Our Sunday Drive

Yesterday we decided to do some last minute Christmas shopping (I think I'm done now ;) )and then afterwards go for a drive to see the new Wind Farm that's being built here in Central Illinois. The Twin Groves Wind Farm will be one of the largest wind farms in the nation! When completed it will have 267 turbines producing enough power for 120,000 homes. That's a lot of wind power! These things are massive, the blades are 130 feet long! It's really hard to get the proper perspective looking at these pictures, but if you look at the picture of the truck, that's only 1 section! There are 3 sections and then the top portion that holds the blades.

While I think that using a renewable resource as wind is a wonderful thing, I'm glad I don't have to look at these everyday. I know that sounds strange considering we're getting a cell tower on our property. I can't explain it, the cell tower seems less imposing as these turbines. Anyway, I thought you might enjoy some of the pictures we took yesterday.

Here's one section on the special semi truck they use to transport them from the railroad to the site. It's just amazing too see. They had to construct special turning lanes on the roads because these trucks cannot make a 90 degree turn like normal trucks can!

Here's the crane adding a section to one of the turbines. If you look VERY closely you can see a normal pickup truck in front of the section still on the ground. That gives you a sense of how HUGE these things are!

These are the special carriers they had to build to transport the blades. Rob saw some blades coming into Bloomington on the train the other day. It took him almost 5 minutes to realize what exactly he was looking at!

Just another viwe of a partially completed turbine. Phase 1 of the construction should be completed by April 2007.

Here's a view of just a few of the completed windmills! In one picture we took you could count over 19 windmills!

Me & My Hip

Sorry I've been MIA for the past couple weeks! Things are just hectic around here between Christmas and the ongoing saga with my hip!

Some of you might know that I have been having trouble with my hip. If you didn't I'll try to make this as short as possible ;) I had my hip replaced when I was 17 due to degenerative arthritis that was caused by a staph infection I got when I was 15 months old. The infection got into my hip joint and I had to have an I&D (incision and drainage) done. My parents were told that I'd have trouble with the joint later in life. Well fast forward 12 years. The trouble started. Basically by the time I was 17 the pain was too much and I couldn't really "be" a 17 year old. I'd have to stay home when my friends went to the mall or the amusement park etc... It was horrible.

I ended up having my hip replaced. I was the second youngest patient on whom my Dr. had ever performed the surgery. Kinda a guinea pig/experimental type deal-o. I did not have the "normal" stem type replacement, but rather a new resurfacing replacement. The stem replacements only last around 10 years so at 17 I was looking at a total hip replacement at least 4 or 5 more times. By then my femur would have been too weak to have it done anymore and I'd be in a wheelchair. So we opted for something different in the hopes that over time the technology would improve and I could have a better replacement still. I still have all my own bone in both my leg and my hip joint, they just added a metal "cap" on the femur and a "cup" in the joint.

Well after 6 years I had worn through the "bearing", it's a thin layer of "goo" between the 2 metal pieces, so they don't rub and grind against each other. I went in and had that replaced. It was another full surgery, but not as long or as intense as the total replacement. I recovered and was fine, until the middle of November this year.

Now, 8 years after that first revision, it seems it's time again to have something done. The metal pieces in my hip are grinding against each other again. There is no pain, just the horrible grinding sound. It feels odd too, but it doesn't hurt. This time is a little different, because we can't afford to fly me all the way back to NJ to see the Dr. that performed the first 2 surgeries. I did find a Dr. here in Illinois that is familiar with a new resurfacing replacement and I have an appointment with him come the first of the year. Hopefully he can either fix what I have or I'm a candidate for the Birmingham Resurfacing Hip replacement. We'll see come Jan 3rd!

Anyway, the reason I explained all this is because it helps to explain my absence from my blog. With the trouble in my hip I haven't felt like stamping much. I guess it's a bit depressing, knowing that I have to have another surgery so soon. I was hoping to have another child this coming year, but now that's pretty much out of the question. It'll all work out in the end, it just kinda sucks right now.

Nathan's 1st Birthday card!

My friend's little boy is turning 1 this weekend and I needed a card. The stacked animals were inspired by many cards on SCS as well as the raised lion head and elephant's ear. What's all mine is the ribbon! There was a thread today about making Korker ribbon bows for little girls hair. So not knowing what those were I had to Google it! I found the instructions (I will be making those bows for Christmas gifts!) and I also thought, hmm those curls would be cool on a card. I would think it's best given person to person rather than sent thru the mail, but with enough padding the curls might survive the USPS. *wink*

Here's how I did it:

1. Cut a length of ribbon about 4 - 6 inches.
2. Put some tape runner adhesive on the ends.
3. Wrap the ribbon very closely (but not overlapping) around a dowel (I used a paintbrush handle)
4. Carefully heat the ribbon for a few minutes with your heat tool, making sure you twirl the dowel around to get all sides.
5. Let it cool for a couple of minutes.
6. Remove from dowel and trim ends.
7. Use on your project!

Unmounting your Wheels - tutorial

Ok I admit it, I'm wheel challenged! I can't use them to save my life! Everytime I tried the image was either not fully stamped or it had lines from the edges of the rubber, it was frustrating. I ended up wasting more CS trying to get it right. I don't make wrapping paper or anything that I'd actually *need* a wheel, so one day I got the brilliant idea to unmount them. I'm pretty sure it wasn't my original idea, but it works for me!

Here's what I do:

1. Find the seam in the rubber. On most wheels it's pretty obvious.(pic 1) Take a sharp craft knife (or paper snips) and score through the glue on the seam. It should cut through pretty easily. (pic 2)

2. Carefully peel back one corner of the rubber at the seam. It should come right off. (pic 3)

3. Snip through the remaining rubber on the seam.

4. Pull the rubber off the wheel. Ususally the adhesive remains on the wheel and the rubber comes off clean. But sometimes some sticky is left. (pic 4)

5. If there is sticky left, just rub it in one direction until it all comes off. (pics 5 & 6)

6. Sometimes I trim the rubber first before mounting it to the EZ Mount (Smart Mount from CHF)It helps to get it trimmed nicely. (pic 7)

7. Mount rubber on EZ Mount foam carefully, making sure to keep it straight. (pic 8)

8. Use Baby Powder to coat the sticky if there is any left.(pics 9 & 10)

9. Trim the EZ Mount around the rubber making sure not to undercut the foam.

10. Clean your newly mounted wheel stamp!

11. Now mount your newly unmounted wheel on the storage system of your choice. I use the binder sheets from Sunday International. They also have an acrylic block 2" x 7" that's perfect for the jumbo wheels! (pics 11 & 12)

Now you can use your wheel just like a long stamp! You can have your wheels and use them too!

Birthday Brag!

I am one VERY happy person right now! I received some money for my birthday and I thought I would use it towards my SAB purchase, but then I got an email from eBay about a favorite seller. I have been watching this guy for over a year now, just waiting for the time I could order from him. What did I order??? I am getting a Kitchen Aid Accolade 400 watt stand mixer!!!! I have been asking for a Kitchen Aid mixer for 4 years now. Finally we had the money and opportunity to buy it! I'm SO excited! It should be here within a week, so just in time for Christmas cookies!!! I got the Lemongrass Green one, I am hoping to do my kitchen similar to Rachael Ray's in 30 minutes Meals. Right now our kitchen is a blank slate (actually it needs a complete overhaul!) I figured I could get the mixer in whatever color I wanted and design the kitchen to match! LOL A little backwards maybe, but I've wanted to do my kitchen in those colors since I first saw 30 Minute Meals!

Part 2 to my wonderful birthday...
I had asked my FIL and his friend if they could build me an ink pad/marker/reinker storage unit. They enjoy woodworking and I thought they would like the challenge. Well that was months ago. I've been very patient and hadn't said anything until about 10 before my birthday. I asked how they were coming on the storage unit. And Tony says "Well, maybe for your birthday." I said "Oh good, that's in 10 days ;)" LOL Well I guess they hadn't realized that it was that close to my birthday. Anyway fast forward to Thanksgiving. We get back from going to see Casino Royale (great movie btw!)and my FIL and step MIL are there, they give me my birthday card and in it is a printed picture and a note. They said they were sorry for forgetting my birthday and they wanted me to have what I wanted, so they ordered the storage unit for me!!! I can't believe it! So in about a week I'm getting this....

So this year I have had the best birthday I've had in a LONG time. Now I just need the money to fill the storage unit LOL. Actually, I'm about halfway there!

Glitter Ornament Tutorial

Ok here goes, my very first tutorial. I've never written one of these before, but I had so much fun making these ornaments, that I thought everyone should know how! The 1st one is Night of Navy and the 2nd one is Cool Caribbean. I also made one with Marigold Morning, but the picture made it look orange and not very pretty, but it's gorgeous IRL!

First carefully take the metal hanger off your ornament. Then add about 20 drops of reinker. I used Cranberry Crisp for this tutorial. (see pic 1) Then you need to swirl the ink around inside the ornament until it coats the inside completely. (see pic 2) After you have the entire inside coated, turn the ornament upside down so that it can drain into something. I can't tell you how long to do this as it depends on lots of factors, how humid it is, how many drops of reinker you used etc... Just let them drain until there are no more "drips" when you turn it over. (see pic 3)

Ok now you need to use some sort of funnel to add the glitter. I just made one from scrap copy paper. (see pic 4) Add about 1 1/2 teaspoon of ultra fine glitter to the ornament. (see pic 5) Now here comes the fun part! Take your thumb and COMPLETELY cover the opening. (I have tiny hands and I can do this, so you should be able to as well.) (see pic 6) Now SHAKE the ornament. Shake it hard, but be careful not to hit it on anything. You want to shake it and not roll the glitter around inside, rolling it will create lines in the glitter, while shaking it will give a smoother look.

Now you want to have a plastic baggie ready to catch the excess glitter. This is the bonus of this technique. You now have custom colored glitter you can use on other projects! (see pics 7 & 8) Let the ornament dry for a few minutes and replace the metal hanger. Your custom glitter ornament is done! These are so much fun and SO easy to make!

Hoppy Holidays

Hoppy Holidays! This was for todays Limited Supply Challenge on SCS. Make a funny holiday scene, using 2 or more stamp sets.

I used Unfrogettable, a Michael's $1 stamps and the Lily pad from Eureka stamps. I am SO glad I bought Unfrogettable! I was really up in the air about it when it first came out, but the more I use it, the more I love it!

Ok the details, first I stamped the frog and then masked him to stamp the lily pad. Then came the snails, first I stamped the front ones and then masked them and then I stamped the back ones. The pond line was hand drawn as well as the harnesses. I masked off the frog and the back snails when I stamped the trees, just to be sure no stray ink got on them. Everything was colored with Prismacolor pencils and blended with odorless mineral spirits.

The "ice" is Glossy Accents (like Crystal effects) with some Cool Caribbean Glitter on top. The glitter was a by-product from making the glitter ornaments :) Waste not want not LOL! The snow is just little dots of stickles.

Mom update!

Mom had the surgery to remove the cancerous mass today. They removed the mass and a bit around it for good measure as well as the closest lymph node. Preliminary tests show the lymph node is CANCER FREE!!!!!! They still have more tests to run on the mass itself as well as the node, but so far things look really good. No chemo! As soon as she heals from the surgery, they are off to Florida to resume their RV travels. "Just a bump in the road." to quote my Dad.

Thanks everyone for your good thoughts!

Happy Birthday to me!

So Sorry, it's been so long since I posted, but I've had a really trying week. I found out my Mom has breast cancer. She goes in for the surgery to remove the mass tomorrow, so keep your fingers crossed that the cancer hasn't spread to any lymph nodes and she won't need chemo! We always knew this was a possibility since her grandmother died of breast cancer, but I wasn't expecting it. KWIM? Anyway keep her in your thoughts :)

On to happier things :) It's my birthday! Woo Hoo! I get to pick the restaurant we go to tonight. I have no clue where I want to go LOL! Any suggestions?

I had a really nice time this past weekend doing VSN on SCS! My mojo was flowing and I'm really proud of most of the cards I made. I had 4 chosen as winners! Yea me! Nice early birthday present! So here they are, these happen to be my favorites of the weekend too!

This one just came together perfectly! I don't really have a whole lot of yellow or gold papers, so when I remembered the sheets of designer Sarah sent me, I knew they'd be perfect! I haven't used Long Time Friend in a while so I broke it out and thought, hmmm I have some little flower beads. But when I went to look for the flower beads, I only had 3 in yellow and the right shape. I wasn't giving up that easily. I was a beader in a previous crafting life, so I knew I had TONS of beads in this house. I found the rosy pink seed beads and sewed them onto the card to look like the flower sprigs. I really love the look!

I just love these stamps by Stampabilities. This Snowman is SO cute and I knew he'd be perfect for the Glitter window card. I also knew that he fit perfectly inside the scalloped square punch I have. What I didn't know was that the packing tape is not quite wide enough to span the hole left by the punch. Hmmm what to do. I ended up overlapping the tape slightly , I should have overlapped it a bit more, but it turned out just fine :) This color combo is quickly becoming one of my favorites for Christmas! The sentiment is a Michael's $1 stamp that's been embossed with RED EP. I love it, it's so crisp against the blue background paper.

The buckle cards was tricky for me. I have made only one before and I HATED the results. It was just awful, so I was hesitant to try again. But then I looked down and saw my brand new Basic Grey paper just calling to me! LOL So I just HAD to use it ;) I really love the results! I had the whole card made and photographed, but it didn't have a sentiment. So I went back to my table and remembered the All in a Row set. I just love this set, it adds so much to your cards. I just wish I had gotten it straight. Oh well, I still love the card! I did a little creative photographing to make the crooked line less obvious hehehe.

I was also a quilter in a past crafting life, so I have tons of patterns saved on my computer just for quilting. So when this challenge came up I knew just what to do! I found the tree pattern and enlarged it so that it was 5 x 5. Than i printed it out and numbered the pieces and cut them out. I used the numbered pieces as the patterns for my patterned paper. The paper part came together rather quickly. Once I got the pieces cut out, I adhered them to a piece of card stock and then glued that to the background. Then I just set my sewing machine for a small zigzag stitch and went to town. Looking at it now I should have also stitched around the edge of the Chatterbox paper, but I really ran out of time to do much else to it.

We have a winner! Lucky number 13!

There were 31 comments that counted and I put the numbers 1 - 31 in a bucket and had Kendalyn pick. She thought she was the winner :) Anyway she pick the number 13!

Here's the winning post!

Nicki Lundeen said...

I love your blog. I check it daily. Keep up the good work, and what an accomplishment - 5000 views!

Woo Hoo! So Nicki, Contact me and I will get your goodies out to you soon!

Please stay tuned for more giveaways :) My birthday is coming up VERY soon, so I think I might just have to have another giveaway then. Keep checking back!

5000 views and still counting!

Woo Hoo! I can't believe my blog has hit 5,000 views. Thank you to everyone who stops on by for a quick peek to see what I've been up to! I always wondered "Why on earth would someone care what I am doing? Why would they care what *I* have to say about anything." I started this blog cuz SO many other people were doing it. I know the whole peer pressure thing strikes again, but seriously it seemed like a great way to elaborate on the cards that I've made and things I've discovered in my stamping journey. Someone must like what I have to say, because 5,000 is nothing to shake a stick at! Thanks so much!

Now for the best part :) It's yet another blog giveaway!

I have a Michael's Preggo lady stamp and an assortment of Giga scalloped punch outs to give away. Just leave a comment on this post and I will have my DD pick the winner from a hat.

I can't wait to see who all comes here! Good Luck!

I'll leave the contest open until Tuesday and then DD will pick the winner.

Stamp Cleaners - Which one?

Well, there are SO many stamp cleaners on the market today, I thought I'd try a bunch of them out and let you all know the results. So far I have only tried the first 4, but I plan on getting the other 2 this weekend. I'll add my finding on those later. Now I'm judging these based on their ability to clean SU's Basic Black and Stazon ink off the stamps. For water based inks (like SU's Classic inks) I use my own homemade stamp cleaner! recipe to follow ;)

My favorite stamp cleaner by far is the 1st one. Judikins Fabric and Permanent Ink Cleaner! It stinks to high heaven, but it cleans even Stazon off my stamps with ease. Old and new stains alike, it doesn't really matter, it gets them all pretty well. I'm a fan of the dauber top, so that helps it's standing a little bit too. Unfortunately, it's a little difficult to find. My old lss carried it before they went out of business and I've used all I bought from there :( I did find a place to order the LARGE jug, but I haven't ordered any yet. Price about $3

My next favorite is the Ranger Solvent ink cleaner (red bottle). This one stinks too, but not as bad as the Judikins. This one will get the ink off your stamps if the stains are pretty fresh, for the older stains, it does ok. Again, the dauber top is nice, I think it helps you use only as much cleaner as you need. I just touch the dauber top to a paper towel to clean it off after each stamp. Price about $3.50 - $4

Now the one that SO many people rave about, Ultra Clean. While this cleaner doesn't stink the way the others do, and it does a nice job (not the best IMHO) of getting the ink off my stamps, I just don't like it. Why? I've found that it's oily. If I get this stuff on my hands while I'm cleaning a stamp, I have to stop and wash my hands before I touch my project again. I don't have time for that! I have ruined too many cards because of oily fingerprints because of this cleaner. It's also a spray, which is fine, I do use a spray bottle for my own cleaner, but for the price, I think you waste more than you use. Price about $5 - $6

Now StazOn Cleaner, it smells nice (like lemons) but honestly it didn't get the ink off my stamps very well. It's also VERY oily and I have to clean my stamps again with a regular cleaner to get the residue off of them. Personally I will not buy this one again. Price about $4

For the last 2, as I said before, I will get them this weekend and let you know what I think. I have heard good things about both, but I also heard fantastic things about Ultra Clean and it turns out I don't really care for it, so we'll see!

Ok for the regular stamp cleaner recipe:

1 gallon Distilled water (pour out about 1/2 cup or so)
4 - 6 TBS Glycerin (ask at the pharmacy counter for it)
and about 3 good squirts of Baby Wash (don't use too much or it gets too sudsy)

Mix this all in the Gallon jug the water comes in and don't forget to label it! I made a batch of this stuff over a year ago and I still have 2/3 of it left. I stamp everyday, so I use a lot! LOL I just put some in a cheap spritz bottle I got at Wal-Mart in the beauty section. Spritz it on my scrubber and away we go!

***I have been asked about Baby Wash. Basically it's just a very gentle soap. You can get a small bottle at the $1 Store if you don't have little ones around anymore. ***

Oh and a cheap alternative to the stamp scrubber SU sells ... paint pads. I can get 2 paint pads for just under $3 and then I can replace them when they get stained and nasty. I just clean them in the sink with regular soap and let them dry after each stamping marathon. Yes, they do "shed" a little bit, but only until they've been "broken in" for a few days. I bet I could take them to the sink when I first get them and scrub them until they don't "shed" anymore. I'll have to try that, it's about time for a new batch anyway!

Multi-fold Holiday Card

This was for today's sketch challenge on SCS. SC94 I used the vertical version so it would go with my Ornamassortment set! I love the way the card turned out, BUT I should have thought it all the way thru before putting it together.

I should have done the gold "stitches" before I put that layer on, because now it's just messy :( I like the way it "should" look LOL What happened was that I got it all done and the focal layer looked too plain to me. So I added the rhinestone to the center ornament, and that helped a little, but not enough. So instead of making a new card, I thought I could "fix" this one. UGH big mistake LOL. I'm too much a perfectionist to be happy with the stray EP flecks.

Ok enough complaining :) I do LOVE the way the Happy Holidays and the All in a Row turned out! I really think I'm going to like having All in a Row for adding little touches like this.

I'm going to need more Cranberry Crisp if I keep this up! I've been using it like crazy lately! Not that that's a bad thing *wink* It's a great color!

Ok, vent time. there's a new discussion on SCS about the "In Colors" and if you should get them, knowing that they'll only be around for a year. I think that if you like something, and can afford it, get it! Don't let the limited availability enter into your thoughts. If you go by that, then you won't buy ANY stamps because they "might" retire them at the end of the year. To me that's just silly. But then again I'm not a demo, just a happy customer who loves her stamps, CS and inks. I love the fact that SU is trying to keep up with the current color trends. So what if I can't get the CS after this year, I'll just have to make sure I buy enough to last me for a while *wink*.

Ornament Greetings

I was browsing blogs the other day, looking for inspiration for my Shoebox swap card, and I think I've found it!

I saw a card on Keri's (Sereikastamper) blog and knew I just had to try the sketch out! I love how it turned out! This is the card I'm going to use for my swap card.

There's only one detail to work out, do I buy the scented Embossing powder from CHF (The vanilla scented and colored one.) for the sentiment? Or do I leave it as-is with the Saffron craft ink?

OK the details :) The card base is Artichoke, and the Paisley background is stamped in Artichoke on Celery paper. The images are stamped on VV and then watercolored/colored with markers (the cranberry is done with a brush). The other colors are Cranberry Crisp and So Saffron. I added some stickles to the edges of the ornaments for some *bling* :)

I just got both these sets the other day, and I LOVE them! Paisley is going to quickly become one of my favorite backgrounds! I can see myself using it on everything!

Purple Cows Digital Photo Trimmer

I'm in love! This thing cuts thru paper like butta! It's wonderful (so far! *wink*)

I think it'll take a little getting used to, but so far I LOVE it! I got the smaller one, not the 2-in-1 version, I can't stand rotary trimmers :) This size is perfect for card makers. The measurements go up to 8 3/4 and just over 5 1/2. I would suggest the larger size if you intend to use it for scrapbooking.

Ok the things I LOVE about it:

The price! I got mine from HSN for $12.95 +s/h

The clean cuts it makes! It cut goes right thru the paper beautifully!

My big thing - there's a measurement for 5 1/2 right on the top! No more pulling out a long bar thingy that I have to make room for on my desk, and having the cut be off just because the paper had to go down to get to the measurement. KWIM?

No blades to replace! Woo Hoo!

The blade locks when not in use! Plus the blade is not sharp. It's a flat edge, so it's safe for kids to use too.

It's lightweight, and with the storage inside the clear part, it'll be nice for taking to crops and shoebox swaps!


The little safety bar you have to push down before you cut. But this is the thing I think I'll just have to get used to.

I wish they'd have put the little hash marks on the underside of the clear plastic part. My Fiskars trimmer was so well loved that the hash marks wore away! I'm afraid this will eventually happen with this one as well.


To me the Pros certainly outweigh the Cons for this trimmer. As with all things new, there is a breaking period and the initial love affair, so I'll keep y'all posted as to if I still love my trimmer when it's not the new toy in my collection!

Coal Again?

OK I admit it, I LOVE Fluffles! BUT, I only really like the tongue-in-cheek ones! I saw this guy at the store and I had to have him!

I belong to a Yahoo group called Scrappin' Sailors. We scrap, we curse, we laugh, and we don't take life too seriously! It's a great group of ladies. We decided to do a non-religious Christmas card swap, so this is the card I'm doing! I think it's perfect for our little group of misfits! Everyone in it deserves at least one piece of coal this year *wink*

I also LOVE non-traditional colors for Christmas. My own tree/house gets decorated in Blue and Silver! So anyway, I used Lovely Lilac, Bashful Blue, & Certainly Celery for the stocking and ornaments, the tree branch is Always Artichoke and Fluffles is done with Creamy Caramel. I used my markers for all the coloring, except for Fluffles himself. I used the Aquapainter and watered down ink for him. It's hard to see in the scan, but I used my Glitter pen to add glitter to the ornaments, the centers of the "Twinkles" and the centers of the "star" stitches. It's really pretty IRL!

Ok another new find! Back in June, I had tried to get the CTMH Simple Stitches SOTM set, but my demo waited a bit to long to put in the order and it wouldn't go thru. (Long story, but I wasn't too happy with CTMH at that point!) Anyway, I still wanted a stitches set, but never really looked into them. I was at the lss the other day, with a full punch card. That meant I "had" to buy $30 worth of product and I'd get it for 50% off! Woo Hoo! Gotta love "deals" like that! So anyway I saw these stitches by Technique Tuesday, I grabbed them up! LOVE them! They're a little short, but since they're clear, it's pretty easy to line them up.

Scenic Fall

Have you ever had an idea for a card you wanted to make, and couldn't make it fast enough? That's what happened with this card! I saw a digi LO in the new Simple Scrapbooks that just caught my eye and I thought, "That would make an AWESOME card!" So off I went to my scramping table (stamping/scraping)to play!

I started with the PP this time. I don't usually, but I have had this Scenic Route paper for over a year now, and while I LOVE it, I just haven't used it. So it was first, then I looked thru my HUGE binder of WRAKs to find an image that would go nicely with the Fall colors on the paper. What better than Autumn leaves in a basket? Nothing! LOL SO that was next. Out came the trusty Prismacolor pencils and OMS, my favorite coloring medium.

I love the Linen on the background and on the PP, but I'm a little disappointed with myself for adding it to the focal image. See the leaves were stamped on WW paper and I had used VV for the rest of the card. SO the focal image needed some toning down. I sponged the edge ala SweetMissDaisy, but it wasn't 'quite' enough. Even with stamping off once, the linen turned out to be a bit too heavy, oh well.

I might re-visit this design when my Paisley stamp gets here. I think it would look fantastic!

The Secret to Happiness is ...

a good sale!

This is for the Ways to Use it Challenge on SCS for today. Glitter! It's really hard to see in the pic, but there is glitter on the gifts, on the words, around the main image, in some of the dots on the background and along the edges of the papers. It's kinda subtle, but it's there!

If you haven't noticed, my goal this week is to use stamps/sets that have been collecting dust. First I used the Wheelbarrow from The Wheel Thing, then the chair from A Little Love, and now the shopping cart from The Wheel Thing and the gifts from Cool Cat (this is actually why I bought Cool Cat! LOL)

Nothing too fancy about this one, Just a lot of the Sakura Glitter pen, LOVE that thing! Word Window punchies thanks to Sarah! I used the last of my fantabulous KI Memories paper :( I hope I can get some more from the lss. I just love the colors in this collection!

One thing to note, interesting things happen when you emboss over embossing! I had done the gifts first, and embossed them with my homemade Iridescent Ice EP. Then I stamped the cart with Versamark over top and embossed with Silver EP. The parts of the cart that went over the gifts are still silver, but it kinda blended into the existing EP.

Happy Together

My Aunt and Uncle will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary at the end of this month, so I needed an anniversary card. I'm not one for formal, so I didn't really want to do the traditional gold, plus that's not really them anyway :)

This was for the SC93 on SCS. I know I know, I had to be the one to do it horizontally, but I think it works. The silk flowers are from my stash! I have a TON of them and I hardly ever use them anymore. So I used 3 on this card ;)

So, what do you do when you want to add a brad and you already stuck down the layer that was supposed to hide the prongs? Ugh I hate when I work faster than my brain! I did just that on this card. I stuck down the Regal Rose layer before I added the flower. Grrr. So anyway, I punched a small hole in some Saffron paper and then punched a 1" circle out around the hole. Now I had a "base" to put the flower on and the brad prongs would be hidden :) You can't see the Saffron circle cuz it's hidden behind the flower :) Now this won't work for every time I screw up and forget that I wanted to add a brad, but it was a pretty good solution for this time!

The large scallops are done with the SU Slit punch. I just drew a straight line across the paper and lined up the straight edge of the punch along that line and punched. Then I moved down and lined up the edge of the round part to the last punch as well as the straight edge and punched again. Continue this until the whole piece is scalloped.

It's hard to see in the small picture, but the Chocolate Chip strip has the punched holes in it. I really love what it adds to the card!

Wheely Sparkly

This is for the CC83 color challenge on SCS. I started out with something totally different in mind when I started stamping, but you know how it goes sometimes, things just kinda evolve into the finished card as you work. That's exactly what happened here.

I was going to have 2 panels that slightly overlapped, but I didn't like it when I tried it out. Then I was going to use white brads for the flower centers, but when I was getting them out, I saw the Rhinestones and well, that was that! LOL The white edge was another after thought, then it got too heavy and I had to tone it down, so I stamped the whole thing with Linen. That helped a little, but I still needed to work the white around some more. UGH!

I really need to use my Primas more often! I have a TON, but I never think to add them to my cards. But when I do, I always like them.

SO glad I was able to trade for Warmest Regards! I LOVE this set! The font is so nice, kinda half formal/half casual. Plus FINALLY I have a sympathy sentiment. Not that look forward to using it, but it's nice to know I have one if I need it.

A Fairy Get Well Wish

Ink it Up's DD is having surgery tomorrow, and Keri asked the WRAK'ers to flood her DD with get well cards. She said Addie loves anything sparkly, I think I got that part down pretty well! *wink*

I got the fairy as a WRAK and I thought it would be perfect for a Get Well "Wish" :) She is colored using a paintbrush and ink. Then I added some Stickles all over the background as well as on her dress. The wand is a little adhesive backed rhinestone I found at Hobby Lobby. She's popped up with mounting tape. I've found I like mounting tape better than pop dots for these larger areas. The small pop dots don't give enough support to the piece and then it ends up sagging once it's gotten to it's destination, not good!

The background is stamped with Gable Green craft ink and then I used homemade Iridescent Ice EP to add LOTS of sparkle! I stamped the Pixie Pink strip with the star stamp from Background Basics and also used my II EP :) I love the poked strip that atomicbutterfly uses, and I thought I'd give it a try here :) I think I like it! Although I had to weigh down the CS layers so the glue could cure. It kept popping up and wouldn't stay stuck! Out came the big ole' binder and let dry for a couple of hours, now it's stuck! LOL

Frankie Goes Trick or Treating!

I LOVE this guy! Actually I love all Halloween stamps! But this guy just makes me laugh, with his belly sticking out and his "I love Bats!" shirt, I just can't help but giggle when I see him!

So I was talking to Anna (SweetMissDaisy) last night, and we were discussing the Shimmer paper. I admitted that I had never used the few sheets I have (I don't want to mess up since I only have a few sheets :( ) and she told me that I had better get busy and try them out! LOL So figuring it was National Card Making Day, AND Anna's birthday, so I had better listen and make a card! LOL

I stamped Frankie on the Shimmer paper with Stazon (my pad is getting dry, so he kinda looks grayish instead of black :( ) Then I colored him with Prismacolor pencils and used the Magic Pencil technique, Gamsol or Odorless Mineral spirits are used with stumps, to blend the colors. I love this technique for coloring and I really need to invest in a larger set of pencils, but that's another blog entry! LOL

I stamped the Linograph in Old Olive on WW and then using my Elegant Eggplant marker, I colored in the little "flower petals". Then I dotted the centers with the Signo white gel pen.

The bat was an after thought, I wish I had thought about adding him earlier. I would have stamped him on the Shimmer paper too and then just cut out the top of the wings, rather than cutting him out all the way and having to lost some detail, because I can't cut that small! Oh well, something to remember for the next time :D

Basic Grey Chipboard Mini Monos

I just picked up a pack of these for a project I was working and I didn't realize that they were self-adhesive. So I'm thinking, "I'll give it a try, but I'll prolly need to use glue dots or red liner tape to really get them to stick." I have never had luck with anything self-adhesive. So I altered the letters for my project and stuck them down. Well I messed up the one and had to move it just slightly, so I tried to pull it up to move it over. First off, it wouldn't budge! Then when I finally got an edge up, it split in 2 LOL! So needless to say, these things REALLY stay stuck! I was able to fix my boo-boo, and the project looks great!

For the price, I'm really happy with these! They were under $6 and there are 81 pieces! Nope, I'm not getting paid to blog about this, just really happy with a purchase I made :) I wish all my impulse purchases ended up this good LOL!

I'd post the project, but the person it's for reads my blog, and I don't want her to see it until she gets it ;) So ya'll will have to wait too! Hehehe!


I did it, I jumped onto the Fluffles bandwagon! So many people were doing SUCH cute things with these guys, I had to try them for myself. SO I asked for Fluffles images on the Wish RAK group. I got a ton of everyday and some Christmas ones, but I didn't get either of these guys. So what did I do?? I went out and bought them for myself ;)LOL

Now I'm not one to send Thanksgiving cards, but I was laughing SO hard when I first saw this stamp, that I knew I just HAD to make a card with it! My step-MIL has like 7 cats, so I think she may get this card, just cuz she can relate! LOL

I had seen some other people doing up the Linograph stamp this way, with the Signo gel pen and the stickles, and I just fell in love with the look! I think it adds SO much to the card.

The scallop oval is of course the Giga punch from Marvy, but the larger plain oval was cut with the CM cutting system! I was so excited to find that the proportions of the CM ovals fit the punches perfectly! I have no idea why Marvy didn't think of that when they designed their solid punches, but it bugged the heck out of me that they were not "just right". So now, I'm a happy camper and can have solid ovals to fit my scalloped punches :)

This card was so easy to do! Fluffles is colored with markers (except Fluffles himself, he's done with watercolor crayons)I used my new Sakura Stardust pen to add glitter to the hat and the swirl under the broom. I also dotted the Chatterbox paper with the Stardust pen to give it more sparkle! I'm not sure why I waited so long to pick up one of these pens! It's so easy to add just a touch of glitz to any card! The little black dots in the corners are done with the Sakura Glaze pen. Another little gem of a pen!

Another new favorite supply of mine has to be the ticker corner punch from SU! Yes you can use a circle punch and carefully look where you're punching to get the same look, but it's SO much easier with the SU punch. Just another little thing that adds SO much to a card!

The field, the field, the field is on FIRE!

Yesterday after Rob took Ronon out for a walk he was just hanging out outside enjoying the beautiful weather. I went out to join him and I sat down on the porch, when I looked up and noticed that the field behind our shed was on fire. Casually I said to Rob, "Oh it looks like they're burning the field." We didn't really think too much of it, other than it was a bit windy for burning.

Then we looked closer and noticed that our neighbor was burning in his backyard, just west of the field that was on fire. We also saw the field was burning from the middle of a side, not the edge like they usually do when it's a controlled burn. Hmmm this seemed a bit odd. Just then the neighbor gets on his tractor and drives out into the field and drives around the fire. Ok now this is really strange, what the heck is going on?

Well the next sound answered my question LOL Fire Engines! Here comes the Waynesville Volunteer Fire Dept to put out the fire. My guess is that something from the neighbors burn pile blew into the field and caught it on fire. Luckily the farmers had taken the corn down just this past week! If it hadn't been down, I don't think I want to know what might have happened! It would have been WAY to close for comfort! Even thought there's a stream in-between our property and where the fire was, I still would have been very worried!

In about 10 - 15 minutes the fire spread across most of the field! It's a good thing we have a volunteer fire department here in town! Their response time was really good! Now the fact that there are only 500 people or so in the town and it's a total of 6 blocks tall by 5 blocks wide, should mean for a good response time! But it was still good to see them act so fast and prevent the fire from getting out of hand!

Our New Puppy

We got a new puppy! His name is Ronon, after the Stargate Atlantis character Ronon Dex :) We're HUGE Stargate fans and it just seemed like a good name for a large male dog ;)

Ronon is part Australian Shepard, Sheltie, Australian Cattle Dog and part Lab. Lots of parts to make up one cute puppy! He's adjusting very well to our home, and is eager to please! We've only had him for a few days, but so far he is understanding that the crate is his place, he is to only go potty outside and he even sits (well most of the time;) )

We had an Australian Cattle Dog mix before and she was the best dog! Unfortunately, she had an accident last year and broke her neck. We had to have her put to sleep :( It was very hard on all of us. So after a year of healing, we decided we were ready to get another dog and wanted another Aussie Cattle dog mix :)

Luck was on our side :) I get the Freecycle mailings for this area and a lady was giving away these pups! I IM'd Rob and we decided to ask for pictures. By the time we had responded, there was only one pup left, but he was PERFECT! We fell in love with him, just from the picture! We talked about it again, and decided that we were ready for another dog and this little guy would be ours!

We picked him up last Thursday and after a trip to PetCo for the essentials, we brought him home. Upon arriving home our cat, Maki, proceeded to let us know exactly how she felt about this intruder, by swiping at him and scratching him in the face! She was NOT happy LOL! He was fine and more than a little wary of the cat for the rest of the day.

He slept thru the night the very first night! I think it was more out of exhaustion than anything else. So far we've only had a few accidents in the house, all our fault. We just didn't get him out in time. It's almost like having a newborn again! We are up in the middle of the night, taking him outside to go potty, stopping him from getting into everything, cleaning up messes. LOL But it's all worth it when he gives his sweet kisses!

Halloween is coming!

I LOVE Halloween! Even more so than Christmas and my birthday! I made the mistake one year of NOT purchasing the Halloween set from the SU mini catty and I regretted it for the whole year. Then when the new catty came out I was devastated that my beloved Halloween set hadn't made the cut. I was fortunate to find it later on the BST forum on SCS, but I vowed that I would NEVER again let a stamp set "get away". So when I saw Best Fiends I KNEW it would be mine!

This card was for the Sketch challenge this week on SCS. SC91 Sarah (speale) had used the Linograph background on her card "I was a Witch" SO of course I had to try it! The only problem was that I didn't OWN Linograph! Sarah told me when it retired that I would want it, but did I listen to her? No of course not. LOL Well she was right! So Again, I got lucky and found it on the BST forum on SCS.

So I tried my WCC again. I'm still not sold on them, but for some reason I can't part with them either. It's not that I don't like how the card turned out, I just don't feel I have the same control as I do with either the Watercolor pencils or the Prismacolor pencils. Anyway, Vlad is done in WCC and the black background was made using homemade Black Diamond EP. I just took some UltraFine glitter and mixed it with my black EP. It works great, and I don't have to spend $4 on another EP :). The layers are stamped with Canvas in black using the finger walking technique. Basically instead of rubbing the whole piece with your hand or your brayer, you just touch it with your fingertips and "walk" them around the piece. It gives it a really grungy look. I also discovered that stitched ribbon melts when it gets too hot! I had dyed the ribbon with Sahara and was heat setting it, when it started to shrink up. SO I used that to my advantage. I tied the ribbon on and then heat it up again. It shrunk and crinkled and now looks all old and worn :)

Ok so have you ever had an idea that just wouldn't go away? That was this card. I'm not sure it turned out exactly how I had imagined, but I LOVE it anyway.

I found this patterned paper at my lss last week and I just knew it would be great on Halloween cards! It's made by Junkitz. I love that the paper is the cardstock quality, rather than the normal thin flimsy paper you usually get with PP.

This is about as simple as it gets, but I love the results. I stamped the spider from Best Fiends on Very Vanilla, and then the rest is PP :) The green rickrack was a freebie from the lss! Woo Hoo! Gotta love when that happens. It was the last bit on the roll (just about 1/2 a yard) and they just gave it to me! The Word Window punched pieces are thanks to Sarah :) She's such a great friend! And the Sentiment is from Purple Onion Designs. I love their font and sentiment stamps! (Oh and they are on sale right now too :) Can't beat 50% off!)

New and Improved Color Combo Site!

It's finally up and running! My NEW and Improved Color Combo site!

The functionality is all the same, we've just made it easier to use and to see what colors you are choosing. The new "In Colors" have been added as well as some combos to start you off!

I haven't gotten all the old combos transferred to the new database yet, and I probably won't add all of them. There are too many fluke combos in the old database. I will add all the 3 and 4 color combos, just not the 5 color combos.


OK so for the changes:

The biggest change is the addition of the In Colors and the removal of the colors that retired 2 years ago.

You now can only choose a color once. This way we won't get duplicate entries in the combos.

You may only save 3 colors or more. If you want to add a 2 color combo, add white to it :)

The colors are computer generated to make it faster for the database to run. Therefore, they might not be exact to the SU colors, but I have tried really hard to get them as close as possible.

We changed servers so that we could use a real database. But the new domain is not free like the old one was, so there is a donation button. It is totally optional, and I will NEVER charge for this site, but it does cost me money to have it up now, so ...

The new URL is

We will have it automatically redirect you from the old site after we've added all the combos! But please update your bookmarks!


If I think of something else, I will add it, but for now those are the biggest changes!

I'm really glad everyone loves the idea of this site and DH and I would LOVE to hear your feedback on the new version.

HUGE thanks go out to Sarah for helping me enter the combos from the old site!

Vintage Violet

There's been lots of talk about this new "In Color" from SU. Some people love it and have been using it with everything from Almost Amethyst to Black and Very Vanilla. Personally I like the color. Now it's not my favorite of the new In Colors, but I do think it's ok from the little I've played with it. I'll have to play with it more to really form an opinion about the color.

What do you think? Do you love Vintage Violet? or hate it?

I think this is one of my favorite combos using Vintage Violet.

Vintage Violet, Sage Shadow, Certainly Celery, and Bordering Blue

It's so soft and gentle. Some other combos that I really like are:
Vintage Violet, Marigold Morning, Bashful Blue, and Always Artichoke
Vintage Violet, Almost Amethyst, Very Vanilla
Vintage Violet, Cranberry Crisp, So Saffron and Always Artichoke

I think the trick to this color is that it needs a brighter color to balance out the muted hue. The brighter color seems to enhance Vintage Violet.
Welcome to my new an improved blog. I hope you can find something useful, insightful, humorous or just plain silly here. Enjoy!
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