A site for my handmade cards, accompanied by my photos and written meanderings which are occasionally witty, often tongue-in-cheek, and rarely profound. Beginning in June 2013, you'll also see lots of NBUS, which is an acronym I coined for Never-Before-Used-Schtuff. Note: my Privacy Policy can be found at a tab below and you can find my NBUS Challenge online. I hope you'll join in the fun there! Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!

August 31, 2013

Book of Composition ~ CASology #59; MUSE #32; NBUS #47

How Dee!

I imagine a lot of American stampers and crafters are off on a three-day weekend for Labor Day end-of-summer happiness.  Then again, a lot of American stampers will be staying home and having a wonderful three-day weekend getting crafty!  That'll be me.  We usually lay low and stay off the roads which are overcrowded with peeps rushing to and fro.
And why is it, do you suppose, that we don't actually use the word "fro" in our everyday lexicube?  It certainly fits the modern convention of abbreviated words.  Hmm?  Nah.  Me neither.  It just sounds too odd.  "I've just come fro the store ..."; I've gotten a letter fro Jane ... ."  It looks too much like one of my typos where I meant to say for and mistyped it fro.  Never mind.  A bit more of that nonsense and we'll all be froing at the mouth.

So then what happened was I wasn't going to play in this week's CASology challenge where the cue card is "Book."
Sometimes the word is too broad for me to narrow down to one card, you know?  There were endless possibilities, but Hilda the hamster in my head wouldn't settle on one.  (You should check out the gallery!  It's very obvious that many artists didn't have a bit of trouble making genius cards with the word!)

Then I saw the current MUSE Card Club Guest Designer's card. 
The Guest Designer is the brilliant Lori Techler of Inkling Aloud.  As you know, sometimes when I look at an inspiration photo or sketch, Hilda helps me imagine what it would look like flipped.  When I envisioned Lori's card upside down, like this:  (stick with me)
I immediately thought of one of those black and white spotted composition books.  Like this:
So I made this:
Composition:   2 a work of music, literature, or art.
I took an artsy shot of my card fro the top of the washing machine in the garage with the DS's (now twins') chalkboard in the background.  The card base is made from this awesome shiny faux leather paper that is magical for making little purses for cards.  And, today, for making a faux composition book to CASE Lori's design!
The Washi tape and the little conversation bubble stickers are today's NBUS.   I'm not sure what I'll use my card for, perhaps for my niece in college, or perhaps I'll turn it into a gradulations card in the spring. 
Enjoy your weekend!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!*  It's supposed to cool off here so I'm hoping to do some overdue gardening, being careful not to overdo.  Oh, that reminds me. 
Last week when we were heading out to an appointment, I mentioned to Mister that we had somehow lost all trace of three plants that used to be in these rocks:
Only one week later, when I went out to my lunch with the girls, look what had sprouted like hope eternal!
It's a bit bed raggled because we've had lots of heat and wind, but it's almost unbearably sweet, don't you think?
As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower!   

*Life Is Too Short!  
Paper:  Unknown PP
Stamps:  None
Ink:  Markers
Punch:  SU! label
Stickers:  Mrs. Grossman
Washi Tape:  Freckled Fawn

August 30, 2013

Birthday Silhouette for Hannelie! CQC #204; CTS #43; NBUS #46; OLW #155; SSWC; STB

Hi there!
And here we are, whooshed back around to Friday! 
I had a busy day yesterday, so lots to show you if you have the time.  First of all, I had a lovely picnic lunch with some of my friends.  I think you've met them all before.  I have been house-bound for a week and it was wonderful to get out!  Would you like to see us all again?  Oh, good:
Donna, Darnell, Sue, Nancy, Helene, Cec, Barbara
Before I left for lunch, I noticed online that this week's One Layer Wednesday (OLW) challenge is "Silhouettes."  Not the machine, the image.  The very talented hostesses of this challenge rotate the duty each week and this week's hostess is the fab Karen of Snippets. 
I haven't been able to play in OLW for awhile, but this time I knew immediately what image I wanted to use.  Do you remember this SU! silhouette stamp?  I've always loved this image of a sweet young lady with her little Scottie** at her feet.
While I like this silhouette stamped in black, I thought my choice of sediment would be a good way to bring some color to the card.  I've also been wanting to doodle a frame like I see so many of you exspurtly do.  It's really cool, especially if you're a little shaky anyway.  It was so much fun, I just kept going and "stitched" a frame while I was at it.
So then.  In my very s-l-o-w quest to revamp the Pigpen, formerly known as the Playhouse, I have managed to clear off a couple of shelves of my bookcase and as a result, things are starting to just lie about waiting to be reassigned a designated spot.  Things like a Strathmore postcard pad.
I have had the pad for ages and never used it, making it one of today's NBUSes.  I realized that the little lady silhouette would fit in the perfect space provided and anywhizzle, what can be more one-layer than a postcard?!! 
Here is one side:
and here is the other:
I used a couple of flower and leaf stamps (more NBUS) from the Paper Smooches "Crystal Clear" set to create a lovely background for my "letter."
So then.  After lunch I received an email head's up from my friend Bev (of Happy Dance) letting me know that today is the burp day of another friend, Hannelie of Desert Diva!  (I'm sure a lot of you already know Bev and Hannelie, but if you don't, you really should bookmark these links!!)
It is a pleasure to wish Hannelie all the best on her special day!  Even better, I made her a virtual card, again using the lady silhouette stamp which hadn't been put away yet.  I decided to use the current sketch from CAS(E) This Sketch, designed by the fantastic Karolyn Loncon, only I flipped it.
For my colors, I decided on the current scheme from ColourQ:
 And I made this birthday card for Hannelie:
I had a couple of pretty used stamps that fit perfectly for the sketch, the colors, and the image!  Our last NBUS for today is the SU! letterpress "Fancy Fan" that I used on the card base:
Hannelie is not only an incredible card artist, she's also very generous.  Quite often you can find her fantastic sentiments available on her site absolutely free!  Thank you, Hannelie, for your constant inspiration and generosity!  I wish you many, many more happy birthdays!!


I'm also entering my birthday card in the current Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge which is "Anything Goes," and the current Seize the Birthday challenge which is also "Anything Goes."  Please make sure you check out the challenge blogs for prize sponsor information and rule details.  I hope you get a chance to play, too!

Enjoy your day!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 
As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower!   

*Life Is Too Short!  
Good Friend
Paper:  PTI white
Stamps:  Hero Arts D3066; SU!
Ink:  Versafine onyx black;
  Kaleidacolor autumn leaves
Stamps:  Hero Arts H2142, A2051;
  Rubber Stamp Tapestry 42022-D;
  Paper Smooches J2S161; SU!
Ink:  Versafine onyx black:  SU!
  Bermuda bay, calypso coral, lucky limeade
Paper:  PTI white and SU! colors
  as above, plus concord grape
Stamps:  SU!; Avery Elle "Fanfare"
Ink:  Versafine onyx black
Impression Plate:  Sizzix for SU!
  letterpress "Fancy Fan"
**Mister and I once owned a Scottish Terrier we named Heather.  We're original like that.  We were newly married and wanted a dog to practice parenting.  We failed miserably right from the get-go.  We used to go to a place called a library in the 1900s and we researched how to buy a dog.  We're geeky like that.  We were clearly advised in italics not to buy a dog from the first place we went.  We did. 
Heather didn't come with a guarantee.  We were starving students and had no business spending money on a dog.  (This was before there were "rescue dogs.")  She was unwell from the start, diagnosed with distemper.  That meant vet bills and lots of messes.  She ate better than we did for months, hamburger mixed with cottage cheese.
She recovered physically, but mentally she was psychotic.  If she got around other dogs she would become like a thing possessed.  That wasn't the least bit embarrassing.  This was before there were dog whisperers.
Heather eventually found a new home and luckily we had better luck when we had a human baby, followed by a long succession of lovely dogs.  Phew!

August 28, 2013

Christmas Cuteness ~ CHNC #139; MM #72; NBUS #45; Rudolph 8/13

Glorious Greetings to You!

Over time, I've been very fortunate to have received treats from friends, like die cuts, stamp-offs, stamps, ephemera.  I've seen ephemera used as a crafty term and it confuses me.  The word means "of no lasting significance," which is odd to me since what we put on our cards and crafts we hope will have lasting significance.  I must be missing a definition somewhere, but I'm not smart enough to dwell on it, so I'll move along.

I've kept these treats handy so I could use them on cards and thank the gifter on my blog and there they have sat, ignored.  I've decided my next project is to follow through on my intention.
For todays card, I'm delighted to use an image that I received from my talented and fun/funny friend Lynn of Creative Crafts by Lynn.  It karacked me up when she used it on a delightful card on her blog.  The stamp is by Stampendous, but I couldn't find it anywhere, so Lynn very kindly stamped off several images for me to use.  This community is so darn NICE and neighborly!  Thank you again, Lynn!  And since this is my first time using one of the comical images, it is also today's NBUS.
Naturally, I had to find a couple of challenges to play in!  So, in Alpha Betty order we have:
  • Rudolph Day, a monthly challenge that runs from the 25th of the month to the last day of the month.  Your entry can be anything festive, not just cards.  The challenge is hosted by the fabulous Sarn via her Stamping for Pleasure website.
Please click on the links for any sponsor information, rules, etc. and please join in the fun!!
My card:
Isn't he the cutest cat showing where curiosity got him!  I just cut strips of the red glitter paper for the margin and cut the circle with a die.  I decided to leave the kitty and garland black and white, like a pen and ink sketch.  Of course, I had to add the googly eyeballs!
And if that's not enough giggles for you today, I bring you this funny:
Enjoy your day!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 
As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower!   

*Life Is Too Short!  
Paper:  PTI white; SU! glitter red
Stamps:  Stampendous
Ink:  Whatever Lynn used
Die:  Spellbinders Circles Classic
Score tool and googly eyeballs

August 25, 2013

PTI August 2013 Blog Hop, Pixie's #87, and NBUS Galore!

Happy Happy Sunday!

On the 25th of every month, the fantastic Nichole Heady of Inspired hosts a Papertrey Ink blog hop.  The August hop consists of six Inspiration Boards with photos and sketches. 

I was planning to play along in the Stamp A Faire yesterday, but I ended up making cards for the hop instead.  For the first time ever, I made a card for ALL six IBs!  What a fun and relaxing and recuperative day I had!
Here, one-by-one, is each Board, followed by my card.








Phew and shazambam, I should have surgery more often!  (NOT!)  Aren't those great sketches and colors to keep in your GoTo folder?!  You don't need to pick a favorite, but I don't mind telling you mine:  the peaches with seed pearls.  And the NBUS, child, there's a bunch of that, too!  And, oh, yes, I used some scraps and snippets on some of the cards, so I will be joining in the fun at Pixie's Crafty Snippets Playground!  If you would like any of the card details, just let me know.
I also love the manly-man last card, except that now that I look at it here, I wish I had used a manly loop twine bow rather than the organza.  I'll be changing that before mailing because we are in the 21st century, not the 11th when men of class could be seen sporting organza leggings for special occasions.  As we've seen, over time hosiery became an acceptable fashion item for women, which men eschewed, until at last we find modern men and women wearing no leg garments whatsoever.
(Please note the word eschewed is no longer commonly used because so often listeners are confused by the speaker's ability to sneeze in the very middle of a sentence without breaking stride.)
Would you like even MORE inspiration?  Well, I have that for you by way of our latest new friend!  Please help me welcome Jill Norwood of Greenwood Girl Crafts.  Jill has been blogging since 2010 and has oodles of card art to stun and amaze you!  Welcome, Jill, and thank you for joining our crafty party!
Enjoy your day!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 
As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower!   

*Life Is Too Short!  

August 23, 2013

Marybeth, Here's To You!

Hi there!  Here we are all whooshed back around to Friday!

This is a scheduled blog hop post in celebration of my friend Marybeth's birthday.  Since her birthday has already passed, hopefully this will be a huge surprise to her!
If you haven't yet visited Marybeth's website (Marybeth's Time for Paper), the huge surprise will also be yours when you click the link.  From her first post to her most recent, she will delight and amaze you with her card artistry!
Happy Belated Birthday, Marybeth!!
This is a much-loved image from SU!  I paper pieced all the bits, except for the grass, and I glossifed the little pot of flowers.  NBUS #40 is the lace ribbon which was a gift that came in a baggie, so I don't know the name of the manufacturer.  I thought this card was perfect for sweet Marybeth!

Thank you to the party hostesses, Joyce and Cathy, for arranging today's surprise belated birthday hop for Marybeth!  To see all the other fantastic party cards, here is a amazing blog hop trail of inspiration for you!

Enjoy your day!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!*  

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower!   
Edited to add:  Thank you so much for all your kind wishes following my last post!  The surgery went fine.  I'm sore and tired, but doing well.  Mwah!
*Life Is Too Short!  


August 20, 2013

BLAST OFF! ~ DD #66; LIM #133; PIXIE'S #86; SWOYWW #220

Hope this finds you well!  Grabba cuppa.
I've made a card for the current Less Is More challenge of "Round and Round" using the colors of the current Dynamic Duos challenge of "Pool Party and Black," whiff a dessert option of embossing.  Since I used scraps for part of the card, I am also taking my card to show my friends at Pixie's Crafty Snippets Playground, where we are all becited to have a new mascot named Parsnips! 
If you are popping in from the hop at Seriously, What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday (SWOYWW) (formerly known as WOYWW), you'll want to see what my desk looks like at the mo:
Sorry to say that I didn't make any forward motion in the Playhouse revamp since you were last here.  The way I organize, which would be in an organized fashion,  I need a few uninterrupted days in a row.  I'm hoping that will happen this coming week. 
Here's a close-up view of my card, sitting on the sill above:
When I was ruminating about the stamps I had with wheels, or things that go round and round, I thought of this old stamp I got for the twins (blue-handled item in the desk photo) with an image of a rocket.  Rockets go round and round.  You might say they orbit.  They sometimes even go to the moon, so it seemed only right to have Mr. Moon waiting there! 
The twins have used the rocket stamp on cards before, but I never have, so it is today's NBUS (never-before-used schtuff).  I accomplished the dessert option of the DD challenge by heat embossing both the moon and the rocket images in black.
We like to show our critters, too, on our WOYWW hops, if we have 'em.  As some of you have shared, hummingbirds seem to be growing in population everywhere.  For several years we have had a confirmed bachelor at our feeder affectionately called "Hitler" because no other hummers were ever allowed to drink from HIS feeder. 
Until recently.  He now appears to have a wife and a young'n or twin young'ns out of wedlock, we can't tell.  It's extremely difficult to get in close enough to see if there is a wedding ring.  All we know is, there are now three mouths to feed and we have gone from filling the feeder every two weeks to filling the feeder every two days! 
I was able to capture this picture of Hitler:
He has the classic bright red neck of an Anna's hummingbird.  And here are a couple of pictures of one of the new family members.
(Robin, notice how orange his downy underfeathers are!)
I think this is a male youngster.  You can just make out the beginnings of the red neck feathers.  (Ha!  Never thought you'd find "red neck" on my blog!) 
They are a blast to watch and they are even making polka dot patterns on the deck!  Here look:
You can't do all that drinkin' without doing a lot of peeing!
Wish me luck with the revamp.  I'm having outpatient surgery on Thursday morning to replace my defibrillator/pacemaker.  It is six years old and the battery has run its course.  I will be housebound and on limited activity for a week, so I'm thinking it will be the perfect opportunity to TDK my schtuff.  Yay!  I'll take breaks for blog visits, so please let me know you came by and I will return the flavor! 
Enjoy your day!  No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 
*Life Is Too Short!  
Paper:  SU! pool party and black
Stamps: moon by Inkadinkado 8907M;
  rocket unmarked
Ink:  Silhouette black EP; Sakura
  clear star glitter pen
Corner Chomper