The little things that make me happy here on Bliss Road~~Emily Keaton

Thursday, June 30, 2011

All-New Stampin' B's DT Challenge!

What happened to June?!? I swear, we just started this month, and here we are ending it already. Yikes! Time flies when you're having fun!! Or when you are super busy with end-of-school-year activities and lots of otherwise-too-hard-to-schedule doctor/dentist/orthodontist appointments. Yup, you read that right--orthodontist. Our 12YO daughter just started orthodontic treatment and her braces were installed(??? applied? riveted on?) on Monday. We have many recurring adjustment appointments in our future!

Well, today's card is courtesy the latest Stampin' B's DT challenge, this week provided by Faith. Her challenge to anyone wishing to accept it is to use two different dies and piercing on your project. Can you dig it? Here's how I tackled it:
Today I'm using two new June release stamp sets that I won from The Craft's Meow: Celebrating You and Timeless Tags. Love that solid-image fuchsia. It's perfect for paper piecing! I went with the traditional fuchsia colors, which immediately made the BasicGrey Green at Heart collection pop into my head. And thus, my color and paper choices were sealed. :)

My two different dies? (Well, if you've followed my blog for a while, you already know that I don't "do" die-cutting/embossing machine-y kinds of stuff. I do what I can with my paper punches and just boogie on down the road.) So my "dies," by which I mean punches, of course, are the 2.5" circle and the 3" scalloped circle. And I'm pretty sure you can spy my piercing. I just love how the fuchsia image's lines are all kind of dotty--a perfect tie-in with my piercing. And edge stitching, for that matter!

I thought I'd also throw this little ditty into the mix over at Moxie Fab World for the Stamp It! Cards Week Challenge--to create a card in which stamping is the predominant element. Check!

Well, th-th-th-that's all, folks! Thanks for dropping by today. If you'd like to try your hand at this week's Stampin' B's Challenge, post your project on your blog or SCS gallery, and link it up to the Inlinkz tool on the Stampin' B's blog. We'd love to see what you create!! :)

See you soon!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Celebrating You and Timeless Tags, both from The Craft's Meow
Paper: SU whisper white CS, SU razzleberry textured CS, hot pink CS from The Paper Company, BasicGrey Green at Heart DP
SU melon mambo, Palette chartreuse, Palette bourdeaux
Accessories: EK Success 3" scallop circle punch, SU 2.5" circle punch, sponge dauber, foam tape, sewing machine, rhinestones, hot pink twill tape
Techniques: paper piecing, sponging, machine stitching, paper piercing

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Red, White, and Blue for Tuesday Throwdown

I can't believe how fast June has flown by! My month as June Guest Designer for Tuesday Throwdown has come to a close. Yes, this is my last TT post! But I'm going out with a bang--perhaps for the 4th of July? You'd think so with a challenge like the one we have for you this week: make a project using RED, WHITE, and BLUE!!

This week Tuesday Throwdown is sponsored by MYGRAFICO, a one-stop source design shop for all, offering a large variety of commercial cliparts, stamps, scrapbook items, stationery, and print supplies in digital forms. Be sure to stop by the Tuesday Throwdown blog to check out the awesome prize supplied by MYGRAFICO this week!

MYGRAFICO supplied all of the Tuesday Throwdown designers with the awesome Spotsy Dotsy Floral Collection by Cheri Wenger. I had a blast using all of these fun elements to make my last year-end thank you projects. Yes, I finally finished! My 12YO daughter wanted to give each of her sixth-grade teachers a thank you note and small gift. I made and decorated these pillow boxes, and my daughter wrapped Hershey Nuggets with coordinating wrappers to fill the boxes. She gave these to her teachers on the last day of school (last Wednesday), and she said they all adored their gifts!

Thanks for dropping by to check out my little slice of bliss for today! I hope you'll give this week's Tuesday Throwdown a try. :)


Stamps: Hodgepodge Happiness by Stampin' Up!
Paper: white CS from The Paper Company
Ink: Palette l'amore red
Digital Elements: Spotsy Dotsy Floral Collection by Cheri Wenger from MYGRAFICO
Accessories: scissors, SU designer label punch, circle punches, baker's twine, dimensionals, pillow box cutting file from The Cutting Cafe, Hershey Nuggets

Thursday, June 23, 2011

StampinB Friendship Sentiments

I know that summer *officially* arrived on the 21st, but today our summer finally begins! Yesterday was my kids' last day of school for the 2010/2011 school year. Woo-hoo! We are ready for a fun summer. :)

And because it's Thursday, the Stampin' B's DT has a new challenge for you. This week, Joanne is our hostess, and she is challenging us to use a friendship sentiment. Done!
I was going for a freshly-laundered-linens-hanging-on-a-clothesline kind of feel here--you know, summery and clean and simple. My friendship sentiment is all summer-fresh, too: "Plant seeds of kindness and your garden of friends will grow!" Cute, right? The flowers were reverse-masked using the negatives left from a SU Boho Blossoms punch.

I'm playing along with Papertrey Ink's Make It Monday #20 to use reverse masking (along with at least one PTI product, of course!). I'm also playing along with Clear It Out Tuesday's clean and simple challenge.

Well, thanks for checking out my little slice of bliss for today. If you'd like to try your hand at this week's Stampin' B's Challenge, post your project on your blog or SCS gallery, and link it up to the Inlinkz tool on the Stampin' B's blog. We'd love to see what you create!! :)

See you soon!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: PTI Blooming Button Bits (flower stems) and PTI Flower Garden Sentiments
Paper: MFP snow storm CS
SU dye inks: wild wasabi, pretty in pink, so saffron, tangerine tango
Accessories: SU boho blossoms punch, sponge daubers, rhinestones, Peapod baker's twine from The Twinery, silver daisy charm from Stamp and Create
Techniques: reverse masking

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Go Bucks! for Tuesday Throwdown

Greetings, folks, and happy first day of summer! This is my third week posting as June Guest Designer for the Tuesday Throwdown Challenge. This week's challenge is Masculine Cards, and our sponsor is Dude Time Doodles, a Bonibleaux Designs company.

About Dude Time Doodles

Dude Time Doodles carries all of your crazy "Dude" card needs. We work exclusively with the artists at Bonibleaux Designs to bring you guy images and ideas for those hard to make cards for the "Dudes" in your life. Guys aren't about flowers and fluff. Guys are our heroes, our fighters, our beer chuggers and bug squashers.

Dude Time Doodles and Bonibleaux Designs have paired together to bring you Manly Man cards and gift ideas. We'll throw the gals an occasional froufrou image but we are really all about the "Dudes" here.

Boni of Dude Time Doodles generously supplied each TT DT member with a digital image of our choice. I was drawn to the Youth Football digi stamp (it reminded me of Schoolhouse Rock so much! Maybe the "Interjection" episode??), and Boni threw in this fun coordinating Football digi, too.

I'm originally from Ohio (yup, that makes me a Buckeye). My sister and her family still live in O-H-I-O and are HUGE Ohio State Buckeyes fans. They often have season tickets to OSU football games and try to go to season-ending Bowl games if possible. Yes, Buckeye-mania reigns at their house (the rec room is completely decorated in OSU colors and with tons of OSU memorabilia). So I colored my youth football dude in OSU colors and decided this card would be perfect for either my brother-in-law or 11YO nephew. :)
Thanks for dropping in to take a peek at my masculine card for this week's Tuesday Throwdown. I hope you'll play along this week for a fun prize from Dude Time Doodles!

Until next time,

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Youth Football and Football digi stamps from Dude Time Doodles; sentiment from Enjoy the Ride by Flourishes
Paper: CS from The Paper Company; Miss Elizabeth's DP
Ink: Versafine Onyx
Accessories: Prismacolor pencils, odorless mineral spirits, paper blending stump, foam tape, brads

Techniques: Gamsol magic

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Tuesday Throwdown Blog Hop

Welcome to the final day of the Tuesday Throwdown Anniversary Blog Hop! You can find details on the hop at the Tuesday Throwdown blog.

We've had some amazing sponsors so far this week, and today is no different. Please welcome Whimsie Doodles!
Whimsie Doodles is so excited to be sponsoring the TT Anniversary Blog Hop! In March of 2009 Melyssa Connolly, artist and owner, began turning her whimsical hand-drawn images into digital files for sale online. Whimsie Doodles' digital stamp line features images that range from cute little boys and girls, to punny stuff, and everything in-between. We enjoy sharing lots of samples on our company blog, where we also post weekly challenges and tutorials.

Special Offer:
A special offer for Tuesday Throwdown Fans - use the discount code Throdown10 at the Whimsie Doodles online store and receive 10% off your next order! Code expires July 14, 2011.

Whimsie Doodles generously supplied the TT DT with two fun digital stamp sets, Shell-a-bration and Have a Seat. (Both sets may be viewed here.) I was completely taken with the comfy armchair in Have a Seat and used it to make a pair of CAS cards:

These images are perfect for paper piecing! I loved the thick lines, so forgiving for cutting. And my job of paper piecing was made even easier by using some fun dotted digital papers from the Springtime Hybrids collection by Echo Park Paper Co.

These cards are pretty versatile. I can complete the sentiment "just sittin' here" on the inside with "thinkin' of you," OR "thankin' you," OR "wishin' you a Happy Birthday," OR any number of other wishes perfect for the occasion at hand! This would also make a super quick and fun set of note cards to give as a gift. :)

In keeping with this week's anniversary Tuesday Throwdown challenge to combine any three or more past TT challenges into your project, I incorporated:
#9 Paper Piecing
#15 Ribbon with a Twist
#28 CAS (clean and simple)
#45 Polka Dots

OK, enough of the chit-chat. Let's talk prizes, shall we? How would you like to win some Whimsie Doodles goodness of your very own? For your chance to win a $10 Whimsie Doodles gift certificate, please be sure to leave a comment for me here on this post. To increase your chances of winning, be sure to also visit the blog of DeeDee Anderson, the other TT blog hop poster for today. You have until 6 pm EDT on June 20, 2011, to comment. Winners will be announced on the Tuesday Throwdown blog on June 21.

Thanks for dropping in to see what's making me happy today!

PS This card is also for this week's Clear It Out Challenge: Paper Piecing.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Have a Seat digital stamps by Whimsie Doodles
Paper: Mark's Finest Papers 100 lb and 80 lb white CS, patterned digital paper from Echo Park's hybrid Springtime collection
Ink: none
Accessories: scissors, Prismacolor pencils, ribbon, brads
Techniques: paper piecing

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Thanks a Bunch

Yup, I'm still cranking out the thank you cards for end-of-year stuff!!
I think those sweet little DeNami carrots, part of the adorable Veggies Petit Four set, are just the cutest. I know, you are probably scratching your head over their purpleness, right? My colors for this project were inspired by the current DeNami Design Color Challenge:
And I was bound and determined to use my Veggies! Oh, I suppose I could have gone with purple cabbage for a similar card, but I just wasn't prepared to settle for ho-hum. Especially when I could go for "WOW!" with healthful beauties like these:
Photo clipped from Sweet Additions

And besides, my "thanks a bunch" sentiment doesn't work nearly as well with cabbages. So, {purple} carrots it had to be!!

This is another card that I may have trouble parting with. I had such fun constructing my miniature scene!!

Thanks for taking a peek at what I've been up to here on Bliss Road!

Card Recipe:
Size: 4.25" x 4.25"
Stamps: carrot from Veggies Petit Four set by DeNami Design; sentiment from Flower Garden Sentiments by PaperTrey Ink
Paper: SU chocolate chip CS, MFP kraft CS, SU bashful blue textured CS, SU whisper white CS, patterned paper from the BasicGrey Basic Kraft collection
Ink: Versafine vintage sepia, Versafine onyx, Palette lavender sachet
Accessories: SU scallop border punch, MS picket fence border punch, 1" and 1.25" circle punches, precision tip scissors, Prismacolor pencils, purple baker's twine from The Twinery

Friday, June 17, 2011

Friends with Flair: Father's Day Pillow Box

Today I'm sharing a project I made for Unity's Friends with Flair blog hop. Anyone with a project made with Unity stamps can join in! You can find details, prize information, and a full list of players on the Unity Stamp Company blog.

I'm still having fun with my new {ippity} by Unity stamp set called The Best, purchased with my recently won $20 {ippity} gift certificate and delivered with lightning speed by {ippity} chick Noelle Reese. I wanted a little treat to mail off to my dad with his Father's Day card, and this set was perfect for decorating a quick and easy little pillow box for him. I filled it with his fave candy bars--Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate, which I was thrilled to discover are now being sold in Pack-A-Snack size. Perfect!!
A pillow box cutting file from The Cutting Cafe made this treat box project quick and easy, and a sheet of patterned paper from BasicGrey's Wander collection kept it fun yet masculine.

I'm entering this project
in the {ippity} challenge to make anything but a card, as well as the All Things Unity challenge to Get Manly.

Thanks for checking out my little slice of bliss today. Making the perfect treat for someone special definitely makes me happy!
Card Recipe:
Stamps: The Best by {ippity}
Paper: MFP natural vanilla bean CS, BasicGrey Wander collection DP, SU scraps: wild wasabi, so saffron, cherry cobbler
Ink: Versafine onyx, Palette l'amore red
Accessories: scissors, gold eyelets, Crop-A-Dile, SU 1" circle punch, hemp twine, pillow box cutting file from The Cutting Cafe

Thursday, June 16, 2011

StampinB Border Punch Challenge

Welcome to a new Thursday! We are in the home stretch now: after today, my kids have just 3 more full days and one half day of school and then SCHOOL'S OUT FOR THE SUMMER!! I'm not sure who is more excited about that: them or me. I'm SO looking forward to sleeping in, not having to pack lunches, no after-school activities, no monitoring homework progress. And I'm also looking forward to being able to do fun stuff with my kids!! With no school to get in the way, we can go on picnics, take hikes, craft, explore, play games, learn new stuff. The possibilities are endless!

BUT, we aren't there quite yet and I'm still cranking out the year-end thank yous. This week Vicki Dutcher is challenging us to use a border punch, so I broke out one of my favorite border punches (Martha Steward Modern Garland) and a detailed fleur de lis stamp to make a thank-you card for my son's Cub Scout den leader. (Incidentally, the fleur de lis is the symbol of the Boy Scouts of America and, thus, perfect for a scout leader! And the Cub Scout colors are blue and gold.)
My layout was inspired by the Splitcoast CAS challenge for this week, which is a sketch incorporating a 3 x 3 grid.

Well, thanks for checking out my little slice of bliss for today. If you'd like to try your hand at this week's Stampin' B's Challenge, post your project on your blog or SCS gallery, and link it up to the Inlinkz tool on the Stampin' B's blog. We'd love to see what you create!! :)

See you soon!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: SU Perfect Punches
Paper: snow storm CS; DCWV textured CS, SU night of navy CS
SU night of navy, Palette sunflower
Accessories: MS modern garland border punch, SU scalloped oval punch, SU small oval punch, scoring tool, dimensionals, twine

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Thanks Sew Much

Have I mentioned before that I like love to sew? It's absolutely true: I do, I do. I've been hand sewing since I was a child and machine sewing since seventh grade when I took my first home ec. class. I ran a successful home-based business making and selling handmade fabric bags (handbags, purses, tote bags, drawstring backpacks, eyeglasses cases, wristlets, coin purses, and such) for six years before I realized that I had hit the wall. Yup, I overdosed on my first crafting love. By then the economy had hit the skids, so that decline, coupled with my burnout, made my decision to fold up shop a relatively easy one. I don't sew nearly as often these days (aside from the sewing that I love to do on my papercrafting projects), but rather than viewing it as a breakup with my first love, I prefer to consider the current state of affairs as just "being on a break."

I know I'll delve head-first into my love affair with fabric and thread again sometime, but in the meantime I am so enjoying the wonderful sewing notions papercrafting trend we are seeing right now. I love spotting retro-chic sewing machines, pins and needles, dress forms, pincushions, spools of thread, thimbles, sewing scissors, patterns, tape measures, button cards, zippers, and more just about everywhere! And plus, you just can't beat the puns in the world of the seamstress--sew funny, right?

So (or perhaps I should say "Sew"), it was with great interest that I read about the I'm Sew Excited! Challenge in the Moxie Fab World. I knew I could have a lot of fun with this one!! But because of my great love of sewing, I also knew that this couldn't be just a casual fling of a card. It had to be something really amazing, if only I could pull it off. So I put a lot of thought into my creation. And when I was done, I had something that I really, truly loved. Loved! Loved so much, in fact, that I was feeling a little overprotective--at first, I wasn't sure that I wanted to share it! Is that so weird?? My much-more-rational hubby talked me down, though, convincing me that I have nothing to lose by linking this up. So, here goes:

There! I did it!

Did you catch the vintage straight pins? The hand stitching and machine stitching? How about that retro sewing machine and the vintage buttons? Yup, I've fallen in love with sewing all over again. This one makes my heart so happy.

Thanks for dropping in today. May your day be filled with bliss!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Thankful Mums and Pumpkins (Thanks sentiment) by Mark’s Finest Papers; Taglines (Much sentiment) by Flourishes; Total Cuteness (frame) by Unity Stamp Co.
Paper: Kraft CS from Papertrey Ink, Natural CS from Neenah, Gertie Papers from Stella and Rose Collection by My Mind’s Eye
Ink: Old Olive dye ink by Stampin’ Up!
Accessories: vintage straight pins, vintage buttons, SU Sweet Stitches rub on, flower stickers by Sandylion Essentials, foam tape, sewing machine, thread, CK Monogram font (
Techniques: hand stitching, machine stitching

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Playing with my new {ippity}

I won a $20 {ippity} gift certificate last week as part of the {ippity} June release party, and I was psyched to be able to get an awesome new set called The Best with it. It arrived yesterday (thanks, Noelle!), and I couldn't wait to start playing with it!! I needed a birthday gift bag in a hurry, so this evening I used the very cool EVENT tag from my new set to dress up a patterned paper bag I've had in my stash since, oh, I don't know, 1986? 'Bout time I used that bugger, eh? This is what I came up with:
I thought I'd enter this in the {ippity} challenge to make anything but a card. It's also perfect for the new All Things Unity challenge to Get Manly.

Thanks for taking a look!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: The Best, Regal Greetings, Just Wanted to Say by {ippity}
Paper: PTI kraft CS, SU whisper white CS
Ink: Versafine onyx, Palette l'amore red
Accessories: scalloped decorative scissors, printed paper bag, silver brad, decorative paper clip, rustic string

Tuesday Throwdown Anniversary Celebration

I'm back again this week wearing my Guest Designer hat for the Tuesday Throwdown. This is challenge #53, so TT is celebrating one year of fun weekly challenges with a weeklong celebration! Be sure to check back on the Tuesday Throwdown blog for the anniversary blog hop's daily schedule. Each day you'll be directed to hop to Tuesday Throwdown DT members' blogs for some eye candy and the chance to win some prizes from the fabulous sponsors Kim has lined up. All the details may be found at Tuesday Throwdown.

This week's challenge is to pick any three previous Tuesday Throwdown challenges to incorporate into your card creation. Be sure to list which three you chose!

We have six--count 'em, SIX!--sponsors this week: Paper Pretties, Heart Song Designs, K 'n K Designs, Digital Delights by Louby Loo, The Stamping Boutique, and Whimsie Doodles. Each sponsor generously provided the entire design team with beautiful digi images to play with.

Today I'm featuring an adorable digi from K 'n K Designs.
The image I used, Little Sheep, was perfect for this birthday card I made for the June birthday of a sweet sheep-loving blog buddy of mine.
Hopefully she has already received her card!!

Oh, I nearly forgot to list which three previous Tuesday Throwdown Challenges I used in the making of this card!! (OK, I actually used four. Couldn't help it!) Here they are:

#8 Stitching
#27 Embellish It
#44 Sparkles & Bling
#52 Animal Image

I'll be back again on Sunday, June 19, for my post in the week-long anniversary celebration blog hop.

Thanks for dropping by!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Little Sheep digital stamp from K 'n K Designs; frame from Autumn Blessings by Schlosser Designs
Paper: SU pacific point CS, SU whisper white CS, SU Ice Cream Parlor DSP
Ink: SU pacific point
Accessories: Prismacolor pencils, SU word window punch, ribbon from Target Dollar Spot, adhesive embellishments from SU Ice Cream Parlor collection, foam tape, rhinestones

Monday, June 13, 2011

Berry Notes for Mrs. Berry

I was hoping to make a little thank-you gift for my son's second grade teacher to go along with the card we made for her, but I didn't think I'd have time and made sure I had a Staples gift card at the ready. Last Friday morning I found a few bonus hours (woohoo!) and decided to play along with several of the Flourishes Release Week challenges. These were just what I needed to put together a sweet little set of note cards designed just for Mrs. Berry, who likes to sign her notes to the kids as "Mrs." followed by a sketched strawberry!

My first card was inspired by a red, white, and blue challenge. (The "from Mrs." portion was computer generated.)
My second card was inspired by a color challenge to use light, medium, and dark pinks.
And finally, my third card was created for a sketch challenge. The berries were watercolor painted, and the leaves/stems were colored with Prismacolor pencils.
Clean and simple? Yes. Quick and easy? Yes. But with a set of strawberry decorated envelopes and some spiffy packaging (see below), I think this will make a nice gift that will hopefully let Mrs. Berry know how much we appreciated all of her wonderful work this past year. :)

That snazzy label and sentiment on the bag topper came from the Timeless Tags set by The Craft's Meow. This is one of five sets that I won last week in The Craft's Meow June release blog hop. Awesome sets! I can't wait to play with them some more. I know for certain that this Timeless Tags set will be a go-to set for me. Just the kind of thing I needed!

Thanks for dropping by today!

Card #1:
Stamps: Flourishes Strawberries, Flourishes Taglines
Paper: MFP snow storm CS
Ink: SU pacific point, Palette l'amore red
Accessories: scoring tool
Techniques: one-layer card, scoring

Card #2:
Stamps: Flourishes Strawberries, Flourishes Taglines
Paper: MFP snow storm CS, SU pink pirouette, SU pretty in pink
Ink: SU melon mambo
Accessories: MS topiary corner and border punches, foam tape, Pink Sorbet baker's twine from The Twinery

Card #3:
Stamps: Flourishes Strawberries, Flourishes Taglines
Paper: MFP snow storm CS, SU wild wasabi CS, Canson watercolor paper, BasicGrey Nook & Pantry DP
Ink: Versafine onyx
Accessories: watercolor brushes, Prismacolor pencils, foam tape, white grosgrain ribbon, Prima flowers, brad
Techniques: watercolor painting

Bag Topper:
Stamps: Timeless Tags by The Craft's Meow; Love in Return (dots pattern on berry) by {ippity}
Paper: red, white CS by The Paper Company, SU pretty in pink CS, SU wild wasabi CS, SU whisper white CS
Ink: ColorBox frost white, Palette l'amore red, Versafine onyx
Accessories: SU wide heart punch, SU two-step bird punch, Marvy LePlume II marker for pen stitching, rhinestones
Techniques: pen stitching

Sunday, June 12, 2011

DeNami Fabulous Frames Blog Hop

Welcome to the DeNami Design Fabulous Frames Blog Hop!

DeNami June Blog Hop

Hopefully, you've arrived here by way of Ruza Rebel's blog, Ruza's Craft Corner. If so, you are on the right track! If not, you'll want to head over to the DeNami blog to start the blog hop at the beginning. (And remember, if you get lost along the way, you can always head over to the DeNami blog to get pointed in the right direction.)

This month's blog hop is packed with ideas for making or using frames, all in conjunction with fabulous DeNami stamp images, of course ;) !! Hop along for some great inspiration and comment along the way for a chance at some free DeNami products! Here are the details:

When: The blog hop starts on June 12 at 6 AM, PST. However, you have until June 12, 2011, 11:59 pm PST, to leave comments on all the blogs (to be eligible for a prize).

Why: To be inspired by beautiful frame creations featuring DeNami Design stamps and also the chance to win mini shopping sprees on the DeNami Design website!

Prizes: DeNami is giving away THREE $20 gift certificates to their website! They'll be giving away one gift certificate to a random blog hop participant (DT members not eligible) and then they'll also be giving away TWO gift certificates to TWO people who comment along the hop!

Ready to get going? Then check out my 4.25" x 4.25" DeNami Fabulous Frame card:
Thanks to winning a DeNami challenge in May, I recently acquired the fabulous and, as Paulina tells me, very popular Decorative Crest Circle stamp. This frame stamp is SO versatile! Pair it with some pretty patterned paper, pop in just about any sentiment in the center, and you've got a quick and easy card for almost any occasion! Dress it up, dress it down. Make it fun, make it serious. Doesn't matter!! This frame stamp can handle it.

Are you drooling over my background paper? Yeah, I was too when I won this as part of a Webster's Pages 4" x 4" vellum sampler pack on the Simon Says Stamp Blog last month. So pretty and detailed, it's a shame to cover it up! Webster's Pages designs are an easy way to get a collage-y, vintage-y, layered feel without a lot of work or a lot of layers. The perfect lazy crafter's product!

Let's see . . . details? I kept it to a minimum (see paragraph above.) Of note: the ruffled ribbon rosette I made. So easy! I basically followed this tutorial. The ribbon I used wasn't stitched ribbon, so my first step was to add a running stitch along one edge with my sewing machine. My ribbon is narrower than the ribbon in the tutorial, so my flower is flatter. But I love it just the same!

OK, I'm scanning my checklist . . . and that looks like everything I wanted to cover!! Be sure to comment here for a chance at some free DeNami products before you hop off to our next Fabulous Frames Blog Hop participant:

A member of the DeNami design team, she always has some creative DeNami goodness to share! Go give her some love. :)

Thanks so much for dropping by today to check out my little slice of bliss!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: DeNami Decorative Crest Circle
Paper: cream CS, Webster's Pages Vellum Fun Pack, SU baja breeze CS, Neenah natural CS
Ink: SU baja breeze, Versafine vintage sepia
Accessories: 2.25" and 2.5" circle punches, sewing machine, grosgrain ribbon, foam tape, mulberry paper roses
Techniques: machine stitching, handmade ribbon rosette

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Exciting News!

Happy Tuesday, everyone!!

I have some exciting news to share: I am a Guest Designer for the Tuesday Throwdown challenge for the month of June!! I was beside-myself-thrilled when Kim Sherrod, the challenge organizer, contacted me earlier in the spring to see if I'd like to take a GD turn. Completely flattered, I said, "Of course!!"

So today is my first Tuesday Throwdown as Guest Designer. Let's get down to business, shall we?

This week's challenge is to use an animal image. This week's sponsor is Robyn's Fetish Digital Stamps And More, a division of I Did It Creations, created and owned by Robyn Weinrib. Robyn offers a wonderful variety of digital stamps and digital papers, designed to meet the needs of all digital paper crafting addicts for every occasion.

Robyn generously supplied each of the Tuesday Throwdown designers with digi stamp of our choice. I chose this delightful A Little Birdie Told Me digital image.

I've been having fun playing with digital images and elements over the past year. Previously I've printed black and white digis and colored them with colored pencils, odorless mineral spirits, and a paper blending stump. This time I wanted to do a little something different and tried my hand at coloring this Robyn's Fetish image digitally using The GIMP. It took some trial and error, but this is what I ended up with:

Not only does this card feature a digital image that was colored digitally, it incorporates some digital Cosmo Cricket papers and scrapbook elements from their Wanted collection as well! Yup, I went whole-hog digital with this one, using
Microsoft Publisher to lay out the whole card, just to see how it would turn out. I'm pretty pleased with the results!

I hope you'll consider playing along with the Tuesday Throwdown animal image challenge this week. The randomly selected winner will get to bring home some free digis from Robyn's Fetish!

Thanks for dropping by to check out my little slice of bliss!
See you soon,

Card Recipe:
Cardstock: Stampin' Up! Chocolate Chip
Digital Image: A Little Birdie Told Me from Robyn's Fetish Digital Stamps and More
Digital Papers and Embellishments: Cosmo Cricket Wanted Collection digital papers
Font: CK Brownie from
Tools: SU large oval punch, SU scalloped oval punch
Accessories: scissors, foam tape, buttons from my stash, embroidery floss, sheer ribbon
Technique: digital papers, digital layout, digi stamp, fussy cutting

Monday, June 6, 2011

Red, White, and Blue Thank You

Still working on those thank-you gifts and cards. I needed one more small giftie for my kids' gymnastics coaches. All three coaches are teenage boys, so I figured what better way to say thank you for their hard work this year than with chocolate bars? I've already put aside these two bars for them, and added this one to the collection today:
I used the Flourishes Tag Lines set to stamp the sentiment for the little red, white, and blue tag. After wrapping a milk chocolate caramel bar with some patriotic patterned paper, I tied on my tag with red and white baker's twine. Done!! A quick and easy gift. :)

I'm playing along with the June Flourishes Release Week Challenge, the Star-Spangled Challenge, which is to let your patriotism shine and use red, white, and blue if you hail from the United States {check!}.

Thanks for dropping by!

Stamps: Flourishes Tag Lines
Paper: MFP kraft CS, SU cherry cobbler CS, MFP snow storm CS, DP from the Target Dollar Spot
Ink: SU night of navy
Accessories: SU tag corner punch, SU oval/scallop oval punches, white eyelet, Crop-A-Dile, foam tape, red/white baker’s twine, chocolate bar

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Chit-Chat and a Flashback

Hi, everyone! Just a quick post to catch up!

Yesterday morning we sat for our first family portrait in five-and-a-half years. How could you have possibly let so much time go by, you ask?? I'm certainly wondering that myself. Our 12YO was in first grade (and had a broken arm!) for our last one.

Anyway, wanting a unified look for our portrait, we decided that we should all wear the same color. I suppose I could have simplified things by buying new matching polo shirts at Lands End for everyone, but oh, no. I was too cheap to do that. I figured that I could find solid shirts in similar colors for everyone with what we already have in our wardrobes. So much harder than I thought! We started with red: the guys both have solid red sweaters (long sleeves), DD has a solid red long-sleeve T-shirt. And I have red short-sleeve T-shirt. Which of these things is not like the other?? So I tried again with black, except all of DD's black shirts have big graphics on them. Not the look we wanted. We got close, but no cigar, with orange, lime green, yellow, white, and turquoise. There was always one of us missing a shirt to complete the set. Finally, after a lot of digging through drawers and closets, I realized that we all had a short-sleeve T-shirt or polo shirt that is approximately baby blue. Nevermind the fact that DS's baby blue shirt is a hand-me-down complete with hand-me-down stains. We hoped decided that they would be faint enough to escape notice by the camera. Fingers crossed!

After all that scrambling, our sitting went even better than we dared hope and in a few weeks we'll be all set to pick up our packet of priceless keepsakes. After getting some wonderful group shots, the photographer took an adorable shot of just the kids standing back-to-back and grinning over their shoulders at one another. So cute! And my hubby and I had our first portrait of just the two of us since, well, our wedding nearly 18 years ago!! We are over-the-moon thrilled with how everything turned out and can't wait to share them with our extended family.

And now I'd like to share a project for the Flashback Friday 12.0 challenge. Kathleen, of the Daisy Chain, is the guest designer for this go-round, and she is challenging everyone to re-post her very first card using summer colors. Going all the way back to May 2009, I have this note card set to share:

I wish I would have ditched the flash for this photo, but otherwise I'm still pretty happy with these, even through the lens of time and experience. Simple but cute, fun patterns, graphic sentiments. I could totally use that layout again--in fact, perhaps I will very soon!!

Thanks to Amy and Kathleen for the opportunity for this trip down memory lane!!

Thanks for dropping by. Have a day filled with bliss!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Unity FWF~~Teacher Thanks

Today I'm playing along with Unity's
Friends with Flair!

You can find out all of the details over on the Unity Stamp Company blog. (You should check it out--there are prizes involved!)

First, you should know that I am a thank-you kind of gal. I thank people for holding the door, for bagging my groceries, for stopping to let us cross the street. I thank my kids for emptying the dishwasher, my husband for mowing the grass, my neighbor for taking my son to school. I say thank you, I write thank you, I sing thank you. I'm teaching my kids to do the same. I'm a big believer in "Thank You" and its power!!

That said, I think June is the "Thank You" season! My kids' last day of school (June 22) is fast approaching, and we have a long list of people to thank for their leadership and service this year: teachers, helpers, coaches, scout leaders, youth advisers. The list could go on and on! So I'm trying to kick the end-of-year thank-you-gift-and-card-making into high gear!! And today I'm sharing a thank-you project that I collaborated on with my 8YO son for his second-grade teacher.
I stamped the adorable books image from {ippity}'s Books a'Flutter kit on a piece of notebook paper, and my son colored it in with crayons. The sentiment is a digital one that I downloaded from Paper Crafts magazine (here). I sorted through my kids' crayon boxes to find four that were still in decent shape (quite the task, I tell ya!) and used them to frame our notebook panel. Glossy Accents was perfect for gluing on the crayons!!

The background paper is actually a page from the 1964 edition of Webster's New World Dictionary. I bought it at a used bookstore last year for $3, specifically to cut up in paper projects. A great investment! (And in the long run, so much cheaper than buying text patterned paper by the sheet.) Anyway, I used the "T" dictionary page that included "teacher" and cut up the page so that the "teacher" entry would peek out strategically at the bottom of the panel. Fortunately, that approach to cutting also ensured that the entry for "teat," just one line down from "teacher" in the next column, was eliminated from the layout. Whew! As wonderful and fun-loving as Mrs. Berry is, I doubt that she would have found that amusing.

So, there you have it!! My son will write a thank you note inside following his patented thank-you-note-writing formula (which is suspiciously similar to the paragraph-writing recipe he learned from Mrs. Berry this year. See? They do pay attention! And won't that make Mrs. Berry proud?): greeting, opening sentence, 2-3 details, wrap-up sentence, "love."

I know it makes me proud.

Thanks for joining me for my little slice of bliss for today!!

5.5" x 5.5" Card Recipe:
Stamps: Books a'Flutter from {ippity} by Unity Stamp Co.
Paper: Wild Wasabi CS from Stampin' Up!, red CS from The Paper Company, notebook paper, page from vintage dictionary

Ink: Palette noir black
Accessories: crayons, Glossy Accents, craft foam sheets, Martha Stewart loops punch-around-the-page set

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I need your help!!

Has it really been five days {already} since I last blogged?? I didn't really mean to let that much time slip by. Oops! But we were definitely kept busy with the extended weekend, which turned out to be both quite fun and productive.

Our family fun this weekend included a movie night with the kids (How to Train Your Dragon), playing lots of Uno {and some Sorry!, too}, an afternoon of Wii games (bowling* and carnival games), an indoor holiday weekend "cookout," lots of ice cream bars and frozen treats, and our town's Memorial Day parade on Monday morning. DD marched in the parade with her Girl Scout troop, and DS marched with his Cub Scout pack. My hubby and I accompanied the Cub Scouts, hauling the 1000 American flags that the boys handed out to spectators along the parade route. I'm happy to report that the weather cooperated for our parade march!!

* Ever since noticing that the Wii Bowling game labels two strikes in a row a "Double" and three strikes in a row a "Turkey," we've been wondering what terms are used for higher numbers of consecutive strikes. Well, it turns out that the Wii game calls four- and five-consecutive strikes rather unimaginatively "fourth strike" and "fifth strike," while six consecutive strikes is called a "six pack." Go ahead and ask me how I know!! Well, it's because yours truly rolled six consecutive strikes in one of our games (with a grand total of nine strikes for that game). So now we know!! Of course, I suppose we could have looked it up on Wikipedia, but this way was much more thrilling. ;)

As for our productivity, we managed to install all of our window air conditioners for the summer season (just in the nick of time!), replaced all of our dimmer switches with standard light switches to make the ceiling receptacles safe for CFL light bulbs (generally not recommended for use with dimmers), and I spent some blissful time playing with paper in preparation for some upcoming DT commitments. It was all good!!!!

OK, so I wasn't pulling your leg with the title of this post. I really do need your help!! So here's the deal: after being two months overdue for my annual haircut, last week I finally took the time to rectify that situation. This time I went a lot shorter than I usually do (in preparation for the hot summer months ahead, I guess, but also because I wanted a little something different). I also got new glasses (OK, that's not a terribly recent occurrence--more like from last November), but now with two "big" changes in my appearance, I figured it was time to update my blog profile photo. With my new 'do fresh from the salon and still looking decent, I had my hubby and kids take a few photos of me. The problem is that they all have pros and cons, and I can't decide which is best. That's where you come in--I need your help to pick one!!

Here are the contenders:
Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4

So, which one do you like best? Please leave me a comment letting me know your choice!

By the way, I had worn my old glasses (yeah, go ahead and scroll up to my "old" profile photo to check them out. I'll wait.) for about 7 years, so my kids don't remember seeing me in anything else. When I got my new glasses and asked the kids what they thought of them, my 8YO son told me that I "look meaner" in my new glasses. What?!?! Wasn't expecting that!! I guess he thought that the rimless portion along the bottoms of the lenses made the frames along the top look more like a "unibrow"--the universally understood "angry look" in all the cartoons. I think he's adjusted to them now and realizes that I'm still the same old cuddly mom that I've always been. :)

OK, enough of the chit chat. Please go vote NOW!!!