6/22/2018 & 6/23/2018

I started Friday, by going to garage sales with my good friend, Lynn.  After going to several of them and yawning a lot, I decided I needed to throw in the towel and go home for a nap.  My total purchases were two stuffed animals for the dogs and a wood case that is perfect for storing ink pads.  I really tried to stay alert, even drinking a Mountain Dew at 9:45AM, but nothing seemed to work.  Exhausted, I crawled back into bed and slept for two hours.  I wasn’t sure what was going on with me, but figured my body just needed the rest.  In reality, there was a big storm front coming in later Friday,  that was completely overwhelming all day Saturday, when we had a couples bridal shower (outdoor) to attend.  I’m nothing if not a great weather predictor.

I’m not sure if any of you love going to bridal showers and baby showers, but I’m not a fan of them.  I feel out of place and awkward when I attend, and when it’s a baby shower, Yikes!  The games they play at those are enough to make me run for the hills.  Have you ever played the one where they put a small candy bar inside a diaper and then melt it in a microwave then pass them around like poopy diapers?  Gross….Unfortunately, I’m really good at that game, as chocolate is a passion of mine.  I can guess the name of that melted candy bar with no problem.  Then there’s the one where they take labels off of baby food and you can dip your finger into it to taste it, to determine what it is.  After I’ve seen a few people with their fingers in the jar, I’m gagging and thinking about communicable diseases..I either don’t play that game or write peas for every line item.  (I know my limitations, and this is one of them.)

So a couples bridal shower didn’t seem bad, since I had Rich and they were having a mini Olympics.  I thought it would be fun to watch.  I couldn’t decide on a gift, so got a gift card for their registered store, and made a card that took FOREVER, but looks like it might have been thrown together in seconds.  I had a really hard time with it.  I started by making a cardboard piece so my embossing folder only embossed a portion of the folder.  It worked perfectly and then I used embossing paste and glitter and filled most of the center portion (that wasn’t embossed) with a leaf pattern.  My goal was to make a bunch of layered flowers from an Altenew set and fussy cut them, then lay them around a sentiment that said “Celebrate.”  I stamped them and fussy cut them, but they looked really bland next to the sparkly card front.  So I used Stickles to make them 3-D and give them some glitz, but the black I used would NOT dry.  I tried using my heat tool, nothing.  I let them set for several hours, still wet.  In the end, I put the flowers on the card and a lot of the black had either rubbed off or melted from the heat tool, gross!

This could be the moment I lost my mind and got out the sequins and went nuts.  I might have put too many on the card, but I wanted to detract from the crazy ugly black centers of the flowers.  Oh, don’t worry, it gets worse.  Rich and I are college friends with the bride’s parents.  I don’t know the bride or groom, but somehow, even looking at the invitation, I wrote the bride’s sister’s name inside the card.  I did get the groom’s name correct, so apparently her sister is marrying the groom.  Darn it…I didn’t realize it until I wrote their names on the outside of the sealed envelope (that I had to custom make due to the card’s size.)  I could not bring myself to make another envelope, so we put address labels over their names on the envelope…Yes, I’m classy.  It didn’t occur to me until we were on our way to the shower (in a terrible rain storm), that I’d written the wrong name  on the gift card and the inside of the card.  I felt stupid, but when we got to the shower, I told my friend (the bride’s mother) what I’d done, and she said she was so frazzled from planning the shower, that she wrote the wrong daughter’s name on her card too.  I felt so much better!

The rain had really picked up in intensity on our way to the shower, so by the time we got there, they had rivers running through their back yard.  They had prepared with big tents, but had a gap between the tents, and that’s where the river was, and also where you needed to walk to get between tables for seating and all of the food and drinks.  I give the family of the bride credit, they didn’t seem to be fazed by the twenty-plus cars that were sinking into their lawn, and I mean sinking.  I tried to sit in a chair under a tent, and that chair was stuck, secure and for good, in a muddy muck, so tried another that was only partially stuck.

We didn’t stay long, just long enough to eat and watch the egg toss competition.  The women that won had an egg that was unbelievable.  They dropped it three times in the game, and it never broke.  After their victory, they threw it into the air as high as they could, and it didn’t break when it hit the ground.  From that point, it was a goal of  the younger men to see if they could be the one to break it.  Several men threw it as high as possible, and when it landed, nothing.  It could be because the ground was so wet and it literally sunk into the grass, but I’ve never seen anything like it.  I don’t know if anyone ever broke it, as I lost interest after four or five men couldn’t defeat it.  Also the storm clouds were moving back in, and I had no interest in jogging to the car in a downpour.  By then my feet were wet to right below my ankles, and it was starting to smell like earthworms.  I’d had enough.  (This is also one of those moments when you realize you’re old, as the younger people were having so much fun with the rain, and I’m whining about my wet feet.  Oh to be twenty again….)


Raised Watercolor Focal Image Card

I saw a similar example of this technique on Tina Zwick’s site. I started with a kid’s coloring paper pad under my paper to absorb the inks and give me a cushion to stamp on.
You’ll need an acrylic block that is square, ( mine was a 2 1/2″ square block), and a cutting die of the same size. I found that really juicy ink pads worked for this technique better than less wet pads. I used Stampin’ Up ink pads in Crumb Cake and Tip Top Taupe. I found that they were too similar in color so added Distress Ink in Old Paper to the bottom lighter portion so it added a more green color to the mix..
You’ll need to ink the acrylic block, half with one color and the other half with the other color. After the block is inked, add water to it and then move the inks around so the whole block has water and ink, then stamp it on the top left corner of paper that is 3 7/8″ x 5 1/8″. You’ll need to dry your paper or wait for it to be completely dry, and then using your die cutter, cut the square out.
I put fun foam on the back of the square I cut out (and should have waited until later to do this as I needed to stamp over this square.)
I used a Friend Phrase old Stampin’ Up red rubber stamp as a background image and stamped it on the paper I’d cut the square out of.  I inked it with the same Crumb Cake ink from earlier and put the stamp face up on my desk and laid the paper over it, then added a scrap paper over it so I could rub my hand over it to transfer the words to my paper.
I used an old red rubber fern stamp from Rubber Stampede #A2490E and inked it with Memento Olive Grove and Stampin Up’s Always Artichoke then stamped it on my card front with the square put back into it’s hole. I had to put another piece of fun foam under the bottom section of the card to ensure I could stamp the fern evenly over the square I’d cut out and the rest of the card front. I added washi tape to the square to hold it in place, and had  previously rubbed the washi tape on my clothes and skin to make it less sticky so it wouldn’t tear my image. I stamped the fern in three different spots on the card with two of them stamped so they were partially on the square. I laid my card front on a piece of 4 x 5 1/4″ tall craft colored card stock, then put them on a card base that was 5 1/2″ tall x 4 1/4″ wide.
I used a sentiment set from My Creative Times called Many Greetings that has a greeting for the outside and the inside of the card. I stamped a sentiment in Always Artichoke from Stampin’ Up on the inside and outside of the card, then took linen thread from Stampin’ Up, and wrapped it around the first two layers of paper three times and then tied it into a knot.
I decorated the envelope with a fern stamp from pegstamps.com. Here’s a link to it. http://tinyurl.com/yb3seq9o
I wanted to update you on the stamp cleaning video I’d done. I used a jar with a lid that can be partially open that you can find at any Walmart or Dollar General.  Here’s one I found on ebay http://tinyurl.com/yace5vbw.   I put a piece of Tim Holtz’s Rub it Scrub it (link– http://tinyurl.com/y9hxp9j4) and a piece of an Absorber towel (link: http://tinyurl.com/ybgx6xnr) inside.  I add a little of my homemade stamp cleaning spray to wet it, and I really like how convenient this system is on my desk. I’ll link the stamp cleaning video to the end of this one.


I didn’t want to push Rich after having the treatment on his hips and back yesterday, so we didn’t do very much today.  I did ask him to put the video of the raised focal image card up, and hopefully it will go online tonight.  I’m not trying to push him when he’s not feeling well though.

On a bright note, the contractors that have been working next door, weren’t there early this morning….I was thrilled to be able to sleep past 7AM.  So all in all, it was a great day…sleeping in, reading and watching card videos.  I did see one I really liked that wasn’t card related, but was about making mandalas with dots in paint.  I really think I’d like to give that technique a try.  I might give it a whirl in an upcoming video, but I’ll need to think about it for a while first.  I don’t want to jump in without really understanding the technique well.



I wanted to try a raised focal point card, and finally got around to doing it.  I found a fern stamp that I’ve had for a long time, and really love.  I’d used it recently on a project (the card that was a hot mess until the very end), and felt it would be perfect for my focal image.  I can’t tell you how much I LOVE the end result of this card.  It’s so organic and earthy…I almost hated to part with it.  It’s simple but just terrific…I can’t wait for you to see the video.

As for how our days have been going, our next door neighbor is building an addition on their home next to our bedroom (not quite, but it seems like it.)  The builders have been starting with their back hoe at 7AM….Of course Honey and Bella are losing their minds as they’ve never heard anything so loud or so intrusive at that time of the morning, so they bark.  And bark, and bark, and shake, and lay on top of me in bed.  We aren’t early risers, so we have been taking turns going to the basement with the dogs so they stop fretting.  It takes at least a half of an hour to calm Honey, and Bella is a little less.

I wonder how long it will take to get this loud outside work done, as I think I’ll be sleeping downstairs until it’s done.  I’ll be honest, I’ve been hoping for rain just to get a small break.  And it’s only been two days, YIKES!

A Fast & Easy Birthday Card. A Great Use of Scraps

I bought Taylored Expressions dies of eye glasses, and thought they’d be fun to use on a bunch of scraps. I used Tim Holtz scissors and then figured out it was easier to bend the dies to separate them. I used the dies on several pieces of scrapbook paper that were in my scrap bin. I also used a silver foil cardstock for the glass part of the eye glasses so they looked liked mirrored sunglasses.
I made up my own sentiment and typed it on the computer, then printed it on 90 lb card stock. I used an old saying “You’re future’s so bright, you’ll need to wear shades.”
I ran the dies through my die cutting machine with a bunch of manly looking paper scraps, then ran them through again with the silver foil paper. When you die cut foil papers, you need to face the cutting part of the die toward the silver foil. If you put the cutting part of the die on the back of the foil paper, it won’t look right.
I used a piece of navy blue card stock that was 8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ and scored it at 4 1/4″. If you aren’t sure how to fold paper once it’s scored, you should fold it away from the indented part. Fold it toward the raised fold. It’s not the way you think it should fold, but that’s the best way to fold paper so you don’t end up with cracked paper.
I cut my sentiment out with a rectangle stitched die and put a small pair of sunglasses on it and put it in the inside of the card. I used Glue Dots tape runner and haven’t found it to hold well in the long run, so added some additional wet glue to hold it forever…or until he throws away the card.
I ran the glasses through the Xyron machine then added them to the front of the card on a diagonal, then filled with the smaller sunglasses and glued the silver eye pieces into the centers. I got some wet glue on the silver pieces, so wiped them with a damp rag when I was finished. I trimmed the edges and added a banner with a Happy Birthday greeting die cut in the same silver foil.


It’s been a weird couple of days.  Rich’s oldest brother (twelve years older) committed suicide.  He had some serious issues and was due to be sentenced in court and probably spend the rest of his life in prison.  Rather than face the consequences of his actions, he chose to end his life.  We weren’t surprised, but feel badly for his two adult sons, as they have to handle the aftermath of his actions.

Then last night, I was talking to a very close friend on the phone while she was staying with her elderly mother for the night, and she said, “I think something’s wrong with my Mom,  I need to go.”  This morning she called me back and said her Mom passed away shortly after we talked.  She was ninety-one and had a full life.  Last year for her ninetieth birthday, her family took her to a Cleveland Indians game (her favorite baseball team), and they showed her on the big screen in the stadium.  I’m sure that was the greatest day of her life.  She will be missed.

I’m on to other topics.  Rich is working on putting up a short video for a birthday card I made this week.  He’s still not feeling terrific from his hip treatment, but better than yesterday.  I wish there was a quick fix for his issue, as he’s having a difficult time sleeping and that’s never fun.

As for me, I went to the dermatologist today and have to have a spot biopsied.  I’m super fair skinned and my Mom had melanoma, so need to have my skin checked often.  I’ve had a lot of spots taken off, and it’s not hard to do, just one of those things.

Let’s face it,…Some days are better than others.



I want to get serious about sending some thank you cards I have been procrastinating on sending.  I make the cards and they sit in a small pile waiting for me to send them, and I just don’t.  So today is the day.  I’m going to write them and get them ready for the mail.  I even have the stamps for them….I’m just slow to follow through I guess.

I got a new die in the mail and it’s a large one that has small boxes that would be fun to do in a rainbow of colors.  I think I’m going to do that as my next card.

Our friend really liked his sunglasses card and I’ll be getting the video up for it.  These things take time….at least for us.