Friday, July 31, 2015

Tags & Labels Framelits

I love using thinlet dies and the Magnetic Platform makes it so easy!  This is a new die this year that has a lot of possibilities.  Check it out on page 173 - Tags & Labels Framelits.  You can do a lot of layering with these dies as you can see that I did below with Whisper White card stock.

In this card, I used a strip of DSP from Typeset Specialty Designer Paper which is really lightweight and a good deal since you get 24 sheets of paper in the pack for $13!  The card is Crumb Cake and I used the Gorgeous Grunge to spatter ink on the background.  The butterflies from Butterfly Basics were stamped with Blackberry Bliss, Mellow Moss and Night of Navy.  I punched a flower from the Itty BittyAccents Punch Pack and adhered a rhinestone in the center.  A very easy card to make.

Here are a few cards from convention that used these dies also:

This was one of the display boards - the sympathy card at the top right uses the framelit.

Isn't this gorgous?  This is the DSP found on page 143 called Timeless Elegance.  Unfortunately, looking at the DSP in the catalog, you would never know this beautiful piece is in it.  The creater used sponge dauber with pink ink to color the flower.  This DSP will be on my next order!

Sonny and I went out on the boat yesterday morning until shortly after lunch time.  It was miserably HOT and humid.  I think the humidity was the worse.  This has been the worse summer we have had since we moved back here for the heat and humidity.  Even getting in the lake was not enough to cool you off.  When we got home, I headed straight for a cold shower!

We got an email from Ashley yesterday as she is on her way to the Phillipines.  She said they have been doing a lot of busy work on the ship but the seas have not been too rough this time.  She has been teaching some of the medical staff the Helping Babies Breathe program so they can hopefully teach it on future missions.  They should be arriving in the Phillipines Sunday or Monday. Hopefully, she will have access to a phone there and will be able to call.  I am really missing our daily chats and am ready for her to come home!!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Koala Swaps and Birthdays

These are a few more swaps I made using the cute little Koala bear and the Go Wild Designer Paper stack.

Marianne, Angela and I took Mom out to dinner tonight for her birthday.  Her actual birthday was last Saturday and she turned 87.  I have had a hard time with her age this year!  I posted on Facebook Saturday birthday wishes to my mom who just turned 67!  Well that would be a little difficult since that is my age!  Then tonight I pulled out her birthday card that I made last month using the Thinlet Numbers and I had the wrong number .... again!  So I just took a Sharpie marker and wrote in "Plus 1" on the card!  I've never had a problem remembering her age since there is 20 years between her and I and another 30 between her and my son (who will be 37 in November).  Don't know where my brain was this year!  She got a couple of surprise phone calls on her birthday Saturday.  The first call was from Ashley right before they set sail for the Phillipines.  That really thrilled Mom.  Then a little later, my son, Jeff, called to wish her a happy birthday.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Card Candy Swaps

For the second year, I participated in a Card Candy swap headed up by Debbie McNeil and Amy Barnes.  In this swap, you make 2x2 card candy swaps using the new In Colors and/or Neutrals and current stamps.  You can make as many as you want from 1-50.  You just drop out of line when you have swapped all you brought.  I took 40 and Marianne took 50.  I still have my swaps from last year but I am making a promise to myself to make a collage frame with them this year!!

Here are my swaps using the DSP from Go Wild stack and the Heart punch (Watermelon Wonder.) The sentiment is from And Many More stamped in Tip Top Taupe and I added a rhinestone.

While I was at convention, I got an email from my good friend, Margaret, that her dad had died on Friday.  He has been doing poorly for a while so it was not totally unexpected but he was such a great guy, he will be missed by many.  Margaret and Graham had been there for a visit in April but when he went back in the hospital in early July, Margaret flew back to England so she was there when he passed away.  I'm thinking about you, Margaret!

As you can see, I did some maintenance on my blog today.  I have been wanting to change the blog header for a while and got some ideas while I was at convention.  Here is what the main stage looked like.  As you can see, I used it for my inspiration.

Below is one of the perks I received for celebrating my 10 years with Stampin' Up.  This was a booth set up with a soda fountain, popcorn and Dove chocolates!  Marianne and I made frequent stops here. I also received a Stampin' Up mini trash bag filled with a stamp set (one I already had), a package of buttons and twine.

We took this picture on our last day.  We looked for Debbie and my upline, Carol, to include them in the third window but could not find them at the time.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Roarin' 20s plus a Wild! Swap

There’s nothing more exciting than gathering with a couple thousand of your favorite people to celebrate the joys of card making, rejoice in our successes from the past year and plan for the future.  This past week’s Stampin’ Up! Annual Convention (called Inspire Create Share 2015) was just that – a lot of reuniting, a lot of celebrating and a lot of new stuff.  What a fun week!  But if I am totally honest, this was not the best Stampin' Up Convention I have attended (I have been to 5 total.)  We have always gotten at least 3 free stamp sets plus other "all attendee" give aways during the week.  This year, we received 1 stamp set and 3 all attendee gifts which did not amount to much (package of Holiday Catalogs, the new archival black stamp pad and a package of DSP.)  I really felt short changed this year.  Things were so very different than past years in many other ways too.

We all love to see new products and hear about new techniques for our businesses.   We love papercrafting and sharing wonderful ideas for new projects.  Still, at the heart of it all, Convention is all about the people.  I love the opportunity to gather with stampers from all over the U.S. and Canada as well as the members of Stampin' Up's staff.  What fun!

Thursday night was Awards Night and there was a party afterwards.  Awards Night was themed this year – we were challenged to dress in “The Roaring ’20’s” outfits.  Marianne and I turned out in our feather boas and jeweled headbands in our hair!  We found Debbie who looked great in her black and white 20s outfit too.

Here is one of the swap  cards I made.  I'll be sharing more swaps in the next several days.  This card was super easy to make using the Little Letters thinlets and the Go Wild DSP stack.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Convention Gifts

These are the convention gifts I made for my two downlines (Debbie and Marianne) and my upline, Carol.  I only see Carol at convention once a year since she lives all the way across the US from me - in Washington.

I got this idea from the very talented Becky Roberts.  Sonny bought the handles for me and drilled holes and screwed in the handles for me.  Then I just had to decorate and fill them.  Since I have more than enough retired DSP, that is what I used on them.

This one of course goes to Marianne who loves purple!

This one is for Carol.

And this one is for Debbie since she likes pink!

And of course, we have to have goodies inside!

These were really fun to make and very easy.  They were what I was trying to finish up when the electricity went out!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Build A Birthday with Pop Up Candles

Sorry - I've been MIA for a while!  Busy, busy, busy!  Think I'm ready for convention though.  I finished up Stamp Club yesterday and got my order sent in to Stampin' Up.  After cleaning up, I was going to finish up a few of my 3D swaps that I had started over the weekend and start packing.  Well .... Mother Nature had other ideas.  We had a storm here and our power went out!  We were without power about 3 hours.  I was able to work with just the light coming in the window for a little bit.  Then it wasn't enough so I retreated downstairs where I read in my Kindle, napped and finally decided I'd just have to eat cold cereal for dinner.  Around 8 pm, Sonny and I started lighting candles.  We had just gotten the last one lit, when "ta-da", the lights came on!  So, blow out the candles and start packing!  Think I got to bed close to 1 a.m. this morning!

Here is a card I made last week from a tutorial I found on-line.

I used Build A Birthday to make the cake with Pacific Point, Watermelon Wonder, Daffodil Delight and Cucumber Crush.

The fun part is when you open the card and the candles pop up!  They are adhered to strips of clear transparency.

Fun, huh?

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Over the Rainbow

I have Stamp Club this Thursday and next Tuesday .... then I'm off to convention!  Can't wait!

One of the stamp sets we will be using at Club this month is Over the Rainbow.  I think this is such a great and versatile stamp set.  I got carried away and made 4 slightly different cards and will let the gals pick which one they want to make.  I also dug out my Circle Card Framelits that I haven't used in such a long time to make the cards.





Not much happening here.  I finally got my peaches yesterday!!  Yum!  I am missing talking to Ashley or at least being able to email back and forth.  We did finally get a short email from her last night.   Malaita, the island she is on has absolutely nothing to do with 3 restaurants each with the same 3-4 menu options since they all shop at the one market in town.  She is eating the snacks she took (and some that I sent her) so she will have a lighter load when returning to the ship at the end of the week!  The hotel she is staying in is very basic with cold showers.  That would not cut it with me!  I love my nice long HOT showers!  She was able to sent us the email from the Mental Ward last night which is the only available internet!  She is a very organized person and some of the coordinating details there are not to her liking.  She spent the first two days at a local clinic but was supposed to be lecturing in the hospital on day 4 but she got bumped for a different lecturer which irked her. She is not sure where the communication screw up was - with the planners of the mission or on the local side.  She will be headed back to Guadalcanal on Sunday which will make her happy!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Over the Rainbow Shoe Box

I have found another favorite from the new catalog!  It is Over the Rainbow!  I have made a bunch of cards today with that set.  It is a really versatile set - good for sympathy, congrats, good luck, love you .... endless ideas!  Here is a card I made for my shoe box swap at convention.

How about that for bright colors?!!  Love it!  I also love the sentiment.  I scattered small pearls on the card that I colored with a few Copic markers (missing those Blendabilities!)  You could also color them with Sharpie markers.

I had a pretty quiet weekend - which is just fine with me!  Sonny and I went to breakfast yesterday in Denver (NC) and afterwards wandered around the Farmers Market buying a few fruits and veggies. Then we drove out to the Peach Stand, which was the main reason we went to eat in Denver, but they were already SOLD OUT!!  It wasn't even noon.  I really believe they never opened.  How could they have sold everything by 11:30????  I'll be traveling out there again one day this week I guess.  Today I got Sonny to go to the neighborhood pool with me to exercise there.  We did pretty good and were there over an hour and the pool all to ourself most of the time.  That is the coolest way to exercise and I don't know why I don't do it more often.  Gonna make a resolution to do that.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Garden In Bloom

I am loving the two-step stamp set, Garden in Bloom.  (Think I have said that before!)  Here is another card I made using the set.  The striped background is from the set, Brushstrokes (pg 128) using Tip Top Taupe ink. I cut an oval from the center of the striped piece and put a piece of Whisper White card stock behind it.  I stamped several of the flowers and leaves through the oval.  I stamped the large flower and leaves on a scrap of white, cut it out and adhered it to the front with dimensionals.  The sentiment is white embossed on the Delightful Dijon card stock that is punched out with the Tags & Labels Framelits.  I tucked a small piece of Mint Macaron ribbon behind the sentiment and a butterfly on the front.

My mom came through her dental surgery with flying colors yesterday.  I went over to sit with her today but really didn't need to.  She was not in any pain - only took 2 pain pills yesterday and none today.  I fixed her a couple of smoothies and took her to the dentist for a follow up before leaving to run a few errands.  She even went to her clubhouse tonight to play bingo!

Ashley has arrived at her next group of islands - this time the Solomon Islands.  They had to move off of the ship because it can't stay docked at the pier.  They will be staying at a compound which is the Australian military compound that is now minimally staffed with civilian police.  She will be taking a 5-hour ferry ride to another island and staying in hotels.  But she has been told there is nothing to see or do there.  She surprised us yesterday with a phone call to check up on her grandmother.  (I have been bad this week and not emailed her much with updates.)  She sent a quick note to us today to say they had arrived and were moving off the ship so she is not sure if she will have internet.  Also to tell us that an earthquake had hit the islands yesterday before they arrived.  Prayers for them that they don't have another one while she is there!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Build A Birthday

There is a really cute birthday stamp set in the catalog this year called Build a Birthday for only $16!  Below are two cards I have made using the set but you will be seeing more in the very near future!

On the card above I stamped the cake layers on to white cardstock and stamped the sentiment on a piece of Vellum card stock and layered it over top of the white.  Then I punched little holes in the top of both pieces and threaded the silver ribbon through it, tying it into a bow.  I adhered it onto a piece of Lost Lagoon DSP (unfortunately, I realized just now that the DSP is retired!).  The base card is Lost Lagoon card stock.

The second card (above) is directly from the catalog.  I participated in a recent "Copy the Catalog" swap and this is the card that I made.  The top and bottom layer of the cake is  Cherry on Top Washi Tape.

One of the neat things about this set is that you can use the stamps as cake layers or as candles! 

Yesterday was one long day!  I don't know how just sitting around all day can make a person so tired but that is what happened to me yesterday.  I took mom to the hospital at 11:45; she was finally wheeled back for the scope a little after 1:00.  Poor thing - the nurse really had a hard time trying to put the IV in her arm.  She finally got one in on the third try!!  And Mom is going back for another procedure today and another IV!  As it turned out, the doctor's suspicions were on target.  A pill had gotten stuck in her esophagus and formed two ulcers on either side - called Kissing Ulcers!  He had no way of knowing which pill it was as it had dissolved by that time.  But he said there were several pills that were the worst for that happening and two of them mom is taking - Fosamax and an antibiotic.  He said to prevent this from happening, you should follow three rules when taking meds:  
  1. Drink plenty of water 
  2. Eat something with meds
  3. Stay upright for 2-3 hours after taking meds.
One of the things I harp on my mom about all the time is to drink more.  She just doesn't.  I hope she will listen and start drinking more water.  He also gave her a diet of things she should and should not be eating.  I know she will have a tough time following that though!  Some of the things to avoid:  coffee (she loves her coffee), fried foods, french fries, ice cream, citrus, carbonated beverages, citrus (she loves lemon in her tea, water, coke ....), creams, gravy, chocolate .....  When I got her home yesterday, I found a chicken breast in the freezer and baked it with a tiny bit of Teriyaki sauce to give it a little flavor and cooked some lima beans.  She was able to eat most of it if it was cut up really small.  But her favorite thing has been the smoothies I  have been making for her!  I have just been putting milk, fruit (peaches, strawberries, blueberries), yogurt and ice in a blender and she drinks them down!  My sister is taking her today for her tooth extraction.  I think she wanted me to take her but this is Angela's day off and she can do it.  I am exhausted!  I am going to get busy getting cards together for stamp club next week.  Plus I just signed up for one more swap at convention so need to figure that out too.  It is only for 12 cards so not too bad.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Garden In Bloom

Another swap card.  I was going to use this one for my shoebox swap but too many pieces to have to prep for!

This card uses one of my favorite new stamps from the catalog (photopolyment, pg. 119) - Garden in Bloom.  It is a two-step stamp and that is my favorite kind!  That is what got me into Stampin' Up in the first place.  I like the look of Lost Lagoon paired with Mint Macaron.  The striped paper is a piece of the Envelope Liner Paper.

My mom ended up staying at the hospital Sunday & Monday nights.  They did all kinds of tests on her and actually were discharging her around lunch time Monday.  As she was trying to eat some lunch, the GI doctor came in as she was hurting every time she swallowed solid food.  So, he changed the discharge papers for her to stay another day & put her on a liquid diet until he could do an endoscope.  He thinks she could have one of her pills lodged in her esopahogas which causes a cyst to from around it.  Marianne stayed the night with her and I don't think either of them got much sleep. I was just headed out the door this morning for the hospital when Marianne texted me that the GI dr. had come in early and wanted her to stay another day until he could get the results of her stress test back & schedule the 'scope.  Shortly after he left, the Attending Physician let the nurses have it because he discharged mom yesterday.  Said the GI Doc did not have the authority to extend her stay!  She was only there for observation & Medicare will only pay for 1 night.  So, back to the discharge!  I took her home around 9 a.m. and made her a milkshake.  She drank all of that.  She slept most of the day while I was there.  I am headed back in the morning to pick her up and take her to the hospital for the 'scope.  We are keeping our fingers crossed that he can fix the problem tomorrow and she will still be able to have her dental surgery on Thursday.

We got a surprise phone call last night from Ashley.  They are on the ship heading to the Solomon Islands.  She was just calling to check on her grandmother.  We didn't get to talk long because an alarm started going off on the ship and she had to evacuate that area.  I got an email from her today and she crossed the equator yesterday.  So she is now offically a "shellback."  There is a traditional Navy line-crossing ceremony.  (You can read about it here.)  She didn't tell us much about what they did - only that it wasn't as bad as she was expecting since they probably cannot do hazing anymore.  She said the seas have been rough on their crossing.  She forgot to take her seasick meds when they left Micronesia and the seas got the best of her.  She was 0 for 3 on keeping her meals down on the first day.  She is taking her meds now and the seas have calmed down so she is ok.  They are due to arrive in the Solomons on Friday.

Here is a great story which just emphasizes the wonderful work Ashley and the team are doing.
Midwife Saves Baby
Sure makes me proud!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Convention Shoebox with Flower Shop

I am participating in a shoebox swap at convention.  After trying several different cards, I finally decided on this one.  I needed to find something that was easy to do for a shoebox and one that I didn't have to take a ton of supplies to make it.

I have already stamped, punched out and put a dimensional on the back of these flowers from Flower Shop (using the Pansy Punch.)  The zig zag lines at the bottom were made with a stamp from Work of Art and markers (Watermelon Wonder, Daffodil Delight and Mint Macaron.)  The leaves are punched out with the Bird Punch.  

This was another idea for the card but I decided on the top one instead.  So, I will just be using this one for a swap card.

We have had a pretty lazy weekend.  Sonny and I had hoped to go out on the boat this weekend but the weather just wasn't cooperating.  We did go to Mooresville Friday night and watched the fireworks.  I wasn't sure they were going to put them off since we got a pretty good rain storm about 9 pm when they were scheduled.  But, finally about 9:30ish, the rain let up enough to let the fireworks light up the sky.  We gave up hopes of  going on the boat & seeing more fireworks on Saturday about 5:00.  We just didn't want to get stuck out on the lake in a storm.  So, we drove to Statesville and had dinner at Outback Steakhouse instead.

My mom is not doing well.  She called me yesterday and was hurting at the top of her diagram - around her breast bone.  I had no idea what the matter could be and advised her if she kept hurting and thought it was something serious, to call 911.  She never did but when Angela came home from work, she took her to Urgent Care.  By the time they got there, she was feeling better so they did not go in.  After church today, they went out to eat and Mom started hurting every time she would try to eat something.  So Angela took her to Urgent Care - this time going in!  The doctor thought it had something to do with her reflux and possibly a stressed esophagus from her back pain and worry about going to the hospital later in the week.  He gave her a stronger Reflux medication.  Later in the afternoon, Angela called me to tell me Mom was hurting worse.  She ended up taking her to the hospital ER and they admitted her for the night just in case it could be something with her heart.  She has never had a history of heart disease.   So, please say a prayer that everything is ok with her and she will be coming home tomorrow.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Happy 4th of July!

Happy 4th of July!  Have a safe one!

I made this card for all those who are currently serving their country - near and far.  Thanks!

We are headed into Mooresville tonight (Friday) to watch the fireworks.  We usually go to my mom's church parking lot where we have a good view of the fireworks that are set off by the Y.

Not sure what we will do tomorrow.  We'd like to go out on the boat and drop the anchor where we could watch the fireworks that will be put off on Saturday.  But, the weather may not cooperate with us!  We'll have to see.  We badly need rain but couldn't it have just waited until after the weekend???

PLxSU Calendar Challenge - Graduation

I had a little time at the beginning of the week and decided to try another PLxSU challenge using My Digital Studio.  The challenge was to use a calendar on your page.

I dug back into some of my older pictures and found these from when Ashley graduated from medical school at UT-SA in 2003.  It was such a fun day with so many of our friends there.  That evening we had a joint party with several of her friends who graduated also.  They are all still good friends and see each other whenever their busy schedules permit.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Fly Away Like a Butterfly!

This has been a week of doctor's appointments and taking care of my mom.  She has not had a good week.  I may do like these butterflies in this card and just fly away!!

This is another swap card that I have made for convention.  I used the Watercolor Background stamp for the background (Pool Party stamped off) and then just die cut 3 butterflies from the Butterfly Framelits and adhered them to the center of the Whisper White cardstock.  The corners are rounded and the white card is adhered to a Wisteria Wonder card.  I drew in the antenna with a black Sharpie marker and added a pearl to the center.  Quick and easy card.

Mom called me on Tuesday complaining of her ear hurting.  It was on the same side as her teeth that she is having extracted next week so I assumed they were all tied together.  I took her to the dentist and they gave her another prescription for an antibiotic.  Then yesterday she bent over to pick something up off the floor and pulled her back out again.  She has been going to the chiropractor now for a week and was feeling much better - even, quit taking pain pills last weekend.  So, I took her to chiropractor yesterday and he did a few adjustments.  He thinks she will probably need to have a cortisone shot.  But she is going back to see him this afternoon and he will decide then.  My sister just texted me that she had a rough night and was really hurting today.  I am headed over to pick her up this morning for her pre-op appointment at the hospital for her teeth extraction!  In the meantime, I realized yesterday that I had missed my doctors appointment that was scheduled for Tuesday!   Hoping things will calm down soon!

Ashley finally made it back to Pohnpei safely and went straight in to work.  She is having her phone interview today for the Pediatric Program Director at Madigan in Washington.  Keep your fingers crossed for her!  She is guessing they will make the decision in the next couple of weeks.  She feels like she is fighting an uphill battle since she is the only "outsider" applying for the position.  The other candidates are already at Madigan although that is where Ashley did her residency so she won't exactly be a newcomer.