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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Hello to a new year...

Believe it or not, I've been working on a few Christmas cards for 2018 before I put all my Christmas supplies away. I'm not going to show those to you today, though. Instead, I want to share a little "Hello" card I made.

I had some pretty dotted paper that even included some glittery dots. I searched through my scraps to see if I had a close match to any of the colored dots and came up with a pretty green.

I die-cut a cute little bow using an unbranded die set that includes the dies for three sizes of bows. This was the middle size.

Notice that I trimmed my green strip to make it look as though it is a ribbon tied at the point of the bow.

I also die-cut my "hello" from this same green CS using another unbranded die.

Three enamel dots from my stash finished off my card.

We had a great Christmas, but it has been really, really cold. I hate the thought of having to go outside when it's double digits below zero!!

I think we will have a quiet New Year's celebration at home. Maybe a little glass of wine, a nice meal and a fire in the fireplace. Sounds good, doesn't it?

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day! And Happy New Year to all of you!!

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Another very quick Christmas card...

I thought I was at the end of my card making, and then the inevitable happened. I realized I needed one more. I decided to grab an embossing folder, a couple of dies and make a CAS card.  I think the embossing folder is by Darice, and the cross-stitched rectangle, J, Y and snowflake dies are all unbranded.

I have since ordered a die that cuts the J, Y and snowflake all at the same time. It's approximately the same size as the ones pictured here, so next year, I can make these even more quickly.

To decorate the inside of my card, I cut apart a larger multi-snowflake stamp (by Inkadinkadoo) to create this arc of snowflakes across the top of my sentiment (by Penny Black). It wasn't a background stamp but simply a sort of swirl of snowflakes that just didn't seem to work for me in its factory form. A little surgery by me, however, did the trick, and now I love it.

I think this card would be pretty with lots of different colored mats and inks.

I am down to the last couple of tasks before I am completely ready for Christmas. I have a couple of gifts to wrap, a batch of cookies to make, and some cooking to do.  It should be no problem as I have a couple days to get it all done.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas with lots of merry making and good cheer!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Big snowflake card...

This pretty snowflake was cut with a Darice die. It's wonderfully big, so you don't need much else to decorate your card!

The aqua background with what looks like stitched swirls on it was cut with an unbranded die that I got online. Isn't it pretty? It adds a little interest, but doesn't detract from whatever else is on the card.

My little banner is also unbranded, and it's been popped up with double-sided foam tape.

I cut my snowflake from some glitter cardstock that doesn't photograph very well. It's really pretty IRL, though. I've added a few gems in the middle that were clear, but I've colored them with an alcohol marker to match my aqua background.

On the inside of my card I stamped a sentiment (Penny Black, I think) and then stamped some snowflakes with Versamark and heat embossed with a clear sparkle embossing powder. Can you see them? They're so subtle, but I think they add a nice touch.

This card was very quick to make. I only made one of them for this year, but I'd like to make a few more for next year.

We are beginning to really look forward to the holiday. My BIL should be here tomorrow night. He'll be staying with us for a couple of weeks, so I'll be a bit distracted during that time. I'll still try to post a few times, but please forgive me if I don't show up on the blog very often. I'm sure you'll all be busy, too.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh-- a little or a lot--every day.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Floral Christmas cards...

I love my big Darice poinsettia die set, and have used it to make a few of my Christmas cards this year. Here are two that feature it:

My first card has a nice rich red poinsettia on it, and I used an unbranded die which cuts an open grid for added interest. The poinsettia die was cut and dry-embossed to reveal the veins on each petal and leaf. The "merriest wishes" sentiment (unbranded) was heat embossed with some gold embossing powder.

I used some gold micro beads for my flower center, adhering them with glossy accents.

On the inside of my card, I added a sentiment and a little row of poinsettias, stamped and colored with ProMarkers, across the bottom.

For this card, I used a much darker red cardstock for my poinsettia. I also added a ribbon and bow across the top instead of the die-cut open grid and changed the sentiment.

For both my flowers, I shaped the leaves just a little bit to give them more dimension. I'm quite certain they arrived at their destinations pretty flat, though, after going through the mail sorting machines at the Post Office!

I used the same treatment on the inside of this card. The only thing I changed was the color of my poinsettias.

I finished up my gift-wrapping today, and feel really good about that! I had made such a MESS in one of the spare bedrooms with all my gift-wrapping paraphernalia. I'm so glad to get it cleaned up and put away.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh-- a little or a lot--every day.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Pretty Christmas gift box...

I made this pretty Christmas gift box, and it was so quick and easy!

First I used this die (unbranded) to cut four sides for the cover of my box.

After the four sides were cut, I trimmed one side tab down to about 3/16" and cut one completely off of each side. That way, I could connect the sides via the 3/16" side tab and some strong double-sided adhesive.

Once the four sides were connected to each other to make an open square, I cut a square piece of aqua CS to adhere to the tabs on top, again using some strong double-sided tape.

To decorate the top, I used a Darice poinsettia die set and a couple of pine branch dies (unbranded) and some pearls. The flower die-cuts and the leaves were also dry-embossed. I inked the leaves through the openings in the die and added some sparkle to the flower petal veins with a Wink of Stella pen.

My white box was made from heavy cardstock 1/16" smaller on each side so that it fits perfectly inside my pretty cover. It's large enough to hold a large coffee mug--slightly bigger than 4 1/2" X 4 1/2" X 4 1/2".

Here's one last look at my box. I really like it and may have a hard time giving it away, knowing that it could simply end up in someone's trash after it's been opened. I guess it doesn't really matter, though. They're easy to make, and I can make another one in no time at all!

I'm entering this project into Die Cuttin Divas' Challenge #347 - Make a Box.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Woodsy holiday card...

I wanted to make a Christmas card with a "woodsy" feel to it, and this is what I came up with.

The wood grain-patterned DSP came from a paper stack from Michael's. I was going to try using a wood grain background stamp until I came across this cool paper. I paired it with a navy blue card base and cut my little circle scene and tree from some white glitter cardstock.

I actually cut a circle that was slightly smaller than the deer scene so that I could adhere my little scene on the front with no problems. The circle was cut through the wood grain DSP and the card base, so that the inside of my card base shows through the die cut (does that make sense?).  Both the deer die and the tree are unbranded.

Having cut the circle all the way through the top of my card base adds a bit of "airiness" to my card, which I really like. Of course, that leaves less room inside for a sentiment. You can see how I handled that in the next photo.

I used another unbranded die to cut a rectangle that I stamped with my sentiment by Penny Black. There was still plenty of room for a signature. The sentiment on the front of the card is from the same PB set.

The house is finally fully decorated and the gifts are nearly all purchased. Even my cards have all been mailed! I did some wrapping today and will hopefully finish up most of it tomorrow. I still need to mail a few packages, so I've got to get that done in the next couple of days. Then it will be full steam ahead to get the baking done. That seems to go a lot quicker than the gift buying/wrapping/sending, so I'm not too worried about it.

Are you ready for Christmas yet? It always seems to sneak up on us, doesn't it?

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

A quilted poinsettia...

I made these cards recently using a couple of unbranded dies that I really love!

I cut out my quilted square twice--once on red DSP and once on green DSP. To get my white "border" die-cut, I just had to flip this piece over to the back side. To give it a flatter appearance, I simply ran it through my Cuttlebug with the embossing mat on top. This works like a charm to flatten out the cut edges.

To achieve the pieced look, I laid my white border down onto a same-sized piece of double-sided sheet adhesive. Then I simply placed each colored piece in its place. Once I was done, I peeled off the adhesive backing and stuck it to my card. Easy, peasy!

My banner and tiny holly leaves are also unbranded dies. This banner die cuts the center piece and the outside border at the same time. Once again, I just flipped over the inside piece and stamped on the back. My sentiment is also from an unbranded stamp set. The berries are three tiny flat-backed red pearls.

I used a Penny Black stamp for my inside sentiment and another holly die-cut. For the berries here, I used the little circles left behind when you use a 1/8" single hole punch.

Here is the pink version of my card. I decided to give pink a try, just for fun. It actually looks a lot prettier IRL.

And the inside.

These cards purposely leave off the "Merry Christmas" greeting because we have several friends who have religious backgrounds other than Christian (e.g., Jewish). We like to send them holiday cards to let them know we're thinking of them, but we don't want to push a Christian holiday on them. After all, I'd think it strange if someone wished me Happy Hanukkah, knowing that I am not Jewish. But I still love to hear from my Jewish friends during Hanukkah.

I had a full day of volunteering today at a local thrift shop. It was very, very busy with families buying holiday decorations, gifts and household goods. I am so grateful there are such stores around that serve so many low-income families. The store where I volunteer offers quality merchandise that is always in good condition. If it's not, they won't accept/sell it! The prices are great and there is some sort of "sale" every day. For instance, Wednesdays are senior days with 40% off everything in the store for seniors.

Well, that's it for me today. Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Let's Craft and Create Challenge #132: Anything Christmas...

Today, we're opening up a new challenge over on Let's Craft and Create and its a Christmas challenge...but there's always the "Anything Goes" option if you'd rather go that route.

There is a ton of great of great inspiration on the LCC blog, but to get you started, I've created this:

Isn't this a fun Christmas card? I found the Christmas sheet music in one of my 6" X 6" paper pads, and I knew right away that I wanted to use my caroler and lamp post dies (all unbranded).

The fir branches on my lamp were cut with a Martha Stewart punch. The holly leaves came from a wreath die set. I added three tiny flat-backed pearls for my holly berries. I backed the top part of my lamp with pale yellow cardstock and then chalked a halo of light around it.

I backed the carolers with dark gray card so that the cut out areas would show up a little more. I love how that kept them as silhouettes, but also gave them more dimension.

Here's a little closer look at my carolers, where you can see the added dimension.

On the inside of my card I added the last little caroler, which I hadn't been able to fit on the front of my card. 

I have a small punch that cuts out eighth notes, so I added them here, as well, since there's no music.

Here's a look at the rest of the inside of my card. I love this sentiment, and a number of stamp companies offer it.

Now I wish I had more pages of that Christmas sheet music, because I was pretty happy with how this card turned out.

I hope you'll pay a visit to Let's Craft and Create and join in on this merry challenge. There is a prize, so if you win, it'll be like getting an extra Christmas present!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Wishing you a sweet Christmas...

I am nearly done making Christmas cards, and it's high time I began sharing them all with you! So, here's the first one (actually a batch of 10) that I made:

It's a pretty simple design, but that made it a little easier to make 10 of them fairly quickly.' The snowflake embossing folder is by Darice. It's 5" X 7", and I use it every Christmas! The stitched oval was cut with a die from My Favorite Things. I'm not sure what company produced the stamp for this sentiment, as it was from a set that I had purchased used (no packaging!).

I love this little gingerbread boy. He was cut out with an unbranded die and his "icing" was paper pieced. I actually just made a second cut out of white CS and colored the little bow tie red. Then I added some double-sided tape to the back of my gingerbread boy and pieced it all in.

Before I did that, though, I inked along the edges of this little guy to make him look like he had been nicely browned in the oven.

For the inside of my card, I added a strip of the cardstock I had used on the front. My stamped sentiment is from Crafter's Companion.

Tomorrow we fly away to Arizona to visit some friends there for the weekend. It will be a nice little reprieve from Christmas preparations. These are friends we only see every couple of years, so our visits are very precious. We always have a lot of laughs and greatly enjoy one another's company. Besides that, you can't beat Arizona weather in November. I just checked, and it is 79 degrees Fahrenheit (26 Celsius) where we are going. Perfect!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Girly birthday high-tops...

I have a beautiful granddaughter who loves to play basketball. So, I got a high-top sneakers die set especially to make her birthday card, and here it is.

I had this great pink and deep red plaid cardstock, so that was my starting point. I found some deep red glitter paper and thought it would work well as a background for my pink high tops.

The stitched star-burst shape is a My Creative Time die, and the stitched banner for my sentiment was cut with an unbranded die. I was able to color in the first two words of my sentiment to coordinate with the deep red of my glitter paper.

I think my favorite part of these high-tops is the black and white twine that I used as shoe strings. I thought it added such a fun dimension to each shoe.

The little stars that I scattered around my design were from another die set altogether. I could have just used the star that is on the shoe, but I have a die set that cuts out three stars at one time, so I used that.

For the inside of my card, I cut a basketball and hoop using my Cricut and the All Sports cartridge. It had been a long time since I had used my Cricut! Can you see that I used more of the glitter paper for my ball?  My sentiment was computer generated.

I think my granddaughter liked her card. I was lucky enough to be with her on her birthday. She had invited her entire basketball team over for the celebration. They had a lot of fun playing games, eating pizza and opening presents. Girls who are 11 years old can sure be loud, though! They love to giggle, squeal and scream.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving and a birthday card for my sister...

If you are celebrating Thanksgiving today, I hope you all had a great time eating a wonderful meal with family and friends.

We had a wonderful time at my daughter's home. It was the first time she and her husband had hosted Thanksgiving. They did a fabulous job of making a delicious meal! I helped out a bit by bringing the pies (cherry, apple, pumpkin and pecan) and a couple of other food items.

It actually felt a little strange not to be up early and getting that big turkey in the oven. But I could definitely get used to it!!

Now, let's talk cards.

My younger sister celebrated her (ahem) 39th?? birthday on November 19, and this is the card I made for her.  I love this leafy, scrolly frame die. It is unbranded, as are the little leaf sprigs, which have been sponged with a little aqua ink. My flower was made with the Memory Box die set called Fancy Blossoms. Its petals were also sponged with some darker pink ink.

I'm sorry I can't remember what stamp set my sentiment is from. I really like this sentiment, though, and use it quite a lot.

Not sure why my cardstock looks so green in this photo when it's actually a nice aqua color. It's probably my lack of photography and lighting skills!

The inside of my card was pretty simple. To add a little interest, I adhered another one of those little leaf sprigs.

I spoke to my sister the evening of her birthday, so I know she had a good day. I hope she also has a fabulous year.

Tomorrow I will be volunteering rather than shopping the "Black Friday" sales. I'm not much of a shopper, so I think I'll enjoy the volunteering a lot more.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

A final Thanksgiving card...

This photo is not quite all in focus, but I had to post it anyway, as I couldn't retake it. The card was sent in the mail days ago. I think you can get the idea for my card just the same.

I had only a scrap of this pretty leaf-patterned DSP left, and wanted to use it on a card.

I found some cardstock in the same shade as the background of my DSP. I used this to cut out the leaves with some very old Cuttlebug dies, emboss each one with a different embossing folder and then swipe the raised embossed areas with a white ink pad.

I used the last two little strips of my DSP on the inside of my card, along with a stamped sentiment and flourish.

Today I will be baking pies for Thanksgiving--apple, cherry and pumpkin. I'm not hosting the meal this year, but still trying to help out. I will also be heading to a local Scandinavian store to buy some lefse. It's a Scandinavian potato-based flatbread that we always have during the holidays. I like it rolled up with just a little butter on it, but my kids love butter and sugar, or even butter sprinkled with a sugar/cinnamon mix.

Image result for lefse image

My youngest sister makes her own lefse from scratch. It's a very time-consuming job requiring special equipment, but the fresh stuff is the absolute best!! I sure hope her family appreciates the effort she puts into it.

If you're celebrating Thanksgiving on Thursday, I wish you a wonderful time of family, good food and fun. If not, enjoy the rest of your week anyway.

Thanks so much for stopping by and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A couple more Thanksgiving cards...

I happened to have just a scrap of this pretty gold leaf patterned CS and wanted to use it on a card. It was only big enough to cover the bottom portion of my card, so I grabbed another scrap of gold textured CS from my never-ending pile of scraps and used that for the top.

I liked the look of the black mat behind the gold and patterned papers, but what to use for a pumpkin? Well, we've all seen those white pumpkins, right? So white it was! I used a small stitched oval die by My Creative Time and cut it out three times. The stem for my pumpkin was cut by hand and my "vine" was made with a Cheery Lynn die.

My little open scallop trim was made with an unbranded die.

To decorate the inside just a bit, I matted my sentiment panel with black and warm brown CS (that matched my patterned scrap perfectly!).  Then I cut out the only remaining intact leaf from the patterned paper and adhered it above my stamped sentiment.

For this card I used a couple of unbranded dies (leafy frame and leafy sprig). To give my open leafy sprig a little personality, I wiped its surface with Versamark ink and then covered it with Perfect Pearls gold powder. To set the powder, I just misted it with a little water.

I added just one "personality plus" leaf to the inside above my computer-generated sentiment.

I managed to finish off 10 more Christmas cards today. I've made about 40 so far, but I've got to at least double that number before I'll have enough.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.