Monday, September 17, 2012

September Anniversaries

We have a couple of friends with anniversaries this month.  My cousin and her husband celebrated their 35th.  I took my inspiration for their card from the element(s) assigned to the 35th anniversary - coral and/or jade.  

Calypso Coral and Gumball Green were my color choices.  The cutwork piece that you see is actually an earring that I found earlier this summer at a flea market.  It was a hideous neon orange so I first smushed it into my VersaMark pad and then into the Calypso Coral pad to make it the coral color that I wanted.  I wound up doing this twice.  

I was trying to get the background green piece to look like jade by sponging the green ink onto the die cut shape.  I did the same with the round stamped image.  I added a Calypso Coral bow.  

Our other friends had their 34th anniversary, which doesn't have any traditional elements that I could find so I went another way with this one.  The silhouette image that you see has 4 birds on the stamp but I only wanted the two birds who seemed to be speaking with one another so I inked the image with my marker carefully avoiding the other two birds.  After I stamped it, I went back with the pointed tip of the marker to add in the branches that those missing birds would have covered.  

I brayered Bashful Blue ink onto the embossing folder before I embossed it so that the ink would be in the recesses of the embossing.  And, when I die cut the image I left it in the die and then used a dauber to add the blue shading so you see the think white frame around the edge.  The navy layer  was not die cut (nor was the Calypso Coral one in the card above).  I turned the die over and traced around it to get my frame.  This die is not that intricate and it didn't take that long. 

I had to add the green to this card because that was one of their wedding colors.   The little hearts were a last minute decision that I was pleased with.  

I'm headed out on some errands today as I have the day off.  My cousin told me that they opened a Hobby Lobby not too far away.  We don't, or didn't have Hobby Lobby in NJ.  At least not close by that I know of, and I'm anxious to see what it's all about!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Birthday Past - July, Oh My!

It's really not that I forgot about this, it's that I just was able to finally deliver it with a gift to my lovely cousin who was quarantined this summer with a bad case of the shingles and then August just blew by us.  But anyhoo, here's the card that I made her - she loves pink!

I used some new and old products and tools on this.  The scalloped edge was created using the Adorning Accents edgelits from SU.  Then I used markers to color the viney stamp from Flowering Flourishes and stamped it twice connecting the vines at the left.  The green marker I used on the stamp was a lighter one so I took a darker green and added in highlights.  You can see that I did this with the large "berries" also.

Into the centers of the flowers went some sticky pearls.  And then I punched out some ferny looking leaves in various scraps of neutrals to make the bird's nest.  

I stamped one of the images from Floral Fillers and colored some of the leaves and flowers with markers and then used the bird punch to punch out the bird's body and wing.  Before I popped up that wing I took a dauber and some green ink and swiped the edges of the bird to define the shape some more.  

Hmmm, this bird and nest might make a cute pin.........

After a very trying first week of school, we were able to meet at our favorite tea room and had we not been so engrossed in catching up, I would have taken pictures of the food presentation which is always perfect.  Well, trust me to say that it was delicious and the company was wonderful!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

MMTPT215 - Happy 110th

This week's Teapot Challenge destination is none other than Mrs. Eula Cousins.  Mrs. Cousins is a very good friend of my friend Jackie and Eula is celebrating her 110th birthday this week.

She has had "An Extraordinary Life - Well Lived".  In addition to our teapot challenge, Mrs. Cousins is having a special b'day complete with a visit from the Philadelphia mayor and possibly a call from Mrs. Obama.

Our party is a traditional birthday party this week and our cards are to depict a birthday or our memory(ies) of a memorable birthday.  We were also asked to include a note, if possible, sharing our memories with Mrs. Cousins.

In my card I wrote - 

Dear Mrs. Cousins,

Happy 110th Birthday!

We asked the ladies to share their most memorable birthdays with you and I have combined two of mine in the creation of this card.

On my 21st birthday I was still living in my parents' house.  It was a two-story red brick building and we lived upstairs from my grandparents.  I remember waiting and waiting for my then boyfriend to come and take me to dinner. He was late and I was anxious and kept going to the window to watch for his car coming down the street.  Finally he arrived and I ran down the stairs and jumped into the car.  I was a bit annoyed that he was so late and asked him what took him so long.  He smiled, fumbled around for something and pulled out a tiny box.  I don't even think it was wrapped.  My annoyance quickly gave way to joy as he proposed to me.  The date was March 31, 1976.  We will be celebrating our 35th anniversary on Sept. 24th.

The second most memorable birthday was when I turned 50, seven years ago.  I gave myself a "tea party" - a real tea party and invited 12 of my lady friends (mother & sister too!) to celebrate with me.  The theme was "I'm not an old bag!" and we ate finger sandwiches, scones, pastries, etc.   We drank hot and cold tea and then we sat at my dining room table and did a couple of "craft" projects I had planned.  We were having so much fun that no one wanted to leave. 

I hope you will be having fun reading the birthday memories from my stamping friends.  You are an inspiration to all of us!  Happy Birthday!

So here is my brick house (though we did not have shutters) and you can see through the window the tea service all set up and waiting for guests.  

The image in the window comes from a Stamps Happen stamp - Tea Party Teddy.  I used my Memory Box Grand Madison Window and shutters dies.  The brick background was embossed onto a piece of Naturals White cs using a Tim Holtz embossing folder.  Then I brayered Riding Hood Red ink across it to pop the bricks.  The curtain inside the window is a small piece of Twitterpated fabric just folded in half and given a quick little running stitch to gather it.  Red line tape was used to adhere the curtain to the inside of the window.  The window itself uses a small piece of acetate.  

I colored my image with markers and Prismacolor pencils.  

If you'd like to help celebrate "An Extraordinary Life ~ Well Lived" leave a comment and I'll share Mrs. Cousins' address with you.  I'm sure she'd love to hear from you too!  And it doesn't have to be a handmade card either.

If you'd like to see the written story that goes along with the challenge, click here.  Cindy did such a wonderful job with this challenge!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Most Wonderful TIme of the Year?

There are those TV commercials from one of the office supply chains that shows parents dancing through the aisles, happily purchasing notebooks, pencils, and basketloads of school supplies for their children all the while the background music playing "it's the most wonderful time of the year."  Their faces are contorted with silly grins while their children frown and pout.

The weatherforecasters have deemed Labor Day weekend as the unofficial end to the summer.  All day Saturday I heard this not just from the Weather Channel, but on regular newscasts also.  

They had to point out that the sun is setting earlier and earlier.   Summer is over, summer is over.  Let's make sure everyone knows.

Yes, fall is on the way.  And today our staff reported back to work.  While some were happy to be back there were those that lamented the fact that summer was over.  They were definitely not singing "it's the most wonderful time of the year."  

I would be singing a little different tune.  Namely, "it's the busiest time of the year."  I would put last week and this week ahead of the Christmas rush even.   It's not as though I wasn't working all summer because we do work in the office.  But there are some things that just cannot be done until just before the start of school.  And one can never count on things like....... 7 new students registering last week.  

So while we did go on vacation a couple of weeks ago, I've also had a bit of self-imposed vacation from this blog.  Things should settle down in another week or so and I hope to be getting back into a more "creative" schedule.  

Until then, here are some more pictures of those wonderful birds we were privileged to get close to while we were away.

When I looked back at all the pictures of this bird I thought it really must be one-legged....

The he got an itch and the second leg appeared.

This one seemed to be dancing with it's reflection.  First to the left.....

Then to the right.

Just look at those green legs!

One never knows what you will find by the side of the road.  Like this group of young female mallards.  

We were literally just about 6 feet from them.