Don’t Tell Mom What We Did at Grandma’s

Oliver in flying saucer rev Smiling Oliver in overalls smaller sizeYes! I do think I am continuing in on a theme here!

And a whimsical one at that. I hope to publish these in an album after doing more in my grandson’s first year. I am having great fun doing these. Who knows what I will come up with next. I will keep you posted. See more of these in previous posts.

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Mixing Fun Photos with Illustration

Oliver having fun

Okay, I think I am on a bit of a roll here in creating a theme.

Before I retired from greeting card world, I’d create fun images out of existing photographs. You can probably see some of the influence of my history as a greeting card designer show up here.

Serious OliverMy grandson is a blur of motion so there are a lot of out takes. Thank God for the digital camera! The fun part starts in selecting the shot that I can create a story around. In the above illustration my grandson has the illusion of sitting up, and I do say an illusion because he is only 4 months old and just learning to roll over. When I looked at the rattle he was holding the idea blossomed of him behind a mike.

Oliver listening to Roy RogersThis one was created for a Facebook post on how I get my grandson to go down for a nap. I had discovered an old CD: Roy Rogers Tribute which I used to call my “milk and cookies” music. As it turn out the music which includes “Happy Trails” is great wind down music. By the end of the album my pally is having sweet dreams.

There are so many ways now to publish photos in book formats and greeting cards which beats thirty years ago of picking up your photos from the drug store and sticking them in an album. One of my son’s baby albums needs rescuing. The backers are yellowed and the pages are coming loose.  Restoring it will be a whole other project that will take some thought.

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Photo Fun

got your noseI am having grandson fun!

Whether it is creating banners for Facebook to celebrate the seasons…

Oliver Cupid banner or just celebrating his smile…

going to grandmas houseor creating colorful memories for personal albums. It adds to the delight of capturing memories as time speeds by.

I still have photos that I keep sans the graphics. Some are just perfect the way they are.
But there are a few that cry for a story and a bit of fun as long as it is filled with love.

I hope to hear from others, especially grandmothers if they do anything similar.

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Grandmas Just Want to Have Fun

Circus OliverOkay! Okay! I am one of those doting grandmothers having a lot of fun with my grandson! Yes, I take pictures, but I like having fun with them as well. Digital cameras and Photoshop have expanded the universe as far as being creative with family pictures.

So here is my latest mischief.

I wonder what I will come up with next?

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Thoughts Entering the New Year

New Year bannerWe are snowbound here in northern Ohio. It is still coming down and the bows of the fir trees are weighed down with snow. As I sit here in my winter hibernation looking at the soft glow of the internet, my thoughts go the new year.

I worry about the future for my family, especially my new grandson. How was it that a little over half a century ago I though that the future would be filled with great things? In the early part of the sixties we sent up astronauts to explore new frontiers. I would get up early to watch the “blast offs” on TV. You could hop on a jet for a reasonable fare with full service and without barriers of screening, removal of shoes, and inspection of bags.

When I was in my early teens, I could take a bus with friends and go into New York City and go to a museum or play from my home town in New Jersey. The thought of any young child doing that today without an adult makes my heart skip a beat.

People left their doors unlocked and windows open. Today we pay for alarm systems for our home and cars and even on our finances and identities for fear of theft and more.

TV reception, like radio was for free. News casts were actually news and lasted for 15-30 minutes and did not back any political candidate. Growing up very little would be found as offensive on the media at that time. Sex was only a kiss. Violence was indirect and minimal and 90% the times involved the death of bad guys that just keeled over. Programing was directed for families. Now most people pay for TV and there are options to pay for XM radio. The news is opinion and it is not uncommon for the “talking heads” to mislead. You have to carefully monitor any media when it concerns children, because it is loaded with gratuitous visual violence that leads nothing to ones’ imagination and desensitizes us to what is gruesome and evil. Pedophiles troll on the internet for young victims. Growing up education opened doors to learning. Today schools teach political dogmas rather than math and reading. Any mention of God is deemed as wrong and evil and history is revised to suit political purposes than to be accurate. More children are illiterate today than half a century ago.

In the mid 20th century, whether our government leaders were a Republican or a Democrat, you felt that they held our best interests at heart. Not now. Our leaders shamelessly lie.  The division is so sharp that divide us and you wonder if a civil war looms ahead or at best will destroy the country we once knew.

Violence is not only filling our nation, but threatens us with radical movements that want to wipe those that are not Muslim off the planet.

The world has become a very frightening place. No where is really safe when you think on past events that fill the 21st century.

I once thought that the future meant that we would learn from history and improve. That we would be explorers of wondrous things in every sense. That peace would fill this world as it would prosper with new technologies that would abolish hunger and ignorance.

Although there has always been evil acts in this world, there was a sense of good and evil. There was common sense. There was a spiritual sense. There were heroes to look up to. We believed in consequences for our actions. Now it seems what is good is evil and what is evil is good. Real dialogue has broken down and common sense seems to be as rare as hen’s teeth.

What I hope is that this will change. Like many periods of darkness in history there are periods of light like seasons. I pray that this winter of darkness and discontent is a short one and the light of spring is around the corner. Meanwhile I will light up candle and pray others do in this time of winter.

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Christmas Card from Oliver

oliver in reindeer suit Melissa,  my daughter-in-law, upon seeing what I did with my grandson’s picture by adding a red cape and clouds, asked if I would design Oliver in a Christmas situation for their Christmas card this year. Let me say this, after designing Christmas cards commercially for years, this was one assignment that I loved doing!

The only problem is Oliver is a cute bundle of motion! Arms and legs are in a constant whirl. At 2 months his angelic face is in constant movement of expression when he is awake and not demanding a bottle or diaper change. So of course it meant taking lots of pictures in a short amount of time before another diaper change, bottle feeding, burp session, or nap. But he worked with me! HA!

Melissa had put him in this little reindeer jumper with the hopes that it would work for a nice picture and I was praying he did not wet it or spit up on it before my camera opportunity. But as you see I lucked out and then had the fun of putting him into Photoshop to see what I could come up with.

I had so much fun, I use him for a banner for my  own Christmas letter announcing his arrival.

Oliver Christmas Banner for letterI never pictured that in the 21st century having a grandchild let alone creating fun images with the use of a digital camera and a computer. Times change, and these kind of changes are wonderful.

Who knows what he will inspire next.

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Celebration Grandchildren

I am a new grandmother, can you tell?

I think my family album is going to evolve into a bit of whimsy! Taking pictures of my new grandson, a moving target,  is not easy. His arms and legs are a blur of motion when he is awake.  Capturing that perfect pose between diaper changes, outfit changes, bottles and burping, and giving him the needed attention that he needs, is like buying a lottery ticket and hoping you win big. Not to mention I am usually too busy to think about it.

But today, while changing his diaper I saw  an opportunity. With the help of my husband, we did some shots on the waterproof sheet that was draped across our bed in the guest bedroom. I loved his motion and his inquisitiveness into the new world that surrounds him. So while importing them onto my computer I decided to have some fun. So here is my little super hero to the rescue!

Grandchildren are such a blessing!

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