Thursday, December 6, 2007

18 Days!

And I still don't have a finished Christmas card to send. Unless you count this one that I made last week for my team's Flying Lessons. We did this as a one sheet wonder and used part of the sheet to make the card and part to make a scrapbook in a box. The stamp sets on this card are Circle Sampler and the Oh Golly set that was only available in November. I wouldn't normally look at circle sampler and think Christmas card, but I was inspired by some cards posted a while ago on Sarah's Studio. This would be another super easy Christmas card for someone like me who has to finish beaucoup cards in the next week. I already received three cards in today's mail from some overachieving friends who completed theirs over Thanksgiving!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Only 22 Days Left!!

And even less mailing days to get Christmas cards out! I had vowed that we wouldn't have "New Year's cards" again this year. But it looks like we may be headed down that track again! I will be putting in some serious stamping time in the next week or so getting the cards and gifts that I have to have done ready. But I work better under pressure.

Here's an oldie but goodie card. This card was inspired by something that I had seen in last year's Paper Crafts magazine. To make it I simply punched a whole bunch of circles from our Merry Wishes paper pack and lay them out in a wreath shape. Add a simple red bow with a glue dot, stamp your sentiment with red ink and you're ready to go. I think that there may be a few of these going out this year!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Counting My Blessings

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I have so much to be grateful for this year. I made this adorable mint tin so I can record those blessings. I will be taking pictures of some of them to include in the tin -- my kids, my husband, my warm even if it is messy house, and of course the wonderful spread of turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie! The others -- like the far flung friends or the wonderful ladies that I've met this year through stamping -- I will just have to write about. But I will have lots of room on the 12 page accordian fold out in the tin. The best part of this tin is that it is small enough for me to carry in my purse so on those days that I'm not feeling particularly thankful for anything, I can pull it out and be reminded of all that is good!

If you would like to make a tin just like this, I'm offering a kit with all of the elements that you need to make one for free when you place an order of $50 or more between now and November 30. You will also receive the double gift with purchase stamps and if your order reaches $100, the double hostess benefits.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Christmas Cards

This is one of my favorite cards from this weekend's Christmas card Stamp-A-Stack. The picture isn't that great, but the card is beautiful and a very different, but hip, combination for Christmas. It is pink, black, and silver. I've seen both pink and black artificial Christmas trees in the stores so I think that this card is perfect for this year!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Where Did October Go?

Wow! I can't believe that October flew on by and now it's nearly the middle of November. I've been so busy with FUNShops, classes, and craft shows that I feel like I missed the whole month. It's already time to start on Christmas! But first I want to share a Halloween project that I helped a friend with at my last Girls Night Out. She knew exactly what she wanted to make but just needed some help to refine her idea and I was happy to offer my "creative consulting". Here's a picture of the card that she came up with.

And when you open it, here's what you see!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

World Card Making Day

Yesterday was World Card Making Day. How did you celebrate?
I had a party with some of my friends!! My friend, Angela, and I threw a party for our customers and we had loads of fun seeing everyone! We had four make and takes, a card contest, and lots of fun things for people to play with.

Here are two of the gals working on their card contest cards. We gave each person a white card front. They had pieces of Lap of Luxury paper (on sale right now for only $3.50 for 36 8x8 sheets!), the Gerbera Daisy stamp, a black ink pad, some black and white ribbon, brads, buttons, and coloring tools available to create their own card design. The cards that they made were all unique and amazing! So good that we ended up awarding THREE prizes! A crowd favorite and two of our favorites.

Here is one of the make and takes. This card was inspired by one that my friend Trudy had made for a Christmas card challenge. I love the simplicity of it! And it uses up the scraps of one of my favorite papers -- Merry Wishes. This card is so easy that I may do it for one of my Christmas card designs -- last year I made 150 cards for Christmas and my list has grown this year. So it has to be simple!! And I'd better start now!
Besides the Merry Wishes paper, this card used our fun May Your Merry stamp set.

Here is another make and take. This fall card is also super simple! We used the pumpkin from Autumn Smiles. It was stamped with Versamark and then colored over with chalk. The green paper was put through a crimper and then a brown ribbon was tied around it. The Happy Harvest saying is from one of my favorite saying sets -- Trendy Greetings. Here are some of the ladies working on their harvest card!

After the ladies finished up their stamping, some of them took advantage of our Hostess Split promotion! I wish that I had taken a picture of this sign when it was hanging up so you could see it better. Angela did an awesome job making it! She even added wire as the stem on the cherry! If you haven't heard about the Hostess Split, you can get yours only during October. Grab a friend and when you each order $50, you get to enjoy all of our yummy hostess rewards.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Celebrate October!

Wow! The Angel Company is offering so many promotions in October! The biggest and best one is Celebration -- DOUBLE hostess rewards and double gift with purchase stamps. I still have a few dates left on my calendar. Contact me today to pick yours. If you can't host a FUNShop in October, try one of my hostess splits. You and a friend both order $50 and you each get 3 Gift With Purchase stamps, a Level A hostess set, and a 1/2 price item. Interested in getting your wings? Start flying in October and you will receive an additional $65 of free stamps with your starter kit. Click on the link to my stamping website for more details.

The second biggest promotion is Crazy for Color. I love the Kaleidascope papers and if you like bright fun colors you will too! This is your chance to get all three of the Kaleidascope collections along with an awesome scrapper's saying set for only $34.95. The paper alone is $33.85 so you are getting this $10.95 stamp set for only $1.10!! If you can't see the stamp set below, please click here to see it.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Card Box

Wow, I've missed a whole week of blogging! That short week last week really threw me. Today I am posting the directions for a project that we made at my Christmas in July class. The sample is pretty basic because this project was one of 14 that we completed in the 3 hour class! But you could dress this box up alot and in fact, as soon as I dig out my stamp room, I have plans to make a dressier one as a gift for a friend and I will share that with you.

Here's the basic box:
Start with a piece of 11 1/2 x 12 cardstock (bottom) and a piece that is 7 x 5 (lid). Here I used green for the bottom and Merry Wishes for the lid.
Score the 11 1/2 x 12 piece at 2 1/2" from each edge on the 12" side and 4 1/2" from the edges on the 11 1/2" side.
With the 7x5 piece portrait style, score the paper at 1" from one edge and 1 1/2" from the other side.
Looking at your box bottom, you will see two small squares formed by the score lines. Cut on the score lines that form the sides of the squares to make tabs.
Fold the box bottom on all score lines and adhere the side flaps together with strong adhesive.
Fold the box lid on the two score lines. Place wonder tape on the 1" flap and press that onto the back of the box. Use a corner rounder on the corners of the lid. Set an eyelet in the center of the lid's front flap. Run two pieces of ribbon through the eyelet and tie in a knot behind the eyelet to secure. Wrap the ribbon around the box and tie in a bow to secure.
This box will hold at least 12 A2 sized cards and envelopes.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Ten Things I Love About You Mini Album

This adorable mini album is made using one of our Candy Tins. The tin comes blank with a blank white accordian fold out. The accordian fold out is just the right number pages to do a Ten Things I Love About You album.

Here's how to make this album:

1. Start with one of our candy tins. Use 3/8" wonder tape to wrap a 3/8"x 12" strip of patterned paper around the bottom of the tin.

2. Use Yes Glue or another strong adhesive to adhere a 2 3/8" x 3 3/4" piece of patterned paper to the outside of the lid. Let dry and use a sanding block or emery board to sand off the corners and edges of the paper flush with the edges of the tin's lid.

3. Use a corner rounder to round the corners of a piece of 2 1/4" x 3 1/2" patterned paper and glue to the inside of the lid.

4. Use 1/4" wonder tape to adhere ribbon around the edge of the tin's lid.

5. Embellish the accordian fold out and the lid of the tin. For my sample, I first sponged Chartreuse and Toile Pink palette inks on alternating pages of the fold out. Then I used alot of the tabs and tags from the Mimi collection along with Mimi ribbon and hardware to embellish the pages. The pictures are cropped to 1 7/8" x 2". I used the stamp set, About A Girl, with Burnt Umber Ink to stamp my sayings. The flower on the first page is a Bitty Blossom with a snap from the Mimi collection set in the center.

6. When you are done embellishing the pages of the album, use more wonder tape to adhere the last page to the bottom of the tin so that it will be easy to fold the album in and out of the tin.

As a part of our Remember September promotion you can get the Mimi collection, including the hardware, ribbons, and coordinating cardstock and a special limited edition stamp set for only $24.95. If you email me with your order, you can also get any saying or alphabet sets, including the About A Girl stamp set, for 10% off.

What if you have a boy instead of a girl? We also have a stamp set called About A Boy and you could use our other paper collection, Lilly Anna, that is a part of the Remember September promotion! With the name Lilly Anna, you may not think to use this paper for a boy, but the bright blue and chartreuse green in the collection work wonderfully for boy themed pages.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Taking It Another Step

As promised yesterday, here is how you can take the little card that we used for the Creating Keepsakes make and take one step further and turn it into a scrapbook page element. For this sample, I used the Hemingway paper. Before making all of these samples, I had thought that Amelia was my favorite of our new paper collections. But now after having worked so much with Mimi and Hemingway, I'm not so sure.

Anyway, back to the sample. I picked this picture because the shirt that I'm wearing in the picture is almost an exact match to the turquoise blue of this cardstock that comes in the Hemingway cardstock collection and because I am beyond grateful for this moment and these kids.

This page is 8x8 and I only had to crop my picture slightly to take out the messy background. I took this picture myself which is why it's such a close up on our faces. I sanded the edge of the picture to distress it a little. Then I mounted it on some of the lightest brown patterned cardstock in the Hemingway pack and then on some of TAC's awesome brown solid cardstock.

I got alot of questions at the convention about how I made the arrow. I actually used the paper that the photo is matted with. If you lifted up the photo, you would see the cut out of the arrow underneath. You've got to save that paper somehow! To make the arrow, I used the Coluzzle circle cutter and cut two tracks apart to make the arc. Then I drew the arrow point on freehand and cut it all out with my favorite retractable knife. I inked the edge with some Jumbo Java ink and stamped the saying with the same. I used mini-bet to spell out the same since I didn't have that exact saying.

Then I used the mini card from yesterday's post as a hidden journaling box. I rounded the corners of the card just so it would stand out a little from all of the other angular elements. Then I added the little tab on the side, which was actually made with this punch, to make it easy to open.

Other elements on the page include inking on the edges, stamp stitching, and a flourish from our Curls & Swirls set. Remember, how I told you that I could just put the pieces of the stitching stamp back together on the block -- that's what I did for this and then I was able to stamp all of the stitching along each side of the page at once.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

CK Make and Take

Here's a picture of the make and take that we offered at the booth at the Creating Keepsakes convention last weekend. This is a very simple 3x3 card. It would make a great card to go with a small gift or as a thank you to a friend who did something special for you.

To make this card:

1. Cut a 3" x 6" piece of cardstock and fold in half -- in this sample, I used the brown from the Mimi collection.

2. Cut a 2" x 3" piece of patterned paper (again Mimi here -- I love the pink, green and brown combination in this paper pack!).

3. Cut a 1 3/8" x 3" piece of ivory cardstock.

4. Stamp the stitches and saying from Running Stitches and More Abundance with Burnt Umber Ink. For the convention, I cut the running stitches stamp into two 3" pieces and put those pieces with the two sayings from the More Abundance sets on one 3x3 acrylic making it easy for everyone to stamp their card just once. When I want to use the running stitches stamp again, all I have to do is line up the cut edges of the rubber on a long block -- the stamp is really 8" long. You may also want to ink the edge of your patterned cardstock. Glue all of the layers together.

5. Tie a plain knot in the center of a 6" piece of ribbon.

6. Pinch the two tails of the ribbon together and thread through the center of a Bitty Blossom. Use a glue dot to attach the flower to the upper right part of the card.

Tomorrow I will show you how you can take this idea one step further and turn it into an embellishment for your scrapbook page.

Monday, August 27, 2007

CK Convention!

I've been absent from my blog for the last week because it was the first week of school here -- including kindergarten for my youngest (yes, a few tears were shed and no, they weren't from him). But the bigger reason that I've been MIA is that I was preparing for the Creating Keepsakes scrapbook convention in Tulsa this past week. I found out a month ago that I was getting a space at the convention after all. It has been a whirlwind of prep since then. But it was well worth it!

The response to our booth was absolutely AMAZING! We ran out of make and take supplies both days by 3 pm -- sorry if you were in the hotel room next to us and had to listen to the thwack of a paper cutter cutting more at 11 pm on Friday night. We talked to so many great people about The Angel Company -- and so many people who had never heard of TAC before! I can't wait to see some of the ladies that I met this weekend again soon. I know that a few of you will be joining my team soon -- don't forget your contract has to be to TAC by Friday in order to receive the Two to Treasure bonus!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Saving Pennies

This is one of the projects that we made at my recent home decor
class. I had originally bought these cute Ball brand mason jars to use to store buttons, but when I was making my prototypes for the class, I looked at the jars and thought wouldn't those make something cute. And they did! Here's how we made them:

Unscrew the lid from the jar. Remove the lid and replace the band on the jar. (I will show you a project that I made with the lid on another day!)

Wrap the jar with a 1 5/8"x12" strip of patterned paper. I used Tutti Frutti paper on my jar. Use wonder tape to hold the paper to the jar -- I used a strip at each end and two in the middle. Position the paper so that the ends are on the side with the embossed Ball name if you are using the Ball brand jars.

Stamp your saying on a large double ended tag that coordinates with your strip of paper. In my sample, I used Fun Time for the FUN and Simple Bet to spell out money. At the class, other ladies spelled out Baby Money and Yard Money depending on what they were planning to save for.

Then place one end of 18" of ribbon through the tag and tie the ends with small pieces of coordinating scrapper's floss. Run the ribbon around the jar and through the other end of the tag. Tie tightly again with scrapper's floss. Trim and start filling with coins!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Partridge in a pear tree -- not quite

I love our new Hemingway papers -- I'm kind of partial to blue (ah, last name Bluestein -- I have to be) and the blues in the Hemingway paper are a beautiful shade that can look teal or blue depending on what it is paired with. Of course, the paper hoarder in me made me skimp with that patterned paper again. So on this card, I just used a 2" x 4" strip so I could get lots of cards out of the 12"x12" sheet. This was another swap card and a project that we did at my recent team Flying Lessons -- don't you just love that name -- sounds so much better than a "team meeting". I didn't have any of the coordinating cardstock for that Hemingway paper yet when I made this project so we paired it with Blue 2 matchmakers cardstock. It's a close match though not as good as the coordinating cardstock. We stamped the Partridge on ivory cardstock with Cognac ink and sponged cognac ink on the edges. I love this new Partridge Level A hostess set. It has such an art deco kind of look to it. That was matted to a piece of brown TAC cardstock and then added to the card with pop dots.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Color Inspiration

I love that TAC's new catalog lists the inks that coordinate with the new paper. It makes it so much easier to find the right color when I want my ink to match the paper I'm using. But I also realized the other day when I was making this card that there was another great use for these lists of ink. I knew that I wanted to use three different colors of ink on this card and had the scrap of green as my starting point. The green matches with the Cha Cha paper so I just pulled out my catalog and looked at the list of inks recommended for the Cha Cha paper -- knowing that they would then look good with my green paper!

The other thing that made this card a breeze is that this stamp set is sized to fit perfectly in the Super Jumbo 1 3/8" square punch that we carry in the catalog. I was doing this card for a swap so I just stamped a bunch of each image on some scraps of white and then punched them all out in a row. Wow, fast! And no worrying about straight edges when cutting!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Gift With Purchase Stamps

I love our new gift with purchase stamps. This card combines two of the stamps -- Flower Bunch and Simply Put. It is a super simple card and very easy to do. But the saying is all about simplicity and so the card reflects that too.

Remember, tomorrow is the last day to sign up for the Home Decor class. I've just upgraded my printer and that means that you all will get upgraded awesome new instruction sheets with color pictures of the projects.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Home Decor Class

The deadline to RSVP for the home decor class is quickly approaching -- I need to know by Wednesday whether you want to attend the Friday, August 10, 6:30-9:30 pm session or the Sunday, August 12, 1:30-4:30 pm session. The class fee is $15 and you will get all of the supplies to make the four projects pictured here -- a cool picture frame, a "Fun money" jar to save your change for buying more stamps and paper, a photo clip that could also be a recipe card holder, and a hanging notes board. I used the new Cha Cha paper, Tutti Frutti, and Just Like Dad to create my samples, but you can choose from any of the papers that I have available. I had a blast coming up with these projects and have some other awesome home decor ideas to share with you but that we won't have the time to make at the class. I was so inspired by making all of these items that I'm rearranging my parts of my studio and office again. You'll have to stop by to see it!

Friday, August 3, 2007

And Now We Return to Our Regularly Scheduled Program...

No, I haven't really been on summer hiatus, but my blog has been! I have actually been very busy with kids, VBS, kids, trip to sister's wedding, and more kids. School starts again in 16 days here -- yes, I'm counting the days. My youngest goes to kindergarten this year and while I'm sure that I will cry on that first day, I can not wait to have the freedom of 7 kid free hours five days a week!

In between all of this other stuff, I have actually gotten a lot of stamping done -- and I found out that I will be a vendor at the Creating Keepsakes scrapbooking convention in Tulsa at the end of August! I'm really excited to meet some new scrappers and share The Angel Company's new paper lines with them. The more that I use the papers, the more that I love them! Here are two cards that I've made recently with two different collections.

This first one is one of the cards that we made at my Christmas in July class. The card features our Amelia paper and Christmas Joy stamp set. These two are a match made in heaven for vintage loving stampers! There were a few people who missed the class and so I'm having a make up session on August 15 from 9 am - 12 noon. If you are interested in attending, please let me know soon because I only have 3 seats left.

This card on the right was made using the new plaid in our Toodle Loo collection. There's only 1 sheet of the plaid in the collection and it was really, really hard for me to cut it up to use for this card!! But I cheated and used just 1/2" strips on the back of each side of the black layer so that I could stretch the paper that much further! I was able to get 12 of this card out of just one 4"x12" strip of the paper with this method. That means I still have a 8"x12" piece to drool over. Oh, and the stamp on this card is one of our great new hostess sets, Happy Celebration.

Monday, July 2, 2007

New Catalog is here!!

Seminar 07 is over! :( But that also means that it is time to start sharing our awesome new catalog with all of you! I can't believe the great new papers and stamps in the catalog. I've made so many lists of things that I want already. If you want to receive your own copy of the catalog to drool over in bed at night, please email me. The cost is $5, which includes the shipping.

Other big news at seminar -- I received a top recruiter award! I was tied for #8 with another angel -- we had both sponsored 8 new angels this year! It was so amazing to get the award and to be surrounded by so many of those 8 new angels (and some who have been on my team for a long time too) when it happened!

Here's a picture of my team with Mischelle Smith, TAC's founder, after the banquet.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

It's Official!!

I set a goal for myself last June to make Executive before seminar this year. Well, I got word this morning that I have officially been promoted to Executive!! The poor woman from The Angel Company who called to tell me is probably deaf in one ear now because I was screaming into the phone when she told me! I have been close for months, but was starting to think that I wouldn't make it because I pretty much took most of April and May off with having been sick with the gallbladder thing. But at the last minute things fell into place. Thank you so much to all of the customers and hostesses and new angels who joined my team this year and made this possible!

Thursday, June 7, 2007


I opened an email this morning from my friend Awna and discovered that she had tagged me. So now I'm supposed to share with you the first thing that comes to my mind about each of these. Whew, that could be scary!

Yourself: tired and busy
Your Partner: gone (he travels for work)
Your Hair: needs cut and colored
Your Mother: haven't heard from her in a while
Your Father: hardworker
Your Favorite Item: my computer
Your Dream Last Night: seminar (only three weeks and I have no trades completed -- yikes!)
Your Favorite Drink: water
Your Dream Car: anything with a partition that I could close off to not hear the kids squabbling!
Dream Home: a farmhouse on two acres near town with four bedrooms and a studio (I'm not asking for much, huh?)
The Room You Are In: my studio, which is a mess and needs to be cleaned before tomorrow night's class
Where You Want to be in Ten Years: wow, I don't know the answer to that
Who You Hung Out With Last Night: my kids
You're Not: staying up late tonight because someone forgot to give the kids the memo that summer vacation is for sleeping in!! Hence the tired answer to question #1.
One of Your Wish List Items: a new tv for my husband
The Last Thing You Did: checked email
You Are Wearing: shorts and t-shirt
Your Favorite Weather: 70 and sunny
Last Thing You Ate: a piece of Dove milk chocolate, yummy
Your Life: is good
Your Mood: content
What Are You Thinking About Right Now: whether to order pizza for dinner
Your Car: gets me where I'm going thank goodness
What Are You Doing At The Moment: typing this! geez!
Relationship Status: Married
What Is On Your TV: kids' shows
What Is The Weather Like: mucho windy -- 30 mph gusts
When Is The Last Time You Laughed: at some silly thing the kids said this morning

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Has it been a month already?!

Wow, I just went to crop the pictures of the pages that I made at the National Scrapbooking crop and realized that it has already been a whole month since I was at that crop!! Time flies, huh? I do want to share these pages with you. I wish the pictures were a little better, but I don't know how to get a great picture of a 12x12 double page layout so this is the best that I have!
All of the pictures on these pages are from my daughter's birthday party last summer. Yes, I'm working way, way behind on pictures. I don't worry about "getting caught up". I know that will never happen and I just kind of work on whatever event I'm inspired by at the time that I decide to scrap, which as I told you below isn't very often for myself. I enjoy scrapping much more this way -- not putting pressure on myself.
Here's the first page that I did that day. It was inspired by the picture on the top right of the second page where my daughter is sitting in a big plastic bin surrounded by the mini beach balls that we had at the party. I used paper from TAC's Kaleidascope Brites collection for these pages and also the Sizzlin' Summer stamp set, which I had used on her party invitation.

This page shows the cake that inspired the entire water theme to the party. My daughter spotted this cake on the cover of a Woman's Day magazine and asked me to recreate it for her. I'm telling you that I LOVE that kid to have spent all the time I did on that cake -- including decorating the teddy grahams with icing so they looked like they were wearing swim suits and sunglasses!
While I was working on this page, my friend asked me if the paper had been made to match the little girl's bathing suit! I love how they do look like they were meant to go together. And all of the fun colors in the pictures are in the paper too! (And no, I haven't done any of the journaling on these pages hence the big blank white spots.)
This is the one page that I went to the crop with some idea of how I wanted it to look. My husband, not being a scrapper, sees no need for zooming in when he's taking pictures. So we ended up with tons of pictures that once they were cropped in to show the details of the picture were very small (some less than 2x2). I wanted to include them because they all show different aspects of the kids playing in the water that day. So I had this stair step kind of layout in mind. After I finished the layout I wasn't sure what to do with the big blank white space on the top right. I decided to make a flower. I stamped the tag from the Label Words set on several parts of the cover sheet from the Kaleidascope paper pack, cut them out and stacked them together. Then I added a large brad that I borrowed from my friend (thanks, Tiff) for the center. I stamped the stem and leaves from the Artsy Elements flourish set that was a hostess reward during Jubilee and added the Fun in the Sun saying from Label Words.

Monday, June 4, 2007

It's a Party!

It's a party! A Lego party! My son is obsessed with Legos and his birthday is coming up so we are having a Lego party. Actually, I kind of "suggested" the idea because I had a super easy invite and cake in mind. Here's a picture of the outside of the invitation. My son helped me with these last week by punching out all of the circles. It's hard to tell from the picture, but each circle in raised up on a pop dot so it looks like the pegs of the Lego block. Pretty cool, huh? And it was fun to do with with him rather than me doing all of the work!

Here's a picture of the inside of the invitation. I used one of my other favorite sets from the retiring list -- Party Words -- along with two of my other favorite sets -- Simple Bet (to spell out Lego) and You're Invited. I love these three sets combined because they are all the same font and the possibilities of the types of invitations that you can make with them are endless.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

An Ending and A Beginning

Nothing stamping or scrapping related to show you today. I didn't get much stamping done last week because I had my gallbladder out on Monday and spent most of the week lounging on my couch. Geez, see what a busy mom has to do to get a rest -- go have surgery!

I did get to attend my son's preschool graduation on Friday. Yes, maybe a preschool graduation ceremony is over the top, but he was so excited by it. And I have to say that it was very moving. The kids had worked for weeks on learning several songs that they sang. The preschool director gave a tear filled speech about how she was going to miss the kids. They got to have cake afterwards and give presents to their teachers. It was beautiful. Of course, the best part of the day for my son was when he got to go back to the classroom and work on the puzzles. Oh, and when his teacher gave him a mini lego set at the end of the day as a present -- he even passed up the chance to play on the playground so that he could come home and build the lego set. Which was ok by me because I was wiped out by that point in the day!

Anyway, this week I'm getting back to my stamping room. I have to get started on my trades for seminar very soon!! It's only 4 weeks away. Wow! I'm so excited to see the new catalog -- especially considering the previews that TAC released last week. You can see them here. I can't wait to get the new Treasure It set!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Ribbon, Ribbon, and More Ribbon

I should be vacuuming because my mother-in-law arrives for a visit sometime this afternoon. But I just got the mail and look what was in it from my great friend Lori! Yes, it's just 1/4" satin ribbon. Nothing exotic as far as ribbon goes, but I still LOVE her for sending it to me. See she knows that I live in a ribbon deprived town. The only store that sells ribbon by the spool is Walmart and they rarely have anything but the basic colors. So Lori bought all of these yummy colored ribbons for me in Idaho and sent them all the way to me! What a sweetheart!

I love ribbons. At the all day crop that I attended the ladies running the crop announced that they were having a ribbon sale and that all of the ribbon would be half off! Yikes! I was one of the first ladies at the ribbon aisle. I had so many spools of ribbon that one of the other ladies was kind enough to get me a basket to carry it all in. I got all of this delicious polka dotted, velvet, striped, and gingham ribbon for less than $20! I would have gotten more, but there were others waiting and I thought that it would look a little piggish. As it was, the lady cutting the ribbon looked at my like I was crazy when I asked if I could have 5 yards of the black with the white polka dots. But it was only 37 cents a yard!!

Now all of these awesome ribbons will need to join my collection. I actually have my ribbon pretty well organized. I keep the heavier ones like grosgrain in quart size acrylic canisters from Walmart. I love the look of glass jars, but envisioned my kids breaking one and bleeding all of the ribbon inside the jar! I wouldn't know whether to bandage the kid's hand or try to wash the blood out of the ribbon first. That wouldn't do! So I was very happy when I found these acrylic canisters with a similar look.

The rest of my ribbon -- satins, sheers -- is stored in a drawer. I took most of it off the spools to save space. Plus it lets me see exactly how much of any one I have -- I hate to run out of a ribbon in the middle of making swap cards. I rolled each ribbon into a loop and just tied off the end of the loop to itself. Then I separated the ribbons by color family into the plastic boxes that my larger stamp sets came in. Another reason to love unmounted stamps stored in CD cases -- I get to reuse the boxes for great storage! It took some time to do this, but I'm so much happier with it than all of the other systems that I have tried before for organizing my ribbon.

The only problem that I had with this system is when I tried to use ribbon at my first class and it wasn't on the spool anymore. The ladies at the class had the sheer white ribbon all unrolled and tangled. But my amazing friend Lori came up with a brilliant idea to solve this problem. She suggested using a box that our gift with purchase stamps come in to hold the loop of ribbon. If you cut a slit through the end of the box you have an automatic dispenser!! I tried it at my last class with some of the ribbons and it worked great. Here's a photo of a loop of grosgrain in a little larger box.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

What FUN!

Sorry for the long absence of posts. May has been nuts here. I got unexpectedly invited to join a friend at an all day crop for National Scrapbooking Day. I finished 5 double page 12x12 layouts that day. Doesn't sound like much when you say it that way! But it was great to scrapbook for myself. I'll share pictures of those later this week. The day after that was the Mother Daughter Craf-Tea.

The Mother Daughter Craf-Tea was such a great success! Thank you to all of you joined us for it. Emma was sooo excited about it that she nearly overwhelmed the first few people in the door with all of her energy and helpfulness. She really was a great helper though -- telling people what the projects were and how to do them. She had so much fun that at the end of the class she asked me when the next one would be. When I told her not until the fall, she pouted a little!

We had to have a change of projects at the last minute. I never thought when I advertised that we would stamp on flower pots that I wouldn't be able to find small clay flower pots at Walmart or Lowes or Home Depot!! Apparently, there was a run on them for Mother's Day. So instead we made this flower pot card which holds a seed packet. They make great teacher appreciation gifts and fit into a standard size card envelope. These are super easy to make. Click here to download the template. Cut out the template. Cut a piece of brown (we used some old terra cotta cardstock that I had in my stash) to 4 1/4 x 11. Fold in half. Trace the template onto the cardstock with the bottom of the flower pot on the fold of the card. Cut out. We then used Versamark and a stamp from Old Friend to decorate the pot. Tie a ribbon around the top of the pot to hold it shut when you slide the seed packet into it. Add a tag with an appropriate saying -- this tag was punched from Bella Flor paper set. We used one from one of our hostess sets called Seeds of Blessing. We also added a flower sequin from the Sonic Bloom collection to the corner of the tag to up the "oh, look how cute" quotient.

If you were really looking forward to learning how to stamp on a flower pot, here are some tips:

  • Using unmounted stamps makes it much easier! Use the stamp without attaching it to the block.
  • Lay it on the table and ink. Use Palette or Staz On inks for permanence.
  • Carefully pick up the stamp and use your fingers to press it to the curve of the pot. to get a full image.
  • Remember if you are using the terra cotta pots without first coating with acrylic paint that the color of your ink will be different on the pot -- for example, purple looks black. You can coat the pot with 2 light coats of acrylic paint prior to stamping if you prefer a different colored background.
  • You can use sharpies or Fabrico makers, palette ink refills, or all purpose inks to color your images.
  • If you plan to use the pot for a plant, spray it with 2-3 light coats of Krylon clear sealer (you can find it in Walmart or Hobby Lobby) to seal the design. Otherwise, it will be ruined when the salts in the water and soil leach through the pot when you water the plant.

Here's a close up of one of the other projects that we did at the Mother Daughter Craf-Tea. It was a purse gift bag, but all of the moms said that they thought that it was way too cute to give away! I think most of them are using it as a part of their home decor! And hey, Maureen, check it out! We reused the bottoms of the paper bags that I was cutting off to make the paper bag card organizers as the base of the purse! We used some of my favorite paper -- Rustic Chic -- with the Running Stitches stamp to make this purse. I love it! One of the girls turned her patterned paper vertically in the center of her purse and it was totally different look that was awesome!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

10% Off Final Farewells

TAC released its list of stamps that are going bye-bye in June. You can look at the list here. There are just shy of 200 stamp sets on the list. I have 56 that are on the list!! Yikes! I'm not worried though because I'll still have lots of great sets left. (Does that mean I have too many stamps? Never!)
I am surprised to see some of them going. I will miss Bits & Pieces and Word Play. And I'm definitely going to miss Comic Bet! That is one of my favorite alphabet sets. And I was really surprised to see Flowery Fun going. I don't use it that often, but it's just a pretty set. I used it to make this card.
Of course, all of this sadness in seeing some of my favorite sets leaving TAC's catalog also is mixed with great anticipation of what is to come with our new catalog. This is TAC's 10th year and I can feel big changes in the works -- starting with our switch to twice a year catalogs. Our annual seminar is the end of June in Kansas City and the demonstrator lists have all been abuzz with talk about it. I can hardly wait!
In fact, I'm starting the party early with a special sale of 10% off any of the stamp sets on the final farewell list! You have to call or email me your order to receive the discount. Sorry, I can't give you the discount on orders placed through the online shopping cart. But you'll also get all of the free goodies that way! Be sure to check out my stamping website for all of the other specials that I have going on. There are lots of deals to be had right now!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Can You Believe It?

Two posts in two days!! I'm challenging myself to post more often to the blog now that I know that there are people out there reading it. LOL

Emma is very excited because this Sunday she gets to be my "assistant teacher" for our semi-annual mother/daughter craf-tea. We did this in the fall and it was great fun! She did a great job of reminding people that the proper way to ink a stamp is to tap, tap, tap and explaining the best way to use the gelly glaze pens. She helped me make the samples for this weekend's class yesterday. I asked her which thing was her favorite and she couldn't decide. Though she did keep holding the "buggy" card up to her cheek and saying "I love this card". If you are interested in joining us this Sunday, please let me know by Friday. You can stop by any time between 1:30 and 5:30, but plan to spend 2 hours to finish your projects. The projects are designed so that all ages -- from elementary age girls to teens to adults will enjoy them. And you don't have to have a mother or daughter to bring with you. The class is $8/person, which includes all of your supplies, refreshments, and door prizes.

Remember, the gelly glaze pens that I mentioned above. Well, we used the souffle glaze pens -- a cousin to the gelly glaze pens, but they work better on dark paper -- to make this card at the Flying Lessons for my team. We used Swirly Gigs -- one of my favorite sets from the spring supplement -- and stamped that on black with Cloud White Versamagic ink. Then we colored the swirly's in with the souffle pens. The flower stamp from the swirly gig set was stamped with black on white and then colored with markers.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Last Day to Get the April Stamp of the Month

My friend, Maureen, told me on Friday that if I'm going to have a blog that I actually need to update it! Apparently, she's been stalking here looking for news and I've been disappointing her.

Tomorrow is the last day to get the April Stamp of the Month -- geez, April's over already -- how did that happen? I love this set! This is my favorite stamp in the whole set -- I get a smile on my face every time I see it. We made this sample last weekend at my team's Flying Lessons. We used the Pearl Ex Watercolor palettes to color the daisy. You can't see the shimmer in the photo but it's very pretty in real life!

Spring Fling is in full bloom at TAC! There are four new stamp sets available only through now to May 31 at special prices. You can check them out here. One of my favorites the punctuation set. Here's a 6x6 scrap page that I made using the punctuation set with our new Mulberry Meadow paper.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Bold & Beautiful

Only five more days to get in on The Angel Company's Spring Fever promotion. I had fun the other morning playing with one of the sets called Still Life. It was the one that when I looked at it I said ooh, I don't really like that. But it has grown on me. It looks great just colored with markers. So it's a great choice if you are new to coloring and intimidated by the idea of shading. This is a set that looks better Bold & Beautiful!