Sunday, November 30, 2008

cards and other stuff

One of the Hero Arts owls stamped alone. Letter stamps for "Be Jolly." StampIt square outline stamp and patterned paper also used.

I have a cold. Again. I haven't felt real good for a week but last night felt crummy. I took some Tylenol cold PM and that stuff knocks me out but then I feel like a zombie the next day.

I have some things to get done today too.

I have a coupon for BOGO at Yankee Candle and it expires today. Cary and I have some favorite holiday candles we burn constantly this time of year. Mistletoe and Christmas Wreath. So I do need to head to the mall quickly for those. I like to have one day to stay home but yesterday we stayed home most of the day. But we picked up my Christmas deco's from my parent's. Put up a few last night. I love enjoying this season as long as possible. I might stop at Target too and look at their decorations too. But not too long...I don't feel good and it's back to work tomorrow. Face the news about the grades I have to figure out.

Anyhow...yesterday I got 9 cards made yesterday with some of the goodies I posted about yesterday. Now I only have about 31 to go! I had fun with them. Some years I do one design and make them all the same. But I do really have fun when I mix it up. I experiment more.

Here's the cards...

Had fun with this one. Only inked one tree from Tim Holtz's stamp. Used a large StampIt rectangle stamp in a light green (very subtle). Deckle edged scissors used to cut out the tree. And my favorite part...the "star" is made from stamping the letter "o" and "i's" around it! Used an SEI clear stamp for the "under the tree."

This is an old stamp (inkadinkadoo) I've had forever. I figure skated for over 10 years so this is a favorite. I love the detail. The "Holiday Greeting and snowflake" is SEI. I added a rhinestone in the snowflake.

Played around with Tim Holtz distress inks on a scallop punched square of white cardstock. "Inked" the edges with a black sharpie. Stamped the "Santa's Coming" from SEI and added the StampIt outline square in red ink.

Tim Holtz trees. A new favorite. Stamped the trees in brown and lightly colored over with an olive colored pencil. Added stickles. Stamped the little SEI deer and used a Cosmo Cricket rub-on "Winter Wonderland." All of this done on a subtly patterned paper and mounted on cranberry cardstock.

Love these little Hero Arts Owls! Used colored pencil to hand color the details and used an SEI stamp (only inked the words not the attached snowflake). Inked the edges with olive green and mounted on a colorful patterned paper.

Here is bunch of the cards I made with the Tim Holtz tree stamp. A few other stamps used as well. Love this stamp!

Well. Off to get dressed and venture out so I can get back home and try and feel better.

Looking forward to seeing other's creations later!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

better luck

My mother's Thanksgiving table. She made a huge turkey and some delicious, tart cranberry sauce with an orange zest in them. She kept telling me the Food Network show she got the recipe from but I can't remember! Also...there is a great tradition with those dishes that I love. My dad picked them up in China when he was in the navy during Vietnam. They are gorgeous. I am afraid to wash them though! I love their simplicity and tradition. He had them at my grandmother's for years and we got them when she passed away. We use them on Christmas and Thankgiving now and they are stored in that lighted, corner china cabinet the rest of the year so we can admire them.

I am hopefully at the start of a better streak of luck!

I had a beautiful, wondeful Thanksgiving. Surrounded by my family and lots of pie!

On Black Friday I got up early and went to my LSS'sannual Day-after-Thanksgiving sale for some awesome finds. I got all this....

What happens is they have a room full of stuff marked anywhere from $.25 - $3.00. So I picked up a bunch of that. Then while waiting in the line (that does take hour)...I picked up these (regularly priced stamps)...

...for my Christmas cards. Plus some holiday paper. The stamp with the trees was a splurge. Tim Holtz $12. And I loved the little penquins ($8.50). I had originally had an idea with Memory Box's Bare Tree stamp but I haven't been able to find one so while waiting in line I was inspired. I also picked up a $10 set of SEI clear stamps. So that is over $40 including the paper and a few little things of regularly priced stuff. More indulgent than I usually am in that store.
So I get to the front of the register...they have an early-bird special for the sale where you draw a bottle cap when they ring up your order and a % off is written on that. Whatever you pull, you get that % off your regularly priced purchases. I thought back to a few years ago when I pulled a 40%. The highest you can get and that year I picked up hardly any regularly priced stuff. So this year I didn't have high hopes. Particularly in light of my bad luck lately.

So I pull a bottle cap.

Thinking guiltily of my $62 dollars worth of stuff.


I pulled the 40% off! Yippee! My order came to $45. I got all those awesome stamps each for 40% the new papers, etc! Plus I had earned a $20 coupon on my next order! You accrue points on your account and when you reach a certain spending amount you get the coupon.

My luck is changing!

Then last night Cary and I went out to the movies (after a Turkey Sandwich at my mom's). We saw Twilight which I was excited about since I'm (still) on book three. Haven't had as much time to read since school started back. I liked it. Then we had a Wendy's splurge and came home. It was such a nice, relaxed day. Unlike any I've had for awhile.

Hoping for more of the same today...can't wait to get started on my cards!

Hope everyone has a beautiful Saturday.

Off to start my dad with the breakfeast of champions. Apple pie!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Sending Happy Thanksgiving to all! This is my 20oth post and it is part of my Gratitude list this Thanksgiving. Through the world of blogging I have felt I have made new friends, received inspiration, been lifted during frustrating days by thoughtful messages and laughed with funny posts. I'm so glad I have found this outlet.

Other things on my Gratitude List on this day...
  • A funny, warm, quirky family to spend Thanksgiving with.
  • Mom's cooking.
  • Cary being here with me and safe.
  • Apple Pie!
  • Warm, lit, heated apartment that I can afford.
  • Enough food in the cabinets and fridge.
  • Enough money in my account to pay the basics.
  • A little extra for some scapbook supplies tomorrow at my LSS's annual sale.
  • A long weekend and some much needed downtime.
  • The happiness I feel during this time of year.
  • Nostalgia
  • My parent's health

I could go on and on today....that is lucky...

Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


An ornament idea I pulled out of an old magazine...lots of beads, glitter, tiny marbles attached with regular-old Elmer's near the ornament's hanger. Inside the clear, glass ball is a single white feather. This was my trial ornament. I plan on making a bunch for co-workers and family.

Here's a layout from my friend's Close to My Heart party on Saturday. I added some more details tonight at home...all stamp images are CTMH but I added a journaling card and sticker border. The blank space will eventually hold a photo(s). I'm not used to making a layout before I have the picture...I'm also not entirely thrilled with the layout but I think it will be easier to see it as finished with a photo or two.

Well off to relax a bit and watch 90210...

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, November 24, 2008

december daily album and other stuff

gathering of supplies for my "december daily" album inspired by Ali Edwards.

Gearing up for a better span of luck. My car is in the shop. They determined the other guy was liable after some fighting on his part. I got my hair colored last week. Closer to my natural brown but with a shinier, redder kick. A needed change. It has been an adjustment getting used to it for me... and Cary! He has only ever known me as a blonde! It is growing on him though. I stayed home sick Thursday. Run down, cold-like. Just not good. Watched my student's class presentations on Friday and then did the school's Admissions Open House on saturday. That night went to a Close to my Heart party and Girl's Night Out. Bought a distressing tool and a journaling stamp. I don't usually buy stuff at those parties but I had had such a bad week I wanted a treat. Sunday I visited with my old high school art teacher/mentor. She is an unbelievable artist and inspires me greatly. Made me want to do some art. I stopped at the LSS on the way home for a few papers and album covers for my December Daily. Here it is so far...(the pictures are terrible with no natural light!)

The cover...a set of Maya Road clear album covers and tabs.. assortment of sticker letters and a Heidi Swapp scalloped journaling circle...

Example of the layers inside. Used lots of transparencies, various number stickers form my stash and some Christmas inspired papers...

Also included some "pages" that are envelopes and tags. Each day of December 1st - 25th has a two-sided page...then I added a final page for New Year's. Hence the title "The Holidays." I wanted to include the New Year as a final page...

Another view of the layers...I love how Ali plays with textures and layers and interest.

And here is one finished dishcloth and a yummy new taupe yarn color I got to add contrasting stripes to a few of the next dishclothes. I'm making a set for my mom. Thinking of getting her some nice soap from Williams & Sonoma or something. She loves cooking and her kitchen is red with shades of light/bright green. These are so fun to make and quick...I found out about them here.

Hopefully this (short) work week will be un-eventful. Grades lots of papers today...few wierd things to check in with my supervisor about...tomorrow at work we are having a Thanksgiving meal for the clients. Have some paperwork to catch up because I was out sick from that job one day last week...


my mom's cooking...

baking pies...

and FOUR DAYS OFF! Yeah!

Friday, November 21, 2008

better luck?

I'm ready to start a better streak of luck. Car stuff is (almost) resolved. My car is going to the auto body today. The insurance co. found the other driver liable (after he argued it). My apartment was exterminated for a problem we don't have. But it is done. And my stuff is (almost) all put away again. I stayed home sick with a cold yesterday. Back to work today. But it's an easy day. My students are presenting assessments and I just have to stay awake with my medicine head! Wednesday night I got my hair colored. A lot. It's back to brown but with a reddish tone. My hair hasn't been this close to it's natural color in's shocking and a little hard to get used to. With all this up-in-the-air abnormality in my life maybe it wasn't such a good idea?? The only creative thing I've done this week is buy some supplies to make a few ornaments and started knitting dishcloth #2 for my mom. I'm begining a marathon few days of work and extras before Thanksgiving. Have to get up early to be at the college's open house tomorrow...sell...sell...sell! Then I am supposed to go to a Girl's Night Dinner and scrap party (Creative Memories I think) but we'll see how I'm feeling. Then sunday I get to see my high school art teacher/mentor. We had to cancel last weekend when I was car-less!

Hope everyone has a nice weekend! Hopefully I'll have some art/scrap/knitting/cards to post...anything creative will be welcomed this weekend!

Monday, November 17, 2008


While I'm waiting for my car insurance co. to call me back and figure out how I'm getting to work tomorrow....trying to not be completely aggrivated (ggrrr...) I will post a few pieces I did last week. I used this general technique with my Art Therapy group and they loved it. Each chose a theme for their "mosaic" based on what they need.

Here are mine. I got the idea from this issue of Somerset .
I appologize for the poor quality of the 2nd image...

Now...back to insurance companies. The other guy (whose fault it was we had an accident) hasn't filed a have to pay for a rental to get myself to work. Grrrr....I'm so annoyed. Plus had to do all the footwork with my own company to get his companies phone number. And don't even get me started on the police dept...grr...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

projects around the house

Todays projects:

Tried to get a head start some of the steps requested by the apt mngmt for next Wednesday's extermination. We don't have a problem but another apt does and it's a precaution...but it is so much work. Finally felt settled and now everything is all over the place again! Oh well.

Washed the shower. Don't want to do to much 'cause I'll have to wash everything again after the extermination.

Planted this...

(of course it won't look like that for a few weeks. right now it looks like a pot full of dirt with an onion sticking out of it.)

Also planted these...

Got the two kits for around $7 each at Target. Watch out if you plant the paperwhites. The kit comes with a little disk and you add water to it to "make" the dirt. The box says, "add 3-4 cups of water." That worked perfect for the Amaryllis but with the Paperwhites I ended up with a bowl full of muddy water. Then I notice on the inside of the box a sticker that says to add much less water to that disc because it is you tell me! Luckily I had a bag of potting mix I could use!

Started a new knitting project I saw in the Winter 2009 Artful Blogging. A Waffle Knit Dishcloth from this blog. Thinking of making a few for my mom for Christmas. Seems like a quick project and a little more interesting than the 80 scarves I still have on the needles!

Organized my knitting basket. Put all unfinished projects and yarn together in gallon size ziplocks.

Now I think I might do a layout or two!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

life's curveballs

thoughts-oil pastel on paper 11.11.08

Life's little curveballs. I got home from a long day yesterday to a letter from the apartment management. Someone's apartment has a case of the bedbugs and they are exteminating the entire building this wednesday as a precaution. Yuck. The letter goes on to describe how on Tuesday I have to take everything out of the (3) closets, out from under the bed, dressers, nightstands, bathroom vanity, etc. AND how we can't be in the apartment for 4 hours after treatment. Which can occur anywhere between the hours of 11 and 5. Nevermind the fact that I don't know what the poisons can do to you? Can't be healthy.

After recieving this letter I went to pick up Chinese food for Cary and I. A relaxing night in trying to forget about all that has to be done this week.
At least that's what I thought.
But... on my way back from picking up food my nice little Honda Civic (which has 3 car payements left on it incidently) was crashed into by a tourist pulling a u-turn in an odd place. It had to be towed.
I have no car. Grrr.
I am thankful no-one was injured but Grrr. It isn't looking like I have any option of having a car until at least Monday. I don't have rental insurance. I have to wait for the guy to file a claim. It was his fault and the police confirmed this for me. Hopefully that doesn't become an issue. When you are driving straight ahead you don't expect the car on your right to suddenly turn left into the front end of your car!

I am trying to stay calm and positive. I'm dissappointed because tomorrow a.m. I was supposed to get together at my high school art teacher's studio out of town. I haven't seen he in years and she is my mentor and one of my favorite people. We will have to reschedule. I don't know how to drive Cary's truck and he has to work. Boo.
Trying to stay positive I will try to avoid doing the massive work here and scrap instead. Or do something creative. Thanks for listening. I am deterimined to have some positive news or at least some projects to post next!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


photo taken may 08

Today my thoughts go to the sacrifices so many have made for us. The men, women, families, children...all sacificed.


I would like to especially thank....

  • My dad who served in the Navy during Vietnam on the U.S.S. Coral Sea - CVA 43.
  • Cary who is an Iraq war veteran and has been in the National Guard for 11 years and dutifully continues to serve.
  • My Uncle, my mother's brother who served in the Army during Vietnam.

My Uncle Lauri who was in the Marines in Vietnam at the same time his brother (my dad) was on an aircraft carrier in the Tonkin Gulf. He sacrificed his future, the hopes and dreams he may have had and life as he knew it. I knew him as Uncle Lauri. Others new him as Larry, the best baseball player, high school sweethearts with his girlfriend, a quiet, funny, kind person. As my Uncle I remember him...........

  • staying with us a lot on the weekends when I was growing up. He always borrowed my radio to listen to "oldies but goodies."

  • on our rides back to his house. A home for Veterans on the cape. A wonderful woman cared for those men and provided a true home for them.

  • taking walks. Always finding a "walking stick."

  • calling a lot when the moon was full. Always asking to talk to my dad. If my dad was at work he asked to talk to me. More than anything I wish I remembered those talks.

  • standing on my parent's porch while I was sitting there and him saying, "sometimes I just wish I had gotten married."

  • as a quiet man.

  • always having a cup of coffee in his hand.

  • having a shy smile. I can still picture it.

  • staying up at night.

  • on the rides back to his house after visiting us on the weekends. We always stopped at Burger King and that was the only time I ever went there.

It really is the small things you remember about a person. He was my Uncle and truly a hero in my eyes. Not only for his sacrifices as a Marine but mainly because of his kind, quiet nature. He died of lung cancer at the age of 49 in 1998.

Monday, November 10, 2008

the seemingly insignificant

In an attempt to lighten up and change my outlook I took a few minutes from my day too look at Ali's blog and her creativity links. Found this. This question was posed...

What 5 seemingly insignificant little things made you happy today?

1. the cookies I packed in my lunch
2. five minutes I took to put my feelings into my sketch book
3. the help I got packing up art/office stuff from a kind, always smiling person
4. someone going out of their way to help me with an errand that needed erranding:)
5. listening to "take it easy" on my ipod speakers in my office

monday blues?

Feeling very blah today. Maybe it's monday blues? I like where I go on Mondays...I think I'm dreading the rest of the week. I really need a change but with the way things are going in the economy I don't know which is more risky. Staying put or struggling to find a new job. I have noticed the employment section of the newspapers shrinking significantly since the unemployment scare I had a few weeks ago. I could scrape by on one of my jobs - the one I really enjoy -but it would require Cary picking up on some of the things I pay for and having $0 for extras. I hate worrying about stuff like this. I NEED a change for my own health and sanity.

It makes me feel stuck.

And down.

I need to change my attitude or its going to be a looonng week.


Friday, November 7, 2008

random thougts for a friday

Well. All that I got done last weekend made up for the fact that I got nothing done this week. At home anyway. Both jobs have been very busy. And I've been neglecting my blog :( Tuesday I came home after a VERY long day at work and fell asleep on the couch at 8pm. Woke up at 9pm and went to bed!

I have been so looking forward to this weekend. But I don't like to do that because I feel like I'm wasting away huge chunks of my life just wishing it would fast forward to the weekends. That is such a small portion of my life.

Anyhow...I have been planning out my idea for my Christmas cards this year. I found a design on Memory Box using one of their stamps that I might do...with a few of my own touches. I plan on buying the cards and envelopes through Paper Source and going to my LSS for the stamp and inks. I love making my cards every year. I love planning them. Making them. Sending them. I have been doing this for many years. Before I even started scrapbooking. My list has grown so I have simplified the cards a little but I enjoy doing something a little different every year. Some years I do a few different versions but this year I think I am going to simplify and do one set of the same design.

Speaking of simplify...that might be my "One Little Word" for next year. I need to do it. Badly! Being an overacheiving, perfectionist Virgo is stressing me out beyond words. Can anyone relate?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

weekend in review

Cover of my Summer 08 Mini board book

I had a nice, relaxed, quiet weekend. Didn't check everything off my list but did do a lot...chores I wanted to get done and fun stuff.

Got some acrylic paints, gesso and a small canvas. Did some work on one I started with water soluable oil paints I have...not done yet. I hope to post it later when I get some more done with it. It is a theme of Just Be. Live. Relax.

Bought a 12x12 album to start Cary's book. Might save it for a Christmas present.

Visited my parents and unexpectedly picked up my sister from work today.

Baked an apple pie, lasagna and made homemade chicken soup to free me up during the week and have some good lunches and leftovers.

my apple pie. my favorite recipe and dessert!

Went to the apple orchard for cider, cortland apples to eat and some for my pie. Love the smell at the orchard. I could just stay there all day and take it in.

Vacuumed...but think the vacuum broke. Made a "crack" and then shut off...wouldn't turn back on again. Uh Oh.

Did 3 loads of laundry.

Got into the holiday spirit. I know it's 2 days after Halloween. And I'm not talking putting up Christmas decos yet. But I'm starting to get excited. Seeing ads with red & green. Collecting ideas for my Christmas cards. Getting ideas for gifts I want to give my family. Also thinking about doing Ali's album idea for the days leading up to Christmas. Started gathering up stuff I have to start putting that together. Need to order covers and gather a few more things to make pages out of.

Bought a set of sheets and a new large sauce pan...stupid things I needed to get.

Grocery shopped.

Found out that my closest mall is getting both a Sephora AND an H&M next week! Yeah! That could be dangeous...I haven't been to that mall in awhile....

Updated the journaling on my July, August, September layouts in my 2008 Album. Started the rest of the September and October page. Still need to order the photos.

Finished my 08 Summer mini book....

I used a mini board book that I've had for ages and didn't know what I wanted to do with it...until now. I have been gathering ideas and the photos for a month or so. I bought the Memory Makers Passport Collection page kit to use. Also used some of their new tiny alphas for each page title...layered these over a stamped Journaling circle from Autumn Leaves. Stamped those in a bright green to highlight the other green accents. That was a color I saw everywhere this summer and loved.

Here's the cover...used some chipboard numbes and lots of ink on the edges. Also used a little green acrylic paint so that the title would stand out a little better. It's hard to see but also mounted the photo on some bright green cardstock mounted on the light blue paper from MM.

An example of one of the spreads. I used the same light blue as the cover on the top of each spread. This is where I stamped the bright green journaling circles and created titles with the MM mini alphas in cream. I used a variety of the MM Passport Collection patterned papers for the bottom of each 2 page spread. I mounted the photos and then used a little cream acrylic brushed on under each photo so I'd have an opaque surface to journal.

Closeup of one of the pages. Love this MM paper...esp the paper that looks like a collage of postcards.

Closeup of the journaling circles...the colors are much better in real life.
Pages about the Red Sox game we went to. I scrapped each of these events in my Random Album in more detail and also noted many in my 2008 Year in Review Album...but I wanted a quick, visual overview of the highlights of the summer in a small album format to have out in the living room for people to check out.

Another page...

One more page...

So...I had fun. Have a few more things I have to do today. Iron clothes for work tomorow. Unload the dishwasher. Boring. But I also can't wait to try my lasagna and pie and enjoy Desparate Housewives tonight!

Thanks for reading!


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