Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Yeah, More Jams!

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Now, I forgot to post when I received the first of these two CD's from the Jingle Bell Jams, but I think I received it on Wednesday, before I left for Silver Bella, and I had band, and was busy packing. It was the one from Vivian. Hers was wrapped prettily with a ribbon and bell. Then, when I returned from Silver Bella, I found another CD had arrived for me. This one was from Dani (I had participated in her 2008 Halloween ATC Swap). I think I have received the majority of the CD's from that swap, and I will be ready soon to break them open and enjoy the sounds of the season!

Back from Silver Bella

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Did I mention that I was going to Omaha for Silver Bella? Well, if I didn't, you must not have noticed that I was gone ;-) I got back Monday, after having a pretty decent time in Omaha. I left Thursday morning, and all of my flights went well. That was the first day that I had flown in a smaller jet, and despite what Tom thinks of them, I thought the flights went well. They didn't feel any bumpier than a big jet. So when I got to Omaha, Wanda's flight was coming in about 20 minutes later and four gates over, so I stuck around and tried to embarrass her while she was getting off of the plane, but my camera didn't take the picture - probably too busy auto-focusing. She introduced me to a bunch of ladies she'd met in Denver on the way up, and we went to get our luggage. While waiting for the shuttle from the hotel, we met a few other Bellas. We stayed at the Embassy Suites in the Old Market District, and it was beautiful. I just loved the courtyard interior, with streams and waterfalls, fountains and Koi. After checking in, we enjoyed the Manager's Happy Hour before the Meet and Greet, which was right before the Welcome Dinner Buffet. Immediately after the dinner, a group workshop was held at the dinner tables, and I finished my project! When Wanda and I returned to our room, we finished pricing and packaging a bunch of items for Wanda's booth at the Vendor Fair, and got to bed way too late.
The next morning started around 6 am, so that we could enjoy the complimentary breakfast bar before the classes started at 8 am. I ate a large breakfast, and boy was that a good idea, because there was not much time for lunch. I started out with the Better Backgrounds class, where I completed two collages. The next class was Do You ATC What I ATC?, where we started to make books to hold ATC's with. I completed the cover, but the rest will have to wait. My last class of the day was Winter Faerie Shrine. I almost completed the project in that class, but I'm not completely happy with it, so I hope to start anew and make one that I'm more pleased with. The evening ended with the Vendor Fair and Bella Prom. After a slow start, Wanda's booth had a nice, steady flow of business, and I'm quite impressed with the amount of stuff she sold. There were hors d'oeuvres being served, but by the time I got to serve myself, there wasn't much available, so that's why a big breakfast is always important. The Vendor Fair was over at 11 pm, so we packed up, headed back to the room, and crashed.
The next day started out pretty much the same, except a half hour later. The breakfast bar was good, and I ate big again. My first class was Tiny Treasures, and I just about finished two out of three of the projects provided. We then attended a luncheon where Mary Englebreit was the speaker, and I got an autograph before heading to my next class, which was Holiday Home Tour. In that class, we made little paper houses, and embellished them. I think this was my favorite class. I finished one house, and started a second. Afterwards, Wanda and I joined Carol and Marion (our meal partners all weekends) and went for a walk in the Old Market District. We took a horse carriage ride and had dinner at the Spaghetti Works where I had a combo platter with eggplant parmesan and fettucini alfredo and tirimisu for dessert. We stopped at an antique store, Second Chance, and did a little shopping before heading back to the hotel for the night.
The next morning, after breakfast and packing, Wanda left for the airport. I stayed in the room until check-out time, then camped out in the lobby where I read, slept, and listened to the water gurgling around me. When I got to the airport, those of us on my flight were notified that we were being delayed until 6 pm due to weather in Newark. At 6, when the captain did a walk around, he found an oil leak, so we were delayed another two hours. We finally arrived in Newark just before midnight, and luckily Continental put us up in a hotel for the night (the Wyndham Gardens Hotel). The next morning, I found out that the flight to Baltimore that I was booked on was oversold, and I was on the standby list. That sucked, because the guy in Omaha said that we'd be guaranteed a flight in the morning. Luckily, someone was willing to give up their seats for a $300 travel package from Continental, and I got back to Baltimore around 9:30, instead of having to catch the 1:20 flight.
Now that I'm back, I'm ready to do some crafting that's in a whole new league from what I've been doing - inspiration has it's perks!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Jingle All the Way

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Amidst my hectic work schedule, cleaning the house for the upcoming holiday and promised visitors, and getting ready for Silver Bella, I forgot to post that two days ago I received my Jingle Bell Jam from Lance in Texas. The CD is filled with an artist I've never heard of before, and the the titles of the songs make me think that they're all original songs - so I'm really looking forward to listening to this CD.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Jingle Bell Jams, and an ATC

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Yesterday, I finally mailed out my CD's for the Jingle Bell Jams. I like my product and how it looks, and I hope that everyone in the swap likes it, too. My jam is a mixture of popular music, spanning many decades. The songs were also placed in an order to signify the season: so the CD starts with Adam Sandler's "The Thanksgiving Song" and ends with Bob and Doug McKenzie's "The 12 Days of Christmas." The music isn't as original as in some of the CD's I've already received (you can hear any of them playing on the pop radio stations during the Christmas season) but they are what I enjoy listening to, which was the whole point.
When I got home from work last night, I had a pleasant surprise in the mail. The next CD from the Jingle Bell Jam had arrived. It was from the Parkers in Ohio. The mix on that CD was similar to mine, with old and new songs done by popular artists, but there were enough songs that I haven't heard of to make me look forward to listening to this CD. I also received the final ATC in the ButtonMania ATC Swap. It was from Luz in Oregon, and in addition to the adorable ATC, she included some background papers cut to ATC size.
I have been very pleased with my experience with the swappers on Swap-bot, and look forward to next three swaps I've joined there: an international Christmas card swap, a cancelled Christmas stamp ATC swap, and a recycled Christmas card ATC swap. I hope to use the cards I receive in the first swap for the ATC's in the other two swaps, at least, that's the plan.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

More Jingle Bell Jams

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Yesterday, in the mail, I received two more CD's from the Jingle Bell Jams 2008 Swap. These were from Melissa and Marie, both from Pennsylvania. Melissa's jam is full of jazzy favorites, while Marie's is an eclectic mix. I'm sure that I will have a great time listening to their CD's, after, of course, I finish getting my CD's in the mail!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

A Champions Tribute to Jim McKay

This is an old post from my old blog. I intend to transfer them all over to this one.

Yesterday, the Pep Band participated in a Champions Tribute to Jim McKay. As you know, Jim McKay, the voice of ABC Sports and the Olympics for many years, died in June. The city of Baltimore held a tribute to him last night, with a good number of Maryland Olympic athletes present for the ocassion. As for the band, we played the Star Spangled Banner and the Olympic Fanfare at the beginning of the evening, and Maryland, My Maryland at the end. It was quite exciting to be included in an evening which featured the likes of Sugar Ray Leonard, Dorothy Hamil, and Michael Phelps, but the in between times, between playing was oh so dull. The band was holed up in a small room, and we had to entertain ourselves for hours on end. I can't even remember what I did prior to warming up, but after we returned to the room after warming up, I learned to play Eucre and Spoons (which we played with cell phones). After a few rounds of Spoons, we played our first few songs for the gathering. After returning to the room, we ate dinner, and played many rounds of Bullshit, until it was time to play at the end of the function. I can't believe how exhausting it was to do absolutely nothing. On the drive home, I had to stop in a parking lot to take a nap, I was that tired. But luckily, I got home in one piece.