Thursday, August 30, 2007

More Fall...ya'll :-)

Here is my second "fall" card for my ArizonaStampers swap. This swap it doesn't matter if the cards are different...they just have to be the same theme. So, mine are different this month. It's called an Above and Below swap...and you send a card to the person above and below you on the sign up list.

This card uses a TAC stamp set...and alcohol inks for the background. I love how this background looks just like a countertop in your home. Cardstocks are from CTMH.

Hope everyone is having a great week! It's almost over!


Another way to use alcohol inks

I saw this posted on another blog and thought I'd try it out. You use baby wipes and alcohol inks to create a mixed muted coloring for solid stamps. I'm not sure I love it...and it stained my stamp (is it safe to clean rubber with the blending solution???) But it is pretty.

Anyways, here's the steps I took.

1) Choose 2 or 3 coordinating colors for your image. Set a baby wipe (or 2) on top of a plate or something you don't mind getting stained (I just sat on top of my Crafter's Sheet...LOVE THIS THING!) Then drop droplets of ink onto your babywipe...not touching but close a random pattern.

2) Immediately take your stamp and use the inked area on the baby wipe as your ink pad.

3) Stamp on your paper. I was using a photo paper (matte) and it tended to stick to it (not sure why). I had better luck just using plain old white cardstock. Here is the finished image.

Anyways, just thought I'd share my new attempts at trying something new. Hope you enjoyed it and maybe it sparks an "ah-ha" moment for you. Maybe you'll find a way to branch off from this even. If you do...make sure you come back and let me know!


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Please vote!

I'm trying to figure out what to do with my blog. What draws you to a blog and keeps you coming back? I'll be allowing votes for a week. So it's time to put in your .02. (How often do you actually get ASKED for your .02???) ;-) Better take advantage of it and answer the poll listed above. You may choose more than one option from the list.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Artwork as promised! Fall is here!

Well, Fall is ALMOST here. Are you thinking leaves and pumpkins yet? I am SO ready for some cooler weather. In the interim I decided to pretend it was Fall and make a couple seasonal cards.

This first card was from the tutorial that I mentioned previously. Almost all stamps are CTMH (the exception being the "cutest pumpkin in the patch saying which is from TAC).

Here's the front view of the pop-up card standing up:

The coolest thing about this card is that it collapses and folds down for mailing in a standard size card!

Here's the frontal view of the card folded for mailing...

And here is a side view of it folded (to give you an idea of the mechanics)...

And then I decided to make a "simple" card. Ever have a card where it just won't cooperate with you? That's this card. I'm still not sure I'm thrilled with it. But it's good enough for the swap I need it for. All stamps are from TAC. I forgiven for not posting as much artwork this week?


Doing the HAPPY DANCE!

Oh Yeah, Oh Yeah, I got a job offer, I got a job offer.
(if you have this to the tune of "It's my birthday").

Dang it, that's an animated emoticon that's doing a happy dance...but I can't figure out how to make him bigger OR how to make him start dancing! Anyone have more experience than I do?

The job pays a little less than my last job, benefits cost more, further from home...but I think I'd really like the people and the environment. And it's NOT a computer programming position! It's a Business Analyst position. So still playing and massaging data...but not the nitty gritty programming. The range on the position is $33-42,000 and they are offering $40,000 - near the top of the range. Not sure if I can get them to go any higher or not. And the health insurance costs over $1000 per month for a family! That's outrageous! I'm pretty sure I could get an independent insurance plan for less and that may be what we end up doing.

I do have an interview set up next week working for the State (in a similar position). So I'm not sure what to do. I'd say my chances of getting offered it are pretty high (my friend works for the State and says generally they only interview 3-4 people). First they sent me a letter - and when I hadn't replied within 2 days to set up an interview they called me this morning. They still had 3 time slots available. I know for a fact that their benefits are to die for. So I may "accept" this job but say I can't start for 2 weeks. Then interview with the State next week but tell them I have another offer on the table and I need a decision quickly. That way I may have held up the current place a bit - but I wouldn't have cost them anything in training me. I don't want to start there and then have to quit. But I also don't want to sell myself short.

Regardless, for now I'm happy, happy, happy! So nice to have the stress relieved and know we're not going to run out of savings!

I PROMISE I will post artwork late tonight. I printed off a tutorial for a new type of card (new for me) so will get to work on creating it just for YOU! ;-)


Another funny thing to check out! may have seen this before but it's the first time that I had seen it (apparently it's been listed on many blogs...but I do a lot of blog-hopping and I'd never seen it till today). If you have kids you HAVE to go read this closed auction on's HILARIOUS. ;-)

Hopefully that works! Today I'll be not sure if I'll have any new artwork to share or not.

If any of you use Arbonne products...I'm hosting an Arbonne party later this week and I could use your purchases! Just give me a holler and I can get you the website link.

Talk to ya'll soon!


Monday, August 27, 2007

Christmas in August?

Yep, it's Christmas in August because I'm THAT far behind...or maybe I'm that far ahead! LOL.

Sorry the pictures suck...but nighttime is not the best time for photo taking. Plus I've been having computer issues today. But I wanted to share something. Without further are the two pages I did the other day.

This was made with a Colorbok kit. Honestly, I'm not thrilled with it. The colors don't match very well. And it took me forever to come up with something I liked. Well, most of the time was spent trying to do the title using the dual alphabets in the sizzix. Regardless, it took me 4 hours to do these 2 pages...and they look more like one hour pages.

I've been spending time today trying to get my coupons and such in order. I used to do a lot of couponing to save money. Then when the kids got older I didn't have the time (and they drove me nuts at the grocery store!) but now that I need to watch the $$ I'm trying to get back into it. The trick is to have multiple coupons and then use coupons when items are on sale. You can save quite a bit this way. But it does require a lot of time and organization.

Anyways, hope everyone had a great Monday! Tomorrow my dh has a job interview. And I'm going to spend the day cleaning the house. I have an Arbonne party on Thursday so want to get the house ready.


Check out the new blogs!

I added some more of my favorite blogs to my list on the right. So check them out! I'll be posting a couple things later (artwork) so visit them now...and then come back here later!


Sunday, August 26, 2007


Gross stuff out of the way (see post below entitled Ewww) and now it's time to share some creative stuff.

First off - here are a few tile magnets I made. I used brown staz-on ink and a sponge to sponge the edges and lightly sponge the tile itself (it was a little brown to start with). Then I stamped the leaf in green staz-on. Add a magnet to the back with E-6000 and they are done.

Do you remember the glass marbles I made a while back? I wanted to see if I could make them into pushpins instead of magnets? Well, I found some flat backed pins at CVS pharmacy the other day and bought them. Adhered with E6000 and let sit overnight. And now they are hanging on my bulletin board. I'm going to use them for a month or so to make sure they hold up to the weight. But for they are!

And now, totally unrelated to stamping...but related to creativity is a picture of an afgan my mom made. She was THE artist in this family...and she had WAY more patience than I do. I tried to learn how to crochet and knit but never had the patience to follow it through. I guess that's why stamping and scrapbooking work for me (I can have a finished product in a few hours). My mom used to knit us sweaters that we'd wear all summer long with our names knitted into them. She also made a huge cougar (our high school symbol) blanket that was raffled off. The person who won it donated it back to the school...which hung it as a welcome to everyone who came in the school. Many years later they tracked her down and asked for her to add some details to it (text) which she did. And it's back in it's place now. Mom passed away in 1997 but I have this afgan hanging in my living room to remind me of her.

Wasn't her stuff amazing? I have a crocheted throw that was done with the thread (that's like sewing thread). It's tons and tons of roses...each one hand done and they are held together with a beautiful "web" of white crocheting. I have that one tucked away in my cedar chest. She made 4 of these...let each of us choose which color of roses we wanted. I won't even say how much time that must have taken her. If you knew my Mom, you'd never think she was the type to make such delicate frilly things. She was NOT a girly girl. She worked on cars (when younger), dug trenches and planted trees, smoked cigars (and later Chesterfield King unfiltered cigs) and drank Hamms beer. She didn't wear makeup or dresses. She cooked ok...but not great (except for her noodles, her enchiladas and her bread...which were to die for). But MAN was that lady creative. I'm glad she passed a few of those creative genes along to me.



Somebody needs to get my DH a job...he's SO bored that he went on the internet, found grasshopper recipes, went out and caught grasshoppers, cleaned said grasshoppers and then cooked them and ate them. EEEEWWWWW! That mouth will NOT be kissing ME tonight!

If you know my hubby you know that he often will say things to mess with your mind. IE...the kids will ask what we're having for dinner and he'll say something like "monkey brains". We've all gotten pretty used to it and often don't believe him. So when he said he was going to do this I was like 'yeah, right'. So I made him show me the grasshoppers. And this is what he showed me (beheaded...innards removed...grasshoppers).

Then he heated up oil in a fry pan and deep friend them and ate them. Here they are cooking...

He wouldn't let me take a picture of him eating them...but he did. He says they tasted like a type of fish that he'd had before. He tried to talk me into eating them and there was no way in the world that THAT was happening! I think I remember a story aboutmy Dad eating them in WWII - but that's a whole other reason (not that he was bored). Does it surprise you that one of dh's favorite shows is the one called Bizarre Foods where the guy goes to different parts of the world and eats their foods?


Saturday, August 25, 2007

Wanna laugh till you cry?

Watch this!

I literally did laugh till I cried on this one. And these days...that's a major accomplishment! Enjoy.


Friday, August 24, 2007

Ok...sharing ;-)

I finished my dominoes. I coated them with liquid glass as a sealer and to make them shiny and pretty. I also sprinkled on just a bit of glitter so they sparkle at different angles. Then I let that dry. Next I added redline tape around the outside of the dominoes and pressed the now sticky domino edges into tiny seed beeds. Then I used strong adhesive (E6000) to adhere pins to the backs. They need to sit overnight but for all intensive purposes they are done. So...if I sold these (or similar ones) at a craft fair...what would you be willing to pay?

Next I played with a new stamp...a Piggy from Stampabilities. My son is WAY into piggies and hippos. So when I saw this stamp I knew I had to get it for him. I was able to get it off a used stamp swap/sell list I belong to for very little. (Good thing since I can't imagine using a pig stamp very often!) But I had to ink him up and use him. So here's the card I made...ignore my hand...the word is stamped on the inside of the card and in order for you to see it I had to hold the card. ;-)

And lastly, remember I said I'd ordered some monkey stamps at the expo? Well, they came! They are still "ink virgins"...will have to ink them up soon. But in the meantime I thought I'd show them to you. This company was wonderful to deal with and even mailed me a color copy of card samples using the stamps. Great customer service! I'm not sure if they have a website but if they do I'll be ordering from them again!

Enjoy and have a great evening!



Just needed to babble today. Feeling very discouraged on the job front. Another week gone by...another week with no job offers. Today I did get two postcards from the City that they'd chosen people for two of the positions I'd applied for there. They were administrative positions. I feel like I'm caught between a rock and a hard place. Not enough recent experience (plus having to explain a termination) for a "career job" but too much education and experience to even get interview for administrative positions (because they probably think I'll just be moving on soon or that they can't afford me). I feel like sitting and crying. Instead, I'm going to go work on my dominoes. Maybe I'll break out my sewing machine and teach myself how to sew well enough to make a "voodoo doll" of my ex-boss and stick pins in it. LOL. Sigh. Did I say that I did finally get my vacation pay (last Friday...only took a month) and that I'm still waiting on my final day of pay that they shorted me? It should be on the NEXT paycycle. Arizona law states that employers are supposed to pay you in full within 3 business days of termination - here I sit OVER a MONTH after termination still trying to get my money.

Ok, enough venting. Off to work on dominoes and magnetic numbers to finish my countdown to Christmas clipboard from yesterday.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Major Projects to Share!

Well, my scramping room looks like a tornado went through it...but I have made some major accomplishments today! And if you're REALLY lucky I'll share them with you! ;-) guys know I can't wait. So I guess I'm sharing!

My first project was a card organizer. This was started awhile back. I'd made the cover but hadn't gotten it finished. Yesterday I finished the pages and had it bound at OfficeMax. And now it's ready to go to its new owner...Mr. Mike! Mike is one of my best friends and he travels ALL over the country for work. He's one of the few males that I know that is pretty good about sending out cards. So, two years ago I made him a card organizer. Didn't hear anything about it for awhile and didn't know if he had used it or not. Well, a few months ago he asked me if I'd make him another one because his former one was falling apart. He said it'd traveled the country with him in his suitcase. So...this time I actually had them put on a plastic cover and backing so maybe it'll last even longer than the first one did. I'm not entirely happy with the binding job - but it's not like they can redo it. And it's good enough to use...just not good enough for the perfectionist in me! view the picture larger...just click on the photo. Then use your browser's back arrow to go back to the original location.

Without further it is!


I found this embossed fish paper clearanced at Michael's for .10 a sheet. Isn't it cool?

First page:

What the inside pages look like side by side:

Ok...are you excited enough yet????

No? You want MORE???

Are you SURE?


This is the other project I worked on today. It isn't COMPLETELY finished yet (it will eventually be a countdown to Christmas with magnetic numbers) but the base portion of it is done. I saw these on Katy Did Creations' blog (see her link to the right) and had to try one. I'm considering making these to sell at craft fairs. BUT, I'd definitely need to simplify them. This one uses a TON of time intensive processes. Actual products I probably only have about $3-5 into this. But timewise...I spent probably 4-5 hours. Basically ALL day while the kids were in school and it still isn't complete. I'd have to sell this for big bucks to make it worth that time!

Here's the whole clipboard. Notice all the piercing, the chalking, the faux stitching, the paper piecing.

And here's a close-up of just the deer portion. Man he was a lot of work. I remember why I never jumped on board the paper piecing bandwagon before! ;-) I think I did maybe 1 or 2 of these in my scrapbooks and then decided I had better things to do with my time! LOL. I gotta go get ready for the open house at the school. Have a great evening!


Wednesday, August 22, 2007's hot, hot, hot!

Only 109 degrees here today. Ugh. Went into town and ran errands so stopped at about 8 places. You never get a chance to cool down because the a/c never gets a chance to run long enough. Left about 11:00 this morning and got home about 4:00. And I have to go to PTO meeting at 5:00. I really just want to go strip off all my clothes and lay under the ceiling fan! Ugh. Every summer I say I'm going to move - but I doubt I ever will.

Onto some more exciting things.

First off...I received a package in the mail today. I assume it's from my secret sister. They put their name on the package and it doesn't SAY that it's my SS but I have no idea why anyone else would be sending me goodies (unless I won blog candy?) Anyways, here is the bounty I recieved! A beautiful card made with ALCOHOL INKS, 2 containers of gorgeous ribbons, and a package of chipboard flowers! Great stuff!

Today I stopped by Michael's (it wouldn't be a trip into town unless I at least stopped there!) I had a 40% off coupon so picked out a package of pin backs for my dominoes and then saw they had some sizzix stuff on sale. I REALLY want an alphabet set and they had a couple marked 50% off. So I decided to get one. When I got home I checked my receipt and they took the 40% off the clearanced price. So I got a ganga deal! And my first sizzlet's alphabet set...grafitti! It has the upper and lower case and numbers plus shadows for all of them. Pretty cool.

I also mailed off an envelope to my secret pal. I can't say what was in it (because she comes to my blog I think) but it contained paper items weighing less than 2.5 ounces and fit in a regular envelope. Yet, it cost between $3 and $4 to mail it to Austrailia! Geesh! It was .90 for a one ounce envelope. I'm surprised such a little addition would cause such a big increase in the shipping! I thought I'd send smaller envelopes more often - but maybe I need to rethink that and just send the monthly packages.

And, on another front, here is a card to share that I made using my new House Mouse stamp! It opens on the side (under the little semi circle). I like how it turned out. I hate that these take so much coloring...but they are SO worth it!

Ok...gotta run. Less than 15 minutes to the PTO meeting.


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

More alcohol inks

Well, I didn't drink any alcohol today...but I did play with some! Alcohol INKS that is! ;-) I wanted to make some dominoes with the alcohol inks. So first, I let my dominoes sit in bleach overnight to make them so they aren't as slick/smooth. Then rinsed and dried them and they are ready to go. I do this step when I first get the tin of dominoes and then I don't have to do it again and can stamp just a few dominoes when I feel the urge.

So, today I felt the urge. LOL. First I mixed two colors of alcohol inks and a couple drops of metallic ink to my blotter tool (basically a wood block with a piece of felt velcro'd to it). I wanted my dominoes to be light in first I stamped the cardstock completeley and then added some blending solution to the blotter tool and then stamped the domino (so it was getting the "2nd generation" so to speak). Then I stamped the images in black. Well, my staz-on ink pad was dried out. I had another pad that I thought would work. But it never dried. I tried hitting it with a heat gun...still wet. So finally, I ended up having to use embossing powder on them and heat setting that. NOW they seem to be ok.

Here are the cardstock pieces and the dominoes...

And here is a close up of the dominoes themselves:

Now...I'll need to decide exactly what I want to do with the dominoes. I can make them into keychains, pins, magnets, etc. I can use a metallic krylon pen and draw around the outside of the domino...or I can use red tape and seed beads. I can use wire and beads (although this would be my weakest area). For now, I guess I'll go blog hopping and try to find some samples on what to do with my newest "toys".

A couple small things to share

Well, I didn't do much yesterday in the realm of creativity. One of the things I did do was make invitations for my upcoming Arbonne party. I only made about 12 of these and figured the rest of the people (like members of the PTO) will get the postcard invite that the Arbonne lady gave me to send out. I tried to keep these really simple. I opened Word and set the margins out as far as I could, then added a table with three columns and 2 rows. I'd originally tried just two columns but then the text between the two was too close. My creating a third column in the center I was able to easily adjust the distance. I typed in the wording that was on the postcard invite and then added my details. Copy and pasted 4 times (to create one page) and viewed on the print preview. When it looked well centered I then set the table borders and shading to none and printed it out on cardstock. Then the rest was a single stamp (from SU's Bubble Queen), corner rounding, attached to another layer (also corner rounded) and then added ribbon. For some reason my scan cut off the bottom of the card but it looks just the same as the top. is one of the 12. ;-)

And then I thought I'd share what came in the mail. On SCS there is a Buy/Sell/Trade forum. You all know how I love my House Mouse stamps. But generally they are about $10-15 a pop for the bigger ones and I'm too cheap (and at the moment too broke) to pay that much for a stamp. BUT I managed to get all three of these with shipping for $20.

I also created one small halloween thing but will save that for later because I haven't taken a picture of it yet. Have a great day!


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Ahoy Matey!

At this rate my blog is going to be a million pages long...but I'm bored...therefore I stamp! ;-)

I bought this stamp at the expo last weekend and then I saw THIS challenge to use a pirate stamp and the sketch. Couldn't ask for a more perfect fit! The stamp is by After Midnight. The AHOY on the ribbon and the AHOY MATEY greeting are made using Karen Foster snap stamps. LOVE my snap stamps!

Don't get too comfortable...I'm sure I'll be adding more artwork later (unless I decide just to crawl in bed with my Robin Cook book instead)!


Happy Sunday!

Good morning all! First off...let me share another card! This one was created using Beate's Sketch Challenge #15.

The stamps are from a cheapo set I got at Michael's last year. It doesn't have a company name...just stays "distributed by Michael's" on the box. The background stamp (circles) is from Cornish Heritage Farms. It was one that was/is being retired so I got it for half off. Gotta love that! LOL!

And now that the fun stuff is over...I thought I'd share some more about the work situation and update you. I did have an interview on Friday which I felt went REALLY well. At least this time they are only interviewing 4 people...not 40 like one of the other jobs I interviewed for. If nothing else, I feel honored to have even been 1 of the 4 chosen. My main qualm about this one is that two of the interviewees are internal applicants and I know usually that gives them priority. A good thing is that the two ladies I'd be working with used to work at one of the companies I did and knows a lot of the same people (good people who will give me references).

Last night I was wide awake WAY too late and found a personality test to take which is supposed to tell you which type of personality you have and which sort of careers would be best for you. I think this one really nailed me. So I thought I'd share it with you. I am considered an ISFJ personality read a description of what that means you can click HERE. And for the career types they recommended you can click HERE. What's funny is that I'd considered many of these careers but ultimately chose not to do some of them BECAUSE of my personality. I know I could never be in social work or'd kill me because I take things too personally and want to help everyone.

Anyways, just thought that was interesting. I think if you know me personally you'll see how closely these two sites hit my personality. It was a series of about 40 questions that I had to answer. I don't think it said the name of the test, or even if it's a standard test. Regardless, interesting nonetheless!

Have a great Sunday all!


Halloween Mouse

I recently discovered that you can get SOME of the House Mouse stamp images in clear acrylic (vs wood mount). Honestly, for most things I like wood mount better. But these HM stamps are just SO big and take up so much space that sometimes less is better. Plus the wood mount stamps go for $9-15 per stamp...and I got this whole Christmas set for $10 on ebay. So it was a ganga deal. is a CHRISTMAS set which limits it's usage. I figured the mouse with the peppermint could be used year round (with a saying about being sweet) and then I saw the mouse with the Santa hat...and I knew just what I was going to do with him. I had a witch hat from a cheap set of stamps I got at Michael's. I stamped the mouse (minus his hat) and then stamped the witch hat instead. Walaa...a Halloween Mouse!

Here's the whole original set and the witches hat so you know how I started:

And here's a close up of just the card:

I got the layout for the card from Jen over at her blog Iheart2stamp.

I have another new halloween card (and another sketch that I used) but will save it for another day. It's 1a.m. here and I'm still wide awake so thought I'd come sign on and share just a tidbit of new stuff! Hope you are all sleeping soundly and not wide awake like I am! LOL.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Can we say "OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE"???

Ok...I really do like how this card turned out...but it is SO not my style! ;-)

This morning I went blog hopping looking for some inspiration and found it here in the form of a sketch challenge. Doesn't hurt that there is a potential "prize" for this sketch challenge! But mainly I just chose it because it was different than anything I've ever done.

When I printed the sketch I envisioned a pink/yellow card using my flourishes set. Very soft floral...even thought about making it into a baby card. As you can see...that is SO NOT what it evolved into! :-) I'd called this "grunge"...others call it shabby chic I believe. Here are the pics and I'll tell you what products and such I used after the pics. I said...I started with a pastel idea. I stamped SU's Linen background stamp tone on tone 2nd generation on the pink cardstock. Then I stamped the Happy Birthday (CTMH) in black...but it looked SO black that now the rest of the card looked silly. So I inked all the edges of everything. I stamped the flourish (Autumn Leaves) in 1st generation pink. Still looked restamped the flourish in black...moving it just a bit to the right. The bottom scallop is made by using SU's slit punch...repeated punch moving down the strip of cardstock. Then I went back and used a regular hole punch in the middle of each scallop so the yellow showed through. And THEN I went back with the 1/16 punch and punched a tiny hole it each of the larger holes. I added the flowers (and inked them as well). The strip of yellow is faux stitched. Used my SU piercing guide and punched every other hole and then connected.

Anyways, hope you enjoy!


Good Morning!

Well, no artwork yet to share. I was out blog searching this morning looking for some inspiration and instead found this wonderful blog that I wanted to share. She has signed up to be an "Angel" (meaning she's joined The Angel Company as an independent consultant) and is offering some blog candy in honor of that. It has an altered tin full of goodies. So go check it out! (Also, if you've never seen their should find one and check it out...they have some cute stuff!) I especially love the new flamingo set.

I'll be back later with some sort of artwork!


Friday, August 17, 2007

Basket of Blessings and thoughts on perfectionism

Good morning all! Last night I decided to do the Limited Supply Challenge on SCS. The challenge was to use 1)ONE main image stamp 2)For the background you could use a stamp, a flourish, or patterned paper 3)ONE sentiment stamp 4)Any color ink & solid cardstock 5)ONE of these embellishments: ribbon, brads, buttons, eyelets 6)ONE speciality tool: piercer, crimper, cuttlebug, or punch.

I combined that with my personal "I Can See Clearly Now" challenge to use stamps from and this is what I came up with.

I did a few things that I'm not sure were ok for the Limited Supply Challenge (but they weren't excluded so I assume they were ok). I used two patterned papers for my background, I used brown kraft CS to make my own "ribbon", I used a pen to make faux stitching, and I used pop-dot adhesive on the main image so it pops up. I colored in the apples using chalks (and the blender I got at the expo). And technically my "main image" is 2 stamps...because the stamp set has a couple different baskets and different fillers for the baskets so you can mix/match. OTHER than's totally legit! LOL!

Ok...let's swing another direction here and let me ask a question. Do you think perfectionism is a learned trait or an innate trait? I'm a perfectionist about most things (not about being neat and tidy in the house but in other areas). I always thought this was because of how I grew up. I have three older brothers and my Dad always showed a preference for them. My Mom told me once that he loved me in his own way, but that he'd wanted me to be a boy. So I thought that's where it started for me. Always trying to do what my brothers did to earn his love.

But now I'm a parent and I have two children. My youngest is a total perfectionist (and was since at least kindergarten). I'm a very laid back parent. I don't sit there and make them do things over and over again. I don't berate them for less than stellar grades as long as they are trying their best. So I don't know where this perfectionism comes from. And it breaks my heart to see it in him so young. This morning he forgot his backpack. No big deal, right? I show up to the school with the backpack and everyone is talking about it. He was sobbing and upset and noone could console him. NOONE got after him at all. It should have been a simple, "I forgot my backpack call" and I would have dropped it and no big deal. But he was beside himself and the more anyone tried to talk to him the more upset he became. They finally just waited for me to get there. I hugged him and told him it wasn't a big deal. That his older brother forgot things some times, etc. He was still snuffling when I left.

I was talking to the special ed teacher on my way out and I guess she'd talked to him too. I told her that I'm a perfectionist for myself but I've never been that way with the kids. She agreed and she said she thought it was just innate in some people. OTOH, I've had this discussion with a counselor who thinks that he sees me being a perfectionist towards myself and copies. SO....what are you and your kids like? Do you think some people are just born that way? Do you think it's learned? Maybe a little of both?

Talk to me people! ;-)

Thursday, August 16, 2007

I had to play with my new monkey!

Ok...I caved. I HAD to play with my monkey...but I still used my Clear Dollar Stamps on this card as well. The monkey is called a Changito Monkey. I stamped him and masked his hand. Then stamped the pencil from the Inking of You Set from Then added the "Write now" from the set and added 3 dots with a pen. Then printed the rest of the greeting on the computer. I thought about trying to be really "dark" and actually doing two monkeys and having the pencil held upwards more facing the 2nd monkey...but decided it was too much work! LOL.

For the layout of the card I chose to use this weeks sketch challenge on SCS. They put up a new sketch each week.



Wednesday, August 15, 2007


In continuing my "Clear Dollar Stamps" week...I have a couple more examples for you. This first card I made for my hubby. The sketch I used is in a cardmaking magazine (don't ask me which one because my brain ain't functioning yet this morning!) Somehow I even managed to wake up early and attempt to take the kids to school an hour early this morning. Ummm...they don't allow you to just drop your kids off an hour ahead! LOL!

Anyways, here is the first card. In real life (IRL) the tape is colored pink to match some of the pinks in the patterned paper...and then I drew little red hearts on the pink tape dispenser. And then I added stickles. Other than's lots of faux stitching. I'm happy with how it came out.

And then I decided to go on and create another sample. I should save it for tomorrow in case I don't make anything today...but I'm too impatient! LOL. So you get to see it today and then you have to forgive me tomorrow if I don't post something!

This card started out in my mind as a cork board. I'm not sure I entirely met that idea. Probably brown around the edges instead of yellow would have looked more like one. Or maybe making a mini corkboard as PART of the card would have worked better. The images themselves are pretty didn't fill up a whole card. Live and learn...and then get

Without further's the card...

The "TGIF" and the push pins is from the Inking of You set and the tag and the color for the tag are from the Price Tag set.

Well, since I have some extra time, I think I'm going to go grab a shower before I take the kids to school. Usually I run them first and drop them off and then come home and shower. Today I guess I'll be ahead of the game.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I can see clearly (continued)

This week I've challenged myself to use stamps from Clear Dollar Stamps to create my artwork. The two cards below will go to a couple friends who are teachers...since school just started and I thought they would be very appropriate!

Out of the two cards...I think my favorite is the one on the left. For once I actually like the staples as a decoration on the card. Love the ribbon as well. You may or may not be able to tell it...but I used liquid glass over the main image so it looks glossy and dimensional. The card on the right is another version of the same sketch but I wanted to make it a little different. I like how it turned out...just like the other one better. My dh said..."oh, this is cool" and before I could stop him he stuck his finger in the wet liquid glass on this one. I told him it was going to a special ed teacher and she'd understand. LOL!

The papers are all from CTMH. I just pulled out one of their School Zone scrapbooking kits and everything coordinated. Made putting them together easy.

I think today I will play with the tape image in the set (or maybe move on to a different set all'll have to check back tomorrow to find out! LOL!)


Monday, August 13, 2007

I can see clearly now...

Decided I'd make this a Clear Dollar Stamps week. Every card I show this week will feature at least one stamp that I bought from their site. Cards may use other stamps as well...but the main image will be from Clear Dollar Stamps.

This first card I made features stamps from a brand new set (that I helped create by giving my input before the stamp set was finalized). It just became available this month. I LOVE this set! So many cute ideas.

Here's the stamp set itself.

And this is the first card I made using the set...

I THINK (although I'm not certain because I don't have other companies to compare this to) that Clear Dollar Stamps has a different way of using a "Design Team". I THINK most companies have designers who help create artwork AFTER the stamps are made. I don't think the designers have any input into the actual making of the stamps. At Clear Dollar Stamps, the owner Lori, has an Idea Team and a Design Team. I'm on the Idea Team (although I hope to be on the Design Team at some point!) The people on the Idea Team all give input into the actual making of the stamp sets. For example, on this set Lori sent us a .jpg file of a few office supply items. We came up with phrases and a few additional items..she makes changes and sends a .jpg back out...repeat a couple times till everyone is happy with it. Then after the stamps are made the Design Team creates the actual samples that you see on the website.

So, how did I GET ONTO the Idea Team? Well, I sought out a couple companies I liked their images and that were new to the scene (or new enough that I felt a newbie like myself might have a chance). Then I ordered a few stamps from the companies and created a few samples. I then sent each company an email saying how much I liked their designs and asked if they had a Design Team - and oh, by the way, here is a card I made with your stamps. Then I let them lead. The first company didn't have a Design Team but told me if I get published with their stamps I'd get a credit on free stamps. The second was Clear Dollar Stamps. Lori had an opening on her Idea Team and took me on board. And I'm happy to be here. It's a lot of fun to be in on the idea side!

Anyhow...keep an eye out for new creations this week using Clear Dollar Stamps!


The boys are off to school!

I thought I'd be struggling to get the boys up this morning...but they were both awake before I was! Here's a picture of them...ready for the first day of school. Of'd be too much to ask to have them both having nice relaxed faces, eh? Dakota looks like he's rolling his eyes at his brother's desire to hug him. Maybe he IS rolling his eyes! LOL.

Today I get to play "catch up". Have a bunch of little things that need to be completed. So that's my plan for the day. I'll post artwork later!


Sunday, August 12, 2007


Remember, as always you can click on the photos to enlarge them for your viewing. I choose to load smaller pictures so the page itself loads quicker.

I have a couple baskets to share tonight. You may, or may not know, that I used to own a gift basket business. Well, I still have a lot of inventory and one of my friends asked me if I could put together a basket for the new principal at the school (school starts tomorrow). So this is what I came up with. I meant to take a picture before I wrapped it so you could see it better...but I forgot to do that. The basket is a pampering basket and contains a cotton wrap, slippers, pedicure set, eye mask, lotion, bath "tea" (something to soak in the bathtub with), some brushes, a relaxing CD, a washcloth, and an actual tea to relax with afterwards. This would have retailed for about $100 - but I sold it to her at my cost (or maybe below) so she got a great deal at $40 and I was able to reclaim just a little space in my house! I told my hubby he can deposit the check into our bank to help cover my budget "overage" from yesterday's rubber stamping expo. His response was, "I'm not even going to ask." LOL.

The second basket shows some items you've seen before. This is one (of the two) teacher baskets for tomorrow's first day of school. They are complete (other than I suppose I should make a tag or a card so they know who they are from and why!) I added ribbon to the journals, added little white boards (write on, wipe off) that I got at the $ store...I stamped "Notes" and a little flower under it on each one and added ribbons to the handle, the notecards and pen that were posted previously, and then I wrapped and decorated a candy bar. Here's one of the completed baskets.

Tomorrow is the first day of school. The boys are in the bath. Their clothes are all washed and put away. Their backpacks are filled with all their back-to-school supplies. The lunchboxes are waiting in the kitchen. I hope they both enjoy school this year. Mario has never really liked school. His favorite year was 2nd grade...but literally almost every morning he whines and complains and doesn't want to go. (Even in Kindergarten and 1st...the FUN years!) Dakota is the opposite...he's excited and LOVES school. I really think it has to do with how difficult things are for Mario. Due to his prematurity he still has issues with fine motor skills so writing is very difficult for him. They believe he is also ADD. He's mainstream classroom - but goes to special ed for math and reading. What's frustrating is that he really IS intelligent - but it doesn't translate to the book learning. I believe some day he will be a technology genius of some sort.

Ok, Mother Hen needs to go get them out of the bath, fed dinner and into bed before midnight! LOL. Really I'm shooting for 9:00.


Chalk blender experiences

I tried out the new chalk blender last night that I bought at the expo and I'm not sure I'm entirely happy with it. Maybe with practice? Probably my main complaint is that it won't work with the chalks I bought last year. The reason I bought the chalks last year was because they claimed they were smearproof/etc and didn't need to be sealed. They are MUCH better than my original chalks (from Michael's) but still do smear a bit.

That's why I thought I'd try this new blender it looked like putting chalks on wet would be easier. Well, I guess whatever they used in the "special" chalks from last year must make it so this new blender stuff can't even pick up color from them. Grrr.

My other set of chalks (from Michael's) is so limited in colors that it's kind of hard to do shading. Probably today or tomorrow I'll be posting a card I made with the blender and my old chalks. I think I'm going to try the same image/card with the chalks I bought last year dry (with no blender) and see which I like better.

For is the card I made with the blender from a couple different angles.



Saturday, August 11, 2007

What a day!

Last night I could NOT sleep for the life of me. Finally fell asleep about 4a.m. and then had to get up at 7:00. We were on the road by 8:00 and headed to Mesa for the Rubber Stamp and Scrapbook Expo. We followed the directions using mapquest and found the location with no problems whatsoever. I've been to two expos in Tucson and they were both SO crowded that I couldn't stand it. This one in Mesa had fewer vendors but also less attendance (probably due to the heat in AZ in the summer). Probably not good for them...but great for me! ;-) We were able to get "front seat viewing" for almost every booth and watch them work their magic. I learned how to use a melting pot and make jewelry with a piece of glass and some embossing powders and a rubber stamp. Then we were off to the next area where we watched them do several techniques with Ranger Distressing Inks and Embossing Powders. I'd received both these items from my secret pal at Scrap Camp and had no idea how to really use them. So that was fun to watch! Then we watched them work with alcohol inks (one of my new passions). Discovered a couple new things there as well. Then we watched a couple other demos on using a dove blender pen and colored pencils and one using chalks and a solution. We also got to watch a new way (or new to us way) of setting eyelets without having to use the hammer and pound them.

I found my changito monkey stamps at one booth - but of course they were sold out of all but the one design. I found a panda bear stamp, a pirate cannon stamp, and a couple small food item stamps at another booth.

The rest of my purchases were more "tools". I bought the new eyelet setter and the new blending solution for the chalks. I had searched out vendors on the internet ahead of time and this vendor had a 10% off purchase coupon for I was able to get 10% off my purchase at the booth. I decided to also pick up a couple sheets of EZ-Mount from here since I was getting the discount. are all the purchases I made at the actual expo.

After we left the Expo we went out to lunch at McD's (thank goodness for the $1 menu) and then we wanted to check out a scrapbooking store that was close by that I'd heard such GREAT things about. It's called Scrapbooks, Etc. and is about 3 miles from the expo. The store is HUGE. Easily twice the size of any stores in Tucson that I've been to. And lots of good deals. First I viewed the 50% off table and picked up these two halloween page elements and then found some paper for .40 that'd match.

Then I went into the "paper room"...yes, literally a room full of row after row of 12x12 papers. I found these two pirate themed sheets (to go with my new pirate cannon stamp) and the monkey themed sheet (to go with my changito monkeys).

And lastly I got another sheet of 50% off page elements for Easter (yes, a little girly...but easter's about the only time I can get away with it in my boys' scrapbooks!) and a sheet of foam that you use to make your own ink pads with multiple colors, etc.

They give you 20% off your most expensive item once per month. So that was off my sheet of foam...which was a whopping $4.99 to begin with. I made it out with spending just over $10! I think that's a record for me.

We left, thinking our adventure was over. We tried to backtrack our driving directions...but got lost. Ended up in Apache Junction...then went the wrong way on ended up taking the back route through Florence to make our way back home. When I was little, my oldest brother used to take me hiking...and after he'd hauled me around for awhile he'd ask me which direction was home. Invariably I'd point in the opposite direction. Well, when I got lost today I called him for directions (he lives in the Valley) and he had a good laugh at my expense. Boy, brought back some memories! At least now I know an alternate route from Phoenix to Tucson if I ever need one!

Ok...I'm off to play with my new goodies! Just wanted to share!