Tag Archives: crafts

Toni’s Extrovert Diaries:) T.E.D. Talk/ Bake Tips~ Day 12: A Dozen Days

5 Apr

“Believe me, it doesn’t always get better with time. Sometimes it just gets longer and more depressing. Wine helps!”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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I didn’t get moving until way in the afternoon. Nowhere to go, nothing I needed to do. A few phone calls were made to friends and family, and I did make a plan to FaceTime Messenger with some friends at 5 pm, so I had something to look forward to. We chatted and laughed and told funny stories. Oh, and some of us had an adult beverage on hand to toast our friendship and shelter in place incarceration. (Note to self- two glasses of wine is way too much, or not enough.)

I wanted to share my tips for making yummy brownies and keeping them moist for days. But, also I wanted to share how I repurpose all those empty brownie and cake mix boxes for craft projects. You’re welcome. (Crafters/artists don’t throw anything away.)

If you watch the video, yes, I had a couple of glasses of wine to encourage my creativity. 🤦‍♀️

Happy Saturday, my friends. ❤️👩🏻‍🎨🍷

Wednesday:) Working on Some Craft Ideas for Valentine’s Day ❤️

6 Feb

“I find the best way to come up with a great craft project is to gather up every art and craft supply you can think of and just play, play, play. Then, steal some ideas from Pinterest.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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I’ve been trying to come up with some craft projects to do with my senior friends over at Towne Creek on Valentine’s Day, next Friday. Some Girl Scouts are supposed to come and join us, and the other residents in the apartments have been invited. So, I don’t know if there will be five or fifty people. Hard to plan.

Last week, the TOTS met at Lynne’s to paint some red hearts on black rocks. So, I picked up a few more black rocks and rummaged through my craft room for some large blue glass stones. I painted a few examples so I can show my seniors what they look like.

This technique is easy. I dip the end of a fat brush in red gloss paint and make two dots next to each other, (like eye balls) then drag each dot down to a point to form a heart. I call them dip-dot hearts. These were on the blue glass stones.

Then, I painted a few more hearts on the black rocks, then I used an opened paper clip to dot around the hearts. Cute.

I played around with some blank while index cards and some of those red paint swatches from the Walmart paint department to creat a book mark. I have a bunch of peel off heart stickers, punched a hole at the top and put a fuzzy pink yarn string,

I love pop-up cards, so I designed, after much measuring and cutting, a pop-up heart to put inside some cute note cards I found at Hobby Lobby last week. I used pastel chalk for an easy background.

So, this is how I get inspiration. I make a big mess and see what develops. Still more ideas in my head. I’ll keep you posted.

Friday:) Friends, Fun Food and My Firemen

6 Jul

“Art, freedom and creativity will change society faster than politics.”

~Victor Pinchuk

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Today was my monthly First Friday with my lovely senior artist friends at Towne Creek Apartments. I was trying to decide what feast to prepare for our dinner break, so I looked in my very overstuffed freezer. I’ve been wanting to use up some tamales, so I decided to make a tamale casserole. Recipe, we don’t need no stinkin’ recipe. I use the wing and a prayer method. Here ya go…

5 layers. 1)Diced tomatoes 2)Tamales sliced in half 3)Pour refried beans over 4)Mixture of chicken enchilada soup, rice, hash brown, sausage (leftovers) 5)Top with cheddar jack cheese and bake covered at 350 for about 40 minutes, uncover and bake another 10 minutes or so till brown and bubbly. (YUM!) I took hot dogs and toppings, salsa verde chips, and bluebell ice cream too.

If you noticed two pans, that’s because I made a double batch of this and dessert for my Firemen friends at Station 9.

Dessert was my famous find fruit in your freezer upside down cake. Blueberries, strawberries, pineapple, and a can of apple pie filling and one yellow cake mix.

I gathered up my art supplies, food and packed up my car. Station 9 is less than two mikes from the house, so I dropped of my goodies. J. McDaniels answered the door and visiting Chief from Station 2 was standing by the door, so I insisted on a photo op. Hopefully he sampled some warm cake right out of the oven.

When I got to Towne Creek, Helene was already there and helped me carry in the many bags of food and supplies.

Our project for today was fun. I’ve been collecting a zillion empty brownie mix boxes for a future art project. I wasn’t sure what, but that’s what artists do. Last night, I stayed up late filling ten boxes with crumpled newspaper, cutting a triangle slit in the back for hanging, taping shut, then painting the side with black acrylic paint. These would become our canvas.

Everyone did something different. They turned out great, plus a great way to recycle and repurpose.

After our fun art project, it was time for our Friday feast.

What a wonderful day, sharing food and friendship, being silly and creative. Thank you Helene for all your help.

Wednesday:) What Ya Been Up To, Miss Toni?

19 Dec

“Make something special for the ones you love. That Amazon box at the door just can’t say, ‘Look what I made for you!’ ”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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I stayed up late last night to paint the letters for the new baby’s room. Everyone was up to bed, so the perfect time to watch the Hallmark Channel and paint pink roses. I finally finished around 1 a.m. They turned out pretty nice. They will go up in the baby’s room when Daddy has a minute to put them up. That might be in June. They have their hands full.

Here’s how they turned out. They should look nice on the pink walls. I’m glad that I had time to make something special for Sophie.

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni?

18 Jul

“If the oven is on and the house doesn’t smell like brownies, it goes without saying, there must be some wonderful hand-painted wine glasses baking in there.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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I almost feel guilty turning on the oven on these excruciatingly hot days, but an artist’s gotta do what an artist’s gotta do. I know that’s not proper grammar, maybe the gas fumes and heat exhaustion have gone to my head.

These hazy lazy blazing hot days of summer have kept me mostly indoors. The lazier I got, the more guilty I felt sitting around. So, I decided that I needed to do a little painting. I have some gifts and donation items I needed to get working on. I have a dear friend that just moved, and I think she needs some hand-painted wine glasses as a house warming. (All the houses are pretty warm these days.) Also, my friend Mary, from church, asked if I’d donate some items for the Bella House Gala and Silent Auction.

My studio/crap room is upstairs, and I don’t keep the air conditioning cranked up on the second floor, as I rarely go up there. Literally, I was working in a sweat shop. I could have lowered the air, but I figured it would only be for a few hours, why bother. Well, I was sweatin’ up a storm. Good for the artistic soul.

I am so lucky to have this great workspace upstairs. I can leave the mess and go downstairs and not worry about it. I’m not even going to show you my media/crap room where shelves and shelves of supplies are not so neatly housed. It might scare you or someone might call for an artist intervention. (Other artists understand.)

Here’s what’s cookin’. A dozen tall wine goblets. The glass paint needs to cure, then placed in a cold oven, bake at 350 for 30 minutes, then cool without opening the door for a few hours. This helps the paint set. But, they still should be hand washed. The crafters rule is…hand-made, hand-wash.

These beauties will find a few good homes to go to.

Friday:) Fun Last Minute Christmas Crafts

23 Dec

“I have never waited till the last minute for homework assignments, term papers, Christmas shopping, housework, getting ready, or craft projects. I always start a good ten or fifteen mutes before it’s due.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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I already posted a few Holiday craft projects that I’ve been working on, but thought I’d show a few Pinterest ideas that might make fun last minute projects.

Here are the ones I did. Full size and min Hershey bars, just wrapped in white paper with a black hat and marker eyes and nose. Accessories optional. and a paper Santa with a candy cane.

Here’s a cool glass ornament I painted with just a silver paint pen… glitter and ribbon optional.

Some cute ideas from Pinterest for next year, if I remember, but you can try a last minute craft today or tomorrow. I may…or may not tonight, or in the morning, or next year.

Paper piercing. Just draw a design on the back and put over a towel and pierce with a pin. Card stock or water color paper works best. Flip it over, cool designs.

Happy last minute everything, my friends.

Thursday:) Those Crafty Girls

16 Jun

“He who works with his hands is a laborer.He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.

He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.” 

― Francis of Assisi

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This morning was the monthly “craft and chat” gathering at The Greens. Mom’s friend, Mary Ann, leads the group, sets up all the supplies, brings cookies, and flits around with a super-silly disposition that lights up the room. Today, we were making clothes pin note holders. Mom made a whole bunch. 

Mary Ann is the redhead standing on the left. Mom is the redhead in yellow on the right. There were so many little stickers, flowers, jewels, and more.



I love crafting and painting with Mom. She is my hero, my teacher, and my inspiration. Here are some of the things we made. 



I really do…especially at Christmas time. My friends will attest to that.

Saturday:) Some Amazing Crafters

5 Nov

“Crafting is not a hobby, it’s glitter for the soul.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Today was the St. Gabriel Holiday Boutique. I got up early to make brownies for their bake sale. They were collecting baked goods Friday, but my brownies are best right out of the oven. So, that’s what I did. One batch had marshmallows and dark and semisweet chocolate chips.mthe other had cut up Mars bars and chocolate chips. My favorite. 


I wrapped them up in a clear plastic bag and took them over, still warm. I needed up buying some back to give to some of my crafter friends who were volunteering or displaying. Silly, right?


Father Don says, “Hi.”

My friend Bonita and other volunteers.

The sweet volunteers behind the scenes in the kitchen, serving lunch.


Here are just some of the wonderful treasures I found.


It was a nice day, good turnout, and fun afternoon visiting with friends and finding holiday treasures.


I even saved a brownie for the mailman. He or she will be surprised when they open the mailbox.

Saturday:) Some Special Things

15 Nov

We create our own world with the ingredients we put into it, so take care with your recipe.

~Greg Phillips

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My neighbor, Kathy called me this afternoon and asked if I could give her a ride to pick up her car over in Plano. I was already almost where she needed to go, but had to drive home to McKinney to pick her up, then turn around and take her back to Park  near Preston. But, the good news was, it wasn’t far from the liquor store. I was running low on vodka and Kahlua for my Black Russians. I only go a couple times a year, so I stock up when I get over there. You can’t buy hard liquor in McKinney, just beer and wine.

So, on my way home, I went up Preston Road because there is Toatal Wine and More with a Michael’s craft store two doors down. SCORE! My two favorite places side by side. I even wrote a poem about it…( Think of the song from the Sound of Music)

             THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS

Kahlua with vodka with some chocolate ice cream

A glass full of happy before my good night dream

Note cards and new paint, my heart all a twitter

Do not get me started on the prospect of glitter

I popped into Michaels, they had a great sale

Total Wine two doors down for my vodka and ale

If you’d like to share in my crafts and my liquor

You don’t need to call, come on over it’s quicker

THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS!

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

   
 
I stocked up on my liquor. Don’t judge me! This should last me a few weeks. Just kidding, a few months, unless a lot of friends stop by.

  
A dozen containers of extra fine glitter for my ornaments on sale and more note cards and paint for painting homemade greeting cards. Did I mention the great sale at Michael’s plus an addition 25% off toatal purchase? SCORE!

Time to practice what I preach. Cheers! 

 
 

We create our own world with the ingredients we put into it, so take care with your recipe.

~Greg Phillips
(I’ve got a good recipe.)

Saturday at St.Gabriel’s Holiday Boutique

7 Nov

“To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.” 

~Osho

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Handmade items make the best gift because they are made with love.

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

I always look forward to the annual holiday craft show at St.Gabriel’s in McKinney. Not only because I find wonderful handcrafted treasures for myself, friends and family, but also because I bump into many friends who are displaying their items, friends who are shopping, and other parishioners to visit with. I personally think handmade items make the best gifts. 

  
My friend Paula Mattei creates beautiful jewelry, especially with local, college and national team charms. ( My Team Jewelry)

  
My friend Krys Watson sees, paints, makes jewelry, you name it. I really scored some treasures here. Krys also is a frequent visitor at Towne Creek with our seniors and has taught us to make so many fun gifts.

  
Father Don was checking out the bake sale items. I ate lunch here. Frito pie. (Chili and Fritos with cheese, sour cream, jalepeños)

  
Bumped into Sherri Murphy and her mom. (Open arm welcome)

  
My friend Miss Bonita on the left and some other church ladies.  

 Great turnout and wonderful crafts and food. 

  
Afterwards, I walked across the parking lot and said a few prayers. I had the entire church to myself. (Captive audience) As always, I thanked God for my many blessings, my wonderful family and friends, and His continued strength and support. Amen!

  

 Some of my treasures.