Thursday, May 29, 2008

Reunion Favors - For Ibby

Here are some favors I made for the daughter of a friend who works in our sister school. Mary's daughter Ibby has just been through one of the most challenging years of her young life. She had a bone marrow transplant several months ago and has moved back home to continue her recuperation period. Ibby is a graduate of Princeton University and this weekend is the big "reunion" weekend there. Unfortunately, Ibby still has to avoid large crowds so...... they decided to have some of the crowd come to her. She is having some friends over and mom Mary asked me to come up with some cute favors that the girls could share.

My stash of orange and black is plentiful as both my children graduated, not from Princeton but from Somerville High School and SHS's colors are also orange and black. Coming up with a tiger (the PU mascot) was a little harder. I used the leopard head from the Zoofari set, stamped it in black on Pumpkin Pie cs and added the black stripes and the white highlights. It's not as vicious looking as the real mascot, but I think he does the job.

This tic tac holder is really easy to make - you can find the tutorial here

After cutting and scoring the black cs, I added the pumpkin pie dsp with the argyle pattern. The tiger is layered over the watercolored daisy from Touch of Nature, pumpkin pie and whisper white circles and a black scallop. I tied a little knot of black gingham on the metallic cord.

Inside I used the stamp from the Time Well Spent hostess set. I think it says it all. The tic tacs are stuck on with a strip of red sticky tape.

Mary came to pick them up at school at lunchtime today - she loved them. I hope the girls will too! And...... Ibby - continue to be your wonderful self!!!!

If you would like to send Ibby a card please visit her webpage.

Name That Egg

Friends of mine called this evening to say that they had found a huge egg under the mulch in the landscaping in front of their house. It appeared to be buried there. They called the KOOK and asked if I might have an idea what kind of egg it could be. I couldn't resist taking a ride over there to get this shot. My first thought was a goose egg - but this is a fairly active neighborhood and no geese have been seen there. I checked the internet and looked at pics of snake and turtle eggs - however, the shell is hard. The next thought was turkey, but the sources say that turkey eggs are only around 3" and this is 4". After taking a few pictures of it, they recovered it with the mulch and hopefully a predator will not find it.

Any guesses? Please leave a comment if you have any ideas. It's definitely a mystery! I didn't pick it up so I couldn't guess on the weight.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

INKredible Color Challenge 5/25

This week's challenge was indeed a challenge!! Almost Amethyst, Bravo Burgundy, and Mellow Moss. But here is what I came up with. It's a bookmark card. I used the Cutter Kit to make a serrated line which is hidden under the burgundy ribbon.

My friend Cindy was just honored as a recipient of the TWIN award - Tribute to Women and Industry - and I thought that I would send her a note of congratulations. There's meant to be a little humor to go along with this card - Cindy belongs to a neighborhood book club and the last couple of times that she has been the hostess, she has politely sent her e-mail reminders to ....... the wrong contact list.

You can guess what kind of responses she has gotten, especially having done it more than once. But it's one of those things that we love her for. So I'll hope she'll use the bookmark in the next book her book club chooses and know that we're all very proud of her accomplishment.

The second picture is a close up so you can see the colors a little more clearly on the bookmark.

Here's the recipe:

Stamps: Carte Postale stamp set and wheel, Canvas
Paper: Bravo Burgundy, Mellow Moss, Whisper White
Ink: VersaMark, Mellow Moss Ink and Marker, Bravo Burgundy and Almost Amethyst markers
Accessories: Bravo Burgundy 1/4" grosgrain, Mellow Moss Taffeta, Cutter Kit, Slot Punch

Note: If I didn't need this to be flat to be used as a bookmark, I would have popped up those squares!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Flutterby Birthday

We'll be spending time with friends this weekend and two of them are celebrating special days. My post below highlights my friend Linda's graduation and this one will be for a birthday girl.

My friend Kathy will be celebrating her 53rd birthday this weekend. I can tell you how old she is because we are the same age, actually, I'm the oldest in the group according to birth month, but that never accounted for anything!!! I actually have several very close friends that have been my friends since before high school that I still keep in contact with. They're the "golden" ones that the song makes mention of.

Anyway, even though I've known her for so long, it wasn't until last week when she called to thank me for the anniversary card that I sent (see this post) that I knew that her favorite color was purple. So when I went to start creating her card, the one thing I was sure of was that I would be using purple or some form of it.

Here's the recipe for this birthday card:

Stamps: Priceless, Doodle This
Paper: Lavendar Lace, Basic Black, Whisper White, Prints Pack Bashful Blue
Ink: Lavendar Lace, Bashful Blue, VersaMark, Elegant Eggplant Marker
Accessories: Heat and Stick powder, Dazzling Diamonds, Stamp-a-ma-jig, Circle Ice Brad, Sponge

I sponged the Bashful Blue and Lavendar Lace on the Whisper White cardstock to highlight the swirls. Then I stamped the swirl in Lavender, positioned my stamp-a-ma-jig over it and stamped again with VersaMark so that I could use the Heat and Stick to adhere the Dazzling Diamonds. This sounds very involved and it kind of is, and it wouldn't be so much if you were using craft ink which stays "open" longer and would have allowed me to eliminate the need for the SAMJ and the VersaMark. But, since I don't have craft ink in the color that I wanted to use, this worked. I hope you can see the sparkle from the Dazzling Diamonds.

The flower is made by stamping the large flower from the Doodle This stamp set, cutting it out and gently bending in the petals to make it 3-D. I really like these flowers - can you tell!! It's a good thing that I will be hand-delivering this because I don't know how that flower would make it through the mail.

Time to Celebrate

My friend Linda just completed work for her Masters in Education and we will be celebrating this weekend. This is a very simple card that I made for her graduation. I don't really have any graduation stamps, but she's not doing the cap and gown thing (at least I don't think she is) so I just wanted to congratulate her on all her hard work. I was drawn to these colors for her card and now that I'm writing about it I'm remembering that for her wedding, the gowns that we wore were very close to the Wild Wasabi green that I chose for the card base. I guess I'll always equate Linda with green!

The recipe:
Stamps: Celebrate Everything
Paper: Wild Wasabi, Groovy Guava, Soft Sky, Whisper White, Afternoon Tea DSP
Ink: Wild Wasabi, Soft Sky, Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Double-stitched Wasabi, Sky, and Guava ribbon, ticket corner punch

Congratulations Linda!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Another Deer Encounter

This is remarkable, really, that twice within a week my yard has become a maternity ward for the local deer. More remarkable, however, is the fact that I actually did not notice this little baby for at least 15 mins. while I was working on building my wall. You can see in the first picture that I laid down my bag of tools next to the daffodil plant and then went about my merry way moving stones around. If you look in the upper right-hand corner you'll see the start of the first course of stones that I was laying. I had picked up and moved about 7 or 8 stones before I realized that the deer was there. So of course I had to get my husband and the camera and then show the kids who took pictures with their cell phones in turn. This one is so much smaller than the one from a few days ago that I think it's a she. I continued to work for about an hour or so and she just lay there quietly taking it all in. We did not touch her or get any closer than the bag because we did not want to leave a scent on her. But my heart ached to pick her up and move her when it began to rain. I watched her shivering from the door on the front porch as the rain began to pick up.

After sitting in the rain for quite some time, she did become agitated and got up and much to my dismay started towards the road. Deer do make a sound that is similar to the bahhing of a sheep when they're in distress and she was making that noise but none of the deer that I saw across the street or later in the next yard came to her calling. It was the noise from two passing cars that sent her back up to the rocks for awhile. She came toward the house looking for a dry area but could not find any and headed down to the road again and again was scared back up towards the house. Then she managed to find shelter under some hemlocks that are on the property line. I kept checking back every now and then and finally an hour or so later, I did not see her anywhere. Fortunately, there was no evidence of an encounter with a car on the road, so I have to assume that mom finally came for her.

INKredible Color Challenge 5/19

The Always stamp set lends itself very well to the poppin pastels technique. This card is for the INKredibles color challenge for 5/19 - Certainly Celery, Bashful Blue, and Basic Gray. Here's the recipe:

Stamps: Always
Paper: Bashful Blue, Basic Gray, Certainly Celery, Whisper White
Ink: Bashful Blue, Basic Gray, VersaMark
Pastels and Markers: Bashful Blue, Certainly Celery
Accessories: 1 3/8" circle punch, Styled Silver Hardware, sponge dauber

Recipe Boxes

Would you believe that these recipe boxes came from the dollar bin at Mike's - actually they were on clearance for 50 cents. Can't beat that bargain. So after combing through the ones that they had left I found two good ones and brought them home. Then as luck would have it, I found this wonderful blog and knowing that I had that paper and those embellishments thought I would give it a try. I did borrow the recipe set from my sideline Dolly (and she will be getting one of these when they're finished) but I haven't gotten to the insides yet.

The boxes are covered in Afternoon Tea DSP and I added Styled Silver Hardware.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Fawn

I stayed home from work today to be here for my daughter who is still recovering from her tonsillectomy. I haven't had to wake up in the middle of the night to check on a child in years but even though she is 25, she is my baby and when they tell you to check on them during the night you do it. I think she is doing fine, I just needed to refresh myself. But anyway, this is St. Francis who stands in front of our pool about 50 feet or more from the back of the house and slightly uphill. At about 1:00 p.m. today I happened to be looking out the window and noticed that there was something brown to the right of St. Francis that was moving. Of course, it's not moving in this picture, but I still think that you can see it.

I grabbed the binoculars that I keep on the kitchen counter (doesn't everyone????) and could make out the form of, well I know you can guess by the title of the post - it was a fawn. So I carefully tiptoed outside with my camera, not sure how close I was going to get and not wanting to spook it.

But as you can see, I was able to get pretty close (I did use the zoom but it allowed me to get up to about 5 feet away). It's beautiful and was so calm. I did say hello (doesn't everyone talk to animal visitors????) and told it how pretty it was and not to be scared and snickered out loud that it was going to love our yard just like all the deer do!!

I kept checking every once and a while to see if it was still there and whether the mother was around anywhere. There were a couple of deer who came down into the yard around 3, but they didn't seem to notice the baby.

When my husband came home, I discouraged him from working near the fawn (he wasn't too happy about that because he is in the process of taking down our old pool which is right behind this area). It was still there as night fell and needless to say, I was quite worried that we were going to find it still there in the morning but dead as it hadn't obviously eaten anything since I first saw it earlier in the day.

Then about 9:30 this evening, I turned out the lights inside the house and turned the outside light on and, oh how I wish I could have taken a picture of the scene that I saw in the dusk. The mother and the baby were standing in front of our birdbath which is about 20 feet to the left of where the baby was lying and she was licking it as it was nursing and nuzzling her neck. I could just barely make all this out through the binoculars. Then they slowly walked away, the mom leading the baby into the darkness. I am so glad that she came back.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Yellow Bird

Again, I have to say that this card is much prettier IRL. There are just too many shadows and this was difficult to photograph because the front panel is all embossed. I lost count of how many times I tried not to get the flash to show and not to wash out the colors.

The story behind this card - the staff at my school is very generous and for Christmas, they have given me a nice cash gift which I tuck away until I find something that I wouldn't normally buy for myself and splurge. Last year I got my Cuttlebug with the money. This year, after my $7 Christmas Tree Shop tote bag blew it's zipper, I decided that I would get a Vera Bradley bag. I got the new spring catalog and after some deliberation, chose the new Yellow Bird pattern. I had sent the $ with Rachel (my DD) when she went to visit her friends in Delaware. Why? Because that's where she got all of hers and there's no tax in DE. The only problem was that the store was closed every weekend that she went. Then I found out through one of the teachers that I work with that there is a VB store in the mall - now I have my new bag. I was inspired to make a card based on that pattern.

This was a labor-intensive card for me, but I was home this afternoon with Rachel after her surgery and had the house quiet so I could hear the bells if she called me and I was able to concentrate on what I was doing. I also got some exercise as each item on the card is stamped in color, then overstamped with VersaMark and then embossed. So I was back and forth from the dining room table to the kitchen counter for each motif. Aside from the fact that the light colors got muddied from the black ink as it was sponged on, I think it came out pretty good.

Stamps: Always, Priceless
Paper: Basic Gray, Summer Sun, Whisper White, Basic Black
Ink: Summer Sun, VersaMark, Basic Black
Markers: Going Gray, Summer Sun, VersaMarker
Accessories: Word Window Punch, Black Gingham Ribbon, Styled Silver Brads, Stamp-a-ma-jig

Surgery Update: Rachel is doing fine although she does have a lot of pain. She has managed to eat some ices and is drinking which is important so she doesn't get dehydrated and spike a fever.

Monday, May 12, 2008

INKredible Color Challenge 5/13

Always Artichoke and Elegant Eggplant

Okay, so somehow between watching the Yankee game and Dancing With the Stars I managed to come up with a card to fit the challenge. Luckily, I had two of the flowers already stamped on the watercolor paper leftover from a previous project, so I masked them out and added the third one in the middle. I colored them with my aquapainter and Elegant Eggplant marker. The leaves are stamped in VersaMark and then colored in with a VersaMark marker on the Artichoke backing. I added the EE grosgrain ribbon on the corners of the main image. I had been wanting to try the "out of the box" technique. How do you think it came out?

I will use this as an anniversary card for our friends Bill and Kathy who will be celebrating their 31st anniversay on Wednesday.

As a side note here - my daughter is having her tonsils out in the morning - if you can, say a prayer that she has a speedy recovery and not a lot of pain. Much thanks.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Spring Fling Swaps

As promised here are my swaps from Spring Fling. It was a great day of learning and sharing and doing. We had great ideas from our speakers as well as from our Break Out session in the afternoon. I will post the Make-n-Takes that we did in a day or so. Thank you to the Inkredibles for another fantastic event!
Wow Swap

I have to tell you that once I decided to do this last Sunday, I tagged along with my husband as he went to Sears and I went to the Dollar Tree. I was looking for another type of frame for a project I had done in a previous post and when I couldn't find that, I was almost resigned to the fact that I wouldn't participate. But then I saw these frames. (I had 15 mins. to shop, mind you, so I was really taking a leap of faith that I would come up with something.) I originally thought that I would use the Bloomin Beautiful set in the openings, but then decided to use a stamp set from the main catalog instead of the mini. So here you have it.

Stamps: Pretty Amazing, Weathered

Paper: Very Vanilla, Regal Rose, Watercolor

Ink: Black Stazon, Basic Black, VersaMark

Markers: Old Olive, Tempting Turq., Taken w/Teal, Brillian Blue, Ballet Blue, Always Artichoke, Cameo Coral, Basic Black

Pastels: Bravo Burgundy, Rose Red, Regal Rose

Accessories: Blender Pen, Crystal Effects, Dazzling Diamonds, Tombow Adhesive, Dimensionals, Sticky Strip, 5/8" Old Olive Grosgrain, $Tree frame

The stems and leaves were stamped in Black Stazon directly on the wooden portions of the frame. And here are the close-ups of the main images:

Card Swap

I decided to use up some of the cardstock that I had cut for the talk I did at the Women's Club meeting, so instead of a card front, I made Magnetic Bookmarks using:

Stamps: Live Your Dream, Canvas

Paper: Kraft, So Saffron, More Mustard, Chocolate Chip

Ink: More Mustard, Chocolate Chip

Accessories: Photo Corner, 1 and 1 3/8 circle, and Scallop Punches, Sheet Magnet Pieces

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Blossoms and Bugs and Birds, Oh My!

So here's part of what I've been working on for the meeting on Saturday. Luckily for me, only 8 people signed up for the WOW Swap so I only have 8 to make, but as you can see from the picture, they're a little labor-intensive. The birds and the butterflies are done in markers on watercolor paper. Then I added Crystal Effects to the birds and Diamond Dust to the butterflies (which need two for each project!!). The flowers (lord help me - I still have more to cut out) are stamped in VersaMark ink on Regal Rose paper and then I used my SU pastels to color them - each flower is stamped 3 times to show the three layers of the flower and each project will have two flowers so...... yes, I know, I'm nuts!!!! I've got it down to 7 mins. to cut out the entire flower, so another half hour or so and they'll be ready. I don't know at this point though, if I'll have time for regular swaps - we'll see. I won't show the finished project until later Sat. night or Sunday after the actual meeting.

The Seat and the Player 5/4

On Thursday of last week my husband e-mailed me that tickets we thought we weren't getting had come through for the Yankee game on Saturday - a little last minute for me. So I actually spent Friday night washing jackets and sweatshirts and packing a carryall to go to the game on Saturday. We take the train to Penn Station Newark and have to switch trains there to Penn Station in NY and then take the subway to the Bronx. The day was overcast and it was spritzing here when we left, thus the jackets and sweatshirts. We left at 9:00 for a 1:00 game and even then had to stand on the train from Newark to NY. We were picking our tickets up at the stadium but we really didn't know where, but after a walk almost completely around the perimeter we managed to find the lobby and got into the stadium just before 12. We had really good seats which were a "gift" from someone that my husband works with - just behind 3rd base and on the lower level.
The weather was great - not too hot, not too cold and we even had some sun at times. The game was great - Mike Mussina pitched for the Yankees and they won 6-1, HR by Johnny Damon. And my favorite player, Derek Jeter was on the cover of the program with a nice article inside.

It was altogether a very good day, but very exhausting. Maybe the last time we'll be in the old Yankee Stadium.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Where Am I

So far behind in my posts - sorry. I've been very busy with getting ready for various things - some stamp related and some not. Hopefully I'll have something later in the day that I can show you. I can say that I've been working on swaps for a stamping event on Saturday. Silly me, I decided last minute to take part in a WOW swap in addition to a regular swap so I've been up to my neck in that. Somebody talk me out of this next time, please!!!!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Balancing Act

This card is a Thank You to the staff at the school I work in for the restaurant gift card that they gave me for Admin. Professionals Day. It's an odd size because I didn't realize that I was using a leftover piece of 12 x 12 until I went to score it at 5.5" and one side was longer. I decided to run with it. I'm not sure what the fold is for this card (I tried looking it up, but it's late and I'm tired) - so I apologize for not having that information down. Since the front of the card was shorter, I added the circle piece on the bottom so that the card could be propped open and displayed. Okay, so you want to know the recipe:

Stamps: Lots of Thoughts, Doodle This
Paper: Bashful Blue, Real Red, Old Olive, Summer Picnic DSP, Prints Pack Hostess
Ink: Old Olive
Accessories: Coluzzle, Scallop and BoHo Blossoms punches, Styled Silver Hodgepodge Hardware, 5/8" Old Olive grosgrain, 1/4" Bashful Blue grosrain

The flower is made by stamping the large flower from Doodle This on the wrong side of the Prints Pack paper, then cutting the petals to the center and folding them inward to make a 3-D flower - pretty cute, eh - not my idea!!! - saw it on Splitcoast. I know you can barely make out the BoHo punched flower in Bashful Blue in the center of the flower. Looking at it now, I should have highlighted the edges of that punched flower to make it stand out more like I did to the scallop punch - oh, well - next time. What do you think?

Edited 5/2 4:00 PM: Aha!!! It's a Kickstand Card - that's the name of the fold. Thanks to those of you who commented on my gallery post at SCS.