Sunday, July 31, 2011

Some exciting news!

First, let me show you the photos from our camping trip last week. All none of them.

Yeah, camping was a bust. It rained on the way there, it rained WHILE we were there, it thundered. We were determined to enjoy ourselves. After all, the weather was supposed to improve, and we had a day of indoor activities planned. Surely we could do that, and then we'd revel in the nice weather & go do the outdoor parks that we already had tickets for.

I just erased the big long dramatic recounting of our trip - let's just say it wasn't fun trying to keep everyone from touching the tent while it was raining, and Thursday morning we woke up with a puddle inside the tent, and the rain still falling. And that's when we decided to cut our losses & head home early.

However, we have been talking about getting a dog for a long time. Years, actually. Only in the last few months has it seemed like something we were really ready for, and so earlier this week we started looking out for people giving up their pets. And, without further ado, meet Abby!

She was originally named Lily, but I don't think my niece would be too happy that our dog shares her Abby it is! She's 4 months old, and unfortunately her family was just too busy to be fair to her, and so they offered her free to a new home. So far the cats are unimpressed, and Abby has decided that she would like to be no farther than 2 millimetres from a human at all times. Her previous home had 4 cats, so really it's just waiting for our cats to stop freaking out. She's about 18 pounds, and they estimate she will grow to about 40. I don't know much about breeds, but her mom was 10 lbs, and her dad was a mystery man. Anyone have any guesses as to breeds?

I'm guessing that you'll hear PLENTY about our new family member - hard not to fall in love with a puppy, right? And she's particularly adorable, and mostly housetrained already (fist bump!)

OK, and a card before I go - I actually made quite a few on Thursday & Friday. Of course the weather was spectacular....

Supplies: Paper from My Mind's Eye;
stickers from K & Co (rose, label, border on envelope);
foam tape to pop up rose; micro beads in pale peach ($ store)

attempting to show the micro beads & dimension...
I bought these rose stickers about a year ago at a yard sale (crafty yard sale? awesomesauce!) and have pretty much hoarded them ever since. They occasionally make their way into my "Ooh, totally making a card with that!" pile, and then sadly fall to the bottom of it, and then sadly go back in the drawer. This time I think it worked out happily for us. I added the micro beads with Mod Podge Dimensional Magic - after about 1.5 years I am nearly at the end of the bottle. $4 for 18 months is a pretty good deal, I think.

xoxo (and puppy smooches),

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I love your face!

Getting ready to head out the door for camping...with a forecast that calls for rain, not CHANCE of rain, but just 'it's going to rain' for tomorrow, and it's raining now. Oh boy.

A friend of mine has been struggling with some tough choices right now, and is having a hard time not beating himself up. It's kind of hard to know the right thing to say, but one morning I was sitting down to craft and this came together. Maybe it's not super-masculine, but hopefully it gives my friend a smile and lets him know that I care about him for him, whatever he ends up doing.


Monday, July 25, 2011

Moxie Fab - Fanatical about Botanical!

Moxie Fab World  is so chock-full of inspiring challenges. This time around, it's botanicals. I can see these two being the first of many entries I link up - I love this theme!
Supplies: paper from Echo Park "For the Record;"
acetate die-cut bird & branch from K & Co;
'birthday cheer' sticker from SRM;
Lacey scallop circle Nesties;
crocheted scalloped mat by me 

Supplies: patterned paper from Basic Grey "Origins;"
brown mulberry scrap from stash;
bird & flower acetate die-cuts from K & Co;
"Happy Birthday" from class-a-peels

Girly things and Weddings...

Maybe it's only me, but I'm so enamored with this UV-reactive nail polish that I had Rob take pictures to show you. It takes not quite 30 seconds for the colour to develop outside. So, so cool.

We're going camping in Prince Edward Island tomorrow - gulp - and hoping that we'll get our tent set up before the predicted rain starts. We thought about postponing by a day, but if we can get set up before the rain hits, we do have some activities (Haunted House? We hope!) we can do while we wait out the weather. In anticipation of spending a day at Shining Waters as well as camping right next to Cabot Beach, I went and bought my first bathing suit in years. Yeah. I'm not ready to talk about that yet.

Weddings are busting out all over around here, and the last few weeks have seen a lot of demand for wedding cards. Here's a bunch!

Supplies: Papers, striped border, red tab from My Mind's Eye (various collections);
"Everything Grows" clip from Fancy Pants;
white button from Basic Grey; heart button from Dress it Up!;
'happily ever after' sentiment from Inkadinkado;
versamark & white EP;
labels 4 Nesties (cut & staggered behind the clip)

Supplies: brown shimmer paper & gold handmade paper from stash;
gold embossed with D'vine Swirls Cuttlebug folder;
chipboard from ATD; rose button from Dress it Up!;
Wilton doily brayered with Versamark & embossed with
pirate gold EP - inspired by Leslie Miller

Supplies: Grey papers from stash;
white velvet paper embossed with Cuttlebug folder;
miscellaneous rhinestones;
template for bride & groom from Lynn Pratt;
envelope stamp from Inkadinkado

Supplies: all white cardstock;
Labels 4 Nesties; D'Vine Swirls Cuttlebug folder;
black rhinestones; Memento Tuxedo Black ink;
sentiment stamp & oval from Inkadinkado;
embossed background brayered with Memento...very messy ;)

Supplies: grey cardstocks from stash;
Cuttlebug embossing folder;
chipboard & stickers from ATD;
ghost heart from Heidi Swapp

Supplies: papers from My Mind's Eye;
standard circle Nesties;
wedding cake sticker from Martha Stewart;
silver outline stickers from stash;
quilled frame by me

Trying to help the kids clean up their room - whoa. Where to begin. But, we said they'd have to get it done before we considered getting a dog, and I've just been making arrangements to visit a potential pet on Saturday, so it's got to be done before we go. I am not a popular lady around here at the moment.

By the way, once again, if you are registered & voting in the Paper Crafts Gallery Idol competition, my bloggy friend Meg has made it to the Top 10. I've reset the widget link to her new entry, and voting is open until Thursday. Go Meg Go!!

Hopefully I'll have a couple of posts come up during the week (if I've done it right) and also be around to visit before we leave...three days no computer = sad, sad Jessi.


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Call the Girly Police!

Not only about this card - girly girly though it is - but about me! I went & had my hair done on Friday for the first time in 2 years, and had a peek-a-boo streak put green, my favourite colour. Very girly-feeling, and I love it! And then, I put nail polish on for the first time in maybe 10 years? I found it at Hallmark, of all places, and it's UV reactive polish. Indoors it's clear, and outdoors it turns a lovely sheer shade of coral. Next thing you know I'll start wearing makeup every day or something ridiculous like that...

Supplies: papers from Cosmo Cricket "DeLovely;"
floral gem strip from Recollections;
rub-on butterflies from the $store;
'birthday girl' sticker from SRM
It's funny: in creating, the girlier the better, but in my personal life, nah. Not really. And lately I have just really been enjoying the girly things in life. Perhaps my Stockholm Syndrome at living in a house full of boys is finally wearing off? If suddenly I don't find fart jokes funny any more, that's when I'll know for sure that girliness has taken over. I don't foresee it going that far!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Whoot Whoot!

Supplies: Owl, branch, hat and 'whoot whoot' from CHF;
'fabulous' from The Cat's Pajamas;
Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Versamark; black EP;
papers from My Mind's Eye;
buttons from Basic Grey;
banner from Martha Stewart
I swear that this is texturally fabulous in person. The "whoot whoot" is heat embossed with black EP. You know that has to be special, because holy sheesh does that stuff stick to everything no matter what anti-static magic I conjure up. Owl-dude was stamped and cut out twice, coloured, and his snarky little eyes & eyelids are cut out & popped up on foam tape.

So, as mentioned previously, I'm what people might consider an avid reader. Normally I read a lot of what I call "throw-away" books - cozy mysteries, thrillers, that sort of thing. I read primarily (oh heck, entirely) for entertainment. There are two books that I've read in the last few weeks that have completely sucked me in, and made me want to recommend them. If you happen to be looking for something to read, these two are really something.

The Help, by Kathryn Stockett Synopsis taken from the weblink:
Kathryn Stockett - Book InformationKathryn Stockett - Book InformationThree ordinary women are about to take one extraordinary step.
Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.
Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.
Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.

The Widows of Paradise Bay, by Jill Sooley Synopsis taken from weblink:
Prissy Montgomery goes to great lengths to avoid having sex with her husband, Howie. So when he confesses to having an affair, and requests a divorce, she shouldn’t be all that surprised.

With her fourteen-year-old son in tow she leaves the comfort of her Toronto home and heads back to Paradise Bay, her childhood home in Newfoundland. But Prissy’s mother, in an effort to spare her daughter humiliation, takes out an obituary to announce Howie’s untimely demise. Prissy is horrified by the deception, especially when her childhood friend becomes widowed for real.

When their son has an altercation with the law, Howie, the “dead” husband, heads home to help, and his arrival leaves the town of Paradise Bay reeling, with more questions than answers.

Okay, the 'widows' synopsis really doesn't do this book justice. I started reading it when I went to bed last night, and ended up staying awake until I finished. I don't necessarily think that it's 'only' for married women, but as a woman who has been married for nearly 15 years, I found myself recognizing a lot of the issues facing the book's characters. 

Just out of curiosity, would anyone be interested in me sharing my reading list? I keep track for myself, but I do love to share. 


Monday, July 18, 2011

I'm the Drama Queen!

Ugh, I never realized until reading the comments that it came across any other way - I'm totally the drama queen. I meant my temper tantrum, and feeling like I was going to quit making cards. To Rob's ultimate credit, he listened and nodded a lot during that rant. The customer was (hopefully) happy with the order, although I wasn't. It held to the theme, and it turned out OK, but it definitely wasn't worth the amount of stress. Like Meg & Mr. Corgi say, it's supposed to be fun!

Speaking of Meg, hopefully if you're a paper crafter you're aware of the Paper Crafts Gallery Idol competition going on right now, and are registered to vote...I added a widget for Meg's contest entry at the top of my page. If you're so inclined, I would love for you to vote for her - once again, her card knocks my socks off. (The fact that I was already barefoot notwithstanding...)

Today is so definitely a Monday - for the second night in a row, Gertie the cat has had me up in the middle of the night. I defy anyone to sleep through the sound of a cat regurgitating multiple times. My favourite would have to be the one from my nightstand, landing on the carpet next to the bed. And then, by 7 a.m., the thunderstorms we were expecting at mid-day had arrived, and last week I made a mistake. It was raining really hard, so I let the kids skip day camp...and so as soon as they saw the rain, {partay! Stay at home!}
Not that I wanted to ride my bike in a thunderstorm either, but that makes 4 days in a row at home. They're going tomorrow if I have to build an ark. {And the sun's been shining all afternoon, of course....but it was raining this morning, so outside is a no-go.}

OK, mind wandering...Sandy Ang from Sandy's Space is having a fantastic challenge for summer - create any handmade item with a travel theme. I've now made 3 different things for her challenge, and managed to photograph only one! Here it is:

Supplies: Papers all from Basic Grey "Wander;"
'enjoy' stamp & mesh texture stamp from Studio G;
Bicycle stamp from Recollections;
Memento Tuxedo Black ink; black embroidery thread;
buttons from stash
The challenge ends July 22, so bop on over there & link up!

And in case you're wondering what I'm drinking to be so chipper, Rob found this at the liquor store:

Me likey, in sparkling lemonade. Summer is nice :)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Crawling out from under my rock... say hi.
Mater teeth suckers. Makes me miss Ring Pops.
(This is from the circus last month - Riley's on the left, Connor on the right.)

Supplies: Papers from Basic Grey "Nook & Pantry;"
Wilton doily; Dress it Up! phone button;
velvet flowers & pearl brad from K&Co;
Phoning lady clip from Crafty Secrets;
'hello' stamp from Inkadinkado; Memento Tuxedo Black ink
And that's about it. Long, challenging, emotional week. Didn't even get many things made, because I had a special order that was extremely difficult & nearly made me decide to quit making cards all together. Serious drama-queen moment, but still. Did more house-cleaning because that empties my brain more effectively than creating, and watched the entire first season of Castle, and read a whole stack of James Patterson.

I think I've nearly caught up on commenting - besides what's above I've been doing pretty well on my attempt to read the entire of the Internets. And my bubble-shooter score on FB is going up too.

Man, I hope this week is better!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Who doesn't love Pink Cat Studio?

Supplies: Digital Fairy Lily from Pink Cat Studio;
papers from Basic Grey "Lemonade;"
'Happy Birthday' stamp from Inkadinkado;
'whimsy' sentiment from TAC;
ink from a Kaleidacolor pad;
iridescent sparkle fabric paint (wings); misc. pearls & rhinestone;
standard oval Nesties
Well. really, who doesn't?

This Lily is paper-pieced using scraps from Basic Grey's "Lemonade" and my handy-dandy printer. After painstakingly cutting out the teeny details & assembling, I painted her wings with iridescent fabric paint (kind of like Stickles), and when dry popped that oval up on foam tape for dimension.

Wow...I'm wracking my brains for something else to say, and I got nothin'. Wow. That never happens. Well, hope everyone has a great day - I'm off for crafty time & lunch with my friend Dee, so I know I will :)


Friday, July 8, 2011

Ew, gross!

That's what Connor said when he saw he kissing his dad yesterday - full horror, covering his eyes & recoiling at the disgusting sight. So I kissed him again.Tee hee ;) If you can't torture your kids, I mean, really, what fun are they anyway? So here's some gross lovey-dovey stuff:
Supplies: Papers from Basic Grey "Capella;"
Lacey scallop & standard circle Nesties;
lace/pearl trim from stash;
'happily ever after' stamp from Inkadinkado;
Vintage Photo distress ink;
Wedding couple stickers from Wilton

Supplies: Papers from Echo Park "For the Record;"
outline sticker (Congratulations) from Outlines;
Wedding cake sticker from Martha Stewart;
Wedding rings & pearls from $store;
black cardstock scrap; lacey & standard circle Nesties;
scalloped mat crocheted by me :)
On a totally unrelated note, I put a pot of eggs on to boil before sitting down to blog surf, and 45 minutes later I just remembered them. One broke open, and the egg is nowhere to be seen. What the heck? I boiled it so long that it evaporated? There's a reason I'm not a good cook - total lack of interest in paying attention to the process :)

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Stamp It! Cards Challenge at the Moxie Fab World

Slowly, slowly I'm catching up on leaving comments around blogland - besides the "days of no Internet" we had a forced update to IE 9, which has apparently caused the computer to develop some sort of problem with having multiple tabs open. If I have more than 3 tabs open {boom} instant crash. Problem is, I am not very tech-savvy, and can't figure out how to import everything I've already marked into Chrome. Whatever. And, oh, on top of everything else, Monday & Tuesday we had no phone service. We had DSL, but no phone. I felt so lost!  {I know, whiner...forgive me!}

So far my 'evil' bike hasn't caused me any grievous harm. It's only a matter of time, I'm sure. The one close call was my shoelace becoming wrapped around the pedal's "stick-thingy," right in the middle of the road. I had to coast, then pry my shoe off in the rain & try to stand one-footed to get it untangled. Try not to picture it too closely...or if you do, make sure you're not drinking something.

OK, so, onto what I've got here. Moxie Fab World has an open challenge in celebration of the release of 2011's Stamp It! Cards where we're to create something with stamping as the predominant element. I think these work :) This is the card set I made as a thank-you for the school's librarian. She also hosted a book club this year, which to my delight Connor joined all on his own (!). I knew I wanted to (once again) reference her position within the cards, and this time I did it by using quotes. Each card uses the same basic set of supplies.  Unfortunately I didn't think to get a good shot of the envelopes, but you can see them poking out at the left - they're also stamped with a mini version of the floral cluster I did on the left of the cards.

Supplies for all cards above:
white cardstock;
Stamps from Digital Princess, Inkadinkado, Basic Grey;
Emerson quotes from My Favorite Things;
black Sharpie for edges; Memento Tuxedo Black ink;
Distress inks:
Fired Brick, Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed,
Peeled Paint, Tumbled Glass, Dusty Concord
I think the how-to is pretty self-explanatory, but I did want to share one thing. See those great little black silhouettes along the top & bottom of each card? I was carefully edging each card with a black Sharpie, and on the 4th edge of the 6th card, my hand slipped. I'm sure they heard the scream of frustration across town....and thus, a "whoops" turned into a good thing. I actually like the cards better with that extra black element on them, and I wouldn't have done it without the ^&$&^# sharpie incident.

It's later than I thought - I've got to run & get the kids from daycamp. It's 30 Celsius out there. I'm already excited about taking a shower when I get back!


Monday, July 4, 2011

Teacher stuff!

Supplies: googly eyes; scraps of red & green cardstock for apples;
"best teacher" and apple stamps from Imaginisce;
'ever' and  teacher's names spelled with Studio G alphabets;
swirls from Autumn Leaves;
arrow drawn freehand with Sakura black Glaze pen;
ink: Memento tuxedo black, and Distress inks:
Fired Brick, Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed,
Peeled Paint, Broken China, Dusty Concord;
Mod Podge Dimensional Magic for the apple

Supplies: Same inks as above; Swirls from Autumn Leaves;
white gel pen; thank you stamps from Hero Arts, Basic Grey, and Studio G;
black rhinestones
I didn't photograph most of the personalized thank you cards I made for the boys' teachers, simply because I was running out of time! I picked my favourites, which happened to be the ones for their classroom teachers. Connor wanted the apple & best teacher for Mrs. Mackay, and when he saw the finished card he said "Whoa! How did you DO that???" Ah, mom magic. It's nice that I still have it once in a while. The shiny apple was his favourite part. I drew the arrow freehand with a fineline marker & then went over it with the Glaze pen, and traced "Teacher" as well. The backgrounds were all made by sponging the distress inks in rainbow order (again, Connor insisted) and then flicking with water off a toothbrush (a la Jill Foster, but not as awesome as hers. Must practice more!)

I had specific ideas in mind for the card sets I made - I went for the tried-and-true idea of referencing the teachers' subjects. For the French teacher:

Supplies: same inks as cards above;
sentiment stamps from Basic Grey;
black Sharpie for edges
For the music teacher:
Supplies: same inks as cards above;
Versamark & clear EP for musical notes on the rainbow;
single music note from Inkadinkado;
sentiment stamp from Studio G; black Sharpie;
no manufacturer markings on the music notes - it's an oldie
And I'll save the others for later in the week - it made sense to put all the ones with the rainbow together. Funny, but as much as I love rainbows I'm pretty rainbow-ed out ;)

Fireworks were cancelled on Canada Day - it was gorgeous all day, until about 8.30 pm when the heavens opened...and then by Saturday morning it was gorgeous again. Boo, hiss. They'll be rescheduled, though. And  Transformers 3 was actually better than I expected - I waited rather uncomfortably with a bladder full of a large Coke Zero rather than miss the battle scenes. {I know! What?} I did keep thinking of Shia LaBeouf as Pube-Stache McGee, though. lol!

First day of day camp today - hurray! - except it's supposed to rain & thundershower this afternoon - boo! - and we're riding bikes. Yikes. If you haven't seen it before, check out Allie Brosh's Hyperbole and a Half post about bikes. I haven't fallen off my bike yet this year, but it's early days, and I haven't ridden in the rain yet. The best falls happen in the rain.


creepy bike
This is my bike, as drawn by Allie Brosh. It's like she knows me. And my bike.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Blog Candy Winner!

Wow, I wasn't sure I was going to get anything else posted for a while - we finally coerced the phone company into a new modem, after asking for one repeatedly over the last several months (and being told our connection was fine...) and ended up with a new modem that wouldn't connect, and an old modem that apparently forgot how to operate. The tech that came out today (bless his 12-year-old heart, working on a holiday) told us that he switched our connections, since we have been paying for (but not receiving) super high-speed service. And then it took him about half an hour to discover the problem while on the phone with tech support. That would be about 5 hours total working on what ended up being some sort of auto-setting with Windows 7. {insert primal scream here}

Plus, Wednesday I finally got around to making all those little teacher gifts I'd been planning. Nothing like the last minute, apparently, and I made 35 cards in one day. 24 of them were sets of 6, but still. Coffee & Coke Zero got me through, but boy, was it worth it when several teachers said that no one ever remembers them. Maybe next time I'll be smart & get started ahead of time. ( if.)

So anyhow, drumroll please....and I didn't take any pictures, because I forgot....more drumming....the winner is:

Emily Keaton!

I'm so excited! Emily has been a lovely, dedicated commenter. If you haven't visited My Little Slice of Bliss before, run & don't walk there. Emily, please shoot me an email at onecraftymama @ to give me your address, and I should have your parcel out next week. Luckily Canada Post is back to work - it's like they knew I had to mail out blog candy ;)

In case you're interested, there were 11 entrants in the blog candy, who left a total of 80 comments, which made for a total of 151 entries. Wow :)

I did manage to get some pictures of the many cards I made earlier in the week, but haven't uploaded them yet. Let's see what I haven't shared yet...

Supplies: Fifth Avenue Floral stamp set;
Cuttlebug birthday embossing folder;
Martha Stewart ribbon tag; Kaisercraft sentiment;
ink...Purple Twilight Adirondack; Spiced Marigold & Broken China Distress Ink;
prismacolor pencils & Dove blender; LOTS of rhinestones;
Versamark & white EP

This one is from a while ago...I stamped the coloured outline flowers first, then ran that panel through the Cuttlebug, trimmed it to size, and used the same ink pads to ink along the edge. The embossed/prismacolored flowers are trimmed out & popped up on different layers of foam tape, as is the sentiment tag. One day I'm going to have to get a die in that shape - I love it.
Happy Canada Day - we're off to the fireworks tonight if the rain holds off. It's the first time the boys will have been to see fireworks. Loud noises just don't usually mix, and neither does being up after bedtime, but they both decided they're ready to give it a try. And tomorrow holds something that's been on the calendar for months - Transformers 3. (Be still, Connor's heart - he is so excited for it I don't know if he'll sleep tonight! I read a goofy review today that called Shia LaBeouf "Porn-stache McGee, and I won't be able to stop thinking that. Here's hoping I don't say it in front of the kids & have to explain what it means! LOL)