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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Bah Humbug!



I made this card for Country View Crafts  December challenge called Bah Humbug.  I was lucky enough to win the October challenge and they asked if I wanted to be the Guest Designer for the month of December.  As soon as I heard the challenge theme, I signed right up! It took us a while to get all the details together with the time difference and all, but we made it work!



To make this card you will need the following materials: 

  • 1 piece of white cardstock
  • 1 piece of black cardstock
  • 1 pieces of red cardstock
  • “When Santa got Stuck in the Chimney” cutfile by Bird
  • 1 piece of cardstock to stick the card onto - optional (I used the light blue to simulate the sky)
  • Pop Dots - optional (if you don't stick the card onto another piece of cardstock you don't need these)
  • Wendy Vecchi’s Bricks Stencil
  • Wendy Vecchi’s Archival ink in Red Geranium
  • Distress Marker in Fired Brick
  • Distress Ink in Walnut Stain
  • Adhesive of your choice

 I put the card together by doing this:

1.  Cut “When Santa got Stuck in the Chimney” cut file card by Bird 3 times:

1 in white cardstock, 1 in black cardstock & 1 in red cardstock (I used my Silhouette CAMEO, but she makes files so practically any machine can cut it or if you need to you can access the file in Adobe (pdf) and hand cut it). Also, now that I know how to put the card together I wouldn’t need to cut out 3 entire designs but I find for my first time it is easier to have all the options available (and as you’ll read, this was a good thing).


2.The black cardstock is what I used for my base card and where I attached all the pieces.  


3. Before I added the chimney base, I stenciled bricks on it using Wendy Vecchi’s   Bricks stencil & Wendy Vecchi’s Archival Ink in Red Geranium.  Because the color was so subtle, I outlined the bricks with Tim Holtz’s Distress Marker in Fired Brick.


4. Then I attached the top of the chimney & the snow that goes on the top.


5. I then edged the chimney with Distress Ink in Walnut Stain to give it some depth.


6. For some reason I could only find one of Santa’s pant legs in red, so I took the red base card and cut his legs off and used those instead. Then I put the snow on the legs in between the pants and his boots.  I think a bit of glitter would look cute to sparkle up the snow (I may do this later). 

While you don't have to add the card to a base I thought since I am going to mail this (in fact, the person should have it by now!) I wanted the card to be a bit sturdier so I attached the cutfile card to the light blue cardstock "background".
Monster inspecting the card without the backing
And the finished card!
I can feel Santa's frustration about being stuck in the chimney - I know I feel that way sometimes when the crunch of the season is upon us! But, if it isn't done by today, then it isn't going to get done in time (that's my theory anyway) and I can always make Happy Winter cards and such for the people I didn't get to.

I wish all of you good health, good cheer and a wonderful holiday and a happy New Year!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ornaments



Since it is my week to post a project for Anything But a Card Challenge Blog and the current challenge is “Anything Goes, with a Holiday Twist” I thought these ornaments I made fit the bill perfectly.  I love to decorate chipboard and book board shapes and I have built up quite a stash of them over the years.  Classic case of “I like these SO much that I don’t want to use them” - I am really bad at that when it comes to paper; but I have employed a trick to make me use it – I just cut it. Even if I cut off a small square, it’s been cut and therefore loses some of its power and allows me to use it. It seems to work with other items, too, but instead of cutting, I open the package.  Whatever mind games I play with myself, it works for me!  So I tore open my drawer of shapes and dug right in, determined I was going to use something I had hoarded. 

I searched in the stash and found a pack of Buck Naked Ornaments from Cosmo Cricket.  When I searched the Cosmo Cricket website, I couldn’t find them, but if you do a search on the internet, various suppliers will come up.  I must have had these things for at least 10 years and had forgotten all about them.  I opened the pack and selected a few of the ornaments and snowflakes to play with. As always, I gessoed the board before I did anything. As usual, I knew I wanted to use them, but had no clue as to what they’d become. 
All gessoed up & ready to party!
I started the Angel Ornament the week I lost my cat Spike and before I knew that I’d had to send Boo to join him at the Rainbow Bridge (for those of you who aren’t familiar with the Rainbow Bridge click HERE, it will take you to a site where the poem is – but be warned – it is emotional! You may want to bookmark it and read it after the Holidays!). I first painted the ornament red but I didn’t like it at all.  It wasn't a deep red like I wanted, more like an orange red –

The red I didn't like

Blue is one of my favorite colors and JacquardProducts makes the most beautiful blue paint called  Lumiere Pearl Blue, so that is what I decided to use, ditch the red and go with the blue. I painted it and set it aside to dry while I searched for an image to put inside the circle.  I found the beautiful angel in my pile, and it is actually wrapping paper that I picked up a while back at the wonderful dollar store.  I cut the image to size.  I also felt that since it was wrapping paper I wanted to protect the image, so I used my Silhouette CAMEO to cut a circle that fit in the ornament out of acetate.  Once my ornament was dry, I glued the image and the acetate down and covered it with the other ornament.  Glued that together and finished off with a piece of gold ribbon.  Now I have a tribute of my kitties (although I do plan on making something else with their pictures and names on it).  I am very happy with how this turned out and I have it hanging in my craft room since we won’t be having a holiday tree.  We had decided that with the kitten (and now 2 new cats - more on them later) having a tree is just too much this year but I will have one next year!
Sorry I didn't take many pictures while making this!
 The snowflake came from the same pack of Cosmo Cricket book board ornaments.  There are few other snowflake shapes, but this one called to me.  Wasn't sure what color I wanted to paint the snowflake, so I dug through my acrylic paints and found paint by Folk Art called Metallic Champagne – I loved champagne when I was younger (hic) and I like the subtle sparkle of this paint, so the red became metallic champagne.  
I often leave works in progress on my tables so I can see them and when an idea strikes I can work on the project, providing I can find it – my room is organized chaos, but my two female cats have decided they like to play with my goodies as much as I do! Because of that, I do have to be careful about what I leave out. I have some gold ribbon that went perfectly with the pale gold so I wove that through the snowflake. 
 Please ignore the fact that the snowflake looks like a darker gold
 I loved it, but it needed some bling. I found a pack of gems by Darice and I chose to put them around the flake and put a larger one in the middle.  Even though the gems have self adhesive on them, I always add a dab of glue just to make sure. I feel like the snowflake came out looking very elegant and it has also has a home in my room, until next year.
 Tada! With help from Manny once again, here is my finished snowflake
 
I hope you enjoyed my ornaments! They were a pleasure to make – I love to play and decorate naked chipboard - and very easy and fun!  
Don't forget to link up your creations to the Anything But a Card blog! It's inspiring to see how everyone interprets the theme and you just might win!

I would also like to enter my creations in the following challenges:
Stampin with the Dragon - Gifts & Ornaments
Crafting for all Seasons - Christmas, Anything but a Card
Rhedd & Rosie Challenges - Use old Stash (the ornaments are at least 10 years old and mentioned in my post)

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Peace On Earth Card



I am sharing another very easy holiday card that sticks to my theme of using non-traditional colors.  I think I only have a few more to share before I fall into the more traditional colors - let's face it, the crunch is on in a BIG way and as I get more stressed out my creativity takes a hike - I don't blame it, I don't like being around me when I am stressed, either (hell, if I could escape me I would).



I found the blue flowered paper in my stash of paper – I think it is from Stampin' Up!- one of their decorative scrapbook papers, but I am not sure - I was SU! demonstrator about 13 years ago, so I am a bit fuzzy about what I have left from them.  I cut out the part that I planned to make the focal of my card.  I stamped Peace on Earth and the frame (both the sentiment & frame are from Tim’s Stamp Line, the set is called “Simple Sayings” and the part number is CMS155) on a piece of scrap white cardstock using Tim Holtz’s Distress Ink in the color of Stormy Sky.  I was thinking of pop dotting the phrase, but I am trying to make my mailing cards a bit simpler considering how high postage costs are so I didn’t.  I matted the paper with the sentiment on it to a base cardstock that I have had for years – I have NO idea where I got it from, and it, too, is about 13 years old, but it resembles a sky with clouds and I thought that it would bring the whole card together, and I think it did!

 
 This is the paper the base card is made from - the color is off as it doesn't look "stormy" in real life. I wanted to share a picture of it with you because you can barely see it on the card and I really enjoy finding funky papers and incorporating them in my work.  As usual, I am sure I had NO idea what I was going to do with this paper but I am so pleased I bought it.

 And here is the finished card.  For those of you that have the "Simple Sayings" set you will know that the frame has a distressed look. I wanted to add that so you didn't think my cutting was so bad - hehehehe - those white peaks and valleys are supposed to be there.


Hope you enjoyed my card and my mini how to!  I feel that this card truly looks peaceful and I hope that the person I give it to finds some peace in their life.

Blessings!

I would also like to enter my card in the following challenges:
Crafts 4 Eternity - Recipe #154, Christmas Chaos, Anything Goes
TotallyPaperCrafts - Challenge #197, Christmas Using Non Traditional Colors
Southern Girls Challenge - Christmas Wishes
CAS on Sunday - Christmas
Use it Tuesday - Christmas (stash is the scrapbook paper & the card base paper)
Clear it Out Challenge - Anything Goes

My craft FAIL that became a craft SAVE!



I love trying new techniques.  And I will happily jump on the next bandwagon of “must have products” be it embossing powders or spray inks as well as the next embellishment craze from eyelets to birdcages.  I admit I have gotten a lot better than when I first started crafting.  Of course, since I was new, I started “behind” everyone else and I had to have everything that “they” were using because if I only had the right tools my art will be just as beautiful as theirs and I, too, will be making book deals, videos and appearances on Carol Duvall (I miss that show SO much!!).  Now I know that the chances of me being able to sustain myself purely on the items I make are slim to none – and I am very OK with that.  And I know that no matter how many cool art toys I have I will never be as good as my favorite artists.  And that’s cool, too, because they will never be as good as me, either. On that note I want to introduce you to a craft fail of mine.  Granted, there are a lot of these fails, but they rarely around long enough for me to photograph it or it is absolutely too horrendous to share. And I thought this fail was funny enough to share, especially since I saved it.

On Unruly PaperArts (one of my very favorite places) they have 2 challenges each month and I have been trying to participate in them (in fact, in 2014 I WILL participate in each of them) and one of last months challenges was to use a stencil in your project.  Easy peasy, especially since I have jumped on that bandwagon wholeheartedly and I have a few (really, just a few!) stencils.  One of the best things about Unruly PaperArts is the columnists – they write up tutorials and such to match the challenges and the first one of the month was The Neat Freak: Sharing her Fav technique using stencils (I have her permission to share this with you).  I could do this! Now, you really need to go read the article (should only take you a few) otherwise, the rest of this fail is not going to make sense.  Go ahead, I’ll wait.

See how nice her stenciling print came out? This is what mine looked like:
(the green spray was already on the paper, I thought it would make a very festive holiday card).
 If you look close you can kinda see the outline of the houses, kinda. But 
remember, this isn't the paper I used to make the card; I used the paper
that I sprayed on - this paper is the failed result of trying to duplicate
the print technique shown on Unruly PaperArts.

OK, so what do we do? How can I salvage this? I thought the houses came out fine so I decided to use them and turned a fail into a win!

This is what I used to make my “winning” card:

  • The Crafters Workshop 6x6 stencil designed by Ronda Palzzari, Home Sweet Home
  • Dylusion’s Ink Spray in Postbox Red
  • Piece of white cardstock that has the actual stencil on it
  • Watercolor paper for the background of the card (the sky)
  • Off white base card
  • Pigma Micron pen in Black, # 01 (or whatever size fits through your stencil)
  • Various glitters & adhesives
  • Ranger Stickles in Rainbow, Diamond, Crystal & Star Dust
  • Distress Paints in Chipped Sapphire, Pickett Fence & Pewter
  • Distress Ink in Black Soot
  • Santa Stamp from Just For Fun
  • Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
  • Craft Sheet
  • Water Spritzer 
After your houses dry, put the stencil back over them and outline them with the Micron pen.  Measure your houses so they fit the card size you are using (I always use A2 size, which is 4 ¼ x 5 ½, unless otherwise specified), I had to cut a house or 2 off but I saved them to use them later. Trim your houses as needed and add the glitter and Stickles to simulate snow.  I used Crystal Stickles on the bottom and Jones Tones glitter on the roof.  Set aside.

Using your craft sheet, dab a few dabs of the Chipped Sapphire & then tap the Black Soot Ink pad near it (I don’t have Black Soot paint, so I am using my ink pad – lovely how all the Distress products work together), spritz it with water and paint it on your watercolor paper (I always make my background paper a bit bigger than I need it because there is going to be a part that I will want to cut off).  The goal here was to make the sky look like night.  Once I was happy with the color, I used some Pewter paint and brushed it over the sky, lightly, to give it a nice bit of sparkle. Once that was dry, trim your background paper to fit your base card, I left a border around mine, but it’s up to you. Next, figure out where you want your Santa to go.  Since the sky was so dark, I took a wee bit of Pickett Fence and made an oval so you’d be able to see Santa better. 

I stamped my Santa with the Jet Black ink and glued my night sky and my houses to the base card.  I had these awesome star stickers so I used a few of those and a moon sticker as well.  Then to add more sparkle I put little random dots of Stickles all around the sky.  The card looks much better in person; you know how hard it is to capture sparkle on a picture.

I am sharing both photos because I think each one shows a different view of the card.  The image on the top shows a lighter version of the card which I think helps you see the different colors I used in the night sky and the image on the bottom is actually closer to what the card looks like in person. 

I hope you enjoyed my "Win" card - I try to use every scrap of my craft supplies and I am proud of myself that I didn't just toss this in the trash (I still have the failed red & green print paper, too!)
                                   
PS: If you'd like to see either of the photos larger, just click on the image.  This works on every photo on my blog (for some reason when I made the photos larger I ended up with a huge space between my text - I am still new at this blogging thing and the only way I could fix that space was make the pictures small)

 





I hope you enjoyed my little card and hopefully you won't look at your fails so harshly - there is always something you can make with your mistakes ~ Have a glorious holiday season!

I would like to enter my card in the following challenges:

One Crazy Stamper -  Winter/Holiday Challenge
The Artistic Stamper - December Challenge Anything Goes
Make My Monday - A Frosty Theme
The Cheerful Stamp Pad - Challenge #75, Signs of Christmas

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Peace Card


Going through my many, many decorative papers, I found this one sheet from BasicGrey called Figaro from the Capella collection.  When I searched for this paper at BasicGrey, it was listed as discontinued which is a shame as the pattern is so pretty.  I saw this paper and decided I wanted to make a holiday card with it as I am trying to stay away from the typical holiday colors.

What I used to make this card:

  • Medium Brown card base
  • Small square of gold cardstock
  • Small square of olive cardstock
  • Layer of Figaro Paper from BasicGrey
  • Embossing Ink
  • Moon Glow 2 Toned Embossing Powder in Twilight Bronze Slate (Lindy’s Gang)
  • Peace stamp from set, manufacturer unknown

First, I stamped my Peace stamp in embossing ink on the olive cardstock and embossed it with the Moon Glow powder.  

                       Here is the Moon Glow Embossing powder in Twilight Bronze
                            Slate. To me, in real life, there is a touch more slate blue 
                                                  than this picture shows.

 Here is a view of the BasicGrey Figaro paper I used.  The paper has some beautiful tones of olive green, light aqua blue and many shades of brown.  Of course, the camera couldn't capture the true richness of the paper.

I trimmed the sentiment and layered it on a small piece of heavy weight gold cardstock.  Then I cut a piece of the Figaro paper to layer onto the medium brown base card.  I adhered the layered sentiment onto the decorative paper and then attached that to the base card.
 
Here is the finished card.  I had to take the picture with a bit of a tilt to it in order to get the embossed sentiment to photograph correctly.
I really like the color combination of the papers and if I had more of the Basic Grey designer paper, I’d make more of these cards.  But, who knows what my stash hides –I may find another piece or two!

Thank you for reading this short tutorial and I hope you enjoyed the card!
Blessings!

I would like to enter my card in the following challenges:

DL.ART - Challenge #123, Christmas 
Inspired By - Challenge #100, Inspired by Image (see blog) 
Our Creative Corner - Challenge - A Very Vintage Christmas
Kaboodle Doodes - Challenge #201 - Non-Traditional Christmas Colors
Flonzcraft - Challenge - Cold & Frosty Colours
BasicGrey Challenges - Challenge #109 - Cold & Frosty

Snowy Noel Card


I try to make different holiday cards rather than make the same one over & over again – I get bored with the repetition.  Granted, there are times when an image or composition just feels so right that I stick with it and I’ll make more than one. I made more than one style of card using this particular image from Penny Black (Snowy Park, stamp # 3231K) and you will be seeing them later. I have had this rubber stamp for years and I don’t know why I don’t use it more often (and looking at the stamp, I don't think it would have to be used as a "Snowy Park", I bet I could use it as a "Spring Park" or "Fall Park". . .well, you get the idea)! The image was stamped on heavy vellum which I colored and then layered a few times.   

To make this card I used:

  • Snowy Park image from Penny Black, #3231K
  • Noel stamp from Penny Black, #3242E
  • Heavy vellum (I think it is called cardstock vellum)
  • Distress Markers in Brushed Corduroy, Pine Needles and Picket Fence
  • Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
  • Moon Glow 2 Toned embossing powder in Twilight Bronze Slate (Lindy’s Stamp Gang)
  • Embossing Ink
  • Heat Tool
  • Shiny Gold photo corners from Xyron (discontinued)
  • 2 different weights and tones of Gold Cardstock
  • White Cardstock
  • Square White Base Card (Square card measures 5 ¼” x 5 ¼”)

I first stamped the Snowy Park on the vellum with the Ranger Archival Jet Black and set it aside to dry.  When I stamped the image, I didn’t know what I was going to do with it so it actually sat to the side for a few days.  But, when stamping on vellum the longer the image has to set the better in my book.  I had also stamped the Noel stamp a few times with embossing ink and embossed with the powder (it is a shame you can’t really tell how beautiful the embossing powder is - to help you see the beauty of the embossing powder, I went to Lindy’s Stamp Gang and this is the image they use on their site – but even that isn’t as gorgeous as this powder is in real life), cut out the ones I felt were good enough to use on my cards and set them aside. 

And since I didn't take any pictures of the Penny Black images before I used them, here they are, direct from the site:
 
 Snowy Park, #3231k

  Noel, #3242E
(click on any of the above pictures and it will link you directly to the site)
I had seen a beautiful coloring on vellum on another blog and that’s when I decided I’d do the same with my image.  I turned the image over and loosely colored in some of the trees and the snow with the Distress Markers; I wasn’t terribly careful as the watercolor-like effect appeals to me. 

Here is a closer picture of the scene
 

 I set the colored image aside to dry while I mapped out the rest of the card.  Since the image was kind of dreary (i.e.: no sparkle) and I have no adhesive that successfully adheres vellum without being able to see it, I went through the many, many photo corners I have and settled on the shiny gold ones from Xyron.  They have been discontinued but if you have your heart set on duplicating the card, exactly as I have made it I am sure you can find some shiny gold photo corners.  I used the corners to anchor the image to the darker of the two gold cardstocks I used in the card.  I think I got the darker gold from Stampin’ Up! years ago but perhaps they still make it.  I also matted the “Noel” on the same darker gold.  Looking at the card I felt it still needed a little bit more something, so I chose a lighter gold, thinner cardstock I had in my stash to mat the image one more time.  For some reason the lighter cardstock ruffled after it dried but I don’t mind.  A happy accident that makes the card look that much more festive! I adhered the matted image and the sentiment on my white square card and I was done.  I think this card is very pretty and I hope you agree.  Thanks for reading my tutorial & visiting my blog ~ blessings!

And forgetting to add the picture of the finished card is what
happens when I try to blog after midnight - SORRY!!
 
I would like to enter my card in the following challenges:
Winter Wonderland - Embossing (the Noel is heat embossed)
Alphabet Challenge Blog - V for Vellum
Rhedd And Rosie Challenge Blog - Use Old Stash (the rubber stamps I used are at least 8 years old)
CraftyHands Challenge Blog – Season’s Greetings/Winter Theme
Left of Center Creative Challenges - LOC or Winter/Holidays (I chose winter & holidays)


Monday, December 9, 2013

Winter Birthday Card (Renee's Card)



I have a close friend who had a birthday December 1.  I always try my hardest to send a birthday card since I know that her birthday often gets rolled into Christmas.  I made this simple birthday card using one of my favorite paper companies Die Cuts with a View (DCWV).  I actually went on a card binge one night and made a bunch with this same paper stack (so you will be seeing more) but this particular card was made for Renee. I love how papers in this stack can be either used for so many seasons – today it looks like a chilly winter card but the beautiful muted colors can really be adapted for most any occasion.

I used the following supplies:

  • Card Base in Off White
  • Section of Sheer white ribbon, 1 ½” wide
  • Birthday Wishes stamp from SU! Sincere Salutations
  • Small piece of white cardstock for sentiment
  • Die Cuts from Spellbinders, Labels 14
  • DCWV Linen Closet Stack
  • Martha Stewart Corner Punch
  • Distress Ink in Weathered Wood
  • Pop Dots

I always stamp my sentiment and then die cut since I can line it up SO much easier that way, especially with all of my “old fashioned” wood mounted stamps.  So I stamped my Happy Birthday in Weathered Wood on white cardstock and then chose the die that fit best of the Labels 14.  I picked a pretty light blue paper with darker blue dots on it, (the dots are almost like enamel) for the second die cut and used pop dots to add the sentiment die cut. 

This is the cardstock I used for the second layer - I could NOT capture the color and the dots, so I chose to focus on the dots - if you look sort of in the middle you can see how they are raised.  The color is truer in the pictures below.



I chose a piece of cardstock with a tan base, but lots of sparkle, from the stack to use as a third and final layer, punched the corners with a MS corner punch (I didn’t label the punches before I tossed the packaging – I do plan on labeling them one of these days).  I then wrapped the ribbon around that third layer, put the card together and I was done! 
Tada! The finished card.  The ribbon looks tan but it really is a sheer white.
I hope you can see how the colors work together.
 
It’s funny; I was never a big fan of packaged papers until I got this particular stack.  The night I went on my card binge I choose some inks that complimented the paper, picked out some of my favorite sentiments from Tim Holtz, Quietfire Design, Wendy Vecchi, Stampin' Up! and various other stamp companies, had all my dies out and I just went wild.  I will be showing you my card binge results after the holidays and I think you will like what I created as much as I do and perhaps you will look at your papers with a different view.

I hope you enjoyed this tiny tutorial! Blessings!

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
Stamping Sensations - (Monthly Challenge for December) Free & Easy

Allsorts Challenge Blog - Week #236 Anything But Christmas 
Die Cut Divas - Nov/Dec Challenge Let's Celebrate!
Crafty Creations Challenges - Challenge 251 Anything Except Christmas
Emergency Crafters - (Monthly Challenge for December) Anything But Christmas

Crafting Musketeers - Challenge #8 Layer it Up!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Another good bye. . .

This has been a truly hellish week.  Due to the aggressiveness of my cat Boo's bone caner tumor (on his jaw) and the fact that my vet was going to be closed December 6 to the 10th, we elected to bring him in to the vet on December 5th, 2013 and have him join his sisters and brothers at the Rainbow Bridge.  Boo was my cat; I love them all, but he was my boy.  I got him from our old vet in Connecticut when he was about 3 months old.  He hid under the bed for 5 days; I used to bring him food to ensure he ate (obviously he snuck out when we were sleeping, but. . .) - he was moody, shy, hated people and other cats but was also one of the most loving cats I have ever had.  He also was born with the last 1 ½” or so of his tail crooked (it was a perfect upside L) – and that was how he got his nick name (he real name was Damian, but he only answered, if you can call what a cat does answer, to Boo) as he was my “Boo Boo Kitty” (Laverne & Shirley anyone??) because of his tail and he was so easily spooked.  Then he was just Boo.  He has a special place in my heart forever & always. . .

Again, I apologize for the bad news - after all this is an art blog - but I feel strongly about giving my furbabies the respect and remembrance they deserve.  Thank you for understanding and I am SO looking forward to the New Year ~ 



Thursday, December 5, 2013

Good Bye to my Spikey Boy



Some of you may recall in May I had to send my cat Baby to the Rainbow Bridge.  She was suffering from heart failure and there was no hope for her.  Unfortunately, her biological brother Spike became ill on Thanksgiving and he went to join his sister, and all his half-siblings, at the Rainbow Bridge on December 3, 2013.  Spike would have been 19 years old this month and I am so grateful I got to have such a wonderful and loving cat for so long.  I was going through a horrible time a few years back; I had some significant health issues and my marriage was ending.  Every time I would get upset, Spike would jump on the bed and just love me to bits.  He wasn't the brightest crayon in the box (once he actually jumped into the shower with me) but he was a very good boy. One of the coolest things he did was when he got to purring really well his whiskers would vibrate! I just wanted to post something so the world would know he was here & I miss him ~ until we meet again Buddy (one of his many nicknames) ~


Mew is our black kitten, she loved Spike

My handsome boy

The 2 siblings as kittens


And on another sad note, my other male cat, Boo, was diagnosed with terminal cancer.  We were hoping he had a bone infection in his jaw, but it is bone cancer.  While I refuse to let my animals suffer just so I could keep them around, I just could not face losing him the same day I lost Spike.  So our wonderful vet & staff (If you live in Colorado and have a cat - this vet is a cat only practice & they run a no-kill shelter- I highly recommend the Cat Care Society) gave us some medicine to keep my Boo Boy happy and pain free and I will be making the call to the vet for an appointment to let him begin his journey to the Rainbow Bridge.  Boo is the most antisocial cat I have ever seen. He is very skittish and generally hates people and other animals; but he loves his Mom and it is my job to see that he has a good quality of life and is in no pain.  I have gotten so much support from my friends & family that I feel truly blessed.  Boo is 16 ½ years old and has brought me such joy.  I wouldn’t trade having any of my furbabies despite this pain.  I will be posting a tribute to Boo as well when the time comes.

Thank you for reading my blog and I know I will be back in full swing in the New Year – I appreciate all of you hanging in there with me while I deal with these curve balls that life has thrown me.  Back to the regularly scheduled program in just a bit.

Blessings to you & yours. . .

Monday, December 2, 2013

Some exctiting news!!



The last few days have been SO exciting for me!

First, I was chosen to be a part of a wonderful Design Team at Globecraft & Piccolo! I am SO excited to be a part of this team as some of my favorite artists are my teamies! 

Globecraft & Piccolo has some amazing products to play with and I can’t wait to start showing you all the cool stuff you can do with them! I am enormously grateful to be given this chance.

Then, today I got a comment on my Thanksgiving Card that The Kraft Journal has chosen my card to be Featured on Friday!! From my calculations, the card (and this blog!) will be featured on Friday, December 13, 2013 – yup, Friday the 13th, which is a lucky day for me & is now even luckier!  
  
Thank you to all my followers, fellow bloggers, friends and teamies for helping me with my creations and this blog.  When I started in June of this year I never imagined that I’d have such a fantastic time sharing with all of you and that I’d be blessed with the opportunities that have come about.  I am sincerely grateful for all your support <3

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving Card



I recently got the entire set of Tim Holtz’s Distress Markers from my good friend Janine who runs Alleystamp. I am a big comparison shopper and I do tons of research before I make a large purchase and her prices are fantastic, but it is her superior customer service that always brings me back to Alleystamp again & again. And if she doesn’t have exactly what you want she will get it for you and it doesn’t take weeks and weeks for you to get your stuff (and if for some reason it is going to take a while, Janine lets you decide what you’d like to do).  Anyway, I am in LOVE with these markers and have been playing with them like crazy.

One of the most recent cards I made using them is a Thanksgiving card for my Mom.  Since we landed in Colorado we have an interesting Thanksgiving dinner - we always get a few Papa Murphy’s pizzas the day before and feast on fresh baked pizza for our Thanksgiving meal!  Mom doesn’t have to cook at all (well, the oven does), the clean-up is super easy and everyone likes what there is to eat!  Talk about a win/win situation!  Since we cook the pizza at Mom’s, it is only polite to bring her something and, along with the pizza, this card will fit the bill. My Mom is legally blind due to glaucoma and luckily does have some limited sight left so she does best with cards that are clean and simple.  This is how I made her Happy Thanksgiving card:

To make the card you’ll need:

  • Card base of kraft cardstock
  • Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
  • Wendy Vecchi’s Archival Ink in Orange Blossom
  • Watercolor paper
  • Twine bow (I handmade a bunch of these a while ago out of some twine I saved from when I bought my Dollar Tree Skeletons)
  • Pumpkin from Tim Holtz Mini Blueprints 5 set, CMS170
  • Nellie’s Multi Frame, MFD010
  • Happy Thanksgiving stamp from a very old Hero Arts set (the set has four seasonal greetings in it)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Markers in Spiced Marmalade, Ripe Persimmon, Brushed Corduroy, Mustard Seed, Pumice Stone and Mowed Lawn
  • Watercolor Brush (I didn't have Tim Holtz's brush yet so I used an old dried out blender pen from Stampin' Up! - I just dipped it in the water for a smidge and colored)

First, I stamped the pumpkin with the Jet Black ink on the watercolor paper.  Then I outlined the pumpkin with the Distress Markers in the pumpkin colors (I’m sorry, I didn’t write down the exact order of when I used each color) and watercolor brushed them.  I colored the stem and the leaf with the Brushed Corduroy and the little stem squiggle with Mowed Lawn. Watercolor brush them as well.  Then I took the Pumice Stone and outlined the side of the pumpkin that has the leaf for a bit of dimension (I learned this trick from one of the many YouTube video’s I watched on using the Distress Markers – if you have these and are just using them to color I highly recommend watching some videos – you will be AMAZED at what these babies can do & how they coordinate with all the Distress Products – OK Ranger, how about making some Distress Markers to match Wendy’s colors?) I did not watercolor the Pumice Stone as I was afraid I'd ruin the whole pumpkin. As my pumpkin was drying I took my Happy Thanksgiving stamp and stamped it using Wendy Vecchi’s Orange Blossom, cut it out, edged it with the same ink and pop-dotted it to the inside of the card.  Then I took my pumpkin, found the Nellie die that fit it best and die cut it.  After I glued it to my card front, the finishing touch was attaching my twine bow.  The card was quick, fun and I think it looks very seasonal (even though we just had our first snow yesterday) and I know my Mom will love it.
The outside of the card
And the inside - the picture does NOT do the color justice 


I also apologize about how crooked it is - I had already filled out the card & sealed it in the envelope when I sat down to work on the pictures or I would have taken another.  Live & learn!

Here’s hoping you & yours have a fabulous holiday, be safe and blessings to you all!

I would like to enter my Thanksgiving card in the following challenges:
The Kraft Journal - So Thankful
Twisted Tuesday Challenge - Fall/Autumn, Thankful 
Use it Tuesday - Anything Goes (I have had the Happy Thanksgiving stamp in my stash for at least 10 years and this is the first time I have used it)
Craft-Dee BowZ - Anything with a Handmade Bow
Cuttlebug Mania - Thank You for Thanksgiving
LEJ Designs - Buttons, Bows or Beads 
Crafty Cardmakers - CAS