Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Good News

I received a call from Melissa, one of the new owners of the TheRubberCafé.com, and she wants to produce my stamp designs! (Their web site is getting a major face lift and I can't wait to see it. It will be very girly and glitsy from what I hear.) I am thrilled! My designs will be produced using quality red rubber on EZ mount, I believe.

Anyways, I just wanted to share my good news. I have about 8 stamp sets that I have created, and I'll be tweaking them and designing new sets during the next few weeks and months.

Now for a question. I designed this stamp set using inspiration from my three-year-old's drawing of our family. (I just love the crying baby.) I am of course biased because I love my little girl's doodles, but I think it's supah cute. What do you think? Would you ever use it?

Are there any stamps you would love someone to dream up? If so, what are they? Thanks for your feedback!

Hope your heart is happy and your fingers are inky!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Baby Lyla is Here

She is such a sweetheart! Mother and baby are doing well. Although it was my longest labor (22 hours--most of it early labor), it was a much easier delivery and recovery...so far. I can't complain.

Monday, July 28, 2008

I'm Here

Hello, my favorite fellow stampers. I am so sorry to leave you all hanging for so long. I haven't stamped in many months (I think it's pregnancy brain and nesting instincts), so I forgot to post anything on this blog. I maintain 5 blogs, so I've let some things slip in the blogging area to make room for other things that I need to get done. For example, I make all of my own bread and grind my own wheat. Today, Monday, is bread day. I haven't bought bread from the store since February. And I feel healthier and don't have any blood sugar problems with this pregnancy (unlike the last two).

Here's an update on me. I am 37 weeks pregnant now. I've been really busy just trying to get ready for the baby and trying to maintain the household. I've been doing graphic design here and there and writing a column for a local paper, but my stamps are in hibernation for now. I'm feeling healthy and anxious to trade my kicking belly in for a kicking baby. I've gone over due with both of my previous pregnancies, so who knows when our little one will come.

Here's the update on my cousin, Stuart. Stuart is doing great considering the circumstances. He got himself a wheelchair--the kind that he can play basketball in (he didn't want the regular kind, he still wants to be active). He's definitely got a long struggle ahead of him, but he seems to be approaching it in a healthy way. I saw him at the end of June and he says he's gotten feeling back in his upper thighs. That is a miracle! He's still a paraplegic for now, but he is making progress. His wife and immediate family have pulled together and he has a great support group. Thanks for all the cards and prayers. I know every little bit counts.

I hope to join the stamping and blogging world some time in the near future, but for now I'm still growing a little girl...waiting.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

RAK Request

To all of my talented fellow stampers:

On April 10, 2008, my cousin, Stuart Wride, was in a tragic accident and thrown from his car. He is now a paraplegic. Stuart and his wife, Julie, have two boys, ages 5 and 8. Naturally, his entire family is in need of comfort and support in dealing with this difficult turn of events. If you feel inclined, please send one of your beautiful hand-stamped sympathy cards to shower my cousin and his family with heartfelt wishes and support in this trying time. They would be overwhelmed with gratitude.

Stuart Wride's Story:
Last Thursday morning, April 10, 2008, Stuart left for work. It had snowed the night before. His son usually rides with him to get dropped off at school, but this time Julie decided to drive him (meaning Julie was behind Stuart and both were headed to Victor, ID.) Stuart was driving his little SUV. He always uses his lap seatbelt, but didn't put it on when he left. When he was only about 400 yards from home he hit black ice and his auto spun around and around on the ice. When it hit the berm, the car rolled over and over (it was completely smashed on top, so, had Stuart been wearing his lap belt that morning the outcome may have been more tragic than it is). Stuart had his two dogs in the auto, too.

A woman witnessed the accident and said she saw Stuart and the dogs being flung from the auto. Stuart landed on his back. (I have heard that the dogs are both okay.) When the woman got to him with her cell phone he said he felt lightening go down both legs when he hit the ground, and then he felt nothing. He told her that he thought he had broken his back and that he was a paraplegic. Julie arrived soon and he said to Julie, "I am sorry Julie, but I think I am a paraplegic."

The second person at the scene of the accident was a nurse (family members feel this was a miracle). She immediately sat in the snow, straddled Stuart's head and held it. As others arrived to help she took charge and directed all of their efforts. The snow he was laying on acted like an ice pack to minimize swelling. She knew how to handle someone with a spinal cord injury and was able to make sure he was not further injured while being transported to the ambulance. He has had two surgeries. The doctor removed bone shards from his spinal cord and said the spinal cord had been compressed (it was not severed). The only broken bone he had was the 12th vertebrae which was shattered. The doctor replaced the shattered vertebrae with a titanium vertebrae. He will be in intensive care for 4 more days then be moved to the hospital wing for 10 more days. At that point he will go into a rehabilitation facility.

The good news is that their friends in the little town of Victor are trying to help him all they can. The men he works with (building houses) have all visited him and offered their love and support. They even talked to the owner of a little hardware store in their town, told the owner he needed to hire Stuart to work the construction help desk. They said Stuart knows everything about construction, he can do amazing drawings, and knows all about the materials needed to do building projects. The hardware store owner agreed to hire Stuart as soon as he is able to go back to work. Then, one of the men said he owns a ranch-style home right across the street from the school Stuart's son goes to. He has already asked his rental people to vacate the house by the first of the month. He and the other construction workers are going to adjust the home to be wheelchair accessible, and Stuart and Julie can live there rent free as long as they need to. (Stuart owns a house in Victor that is up for sale, but that house has bedrooms upstairs.)

He does NOT have insurance.

Please send your cards to*:
The Stuart Wride Family
572 S. 50 W.
Victor, ID 83455

*Although they will be moving in May, they will surely have their mail forwarded.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

No Ink Stains

I'm sorry that I haven't posted recently. I've had my ups and my downs. I've been nesting, deep cleaning, reading classic novels, planting seeds for my garden, learning how to make homemade yogurt, learning about sourdough starter, grinding my own wheat and making fresh bread a few times a week, and I just haven't felt like stamping. It's crazy. I feel like sewing and organizing and lots of other things, but no card groove has caught me. Also, I've been summoned to jury duty for the second half of April--so who knows when I'll get good and inky. This is by far the longest dry spell.

I'm 21 weeks and the doctor says I'm having another girl. That makes three. My husband feels outnumbered already. But the baby seems to be healthy and growing well--I can't ask for much more than that.

Today is what I term "my mom's survival anniversary." She was in a near-fatal car accident on this day 11 years ago and should have died. But they saved her. She spent more than a month in the ICU, months in a wheel chair, and many more months with a walker and cane. It's a special day for me because my mom is one of the most wonderful people I've ever known. She's my best friend. She has shown me how to overcome. Her life has gotten harder since her accident because people close to her have forgotten how fragile life is and treat her badly (which breaks my heart), but she keeps going. And I am extra grateful that God spared my mother this day 11 years ago.

I hope you're all doing well and I'll be blog hopping to get some inspiration from all of you talented ladies.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Springy Day

So this is not the best picture, but I'm too lazy to take another picture. I used some SU! incentive stamps. I was feeling like Spring today now that I'm on the downward slope of my sickness. I got the flu about 9 days ago, got really sick and thought I was going to die (such the drama queen I can be), and then got a bad sinus infection that made me feel like I had 10 rotten molars. Only for the past two days have I been able to do more than shower and feed the kids.

And today I felt like stamping. It's been too long. The darker green paper is textured--which never seems to stick to anything. So I tried Alene's tacky glue and it seems to have worked. I colored using blender pens and ink pads. I used dimensionals to make the little chick and flower images pop. The flowers and umbrella and boots are glazed with glitter. It makes me smile. Hopefully it will make someone else smile when I figure out who to give it to.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Another Update

Sorry my posts have been sparse lately. I've been busy with freelance editing, reading Jane Austen for the first time, and I finally succumbed to the head cold that's been going around. And I don't get to take any good medicine. My youngest has been sick for three weeks--so I'm hoping that this one passes quickly. BTW, I get my first ultrasound on Thursday, and I met my new OB last week. He seems great. Let's hope the baby isn't being modest so we can get a peak to see if it's a boy or girl!

Edit added Feb 29th: My ultrasound went well. I am NOT carrying twins (big sigh of relief). Just one little fetus. Because the baby was still so small, the doctor wasn't 100% sure, but made an educated guess that it's another girl. And she wasn't being the least bit modest. So I guess I'm taking after my mom. She had five girls in a row.

My two little girls both got some bad flu bug--not what I have. Their fevers don't respond well to medicine, so I've been rubbing tea tree oil on them. Poor sick little girls just want to lie around and watch Barbie movies.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Mini Ice Cream Cones

I love these colors with the ice cream cones. It makes me hungry. I want some mint chocolate chip right NOW! Oh the cravings. (Lately I've been craving V8 and salads with Walmart's Great Value Zesty Italian dressing--wierd, huh?)

Anyways, this card used two textured cardstock layers, thus the eyelets. Not that eyelets aren't fun and cute, but I was forced into it. By the way, I wrapped some SU! cardstock with the sentiment "Happy Birthday" around the bottom of the textured red paper--it's hard to tell.

And aren't those little ties around the cones fun?

Recipe
Stamp Set: CTMH Birthday Party
Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Gable Green, Real Red, Whisper White, DCWV textured Red and Gable Green
Ink: Pretty in Pink, Regal Rose, Real Red, Basic Black, Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Gable Green eyelets, dimensionals, linen thread

Friday, February 15, 2008

Last-Minute Anything Card

This one was fun to make. It only measures about 4" by 3-1/2" and would be perfect for those last minute birthday/congratulations gifts. I am using up my DCWV textured cardstock that I've had for two years--I like the colors and texture and it doesn't fade like my SU! papers, but it is so annoying to try to adhere to anything. The color is perfect for this card though.

How do you adhere textured paper? I have tried mono adhesive, glue stick, glue dots all without luck. The only things that work for me are dimensionals or metal fasteners: staples, brads, eyelets. Please share your secrets.

Recipe
Stamp Set: CTMH Birthday Party
Cardstock: Pretty in Pink, Gable Green, Whisper White, DCWV textured in a shade like Gable Green
Ink: Pretty in Pink, Regal Rose, Real Red, Chocolate Chip, Basic Black
Accessories: Gable Green eyelets, Green Galore button, linen thread, aquapainter

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Off-Topic: Pregnancy Update

I don't mean to leave you all wondering what has happened to me. Pregnancy is going well. My morning sickness has subsided significantly. Still some queasy moments if I try to drink water as soon as I wake up (I'm always SOO thirsty). I'm 13 weeks, measuring 18 or so. Pretty sure I'm not having twins, we just have over-excited uteruses (uteri is also an acceptable plural form, but it sounds creepy) in my family. I haven't gotten an ultrasound yet, but hopefully soon.

We will be finding out the sex of the baby as soon as we can. The Braxton-Hicks contractions have already started, as usual. I need about 8-9 hours of sleep each night or I "pass out" during the afternoon. But if I nap, I can't fall asleep at night. And I would stamp, but I have no energy. Curses.

I usually crave tomatoes during my first trimesters, and this is no exception. I've been drinking large amounts of V8 on a daily basis and eating yummy salads. Salads are a rare treat at my house. My DH is allergic to lettuce, so the closest we get is spinach--which isn't my favorite.

I don't like staying up past 10 pm because then I feel snacky... and then chubby the next day. I'm reading baby name books. My mother's intuition, which has been wrong 100% of the time in the past, says that this is a boy. We'll see. Hope you're all doing well!

Another Valentine

Here's another feeble attempt at a Valentine's card that would be good for someone with whom you are not close or romantically involved. It uses unisex colors. I like this set, but the truth is that the bubblegum image is so huge that you can barely make it fit on a card without it taking up the whole thing. It is fun to stamp the pieces-parts inside it though.

Recipe
Stamp Set: Treat Yourself
Cardstock: Ballet Blue, Black, Bashful Blue, Whisper White, DCWV textured red (hate trying to adhere this to anything)
Ink: Black, Real Red, Ballet Blue
Accessories: Hemp, Aquapainter and Blender Pen, Red staples (to hold the darned DCWV textured cardstock to the card--all four corners)

Love Card for a Guy

The past few weeks I've been so busy that I'm too worn out to do stamping. Very sad. I did finish my taxes (finally) and completed two freelance editing gigs, so I can't really complain.

Given that Valentine's day is less than 48 hours away, I thought I had better come up with a manly Valentine's card for my hubby and quick. These are good colors for my man, and I think the hemp-wrapped edges are perfect. I know it's not terribly mushy or lovey-dovey, but it totally works, I think.








Recipe
Stamp Set: A is for Adorable (Hostess set from 2 years ago)
Cardstock: Ballet Blue, Real Red, Brilliant Blue, Whisper White
Ink: Ballet Blue
Accessories: Hemp twine, hot glue gun (to secure the edges of the twine), dimensionals, red staples

Monday, February 4, 2008

Another Cupcake

I made another cupcake card--this time a 3-1/2" square card. It was so much fun. I used some scrap DP paper that I bought at Joanns or someplace and wish that I had 10 more sheets of it.

I want to spruce it up a little, but I need some ideas. Should I have done a background stamp on the textured green? Please help.

Recipe
Stamp Set: Treat Yourself
Cardstock: Regal Rose, Pretty in Pink, Gable Green, cheap kraft, and DCWV textured (color resembles Green Galore)
Ink: Green Galore, Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Silver brads, white gel pen, gold glitter pen, glitter, dimensionals

Friday, February 1, 2008

Sparkly Cupcakes

I am so sorry for not having posted sooner. So much has been going on, and I've been doing a lot of non-craft (therefore, non-fun) projects--like cleaning out the 2nd half of the garage so that I can park my car in there, too. Cleaning behind the stove. Confiscating all the toys that have littered my house for a week straight. Thinking about doing my taxes. Doing homeschool-preschool. Teaching my girls how to make a cake. Anyways, I'm trying to get back into my groove.

I went over to my friend's house Wed. night and stamped the cupcake parts and watercolored them. Today I cut them out and created a simple Birthday card. It's not fabulous, but it's a start in the right direction. I used the white gel pen to color the candle and the sprinkles, if you can't tell.

I hope you're all doing well!

Recipe
Stamp Set: Treat Yourself
Cardstock: Regal Rose, Pretty in Pink, Gable Green, some cheap kraft, and Chocolate Chip.
Ink: Regal Rose, Pretty in Pink, Gable Green, Chocolate Chip
Assessories: Glue & Glitter, dimensionals, white gel pen, gold glitter pen (for flame)

PS: For SBS1, Niki is withdrawing from the group. So you can remove her link from your sidebar. Let's all wish her a friendly farewell, too.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Off Topic: A Miracle!

I must have called 6 of the 9 OBs that delivery at Mercy Hospital (Nampa, ID) and was turned away by all of them because I wasn’t willing/able to prepay my delivery before the baby came. I cried for 30 minutes yesterday and then put together a difficult 550 piece puzzle to get my mind off of it. (I am addicted to puzzles lately. I've done at least 6 in the past week.)

I made one more phone call to one of the OB docs still on my list: Dr. Gregerson’s office. I asked if they required the prepayment of the delivery fee, and she said no because they often don’t know what my portion will be because the hospital may hit the deductible first—but there’s no way to predict (which I’ve been saying all along). So she scheduled me for an appointment next month and I am swelling with gratitude right now. God really answered this prayer for me. It only took one day, too. Thanks and {{{hugs}}} to all of you who prayed on my behalf! True sisters!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Off-Topic: In a Rut

I'm sorry I haven't posted any beauties lately. I just got back from a four-day vacation at my parent's house in eastern Idaho--wonderful.

And I just learned that no doctor is willing to give me prenatal care. My insurance covers prenatal care 100%, but all the doctors around here require prepayment of the global fee (prenatal plus delivery)--paid in FULL one month prior to due date. My deductible is huge and I can't afford to prepay. I'm still paying off my appendectomy surgery. (That gives me no option to fire my OB if I don't like service, or changing OBs if we have to move, which there's a 30% chance of that.) So I have insurance to cover my prenatal visits, but can't prepay and therefore don't get care. How ethical is that? I don't know how these doctors can sleep at night knowing that they are turning away pregnant women and babies who need their help.

I'm frustrated and down. I don't even feel like crafting right now. I'd love to run away.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Sew Thankful

I have a few friends who have helped me out recently that I needed to make Thank You cards for. I think these monochromatic cards will work great.

The photos are a little washed out, but if you look closely you can see that I machine-stitched my first two cards ever! I loved it. It adds such a nice touch. The first card is zigzagged and the second has a straight stitch, both with thread that matches my cardstock.

I also sponged Cool Caribbean around the edges of the cards and the cut-out flowers.

Recipe
Stamps: Delight in Life, Much Appreciated
CS: Cool Caribbean, Taken with Teal, and CS from my LCS
Ink: Cool Caribbean, Craft White
Accessories: Circle Cutter, White Gel Pen, Sewing Machine, Antique Copper Brad

Recipe
Stamps: Delight in Life, Much Appreciated
CS: Cool Caribbean, Taken with Teal, and CS from my LCS
Ink: Cool Caribbean, Craft White
Accessories: Circle Cutter, White Gel Pen, Sewing Machine, Antique Copper Brads, Dazzling Diamonds Glitter

PS I'm still sick, but I force myself to do a few things each day, like shovel the driveway, post on my blog, and take a prenatal vitamin. I have heartburn so bad I feel like someone has their hand around my neck. So I just tell myself that there will eventually be an end to this, right?

Monday, January 7, 2008

Cute Scrapbook

During the fun New Year's Eve party I attended, I was able to "buy" this cute scrapbook from the auction with my fake money. It's purple with rub on letters and a few ribbons, and it's own paper and clear sheet protectors. I totally scored. My friend gave away so many gifts; I'm wondering how much she spent on that party. BTW, for the white elephant gift, I got a jar of home-canned raspberry jam and a "Monkey Farts" scented candle (it smells like bananas, LOL. To order: parma_mom@yahoo.com). It was a blast!

Now for the confession...I have never scrapbooked! Not even one page; not even a layout. I don't think I have printed more than two dozen pictures in the past seven years. I bought photopaper for my home printer, but the image quality stunk. So I just did nothing. That needs to change. The problem is that I need a new digital camera since mine won't communicate with my iMac anymore. Jerky thing.

So one of my goals this year is to make a tiny scrapbook of my two little girls, since they are best friends. I'll post the pages as I make progress. Feel free to ask if I've worked on it down the road to re-motivate me.

Another goal I have is to get my stamp line launched! It may take a while, but I'm leaning toward rubber cling because I'm not sold on the clear stamps yet. Perhaps the ones I bought are too cheap?

Friday, January 4, 2008

Lee Geluk Book: Windstorm Wonders

I try not to post non-craft related items, but if you have a minute, visit my personal blog to see what the windstorm did to our neighborhood. You will be stupefied. Lee Geluk Book: Windstorm Wonders

Thursday, January 3, 2008

More Scalloped Circles

So when the scallops don't meet up well, I turn them into flowers with a stem, like so.

This first card is done in pinks, but I didn't think there was enough contrast, nor layers. I used the grosgrain ribbon to camouflage the awkward space. What a fun way to hide the flaw! This one is a wedding card, with the images from $1 Michael's clear stamps. The cake stamped clean using basic black, but the hearts looked pretty fuzzy. I'm sure a little glitter will cover that right up. (I even tried erasing the surface of the stamp. No luck. Does craft ink work better, anyone?)

Recipe
Stamps: $1 Michael's clear
CS: Regal Rose, Pretty in Pink, DP from Joann's
Ink: Regal Rose, Pretty in Pink, Basic Black
Accessories: Watercolor Pen, Grosgrain Ribbon, Fiskars circle cutter, slit punch

The second card is similar to yesterday's post, but it's on a standard size card with a different layout. I sponged ruby red and chocolate chip on the white papers (the white strip is actually the red DP folded up), and chocolate chip around the edges of the bottom red DP layer.

Recipe
Stamps: $1 Michael's clear
CS: Handsome Hunter, White, DP from Dollar Store
Ink: Ruby Red, Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Linen Thread, Sponge, MM Antique Copper Brads, Fiskars circle cutter, slit punch

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Monkey Bean Bags

These are my wonderful monkey bean bags. I made them for the teachers in my Primary (LDS children's Sunday school). I used leftover yellow and burgundy fabric because I still have big plans for the nice fabric that I have had for years. *well-intentioned smirk*

First, I serged the two short sides (one long side is a fold) and then flipped them right side out. I tacked the stitches in the corners with hot glue just to guarantee these won't break open all over the church floor.

Second, using the fabulous-smelling StazOn black ink, I stamped the monkeys on one side and the bananas on the other side. That way it has a "heads" and tails" for any games they want to play. (I'm giving them a doc with over 60 learning and review games to play using a bean bag.) The images still show up will on the dark fabric, but the picture is deceiving.

I gave each of my girls a big bowl with a scoop and several pounds of beans, rice, and lentils. They helped fill the bags and then I sewed them shut (which was the most difficult part--I learned quickly not to overfill the bags). I currently have beans and rice ALL over my kitchen floor. But it was entertaining for them.

As I was taking this picture, my two-year old daughter was in the process of stealing one of the yellow bags. So I made them some green ones to play with. Such a fun and easy project using scissors, sewing machine/serger, and stamps! My kids have kept busy for an hour with these little guys.

Stamps: SU Monkey Business
Fabric: 8" x 4"-5", folded and stitched

Square Card

This is one of my first square cards that I've ever made. I got the idea from my SBS sister Lesa's recent post. Anyways, I got a fiskars circle cutter (see 2nd photo) for Christmas and wanted to see just what it could do.

I cut out a 4" circle and then remembered Sarah's tutorial on using the slit punch to create a scalloped circle (she uses the coluzzle). I cut out a 2" circle in the middle and began scalloping. It didn't match up perfectly each time (you'll see that card on my next post), but I was thrilled to have my first scalloped circle! I need to make some thank you cards for Christmas, so I thought a flower with rich colors would work well.

The trick seems to be having a 1" border left intact on the large circle. The card measures 4-1/4" square. The green circle is 3" in diameter, and the red one is 2-3/4" in diameter. I just used the gold circle that I cut out of the larger circle in the first step, and the white circle is 1-3/4". I used DP from the Dollar Store and $1 Michael's clear stamps (series 7, I believe). The "Thank You" image didn't stamp too crisply, so I re-stamped (I guess that's the beauty of clear) and then went over the letters with a brown glitter pen. Overall, I'm tickled with my circle cutter and the cute cards it made.

Recipe
Stamps: $1 Michael's clear
CS: More Mustard, Chocolate Chip, White, DP from Dollar Store
Ink: Ruby Red, Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Fiskars circle cutter, a brown glitter pen, slit punch, sponge

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Pretty Princess

A miracle happened. I've been really sick from this pregnancy for a week. Sunday was bad, but I was determined to make it to church. I've actually been feeling okay ever since. (I even went to a New Year's Eve party last night until 11 pm--don't worry, it was good clean LDS fun.) I wasn't able to hold down milk this morning, but I stomached jelly bellies. Go figure.

Here's my first card in a while. It would be perfect to give to my daughters or nieces for their birthdays--especially since "princess" is usually the theme.

Anyways, now that I'm feeling better, I had the energy to get out my new Studio G ($1 Michaels) clear stamps that "Santa" put in my stocking. I must admit that the clear stamps didn't turn out as crisp as I'm used to with rubber. I've been trying to find my darned eraser to rub on the clear stamps and hopefully improve their ink-taking abilities.

And I also had time to figure out my new Fiskars circle cutter. The circles on this card are 1-1/4" 1-1/2" and 1-3/4".

Recipe:
CS: Pretty in Pink, Regal Rose, textured Black, DP from Joann's
Ink: Basic Black, Pretty in Pink, Regal Rose, YoYo Yellow
Accessories: Rhinestone Brads, Circle Cutter