Friday, October 24, 2008

This New Old House

Some friends of ours recently moved into a new (to them) house. It sits on a large parcel of land with grass and trees galore -- every kid's dream...until they have to rake the leaves and mow the lawns. lol

This is the first time I've used my Boards & Beams stamp set, and I found it more of a challenge than I'd anticipated (although I think it's just me). I love the house images in this set, but since my coloring skills aren't where I'd like them to be (and it never occurs to me to practice...until something like this comes up -lol), so by the time I got done with it, it didn't much look like what I'd envisioned. One thing I realized after the fact is that I colored in what I assumed was the front door's kickplate (and most of the time they're a shiny gold tone, KWIM?), when I think it's actually supposed to be part of the front porch. Oh, well. It didn't come with instructions! lol I'd have given the coloring another shot, but I was running short on time (the story of my life).

Coloring aside, this house actually reminds me of a house I lived in back in the mid-80s...charming house built in 1917 (I think), but, boy, was it a lot of work (remember that, Mom?)! Seems like a lifetime ago. Anyway, I used Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge 61 as the starting point:
Because the house image is rather large, I had a little bit of trouble getting everything to fit, but I think it worked out okay (heaven forbid I actually make a 5x7 card! lol). I used the Tiny Bubbles embossing folder on the larger circle on the lower right, and I sponged some ink onto the smaller circle behind the house image (with that deep purple cardstock as the background, it kinda resembles a big moon, don't ya think?). For me, I think the Picket Fence border punch really pulled this card together. I was still in the thought-process stage of making this card when I found this punch on sale at Michael's, and I knew I wanted to incorporate it into the card's design somehow. I'm really glad I was able to use it here. ;)

BTW, the sentiment reads "Congratulations...," not "ongratulations..." as it appears in the photo. lol

Hope you enjoy your weekend! I plan to. ;D

Thanks so much for visiting my blog, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Economy Boosters (just doin' my part -lol!):

Cardstock: White Daisy, Pansy Purple, Garden Green (CTMH); Stamps: Boards & Beams (PTI); Ink: Jet Black Staz-On (Tsukineko), Chocolate, Goldrush, Olive, White Daisy pigment (CTMH); Other: classic circle Nestabilities (Spellbinders), Cuttlebug, Tiny Bubbles embossing folder (Provo Craft), picket fence border punch (Martha Stewart), Prismacolored pencils (Sanford), odorless mineral spirits (Mona Lisa), blending stumps (Loew Cornell), sponge (CTMH), ribbon (from my stash), foam mounting tape, sewing machine, thread

Friday, October 17, 2008

It's Friday, and I've got Some Card Shares for Ya!

Happy Friday!! I hope you're all looking forward to a fun and relaxing weekend (or are those mutually exclusive adjectives? lol)! I know I am, and for me that means I hope to do some stamping! ;D

The first card I want to show you is the birthday card my awesome mama made for my husband (he loved it, BTW!) -- it's so masculine and rich looking, and I love all the metallic touches on it! The strings, frets, and other details on the guitars look kinda white in the photo, but they're actually silver in real life. The picture just doesn't do this fabulous card justice!
And these next two are RAKs that I recently received and they're too cute not to share with you. ;)

This first one is from my good friend Mary Ellen -- who, I'm proud to say is one of the ultra-talented designers for the Patstamps Technique Junkie Newsletter, which, if you're not familiar with it, is a wonderful newsletter put out by Pat Huntoon loaded with new and fun techniques for the avid stamper (Pat has CDs with detailed tutorials too, which are amazing!). Can you see all the sparkle in this one? I LOVE it!! (Thanks again, ME!)

This next one is from my sweet friend Laura (who doesn't currently have a blog or I'd link you up). Laura is always so thoughtful and is forever creating wonderful cards and handmade gifts for the special people in her life. This is a double pocket card, and I love how she used all those punches to play off the background pattern and create the whimsical feel of the card. And if you look closely, you'll see that she actually used what appears to be a recycled Archiver's ad as her card base -- very creative (and ecology-minded too)! Isn't it cute?! Thanks, Laura! ;D
Thanks so much for visiting my blog today, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Some Bunny's Going to Pennsylvania

Can you guess who? (I gave you a pretty good hint there!) Nope, it's not me -- even though it's been over seven years since we were last there for a visit and I wish we could go back. (I have a brother who lives there with his family.) It's...Some Bunny!...and she'll be making two appearances there this week, hopefully bringing smiles to two very special little ladies. ;)

You see, I've got a niece who'll be turning seven on Friday (and if you do the math, you'll figure out that neither she nor her younger sister were even born when we were there last, but we have seen them a few times since then thanks to my brother's ability to travel). Time sure does fly! This is the card I made for her (she loves pink -- and I really hope she likes polka dots - lol!):
And this next, very similar, card is for Janessa: If you want to know more about little Janessa, and especially if you'd like to pray for her and her family, please click on the link above. Her aunt, Korin (whom I got to know through one of my online stamping groups before she started Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps), posts updates fairly regularly on her blog. It just breaks my heart when I hear of situations like this, but I know that prayer does help and they could use all the prayers we can offer up on their behalf.

There is another family I'd love to send a card to as well (maybe you read about them on Cammie's blog a little bit ago), but I just haven't found the time to get to it yet. It seems there's never a shortage of those needing encouragement, so one of these days I'll figure out a way to get a stash made up so I don't always have to be so late with everything. I know, good intentions and all that.... But one day....

Boy, that kinda seemed like a downer post...such trying times for these two families. Sorry about that. Hearing of things like this really cause me to be thankful for how very blessed my family has been. I think I'll go give my two youngest kiddos a hug -- I'd hug them all, but the oldest ones are too far away. If you can reach 'em, I'm sure it would do your heart good to give your kids a hug too!

I used Jen del Muro's current Sketch For You To Try on these cards (Did I ever mention how much I love her sketches?): It was a fun sketch, but you can see I didn't challenge myself to vary my two cards too much. ;)

And before I go, I also wanted to say a heartfelt thank you to all of you who left me such sweet comments regarding my daughter's coaster album. I always appreciate your comments, but this was such a special project for me and I was really touched by your kind and complimentary words. You ladies are just so sweet. (Oh, and did you see that my daughter actually left me a comment there today -- her only comment on my blog?! Yes, the tears were flowing as I read that one.)

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!


Economy Boosters (just doin' my part -lol!):

Some Bunny Polka Dots
Cardstock: White Daisy, Desert Sand, Blush (CTMH); Stamps: Some Bunny, Birthday Surprise (Verve), Polka Dot Basics (Papertrey Ink); Ink: Timber Brown Staz-On (Tsukineko), Blush, Desert Sand (CTMH); Other: classic and scalloped circle Nestabilities (Spellbinders), Cuttlebug, Swiss Dots embossing folder (Provo Craft), Prismacolor pencils (Sanford), odorless mineral spirits (Mona Lisa), blending stumps (Loew Cornell), stipple brush, organdy ribbon (CTMH), sandpaper, foam mounting tape

Some Bunny Gingham
Cardstock: White Daisy, Baby Pink (CTMH); Patterned Paper: (ret.) Baby Pink Gingham (CTMH); Stamps: Some Bunny, Birthday Surprise (Verve), Classic Numbers (CTMH); Ink: Timber Brown Staz-On (Tsukineko), Chocolate (CTMH); Other: classic and scalloped circle Nestabilities (Spellbinders), Cuttlebug (Provo Craft), checkerboard border punch (Martha Stewart), Prismacolor pencils (Sanford), odorless mineral spirits (Mona Lisa), blending stumps (Loew Cornell), stipple brush, glue dot, grosgrain ribbon (CTMH), foam mounting tape

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

'21 Reminders' Coaster Book

Okay, as promised, here's the coaster book I made for my daughter's 21st birthday. At first I thought it would be just from me, but then I changed my mind. Wanting to make this really special for her, I thought about this long and hard and decided to rise above myself and include ALL of her immediate family members...meaning, not only would this include sentiments from myself, my hubby, our two kids, my two older sons (my daughter's flesh-and-blood siblings), my stepdaughter, and my parents; I went even further and also asked my ex, his wife, her son, their daughter, and his parents to contribute to this as well (and if you know me, you know this was not easy for me to do because the relationship I have with my ex and his wife is less than pleasant, to put it nicely).

Anyway, not everyone followed my 'instruction' to list what they love about her, but the general idea was there and so I went with with the wording exactly as it was given to me. I'm not sure you'll be able to read it all, nor is that my concern here. I just thought I'd give you a heads up so you might be able to make sense of all this in case you were looking beyond the artwork. ;) Every person's sentiments are in a different font, and I tried to create each page with that person and their personality in mind...kinda tough when you're not overly fond of some of them. lol

BTW, she just received it today, and she said it was the BEST gift she's ever received, so I'm glad that all my thought and effort was worth it. I felt like I was living this thing for weeks, and it took almost a week for UPS to deliver it, so I'm really glad it's finally in her hands and also relieved she loves it. ;)

I'm going to list the "pages" in the order they were assembled, even though I don't have them in groupings of two. Make sense? And I took most of these pics before I assembled it...I was so afraid of ruining it when punching the holes with my Crop-a-dile! lol Oh, and you may want to go get a little snack and your favorite beverage...this could take a while. ;) There are so many pics, I'm wondering if Blogger will need me to break this up and put it into two or three different posts.... Guess we'll find out soon enough. lol

Okay, this is the front cover:
Page 1:
Page 2:
Page 3:
Page 4:
Page 5:
Page 6:
Page 7:
Page 8:
Page 9:
Page 10:
And Page 11 (this was one of my favorites):
The book opens to reveal my parents' sentiments (hope you don't mind that I'm sharing this, Mom):
Page 12:
And here's the inside of that one:
Page 13:
Page 14 (the inside of the back cover -- I tucked an extra little note inside this envie):
And no, I'm not going to let you read the inside of the note -lol:
The very back cover is just plain cardstock with my little signature stamp on it. Nothing fancy and not worth showing. ;)

I thought I was making each page relatively flat, but I had to use 2" binder rings to assemble this. I think it might have looked better only using a top ring, but I really wanted it to be more like a book, so I went ahead and used a ring at the bottom as well (but the ribbons are only at the top). My supply list was so ridiculously long, and most of the supplies used were from Close To My Heart (I think some ribbon and chipboard were the exceptions). I somehow misplaced it when I was cleaning the house to have friends over for dinner last weekend, but if I ever find it, I'll edit this post to include it all. Until then, please feel free to ask if you have any questions.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Got Cookies?

Yep, it's me again. Twice in one day -- Wow! No, make that twice in one week! ;) I'm on a roll! lol


I just thought I'd tell you about something I did the other day, because maybe some of you would like to participate in it as well. I baked cookies for our soldiers. ;) I don't personally know anyone who is currently serving overseas, but there are some others who do (see photo, above), and they've organized a {growing} operation in order to enable people to send some lovin' from our ovens to our soldiers, called Operation Baking Gals.

Here's a picture of some of the cookies while they were cooling, and the other photo is of everything all boxed up and ready to ship out (mine were mailed yesterday).


It may not sound like much to send a few dozen cookies and some other miscellaneous taste treats, but I've been told that the men and women who receive them are absolutely thrilled to have a tangible reminder of home and that there are people who care about them, grateful for the sacrifice they're making, and appreciative of what they're doing in the name of freedom so far away from their country and their loved ones. It was the least I could do, and I'm glad I took the time to participate. (And if I were half the stamper I wish I were with a huge stockpile of cards on hand or the ability to just whip out a dozen or so in no time flat, I'd have sent several handmade cards along with this care package as well, as I know the soldiers would love to have cards to be able to send back home to their families.) My kids enjoyed having some extra cookies around, and it was rewarding for me to know that my doing this would bless others; I will definitely be doing this again.

Each month, different baking 'teams' of at about 25 members are assembled, and one person is selected to be the recipient of all this homemade goodness (of course they share with those they serve with, so the love is definitely spread around). I learned about this from reading Donna's blog, and though this 'operation' is still in its infancy, I have a feeling it's going to be huge as word of mouth travels.

If you're interested in participating or just want to learn more about this, please go check out this post on Donna's blog. She's done this a couple times now and, as a team leader, knows a lot more about this than I do. ;) I'm sure she'd be more than happy to answer any questions you might have.

Okay, NEXT time I'll be back to share my daughter's coaster book. And be forewarned, I'll have LOTS of pics for ya!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

How Sweet

Seems I've missed quite a bit in the last few weeks. I'm finally feeling good again and have been trying to get caught up on everything I would've been doing had I not been sick. I still haven't made my hubby's birthday card, but I think (I hope) he's okay with that and knows I'll get to it soon. ;) The house is really clean, I'm burning my favorite Mulled Cider candles, and I even have the house decorated for fall -- and I'm especially loving that because I hadn't pulled out many seasonal decorations at all since we left CA two years ago! Not having our 'home' yet, with so many of our things still in boxes, it just seemed like too much trouble. However, I'm thinking that little things like that not only make the house feel more like 'home' to me, but after seeing how excited my little girl got as she helped me with it, I think it's important for the kids too. ;)

In the blogging world, two of my sweet blogging friends recently thought of me and so I think I'll take a moment to share them with you. First, Barb, gave me a 'sweet' award AND she also tagged me...and then Jeanette tagged me as well! Fortunately, I think I can get away with only playing the tag game once (no need to thank me, I'm already thinking of you! lol). Both of these ladies are very sweet and super talented, and I love to visit their blogs to see their latest creations. I hope you'll take a few minutes to check them out too.

Here's the award:
Isn't it sweet? ;) With the current cupcake craze, how could you not be excited to see this darling little treat come your way? I didn't see any 'rules' on sharing this with other 'sweet' bloggers, so I'm going to take the chicken way out today and tell everyone who reads this post to consider themselves tagged...I haven't really had a lot of response in tagging others in the past, so I figure this will work...for now. ;)

As for my 7 "interesting" facts about me, that's a tough one but I'll give it a shot and hope I don't put anyone to sleep (I wouldn't want you drooling on your keyboard...I hear that's not good for it). Okay, here we go:

1. When I was young, I wanted to be a marine biologist and study sharks when I grew up...until I learned that you'd have to actually get into the water with them to do it!

2. About the time I first got married, I was sure I didn't want to have any children...now I have five and a stepdaughter!

3. In order to ease the symptoms of hot flashes and whacky hormones, I daily drink a somewhat nasty herbal concoction (that I have to brew myself from things like roots, bark, berries, and herbs that are 'prescribed' for me). It's been over two years now and, even though I don't like the taste of my, um, special tea and it's really expensive, I can't imagine life without it. (I'm not a big fan of conventional medicine.)

4. My second husband and I went to the same elementary, junior high, and high school (and we even shared a 5th/6th combination class together), but we never knew each other.

5. My second husband and I married within six months of our first date...and we're going to be celebrating our 13th anniversary in a couple months! (I'm sure it's because we didn't know each other growing up! lol)

6. I've never been to Hawaii or on a cruise. Yes, I live a sheltered life. ;)

7. I broke one of my upper front teeth in half and had to wear a SILVER (as in shiny!) cap on it from fourth grade through eighth grade until they finally replaced it with a porcelain cap (since I never had to wear braces, all I can figure is it was the dentist's way of making sure I'd be teased mercilessly by the guys -lol).

Okay...you can wake up now! So who's up for playing along with me (see above as to why I'm not going to name names right now)? Please feel free to share some random facts about yourself and be sure to comment here so I can go check it out. It's always fun to get to learn a bit more about the people behind the talent shared on the blogs we frequent. ;)

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!