Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Colin Cowie

Do you know who he is? He's Oprah's party planner extraordinaire. Anyway, the other day I happened to catch a few minutes of Oprah. My husband thinks that I watch it everyday with my feet up, eating bon bons (who does that?) but that's so not true. So, I did see a few minutes the other day when Colin Cowie was on. They showed his luxurious NYC apartment. Fabulous. One thing that I found very cool was that he had wrapped gifts on his bookshelf, ready to go for gift giving. Now, I realize that many people (my MIL is really good at this) have gifts stashed away for those moments in life that you just need one. But he had them wrapped and ready to go on his bookshelf... like artwork or something. He said he buys pretty, scented candles, and or bottles of wine or things like that and wraps them all at the same time. Then when he goes to a dinner party (again, who does that?), he never goes empty handed. He probably doesn't frequent Chick-fil-a, like I do. So, where am I going with this? Well, I recently purchased these sturdy (I'm actually impressed) little, plastic boxes that hold 8 cards and 8 envelopes. I bought them from a lady on SCS (where else? :)). This morning, I went through some of my stash of cards and made up 5 boxes of these, tied a ribbon, added a tag... and voila... 5 presents ready for the giving. My son's preschool teacher from last year is having a b'day this week (and we really like her), so we'll give one to her. So, it may not be fancy, schmancy wine or candles, but it works for me and I'm so impressed that I actually have something ready to go when I need it (all my life, my mother has told me to do something like this... well, here we are). I'll have to call her and tell her that I've finally done it.

I'm cured!

Those of you that know me, know that I claim to be "bow-tarded". I think I'm cured. A couple of weeks ago, I had a workshop where I had leftover cut card stock. I decided to make up those cards tonight to put in my stash. It's one of my favorite cards, so it was easy to get motivated to finish them up. It uses the Dazzling Diamond Dust technique. Anyway, I usually tie a knot whenever I use ribbon but for some reason tonight, I thought I'd try a bow! OMG! (Angela, if you read this, I know you're not wanting to try it!) It's easy! Maybe it's because I used organdy and not grosgrain. I'm so excited. Of course, a knot is still easier. The card is Certainly Celery, with layers of Almost Amethyst, Bashful Blue, Basic Black, and Whisper White. LOOK at that bow! :)


Last fall, my oldest boy started playing soccer. What a hoot! Anyway, at the end of the season, I made paper bag scrapbooks for the team showcasing some of the highlights of the season. It was a fun project and I enjoyed making them. I gave each player (6 including my son) the scrapbook at the pizza party. One of the scrapbooks accidentally got ruined a few days after the party. I knew the mom felt awful and she asked if I would make another one. Well, here it is THREE months later (Sorry for the delay!), but I worked on it tonight and it's done. Now, I've blurred out the picture on the front of the little boy - I'm kinda freaky about that. I'm sure you've all noticed that I don't call my boys by their names on here. Don't know why... just freaky. Anyway, here it is. The color for the team was similar to Glorious Green.

Planes, trains, and automobiles

Did you ever see that movie? Of course, that probably dates me. Hmm... Anyway, I was talking to my friend, Michelle, today and she was telling me that she's out of these 3x3 cards that she and I made one night a long time ago. We made a bunch - boy birthday, girl birthday, baby shower enclosures, you name it. Those are great for putting in the gift bag for all those 4 year-olds turning 5 years-old birthday parties. Anyway, she said she's out of the boy ones. Go figure. We both have boys and we're at the age (well, our boys are), where they get invited to more boy parties than girl parties. So, back to the planes, trains, thing... I decided I'd make her some cards tonight - quick ones and I still have a bunch of those red 3x3 cards and envelopes that SU! sold last year. I made 36 - 18 for her and 18 for me. All boy designs. Nothing spectacular but then again, they're headed straight for the trash after being opened. Michelle and I used to get together (it helps that she lives in the same neighborhood) once or twice a month and crank out tons of cards in an evening. One time, we made 100 cards (regular size cards) - 5 designs between 8pm and midnight. We were stampin' machines! Anyway, those were the days before second children and before I became a demo. So, Michelle has an infant now and I thought it would be nice to give her some of these cards. Some day soon, she and I will stamp together again. So, right, planes, trains (okay, no trains), automobiles, a few spaceships, a couple of helicopters, and a tractor here or there. That's what I stamped 36 of.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

I let my 4 year-old pick the theme!

How fun is that? My baby is turning one next week. First, how did that happen? I can't believe it. I still feel like I was "just" pregnant. HA! Anyway, his big brother picked Disney's Cars as the theme for the baby's birthday party. It's going to be a small family gathering but I still had to make the invitations. I saw a tractor tipped over on a card on SCS by copsmonkey so I had to CASE it. I used a different quote from the movie so that my family would get it - I don't think they've all seen the movie (Can you believe that?) Of course, they don't all have small children around and HAVE to watch it 100 times. I think it turned out cute. Do you think so?

My friend's baby is ONE today!

Happy Birthday Anna! Happy ONE! Anna and my son are in music class together. And Anna's mom, Amy stamps with me sometimes. For Anna's birthday, I made her a girlie (don't get to do that very often around here!) frame for her room. Here's a picture of it. I had to paint the frame white too. It was a brown color and it didn't really go with the girlie colors! Amy liked it! We sang Happy Birthday to Anna at music class today. I can't believe she's one!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Sell-a-bration ends Monday 2/26

Last chance to place your $50 (before s/h and tax) to get the FREE stamps!

Anyway, last night's class featured the 5 stamp sets offered in the SAB mini catalog. I got most of the ideas from Splitcoast and must credit the original creator!

First, using the Delight in Life set, I CASED this from twoboysandagirl. I changed it a bit but not much.

Next, I CASED this violet creation using Happy Harmony from bethannwilson.

I designed this Big Blossom card. I really like the Marigold color that SU! came out with as one of this year's six In Colors. Marigold and Perfect Plum look so nice together. Do you think so? And the saying is from my new favorite word set - the Small Sayings in the Winter Mini.

The So Very set is pretty useful. I didn't like it that much in the beginning but now I've seen all kinds of things done with this set. My design is CASED from lov my dolly.

Last is the Very Punny set. I used this card from Jeanne S as inspiration. The colors used are Cool Carribean and Basic Black. It looks pretty sharp.

Silent Auction basket for RMDH

My friends over at Temple Inland are having a silent auction next week to raise money for Ronald McDonald House. They asked me if I wanted to donate a few cards or something. Well, it sounded like an opportunity to put together a basket! I made a basket of goodies for a silent auction at my son's preschool last Fall. I like putting together stamping baskets. Anyway, this one has the Big Blossom stamp set, 8 cards and envelopes, both Winter Mini and Spring Mini catalogs and a gift certificate for a free workshop. I hope it raises a lot of money for RMDH!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

For Nancy

My friend, Nancy, emailed me the other day trying to figure out how to make a card she saw on SCS, using the Swell News Stamp Set. The basic idea was that the pregnant lady was hidden until you pulled on a tab and then there she was in all her roundness! All that talk reminded me that I had made a card last summer with the similar idea. I didn't color her in and I still should do that (probably won't ever happen at this point). Anyway, I thought I'd share the layout with the rest of you. Thanks Nancy for asking! That reminds me that I need to make some more of these cards...

Monday, February 19, 2007

Stamping is stress relieving to me...

And boy do I need some stamping time! Too much going on around here, it seems.

This Thursday is my last workshop for a month or so. That kinda makes me sad but there's just no way to sneak anything else into my schedule. I hate that. But that's how life is I suppose.

I made some cute thank yous for a friend for her bridal shower. I missed the shower because we saw Elmo make music instead ;). That was fun! Anyway, I'm sure she already has the professional thank yous for her wedding but I still wanted to make something handmade. I made a set of 10 cards with her name on them. I love the font. It's called "Susie's Hand". I used the ring (yep, again) from Fairy Tale Wedding and put dazzling diamonds glitter on the stone. Very simple, very elegant. I hope she likes them. I also made a tag using the tag punches and the "Mr & Mrs." stamp from Tagger's Dozen. I also made some 3x3 gift enclosure cards to go on the gifts that we got her.

I had a workshop yesterday and we made three cards. That's all I've stamped since Valentine's... I haven't even taken the pictures yet of the final cards! Sheesh, where is the time going?

That's it for now. I hope to get to stamp more this week. I need all the stress relieving I can get... who doesn't really?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day!

No new stuff to show tonight (it's still early though! ;)).

Just wanted to say Happy Valentine's Day to all of you.

Also, I know some of you signed up for the email subscriptions and then their system (Feedblitz) promptly stopped working. I tested it out on Sunday and everything was fine. But they had problems Monday and Tuesday. They say it's fixed now but we'll see if you get any updates in email tonight. Sorry about this.

I had to reschedule my Special Occasion Card Buffet that was supposed to be on Friday night. You should have received the rescheduled evite. Please rsvp again for the new date in March.

Anyway, I'm taking the evening off to spend with my husband and watch last week's Grey's (again) before tomorrow's episode!


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

7 minutes until Valentine's Day

Talk about last minute.... I got the teacher gifts done today/tonight. I actually was feeling pretty happy that I got a good portion of them done this morning during my baby's nap. It's a good thing too, because he threw me for a loop and stayed up ALL day. He's not feeling well and just wants his mommy to hold him. Good for him, good for me, bad for the teacher gifts.... Around 10pm, he went off to his bed so I finished these up.

The teachers are getting mailboxes as well but more grown up decorations. They are filled with Caramel Kisses and 8 3x3 mini cards. The cards are gift enclosure cards and are for different occasions. I hope they like them.

The mailboxes are decorated with SU! Loves Me double-sided designer paper from the Winter Mini Catalog. Every mini catalog, SU! comes out with new paper. So far, this is my favorite and I'm not even a pink person. I have seen the Spring mini and well, I think I'm going to have a new favorite.

I wanted to put some saying or such on these so that they weren't just Valentine's Day things. And I wanted it to be something that a parent of a child would say to a teacher (Even though it's "from" my son to her, I wanted it to not be kid-like). I finally used a stamp set I've had for a while (I think I've had it for a year and a half and never used it!). It's called Sage Advice and it was in a Summer mini catalog a couple of years ago. Anyway, the saying on the mailbox door is from that set. It says "The way to know life is to love many things" by Vincent Van Gogh. It seems appropriate for V-day, doesn't it?

Monday, February 12, 2007

Junior High Dances

Do you remember Junior High Dances? You know, where the boys are on one side of the room and the girls are on the other. I've been working on my son's preschool class Valentine's Day stuff and I kept thinking about Junior High Dances. Why? Well, his class is unusually gender unbalanced - 11 girls, 5 boys. Hmm. What are the moms of the boys supposed to think?.... I digress... Anyway, so GIRLIE things are so much more fun to make (and shop for - but don't get me started). Of course, boy stuff is SO much cheaper. Back to the dance... I was getting ready to take the pictures of all of this and I realized I had all the girls on one side and all the boys on the other.

So, for his class I decorated these CUTE, CUTE, CUTE mailboxes from Target's $1 spot (don't you just love that place!). I never come out of there just spending ONE dollar, though. Anyway, again, someone on Splitcoast found these mailboxes the day AFTER Christmas and so off I went to my Target. I went everyday for 4 days. Finally, they had 5... WHAT? I need more than 5! I called the "other" Target. They saved me 32! WOHOO! Then I had to have a class to use up some of these! Fast forward to today... The mailboxes come in red and white. I somehow ended up with more red than white (after the class) so the girls got the red and the boys got the white. Worked out well even if I didn't plan that.

For the girls mailboxes, I used the adoring hearts wheel on SU! White Wrapping Paper. The SU! Wrapping Paper is very nice. It takes the ink so well. I cut 2.5" strips and scalloped the edges. Then I printed their names in Red on the printer and used my non-SU scallop circle punch. Tied some ribbon and called it done.

The boys mailboxes were a bit more challenging. It's so hard to not do cutesy with 4 year-old boys but I tried. I almost did pirate stuff instead of hearts on theirs but that's not very Valentine's Day-ish. So, I used the same wheel in red on SU! Kraft Wrapping Paper. We sold this a year ago before Christmas and mine was still in the shrink wrap (I'm a graduate of the Jenn Balcer School for Hoarders!).
Anyway, I couldn't do the white paper since the mailboxes are white. I think it turned out well. Of course, it's always amazing how much I care about these things and then I have to step back and realize these are 4 year-olds, who could care LESS about the packaging!

Which transitions me (nicely!) to what I put in those "packages"... Notebooks and pens (and some leftover tattoos). Once again, I had those notebooks from last Fall - they were supposed to be part of the kid's Christmas presents but I forgot I already had something for them... (DOH!). Anyway, I covered the girls with a new set (I LOVE IT) coming out in March called Doodle That. For the boys, I used a retired set with an airplane (Going Places, I think) because that's what my son wanted on his. He should have some input, right? :P

I'm pretty happy they're done. I still need to make two for his teachers. But somehow I think those will be easier. Designing for adult ladies seems easier... just stick a flower on it and call it good. :) One more day to get these Valentine's Day things done!

Scallop Punches

So, I've had a bunch of questions about where I got that scallop circle punch that I used on a previous card. Here's the skinny...
  • No, it's not SU!
  • It's called Marvy Giga (the largest size they have) Scalloped Circle Punch (aka clever lever, I think)
  • Found it online at and some other places
  • HOWEVER, currently everywhere is sold out and has been since right after Christmas thanks to Splitcoast. One of the great designers on Splitcoast starting using her punch and all of a sudden there was a mass run on Scalloped Punches (all shapes - circle, oval, square) in all sizes (Giga, Mega, etc.)
  • The manufacturer is currently working on making more.
  • I ordered the circle and oval BEFORE Christmas and I'm still waiting for the Oval. :(
  • Rumor has it that Marvy was going to discontinue these but then Splitcoast got a hold of them.... and well, here we are.
  • I have seen the scalloped square at Michael's but it's their (Marvy's) old style.
  • The regular price for the Giga (2 3/4" to 3") is about $20. Joann' usually has some sort of coupon.
That's the skinny... Good luck in your quest for one or two, or more. :) Oh, by the way, they are HUGE and take up a lot of storage space. One more thing... they are heavy too, especially if you drop them on your toe :(

Mom's Valentine's Day Surprise

It's two days until Valentine's Day and yesterday I decided to make my mother a present. My upline, Jenn, sent me these fabulous coasters to make stuff with. I think I love them. They are so easy to decorate. I'll have to have a class with them sometime soon!

Well, I ended up making two frames (one of each boy) and they have little hinges that let them sit on her desk. I didn't embellish them as much as I wanted to because I had to get them in the mail today! (Yes, I'm brilliant, I know... wait until the last minute to start a project! DOH!) But they are very easy to do!

My baby had his first haircut (I did it myself btw!) yesterday so I took before and after pictures. My mom lives nearby so she does see the boys pretty often. I just wanted to send her something so she could get some fun mail. That's that new punch that makes a file folder tab thingy on there. It's available in the SU! Spring Mini coming up in March.

Anyway, I love the coasters and the frames. (I think I said that already....). Anyway, wanna make some? Look for a class coming soon... we're going to make boxes, too... and other stuff... oooh..

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Email subscriptions

Ah, the engineer in me still lives. She's buried pretty far down in there but she's still there. I poked around last night and this morning trying to figure out how one could subscribe to blogs. My thought was there must be something out there that allows for automatic email updates every time a new post is posted. Or something like that. Certainly, someone else there in our blogging world has done this before. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I'm so behind on the whole blogging thing. But at least I'm trying to catch up, right? So, supposedly, I now have a way for you to get updates directly to your inbox without having to come to this webpage. All you have to do is enter your email address in that box there on the right side of this page. There will some confirmation steps (to prevent hackers from getting your email address, etc.). There will also be an email sent you to that you have to click on to finish the confirmation. Then you're set. It's really not that hard: 2 steps... I hope you do subscribe and come on my adventure with me.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Hostess club tonight

Tonight is my monthly hostess club group. Great group of ladies. We always laugh a bunch at these. Anyway, since it's in less than 2 hours from now, I figure I'll post what we're doing tonight. Maybe it will ruin the surprise but maybe those girls won't log on here right now ;).

The first card is called a floating card. I really like these cards. They are so different that the normal ones. Basically, the base of the card is acetate. That's my wood table you see through the card. This card uses Mixed Bouquet and you guessed it... Small Sayings. I love that set!

Okay, well now it's after stamp club so I guess the surprise is not ruined... ha!

The second card shows the technique of using Heat and Stick powder. See previous posts for my many creations using H&S. But tonight's card was a complete CASE from mytime on SCS (mytime's card). My card uses Loving Hearts, Love Matters, and So Very SAB set.

The last card shows how to color those cute chipboard flowers (any chipboard really) that SU! has. They sure do add a dimension to the card. SU! has them in 2 varieties - lowercase alpha and shapes. This flower is from the shapes set. It also uses the rose red stitched ribbon from those ribbon originals and also the twill ribbon. Lots of textures going on here....

Well, that's it for tonight's class. I really need to work on Valentine's Day stuff tomorrow! Really... Seriously...

Thursday, February 8, 2007

What I did last night...

was stay up WAY TO LATE. Shame on me. Today is going to be rough. Well, at least I was having fun.... stamping, of course. I'm seriously addicted to this stuff and think I've found my passion in life. I love to create stuff. I don't think I'm so good at it, meaning I copy a lot more than I do create from scratch. But it's still fun and for me, very relaxing.

Well, I worked on some things I didn't need to be working on. My stamping to do list is SO long but yet I worked on stuff that isn't even on the list. Oh well....

First up, I finished a little gift for a friend's birthday. I got these frames from the $1 spot at Target. They came 3 to a package (for a $1! WOW!). They are 4x4 and cute. Anyway, here it is...

Next, I needed a baby card (and I usually have these already made but my stash was depleted! Go figure!) for one of my son's preschool friends. His friend has a new baby brother. Nothing spectacular about this card but I am in love with the Small Sayings set from the winter mini. You gotta get them (before the 28th of Feb!). They are cute words and just the right size... And I used my new (yes, non-SU!) polka-dot sheer organdy ribbon. Oooh, it's so cute (the ribbon, I mean!).

Next, I started to make a few cards of the thinking of you variety but I ended up playing that color/layout challenge again from SCS. WHAT? Silly me...

I did 2 cards using the same colors and layout just different stamps... the first is a Sympathy Card (did you know that SU! has Vanilla Embossing Powder?) I just got it and I like the softer look.

The other is a masculine card using Classic Pickups and of course, Small Sayings.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Bumpity bump bump bump...

So, we're in month two of bumper cards. We lost a couple of people from January - just too busy, I suppose but we GAINED a bunch more! I really am liking it... of course, I'm not part of the list that you guys are playing. But it does make me get my stuff out and stamp. I love that. It's such a good feeling to use all this stuff .... isn't it? Well, if you're doing bumper cards this month, I'd love for you to leave a comment here. You don't have to have an account or sign up or anything, just click on the comment button right below this post and leave a comment. Tell me about your bumper card... are you having fun? Did you get one yet? It is still early in this very short month! I have been getting some handmade cards in the mail lately... some thank yous and my upline, Jenn, sends me one every now and then. They all make me smile. It's so fun... you should join us in March.

I've challenged myself to send one card to each bumper card person. This is why I'm not on the list. So, for this month, I completely CASEd a card from Cindy Lyles (aka starlitstudio). She sent me a close to cocoa card last week and I loved it. I changed the words a bit and the colors and the size but it's still her creation. Thanks Cindy! I wanted to send a 4x4 square card. Square cards cost more money to send in the mail. I learned that with my 100 5x5 square cards I sent at Christmas. But I like square cards. So, JulieHRR's blog shows a cool trick on using a standard A-2 envelope (the normal handmade card size) for square cards. You can check her blog out on the list on the right. She's way talented and AWESOME. Anyway, that's what I did for my envelopes for these square cards. Okay, here's the card I made. I used Like it a Latte from the Winter Mini. Hope you like it a "latte" :).

Monday, February 5, 2007

No classes... no stamping...

It seems that my theory, or at least what I call a theory, has been proven to be valid. If I don't have any stamping classes, I don't stamp. Last week, I didn't have any classes (shocking, I know!) and I never got to stamp. My husband had to travel for work so I was doing the single parent thing and boy was I tired by the time the boys went to bed. Whew, glad he's home.... now, time to stamp again.

So, I haven't posted for a few days because I've been working feverishly (well, okay, not feverishly but the baby had a fever on Friday and Saturday, does that count?) to figure out one of the techniques for stamp club this week. I've researched and researched (splitcoast, of course) and even made 5 different cards before deciding the last one is the one. I can't show that one, of course, until after stamp club on Friday, but I can show you some of the others.

The technique is using Heat and Stick Powder. I've had this for longer than I've been a demonstrator and I'm just getting around to using it. At first, I didn't think it was worth much but now I think I've found something that I'll keep in my mental favorites folder. So, what is it? Heat and Stick Powder is just that... it's a powder that you put after you've stamped your image in Versamark or Craft Ink, just like embossing powder. Then you heat it (not very long at all... the longer you heat it, the less sticky it becomes). Then you apply whatever you want to stick down.... glitter (OOH all kinds of glitter!), Microbeads, Flock (fuzzy stuff you would put on say a bunny rabbit or a teddy bear to make him have texture), Pearl Ex, etc. It's glue. But it's controlled glue. The 2-way glue stick can be used but the 2-way is NOT controlled. Heat & Stick works great with the stamp-a-ma-jig, too, that way you can put Heat & Stick just on part of your image - not all of it. The Versamarker (what a great price for this tool... I love my Versamarker now!) can also be used and then QUICKLY put the H&S powder on and heat it briefly.

This turquoise card uses the Pretty Princess stamp set. I stamped the cake in black and colored in with the markers. Then I took the Versamarker and went over the pink passion icing. Next, I applied the H&S and very quickly heated it and put the SU! clear microbeads on it. If you smoosh them down, they stick better. Voila! I made a couple very similar to this one.

This card is probably my favorite of the 5 but I didn't choose it for stamp club because it's way too detailed and time consuming for a class with a lot of people. But it sure does SPARKLE. I used the H&S to apply microbeads to the purse for a beaded bag! Then I applied H&S all over the place to apply Dazzling Diamonds Glitter (on her sunglasses, present, shopping bag, her blouse, the little fringes on her purse and pants, and her shoes). I LOVE this card!

Okay, I've made a bunch more cards since Friday but I can't post them just yet.... some are birthday cards going out this week, some are my bumper cards (and well, I don't want to ruin the surprise!), and then of course, the hostess club cards.

All I can say, is thank goodness I have a class this week. Happy stamping...

Friday, February 2, 2007

Out of my comfort zone...

Today, I made 3 cards for this challenge on SCS. The challenges provide a sketch/layout to follow and color combinations to use.The first one used a color combo. that is not in my comfort zone. Jenn, my up line, loves these colors and always tries to get me to use them. I like the end result. I used the Totally Cool stamp set and the words are from Small Sayings from the Winter Mini. I used heat & stick powder and dazzling diamonds glitter. The colors are Pink Passion, Tempting Turquoise, Apricot Appeal and Whisper White. Do you like it?

The 2nd and 3rd cards are very similar. Exactly similar, in fact. I only changed the stamp sets. I figure if I have to cut the card stock in half anyway for one card, then I may as well make 2 (another one from the other half!). Actually, this is so unlike me because I typically make at least 10 cards (5 sheets of CS). I mean really, what's the point in just cutting one when it's as easy to cut multiple. That way I have a STASH!

So, anyway, the 2nd and 3rd cards had a different layout and uses Elegant Eggplant (okay, so that is my favorite color and very much in my comfort zone!), Old Olive, and Naturals Ivory. I did both as sympathy cards and used Heartfelt Thanks on one and Spring Garden on the other.
Which do you like?