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Monday, August 27, 2012

A Triple Header!!

     With school looming very closely, it has been a busy week or so.  So I am posting all three challenges, dares, etc. under one "roof".   That may happen frequently during the school year.  My days of being a lady of leisure are about over.  But what a wonderful and relaxing summer it has been!

Celtic Knot Challenge #2

   I am really loving Judy West's teaching us how to do celtic knots.  They look so complicated, but she breaks them down until they are very . . .well, not easy, but less complicated to do.  I just played around with the design and then decided it needed a bit of color.  Check out her "distructions" at Creative Doodling.  It is a cool sight if you have not discovered it.

Dare #20

     I can't figure out why this dare was so wicked!  I just could not get inspired.  I decided to keep lots of space - not usual for me and use my favorite tangle, Verve.  It also gets some of my other favorites - betweed, pea-nuckle, emingle, and beadlines.   After I finished it, I felt okay about it.  Kinda reminds me of a funky driving wheel.  Okay my brain is tired . . .  But go to The Bright Owl and see all the awesome entries.

Challenge #84

    Soooo glad to hear the Diva is back - mostly because it means Artoo (her really cute little guy) is out of the hospital.  My prayers go out to you and your family, Diva.
    The challenge this week at the Diva's site was to draw our string with our eyes closed.  I drew three tiles and discovered I tend to be much more curvy with my eyes closed.  I chose the one string I liked the best to work on.  I wanted to take a pre tangle picture but my camera phone and I had an argument and it won.  I also decided to pull out the sepia pens.   Just to be different.  
   The center area was my blind string, then I webbed around it fully aware of my moves - or maybe I shouldn't admit that.

Contest picture

  Over at The Craft Barn, there is a cool give-away of crafting goodies.  Check it out and enter.  Maybe one of us will get lucky.  Here are the goodies:

    Guess that wraps up another week.  I think I like posting these separate - I get confused.  Hope I haven't linked everyone to who knows where!!  That would be wild.  Take care, have a safe and happy week and HAPPY TANGLING!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Zendala Dare #19 and a new challenge!

     Arrgh!  My summer is slipping away!  In a few short weeks, I will be off to a mad dash!  But for now, I can enjoy the dares and challenges provided for me.  And they are so much fun!  The dare this week by Erin is awesome.  See the button for The Bright Owl and check out all the beautiful work that others have done.  This template appeals to me.  I love the boxes!  I copied several others and hope to get to doing some more.  The first one is really a mono tangle - unless we have to count the woven lines in the middle.  I love the tangle "shimono" by JJ LaBarbera.  Actually I love lots of the tangles she does.  But I chose to do shimono both large and small to cover my boxes.  I also like how they turned out 3D.  Kinda cool.
Boxed In
The next one I really didn't have a plan for.  I just wanted to see how Cindy Angiel's tangle "sprigal" would look on the boxes in color.  Then I needed something for the center of each box and something to pull them together.  So I chose fengle and paradox.  Of course, there had to be some paradox somewhere!
       I found another neat challenge this week you might want to check out.  It comes to us from Judy West at Creative Doodling.  She has shown us how to make a freestyle celtic knot then asked us to use one in a piece of art.  So here is my entry in her challenge.  Oh by the way, Diva, you have inspired me to keep at mooka - can you tell?
      Hope everyone is having a wonderful week and happy tangling!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Duo Tangle Challenge #83

  Everyone has tangles they "overdo".  Ones they love to use and seem to show up on everything - those "go to" tangles we love.  I have several and they seem to change every now and then.  I will find myself doing lots of paradox, then it seems verve has taken over.  Then there are those tangles we enjoy, but avoid.  Those I have put in my tangle organizer, and then moved rapidly on to sunnier skies!  When I first saw "assunta", I thought how pretty.  I put it in the organizer and decided to leave it alone.  Those little dashes drove me nuts. I am by nature a perfectionist and they weren't even and they didn't line up.  
     My next big tangle to avoid was "mooka".  Now this is one I really wanted to like - it's big swoopy lines were beautiful.  I love the flow of one line moving gracefully around the page.  I watched the video, put it in my organizer and then decided to admire it on other people's pages.  I just couldn't do it.
     So now enter the duo tangle challenge by Diva this week.  What should she choose but assunta and mooka!!  Yuck!  I don't want to miss a challenge (I am also obsessive), but what on earth can I do to make these two tangles work for me?  Look at the mooka video again for starters.  That helped . . . some.  Not much.  Then I pulled out the sketch pad to play around hoping for something.  I discovered that mooka would fit nicely in an overly large assunta.  So that is where I started.  After that I drew some assunta around the outside, because I had to.
     The second tile was just playing around some more.  Again I added some assunta - because I had to.  I have discovered I am enjoying playing with mooka and probably will use it from time to time.  I also now have two tiles in my stack with assunta on them, . . . and that's probably all I will ever have.  
     Have a great week.  Oh and Diva, I really "hate" the tangles verve, keeko and paradox if you want to make us use those.  Maybe.   Happy tangling! 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Zendala #18

      I feel as though my mind is being pulled into two (or more) directions.  I want to tangle, I need to cut some things out for my classroom.  School begins for teachers on Aug. 30th.  Just around the corner.  I have "arranged" my room 100 times + in my mind.  I hope to go in one day this week and at least unpack the furniture.  Then another day to decorate.  That leaves 2 planning days.  Whew!  Time will fly!
     Thank you, Erin, for an "excuse" to relax and chill a bit.  This week's dare was loads of fun - as usual.  I decided to do one in color and one more traditional.  Both were lots of fun.  
   I hope everyone has a great week and see you at the next dare!  Thanks for dropping by!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Challenge #82

     Yahoo!  This week is off to such a great start!  Seriously.  I took part in a blog hop about Kass Hall's  new book, Zentangle Untangled.  There were several different give-a-ways.  Of course, loving prizes, I entered all.  I won not once, but twice!!  I got a really neat rubber stamp that can be used as a tangle string  and a beautiful piece of art work (a tangled map) by Jill Berry.  Wow!
     Then to make the week even sweeter - I just read an e-mail from my last year's student teacher.  She has a job! I am so thankful because she is a dynamite person.  Hope you are reading this, my friend and lots of luck.  There is a lucky bunch of fourth graders out there!
      The Diva this week asked us to use the tangle Brayd for our challenge.  Not one I have spent much time with after putting it into my tangle notebook.  So I pulled out my sketchpad to play a bit with it.  It looked okay, but not quite right.  So I went back to Michelle Beauchamp's site to see the directions again.  I read it a bit more carefully and saw that she compared the strokes to Yincut.  I had an "aha" moment and things came together.
      My first tile was to keep it simple.  I pulled out a piece of paper I had watercolored on and just focused on getting it right.  I added some mysst, pokeleaf, and twistee.  It became a rainforest.
Rainforest
     On the next tile, I played around with trying to vary Brayd using some other tangles.  Then when it all got tangled up, I connected everything with some hollibaugh-like lines.
     I wasn't sure about this tangle at first, but after much playing, decided it is really a lot of fun.  I love these challenges because they force me to try some different things.  Helps me grow.  I think before my summertime leisure runs out, I am going back to the Diva's first challenges and work my way to where I started.  That should be fun!
     Hope your week is going great and filled with lots of blessings!  Also good luck to you, Alice, on becoming a CZT this week-end.  I am very envious and want you to post all about it!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Zendala # 17 - In Honor Of . . . .

   Erin at The Bright Owl asked us to do a zendala template this week to celebrate the life of someone who had been involved with cancer.   As I mentioned in my last post, I have lots of people to choose from - 3 of my grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, and students.  On the last post I chose to honor one of my former students, Samantha Gilley.  This post I will travel a lot closer to home.  Both of my parents lost a battle with cancer.

Doris Marie Cusson

Mother's battle with melanoma was stretched over about a 10 year period.  Most of the time you had no idea she had any problems.  She was dynamic and full of energy - a tiny, fiery redhead!  While she had the legendary red head's temper, she was full of caring and love for those around her.  It is hard to believe she has been gone for 36 years.  
     I wanted her zendala to be full of things that represented her.  Her favorite flower was yellow roses, so that was my start.  She also had a beautiful lilac bush outside our kitchen and I loved that flower.  Even today, I cannot smell or see lilacs without thinking of home.  For the tangles I chose Lezy because of the delicate quality.  I also liked facets (one of my favorites, anyway) because she had many facets to her personality and she was a true jewel!  Bateek reminded me of a cozy quilt and cubine, well, honestly because it fit! I kept debating on completely coloring it, but finally decided to let the rose and lilacs take center stage by being the only color.
Mama

James Moser Cusson

I lost Daddy 21 years ago to bone cancer.  He called one day to say he wasn't feeling well and thought he would go to the doctor.  Daddy never was sick or went to the doctor.  About a week later he was gone.   We didn't even have time to get home to North Carolina to see him.  It was fast and furious.
      Daddy spent his life designing buildings and doing floor plans for people.  I even got to work with him for awhile.  So his zendala had to have things to represent precision and drafting.  I found the tangle stubs in Sandy Bartholomew's book and used that on the corners.  The next idea was to use paradox.  It has a double meaning.  He helped me draw this for a drafting contest back in high school (it is also called Huddy's Doodle).  Paradox also fits because Daddy was such a paradox type of personality.  He was fun-loving, yet moody.  He was loving, yet had a hard time showing it.  Betweed because it helped add to the precision aspect and Volan because he loved cars and that reminds me of little steering wheels.  I also tried to put some Rain in.  One of my favorite memories was when I was younger and Daddy sent us out to play in the rain.  Mama couldn't believe he told us we could go out and get soaked - he usually was much more restrained!  I added little rulers of my own.
Daddy

     Personally, I love these two zendalas.  They are filled with memories and love.  I had a hard time finishing them because I kept getting lost in thoughts.  Two wonderful, loving people and I was blessed to call them mama and daddy.

Hope your journey this week was a happy one.  Take care and tell someone you love them.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Challenge #81 - Relay for Life

     This week's challenge is done by guest tangler - Erin Olsen (she's the gal who gives us such cool zendala dares and templates).  What fun!  Yes, but something about this one really "challenged" me.  It must be the circles!
     To get started I chose to try the logo for Relay for Life - at least in part.  Then after they were in place, I simply drew a blank.  I could not figure out what to do.  I "made up"  something for the rest of those circles, used Verve (because it is becoming my absolute - momentary - favorite), and then drew a flower for the center.  Rather bland ideas, but I like how it turned out.

     This challenge came about to help raise awareness of a cancer walk Erin is participating in.  Check out the info on this by clicking either button on the side of this post.  I doubt there is a person alive who has not connected with someone touched by cancer.  I have lost both parents, 3 of my grandparents and several aunts and uncles to this enemy.  I have seen it move swiftly through them, striking without a warning.  I have seen it weave its way slowly and deliberately.  Either way,  the devastation it leaves in its path is the same.  To the person afflicted, to those loving and not knowing how to help.  It is no respecter of persons.
    Some time back I wrote about Rebekah, a child in my second grade room.  She was a beautiful dynamo fighting leukemia.  I never saw her cry or complain - just keep battling until her race was over. Another child comes to mind.  Samantha.  She entered my third grade room, very disfigured by retinal blastoma.  Her sight was failing.  She never complained and had the quirkiest sense of humor I have ever encountered.  She eventually lost all her sight.  She called me frequently and came by to see me.  One of the first places she came when she got her guide dog was to see me.  I knew the rules about petting a "working dog".  Her first words, when I met Peach, was "go ahead, Miss Cusson, you know you have to pet him!"  Samantha got involved in tandem bike competitions, traveling all over the world and biking with a partner.  Her last call to me told me about a young man she had met and they were going to be married.  "He's not blind, and he still thinks I am great, go figure".  Two weeks before their marriage, life dealt her the final blow.  She would not recover as she had countless times in the past.  No more quirky calls.  No more "Hey, Miss Cusson."
      The last tile really doesn't have a lot of tangles in it.  Just sunshine and thoughts of sunshine for those suffering from cancer.  Thanks for taking time to read this and as always your comments are my bits of sunshine.  May God bless you this week.
Samantha's sunshine