what this blog is about

This blog is an eclectic one, having a little bit of everything thrown in here. I hope you enjoy it!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Harry Potter Party: The Stamps

Oh the stamps, the stamps! I have found a new hobby in carving my own stamps to use for various things. I spent three months finding the images and carving the stamps. I made twenty-seven for this event, and would have loved to make more if only I had time. I might still! Only two stamps are missing in the above photo due to the fact that my eldest sister has borrowed them. They are the stamps that I carved for the Hogwarts wax seals that I made for the invitations, and the Gringotts stamp made for the money bags.
Ron, Harry, and Hermione
I put a lot of effort into carving these and really pushed myself to carve more and more detail. It was kind of funny, I was sitting there thinking
Hogwarts Castle
that I wasn't going to be able to do a good enough job on the carves because they are so detailed. I was scared to start carving because I didn't want to mess up. I actually had to tell myself to just start and take my time. It can be difficult to see the detail of the stamps in these photos, especially since they have been stamped so many times over now and they have ink in all the little crevices. We cleaned them up the best we could after the event, but we could only get so much of the ink off of them. It doesn't help that Carma, Joyce, and I then went and stamped them in our logbooks in the various different colors we wanted to use.

Below are some scanned images of the stamps that were hidden around our property for the guests to go and find, with the help of some clues, of course. Some of the ink colors don't quite show up, but you get the main idea. Also, some of the images didn't stamp very clearly, but I went with the pages that had the best results.

So, all of these stamps were hidden in plastic boxes, painted so that they would blend more easily into the surroundings. The boxes are shown below.
I then had to type up clues to give them so that they would be able to find the boxes. I tried to incorporate anything from the Harry Potter movies and books that I could when writing the clues. I even made one of them into a poem, and believe me, it took awhile because writing has never been one of my strong points.

As you were able to see above, one of the images is of a dementor. Those who are Potter fans will know that the best way to recover from being near a dementor is to eat chocolate. Therefore, I made some chocolates, wrapped them up, and made labels for them.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Harry Potter Party: Honeydukes

At our first Harry Potter marathon, we had some treats. We had chocolate frogs and pretzel wands. This time around, we took it up a few notches. Well, you'll see in the pictures below.
I made twenty-seven of these Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans boxes, and quite frankly, if I have to make one more it would be too soon. 
These all had various flavors of Jelly Bellies in them, but none of the disgusting flavors.
We made thirty-five chocolate frog boxes, with the chocolate frogs to go with them. This year they had famous witch and wizard cards in them. I made twenty-three different cards in all and all thirty-five boxes had one in it.
We did have a jar of the gross beans. Unfortunately, the gross ones and the good ones looked exactly the same so you never knew what you were going to get. We added cockroach clusters and acid pops this year, pictured below.

Sorry about the acid pops picture being fuzzy. The guests were starting to arrive and I never had a chance to get another photo taken before people started taking them.
Carma made the marauder's maps again this year for everyone to take. We also had Honeyduke's bags for them to put all of their goodies in.

And finally, a photo of the whole Honeyduke's Sweet Shoppe.
And here is the link for the Marauders Map template and instructions. My sister made them. She put tea in a spray bottle and sprayed each map and them baked them to make them look old. 

Harry Potter Party: The Crafts

This is going to take at a few posts to cover. Partially because there was just so much going on, and partially because my sister took most of the photos (I was hosting and didn't get much of a chance) and she is on vacation right now. As soon as I get some photos from her I will do more posts. Right now, I'm going to focus on the things they made.

We had a couple of crafts available to the guests. One of which was making their own wands. Well, really, they needed to do this because what's a witch or wizard without a wand? So we sent them over to Ollivander's where Luna, aka Carma, gave them instructions. Luna was kind enough to fill in for Mr. Ollivander while he is recovering from his recent abduction by the death eaters. Here are some pictures of the wands, in varying degrees of closeness so you can see the detail.
The one in the center is mine!

These were made with paper, sand, hot glue, and three different paint stages. They were really fun to make. No two wands turned out the same, which was perfect, because no two wands in Harry Potter are the same.

We also had the option, mostly for the young kids that were there, to decorate their own Death Eater Mask. I spent some time painting plastic masks black so that they would be ready to decorate using paint pens and silver sharpies. Below is the mask I made to be an example at the craft table.
My Death Eater Mask!
People were seen wearing their masks and having duels with their wands throughout the second half of the day. It was great fun! The kids kept coming up to me and asking me how to do certain spells. I later found out that Carma/Luna kept telling them to go ask Professor Trelawney (me) when they were asking her. Thank goodness I'm a Harry Potter nerd and was able to tell them all the answers, even if it took me a while to remember the incantation.

Next post: Honeydukes!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Recent Vacation: Week Ten

Well, I don't know if I should really call this a vacation, but it felt like one to me. Last weekend I helped co-host a letterboxing event. Gearing Up For The Great Outdoors! Joyce decided to hold this event about seven months ago and asked a few of us to help out and carve stamps and what not. I ended up carving twenty stamps for the event. When we were done getting camp set up, (we camped out for the event! How fun!) Carma and I took Mom and Dad's atv's and went to hide the last few stamps around the area.
Ryder, Carma, Me, and Cathi signing into the event book
Joyce and Cathi had to run back to Joyce's house to finish getting everything for the event. Carma and I hung out at the main camp to get everyone going when they showed up. Also, I was instructed to take pictures of everyone singing in with Joyce's camera while she was gone. We had such a great time getting to know a few boxers better and getting to know some for the first time.
Group Photo
There were sixteen icon boxes that we sent everyone out to find once they had gotten their camps set up. These were images of different Parks and Recreation signs. We then had a potluck dinner and took the group photo. Once it got dark enough, we did night boxing. This was kind of fun. The stamps were hidden in pouches on trees. The pouch had a reflector strip on it that you had to find by flashlight. We stamped the images into logbooks that Joyce made for everyone. The books were filled with campfire songs, some of which corresponded to the stamps that were carved for the night boxing.
On Saturday, we sent everyone off with clues to boxes around the area for them to find, packed up our camp, and said our goodbyes. Carma, Ryder, Mom, and I rode the atv's back to Joyce's house. We stopped along the way to get the boxes that we hadn't gotten yet. We all took much needed showers at Joyce's and slept hard.
This was such a fun experience! I loved getting to know some fellow boxers better!