My View by Sandra

and other stuff . . .

I’ve found the perfect gift!

How wonderful to give a gift that you’ve made. In this day and age, it seems we’re always so busy and to find the perfect gift for someone isn’t always easy, let alone making it too.

I work (and play) on the computer since I’m a graphic/web designer. And I do photography. A couple of weeks ago I was downloading a lot of my photos into Mac’s program, iPhoto. I noticed that the program offers a place to order custom greeting cards, calendars and even a book using your own photos. I decided it’d be fun to try, but honestly didn’t expect much. I had been on-line trying to find a gift for a special friend and thought that if the book turned out okay, I’d give it to her for her birthday.

I came up with some friendship quotes – and voila, my book was born. I ordered it as soon as I put the finishing touches on it and couldn’t believe that the completed product was here so fast.

And now – I’m going to recommend it to you. I’ve begun thinking of all the possibilities, and I have a list of future books I want to make: my grandkids at Disneyland, my brothers and I growing up which will include photos of our parents (who are now deceased), a book featuring each of my dogs with favorite pictures I’ve taken of them – the list is endless. And they’re so great that you don’t have a stack of albums laying around with faded, loose pictures with torn edges. If you have some pictures that you only have one of, scan them and make a book for those who would like to have the pictures also.

iPhoto isn’t the only one who has this available. You can do them right on-line with your digital photos through Wal-mart, Sam’s Club, Shutterfly, Kodak and more.

The books come in a variety of cover selections, layouts for the pages, designs, paper, colors – whatever you need.

I’ve attached a .pdf copy of my first book. Check it out and CLICK HERE to see My Book!

September 15, 2008 Posted by | Favorite Sites, Personal/Family | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Make a Seashell Flowerpot Wind Chime

My daughter-in-law Kristy gave me a little handmade gift from my grandsons for Mother’s Day. Each year she gets creative and this year, I was really impressed. My gift? A windchime made especially for me.

First of all begin with some good shaped seashells, five small flower pots (clay), fishing line, a pot saucer (plastic), paints, bells, 5 coat buttons and a metal ring.

The pots will be hanging upside down – so be sure to paint them so that your design isn’t upside down.

First of all cut 5 pieces of fishing line. Holding them together, tie them to the round metal ring. Then make five holes spaced appropriately around the plastic saucer. Thread one of the fishing lines through each one and then plug it up with a button. Paint the pots with any design using expensive acrylic paints that can be found under $1 at Wal-mart. If this will be a gift from the kids, let them do the painting.

Inside view

Inside view

Bring each strand of fishing line down through the bottom hole in the painted, upside down flower pot. Make holes in each of the seashells. A ceramic drill bit (small) will work. You can use a light speed with a drill or even a dremil tool will work. You can even try scraping with a needle and make the holes that way. Be careful, the shells are fragile. Place a bivalve shell on, closest to the top, add a bell and then add a heavier, Gastropod shell on the bottom. Be sure it’s tied on so that it hangs at the bottom of the pot’s edge. Tied them to secure them, and add a little glue if you want it a tad more secure.

I’ve hung mine in my patio room to keep it nice, but outside would be fine. You may even want to spray them with an acrylic spray.

And, they don’t have to have a “made by a kid” look to them.

September 15, 2008 Posted by | Personal/Family | , , , , | Leave a comment