Thursday, December 20, 2007

Presents for All!

Oh, the month of December kicked my butt royally this year. I just didn't see it coming. One day I was ahead of the game (it was a day in November, I'm sure of it), and the next thing you know, it's December 20th! No matter, maybe I can get you caught up. Here are the gifts I made for my co-workers. I found super-cute mugs at Starbucks, and they were on sale for $14.39 for a four pack. LOVE THAT! Filled them up with an orange (I had to fill the bottom somehow, and I hate getting baskets with balled up paper towel sheets in the bottom, don't you?), then a See's Candy Santa, and best of all, this delicious dessert tea from a local Italian import shop. Even opening the box to get them out smelled good! Made a tag with my Marvy punches and Amuse stamp, and I was good to go!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

This is Better Than Christmas!

OMG!!! Today was like Christmas for me! So, let me backtrack: During World Cardmaking Day, I participated in a bunch of contests. One of them was with one of my favorite bloggers, Jenn Shurkus. The girl is my idol. She's an Amuse instructor and she works at a scrapbooking store in Massachusetts. How cool is that!
Anyway, I won her contest, and my prize arrived today! I opened my package up to reveal a scalloped rectangle punch (one I've been coveting for months), AND a handmade card by Jenn herself! Amazing! It was better than Christmas! I was so happy, I literally started jumping up and down, and I had to burn off some excitement by doing dishes. Now I'm trying to come up with my first design using my new treat. Stay tuned to see what I come up with! Thanks again Jenn!!!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


The ATCs are finished! After a slight mix-up with the due date, I was up until 1:30am finishing them. Nonetheless, I think they turned out all right. I did two swaps this time for the first time, which I think also threw me off. Nonetheless, I like how they both turned out.

This first one was for the Cat's Pajamas swap group. I used my fabulous new Spica pens on the sword, and copper brads down the side. This ATC took me forever to design, mostly because I couldn't decide on the layout. I had the phrase "Ahoy there, matey!" also by the Cat's Pajamas, but I couldn't figure out how to fit it or how to stamp it onto the black patterned paper. On the other hand, I know I'll have lots of ways to stamp the two together on a card front. Oh, I can't wait until I have time to stamp some more cards!

This next card was for my Amuse swap group. The images are from Amuse's Party Time clear set. The utensils were really what sold me on the set, and I've used them a ton so far. I used my Spica silver pen to color in the utensils. The background plaid is actually a sticker I got from a Mrs. Grossman's sale. I have to say, living so close to Mrs. Grossman's Sticker Factory definitely has its perks. I got a whole roll of those stickers (in an even bigger size) for $3. Love those!

Now I'm down to one more assignment. My Secret Sister on Amuse Addicts is desperately in need of some treats. Once I finish that, I'm on to holiday craftiness!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Holidays Are Here

Well, not here as in my house, but here in general. (Our decorations have yet to go up--oops!). Anyway, I've been in a holiday mood. I've pulled out my Christmas albums, uploaded them to iTunes, and I'm even playing them in my car. Bring on the holidays!
This year, I'm actually not that worried. I've got a few crucial gifts already out of the way, but the elusive significant other gift is still stumping me. Why are guys so darn hard to shop for!
Anyway, I've already done my first holiday tradition. My LSS does a tag swap every year, and I've been doing it for about three years now. You make 25 tags and get 25 different ones back. It's fun and it's easy. Well, the envelope went to the Post Office tonight, so that can be crossed off the holiday list. You wanna see them?

The reindeer was a freebie I got from Amuse at their anniversary party. For some reason, I'm smitten with him! Anyway, he's accented with Stickles, and the To: From: is from a set by Hero Arts. Very simple, but I think it's cute nonetheless. Now, I'm off to finish my two ATCs for Tracy's swap. Wish me luck!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

To the Cards I Make and Never Send

I'm sorry. Really, I am. Somehow, I feel so accomplished in creating you that I forget that there's still that pesky step that involves addressing and affixing postage to you. The next thing I know, the event is over.

Namely, I apologize to this Thanksgiving card:

which was intended for my relatives on the East Coast, but I was still staring at it on November 21st, cringing. I guess there's always next year, right?

I also managed to make this card:

But, this one I think managed to make its way to the recipient in time to celebrate a birthday tomorrow. We'll see!

I Cut My Hair!

Oh yes I did. I cut ten inches off of it and donated it to Locks for Love. It wasn't as scary as I thought it would be, in fact Jeff my hairstylist did it so quick I didn't even know it was coming. He put it into a ponytail and then snip! snip! it was gone!

Last weekend flew by. Friday night we went to see Tainted Love, this rockin' 80s cover band that played in San Francisco, and on Saturday, I went to a wedding (where my haircut picture was taken). A super fun and super-quick weekend.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Bad Blogger!

Okay, so I really stink at blogging. How about I make it up to you with one amazing post? (You gotta start somewhere, right?) So, between October 12th and now, I bet you're wondering what I was doing. Let's start at the beginning, shall we?

Right after I disappeared, Phil and I hosted a kickass pumpkin carving party, complete with decorations (see above). We also did deviled egg eyeballs, complete with olive pupils:

Although they looked completely gross, they were actually delicious!

We then went down to our local pumpkin patch and got very lost in their corn maze. Man, I never knew how hard those things were to get out of!

Anyway, after the maze we picked out pumpkins. Here's Phil lugging around his ginormous pumpkin. It was so hard to pick just one!

Then we came back to the house and carved 'em up!

After the pumpkin carving party, I got to work on Halloween treats for my friends. I wrapped some candy bars (a la Martha Stewart), which turned out like this:

And of course, I had to make some broomsticks. (The tag sticking out says, "Have a FRIGHTFULLY Happy Halloween!") These ones were made with paper bags and weighed down with candy corn. Yum!

To finish out October, I got down to some card-making. I had a couple of birthdays, which I approached in two different ways:

This one was for my friend Teri, who's fun and bright. And the next one was for my friend Pete, whose family celebrates every occasion with fondue:

We for our part had to celebrate Pete's birthday in our own way, so we made the trek into San Francisco to go to dinner at the House of Prime Rib. Let me tell you, that prime rib was AMAZING. The dessert was pretty good too though:

Lately, I've been making birthday cards, with more to come. Here are a couple I did quickly over the weekend:

Lastly, I did one more crazy thing while on hiatus from the blog.

And the after picture is coming soon! Can you guess what I did?

Friday, October 12, 2007

World Card Making Day--Celebrated!

So, this past Saturday was World Card Making Day, and it was great! We went up to Seattle to go to the Amuse one year anniversary party. The night before, we made a few cards to donate to the Cards for a Cause program sponsored by Amuse.

This first one used stamps I purchased at Impress in Seattle. It was my first time at that store, and man, I just fell in love. They have some really cute stuff, including some great alterables. I ended up getting some blank matchboxes and a couple of tins. Impress was in University Village, and right down the way was another cute store called The Confectionery. They had some amazing candies, and my mom and I both picked up some cute candy toppers for Halloween cupcakes. Can't wait to use those!

This next card uses all Amuse stamps. I love my little bee guy and this sentiment. The card is simple, but I especially like doing doodles and things as part of a border.

On Saturday morning, my mom and I were out in front of the Amuse store by 9:50am, and we weren't even the first ones there! When the doors opened at 10am, I was practically giddy. I picked up some great stamps for $1 on the clearance table, and Novell was hosting a great Make and Take treat bag. I even made another card for Cards for a Cause. It was a great event and a great day!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

OMG! Julie HRR Mentioned Me!

So, I realize that this is only exciting to people that read crafty blogs, but I just have to share: Julie (HRR) mentioned me! Granted, it was only for figuring out how she stamped something, but still! I'm honored to have my name anywhere near her blog! You can read about it here:

Yay me!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Bad Blogger!

Oh, it's never good when your mother reminds you to update your blog. Oops! No worries, because I have goals for September, and one of them is to complete 10 cards. Granted, this is a pretty low goal (that's like 2.5 cards per week), but if nothing else, it guarantees at least that I'll have material to post.

To catch up, here are the ones from the end of August.

This first one was inspired by several other bloggers who were caught up in a Splitcoast challenge. The challenge was to make a Cami tri-fold card, following directions created by Beate. It looked so cute, I tried it out and I fell in love. What an easy and cute card style!

The idea for the next card had been kicking around in my head for a while now, but once I got it out, I ended up making a couple. I love Amuse's "Gone Fishing" stamp because of its font, particularly the "fishing" part of it. However, I thought it'd be cute as a "Best Fishes" sentiment. So, I freehanded the idea. What do you think? The Amuse fish is up on pop dots and covered in diamond glaze.

I didn't originally have an intended recipient for this card, but I ended up using it in the same week. I love my slice of cake, and I love all my Marvy punches, so I figured I'd put together what I love and see what happened. Well, it passed muster, but I'm not in love with the sentiment. I hand-wrote it, and I just don't like the way it looks. Luckily, I'm learning how to layout sentiments on the computer, so perhaps I'll give it another go later with a typewritten font.

Lastly, this card is a CASE of the card I did for my mom's birthday. I love this version of "Happy Birthday" because it's so elegant. So, I used it for my aunt, whose birthday is early next week. The butterfly is up on pop dots and the paper is Anna Griffin. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Babies, Birthdays and Thank Yous

Hey there. Sorry it's been so long since my last post. I've been sick, and it's slowed down my desire to make cards a bit. Regardless, life goes on. Babies are born, birthdays happen and thank yous are required, so I made a few cards specifically for those occasions.

First up are the baby cards. A former co-worker and my husband's co-worker's wife both had babies recently, so I thought a couple of baby cards were in order. I'm completely in love with this baby stamp by Denami, so I did two of the same, changing up the layout a bit. I should point out that after this picture was taken, I ended up adding some buttons to the Jr. one. I haven't sent the Calvin one, but I think some ribbon might spice it up a bit. Regardless, I like how these cards turned out.

Next up is my mom, who celebrated her birthday on Monday. Even though she didn't want to do anything big at work, I got up early and brought her homemade cupcakes.

To compensate, I also made her a card full of apologies for embarrassing her on her birthday. This sentiment stamp is by Endless Creations Inc., and I think it strikes the perfect balance between casual and classy. I knew she'd like it because I found it in her collection (we share stamps). The butterfly is an old Amuse stamp that I found at a garage sale.

Lastly, I've been meaning to get to some thank you notes for the longest time. It's pretty sad, actually. This card has been owed since May. My husband and I went out to North Carolina for a wedding, and the bride's parents were super-kind and helpful. They invited us into their home for a couple of breakfasts and gave us directions all over town. In short, they were great. I'd had this idea kicking around in my head for a while, but I think I put it off because I was really worried about getting the sentiment down just right. I know, I know, I have a Stamp-a-ma-Jig and I could've come up with a Plan B, but for some reason, it was just downright intimidating. Have you ever had that, the fear of screwing it up? Anyway, I finally got it stamped, and I think it turned out pretty good. The sentiment is by Judikins, the cars are punched with an EK Success punch, and the roads are handmade with a Sakura Glaze pen. The cars are actually perfect, because here in California I drive a yellow Beetle. That's all for now, but I'm still creating tonight. Stay tuned to see what I come up with next!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Knew I Did Something

So, I knew I did something creative between the previous two posts, but I couldn't remember. Suddenly, it came to me. I did a couple of get well soon cards for a co-worker and a family friend. The different styles reflect the recipients, plus I wanted to try out a couple of stamps I got second-hand. Enjoy!

What I've Been Doing

This is what I've been doing instead of blogging like I should've been. I signed up for my first ATC swap ever (I had never made an ATC before), and I've been stressing out over the design. Now that it's done though, I like them.

With leftover scraps from my ATCs, I also made a mini 3x3 thank you note for the hostess. Do you see the resemblance?

I think I've done more cards since my last post, so I'm off to find the pics. Perhaps I'll upload them later. Enjoy!
(Supplies used: stamps by Amuse, patterned paper by Memory box, silver and blue from Michael's, MM silver brads, Offray ribbon)

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Time for a Little Monkey Business!

So, I just realized I haven't written on here in a while. Whoops! To make it up to you, let me show you what I've been working on. Here are some cupcakes I made to celebrate a co-worker passing probation. I made the toppers using a stamp I got when I was in Japan a few years ago, just before the Year of the Monkey. Aren't they cute? There are actually three monkeys on the stamp, but I masked them off and did the two end ones. I think these cupcakes (and the matching card) were pretty cute. Yummy too! Enjoy!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

One More for the Road

So, here is my last card for Amuseapalooza. It's been a fun ride, and I've really enjoyed the opportunity to play. Thanks Amuse!

With a Bow on It. . .

Here's one that would fall into several categories in the Amuseapalooza challenges: use of ribbon, black ink, new stamp, punch, you name it. I have a feeling that "You're cool" will also come in very useful in the future. Enjoy!

What's Missing?

Okay, so I feel like something is missing on this card. What is it? A mat, perhaps? This one might just be subject to some re-designing.

Useful for All Occasions

So, I think this card would be useful for almost any occasion. After all, who doesn't love a bear holding balloons?

I Love Simple!

And I love the new "Let's Chat!" sentiment too. It's going to go great with my chair and lamp, my phone, etc. etc. etc. Can you tell I'm excited about it? Enjoy!

Keepin' It Simple

Hi there!

Here's another simple card. I am totally getting in touch with my margarita-drinkin' self tonight. Love that stamp! Sentiment by the Cat's Pajamas. Enjoy!

A Scene (or A Different Use of New Stamps)

So, I was wracking my brain trying to come up with an new use for my new stamp Edward when it occurred to me that he might need a home. After all, where do snowmen go at night? So, I gave him a home. The chair and lamp are courtesy of Amuse, the tree by Penny Black.

I Just Couldn't Stay Away!

So, after writing up my review of the Amuseapalooza event in Sunnyvale, I decided I couldn't let the week get away from me without seeing the new Amuse stamps one more time. This time, I drove two hours in the OTHER direction, north to Sacramento. The Paper Garden was where Linda had held court on Monday and Tuesday, but I couldn't deal with the thought of fighting the traffic to get there, so I chose Sunnyvale.

Well, when I arrived, I realized what an amazing opportunity I had missed out on. The store was super-cute, and full of brilliant ideas and cards. There were Amuse stamps on every rack, and
even some of the ones I had seen on the Amuseapalooza blog.

The owner, Stephanie, was behind the counter, and she was really nice and friendly. It sounds like the party Monday was quite the scene. As part of the Amuseapalooza week of fun at Paper Garden, there was a make-and-take, which was sweet.

And of course I ended up with more Amuse stamps. After all, how would I enter the last few challenges without them, right?! (Just don't tell my husband!)

In short, I had a wonderful time at the Paper Garden, and I look forward to going back there for more Amuse stamps.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Amuse Mania Hits the San Francisco Bay Area!

On Monday, July 9, I attended my local Amuseapalooza event in Sunnyvale, CA hosted by Stamp On Over. Stamp On Over is a very unique rubber stamp store in that it is actually in a craft mall, Cranberry Hill Mercantile.

After the two hour drive from where I live, I was ecstatic to see the signs posted on the door:

We had arrived in heaven! The stamps were out and man, were they cute! It was hard not to put them all in my basket. In between my attempts to scour the racks for my favorites, there were a ton of desserts to nibble on, from cakes to fruit. However, the chocolate fountain was the star of the dessert table. There were marshmallows and strawberries to dip in the chocolate, and it was absolutely delicious!

About half an hour after the party began, the make-and-take tables started up. There were three projects to do, and they were all very different. Kudos to the staff of Stamp on Over for coming up with stamping projects that weren't cards, for a bit of variety! The first project I did was an adorable purse. It used the Amuse Pinwheel as its closure and the sentiment "A Treat for You," and it held a single chocolate candy.

The next project I did was a mini candy cup. It involved a bit of origami, but I thought it was a very inventive way to package small treats. I'll definitely keep it in mind at Christmas. Check out the directions they so neatly posted for us to refer to! (The finished product is in the bottom right corner.)

Finally, there was a beautiful lunch pail project. Because it was so popular, they had to do a waiting list, so we ended up taking the supplies home and making it. It was gorgeous nonetheless!

All in all, I could not have been happier. The make-and-takes were interesting, the mood light and fun, and it was just great to get together with other Amuse enthusiasts to celebrate the new release. Thank you to the ladies at Stamp on Over for a great event!