Thursday, February 23, 2012

Easy Elegant Card Set

Today I have a set of cards to share with you that I made for the ABC Toys & Crafts Design Team Blog.

I love elegant cards. But I must admit that I usually spend a lot of time when I make them by adding a lot of layers and many different kinds of embellishments and details. But once in a while I will come up with a card that is "simply" elegant. Like the ones in this set.
(You can click on the links to see the items in the store).

My first one was the green one. I ended up liking it so much that I decided to make a few more using similar patterned papers. It was so easy: I just cut the designer paper a little shorter than the length of my card front, and then punched the border using the Martha Stewart Floral Lace edge punch. Then I trimmed the top a bit to make it the exact length I wanted, and with my tape runner, I adhered it over my card base.

I tied some wedding tulle around the card and added a flower from my stash and a hand made stick pin. The pretty little butterflies were punched out using one of the Martha Stewart butterfly punches, and I added a couple of little 3mm Hero Arts pearls to them.

Each of the sentiments I chose is from the Hero Arts clear stamp set "Say It All". This is such a great set of 12 stamps that are perfect for so many occasions. And being clear stamps, I love that they are so easy to line up :-) I stamped them all in Memento Tuxedo Black ink.

Simple and elegant. I love that combination! These cards were so fun and easy to make that I ended up making a whole bunch of them. But I have a feeling they will not be hanging around in my card stash for very long, since I have several people and occasions in mind that I think they will be perfect for :-)

Just a reminder: The punches I used are among the many Martha Stewart punches that are now on sale for 25% off. But you'd better act fast, as this sale ends March 2nd!

I hope you have enjoyed my ABC cards for this week. Until next time, I wish you blessings~

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Delightfully "Crappy" Announcement!

It's only the middle of February and already this is shaping up to be a year full of surprises- some good, and some not so good. But all in all, this is already proving to be an eventful year!

I have a quick announcement that I just can not wait to share with you- and this is regarding one of my exciting surprises of the year :-)

I am one of the new "Queens of Crap"!

In case you are not familiar, the Queens of Crap are the Design Team members for Scrap Your Crap. It's an awesome blog with wonderful challenges and an amazingly talented team of designers. I am so, so honored and excited to be joining them!

I'll be sharing more with you soon, and will be posting my SYC challenge projects before long, so please stay tuned ;-) I'll be back shortly with some more cards, too.

Thanks so much for stopping by.

As always, I wish you blessings~


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Beautiful Blooms

Over at the ABC Design Team Blog, Lynda and Sheri have certainly gotten us off to a great start with their use of Martha Stewart punches! I also had fun with a couple of great Martha Stewart punches in the card I have to share with you this week as well. The two punches I used are the branch punch (among my favorite punches EVER!) and the doily lace border punch. Here's my card:

For all of you who know me, all the flowers are not a surprise. I love, love, LOVE flowers! :-) It was so fun scattering them all around and adding all the little punched out branches underneath and beside them. The large yellow flowers are Quick Pick Twilight from Prima, and all the little ones are from Prima's Sweet & Sassy All About Me collection. I added little white Hero Arts pearls to their centers for a bit of elegance. I love how they turned out!

My two patterned paper choices are from Basic Grey's Origins paper pad. The sentiment was stamped onto an oval which was die cut and layered on another oval using the SpellbindersNestabilities Classic Oval dies. I used 3-D Dots 1/8" circles in between the oval layers to add some great dimension. And the bottom oval layer was also dry embossed using the CuttlebugSwiss Dots embossing folder which is a wonderful way to add some nice texture.

I added some green pearls to the corners and a row of brown lace from my stash (But oh rats! I can't remember where I got it.)

So if you are like me and like a lot of flowery details on your cards, you will LOVE these beautiful flowers and awesome punches :-)
I'll have another "ABC" card for you next week!
I'll also be posting again before then, so I hope you'll stop back again soon!
Wishing you blessings~

Thursday, February 9, 2012

When Life Throws You A Curve Ball

This is my family. They mean everything to me. Like all families, we have been through some tough things together. Well, maybe not "average tough", as we have had things like disabilities to deal with; a move across the country away from family and many, many dear friends; losing several close family members in just the past few years.... lots of stuff like that. But we deal with it. Together. And even though I know a lot of my friends often say things like "Wow- you have so much on your plate!" or "I don't know how you deal with all you deal with" or similar remarks, I really don't get what they mean. I love my life! I am so, so very blessed! I have sooo much to be thankful for!

But yes, life can throw us curve balls. And usually when we least expect them. We had a few last year. Including when both of my husband's sisters died just a month apart. We hadn't really felt as if we'd come up for air after losing my brother at that point, so it was really pretty "heavy".
So I think when the new year came, we just had it in our minds that this year was going to be a lot better. Easier. We were "due"! ;-)

Well... maybe not just yet.

We got hit with another curve ball, I am afraid. I debated weather to post about this. But I think for several reasons it's a good idea. I suppose most of you come here to see my cards. But I know many of you have said you like when I throw "other stuff" in here, too. I have been so busy being on design teams and making cards for them that for several months, that's pretty much all I have posted about. And I'll admit, I kind of miss adding in the "personal" stuff here and there. Lately I am afraid I just haven't had time. But now I am going to make time. Time to post something not so "fun"- but I think "post worthy" never the less.

Typically, I'd be sharing my weekly card for The Perfect Sentiment challenge blog. It feels so weird not having a card to share with you today for their challenge! No- I have not left the Design Team! Thankfully, Jennipher is so awesome and understanding that she not only has allowed me some time off, but insisted on it as well.
The reason: My husband has cancer. Wow. Just typing that kinda puts a pit in your stomach. Bottom line: to put it lightly, it stinks. I mean really stinks. But at the same time, I can honestly say I am so, so grateful. And the reason why I feel that way is the reason I am sharing this with you.
You see, we have a lot to feel grateful about right now. But it would not have been that way if things didn't come about as they did. All because of awareness. Awareness because my husband read an article in a magazine while he was on an airplane on a business trip. Thanks to Mike Ditka's name catching his eye, my husband (also named Mike) read an article that may well have saved his life. And this, my dear readers, is why I am writing this post. Because I hope that you will become aware and urge all the men in your life to get tested for prostate cancer! According to Mike's doctor, had my husband waited until his primary doctor said it was "time" to be tested (or for symptoms to begin)- it may have been too late. Wow- if that doesn't get your attention!

You see, Mike read that article and it bugged him. Enough so that when he went in for a routine blood pressure check he asked to have the exam for prostate cancer. His doctor actually said it wasn't needed- that he could wait. But thank God, Mike pushed the issue until the doctor agreed to do the exam. Imagine the surprise when it was found that there actually was cancer present!

I won't go into all the details, but will tell you that I am writing this just hours before Mike is to have surgery. I am really tired from running around getting things set for the kids since I will be at the hospital all day, and for Mike for when he comes home, etc. But I decided to write this in hopes that by writing this it may get the attention of you all and even if just one life can be saved by awareness as we believe Mike's has, then it will be the best thing I can do! My husband had absolutely no symptoms. So please, please don't think because a man feels great that there can not be a problem. They need to be tested. But sadly, most men just want to bury their heads in the sand about this. They don't even want to think about it, much less face the possibility and get tested. But we must convince them not to put it off. You just never know when it might hit someone you love. If you don't believe me, check out these numbers. This was reported just a few months ago by the American Cancer Society: (And this is just for one year!):

  • About 240,890 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed
  • About 33,720 men will die of prostate cancer

About 1 man in 6 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. More than 2 million men in the United States who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point are still alive today.

Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. About 1 man in 36 will die of prostate cancer.

So.... there you have it. Not a typical post for me, but one I feel compelled to write. I hope some of what I have said will convince you of the seriousness of this and get you to urge the men you care about to get themselves tested.

I'll be back soon and give you an update. (And a card again soon, too!) ;-)
If you don't mind my asking- if any of you are like me and believe in the power of prayer, I'd be so very very grateful if you might say a quick one for my husband. I will be praying that all of the men in your life get tested- (with good results!) for prostate cancer. But saving lives all starts with awareness!

Thank you for letting me share this with you.

Wishing you many blessings,

Valentine Hugs

I love Valentine's Day. And I love the February challenge over at ABC Toys & Crafts: to make a card with the focus colors of red, white and pink. Soooo pretty!
Our current theme on the Design Team is Valentines, so I combined that with the challenge and here is what I came up with:

Isn't the paper sweet? It's from the Authentique Uncommon 6x6 paper pad. I love the colors and prints in this collection!

My cute little sentiment comes from the Hero Arts Say It All clear stamp set. I stamped it in bright pink onto ivory card stock that had been die cut using the Spellbinders Nestabilities Classic scallop ovals dies. I layered it on a 3-D Dot for dimension over a pink coordinating oval die cut.

And how about these darling Prima Sprites flowers! It's so great how they are shaped in hearts. I just added a few pearls in the centers.

I love how this card came together. It was pretty quick and easy and one that could so easily be changed up a bit to be used for different occasions. But I am pretty happy with the way it is. Now I just need to decide who to send this Valentine to ;-)

I hope you'll be playing along with us this month for our fun ABC challenge.
I also hope you have a very happy Valentine's Day!


Sunday, February 5, 2012

ABC Challenge Time!

It's the beginning of a new term and that means it's challenge time over at ABC Toys & Crafts!
I am so excited not only to share my card with you, but all the details of the challenge as well.
To start off, the challenge is pretty simple: To focus on three colors: Red, white and pink.
Here is the card I have created, which I hope will inspire you to play along:

I started by using some beautiful patterned paper from the Crafty Secrets Classic paper pad.
I die cut it with the Sizzix scallop card die. I put some pretty little Hero Arts pearls between each scallop.

My red and pink heart layers were embossed using the Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing folder .

I tied some lace around it and added a few flowers and it was complete. Fairly simple, but very romantic- perfect for Valentine's Day!

Now, for some challenge details: You may create a card or other project (such as a tag, scrapbook page, altered item, etc.)- just get creative with red, white and pink and share it with us!
You may enter as many projects as you wish, but must have them linked up by Saturday February 25th.
All details can be found at the ABC Toys & Crafts blog HERE.
If you are the winner, you will receive a $20.00 ABC Toys & Crafts store credit- or $25.00 if you also display the ABC Challenge Blinkie on your blog!

I hope you'll join in on the challenge and show us what you can do with red, white and pink! :-)

I'll be back in a few days with another card to share with you!

Wishing You Blessings,

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Love Is In Bloom!

Wow- it's already the 2nd day in February! And that means I am ready to share my first card I designed for ABC Toys & Crafts with you! And what better way to start than with a romantic Valentine?

I absolutely love romantic, flowery, vintage looking cards, and this one was so fun to make!

Here in the close ups you can see all the great textures and details I was able to achieve with the products I used.
I started with this beautiful Authentique paper which made it easy to add all kinds of pretty embellishments in a nice variety of Valentine colors.

The Spellbinder's Fair Isle pendant die provided a great background to build upon. I love how the little Hero Arts pearls fit perfectly into the holes.

And both Cuttlebug folders- the Swiss Dots and the Birds and Swirls add such nice texture as well as design.

For added sparkle on my small Prima flowers, I used some Stardust Stickles. I stamped my sentiment in Memento Tuxedo black ink onto a great little Nestabilities Label four die. Then I added a couple of sweet little hearts that were punched out using the Martha Stewart looped hearts Valentine edge punch.

You can find all these great products by clicking on the links, or go to the ACB Toys & Crafts Store to find even more great products- all at 10% off every day!

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you have enjoyed my Valentine. Please be sure to check back here with me as well as over at the ABC blog to see all that we have to share with you as we continue our Valentine themed cards and projects!

Wishing You Blessings,


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Blog Candy Winner!

Well, it's February 1st, and thanks to you, I have reached my goal of having more than 100 blog followers. Thank you so very much.
And now it is time for me to announce the winner of my blog candy:
Scrappin' Abby!

I could not think of the name of the internet picker thing I used once before, lol, so I went the old fashioned route and put all the names on pieces of paper in a little basket and had my youngest daughter reach in and pick one out. And Abby, it was you :-)
Please send me your mailing address and I will get these goodies sent to you.
I hope you will have fun with them!

Thanks again to everyone who participated in my contest. I will be doing another giveaway before long, so stay tuned ;-)

And tomorrow, my first post for the ABC Design Team blog will be up! I can hardly wait to share my card with you there. I hope you'll stop by and check it out!

Have a wonderful first day of February!