Ah, the holidays. Oh, the joys and the miseries of dealing with our loved ones. Have you found yourself complaining to a friend about an upcoming family event? You just know that Aunt So-and-So is going to make a snotty remark about your children. Uncle so and so will get drunk. Your brother's new girlfriend is too perfectly skinny and far along on her career and just knows it. Grandma will say something racist. Your nephew will sneeze without covering his mouth. Do you have this sort of list of things that drive you crazy that you just KNOW are going to happen and you just HATE dealing with? Does your friend that you've been complaining/kvetching/whining/moaning/"oh, yeah, well, listen to this one..." with - does she or he have this sort of list too??????
Bossy Girls to the rescue with a way to make this FUN: Have a race!
1. Write up a list of all those awful things that your relatives do. Your friend does the same.
2. Decide to have a race to:
--- see who can check the most things off within a certain amount of time
--- or compete to see who can check the most things off
--- or set up the race in any way that makes you happy!
3. Set up a scoring system if you want to get really really into this. Perhaps you can get extra points if a family member does their dreaded (now highly anticipated) thing more than once.
3. Arrange to check in with each other either as things happen, or every hour, or once a day, or? via text message or phone call or? to see if you are "winning". See? Now you are actually looking FOWARD to witnessing these awful behaviors. Now, when your sister does that annoying thing that used to make you cringe, you will think, "AHA! Chhhheck that off my list! I'm gonna win win win!
4. Whoever wins has to take the other out to lunch, or cook the other dinner, or treat the other to an afternoon out for a manicure, or?
Giving credit where credit is due: your head bossy girl over here read this beautiful idea in an Oprah magazine many many moons ago. I do not remember the year or the issue, let alone the author. If anyone knows this, please let me know in a comment so credit can be given. :-)
Why be normal, especially on Halloween? Forget bobbing for apples or drinking pumpkin beer in a bar. And our kids are too old for trick or treating. Some of us Bossy Girls enthusiastically volunteered at the Lone Fir Cemetery's Tour of Untimely Departures. The oldest cemetery in Portland has a tour every Halloween with actors at several graves portraying the people buried there. How cool is that?
The cemetery is everything you imagine a cemetery should look like, especially for Halloween: huge trees, elaborate tombstones, moss, falling leaves...
I ended up an actress myself for a while, being in the right place at the right time when the tour groups were getting backed up waiting for the ones in front. "Slow them down over there!" one of the organizers said. "Over there?" I asked, "I know that tombstone and that story." So I went and improvised portraying Mary Alice Oberly, who was buried there. Actually, she used to be buried there, but her sister was so mortified that Alice's male "customers" had paid for such an elaborate and large tombstone, that she had the epitaph erased and Alice's body moved to another cemetery. Ooh, I just love to play a bad girl! Now I really wish I knew all about what Mary Alice Oberly was really like.
Bossy Girls say: Step outside the box for holiday activities! Google away and you may be surprised to find out what activities are happening where you live. (I know, I know, we can't all live in fabbity-fab Portland Oregon, but I'm sure there are some cool things happening elsewhere, too.) Volunteer somewhere. Research old traditions and incorporate them when you throw a party at your own house. Make it a potluck if you are broke! What else can you think of?
It seemed like a no brainer. Pay $400 or so up front for a machine that will cut any font on your computer, in almost any size, plus any image file you can find. That compared to $50 - $100 for a traditional cutting machine followed by $50 to $100 or more for each and every metal alphabet die set, plus more $ for each image.
Especially when Xyron announced that the Wishblade cutting machine is now Mac compatible. (Well, they certainly exagerated about that, but that is another story, and its a bit better now...also, I hear that other company's cutters - like the Silhouette, Pazzles, and CraftRobo - have better software and customer support.)
THEN, the rest of my family upgraded to the Tiger version of Mac's operating system, and I had to wait for months to upgrade, all because Xyron's Wishblade software, Create and Cut, was not compatible with Tiger. Turns out, there were a ton of PC users out there who were equally unhappy because they had upgraded to Vista before they knew that Xyron had not done the same for Creat and Cut. You couldn't even buy a new PC with any other operating system than Vista or a Mac without Tiger. People were stuck waiting, their Wishblades untouched.
Moral of Story: If you buy this kind of cutting machine, you are stuck in the upgrade race. You know what its like; it happens with all your electronics. how long before the entire machine is obsolete? And how many times will you be unable to use it? If this is not a problem for you, then go for it and get one. You could use your rubber and acrylic stamps and/or a Coluzzle to make letters and shapes when you can't use the machine. If you no longer like the idea of buying an electronic cutter:
Bossy Girl's Advice: Go find all those people who just bought Silhouettes/Wishblades etc (and Cricuts too, but more about that below) and are selling all their metal dies for cheap (Craigslist is one good place to look). You will have cutting tools that will still be functional for your grandkids. By then, our designs may have gone out of and come back into fashion! Still, its pretty cool to be able to cut any font that's on your computer, right? Especially when you consider all the designs to be found in dingbat fonts (you know, the picture fonts.)
Step 1. Find a Cricut on Craigslist (about $100 to $150 around here, more for the larger one).
Step 2. go to http://www.craftedge.com/products/products.html for $90 software that lets you use your Cricut to cut ANY font on your computer, plus any svg files. AND, its both PC and Mac compatible. Its called Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL) and its made by Craft Edge. In case you have heard bad things about it: I hear it had some problems at the very, very beginning when it was first released, but that the bugs have been worked out. You could spend less than $200 for both the Cricut and SCAL.
Step 3. Continue to keep an eye out for those metal dies on sale for cheap, in case of electronic obsoleteness.
Step 4. Oh, ok... go ahead and buy some of those Cricut cartridges, just 'cause the designs are so darned cute on some of them! Ebay is the cheapest source for that I have seen.
This solution is way cheaper than buying a new Silhouette or Wishblade.
Another quick note: according to Provocraft (the maker of the Cricut) using SCAL will invalidate your warranty. Of course they say that; they want to sell cartridges. Who cares? The warranty is only for a year, anyway. And yes, this is perfectly ethical. Independent software companies have been making software as add-ons for things they didn't create for years now, and it has been deemed legal.
I'm loving Donna Downey's new fabric items made for scrapbookers. And entire hour long video work shops about layering fabric and paper. That's gotta have some great ideas. I'll try one and post again about how it was.
More vintage fabrics! I gave up on finding information on the internet about dating fabric, and headed to the library. Now its off to the bookstore today. You know, I would have thought the web would have tons of info on this. If anyone knows a good site, please let me know! I am a sponge ready to learn!!!
Getting ready to post some of my first vintage fabrics to my Ebay store, and they aren't just fabric; they are vintage dish towels with some of the coolest designs, mostly travel souvenirs. I'm hoping scrapbookers and mixed media artists will be as interested in these as quilters and collectors will. Just take a sneak peak close up look at how cool:
Perhaps I am crazy? Having been working on organizing, gathering info on, and scanning my mother's side of the family's photos for MANY years already, not to mention some of my Dad's side: I have taken on my biological father's side of the family - and they are just about as messy as my mother's side: mostly loose and in boxes. With auntie's help, thank goodness. How do we end up the Keepers of the Family Stories & Photos? I'm not sure, but I know most of the other family members appreciate it. Show some interest in family history and genealogy, and voila, you assigned the task! Ok, ok, and be willing! The secret to success: to know that you do not have to do it all at once. It could take years. Decades even. But once they are digitized, you can easily get copies to multiple family members. That makes there chances of preservation so much greater.
Bossy Girls speak their mind. Bossy Girls are not afraid to hear their Bossy Girlfriends speak their minds. Bossy Girls know that they may - or may not - follow their Bossy Girlfriends' advice. Bossy Girls know how to make fun even in a dull situation. Bossy Girls love to let their inner children play. Bossy Girls also love to vamp it up! Bossy Girlfriends love each other, flaws and all. Bossy Girls allow themselves and each other to vent and weep, but not for too long. Bossy Girls stand by their Bossy Girlfriends with support, affection, and, yes, advice!