Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Inspire Your Heart With Art Day

If you google wacky holidays you will almost certainly be able to find a holiday for any particular day of the year.   Today is no exception because it is Inspire Your Heart With Art Day.  It also happens to be the birthday of a friend of mine who is an art teacher so, although we haven't seen each other much lately, I thought it would be nice to make her a card for her birthday and for the "holiday" of the day.

She is a nature-lover so I knew that I wanted to add a bird and this new stamp set - Take it to Heart provided me with an image with a bird in a heart.  How perfect!  I stamped it in Basic Gray onto Naturals White cs and then used my aqua painter and ink to watercolor it.  I have no idea what bird this is supposed to be so I stuck with browns.  On the background I used a number of stamps from Creative Elements.  I colored in the viney one with my SU markers and sponged the edges of the panel with Marina Mist ink.  

That blue flower happened to be on my work station for a while and I'm glad that I finally found a place to put it.  It's stamped in Not Quite Navy on Marina  Mist cs. I popped up both images adding some Pretty In Pink and Regal Rose ribbons underneath and on the side.  

This was a lot of fun to "Create" and certainly did inspire my heart.  Happy Birthday Friend!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Chickadee!

I hope you get this before you see it here.  And I hope you have a wonderful day!  Maybe those chillies will have brought YOU some candy today.  

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Jingle Belles JB12:02 - Sketching Through the Snow

Yes, it's a sketch challenge this time, brought to us by the lovely Kirsty Vittetoe at Homemade Little Things.  

I must admit that I was thrown a bit, not by the sketch in general, but by what looks to me like a butterfly.  I kept trying to look past that to put Christmas in it and it really was challenging.  I guess you could say that I was trying not to interpret it too literally.  So I pondered what I would like in that focal point.  And I pondered.  And I pondered.  (Strange word "pondered" - I digress, it's late.)  Then I started scrounging around on my worktable to see what I might have going that I could use.  

I spotted a couple of die cut doilies that I had been playing around with using the new SU doily die.  It was too big for the card - drat.  

But then I saw it.  I saw how I could cut it up and make, not a butterfly with wings, but an angel.  I die cut a brand new one out of Shimmer paper and then mounted it on Glossy White cs.  The center of the die became the head which I covered with a punched circle and then a jumbo sticky pearl.  The halo is just another circle of the same size mounted in the halo position. 

I used metallic gold paper for the card base (which unfortunately is showing up mustardy in these pictures), embossing the sentiment in gold also.  The "stringy" ribbon is something I found in the holiday ribbon section at Michael's back in November or December when they were on sale.  The floral paper is again something that I picked up at Mike's just because it looked so pretty with the gold and silver metallic highlights.  

I tried to achieve some balance by adding the white punched lace border and the pearls.  Don't know if I'll get a second card made for this challenge, but at least I have one to show for it.

I peeked in the gallery and there are quite a few pretties there!  Click here to check it out.  

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sunday Zentangle 1-22-12

If I turn it on the side can you see the bird?

Throwing in one more picture for the week.  A parent brought me this little flower arrangement on Tuesday to thank me for helping her daughter after she missed the bus one day.  It's sitting on top of a Tiffany box that held a mug and was given to me by one of our teachers whose sister is in marketing and was cleaning out her closets.  Please ignore the rest of the mess in the background.  That is my "flea market" desk!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday Snow Day

Our first "winter" snow.  We had a snowstorm in October - still the fall.  This time the trees were ready for it.  And so were the bird feeders.  These were taken through the kitchen window while it was still snowing so they may appear a little gray.

This woodpecker had the responsibility of dropping some of that suet cake as he was picking at it for the birds that were waiting underneath.

Then he heard something that made him fly off.

It was the Blue Jay come to take his share.

While the cardinal not-so-patiently waited in the tree for his turn.

Oh, but he wouldn't be alone.  A junco came to take his turn.

Enough, said the cardinal and off the junco flew.

Just as well.  Look who also came looking for some seed.

Can you find 7 deer?  From the window I actually counted 14 in the yard, but there are seven visible in this picture if you look very closely.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Teapot Tuesday 181

What a wacky teapot, huh!  She's definitely doing the "I'm a little teapot dance" but what about that bird???  Crazy!  But fun too, don't you think?  I think that might be the elusive boobie bird.  And speaking of boobies.......

We've been instructed to be funny this week.  Our destination is a young lady who loves to giggle.  Well, just looking at this teapot would give her a giggle I think.  But I took my cue from the patterns in the black and white dress and found a bird of my own.  Not the elusive boobie bird, but then again, if you look carefully you might see three sets of boobies. 

With the sentiment from Word Play that says "Laughter by definition is healthy" I had to do something to try to get a laugh, so I put the front panel on upside-down deliberately so the card opens on the top.

And on the inside I stamped this................

What's sdoo you say?   It's actually OOPS upside-down.  Well, if she doesn't laugh out loud I hope she at least smiles! 

Time to go check out the gallery.  Click here to join me. 

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Take a few simple ingredients - some 3/8" washers from the hardware store, about a yard and a half of ribbon and the only tool you'll need is a safety pin to get something that looks like this...............

a cool little necklace that you can tie around your neck.

I used some Cherry Cobbler seambinding and 21 3/8" zinc washers and instructions that can be found here.

This was a quick project I put together this morning and gave to my daughter who was visiting for the weekend.  It was so good to have her home even though she wasn't feeling that well.  We got a little shopping in yesterday but today I really felt under the weather myself so while she and her dad made a quick visit to Costco, I put this together for her. 

I've also been working on a little secret Valentine's project I'll just tease with that uses some more hardware.

Sunday Zentangle 1-15

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jingle Belles JB12:01b

Whilst I was attempting to clean-up Christmas around here this past weekend, it occurred to me that the box of Christmas tea that I received from two of the teachers I work with had some lovely vintage holiday images that could be repurposed into cards and the smaller ones, bookmarks.  Then I got busy and almost totally forgot about making my card for the second week in January. 

We are using the same prompt for two weeks, and while I'm sure that it's optional whether to make two cards during that time, I thought that in this case I would.

Here's the large box which contained 9 smaller boxes and all those potential reuses.

I was lucky enough to have received from HWNSNBP the Poppystamps window die that was on my list and was thrilled that the front of the smaller boxes fits perfectly inside the window frame.

The card is on an Always Artichoke base with a layer of Cherry Cobbler and then some dsp that looks like vintage wallpaper to me.  I die cut the window out of textured Creamy Caramel cs and used a dauber with Creamy Caramel ink to bring out the texture in the cardstock.  The greenery was punched out of Always Artichoke and the banner is Cherry Cobbler seam binding. 

There is some stamping also - JOY comes from a stamp I found in the $bin at Michael's.  I colored the letters with my markers to match the cardstock and fussy cut them out.  They are popped up with dimensionals on top of that banner.

I am having the most difficult time this week finding things that I "put away" before or during the holidays. Anyone else out there having that problem?  I know that I need to organize my "stuff" better - a project that will be ongoing for the next several weeks - but this has been really driving me crazy and taking up way too much of my time.  I actually was fearful that my new die and a new stamp set I got as gifts might have been inadvertently thrown out with the recycling or garbage.  Thank goodness I found them!

Well, now I will be meandering over to the Jingle Belles blog to see all the lovely creations for this week. I'm sure I will be delighted.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sharing Their Christmas Creativity

Before we get too far removed from Christmas I wanted to share the homemade cards I received this Christmas.  

First is this beauty from Dana.  Isn't it adorable.   There's also a great stamped image inside that looks just like her and her husband.

My blogging friend Dawn sent me this from North Carolina.  Dawn is an expert color artist.  This Santa is spectacular.

The picture of this card from Sabrina doesn't do it justice.  I absolutely love the silver stamping on the navy background.  And just look at the glittery frame outlining that snowy background.  Love it!

My friend Janet posted this off to us.  Janet loves to use the clear envelopes and let me tell you, they really do make a statement! 

Carol, one of my sidelines, gave me this card that she made .  I really like the three panel layout.  It makes that snowman so special.

Our Teapot Queen, Cindy, sent me this one.  Ho, ho, ho!  Santa sure is a star!

Jingle Belles hostess Lauren sent me this beauty.  I am absolutely in awe over this card.  Very good use of all those wonderful goodies she had in her stash. 

A beautiful tag from Stefanie, our other Jingle Belles hostess.  Look at those sweet little snowflakes stamped on this - so cute!

Sabrina also made me this awesome Twelve Days of Christmas folding book.  Just look at all the detail in the cover alone.   Each of the page backs has this wonderful embossing on it. 

Inside she stamped and colored these fun images for the 12 Days.  Those little holly leaves and berries are just so pretty.  She has such creative attention to details.

See how all the pages are attached with ribbon she added between the front and back of each page. 

I forgot to take a picture of it displayed across the windowsill in the dining room where our Christmas Eve guests were able to enjoy it's beauty.  This will become a wonderful addition to our Christmas decorations.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Raptor Trust (Part 2)

As promised, some more of the pictures from our Jan. 2 outing, including , golden eagles, another pic of the snowy owl after he moved, barred owl and barn owl, and a peregrine falcon with an injured wing.

I took close to 100 pictures and a lot of them did not come out clearly because of the netting  you can see in the following picture.

I actually was astounded that some of the pictures where I got really close to the netting with the lens did come out (don't tell the Raptor Trust that I actually touched the cages though!)  Luckily the birds tolerated my determinedness to capture them in the camera only.

This is Jake the Raven - again, not so clear pictures, but he was a bit of a showman.  He made such cackles, whoops, clicks, and whistles.  We weren't sure whether he was showing off or that he was unnerved by the two turkey vultures that were not caged and were flying from tree to tree overhead. 

This pose is just how Kirby tilts his head to see something overhead or on the ground - very inquisitive looking.

And very noisy, though entertaining.

Speaking of vultures.  There were a couple of them sharing a cage.  The turket vulture with the red face and a black vulture.

I think we will try to go back in the spring and visit the indoor educational facility perhaps when we start thinking about gathering our annuals for planting. 

Looking out the back window this morning, despite the unseasonably warm temperatures I was a little sad not to see any birds at the feeder.  Stranger still is the lack of squirrels who always have to be chased away.  I'm afraid without the leaf cover of the trees our little friends will be very wary of visiting.  Right now we're only getting the occasional woodpecker at the suet feeder.  I wonder if the hawks move on to other territory if the food becomes scarce?  Should have asked that question last Monday on our visit!