Friday, March 04, 2011

Sunshine and a Wasp Tale

Where is the sunshine?  The other day it came out for almost the entire day and it was glorious!  Did you see it at your house too?

I miss the sunshine.  Kind of like I miss that little girl in the scrapbook page (who is now 16!).

Now that my kids are grown or almost grown I also miss those kid experiences.  Playing outside with no real purpose, the sweet little voices, the unconditional hugs.  When they were little, my kids loved to play in the yard and at the park.  Personally, I have a love/hate relationship with the park and backyard swing sets.  Many years ago we had one of those big sturdy wooden swing sets that had a fort look-out, swings and a slide.  It was painted with a lovely dark green enamel paint and occupied its own sand lot on the side of the house.  Unfortunately, the local wasps also thought the swing set was lovely.  They built their little nests in every corner of that thing.  One day my youngest was out in just a diaper playing in the fort and made the wasps angry.  The poor little guy had stings up and down his backside.  Luckily, it didn't hamper his love of swing sets and playing in the backyard!

**The giveaway portion of this post is now CLOSED.**

I'd like to celebrate the love of sunshine and happy playing children everywhere with a giveaway.  Enter to win a $25 gift certificate to any of the 200+ CSN Stores so you can go shopping for something for your Little Sunshines!  Just leave a comment below, making sure to leave your email.  For extra entries, follow me with GFC, on Facebook or on Twitter.  Leave a comment for each extra entry.  The relevant links are in the right sidebar.

Giveaway ends March 28, 2011 at 11:59 pm MST.  Be sure to leave your email or  have it in your blogger profile so I can  find you if you win.  Open to residents of the US or Canada who are 18+.  Winner will be selected  by a true random generator.  Winner must respond to winning email in 48  hours or a new winner will be selected.  I received no compensation for this article.  CSN Stores is sponsoring the giveaway.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Toothpaste as an Art Medium?

Yes, you read correctly.  Today I experimented with toothpaste as art.  I have to say the results were stellar!

Let's backtrack a little, however.  Have you heard of TheraBreath?  This stuff is amazing - seriously!  If you struggle with any breath problems this is the product for you.  My whole family is very impressed with the results.  TheraBreath graciously offered to send us toothpaste, mouth rinse and lozenges (mints) to try out.  I bet they didn't know I would turn their product into art as well. But, like I said, more on that later... *grin*

The TheraBreath toothpaste and oral rinse (mouthwash, whatever you'd like to call it) is well, not the typical stuff we're used to using.  The taste is so mild it's almost nonexistent and there's no fizzy bubbling mint explosion in your mouth.  At first you wonder if it even did anything.  Let me assure you, it is working, and hard!  This toothpaste and rinse really do get rid of any and all funky breath smells and banish it for the whole day.  We were also happy to find that it has fluoride as we are advocates for the addition of fluoride.


Next up is the lozenges.  Our oldest son, who is married, sent me a text message the day after using one of these and said "Holy Crap!  Those things are amazing!".  He and his wife had smelled each others morning breath just to prove me wrong that these lozenges are so long lasting and voila! no bad morning breath.  The mint in these is quite powerful but after it's dissolved your mouth is fresh, not funky, and for lack of a more descriptive word, neutralized.  I can go to any event, meeting, or crafting class and be 100% sure that my breath will not offend.  Later this year TheraBreath will also be releasing a probiotic which can help your body resist cavities.  Who wants cavities?  Not us!

So, back to the toothpaste art.  I even have a tutorial for you!  Let me show you the final product:


See the star?  Yep, stamped in toothpaste.  Gives it amazing depth and dimension.  To get started, you will need toothpaste (I used Dr. Katz's TheraBreath), food coloring, paint brush, stamp, a sheet of plain colored cardstock, clear embossing powder (like Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel or UTEE) and a heat embossing tool.  Squeeze out a small amount of toothpaste and mix with a drop or two of food coloring.  


Your mixture will be much thicker than paint and you will want to work quickly to avoid anything drying out.  Next, paint your stamp of choice with the toothpaste/food coloring mixture.  I used a clear stamp and stamping block.


At this point you're going to wonder what in the world you're doing and question if this could possibly turn out even somewhat ok.  I promise, it will!  Make sure to coat your stamp well and stamp onto your cardstock.  It won't look like much yet but a wet gloopy mess.  Next, grab some clear embossing powder like UTEE and cover your stamped image with the powder.  Pour off the excess embossing powder and you will have something that looks like this:


The final step to completing your toothpaste stamped image is to heat the embossing powder with a heat embossing tool.  This will 'set' the toothpaste and turn it a light color and the embossing will protect the image.  It's really pretty cool.


Once you have completed your toothpaste stamped art, it can be used on a card like I did or any number of projects like scrapbook pages (although I wouldn't put it directly next to photographs), altered art or artist trading cards.  Ain't it purdy!!

Now, since I know you are all dying to create your own toothpaste art and have incredibly fresh breath while doing so, run over to TheraBreath and get some of your own!  PLUS, TheraBreath has awesomely offered one of my readers the chance to win a set of TheraBreath toothpaste and Oral Rinse of their very own!!

As a secondary giveaway, I am giving another reader the chance to win the toothpaste art card I created, complete with envelope, and 3 $1.00 off coupons for TheraBreath!!
**The giveaway portion of this post is now CLOSED.**
Want the chance to win?  Please follow these steps:


*1)  Just leave a comment below letting me know why you'd like to freshen your breath or why you want to freshen someone else's!   This is the only requirement for entry!  Be sure to leave your email in your comment if it isn't in your profile so I can find you if you win.  Thanks!
*2)  If you'd like to be entered for the card and coupons, leave a second comment letting me know how you would use the card or what you think of my project!

EARN EXTRA ENTRIES, complete as many as you like:
*3)  Follow @ArtsyChaos on Twitter.  Leave a comment letting me know you follow with your twitter name.
*4)  Follow @therabreath on Twitter.  Leave a comment letting me know you follow with your twitter name.
*5)  Like the Artsy Chaos Facebook Fan page.  Leave a comment with your facebook name letting me know you have joined.
*6)  Like TheraBreath on Facebook.  Leave a comment with your facebook name letting me know you follow.
*7)  Follow my blog with Google Friend Connect (in the right sidebar--->).  Let me know you follow.
*8)  Tweet this giveaway using the button below the post.  Leave the URL to your tweet!  You can tweet once daily if you'd like, just come back and leave a comment to let me know.  Or, if you'd prefer, share on facebook, just leave a comment and let me know.

Giveaway ends March 28, 2011 at 11:59 pm MST.  Be sure to leave your email or  have it in your blogger profile so I can  find you if you win.  Open to residents of the US who are 18+, sorry International readers.  Winner will be selected  by a true random generator.  Winner must respond to winning email in 48  hours or a new winner will be selected.  For this review, I received a complimentary set of products from TheraBreath.  This did not affect or influence the opinions in this article.

Sunday, February 27, 2011