Monday, December 31, 2007

Card catch up

Firstly, (is that a word?), allow me to apologize for the fuzzy scans. I have this new scanner, an EPSON, and it does not like 3D images to scan. My HP did a fantastic job of scanning, but everything has a lifespan, so... This first number is a birthday card for my stash. It's an Art Impressions stamp colored with Prismacolor pencils. I think it took me about 4 hours to color. I usually price my cards according to how long it took me to make it, but I don't know that I can charge enough for this card that someone would pay for it. Would you pay $10 for this card? This card is done with a stamp by Terry Medaris. I love his stamps. I recently made 6 or 7 cards with his stamps and sent them in to Rubber Stamp Madness for their Southwestern card submissions. I love this image because it's so quick to color. I do wish it was a little smaller, though, that way I could put a little more on an A2 card than just the image. Oh well. Yay, I finally got around to stamping a House Mouse image. I've been so busy with everything else that my HM stamps have been put on the back burner. This stamp is another one that is quick to color and make into a card. I now have about 35 HM stamps. I buy them from the HM Stamps guy. He has some great prices on Stampabilities and Penny Black. You should check him out. This last card is made using justjohanna stamps. I just felt like making an anniversary card. I hadn't used my Eiffel tower stamp yet so I thought it would be appropriate for a lovey dovey card. French stuff seems lovey dovey. Croissant. Doesn't that sound sexy? Um, ok. I think I've had enough of the spiced egg nog. I'm off to watch the New Years' festivities on the telly. Happy New Year to everyone! See you in 2008....

Friday, December 28, 2007

Friday Cards

Some cards take a long time, some don't. This first card, the 4x4 thank you card was very quick and easy. I used my new DreamKutz to cut my 12x12 paper into three 4x12 strips and then cut those down to 4x8 strips, folded them in half and voila! Big purple scallop circle punch with Stickles. justjohanna stamped image colored with Prismas. This second card was very quick to make. I first stamped the two images, the sentiment and then the strawberry row (justjohanna images) and then colored the berries with my prismas. Two reds and two greens for the pencils and done. I double-matted the image and then mounted it on red 4.25x5.5 Prism cardstock. I made two of these cards and I think I finished in about 15 minutes. I like that. This card was even quicker to make. Stamp the justjohanna "thanks ever so"on matching cardstock, color with two red pencils and then attach to premade K & Co card. I added some stitching lines and some flowers I got from an old Self-Addressed kit. Done in ten minutes or less. Yet another quick thank you card. The card base is the K & Co premade card from a stack I got at Michael's for around $6. I stamped the espresso sentiment (justjohanna) and colored the letters with a brown prisma pencil. I stamped the mug (justjohanna) onto matching cardstock and then cut it out. I hand drew the steam. Nifty, huh? This last card is another layout I copied from "Cards" magazine. I got out a pack of Self-Addressed papers and went for it. It was easy peasy. I used my new Arabesque frame from justjohanna and the sentiment (jj) positioned inside the frame with my stamp-a-ma-jig. I added jewels around the frame, but I'm not so sure that was a great idea. Hmmm. I colored the frame with my favorite Prismacolor pencil - limepeel. Man, I LOVE that color!! That's it for today. Tomorrow I'm going to put down the paper and pick up some fabric. I've got some awesome projects in the works.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Green and Blue

I got my December Self-Addressed kit and I LOVE the papers in it this month. I love these greens, blues and browns together. Of course I'm in love with my Limepeel Prismacolor pencil, so this green reminds me of that and that's probably why I like these greens. I used Sylvie for the chick on this first card. The card layout was copied from the December "Cards" magazine. I learned this trick from Johanna. Go through the book and tag the pages you like and then systematically go through and copy each card. Match up dotted paper, stripes, etc. where you can or just copy the layout and pick your own papers. This card is 4x4 - my new favorite card size. I colored Sylvie with my Prismacolor pencils - limpeel and peacock blue. This card didn't photograph well at all. It's all the greens and I couldn't get it to get to the right color. I'm having major problems with my new scanner. It doesn't like 3D objects. It focuses on the closest item to the scanner glass and then everything else is blurry. I resorted to taking pictures under the Ott light with my digital camera. If this is the way I have to do it now, I'll have to photograph the cards outdoors in the natural light. This is Gigi and I gave her some glittery bobs on her head. This is the last card I copied from "Cards". This layout is very pleasing to my eye. I love the mix of papers on this card, too. The "indulge your passion" stamp is by justjohanna and I colored it with a brown marker. Gasp! A marker?! Yes, a marker, but it isn't blotchy or streaky, so I hope it passes the Johanna Test. Thanks for looking at my blog today. I'm home all week, so I'll be posting every day this week.

Monday, December 24, 2007

A few to get started

I started making some cards yesterday. Here are a few simple ones I made to get the juices flowing. The bad thing is, my new scanner doesn't seem to scan 3D very well. I noticed it blurs under the buttons, ribbons and brads. That is just not acceptable. I guess I'll have to monkey with the scanner today. Rats.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

What a naughty kitty!

Just look at that Priscilla. She is being so naughty! Phillipe was minding his own business swimming in the fish bowl, blowing bubbles when Priscilla snatched him out and ate him up, leaving a fishy skeleton. Naughty, naughty Priscilla. No candy for you.

Friday, December 21, 2007

A few cards to start the weekend

I made these two cards using the justjohanna December sketch. I love the "tis the season" sentiment because I can color the letters. Anything I can color is a good thing. Those are justjohanna reindeer chicklets. Aren't they adorable? I think you should have some. Check out the rest of the chicklets, too. What a great collection you could have! Just type "chicklets" in the search box on the page when you click the links above and you will see there are 4 pages of chicklets! Halloween chicklets, Easter chicklets, bride and groom chicklets, oh my! So many chicklets! (Thanks, Emily!) This second card is made with new stamps by justjohanna. I never would've thought to say "Hard Candy Christmas" but it works. It's a fun thing to say. Try it. See? It's fun. The pieces of candy are all one stamp, but I cut them out and glued them down in the order I wanted. I really suck at embellishments and it used to bother me, but now I just say "whatever" and carry on. I think embellishments can be way over done. This way, I'm showing more of the stamps than the embellishments. Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Where did the week go?

Wow, my last post was Monday. This week went by so quickly! I haven't made any more art this week because, well, guess why. Yep, my shoulder again. I has been nearly unbearably painful. Nearly impossible to sleep in bed or sit at the craft table. But, now, NOW I'm feeling better. Not perfect, but better and I'm ready to craft. I took some time off from work and I plan on doing some type of craft every day until January 2 when I go back to work. I bought myself a couple of gifts for my birthday and for Christmas. I got them from Memory Lane in Quakertown, PA. I visit that scrapbook store every time I visit my sister, so I just ordered from them. They are very friendly and accomodating and they have everything you could want in that store. Check out their blog. Here's gift number one: a Clip It Up. I thought it looked like an interesting and useful item to add to my already over-crowded craft table. I got it today and it is awesome! It sits about 26" high. There are two separate tiers. You get 80 clips for the bottom tier and 40 for the top. I plan on using the bottom tier for hanging cards to dry and for keeping my design team assignments handy and organized. I have a bad habit of placing something in a "safe place" and then never finding it until it's two weeks past due. As I find more uses for this thing, I'll keep you posted. I have made cards and taken them to work to sell. I have a photo box that I usually keep the cards in, but wouldn't the bottom tier of this Clip It Up be perfect for cards? Both tiers come with separators that you can label, so that would be just too cute for various card categories, I think. I may end up buying another one. Hear that Sarah? You may be hearing from me again. :) The other item I bought was a DreamKutz. When I bought my Bind-it-All last year, I looked at the DreamKutz, and thought it was a glorified paper cutter. Well, it IS a papercutter, but it is so cool. You put your 8.5x11 paper in, turn the crank and voila! You have perfectly cut paper for an A2 sized card. Sure, you can do that on your regular paper cutter, but I find that I either don't push the paper up next to all edges of the cutter, thereby getting cooked cuts or I don't hold down the plastic shield and the paper either moves or doesn't cut through all the way. I'm sick of that. I am very eager to give this puppy a workout in the next week. Oh, this little number also cuts 12x12 paper, too. Yee haw! Watch for a post every day for the next 10 days. I can't wait to spend some serious time in the craft lounge.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mikey

Saturday was my brother-in-law, Mikey's, birthday. Ok, so he really isn't my brother-in-law, but he is related somehow. I think. Here's how it works. Try to follow along... This is the short version. Trust me.

Pam and I have been friends since 6th grade. I got married (the first time) in 1978. I married Steve. She was in my wedding. She got married (the first time) in 1978. She married David and I was in her wedding. I was a bridesmaid and John was an usher. We walked down the aisle together. John is David's brother. I got divorced 8 years later. Pam and David introduced me to John. John and I get married two years later. Now Pam and I are sisters-in-law. With me so far?

A few years after John and I got married, Pam and David split. Years later, I start working at the same place as Mikey. After a few years, he splits from his wife. Soon after that, I introduce Pam to Mikey. A short time later, they marry. So, Pam is no longer my sister-in-law but her twins are still my nephews because they are David's, too. So I consider her my sister-in-law, but more than that she is my sister.

I always tease Mikey that he is part of the family whether he likes it or not. And that is why I make him birthday cards. Whether he likes it or not.

P.S. I got this image from Jennifer and I am not ashamed to say I copied her coloring. A lot. Well, heck, she did such a great job, I just had to! Thanks for the images, Jennifer. BTW, your card is way better than mine.

Secret Santa Card

Tomorrow is "Secret Santa Day" in our department at work. We've all drawn names and so we exchange/deliver our gifts tomorrow. I'm not quite sure how the secret Santa thing works. Do you put your name on the gift or is it "secret"? I was thinking the secret Santa only meant that the person knew someone was buying you a gift but you didn't know who. Yet. Maybe I'm just a goof.

This is the card I made to go with the gift. It sure didn't scan well here. I used all justjohanna stamps. The outside stamp is the decorated tree and the inside setiment is Michelle's Merry Christmas sentiment. I'm not quite sure about the Peace and Joy brad in the upper left corner, either. Oh well. Not every card can be a masterpiece.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Great News!

If you read my blog, you've read that I've had a frozen shoulder with a lot of pain. Well, yesterday and today, no pain, BUT the shoulder is still frozen. I have been seeing an acupuncturist and he has done wonders with my shoulder. He does the needle thing and some awesome stretching massage. He is also certified in Egoscue, so we work on body positioning and stretching. I just can't believe how well this is working. I see him again tomorrow for more treatments, and I think I need to take him a little treat. If you are unfamiliar with the Egoscue Method, read a little interview here with Pete Egoscue. This really is an amazing form of physical therapy that is pain-free and gentle and IT WORKS! The book is amazing, too. If you have chronic pain, I strongly encourage you to buy the book and seek out a certified Egoscue therapist. I'm tellin' ya, I feel like crafting!!!

Friday, December 07, 2007

Princess for a Day

I was a Princess for a day!

Tomorrow is my birthday and my coworkers surprised me by decorating my cubicle. How fun is that? They decorated it up with pink streamers, white fluffy boas and pink and purple crowns with a "50" in the middle. I even had a tiara what lit up (you can almost see it in all my red hair) and a magic wand. Oh, and I got my favorite kind of birthday cake: white cake with white frosting. YUMMY! I really felt special.

They gave me some really cool gifts, too. I got some beautiful coffee mugs, picture frames, some really pretty kitchen towels and a neato basket that was made out of dried seaweed. If that last thing sounds yucky, it's not. It's gorgeous. The seaweed dried into a leather-like consistency and it is hard. I didn't get a picture of my stuff before I took it all home and put it away. Oh, I also got some very cool flowers. Check them out here:

It is a hand-painted margarita glass. It has peaches on it and then the flowers are put inside the glass. It comes in a neat box that has a recipe for peach margaritas on the bottom. Aren't the flowers gorgeous?

I took the picture next to this year's vacation picture with my sister and brother-in-law. The picture frame and margarita glass just seemed to go together somehow.

Tomorrow is my real birthday and my friends Pam and Judy are taking me up to Temecula to go antique shopping and quilt store shopping. Oh, and we will eat. Yes, we will eat. In the evening, I have plans to either go barhopping in Hillcrest or go see Eek-a-Mouse down at Cane's in San Diego. If it is raining cats and dogs, I'll just stay home and have John rub my feet all night.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

I did it!

Over on the justjohanna forum, Kim F. put out a challenge to make a card a day for the 12 day of Christmas. Since I hadn't made any cards in awhile (see post below), I thought I'd try and see how far I got. Since I needed to make some thank you cards for the birthday gifts I've received, I thought I'd make some small cards. I made about 10 cards like this. They measure 4x4 and all stamps are by justjohanna. The paper is Infuse from Basic Grey. I used my white Sharpie pen to color the music notes and the word. Thanks Kim, for the challenge. I think you got me going now. (My arm does hurt, but not so much I couldn't finish.)

Where are all the cards??

I just wanted to say why I have not made cards in a few weeks. I have a very badly frozen left shoulder. It has been frozen for over 6 months and it has been hard to deal with from the beginning, but the past 2-3 weeks have been the worst. I have been getting physical therapy, massage therapy and acupuncture to try and get this shoulder loosened up. We are all making progress, but it is a very painful one. It is very difficult for me to sit and craft, reaching for items and using any kind of exertion with my left arm. I tried sitting at my craft table last night to make even one card, but I just couldn't. The only reason I can type is because my hands and arms are resting on the gel pad in front of the keyboard. I miss my craft room and my rubber stamps so much! I can't wait to get back to them. I'm hoping with the concentrated efforts of my acupuncturist and my massage therapist, I'll be on the mend soon.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Here they are, Here they are!!

Johanna has announced the new Design Team for justjohanna rubber stamps! Congratulations, everyone!

You Want Fries with That?

Ok, today is my day to talk about the people behind the speakers in the drive-thru’s. I know you know what I’m talking about. Here’s how the conversation went today when I went to George Burgers for lunch. “Welcon to Chorch Burger, can I help you?” “Yes, I’d like a fish taco and a small coke.” “What kin’ taco you want? Beef?” Sigh. “No, I want a fish taco.” “Ok, fish taco. Anyteen else?” “Yes! A small coke.” “Tank you. Please drive up.” Ok, first of all, I cannot drive UP. They have not equipped BMW’s with an UP gear. I can drive forward, but not UP. Second, she didn’t tell me how much my order was and I couldn’t see the sign with the sun in my face, but I think the taco was $2.39. I figured about $3.50-$4.00 tops. There are three vehicles in front of me and George’s is known to be a bit slow, but that’s ok because their food is excellent, so I wait. Finally, it’s my turn at the window. She shows up at the window and says, “Five fifteen.” I shrug and hand over the $5.15 thinking that the price of the taco must’ve gone up. Either that or she charged me for some gigantor coke. Now I wait. And wait. AND wait. Seven minutes at the window. “Sheesh, this is taking a long time,” I think to myself, wishing my satellite radio was working because there was a good song on before I went under the overhang. Watching inside, everyone is working but no one is coming to the window. What’s that? I see someone and she is headed my way! Oh darn, she gets on the phone at the drive-thru (or is it drive UP?) window. Ok, so I wait some more. They must be out catching the fish and that means this is gonna be some really tasty fish taco! Three more minutes and then someone heads towards the window with a food box. Hooray! She hands me the box and I don’t even look inside. I put it on the seat beside me and she turns to walk away, but I say, “My coke?” She gives me a blank look and then the gal on the phone says, “You no order coke. You order two fish tacos!” Excuse me. I guess I did. I can’t even understand myself sometimes.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Printers are a pain in the butt!

I have had this HP 950 All-in-One printer for years. It has been my second best friend. Until now. Why do printers stop working? This printer scans like a dream. It makes decent color copies, including photo, but now, NOW! it won't work. Whenever I try to scan or make a copy, it just sits there and the message says, "Warming Up". I even went to the HP website and downloaded the newest drivers. No difference. Grrrr, I hate it when this happens. Fortunately, I got a free Epson All-in-One printer last month when I bought my laptop. I prefer HP printers, but oh well, free is free. Oh, and another thing... I bought an HP black laserjet printer last month and it doesn't work, either. I think it is the printer because I thought I was buying a new one and this one had been repackaged. It didn't even include the installation disk, and my Windows XP wouldn't recognize the printer. I'm just not having very good luck with printers these days. I can only post my cards and art via my digital camera. I guess that's better than nothing, right?