Wednesday, June 29, 2016

CubeCraft 11-Piece Detail Paint Brush Set Review

I started a painting awhile ago, then it got put on hold, and now I'm painting on it again.

CubeCraft 11-Piece Detail Paint Brush Set is what I'm using to paint with. Their brushes are A*M*A*Z*I*N*G. 

They just stay shaped really well, and not one bristle became loose. I hate when I'm painting away, and a bristle is stuck in the paint.

The set comes in a sturdy box. I love this for going to paint on location. It makes it easy to wrap if it's going to be a gift to.

The brushes simply slide out the bottom of the box.

The tips all came with protectors. That's not always something I see on brushes. I can tell CubeCraft cares about maintaining the quality of their product. I'm not always the best about putting the tips back on when I'm finished. I do however keep my brushes clean, and shape them back up with my fingers to maintain a good point. 

Cleaning Your Brushes:
  • Always wipe your brush on a plain rag (one you don't care about), or paper towel to get all the paint out before cleaning it. This is less hard on the drain. 
  • If you are using a water based paint then rinse it with water. If you are using a oil based paint then rinse it with mineral spirits, or turpentine. I use a product called Gamsol. It's allergy safe.
  • There are brush cleaners that you can buy at any craft or art supply place. Read the instructions because some have you leave the cleaner in your brush because it's a conditioner. 
  • A mild soap works well to clean with to.
  • Always clean your brush until all the color is out of it. 
  • Reshape the brush when you are done.
  • Dry your paintbrush flat. If you dry it standing up, the water seeps into the brush breaking up the glue, which the bristles will come up eventually.  

These brushes are fairly small for detailed work.

They can be used for any media:

  • Watercolors
  • Pen and Ink
  • Acrylics
  • Oils 
They are also separated in the packaging.

I'm working on a painting of the back side of a sunflower. You can see my reference right there. I haven't started paining the actual flower part yet. The steam was painted with something I've never painted with before. It's painted on corn husk. I used the matte medium to adhere the husk to the canvas, and painted on top. I'm still not done, but it's getting there. 

I'm going to use tissue paper to paint on the petals. *Note that colored tissue paper is not light safe. I'll use white, and color it with acrylics.

I have the underpainting done of the steam, but will be going in to touch up lights and darks. Before I do that I'll start in with the underpainting of the flower petals first.

Above the flower will be a honey bee with a gas mask on. The piece is about the mass decline in the bee population.

The brushes worked great. I'll be using them more and more with the detail work. 


$19.95 on Amazon. 

Do you like to paint?

Disclaimer: I received CubeCraft 11-Piece Detail Paint Brush Set for a discount in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

WW: Superheroes {Linky}

My nephew Emerson has Trisomy 18. He wasn't expected to live. In the hospital they call his condition incompatible with life. He just turned 5. He walked all over during his birthday party; with a superhero cape on the back of his walker.

Happy Birthday Emerson!

Here's his family. My sister, nephews and brother-in-law:

My nephew Evan and Elijah. My boys are close to them because they are the same ages as them.

My son's Mica and Isaak.

My youngest nephew that gets all the attention because he copies whatever the boys say or do, Edison.

I convinced my dad to get a picture. ;) What a sport!


Monday, June 27, 2016

I Ruined Someone's Dying Wish

This weekend we celebrated my nephew Emerson's 5th birthday. Pictures will be posted tomorrow.

My sister had a special party planned because we never thought he'd live this long. He keeps going and going. I say that because throughout his party he showed off the whole time by walking with his walker. He had to be so tired by the end of it. My sister kept offering breaks for him, but he kept on walking.

Ok here's one photo. It's hard getting photos of him because he's constantly moving, and hardly keeps his head up. I won the cape from Mail4Rosey. :)

I was asked to take pictures at a booth they had set up. I have to be honest I wasn't too thrilled when I got this job, but it ended up not being so bad. I tried recruiting kids over to take photos with superhero masks and capes. Some wanted to take part in it, while some were too shy.

I showed up right when the party started, so I could get a lot of photos before the kids were too busy playing. That ended up working out great!

In the room walks a distant relative. She's tried to get my husband to fix old costume jewelry for her for free before. 

She had a manuscript, a Shutterfly book, and some sketches in her hands. She walked right over to where I was at. 

Freebie Person: "Alissa I have to tell you all about this lady who drew my cats for me. You see her husband is so sick that they have his body opened up. He's been in the hospital. I don't know what's wrong with him." 

Me trying to listen: "Oh I'm sorry to hear that." Thinking, What does this have to do with me?

Freebie Person: "Since she can't draw cats for me anymore I'd like you to." 

Me looking at the Shutterfly book: "Have you tried sending your manuscript to a publisher? They set people up with illustrators that match the writing style." 

Freebie Person: "Oh I don't want to do all that. I just want a few books printed. You can go to Amazon, and make books right? You know about that stuff. I just don't. I just need you to be just as excited about this as I am." 

Me: "I'm afraid I don't draw in a cartoon style. My work is more about collage, painting, and layers. It's not going to match the style of this other illustrator. I think it would be best if you tried to submit it into a publisher. You'll have better results in the end. This other book is from Shutterfly, not Amazon." 

Freebie Person: "It's my dying wish to have this done. I think you'd be perfect for this." 

Me Thinking, But Not Saying: You came to this party to try and get free work done for your book. You didn't come to see Emerson at all. 

A Few Other People Came to Talk to Me...I wanted to hug them for interrupting the freebie person. Our conversations couldn't last the whole time.

Freebie Person: "You see this is my dying wish to have this book."

Me: "I'm sorry it's not going to work." 

I walked away. 

She was notably upset. 

Later on...

Freebie Person: "If you know of anyone that can do this book, or if you change your mind please let me know." 

Me: "I'm sorry it didn't work out. I really don't know anyone that will work for free."

I was thinking: Never would I have my students do this kind of work for free. 

Why is it that people often want an artist to work for them for free? 

When a toilet is jammed up no one expects that to be fixed by a plumber for free. 

I'll do things for my immediate family, like taking photos at my nephew's birthday, I've done many invitations for birthday parties, but beyond that I don't want to do free things. I'll sometimes do an exchange. My cousin wanted wedding invitations made. I did them. That was her gift from us. 

I may consider doing something for a nonprofit that doesn't have the funds for much. It's because I believe in the cause. 

Gold Tank Digestive Immunity Boost Review

One thing we take almost daily is probiotics. I firmly believe that they keep our bodies in balance. They are the only thing that helped both of my kids with eczema long term. Steriod creams just masked the problem temporarily. I'm happy to introduce to you: Gold Tank 3 in 1 Digestive Boost.

Gold Tank Contains:

  • 7 probiotic strains which help maintain good healthy bacteria in the digestive system
  • 6 digestive enzymes to aid in the breakdown of fatty, hard to process foods and reduce stomachaches 
  • It also has an herbal blend with 4 plant based products that all work together and on their own to minimize bloating, gas, nausea and soothe your stomach and colon
  • This herbal blend consists of Peppermint, Fennel, Tumeric, and Ginger, all known to bring peace back to a raging gut and helps assist in aches and pains

The lid came with plastic around it, a cover over the bottle, and cotton inside to ensure freshness.

I like this brand because it comes in capsules that can be taken apart. I can open them up to add them to applesauce, yogurt, cottage cheese, smoothies and more.


$29.99 for 90 pills.

We use about 3 pills a day.

Do you take a daily probiotic, or digestive immunity boost?

Disclaimer: I received Gold Tank for free in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Random Tid Bits

I was thinking about the differences from living in Savannah and Atlanta, Georgia to living in Omaha, Nebraska.

  1. In the south I heard, "Have a blessed day!" often. Here not even the most religious people say that. I have no clue why.

    We also don't say ya'll here in Nebraska. Drive 5 hours into Missouri, and you'll hear ya'll.

  2. We serve hot tea and iced tea in Nebraska. In Georgia it's only iced tea. Often times it's sweetened there to.

  3. In the south even the wealthy people might possibly have a roach problem. They are all over Georgia. In the midwest we have roaches to, but not everywhere. I remember standing outside for my night class in Savannah; I could just see the roaches scurry from the grass to the sidewalk.

    In Nebraska, since there are fewer roaches you are considered to be unclean if you have a roach problem in your house. 

  4. I was going to talk about Nebraska's lace of respect for different races, cultures, and religions. It's primarily filled with Catholic caucasians and Lutherans. What I wrote sounded so negative that I deleted it. Not all of Nebraska is raciest. If you come here it certainly stands out that there is a lot of white people. Different parts of Omaha are very separated. It's very different from the south with that. I encourage any one that lives in the midwest to travel to the south and visa vera. You'll understand what I'm writing about then.

    I do remember an Asian part to Atlanta. Everywhere has parts of town I suppose. I ended up there by a happy mistake. I was sized for a wedding dress. The lady couldn't speak English. She had me try on all these dresses. I got my wedding dress for $100! It was traditional looking dress, with pearl buttons all down the back.

  5. Nebraska is all about their college football team. Most other places are about their state football teams. I cringe when it's football season. I don't care for the sport at all. Men running into each other causing concussions, and brain injuries. My husband loves football. He gets annoyed with me when I bitch about it. Why does our news take up 1/2 its time with sports, when there's so much going on in the world? Why are they talking about football now when it's not football season yet? Our football team's mascot is a hick. Nebraska doesn't like to be referred to as having hicks that live here. Why is our mascot a hick then? It's so odd!

  6. Source
  7. Georgia has some places we don't have, but we have some places they don't have. I miss Georgia's DMVs. They were at their Kroger's. Kroger isn't Kroger here, it's Bakers. Here we just have a DMVs - not in grocery stores. They have long lines. 
  • Georgia has Waffle House, Nebraska doesn't
  • Georgia has Restoration Hardware, Nebraska doesn't
  • Nebraska doesn't have a Churches Chicken, Bojangle's, or Checkers. Chick-fil-a and Raising Cane's are newish here in Nebraska. It's hard for me to tell you whant Nebraska has that Georgia doesn't have because it's been so long, since I've been to Georgia. :( I can tell you that we have a lot of family owned places in Nebraska. 
What are some things that stand out where you live?

Thursday, June 23, 2016


I noticed one of my friends wasn't on facebook for a few years. He has MS, so I got nosy, googled his name/place to see if he was still alive.

Turns out my college acquaintance has been in prison for a few years.

He's in for luring a minor with obscene material, and having attempting to have sex with someone under the age of 12. A sick man indeed!

My mouth dropped. That's certainly not what I expected to see.

This guy wasn't a close friend of mine, but he hung out in my doom room. I always thought something was off with him. He was really emotional for a guy.

His ex wife and he adopted 3 kids because they couldn't have kids of their own right before this happened. I hope nothing happened to one of their kids\. The kids weren't babies. They sure have gone through enough!

Have you ever known a criminal? It's creepy!


I noticed one of my friends wasn't on facebook for a few years. He has MS, so I got nosy, googled his name/place to see if he was still alive.

Turns out my college acquaintance has been in prison for a few years.

He's in for luring a minor with obscene material, and having attempting to have sex with someone under the age of 12. A sick man indeed!

My mouth dropped. That's certainly not what I expected to see.

This guy wasn't a close friend of mine, but he hung out in my doom room. I always thought something was off with him. He was really emotional for a guy.

His ex wife and he adopted 3 kids because they couldn't have kids of their own right before this happened. I hope nothing happened to one of their kids\. The kids weren't babies. They sure have gone through enough!

Have you ever known a criminal? It's creepy!

Unwanted Trees

1 neighbor had a guy take a tree down. It just so happened that they cut it down on the day we had May birthdays. He chopped it once, and it lay there. It's been laying there, since May 28.

I happened to see one of our neighbors, and politely asked about the stump in their front yard and big tree laying in their backyard. She doesn't know what they'll do with the stump. The big tree in the back they were waiting for the guy to come back after he sharpened his blade.

Right after our conversation our neighbor decided it was a great idea to mow his yard. He kept getting sticks caught in the mower. I was beginning to think he'd never get his mower working again at one moment.

The guy with the saw just came this morning (June 23) to I hope finish the job. I'm not sure the job will get done.

The guy was sawing with no eye protection, no ear protection, and no yard gloves with a dull blade.

Our other neighbors have a tree that was planted before they moved in. It's gown into the lines, pushes on our retaining wall, and almost all of its leaves fall into our driveway in the fall. We've had people come out to move the lines away from branches. The wall needs to be replaced, but we don't want to with the tree pushing on the wall.

We took 2 trees down when we moved in. An Oak Tree was wonderful, but not so wonderful for our font yard. Had it been in the back yard we would have left it. A tree in the backyard came down because it was 1/2 dead. We've planted many to replace the ones we took down.

Do you have any unwanted trees in or around your yard?

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Omaha Community Playhouse Camp

Mica wasn't too excited about his camp the first day. Then he was all about it.

Day 1: They got homework to memorize 2 songs, Wicked's No Good Deed, and Michael Jackson's Bad.

Day 2: They got homework to memorize 1 song, Hercules Zero to Hero.

Day 3: They had to write a story they wanted to act out.

Day 4: Practice!

Day 5: Perform!

I think Mica was slightly thrown off because they had a new director and teachers that did things differently than the ones he had before. Mica doesn't like change very much.

The old director and teachers had the kids just act out, and dance to things to songs they played out loud.

Their "light sabers" they used during the show:

The new director and teachers had them sing, act, dance, write their own acts, and edited their acts down. A lot more was on the kids to do.

Isaak wrote a 2 page paper that he wanted acted out, but it had to be edited way down.

Any time they gave Mica dance moves to do, he got thrown when they had him change the moves.

Mica also likes to sing, but isn't super gifted in that area. He loves to act. He can memorize lines fairly easily. That's a hard one because a lot of children's theater they want kids to be able to sing really well.

Isaak really a pretty good singer, but has trouble memorizing lines. The opposite of Mica for sure.

Was it perfect? No! Did they learn a lot? Yes! 

They came home singing, and singing. In fact they are still singing. I got the question, "What song, or act did you like the best Mom?" about 5 times from each kid. They told me about upstage and downstage.

A little off key at times, but here's Zero to Hero.

The one that had me rolling is when Isaak was in the shower. He was singing and singing the Wicked song, No Good Deed. He was singing pretty good. I tried to sneak up to record his singing. He used improvisation to continue the song, and went back to it.

All the singing and dancing must have worn little Isaak out. I told him to go read, and he was out like a light. I had to wake him up 2 hours later. He still was tired after I woke him. We all need a nap from time to time.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

WW: 40 {Linky}

I'm 40 today. Do I feel over the hill? Not really. I feel the same as I did 5 years ago.

Age has increased my grey hairs and made my hair curly (it used to be straight). I've always had allergy eyes, so that's nothing new.

I made my family take photos to. Mica with a goofy smile, and Isaak thinking, The sun is in my eyes! He always says that, even though all the rest of us can get a photo in.

Travis being goofy!

At my work we make treats for our birthdays. These are the watermelon sugar cookies I made. I mixed green in the dough. I used a glass to cut them out because my round cookie cutter was too little. They were then cut in 1/2 with a zigzag cutter. The cutter I use to cut carrots all funky like. Then frosting is strawberry. The seeds are mini chocolate chips. I could have pipped white for a rind, but that would have been more work than I had time for.

What's considered Over the Hill these days 40 or 50? 



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