Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Calligraphy Program!

Its been a while since my last post, but I have a lot to share so I will be splitting them up!

First things first, my Calligraphy Program!

I've played with this for a couple of months and finally decided to go for it. I hit up Google searching for Calligraphers in the area and found two. I reached out to the first person who came up and while he did professional Calligraphy, he had never taught a class before. The second person I reached out to does Calligraphy but was also an Art major and taught middle/high school for 5 years. She was as excited as I was to offer this program!

I set my date for Thursday, February 15th at 7:00 p.m. I set my limit for 18 people with a wait list of 10. Both filled within 3 weeks. While the program was originally geared towards 18 - 35 year olds, I eventually opened it up because I was paying for the program and wanted to fill as many seats as possible.

I purchased THESE Calligraphy markers off of amazon. 

Printed out the worksheets the presenter wanted and was all set! 
Find a good one HERE.

(Each seat had a set of worksheets and a pen they took home)

I had 14 people show up even though I sent out email reminders and made phone calls. While it is not the 18 I would have preferred. I was happy with the result.

(sample videos!)

Overall, I felt like people had a great time. It was fun walking around and see attendees take those up and down strokes. To hear laughter as they realized that it wasn't as easy as it looked but still enjoying themselves. And at the end, having them say that they had a great time and are glad they came! 

Now, enjoy some photos!

(listening to instructions)


(working hard)

(some more pointers)




(Proud of their work!)

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Galaxy Jar Craft!

A couple of months ago, I came across a blog post of something called a Galaxy Jar Art Craft (I have since lost the post).

Feel free to skip through my process and go straight to the pictures that hold the good stuff!

I thought it was one of the most beautiful things I had witnessed. Anyone who knows me knows I love anything outer space related. I have an inaccurate spray painted 3 part art piece of the solar system hanging over my dining room table.

The guy who spray painted them.

The finished product! Aint it glorious?

 Solar system cups (one of each planet, including Pluto, and one of the sun) gracing my TV stand with a little astronaut bank up high. Plus the countless other things. 

ANYWAYS. I wanted to do this glorious craft I had come across and decided that for December I would host an art program at work and it would feature this out of this world jar! I googled Galaxy Jar and stared at the work of others. I went on YouTube and scrolled through videos and got the basic idea of what I needed and how to make it.

(STEP 1)

1) Glass Jar 
2) Cotton Balls [lots of them]
3) Food Coloring [cheap brand will do]
4) Water [tap tap tap]
5) Paper Towels [to soak up escaped liquid]
5a) Old Sales Ad [to protect your work space]
6) Straw [or anything else to push the CB down]
7) Glitter [if you want to get a little bit extra]
8) Paper Cups [to mix those colors]

*Everything purchased from the Dollar Tree except the food coloring.

(STEP 2)

You can leave your cotton as balls but I preferred to stretch some out to stuff into the crevices.

(STEP 3)

If you look a little closer you will see I left some as balls and some are not.

(STEP 4)

The first color I made was purple. I mixed red and blue food coloring together for this. I also tossed in some white glitter in the hopes it would reflect in the jar. 

A little cheat sheet if you want to create more colors:
Red + Blue = Purple
Red + Yellow = Orange
Red + Blue + Green = Black

(STEP 5)

I poured the liquid over the cotton balls. As you can see the white glitter did NOT do what I was hoping it would. I didnt use it again.

Here is some excess liquid. Before getting started on your next color make sure to put more cotton balls in and push them down with your straw in order to soak up the excess liquid. If you don't the colors will run.

(STEP 6)

I ended up going online and looking at real Galaxy pictures at this point. To make things a little interesting, I then placed red only in two areas and waited to see what happened.

(STEP 7)

When the red didn't run, I added more cotton balls and dripped in yellow and green as well. Before pouring over my next big color, blue. I also tossed in some silver glitter and was happy to see that they shined through.

(STEP 8)

Make sure to continue to add in cotton balls to take up any excess liquid. My final color was Green.


And here is my final product! I aimed to make all my colors dark but I didnt do so well with the purple. I believe that is due to the fact that I did not add enough food coloring. The more food coloring in your water, the darker your colors! But I LOVED how it came out in the end. I really enjoyed how some of the colors DID run together because they created a whole new color on their own. There was a whole lot of trial and error with this jar. But for my first jar, it came out great. Now go make your own and show me!

I will post pictures from my program later tonight/tomorrow. So excited to share their work with you!

For additional reference: 
The main one I watched YouTube Galaxy Jar 1  
I took a look at this one but decided to not go this route Youtube Galaxy Jar 2

EDIT: Here are some of jars attendees made!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon December Book Group

I can't believe it is December already! And a third of the way through at that! This year flew by!

But back to more important matters. Our December book group met on December 7th. We read 'Where the Mountain Meets the Moon' by Grace Lin which is actually a juvenile (kids) book. The reason we did a juvenile book is because December is a very busy month for most people. Between the Holidays, exams in school, and traveling, there is not much time to read. A shorter book tends to mean that people will get through it faster, or at least attempt to give it a go.

Members really enjoyed the book. They thought it was very good and described it as a feel good sort of book. Something people want to feel when they are particularly busy. The images in the book were beautiful. We spoke about adventures, our own childhoods, friendships and family. We covered a wide range of topics as people shared more about themselves in relation to situations in the book. We ended the group early because people ran out of things to say which is usually the case when the group tends to agree as a whole that it was a good book.

January Book: 'The Sinner' by Petra Hammesfahr

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Millennial Programming Webinar

Did you miss my webinar that took place yesterday at 5 p.m.? Have no fear, the lovely ladies at LIANZA recorded it and posted it to YouTube! So now you get to see it too!

I do have to apologize in advance, I guess I never realized just how much I use my hands while talking.

Anyways, if you do watch it, I hope you learn something new. If you watch it to the end, please take a minute to fill out a quick survey. I would love some feedback since this is my very first webinar.

Here is the link to my survery => Google Survey

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Behind Closed Doors November Book Discussion

Image result for behind closed doors

On November 2nd 2017 I had 9 individuals show up for my Better Than Therapy Book Discussion.  Its been a couple of months since I've had that many show up so it was a pleasant surprise.

During my pumpkin carving program a week early, some of my attendees excitedly told me they loved the book. I had to quickly stop them because I wanted to make sure they had enough to talk about DURING book group. With past experience, if a book is "very good" it usually made for a very quick discussion.

I set up my refreshments and watched them trickle in. And for an hour, we discussed, oh boy, did we discuss. There was just so much to cover in the book.

Issues of abuse, anger, betrayal, devotion, we covered it all. We dug deep, asking questions such as "what would you do if you knew someone in a similar situation". We dug deeper, and deeper. We want to be the good person, but how far are we willing to push.

Overall, one of the best discussions we've had!

Next month, we will be discussing 'Where the Mountain Meets the Moon' by Grace Lin. 

Monday, October 30, 2017

Pumpkin Carving!

The first time I did Pumpkin Carving at my library was back in 2012 and it was a BIG hit! Everyone had a fantastic time, so I decided to bring it back this year!

For this program, pumpkins would be provided by the library free of charge to attendees. I was able to get a good deal on them by going to our Pumpkin Guy who had a patch a few blocks away. Attendees WERE required to bring their own carving supplies. I preferred that they did that so they were familiar the knives, carving blades, etc they were working with. I also picked up some mini carving kits from the dollar store. The best part of the kit was a mini blade for hard to reach places. Leading up to the event I posted a couple of YouTube videos on the best ways to carve/preserve pumpkins.

I had 13 out 15 of my signups show up! I call that a success!

I created my flyer.

Purchased my Pumpkins.

Prepped the room for the carving and printed out some stencils. I layered the floor and tables with newspaper to protect them from pumpkin juice, seeds, and pulp.

Carved some pumpkins!

Overall, people had a good time and I am glad I did this program!

Here is the pumpkin I carved as well!

(Jack Skellington)
Any questions? Let me know in the comments!