Sunday, December 11, 2011

All Buttoned Up

Oh my, what a week I had! Busy, busy, busy - but I guess we're all in that boat! My son, Chris, is a senior in high school and captain of his wrestling team. Wrestling season is BUSY, and yesterday was an all day tournament at another high school, where Chris placed 2nd in his weight class (182). I know we aren't supposed to brag, but I love bragging on my children! Here's a cute pic of him I took while he was chatting in the stands before his final match - I love my handsome boy!

And this is him with his medal:

Okay, enough of my proud mom act! On to some craftiness!

This week's Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz is "All Buttoned Up" - make a project that features buttons. I chose to make a button tree. I have seen photos of several of these over the years, and finally got myself in gear and got one completed. I have the supplies to make a couple more, but I just haven't found the time to get them done - at this rate, it will be next Christmas before I make them!

It's just a styrofoam tree base, which you can get at any craft store, and lots of buttons and pins. I dipped some of the pins in glue and then microbeads to add a bit of texture.

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope everyone else is doing better with their Christmas preparations than I am. Gotta get busy and get some shopping done this week! Big hugs to you all!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas!

Whew! I don't know where the time has been going. I have barely been in my house this past week. So I am, as usual, trying to play catch up. It's wrestling season now for my son who is a high school senior, and I am the team mom, so that's almost a full time job, on top of running my two businesses, so I don't have a lot of time for being crafty these days! I have so many projects I want to do, but there just aren't enough hours in the day!

Our Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge this week over at The Outlawz is to make an ornament or a card with an ornament on it. I decided to make an ornament using a paper rosette that I already had made for something else and never used. I added a variety of other elements to it, and voila, a handmade ornament for the tree!

Thanks for stopping by a sharing my time woes! Hope you are having a better time managing your 24 hours each day! Big hugs!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Recipe

Hi everyone! I hope your Thanksgiving was as wonderful as mine, and for those who live in other parts of our world, someday you'll just have to come visit and celebrate with us! I ate too much, and have had lots of leftovers since Thursday, but that's about over now and time to move on to some non-Thanksgiving foods.

In that vein, our weekly Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz uses a "recipe" for designing our projects. I decided to go with a Christmas card as the result of my use of the recipe:

I dug into my healthy stash of Christmas themed papers and embellishments for this one - I love this time of year, because I get to play with all my "stuff"!

I also made another card this week. It uses a gorgeous digi from A Day for Daisies and some little scraps of paper and ribbon that I had in my scrap pile. I colored the image with Copic markers and Prismacolor pencils:

Thanks for stopping by this week. Stay tuned because we have a couple of great challenges coming up that will hopefully inspire you to get creative! Big hugs!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Christmas is just around the corner!

Oh, where does the time go??? Thanksgiving is this week and Christmas is just around the corner. Time to get all my Christmas cards made and sent out pretty soon!

In that regard, our Saturday Paper a la Mode challenge over at The Outlawz is to make a holiday related project (doesn't have to be Christmas, because not everyone celebrates the same) based on your own family traditions.

As far as traditions go, we don't have a lot of specific traditions - I guess mostly we tend toward the traditional colors and images and designs, but occasionally throw a curve ball into the mix.

So, I have a few cards I want to share. This first one I made for the card front swap at Crafters Digital Art Center. The vintage image is from the Etsy shop iralamijashop. I threw some colors into the card that are perhaps a little non-traditional, but then I guess that's how new traditions are made - sometimes you've got to step out of the box.

This next card uses a digital stamp from A Day for Daisies. I just adore this cute little sweetie!

Now I'm off to work some more on a special Christmas tree I am making. Hopefully it will turn out nice and I will be able to share it with everyone!

Happy Thanksgiving to you, and big hugs too!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Thank You to All Our Veterans!

I am a Veteran! I served almost 9 years on active duty in the U.S. Army as an officer, and another 5 years in the Reserves, before resigning my commission altogether so I would be assured of being around to raise my son. Since leaving the military, I have continued to work with the military in some capacity, either as an employee of a defense contractor or as a business owner. A huge majority of my friends and acquaintances are either in the military, retired from the military, or are family members of military. It's been my life and that of my children for a very long time - it's what I know and love. It's my family!

Today I wanted to create a project that honors veterans. Over at The Outlawz, our Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge is to make a project that honors veterans in some way. After a lot of thought and a million ideas - too many to actually make - I decided to create a scrapbook layout to honor my dad. My dad served in the U.S. Air Force as a young man during the Korean War, and he was very proud of his service, and even more proud of mine. This is one of my favorite photos of my dad - it's old and a little fuzzy, but still precious to me!

Much love and thanks to everyone who has served our country, and to their families and loved ones. Hugs to you all, and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Time to Give Thanks!

I love Thanksgiving! Nothing better than family, friends, and food all meshed together at one time! But sometimes it's hard to actually enjoy it! Everybody is rushing toward Christmas before Halloween is even over. So I have promised myself this year that I will make a concerted effort to focus the month of November on being grateful and giving thanks to God for all the wonderful blessings in my life! And try to mostly put off any Christmas preparations until after Thanksgiving is over and we have given God his due, at least for a short time.

I got that cute graphic from Facebook - thought it was appropriate to share it here!

Over at The Outlawz this week, we are doing Thanksgiving projects for our Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge. I have two projects to share - the first is a CD holder that I made. This one is for storing away my fall photo CDs of football games, Halloween, Thanksgiving, back to school, and all those other Autumn events. You could give these to family and friends as gifts, or try decorating it a bit different and put music CDs in it as a gift.

Then this next one is strictly for Thanksgiving - a pretty little card where I applied some leaf-shaped brads and sewed on some pretty golden beads.

I hope everyone can find more reasons to be thankful than they can even list! Hugs to you!

Update: I decided to put a series of photos together with some brief instructions about how to make the CD cover - if you can't read the words, just let me know and I'll send it to you in an email or something. I apologize for the lighting in these photos - it was hard to get in a good spot for lighting in my craft room.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Here I Go Again!

Well, I'm batting 1000 - late again for posting what should have been done Friday night. I just don't know where the time goes anymore!

Our challenge for Saturday's Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz this week is to use stitching on our projects. It can be either machine or hand stitching, but it has to have some sort of thread on the project.

Confession time: I recently bought a new sewing machine - about a month ago - and it's still in the box. I have been holding out on setting it up because I wanted to get my craft room purged and rearranged, but at the rate I'm going, that will be next year this time. So ... I had to use hand stitching. But I thought it turned out pretty - sort of an embroidery effect. I like a lot of texture to my cards and layouts, so on what would have been a rather CAS design, the stitching adds a lot of "oomph"!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope to be a bit more proactive this week in getting my blog post done! Hugs to you!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Time is flying! And I'm slow with my posting!

Hi everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful weekend! I am a few days slow with posting for Saturday's challenge. I took my son, who is a high school senior, for a college scholarship interview at Virginia Tech this weekend. It was a great trip, and so beautiful with all the leaves changing colors. Virginia Tech is located in Blacksburg, Virginia, which is down in the southwest corner of the state, and the terrain is a bit mountainous, so the views and scenery are incredible. Virginia Tech is so beautiful, with almost all of its buildings being made of stone, so it has a very regal and distinguished air about it. Chris did well with his interview, so help me keep my fingers crossed that he gets offered this scholarship.

For our weekly Paper a la Mode challenge at The Outlawz, I made a fall-themed banner - it covers both Halloween and Thanksgiving, so I can leave it up hanging from my mantle for a couple of months. I used some cute tree and house-shaped chipboards as the base, and alternated 7 of them for the banner. I made each one unique, because really, who wants to be boring and make the same thing over and over. Here are a few photos of the individual pieces and the overall banner.

So, which one is your favorite? I like each of them for different reasons. I put the whole thing together with some beautiful orange satin ribbon, but it's a bit difficult to see in the photo of the entire banner - it's the same ribbon that you see on several of the individual banner pieces. I got that ribbon, and most of my ribbons and lace, from Martha Pined's Etsy Shop, Creating Is Fun. She has gorgeous stuff, and you can't beat her prices and customer service. And she has lots of sales!

Thanks for stopping by, and big hugs to everyone!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

And Even More ...

Got a couple more cards done yesterday with a couple more of my new A Day for Daisies digis.

This first one is for one of my little nephews - I thought he would enjoy the spiders. There wasn't much coloring involved - just the bodies of the spiders with some gray-scale Copics. Then I used one of my distress ink pads to blend some orange color around the edges, since it is for Halloween. The papers are a hodgepodge of scraps that I had from previous projects.

This next one is for my sister. She loves cats - we call her "The Crazy Cat Lady" - and so I always make cards for her that have cats on them. She always love them, and keeps every single one. I colored the cats with a mix of Copics and Prismacolors and put on a sentiment sticker and some pretty buttons from my extensive button collection, otherwise known as the "Stash"!

Thanks for stopping by! Big hugs!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Saturday is A Day for Daisies! (and pretty birds)

Soooo ... I got my new October digi kit from A Day for Daisies yesterday, and there are so many beautiful images. I love this little bird, and I decided to modify it a bit by adding some words to it. Not sure where this quote came from, by I thought it was appropriate. I made this card for a sweet friend of mine who has been going through some tough times this year, so I'll put it in the mail on Monday and hopefully it will cheer her up a bit.

I used some My Mind's Eye papers, my favorite Stampin' Up Top Notes die, and some ribbon and buttons from my stash, along with a little Tim Holtz ticket that I've been hoarding for several years! And of course a little black cardstock, because it just makes everything look prettier!

I think I'm going to make another one of these and put it on kraft cardstock, because it also makes everything look prettier!

Thanks for stopping by, and love and big hugs to you!

Monday, October 3, 2011

3-Dimensional Designs - The Outlawz 1000 Member Party

Hi everybody! Thanks so much for stopping by to see what I made. It's always nice to have visitors.

Over at The Outlawz, we are having our 1000 Member Party all this week, starting today, October 3rd. We have a blog hop going on, which is perhaps how you wound up here. We also have lots of challenges and games going on this week, so if you aren't already playing along, I recommend you get on over to the party and have some fun with us. We have over $800 in sponsored prizes being given away for the party - you can check out the sponsor list and prizes by going to The Outlawz home page.

Now on to my 3-dimensional creations. Our challenge for the Paper a la Mode group is to use Autumn colors for a non-Autumn themed design, and do something in 3D. So this first design uses a 3-D heart for a "love"-ly little card.

This next design is a decoration I made for my fireplace mantel. I love fall - it's my favorite time of the year. I don't do a lot of holiday-type decorating throughout the year, but I always have some things around the house to celebrate this wonderful season. The air cooled off here in Virginia this weekend, so it definitely feels like fall now, at least for the next few days. We will have a couple more hot spells I'm sure, but there's nothing like that first nip of cold air!

And then I made a couple of pumpkins to go along with the half pumpkin on the framed design. These are pretty good size - about 3" across on the scalloped one and about 3 1/2" on the larger one. They use up a couple of sheets of paper each, but they are just so darn cute and very easy to make. I'm going to make several smaller ones and create a tablescape for Thanksgiving with these and some larger real pumpkins and candles. Can't wait!

Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope you'll take a moment to become a follower of my blog and leave me some love! I recently realized I've gone over 100 followers, so it's time for some blog candy soon!

I hope you are having beautiful weather wherever you are, and don't forget to stop by The Outlawz and play some games, join some challenges, and win some prizes! Big hugs!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

School Days!

Our weekly Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz is to make a project with some sort of back to school theme. I opted for a bit of a CAS style this week. I made a little folded fan pinwheel and used an apple digi for the center. I also used a school paper digi for the background. Both of the digis are from The Stamping Boutique. I inserted the digi into powerpoint, then added text in a font that looked something like what a kid in school would write like. I like the rainbow colors against a black background - makes them pop - and I guess it looks a little bit like a blackboard in school.

It was a long week this week. Today I am being overly lazy, hence my lateness at getting this posted. I just ordered some chinese food from my favorite local place - to be delivered - so hopefully it shows up soon. I plan to eat and go read my book. I need to catch up on a couple of projects, but that will have to wait until tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by! Hugs!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

1000 Member Party at The Outlawz!

Make plans to join us for some crafting, games, friendship, prizes, and just good fun!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Saturdays are for ...

So it's Saturday, and as the sun started fading, I decided to get busy in my craft room. I put this card together for another of my A Day for Daisies digis I colored last weekend. Yes, it's another bunny. Yes, I think he's adorable too!

I used a combination of Pink Paislee and Jillibean Soup, a variety of edge punches from Martha Stewart, Stampin' Up, and EK Success, the Top Note die from Stampin' Up, hand-dyed seam binding, and ink for edging by Ranger Distress Inks (Antique Linen). The sentiment frame and stamp are from Papertrey Ink.

Thanks for stopping by and leaving me some love! Big hugs!

Thankful ...

Hi everybody! I have been on an A Day for Daisies kick for the past week. I spend last weekend coloring up a bunch of new digis with my Prisma colored pencils, and now I've spent this week trying to turn some of them into cards and things. This week's Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz is to celebrate autumn, since summer is heading out the door and we're heading into the new season. I decided to make one of my new digis into a "thankful" card. This little bunny is showing us some of her carrot harvest - isn't she just adorable!

Autumn is always a time that makes me reflect, not just waiting until Thanksgiving, but there is just something about that first cool air, the leaves turning beautiful colors, the day growing a little shorter, that makes me remember how blessed I am. I may not be "rich" monetarily, but I have two wonderful children, two funny fur babies, fabulous friends all over the world, and I am in good health. A girl can't ask for much more, but I am blessed in more and more ways all the time, and I am Thankful to God for all that He has given me and continues to bless me with! I wish you all many blessings in your lives!

Thanks for stopping by! Big hugs!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Thinking of You ... More ADFD

Okay, still trying to play catch up and turn some of those sweet little digis I colored over Labor Day weekend into cards, so this is one I finished last night. I started out making something entirely different with an entirely different digi, and somehow ended up with this. It was sort of like surfing the net - I started out in one spot and ended up somewhere entirely different and can't explain how I got there. But I think the card is sweet and pretty. I love all the soft colors together. The stamped image, which is doubled up and raised with foam squares is from Ippity by Unity. I get all my Ippity from the dear Rona. The pretty paper is from Pink Paislee. That lovely lace is from one of my favorite Etsy shops - CreatingisFun - Martha always has such beautiful laces and trims, and she is almost always having a sale, so check her out if you are a lace lover like me.

Okay, back to my craft room to work on more designs. It's Thursday evening, I just got back from a trip to DC today, and I need to get busy with my creation for Saturday's Paper a la Mode challenge over at The Outlawz. Thanks for stopping by, and big hugs to you!

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Fruits of My Labor ... How I Spent My Labor Day!

If you are not already familiar with Tammy Thompson and her digis at A Day for Daisies, I highly recommend you check it out! She sells her designs on her site, and she also has an Etsy shop. I fell in love with her designs from the first time I saw one, and I especially love and adore her nature and animal digis. This past week her new releases (she has a new release every Friday) just knocked my socks off! It's been a long time (probably almost a year) since I touched my colored pencils, but I got so inspired this weekend I printed out a bunch of the digis and started coloring. I had forgotten how much I love to color! I have both pencils and Copics, but I have to say that most of the time I prefer the pencils. For me, with my lack of Copic skills, the pencils give me a lot more control over my shading and blending (and of course they are much less expensive too). So I got a bunch of the digis colored up, and I decided to make a card from this little cutie - oh my goodness, isn't she just adorable. I thought a Thanksgiving card would be appropriate, since it looks like she's busy with her harvest of goodies from the farmer's patch! And wait until you see the other sweet digis - I am just in love with all of them! And of course I had to add some lace and pearls and ribbons and buttons and my favorite Ippity stamp (you can get all your Ippity stuff from my dear friend Rona) with some Cosmo Cricket Tiny Type letters (my favorites). The papers I used are from Jillibean Soup and Sassafras. I'm still undecided on whether or not I like all the papers and things I used, but I definitely love that little bunny! And I am going to enter this one for fun in The Outlawz Monday Greeting Cards Challenge this week, because the challenge is to use pearls and lace on a card (and what fun is a card without pearls and lace).
I hope everyone has had a wonderful Labor Day! My not-so-little one (he's 17) started his senior year of high school tomorrow, so a big day! I'm excited - life holds so many wonderful surprises around each corner. I hope you are all blessed! Big hugs!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Banners, banners everywhere!

Another week and another banner! I know, I know, but I just can't seem to stop making banners. This week's challenge over at The Outlawz for our Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge is to use canvas or fabric in your project.

I decided to make my banner panels from canvas, but I wanted to make sure the beautiful papers I used from Pink Paislee also got to shine, so I alternated the banner panels for my AUTUMN banner between the canvas pieces and the paper pieces. So for each panel I cut a larger piece and a smaller piece and layered them together.

I used some rubons to decorate the canvas pieces, and who knew rubons would work so well on a rough surface, but they did. I wanted to keep this banner relatively simple, so I used a Papertrey Ink stamp and die set to make the little center medallions, then used some more Pink Paislee alphabets in the centers to spell out AUTUMN. I wanted an odd number of panels, so I added one extra on the end and put a Basic Grey flower in the center.

I used beads to connect the panels, and the larger oblong center "beads" are actually roll up strips of paper that I taper down a bit with my paper cutter. I got the idea from my daughter's jewelry collection, because she has all sorts of jewelry from Light Gives Heat, an organization that sells gorgeous products produced by ladies in Africa. They are so pretty and colorful, and they are made from paper beads. Mine aren't nearly as gorgeous as theirs, but they serve the purpose, and I think they turned out pretty well - they add some nice coordinating color, some space between the panels, and a nice new dimensional element.

Thanks to everyone for stopping by this week! I appreciate all the love and support! Big hugs to all!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Irene is gone!!! And I'm late with my post!!!

Today I am so thankful that Hurricane Irene turned out to be much less intense than forecast. My home and family came through with flying colors - just some debris cleanup outside. But my heart and prayers go out to everyone who have had their property damaged, or worse yet are injured or killed. Having been through this before, I know the recovery is going to be long and tough, so please remember those affected.

Saturday's Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz started yesterday, but I was so focused on the storm that I completely forgot to post my creation - my quick creation. This entire week was full of work and home storm preparations, but I found a little time on Friday to try to put my thoughts about the inspiration photo that is the focus of the challenge onto paper. The colors and lines are just so bold and beautiful, and I had to make a couple of tries to get something pulled together that I was happy with, but this is my "inspired creation":

I used some Pink Paislee papers that I had in my stash, along with a little chipboard tree and a variety of little gems and pearls that are supposed to look like leaves in the fall, although I'm not sure how successful that turned out.

But thanks for stopping by, and thanks to everyone for all the prayers and positive thoughts as Hurricane Irene approached and passed us by. Hugs to all!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Banners - Saturday Paper a la Mode Challenge

Okay, it's time to talk about one of my favorite things in paper crafting - BANNERS! I love making banners, and I have made quite a few over the last couple of years to celebrate different seasons, holidays, as gifts, and now have made a tiny one to put on an Artist Trading Card (ATC) for this week's Paper a la Mode Challenge over at The Outlawz.

I made the banner pieces, which are quite small - maybe 1/2 inch for each piece - using Power Point. PP has a lot of different shapes built into it, so I used a triangle and sized it to what I wanted. Then I typed a letter into each piece - in this case I was spelling out "joy" because my ATC is for the Christmas season. I made the border of each triangle red, and the letters black. Then I printed it out on plain white cardstock and cut out the pieces - easy peezy! (If you would like to use the same idea, let me know and I will send you the file to use) I love the little digi bunny - I colored that with Copics and added a little Stickles to the fur on the hat for some bling.

My last post had the ATCs for the other 3 seasons, and this is the final one. These are for a swap over at CDAC where we had to use digi images to make ATCs, and we could pick one or more seasons - I am doing all 6. I've got to get these in the mail to the swap organizer this week, and I am so looking forward to getting back the ATCs that everyone else in the swap has created. This will be my 3rd swap with CDAC - if you haven't tried it, it's a lot of fun. They do different ones for stickpins, cards, ATCs, mini albums - just about anything.

Thanks to everyone for stopping by! Big hugs to all!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Paper a la Mode Challenge at The Outlawz

Ooh, I have been soooo remiss with my blog lately!!! And with my paper crafting too for that matter!

So now for this week's challenge, and hopefully a little inspiration for you! Over at The Outlawz, we do a weekly challenge called Paper a la Mode. There is usually a twist, and you can use the twist to make pretty much anything involving that twist. This week's challenge is to make anything but a card (so a layout, banner, mini-album, wall decoration, etc.).

So I decided to try my hand at some ATCs (or artist trading cards), which are tiny in size ( 3 1/2 inches by 2 1/2 inches ).
I am making these for a swap, in addition to this challenge, and they are seasonal. The swap requirement is that they each have to have a digital image of some sort on them. I struggled and struggled with this, because I am just not accustomed to trying to work with something so small - my typical card size is 6 inches by 6 inches!!!

So this first one is for Summer - it's the first one I did. I thought the canning jar with the flowers was just so "summery", and I tried to put it with some colors and patterns that reminded me of summer - I guess mostly because they reminded me of summers at my grandmothers house a million years ago, but my best memories ever!

This second one is for Spring, and might just be my favorite. I used an adorable image from Arielle at the Wax Fruit Company - I actually won this in a sneak peek contest, but just had not taken the time to use it yet. I think it's just too cute!

And then the third one is for autumn, and in this case I made it Halloween-y with one of my all-time favorite digis from A Day for Daisies! I love cats!

There is a fourth one that I am doing for winter, or in my case Christmas, but I am saving it for later. So stay tuned for that one coming along in the next couple of weeks.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, and I hope you join us over at The Outlawz for some fun! Big hugs!