Saturday, October 30, 2010

have a wildly Wicked Halloween!

Happy Halloween Eve! {LOL} Time for another fabulous sketch challenge at Sketch Saturday!!!

I couldn't resist making just one last Halloween card, especially since I hadn't yet inked up Hangin' Out - Wicked Wardrobe. I'm so glad I did! This set is so much fun and fit the sketch perfectly!

I ended up paper piecing the witch's clothes, but I took my black atYou Spica pen and highlighted each piece, plus the clothesline poles, bats, clothespins and the witch's hat. It shimmers IRL... I love it! I stamped the background in So Saffron ink using Cloudy Days Background, and then sponged around the edges. All of the cardstock, DP, ribbon and bat embellie are from the Halloween Project Pantry kit, which is now sold out.

There are still so many uninked Halloween images (sigh). Maybe I'll color up a few for some scrapbook pages. We'll just have to wait and see. It's been fun, though. Now on to my FAVORITE time of the year, autumn/harvest, with a lot of Christmas thrown in for good measure, no doubt!

I can't wait to see what you come up with using this cool sketch! Be sure to nip on over to the Sketch Saturday blog to see the amazing works of art of the rest of the design team... you will definitely be inspired!

Have a great day!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Trick or Treating With Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps

Welcome to the collision of Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps. One fun, fun, fun blog hop!.

How to Participate: Post your creation on your personal blog today (October 29) between 12:00 PM CST (noon) and 5:55 PM CST. The title of your post should be "Trick or Treating with Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps." If possible, your post is to include a Trick (a technique) or a Treat (a gorgeous card).

Once your blog post is complete, visit the Simply Betty Stamps blog and link your exact URL in the Inlinkz list at the bottom of the blog hop post in order to qualify for the prizes. There is no need to sign up in advance, but the Inlinkz list will close at 6:00 PM CST. Then we hop, Halloween style, from the Simply Betty Stamps blog.  If you don't plan to enter a card, still come along and comment. Everyone would appreciate it and you might get super inspired---or spooked!

Prizes: Two blogger participant winners will be announced November 5 and highlighted on the hosting blogs, Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps. Both winners will receive $10 gift vouchers from Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps. Many of the design team members are also offering freebies and prizes along the way, so even if you don't plan to enter a card, come along and find all the tricks and treats!

In the meantime, the Tiddly Inks and Simply Betty Stamps and Simply Betty Challenges design teams have already posted their "tricks and treats," so you can start the hop with us at Christy's blog, where you'll also find the full link list in case there's a break along the way.

Here's my treat:
My card features Ghoulfriend and the tree and moon elements from the Twisted Tree and Silver Moon Set by the amazing Christy Croll, Miss Tiddly Inks herself! I created the scene with Photoshop Elements and paired them with DP from the Nite Owl collection by Stampin Up! After a tiny bit of shading and coloring of the images, I finished up with a couple of headstone stickers from Martha Stewart Crafts and a brad from My Mind's Eye. 

Here's my trick: 

For a balanced design, always create a visual triangle with your images and embellishments. Do you see mine?

The next stop on the DT hop is Lou's blog. Enjoy!

Note, this is my second post for today. Please scroll down for Taylored Expressions Sketch Challenge. Thanks!

Witch Marci

Aaaannnd we're back! After a two-week break, Taylored Expressions Sketch Challenge is back in business! Yay!!!

I LOVE this sketch... it's a keeper! I couldn't resist one more Halloween card. And I still have some Halloween stamps that never saw any ink. How does that happen?

I'm showcasing sweet little Witch Lala's adorable face. I mean it when I say I just want to pinch her cheeks! I've paired Marci with my favorite Halloween DP this year, Toil and Trouble by The Girls' Paperie. It has a bit of a vintage feel that I really like.

I used my Kiwi Lane templates to make the wavy borders, added a bit of stitching, and finished things off with a tulle bow with a brad (My Mind's Eye) in the middle. Voila!

For more inspiration and amazing eye candy, be sure to visit the rest of the Sketch Crew:

Alice Wertz: Alice's Little Wonderland
Jami Sibley: More is More
Lori Craig: Make a Difference
Melissa Sauls: In Stamping Mode 
Monika Davis: M.A.D. Stamper
Rachel  Sztonyk: Gingerbread Gallery
Rosie Hughes: Love My Craft Room
Sherrie Siemens: Card Creme 
and of course Taylor herself: Taylored Expressions

Have a wonderful Friday!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

It's what I do...

Today (October 28) was Avery's 14th Birthday. We had a cake for him after dinner, but we'll be celebrating more on Saturday.

I love this kid more than life itself. I guess I finally figured out how to be a good mom by number 4. 

A few more things I've realized lately...

Baskin Robbins makes the BEST ice cream cakes ever!

I've lost 9 pounds! Which means I'd better not eat too much of Avery's cake...

Even though I'm definitely a fall/winter girl, I cannot deny that days like today in Southern California are the reason so many people want to live here...beautiful blue skies, white clouds, green everywhere (thanks to recent rains), a bit of a breeze, and temps in the 70's (20's C). The colors are so intense, it's intoxicating.

Chiropractic care and whole food supplements really do work. Thanks Lynn!

Sometimes people you thought were your friends really aren't your friends after all.

There are some things that happen in life that you will never get over.

Bottom line... life is definitely a study in contrasts.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Happy Birthday from Cupcake Ruby!

Oh dear, I'm running late with this post, so it will be short and sweet! It's time for another fun challenge at Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps!

It's a gorgeous inspiration piece, isn't it? I decided to try the letterpress technique... I inked up one side of the embossing folder and ran it through my Big Shot. The color is a little uneven, but I think it gives it a cool vintage-y look. Cupcake Ruby was just perfect for all this red, so here she is, with a birthday cupcake just for you!

The DP and ink are the retired Ruby Red from Stampin Up. I kept mine because I LOVE this color. I hate that it's retired now. I'll be bummed when I run out of cardstock. The embossing folder is part of the Plaid & Snowflakes set by Basic Grey for Sizzix. The vertical greeting is the must-have stamp set called So Random Sentiments by Claudia & Company.  Seems like I always need a vertical greeting! The gorgeous rose and leaves are by Prima.

I hope you join us this week for the challenge! You may be the lucky winner of one of my favorite SCRS stamps, Elf Oliver! Be sure to stop by and see what the rest of the design team have created for your viewing pleasure and inspiration!

and Sparkle herself!

I hope you all have a fabulous day! I'll be spending the day at Julie's for the monthly Paisleys and Polka Dots crafting day. Such fun and such gorgeous books we make!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Christmas Wishes

A very happy Saturday to you! I'm heading off to the ScrapExpo in Ontario (CA) with my dear friend Alicia today. I know we'll have a great time! Alicia is the bargain shopper of all time. I just love spending time with her... she's the daughter-in-law of my heart.

It's also a happy Saturday because we have a new sketch challenge at Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge, and I was able to play!

My card features Santa's shoe print from the Secret Stamp Set, and greeting from Very Vintage Christmas, two of my all time favorite stamp sets. Claire has a particular fondness for Christmas, and her holiday stamp sets are unparalleled! Just wait until you see the November release!

I stamped the shoe print in Dark Moss Colorbox chalk ink on Websters Pages designer paper and then sponged the edges with Tim Holtz Walnut Stain distress ink. The tag is stamped and sponged with the same ink, as are the DP layers behind the main image. As Claire would say, I hope it tickles!

Please do join us this week at Waltzingmouse Stamps Challenge! You don't have to use Waltzingmouse Stamps in order to play, although we love to see them when you do! We have a prize up for grabs as well as three Top Mouse awards. How can you resist! LOL

Note: this is my second post for today. Please scroll down for Sketch Saturday. Thanks!

Happy Birthday From All Of Us

Happy Saturday my friends! It's time for another fun sketch challenge at Sketch Saturday!!!

I wanted to play with my Taylored Expressions October Key Ingredients Kit, and decided to pull out a favorite stamp set, Pet's Place. I think I ended up making this sketch more of a challenge than intended. (*grin*) My image is a bit tall and left little room for an embellishment at the top, so I ended up with a stick! What do you think? I'm kinda diggin' it. It's fun to try new things! This was also the first time I've tried a pleated ribbon treatment. I'm not sure I did it correctly, but it seems to be sticking... for now! LOL

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend that includes a bit (or a lot!) of crafting! Be sure to stop by the Sketch Saturday blog for more inspiration and play along in our challenge. I'd love to see your take on it!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Taylored Expressons Blast From The Past Blog Hop!

Happy Friday!!! It's extra happy today because it's time for the monthly Taylored Expressions Blast from the Past Blog Hop!!! Our creative focus this month (I love that expression) is Christmas/Holiday.

Once again, the very talented and lovely Sankari Wegman has created a wonderful sketch for our inspiration. I turned the sketch on its side for my card, which features images from one of my favorite holiday stamp sets, Wings of Joy.

The DP and chipboard element are from the Mitten Weather collection by Cosmo Cricket. I stamped the main image (and the greeting) in Tim Holtz Walnut Stain distress ink and then used my Copics to color the birds and bits. For good measure, I randomly stamped one of the snowflake images in Tim Holtz Tumbled Glass distress ink.

I love the Red Stripe Fabric Tape you see behind the main image... Taylor has just started carrying fabric tape, and now that I've tried it, I'm definitely going back for more! It's not like washi tape because it's fabric. Very cool!

Before you continue on with the hop, don't forget to take time to check out Taylor's 12 Day's of a Handcrafted Christmas. You will definitely be inspired!

A Handcrafted Christmas

Simply Betty Stamps Digi Release Blog Hop!

Hello everyone! Welcome to the Simply Betty Stamps Digi Release Blog Hop!!! Today, Simply Betty Stamps is releasing Jude and His Shenanigans Crew Christmas digis! There are a total of six in this adorable collection!!! The fun begins at the Simply Betty Stamps blog, so be sure to start there and hop along to enjoy all the eye candy!

My card features Peter, whose Christmas wish has come true with the arrival his new puppy! Could he be any more adorable?

The background cardstock is from the Cosmo Cricket color collection by Core'dinations, and the DP mat behind the image is from the Mitten Weather collection by... you guessed it... Cosmo Cricket! The ribbon and Christmas tree charm are something I dug out my stash (*wink*).

Now on you go to Meredith's blog to see which cutie pie she is featuring today. Enjoy!!!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Merry Christmas from Marci and Friends

Today is my day to post on the La-La Land Crafts Blog. Have you been over there lately? OMGoodness, you must!!! Irina has an amazing design team, and those ladies have created the most wonderful eye candy with Luka and Marci. I drool!!!

I know I'm skipping around on holidays lately, but I couldn't resist making a card featuring sweet Santa Marci. She is especially cute holding her panda. So I decided to give her a couple of friends to join in wishing you (an early) Merry Christmas!

The DP and die cut stickers are from the Everyone Loves Christmas collection by Bella Blvd. So cute! I'm really loving all the die cuts and chipboard pieces that companies are making to coordinate with their papers. It makes putting a fun card together so easy!

It may be hard to see, but I used Sparkly Fluff on Marci's fur trim. I love the way it sparkles!

Thanks so much for dropping by today. I've been enjoying the rainy days here in So California over the past few days... so cozy. We stoked the fireplace today... I love that! In my next house, I'm going to have a fireplace in the bedroom. There's nothing I love more than snuggling under the covers and sleeping near a crackling fire. I took just such a nap today. Bliss! 

Have a la la lovely day!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Rin and Snowman

Happy Tuesday!!! Today we have another fun challenge for you at Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps!

Yep, it's time to turn our thoughts to winter! We card makers love to jump around with the holidays and seasons, don't we? It keeps things interesting!

My card features sweet Rin and Snowman, perfect for a winter card. Doesn't even have to be Christmas, although I did sort of lean that way with the colors I chose. The DP is from the Candy Cane Christmas collection by Stampin Up... I'm in love with that paper! The snowflake border was made using my new Tim Holtz Snow Flurries die, which I also love love love. I threw in a rhinestone snowflake and a few blue rhinestones just for good measure. Who doesn't love some SPARKLE? (pun intended!)

I hope you'll join us this week and show us your winter cards! Don't forget, there's always a chance to win a Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamp stamp as a prize! Please be sure to visit the rest of the design team to see what beautiful winter cards they've come up with.

and Sparkle herself!

Have a great day!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Come boldly unto the throne of grace...

A blessed Sunday to you! This is the day that the Lord hath made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!

I have the privilege of hosting this week's challenge at Stampin' Sisters in Christ. I chose for the inspiration scripture  Matthew 6: 9-13 "This, then, is how you should pray: 'Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.'"

The challenge is to make a card/project that features prayer; either someone praying, or a verse about prayer, or a greeting that lets someone know you are praying for them. 

At first glance, mine might not appear to meet the challenge. But, to me, this is what I would pray when I wanted to reach out to someone... that I could come boldly unto the throne of grace to obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  In fact, my daily prayer (although admittedly I forget some days) is that I will be a blessing to someone that day. 

That gorgeous scripture featured on my card is from the Lift Up Our Hands stamp set by Our Daily Bread Designs. The frame around the scripture is from Very Vintage Labels No. 2 from Waltzingmouse Stamps. The DP is by Websters Pages. 

I've copied and pasted my devotional from the Stampin' Sisters in Christ post today: 

We all know [The Lord's Prayer] by heart, don't we? It's been slightly changed in recitation; for example, in our church we pray "Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, Amen."

I've been thinking a lot about prayer lately. It's a bit of a puzzler for me, and I think it is for all of us. We are told countless times in the Bible to take everything to God in prayer, that God will always answer our prayers. But one wonders... if God already knows everything that's going to happen in our lives, if everything that happens is according to his plan for us or his will, then what's the point of prayer? And how about all the times we pray fervently for something, like the healing of a loved one, and it doesn't happen?

I don't know about you, but I'm not able to answer any of those questions with authority. I'm not a religious scholar, and I have a feeling even religious scholars might answer these questions differently. I'll say this, though... when we pray and pray and pray for something and it doesn't happen, maybe we aren't praying for the right thing. Maybe what we should be praying for is wisdom, for the Holy Spirit to speak to us and guide us, for strength, for patience, for comfort, to be a blessing to others, and for healing, at least spiritually if physical healing is not possible.

Prayer IS powerful. It brings us closer to God. It is when we pray that we are putting our hearts and minds on him, having a direct conversation with Our Father in heaven.

Jesus tells us "your Father knows what you need before you ask him. This, then, is how you should pray:" (Matt 6:8)

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. It is significant to note (as our pastor pointed out) that this was the first time God was referred to as Our Father, better illustrating the close relationship God has... or wants to have...with each of us.

Thy kingdom come (yes, please!).

Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven (we must each do our part to make it so).

Give us this day our daily bread (just what we need, not necessarily what we want).

Forgive us our trespasses (debts) as we forgive our those who trespass against us (our debtors)... the latter can be a little tough sometimes, can't it? But how wonderful to know that by grace we are forgiven everything!

Lead us not into temptation (we need God's help with this every day!)

Deliver us from evil (please, God!)

For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

Amen indeed!

I encourage you to spend time in prayer every day, my friends. It it is the pause that refreshes! And I assure you, if you listen closely and look carefully, you will see that God is answering your prayers... it's just that sometimes it's not quite in the way you might have expected. If all else fails, pray the Lord's prayer and think on every word, don't just recite it by heart. It is full of meaning and full of blessings.
I hope you'll join us for our challenge this week. Our sponsor is the wonderful Layers of Color Art Stamps. Truly gorgeous stamps, and a Christian company! You'll find lots of inspiration and spiritual blessings, by visiting the Layers of Color blog and our design sisters:

Grace Nywening: Th-INK-ing of You
Miesje Flach: Craft Room With a View
Patti J Gilliam: Cherish Each Precious Day
Peggysue Turner: Roses By My Window
Rebekka Reed: Diamond in the Rough

Have a blessed day!

Note, this is my second post for today. Please scroll down for the October Friends of Waltzingmouse Stamps Blog Waltz. Thanks!

October Friends of Waltzingmouse Stamps Blog Waltz

Happy Days, my friends! Time again for our monthly Friends of Waltzingmouse Stamps Blog Waltz! The theme this month is Autumn/Harvest (my favorite time of year!). All are welcome to join us! If you missed making a card/project for the waltz, you can still enjoy the waltz and play along in our game to win a stamp set of choice! All the details are in the Waltzingmouse Forum (Playroom:Blog Waltzes), where you'll also find all the links for the waltz. If you haven't already registered for our forum, it's just a few clicks and easy as pie!

I made a wee notecard based on this week's sketch at the Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge Blog. We have a prize up for grabs this week, so come on and join us there, too!

I used the new Text It stamp set to stamp my background on one of the "solids" in the Pyrus collection by Basic Grey and then sponged around the edges. I then stamped the branch, leaves and little birdie from the Teeny Trees stamp set. I love the simple, rustic look. The card was finished off with some silky ribbon and a flower from the Capella collection by Basic Grey. Simple pimple, as Claire would say!  And it looks so NATURAL.

Thanks so much for waltzing by today! I will be doing a bit of waltzing myself and looking forward to it!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Cheers Darling!

Cheers indeed! I was the lucky winner of FIVE Li'l Lolita digi images from Tickled Pink Stamps this week as part of their month-long birthday celebration. Woo hoo!!! This is one of the five I picked... Vampire Lilith. I made the greeting on my computer, thinking it went well with the blood wine she's drinking. (*grin*)

Of course, since it's Saturday, that means it's time for another fabulous sketch challenge at Sketch Saturday! I flipped the sketch on its side. I couldn't quite fit embellies on top and bottom of the image, but hopefully the pumpkin will do. (*grin*)

I had a blast playing with my new Tim Holtz Paper Rosettes die. The DP is from the Toil & Trouble collection by The Girls' Paperie (which I LOVE). The bat and pumpkin are by K&Company.

I know it's on to Thanksgiving and Christmas now in the card making world, but technically Halloween is still two weeks away and I have a bunch of goodies I want to use up, so you'll likely see a few more Halloween cards from me before it's over. I promised the kids we'd decorate the house a bit this weekend. We used to have a big party every year for Halloween back when the kids were young and went trick or treating. I really miss those days. (sigh)

Have a wonderful weekend my friends! Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Taylored Expressions October Key Ingredients Release and Challenge!

OMGoodness, could Friday get any better than this? Today Taylored Expressions releases the October Key Ingredients Kit and it is definitely one of my all-time faves!!! If you know me, you know that I'm an autumn/winter girl, so the patterned paper, ribbon, buttons and Stickles in this collection sing to my heart!

The Subscriber Challenge this month is to create simple cards. I have to admit this was truly a challenge for me. I've become so used to adding layers and embellies and such to my cards, that I had to force myself to take a step back. I even looked through magazines to get some ideas.

One thing I learned is that you don't have to take tons of time to make a perfectly lovely card! As long as you have the key ingredients, it's a snap!

Both of my cards were made using only the the goodies in the October Key Ingredients Kit (except for a bit of twine to tie the button to the bow). The stamp sets are Branching Out and Branching Out Coordinates, which I love love love! The possibilities are endless with these two sets!

Taylor has compiled all of the Design Team (and her own) cards into a handy guide with step-by-step instructions on how to recreate them yourself, which will be a FREE download for all Key Ingredients Subscribers! Woo hoo!!! If you weren't already a subscriber, now's the time! You won't hesitate any longer once you see all the cards made by these amazing ladies:

Melody Rupple: A Paper Melody
Jen Tapler: Jen Tapler Designs
Lynn Put: The Queen's Scene
Jessica Diedrich: Yeah, She Stamps
Rosie Hughes: Love my Craft Room
and, of course, Taylor herself: Taylored Expressions

Don't forget...whenever you need some inspiration or just want to stroll through some gorgeous eye candy, it's just a click away in the Key Ingredients Gallery!

Oh, and by the way, if you haven't already, you MUST check out the Twelve Days of a Handcrafted Christmas at Taylored Expressions!

Have a wonderful day, my friends!

Note, this is my second post for today. Please scroll down for the La-La Land Crafts New Release Blog Hop. Thanks!

La-La Land Crafts New Release Blog Hop!

Yeppers, you read that correctly! We are having a second mini-release this month at La-La Land Crafts! And we're having a blog hop to celebrate! The fun begins on Irina's blog, so you'll want to start there and hop along and leave comments for a chance to win this bonzer prize package!!!

For your chance to win, visit and leave a comment on every blog of the hop. For additional chances, like us on Facebook, and mention our hop and blog candy on YOUR blog (or post to your favorite on-line crafting site!) and then leave us a message on the La-La Land Crafts Blog on the blog hop post letting us know you did that! The Blog Hop will go through Monday October 18th at 11:59 pm Pacific, and we will announce the winner on La-La Land Crafts blog on Tuesday.

Now on to the show! We are introducing to you today three more ADORABLE stamps:

Are they cute or what????

My card, of course, features Ice Skating Marci in honor of my dear friend Debbie, whose daughter is a figure skater. I know she'll be buying this stamp! (*grin*) I set Marci in a scene stamped with an image by High Hopes which I've been saving for just such an occasion! The background paper is from the Candy Cane Christmas collection by Stampin Up.

Your next stop on the hop is my sweet friend and uber-talented Kristine's blog! If you have a hat, you might want to hang onto it because she's going to blow you away with just her new blog banner alone!!! I love that girl!!! Enjoy!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Happy Thursday! Today is my turn to post a card on the La-La Land Crafts blog. Did you know that the Design Team ladies post sample cards every day over there? You should definitely check it out. All I can say is be prepared for some jaw-dropping eye candy!!!

My card today features Winter Marci. I can't even tell you how much I LOVE Marci and Luka, and Winter Marci is another favorite (*grin*). Okay, so they're all my favorites! But seriously, could Marci be any cuter in her winter coat and hat? And she's so easy to color. You could easily place her in an autumn, winter or Christmas setting... my favorite seasons!

The DP is from the Alphabet Soup Girl collection by My Mind's Eye. The stick pin is by Jenni Bowlin, to which I tied (with embroidery floss) a little tag made with a Stampin Up set and punch. The flowers and lace are something I found while rooting around in the LA Fashion District awhile back. You'll see more of those finds and a lot more very soon! (tee hee)

Please plan to join us tomorrow for a blog hop to celebrate the release of three more Marci/Luka images. Brace yourselves, people... they are so cute you will squeal with delight!