Wednesday, January 30, 2008

February Stamp Club Projects

Of course, for February, I wanted to do Valentine's Day-themed projects, but I also realize that some people detest Valentine's Day! So, how do you find a balance? Okay, I didn't do a very good job of that (I love Valentine's Day)! But, my Stamp Club ladies will have the option of turning these into non-Valentine's projects by changing which sentiment stamps they use. Fair enough?

This first card uses the faux silk technique that was shown on Splitcoast Stampers. As soon as I saw the tutorial, I knew I had to try it! It's super-easy!

I went with Almost Amethyst, Blush Blossom and Sage Shadow for this one, with some Elegant Eggplant for contrast. For the "silk" piece, I stamped the hearts from Simply Said all over some white tissue in the three Soft Subtles colours. Then I layered it over some Whisper White card stock. I matted this piece on some Blush Blossom and wrapped some Eggplant ribbon around it.

Then I stamped the hearts on a white square and matted that on Sage Shadow. I adhered this piece to the "silk" piece, then attached the whole thing to the card. I finished by stamping "love" from Wonderful Words across the bottom in Eggplant.

For those who don't want a Valentine's Day card, Wonderful Words also has "celebrate", "friendship" and "thanks"!
All of you Stampin' Up! demos will recognize this Love Box from the cover of the February issue of Stampin' Success! I had to try it as well! (All of the dimensions are on the SU! demo website.)

It was really easy - a strip of Real Red cardstock folded into an open-ended box! I used my mat pack and a white gel pen to do some faux-stitching across the top and bottom of the front of the box.

Then I stamped the l, v and e from Big Deal Alphabet in Pretty in Pink and Real Red. The flower is from Priceless, punched out with the 1 1/4" circle punch. I adhered these to the box with dimensionals. I tied some Whisper White taffeta ribbon around the top, then some linen thread around that to hold the tag. The tag is just a rectangle of Whisper White, stamped with the sentiment from Holidays and Wishes in Real Red and punched with the 1/16" circle punch.

When we do this at Stamp Club, the ladies will get some small cello bags to fill with candy that they can put into the box.

The final project is this Double Accordion Gate Fold Card. I found the tutorial here on Leslie's blog (Running With Scissors). If you haven't checked out her blog, you must! Hers is the first blog I subscribed to when I first entered this blogging world. Her work is amazing. You can see another of her Gate Fold Cards here.

For this one, I used Close to Cocoa Prints designer paper for the card base with Purely Pomegranate for accents. This one is not a Valentine's Day card (but it does use Valentine colours!).

The balloon is from the Birthday Whimsy Sale-A-Bration set and is stamped in Pomegranate on Whisper White, then cut out. I attached it to the Cocoa scallop circle with a dimensional, then matted that with Pomegranate and more Cocoa. The sentiment is stamped in Cocoa as well. It is held closed with a pewter hodgepodge hardware piece.

On the inside, I put a stamped Whisper White rectangle so that you can write in it.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Could it Be Any Colder?

I can't believe that it's almost minus 40 degrees Celsius. It doesn't get much colder than that around here! I'm not venturing out of my house today. The boys and I are going to watch movies and lay low! BRRR!

I'm hoping to get some stamping done this afternoon, so I'll add to this post a little later when I get something done!

ETA: Okay, I got some stamping done this afternoon!!! YAY! I worked on a couple of Stamp Club projects, but I want to wait until I finish all of them so I can post them all in one post. Another thing I did was make a baby shower invitation for a friend of mine. She wants me to make some invitations for her, so this is a prototype!

She asked for it to be a pocket card. I made it fairly simple since I'll be making a whole bunch of them (if she decides she wants to go with this one). I based it on the Celebrate card on page 8 of the Spring/Summer Preview brochure, but I used the Bundled in Love set instead, with Chocolate Chip, Bashful Blue and Barely Banana cardstock. I think I'll round the corners on the outside Bashful Blue piece, though. I hope she likes it.

Monday, January 28, 2008

I've Been Tagged!

Thank you for all your kind, encouraging words. It sounds like the flu has been striking a lot of people! I hope everyone gets healthy soon.

I was tagged by Amy, so here goes!

Five things I was doing ten years ago:
  1. Teaching kindergarten in Drayton Valley, Alberta
  2. Living in a horribly old two-bedroom apartment with my new DH (we were married in 1997)!
  3. Surviving on my half-time salary while my DH went to school (amazingly, God provided)
  4. Saving up to buy a car (we still drove our cars from high school!)
  5. Exercising every day (because I actually had time to!)
Five things on my to-do list today:
  1. CLEAN the house (since I've been sick for two weeks, I haven't done much!)
  2. Prepare for Bible study tonight.
  3. Cook supper
  4. Do some blogging
  5. Go to bed early!
Five things I will do when I'm a millionaire:
  1. Pay off our house and debts
  2. Give money to charity
  3. Take a nice holiday with my family
  4. Invest in the future
  5. Buy a bigger house with a nice craft room!
Five things I'll never wear again:
  1. Leg warmers
  2. Big back-combed bangs!
  3. a bikini
  4. crop tops
  5. fluorescent colours
Five of my favourite toys:
  1. my stamping stuff
  2. my computer
  3. my DVD player
  4. my piano
  5. did I say my stamping stuff?
Five banes of my existence:
  1. whiny children
  2. housework
  3. migraine headaches
  4. getting up early
  5. noisy neighbours (late at night when you're trying to sleep and their teenagers are partying in the backyard even though it's snowing and really cold out and they're REALLY loud!)
Five more people to tag:
  1. Barb
  2. Shelley
  3. Alex
  4. Diane
  5. Candace

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Flu Strikes!

Oh my goodness! I have had a horrible time the past two weeks! Last Tuesday, I was struck with the flu (it felt like I was struck - I woke up fine, but by after lunch, I was in bed sleeping with a fever! It was crazy!). So I was literally sleeping for almost four days straight! My husband had to take Wednesday off of work to watch the kids and my MIL had them on Thursday. I couldn't stand up, I was so dizzy and fevery. By Friday, the fever had broken, but I still wasn't better yet. I even had to miss our church's annual all-day scrapbooking event on Saturday! I was so sad! By Tuesday this week, the illness seemed to be gone, but I've been really tired and weak still. I've been sleeping when the kids nap in the afternoon, and I've gone to bed right after them in the evenings, so I haven't had time to do any stamping for almost two weeks! I also missed an entire round of Barb's Bingo!

The good news is I've lost about seven pounds! Thank goodness for sickness weight loss! LOL! (I know, I'll probably gain it all back, but at least there's a little bit of a bright side!)

So, I haven't had much time for blogging, crafting, emailing, or anything. I'm going into withdrawal! LOL! I'm hoping to have some time this weekend to get back into the swing of things. I'm missing all of your blogs and seeing what you've been up to! I know Amy has tagged me, so I'll have to get that going this weekend as well.

Thanks for checking up on me! I hope you haven't forgotten about me, and I certainly haven't forgotten about all of you. Today, I actually managed to stay awake all afternoon, so it's looking hopeful! I'll see you all soon!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Valentines Swaps Finally Finished!

I finally finished my cards for Candace's Valentines swap. This is the first swap I've participated in, so I was very nervous, hoping my cards would be good enough! I hope these are alright. The swap is for 3 x 3 valentine cards using current SU! products.

I started with Whisper White as the base, then layered on some Pretty in Pink that I had dry embossed with the flower on the Priceless classy brass template. I put some Real Red grosgrain ribbon across the front. The stamped image is from Happy Heart day, stamped in black Staz-On. I coloured it in with Real Red and Pretty in Pink Stampin' Write markers.

The only place I cheated a little bit was with the flower that I put through the heart - I would have used the flowers from the SU! Pretties kit, but I didn't have enough for all eleven cards, so I just used some little flowers I found at Michaels. But I would have dyed the little flower with Pretty in Pink ink had I used the Pretties kit. It's attached with a silver brad. Then I layered the stamped piece onto some Real Red and attached it to the card with dimensionals.

There you have it! I'm looking forward to seeing what other people made for this swap.

Friday, January 11, 2008

More Christmas RAKs!

I wanted to show some more of the Christmas cards I received from my friends and family and my new blog friends. I would have posted them sooner, but they've been displayed on my mantle as they arrived, and I didn't take pictures before. Now that I'm putting away the Christmas decorations, I'll be taking these down (but saving them!). I received lots of hand-made cards this year, which is exciting! Here are some of them; I'll post some more tomorrow.

This first one is from my new blog friend, Teri. I just love the Blush Blossom with Chocolate Chip! Isn't this gorgeous? Thank you so much, Teri!
My friend, Treena, made this next card for me. She's a wonderful lady whom I've gotten to know better this year. She's really become a dear friend to me. I just love all the 3-D parts to this card. She also gave me a hand-stamped candle that is just beautiful (I have to check with her before I post it here!).
Another great blog friend, Amy, sent this festive "Merry" card! Don't you just love the fun colours and stamps? This is so pretty! Thanks, Amy!
This last one is from my wonderful mother-in-law, Margo. I keep telling her to start her own blog, but she's ignoring me! Her cards are so beautiful. She makes tons of cards to sell in our local stores, and she donates all the profits to breast cancer research. She's such an amazing woman.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Lovely & Mellow

This is another card I made for my SIL's stamp-a-stack. It's fairly simple, again, for new stampers.

I stamped the image from Lovely as a Tree in Close to Cocoa ink on Very Vanilla cardstock, then sponged Mellow Moss around the edges. I layered this onto some Kraft paper before adding a strip of knotted Mellow Moss narrow grosgrain ribbon across the bottom. Then I adhered the whole thing to the Mellow Moss card base. Quick and simple! And another card I can submit for Barb's Bingo!!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

For Wendy!

I know I have three of the same card here! Please allow me to explain!

My sister-in-law, Wendy, is hosting a stamp-a-stack for me at the end of the month, so I'm trying to come up with some cards for her and her friends. There are some ladies coming who have never stamped before, so I want to keep it simple. I like this card, but I just can't decide on which card base colour I like best!! I'm posting it here so Wendy can have a look and tell me which one she'd like! And if anyone else has an opinion, I'd love to hear it! I was leaning towards the Wild Wasabi base (as usual), but I'm already doing another card that has Wasabi in it, so I don't want to overdo it. I'm so indecisive, it's pathetic!

The butterfly is from the Priceless set and the sentiment is from Holidays and Wishes. I used Groovy Guava, Blue Bayou and Wild Wasabi for all three cards.

Anyway, please let me know what you think!

Monday, January 7, 2008

A Healthy 2008

Sorry I haven't had a chance to post lately. I've been so busy! This afternoon I was working on my Stampin' Up! Demonstrator Business Website, which goes live tomorrow! I'm so excited about it! It looks so much nicer than the old site, and there is so much more you can do with it. I've been playing all afternoon! Please check it out tomorrow and let me know what you think (I welcome constructive suggestions for improvement!).

Then this weekend, I was working on a 3 x 3 valentines swap that Candace is hosting. This is my first swap, so I'm very nervous. Of course, I decided to do some dry embossing on the card, which is taking a LOOONG time on 11 cards! Next time I'll have to think things through! I'll post the cards when I'm finished them all so you can take a look.

I was also spending a lot of time this weekend praying and thinking about what I would like to change this year (I'd call them New Year's Resolutions, but then they'd be doomed to fail! LOL!). I really need to get healthy this year, so I made this Health Journal to help me stay motivated and focused (I know, any excuse to play with my stamps)! I read in Good Housekeeping that the biggest determinant of people losing weight is whether or not they journal what they eat. So, I thought I'd give it a try. For this journal, I thought I'd keep it simple since I'll be using it all year (at least that's the plan!). I covered it with Ginger Blossoms paper, then stamped the title with the Best Friends Alphabet in Ruby Red on Very Vanilla. I matted this on some Ruby Red cardstock. The flower is stamped from Embrace Life in Ruby Red on Groovy Guava, then cut out and adhered with a dimensional. For the center of the flower, I cut out a flower from the Ginger Blossoms paper and stuck it in the middle. I finished it off with a strip of Bravo Burgundy wide grosgrain ribbon.

At first, I was going to focus just on losing weight, but then I thought that I should really look at my over-all health. So with a lot of prayer, I've come up with some goals. I need to eat healthier and exercise at least three times a week (I want to lose 30 lbs and get back to my pre-pregnancy weight!).

For my spiritual goals, I also need to spend time in prayer and in the Bible (" does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord." - Deuteronomy 8:3b). I plan to study a book of the Bible each month, starting with Daniel, and spend time in prayer each morning before the kids get up.

I also have some social goals. I've become a bit of a hermit since I had kids! I've decided to phone at least one friend a week just to chat and invite someone over for dinner at least once a month.

Then I thought I should have some marital goals to keep my marriage strong. I know a few people who recently decided to separate or divorce after many years of what seemed to be happy marriages. It's probably best to keep things strong and communicate! So we're going to start having a regular date night, "couch time" every day when he gets home from work (this is where we sit down on the couch and talk about the day for a few minutes) and do a weekly couple's devotional to keep us connected with God as a couple.

Well, that's a lot of things to work on this year! It's only the first day, so hopefully I can stay focused! I typically do well for a few weeks, then fizzle out, so I'm really hoping that doesn't happen again!

So has anyone else made any goals/resolutions? I'd love to hear them! Please leave a comment and let me know what you're planning for this year.

Wow, this is a long post! Thanks for "listening" to my rambling. I wish you all a Happy and Healthy 2008!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Ginger Blossoms

I forgot to mention before that I'm playing Barb's Bingo again! This was so much fun last time, and I'm so happy she decided to do it again. Check out Barb's blog for all the details!

Barb lets us "earn" extra bingo numbers by making cards for her challenges, and her first challenge was to make cards using Stampin' Up! sets. Well, that is right up my alley! (I actually don't have anything BUT Stampin' Up!) So my last few posts have been submissions to get us extra bingo numbers, and this one is no exception!

This is a card I CASEd from Cambria Turnbow (whose blog is amazing, by the way). She made this card quite awhile ago using the now-retired Petals & Paisleys designer paper with the Polka Dots & Paisleys stamp set.

I basically just changed the designer paper and colours and used the Embrace Life stamp set (can you tell that this is my new favourite stamp set? LOL!)

I used Old Olive as the card base, then layered some Ginger Blossoms paper on the bottom. The top part is Groovy Guava, dry embossed with Seeing Spots. I put a strip of Old Olive that I scalloped with my slit punch across the seam and layered a piece of Tempting Turquoise over that.

For the center part, I layered Tempting Turquoise, Groovy Guava and Whisper White. I stamped the top of the flower (leaving out the stem) in Olive, Guava and Turquoise and punched it out with my 1-1/4 inch circle punch. I put a silver brad through the bottom of each flower and positioned them on the white piece with dimensionals. Then I used my paper piercing tool to make "stems" for the flowers. I finished it off by tying some Always Artichoke grosgrain around the center piece before adhering the whole thing to the card.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Seeing Spots

Here's another card I made yesterday on my wonderful day off. (Isn't it funny how quickly the free day goes, then the next day it doesn't even feel like you had any time off? I'm going to savour the memory of my day! LOL!)

Anyway, this is a card I made with a previous Splitcoast sketch challenge (SC148).

I started with the designer paper - Cutie Pie - then chose some coordinating cardstock. I used Bashful Blue as the base. The lower half is Certainly Celery, dry embossed with Seeing Spots to match the designer paper. I put some Bashful Blue ribbon across the two pieces to hide the seam. The sentiment is from Time Well Spent, stamped in Certainly Celery. I stamped the two little flowers in Bashful Blue and put them over the flowers on the sentiment with dimensionals. The large flower is stamped in Bashful Blue as well; then I used an Aquapainter to shade it in with the same coloured ink. I cut that out and adhered it with a dimensional as well.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Embracing Life!

What a wonderful husband I have! He gave me today as a "day off" (being a SAHM, I'm on-call 24/7 as many of you can relate to!). I slept in until almost noon, then worked out a bit, had a shower, and then spent the afternoon holed up in the basement playing with my stamps! What a heavenly day!

I made quite a few cards, so I'll spread them out in my posts as I don't know when I'll have another opportunity to stamp for awhile!

I actually participated in a sketch challenge for this card. (Splitcoast Stampers SC157). I also used their last week's colour challenge (Wild Wasabi, So Saffron and Elegant Eggplant).

I was excited to get to play with my new Embrace Life set. I used Wasabi as the base, then layered on the Saffron after stamping it in the same colour with the bamboo stamp from the set. Then I layered on some Eggplant. I stamped the flower image on Whisper White after using my Stampin' Write markers to ink it up (I used Eggplant and Garden Green since I don't have a Wasabi marker). I layered this piece onto some more Wasabi. I stamped the sentiment in Wasabi and Saffron across the bottom.

To finish it off, I added some Crystal Effects to the flowers and sprinkled some Dazzling Diamonds glitter on top. Then I added a couple of So Saffron brads from my Rich Regals collection.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

January Stamp Club Projects

For this month's meeting, I wanted to keep the projects fairly quick in order to give the ladies time to look through the new catalogue since there's so much great stuff in it! I'm actually more excited about this catalogue than I was about the Fall/Winter Collection. There are way more nice stamp sets, and I love the new accessories, especially the rub-ons! Plus, the prices are much lower than the last catalogue for those of us in Canada (finally!).

So with that being said, here are the cards/techniques we'll be making this month.

This card uses the shadow technique on the stamped images. I stamped the flowers from Simply Said in So Saffron first, then stamped over them (moving the stamp over a bit) in Rose Red and Brocade Blue to give them a 3-D effect. I also wanted to use some designer paper, so this card has some Cutie Pie on it.

I've had a lot of ladies in the clubs ask me about dry embossing, and lots of them have never tried it before, so I wanted to do a fairly simple card that lets them try out the embossing. I started with a So Saffron base, then layered some Groovy Guava textured cardstock on the right. For the embellishment, I dry embossed the flower from the Priceless classy brass template onto Purely Pomegranate cardstock (it's hard to see in the photo, but it's there!), then punched it out with the 1 3/8" circle punch. I put a So Saffron brad through the center and layered it onto a white scallop circle. Then I adhered the whole thing to the Guava piece and stamped a flourish from Priceless in Purely Pomegranate onto the card.

I've also had a lot of ladies ask me about the tag punch snowburst flower from my Christmas cards (you can check it out here), so I thought I'd show them how to make it. The ladies will get to choose one of these cards to make - one uses the circle punches for the flower and the other uses the tag punches for it. Both are on Perfect Plum with Pale Plum and Whisper White layered on. I used the Happy Heart Day and Time Well Spent stamp sets for these cards. For the flower centers, I stamped the images, then put some Crystal Effects and Dazzling Diamonds glitter on them to add some bling. Then I adhered them with dimensionals. I think I prefer the mouse card!