Red Truck Christmas

Snowy Red Ford Truck with Christmas Wreath on Front Watercolor 11×14

Red Truck Christmas.

I can think of a few peeps who would love a new red truck for Christmas (one is the guy I’ve been living with for the past 35 years!).

But he already has one, and it was the model for my latest Christmas watercolor painting.

When I painted my previous classic red truck carrying a Christmas tree, my red truck man informed me since it was a Chevy, I needed to paint a Ford too.

So here it is.

It was fun to paint it this past Sunday afternoon en plein air.  Sunny and 77 degrees F outside in late October painting Christmas snow!   Gotta love it!

This painting makes great prints and cute cards for Ford truck lovers.

They will be available in our McKinneyX2Designs Etsy Shop, at Berry Vine Gifts, and at the Mars Fall Craft Show on November 18th.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

A 30th Birthday Money Flower Card

A 30th Birthday Money Flower Card.

If you are looking for a creative card and/or gift for a special 30 year old in your life, how about making them a money flower card?

I needed a special card for a very special young lady (my daughter-in-law, Colleen) who turned 30 this past weekend.  I was trying to think of something creative like the Happy Birthday Money Cake I made for my son (her hubby!) a few years ago.

For the card, I started with a piece of black (any color will do) poster board cut to approximately 20 inches wide by 10 inches high that I folded in half to form a large card.  I also used two pieces of white 8.5 x 11″ card stock, 30 $1 bills and 1 $20 bill, approximately 33 dimensional adhesive dots, Tombow Mono Multi Liquid glue, a small piece of ribbon, and some colorful Sharpie markers.

I rolled all of the dollar bills tightly and adhered the loose end of each with a dimensional adhesive dot to the first piece of white card stock in the shape of a flower.  I used the $20 as the flower stem rolling it the long way.  I then drew around the flower with colored Sharpie markers, added two leaves with “Happy” written in one and “Birthday” in the other.  I drew a big bold “30” in the center of the flower, tied a bow on the stem, and then glued it to the front of the folded poster board using the Tombow glue.

On the inside, I listed 30 things we love about Colleen.  (That was the really easy part!)

You could use this for other milestone birthdays too and create different shapes.  It might make a fun wedding, anniversary, or graduation card too.

It was really fun and super easy to make, and even more fun to give to her.

Make giving the gift of money fun and creative!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

My New Creation Station

My New Creation Station / Art Studio is just about done.

A few pieces of art need framed for the walls and some fabric is needed for a window treatment, but besides splashes of paint and scraps of paper on the floor, we are about done.

Hubby has been working so hard this past month transforming  a 22′ x 13′ bonus space we had in our home into a usable space for a few of my “creative life in between” hobbies.

Duct work had to be moved for the air flow of heat and air conditioning.
A cold air return had to be added.
Recessed lighting and a ceiling fan were installed.
Walls were painted.
Flooring was laid.  (And I’m so grateful to my son, Nick, for pitching in last Saturday to help Hubby with the underlayment, padding and laminate flooring.  They did it all in a day!)
Trim was stained and cut and nailed in.

And then I got to start filling it with my painting and stamping and crafting and sewing and photography supplies.  The weekend was spent cleaning out a walk-in-closet that could not be walked in anymore and an office that doubled as a craft room.

Our large garbage receptacle was filled.  The office is now streamlined and breathable.  The walk-in-closet can now be walked in.

It was cleansing and fulfilling and back-aching and tiring work, but so wonderful to accomplish.

And one of the best parts about it all is the only new things furnishing my art studio (besides lighting and fan and flooring) are the Husky Adjustable Wood Work Table and Chrome Shelving Hubby bought me for Valentine’s Day and the fabric organization boxes I bought to organize things in.

Leftover cans of paint from other home projects were used to paint the walls and ceiling.

A very old 8′ folding table that was stashed in the basement, as well as a small four-drawer wooden baby dresser, got a fresh new look with a coat of Tuscan red chalk paint.

I’m keeping one tall wall clear and open for possible photography use.  I received the reflector and Genaray light for Christmas.  Another little spot houses my light box for photographing smaller things.

Another corner is reserved for sewing.

A very special corner is set aside for grandies and other children that may visit with a small child’s art desk that holds a roll of paper (gifted to use by some very special peeps), plastic drawers filled with wooden stamps and a carousel of crayons and markers.

It’s been fun organizing paints and supplies.  I even created a long-needed paint chart for my watercolors and am trying to decide which 20 colors to add to a new palette.

Enjoy this little 30-second Hyperlapse visit of my new little Creation Station.  Can’t wait to splash it up!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

PS – If you can’t view hyperlapse video above, click here to watch video on Youtube.

Introducing McKinneyX2Designs

Mx2 log

I am so excited to share something my sweet daughter-in-law, Colleen and I have  been up to the past couple of weeks.  We started a little Etsy Shop together, and I could not be more proud of her and her beautiful work, so I wanted to share with all of you wonderful LifeinBetween friends.

Colleen takes reclaimed pallet wood and creates beautiful rustic home decor and signs.

il_570xN.919819770_c4va

She takes buttons and burlap and creates sweet little works of art (several have sold already for baby nurseries!  a little blue whale and a toy sailboat!)

il_570xN.914679891_6w97

She paints beautiful sayings and adds country charm to each piece she hand makes with love and such attention to quality and detail.

il_570xN.919530413_kemg

I’ve added a few of my favorite little watercolors that I’ve turned into prints and made into cards – selling them in singles and boxed sets.

whimsy owl set mx2

From our first sale, we got a Five Star Review:

review

Thank you, Maggie!

So I hope you don’t mind me sharing here and asking if you can help us spread the word.  Will you share with your friends and give us a “favorite” on Etsy,  a “like” and/or “share” on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram too?

And maybe you’ll even find something you like or a gift for someone you love.  Here is a little gallery of some of our products.

I look forward to hearing what you think, and we would appreciate any ideas for products, suggestions for promotion, and general feedback on what you like or don’t like about it.

Thanks for letting me share, and thanks in advance to those of you that are willing to help us out and spread the word and share with your friends.

Cheers & Hugs
Jodi

Hand Painted Snowman Mugs

painted snowman mug 2

One of our Christmas celebrations last week was our annual McHendy Christmas get-together.

For this celebration, I painted some snowmen mugs and filled them with Rolo chocolate caramel candies, mini marshmallows, and the recipe for Rolo Hot Chocolate that I featured here a few weeks ago to give to everyone.

painted snowman mug

On white ceramic mugs purchased from the Dollar Store, I painted little snowman coal eyes and carrot noses with Sharpie Oil Based Paint Markers on one side, and wrote McHendy Mug and the year on the other.

painted snowman mug 3

After painting them all, I let them cure for 24 hours.  I then placed them in a cold oven, set the temperature for 350 degrees F and “baked” for 30 minutes.  I turned the oven off after 30 minutes and let them cool completely in the oven without opening it.  I hope this works as it is the first time I tried.  They are supposed to be able to go through the dishwasher.

Wondering what a McHendy Christmas Celebration is?

Well – when you take two besties and their families that have so much love they actually form one big family, you combine their last names to create a new one.

jill and jodi mchendy christmas 2015

And you celebrate every year watching the “kids” grow, marry and add to the family, and count your blessings dearly!

Mchendy family 2015

My BFF Jill not only had these shirts printed for all the McHendys this year, she even created the McHendy family crest, which is full of love and meaning to both of our families.

McHendy crest

We can be born into families, and we can be loved into families.  No matter which way it happens, celebrate it, and cherish the moments!

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

 

Wooden Log Snowmen

Wooden log snowmen christmas 2015

I love making and giving handmade DIY Christmas and holiday gifts, so when I saw a similar snowman project created from logs, I fell in love with the idea and convinced hubby we should make these.

He was a real trooper and really did the hard work.  He gathered, cut, and sanded the logs, drilled holes and assembled them with dowel rods and glue.

I broke out the sewing machine and created little fleece hats and scarves.

And Voila!

Stinking cute primitive wooden log snowmen!

Wooden log snowmen christmas 2015 2

We were thrilled with how they turned out, made about 15 of them, and had so much fun giving them away.

Handmade with love from both of us and sharing a little piece of our woods.

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

 

 

A Paper Players Sketch Challenge with Hugs

PP264 Too Kind Hugs

As a guest designer for The Paper Players, I think Sketch Challenges are my favorite.  (I love a good color or theme challenge too!  – – – Heck – I guess I just love a paper challenge – eh?!)

This week, Claire presented us with this sketch for PP264 that I really fell in love with, so my card is pretty true to the sketch.

I haven’t used the StampinUp “Too Kind” flower stamp in a while.  I love it’s versatility and layers, so I did it in Autumn pumpkiny colors to pop off the black and (very vanilla) white background of the rest of the card.

pp264 too kind hugs flat

What would you do with this sketch challenge?  Join us!  I’d love to see your interpretation and creative expression of this sketch.

For my card, I used the following “ingredients:”

  • Stampinup (SU) Black and Very Vanilla Card Stock
  • SU Typeset Specialty DSP
  • SU Inks in:  Pumpkin, Tangelo Twist, Tangerine Tango, Mossy Meadow
  • Memento Black Ink
  • SU Too Kind Stamp Set
  • Paper Smooches Sentiment Sampler Stamp (Hugs)
  • SU metal button
  • Black and White Bakers Twine
  • SU Adorning Accents Edgelit
  • Black Script Washi Tape

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

I’ve been asked to be a “Designer”

Birthdays are for the Birds!   Child Birthday Card  Punch Art   SU Bloom with Hope

My Most Pinned Card on Pinterest – Birthdays are for the Birds!

How about that?  Pretty exciting stuff – eh? (at least in my little corner of the world)

I am so honored to be asked and super excited to participate as a Guest Designer for the next three months at ThePaperPlayers.

SUO 114 Dots Big Day

My second most pinned card on Pinterest – Dots Big Day Birthday Card

The Paper Players is a fun community of artsy crafty paper peeps who love to stamp or draw or paint handmade paper crafts.  The design team is a group of amazingly talented, inspiring individuals that are as kind and encouraging as they are artistic.  They truly embody creating HeARTwork!

I originally discovered The Paper Players when I started stamping, and for those that have been with me here a while know this is a weekly challenge I often participate in – – – and have actually won a few times!

I added "Jodi McKinney" to an #inlinkz linkup!https://lifeinbetween.me/2014/09/14/the-colors-of-fall/

One of my winning cards

I will be creating one card per week as “inspiration” for the challenge in hopes that others will join in and play along.

I hope some of you that love or would like to try paper crafting will check it out and join in with us weekly or as you like from time to time.

Stampinup By the Tide

One of my faves – Stamin Up By the Tide Hello There Card

The guidelines are very simple:

1. Create a new paper or digital project.
2. Upload your creation to your blog with a link back to ThePaperPlayers. (Please provide a direct link to the post featuring your challenge entry as opposed to you blog home page.)
3. We also ask that you link your project to no more than three challenges.
4. Have fun! 

Wish me luck, and I hope this inspires YOU to do more of what makes YOU Happy!

Happy Life Stampinup Watercolor Technique

Happy Life Watercolor Card

 

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi

 

A Happy Birthday Money Cake!

money birthday cake Jake 27

Monday is my son, Jake’s 27th birthday.

First of all – how did that happen?  Where did the time go?!  I feel like I’m still 27, so how could my “child” be 27?

Anyway – when trying to decide what to get Jake for his birthday, we thought money was what he would appreciate most.

But I hate just writing a check or enclosing money in a card.

I need to be a bit more creative and personal than that.

So here is what I made for Jake.  A birthday money cake!

I think this is a cake even pie lovers would like – right?!

money cake Jake 27

It really was quite simple to make.

The layers are stryofoam discs with rolled dollar bills pinned to them.

I then made a “bow” from a $20, a $5, and two $1 bills to represent 27 years.  The layers are covered with 100 $1 bills.

money cake making

I used an 8″ piece for the bottom “layer,” then two 6″ ones glued together (they were not as high as the others, and I wanted to create more height), and the top is a 4″ piece.

I finished it off with some ribbon and poked 27 candles in too.

money birthday cake Jake 27

So – is Jake going to love it or is he going to want to shoot me for making him work so hard to take it apart to get his money???

I’m guessing the latter, but that makes me smile.  🙂

And I think Colleen will get a kick out of it.

Yep – these are the things I do at

life in between.

Cheers & Hugs,

Jodi