Tuesday, December 31, 2013


Did you know that you can mail pretty much anything?

 True story.

I mailed this to my brother, Rob, for his birthday this year. He loved it!

Also as a disclaimer, I did not actually make this. I was going to, talked to my friend, Tanya, about it, and she said she actually made one for her friend a while back and had an extra slice of cake. She gave it to me so I didn't have to make it!

Monday, December 30, 2013


I am finally trying to go through, organize, and blog/post pictures of the work I've done in the past three years.

I'm starting to pull my hair out. I'm not showering. I'm not eating. I'm not even smoking anymore.


I have made a lot of freaking cards.


I don't have any real pictures to share today, but because I know that pictures helps break up the monotony of the walls of texts, I'm going to put some that I adore in here... and they just so happen to go along with the theme.

There are a few things that I want to discuss. They're uncomfortable for me to talk about, so I would expect it's going to be uncomfortable for you, too. The only reason I'm doing this is because I like to be open about big circumstances in my life. I don't see why there has to be an issue with discussing something going on in my life. Everyone enjoys their privacy, but I find it important for me to open up about problems that are close to my heart. Or my brain...


Here's a recap of rants I've had in the past:
It looks like I covered everything in just one post!


Today I'm going to cover:
  • We can't have kids (probably).
  • We are too poor to adopt or to go through fertilization treatments.
  • We worry about my mental issues interfering with the stresses of being a foster parent.
  • We want to be parents anyway.
  • I have opened an Etsy shop and will be starting to promote my (hopefully decent) work to try to earn money to purchase some sort of human being. That sounds so effed up, but it's true.
  • I don't know why SO MANY of the pictures in my previous posts vanished. That actually really pisses me off, because the only reason I even KEEP a blog is to document my life and work! WHAT.THE. CRAPF(&SFJAsd;fo*%($@&%!!!!!!!

1.  We can't have kids (probably).

True story. Everyone else says "oh, you will. It will happen", "you're young still", "you never know what can happen". Fine, I'm young, but chances aren't looking so good. PLUS, WHO ARE YOU to tell me it'll happen? Ugh, that irks me the worst. I haven't been trying *that* long, in the whole scheme of life (6 years), but that's a lot of failed attempts and so, so many monthly heartbreaks. I'm pretty convinced that if we keep doing what we're doing (essentially everything they could do 2013 years ago, nothing more), we won't be able to have a baby. We've "stopped trying" for a year or two now, hoping that we would be one of those lucky couples that have them on accident. No dice.

I have had some medical tests in the past. Some tests have come back either normal or slightly abnormal, but there's not a lot that we can do because of the money issue.


Which leads me to:

2.  We are too poor to adopt or to go through fertilization treatments.

I suppose we're not poor, because we're not in the poverty range, but we're definitely not rich. Most people call it "well off". We're on the lower end of that description.

My enormous medical bills require us to deplete nearly all of our monthly "fun" money to pay them. We don't have $20,000 to invest into an adoption. Don't try to tell me that it's cheaper Here or There, because I feel like I've looked into everything! Even the so-called not-for-profit organizations charge a minimum of $20,000. Doctor appointments are costly just to try to see what's wrong with one of us. Once we find out what's wrong, what's the treatment? What if we go through $10,000 in medical tests and find out that the only option is In Vitro anyway? Either way it's a moot point, because we don't have $10k to drop in the first place.

HOWEVER! There is a place in Madison that has a guarantee that their services will work! Adam is begging me to try that before we go through the process of fostering. The only problem I have is that Madison is THREE HOURS away. We'd both have to take an entire day off of work just to go to one appointment! That's an entire adventure! That's a lot of time in the car and a lot of money spent on gas!


3.  We worry about my mental issues interfering with the stresses of being a foster parent.

It's not secret that I don't handle stress well. In dire situations, I can be unusually calm, collected and cool, but when constantly pressured, I break. If a troubled child pushes me to a breaking point, obviously that's not good. But, also, who is to say that I'll break? What kind of a break? Will I cry? Will I need to go get my meds adjusted? Will I need to go see a counselor? (probably a good idea, anyway.) Those are all ok. But what if I need to be admitted? Highly unlikely. But what if!? That's always going to be in the back of my mind.

I think that the best option for us would be for us to foster. This may sound wrong or inappropriate, but it's the cheapest route, and therefore the most feasible and practical in our situation. Getting into severe debt just to have something that will cost us even more in the short and long term and forever term doesn't make any sense to me.


4.  We want to be parents anyway.

"We" is a relative term. Adam is more of a "if everything is peachy keen, let's do it", whereas I'm the irrational, spoiled brat who always gets what she wants, and throws a fit when she doesn't get it. I believe what everyone else says, that there is never an opportune time to have children. You just have to do it, and things work out somehow.

I've been trying hard to be patient. When I pray and plead with God to give me a child, I hear him tell me to "be patient". Ugh! Fine. I guess I don't have a choice much, do I? lol.


5.  I'm making this post because I want to explain that I'm going to be shamelessly promoting my (hopefully decent) work so as to earn money to obtain a Precious. 

I don't know why I feel like I have to announce this. Maybe so it's that I can tell myself that I should do this. Because I AM awesome and I CAN do this. Maybe my stuff IS good enough that people might want to buy it. And if I do get money from it, I want people to know that it's going to something that I'm passionate about.

However, I know that if none of this goes my way, Adam and I will just grow old together. 
And that will be ok.

Endless Love.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

UPDATED: Newsletter.

Since this blog exists mostly to just document my work (not to be a famous blogger, even though that would be a weird, happy accident), and even though I know I already posted photos of "The Rathsack Family's Second (Not-So-Annual) Christmas Newsletter", I found some photos that I took on my iPod and I wanted to document them, even though some may seem totally redundant! That was a long sentence.

In order to keep things organized, I'm going to integrate the last post in with this one.

And, as always, my disclaimer: I know my photog skills suck, so try to look past that!

I have a lot of fun doing little things that end up taking a long, long time. Enter:

The Rathsack Family's Second (Not-So-Annual) Christmas Newsletter!

I did a newsletter in 2011, but not one in 2012 (it was a sad year), and decided to do one this year because so much happened!

They were printed on off-white paper so the print on the inside was not a stark difference from the backside.

Did you know that Office Max still charges you $.49 per color copy, even if you use your own paper? RIDICULOUS.

This is how the cover page turned out once printed with some AWESOME lighting... yes. it's awesome. You're jealous. 

Most of the covers ended up with dirty spots somehow, so I used some iRocks (SHINY!) to cover them up. They turned out pretty random on most, but I don't care. That's how I roll in the first place: Random.

Red ribbon.

Holy COW these pictures are bright. I feel like my eyes are burning.

Tied on the edges with silver string

Tied on the edges with red baker's twine

Tied on the edges with tiny red ribbon

Folding out in the backside.

The newsletter was a tri-fold card, and because I like to mix things up to break the monotony, bound either by a ribbon across the folds or by tying the corners together with small ribbon, shiny silver string, or red baker's twine.

Tri-fold in action.

The full inside.

The first page of the newsletter!

CONGRATS a million times to Adam for his promotion ( and his raise :D )

The second page! 

I posted about this story earlier. It was like being on an HGTV or TLC show about a poor newlywed couple that got their house made over for free! We are truly blessed.

The third and last page!

Yes, I even made a fancy label.

The lot of what was sent out.

I shamelessly stuck my brand stamp that Erin purchased for me a long time ago that I don't really use. I really like the stuff I do, but if someone else doesn't like it, I bet they think "I TOTALLY wouldn't put my name on THAT piece of crap". You know what I have to say about that!? DEAL WITH IT! People are dealing with things now, Ted. (if you know what I'm referring to here, then you just made my day.)

The left side here was stamped with Memento's Tuxedo Black, and I tried stamping the right with a StazOn grey (can't find my ink pad in my mess of a craft room to find the name), but it was too juicy! I hate that! Anyone have any ideas to make an ink pad non-juicy? 

It's hard to pick my most favorite part of the newsletter. I think I'm hilarious, so I'd probably have to pick the "© T to the Essa, Inc.", or the "Love, Smooches, Rainbows and Unicorns".

I love the way this project turned out. I had a really fun time making them, even though I stayed up until 2 AM a lot of nights adjusting, re-adjusting, tweaking, moving this or that an eighth of an inch here and there... then they took me hours upon hours upon hours to complete by hand once printed. I only had to make 65 of them.

(looks left)

(looks right)

So much fun!!

As always, much Sprinkles and Kittens,


Saturday, December 28, 2013


Did you know there is a different realm of paper crafting than men are into?

Yeah, mango. It's either called "Fold PaperCrafting" or "Smooth PaperCrafting", and the people make some SICK 3D stuff out of paper:

(the following techniques are Smooth PaperCrafting)



And my favorite: 

not. even. lying.

My mind was really blown when I first saw these. I hope your's is too so I'm not alone in losing my head.

The paper is just high quality paper (usually NOT cardstock, from what I've read) and the images are printed from the computer. 

NOW. My brother wants me to make him some things using these techniques. I'm starting with the Folding PaperCrafting. And I'm scared. 


This is his character in Minecraft. There's an awesome guy who made a generator for characters - all you do is enter your character's name, and images of your dude are put on this printable image.

And then he wants me to make this dragon:



I need some encouragement. Please tell me that I can do this!!

In case you're like me and you are going to make one yourself, here's a link to a great tutorial.

If you want one, or know someone that wants one, contact me. Maybe I'll make one for you!

Friday, December 27, 2013


You know those cliche coupon books that you make for your hunny for their birthday or valentine's day?

No? Just Google Image search "Coupon Book" and you'll see a plethora of them. Most are pretty cute, some are professional, some people have templates so you can make your own.

For me, I didn't like anything I saw. I had an idea in my head of how I wanted it to look, and I couldn't find anything similar online except something along these lines:

Of course! Vintage. Although I love modern and contemporary, I think vintage and antique are more of what I'm drawn to.

Now, again, there are people who have graciously given us freeloaders templates so we can make our own coupons in a time efficient and quite cute manner. However, even though I love free, I also love to create and do things myself. Naturally, therefore, I made my own:

And of course, I added a message at the end:

The book was adhered together with two heavy-duty staples that I stole from work. I wanted to have it look fairly authentic, so I wanted the back of each coupon to not be colored white. I simply printed the background image on the back of the paper before I printed the front.

The company name of "Whyte" and Sanchez" are just random names I came up with. I was trying to be funny. Adam didn't get it.

The background I found from Far Far Hill. This chica is crazy, I tell you. Nearly everything she makes is free and she posts new freebies daily. DAILY. FREE. Not even lying.

Here are screenshots:

Contact me if you're interested in something like this!
(see the widget on the right hand side)

I learned so much in the process, and pretty much taught myself everything by trial and error.  I taught myself how to make the "Whyte & Sanchez Co." sign, which I actually ended up doing in Microsoft Publisher using the "WordArt" tool, how to cut the edges off of the corners of the coupons, and I learned from just a quick search how to take a .jpg (an image with a white background) and to use Photoshop to edit it appropriately with the magic wand tool to make it transparent, then obviously to save it as a .png to keep the transparency. With that done, I was able to use the precious (free) vintage women on the cover!

Side tracking for just a minute:

Adam learned in college that there's a "right way" to do everything in programming, even if another way may produce the same results. The "right way" is the easiest, simplest and most direct way to accomplish what you are trying to achieve. This concept was hard for him to understand, because if you produce the same results, what's wrong with your method?

Answer? I don't know, or at least I don't remember what my husband told me, but that's just the way it is.

The way I did this whole project was definitely not the "right way". I know that if it were, everything would have been done in Photoshop or a like program.  Obviously it was not.

I am shamefully able to admit that I used Silhouette Studio to perform my magic. Other than the tidbits I told you about above, with the help of Publisher and Photoshop for two elements, everything was done in Silhouette. But the good news is that I was able to cut everything out in two seconds! lol...

In the end, I had a ton of fun, even though it ended up taking me days upon days to tweak everything "just" right. Adam thought it was one of my coolest crafty projects ever, and still has not torn a single coupon out. He says he doesn't want to because it looks so cool!

Thursday, December 26, 2013



Kali sent me a card back, so I was able to take a picture of it! She added some stringy glitter (what is this called??) and some bling to make a cute doorknob!

Help support the Tessa-Wants-A-Baby Fund!
Contact me if you're interested in something like this (see the widget on the right hand side)


A few weeks ago I volunteered myself to make my cousin 75 "We Moved/Christmas" cards. It took a LOT longer than planned, as things always do.

Because I forgot to take pictures before I sent them to her, she was kind enough to send me this picture.

I used my Silhouette to cut out Bird's House Card, which she graciously allows everyone to use her files for any purpose entirely. Kali picked out the blue; she said it's her favorite color and she uses it all over her house for Christmastime.

I love the way the cards turned out, and so did Kali!!


Tacky as it may be, I just have to take a minute and brag about how freaking SPOILED I am this year. Santa was super nice to me.

What's sad is that I got even more than this, these are just the big ticket items!! My photog skills are totally awesome, I know.


A TV (and wall mount) in my craft room!

A Camera!

A Professional Photo [Cube] Booth!

A Quill and Ink Set!

Adam's favorite gift was a Gandalf hat:

I got a bunch of smaller things too. I don't know how anyone afforded these things for me, especially my husband. I'm so spoiled. I'm so blessed. I'm so lucky. I'M SO EXCITED.