Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I AM alive!

I know I haven't been posting on here but I promise to try to do something about that soon! Just a quick note to let those of who are (still) checking in know that yes, I am still alive.....just busy. I'll be off work Friday & my grandmother has requested some cards, so hopefully I'll have something crafty to post this weekend!

Monday, October 5, 2009

My very first Tilda

After months of coveting all these cute Tilda stamps, I broke down & bought some from Simon Says Stamp. They were so quick with their shipping & the Tilda's are so undeniably cute, that I placed a second order too - I think I may need help! So today I proudly present to you my first Tilda card! My friend Trina just lost her favorite cat & I wanted to make something to let her know I was thinking about her & this is what I came up with.


Lollipop flowers:

A close-up at an odd angle:

I know the last picture is at a funny angle, but this one shows the true colors of the card much better. For some reason the other two kind of wash the colors out. You can also see the 3-D aspect of the kitty's head here.

This card fit the bill for a few challenges: first, I used the sketch from Sketch Saturday which had the added twist of a pet theme (quite fitting). The ABC challenge for this week was "E is for embossing" & the whole front of the card is embossed with birds & vines. I tried my hand at making lollipop flowers (I think that's what they're called anyway) which qualified it for Just Magnolia's challenge of handmade flowers. Magnolia Down Under challenge this week called for buttons which are there on my flowers. Crafty Cardmakers wants to see ribbons & fibers - don't know if they'll count my measly little white satin ribbon, but since it was there I figured why not? It's hard to tell from the pictures, but I've used a little foamie to make the kitty's head 3-D & Charisma Cardz theme for the week is decoupage - does that tiny kitty head count?

Usually, except for the sketch, I make the card & then see what challenges it may fit so it's fun to see how many I can squeeze in there. This week, though, the Just Magnolia challenge inspired me to try making these cute flowers. I've seen other people make them before &, although I definitely need more practice, I like the end result.

Paper: Lavender from my stash, DP from Basic Grey Wisteria
Stamps: Swing and Tilda with Kitten by Magnolia, sentiment from the $1 bin at Michael's
Ribbon & buttons from my stash
Other supplies: Marvy scallop circle punch, Cuttlebug and birds & vines embossing folder, colored pencils

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Buggy full of bunnies baby card

It's been forever since I posted a card on here but I finally got my act together! This is a card for a friend who looks like she's about to pop any day now. Four babies in the buggy is just about perfect - no, she's not having quadruplets but she is having baby #4.

Speaking of the #4, there were 4 challenges that worked with my card this week. I used the sketch from Sketch Saturday but changed it a tiny bit to suit my materials. Creative Card Crew's challenge this week was to decorate the inside of your card and, since that's something I've never done before, I decided to give it a shot. House Mouse and Friends Challenge is to pick your favorite challenge from the last year. I was so excited to see that because a while back I missed their white on white challenge - everything on the card had to be white except your image - and I really liked the effect. Finally, the challenge at Die Cut Dreams is to use ribbon your card & I just happen to have a velvet ribbon on the front & a satin-y ribbon inside.


A little more in-close on the image:

I had to take like 13 shots of the white on white inside before I finally got this one!


Paper: the card is a pre-made card I got in an 8-pack for $1 at Michael's, other paper from my stash
Stamps: Happy Hoppers Bunny Buggie from Stampabilities, sentiment from the $1 bin at Michael's
Other supplies: colored pencils, Martha Stewart lace border punch, Cuttlebug swiss dots embossing folder, and for the first time ever (!!!) my new Spellbinders Nestabilities

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Quick question about Copics

I've been looking into getting some Copics & have a quick question for all you experts out there: is there a big difference in quality between the Sketch markers & Ciao? The Ciao markers are a couple dollars cheaper & they're already kinda pricey so I'd prefer to stay with those but wasn't sure if that would be a mistake.

Or, if you've only tried one type of Copic I'd really take any hints or tips you can give about using them. The tutorials are helpful but sometimes there are little quirks, ya know? I'm looking for all the help I can get! So if you're familiar with Copics I'd really love your input!! Thanks in advance :)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Passion for Promarkers Blog Hop

Check it out! The ladies at Passion for Promarkers are having a blog hop & they're giving away a full set of the new Promarkers colors!! This is the first blog hop I've ever done & I really had fun with it.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Card for a cause (& a couple of challenges too)

So, as you may have noticed I didn't get crafty yesterday. I have to say this is totally & completely my sister's fault because she talked me into going to JoAnn Fabrics with her so I could buy more craft supplies. What can I say? She knows my weakness.... Actually, I guess I should take that back - I did get crafty but I didn't have time to post about it until today.

If you read my last post, you may remember that I mentioned Erin's efforts to get lots & lots of cards for her 13-yr-old neighbor, Paige, who lost her arm as a result of a boating accident. If you missed it, please visit this post for more information. Anyway, I looked through my stamps & decided to use this cute bear - love Gruffies stamps! The lilacs he's sniffing lent themselves to the color combination of lilac/purple & grey for the Creative Inspirations challenge this week. I also used Heidi's lovely sketch from Friday Sketchers. This is the first time I've used this stamp & now that I've inked him up I'll probably be using him again soon. I 3-D'd both the image & sentiment with foamies again.


Close-up of 3-D flower & sentiment:

Close-up of image:

I inked around the edges of the sentiment - this is the first time I tried it & thought it looked pretty good - the slightly messy look of the ink is actually on purpose. You may also notice that those 3 dew drops just appeared in the last photo; it just seemed to be missing something & those seemed to complete the picture I had in my head. Hopefully it'll bring a smile to Paige's face :)


Paper: Sorry but I can't remember the brand of the DP - it's a loose piece that I purchased, I think it may be from Sassafras Lass; plain papers from my stash
Stamps: Gruffies Lilac Bouquet from Stampabilities, sentiment from the $1 bin at Michael's
Colored with colored pencils
Other supplies used: Dew Drops, Cuttlebug Flowers & Hearts embossing folder

Have you heard.....about the new Saturday Spotlight Hidden Potential challenge? They're still looking for DT members for those who may be interested & the 1st challenge is coming up on October 3. Help spread the word & you can be entered to win some pretty awesome blog candy!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Thank goodness for long weekends!

This has been a busy week & I haven't had the time to even think about making any cards, and the weekend's not looking good either! I'm hoping maybe I'll get around to it Sunday night as I still have another baby card to make. Now I just remembered that Monday is a holiday & I don't have to work! Yay! Ok, so maybe if I can't squeeze in a little craftiness Sunday, I've got Monday to be creative.

I did have to take a minute to mention a couple of goodies I found this week - happy browsing!

Don't forget Bev's weekly Simon Says Stamp giveaway - it's Tilda with bird cage. This is my favorite Tilda & I want it so bad I can taste it! So, although I'm giving you the link, how about staying away so I can win it?? Yeah, I figured that wouldn't work but it was worth a shot!

<<<<------Sem has a triple celebration going on & she's giving away 3 different blog candies with 3 ways to enter. Go check out her sparkly blog. Closes Sept 26.

is getting close to 5000 hits & when she does, she's going to be giving away this beautiful chocolate clutch ------->>>> While you're entering, see what other pretty things she's made!

Ida is celebrating her third blogoversary with 3 candies (seems to be a popular number on this post, doesn't it?). There are 3 ways to enter this one as well. Closes Sept 24 - and Oct 1.

Helen's just gone over 15,000 hits & is celebrating her 1st blogoversary. Go see the yumminess that is Helen's candy! Closes Sept 13.

Wowsa! Julie's giving away $125+ worth of goodies to celebrate going over 100 followers! Closes Sept 18.

Check out Vikki's surprise candy - she's giving sneak peeks over the next couple of weeks! Looks good so far :) And she's adding more goodies for every 50 comments. Closes Sept 30.

Danielle is giving away a Slice Starter Set, some top secret stuff from Shimmerz, & Prima stash - 6 total people can win (one Slice, 2 Shimmerz, 3 Prima = 6 if my math is right!). Closes Sept 14.

Tara appreciates long weekends too - and she's giving candy away to prove it! There's some K & Co goodies in there! Closes Sept 6.

Caroline is going on holiday & she's so excited that she has a Tilda up for grabs on her blog. Closes Sept 16.

Finally, and most importantly, Erin is asking all of us out here in blog land to help cheer up her young neighbor who's just been involved in a serious boating accident. She's asking for us to make cards for this young lady & is offering up some candy for those who do so. Even without the candy, it's definitely a good cause! You can get all the details here in her post.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sweet Baby card for 3 challenges

I know a couple of people who are pregnant at the moment, so I thought I'd make at least one baby card so I don't leave it till the last minute (I'm a horrible procrastinator!). This week I used the sketch from Pink Elephant challenge and - in proof of my procrastination - am getting it in by the skin of my teeth! I'm also entering this card in Stampin' for the Weekend challenge which has an "Anything Baby goes" theme this week. Cute Card Thursday's theme was "New Beginnings" & that fit just perfectly.

I've seen other people stamp the image on the paper & then stamp it again, cut it out, & pop it off the paper and I've always liked the look of it. So, I tried that on this card. It's not as cleanly done as I've seen others do but I'm pleased with it for my first try.


A little closer:

Closer still....:

3-D detail:


Paper: pink by Bazzil, patterned from Nana's Nursery (girl) stack, plain from my stash
Stamps: Our Craft Lounge cling rubber stamps from the "Tree-mendous Love" set
Ribbon: from my stash
Colored with colored pencils

I just wanted to take a minute to tell you about an awesome giveaway: The Scrapping Cottage Blog is trying to reach 500 followers and, when they do, they're giving away a $250 shopping spree in their store! Click here to find out more.

Check out Prima's favorite picks & the beautiful things people have made with them! I don't know if these are available where any of you are but I've never seen them in my area - that's probably a good thing as I'd have to have them & don't have the cash to spare at the moment! Click on the picture to learn more.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A card for my Grammy

My grandmother is one of the few people who regularly corresponds with me by snail mail & I "owe" her a letter. In fact, bad granddaughter that I am, I've owed her a letter for a while but wanted to send a handmade one rather than store-bought & it's taken me forever to get around to it. I know she'll appreciate the time spent on it so I'm pretty sure she'll forgive my flakiness! At least I hope so :)

The whole color scheme for this card started from the watering can/flower ribbon; it's not a color combo that I'd use all the time but I do like it. I wanted to make this card a little 3-D, so I popped the flower w/ some foamies. Now I'm wondering if I should've popped the whole image but it's glued down now - too late! Something to try next time I guess.

I've entered this card in a few challenges as well: I used the sketch from PaperPlay Challenges - by Mandy - for challenge #31. Cute Card Thursday had the theme 'Lazy Days' this week for a summer themed card. Nothing says summer like flowers & gardening! Stamptacular Sunday is a 3-D challenge; I know it's only a tiny bit of 3-D so I'm not sure if it qualifies, but I thought I'd try anyway. Finally, Crafty Cardmakers challenge for this week is Complimentary Colors - check out their color wheel lesson, it gave me some ideas for future combinations.

The orange cardstock is very lightly textured & I ran the 3 blue rectangles through my Cuttlebug in a flowered embossing folder. Image is stamped on white cardstock & colored with colored pencils. I cut out the flower & popped it with foamies for a 3-D effect. Haven't got up the nerve to try decorating the inside yet so it's completely blank.


Trying to show the 3-D aspect

A close-up

Supplies used:

Papers from my stash
Stamp by Penny Black
Ribbon from the $1 bin at Michael's
Dew Drops from The Robin's Nest
Some goodies!!!!!

Moni is celebrating the 1 yr anniversary of Everybody-Art-Challenge by giving away some stamped images, ribbons, & more. Closes Aug. 31.

Sassy Designs
is giving away 100 stamped images to their followers - this is another challenge blog I just stumbled onto. Closes Sept. 27.

Carolyn has a massive assortment for her blog candy! Check out the inside of her cards - maybe she'll give me some ideas. Closes Sept. 22.

I just found Ingvild's blog the other day & had to become a follower right away - she has a romantic, victorian style that I just love. And her candy is fabulous! Closes Sept. 30.

Jo has new Basic Grey papers & more in her blog candy. Closes Sept. 5.

Maria's candy is a huge assortment of goodies including stamps, ribbons, & more. Closes Aug. 31.

Emma's celebrating her blogoversary with a beautiful array of images, embellishments, & more. Closes Aug. 31.

Erika is giving away some goodies from her stash. Check out her CHA pictures too - I'm jealous! Closes Aug. 29.

Vivi is celebrating 100 posts by giving away 100 Tilda images! I want to win this one! She does quilling - something I want to try........ Closes Aug. 30.

My first ever blog award

Wow! What a pleasant surprise to receive this friendship award from Cheryl - thank you so much! I just recently found her blog & she has some really beautiful things there. I especially like her victorian scrapbook page with the adorable pictures of her little girl. The tool belt for Dad is pretty cute too - full of sweets, now that's my kind of tool belt! Drop by & visit her blog - you'll be glad you did.

Thanks again Cheryl, you made my day!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Do you know Mo?

I haven't tried digital stamping yet as I don't currently have a printer, but I think I know where I'll be getting my first digi from. During my blog hopping I found a link to Mo Manning's blog & fell in love with the cute images there! Mo is an illustrator of children's books & she's making her art available as digital stamps. I've been making a mental list of which ones to get - maybe I should start with one though ;) Anyway, if you want to see what I'm talking about, check out Mo's blog or her shop - you won't be sorry, unless it's because you're spending too much money there!

Another treasure I found yesterday is Helen's blog, Scrap A Little, which has several neat tutorials for flowers & more. Some I'd seen, some I hadn't but I'll definitely be going back - her instructions are clear & I like that it's a picture tutorial rather than video (sometimes video goes too fast for my brain!!). Anyways, figured I'd pass it along since I thought it was informative.

I have a card in the works but don't know if I'll get a chance to post it tonight, if not I'm shooting for tomorrow. Here's some sweets in the meantime...........

Crafty Suzy
is celebrating 2000+ hits with some cupcake candy. Closes Sept. 6.

Beccy's had some good fortune lately & is sharing the wealth. Closes Sept. 16.

Check out Linda's generous candy to celebrate 15,000 hits! Closes Aug. 31.

Melissa is having a huge 'just because' giveaway! Closes Aug. 31.

Caz is having an embellishment blog candy with lots of goodies. She's just accepted a DT position with Squiggle Stamps - I'd never heard of them before but they have some adorable stuff! Closes Aug 26.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy together...........6 years & 5 challenges

As promised I'm back with the anniversary card I made for my sister & her husband - happy 6 years Jenny & Paul! Since I'm not giving them the card until tomorrow, when they come over for dinner, I told my sister she's not allowed to look at my blog before then. Is it sad that you're seeing the card before she is? Normally I would have waited until later but I used the sketch from Friday Sketchers this week & I figured I may as well post it.

I really like the turquoise/red combination and, although this isn't quite what I envisioned, I'm very happy with the way the card turned out. Besides Friday Sketchers #65, I've also entered this card in Stampin' for the weekend "Days Gone By" challenge, Color Throwdown #56 - my colors are a tiny bit off but I think they may be close enough, Crafty Cardmakers #1 - Blossoms, and Papertake Weekly Challenge #100 which is your choice of any of the 99 previous challenges - I chose My Favorite Things as I absolutely love all things victorian! That makes 5 challenges - not bad considering I didn't really plan for any of them except for Friday Sketchers!


A few detail shots


The couple is stamped in brown ink & embossed with clear embossing powder. I thought about coloring the image in but thought this was really a case of less is more. The papers have a glossy/glittery aspect to them & I was afraid adding anything else would be too overwhelming. Hopefully Jenny & Paul will like it too :)

Supplies used:

Patterned papers from Jen Wilson's Laundry Line by My Minds Eye; plain paper from my stash
Sticky pearls from Martha Stewart Crafts
Flowers cut & red strip embossed with my Cuttlebug
Blue Darice ribbon
Stamps: Victorian couple from Inkadinkado, "Happy Anniversary" & "together" from Fiskars Romance clear set

One more thing.......Rach is at it again - she has another adorable Rachelle Anne Miller stamp up for grabs on her blog!

Another giveaway by Rach

Today Rach is giving away a clear stamp by Rachelle Anne Miller from Stampavie! In fact, she usually has a little giveaway each & every day - I just don't always get the chance to blog about it :) There are no R.A.M. stamps in my collection yet but only because I haven't gotten around to purchasing any - they are adorable. Closes today at 10pm.

I have another card to post but it's an anniversary card for my sister & I have to wait until I've given it to her or she's agreed not to look at my blog! Keep an eye out for that today or tomorrow.......

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Looking for a challenge

I've been browsing around looking at all the different challenge blogs out there - it really helps sometimes when you have a specific sketch, color scheme, or theme to work with. I don't know, I guess it just helps to get the creative juices flowing. There are even more challenge blogs out there than I thought! It seems like I see a lot of the same ones on other people's sidebars, but I did find a couple of new ones.

I was quite pleased to find a House Mouse challenge blog because I think their stamps (Happy Hoppers & Gruffies too!) are really cute, and I actually have some! Looks like they're on vacation right now but hopefully I'll be able to enter their next challenge on Aug 31.

If you're ever looking for a challenge, I found a whole list of them on Boni's blog. She's posted all kinds of beautiful cards & the "Are women born this way?" video alone is worth the trip. Hope you head over to her blog the next time you're blog hopping.

Not a challenge blog, but if you want to see something adorable check out the new babies at Michelle's place!

And now......a little more blog candy.........

Carolyn is celebrating a year of blogging with a fabulous giveaway. Closes Aug. 18.

Check out Naoual's sparkle-y candy! Closes Aug. 22.

Elisabeth Bell wants to know what you do in your free time. Closes Aug. 23.

Bev has an adorable Tilda Magnolia stamp for her weekly Simon Says giveaway. Closes tomorrow.

Dianne just posted her new blog candy & is already planning for more! She has links to lots of challenges too.... Closes Sept. 7.

Georgia has had over 6000 hits on her blog. She makes some pretty amazing cards - even more amazing when you realize she's only 13! Closes Aug. 29.

Jacqui's blog counter is over 130,000 and she's got some fabulous stuff up for grabs! Closes Aug. 22.

Kim is celebrating the start of her new Magnolia Only blog with, what else but, Magnolia candy! Closes Aug. 20.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Launch of La-La Land Crafts

Irina at Everything Paper Crafts is officially launching her own stamp company: La-La Land Crafts! The official Launch Party is taking place in a couple of hours at Cranberry Hill Mercantile in Sunnyvale, California - tonight! If you're not close enough to to check out the stamps in person, La-La Land Crafts online store will be opening at 11pm PST &, for the first 24 hours, they are offering a storewide 10% discount. Since I'm on the east coast I don't think I'll be able to stay up until 2am (my time) for the unveiling but I'll be sure to check it out tomorrow. Irina's been giving sneak peeks on her La-La Land Crafts blog & it looks like they're going to have some really cute designs. You may be able to snag some blog candy by spreading the word about this new venture - there's a lovely assortment, including a couple of Magnolia stamps! Candy winner to be drawn tomorrow @ 10pm PST.

If you have a moment take a look at the blogs for each of the DT members - they have some real talent & it's no wonder they were chosen. I make my little cards & I'm completely happy with them until I see the things other people make - there are so many interesting techniques & creative people - they're on a whole other level........

Phew! My blogs are back!!

Thank goodness - my followed blogs are back! Not that the blogs themselves disappeared but my "following list" vanished. I know I'm not the only one who was having problems with it, so hopefully everyone else got their lists back safe & sound too. Despite knowing that Blogger was aware of the problem, I was a little nervous that a blog or two would be missing but it looks like they're all there. Last night I was scrambling around trying to bookmark as many of my regular stops as I could remember but now it looks as if that wasn't necessary. Oh well, that just means I have a backup if it happens again!

A quick blog candy note..........

Tab is having 2 giveaways with Magnolia stamps, pretty papers, & embellishments. Be sure to spend a little time browsing her blog; she makes some pretty fantastic cards! Winners drawn Aug. 22.

Carly's blogoversary is coming up & she's celebrating with 2 giveaways too! 1 is the Magnolia Stamp Club kit from Summer 2008 & 1 is a handmade box full of images. Check out all the cute stuff she has on her blog. Closes Sept. 23.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Ta-dah! The first card I've ever posted!!!

I finally figured out how to get pictures from my camera to the computer & it was actually pretty easy -- too bad I didn't take the time to figure it out sooner!

So....here's the first card I've ever posted on my blog. I followed the Mojo Monday sketch from a couple weeks ago; I really like a lot of their sketches although I haven't used many of them. Check out their blog if you haven't already! I've entered this card in Spoon Full of Sugar Challenge #63 - Floral Fantasy (flowers on the stamp & I know it's hard to see but the paper is floral patterned as well) & the Papertake Weekly Challenge - Four Seasons (mine represents spring to me) - hope it's not too late!

Front of the card

Close-up (you can kinda see the embossing & Stickles)

I kept the inside simple

I love this stamp that I used for the back - it's not as big as it looks - I just zoomed in.

I used those foam sticky pads to pop the circle up off the card. The image is embossed in black & colored in with colored pencils - it's a little hard to tell from the pictures here but the girl on the left is in pale pink, on the right in blue. I shaded the edge of the circle with light green - not sure if I like that element but I'm pleased with the rest of the card.

Supplies used:

Paper from Basic Grey 6x6 Sultry stack
Pink velvet Offray ribbon
Stickles in Pearl (I think - I can't find the bottle at the moment)
Marvy scalloped circle punch
Stamps: Little girls from See-D's "Flutter By Butterfly" set (image cropped to fit the circle); Thank you from Stampin' Up's "Best Blossoms" set; Handmade stamp from Inkadinkado
Colored pencils

And now for a little something sweet....Blog Candy!

Stephanie is giving a $150 gift certificate (to the store/site of your choice) away in appreciation of 25,000 hits & 100+ followers. Closes Aug. 28.

has 2 - yes, two! - blog candy giveaways to celebrate joining the Sugar Nellie DT. Not sure when this one closes so you'd better hurry!

Bev has over 400,000 hits & 1000+ followers & is thanking everyone with some pretty fantabulous candy. Closes Aug. 17.

Bea is giving away the perfect assortment to make a Strawberry Tilda card. Closes Aug. 15.

Leanne is moving to Dubai & giving a set of Gorjuss Girls stamps as a going away present. Closes Sept. 1.

is giving away a Tilda by Magnolia. Hurry - closes at 10 pm Aug. 11.

Claire is thanking her visitors with a variety of goodies. Closes Aug. 21.

Sarita is giving away a unique assortment to celebrate her blogoversary. Be sure you check out her craft room while you're there - talk about making me jealous!! Closes Aug. 15.

Friday, July 24, 2009

I Need Help With Sticky Stuff

Quick question for you crafters out there in BlogLand: do you have a preferred adhesive for your paper crafts? I used to use Aleene's glue but had trouble getting just the right amount - I wouldn't use enough & the papers wouldn't stick together, so I'd add a little more which made it too wet & the paper "ripples". On my recent buying spree I picked up some adhesive dots to try but the first card I made fell apart (the whole front came off). The dots were the removable kind, so maybe that was the problem. So anyway, crafty people please leave a comment with your favorite adhesive (or any sticky tips you may have). If you're not crafty - tell your friends, I need all the help I can get!

As I've mentioned before I'm planning to try to get some cards posted on here in the not too distant future...and I have another question. Sometimes coming up with the card design is half the battle, so I ask: what is your favorite card challenge blog? Sketch, theme, stamp company, whatever. Here's hoping you'll have some inspiration for me..........

Monday, July 13, 2009

Replaying our Columbus trip

Girl weekend was a blast, but also a sad reminder of how little self control I have in crafty stores! We were pretty much able to stick to our plan of attack, although Trina decided she against going to any clothes stores. I won't tell you how much I spent but let's just say there is a reason I don't do this kind of trip very often.

Friday: Our 1st stop was an independent scrapbooking store called Scrapbook Groupies & I didn't spend too much there - got some really pretty Bo Bunny papers that I haven't seen in WV. Trina kept commenting on how much "cool stuff" they had - I think she could be converted into a scrapbooker/card maker without too much effort. Next we went to Blockbuster to redeem my coupon for 2 free movies. By that point it was after 8pm, so we grabbed dinner (Taco Bell for me & Wendy's for Trina) & headed back to the hotel to vegetate in front of the TV. Oh....and we got Graeter's pints for dessert.....YUM!

Saturday: We got up early enough to leave the hotel by 9am - would've liked to sleep in but decided we'd rather get going & make sure we could squeeze in everything we wanted. We got breakfast - can't remember where but it was probably McDonald's as we were trying to eat cheap so we could spend more elsewhere - and ate it in the parking lot at Hobby Lobby. As I said before I'd never been to a Hobby Lobby before but this definitely won't be my last visit. I was pretty pleased with their rubber stamp selection & picked up a few cute ones. They had some nursery rhyme stamps on clearance but I wasn't sure if I'd actually use them so I exercised some restraint & left them on the shelf.

Our next stop, Achievers, was the place I REALLY wanted to go to & also the place that hurt my bank account the most. They had a bunch of stuff on sale/clearance & that's where I get in the most trouble - I have a tendency to pick up 10 things that are $1/ea rather than one thing that is $8, does anyone else do that?? I actually put back about 1/3 of the items in my basket & still spent more than I had planned.

By the time we got done with those 2 stores, it was around 2 p.m. so we decided to get lunch. Before we ate though, we ran in to The Cheesecake Factory & each got a slice of cheesecake for later. We dropped our cheesecake in the refrigerator in our hotel room & headed for food.... One good thing about eating lunch that late - no wait at Olive Garden! I had chicken w/ broccoli & pasta in a garlic sauce - mmmm....it was good. After lunch we saw The Proposal which was actually pretty funny. I'm the first to admit that I like romantic comedies - despite the predictability - and this one actually had some laugh out loud moments. Betty White was pretty hilarious. After my shopping spree that morning, we decided we'd spent enough so we grabbed Taco Bell (again) & lounged around the hotel. I think we'd both kind of forgotten we had Cheesecake in the fridge & were quite pleased when we remembered it. Mine was White Chocolate Caramel Macadamia & I whole-heartedly recommend you try it the next time you go to The Cheesecake Factory.

Sunday: We slept in!! Our plan was just to head back in the late morning/early afternoon but....Michael's & Jo-Ann's were calling me & I had to make stops there before we could leave. Yes, I know, it's sad. Basically I rationalized it by telling myself that it made more sense to stop while I was so close than to wait till I got home & drive an hour each way [the next time I wanted to go]. I reined myself in a little bit at those 2 stores since I'd already spent more than enough, so it wasn't as bad as it could have been! Since our closest Starbucks is an hour away we had to stop there too. After breakfast at Tim Horton's (love their chocolate chip muffins!), stops at Michael's & Jo-Ann's, & a Mocha Frappucino run, we were ready to leave for home.

Reflecting.....I spent way too much (& ate way too much!) but I had a great time! With work schedules & just the busyness of everyday life it can be hard to spend as much time with friends & family as I would like so I'm glad Trina was able to make the trip with me - it was a lot of fun just hanging out & goofing off. Realistically speaking I probably won't be able to do another trip like this for a while but I'll be in Columbus for a couple of games during the upcoming hockey season so I'll probably do it on a smaller scale when I'm up there for a game. Now I'm just trying to get all my new stuff organized so I can play with it! I did make my parents an anniversary card last week & wanted to post a picture but my camera battery is dead & I haven't bothered to charge it. Not to mention the fact that I'm not entirely sure how to get the pictures from my camera to my computer! Oh well, there's something else to add to my list!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sidebar wishes & blog candy dreams.....

I need to figure out how to set up a sidebar for blog candy - maybe then it won't look like all I do is blog about other people's blog candy!! When I'm a little more adept at blogging, I'm going to change the layout of my blog & a sidebar will definitely be on my list of requirements.

Anyway, just a quick note to tell you about Pauline's candy at Passion for Papercraft. She's just reached her 1 year Blogoversary & 20,000 hits too! It's a "must enter" for Penny Black fans - she's giving away a stamp set, stamped images, & more. While you're there be sure to check out some of her fabulous cards - this one is one of my favorites. (closes July 12)

Joanne at Stampin' Up! My Way is having a Copic candy giveaway to celebrate the 1st Northern Papercraft Retreat - if you're in the UK you might want to check it out - sounds like fun! (winner to be drawn July 31)

Monday, June 29, 2009

Computer Issues............

I was doing better with my posts in the month of June & then the computer problems started. First it was issues with the computer not wanting to stay connected to the internet & now it rarely wants to connect period. Hopefully my computer guy (i.e. Dad) will take a look at it soon & tell me that it will be a simple fix. All I have to do is get myself in gear & walk next door with my laptop but it just hasn't happened yet.....LOL. That's kind of sad, isn't it? Maybe I'll do that this evening.

My shopping weekend is rapidly approaching & I've been trying to track down more stores that I "need" to go to while in Columbus. So far we're planning to hit Michael's, JoAnn's, Archivers, Hobby Lobby, Dick Blick, & Scrapbook Groupies. I didn't account for stores being closed or closing early) for the holiday so we'll have to see if we can work them all in. Trina requested going to a TJ Maxx or Marshall's & I'll make sure we get to 1, if not both, of those since she's nice enough to accompany me on my whirlwind trip!

Depending on what time we arrive Friday night we may just grab a slice of cheesecake & hang out in our hotel room, or we may try to get to a couple of stores that night & save the cheesecake for Saturday night. I've been wanting to see the movie The Proposal so there's a good chance that might be our Saturday evening entertainment. Basically you could say that we'll be somewhat playing it by ear. I'm hoping we get to do everything we planned but I'm just looking forward to having a weekend where I don't have to do anything!!

One more quick thing before I go.....Abby has blog candy to celebrate becoming a member of The Next Level design team. Her candy is open until midnight (EST) July 5. She makes some beautiful things so be sure to check out her blog.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

For your entertainment.....

If you're looking for something entertaining - it might even make you giggle - check out Cake Wrecks. This blogger posts photos of cakes with misspelled words, awful artistry, & (my personal favorite) sometimes even the decorating instructions right on the cake - see example above.

It's not all bad though, they do "Sunday Sweets" weekly which features fabulous cakes on a different theme each time. Some recent themes were Star Trek, cakes that look like candy, & cakes based on books. Here are a few of my favorite Sweets:

Isn't he adorable??? There are a few more cuddly little dragons by the same cake artist - I think I picked this one because of his colors.

These little flower pot cakes are just gorgeous! They almost look like real flowers - especially the paler roses.

To really appreciate the detail in this one, you should check out this bigger photo. Pretty amazing, isn't it? Like a lot of the sweets, it doesn't even look like a cake! The blogger really hit the nail on the head when she said it looks like a Hallmark ornament.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Shopping trip!

I'm going shopping!!! No, not now, but soon! My friend, Trina, & I decided we needed to get out of our little town, so we're going to the big(ger) city of Columbus, Ohio for a couple of days. Why Columbus? To be honest, I've been dying to get back to Archivers since I was last there in February & the closest one is in Columbus. The lady at a local scrapbooking store was telling me about Hobby Lobby the other day so I'm hoping to check them out while I'm there too. Throw Michael's & Jo-Ann's into the mix & my bank account may be in serious trouble!

We booked a hotel on Priceline & it looks to be pretty nice - 3.5 stars - and we got it for less than $100 for 2 nights! I was pretty pleased with that deal, and then I was looking online & saw that there are a couple of Hobby Lobby stores within 5 miles, and we're like 7 miles from Archivers (and The Cheesecake Factory - yummmm....). That made the deal even sweeter for me! Now I just have to be patient & wait a few weeks till we actually get to go - easier said than done.

My goal is to actually enter a card making challenge sometime soon. I have a bunch of them bookmarked on my computer & I keep checking them out, but haven't had the courage to actually do one. In the meantime I keep visiting tons of you blogging crafters & I'm so blown away by the talent & creativity!

A few yummy Blog Candy Giveaways I wanted to tell you about:

  • Allison is celebrating a belated 1st Blogoversary (and over 25,000 hits!)
  • Michelle is giving away blog candy in honor of reaching 75,000 hits - wow! (check out her adorable donkeys while you're there)
  • Martine is celebrating becoming a Stampin' Up! demonstrator by giving away some awesome candy!
  • Dianne is trying to reach 250 followers - how about giving her a hand? Her candy is pretty fantastic (as are the cards she makes)!

Friday, May 22, 2009

So much blog candy.....I'm stuffed!

Wow - ok, so everytime I go blog hopping I see such fantastic candy & so many times it's things that I can find here in my rural area so, of course, I have to enter the giveaway. I think maybe I should quit spending so much time visiting other blogs & work on my own! It's so much easier to browse through other people's blogs & appreciate all the talent out there than it is to try to figure out what to say on here, I guess. There is such an amazing variety of blogs - the more I see the more determined I am to get rid of my generic layout! Please be patient, it may take a while before I find the right look. I seem to have misplaced my camera at the moment, but I really will be posting pictures of my cards at some point - I promise! In the meantime, here's some more yummy blog candy for you to check out!

Nikki at Smells Like Homemade is giving away this assortment of goodies to celebrate her growing blog popularity (there should be a word for that - maybe blogularity?!). Not only is her candy fabulous but so is her blog - I've looked at most of the cards she's posted & I can honestly say I haven't seen one that I don't like!! (expires June 15)

Next, check out Create4fun's blog - it's a pink & green theme that makes me feel like Spring! It's a Copic giveaway on this one. I'll be honest, I hadn't even heard of Copic markers (let alone used them) until the last month but I've seen beautiful results from so many of you cardmakers that I'm dying to try them myself! (expires May 24)

Wendy at Creations by Louby Loo is celebrating 10,000 hits (WOW!!) with an amazing variety of items including dies, papers, stamps & more. She also has her own line of digital downloads for crafting - I've never tried digital stamping but I may just have to give her stuff a try! (expires June 1)

Take a moment to visit Gayle at Little Bird Design - I love the color combinations she uses on her cards. Don't forget to sign up for her blog candy while you're there (she has even packaged it prettily in a crafting bag). (expires May 31)

I hope you take the time to visit these blogs created by these amazingly talented people!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Fabulous blog candy to sign up for!

I just wanted to take a minute to tell you about some fabulous blog candy from a couple of blogs I follow. Carly at Carlz Cards is celebrating 30,000 hits by giving away this beautiful assortment of stamps, papers, & embellishments. Check out the fantastic cards she makes - you'll be glad you did! It's really a beautiful blog - I love the embroidered/embellished look of her blog set-up.

After you sign up for Carly's blog candy head over to Debbie's blog, Passion For Crafts, & sign up for her blog candy! I must say that Debbie has both one of the "awesomest" (is that a word??) blogs & the best giveaways I've seen in a while. I absolutely love the clarity of pictures of the cards she makes. Plus she's got skills with Copics! In fact, I think it was on her blog that I first heard of Copic markers (have yet to get my hands on any but I can't wait to try them out!). Take a look at this card she made for a recent Penny Black card challenge - I don't think there's anyone who wouldn't love to receive something so pretty!

Magazines or Storage Units??

I am a member of My Points which is a site that sends you emails to read, surveys, etc., you get points for visiting the websites in the emails, answering the surveys and then you can redeem your points for cool stuff. Usually I redeem mine for Barnes & Noble gift cards but I've decided to go outside the box this time. I've been debating between a $50 Magazines.com gift code or an $50 Amazon.com gift code. If I go with Magazines.com I'll be using the code for a couple of craft magazines I've had my eye on for a while. On the other hand, Amazon.com has some storage units that would be fabulous for all my craft supplies. Decisions, decisions......

In the end I decided to go with the Magazines.com gift code since my craft room isn't ready yet & the storage units would just be sitting around the house taking up space. Instead I'm going to subscribe to PaperCrafts and CardMaker. That way I'll (hopefully) have some ideas to try out when my craft room is ready! Makes sense, right? Even after purchasing those two I still have money left on the code so I'll have to decide if I want another magazine or cash - great, another decision! Can anyone think of an awesome magazine I should use the rest of my $$$ on??

By the way, if you're interested in signing up for MyPoints, check out their website at MyPoints.com & sign up! Or you can email me at auntyjan(at)hotmail(dot)com & I can send you right to the sign up link - I'll get some more points for referring you if you do that, but no hard feelings if you just sign yourself up :)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

High Hopes & Blogoversary Candy

When I started this blog I had high hopes that I'd be able to make it a fun & interesting read for friends, family, & fellow bloggers. If you're reading you can tHell that so far, I've failed dismally... Between working full-time & my other commitments in life I haven't really gotten into a blogging rhythm yet. My goal is still the same but I'll just have to organize my time a little better, I guess.

I've been doing some blog hopping today & stumbled across some great ones! I'll post some links when I have some more time. For now I wanted to let you know about an awesome Blogoversary giveaway from Debbie at Passion For Crafts. She really does some beautiful work & I love the Magnolia stamps she uses. I've yet to see Magnolia brand stamps in the US but that could be just because of my rural location. Mostly I seem to see them on European blogs but I have noticed that they can be purchased online. Guess I'll be saving some money for a stamp shopping spree!

Anyway, check out Debbie's blog to see her works of art, I mean cards ;) And for a chance to win some blog candy! The deadline is April 30th at midnight (I'm guessing that's midnight her local time which is probably 5 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time) so hurry!

Happy trails,

Friday, March 20, 2009

I can do it!

I've noticed lately that I have a tendency to be negative - maybe not overly so, but enough that I'm thinking it's a habit I should try to break. The weird thing is I don't consider myself to be an overly negative person, in fact I've always thought I was more of a 'glass is half full' type of person. What changed?

I don't know, maybe it's that winter has seemed long & cold. Maybe it's that I'm working full time (completely new thing for me) & there's not enough playtime with my sister & her kids
anymore. Maybe it's that one of my closest friends recently moved out of state. Maybe it's a combination of all those things.

Since the plan is to be more positive I guess there's another way to look at things:

  • Yes, it seems like it's been winter forever, but that must mean that spring is near!
  • There are lots of people who are unemployed right now - so I should be happy to even have a job.

  • Having to put more effort out to spend quality time with family will make me appreciate it that much more. Honestly, even when those kids are bad they're adorable (most of the time).

  • Thanks to my friend who moved, I now have a new place to visit.

Okay, so that's my positive spin for the day. That wasn't so hard after all.....

Photo credit to Reenie-Just Reenie.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Happy ending to a yucky day.....

I woke up this morning with a migraine....mmmm, lovely. If you've ever had a migraine, you know it's not really possible to function - for me it's pretty much Aleve & sleep in a dark room. So I didn't go to work today. I'm a secretary at a dentist's office &, fortunately, my boss is really great. I'll probably pick up some coffee for him & his assistant in the morning - kind of an "I'm sorry you had to deal w/ the money & phones yesterday."

Soooo....I slept the majority of the day & still had a bit of a thumping heading when I woke up this evening. Had a little caffeine which seemed to help my head a little, but probably wasn't the brightest idea - combine that with the fact that I slept all day & I probably won't sleep tonight!

On a good note, my two favorite hockey teams won tonight! San Jose was playing the Ottawa Senators in Ottawa & allowed the first goal of the game again. Thanks to some pretty decent play by Brian Boucher, & goals by Milan Michalek & Patrick Marleau, they were able to come away with a 2-1 win. They now have 93 points & lead the NHL in points as they have for the majority of the season (although Detroit & Boston are both pretty close behind them).

Then, to make it a little sweeter, the Columbus Blue Jackets (my second favorite team) won an away game vs the Edmonton Oilers. I didn't get to see the whole game as I was watching the Sharks game which started a little earlier, but I did get to see Raffi Torres score the only goal of the game. Steve Mason of the Blue Jackets got his 8th shutout of the year & the Jackets are that much closer to making the playoffs for the first time ever. I'm so excited at the prospect of going to a playoff game in Columbus!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A first time for everything

Welcome to my first attempt at blogging! My awesome sister set me up with a domain name, so this will eventually be moving over there, but I couldn't figure out how to export my blog...yet.

Ever since I was a little girl, I've had this weird obsession with cool pens & pencils, not to mention new notebooks. I wasn't a fan of going back to school but all the new school supplies made it slightly easier to handle.

Now that I'm out of school, I no longer have an excuse to stockpile pens, pencils, etc., unless you count my new obsession....making cards. Unfortunately I now stockpile more expensive things too, things like rubber stamps, die cutting machines & dies, and oodles of embellishments.

I bought a Paper Creations magazine yesterday & I've spent most of the afternoon checking out some of the websites featured in it. Some of the sites I'll be visiting again:





Unfortunately, I won't actually be buying anything from those sites anytime soon as I have to figure out a way to organize the stamps I already have before I add to my collection! At the moment, I risk buying the same stamp more than once since my stamps are kind of all over the place - that makes it hard to know which ones I've only admired & which ones I've actually purchased!

Someday I hope to have an awesome craft studio like these:



I'm so jealous!!!