Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The costs of working

I've been tossing around the idea of getting a part time job for some time. With the economic climate the way it is, and the fact that we have a HUGE mortgage it seems like a no - brainer.

But ....

As a result of the fact that I'm unlikely to find "the perfect job" close to home (the downside of living in the outer suburbs), I'll have to add the costs of out of school hours (OOSH) care for the big kids and more long day care for MrM. I've looked at the likely payscales I'd be employed under, and by the time I add childcare fees it looks like we will be only about $50/wk better off. From that I will need to deduct vehicle running costs (as most positions I'm interested in require use of own vehicle), which probably wipes off all the gains. Sigh.

So, do people work for purely economic reasons? I know my mum thinks I should get back to work ASAP so as to retain my professional skills. I have to say my confidence in some of my skills has dropped, but I'm sure I'm still employable in my profession. What is it I want from work ... money, routine, social connections, a break from home/kids, the sense that "I'm contributing" ...

What about the things I'd miss out on ...

How to you place value on these things??

First Christmas gift giving

DH had a work trip back to Singapore last week. On the weekend he was able to catch up with some of our old friends, so I sent a few Christmas gifts to mark the occasion.

For the children of our friends I made this gift slider. The pockets contain gigantic Caramello koalas. A yummy treat from Australia.

This first one is for a great little guy. The stamps are Hero Arts. They are pretty new stamps too - I thought it was time to get some more boyish stamps for the men in my life. I think I'll use it lots - love the strong lines and how it lends itself to bright funky colours.

The second one I actually made at a SU! demonstration. I loved the stamp set so much, I just had to buy it.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

My turn

Even I got some cards done. Having Ms A enthused about creating stuff got me back in the mood too.

The first card features a Tim Holtz/ Stampers Anonymous image that has been laying around since last month.

After I first stamped the image on an offcut of cardstock I had no idea how to design a card layout from it. Inspiration finally struck a couple of days ago - right when dinner was served - and all the stopping and starting (dinner, supervising baths, getting kids into bed) turned out to be a Godsend. I think it stopped me making some bad design choices. The only thing I would do differently would be to ink up/distress the edges of the layers. Otherwise, I think it turned out well.

This second one uses an image I bought years ago, but had never seen ink. Shameful, I know!

Its not a great pic, but I watercoloured the image with my watercolour crayons, highlighting the breast of the bird with interfence twinkling H2Os. I intended to create UTEE/Opals tiles ... alas I didn't have any, so I used glossy accents instead.

The charm is one of the "nonstock" charms from Far Flung Craft. (We occasionally found random charms mixed in the bulk packs when we repacked for retail sale) The charm sits on a stamped frame (think its inkadinkadoo) which was flukingly (is that a word???) the perfect size.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The young artist

Ms A accompanied me to a craft fair a couple of weeks ago. She had a blast, watching lots of demos, and even completing her first LO's.

The next week she had a few days off school and this is what she came up with:

She was rightfully proud of her accomplishments and has shown them off to all and sundry. An excellent first attempt at twinkling H20's.