I’m hauling these critters out of my virtual vault as I didn’t lift a designing finger over the Easter and Spring Break from school, other than to do some plant illustrations for my husband. I know many of you will already have these cool animals, but then again you might not. There so many creative layouts made with them last year I figured I’d revive them so that anyone who didn’t, could now. So stay tuned over the next week as I round them all up and give ‘em out again.
Seriously, I’m not avoiding anyone, but I have not been online much in the past few days so that I can catch up on a few things, and get organized – just in case you’ve wondered where I’ve gone or if I’ve neglected to visit you.
It was a good break, we went HOME to our folks for the weekend, four days actually and we just settled into the embrace of being with family. I hope I never take our parents for granted – they are most amazing role models for what a mom and dad should be. Honestly, we all look forward to getting together, and Mom spends months preparing food. I have a ‘never diet’ rule which applies to any time we visit... and anyhow it would be futile!
Now, when we get home, its a different story – after our 4 day all you can eat buffet lifestyle, we lapse back into much more modest eating habits, that is unless we have dinner guests. And we did have guests over on Friday. We had the opportunity to unite two Italians – our Pastor Jim and wife Elaine, and our adopted Italian Mama, Italia and her husband John. It makes for a lot of good humour and waving of hands - and the evening wrapped up with the two couples looking forward to getting to know each other better.
NOT serving lamb for dinner...
Jim did not bring the sheep he’s admiring with him ... he’s got a huge collection of sheep and while he probably does not need another we could not resist getting him this one which makes the most mournful bleating when it’s turned upside down (you would too, if someone were to turn you upside down, I bet!)
A nice way to pass the evening with friends!
I did take care to make the main course low-fat fare by preparing rice wraps filled with a red Thai rice, beef and fresh veggie filling, but I went all-out for dessert. Keeping with the oriental theme, I made a chocolate cream pie using coconut milk instead of cow milk (LOL, mainly because I had no real milk in the house and no time to go to town...) but it WORKED. I topped it off with some delicious crème de leche (rich, thick, yummy Caramel) which I got the recipe from Gina’s blog.
Ohh the Caramel center is too-die-for good!
I did not follow Gina’s recipe completely because I am a wimp. The recipe says its ok to put a can in the crock pot, unopened and cook it for 8 hours. And this worked for Gina. And this has worked for millions upon millions of people all over the world. But for a few people, the can has exploded and caused bodily harm and destruction of kitchens – and this would for surely happen to me if I were to try it. So I opted to track down her source of the recipe and read all the comments and found another option which would allow me to do the same thing but with piercing the can first. Whew.Recipe:
Take one can of Sweetened Condensed Milk. Pierce a small hole in the top. Put a cloth in the bottom of your Crockpot (Gina’s advice as she was left with a rust stain in the bottom of hers the first time) Put the can on the cloth. Fill with water up to within ½ inch from the top of the can. Put lid on crockpot. Turn on low. Let cook for 8 hours. Open can and enjoy (be careful, its HOT when you first take it out!)
You may notice a new button in my sidebar regarding the CWO Writer’s Contest – just click on it to check it out, and also here’s an explanation as well:
Christian Women Online, in conjunction with Art Bookbindery, is sponsoring the “Her Life Reflected,” writing contest. We are looking for essays that tell us how your mother, or a mother that you know has reflected the heart of our Heavenly Father in her life. The winning essay will be one that is both written well, and of most importance, one that reflects God as being the central focus of one's life.
The contest is open to women aged 18 years and older, who reside in Canada or the United States. Employees of Art Bookbindery or regular writers of Christian Women Online, are not eligible to enter.
Our judges will choose only one winner. That winner will receive $400.00 U.S. from Art Bookbindery, 2 copies of Darlene Schacht's humorous book, The Mom Complex (one for you and one for mom!), 2 copies of Kathleen Carnali's music CD, Dangerous Prayer, 2 Proverbs 31 mugs from Mugs of Truth (a design idea inspired by CWO friend, Iris of Sting my Heart), and an autographed photo of Candace Cameron Bure along with a DVD of her testimony. Now that's a great package! We will announce the winner on Mother's Day, May 11th, 2008, and will publish the at that time.
Robyn – you left me a comment regarding me and my alternate personality Olivia LOL, possibly creating some vectors of Koi and Goldfish for sale at the Shoppe – well sure thing! I will work on some in next few weeks, if you could just be patient with me? Also, feel free to email me anytime too, at lalalimeAThotmailDOTcom anytime if you have another request (typed in letters rather than symbols to foil spammers) I am really encouraged that you’ve given me positive feedback on my vectors, as so far they have not really ‘caught on’. I put a tremendous amount of work into them so that anyone design ing finds them easy to work with, weather using pngs, Illustrator, photoshop etc, you can easily use my files... do you have a testimony as to the ease of use? If they become more popular I will certainly continue on with the vector series? And Robyn, I’m TICKLED you have purchased some of the series to date!*****
Can you, for one fun and adventurous minute, see yourself on a Vespa LX50 Scooter? If you live in Canada and would like the opportunity to win one, just click HERE to enter the contest!
The most common ways of image resizing - cropping and basic shrinking/enlarging usually ends up with compromised results - in the form of pictures which are either distorted or eliminate detail. This program is a web-tool which scans the picture for ‘important’ sections and allows you to manipulate the size of the image by just resizing the picture’s ‘unimportant’ sections. You can watch an impressive video on how it works at the website too. Just click HERE.
I caught a few moments of a tv show the other and just had to share a very interesting concept with you. Its called Aberdeen Cubes, and its basically a store located in the Aberdeen mall in Vancouver. The store is filled with walls of ‘cubes’ which a person can rent out. They start at $80 dollars a month. The cubes are then filled by the renter with the merchandise they are trying to sell – so if you have a new idea, you can try it out here, to find out if it will generate much interest, and without investing a ton of money to find that out. Its a neat idea, and you can watch the video about it HERE.