Thursday, November 20, 2014

Bachlorette Painting Party


I don't know about your area, but around the Buffalo, NY
area painting studios have become a big thing.
This is a studio where you can go and learn to paint a picture from
start to finish in about 2 hours.
Vicki had her bachlorette party at a studio like this.
is one of the studios in our area.
Vicki chose the picture ahead of time and they were all
set up for us when we got there.
This was the painting we were to learn to paint.
We started off with a blank white canvas.
Notice the paper plate palette?
There were only 3 colors on it,
red, black and white.
Those are the only colors we were going to use.
Step by step the picture began to emerge.
We did have a break, while our paintings dried.
Refreshments are encouraged and we had plenty of them.


Painting with a Twist doesn't have a liquor license,
but if you bring wine (or whatever) you can serve it 
yourself.
Here is a selfie of me with Vicki, 
our beautiful bride.
Then it was back to work on our painting,
and before long.......
the painting was done.
This is my painting ready to come home to
be framed and hung.
Since my husband is a photographer and frames
his own work, I have a custom framer in the house.
I think this painting will be hung in my crafting room.
And here is the whole group with our paintings.
Now you might ask, why there is a guy at a bachlorette party.
That is the brides brother, Mikey, he was her "Man of Honor"
Patrick had a "Best Lady"
I'm sure you also noted that Mikey's painting is a bit different than the rest.
The teacher told us that something like 80% of the men who 
come to a painting class, don't follow the directions and 
end up with something totally different than what was intended.
Mikey's painting sure was different!
The important thing is that we had a lot of fun.
Everyone's painting turned out different.

I'm glad you stopped by today.
If there is a Painting with a Twist 
or another studio like it in your area,
I'd encourage you to give it a try.
It's a lot of fun and you'll be surprise what you can create.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!


Monday, November 17, 2014

Wedding Card for Mom

I'm having so much fun with my Silhouette Cameo!
I have been playing around with designing my own cut files
and I'm having a ball with it.
I saw a wedding card that I loved and was inspired 
to make a file of my own in a similar style.
I cut everything out twice and took it all with me to a crop
to assemble.
My intention was to make a card for my Mom to give my 
nephew and niece for their wedding.
I only needed the one, but wanted to be prepared in the event that
I messed something up.
Not to worry, I didn't goof up and ended up with 2 cards.

The panels of the dress were embossed with an embossing folder
with tiny hearts using the Cuttlebug. 
I embossed the stripes on the shirt using a scoring board
and a stylus.
I made this card a gate fold.
The flowers on the dress and the lapels were 
popped up with foam tape and glue dots.
The second card was made the same way, with 
a different colored card base.
Mom chose the red card.
I printed a sentiment on the computer for the inside 
of the card.
This card fits perfectly in an A-2 sized envelope,
it measures 5 1/2 x 4 1/4.

I was very pleased with the way these cards turned out.
I love that I created the cut file myself.

I hope you've been inspired in some way today.
Come again soon, you never know what you'll
see next on 
Kristie Kreates.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Ireland #20 Peat Bogs and Steaks.

I took these pictures on our return trip from 
the beautiful beaches and cliffs.
These are my "Peat Bog" pictures.
Right in the center of this picture you see a dark 
line and a pile of dirt.
That pile isn't dirt at all, but cut peat.
Here is an official definition of peat:
"A Brown, soil-like material characteristic of boggy,
acid ground, consisting of partly decomposed
vegetable matter.  It is widely cut and dried for use in 
gardening and as fuel."
Here in the U.S. we are most familiar with it in the form of
peat moss, which we use in gardening.
What I'm talking about here is it's use as fuel.
My first encounter with peat as a fuel was on my 
first trip to Ireland, many years ago.
I will never forget the distinctive smell of 
burning peat.  I can't even explain it to you.
Let's just say, it's not my cup of tea.
In this picture you can see where the peat was cut into tiers
From what I have read, it took several thousand years
to form this peat.
When it is harvested, an area is cut into.
They cut down into the peat and from there cut the tiers.
Here you can see that they have dug deeper and into tiers.
As they cut down the tiers, they cut off the peat
in "bricks" and pile them up in big piles.
I've heard 2 different opinions on burning peat as fuel
for heating.
Some say that it is an economical way to heat, 
PJ (I spoke of him in a past post) said that it is not
an economical source of heat, but that he does burn
peat during the holidays.
He and his family love the scent of the burning peat
and it brings back fond memories of past Christmas'
Much like some have fond memories of pine scent, 
or baking pies, cinnamon and roasting turkey.
As I said earlier, I don't care for the scent, but then
again, it isn't something I grew up with.
I do however find it interesting to see the places they are
harvesting the peat.  It also is amazing that this looks like 
a brick of dirt, but it is burned in a fireplace or stove.
Here are a few other pictures I took of the peat
during our trip.
Many homes and businesses have peat piled at the
side of the house/building.
There were places where there were big piles of peat at the
side of the road, presumably to be picked up.
Must have been harvested in the bog behind it and
left there for pick up.

And a closer picture of the peat.

Now on to the Steaks!
The night before when we were at
The West 
the men at the next table had the most
amazing looking and smelling steaks!
Soooooo, we HAD to go back for another dinner
at The West.
This time 5 of us had the steaks.
What makes the steaks so good? You might ask.
Well, let me start at the beginning of the meal.
I, as always, started my meal with ONE
Diet Coke.  Only one!
Why is that? The reason is simple.
Diet Coke in Ireland is freakin' expensive!
Here is a picture of what you get for
the equivalent of about $5.00 U.S. 
That's right $5.00 for a diet Coke
and it's only an 8 oz. bottle.
Cost more in some places than a
Guinness or  Smithwick or
any other kind of beer or ale!
So I limited it to one a day.
Ed and I both had the cream of mushroom soup.
We had had some cream of mushroom soup before and 
found it a little lacking, but this was wonderful.
The first time we had it at another restaurant, we were
surprised to find no pieces of mushroom in the soup.
Then at The West, we found the same thing and also
found this with other creamed soups.
When they say creamed they really mean it,
no pieces of veggies in the soup at all,
it is all creamed.
I have to say though, that this soup was one of the best
cream of mushroom soups I've ever had.
And I LOVE me some cream of mushroom soup!
We also had salad with our meals, very nice.
Dave was the only one that didn't have a steak,
he had a salad with grilled chicken.
He said it was very good.
Then came the steaks.
The steaks at The West come to the table on a 
lava stone that has been heated to 440 degrees Celsius.
That is over 800 degrees Fahrenheit! 
They put the steak on the stone, sear it, flip it over and then
serve it to you.  If you want it to stop cooking, 
you take it off the stone, otherwise you just cut it and eat it.
And believe me, this steak was so good!
Along with the steak, you are served 3 dipping sauces.
Garlic butter - horseradish - peppercorn
They were all incredibly good.
The others got mashed potatoes with their steaks.
I got "Sumo Wedges"
which are "fat chips with Cajun seasoning"
They were very good, cooked perfectly and very spicy.
We all enjoyed The West for the second time.
No room for dessert, even though they all sounded
fabulous.
There was only one other restaurant/pub that we 
went to more than once.
More on the other one later.
We did write a glowing report on 
Trip Advisor for this restaurant 
  We found the service to be fabulous
and the food to be incredible.
We would definitely make a trip to Westport again just
to eat at The West!
Here is a picture of 
The Celtic Adventurers
having dinner at The West.

Flowers of the Day

The areas we were in in the last couple days 
didn't have a lot of flowers, but there were these beautiful
purple flowers growing along the roadsides and
in the peat bogs.
I don't have a clue what they are, but they were pretty,
covering large areas with purple.
And  we saw sheep among the flowers.
In an area where there was a lot of brown
the purple was so pretty.
Thanks for traveling along with me.
Next time PJ answers a couple questions and
we're off to a few places that were
busts!
But then on to some wonderful adventurers.
See you next time!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Christmas cards

This year I am making my Christmas cards.
This first one is a one of a kind.
I wanted a simple design and when I put this together
I realized that it was not going to be a quick and easy
one to replicate, so there will be only this one.
I used scraps of Christmas papers for the banners.
The ornament is "Icicle Ornament" (#83406) from
Biblical Impressions
I stamped the image onto white card stock, colored it with
colored pencils and used gamsol to blend the colors. 
I then fussy cut it and covered it with
Glossy Accents.
 The string is some home made bakers twine.
Then I saw a picture that inspired this card and
I love it.
At My Happy Place we have some old sheet music
up for grabs by anyone that would like to use it.
Since it obviously isn't acid free, it can't be used for 
scrapbooking, but it's great for cards.
In a few hours, I put a huge dent in what I need to make.
Some have black print.
Some have green print.
And there are some that are green with black print.
For the stars, I used Squeezed Lemonade Distress Ink
to color some of the page, then punched stars out for the
top of the trees.
I'm really happy with the cards I chose to make this year.
I hope the people I send them to like them as much as I do.
How are you doing on your Christmas cards?
Are you making them?
Have you started?

Thanks for stopping by,
I hope you've been inspired today.
Now get to work on your cards!

See you next time!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Ireland #19 Westport then off to Achille Island

Westport is a lovely little town with a population
of around 5500.
We arrived right at dinner time and we were
ready for a nice meal.
Of course, we had no idea where we'd eat, so we took
a walk around and came upon
The West Bar
This sign was on the out side and the menu looked good
(they had fish and chips)
so that's where we ate.

As it turns out The West Bar is not only the
All Ireland Chowder Cook Off Winner
for 2012 and 2013
They were also named the
Worlds Best Seafood Chowder
at the World Competition in
Newport, Rhode Island in 2014.
Now who wouldn't want to try the
best chowder in the world?
Unfortunately, I am allergic to shellfish,
so I couldn't give it a try, although I would
have loved to.
4 of the Celtic Adventurers ordered the 
Seafood Bake.
This dish looked so good!
It was their famous chowder covered with 
Gruyere cheese and herbed bread crumbs, then baked
to a beautiful brown on top.
The other 2 of us had the fish and chips.
Sorry I didn't get a picture before I ate most of it.
Guess you can tell that it was pretty darn tasty.
Still not my top pick, but pretty close.
I love that they served it on the paper to mimic 
the traditional newspaper wrapping.
While we were having our dinner,there were a group
of young men at the next table, they all ordered steaks
which made our mouths water.
More about that in my next post.
After dinner we had a little walk around town.
I love this little town square with the clock tower
and the phone box.

I do wish I had taken more pictures in Westport.
The Carrowbeg River runs right through the
town, the bridges and walks are beautifully decorated with
flower boxes.
Westport has been named Ireland's Tidiest Town a few times.
Next time, I'll get pictures.
That night we stayed at a lovely B & B.
The Dun Mhurie B & B is high on our list of favorites.
PJ, the proprietor, visited with us a bit that evening.
PJ was a very personable and funny man, we 
enjoyed him very much.
In the morning, we were served a very nice breakfast,
then were off for more adventures. 
Off to Achill Island.
We didn't take the typical tourist routes and
were so glad that we didn't.
Not an uncommon sight in Ireland, 
sheep in the road or by the side of the roads.
Had to get a picture or two of them.
(well...... maybe more than one or two)
Although sheep grazing along the roads and in the 
fields isn't so uncommon, to us this sight was a little 
different.
These sheep were just roaming around,
not so odd you say?
Not until I tell you that it was the golf coarse that
they were grazing on.  
I didn't get a picture with the golfers, but they were there,
walking along, golfing with the sheep.
Just another day at the links.
Hope the poor sheep don't get hit with too many golf balls!
We kept driving along the roads, not knowing what we'd find.
When suddenly we were in awe.
There was the most gorgeous bay we had seen.
The water was clear, blue and turquoise.
We had come upon Keem Bay and it was incredible!
Check out that water, you can see right to the bottom,
so clear and beautiful!
Of course I had to have a selfie with this
beautiful bay in the background!
The Celtic Adventurers all out of the car to 
take pictures and admire the beautiful view.
And looking out to sea in the other direction.
When we drove down to go to the beach, this is
the gorgeous scene we saw.
Everything about this beach was beautiful.
We hit upon it at the perfect time,
nice skies, beautiful sunshine,
fairly warm temps.
Look at the way the mountain just rises up out of the beach.
Incredible!
I have a panoramic feature on my camera
although it didn't stitch seamlessly, I still love how my 
panoramics turned out.
The beach wasn't huge, but it was a pretty good size
and there weren't many people there.
So beautiful!  Those clouds were just amazing!
The panoramic feature worked great vertically.
I love this picture of the shoreline.
And the rocks and hillside.
Looking out to sea.
As I walked along the beach I kept my eyes open
for interesting rocks to take home.
The first one I found caught my eye, because it was 
light in color with the brown streak.
Then a really gorgeous one caught my eye.


The road we took from the clifftop was constructed in 1960.
The road crosses a local geological boundary, 
exposing a seam of amethyst quartz.
Folklore says that amethyst has many properties,
it is said to be a love charm, gives protection against 
thieves and drunkenness and is a sleep aide.
Jane read up on the bay, her reading said that 
not many find amethyst these days and those that
find it are very lucky indeed.
Guess I'm one of the lucky ones!
This is one rock that won't be going into the garden.
It is by far my favorite rock from this trip.

Then we were off to see what we could see.
We found more beautiful beaches
We found a lovely place to have a lunch of 
cheese and crackers and other goodies.
Another beautiful setting.


We stopped to take some pictures along the way
and Dave struck up a conversation with a local
guy who was out running.
We had passed him, then he passed us a couple times,
Dave made a comment about it and the runner stopped
to talk to Dave.
He said there were some places that we could go
that were off the beaten path.
WAY off the beaten path!
We were glad we took his direction as we did see some
beautiful sights, a lot of sheep for Jane and Roxie to take pictures of,
some gorgeous cliffs and some great peat bogs. 
More about those in my next post.
I'll leave you today with this picture of the beautiful cliffs that we found
when we took direction from a local.
The people in Ireland are so friendly and helpful!
If you just take the chance to talk to them,
they will tell you all about the best places to go,
places that the tour buses don't get to.
Maybe because they don't know about them,
or maybe because there is no possible way they 
could drive the roads to get there as many of
them were basically dirt roads or mere paths.
Next post, I'll tell you about those 
peat bogs and about the steak dinners.

Thanks for coming by to share my Ireland adventure!