New Hobby

Yes, I know I haven't updated in half a year. I have no excuses. Just haven't felt like writing.

Now that that's out of the way...I picked up a new hobby back at the end of last year. I taught myself how to crochet. Working at a local craft store I was seeing all the gorgeous soft yarn we had and I just needed to learn how to use it. I tried knitting and after 7 solid hours I was just frustrated with it. I think my tension was too tight - it hurt my hands. I tried crochet the next day and haven't looked back. Crochet was EASY!

So I've been making lots of pretty things...and collecting even more pretty yarn. :)

I started with granny squares! And I thought, yes! I'll only ever make granny squares (or circles) of all kinds so I can use so many colors of yarn.

Then I thought, no, wait, I'm going to make mandalas! Those are even cooler than grannies!

Then, of course, I had to make myself a pin cushion for my needles.

From there, I made a cotton towel for the kitchen to dry our hands on. And then I made some matching placemats and coasters.

Then I decided 3 weeks before it was needed to make my first afghan.

She loved it, by the way.

I made a kitchen scrubby, and some face scrubbies.

I made a bag, and had my mom line it for me. (I'm super proud of this one, and the colors are SO pretty!)

I made a bathing suit cover in the week before a trip to Disney earlier this month, and finished it on the plane!

And I have just recently started on making chemo hats for donation. I'm doing adult and children's sizes, but am still looking for where to donate my children's hats. My mom has a friend that works for Dana Farber and can take the adult ones for me.

So that's pretty much what I've been doing. I've also been decluttering - we donated/passed on/tossed so much stuff this spring - 2 car loads to a local Scout troop yard sale, 2 car loads of kids toys to a friend nearby, 2 boxes of books to the local used bookstore, 2 car loads of boxes and styrofoam to my mom for shipping, and bags upon extra bags of pure trash and bulk pickup items in our garbage. We cleaned and organized our attic and garage. The house is looking SO good. And we've been traveling a lot.

I have not felt like making YouTube videos. I haven't felt like blogging. I haven't even been making cards recently, but I do have a craft fair this fall so I'll be getting back to those soon. I have been very busy, just not with the stuff I expected to be busy with. I am enjoying not working in an office and instead embracing my retail crafty job for now, while I can.

Talk to you some point. :)

Small Update

Just popping in with a small update as to where I've been. About a month ago, I picked up a part time a local craft store! It's a HUGE change from my former job as an accountant, both in job type and obviously monetarily, but so far I love it. I get to stock crafty stuff (which satisfies my need to organize), I am meeting other crafters, and I get to make a little extra cash while I'm at it. The job is suuuuper flexible with hours so I can work while my son is in school and get out in time to pick him up in the afternoon. It gives me time to work on my craft business as well. I do need to get used to being on my feet for hours at a time, and how to continue to fit everything else around hours that change each week. But as I said, I am so far loving it!

So that's where I've been lately! Other than that, not much is going on. I'm working on stocking up for my last craft show of this season and filling my shop with items. This week I put up holiday earrings, so if you're interested, please check them out here! Here are a few pics of some of them below, but I have a lot more.

As the holidays approach I'm trying to make some gifts for my family, and I'm already thinking ahead to 2019 and what next year will bring. I'll update here when I can or have something new to share with you. :)

Card Share - Stampin' Up! Birthday Wishes For You

I've been working on creating items for my upcoming craft fairs this fall. I'm bringing handmade cards and earrings, along with a few other items. Yesterday I spent time making a bunch of cards using the same card set, and I wanted to do a quick card share. Each of these use the Stampin' Up! Birthday Wishes For You stamp set (and yes, I will use the SU copyright stamp on my item as per their Angel Policy).

I stamped all of the images onto card stock and then colored them with my alcohol markers and added them to card bases as I went. Each card is a little different, mostly in color scheme but some in layout. I love how they turned out.

There you go! Just a quick card share for some inspiration for you guys. :)

Ohuhu Marker First Impressions - Copic Marker Alternative - Cheap Alcohol Markers!

The other day while browsing YouTube I came across a set of inexpensive alcohol based markers available on Amazon from Ohuhu. I had a gift card and they are really cheap (less than 50 cents a marker), so I thought I would go for it. I ordered the set of 100 Ohuhu markers, but they do come in sets of 40, 60, and 80 as well.

I received them today and filmed an unboxing/first impression video for you. Well, really for Shannon, but you all can watch too! Please check out my video below:

As I mentioned in my video, after testing them all, I found none dried out or cracked. Just one cap that had a little melty thing going on, but it didn't affect the marker or it's ability to close.

Here is my full color swatch chart of the 100 set of Ohuhu markers. As you can see there is a really great range of colors, and they even include a few neon colors, which is kind of neat (not sure what I'll use those for though!).

Anxiety, Vacation, Fall Craft Fairs

Good morning. It's been quite some time since I blogged. I have really good intentions to keep up with things here and on my YouTube channel, but then life just...happens...and before you know it, it's been over a month and you haven't posted anything.

We hit Disney again last month (where else?), staying at the Old Key West resort. I think this may be my new favorite resort. It is entirely a DVC studio/suite resort, though I do believe if there is availability you can book it for cash. It has a boat to Disney Springs, and the vibe is so chill and relaxed. We absolutely loved it. Each room was like you had rented a condo, rather than being part of a resort hotel, the way it is designed. We had a "quiet" pool not far from our room that we visited almost every day. It was just lovely. Our room even had a view of the golf course off our patio. We plan to book there again next summer.

We had a lovely vacation. We even spent a day and night over at Universal and Islands of Adventure, which Austin has never been to. We hung out with my brother, who lives in Florida, for the day, and he had a blast taking Austin on rides. The Mummy was a huge hit (my favorite too), and seeing Diagon Alley for the first time was pretty amazing. I even managed to catch the Gringotts dragon breathing fire:

Since we got back I've been preparing for three craft fairs I am participating in this fall. I plan to bring my handmade earrings and cards, but I have a lot to make before the first show date! So I have been in my craft room much of the day, while also trying to keep up with housework, Austin being back to school, and other stuff of daily life.

I did finalize what I want for my booth display - I have a custom table runner on the way (they sent me the wrong one the first time). I have displays for the earrings and the cards, including some inexpensive wood storage drawers from Ikea. I'm very excited but also very nervous as I haven't done a craft fair since Austin was a baby. I hope I'm prepared enough! I plan to put out my tables for a practice setup (minus the products) this weekend, so once I do that I'll take a few pics and post them for you guys.

Other than that, I've just been trying to manage my anxiety, and I'm failing at it. My anxiety has been in overdrive ever since last fall. I think I had this plan of how things were going to go and suddenly things were chaotic and unknown and it's just put me in this state of constant worry and fear and panic. And when I say constant...I mean constant. At any given point in a day, my mind is focused on exactly what could go wrong. I lay awake at night worrying about a gas leak, or a break in, or that Austin's going to suddenly stop breathing down the hall and I won't know about it. I have mentioned before (I think) that I have this constant fear of him choking or falling down the stairs. I mean, ridiculous things, I worry about ALL.THE.TIME. I have an intense fear of certain bridges that I never in my whole life had before, ever since the bridge collapse in Florida. I panic about being stopped under them, or stuck over water.

And then I'm obsessed with true crime and missing persons, so I watch those videos on YouTube and that only makes the anxiety worse, but I have zero willpower to turn away from them!

It's very clear that if I stopped watching negative things...if I laid off caffeine, got enough sleep, exercised and took care of myself, and let go of social media, things would be "better." But I am clearly not making my mental health a priority right now, because I feel like I can't, and so I'm in this state of constant anxiousness that I can't turn off because I'm not willing to do the things to turn it off. I'd like to say I hope I can do so soon, know me and following through on things.

Alright, enough for today. Thanks for listening, if you're out there! Even if I have nothing productive or interesting to say. I appreciate you taking the time to read.

The One Where Everything Goes Wrong - Watch Me Work

I asked on Facebook yesterday what you'd like me to film, and a couple of people commented a birthday card. One commented suggesting a purple birthday card, so that's what I went with. This card uses purple and aqua, which I think is such a lovely combo.

Note: I use a lot of Stampin' Up! products in this video but I am not a SU demonstrator.

I filmed this card, which you can watch below.

As you'll see from watching the video, things just didn't go smoothly. The Stampin' Up! markers...I hated. They bled with the Memento Tuxedo Black that I always use with my Copics and Spectrum Noir markers. Am I using the wrong ink? I'll consult Google soon. I also later cut something wonky. I notice a Stampin' Up! watermark on my patterned paper after attaching it to my card. And my mat gets offset on the video so the last few minutes are filmed with a crooked mat. All in all, not my best day. But I left all those mistakes/issues in for you to see that what may look like a nice card in the photos, doesn't always get made perfectly the first time. :)

Supplies used:

Stampin' Up! Highland Heather ink
Stampin' Up! Highland Heather card stock
Stampin' Up! Sycamore Street DSP
Stampin' Up! Birthday Wishes For You
Copic marker BG23
Stampin' Up! Pool Party Blends Markers combo pack
Stampin' Up! Candy Dots
Mini Glue Dots
Memento Tuxedo Black
Scotch ATG

Floral Earrings

This weekend I spent time making several pairs of new floral earrings. They just went live in my shop! Come check them out at!

I love how these turned out - I need more colors of the floral fabric for sure!

Vegas Girl Designs New Website

It's been a bit since I posted but I've been sick for about a week now and pretty much being a slug at home. Stupid summertime cold which I suspect I caught on a train last week. I haven't been sleeping well and I have had a splitting headache for two days. Hoping I can feel better tomorrow so I can take Austin out to do something. He's been very sweet though, bringing me water because I had said my head hurt. He's a thoughtful little guy.

I did do something I am pretty excited about during this downtime. I wanted to create a standalone website for my online shop. I'm still on Etsy as I like how easy it is to use and I like the community aspect of it. But I wanted to be able to have a direct site to have customers be able to see my entire product line. Some things I can't really put on Etsy. Some things also don't make sense to continue putting on Etsy (older digital products, for example, as I price those very low and it isn't beneficial to me to continue paying Etsy fees on listing them).

I spent a few days researching what option I should go with. Did I want to build a site from scratch such as with WordPress and WooCommerce? Did I want to try Shopify which has all the bells and whistles ready to go for me? Or did I need something simpler. In the end, for now, I have decided on Pattern by Etsy. But boy, was it hard for me to get opinions on this platform. A lot of the articles I read were outdated, as Pattern has updated features and theming since it's launch. It is limited in the theme options, but I do like that everything is done through Etsy's checkout - which to me, means my customers can trust it.

Shopify was too expensive, in my opinion, for where I'm at in my business right now. But I am open to switching in the future should I need a more robust site. I've ruled out WordPress and WooCommerce even though it has very high reviews as I am just not ready to spend a ton of time designing a site. As my husband put it best, do I want to spend all my time setting up a website, or creating?

So here is what my new site looks like. I like that it is a clean design and organized. It's simple, but has what I need. You can check it out at if you want to see more than this screenshot below :) (Pretty please go take a look?).

Even though I've decided to stick with Pattern by Etsy for now, I'd love for anyone with experience with Shopify or other websites to leave a comment and let me know what they like or don't like. I did check out Indiemade and that one also looks like a really great option. When I'm ready to take on something a little more complex, I want to be prepared before I start!

I know I've been neglecting my YouTube channel as well for a bit. With Austin home during the summer, being sick, working on earrings, and having random stuff going on, I just haven't been able to make it work. I definitely don't want to record when my voice sounds so terrible either. But it's not dead, I haven't abandoned it, and I'll be back soon.

Weight Loss Update and Small Rant

Just a quick one today - as for weight loss, now down 12 pounds. All without exercise, done just by reducing the calories I'm consuming. I eat what I want, but I eat less of it. I don't deny myself something. We've gone out for ice cream, ate what we wanted for the fourth of July, and I'm still losing. It kind of makes me sad when I think about how much I must have been consuming before.

Speaking of the 4th...I went out that morning and got my kiddo a $20 blow up pool from Big Lots and it is all he can talk about still. He LOVED IT. This photo was taken during hour...three, maybe? The water was nice and clear when we started but he spent a solid four hours running across the back yard to jump into the pool. Then he wondered why it got so filled with grass and dirt. Gee? I wonder?

As for my small's more of a "this is getting creepy now ok please stop thank you." I've had this happen a few times, but for example, a few weeks ago, I merely spoke to Brad about a new liquor store I noticed nearby in town, and a few days later, an ad popped up for it on Instagram. First ever local ad I've had. I never searched for the store or typed it or texted it or anything. But I suddenly get an ad? THE PHONE IS LISTENING.

Yesterday I ordered a couple of bathing suits from Torrid from my computer. I never searched on my phone, but I did Snapchat pictures and a few remarks to Shannon. Today, the top three ads on my Instagram feed are bathing suit ads.


How do you avoid this? I mean, Snapchat?! I know you can browse in private mode, but when your phone is picking up your Snaps, or your texts, or YOUR FREAKIN' VOICE and targeting you for ads...that's messed up. I hate it and it makes me feel like I'm constantly being watched. (Which, let's face it, I'm sure we are, in some way).

Rant over.

Card Making Challenge - Paper Crafting Alphabet - Add A Touch Of Gold

I have a card today! Yay! :)

This card is the next in the card making challenge I've been working on. I wanted to make a congratulations card for a friend who reached a huge milestone, and I just love the Lawn Fawn Upon A Star stamp set a friend recently gave me. I thought the set would be perfect for this card.

The stamp set comes with little constellations you can stamp but I opted to use a background paper from one of my 12x12 paper stacks from Heidi Swapp, the September Skies pack.

I stamped the fox and bunny with Memento Tuxedo Black and colored them in with some of my Copic markers. Then I used the matching dies for the Upon A Star stamp set and cut them out. I used the My Favorite Things Stitched Snowdrifts die set to make the hillside on the bottom of the card.

For the sentiment and part of my "touch of gold" in the challenge, I stamped 'You're A Star' with Versamark and then used Stampin' Up! gold embossing powder. I used a white Gelly Roll pen to outline the 'star' for a little something extra.

I popped up the critters with foam adhesive, and to finish off the card, I added some gold star sequins I have in my stash. That makes me happy because I have SO many sequins, so any opportunity to use some is a big bonus in my book.

I love how this card turned out and I hope my friend does too! :)