Sunday, November 28, 2010

GIVEAWAY: Silhouette

Hey, blogland!

If you have ever been a grade school teacher (or coveted their bulletin board trimmings), you've probably wished you had a die cut machine at your house. Remember these hefty puppies? Ker-chunk!

Well, Ellison branched out into the craft world with its Sizzix home die cut machine. Several systems have spawned off of that, eventually leading to the development of an electronic die cut machine: the Cricut. If you have never seen the Cricut infomercial, you have missed out on some serious craft porn.

Without having used one personally, the only unfortunate thing I can see about a Cricut is that it requires cartridges. As in, a different one for each font or graphics set. BUDGET FAIL

Enter the Silhouette!

Aside from its cartridge-less-ness (yes, it's a word now), there are some other differences as well, which Silhouette has outlined here. One that isn't mentioned is Silhouette's recommendation by Beckie, of Infarrantly Creative fame, and that's enough for me! Well, more like "Beckie's ringing endorsement supported my personal research," and that's enough for me. :D

Want to know what else is great? Well, two things really. First, you can enter to win a FREE Silhouette system on any/all of these fine blogs:
Second, you can purchase a Silhouette system for a very deep discount on Cyber Monday! Decide whichever of the above blogs is your favorite (they probably get credit for the number of people they refer) and use her discount code to save almost $200 on a sweet Silhouette package.

I was planning to choose a Cricut Create as my Star Consultant prize this quarter, but I think I'd rather just take advantage of the Silhouette deal as my one-and-only Christmas present from my husband. Then I can have a die cut machine AND choose a prize! I'm thinking...the Dooney & Bourke Chiara bag? Maybe the gift card? Don't have to decide until December, so I'll put some thought into it.

I am participating in Infarrantly Creative and Tatertots and Jello’s Blog Hop for a chance to win a Mint Cleaner. It is the revolutionary machine that cleans your hard floor surfaces for you.
Click here to join the blog hop and a chance to win!Mint_cloth2
The Mint Cleaner is available at the following places:

Monday, November 8, 2010

Weekend in French Lick

No, it's not as dirty as it sounds. French Lick is a town in Indiana with a couple of fabulous luxury resorts. This past weekend, about 300 beauty consultants got to stay there (tax write-off!) for a training retreat put on by our (in my case, adopted) National Sales Director, the incomparable Linda Toupin.

I'll add more later, but here's what we did Friday night:

Members of the Future Holly Brown National Area (plus 1 groupie ☺) made quite an impact at the country costume night for the 2010 Toupin Area Fall Retreat! Thanks to my hubby for creating the theme song CD and to The Barons quartet for the jokes that inspired our MK version of Hee Haw's "Cornfield" sketch.

Here are our jokes:

Christine Hayes: Hey, Sharon! Did you hear that the Top Directors just got back from a cruise to Greece?!
Sharon Rawlings: Yeah, but did YOU hear what happened when a pink cruise ship crashed into a purple cruise ship?
Christine: No! What?
Kathy Baggerman: Everybody got MAROONED!

Marva Moberly: Hey Hannah, what do you have in that sack?
Hannah Wheeler: [hold up imaginary sack] Look Books!
Marva: If I guess how many are in there, will you give me one?
Hannah: If you guess how many are in there, I’ll give you BOTH of them!

Holly Brown: Doctor! Hey, doc! I haven’t seen you since you gave me my last physical.
Erma Anderson: Well hi, ____. How are you?
Holly: I’m doing great thanks to you. I’ve done exactly as you said after my physical. You told me I “was a HOT MAMA and to be CHEERFUL”.
Erma: What?! I told you you “had a HEART MURMUR and to be CAREFUL!”

Hilary Fiskeaux (me): Knock, knock…
Melissa Noe: Come on in!
Hilary: No, no, no, no — it’s supposed to be a “knock, knock” joke…so…Knock, knock…
Melissa: Come on in!
Hilary: No, no — it’s a “knock, knock” joke. I’ll help you: I say “knock, knock” you say “who’s there”.
Melissa: Oh, okay, I think I’ve got it. Go ahead.
Hilary: Knock, knock…
Melissa: Who’s there?
Hilary: Ryan Rogers
Melissa: Come on in!

Holly: So long everybody!
Melissa: We'll see you in Houston on...
Everybody: [up] Heeeeee-haw!
Christine: That’s all!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween 2010

When Caspian saw the colorful wings at Dollar Tree in September (or was it August?), he immediately declared that the entire family would be faeries: green for him (grass/-hopper faerie) and orange for Perrin (pumpkin faerie). Since I actually OWN a sewing machine now, I was excited to combine crafting with thrifting to create some boy faerie costumes.

I made my own "Asian green jewel beetle" faerie wings using wire hangers, pantyhose, and craft paint. Caspian's leggings were from a thrift store, his tunic used to be an Indian costume from the Peddlers' Mall, and his leafy headdress (also seen on Perrin) was made from elastic and craft leaves. Perrin's tunic used to be a pillow case from Goodwill.

Eventually, I'll get the full step-by-step tutorials up. For now, here are some action shots. (And yes — when the day finally came, Caspian refused to wear the wings that inspired it all.)