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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Pens Review

      Schneider Pens Review

     Okay.  It is no secret to anyone who knows me, I love pens.  I have a serious pen addiction, buying any interesting ones I see.  But I suppose there are worse things to be hung up on, right?  So when I got the opportunity to review several pens by Schneider ( a German company) and Stride I gladly accepted.  Along with a super pack of pens from Shoplet, I received an interesting story about the company that assembles and sells these pens.  Stride was "born" in 1988.  It is the brainchild of Barbara Brennan.  She wanted a work place that would produce green products and allow people with disabilities to work.  She keeps work hours flexible for these disabled people and focuses on helping make their lives better by giving them some independence.  She formed a relationship with Schneider Writing Instruments in Germany and together they produce a really high quality pen.  You can read more about this remarkable company at www.strideinc.com.  It is an interesting site and worth a visit.
     
     The first set of pens I looked at was the Slider Memo XB.  It is a four pack of some rather cool colors - pink, green, orange, and purple (and you never go wrong including purple).  I found the ink to skip a bit at first but after a few moments usage it flowed nicely.  I also really love the "chunky" feel to the barrel of the pens.  Easy on my hands. 

      The next part of this package was 5 different pen types by this company.  Each one has the feel of a much more expensive pen - not your checkout counter ballpoint.  The barrels are nice and comfortable, a little thicker than most pens.  Again the ink sort of skipped at first but it didn't take long to get a very nice even flow.  The top pen, Schneider Xpress, has an 0.8 mm point, filled with waterproof ink.  I had some posters to draw and thought it a good chance to use it.  It worked beautifully.  The ad on the pen says it works up to 3 days without the cap on and won't dry off.  Now, admittedly, if I were a really good reviewer I would set this pen - capless- on the desk and come back in three days.  I admit I am not that sort of good reviewer.  Two reasons - I am crazy about the lines this pen writes and I intend on using it A LOT.  Reason two, one of my big pet peeves is not capping a pen when not in use.  If you decide to test it, let me know.  I won't ever leave it uncapped, but you can still let me know.
     The Slider Basic is the next in the photo.  It is a very nice pen.  Pretty basic (where did hear that?) compared to the rest, but still a nice value for the money.  I did find that if I left it sitting (capped of course) it took a few moments of scribbling to reactivate the ink.  It doesn't have the ergonomic feel of the others, but like I said it is a nice pen and a good value.
     Like all the pens I reviewed this next pen has waterproof ink that dries very quickly.  It is my almost favorite (the first one may win out).  As a teacher I grade a lot of papers.  This RED pen has such a great feel to it.  My hands get tired and the rubberized barrel is a big seller for me.  Check out the Ballpoint Pen Red at Shoplet.
      The Slider Edge is a very inexpensive pen resembling the cheaper counter models.  The big difference is the rubberized barrel on these.  The ink comes in black or blue.  It is nonrefillable and also does not smear even when highlighting something.  Great pen for it's value.
     The last pen shown is a very nice ballpoint pen.  It has a high grade steel clip.  Refills can be purchased on Shoplet.  Again the ergonomic barrel keeps hand fatigue down.  The Viscoglide Retractable Pen is one you may want to guard and make sure when you loan it, you ask for it back.  Maybe though, at only around $4.00, you might could spare one or two for some friends.
      Thank you for dropping by!  I hope you have a great day!
  


Days 177 - 179

     We had some rain!  And now it is cooler!  Yahoo!  I would love to live where this was the type of weather year round.  I probably would miss cold and snow.  I definitely would not miss heat. 
      Friday was day 177 of the create each day challenge.  Can you believe I have not missed a day?!  I wonder if I can actually make it 365 days!  That would be awesome.  I don't get to post everyday, but I do manage to get the art work done.  Of course when school starts back up . . .  For today I did the Square One challenge over on Facebook.  We had to use the tangle meer.  I honestly am not crazy about  that tangle.  I never feel comfortable about how the lines go.  Along with meer I added a variety of borders just to jazz it up.
      I also worked on four more ATC's for the swap.  I am almost through.  So here is group 4 of my cards.
      I had great hopes for day 178, but I didn't seem to put it together well.  I plan on trying another of these 3 panel thingies.  I just don't feel this one "works".  I am using it for the Diane Clancy challenge - letters JWO and also the Facebook challenge stacked and journaled. 
oolong, whirl, jesterz
     I also did my last set of ATC cards.  Yahoo!  They are now in sheet protectors and ready for a trip to the post office on Tuesday.  Then I get to wait and see what goodies I will get!
     I worked on my inchie for day 179 and Every Inchie Monday.  The word was enjoy.  I could not think of anything at first.  Then a strange creative idea hit me!  So I here is the inchie - N (in) JOY.  Make sense?  I may have mentioned I can sometimes have a crazy way of seeing things.  Hopefully it will be different. 
     The inchie is probably all I will accomplish today.  I have got to get started writing a review for some pens.  I love doing reviews and the cool products I get to try out - but I have to make myself write about them.  I plan on writing the review to post with tomorrow's art work - hopefully.
     Thank you for dropping by!  Have a great day!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Days 174 - 176

      For the Diva challenge #223, we were to use the new tangle, umble.  Honestly at first I really was not sure how I liked this tangle.  After playing with it for awhile, I mellowed a bit.  I doubt it will ever be a go-to tangle for me, but it got a bit more likeable. 
Day 174
      Made by Joey's challenge was to do a monotangle with "cornerz".  I struggled in my mind to figure out how to make this tangle interesting as a monotangle.  Finally I decided that some of those cornerz were just begging to be set free!  So they escaped!  I kind of like the feeling of escaping!
Day 175
      I also worked on another piece for today.  It is sort of a two day project.  I have not put anything up on the facebook group "Journaled and Tangled".  The challenge was to use either a template by Genevieve Crabe or one of her stencils.  I won a set of her stencils about a year ago and love them, so using them was my choice.  They are so simple to use (even I can do it).  The results are always fun to see.
     Just a bit of time for some art work today.  Right now I am chilling from having been out for a bit.  I cannot stand heat and today is plenty hot!  I finished up the tile to send to Adele Bruno's string challenge, so I could go ahead and post today.  I plan on working on some of my ATC cards later on.
Day 176
      I hope you enjoyed your stay here for a bit!  Have a wonderfully blessed day!
   

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Days 170 - 173

     Was it only a few months ago I was complaining about the cold?  Well, now it is the heat!  Let's face it, I don't do extremes.  Give me a climate of constant spring.  Of course, when it is this hot staying inside and crafting is the best solution.  (Actually, I would rather do that any day no matter the temp).
     Day 170 was Friday and the day I get the Square One Facebook challenge.  This week it was to use the tangle arukas.  Just used that a few days ago for a challenge.  Ah well.  Good practice I suppose.  This time I went with one of the arukas and made the lines curvy.  Quite a difference.
     For day 171 I worked on my inchie.  The great thing about that challenge is that the words are posted a year in advance and you could actually do the whole year if you chose.  Yeah, right.  There are times I feel like I am rushing to get one done.  Oh well, it is possible.  Just not for me.  The word this week was apple.
     I am working on ATC's for a swap.  I finished up four of those for day 172.  I am having a lot of fun playing with those and adding just a touch of color for each.  This makes 12 of the 21 I need to get done.  Fortunately they are pretty quick to do.

     The New to Me challenge asked us to use a new tangle with the letter F.  I chose three tangles - farling, facade, and footlites.  Footlites was the only one that was not new.  I have used it before.  Unfortunately my shading got a bit more that smudgy. 
     I worked on the challenge for Diane's challenge.  The letters were F, M, and T.  So having discovered the tangle farling yesterday, I decided to use it again today (day 173) along with muzaky and tripoli. 
     That wraps up the last four days.  Now if I don't get this blog posted and linked up to all those places, I won't have any time to do any work for today!  Have a blessed day!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Days 166 - 169 Time to catch up!

       As I have said before, the art work is done daily.  It is just the blogging holding me back.  So I hope you are up to a longer post!  I have 4 days of artsy stuff to get posted!  Might want to put your feet up for a bit and get comfortable . . .
     Day 166, which was Monday by the way, I worked on my inchie challenge and the challenge for Suzy Mosh's New to Me.  The thing about the inchie challenge - it is a small piece of art work, just an inch, but I have increased my vocabulary so much.  One new word every now and then is pretty good.  This week's word was "etna".  Other than an insurance ad on TV many years ago, I had no clue what to do.  I found out it names a volcano.  There is also an anime character by that name.  I chose to go with the volcano.
       For the New to Me challenge, we had to use a new tangle beginning with the letter R and also a tangle by artist Lila Popcheff.  My new tangle was roscoe.  But only after a lot of practice.  This one is really cool, but it evaded me for a while.  Once I got the hang of it, I enjoyed it.  The tangle in the center is trapt 1 by Lila.   Cool looking tangle, isn't it?

     The challenges over at Made by Joey are alphabet monotangles.  We are given one tangle each week and have to focus on just that tangle.  This week, day 167, was to use just the tangle bunzo.  Now I really love that tangle, but could seem to get really creative with a way to use just that tangle.  So I used color to vary it.
     Since Diva's Laura Harms is a colorful person, she chose the theme of "colors of the rainbow" for challenge #222.  This was my day 168.  I took the tangle zenplosion and turned it into sort of a zendala.  I like the colors. 
     Adele Bruno gave us a really cool string for her string challenge.  I am not sure if you can see that it is the letters DAD, for Father's day.  Pretty neat, huh?  I used the tangles umble, diamonds and squares, and double d's for my art for day 169.   
     I guess that wraps up the last few days.  It will take me forever to link up all these challenges.  After that I think I will work on some more of my ATC's for the swap.  I need some zen right now.  Things are bit rough and the peace of drawing will be nice.  Have a wonderfully, blessed day!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Days 164 and 165

     I am overly tired today.  Lakota has allergies something terrible and he woke us up at 5 this morning really biting and carrying on.  So I went to make him some of his special "pimiento cheese".   It really isn't pimiento cheese.  It is grated cheese with a tiny bit of mayo to hold it together and to top it off 2 benedryls tucked somewhere inside.  It is the ONLY way to get a pill in him.  We have tried everything.  After that he went to sleep like a baby and I lay awake tossing and turning!  Maybe I needed a bowl of "pimiento cheese". 
    Yesterday, day 164,  I worked on two challenges.  I finished the challenge for Square One on facebook.  We had to use the tangle "flux".  I am sort of neutral about this tile - nothing really special.  The second one is for Made by Joey.  She is beginning an alphabet monotangle each week.  This week was the letter A and the tangle "aruka".  I love that tangle, but it is a real challenge for me to keep the lines where they need to be.  Of course, it didn't help that I put four on the same tile!
Flux with Spoolies
Aruka
       Today is day 165.   I started this yesterday, but didn't finish it until this morning.  I have gotten behind in my Journal52 challenge.  My goal is to be caught up by the time school starts - because we know I will get lost some then!  This week's prompt was to do a "Silly Animal Zoo".  I had fun doing this page, but honestly I am not super crazy about how it turned out. 
     I think for the rest of the afternoon I am going to look at some school things.  My goal is to have the year mapped out for math (the subject I plan).  I am doing this in hopes it will move things along a bit faster next year - we will see.  And also honestly, I do this because I actually enjoy planning.  Weird, huh?
     Have a wonderful day!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Days 162 and 163 - ATC frenzy!

    It has been awhile since I have done an ATC swap.  Postage can do me in even though I love doing them.  The really nice thing about this swap for Stacked and Tangled (a facebook group) is that I can send all my cards to one place and then they will send me a stack back.  Essentially two times for postage.  Not bad.  I also get lots of gorgeous art work from some of my favorite tanglers.   Swaps are fun.
     My first ATC that I worked on for day 162 is also for Diane and Carolien's ABC  challenge.  I figured, why not?  Our piece of art had to use tangles that begin with a number, C and R.  I used (from the bottom up) chainging, chuchu, 2n5, rolling in, rain or shine, and cle.  Lots of fun and it set the stage for the rest of my ATCs.  Also today I finished 3 others.
      While I had other challenges to work on, I got caught up in some more of the ATCs.  So for day 163 I finished four more cards.  I like the quick work you can do on these.  I can sit while visiting or watching TV and get several done. 
    I wish the colors were brighter in the scan - they are very vibrant in person.  I think for today's creative work I will get to some of those challenges I want to do.  After all, I have until July to finish the cards and I am almost half way there! 
     By the way, welcome and thank you to my new followers!  It is so exciting to see that number grow!  I remember when I started this blog adventure and I went to school and begged asked a few close friends to please follow me so I wouldn't look so lonely over here.  They were nice and said yes.  Now . . .  I have so many wonderful new friends!  I still get excited at each new follower though.
     Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Days 159 - 161

     Monday is the day for the Diva challenge!  Each year at this time we are asked to show our support for Beads of Courage by doing a tile with that theme.  I decided to enlarge the beads so I only have a few on the tile for day 159.  Last year, I think I did lots of little ones - can't really remember.  While the beads are for children battling various diseases, I think probably each one of us could start a strand for ourselves.  We have all seen times when we had to dig deep to  find the courage to move forward.
     Susy Mosh's New to Me challenge can be a real challenge.  Sometimes, I can't find a new tangle to use.  Could that perhaps suggest I spend too much time tangling if I use most of them at some point?  Uh, let's not go there.  Moving right along, for day 160, we had to use tangles that started with the letter D (that were new, of course) and also use a tangle by artist, Genevieve Crabe.  She is an awesome artist and does so much with her weekly newsletter to keep people informed about new tangles and things.  I went first to her tangle site to find one to use.  I discovered a tangle by her that I had not used before - dessus-dessous.  Surprise!  It also began with a D.  Was that lucky or what??  I also used the tangle demi, another by her but more familiar to me.
     Today is day 161.  I have had the Cricut out to cut out an alphabet to use as templates.  I also will probably go back to the Cricut when I finish here.  But I also took a few minutes to do my string challenge for Adele Bruno.  This string and the tangles she gave us to use presented some problems.  I couldn't figure out how to put it all together.  I am sort of happy with it.   The tangles are nvelope, nipa, nuwave, and neuron.
      My crafting table is now a major disaster!  I have cutting things and drawing things everywhere.  Probably I should decide what I am going to do and clean a space to do it.  A messy crafting table really doesn't bother me - except it is also the dining table.  And there is no room for a plate (or two) later on.  One day - I will have a craft ROOM. 
      Thank you for dropping by and I hope you are having a wonderful day. 

Monday, June 8, 2015

Day 158 - Every Inchie Monday

    While the title says "Monday", I did this piece on Sunday for the create each day challenge.  I just knew I wouldn't get it posted til today.  Actually it is the ONLY piece I created yesterday.  I just couldn't work up much creative energy.  Some days are like that I guess. 
     The word this week was "wave".  I thought of a hand waving because I knew drawing an ocean wave would be a stretch.  But as usual I decided to go the harder route.  I am not sure it exactly looks like an ocean, but it is close.  Sort of. 
     I guess I need to get going on something for Monday.   They just updated my gypsy, which is a device that works with the Cricut cutting machine and I am so excited!  I plan on heading off to the world of card making and other goodies!  Thanks for dropping by and saying hello! 
    

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Days 156 and 157

     Another beautiful day!  For yesterday (day 156) I worked on the Square One Facebook challenge.  We had to use the tangle msst.  That tangle tends to show up in a lot of organic pieces because well, it looks like rain and mist.   My tile is sort of haphazard.  I drew a string and then just played around on it without too much of a direction.  It kind of works, I guess. 
     Diva, this past week introduced us to the tangle "boxed up" by Alice Hendon.  I have already done that challenge earlier, but I knew I would have to play with that tangle some more.  It is easy and very relaxing.  So today I worked on a couple of other pieces with that tangle, amongst others.  Here are a few pieces for day 157.
Emerson quote
Snail's Pace
        I hope you are having a wonderful day.  I think I will go and think about - and maybe work on - the Journal52 page.  I cannot decide what to do for the prompt this week, "small success".  See you later!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Day 155

      Even though the weatherman says there is a possibility of evening showers, the weather right now is gorgeous - perhaps a bit warm.  We were out playing a little with Lakota and being very large and black, he just can't take the heat for very long.  Honestly I don't do so well for very long either.  So I headed inside to tangle up some challenges. 
      The first one I completed was for Made by Joey.  We had to use tangle string #006 and tangles that began with a J.  My tangle choices were jajazz and jetties.   I really like this tile.  It is always a favorite of mine to use black and white with a touch of red.
      Diva wanted us to try Alice Hendon's tangle "boxed in" for the UMT challenge.  I think I want to play with this tangle some more.  It is a lot of fun and the shading just makes it pop!  The other tangle is a variation of Amy Broady's troellog. 
     I almost did not do Adele Bruno's string challenge this week.  The tangles she chose were some of my absolute favorites, but I could not get the string drawn.  I drew and erased a dozen times.  It nearly drove me nuts.  I am glad I persevered though because I really like everything about this tile.  The color of pink, my favorite tangle - nzeppel.  Everything.  Guess that shows why you should not give up.
     Now to get all of these posted to their appropriate sites!  That is always an endeavor.  Thank you for coming by and checking this out.  I hope your day is filled with lots of blessings!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Day 154

     I sort of "goofed" with today's challenge tile.  It is for Suzy Mosh's New to Me Challenge.  We were supposed to use new tangles for us that start with an A and also a tangle by Margaret Bremner.  The tangle by Margaret Bremner is sort of new.  I don't use chebucto very much because it is a struggle for me - as you can tell.  I was hoping adding some color to it would help.  It didn't.  I think I like it even less.  As for the new tangles, I got busy and filled the tile and neither are completely new to me.  Arabel (lower right) is one of my favorite go to tangles.  So it is definitely not new.  Now, the other one - afreeka - is not an overly used one.  So for the sake of the challenge I will count it as my "new" one, even if it is not completely new.  I will do better next time, Suzy, I promise!
      I think I will spend the rest of the day working on my paper dolls for my class door.  I can't wait to finish them up and share those - although that is going to be awhile.    Have a great day!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Days 152 and 153

     Hello!  I hope you are having a wonderful day.  It is not raining here and the weather is very pleasant.  Yahoo! 
     Day 152 was the day for my inchie!  The word this week was pillow!  I promise I seriously thought about a really cute 3D stuffed pillow.  But that is as far as I got.  Being needle and thread challenged I decided on drawing a pillow.  I am sure if you go over to Every Inchie Monday (see sidebar), you will see some awesome interpretations of this word.  This group is fantastic.
     Somehow I am missing the challenges over at Facebook's Stacked and Tangled.  So for day 153 I worked on two that I had overlooked.  While I love Facebook, I do not like the lack - in my opinion - of organization.  The first one is for the challenge, Name Your Stripes.  It also is going to be for the alphabet challenge - YZA.  I used the tangles zanzee (mine!), zanella, yewdee, amalea and arckles. 
     The other challenge at Stacked and Tangled I missed was to use string #157 and stack some tangles in it.  I used cadent, come and go, c-scape, and chainging. 
     To me it looks like the top of a knitted bonnet or cap!  Oh well, not intentional.  Now I am going to pull out the Cricut and cut some really adorable kiddos for my door at school.  I cut and plan a paper doll for each child to show who is in my room.  It is a ton of work, but honestly just as much fun!  I try to make it look as much like the child as I can.  (Okay, I did love paper dolls as a child)  I will share some of these along as I get them done.  It usually takes several weeks, so it may be awhile. 
     Thanks for coming by and I hope you have a great day!