Tuesday, December 31, 2013

finally! ...ppa 185

let me start by apologizing...there are a few people who care what i do and have been asking where i am..."walking the dog" is my reply!  at the end of october, we adopted ruby, a beautiful pit bull, from a shelter in ewing, nj.  my life is forever changed by this bundle of personality!

Look out Rudy!  Santa's calling on me, Ruby, next year for sure!

Sooooo, between school, giving ruby the time she needs to adjust to our home, including obedience school (in which we graduated with dignity, not necessarily honors!), thanksgiving, christmas, blah, blah, blah!...i have simply failed as a blogger!  having said that, i am not giving up or giving in!  

the first sketch i decided to play with is found at pal paper players #185.   this versatile sketch by nicole watt can be used with any style.  

i used black, crumb cake and cherry cobbler card stock.  the ink i used was versa mark.  i embossed the frame and verse from the chalk talk stamp set with winter white stampin up emboss powder.  i inked the woodgrain embossing folder with brown sugar before i put it through the big shot.  a nice look if i do say so myself!  once again, i feel i had to think outside the butterfly/flower box, however, a true pleasure with this sketch...

...and now~a side note:  i was up quite late last night, trying to post this on the pal paper players blog and what to my wondering eyes should appear...no internet connection!!  GAHHHH!  

as i always say, "it is what it is!"

new year's eve is now upon me.  i'm about to ready myself for dinner, an early one at that, with dear friends...to come home to my son later on so that we may play a board game, eat chips with onion dip, and drink champagne at midnight.  it's a weird holiday for me...i try to be festive, indulge a bit too much and make merry...but as i get older, it becomes a night of true reflection...

my friend, kim, has a tradition each new year's...she sets goals for the year-not resolutions...they are sometimes too easy to ignore.  those promises are for better health, for a deeper spiritual connection, and lastly, for personal growth.  i like this tradition and have adopted it myself...i'd like to get four activity points a day with my weight watcher's active link (staying active is a must for this tired body of mine!); read a daily devotional-daily! (to remind me that God is my guide in my thoughts, words, and deeds); stamp/blog on a regular basis (this will help with staying true to my authentic self!); and lastly, to cook more new recipes for my family (we tend to have more harmonious mealtime's when we are eating new and healthy food!).

i wish any of you who may have stopped by to read this, a very fabulous new year...one filled with an abundance of blessings of peace, joy, good health and love.

peace be with you...

Monday, September 30, 2013

freshly made sketches #105-wish big

hey tracey and mom! (and maybe gigi!)  thanks for stopping by!

i think i mentioned before, by day i am a special education teacher for a group of adorable second graders.  i love this time of year...they are all excited to learn, share, do and explore.  they have funny stories to share...and...i have a collection of rainbow loom rubber band bracelets that would rival the queen's jewels!

...but man oh man...this teaching thing is really getting in the way of my stamping...so i apologize for the delay...and i hope you have not given up on me!  i have 'flagged' about eight challenges i would like to do...and here is the first one!

i needed to make a birthday card for my daughter's friend...who by the way, can't wait to become a stamping fool herself!  i decided to use allison's design from freshly made sketches.  it is a very versatile sketch that could be used for anything.  see how this talented design team used this sketch  here.

i definitely have favorite colors, and wanted to try something new...so i used my color coach to come up with the pallet for this card.  The colors are espresso, daffodil delight and cherry cobbler.  i used my favorite flowers from the secret garden set...first embossing them with vanilla ink on vanilla paper...then cutting the flowers and leaves with the coordinating framelits.  i used my aqua pen with cherry cobbler ink to color the flowers, however, the color wasn't rich enough for the card. so...i used sponge daubers to enhance the pretty red.  i fussy cut additional flowers to add dimension to the flowers' centers and finished them up with a pearl.  i'm really happy with this one!

balance in life is really difficult sometimes...work, kids, the home, friends and stamping...but i also know it is essential to enjoying life as well.  as the greek poet, euripides, once said, "the best and safest thing is to keep a balance in your life; acknowledge the great power around us and in us.  if you can do that, and live that way, you are really a wise man."

peace be with you

Monday, August 26, 2013

freshly made sketches #100

good morning tracey and mom...and anyone else that may have popped in to take a peak!  i thank you from the bottom of my heart for caring about what i may do...

when i am not touching all of my wonderful stamping things, i am a special education teacher.  this morning i have to get to school...get the room ready for the shiny new children that will be arriving on the 9th...but not before i quickly made a card for freshly made sketches 100th sketch challenge

i really thought the butterflies should come out again...but i really wanted a manly card.  this is what eventually came to life...


i liked the way this sketch was designed and look forward to using it in the future. it is so versatile to use with any theme and any set!

i feel a bit guilty that much of what i used is not available from stampin up right now...but you cannot go wrong with such a classic-looking truck!  the stamp set is called countryside.  i used marina mist, cherry cobbler, and certainly celery ink refills and my aqua painters.  the designer paper is from last year's brights collection as well as first edition specialty.  the cardstock used is very vanilla, marina mist, black and river rock.  i know many colors in the new catalog would work just as well!  i used the square lattice folder to give texture to the black strip and antique brads finished off this card just perfectly!

i suppose the inspiration for the card also came from georgia...where there are more trucks proudly proclaiming their roots, boasting country music as they toil down the beautiful country roads!  ahhh, America!  God bless you real good!

and i leave you with some wonderful words from a song by lee greenwood, that which will always give me goose bumps:

"...And I'm proud to be an American,
where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me..."

peace be with you


Friday, August 23, 2013

the paper players challenge #159

when i was in georgia a couple weeks ago, my mother-in-law was so excited for me to step inside their home.  she had beautifully added her warm womanly touch to the main great kitchen-family room with a comfy new couch, walls adorned with photograph's from their travels across the nation, and books and nests and dishes from her home in southern georgia.  funny enough, the things that caught my eye immediately were the gorgeous new drapes and tablecloth she had made out of the prettiest print...i knew i just had to turn the colors and combinations of words, swirls and insects into a card!  sometimes my inspiration comes from the strangest of places! 


 i decided this would be the perfect card to place in the paper players challenge #159.  ann's clean and simple one-layer card challenge should be easy, but for someone who adores her layers, it wasn't!  i saw this bordered sentiment masking technique on splitcoaststampers. when i added the black marker all around the card, it gave it a layered look...ahhh, that made me feel better!

this was fun and sooo easy to do!  i first stamped the butterflies from the papillon potpourri using black stazon ink on very vanilla cardstock. i then colored them in with copic markers, #s yr04 and yr07.  next, i stamped-off some crumb cake on the en francais background stamp.  i added the flourish from everything eleanor with chocolate chip ink, which i also stamped-off. after that, i sponged the inked parts using crumb cake and added some black accent marks with my all-time favorite retired stamp set, itty bitty backgrounds.  finally, the sentiment is from blooming with kindness, another one of my favorites!

my friend kim once said, after spending an afternoon together, that my home felt as if someone just made her a cup of tea and warm homemade cookies.  i'll never forget that analogy and have forever hoped that my friends and family have felt the same way. i believe a home is a reflection of the people who live, love, laugh, cook, talk, share and grow there.  so whether yours is filled with things from faraway places, hand-me-downs from family, antique store treasures, something new, or drapes with big beautiful butterflies on them, i hope your home is blessed with peace and joy, much love, good health and prosperity!

peace be with you

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

words, words, words part 2

hello, you...who may be checking out my blog!  i am thrilled you have not given up on me...as i am slow in adding to my posts.

i am finally home from a wonderful vacation with my hubby.  we spent our days riding our motorcycles on the winding roads of georgia, eating wonderful epicurean delights...whether homemade or out in a neat little restaurant, visiting little artsy towns, eating, laughing with family and eating.  i did manage a side trip to that little stamp store i mentioned...and just as i thought, i bought a few things i just had to have!

now that i am home, i have spent some much needed time with my family...especially my momma, who came to visit from florida.  unfortunately, my pop did not accompany her.  however, that allowed us umpteen hours in my woman cave creating pretty things with my stamps and stuff!  today i tried something new:  faux patina. it is a technique that creates the look of aged metal.  if you would like to try it, check it out here.  i did not use any metallic colors, but i loved it just the same. 

once i completed a few cards, as i never make just one, i asked myself...is this worthy of a challenge?  thankfully i came across words, words, words from our creative corner.  i loved this challenge because quotes are my 'thing'.  i have so many to choose from, but here is my very favorite:

did i also mention...i love butterflies? 

just in case you need to know...my inks are brown sugar, soft sky and crumb cake.  the cardstock i used is brown sugar, soft sky, very vanilla and black.  papillon potpourri is my stamp set of choice and the peace quote is from a random stamp store from long ago.  unfortunately, the embossing folder is retired and for the life of me cannot remember it's name.  oh, well...

i have to tell you...stamping with my friends this past thursday night, and more importantly, with my momma this past week, reminds me why i do what i do...quite simply-the joy it brings to others.  besides the fact that my sister, mom and myself laugh till we cry, my mom's approval and accolades always makes my day!  there is nothing better than to hear that what you do matters to your mother...

...so it is only appropriate i leave you with this quote from abraham lincoln:  "all that i am or ever hope to be, i owe to my...mother".

peace be with you

Thursday, August 1, 2013

what was i thinking?!

i guess it was a terrible idea to begin blogging when the following week i would find myself in canton, georgia, visiting my wonderful father-in-law, john the elder,  and his lovely wife, patty.  john and i loaded up the motorcycles and headed to the north georgia mountains.  i can think of no other roads, at least ones that i have ridden on, that compare to these.  it makes me wonder... if God rode a motorcycle, would the roads in heaven be just like georgia's?

as much as this is a vacation geared for hitting the pavement, i have to say, i wish i had packed some stamp stuff to play with!  i keep receiving all these emails...with all these challenges...wishing i was in one of them!  well, i guess i will just have to satisfy my stamping jitters with a visit to one of the best stamp stores in roswell, georgia, called impressive ideas.  i'm quite sure there is a little something there that i must have!

i promise when i return home, i will stamp like a woman possessed and get some samples up on this blog o mine!  until then, i leave you with this quote by desmond tutu:  "you don't choose your family.  they are God's gift to you, as you are to them".  enjoy your family...be joy to your family...

peace be with you

Sunday, July 21, 2013

freshly made sketches-95

hey everyone...or actually 'one', since my sister is the only one following me...actually, she is the only one who knows i am blogging!  i digress...

here is my first creation, inspired by freshly made sketches #95.  i have been receiving emails from fms for about a year now...admiring the works of many.  yay me!  i'm finally published on a site that loves the arts!  

i just loved this layout!  the set entitled 'flower shop' by stampin up is so fun to use with its coordinating punch.  the new dsp used is gingham garden.  i have to be honest...this card was a great example of me thinking outside the box, or at least my creative box.  i love flowers and use them all the time, but i'm more of a vintage-worn kinda girl.  the clean look of this card even took john by surprise!  he even knew this was not a typical leslie card!  

...it's sunday night and i'm going to spend what is left with my family.  i hope to have another card, be it a challenge or not, up in a few days.  thank you so much for taking some time to look!

until then, i leave you with this quote from abraham lincoln..."whatever you are, be a good one".

peace be with you

Friday, July 19, 2013

ta-daaaa! my very first post!

i've be told, that in order to reach a goal...you must write it down.  i'm embarrassed to actually put it in writing, however, since i'm on my way, beginning with this blog, i may as well go for it.  some day, i want to be a part of stampin' up's design team.  there-i wrote it!  feels a little foolish and wonderful at the same time! i figured that i needed to get myself out there in order to do it.

it's kinda funny...when i was a demonstrator all those years ago, there weren't any blogs, web pages, social media-nothing!  you had to go out into the world to see what other people were doing!  in my circle of friends and stampers, i was always hailed as someone with talent...and it felt good!  but now-oh my.  i am truly humbled by what others are doing.  i am in awe. i am anxious to get back in the game and see how others, besides my-wonderful-husband-who-thinks-everything-i-create-is-amazing, feel about my work.

the truth of the matter is, i just want to 'play' again.  i just want to sit in my woman cave and see what comes out of my brain and onto some paper.  i want to have fun with my friends and see their faces light up when they make something to be proud of.  and...it would be nice to some day be a part of stampin' up's design team!

i'd like to leave you with a quote..."choice, not chance, determines your destiny".

peace be with you