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Creative Casey's Blog

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Boulderfest, Zombies, and Cheese

Here's an update on some of the things I've been up to, including the much anticipated Run For Your Lives Zombie 5k!

1. Boulderfest: -  My friend and I decided to check this mini festival out after all it is for a good cause. It was quite an interesting eclectic mix of people and music to be sure.  There were two stages for music and an array of styles of Punk, Jam, Rock, Indie and more.  The spectators were also a wide variety of characters, from goth to a full purple velor outfit, to the homeless man with his dog, to a birthday guy who was being video taped by his friends while he was trippin'.  The porta potties were horrid (as reported by my friend). After her expression upon existing one I chose to be in pain and hold it until our next destination.  The vendors were lack lusters (only a few) but the food vendors were plentiful and all were generous in giving some of their profit to Harmony (who the festival was being held for).  Needless to say I was ready to go when it was time to leave to go to a nearby venue to watch a different band perform.

2.  Southwedge Fest 2013 or wait rather a no go fest. My mom was visiting and I was excited to check out this neighborhood festival for a few reasons; Hedonist Chocolate, The Little Bleu Cheese Shop-, and the fact that it was near where I used to live in the city so I wanted to support this up and coming neighborhood. Unfortunately, once we got to the area there was nothing going on!!  My mom thought I got the date wrong but I didn't!! As it turned out this isn't the first time this neighborhood has organizers from the neighborhood plan events only to pull out at the last minute which is apparently what happened to this years Southwedge fest. I do have say that's a loser move on their part.

Since it was a nice day and we were already there we decided to take the opportunity to walk the Southwedge main street and take a stroll through the shops.  A professor of mine and his wife opened up The Little Bleu Cheese Shop and it is so adorable and unique. A highlight of this adventure was checking out their store and seeing my professor at work.  Hedonist chocolate spelled delicious, was pretty expensive, and had No samples. What kind of a chocolate shop is that!  We went into a couple of other quaint shops and checked out a myriad of neat one of a kind sandwich shops and bakeries.

3. The much anticipated Run For Your Life Zombie Apocalypse 5k was held last Saturday. It was a very fun run, a little difficult from a running perspective, and incredibly dirty. The Zombies met my expectations as far as costumes. They were pretty vicious especially if you still had a flag on you by the mid-point (which is so atypical for zombies).  I would describe them at the beginning as the zombies from Walking Dead season 1 and then by midway they turned into zombies from the end of Walking Dead season 2.  They literally chased you and ran really fast if you had a flag on you.

The race took place in the backwoods on a motor cross field and then led into a narrow wood path through the woods and back onto the motor cross field.  Zombies were all over. There was a smoke house with live electrical wires (us ladies didn't get hit with the wires but the guys with us did and they hollered like girls!) and a blood tank which was practically as tall as me and freezing. There were a couple of mud pits that you had to crawl through with barbed wire above you and you had to go through on your belly or else you would get caught by the wire. I know this because I got my shirt and hair caught in it trying to stay on my knees. (ouch!) That was the grossest I've probably ever been.  There were some other fun aspects including the pictures you got to take with the zombies at the end.  I did get a trophy and t-shirt but sadly my trophy says "infected".  All of my flags were taken but I lasted the longest out of our group with our original flags. I also do not have my race bib to show because a vicious zombie yanked it off of me trying to get my flag. Damn zombies! If you like fun runs I would recommend this one. I even screamed once because a zombie popped out the woods one time.

**Stay tuned for the Dirty Girl 5k I'm doing with a friend in September. Also, we signed up for the Chicago Hot Chocolate 5k in November. I'm a little worried about the cold and my Raynauds but if there was ever a race tailored for me it would be this one!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

PMC Jewelry Kicks Ass!

I've been wanting to take a PMC jewelry making class for over a year. I first heard about this through a colleague when I saw a silver ring she was wearing and asked her about it. She mentioned taking a PMC jewelry class at the Creative Workshop and making it in less than 3 hours. I looked into and signed up for a class this past January but it ended up being canceled. The only other time to take it at that place was during the day (which obviously doesn't work when you are working during the day).

A couple of months ago when I was at Studio 34 to make the hot glass beads the owner mentioned that they have PMC classes. We finally connected on a workable time and I was able to take the class this past week.  The teacher was Janice McKay Wiggins who has her own business JMW Silver and is a local art teacher. Her Esty shop can be found at:

One of the cool things about attending this class on this day was that Studio 34 and it's owneMarilynne Lipshutz were just featured in the Sunday D&C Living Social on the front page. What was even cooler to me was finding out that Marilynne was a recently retired psychotherapist who opened the studio in 2001 because of her love for creating.

So moving's the skinny on PMC (Precious Metal Clay):

Metal clay is a crafting medium consisting of very small particles of metal such as silvergold, bronze, or copper mixed with an organic binder and water for use in making jewelrybeads and small sculptures. Originating in Japan in 1990, metal clay can be shaped just like any soft clay, by hand or using molds. After drying, the clay can be fired in a variety of ways such as in a kiln, with a handheld gas torch, or on a gas stove, depending on the type of clay and the metal in it. The binder burns away, leaving the pure sintered metal. 

How neat is this medium! In 2.5 hours using 9 grams of silver PMC I made 2 sets of earrings and a pendant necklace. I learned the basics and picked it up pretty easily because it's very much like using regular clay, sculpty or fimo clay.  In the end I used patina to darken my silver and lightly sanded off the upraised portion of my design to the original silver look.  Later when I got home I added some beads to the earrings and got a chain for the necklace.  

My goal is to get back to the studio on an open studio day where I can just purchase the PMC, use the materials in the studio and then pay for firing in the kiln to make some more pieces. Through asking questions I'm pretty sure I can add layers and pattern both sides of a piece on my own and through experimentation.  This is definitely a material I'd like to continue to work with. If only silver wasn't quite so expensive. $30 for 9 grams!  I made the necklace and matching earrings for my sister for her birthday. I can still show a picture because my sister doesn't follow my blog or ever look on it to see what I'm too. Therefore she won't see her b-day present! Her loss. :)

Friday, August 9, 2013

Can't Get Enough of Books!

The summer job I took up to make some extra cash has allowed me to read a ton of books.  I've tried to read a mix of work related therapy books in between book club and random book finds.  A cool occurrence is that at a new local library I've been going to this summer has a summer reading program for adults with prizes! If you fill out a brief book review on each book you read you enter each review into a bucket and if your name/review is picked (the drawing is once a week) then you win a gift card.  I was uber excited and put out a positive intention that I would win and on my first week participating I received a call and won! I received a $10 gift card to the Pour House. It's a local restaurant that I've never been to so that's pretty cool.

 Below are some but not all of the books I've read this summer. I've rated them based on my opinion.

Supreme Influence by Niurka ***

Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris ***.5

Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris ***.5

Alter this!: Radical Ideas by Alena Hennessy ****

Cute Stuff by Aranzi Aronzo ***

The Principles of Uncertainty by Maria Kalman ***

Monkey mind: A Memoir of Anxiety by Daniel Smith ***

Afraid to Eat: Children and Teens Wight in Crisis by Frances Berg **.5

I'll See You Again by Jackie Hance ****

The Impostor Bride by Nancy Richler ****.5

The Generosity Plan by Kathy LeMay ****

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Binky Patrol Project

Since making the decision to not pursue an Esty Shop at this time, I decided to look for a non-profit to donate the small blankets I had made.  I went searching out positive inspiring causes and came across Binky Patrol.

Their Mission:
We are an all volunteer, national, non-profit organization making and distributing homemade blankets to children born HIV+, drug-addicted, infected with AIDS or other chronic & terminal illnesses, those who are abused, in foster care or experiencing trauma of any kind. Our recipients are from 0-18. 

They can be found at:

The blankets I had created fit into the binky patrol measurements so I sent all 6 of them off to one of the donation sites. Hopefully some babies will be comforted by them as I was (oops still am) comforted by mine.

Women Roc, Makerspace, Summer Freebies, and more...

Summer has continued to be jam packed with many new adventures. Here's a taste of some of the things I've been up to:

1. Paddle Boarding (SUPPing) at Bay Creek Paddle;‎.  I went one time last summer and it was fun. It was even better this time becauses I knew what I doing and was able to go with and teach a friend.

2.  Women Run the Roc 5k race- a part of Fleet Feet running; .  This was for a great cause- Operation School Supplies for Inner City after school programs. I dropped off a bag of school supplies and got to run with over 365 women.  I set a seriously high goal for myself to run the race in 26min. minutes. To my awesome suprise I met that goal and then crushed it coming in at 25min.46sec. I improved on my last race by 2 min..  I wore my very bright colored new running shoes and ran with a friend so that was fun. Lesson learned this time- it was positive to study the map race route ahead of time. I knew when I hit the 2 mile mark and could kick it into gear.  I came in 42nd out of 365 runners overall and 15th out of 62 runners in my age catagory. Not to shabby!

3.  A visit to the newly established Makerspace;  Not sure what to expect and due to the location I conned a friend into coming with me to an open house night at Makerspace (thanks Marcy!).  This was a cool place filled with a bunch of geeks (like myself). We received a tour by one of the founders, Rob. Some of the cool things going on in this space are: an awesome wood working room, a sewing machines, stain glass making, a soon to be art framing section, electrical stuff, machinist corner, a children's play area, information library and perhaps the coolest part a 3D printer!  We learned how the 3D printer works and we hope they offer a class in it soon. Marcy and I felt right at home sharing in the sci fi quotes floating around all evening.  We were even asked to participate in a practice class for an electrical course being offered this weekend. We got a free course which fried my circuits. :)

4. I made it back to a Stampin Up Technique Geek class a week ago. Learned some useful techniques, got inspired and had fun catching up a couple of my friends who also took the class. We all planning in heading to the next Geek class in Aug.. :)

5. I attended the monthly Dress A Girl Around the World through Angels of Mercy Inc..  I also attended their Stop Sex Trafficking awareness event where there was presentations, the video "Chosen" was shown and lots of great cookies and beverages followed.  I'll be running in the 5k race for this project/awareness event the end of September.‎

6. Rochester has a lot of awesome free events during the summer. I took advantage of some of these events by attending the Wegmans Concert Series called Music on the beach where a friend and I brought our chairs and drinks and listened to an Irish band and watched Irish dance troops on a breezy hot summer night.  That same week I attended Movies at the Park (Highland Bowl). I went because it was retro night and they were playing the original Ghostbusters! Awesome!

*** Stay tuned for upcoming projects and adventures: building of the Little Free Library and the much anticipated Zombie 5K race!!!