Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Cards I've Made

I'm just about done making Christmas cards and wanted to share a couple of them with you. The first one is extremely clean and simple (CAS) using only one piece of cardstock embossed using my Cuttlebug, a bow and a brad and some tape to adhere it to the front of the folded cardstock. The second got a little more involved and took much more time to punch all those little branches and get them lined up, but I love the way it turned out. The last one is super fun because it's in three parts. I got the instructions for it on Julie Davison's site and found all kinds of tutorials that I want to go back and try. The snowman stamps and the sentiment are from Stampin Up. What really makes this card special is the custom die that I used for the outer circles. It's called Embroidery Anglaise Circle and can be purchased here by itself or with matching stamps. Cindy at StampingScrapping has some awesome custom-designed matching stamps and dies and also has a TON of other products in her store. The Merry Christmas sentiment on the white card with the branches is from the matching set of stamps. She even gives discounts to subscribers of her Yahoo group. Disclaimer:  I am not getting any compensation for telling you about her store, I just personally LOVE it and wanted to share the love! Ok, back to the cards.... enjoy!

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

A Holiday "Cheer-io" Giveaway

Please hop over to Danica's Daily to enter her fun giveaway in partnership with cheerios. As you know, my dad and I are both army veterans, so this means a lot to me.
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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I think God is trying to tell me something...

If you're new to my blog and haven't seen last year's slide show about my father, a 21 year veteran of the U.S. Army, please take some time after reading this to view it on this post. Something I just now noticed while watching it for the umpteenth time is that in the picture of him peeking his head up over the top of the dining room table if you look directly over the top of his head you'll see a picture of me from my Army days. Yes, I also served in the Army as a WAC and was honored to serve on the same base with him in Germany in the early 70's!

Ok, so what's all this got to do with God and craft rooms and scrapbooking? Well, on Veteran's Day in 1991 the condo that I lived in with my young daughter blew up from a gas explosion, killing the neighbor boy and severely burning his older brother. My daughter and I escaped the burning building from the 3rd floor apartment and lost almost all of our belongings. My scrapbook from those Army days was tucked in the back of a huge walk-in closet situated right next to my waterbed and against an outside wall not exposed to the heat. Let me show you what my albums look like today. Now friends, when I say scrapbook please keep in mind that we're not talking about the elaborate one-picture-per-page full of embellishments that we do these days. We're talking plain cover, black pages full of pictures with some writing (who ever heard of journaling back then? Wasn't that for teenagers with diaries locked up and tucked under the mattress?) The first picture shows where the albums landed during recovery efforts and where they have remained to this day. Yes I've had them out a couple of times, but I guess the memories of that day have been too painful to want to actually DO anything with these albums. One I didn't photograph is from my year in California when I went out to attend LIFE Bible College, so it needs a whole album to itself.

The next two show the front my two albums from right before and during my 3 years in the army.

Miraculously none of the pictures appear to be damaged even after 20 years in that bag! *knocking on wood here at my desk!* The page edges are singed like the covers, but the pictures are fine as you'll see in the next picture. You'll be able to see a pic of me and my dad (I'm the one with the dark shorts on) with my Drill Sergeant. Yes I even got my hair cut and frosted just like her! Oh and pay no attention to those girls fooling around in the bottom picture. Things got a little wild and crazy around the barracks every now and then.

OK, moving on.... why do I bring up the past like this??? Well today I found out that I won a prize from a great gal over at Above Rubies Studio. It was graciously donated by a new company called Uniformed Scrapbooks of America and I get my choice of albums. Well for me it's a no-brainer and that link takes you to my choice.... ARMY!!! They'll even custom embroider the name and insignia rank. Since my dad and I had the same last name during that time period it will be just perfect. I've asked if they can do two insignias, one for each of our ranks, but even if they can just to one I'll be happy. What an awesome gentle reminder from God that it's high time I got busy re-doing these precious memories!!! My niece has recently uncovered a few boxes of Dad's military memorabilia that I've already laid claim to for a memory album. Hmmm, looks like I might need more than one, huh? lol! I also have every intention to do an oral history with him and now that they have all these recordable books it seems the time is right for that too. Oh so much to do with sooooo little time!

While you're over at Megan's studio you MUST watch her videos and find out about her new exciting product that I can't wait to try out! She does some awesome tutorials that you'll want to subscribe to on YouTube so you won't miss any of them.

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Oriental Trading Post Haul

Ok Ya'll, please don't laugh, but I finally made a video to share a haul with you. I discovered that my daughter has the best place ever for making videos, so might just have to spend more time granddogsitting in the future. Or I guess I could just go when she's there to keep the dogs out of the room. Anyway, here's a video showing all the cool stuff I got from Oriental Trading Post.

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Winner Winner Come for Dinner!

Well it might be kind of far to drive for dinner, but it'd be fun anyway! The lucky winner of my blog candy for gratitude is........ *drum roll please...*.......................................

Lisa T said...
Wow, lucky you! How nice of you to share. :) I added your blog candy to my side bar. (I'm on the SCAL list with you.)
October 2, 2011 8:17 PM 

Lisa I will send you email. Please send me your full name and mailing address so I can get your package sent out. Congratulations!!!
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Friday, October 28, 2011

How to turn a big screen tv in to a desk protector

Being the perpetual upcycler that I am when it came time to dispose of our broken 52 inch tv I absolutely could NOT throw away all the parts. Like that pop-off lens cover thingy in the pretty see-through smokey brown color. What could I do with it? Well, combine one huge desk that desperately needed protection from a messy crafter with one equally huge hard plastic surface and VOILA! I have to warn you that unlike my idol Brittany over at Pretty Handy Girl I don't have the best tools or knowledge of which drill bits to use on plastic OR the excellent camera skills that she has, so if it's REAL tool skills you're looking for please hop over there because she's started an awesome series of video tuts for folks like me who aren't afraid to use a tool, just lack a tad bit of knowledge and need her expertise. So, now on with the sheee-ooooohhhh.....

My go-to tool is the Dremel. Mainly because it's the only one I can reach and it doesn't weigh a ton. Plus I bought a ton (no kidding, well not a ton in weight, more like a gazillion) bits and attachments for it that haven't seen the light of day since being slipped in to the fancy 3-foot tall rolling tool box I bought for it. First I laid the plastic on the desk (please note the completely empty desk because you will NEVER see it this way again!). 

Then I traced a line where the edge of the desk was so I'd know where to cut it.
 My handy Dremel with the tile-cutting attachment and the bit that said it was for plastic.
 After cutting only about 3 inches I brought in the reinforcements, ear plugs and the cotton swab to clean my ears before inserting the plugs. For someone with severe tinnitus you'd think I'd know better than to expose my ears to the extremely high-pitched whining the tool made while cutting the plastic!
 Here's what the edge looked like after cutting. The plastic actually melted to the drill bit. Sorry no pic of that.
 Ah, note to self, NEVER cut all the way to the end of something without supporting the piece about to drop off or you'll have a mess!
 Another view of the rough edge. Actually, come to think of it this picture should come before the one up there with the white edge. That other picture shows what it looked like after I sanded the edge.
 The metal sanding bit I used on the edge. Now go back up to the other picture to see what it looked like.
 Since the edge was still a little sharp I dug out my handy-dandy rubber shelf liner, cut strips and laid under the plastic. Go figure, had to protect the desk from the desk protector!
The finished product! Ta da! I'll post another pic when I get my stuff put back on the desk, but for tonight I've got two get well cards to make (mom's in the hospital) and you know what that means. Yup, messy desk!

 Oh, if anyone reading this has advice for the right bit to use or method for smoothing the edge please let me know. Thanks!
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Monday, October 24, 2011

Time to get organized!

What do YOU do when you take time off from work? Well if you're like me you work even harder at other things. Whether that means gardening, cooking, sewing, taking kids to doctor appointments, cleaning house, caring for elderly parents, or like me, organizing your craft space; it usually requires a lot of work. I've taken the next two days off to clean up my two rooms dedicated to my crafts. Yes you heard me right, TWO ROOMS!!! AAACK!!! For those of you who are now wallowing in jealousy over the fact that I have two full rooms for my crafts (one for paper, the other for sewing) let me tell you that I'd have more room on my dining room table than in both rooms put together! More space means more STUFF!

On Saturday my daughter and I had a very successful sales event in Lawrence, Kansas. There were a dozen Etsy vendors set up in a room at a downtown restaurant, Pachamamas (with absolutely FAB food that we've promised our husbands we'd taken them to later!) The crowd was awesome and steady throughout the entire day and the other vendors were all so friendly and talented that just meeting them would have been well worth the time.

Anyway.... I've finished doing inventory and now it's time to make a dent in the mess called my craft room. Hopefully I'll be able to spend tomorrow cleaning up my sewing room. I have every intention to finally get both rooms to the point where I can actually walk in, sit down and do some creating, then eventually start creating tutorials. What would you like to learn how to do? Is there a paper craft that you've seen here that you'd like to learn all the steps? Maybe you've seen a finished product somewhere else and just can't figure it out? I used to do training as part of my job and I guess you could say that it's in my blood. There are already soooooo many awesome tutorials out there and I don't want to repeat things that are readily available, so pray tell, what can't you find? Not that I can guarantee I'll be able to figure it out, but it'll give me something to shoot for when this old antique computer gets replaced by a graphics capable one. Oh, please also tell me if you're more of a visual, auditory, textual or hands-on learner. I'm one of those people who needs to do all four: see it, hear it, read it and do it. If you're anything like me you do best when there are written instructions to go along with the video tutorial so you can concentrate on soaking in all the visuals and listening rather than scrambling to write everything down.

Ok, NOW I'd better get out of this room and get to work in that craft room! Hopefully I'll have some success stories and pictures to share later. Oh, OH OH! Don't forget to sign up for my October Blog Candy Gratitude Giveaway that closes at midnight on October 29th!
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Friday, October 14, 2011

Hear Ye Hear Ye Read All About Kansas Handmade Market!

Our upcoming Handmade Market for Kansas Etsy shops was featured today on the front page of We are sooooo excited and hope to see some of you there!

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Halloween Cards upcycled from food boxes

I've been busy lately preparing for our upcoming Handmade Market in Lawrence, Kansas for Etsy artists from Kansas. Would you like to see a few of my Halloween cards? Well you're in luck because I have posted a few pics below beginning with the blob that was supposed to be a spider. Maybe it'll adorn another card as The Blob, ya think? I tried homemade shrinky dink stuff using some plastic cut from something like a salad container and well, it must be the wrong kind of plastic! I ended up just stamping a spider on the plastic and marking over the image with a Sharpee to thicken the lines.

 I like the way this bakers twine spider web looks. I cut tiny slits along the edges of the card to hold the twine in place, then tied the spider on to the center of the web.
 What you can't tell about the pumpkin below and I can't photograph it is that it's painted with glow in the dark paint! Believe me, when I turned out the lights it was really cool looking! Oh yeah, the web on this card is painted on with Epsom Salts and looks awesome, kind of like ice crystals.
 The little bats are stamped on the card using Versamark clear ink. The black dots around the orange circle are done with glitter glue and look great, just hard to photograph.
 The spider and BOO below are done with a puffy black embossing powder that feels grainy.
 Don't you just love the Stampin Up mesh embossing folder? I can't get enough of it!
 Now for those who are just happy it's Fall, here's the perfect card for them. Very simple, yet elegant.
Below I've used a circle to mask off a spot, then sponged orange ink all around it. It really makes the paper cutouts pop, don't you think?

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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Luscious Heavenly Fabric Goodies!

Look what came in today's mail. Oh before I show you let me encourage you to head right over to SuziQu's Threadworks after you're done drooling over the contents of my package. The pictures she takes are much better than mine, plus you can see all her other beauties!

I knew the package was from her because, well, I currently don't have any relatives or friends living in Australia. New Zealand, yes, but the aunt who used to be a missionary for Wycliffe Bible Translators in Australia has long since retired and returned to her roots in Wisconsin. Ok, I digress and I know you're chompin at the bit to see my surprises, so here they are:

So what will I do with this lovely fabric journal? Well for now I'm just going to admire it, pet it and soak up it's yumminess. Then I think I'll let IT tell ME what it wants to become! Maybe something to house some of my favorite fabric swatches. Or how about swatches from clothing my daughter wore growing up? Or pictures printed on fabric and sewn to the pages? Oh there are so many possibilities! I'd love to hear what YOU would do with one of these!

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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Blog Candy for Gratitude! -- CLOSED

If you've been reading my blog you know that in one week's time I was the recipient of four blog prizes. This past week has been an all time high for me, making me feel almost guilty, but mostly grateful and appreciative of the generosity of others. The best way for me to show my gratitude is by paying it forward, so ..... drum roll please.... I've got blog candy!!! Yup, I put together a package of ephemera, vintage ribbon, buttons, vintage wallpaper, handmade embellishments, twine, silk flowers and other fun things that would be great for making mini albums, embellishing scrapbook pages and cards or anything else your imagination desires. This blog candy will run until October 29 with the winner announced on October 30. To be eligible all you need to do is the following:

  1. Become a follower if you aren't already
  2. Leave a comment
  3. Tell someone else about the candy. If you want to post this on your sidebar that would be awesome, but is not a requirement. You can just mention how you are spreading the word (twitter, facebook, blog post, etc.) in your comments.
Oh and please leave me a way to get in touch with you. Here's a picture of what I've gathered so far. I will be adding more as the month progresses and if I get over 50 comments I'll start another box. Woohoo, let the fun begin!!!

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Saturday, October 1, 2011

You're not going to believe this!

Ok, truly now, if any of you want to hop right over and rub my hand for good luck I'm home the rest of the weekend! Oh yeah, I WON AGAIN!!!! I got the message that I'd won an awesome Stampin Up stamp set from Holly and The Dog over at  Ink Paper Stamps while checking my mail on my cell phone in the car and let me tell ya, it's a good thing Mr. H was driving or I'd have gone off the road!!! We were on the way home and I promptly instructed him to stop at the next location that sells lottery tickets! Silly me made him come in with me because, well, I honestly don't know the first thing about buying lottery tickets. No really! Here is the lovely set that will be in my grateful hands soon. You've GOT to go give Holly and The Dog a shout out and enjoy her crafts. She's got some great tutorials if you're looking for inspiration!

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Monday, September 26, 2011

I have been truly blessed!

This past week I was notified by not one, not two, but THREE very generous bloggers that I had won something!!! Can you believe it??? No, I couldn't either, in fact I told my husband that this would be a good week to buy a lottery ticket!

So what did I win? Well how about some pictures?
First I was notified by the lovely and extremely talented Suzy over at Suziqu's Threadworks that I had won a gorgeous embellished lace and linen doiley needlebook:


and some luscious yummy trim:


This uber talented artist has all kinds of beautiful fiber art on her blog and also can be found on Etsy as suziqu.
Oh and did I mention that she's from New South Wales, Australia? I happen to have an aunt still living in New  Zealand and had one serving as a missionary in Australia for many, many years. Coincidence? I don't know, maybe just good karma! Actually the karma will come when I put together some blog candy and have the pleasure of giving it away, so stay tuned!

Okay, so still guiddy from Suzy's notification and tired from spending the whole day on Saturday at a scrapbook crop (where I was without a cell phone signal) I get home and find a message from my favorite Stampin Up consultant, Shelly May, that I've won these awesome Christmas cards!

9-23-11 010

OMG I told her that I would decorate my mantle with them because they're so gorgeous! I can't wait to see all the detail that went in to making these because everything Shelly makes is beautiful!

Now last, but not in any way least, is a digital scrapbooking software program from my friend Linda over at LadybugLair. The program is called My Memories and looks like loads of fun! I just downloaded it and hope to play with it as soon as I finish this post. You should hop over to her blog and see some of the things she's already done with it. Oh and you've got to see the funny card she just made for a friend turning 60. So funny!

I am genuinely touched and feel blessed to have received all these gifts. Now, the question is.... what can I give away that even comes close to these things? I've got some ideas bouncing around in my head and will let you know when I decide. Until later.....

Hugs and kisses...

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