Friday, August 24, 2007

Lunch dates....

I had lunch today with a dear friend. One of those friends that we probably all have. We have a totally fun time when we are together! We talk til our throats get sore, laugh til our sides ache and share our deepest darkest secrets. Then, we don't talk for months on end. Why do we do that? I don't know! I don't have all the answers! But, I do know that I totally love spending time with D. She is just a breath of fresh air. I am just so blessed to have such good friends. And to think...I didn't want to move to the south! I made this little Gratitude Journal for my lunch date friend. It is a simple little book on the outside because I want her to fill free to fill it with all that her heart desires. I know that she has loads to be thankful for and I hope this book runneth over! I used the Outlaw paper on the front with the cool spiral punch. I don't know how to make that fit perfectly so I had a little border around the edges. No worries! I used my Mocha chalk pad to rub the edges and even rubbed the back. I punched a couple holes in the cover with my Cropadile....mainly because I just LOVE using that thang! I stuck a few JUMBO eyelets in the holes and fed the holes some Wide Chocolate ribbon. Have I said how much I love this ribbon?! I made cute little 'tabs' with the Wanted set and punched them with the scallop punch, yes, mine is still working great! I know these little tabs will be rubbed off and destroyed in no time, but....they looked cute when I gave it to her. I stamped Gratitude and the definition from the Define your life set...SUCH a cool set! Buy one! and then called it good. It was quick and easy and actualy close to instant gratification...;o)
My two older boys and their dad are off camping. Should I clean or stay up all night watching movies with my girls? hmmmm such a hard decision!
I added a new blog to my list of bodacious blogs today. If you have time and want a laugh, check out SJ's site, the Sarcastic Journalist. I about peed my pants reading some of her posts! Laugh out loud! It's good for your health!
Signing off!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

My hero!

Today was such a fun day! I got to be the teacher's helper in Kindergarten. Let me tell you...if I was going to be a teacher, and I might be some day..... I would want to teach Kindergarten. I mean, you get to color, cut and paste, play with playdoh, read stories, get snacks and take naps! I think that author...Robert Fulgrum maybe? was right. Everything I need to know I learned in Kindergarten. Of course, it helps that this particular Kindergarten class had my baby Ben in it and the most amazing teacher. Mrs. M is the absolute best! I just adore her! I went to help get the day started and ended up staying past lunch. After that, I really had to book it home to get ready for my workshop tonight. That is when the real excitement happened. I was working on getting my last project packed up when Mae came to talk to me. I looked up to answer her and saw a HUGE brown spider abover her head on the ceiling. MOVE!!! I said to Mae and we both dove, literally, to the other side of the room. We can move it, I tell ya! We were both just shakin in our boots looking at that evil thing. I'm not kidding...it was easy 4 inches in diameter. uhg! I'm getting creeped out just writing about it! Anyway, it was WAY too big for me to try and kill. Besides, it was up on the slanty part of my ceiling by the beams and I couldn't safely reach it. (There is always the chance that I will climb up to smack it and it will jump on me AAAHHHKK!) A neighbor girl thought she could smash it with the end of a wooden dowel....hello! This called for a bigger weapon! In stepped my hero Thorin! He asked if he could shoot it with his bb gun. I said yes, but if you miss and knock it down, you have to hunt it and kill it. Do you know...my wonderful son hit that thing with a bb from clear across the room?! I was so impressed and amazed! (And relieved!!) He hit it in the leg (eewww!) and then again in the body and it fell and we squished it. Okay, I didn't squish it, the neighbor girl did, but I swept up the dead body and took it all the way out to the garage trash. You never know.... I hope I don't have nightmares! I REALLY don't like those evil creatures of the night aka spiders.


Now that you are all checking under your desks and feeling those tickly feelings all over from my lovely story, I will move on to stampin. I had a real fun workshop tonight with some lovely ladies. We did three projects. One of them was similar to a Fabulous Flower card I did a while back, with the glitter, so I won't show that. This next one I cased from the Workshop Wizard on the SU website. I loved the colors together. It uses Soft Sky, Blue Bayou and Groovy Guava. The stamp set is Just like You, which is the Ronald McDonald house set for this year. I totally love this set! It is so easy to use and very versatile. The card is pretty straight forward. I used the 1/16" hold punch on the scalloped punch but some of the ladies at the workshop used the paper piercer instead. They both work great.
This last project turned out way cuter than it looks here. I was going for a pumpkin look. I used Pumpkin Pie cardstock cut 8-1/2 x 3-1/2. I scored it approx 1" down from the top and then folded the bottom up to 1 centimeter from the top fold and then 1 centimeter past the top fold. That made the little flat bottom. It is sort of a match book style fold. After I made the folds, I flattened it back out and rolled it with the Batty for you jumbo wheel. I filled a cello bag with M&M's and stuck that in there. I punched out a 5 petal flower from garden green and stapled it to th
e top while sandwiching the cello bag in the folded Ppie paper. Clear as mud! It is a super easy project with any sized paper. I thought the little green flower kind of made it look like the
top of a pumpkin?? maybe with your eyes squinty closed and your head tilted?
Can you see it?? Yeah, I thought so. Good eye. ;o)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Bloomin happy!

School is back in session! I should have loads of time! LOL Any mother of school children knows that once they all go off to school, it is time to clean up the mess that was made all summer! That is what I did yesterday. Well, at least, I started on that mess. Today I actually stamped a bit and....it is a bit embarassing to say this, but...I blew an hour and a half by watching the High School Musical 2 that I had recorded. It was so cute! golly....brings back memories of high school....all the fun times and hard times and...boy does that guy have blue eyes! Don't they just glow?! Anyway, it was cute. I don't usually watch TV at all! But, on to the stamping! I had ordered these long notes and hadn't had a chance to play with them yet, so they were my target today. I decided to use my Pick a Petal set because it filled up the long card well. This first one is done using the Guava note. I used Guava to stamp the flower petals onto white cardstock and then cut them out. I stamped the middle with Wild Wasabi and cut it out as well. The words are stamped in black right on the long note. I don't know if you can see it, but on the card base I stamped the sanded background with craft white. It is subtle but gives the card a bit of unity. I added some dazzling diamonds glitter with my two way glue pen on the petals and flower center. The end of the card is punched with the corner rounder and the 1/16 hole punch. I stamped an envelope to match.
The second card is also a long note. For this one, I did more layering, using the ticket corner punch on the top layer. Again, I stamped the petals and cut them out. These were actually stamped onto Vanilla. The front of the card is Vanilla too, although it looks white here. The leaves were just free cut from some river rock cardstock. I added some lines with my Mellow Moss marker and added some moss brads to the corners. This set is fun to play with! I don't know if I am sold on the long notes.... I will have to play some more with them. Tomorow I will be prepping for a workshop on Thursday so Hopefully I will have some stellar samples for y'all!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Back in the stamp of things







Tonight was my monthy stamp night. It felt so good stamp with my buddies again! I didn't realize how much I had been missing them. We had a pretty good sized group for our class tonight. I know several people couldn't come due to other commitments, but...we'll catch them next time!
As promised, I am including a picture of my potato peeling crew from a few days ago. They were such great helpers! I am going to miss having all those extra hands to help me can when they all go back to school. This picture has three of mine and an extra child that was helping. If you are at out house when we can, you will be put to work!
Here is a picture of the first project I did for our class tonight. This may look a bit familiar to you. I cased the little red coaster frame I showed a few days ago on here. It was so easy and fun to make! We did a Halloween version using the Creepy Crawly paper from SU. I am not a big Halloween fan. In fact, that particular holiday could disappear and I would not miss it at all. I especially don't like the dark side of the holiday. BUT, having said that, I totally love this patterned paper! It is so fun and colorful! For my frame, I used a medium weight coaster I purchased at American coaster online. I used my 1-1/4" square punch and punched right through the coaster. I lined up the edges of the first punch and punched four times, overlapping on the edges to get the bigger square hold. The hole is approximately 2-1/2" square. I used my snail to adhere the coaster 'frame' to the patterned paper and then cut around the coaster with my scissors. I used the hobby blade to cut an X in the patterned paper inside the inner square. I folded each triangle around the edge of the inner square to get nice clean edges. I adhered the black grosgrain with my snail and then stuck a Fire Rhinestone Brad in the junction of the ribbon. I used the Cropadile to punch through the coaster. Easy peasy! I used the M3 to color the pumpkin on the stamp and then stamped it onto white cardstock.I stamped the same image on pumpkin pie cardstock with black and then used two different sized circle punches to punch out the inner pumpkin and the pumpkin and words together. Then I just layered them using the Dimensionals. The back coaster is scored at 1-3/4" and stuck to the front coaster with sticky strip.
The funny thing about this project is that , although the square punch worked great to make the frame at home, at the class it would NOT work! So, we did it differently by just covering the whole coaster and layering a piece of black cardstock measuring 2-1/2" square. They were all very cute and very different!
The next project used the chipboard flowers that we were offered at convention as a special purchase. The card base is Barely banana. I used the new wide summer green growgrain ribbon across the front and a folded piece as a faux leav. The Gg is stamped with Apricot craft. The chipboard flower is inked up with Almost Amethyst and embossed with Irredescent Ice embossing powder. The inner flower is inked with Blush blossom and embossed. I added the definition of Gratitude in black and two silver brads to finish it off. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this alphabet and the words/definitions! There will be no more lonely letters! This Define your life set has a word and definition for every letter of the alphabet! I think it is awesome set! I am so glad I splurged and bought it! Now I am going to 'splurge' and go to bed before 2am!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Peeling good?

With all the back to school activities, I decided to can again! Why not? The kids are here to help for a few more days. So, no stamping again. And I REALLY need to! I have several cards that need to be in the mail now. Tomorrow....I will have to find time.
Potatoes were on sale at my favorite veggie stand so I bought a mere 50 pounds. That may sound like a lot, but it really isn't And, it was pretty cheap! For about $30 I ended up with 32 jars or super yummy potatoes. In case you were just dying to know, potatoes are uber easy to do. We peeled them, cut them into approx 1" cubes (no, I didn't measure, but...just for a visual...) and cram a bunch in the jar, put about 1 teaspoon of salt in and fill the jar the rest of the way with water. I did these in my oven at 275 for 2-1/2 hours. I don't think they needed to go that long, but boy are they good! (Yes, we do open a jar the day we make them and try them out. ) Now we are even more anxious to do sweet potatoes. They are going to be SO good! I will have to watch the sales for those. We did take some 'peely' good pictures, but...they will have to wait til tomorrow.
On another note, I did run tonight. My sister recommended running at night after dinner and I did much better! In fact, I went one time around the big block, came in for a drink and decided to go again! I don't know if i will be able to keep up with her, but...at least I will make it I think!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Coaster frame

This week has been officially christened 'registration week' at my house. Between the elementary, junior high, and high school....that is all I'm doing! Don't tell, but I'm thinking of registering at the community college as well. Maybe some online classes in my free time. LOL
Since I have been either in the car or at a school all week, I haven't had much time to stamp. So, I am sharing another great swap from convention. I have been getting some questions about coaster ideas so I thought this was a great swap to share. This is a totally simple wow project. The artist is Annette Bogue. She took two coasters and stuck them together to make a little desktop frame. The front coaster has a square cut out of the middle and has black cardstock stuck over that on the back. It is open at the top so you can slide a photo into the frame. The front coaster was painted red and dotted with....the awesome white gel pen! yes! The back coaster was folded almost half way down and the two coasters are stuck together on the upper part of that fold. Because I know I am a totally visual person, I am including this picture so my words make some sort of sense. See? anyway, I totally love this idea! Kudos to Annette for thinking of something so simply wowish! What a perfect little gift for some one or a great stamp camp idea.
I hope you all have a wonderful day. I actually got my lazy self out of bed and attempted a run today. My first day running out in the big wide world. I tell ya, it is different from the good ol treadmill at the gym. For one thing, I felt like a total goob and the second thing...it was pretty warm out there! Even at 7 am! My sister ran at 4pm in Phx the other day....yes, I have little sister envy. For lots of reasons. I am determined to do this triathalon! They may have to drag me over the finish line, but...I'm going to give it my best shot!
Hopefully I will find a minute to stamp today. I better, I have swaps due tomorrow!
If you all have time, take a minute to wish my bestest friend Michelle a happy birthday today. She is turning the big 40! Happy Birthday Michelle!



Saturday, August 11, 2007

Wanted!

Okay, before you think that I made this, I am
going to give credit to the artist. This adorable
little project was made by Joanne Tofte. I got
this in one of my WOW swaps at convention.
Believe me, it is even more gorgeous in person!
That is chalk tied on with the guava ribbon and when you pull it up, there is a coaster that has been painted with chalk board paint. It is so darn cute!
Today was my local mini convention. We had a great time! It is amazingly hard to fit three full days of convention into three hours, but we tried. I'm interested to see how convention will work next year with it only being one session, but having been to many conventions throughout my Stampin' Up! career, the one thing I am certain of is that SU has been learning. Every convention is getting better and more organized. I have no doubts that they have really thought this one session thing through and that it will be awesome. So, if you are a demo, plan to go! If you are NOT a demo....let' s get together and get you signed up! There is an awesome promotion going on right now. When you sign up to be a demonstrator, you can pick a whole color family of classic stamp pads for free! What a great deal!
Okay, it is past midnight. I'm going to go and collapse! Have a great Sunday y'all!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Back in the groove...





I'm getting things back in order after convention. It was so nice to have a week away...no laundry, no driving kids all over town, no cooking.....I'm paying for it now tho, I also had NO excercise. Although, I did opt for stairs (thanks Sarah-in picture with me) whenever I had the opportunity.
Today I got up early (8:30) and did two miles on my bike. I know, not so very impressive for some of you, but dang impressive for me!

Of course, then I ended up at UnderDog today and ate a ton of junk food. My will power is pretty much shot these days....what can I say? Warm cinnamon pretzels? Who can resist those, really!? The funnest part of the movie was watching my Benny jump up and down in excitement everytime the dog flew around. He was a riot! The movie is totally kid friendly and clean and just fun. It is also quite short. Only an hour and about 27 minutes. Just long enough for a 6 year old that doesn't like to sit for long. And, of course...long enough to eat way too much junk. sigh...
Here are some more samples from convention. I am going to apologize right now for not giving proper credit for these. There was a gal in the dining hall that had a bunch of 3-D items spread out on a table from a swap that she had done. She let us take pictures of them. Very sweet of her. I liked this recipe book because 1. it was cute, and 2. each of the pages inside had the slot punched on one side and twice along the bottom so you could easily slide a recipe card into the book. I thought that was such a clever idea! Kudos to whom ever came up with that one!

This next once is so dang cute! Simple, but cute. I think I like this little set. At the end of the day, we would all pull out our swaps and take pictures of each others so we could have more samples. I think this card must have been in another person's group of swaps because I don't actually have it. So, again...can't give credit. I'll just tell you that I didn't make it but...I could if I wanted to! And, if I had the stamps... Sometimes the most striking cards are very simple. I really liked this one.
Okay...I have about three extra kids spending the night tonight. Tomorrow is Ethan's big birthday so...this is his first official sleepover. I guess I should go pump them full of sugar and then let them run it out. (Just kidding!)
On a local note, I am having my big new catalog kick off a week from Saturday. If you are in the area, please come by! Email me for more information. We will be doing loads of fun stuff!
Hugs!

Monday, August 6, 2007

More convention stuff










One of the great things about convention is the chance to meet up with old friends and make new ones. That is actually probably the biggest reason I like to go. The stamping and business info is invaluable, but...it really is all about the relationships. I have so many great friends that I have made through stamping. It is wonderful! At convention this year, I was able to finally meet one of my downline in person. April is a sweetie! We had a great time hanging out together. She brought me this awesome gift the first day. Isn't it adorable? The notebook was inside the can along with loads of yummy taffy and goodies. I thought that was so sweet of her! She also did a great job on these!


April and Kimber were also the ones that accompanied me to the awesome concert after the awards ceremony. Aren't they beautiful?! We had a lot of fun!


Here is another picture of the band I am gaga about today...It was amazing watching them play each other's instruments like this. The good news is, I let my hubby listen to them and he likes them too! That is very cool! If you haven't checked out the band yet, do it! http://www.shupe.net/. Listen to Dream Big. It is my favorite.

At the pajama-rama the first night of convention our group all wore our matching pjs. We were so darn cute!! SU offered a free sepia photo to everyone so we got one all together. I really regret not getting one in color. We were all so tired and there were so many people running around, we thought we would wait for another day. And, we just didn't do it. Imagine this picture in color...the bottoms are black with white dots and the flowers on the shirts are a bright real red. We were by far the cutest group there! I had one of the SU photographers snap a picture of us and told him that if they put THAT in the recruiting brochure....people would be lining up to sign those papers!

The cute little man in front is Steph's son Zach. He was so wonderful! We all got our baby fix holding him. I did find out that I have lost those baby arm muscles tho...I got wore out holding him!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Home from Convention

We had SOO much fun in Denver! What a blast to spend four days with a bunch of crazy stampers. I believe stampers are the best people in the world!

I will be uploading some pictures in the next few days of friends, fun and stamped samples, but tonight, before I collapse, I wanted to share the total highlight of the week with you all. The very last day of convention was the awards ceremony. I have been to loads of these and some of them leave a bit to be desired. This year however, it was wonderful! The entertainment was put on by Ryan Shupe and the Rubber Band. It was wonderful! I am putting a link here for you all to check them out. If you have a chance to see them, go! I purchased ALL their CDs and am anxiously awaiting when I can see them in concert again.

One of the things that made the band so awesome was the fact that they totally loved what they were doing. It was clear on every one of their faces and in everything they did. They were also am amazing bunch of musicians. wow. No words can describe them! Yes, I am gushing, but...my first love is music (after family of course) and these guys just had it!
This card is one of the swaps I did. The background is done by spritzing glossy paper with water, randomly splotching reinkers on the wet paper with a paint brush. When you get the colors all over the paper, take some Saran Wrap and lie it over the paper and scrunch it up. Let the sarah wrapped paper dry for a couple hours and then peel it off. I got this technique from Pat Huntoon. It always looks different and amazing. I really like it! The focal point is from the Garden silhouette set. I used the M3 on the stamp and then added a bit of clitter to the centers of the flowers.
Have a good weekend!