Thursday, November 20, 2014

Christmas Stamp a Stack 2014

I've been busy getting ready for my Christmas Card Stamp a Stack which is Saturday.  I still have a couple of seats left if you are interested.  But I need to know ASAP so I can get your supplies cut out!!  Here are the cards to choose from:

Endless Wishes

Festival of Trees

Star / Joy

Holiday Home


Lovely Trees

Bright and Beautiful Stars

Wondrous Wreath

White Christmas


Gentle Peace

Let Earth Receive

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

New York, Day 2

On our second day in New York City, we took the subway over to Greenwich Village where we went on a Culinary Tour.  It was so much fun!  Our tour guide, Robin, was very knowledgeable about the area we were walking in and gave us a little history about the Village as well as pointing out some of the architecture we were walking by.  Our first stop was at Joe's Pizza where we ate a delicious piece of NY Style thin crust pizza.  Next we headed over to a Faicco's Italian Market where we had a Rice Ball.  I had never had one before but it was delicious.  It is rice mixed with Italian cheeses, rolled in bread crumbs and deep fried.  Yum!!

Faicco's Italian Specialties - Fried rice ball. - New York, NY, United States

Next stop was to O and Co Olive Oil shop.  They had gotten some fresh Tuscan bread from the bakery across the street and we did some tasting of their various oils and vinegars.  We got quite an education regarding Olive Oil.  Did you know that if you buy olive oil in a transparent container, it is basically worthless.  When light is allowed to permeate the olive oil, it causes it to lose it's potency. So when you store your olive oil at home, you need to do so in a dark cabinet.   

Next we went to Pesce Pasta where we enjoyed a nice meatball with marinara sauce.  It was so good, Ashley and I returned on Monday for a full meal.  Next stop was Rafele Ristorante where we had a classic Eggplant Rollatini with a glass of wine.  I don't normally order eggplant but this was delicious!  We were not done yet!  Next stop was Milk and Cookies Bakery for a warm Chocolate Chip Cookie.  It was good, but nothing extra special in my opinion.  Next we went to Murray's Cheese Shop for a sampling of cheeses.  Our final stop was Rocco's Pasticceria for a mouth-watering Cannoli!  I got to eat mine and most of Ashley's - it was really good and sweet!  Needless to say, we weren't hungry at the end of the tour and even skipped dinner later.

After our tour was over, we went to a small bar in the Village and joined our tour guide, Robin, and a friend of hers for a glass of wine before heading back to our hotel for a quick nap!

Saturday morning we found the USO office and got some free tickets to an Off-Broadway Play that night as well as discounted tickets to a musical for Monday night.  The play was Livin' La Vida Imelda.  We figured if we didn't like it, we could leave since the tickets were free.  But, as it turned out, it was quite entertaining.  It was a one man show written and performed by Carlos Celdran.  The show explored the cultural sensation that has surrounded the life of Imelda Marcos, the former First Lady of the Philippines.  I knew nothing about Imelda except that she loved shoes and had thousands of them.  But I learned about the Manila Cultural Center that she had built .... without a parking lot!! Apparently, if you planned to attend a performance there, you'd better have a limo and a driver!  Also he told us about her plan, unknown to the British Royal Family, to have her daughter marry Prince Charles.  Oh there's more - Mrs. Marcos order a Folk Arts Theater built in 77 days for the 1974 Miss Universe pageant so she could put her country on the world stage.  A typhoon struck at the last minute and the story goes that she ordered the grass to be painted green and pieces of white tissue paper put into the trees to give the appearance of blossoming flowers!  The craziest thing I learned was about the Manila Film Center that Mrs. Marcos ordered built in just a few months.  It was a colossal structure modeled on the Parthenon built for the 1982 Manila International Film Festival. But, in November 1981, a section of scaffolding collapsed killing many workers who were impaled on steel bars or dropped into quick drying cement.  There was no time to excavate the bodies, the story continues, so the limbs protruding from the concrete were sawed off and the workers entombed!!  Isn't that gruesome??!!  I think she was one crazy lady!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

New York City Day 1

I am preparing for Stamp Club later this afternoon but wanted to take a break and share a few of my pictures from my latest adventure to New York City.  We had such a great time.  The plan was for me to fly to DC on Friday, arriving at 1:30; Ashley was going to pick me up and we were going to the metro station to leave her car (cheaper there) and take the Metro to Union Station where our bus was leaving for NYC at 3.  I was not checking my bags so I could save time there as well.  Well, best laid plans .... my flight had some difficulty leaving Charlotte (the baggage door wouldn't close).   I had not checked baggage but the plane was a small one - we actually had to walk out on the tarmac to board where they took our carry-on bags since there was no room for all of them inside the plane.  So, we didn't get out of Charlotte until an hour after we were scheduled.  So by the time I got to DC & had to wait for my bag, we did not have time to go to the Metro station.  We drove straight to Union Station where we left Ashley's car for 5 days to a tune of $120!!  We were afraid we were going to miss our bus and would have to drive so I am sure parking in NYC would have been triple that plus I did not want to drive to NYC in Ashley's little tiny Fiesta rental car!!  They were loading the bus when we arrived so all worked out.  The traffic was terrible going to NYC and it took us forever to get there it seemed!  But arrive we did .  We ended up having to walk about a mile or more to our hotel and it was cold!  At one point, we stopped and I opened my suitcase right there on the sidewalk to find my hat and jacket.  Our hotel turned out to be much nicer than we had expected and for some reason, they gave us a handicap room so the room and bathroom were quite large for NYC standards.  We were just a block off Times Square and about a block from the Subway so the location was great.  My only complaint with the room was there was no drawers, shelves, etc. to put your stuff and it was hot.  But we found out every place is hot on the inside in NY.  We could not control the heat but there was a fan on the A/C that we kept running the whole time.  After unpacking, we headed out to find something to eat.  You know us, we found a nice Irish bar near our hotel and had some dinner.  When we returned to our hotel room, the theater right next door to our hotel was just getting out and we saw Maggie  Gyllenhaal (I remember her from the movie, Crazy Heart) coming out of the theater and signing autographs.  She is in the play, The Real Thing with Ewan McGregor. We were excited to see a celebrity on our first day!  We had another celeb sighting on Sunday while we were enjoying a delicious pastrami sandwich and cheesecake from Carnegie Deli - Andrew Dice Clay.  Although, I really wouldn't have spotted him if the people at our table hadn't pointed him out.  He was enjoying lunch with his kids.  What is funny is a few days later, I saw him on Good Morning America or Today show or one of those morning shows!

Here are a few pictures - will share more later.

I was supposed to photoshop the Cheetahs sign from this!!

Andrew Dice Clay spotting

Monday, November 17, 2014

"Exploding" Gift Box Set

This gift set is perfect for a hostess, friend or co-worker.  The box is easy and quick to make with the Gift Box Punch Board.  The lucky recipients will burst with excitement when they open the "exploding" box and find the beautiful free-standing Christmas tree ornament inside!  The tree can be removed from the box and used as a decoration for their desk or kept as a keepsake ornament to treasure for years to come.  The accompanying card makes the Gift Box feel even more like a gift!

Christmas Tree Exploding Box Gift Set

To get the instructions for Carol's project, just SUBSCRIBE to November Craft Project Central.  If you have a minute, please leave Carol a comment on her project!!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Festival of Trees Votive Box and Matching Card

We all need little gifts to hand out during the holidays.  This votive holder is easy to assemble using the Envelope Punch Board.  It makes a great teachers gift, hostess gift, or thoughtful handmade gift for anyone.  The coordinating tent card and envelope add just the right touch.

Festival of Trees Votive Box & Card

This gift ensemble was designed by Laurie.   To get the instructions for making this project, go to Craft Project Central.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Recycled Glass Bottles

Create three holiday gifts by recycling Starbuck's drink bottles.  This tutorial will demonstrate three unique gift ideas with festive decorations.  The gifts are sure to be a perfect fit for some of the names on your list!

This project is designed by Regina Andari.  You can find the tutorial at Craft Project Central.

Stamped Bottle Gifts

Autumn Leaves for MDS Monday Challenge

It's past my bedtime but I wanted to do my page for MDS Monday before the Saturday deadline!  We returned to DC from our New York trip on Tuesday.  I ended up staying an extra couple of days with Ashley.  I was supposed to fly back Wednesday evening but I got a call from US Air around 4 pm while Ashley and I were walking around this beautiful nature walk that is right off post that my plane would be leaving at 9:30 instead of 8 pm!  BUT I was supposed to arrive at the airport at 7 just in case they got everything going and left earlier!  I really didn't want to sit around the airport for 2 1/2 hours!  So after our walk, I contacted US Air and got a flight out on Thursday afternoon which worked out just fine.  I got an extra day to visit with Ashley and got home before the big cold front hit.

The challenge this week was to use a cluster of embellishments, stamps, etc. at the top left and bottom right of the page.  I thought these fall leaves were just perfect for these beautiful fall pictures.

Here is the sketch:  You can check out the entries at MDS Monday.

Here are my supplies:

     Designer Series Paper\Distressed\Soft Suede Distressed

    _Designer Kits\Downtown Grunge - embellishments\Downtown Grunge - frame3
    _Designer Kits\Downtown Grunge - embellishments\Downtown Grunge - frame3
    _Designer Kits\Downtown Grunge - embellishments\Downtown Grunge - frame3
    _Designer Kits\Downtown Grunge - embellishments\Downtown Grunge - frame3
    _Designer Kits\Downtown Grunge - embellishments\Downtown Grunge - frame3

    Lovely as a Tree\Lovely As a Tree - oak leaves, Color = MORE MUSTARD 212,161,80
    Lovely as a Tree\Lovely As a Tree - oak leaves, Color = MORE MUSTARD 212,161,80
    Lovely as a Tree\Lovely As a Tree - oak leaves, Color = MORE MUSTARD 212,161,80
    _Designer Kits\Grateful Heart Thanksgiving\Grateful Heart Thanksgiving - autumn leaves, Color = EARLY ESPRESSO    

Friday, November 14, 2014

Trio of Trees Holiday Gift Display

I've been out of town for a week and while I was without computer access, I missed posting a lot of the Craft Project Central projects!  We can't have that so now I need to catch up.  I love the projects that have been posted and I'm sure you will too!

This sweet Trio of Trees Holiday Gift Display comes together quickly and uses just one package of DSP.  Plus, with the leftover DSP pieces, you'll be able to add a bunch more custom little gift boxes - they're fun and addicting to make.  You can frame the card to make a great mantle display, or use it as it's displayed for a special gift to give someone!

Trio of Trees Holiday Gift Display

This great project is designed by Julie Beltramo.  Her complete tutorial can be found at Craft Project Central.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Fall is Beautiful

Well I am still in DC . My plane was delayed about two hours last night but luckily they called me late in the afternoon to let me know so I called USAir and nothing was available for me to fly out last night & not have to wait at the airport forever so they booked me on a flight leaving this afternoon and arriving in Charlotte around 5 o'clock . We had a great time in New York City and I will be posting lots of pictures .  For now here are couple of pictures I took yesterday whiile we were back here in Virginia

 It was a beautiful fall day here yesterday. When Ashley got out of class we took advantage of the weather and the beautiful fall foliage and took a nature walk here on the base.

 Isn't fall beautiful?!  I love this time of the year . Although today it is turning cold.  Hopefully I will be home before the big freeze hits

Monday, November 10, 2014

Merry Christmas - MDS Style!

Each month, as well as having great 3D projects, Craft Project Central has a card sketch challenge.  You know, I love sketch challenges!  This month's card sketch is below and here is my card I created using My Digital Studio.

My card uses elements from the Hello December Project Life download!!

For every ten cards submitted, they pick one winner of a free month subscription on Craft Project Central! The winner(s) will get to select the month of their choice!  *If the project designers submit a card for your inspiration, they won’t be in the winner random-selection pool, but their cards will count towards the “for every 10 cards submitted winner total”.

For more information, go to Craft Project Central HERE.