Sunday, July 27, 2008

wonderful weekend!!

I had the BEST weekend... I went out of town for my cousin's wedding- the first family wedding since mine almost 6 years ago... I had so much fun visiting all of the aunts, uncles, cousins and family friends. There had to be 250 or more guests at the wedding and it was a blast!! The scenery was beautiful as the reception was at a golf club and there was a little waterfall outside the banquet hall. There was a huge outdoor walkway that overlooked the course.

The wedding colors were black and hot pink- I wish I could show you photos of the awesome bridesmaid dresses- but I'm not sure I want to share photos of my extended family without their ok since this blog is open to the public...hmmm... maybe I'll go crop their heads out :) Ok- I did... The dress on the left shows the front of the sash a little better- and the cute design. The dress on the right shows how the sash comes down the back of the dress- isn't it cute!!

When I sat down to make the card for the wedding- I realized I had NO wedding stamps!! How dumb is that? Actually- that's not totally true- I did have a $1 set of Studio G wedding stamps from Michaels that I'd bought some time ago and never picked up. So I thought it'd be a good time to break those out and try that brand of stamps. Well- I can tell you that I will NOT be buying more of those!! At least not any that have solid images. The outline stamped fairly well (although the overall quality of these stamps is really only worth the $1 that I paid) the solid tuxedo image was HORRIBLE. Some of you might question whether the stamps were "seasoned" properly... or if I used "cushion" under my stamps? The answer is yes... I tried all the techniques a good acrylic stamper has up her sleeve... and sadly- none worked. I admit- this particular image does look ok- that's because after stamping it- I had to color it in with a black marker!!

Since I don't have a decent wedding set I also don't have a sentiment to go along with the card- so I printed the wording out on my computer. I can't really tell you what brand the paper is (the black and watermelon cardstock is CTMH but I'm not sure on the pattern) I will admit I bought it from the local chain store (for Midwesterners- it's Meijer- for everyone else- It's a store similar to Walmart but only found in a few states in the Midwest) The gemstone flowers (which are the same color as the pink cardstock in real life) are from Close To My Heart. They are self adhesive and come with 3 colors in the pack. I think there are about 12 flowers per pack. As of August 5th these will be available for sale on my website at while supplies last!! That will be the first time they've been available for sale to customers as in the past they were a gift from consultants to customers.
Well- It's nearing 10 pm and I need to design a class before I go off to bed... so I'll be back later this week with the sample photos!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

a few more from the stack...

Please forgive my layout photos... 1) I don't have a good method for taking decent layout photos due to their size 2) these photos were taken while the layout(s) were stacked in a pile.. not optimal!!
Thought I'd share a few more from my "stash" of pages that need to go into books.
The Christmas layout was a page lift from another consultant a few years ago- I don't remember her name but I fell in love with her "joy". The supplies used on that page are the Deck the Halls paper pack, Classic Caps Alphabet, Create a File stamp set, a holiday sentiment set, our foil which is now retired, prisma glitter, white hemp- all from CTMH. The "Cutie" layout uses the Boutique alphabet, some Hollyhock and white daisy just blooms, olive buttons (or garden green?) and a paper pack that I can't for the life of me remember the name of. That ink color is Twilight. Well- I'm off to prep project kits for my customers- I'll be back in a day or two with more art- maybe even something NEW!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

organized... at last!

well.. I'm not totally organized... but my scrapbook layouts are!! I really wanted to do some scrapbooking this weekend but as I looked through my never ending supply of photos- I realized that I had finished all of my photos through 2005!! Now- I'm certainly not THAT far behind! I am one of those people that stores pages chronologically- but I don't scrapbook that way!! I like to scrapbook whatever interests me right at that moment. So while I say that I'm caught up through 2005- that only means that I have no more photos pre-2006 to scrapbook- I have already, however, scrapbooked plenty of photos from 2006, 2007 and even 2008- but those years are not yet complete. So what did this information prompt me to do? Get those pages in books!! So rather than scrapbook I pulled out all of my scrapbook albums in progress and new in the box and added post extenders, page protectors and pages!! Here's a photo of the books all caught up.

The next photo is of all the pages of photos from 2006, 07 and 08 that I have not put into books yet ( I always wait till one year's worth of photos is scrapbooked.. I don't know why but it's easier for me that way... I store the pages in ziptop bags)

And finally, a few photos of some of my favorite pages that I snapped while going through the stack... If you are a CTMH consultant... you may have seen some of these posted on the consultant boards in the past.

Well- that's it for now- I took more photos but I'll show them through the week!! Hopefully I'll have time to make something NEW to show... but it will be busy so we'll see if I have time!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Thanks Kari!!

Kari suggested I go with Sitemeter for my new counter so I checked them out- I LOVE that I could start my counter at a higher number to account for the visits before my counter went wacko!!

My friend's birthday was this week and this is the card I made. It was a quick one but I really like the way it turned out.
Supplies: Patterned paper from the Paper Garden pack, White Daisy Just Blooms, From Me To You Stamp Set, blush button, Sweet Leaf Ric Rac, gold bitty brads. Petal and Blush ink.
My stamp club meets today so I'm off to finish prepping for that- I'll be back later today or tomorrow with more :)

Friday, July 18, 2008

what the heck

my counter reset itself... again!! Anyone know of a reliable place to get a free counter? mine is not so reliable!!

I'll be back tonight with artwork- I was just doing some surfing before work and don't have my art ready to post.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

feedblitz repair

It looks like my feedblitz subscription link was messed up... if you tried to subscribe to my blog and got an error message- it should be fixed now. Thanks!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I've been nominated...

Janis posted this comment yesterday...

"I love your creations and artwork! I am nominating you for the 2008 Weblog Award! Send all of your viewers to my site to vote for you! "

It looks like you have till Monday to go vote!! Thanks Janis for nominating me!!

We took a trip to the zoo on Sunday- my daughter really liked the lizards and snakes.. unfortunately they were all behind glass and I didn't get many good shots- but here are a few favorites from the day. And you know- both of these shots were behind glass too- I just think the lighting around the lizards and snakes was darker and since I couldn't use my flash they didn't turn out well. The atmosphere around these two was much lighter.

I'm pretty excited to scrapbook those photos and hope to get some of that scrapbooking done this week!! For now- here's another card made with the Blue Ribbon Paper Pack. The flower image is from the April Word Puzzle Stamp Set inked in Cranberry for the solid portion and Outdoor Denim for the outline. The image piece was "roughed up" with the distressor tool to make it "stand out" from the rest of the card... otherwise it blended in with the OD strip too much. A little natural hemp finishes it off.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Blue Ribbon Cards

I'm working on a card workshop for August. The attendees will receive half a pack of paper, cards and envelopes and supplies to make 10 cards... here's the first 2:

Supplies for both: Blue Ribbon Paper Pack.

The left card also uses the New Horizons Stamp Set, Cranberry eyelets and natural hemp. The card on the right uses a Dimensional Element (chipboard) ribbon slide, clear button and Indian Corn Blue Grosgrain (retired) and the new Sweet Leaf Ricrac. All supplies are from CTMH.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

flowers, flowers, everywhere!!

I've been getting some great garden shots this summer!! Here are a few photos that will be going on my backyard layout at the end of the growing season...

And finally... here's a flower card to end my post with! Once again this idea came from Lisa and you can see hers here. This is the 3rd and finaly club card for July!! I think the ladies will be happy with the selection... and if not I hope they lie to me!! ha ha.
Supplies: Garden Green cardstock and ink on stem. Petal colored pattern paper from Paper Garden Paper Pack. The light colored paper for the flower center is the reverse side of the floral pattern. Sentiment is from the For Every Occassion stamp set (stamped with petal ink) I did some sponging around everything- Garden Green ink on the stemp and petal around the petals and sentiment piece. I used a large circle window charm for the center of the flower. This flower will fit a 6x6 envelope.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

It's Saturday- yeah!!

Here's another club card for July... this is another cased idea from Lisa's blog- you can visit her blog to see where she got the original idea from.
My ribbon needs to be trimmed a little bit better- I'll do that when I find my good scissors. The "joy" is from the Solo J stamp set and is punched out of cardstock. A circle window charm is on top of that. The white flower is from the Big Pink Collection and the paper is from the Boom-Di-Ada creative basics collection. I'm not sure my hat is drawn quite as nice is Lisa's but when you freehand... it's only as good as your drawing skills!!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Have a happy 4th!!

Here's to wishing you a safe and happy 4th of July!! There's a local balloon festival going on this week and we're planning to go see the balloon's lift off tonight (about 60 hot air balloons lift off 2 times a day this week- weather permitting!) I think my daughter will really enjoy that. We probobly won't stay out long enough for the fireworks show but there's usually some exciting ones around our house!!

Well... I will admit this card is cased from the CTMH consultant board!! Once I find the name of the consultant who's idea it was- I'll post her name here.

ETA: The consultant's name is Nancy Brown- Krista was kind enough to let me know and I verified by checking the consultant boards!! Thanks for the great idea Nancy!!

I saw the card yesterday and immediately copied it- the major change is the pattern on the right side- she used her cuttlebug and then I think added the color to the design (or maybe she used the cuttlebug on colored paper then sanded to expose the white- I can't remember which way it went) but I don't own a cuttlebug so I simply stamped the paisley from the CTMH Adorable stamp set in Barn Red Ink.

The monkeys and sentiment are all from the July stamp of the month "Life's a Jungle" set which is ADORABLE!! The barrel is freehanded- I stamped first with the Weathered Background woodgrain stamp- drew my barrel and cut out. I cut a slit in the barrel's opening to allow the first monkey to fit down inside. I didn't do any masking- the clear stamps allowed me to line up the monkey's perfectly without any extra work.

This is one of 3 cards for my card makers at club this month!! I'll show the other 2 over the next couple days.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

4th of July - July Club Layout

I have a class at the end of the month and the hostess wants to do a 4th of July layout... I thought I'd design something that I could also use for my clubs this month.

The right page is similar to something I saw on the CTMH consultant boards a while back although I know it's different- my photo mats are larger for bigger pictures. I designed my left page based on something similar in the CTMH catalog for a different patriotic themed stamp set. The stamps I used were from the Rustic Alphabet (for the July) and the July word puzzle for everything else. The 3 stars on the left page are linked with natural hemp. I stamped the "J" "U" "L" "Y" letters on colonial white with Indian Corn Blue (I also rolled the stamps in Outdoor Denim) and then stamped the little star from the July Word Puzzle Set in Outdoor Denim ink. I used my trusty cutting knife to cut out all the letters and stars. All of the "labels" (i.e. "4th of" on the left page) are made by first cutting the paper to size, stamping my text, then rounding the corners with a corner rounder. All the brads are antique copper.

Colors: Outdoor Denim, Indian Corn Blue, Colonial White and Cranberry. Striped paper is from the Blue ribbon Paper Pack.

Lake Michigan Fun

I just have to share a few photos that I took Sunday and Monday on our way up the Michigan side of Lake Michigan. We had to cancel a big trip we had planned for this summer for a variety of reasons and decided on a short trip to the lake and then up. We spent 2 days driving what would have been about a 2.5 hour (or less) drive!! We hit 5 beaches, 3 state parks and some really fun small towns. We know which ones we'll plan longer stays at.. maybe next year. I did learn that while this type of trip suits my hubby and I - it is NOT WISE for a 3 year old. She did not like playing in the lake like a lunatic only to find it was time to pack up and head to the next beach. For some reason she would also only wear her swim suit at the final beach we visited... so it's a good thing I packed plenty of outfits!!

This picture to the left was taken at South Haven Michigan- it was so windy the waves were just crashing and she was trying to jump over all of them!! What fun to catch a mid-jump shot!!

The photo to the right was taken at St. Joseph, MI- that beach is so awesome!! We had never been there before
(actually- the only town we visited that we HAD been to was South Haven)

The windmill photo was taken at Windmill Island in Holland, MI. The windmill was actually disassembled in the Netherlands and shipped to Holland, MI for reassembly.

And lastly- here is one of the many lighthouses we saw on the trip... This particular one is located in South Haven. To the right of the lighthouse you can see part of a sailboat coming up the channel -
it was on the lake and entered the channel to get to the marina.