Feb 28, 2008

Good News Bad News

Well, I haven't been able to post in a few days- after the weekend in Birmingham, Amadeus has been sick with a sore throat, high fever, chills, etc. tested for strep and at least it's not that!! Hopefully its not the flu, which has been making the rounds. Anyway, between taking care of him and work, I've not had much time to do anything else.

On a positive note, Andrea's test results for leukemia came back negative (Yeah- that is a relief) but we still don't know what is causing the rapid weight loss, etc. so back for more tests soon.

Also, thanks to all who have been keeping my dad in their thoughts and prayers- it looks like the experimental treatment has really started to work- the gangrene on his foot is beginning to reverse itself. We are still "holding our breath" but things are looking much better than they did over the holidays.

Hopefully, I'll get some of my new projects posted soon.

Feb 24, 2008

Back Home- more stamping tomorrow

We're back home from AL- here's a picture of my "tennis hobo" waiting outside the hotel for our ride to the matches. It was a great weekend for Ama and a real confidence booster- he won every singles match he played and tied in Mixed doubles today. The other team ended up bringing in some high school players in an attempt to try and stop Ama's winning streak- it didn't work LOL- he won his first match 6-2 and his second match 13-0 (these were timed matches and not the traditional best 2 out of 3). Can you tell I'm a proud mama!

More from the Mail Bag

A few more goodies from the mailbag today. These are more cards that I received from the SCS new catty swap.

The pictures aren't that great, I apologize but I really like the use of color and placement on each of them. All sets are from the new Spring/Summer Collection. You can view the whole collection at my website.

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990-2008

I'm writing this from our hotel in less than balmy Birmingham, AL. We're here for a 2 day tennis match-up between my son's CTC group from Nashville, TN and the Birmingham players- it's sort of an end of the training year opportunity. When we left home yesterday it was in the 20's and frost was everywhere- the weather was forecast to be in the 60's here (Ha! ha!) so that's what everyone packed for- when we arrived temps stayed in the high 30's low 40s- I'll post a picture tonight of the kids. Thank goodness for the self-heating hot cocoa I found at Wal-Mart (smiile).

More stamping when I get home tonight!

Feb 22, 2008

Great Mail Day and a Great Massage :)

It was a great Mail day today with my cards from the SCS New Catty card swap arriving. This was a great swap and a fun way to get some new ideas. I've decided, I simply have to get the Embrace Life set. Now, those of you who know me well, know I'm not a flower kind of gal, but hey....

Anyway, here are a few of the cards I received, I'll post some more over the weekend.

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990-2008

I also wanted to mention to any of you who live in the Gallatin/Hendersonville/North Nashville TN area- I have the best massage therapist in the world! If you ever have a real problem spot (my left side of my neck is the big trouble area), he does the best deep tissue healing massage. My neck was so bad that my regular doctor prescribed 4 therapeutic massages and wow has it made a difference. So, if you need a recommendation, ask for Darin at Massage Envy

Feb 21, 2008

Cute Baby Card

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990-2008

Okay, it must be the cold and the cold meds- I also posted this to my work blog- I hope too many people didn't catch it.

Anyway, this card is a total CASE from LauraLynns card on SCS. I've included a link to a card and to the template.

The card is made from 1/2 sheet of CS cut vertically. The fold for the card is at the shoulders and the bottom is decorated with brads for onesie snaps. The middle embellishment is from the So Many Scallops SAB set. I hope you enjoy!

And the Winner(s) are...

Yes, that's right- since I'm late in posting the Blog Candy winner (I accidentally posted this to the work blog - big oops!! since I'm one of the contributors on that site), I've drawn 2 names! The first name is Cathy M who will receive the "full" blog candy package. The second name is Annelies who will receive 6 yards of assorted ribbon.

Please email me with your mailing address so I can get your prizes to you :)

Just to be fair to all, I numbered each entry and used the Random Number generator to pick the winners!

Thanks again for visiting my blog and playing!! Check back in early March for my next blog candy!

Feb 19, 2008

Black and White and Spirelli...

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990- 2008

I have been looking for new ideas to "spice" up my classes and I also wanted fun and simple techniques that won't overwhelm someone just getting started. I think that Spirelli fits the bill. Do you remember playing with a Spirograph as a child? If so, you are already familiar with the Spirelli concept. Basically, you create a pattern by wrapping thread around a punched out image. The closer the thread is wrapped, the wider the center opening is. For the piece I used on this card, I punched a scrap of Real Red CS with our Scallop punch and then used the (now discontinued) silver cording to create the pattern. Using a piece of tape (or a glue dot), I taped the starting piece of cord to the back of the punched cs. Then I came up over the top counted five valleys (the little dips between scallops) wound back and then over, always working clockwise.

After the first try or two, it actually went quite quickly. The biggest challenge was keeping Breezy (the silly orange tabby) from helping!

The finished card uses Basic Black, Whisper White and Real Red CS, the Baroque Motifs set and the scallop punch. Simple, elegant, and multi-purpose.

Feb 18, 2008

Faux Silk

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990-2008

I think I've just found my new favorite technique! At least for this week LOL! I was prepping for my Stamp a Stack this week and new that I had a good mix of experienced stampers and newbies attending so I wanted to show a simple technique that had a lot of "WOW" to it. I stumbled across the tutorial for Faux Silk over at SCS and decided I couldn't go wrong.

For this card, I used Wild Wasabi cs for the base and then layered my tissue paper piece on top of a Purely Pomegranate. I finished it off with some double-stitched Purely Pomegranate ribbon I had in my ribbon drawer. I stamped the image, From the Garden in Bravo Burgundy for a slightly lighter shade.

I'm pleased with it.

Feb 17, 2008

Blog Candy Time

Help me spread the word about my blog! It's Blog Candy Time and this time, you'll really enjoy the prize.

I'll draw one name from everyone who leaves a comment to this post between today and Wed.

The winner will received:

3 yards assorted organdy ribbon
1 container of mini beads (brightly colors)
2 yards assorted grosgrain
and an extra suprise!!

Please spread the word to your ribbon loving friends, too!!

Fun with a Good Egg

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1990-2008

I just love this set, A Good Egg, from the Spring/Summer collection. This is based on a card I saw on Splitcoast, but I stuck with all SU supplies. If you'd like to create it for yourself, here's what I used:

  • Barely Banana and Certainly Celery CS for the background and grass. Whisper White for everything else
  • Images were colored using the Brush end of the Basic Black marker and then stamped and colored using assorted Stamping Write markers
  • Sunglasses are from a retired set
We made this at Stamp a Stack today. If you'd like to join in the fun next month, mark your calendar for March 16!

Feb 16, 2008

It's All In the Name

What Mary Means

You are confident, self assured, and capable. You are not easily intimidated.

You master any and all skills easily. You don't have to work hard for what you want.

You make your life out to be exactly how you want it. And you'll knock down anyone who gets in your way!

You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection.

You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive.

You have the classic "Type A" personality.

You are wild, crazy, and a huge rebel. You're always up to something.

You have a ton of energy, and most people can't handle you. You're very intense.

You definitely are a handful, and you're likely to get in trouble. But your kind of trouble is a lot of fun.

You are a free spirit, and you resent anyone who tries to fence you in.

You are unpredictable, adventurous, and always a little surprising.

You may miss out by not settling down, but you're too busy having fun to care.

Hmmm, does this sound like anyone you know??

Mail Call

I thought I'd share some of the great cards and postcards I've received in the last few weeks. Here are just a few of the wonderful Valentine's postcards from the TennesseeStampers postcard swap. I'll post more later this week.

This is another ATC from the Alice in Wonderland swap that I participated in on TennesseeStampers:

And last, but certainly not least, is this week's Monday Mailer from Trina. Monday Mailers are one of the many swaps offered on the SUStars group. I love the pink and white!

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

Feb 15, 2008

Shaving Cream Anyone?

I signed up for a technique swap on the Tennessee Stampers group and chose the Shaving Cream Technique. This is one of my all time favorite techniques, especially when I'm a little stressed and need some good "clean" stamping fun.

If you'd like to try this technique, here's what you need:

  • Shaving cream (the less expensive the better), unscented, without any emollients. I've found that Barabasol in the red can works best
  • Re-inkers (I used Stampin' Up, but any dye based re-inker will work)
  • Glossy photo paper (you can use regular CS but it gets even messier)
  • Pie tins
  • Something to scrape with (I used my stoneware scrapper from Pampered Chef)

Now for the fun part. Follow these simple steps. I suggest having lots of paper towels around, too. It's best to mass produce this otherwise, you waste supplies and each page you make is very unique. I used my Pampered Chef baking racks to dry the paper on.

Here are the steps:

  • Spray a pile of shaving cream into the pie plate
  • Add drops from the re-inkers. I usually limit to 3 complementary colors. For this sample, I used Barely Banana, Bashful Blue and Gable Green.
  • Use a chopstick or knife to swirl the ink through the shaving cream. Be careful not to blend too much
  • Take your first piece of paper and smoosh it into the shaving cream mixture
  • Scrape the shaving cream off the paper
  • Take a paper towel to remove any extra shaving cream
  • Place on rack to dry
Here's the finished product. Once it dries (I usually let mine dry overnight) you can stamp on it, use it for a background, create a layout and more.

Come join us tomorrow (Sunday) for some stamping fun. There's still room for you.

Feb 13, 2008

Which Way is UP?

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

Things in Tennessee have been pretty interesting weather wise-- last week it was in the 70s with tornado's that tore through the state, today most of the county schools in our area (Middle Tennessee) are closed due to snow and ice. On top of that, lots and lots of kids are sick with a few different viruses (we're still recuperating from a stomach bug). I'm hoping that things will get back to normal soon and I can get back to stamping and posting on a daily basis.

However, here's a great card I received from my January COTM partner. I have also been working on several new cards for a class on Sunday and will be posting a few of those soon (don't want to share all of them though- what fun will my class have then?)

Stay warm, dry and healthy!

Feb 10, 2008

Brr- it's cold again!

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

Love this little gift card I received from my SUDSOL Card swap partner. With this crazy weather, too, the penguin fits right in and of course, next to dragons, penguins are my second favorite "creature" to collect.

I really like the choice of colors. The gift card holder is constructed so the gift card is invisible but you pull the ribbon and out pops a surprise!

Speaking of ribbon- there's still time to join the fun in the Spring card front swap. Just make four cardfronts with a spring theme that use ribbon somewhere on them. Send them to me and I'll send you four different card fronts back. Full details in the I Feel a Swap in the Air post!

Feb 8, 2008

Searching for Stickers

Hey Everyone,

This was shared with me on the Tennessee Stampers list, straight from Lisa Bearson's Blog.

Stickers for Brian

Brian is a young man with Asperger's Syndrome who uses his own money to put stickers in the kids meal bags at the Subway where he works. Brian also creates sticker art. The full story is on the blog and I think this is an excellent idea. My stickers will be in the mail this weekend.

Feb 7, 2008

More Happy Hearts

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

It was a great mail day yesterday and the day before, I'm working on getting those images uploaded. I wanted to share this one from my Feb. Monday Mailer partner Trina. This card is actually a two part card- one is a faux enelope with the cutest tabbed insert. The card was made with the Happy Heart day set, scallop punch and tab punch. The picture doesn't do the elephant justice- it just sparkles!!

I've included a link to a great site that has many different envelope templates available for your personal use. Have fun!

Feb 6, 2008


All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

I received these great SAB swap card from my online staming friend Shari Dudek. I just love the scallop punch and the new scallop set gives you so many more design opportunities. The flower stems use scraps of paper (who else has those laying around) and just a small piece of ribbon to tie the whole theme together. Speaking of ribbon, if you are a ribbon addict or just want to expand your horizons, leave a comment or send me an email and I'll send you more information about the awesome Ribbon Bundle special that I am offering this month.

All Images Copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008

Give me your tired, your scared...

...your friends that live in apartments. Taking a short break this morning to just post an update on life in Sumner county. Last night, Tennessee got hit but another string of tornado's. Memories of the tornado that destroyed my car, my work, and my town two years ago were flashing through my head as I watched the news and made sure that we were as prepared as we could be. One of the features of our house that I really like is the "cinder block" closet in my daughter's room and our "secret" room in the basement (aka the Stamp room) both of these are interior rooms in the basement and about the best place to go in case of a tornado.

Anyway, our emergency preparedness kit consisted of a 6 pack of bottled water, chocolate bars, cookies, pop-tarts, my sons' tennis bag (that's where the first aid kit is!), my digital camera and some flashlights, candles and matches (hmmm- maybe I ought to be a little more prepared). Anyway, having learned my lesson a few years ago, when weatherbug said a tornado is coming your way, like most people I didn't really pay attention- I should have and the message should have been, A tornado is coming to get you NOW! we watched the news and when they said Hendersonville, 9:49 p.m. we were locked in the closet ready to go (3 people and 4 cats- just imagine!). Called my sister about 10 minutes later and we got the all clear.

Later on, my daughter had most of her friends who live in apartments come over to spend the night (2 more storms were projected). We took turns watching the news- my last thoughts were about 1:30 a.m. when I finally drifted off to sleep to news of the fire in Macon County.

We're safe and I will keep you updated.

Feb 5, 2008

Great Card from Lori Davis

All Images Copyright SU 1998-2008

Here is the most recent card that I received from Lori Davis as part of the SUStars Monday Mailer program. Monday Mailers is a great one on one swap and is something that any stamper can do just to brighten someone's day. Just send a card to someone every Monday to brighten their week.

I love the colors of this card and I'm so glad I bought the Scalloped Punch- I've gone punch crazy with it!

Feb 4, 2008

I feel a SWAP in the air :)

It's been awhile since I hosted a swap and I've had a few requests so here's my next swap for you.

Theme: Spring time
Create 4 card fronts with a spring time theme. Preferred all SU items (if you have them, but don't let that stop you from playing!)

Swap Twist- use ribbon or fiber as part of your card

At least 2 layers
Do your best work- be creative- embellishments welcome : )

Sign up by Feb. 14
Cards postmarked by Feb. 26
Include a SASE - cards returned back to you by March 1

Sign up for the swap by leaving a comment or emailing me- please tell your friends

Special bonus- all participants will receive a special Thank You gift from me :)

My First ATC

What do you think? I'm pretty pleased for my first try at making an ATC (artist trading card). For those of you who are unfamilar with ATC's (I was until a few weeks ago), these are miniature works of art- there are a few rules to ATC's"

1. The size must be 2.5" x 3.5 " inches
2. They can only be swapped or traded
3. Each ATC is marked, just like a limited edition piece of art- in this case, I created 3 so one lucky person received 1 /3, etc.

This was created for a swap hosted on the TNStampers list. It was called a Same But Different Swap. Each player received an envelope of stamped images and had to create three ATC's by adding their own supplies. We all did an Alice in Wonderland theme. (which happens to be a favorite of mine since I was Tweedledee in high school when we put on a production of Alice).

I colored the queen then added some fun Heart ribbon that I purchased at Wal-mart and some Purple Mulberry paper to give the background a little more regal feel. I also added a sparkling brad to her outfit.

So, what do you think? any suggestions for improving her? Any good recommendations for books or sites to learn more about ATC's- I can see where it would be easy to get hooked!

Feb 3, 2008

February- Reasons to Stamp and Other Fun

Thanks to SU demo Jane Hignite for gathering all this information and posting it to her website. What a fantastic list of things to do every day of the week. Need a reason to stamp? Check this out..

A New Look at a Favorite Template

It's been a busy craft weekend around the house. I'm almost caught up on all of my swap commitments. Today's card is a new take on a favorite template. I've included a link to the pattern for you. It uses a half circle to draw attention to the cards. This particular card was created for a demo only swap on Splitcoast Stampers. The only requirement was to use a new set from the Spring/Summer collection. I chose the level three hostess set, Time Well Spent which is turning out to be one of my favorites (surprising, since I'm not usually a flower type of person). All of the coloring on this card was done using Watercolor Wonder crayons and an aqua painter. I just love the look I can achieve with them.

I also learned painting miniature figurines, my son, enjoyes the book and game called Warhammer 40k. He is going to be playing this with a group of other homeschool boys, regularly and so he needed his army. We'll be painting minatures for quite some time. It's a good thing I like doing detail work.

All images copyright Stampin' Up 1998-2008