Sunday, November 30, 2008

Wishing You Happiness!

Okay, so probably most of you would figure this summery card is out of season. Except, of course, for those of us in the sunbelt. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm sick of nice weather! {LOL} Okay, even I can't complain about the beauty of today's weather... clear skies, sunny, no smog, 70-something degrees with a light breeze. But there is no change of season this year in So Cal. It's hard to get into the Christmas spirit when you can wear shorts outside! I am honestly living in the wrong climate.

This card is for one of my BFF's, Maryann, who is lucky enough to not only live at the beach, but directly across the street from it, with a full on view of the ocean. I am lucky to be her friend, and not just because I get to sit on her deck and enjoy that awesome view (although that is definitely a perk!). Maryann and I have been friends for, gosh, I think about 15 years... ever since our sons Collin and Michael became friends in preschool. She is an inspiration to me in many ways, but most especially as a mother and a wife, and has had a tremendous influence on my spiritual life. I have definitely been blessed by her friendship. Not to mention we have a heck of a lot of fun when we get together!

My inspiration for the design of this card was a card made by Nichole Heady (one of my stamping heros). Plus, of course, I used some of the awesome Men of Life paper shown at the link. The stamps are By the Seashore from My Favorite Things. I colored with my Copic markers.

We spent Thanksgiving in Arizona with my mother-in-law and just returned yesterday on my birthday. The celebration started on November 20th and will continue with more lunches and dinners out with friends this next week. I decided to call it Lisakkah (like Hanukkah), only Lisakkah lasts more than 8 days. {LOL}

Anyway, I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are looking forward to Christmas. I decided that the economic slowdown, with cutbacks in spending, is an excellent reason to put Christ back in Christmas and enjoy the holidays for the comfort and joy of spending time with family and friends. Plus, when you can't spend as much money, it makes you think more carefully about the gifts you do buy. All in all, I think this is going to be a particularly blessed holiday for us. I hope it will be for you, too!

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Nuttin Better Than a True Friend!

So true! And I know this for sure because I have several true friends who bless my life.

This will be a quick post because I have a LONG list of To-Do's today. I'd better start by eating my Wheaties!

Here is a sample of the Autumn Vine DSP I mentioned in my last post. You can see how the colors inspired my rendition of Season of Friendship. I LOVE this color combo and plan to use it again.

That cute little squirrel is from Papertrey Ink. The acorn is popped up with a Dimensional. I'm also loving my new Nestabilities labels. I'm desperate to get back to stamping more!

The velvet ribbon is retired SU, but the Rope Twine is in the Holiday Mini... so cool! And the more I use Baja Breeze, the more I like it.

Thanks for stopping by. Hopefully, I'll get my chores done today so that I can stamp tonight and tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Give Thanks

Finally, a card! I got the inspiration for this card from Stampin Up's Autumn Vine DSP, and I love the the way it turned out! The colors are Baja Breeze, Really Rust, Chocolate Chip and Creamy Caramel. The dots around the tree branches were also inspired by the paper. If you don't have this paper, you must get it before the Holiday Mini Catalog expires.

Large images, such as this from Season of Friendship, are hard for me because they take up so much room on the card front, there isn't a whole lot you can do (or maybe it's just me!). After the image was stamped, I spent quite a bit of time fiddling around with design ideas for the rest of the card. First, I came up with the label from the Curly Label Punch Bundle. "Give Thanks" came from a retired SU set Fancy Flexible Phrases (at least, I think that's what it's called... I'm too lazy to get up and go look)... it's similar to the current Everyday Flexible Phrases. Turns out they are the perfect size for this label!

I then added the Baja Breeze striped ribbon because I just can't make a card without adding ribbon! {LOL}

The card still seemed too plain to me, which is when I got the idea for the photo corners. With the points of the leaves, I think it was a good call.

I was hoping to get more Thanksgiving cards done, but time is running out. I'm going to have to start working on Christmas cards soon. Besides the zoo and holiday boutique, and then recovering from the boutique (i.e., catching up on chores around the house), all of which have severely cramped my stamping time, my dad and his wife paid a (sort of) surprise visit. They live in Mississippi and came out west to visit my dad's brothers in AZ, and decided to continue west to California to see me and my family and my brother. It was wonderful to have them here for five whole days. I don't get to spend nearly enough time with my dad and Wanda, living so far apart. My kids get a kick out of Grandad... he's sort of a novelty to them. And Wanda is the most wonderful lady who has truly transformed my dad over the past 10 years. I miss my mother like crazy, but out of great tragedy, God gave us a blessing in the form of Wanda and the influence she has had on my dad, and what that has meant to all of us.

I hope to get some stamping done this weekend, although now that Dad and Wanda are gone, I again need to catch up with chores and get ready for Thanksgiving. No rest for the wicked.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More Reasons for My Blogging Absence

The day after our trip to the zoo began the countdown to the Shopping Extravaganza I mentioned in this previous blog entry. Although I had done quite a bit of preparation already, there were things to do every day until the big day arrived, which left no time for stamping.

The boutique was held November 7 and 8th at The Grove church. We were one of about 40 vendors. Ours was an eclectic mix of things. Susan's mom Nita sold many of her beautiful quilted items... mostly table runners and the coolest coffee cuffs, which you can sort of see in this picture. She had assortments of Christmas and everyday designs, all quilted. Nita was definitely the top seller in our group that day! Everyone (including me, who bought a tree skirt from her, plus four coffee cuffs) loved her quilts.

My friend Lisa had an awesome array of hair bands and clips for girls. She is sooooo talented... I drooled over the assortment. It was like the most delicious eye candy, which makes her etsy store name Ribbon Confections all the more appropriate!

You definitely need to hop over to her etsy store and do some shopping for the little girls in your life! Also, for us paper crafters, she is de-stashing a bunch of cool ribbon (believe me, I bought several!), so don't miss this opportunity to add some truly unique ribbon to your stash!

As for me, I managed to de-stash some scrapbooking and stamping stuff, but I have tons more. I'll probably try to sell the rest on eBay, but I'm going to wait until after the holidays. There's just too much going on right now. We did have fun, and enjoyed doing some shopping (or at least I did!), but it was a very light crowd and not much spent this year, a sad sign of the times. I talked to other vendors who said they'd never seen such slow sales in all the years they'd been participating. I pray we start to see some economic relief soon.

I'll end today's post with this picture of the four of us Pink Shirted Ladies. I appreciate that Susan, Nita and Lisa forgave me for this bright idea! That's Susan and her mom Nita behind me and Lisa to the right.

I promise I'll share at least one card, maybe two, in my next post. Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Finally, a Moment to Blog!

Hello everyone! Has anyone missed me? Yes, it's been forever... okay, 19 days... since I last posted on my blog. It's been a pretty crazy time. Nothing bad, just busy.

First, the day after Halloween, the boys and I went to San Diego Zoo to celebrate Avery's 12th birthday (seen here with some of his souvenirs). We sure had fun. San Diego Zoo is beautiful, and the weather that day was perfect. We got lucky and got a pretty good look at several animals. This was especially fun for Avery since he LOVES animals. He watches Animal Plant and Discovery Channel regularly (and has Planet Earth on DVD). He told us a lot of facts about the animals as we went along. He admitted that he learned some of it from watching Go Diego Go, so I guess cartoons aren't all that bad!

Here are some of the animals that were the highlight of our day: This brown bear, who is so dark they named him Blackie, looked an awful lot like he was hungry and wanted to jump over the moat and the fence and have one of us for dinner!

The pandas were especially wonderful to see. We were lucky that they were out and active. To the left is a mama playing with her baby. They had the crowd enthralled. The guy on the right was just content to sit and munch on bamboo.

We spent a lot of time watching the gorillas. A bunch of them, including the alpha male, were hanging around outside the door through which they must be fed. While the big male waited patiently (he's been there a looooong time and is apparently well familiar with the routine), a couple of the others kept walking up to the door and slapping their hands above it, as if to say "hey, we're hungry out here, hurry up!" I wanted to wait until they finally opened that door, but some of the kids got tired after about half an hour of watching them and we moved on.

Blogger doesn't like it when you upload too many pictures... it's very hard to manipulate... so I'm going to call this post good for now and will be back soon with more news and some new cards!

Thanks for stopping by!