How was your Christmas? Mine was a little different than normal, but still wonderful. 🙂 We had 5 celebrations with different parts of the family, caroled at a nursing home, had a beautiful Christmas Eve service, were blessed with many fun gifts, and ate WAY too much good food. XD
Now, the post. Whew, where do I start? 2018 has probably been the most exciting, scary, stressful, wonderful, and all-around life-changing year for me yet. O.o I don’t think I can do it justice in one post, but I’ll try.
Today I’m going to show you guys some highlights, blog stats, popular posts from this year, goals for 2019, and more. I hope you enjoy the ride! Let’s start with some highlights from 2018, which aren’t necessarily in order.
Oh my, it was VERY hard to restrain myself from starting this post with the overused “I can’t believe summer went by so quickly!” (Wait, but what did I just do…? XD) Instead… let me think. Oh! I saw a marquee sign the other day that said “Summer should get a speeding ticket.” Much more original, right? AND TRUE.
ANYWAY. I seriously am having a hard time believing it’s September already, especially since this is the first year after graduating when I don’t have school! :O It feels strange, but it’s exciting. Even though it’s not technically fall yet, it doesn’t quite feel like summer anymore. Maybe it’s… fummer. NOPE, THAT SOUNDS TERRIBLE. Maybe it’s just September. Let’s go with that.
Ahem, what I was TRYING to say was that this post will be about 20+ things I did this summer, in no particular order. Not an exhaustive list, but a good summary. (Or rather, summery. SORRY I COULDN’T RESIST.)
Wow, I really better start using pictures instead of words, now. This is getting out of control. O.o Heh, let’s begin. Continue reading →
Heyyyy, dears! I hope you guys had a lovely Christmas – I sure did! There was so much fun, family, and food… it was wonderful. 🙂 And of course it was great fun to give and receive presents! One of the best parts about giving presents is seeing the expressions on people’s faces when they open the gift, and there were some pretty great expressions – especially the uncontrollable laughs. XD
I absolutely loved the gifts I received as well! If you gave me a gift or Christmas card… THANK YOU SO MUCH. ♥
Anyway, I decided to do a little Christmas haul post for you guys! And nope, I am by no means trying to brag by posting about my presents, and I don’t think I’ve never read a haul post that was… I just wanted to post this because I love reading Christmas haul posts, (though I despise the term “Christmas haul,” heh heh). What ’bout you?
~ Selected Gifts ~
Just a note: these gifts are in random order, not by how much I like them or anything. Pretty much by how they came up on the computer. XD AHEM. Let’s begin.
#1: Sealing Wax
This stuff is so neat! Basically you light a candle, put a piece of wax in the spoon, and hold the spoon over the flame until the wax melts, after which you pour it onto the area to be sealed. I tried it out and it worked pretty well, although there were a few bubbles and I waited too long to press the design in so it didn’t show up. It also made the spoon really black, but you can just wipe that away with a paper towel. Perhaps my sealing techniques need polishing too. HA.
#2: Macro Lens Extension Tube Kit
EEK I’m so excited about these! When you attach them to your DSLR lens, they let you take super close up pictures, almost like a mini microscope! The lenses are stackable, meaning you can choose how many layers to attach depending on the zoom you want.
Honestly I still haven’t quite got the hang of using them, but I can tell it’s going to be tons of fun once I do. 😉 Here are two test pictures I got so far, and I’m sure there will be lots more in the future! Let me know if you guys want a more in-depth review.
#3: Stuffed Hedgehog
LOOK IT’S SO ADORABLE AND SQUISHABLE. Sweet Laura sent me this for Christmas and I love it! HOW COULD YOU NOT? ♥ It’s so soft and fuzzy and fun to hold. 🙂
#4: The Julia Rothman Book Series
I LOVE these books. I discovered them at a friend’s house and so enjoyed the charming illustrations and fun informative writing that I decided to put them on my list! My favorite thing about these books might be how pretty they are. XD The illustrations are beautiful and whimsical, not to mention the books are like mini encyclopedias bursting with entertaining and interesting facts. They’d be great coffee table books.
This particular boxed set is excellent, especially since it comes with 10 (I think) framable prints from the books! Here’s a selection of my favorites…
#5: Micron Pen Set
THESE ARE AMAZING. (I say that about everything, don’t I? XD) But seriously, I am SO happy with these pens so far! They come in a large variety of tip sizes, ranging from 1.0 mm to 0.15 mm, not counting the brush pen which can be different sizes depending on how hard you press. Guys, the smallest pen (a 003) has SUCH a fine tip, it’s barely visible! Okay, maybe not that fine, but you know…
I made these two ATCs to test out the Microns. I also used watercolors and a brush pen we’ll address shortly…
Here’s another test page, with lots of different vines in descending order of the Micron pen sizes, and labels for future reference. Look how thin the lines go!
#6: Black Velvet Brush
I don’t have many good quality brushes, so I was super excited to get this one! The great thing about this paintbrush is that it can hold a fair amount of paint and works for both good-sized areas (like behind the “hello”), and tiny spaces. Usually brushes don’t hold their point very well but this one really does! That’s my favorite part about it – the superfine tip. (As you can tell, I like fine-tip things because I love making and drawing tiny details.) I also used this brush in the watercolor pieces above.
#7: Black Brush Pen (Sakura)
Brush pens are so much fun, and I use the black one I already had a lot. This one is better quality than the one I have now, plus it comes with a refill! It’s also super fun to use and the ink is very opaque. (I used this for the “hello” word and outlines on the ATC.)
#8: Travelogue Sketchbook
A new sketchbook, EEP! I’m quite excited about this one as the pages are thicker and better quality than my current sketchbook’s, so it works better for mediums like watercolor. I used this for the vine picture, by the way, and it didn’t buckle that much – woop woop! It’s quite a bit smaller than my current sketchbook, but I like drawing small anyway, so that’s fine. 😉 I cannot wait to fill it with drawings!
#9: Lined Notebook
This is SO pretty and classy, don’t you agree? Clara sent it to me for Christmas and I love it! Thank you so much, my friend. ♥ The padded cover is light pink with gold accents and bookmark, and the clasp is magnetic. The paper is lined, with a fun border. 🙂
And last but not least, we have these super neat micromagnets! They are SO fun and addicting to play with, hee hee! Micromagnets are tiny magnet balls that you can build and mess around with to your heart’s content. 🙂 They’re super strong, but still flexible, almost like magnetic cloth or something. It’s kind of hard to explain what they’re like, but they’re amazingly weird and fun. XD Look up micromagnets and see if you can find a video maybe?
And that’s the end of the gifts! That wasn’t all of them, but it would be way too long of a post if I included all the delicious candy and snacks and fuzzy socks too. So I’ll spare you the details. XD
~ Select Christmas Adventures ~
My brother got a sticky bug toy that climbs down the wall, and he, uh, threw it a little too high and it stuck. XD He got out his new fishing pole and tried to poke it down, and then Grandaddy got his enormously long bamboo pole and after much prodding and laughing, he got it. XD XD
We had some rather interesting food in our several Christmas celebrations so far. For instance…
Tripe: pickled cow’s stomach. IT TASTES LIKE RUBBERY VINEGAR BUT WORSE.
Divinity: a sweet marshmallowy macaroon type thing. Yum.
Scrapple: basically the leftovers from butchering a pig made into a sort of meat pudding and then fried. It’s actually quite good if you don’t think about what it’s made of…
Hominy: corn without the hull, so it’s soft and tender. Quite yummy; tastes similar to potatoes.
Baklava: a Greek dessert with delicate, super flaky pastry and honey and nuts. DELICIOUS.
Have you had any of those?
My brother got a drum for Christmas. -_- *covers ears* XD He’s actually pretty good at it, it’s just REALLY LOUD. HELP.
Carmen got a beta fish, and she’s still undecided about the name. Which do you think is better, Gilbert or Bobo? (Hint: PLEASE PICK GILBERT. XD)
We always measure the grandchildren at my grandparents’ (on my Dad’s side) Christmas, and this year I was 5′ 10.5.” O.o I think I’m done growing now, heh heh. I hope so, because it’s almost impossible to find clothes that fit as it is. Oh dear… XD
Annnnd that’s about it! I hope you enjoyed reading this (rather large) post as much as I enjoyed making it! 😀 Thanks once again to everyone who gave me those lovely gifts. 🙂
How was your Christmas? What was your favorite gift?
Thanks for bearing with me through all these Christmas posts, dears. I believe this is the last one, so congratulations on surviving the overload! *applause*
P. S. I doubt anyone will notice, but just in case, I wanted to let you know that I may post a bit irregularly over the next two months, since we’re pretty busy fixing up the new house(s) for when we move. 😉 AHH I’M SO EXCITED.