Bit o’ Barnes & Noble Fun

Sadly, this month,I believe I should be crowned and known as ‘she-who-gets-it-done-JUST-in-the-nick-of-time‘ . I feel like an extraordinay juggler these days… grateful the balls are still in the air, but not quite comfortable how close they are to dropping.


FREE! Vintage Image to use in your art, click the photo.

One of my dearest friends, and someone I have repeatedly referred to on my blog as a woman I both admire and strive to be like, has done an amazing job running the PTA at her youngest daughter’s school. She generated interest (which we all know is half the battle), has been innovative with fundraising ideas, and done a world of good for the school and children in it. I already knew what a better place the world is with her in it, I am glad others are continually seeing that as well.

The money the PTA raises funds field trips and reimburses the teachers for the supplies that they generously pay for out of their own pockets. As someone who used to spend 1/4th – 1/2 of my paycheck on supplies for the kids in my classes, I cannot tell you how much a program like that would have helped.

I didn’t post this with much warning time (see first paragraph) – but knowing the book & magazine lovers most of us are, I know there will be at least a few of you who will be going to Barnes & Noble today, and a few who planned to soon that will make the time. The school will get a portion of the proceeds if you present one of these 6 Barnes & Noble Vouchers when you make your purchase. Their small town school can feel the benefits nationwide, awesome isn’t it?

Now is a perfect time to get off yer buts (i couldn’t resist with that photo) and buy one of the books I am in, a fabulous art magazine, that book you’ve been dying to curl up & read or that new technique book you didnt’ get from Santa. Treat yourself, treat someone else, pass the vouchers out, spread the word… whatever it takes. Help me make even a last-minute effort count.

Oh, and can ya do it today? (insert sheepish grin here)

Quick Recap –

  • Download the 6 Barnes & Noble Vouchers & print.
  • Go buy something at your local Barnes & Noble.
  • Today, if you would.. its the last day!
  • Give the extra vouchers to a friend or stranger.
  • Savor the warm & fuzzies you get from helping the PTA.
  • Pass my post on.

With Gratitude,


Next Up: The {Echo} Week 5 Roundup – be sure to let me know you got your entry up, so I can add it. Info here.

Day 19/29 Days of Giving is…


Hey! I heard that…

as i said… shhhhh….

lean in a lil…

not THAT close!

ah better… thank you.

You see, I have a little secret to tell each of you.

Let’s just keep it between us shall we?

When it comes to donating, I find that I am not really drawn to the corporate type non-profits. In my (possibly warped) mind …big organizations tend to have equally big patrons; and while I don’t dispute their value or necessity in society, I rarely enjoy giving to those causes. It has somehow become so terribly impersonal and I cultivate relationships with value in my life… I don’t just want to be another name on yet another list. (Isn’t that just a touch horrible of moi?) Subsequently, I like knowing where my hard-earned dollars go, and often with those places – it’s a big ol’ mystery that feels unappreciated.

There are so many people who fight for awareness on the ‘big’ issues- as there should be, after-all they are causes for a reason. However, as someone living with not so common issues (Bipolar Disorder, Tourettes Syndrome) I am understandably drawn to a different sort of genre. The people who fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. The person who doesn’t make little enough to receive assistance, but doesn’t make quite enough to meet their bills some months.  That sorta thing. Who represents that crowd? The crowd most of us fall into, or have at least been in at some point within our lives.


 What gets to me – what really gets to me – are everyday heroes. Seemingly ordinary folks – like you & I … giving of their time, their belongings, their skills towards a common cause or a goal. Communities who rise together and help an ailing neighbor, or a group of children in need of a place to play. A mother who organizes a picnic for their child’s teacher who was unfairly let go. The people that spur hope at every turn.  I want to know the individual stories behind the illnesses we rally to fight against. I like a face to a name. I am inspired by those who not only hold onto hope, but fight for hope – even in the most dire of circumstances.

Sob stories, and a woe is me attitude? … do nothing but infuriate me. They are a dime a dozen these days, and more often than not have that boy-who-cried-wolf feeling to me. If I have learned only one thing in this life – it’s this: We may not be able to control the things that happen to us , or around us in life – but we CAN control how we react to them. We can choose to see the light, even on the darkest of the days … and if there truly is no glimmer of light, we can somehow…find a way to embrace the darkness. To walk through it. We can control our reactions, and our attitudes. As someone living with a mental illness – I can attest to just how difficult this can be some days – and yet it’s still a possibility. I love possibilities, don’t you?


I love helping people who choose to take action in their lives. Today’s giveaways (yes multiple ones – woo!) … both stem from two people I believe are everyday heroes; and I hope you are at the least… just a touch moved by them too. Additionally, I am doing something I almost never do too – asking a favor of you. – If you are at all touched by these women, would you consider helping their causes? If you can’t help financially consider promoting this on your own blog, websites and twitter.

Sidenote: Please know, if you can’t it’s okay too – there are still giveaways I’d love for you to enter, and noone will think less of you. I want each of you to give with intent, and authenticity – and would never put pressure on you to do so. It’s a personal choice and one that I happily respect!

Giveaway/Story # 1:


One of the most generous artists  I have met online (and in person last summer!) is Donna Cook. I swear folks — this woman is always helping people, giving of herself  in her everyday life, as well as online — she is just one of those special  people that lives her life in a manner we all aspire to. A true, generous soul… and I feel blessed to have met her. She is one of those everyday heroes I spoke of, and takes action – as well as the woman she is helping.

She recently has been trying to help ‘Save the Sawmill Strays’ . Her story reached me on a multiple of levels, and I felt a compulsion to try to help. I donated the lil’ bit of money I could, and am trying to spread the word… as an animal lover, and someone who once loved doing work camps … perhaps, I just found this oh-so-relatable. I’ll show you an excerpt of her story here, but i encourage you to click through to the blog she set up, and page through all the posts. I have a feeling you will be as touched as I was… and just a dollar or two, would go a LONG way in  this project. Nothing would make me happier, than seeing her reach her goal!

Here’s a tiny excerpt of their story — but you REALLY need to go read the backstory too to understand.

 My wildest dream is for Bev to be able to start a No-Kill Shelter. That’s my wild dream and maybe her’s as well, but what she wants to do right now is spay and neuter the 4 adult dogs as soon as possible, and then generate some income to have the pups spay and neutered when they are old enough. Maybe out of this will grow the dream of a No-kill shelter. Perhaps in our semi-wild dreams we can generate income to build some additional kennels on Bev’s lease, so that these animals can stay safe.

We are hoping that animal lovers all over the world will help us with a donation to our “Chip-In” account. I trust Bev, but you all don’t know her. I am hoping that those of you I have met “on-line” will trust me.

She has discovered a local source that will assist low income families in paying for spay and neutering services. My plan is to work with Bev, sending her payment for the first surgery and then additional payments after she sends the receipt for the previous surgery. This may not really be necessary, but I wanted the internet community to know that I am making every effort to insure that the money goes for the animals. I know that Bev will use it for the animals. I’m hoping in my wild dreams, for enough money to help build a few more kennels.

In an effort to help them both, and the poor animals that Bev saved — I am offering up a free colored digital collage sheet of choice  (except the inching along sheet) to anyone who donates at least $1.50 to her cause. and anyone can enter to win my giveaway, which is 10 ..count em 10… printed collage sheets (my choice) and 1 digi sheet of your choice (except the inching along sheet)– so even if you can’t contribute, you can still win. Let Donna know when you chip in, you want a collage sheet or let me know that you donated, and I’ll check with her. Chip In by clicking here! Donna doesn’t even know I am doing this yet — How fun!

Giveaway/Story # 2:


A little while back I was approached by Kary to use one of my free  for personal use only textures  in a digital scrapbooking kit she created.; ordinarily I wouldn’t allow a commercial use … but this time? I was moved. 

Here, read why…

This year I made the commitment to walk nearly 80 miles over the course of two weekends as a participant in two Avon Walk for Breast Cancer events. I will walk in Houston Texas the weekend of April 4, 2009 and again in Chicago Illinois during the weekend of June 7. I am excited, nervous and honored to be walking with so many others who have also made this amazing commitment to help raise awareness and funds for this devastating disease. I lost my own mother to breast cancer almost 18 years ago to breast cancer; I miss her very much and miss having a “mom” to share my life with and talk to. I wanted to honor her and DO something to make a difference in the lives of others who are living with and fighting this battle. Funds raised for the Avon Foundation Breast Cancer Crusade support their mission of providing access to care for individuals who cant afford it, and in finding a cure.

As a computer teacher and digital artist, I thought one way I could use my unique talents was to design and sell a digital scrapbooking kit. The kits theme is primarily geared towards the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, as I thought it could be used by anyone participating in the walks across the country to help document their journey before, during and after their walk. But I purposely made the kit very large so anyone who purchased it could easily use it in his or her own digital scrapbooking layouts. 100% of the net profits of the sale of this kit will go towards the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.

I love the personal meaning behind this – and it’s a great example that some bigger causes, know how to still stay personal. This kit folks? Is AMAZING! Seriously — look at what all you get… then look how little it costs!  

  • 12 pieces of digital scrapbook paper – each is 300 dpi and 12×12 in size. Papers come in a variety of patterns and shades of pink
  • 6  “torn edge” brushes for Adobe Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. These brushes can help you achieve a simple torn edge on your digi paper
  •  9 vintage inspired photo frames
  • 3 sets of complete alphabets that include lower and upper case letters, numbers and special characters. The three styles of alphabets are GLITTER TEXT (73 characters in all), PINK METAL TEXT (97 characters) and PINK PLASTIC TEXT (98 characters).
  • One set of rubber stamp alphabet brushes for Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements. For those using other programs, I have also included the PNG version of this alphabet
  • Two glitter borders (each 12×12) and one glitter background (slightly smaller than the page)
  • Four glitter hearts and three glitter swirl flourishes to accent photographs are other parts of your page
  • Four felt hearts, one sewn felt heart assemblage and one felt star
  • Three cut out flowers with “deep” drop shadows
  • One Queen of Hearts playing card
  • Sixteen tags with and without “hangers” in four colors
  • Two staples and one stitch to “attach” your tags to your page
  • Seven journaling tags
  • Thirteen ribbons in various styles and shades of pink. Ribbon styles include gingham, grosgrain, silver lame, satin and “word” ribbons that commemorate the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer
  •  Two bows
  •  One “pink ribbon”
  •  One chrome metal “pink ribbon”
  •  Six pink beads
  • Eleven sequins in various shapes and shades of pink
  • Four buttons – two of which are sewn
  • One chalked edge word art “Pretty in Pink”
  •  Over 230 digital stickers that includes: All the host cities for the Avon Walk (Houston, LA, San Fran, Chicago, Charlotte, Rocky Mtns, DC, Boston, NYC), stickers commemorating the Avon Walk (We Walk as One, etc.) stickers with a “pink” theme (Pink Ladies, Pink Power, etc.) and tons of stars, hearts, flowers, crowns and “pink ribbons”

ALL of that for just $8.00. I plan to purchase one myself in the next few days… I’m not a digital scrapbooker, nor will I be walking — but I can use these graphics (the vintage frames alone look amazing !), and papers in my digital art. I’m more than happy helping her fulfill her goal! Will you consider purchasing one too?

The kit is currently for sale on Etsy as a digital download . If someone prefers to have the kit mailed to them on a CD, they can visit her site where they can email her to make arrangements. All of the additional pics of the kit are there as well.

Did I mention, she is also giving 1 of you a kit for free? How exciting!

So to enter today’s giveaways:

Which as a reminder are.. 10 ..count em 10… printed collage sheets of mine (my choice) and 1 digi sheet of your choice except the inching along sheet– and another person will win one of the beautiful scrapbooking kits!

  • On this post; in the comments – answer one or more of these questions: Either tell us about your favorite cause or everyday hero or just tell me what 2+2 is ! 
  • Do this by: Sunday, January 18th, 2009
  • PLEASE keep Spreading  the word! Blog it, Tell your friends — the works! I’m amazed daily at the impact this project is having on people. I want it to be contagious, plus it fuels me to make it bigger & better! 
  •  Enter Day 0 & Day 16 & Day 17  & Day 18 still!
  • Check out the first batch of winners, the second batch of winners and the third batch of winners!
  • Donate what you can to save The Sawmill Strays — remember just $1.50 will get you a free digital collage sheet of your choice!
  • Purchase the Beautiful Digi Pink Kit and help Kary honor her mom.
  • Whew! I promise not to be so long-winded tomorrow, and to lighten the posts up a bit again! And quite possibly come back to  edit this post, so it’s more clear — I’m totally crosseyed at the moment!

    Thanks to all who take part in these giveaways, and an extra thanks to those who do me the personal favor, of helping out where they can. It means the world to me.


    Freebies, New Art – Getcha Some!

     Wishes Do Come True

    “Wishes do Come True”
    4″ x 4″ Art Squared On Matboard
    One Of a Kind September 2006
    Mixed Media: By Raleigh, NC Artist Chrysti
    Created for
    Bernie Berlin’s Fundraiser
    Read my post about this project here

    Well, I have good news! The surgery I’ve been waiting on, the whole massive dental drama that started at the beginning of this year? Will FINALLY be coming to an end! I am scheduled for surgery 11/8/06 .. and cannot wait to get this all behind me! I never anticipated it would take this long to get it, but I’ll take what I can.. beggars, choosers.. y’all know how it goes :-) Pain Free, what a nice switch that’ll be!

    C’mon, whose gonna join in on a happy dance with me?

    Have No idea what I’m talking about? Read about it in these entries:

    Pain, Heartache & Inspiration
    Hidden Among The Chaos

    More fun with TIT Transfers!

    Good News, Handmade Paper, And Random Thoughts

    Quick Dental Update

    I’ll fill you in on the details of this surgery later, as I have alot to blog about as it is this week.. just need the time to do it all!


    2.5″ x 3.5″ ATC Chunky Book Page
    Mixed Media Collage & Painting
    One Of a Kind: October 2006
    Created on 140lb Watercolor Paper
    By Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti
    Created as a gift, not for sale …

    So, part celebration – part I really need the extra money … I’m running a MEGA give-a-away this week & special in my store… I won’t be doing one this big for a long time.. so, take me up on it now.. while you can!

    IMPORTANT!!: You MUST Request the special in order to receive it.. please let me know when you send payment, or request your total with shipping reduction…

    Covet Me Mega Deal!

    Valid from 10/8/06 – 10/15/06 (order must be paid for by then)
    *Totals are for merchandise cost only, does not include shipping

    Purchase $10.00 worth of Merchandise & Receive:

    * 3 Free Collage Sheets
    * 5 yards of Luxurious Fibers
    * Mini Buttons & Tags Set

    Purchase $15.00 worth of Merchandise & Receive:

    * 4 Free Collage Sheets
    * 5 yards of Luxurious Fibers
    * Buttons & Mini Tags Set
    * 5 Pre-Cut ATC Backgrounds
    * 2 Pages of Sheet Music
    * 5 Pages of German Text

    Purchase $25.00 worth of Merchandise & Receive:

    * 7 Free Collage Sheets
    * 25 yards of Luxurious Fibers
    * Buttons & Mini Tags Set
    * 7 Pre-Cut ATC Backgrounds
    * 2 Pages of Sheet Music
    * 5 Pages of German Text
    * Embellishment Sampler Kit
    * 3 Decorative Napkins
    * 1 package of Luxurious White Feathers
    *10 Circles from Vintage & Foreign Text
    * Surprise Gift!

    Purchase $99.00 worth of Merchandise & Receive:

    * 10 Free Collage Sheets
    * 30 yards of Luxurious Fibers
    * Buttons & Mini Tags Set
    * 10 Pre-Cut ATC Backgrounds
    * 2 Pages of Sheet Music
    * 15 Pages of German Text
    * Embellishment Sampler Kit
    * 5 Decorative Napkins
    * 1 package of Luxurious White Feathers
    *20 Circles from Vintage & Foreign Text
    * Surprise Gift!
    * Free Shipping within the US! ($5.00 Discount on International)

    I’ve been adding new items daily, and will continue to…you’ll love ’em! (New colors/styles of the fab Handmade Paper Kits, Charming decorative buttons, gems, 1″ Skeleton Leaves, new colors of the mulberry flowers, and flower heads.. fabric embellishments..and a whole lot more…) So c’mon over and see! 

    These will only be up for limited 30 day runs.. as my site gets finished.. not all items will be carried at the new store!

    Alright, enough of my shameless self promotion.. and onto some art fun…

     Cocoa Melts Your Heart... - 1

     Cocoa Melts Your Heart... - 1a

    “Cocoa Melts Your Heart”
    2.75″ x 3.5″ ATC Chunky Book Page
    Mixed Media Collage & Painting
    One Of a Kind: October 2006
    Created on 140lb Watercolor Paper
    By Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti
    Created for the Coco Charity Fatbook

    Shosh, from Hannah Grey .. needs more players/submissions in her Coco Charity Fatbook.. Coco is an adorable dog, with an inspiring story.. that she recently adopted – Touched by all the GEPDA did for Coco, Shosh is looking to give a lil back .. and help to create another miracle, for another dog in need.

    Read about Coco’s Story here.. Warning! Tissues Needed!

     Cocoa Warms Your Heart

    “Cocoa Warms Your Heart”
    2.75″ x 3.5″ ATC Chunky Book Page
    Mixed Media Collage & Painting
    One Of a Kind: October 2006
    Created on 140lb Watercolor Paper
    By Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti
    Created for the Coco Charity Fatbook

    Sooo… Join Me & Help an Animal Rescue with your art!

    2 Pages — That’s all you need to make! How simple is that?

    The theme is Coco.. Cocoa Puffs, Hot Coco, Coco Chanel.. let your imagination run wild!

    • 3.5″ Tall x 2.75″ Wide

    • One Original Page & One Copy (Or 2 Originals)

    • NO Embellishments on left  .05″ of page

    • NO Blank Backs — Include your name, and location it as well.

    • Date Due: Oct. 27th, 2006

    For additional questions and to sign up here to email Shosh.

    I think that’s enough for one post! Until Tomorrow ( Or later tonight…)


    Artists Unleashed: A Call For Charity Art

     Free 2 Be Me!
    “Free To Be Me” 

    4″ x 4″ Chunky Book Page : 2005
    By: Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti

    Well, I’m back from my longer then expected trip (thanks amcrap errr amtrak) and busy playing catch up today.. but I wanted to touch base with y’all, and let you know about a really great cause..

    “He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.” Unknown

    My Pets…

     My Furbabies

     1.Callie 2.In Thought… 3.Sophie 2003 -2
    4.Aging 5.Take That! 6.Stick-y Situation
    7.Cat’s Eyes 8.The Observer 9.

    As y’all know… I have a mini zoo of animals here, and have always grown up with immense appreciation, love, and passion for them (Thanks Mom!)… They make my life complete, offer
    unconditional love, never talk back (well mostly), and most importantly.. they rely on us to help them.

    “He who wished to secure the good of others, has already secured his own.” Confucius

     A Better Day
    “A Better Day” May 2006
    This life’s a rugged way for us, But there’s a better day for us

    8″ x 8″ Mixed Media Collage & Painting on Canvas
    by Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti

    A Place to Bark: Artist’s Unleashed Auction

    Bernie Berlin has placed out a call for art, to benefit her amazing, continued efforts within the animal world through her no kill shelter, click the link above for more information about her work, and the auction itself.

    All levels of artwork art work (even children’s) are accepted, and the Date Due is October 25th .. can’t you find some time this week to create a piece of art for this fabulous cause? I know I will be!  

    Love Thy Dog
    “Love Thy Dog”  2005

    2.5″ x 3.5″ ACEO/ATC Art Card – Mixed Media Collage & Painting

    by Raleigh, NC Outsider Artist Chrysti

    “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
    Winston Churchill

    Please Join Me! The power, working together as an art community we have, is nothing short of amazing… we really can achieve wonderful things acting as one.

    I look forward to sharing what I create for this, and seeing what you come up with as well! Link me to your pieces, I’ll compile them and share them here :-)

    – Chrysti

    Net Finds..

    TODAY ONLY!!! My Not So Secret Sale Day

    Covet Me is my fabulous altered art & scrapbook supply store on ebay … it has become my baby, and my passion …(some days my pain in the behind!) … I pride myself in the items I carry, the quality, quantity, fast shipping, and the low cost … I’ve tried to create a store I’d want to shop in.. and offer the service I would expect from someone else. The support I’ve received is nothing short of fabulous.. and I’m thankful for it daily.

    So today, I’m thanking all of you!

    All Orders Placed (over $3.00), and Paid for today only… will receive:

    • Free Shipping!
    • Free Fibers!
    • Free Embellishment Pack!

    IMPORTANT: You must send a note when you request your invoice.. stating you want the secret sale offer!! Orders paid for after today, do not qualify…In addition, I will be lowering prices on some of your favorites for  today only.. so be sure to stop on in!  

    1,000 + Copyright Free Images FREE to use & download …  

    Collage Image Mosaic

    Collage Images is a Flick’r Group I started…. where we can share vintage, and copyright free photos, ephemera and more.. for use in our mixed media & collage artwork… it’s becoming a fabulous resource, with many generous participants .. I’d love to see you there! I will eventually be making the group private, so be sure to actually join it.. or you may lose access .. Best of All? It’s Free!

    OooooAhhh... Take Your Chances, While Making a Difference !!

    This caught my eye on one of my art lists .. I’m not affiliated in any way.. So many of us, (myself inluded) can relate to the stress of serious illness, and the financial toll… so I thought I’d try to spread the word here as well… besides, these prizes are oh so fantastic!! Prizes from Claudine Hellmuth, Lynne Perella, Lisa Vollrath & many, many more fabulous artisans! The proceeds of this raffle go to  help Sara of Manto Fev and her husband pay for medical bills.  Please take a look if you get the chance!