Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Winter Waterfall Gift Tag

I joined a Tag Swap, so it's time that I made some tags that another paper crafter might think is neat.  For the Winter series, I decided to scale down the waterfall card to see if it was possible to make it into a card.  It is:

The colors on this photo didn't turn out quite right.  Believe me when I tell you that the chocolate colored strip matches the other papers well, and it all looks rich and pretty.

By adding the chocolate decorated strip on top of the chocolate card stock, I was able to cover the end of the waterfall strip.  I think it looks much more finished this way (versus what I did two posts ago).

I don't think that I'm ever going to get tired of this waterfall effect!!

The back is just covered with a Grey Flannel card stock with a few light snowflakes stamped around the edges.

I know that it's Halloween, but it's time to get started on those Christmas crafts!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

More Bread Tags for Dad

I hope that everyone is safe and warm and dry tonight!!  It was so very windy here in SE Michigan, that I was really worried about everyone in the path of the big storms!!  I don't follow the news much, because anxiety is the main trigger for my migraines (and I woke up with a big one this morning), so I don't know exactly where Sandy is right now in terms of strength.  I hope that it will all be over soon!!  Hang in there!!

It's a very small project today because of my headache.  This one hurts!!  I was able to do some thinking about possible future projects though, so all was not lost.

I heard, recently, that Dad has been giving out a lot of loaves of his Cinnamon Craisin Bread, so that must mean he'll be needing more tags.  These are the few that I made this evening, while I watched Life on Netflix with Tom and Lisa. (We love that show).

I just didn't want to ruin the daily blog streak that I have going right now just because of a dumb migraine!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Waterfall Card

I love interactive cards.  They really appeal to me, and my favorite thing is being able to master a new one!!  I was a little intimidated by the waterfall, but, it turns out - there is no reason to be.  It's easy!!

This card is for a distant cousin that I met through

We send email occasionally, about genealogy, and everyday life.

Recently, I received an email from her, and she told me that her husband had passed away after 63 years of marriage.

 She has family nearby, but it's just not the same.  She said that "it sure is lonesome after living with someone for 63 years."  I'm sure that it must be terribly hard!!

 I thought I would like to send her a card to brighten up her day.  Bills and junk mail can be so very monotonous!!

So, how did I do it?  First, I watched this video:

Here are those measurements: (I wrote them down from the video.  I am still trying to locate her blog!!)
4 1/4" X 5 1/2" card
2' X 9" strip of card stock scored at 2", 2 3/4", 3 1/2", and 4 1/4
Cut 4 2" X 2" squares. or do what I did, and vary the size of your squares.
Cut 4 insets in a neutral color for the squares, probably 1 3/4" X 1 3/4", or do your own thing.
The bar that goes across the bottom of the cars to anchor the waterfall measures 3/4" X 4 1/4"
I think that's it.

I did make one other change, besides varying the size of my squares, which I did to help conceal the upcoming images, and to add interest.  It's a small thing, and you would probably think of it too, but I think it's worth pointing out.  If you watch the video, you will see that she puts the brads right through to the inside of the card.  I didn't do it this way.  I just worked on the paper front first, like so:

Then, once the brads are tight (squish them with an acrylic block from the back), attach the paper to the front of your card and continue.  Now, wasn't that easy?

Joanne, I hope this finds you well.  I wish you happy, and safe and warm!!
Take care!!  Much love, Karen

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Annie Loves Halloween

Annie loves Halloween.  It might have something to do with the fact that it's her birthday!!  Of course, she also has a big personality, so dressing up and having everyone over for a big costume party would probably be happening anyway!!

Who's Annie?  Everyone knows Annie?!!  She teaches my parents' water aerobics class!!

Annie is a wonder, and this group is like a family now.  They range in age from (I'm guessing,)  35 to 87 (I happen to be sure of the 87 - I won't say why ;)  The core group goes out for coffee after every class, twice a week, and also celebrates everyone's birthday (either at coffee or at a restaurant, depending on the birthday person's availability!!)  I have gotten to know most of them, and wish I lived closer so that I could be a regular!!

Here's my Halloween/Birthday card for Annie:

This was my first time using tulle.  It turns out that it doesn't stick to Tombow adhesive at all!!  I decided to try Liquid Glass, but I didn't want to get my fingers stuck in it, so I used a bit of scrap paper (pretty scrap paper in this case) to secure it:

How would you have secured this tulle?

I wanted the black tulle curtain to come together a bit under my little Vaudeville sign. So when I placed the foam adhesive tape, I just left space in the center, like so:

"Best Witches" came from the zip strip that runs along the top of one of the sheets of paper in the Moonlight Pack that I was using.  It's just an extra little bonus!!

Front of envelope and back of card:

I have used the Moonlight paper for everything except Halloween, so I thought I should make a few more cards.  I don't know if it shows up in the photo, but the sign reads "Beware."  I added tiny red sparkles to the ghosts eyes, so that it would be just a tiny bit creepy.

Inside of ghost card:

Tom really liked this and felt it needed a watermark!!

For all of the characters, I stamped them on the light paper that came in the Moonlight Kit.  It is a sort of Colonial White softly sponged in Goldenrod, Smokey Plum, and Slate. I have a real thing for this paper!!  I am going to have to try to make it myself!!

Lastly, with the stamps that came from the Workshop on the Go kit, I made this one:

Ghost and Mummy received spiders on back; Vampire got a bat.

I decided to enter the Mummy card in the Heart 2 Heart challenge blog for the Halloween or Pumpkin Challenge.  It is a wonderful challenge blog with a truly amazing group of creative artists.  Bwaaahaaahaaa!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Loss: A Fount for Creativity?

Lisa (my daughter, age 24, a student at Eastern Michigan University) and I had a conversation a few weeks ago that immediately led to the creation of this card.  Lisa is an elementary education major and one of her required classes is an art one.  She loves it, of course!!

The day I made this card, the assignment was to make a creature out of clay.  Lisa made a sheep that happened to have wings.  Her friend Alexis, made a tree.   Alexis' childhood friend had just passed away and she was very sad.  She didn't have it in her to make a whimsical animal, but her childhood friend had loved trees.

Lisa described the tree to me in vivid detail.  It didn't have roots, but rather legs that were sitting comfortably stretched out.  It will be painted in autumnal colors because that was her favorite season.  Everything about this tree celebrated who her friend was and their long friendship.

I was very touched by the story, and feeling pretty emotional about, it just from Lisa's dynamic storytelling.  I had been card making all morning, so it was natural to go right in and begin to choose stamps and paper and inks.  (The paper never ended up getting used.)  Everything was stamped, water colored  using the ink pads and water brush, and the grass was sketched in with the new alcohol markers.  I think I used some water color pencils, as well.

I stamped the sun, the tree top, and the airplane first in the lighter color ink, then rocked the edges in the darker ink.

Once the card was finished, I worried that Alexis, who I didn't know, and Lisa only knew from this one class, would think this was weird - or it that might make her more sad.  I held on to it for a few weeks.  Lisa just delivered it on Wednesday, and she really appreciated it.

It felt like the right thing to do at the time.  Why do I doubt these things???

Wishing you all sunshine!!  (Me?  I've been holed up in a dark room, resting the head.  Hoping for a productive day tomorrow!!)

I have to say that I love this stamp set: Splendid Day  D1462.  I must use it more!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Bea's Mini Album is Finished!!

OMGee, OMGee, OMGee!!  Yes, I actually say, oh em gee!!  It stands for: Oh My Gosh!!  (which I also say!!)  It drives my kids crazy.  (Will just walked into the room and said, "Oh my gosh, Tom, I'm so excited!!"  That's just what we say.)

As I was saying, my kids hate when I say OMGee - apparently "It's not cool!"  Then I found out that Bobby's mom (Lisa's boyfriend) said "Laugh Out Loud" and my eyes lit up!!   Lisa looked at me and said, "DON"T YOU DARE!!"  She's going to make a wonderful parent someday!!

What I have been trying to tell you is this:  I have a new follower and she's from RUSSIA!!  Really-truly!!  How cool is that?  I was hopping around international blogs yesterday.  I am really curious what is going on in other cultures.  I'm sure that they are all bringing their own backgrounds to their artwork, plus I love to see cards stamped in foreign languages.  I also like to try to read the posts.  I can tell you outright that I cannot read Russian!!  (Also, no to Finnish, Ukranian, and Hebrew, my Dutch is pretty rusty, and I can read more Portugese than I thought I would be able to, because it is close enough to Spanish!!)

A very warm welcome to Valentyna Konmisarenko to my little blog family!!  Her blog is called The Fairy.  I am also putting in a link to the card that first caught my eye.  She has a lot of followers, so in answer to my September 2nd post's question about Russian women: are they scrap booking?  I'm still not sure (I suspect that they are), but I can tell you one thing, they sure are making a lot of beautiful cards!!

So, let's finish up Bea's Mini Album!!

I actually made my first video tutorial today out on the front porch with my daughter, Lisa.  I am waiting for Will to edit it.  Hopefully, I will add it tomorrow, so that you will be able to see how to cover a chip board element with paper (if you don't already know how.)  This post will be up-dated to a 2.0 when the video is attached!!

I also added two of Bea's quotes to the tags that pull out of her head!!  There are foam strips under her photo that raise it up, leaving space for the tags.  I also have a strip in the center so that each tag has its own slot.

This was the final bit I did.  I just had to finish the bottom of this page, and then I smudged it!!  Fortunately, it will get covered when a photo is added.  So, this is how everyone will know it was handmade!!

Don't worry, I didn't cry.  I'm a big girl.  Had it smudged a little lower, I would have had to remove the paper which is good and stuck on with a LOT of foam squares.  In that case, I might not have said OMGee!!  :)

I say FUDGE BUCKETS!!  OH, BUCKETS-OF-FUDGE!!  and then I usually laugh, because it sounds so silly, and kinda scrumptious!!

Bea's Mini Album Continues

This was supposed to be the last Bea post, but I woke up with a migraine and procrastinated a lot today because of it.  I did a lot of things to try to get over the migraine, and I did a lot of things to try to get inspired, so that I would work despite the migraine, but I was only partially successful.  I'm bummed that this project is not finished because I want it in the mail tomorrow.  I can still make it, but I would also like this migraine to GO AWAY!!  (Don't worry, I'm not in terrible pain.  I get confused, use the wrong words a lot, and have to rest frequently.  The left side of my face is numb, as is the roof of my mouth on the left side.  If I lean over THEN my head hurts!! - so I try not to do that. ;)

So, that was the disclaimer!!  I did not get a lot done today, but here's my up-date:

Back cover, Mod Podged for durability.

There are two back pages in this album.  I am out of photos.  This page is still unfinished...  But I do like the hinges.  This is the first time I have used them!!  :D


Sleep now!!  ZZzzzzzz.......

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Bea's Mini Album Interior

Yesterday I wimped out; only finished the cover of Bea's mini album, but blogged about it anyway.  I'm really trying to blog daily - I would say rain or shine, but it's not really the weather that affects me.  Well, maybe too many dreary days...

Ideally, I finishing up today, but there was lots of shopping, and all of those things that I didn't do on Tuesday when I watched Netflix all day.  Seriously.  All day.  I didn't even get dressed.  'Jamas-on-the-couch Day!!  Didn't you observe it?  I guess it was one of those "Personal Holidays" I keep hearing about.  ;)

OK, Bea's Mini Album:   Little pockets to hold pages for journaling.
I'm leaving these blank for her family, or my folks and others.  One of the tabs has a baseball or softball.  She met her husband at a pickup game.  You really need to meet Bea Ihlenfeld if you haven't yet.

Bea still gives swimming lessons to some of the other residents!!  What would you like to be able to be doing at age one hundred??  (You said "still breathing," didn't you?!)

This pool photo was taken by Bill Marcil, Jr.  He also took the black & white one below. I got them from The Forum - Fargo, North Dakota's newspaper. I emailed him and he kindly gave me his permission.

I'm going to write some of Bea's sage advice here - coming right out of her head!!

That's as far as I have gotten.  Almost finished, but not quite.
Night, night!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Bea's 100th Birthday Mini Album

As I mentioned in my last post, Bea is turning 100 in November, and I am making her a keepsake with some photos that my parents sent to me.  If you didn't get a chance to meet Bea, click here and go to the bottom of my post.  There is a link to an article and a short TV broadcast about her.  She is an inspiration to us all!!  I could have just put the link again here, but I want you to see the card that I made for her 100th birthday.  I just love the way it turned out.  ;)

On to the mini album...  I like having photos on the outside of albums, but eventually they begin to wear.  I suddenly realized that if I affixed a clear card onto the cover that it would protect my photo and still give me the look that I was going for.

Not only that, but it gave me a little interacting element!!

I added the Lagoon sparkle to give a hint that the opening was to be found on that side (and also to cover the smallest of smudges!!)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Bea is Turning 100!

Where does the time go?  When you are four, it takes forever for your birthday to come around because a year is one fourth of your life.  As we age, the years go faster and faster.  I wonder if it ever seems to even out a bit.

 I guess I should ask Bea - because she is going to be 100 next month, so I figure that she must have a lot of the answers!!

Here's my card for her one hundredth birthday.  It has a little interactive element on the cover:

Now for the inside of the card (in case you haven't guessed it already):

I thought that I would add this card to the Birthdays by the Numbers challenge over at Heart 2 Heart because I did tell them that I was going to try to get this card done in time to enter it - and here it is!!

My parents are friends with Bea in Fargo, North Dakota, where she is quite the celebrity.  They sent me photos to use on her card, but I decided to make her a little keepsake with the photos, so you will have to wait a couple of days to see what that is. Don't worry, Mom and Dad, I am using the photos!!

Bea is an inspirational woman.  If you would like to be inspired you can read an article about her and watch a short television broadcast.  It's amazing what 100 can look like!!  Just take a few minutes...

Friday, October 19, 2012

Imagine the Possibilities, Megan!!

It time for Megan's birthday.  She's in eighth grade this year.  Yeah, where does the time go?  Eighth grade was one of my absolute favorites*, and from the photos that I saw of her birthday party, I think it just may be one of Megan's favorites too.

This card had to be pretty creative because Megan is a very artistic girl.  She is always drawing and painting and working on projects.  She has this crazy, cool room that she has painted herself - and each wall is a different color.  First, you have to understand that she has 12 walls, or something like that.  When I said it was a crazy room, I really meant it!!  Anyway, the paint job is awesome, and the room is filled with her artwork.

So, I tried to channel my inner eighth-grader, which is not that hard for me, as I'm not very grown up!!  I challenged myself to only use stamps from two sets: Live Out Loud S1207  (Stamp of the Month from last July, but I wouldn't be surprised if they bring it back; they do that sometimes.) and Love Life D1482.  This is what I came up with:

I had to make it a 5" X 7" to contain all the creativity!!

I tried to make it very colorful and use a lot of stamps!!

I forgot to take a photo of the inside of the card after I finished it.  It has the Live Out LOUD stamped in Lagoon, and then embossed.  The LOUD font is open, so I was able to use the water brush and paint it with Smoothie ink.  I really liked the effect. Wish I photographed it!!

Now on to the box.  This was great fun!!  (Get yourself one and go crazy!!)  Using the same two stamp sets, plus card stock in Lagoon, Smoothie, Sweet Leaf and Sunset, and a bit of Dotty For You (can't forget matching bling), this is how it turned out:

I used Mod Podge over the entire box this time.  I just now Googled "Mod Podge" and it's been around since 1967, so I am right when I remember first using it in third grade (1969) to make a Mother's Day vase out of a glass coke bottle and torn up pieces of tissue paper. The smell of Mod Podge always takes me back to Mrs. Pyle's classroom, and makes me happy!!

Megan really doesn't need any help imagining the possibilities, but I think we can all use a reminder now and again.

This is the stamp that is in the inside of Megan's card.

I may have gotten a little carried away with the Sparkles!!  They come in Blue/Green Red/Pink/Purple, Brown/TansBlack/Grey and Clear.

I really like how this front turned out.  It looks nice when open, and when closed.  I only sparkled the bottom so as not to interfere with the magnet closure.  (I love magnets!! Just ask my kids, and they'll roll their eyes!)

No cards for Megan.  I thought that she'd rather have money.  She can decide what belongs in the box.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MEGAN!!  May all your Birthdays be as exciting as this one!!
Lots of Love from your Uncle Andy, Auntie Karen, Lisa, Will and Tom

*Eighth Grade Mom Stories:  A lot of people think that eighth grade is special because you are the "top of the heap."  I was lucky to be the top of the heap in fifth grade, sixth grade, and eight grade!!  Yes, my elementary school was only K-5, so then we were transferred to a K-6 for one year, and then on to Jr. High.

I must say, that I also loved 7th grade, once I got over the fear of Mr. Cezak, our Band Director.  In my first flute sectional, I didn't have enough spit in my mouth to talk, let alone play.  I was terrified from everything I had heard about him.  None of it was exaggeration either!!  But, I must say, he was a softy deep, deep down, and he did turn out a FIRST RATE band - there's no doubt about that!!  At competitions everyone would whisper about the band in the red coats.  We all stood taller.

Once, at "States," we started to play The 1812 Overture, I was in 7th grade, I think, because I remember this from the center of the first row (and in 8th grade I was first chair so I would have been right in front.)  We started to play, but were only eight or twelve measures in, and Mr. Cezak heard noises from outside the gymnasium.  He stopped us.  Stormed out and yelled at whoever was causing the distraction, telling them that a competition was going on (which they darn well knew).  Meanwhile, we were dumbstruck.  Our director just stopped us as we started our final piece in a competition. We also knew what those kids were experiencing in the hall, because we had all been on the receiving end of his wrath.

Mr. Cezak returned to the podium, and started us again - somehow conveying to us that all of the work we had put into this moment was worth being listened to without a distraction.  He hadn't lost his temper.  He had done that for us.  I don't know if he said something, or if it was with a look, but we knew.  We had a different confidence when we began again.  We were proud of ourselves and proud of our director.  We loved Mr. Cezak!!

I guess I'll talk about 8th grade some other time!!  ;)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Jay's Fire Dog Card

Some of you know what to expect from today's card!!  Yesterday, I took a dog stamp and altered it into a dachshund, and then for this card I used the original dog, added spots and a fire helmet.  I first dressed my monkey for my Talk to a Pirate Day post, since then I have been thinking about dressing other stamps, but this is my first attempt since then:

This card is based on Sketch #57 by Freshly Made Sketches.

It's fun to play along with the Freshly Made Sketch Challenges.  Check out the other cards!!

I'm trying to hurry to get this up on my blog and I'm not giving Jay his props!!  He is my husband's cousin's husband, but I claim him as one of my cousins because he's cool. Jay used to have the coolest hair, but like most of us, it's just a memory (he shaves his head - not bald, but pretty short, maybe it's a fire fighter thing!!)

Jay is the Fire Chief of his town in New Hampshire.  He is Chief Lord - and as my son Will says, "That's a great name!!"  He's a great guy and we don't get to visit with him and his family often enough.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JAY!!  Have a great day.  Wishing you a wonderful year!!
Love from all of us,  Drew, Karen, Lisa, Will and Tom

I've got to run off and work on the Scholastic Workshop on the Go Kit at Carolyn's house.  Don't want to be late!!  ;)