Monday, November 28, 2011

Sparkly Christmas

I was feeling sparkly with this card, so I went with some of my gold sparkle embossing powder on the Skipping Stones Christmas Joy stamp. It's a neat stamp set. You can find it here. The ribbon was originally from a birthday present. It's a pretty attention-grabbing ribbon, so I decided on a knot to make it a little bit smaller so not to overshadow the tree. Ho ho ho.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Wishing you God's Peace

With most cards, I prefer to make the card with the sender in mind. But with sympathy cards, it's easier for me to have several on hand from which to choose. It can be too hard to try to make a thoughtful card and write a thoughtful note inside while also going through the grief. So I try to keep a bunch on stock. This one uses the Leaf Clusters set from Hero Arts and a rub-on sentiment from Simple Sentiments. How do you handle sympathy cards?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Just Us Girls Joy

The Just Us Girls challenge for this week was to use green, red and white. I threw in a little kraft, too, with some awesome papers from Authentique. The little tag was a gift I got in a holiday card exchange with some ladies on the Hero Arts Flickr page.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Hope in what is true

It's been a challenging week for my church and my family. The challenges to our family have been external, which unfortunately is sometimes the case when you're a foster family. You have a whole range of extended family that you kind of know in some way, and their well-being affects the child you are caring for, so it matters, but you have absolutely no control over it. If it were my brother or my brother-in-law, I could at least speak with them and try to help. And I would really know what was going on. Because of confidentiality, we are often given the barest glimmer of the full story, which generally is fine. All that is to say, this week has been kind of challenging on the home front for our kiddo, in ways that at such a young age, the kiddo can't really understand or articulate, but does know on some level. This is hard for the fixer in me.

My church is facing some serious financial challenges. We are a small church, and have always existed on the edge of financial solvency. But we do a lot of work in the community and I'm very proud that while we are small, we are strong. Except financially. And that's important, obviously. We had a good stewardship campaign, more than half of the pledging families raised their pledges, which was the most that had ever done so. Proud again. But it's not enough. Tough questions, hard week.

In the Board meeting today, I said (along with a lot of other things) that we need to be hopeful and practical. These things, along with some other things that have happened in the last year (or not happened) have forced me to think of hope in a different way. I love, love, love talking about hope. I talk about it all the time in sermons. But it wasn't until recently that I really thought about how stupid and robust hope is.

It doesn't make sense to be hopeful in most of the situations we have to be hopeful in. And yet, hope is sometimes all we have. This is from a sermon I gave last month:
Hope is not naive. Hope is a choice to see the world in a certain way, full of possibilities and kindness and God's promises. Hope  trusts that the future will be better than today, and that today is also the Lord's. God is God, today and forever. This is the good news.

"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1 NRSV. 

Merry Mojo Monday

I have found sketches to be one of the most useful starting places for card design for me these days. And Mojo Mondays always have a good one, like this one. I used some Authentique Christmas papers and the little Christmas tree stamp which is white opaque embossed. A few Hero Arts paper flowers, a Hampton Arts Merry Christmas stamp and all done.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

My Time Made Moxie

I made this card for both the Moxie Fab World Tuesday Trigger and for the My Time Made Easy Pretty Palette challenge. The Moxie Fab trigger (below) was a purse with some great colors. Immediately when I saw it I thought of some Basic Grey paper from the Ambrosia collection in the back of my paper stack. I had planned a fancier card, but the pattern on the background was just too awesome to cover up with many embellishments. I contented myself with some twine and wooden buttons and a couple strips of border punched strips in coordinating BG paper and black.

Here's a close-up of the embellishments.

Here's the Tuesday Trigger from Moxie Fab.

And the palette from My Time Made Easy:

Monday, November 21, 2011

Lock up your daughters

I was at Walgreens recently and spotted a cute little boy's t-shirt which read "Lock up your Daughters". Setting aside the sexist implication that girls need to be locked up to be safe, etc, I thought it would make a funny baby boy card. I used a transparency that I had been hoarding and some embossing powder that is called Blue Glitter. I like having the effect of glitter without having it everywhere in my craft area, the envelope of the card, the body of the person who receives the card and so on. Here the glitter stays in place. The design of the card is from Cas-ual Fridays and you can see the sketch at the end of this post.

It was pretty challenging getting a good photo of this card, since the transparency is reflective. See?
When I was a kid I sucked on my pointer finger, not my thumb. Even today when using fine motor skills, I stick my pointer finger up in the air and use my middle finger like my pointer. Weird, huh?

Eventually I photographed it lying flat from a distance. The card was flat, not me. Ha ha.

Here's a closeup of the onesie:

And, here's the sketch from Cas-ual Fridays:

Steampunk missing you

I used some inspiration from Lucy Abrams for this card. Hers can be found here. I started with the bird from the Ode to Steampunk kit. I'm getting a lot of use out of it, which is always satisfying. It's a big kit. The sentiment comes from the Wish you were here kit.  I was perhaps disproportionately excited about using two kits together. I need to find a good way to organize the kits so I remember to cross-use them. Maybe if I printed out the sample pages and put them somewhere easily accessible.

A little My Mind's Eye Lost and Found paper, a teal cardstock base, a teal ribbon, and voila :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Six on Saturday

1. Today I was photographing some of my cards when something strange in the corner of my peripheral vision caught my attention. Thankfully it was not a mouse. It was Elmo. All over the dining room chair.

Someone had given the Destructo Twins a sticker book and they proceeded to use them all over the chair. We've never been the kind of people who were going to have nice things (it's just not that important to us), but if we'd ever entertained hopes of doing so, they are occasionally readjusted by things like Elmo stickers on the antique dining room chairs. Thanks to my grandma for the gift. Anyone have a good suggestion for removal? When we tried to get the ones up off the floor, they took the finish with them.

2. Yesterday I took the kids to the boy's school's Harvest Festival. They had a bunch of tables where one could make harvesty things like a turkey out of an apple, sticks, marshmallows and carrots. The girl enjoyed eating the boy's turkey. And I forgot to take it with us when we left, so I hope his teachers noticed and didn't leave it for us when we return on Tuesday.

3. I've begun an exercise routine which includes a daily trip to the gym between now and Christmas. This is a stressful time of year for my family, not only because of the regular family stress, but with being a two pastor family, Advent kind of knocks us silly. But, I have proactively tackled the stress with Pilates and Zumba.

4. Zumba is hilarious. The teacher is a beautiful dancer and the class was very fun. I do fine following the steps thanks to some aerobics and dance in my background (let's not discuss how far back in the background), but the sexy angle of the class is lost on me. FOR NOW. :)

5. I love the Hero Arts digikit Ode to Steampunk. I've used it now for a retirement card, a missing you card, and some gorgeous flower cards. I really like how flexible digis are.

6. And as you're getting in the holiday spirit, here's a picture from last year's Nativity set. The boy added a piece to the set.

Steampunk retirement

Last month's release from Paper Crafts of the 365 Cards had a super cute retirement card with an old time-y pocket watch and Happy retirement sentiment. I thought I'd give it a try with this Hero Arts digikit called Ode to Steampunk. The map background and the clock come from the kit, and I typed the sentiment using a font from Word. I added a gem for each hour and a shiny silver ball in the center for a little shine. I made two of these cards, one with a more manly cardstock base :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

My Time Made Pink, Red and Black

The pretty palette colors for My Time Made Easy this week were pink, red and black. Those colors seemed to call for something flowery and dramatic. So, a black base, pink cardstock and red flowers from a Stampendous stamp it was. I threw on a little twine (I think 90% of my cards have twine these days) and called it done. I hope you like it.

I can't seem to find the perfect time of day to photograph, and I have that pesky job which requires me to work, not gallivant around the backyard photographing cards (what do the neighbors think, I wonder sometimes), so I'm working on getting a good contrast. Still working, I see.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Lily Pad Card Chain

The colors for this month's card chain over at Lily Pad Cards were blue, fawn and chocolate. Lovely colors! I used this panel I made at the same time as the one for this card as the main image. The stamps here are both Hero Arts and the technique is known as ghosting. Very fun - you should try it.

And here it is at another angle! Now, I'm just amusing myself with entertaining angles like I'm some sort of famous photographer :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Mustache Thanks

One of the challenges (the Random Fun Challenge) over at Moxie Fab was to create a card with mustaches. Ta da! I've always had a sweet spot in my heart for mustaches, since my Dad wears one. His was pretty restrained for years since he was in the Air Force and there are regulations about the size, but once he was retired, his grew to Yosemite Sam proportions. I mentioned he's a redhead, right? :) So, thank you very mustache.

Unfortunately you can't see the score lines I added to the sentiment panel. They outline the sentiment.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

Ten sentences on this Tuesday:

My in-laws came down for my church's big fundraiser this weekend. Here's a picture of the girl child with Bampa and his hat:
I'm taking the kiddos on a road trip to visit my parents and brother, sister-in-law and niece later this month. I am very excited to have a vacation and have been considering different methods of surviving an 8 hour car trip with a two year old and a three year old. Needless to say, the 2 screen DVD player will be making an appearance. We'll also be traveling during nap time. How many cookies do you think we can safely eat in that time span? :) They are pretty easy to bribe these days.

And in case you're here for the cards, here's one I made for the 90 minute scramble over on the Hero Arts Flikr page. Thanks so much for coming by :)

Cas-ual Fridays Tag

This week's challenge over at Cas-ual Fridays was to make a card with a tag. I used some Paper Studio paper and handwrote the birthday sentiment. A little twine finished it off. :)

Monday, November 14, 2011

Just Us Girls Challenge Ghosting

I was interested in the technique over at Just Us Girls which is called ghosting. It's basically emboss resist technique, which is then stamped onto. The hardest part was letting the ink dry at each step. I think this card took about 3 times as long as usual, mostly because of the drying time. I had tried emboss resisting before, but especially like the addition of the image on top. It feels pretty weird when it's all done, but is very pretty.

Supplies: Hero Arts stamps, french writing and antique engravings. The paper is Basic Grey.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mama Penguins

How sweet is this image? I added it to some Paper Studio paper, a few gemstones, and all done. I think I'm going to be using this one for some Mother's Day cards :)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Penguin Play Date

While shopping for Christmas digis over at Two Peas this sweet digi of penguins came up on the sidebar. I was instantly sucked in. There are 6 images in the kit, so I'll have a couple days of penguin cards to show you. Today I used two different penguins for the Play Date Cafe challenge to use black, white and a splash of orange. The first one is my entry - I think the second has too big of a splash, more like a wave. When I stamped my orange flower, it was more yellow than orange, so I colored it in with markers. I did an intentionally rough job for a little texture. The top flower is pop dotted up for some 3-D action :)
Thank you for coming by.

Anybody else's hair look like that when they wake up? hee hee.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Play Date Cafe Challenge

Ah, the Play Date Cafe. I love to play along with them, especially because of their talented design team who provide such great inspiration. This week I tried my hand at making an accordion flower. The assigned colors were pink, grey and yellow. I sneaked in a green leaf, which I hope is okay:) thanks for coming by!

Mojo Mondays 214

Today's card was inspired by the sketch over at Mojo Mondays. I like to challenge myself with their sketches, and this one was good for that. I used some Bo Bunny paper, which was doublesided, giving me twice the patterns :) I flipped the location of the flower, so as to highlight the big pink flower in the circle. Have a good one. 

Here's the sketch:

Saturday, November 5, 2011


Yesterday was my birthday. Tomorrow is my birthday party. I was trying to convince my husband that also makes today a special day, but he was indulgently skeptical.

Our son, who is three, likes to ask for things in threes or to do things in threes "because, guess what, I'm three". Yep, he says "because, guess what, I'm three". I haven't reminded him that I always know precisely how old he is. :)

So in honor of people who may or may not have turned 33 yesterday:

Six (three and three) on Saturday:

6. My racquetball partner Katherine Pershey has written a book which you can preorder here. Like how I dropped that "my racquetball partner" bit in there? I do that now.

5. After a length of time that we don't need to discuss, I have rejoined the exercising world. It has been really interesting to notice the differences between how I liked to work out before our daughter came and now. Before she came I successfully trained myself for a triathlon. Now I like to play racquetball and go to classes, like yoga. I think I might have another triathlon in me, maybe next summer. This is the one I did 2 years ago. We'll see if I can get in a regular routine first.

4. Speaking of the number 33, that's how many cards I've made for the splitcoast stampers' drive for MD Anderson in honor of breast cancer awareness month. It was a fun challenge, with one each day of October, plus 2 extra on the first day. I think this was my favorite. It was fun to get out the paint dabbers. The blue one had crusted over or something, so I had to freehand it. That was oddly soothing, too.   

3. Two different folks loaned us Halloween costumes, so we ended up dressing both kids like lions. They were SO freaking cute. Don't take my word for it, though. Here they are:
My little pride of lions.

2. I am going to take a week of vacation at the end of the month. A whole, glorious week. I have been exceptionally bad about vacation this year, and need to use it before I lose it. I don't mean the vacation, I mean my mind. :)

1. My friends and I call 33 our "Jesus year" because Jesus was 33 when he did his ministry before his death and resurrection. So I'm thinking this will probably be a rewarding, challenging, thrilling, awesome year. And I have the skinny jeans ready for it.

Thanks for coming by. I'd love to hear what amazing thing you're hoping will happen in the next year in your life. Let's inspire one another, eh?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Skipping Stones 100

So, you already know I'm the world's luckiest girl, right? Today I am lucky because I get to make another card with a set I won, called Christmas Song from Skipping Stones Design. They have a weekly contest complete with sketch. I'm going through a design phase where sketches are very helpful, so after I finished all the cards for the breast cancer drive (all 33 of them) I skipped (ha) on over to their site for some inspiration. And ta da! The sketch is at the end. This set also comes with some pretty sentiments and a tree. Here I inked up just "peace" from a "peace on earth" sentiment for the sake of space. This is a scan, the ornament on the left hangs over the edge of the card. I like that effect. Thanks for swinging by.

and even more SCS, again

You can tell what I've been doing this month, right :)

Some more cards for the drive:

Both of these cards use stamps from the Christmas song set from Skipping Stones which I won from Cristina. How lucky am I?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


I have discovered misters. Now, obviously they have been around for a long time, so I didn't really discover them. More like I succumbed to them and now can't get enough. I even found myself talking them up to my very nice mother-in-law who is totally not the misted-card type. She graciously listened. :)

I've got a few more cards to show off from the splitcoast stampers drive for breast cancer. It's not too late to join. The first was for the challenge to be inspired by my happy place. That was my honeymoon, so I went with some colors from the very green part of Canada we visited, and a trimmed up SRM sticker that used to say joyeux noel. Without the noel, it means happy, which worked. That sticker is very glittery in real life.

This card challenge was to make a masculine card with pink. The truck and the sentiment are pink. I stamped behind the truck in blue and "diamond" misters. Fun, fun, fun.