Welcome to my blog!

Thanks for visiting my blog. As the title suggests, I love to scrapbook, stamp, and sing! I will share cards and scrapbook pages I create, as well as information about my music - Barbershop harmony.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Candy canes!

I love a good candy cane around the holidays but even better - Lindt peppermint flavored chocolate truffles - yum!! I went to the Mall of America on Sunday and bought a big bag of their Lindor balls. This week Merry Monday brings a challenge from Linda to include a candy cane on your Christmas card - I started right away Monday morning on my card but got a bit sidetracked and didn't finish until today - more on that later...

Photo Credit

Last year Kristie, a former Merry Monday Design Team member, enabled me to buy some Whimsy Stamps. One of the cling images I ordered was this darling penguin quartet - yay, the sign they're holding is lettered with candy canes - perfect! Here's my card:

Candy Cane Joy
Supplies: Paper - Neenah Solar White, American Crafts Christmas from Target Hot Spot
Stamp - Whimsy Stamp's Penguin Joy; Die - My Favorite Things Blueprints 20 (stitched rectangle)
Other - Copic Markers, Hickory Smoke Distress Marker, foam tape; Ink - Ranger Archival "Watering Can"

Below is a card I made while being sidetracked from Merry Monday. I was looking through my overwhelming stash of stuff for something for my sister. Instead I found a little decorated Christmas box containing a bunch of dies and an old Sizzix metal emboss & cut folder. I didn't remember owning this item and don't think I had ever used until now! No surprise... I included the folder in the photo - it's black metal on the outside and silver on the inside - such a fun item and I'm sure they don't make them anymore! Do any of you have one? I couldn't resist making a card with it. After embossing, I ran an ink cube over the raised paper - black on the deer and silver on the frame. A bunch of us from chorus were heading to sing at a couple senior living centers; one is where a long-time member Jean lives. So I took this card to give to her. She arranged a holiday song we sing "Straw Carol". We had a great time singing and Jean loved hearing her arrangement!

Embossed deer

I'm doing well on my goal of writing out 5 Christmas cards per day for mailing. Will be done soon - yay - but like Bonnie points out, there's nothing wrong with getting some cards made for next year! Thanks for stopping by and have a crafty week!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Some Christmas trees & my helper

OK - I've had some requests to post some holiday decoration photos so here they are. I don't decorate the outdoors at all but I usually put a tree in front of the living room window and a trio of lighted candles in the family room window. These can be seen from the street by passersby.

I bought this slim pre-lit artificial tree a couple years ago - a perfect fit in the corner by the family room staircase. This year I decided to give it the spot in front of the living room window - looks great in the center panel of a three panel window.

One of Mom's friends made the tree skirt. My brother gave me the topper - a crystal angel that he didn't need anymore. Most of the ornaments are by Hallmark but I also have a few on there from other companies. One - Newbridge Silver in Ireland - Heather sent me a couple (thanks again!!) and I bought one when I visited her in 2014. Another - Chico's (the clothing store) who has offered several beautiful metal and bead ornaments over the years. I love to open all the boxes and appreciate all the details of each ornament. Quite a few play music including "Feliz Navidad", "Santa Baby", "I've Been Everywhere", and my favorite - "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas". Every day I go around the tree pressing the buttons and singing along as the ornaments play. My brother's cat Misty was visiting me and "helping" with the decorating (she didn't bother the tree or play with the ornaments, thankfully). Here she is supervising from one of my packing crates:

One last "tree" - this one sits on the kitchen table. It has a cookie cutter for a topper, reminiscent of the antique star cutter I use for my almond shortbread cookies. The tree and the ornaments are all by Hallmark.

I have other decorations put around but didn't photograph them. There's plenty more I haven't put out but I wanted to get some decorating done because my brother and sister-in-law came to get Misty (boo-hoo) last night and I fixed them dinner. Donna makes lefse so she brought a large bundle of them. Brother wanted lutefisk so I picked some up at the grocery - very easy in Minnesota this time of year - LOL. Despite being of Norwegian descent, Donna doesn't touch lutefisk - that's why she wanted me to make it for my brother. She ended up with some rotisserie chicken; that way I didn't have to make Swedish meatballs (what we usual serve the non-lutefisk eaters). They will be with her family for the holidays this year so I enjoyed fixing a holiday dinner for them now.

No cards to share today - I've been working on getting my Christmas cards ready to mail. When I made my Merry Monday cards throughout the year, I didn't do the insides. I'm mass producing the insides with the help of the MISTI. I already have the cards in piles of horizontal vs vertical orientation and by theme. Hope this is a good plan - it worked great for the first batch! Wish me luck and thanks for stopping!!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Masculine Christmas Card

Yes - it's Monday and I'm managing another blog post. Seems that's all I can do at this time of year is get a Merry Monday post done - oh well.... This week, Kathy has challenged us to make a masculine Christmas card. Check out all the great cards by the Design Team here.

Well, masculine cards are not my strength but I recently got the Spellbinders die set with the stag head, inspired by some of the stag cards I've spotted, including this one by the amazing Rosemary. Quite a few of the DT included a deer or stag so I think I'm good to go! Here's my card:

Masculine holidays
Supplies: Paper - Hero Arts Grass Layering paper, Neenah,
American Crafts (Target dollar bin - plaid, woodgrain, foil), Authentique
Dies - My Favorite Things Blueprints 20Spellbinders S2-221 Aristocrat Etched Die
Hero Arts DI198 Rectangle Infinity Dies and DC117 Fancy Holidays Stamp & Cut
Stamp - SSS/Hero Arts Stamptember "Happy Thanksgiving" (Happy)
Ink - Pine Needles Distress Ink; Other - foam tape, Copic, enamel dot

I really liked the effect of the embossing on the stag head and the label (hard to see on the white) - gave some nice dimension. The enamel dot was too light so I darkened it up with a Copic marker - worked great! Anyway, that's my attempt at masculine and it's going to a friend I like to call my neffie-poo. He's the son of a guy who's like a brother-in-law to me. Now it's back to decorating my Christmas tree - well, the first one (I have several). This one is a slender pre-lit artificial one that usually goes in the corner of the family room. I decided it deserved a turn in the living room :) Just needs some smaller ornaments towards the top and I'll be done!! It's really starting to look like the holidays indoors - outside it's raining and unseasonably warm, ugh.

Hope you're having a crafty week! Thanks for stopping!!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Merry light/dark blues with pink!

Hi all - back with this week's Merry Monday color challenge from Debbie to use light and dark blues with pink. What a pretty combo!
I was inspired by Kathy's ornament card to go off and find a Spellbinders set I haven't used much. I thought it would be so fun to do an ornament in a bright pink with the blues behind it. Here's my card:

Happy holidays ornament
Supplies: Paper - Hero Arts powder folded card, Authentique for the blues, Doodlebug for background pink, 
Reflections for solid pink, Heidi Swapp for hot pink glitter paper
Dies - Spellbinders Heirloom Reflections (ornament), Blueprints 13 (stitched rectangle) and 18 (diagonal panels - cut to fit)
Inks - Hero Arts Navy and Cornflower; Other - navy ribbon (looks sort of black in photo but it matches the bottom paper in real life) recycled from a My Monthly Hero package wrapping, foam tape

If you look closely at the stitched rectangle, you will see the heart paper which I put upside down so it wasn't so it wasn't so obvious. It was the best of matches for my other papers so I went with it! Now I'm off to make a birthday card for a friend and to practice my clarinet! Last week's rehearsal of the Jingle Bell Band went great and we have another one coming up. Our three songs are "Angels We Have Heard on High", "Jolly Old Saint Nicholas" and "Deck the Halls". For practice purposes I also bought a Christmas carol book at my local music store. It came with a CD of accompaniments to the clarinet solos. I plan to record myself with the accompaniment and share it with my parents in Arizona - they will get a kick out of it after making me take lessons for 9 years growing up!!

Be sure to check out the great cards by the Merry Makers this week - awesome inspiration!! Won't be long and we'll need to start mailing out all the holiday cards we've been making - can't wait!! I put 10 cards in my former workplace's charity auction last week - they went for $180 dollars (packaged in a holiday book box from Michael's)! Anyway, thanks for stopping and have a great week!!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Time for Grey/White/Red

(photo source)

Hi all - Deanne challenges us on Merry Monday to use the colors grey, white and red on a Christmas card. She said this color combo reminds her of a warm and cozy sweater - the inspiration photo has plenty of knitted goodness too! This brought me to two new paper pads - one from Authentique and one from American Crafts (in Target's Hot Spot bins). Both had patterns that reminded me of a sweater, plus met the grey/white/red color scheme. Here's my card:

Winter Wishes
Supplies: Paper - Neenah Solar White, Authentique Wintery (grey/white sweater), American Crafts (reindeer & glitter)
Stamps - Hero Arts DC193 Kelly's S'mitten Stamp & Cut (cap), CM120 Winter Time Fun (skates & sentiment)
Dies - My Favorite Things DieNamics Blueprints 20 (rectangle); Spellbinders Ovals, Hero Arts dies to match the stamps
Ink - Ranger Archival Watering Can (Wendy Vecchi)
Other - foam tape, Copic Markers

This is just a quick card since I have a busy week ahead. For my chorus Christmas party, we created a "Jingle Bell Band". A bunch of us who played musical instruments in our youth will dust off our clarinets, flutes, etc and play a few Christmas songs for the rest of the chorus. Out of our 113 or so members, the band runs around 20 participants. We have our first rehearsal tonight - can't wait! Plenty of time to practice until the December party.... Oh - I'm playing the clarinet :) Thanks for stopping! 

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Scramble with a Tree

Hi everyone - I'm the hostess for a Scramble on the Hero Arts Flickr group (24 hr addition ends 11/13/16 at 8 a.m. PST). My theme: create a Holiday card with a tree on it. I thought it would be nice for participants to have a theme meeting the current Hero Arts Holiday Cardmaking Challenge. Feel free to join in, if you're interested!

Here are my two sample cards:

Merry Christmas shaker
Supplies: Paper - Hero Arts Sea Mix Layering Paper & acetate, Neenah Solar White, 
Paper Studio Glitter, BoBunny Tis the Season(green patterned for tree)
Stamps - Hero Arts CG697 Blizzard Bold Prints, CL997 Color Layering Snowy Tree
October My Monthly Hero (Santa in sleigh with reindeer - set sold out)
Inks - Tim Holtz Distress Tumbled Glass, Salty Ocean, Stormy Sky, & Picket Fence; 
Ranger Archival Watering Can (Wendy Vecchi)
Other - foam tape, Darice and Target sequins
(Note - the sequins were too cupped and wouldn't shake very well so I took them out later!)

Layered Tree
Supplies: Paper - Hero Arts Foliage Layering Paper, BoBunny Tis the Season 6x6; American Crafts glitter
Other - Foam Tape, Doodlebug star gem

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you're making progress on your holiday cards!! I think I have enough and was even able to donate 10 cards to the charity auction at my former workplace.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Outdoor Winter Fun

Hi everyone and a Merry Monday to you!! This week at Merry Monday, Colleen challenges us to create a Christmas card with a winter activity on it. I knew right away that I'd pull out the darling Whimsy stamp with a polar bear and three penguin friends on a toboggan. I first learned of Whimsy Stamps via a former Merry Monday Design Team member Kristie. She made an adorable penguin card for one of the challenges last year and I couldn't resist ordering the set she used, plus a few other winter stamps.

My siblings & I spent many happy winter hours tobogganing on the steep rolling hills around my cousins' house. And I've heard my Dad's story many times of him & his cousins taking a toboggan down the nearby hills. They headed towards a tree and all but one rider bailed. The crashed rider (broken arm) and toboggan meant no more fun for them that day! I decided to make a slider card but since I didn't have a channel die, I just used a hillside die cut twice. Here are three views to show the toboggan sliding downhill:

penguin bear sled at top

penguin bear sled mid way

penguin bear sled at bottom
Supplies: Stamps - Whimsy Stamps Snow Fun & Hero Arts CL983 Holiday Messages and Tags
Dies - Hero Arts DI318 Holiday Tags Frame Cuts & Lawn Fawn Stitched Hillside Borders; snowflake by ?
Inks - Ranger Archival Watering Can (Wendy Vecchi); Tim Holtz Distress Ink Fired Brick
Paper - BoBunny  Tis the Season Collection (6x6), Neenah Solar White
Other - foam tape, Copic Markers, Hero Arts red metallic accents, Michaels gem,
3M plastic furniture disks (I sandwiched two together to make a button for the slider).

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out the inspiration at Merry Monday - the Design Team created some fabulous cards with this weeks theme! Only a few weeks until it'll be time to start mailing out our Christmas cards - I think I'm ready!!