Sunday, September 28, 2008

Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #59 and Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge #35

This is my attempt at Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #59. I tried the "craft white ink on Kraft cardstock" look that Pine has made so popular... which seemed only right since I used her Rustic Branches set by Papertrey Ink!

Besides the white craft ink, I used Spring Moss cardstock and swiss dot ribbon, plus Dark Chocolate ink for the berries in the main image. That cool button is one I picked up at a little shop in Vancouver on Granville Island. Boy, was that ever a great trip! I LOVE Vancouver.

I would only use such a special button for a special friend. I'm sending this card to Marianne, who lost her husband one week ago today. It's been a tough week, and she still has a lot of grieving to do, but I will stand by her and be there for her, as will many others. She loves my cards, so I think I'll have to make sure she gets regular deliveries!

Papertrey Ink Rustic Branches
Paper: Stampin Up Kraft, Papertrey Ink Spring Moss and white cardstock
Ink: Stampin Up White Craft, Papertrey Ink Spring Moss and Dark Chocolate
Accessories: Papetrey Ink Spring Moss swiss dot ribbon

For Taylor's Cupcake Challenge #35, I made this quick and easy card. It was super easy because Taylored Expressions Birthday Girl Key Ingredients has everything you need to make a cute card! The only things I added were the little flower ribbon slide behind the bow, which is part of the Stampin Up Hodgepodge Hardware styled silver collection. The cupcake image is also by Stampin Up. I stamped it first with Ranger Archival Jet Black ink, and then colored it in with my Stampin Up Pink Passion (I think that's the one) marker for the "cup" and sprinkles, and my Copic markers for the rest. The sentiment is part of Stamp a Sweet Impression Sweet Celebration set, which I stamped in SU Basic Brown. I also used a bit of Pastel Raspberry Liquid Pearls. to "frost" the cupcake. Sweet!

Since I've given you the recipe in the description above, I won't repeat it here. The dryer buzzer is about to go off (story of my life), so I need to go. Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Card for an Alzheimer's Caregiver

Here is the card that I'm mailing off today to the Staff at the Artman Home in Ambler, PA. I don't know any alzheimer's caregivers, although I certainly do know and have known other caregivers, so I truly appreciate what they do. It's cancer that seems to take all the people I know and love. Sending a card to an alzheimer's caregiver is a requirement by Carolyn King (Cammie) for her awesome blog candy sponsored by so many wonderful companies and individuals. You can find the details on Cammie's blog. Even without the opportunity to win prizes, I'm very happy to make and send a card to brighten any caregiver's day because they do have the most difficult jobs. It takes great strength to tend to one who is seriously ill, especially if it is also someone you love. I pray for God to bless those people... and something tells me that He does.

I finally bought one of Anna Wight's stamp sets... one of her newest releases from Whipper Snapper Designs. I've been meaning to do that for awhile because I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Anna's artwork (and her blog). When I saw Harvest Blessings and Crazy for Chickens, that did it! Since they are the newest rubbah in da house, I reached for them when I sat down to make my card tonight. It was hard to choose, but since I LOVE autumn and I'm so happy it's finally here (even though you can't tell by the weather), I chose Harvest Blessings. Besides, we're talking about blessings, aren't we, when we talk about caregivers? They certainly are blessings in the lives of others.

If I'd had more time, I would probably have tried different versions of my watercoloring... I'm never happy the first time around... but I think it turned out okay. I mostly used my new Stampin Up In-Color re-inkers, plus Creamy Caramel and More Mustard. Oh, and the sky is Cool Caribbean. I ran the card base through my Cuttlebug embossing folder that looks like branches... sort of reminds me of straw (I need to start writing down the names of those folders when I open the package). I couldn't find the right verse, but came across some of the Papertrey Ink DSP while I was riffling around and decided to just punch out the word Gratitude since that's the idea behind the card.

Whipper Snapper Designs Happy Harvest by Anna Wight
Paper: Stampin Up Pacific Point, Tangarine Tango, Kiwi Kiss; Canson watercolor paper; Papertrey Ink DSP (greeting)
Ink: Staz on Black ink pad, Stampin Up reinkers Pacific Point, Tangarine Tango, Kiwi Kiss, Riding Hood Red, Creamy Caramel, More Mustard
Accessories: Stampin Up Tangarine Tango striped ribbon, scalloped circle, 1 3/8" circle and oval punches, Cuttlebug embossing folder

Today was Nick's funeral. It was truly a beautiful send-off, but still so sad that he passed so young (age 61). My dear friend Marianne is holding up well under the circumstances, but she has a long road of grieving ahead of her. Luckily she has lots of people who love her and will help her get through... me included. It's times like these when you really stop and think about what's important and who is important. On the way home from the funeral, Paul and I almost got hit head on by a crazy driver in a truck. That's not the first time, either. Every time there's a near miss, I fall to my knees (so to speak) and thank God for saving us. But you never know. So live your life to the fullest each day, and remember not to sweat the small stuff or harbor grudges. Make sure your priorities are straight. I remember my mom saying that if she had it to do over again, she'd clean the house less and play with us kids more. So maybe it's not so bad that the dust bunnies are overtaking my home????

Thanks for stopping by!

Major Blog Candy Opportunity!

Okay, so I'm a little behind the times, but I've been a bit preoccupied this week. I just realized that tomorrow is the last day to enter the contest to win Major Blog Candy from a number of awesome sponsors in recognition of Cammie's support of the Alzheimer's Association in memory of her dear grandmother. This is indeed a worthy cause, and it's wonderful to see so many come together to make a difference. Caregivers are indeed deserving of recognition. And not just caregivers of alzheimer's patients, but all caregivers. I've seen first hand what they go through when a loved one is afflicted with illness or disability. It's terribly stressful and takes a lot of strength and devotion... and courage. I'm going to make a card tonight to send to a caregiver of an alzheimer patient, and I hope you will, too!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Happy Haunting!

This is my second post for the day, so be sure to scroll down and see the other.

I was so excited to receive my goodies from Taylored Expressions. Taylor has a new line of stamps called Stamp a Sweet Impression, and are they ever SWEET! I had to have them all! {LOL} I also bought the Key Ingredients... Taylor does such a great job picking out coordinating papers and accessories. Her ribbons are to die for!

Anyway, what better chance to play with my new stamps and accessories than Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge #34.

I actually hand stitched the long panel by prepunching the holes using my Stampin Up paper piercing template from the Mat Pack and then using black embroidery floss for the stitches. I "glitterfied" the house with the black glitter than came with the Key Ingredients. I stamped the small green panel with the tree, cat and moon, and then mounted the house on top with Dimensionals. The metal frame is from Stampin Up's Styled Silver Hodgepodge Hardware... I just used a black Sharpie to color the edges before mounting with two of the brads that also came with the Key Ingredients kit. So fun! I can't wait to make more!

Taylored Expressions Frightful Night
Paper: from the Taylored Expressions Key Ingredients Halloween
Ink: Ranger Archival Jet Black ink pad, YoYo Yellow and Basic Black markers, Copic Warm Grey marker, black Sharpie
Accessories: Ribbon, glitter and brads from Key Ingredients Halloween, metal frame from Stampin Up, black embroidery floss

I've finally started my own Demonstrator Business Web Site, so be sure to check it out. You can order on line, plus keep up with the latest specials. It's still a work in progress, so bear with me. I plan to add more projects to the site, and I will send out a newsletter every month.

Thanks for visiting!

Cast Your Cares on the Lord

"Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you." So true. But sometimes so hard to do. We are creatures of worry and stress. But when we truly turn to God, there is a comfort that surpasses all understanding. This is my sincere prayer for my friend Nick (and his family) who is fighting for his life right now. He has Stage IV lung cancer. The cancer metastasized onto his spine in the form of a tumor that is causing him not only a tremendous amount of pain, but also the inability to walk. He's been undergoing radiation and physical therapy, and was to start chemo soon, but he's had a terrible setback in the form of pneumonia. He's in intensive care right now. His wife is one of my best friends. I'm just heartbroken for all of them. I wouldn't wish cancer on my worst enemy. It took my mother and my father-in-law, among others. I hate it. But I keep praying that the Lord will bless Nick and his family in all this. And I pray that Nick won't be afraid. He loves my cards, so I made this one for him.

The layout is based on Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #58. I had to fudge a little with the dimensions because my image is so large. Both the image and the greeting are heat embossed using Craft Chocolate Chip ink and clear embossing powder. That made it really easy to color in the image using my Stampin Up markers. Plus, it's hard to see in the picture, but the embossing gives the image... especially the basket... a lot of texture. My inspiration for the card came from Laurie Schmidlin, who made a similar card that you can see here.

Laurie is one of my FAVORITE stampers. I admire her art so much.

While I was at it, I decided to make a second card using the other verse in this stamp set. I just love the stamps from Our Daily Bread Designs. They are so inspirational... and beautiful.

Our Daily Bread Designs Fishers of Men
Paper: Stampin Up Chocolate Chip and Kraft cardstock, Stampin Up Kraft and Not Quite Navy from the Hostess Level 1 Patterns Pack Designer Series Paper, Papertrey Ink Paper Basics Vintage Cream cardstock
Ink: Craft Chocolate Chip, Stampin Up markers: Creamy Caramel, Sahara Sand, Brocade Blue, Ruby Red and More Mustard, Creamy Caramel and Close to Cocoa classic ink pads for sponging
Accessories: Hemp twine, Making Memories brads

I have another card to share with you in a moment, so stay tuned...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Happy Autumn!

Okay, so maybe I'm rushing it just a little bit, but I'm soooo excited that Monday is officially the start of the Fall season. I am a Fall/Winter girl to the max, and these final days of summer have really worn me down. My mojo is at an all time low. Of course, here in So Cal, just because the calendar says it's Fall, doesn't mean the weather is that much cooler. We won't really feel autumn weather until mid-October or so. But, still, I can feel it coming, and so my spirits are already lifting!

I submitted this card for the Papertrey Ink September Guest Star Stamper contest (the link takes you to this month's contest). I love Papertrey Ink stamps, papers, ribbons. style...everything! I was thrilled to be an honorable mention on Nichole's blog. I'm definitely going to keep trying! In fact, I'm anxiously awaiting my September release goodies... due to arrive on Tuesday. I'll get all my chores done this weekend so that I can play when they come!

Papertrey Ink Mailbox Greetings
Paper: Papertrey Ink Pure Poppy and Select White cardstock, First Fruits patterned paper
Ink: Ranger Distress Ink, Copic Markers, and Stampin Up Ruby Red and More Mustard (I stamped the leaves by using the "rock and roll" technique... first inking up with More Mustard, and then inking the edges with Ruby Red and then stamping)
Accessories: Taylored Expressions ribbon

Well, I returned home safely from Atlanta. It was a good conference, as always...nice accommodations, good food (I love grits!), and nice to visit other college campuses (Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia), but I was glad to get home. The boys were on their own for four days, as Paul was also on the road. They did a great job, except not a bit of laundry was done and only a modicum of housecleaning. So I've got tons to do to whip the house into shape. I'll have to organize the troops to help. Ha! Hopefully I'll find some stamping time this weekend. I did manage to color some images on the plane, which helped while away the time... and gave me a "stamping" fix. So stay tuned for more...

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Happy Anniversary Helen and Harry!

Some dear friends, Harry and Helen, are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary. Yes, 60 years! The coolest thing is that they are going to stay at the same hotel at which they spent their honeymoon. That hotel has since become fairly pricey, but they've invited H&H to come at a discount (I think it should be free), and they will be treated to a nice dinner and such. For the life of me, I cannot remember the name of the hotel, but I think it's in the Monterrey area.

Anyway, they are such a nice couple (the parents and in-laws of very close friends) and I wish them many more wonderful years together. The Verve Anniversary Birds set had the perfect sentiment: "Together, the perfect way to spend a lifetime." Amen!

The two birds were stamped in Night of Navy craft ink and then embossed with clear powder to make them stand out a bit more. I popped them up with Dimensionals. I couldn't resist some fun fur for the "ribbon" because it reminds me of bird feathers. I'm also loving the new Stampin Up filigree brads... and the scallop edge punch. Must haves!

Verve Anniversary Birds
Paper: SU Creamy Caramel,Night of Navy and Natural Ivory cardstock, K&Company DP
Ink: Night of Navy Craft Ink, Creamy Caramel and Night of Navy Classic Ink pads
Accessories: Misc heart charm, fun fur, SU Filigree brads, SU corner punch and scallop edge punch

Well, I'm on my way to Atlanta tomorrow for a conference (work related). I'll be back on Wednesday night. I probably won't have a chance to post anything new for about a week, but I'll be back! Maybe I'll have a picture or two to share of Atlanta. While it is a conference, we always get a bit of free time and a couple of special tours. I've signed up for The World of Coca Cola tour. Why not? It's an American tradition! Besides, maybe I can get some Christmas shopping done for my son Collin and brother-in-law Gary... both huge Coke fans.

I've decided to take Marianne Walker's advice and take some stamped images and my Copic markers along for something to do on the plane or in the hotel room... try to practice some of the things I'm trying to learn from her blog! At least that way I won't go through stamping withdrawals. {LOL}

I hope you have a wonderful week. Thanks for stopping by! I'm off to pack my bags...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wedding Card

My husband asked me to get a gift for two of his former student athletes who recently married. I ended up with a gift card to Target (they were registered there, and I just couldn't make up my mind which item to get that was left on their wish list). But I decided to make them a card since I don't think I've ever made a wedding card.

I hadn't tried one of the SCS Weekly Sketch Challenges in awhile, so I thought I'd give it a try... only, of course, I'm always behind. This was last week's sketch!

I also wanted to try my new Essential Glue Pad... and, boy, does it ever work like a charm! Just check out the detail in the hearts. I love it!

Both hearts were stamped with the Essential Glue Pad, sprinkled with glitter, cut out and mounted with Dimensionals. The background panel is DP stamped with the berry accent stamp in the Always set. The greeting is by Verve... perfect for this card!

Stampin Up Always, Verve Anniversary Birds
Ink: Papertrey Ink Lavender Moon
Paper: Papertrey Ink Lavender Moon, white cardstock, Basic Grey Euphoria DP
Accessories: Essential Glue Pad, Stampin Up glitter, Kaiser Crafts pearls

Today is 9/11. I still remember, like everyone else does, where I was when I heard about the attacks and the shock of it all... the sadness, the fear, the anger. I still grieve for those lost, and I think about how profoundly we've all been changed by that terrible event. I am very grateful for the many blessings in my life, and I don't take it for granted one little bit.

Thanks for stopping by. I should have another post tomorrow before I leave for Atlanta for a conference on Saturday.

Take care, and God Bless America!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #56

Another weekly challenge I look forward to is Beate's sketch challenge. I really like this month's sketch. I was a bit short on time, so I pulled out this image of a bowl of apples (Lockhart) that I had colored a week or so ago, and put the card together fairly quickly. I love the new patterns of DSP Stampin Up is offering this year. The paper I used for this card came from the Hostess Level 1 sampler pack. Every color in that pack is great! Plus, I am loving the new colors, ribbons, and brads. Check out the filigree brad in the corner. It was that or a stamped greeting, and I went for the flower... that corner just needed something special! LOL

Paper: Stampin Up DSP, Stampin Up Real Red and Pacific Point cardstock, Papertrey Ink white cardstock
Ink: Ranger Archival Jet Black, Copic Markers
Accessories: Pacific Point striped ribbon, Filigree brad

I have a couple more cards to share with you this week, so stay tuned. It was a fruitful weekend of stamping, which I really enjoyed. Thanks for stopping by, and have a great day!

Taylor's Cupcake Challenge #32

I always look forward to Taylor's weekly Cupcake Challenge... the sketches are always a lot of fun, and the entries are fabulous! Plus, I... like everyone cupcakes! This week, I used my new Cupcake wheel from Stampin Up to create my stamped panel, colored them with my Copic markers, and used my Signo White gel pen for accents here and there. Since I'm "right-brain challenged," I usually pick my paper first and then use the colors to guide me... works like a charm every time!

Stampin Up Cupcake wheel
Paper: K&Company DP, SU Rose Red carstock, Papertrey Ink Dark Chocolate and white cardstock
Ink: Ranger Archival Jet Black ink pad (I rolled my wheel across it to pick up the ink), Copic Markers, Signo white gel pen
Accessories: Papertrey Ink Dark Chocolate ribbon

I can't wait for my new stamp sets to come from Taylored Expressions. I ordered all three of her first stamp set releases (so cute!), plus the three Key Ingredients paper and accessories packs this weekend. (I splurged because I sold lots of stamp sets on eBay, so I figure I can treat myself a little!) I'm lucky that Pasadena is pretty close to Riverside, so I should have my goodies soon to play with... just in time for fun Halloween cards and projects. I might even have to try out for Taylor's Top Chef Challenge, although I'm quite sure I don't stand a chance... but it will be fun anyway!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Stamp Club Project Part Deux

Happy Labor Day! I wish this were the end of the hot summer months, but we here in So Cal have several weeks to go. Which means that we tend to ignore the fashion advice to never wear white after Labor Day. Ha!

We are laying low today... too hot, and too much traffic to go anywhere. Except I think I will take a trip to the new Cherry On Top yogurt shop. Have you experienced that place yet? It is soooooo good! We found it yesterday on our way to the beach and all I can say is YUM-O! You pick your yogurt flavor(s) and then add toppings... I went for an all fruity version, with a few chocolate chips for good measure. I figure with all that fruit, it had to be good for me!

Anyway, as promised, here is the second project we did for Stamp Club last week. This is the Rolling Marbles technique, which was featured on SCS. Love it! We used two of the new Stampin Up colors, Kiwi Kiss and Pacific Point. If you haven't tried this technique yet, you must! The butterfly was stamped and then cut out... I even managed to cut out his antennae...and mounted just in the center so that his wings pop up.

Stampin Up Garden Whimsy and Think Happy Thoughts
Paper: Kiwi Kiss, Pacific Point, Whisper White cardstock
Ink: Kiwi Kiss, Pacific Point
Accessories: Old Olive wide grosgrain ribbon, Styled Silver Hodgepodge Hardware

I've spent all morning preparing stamps and stamp sets for shipment. My latest eBay sales are going strong. Check it out if you have a chance. I still have several good deals left, but they are going fast!

Thanks for stopping by. Have a great day!