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 16, 2016

Cards and Critters Gallery

Greetings everyone!

How are you? I hope you had a great weekend and the greatness is following you into the week!

I'm slowly getting snuggled back into my routine. Today I'm showing you the fronts of some of the thank you cards I made. It's nice to have cards gracing the ol' blog again!
I used my Brusho backgrounds and Memory Box Distressed Collage dies.
For this one I used my NBUS "You're So Sweet" stamps from Simon Says Stamp.
This design I sto CASEd from my neighbor Chrissie at the Happy Little Stampers Retreat. Thank you, Chrissie!

As often happens with learning a new technique, you'll be seeing lots more Brushos ahead. I know they've been around ages already and I'm late to the scene.


England Epic Log

You might have noticed that Hammy took a back seat on my England trip. That happened so he could make a "surprise" grand entrance at each location. Ever since we've been home, however, he's been insistent that he be given his 15 minutes of FAME!

So here is the Hammy Gallery: "England From a Teacup" with his notes:
I traveled in a pretty little makeup bag, along with my very own flag of the UK. The bag was comfy and I could breath fine, but it bent my whiskers something awful!
Starting in Southampton in the foreground, you can see I had a blast at each stop along the way.
I was able to spend the entire Retreat weekend out of my hiding place and among talented friends. To show off, I learned how to balance a bottle of glue on my head.
The best part? Everywhere I went, I got lots of cuddles!

It was a pleasure being a tiny honorary member of the English society. As my friend Shirley said, it was a bit like being a tiny Olympic torch of love being passed around from friend to friend!

Me, again. Speaking of friends, when I started planning this trip almost a year ago, I made an assumption that the friends I knew in each particular county of England all knew each other, too, and were already friends because they lived nearby each other. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that a lot of them didn't know each other, so it was a wonderful bonus to sit back and watch new friendships being formed around the tables at each location. I was thrilled to be a Friendship Matchmaker everywhere I went!

Introducing Jack

It's was a busy weekend here with the boys and the granddogs.

Wait. What? Dogs with an ess? Why, yes! Allow me to introduce Jack, a German Shorthaired Pointer:
Duke's got a new playmate!
Duke loves mini-duke, but then again ...

It's hard to beat a new puppy for cuteness, but I'm leaving you with this:
Yup, Hammy has a new playmate, too, thanks to my friend Annie! I think we need to have a Naming Contest, don't you? Let me have your best ideas!


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

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*Life is too short!

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kiwimeskreations said...

OHHHH I'm first to comment!! Love your brusho backgrounds Darnell - never mind being late on the band wagon - you are on and that's the most important!! Love your cards - that green is so crisp and fresh.
I think Hammy's friend should be called Omph - he looks as though he has just landed from a hige leap and said Omph as he did!

Hannelie said...

Hi Darnell... good to know you are home safely! I enjoyed the trip with you... thanks for keeping us up to date!
Then... your cards today, are all beautiful! Love the fresh look!
Then... about blogger/google... the unfollow button looks like an open invitation for everyone to unfollow, It's got a negative vibe to it that I strongly dislike! :'(
Yay for the new family member ♥

Ruth said...

Welcome back Stateside! I'm so glad you had a great time, as did Hammy, and he has a new friend. I'd call him Filbert. Filbert the Frog. You're back in the swing of things with gorgeous cards using beautiful backgrounds. Xx PS It's actually the flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, not just England. Call it the UK for short. Confusing I know, but it contains all the flags of the home nations; Scotland, England, Wales - minus dragon, but red is in there - and Northern Ireland ;) xx

Sue said...

Hi Jan, Love the cards.

Well Hammy sure had a good trip as well.

I assume as America is so big, you get use to travelling further to meet up with friends. Here we seem to stay in the county where we live and maybe venture out into the next county occasionally. What would be a short drive for you, would be a long drive for most of us.

Jack is lovely. Glad Duke has a brother.

As to naming the frog...... Froger (my brothers name is Roger:)).

Hope you have a lovely day. Sue

Julie B said...

Super sweet that Hammy has a new friend, Ferdinand sprang to mind, Ferdy for short. Sort of sounds like a froggy chorus.
Ruth is correct in that the flag that Hammy is waving is the Union flag (Jack only on a ship) with all the national flags except Wales included. So it should be The UK flag for short.
I recognise that die of Chrissie's, I borrowed it too!!
Love the puppy too, Max says hi,sorry, woof. x

!neke said...

Home safely and life is going its way !
Great cards !!!!

Ineke X

Ros Crawford said...

Oh my... Your cards are so beautiful!! I love them all! The colours and the fabulous dies are stunning! I'm so glad Hammy had a great time and your gift from Annie is wonderful! The name Cormit (or Cor! mate!) comes to mind
However, I think that new pup has stolen my heart ...sigh ... He's so gorgeous!

Aileen said...

Love your cards with the brushos so keep on sharing as I'm still at the very learning curve of them. I have those corner die cuts and have made the cards and they just sit there needing something and bang you go and show me what I need.. Fantastic. Loved reading all your travels, my goodness you have sooooo many friends. You must have had a total ball. And hows the Mister..... Happy to have his hunny home I bet. Looking forward to seeing more from you. Hugs. Aileen

Anne said...

Hi Darnell. It was an honour to meet Hammy! Sorry you are still waiting for my parcel( I did buy it all before your visit I promise) my mum has been here and fell on an escalator . She fractured her ankle. She also has water infection and chest infection. On top of that we have had our grandsons here. Mum at my brothers and we take her home tomorrow. On my return I will sort your parcel. Anne x

Pat said...

Wow! What a lot of cards Darnell, you have been very busy! I love your Brusho creations using the collage die and then the stitched squares, especiallt the pretty die cut flowers within, all so pretty. I love Hammy's new friend and I think he should be called Gribbet as that combines 'green', as he is a pretty sort of green, with 'ribbet' for the noise a frog makes..lol, well that's my interpretation anyway. How sweet is Jack and a great new buddy for Duke too. x

Jeanne said...

Thanks for sharing your wonderful cards, Darnell. Don't feel too bad about the Brushos. I don't own any. I'm even further behind than you! LOL Great pictures of Hammy and congrats on the new playmates. A name for the frog that came to mind is either Schuster or Otis! Don't ask me why. They just popped in. :) Have fun.

Nan G said...

Welcome home Darnell! What a fabulous trip you've had! Love the cards! I've been thinking bout getting the Color Bursts. Either product looks like fun. Hugs

Nan G said...

P.S. Finally the pic enlarged so I could see those fab die cut corners!!

Ustvarjalni utrinki Tamara P. said...

Fantastic Darnell
big hug Tmaara

Happy Dance said...

Those cards are amazing!!! The dies are fabulous, and I love how you worked those colors; they're bright and happy. Sweet NBUS stamps too...perhaps a little more shopping for me later (hahahaha!!). Glad Hammy was a hit, and a wonderful world traveler. Does he have his own passport? What a dream trip for both of you. Congrats on the new granddog. He's pretty darn cute, and looks like a real lover. Looks like he's good company for Duke too. I'm drawing a blank as far as names go for that sweet little frog. The coffee hasn't hit my brain yet.... So nice to see you here, and so glad you had such a wonderful trip. Thinking of you often... Bev

My Card Attic: Hazel said...

Those cards look amazing Darnell! LOVE those Brusho backgrounds peeping out from the card fronts like that! Fabulous, colourful, but still beautifully CAS designs . . . stunning!

Hammy certainly looked like he was having a ball with all that attention - well, he is nearly as famous as his travelling companion after all!

I'm one of the lucky ones who met a new friend during my 'audience' with you (the Queen of Blog-land)who I am getting to know better and better and has even introduced me to more of her lovely, crafty friends! So, thank you once again, for coming all this way to meet your 'loyal subjects' and for the joy of forging new friendships!

Have a great week, and rest up and re-charge your batteries, you must be exhausted! Hazel xx
My Card Attic

Mac Mable said...

Glad you and Hammy are home safe and sound and that Hammy had such a great trip even if the whiskers where bent! Gorgeous cards and fabulous photos of the dogs x I think Grumpy sounds good for Hammy's new friend x

Brenda in IN said...

Welcome to your new grandpuppy, Jack. Looks like he fits right into the family. Hammy looks rested and relaxed from his trip. Your family is growing with two new additions. I love your thank you cards. I just got that same die so I now have ideas how to use it. Thank you for the inspiration.

Marybeth said...

Congratulations on Jack he is adorable and all love! My goodness your cards are all gorgeous! Love the simplicity and clean look!
Enjoyed the fun Hammy pictures! Hugs to you sweet girl!

Sammy said...

Gorgeous cards Darnell, and so lovely to see Hammy get some extra attention too. It was a perfect little surprise for him to make an appearance.
Such beautiful dogs!
Sorry, not going to be much help with naming... My complete inability to come up with names is one of the reasons I stopped writing! x

Marcia Hill said...

Welcome back Darnell! LOVED following your trip all around England and meeting all your friends...fun, fun posts! Glad you're back safe and sound (and Hammy too!)and back in the studio! :0)

KT Fit Kitty said...

Well that's a lot of news to share! Hammie certainly had a good time hehe! Love your new puppy Jack! Your trip sounds divine and how fun that you helped begin some crafty friendships! Thanks for sharing! I enjoy your blog!

Alice (scrAPpamondo) said...

Beautiful CAS and love your new puppy Jack, he is just adorable! Hammy's photos are so fun!

Shelly said...

Simply SWEET cards!
Loved reading and seeing Hammy's adventure! And what a cute puppy...Duke is just as cute, too! ;)
Wish I could throw a name in the pot, though I'm not always good coming up with names...I'll wait to hear what you choose. :)
Have a great week, hugs

Krisha said...

Welcome home dear friend.

Thanks for sharing your trip as you went, it was fun to put faces to names.

I adore Jack as I am sure Duke does too.

Wonderful display of cards, all are gorgeous and very inspirational.

conil said...

She's baaaaack!...and how! Good to see you card sharing with such gorgeous cards. I'm sure the recipients are going to be knocked out of their socks. Also, good to see that Hammie has a hoot, too, proving, once again, he's poopular on both sides of the pond (and talented as well, with his balancing act).
Jack is a handsome fellow, isn't he. Duke will have to learn to tolerate his incursions on personal space. Don't ask me for a name, I'm awful at it. Always want to give animals people names which I've been told, under no uncertain terms, is boring.
Glad to see ya...

Redanne said...

What a lovely and cheery post Darnell (except for Blogger of course!!) and your cards are truly beautiful. Thank you SO much for ours, it arrived this morning and I love it!

So pleased to see Jack, he has such a lovely face and it is good that he gets on with Duke too.

Hammy, it is fantastic to see you in the limelight, you certainly got to meet a lot of lovely people on your holiday and you look wonderful carrying the Union flag too.

Sorry Darnell, I cannot think of anything except Froggy because that is what we have been calling him since we bought him for you, I do hope though that he and Hammy get on well together and that Froggy does not interfere with the support that Hammy gives you on the crafting front..... Hugs, Annie xx

Em Louise Fairley said...

THANK YOU... My card arrived today. I love it!
Em xxx

Princess Judy Palmer said...

Fergus the Frog.

holy potato sticks it is busy today at Ye Olde Kollege.

Linda said...

Gorgeous cards Darnell .... glad you're enjoying playing with Brushos, they're so much fun.
Looks like Hammie had a good trip too ... no wonder with all those cuddles!
Your new addition looks sooo cute ... and the frog too xx

Harriet Skelly said...

I really think Hammy has earned a blog of his own and a Facebook page! Now especially since he has a new Froggy friend - they could do the blog together!! Just sayin'. Your cards are all so CAS and lovely!

Donna said...

I am so glad hammy has had his fair share of the limelight.
He really does need his own little rucksack, doesn't he? You should let him see this website : http://bettybirney.com/humphreyville.html.
I think he will like it. X
Beautiful Brusho cards, Darnell.
Glad you are finding your feet again.
PS. One of Humprey!s books (from website) tells of a new classroom pet called Og The Frog. Maybe that's a good name for Hammy's new friend? X

Bonnie said...

Although I haven't commented on each, I have enjoyed each and every one of your posts from your trip. I've especially enjoyed seeing pictures of our friends across the pond. You are a wonderful people getter together! I'm glad to see that Hammie enjoyed the trip as well. I think his friend looks like an "Inky Fingers".

Bonnie said...

BTW, Love your cards and think they are a perfect fit for the CAS Mix Up Challenge this month!

Sharon Underwood said...

I'm so excited you've picked up on the Brusho craze! I have some but hardly know where to start, so maybe you can inspire me. Love the dog pictures, especially with that caption you included. I had to laugh out loud at that one.Hammy pictures are adorable. So glad he made it along with you on the trip! Take it easy, friend!

Karen Petitt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Karen Petitt said...

Gorgeous cards Darnell, love the set of dies you used on these - will have to save my pennies lol!
Happy to see you back crafting and creating hun, the jet lag must have hit hard, it's the one thing I hated when we were able to travel. I am sorry I couldn't get to meet you hun as I am house bound still and not able to get out at all at the moment, my rotten blooming health is not fun or good right now.
Well surely if Hammy is Hammy and the frog came from Annie he should be Fannie? (I had to delete my comment and re do it as I spelt Hammy incorrectly), rough day!
Now then be careful that your Hammy doesn't start expecting the special treatment on every post Karen xx

Pat said...

I so enjoyed my virtual trip with you; thanks for letting me tag along. It's great to have you back to your she-nan-agains. I think Hammy's friend could go by FASTA- Frogs Are So Toadily Awesome!

Lisa Elton said...

I like the crisp white and fresh green on your pretty thank you cards Darnell!! Jack is certainly a handsome pup and has stolen the show today! Looks like hammy had a wonderful trip too. So nice of you to let him tag along!!

Misty Elam said...

Hammy cracks me up!! LOVE the cards too. I've never used brusho's before, but I love what you've done with them. It looks REALLY cool peeking through like that. The card next to Hammy balancing the glue on his head is really pretty too. Is that yours too? Jack is ADORABLE!!!

Patti said...

You go Hammy! way to represent cuteness all over the WORLD! : )

Sweetest of posts Darnell as are your cards! what a blessing to have YOU in all of OUR lives!!

Love your Prince Charming there so what a better name than William... oh! or George!! : )


Cheryl W. said...

So fun to see your clever and beautiful cards again. I think your frog should be called Fred. It's a great name that rhymes with so many words: fled, bed, instead, led, bred, dead, said, red, and more!

Geri said...

I'm so glad that I stopped by just before bedtime because the smile of my face will likely stay until the morning! I love all the pics of Hammie in action!

So nice to see that Duke and Hammie have new play partners! Specially nice is that your new grand-pup Jack is for real!

Glad to have you back and settled into card making again (something I really need to start before October!). Love the blue/green combo and adore the CAS thank-you cards, especially the pear!

Susan said...

Such fun to hear and see how Hammy enjoyed the trip! I bet he loved all those cuddles. And nice to meet your new grand-dog.

Lovely thank you cards with lots of brushos in them!

Karenladd said...

I got so sidetracked with the Hammy photos, waving his little UK flag, that I didn't even notice the cards at first! I do admit to an unhealthy obsession with really cute stuffed critters but honestly, Hammy is ridiculously adorable. Then, you throw in dog photos with funny captions, and I'm lost for the evening. So glad you had such a great trip, and I thank you for taking us along for the ride! As for that froggy friend, Farley comes to mind.

Linby said...

I've been catching up with your posts - looks like you had an amazing time here in the UK - what a lot of memories you have.
I love your cards, especially the TH die ones, now I have been putting off getting some of those - but now........

Lynn x

Neet said...

It really was lovely to meet up with you, I am just so sorry I could not stay long and was unable to eat (I did eat when I got home and could use a more undignified way of getting that delicious sandwich into my mouth). Thank you so much.
Thank you also for the lovely card which has just arrived, glad you liked your little things.
Last, but not least, what a lovely blog post. Hammy was a treasure and had I known he was going to be there I would have brought Spencer (the bear) along to meet him. Spencer always travels to America with me and one day, who knows, I might make a trip to close to you and the two of them can meet up.
Beautiful cards, beautiful lady, beautiful blog is my summing up. Thank you for everything.
Hugs, Neet xxx

Gerrina said...

All the thanyou-cards look so fresh with the greens or green-blue colours and as always you used some great sentiments! Hugs, Gerrina

Lisa T said...

Oh these cards are fabulous Darnell! I am late to Brusho too, I just tried it last week after a lovely crafty friend sent me some samples. But that green is just GORGEOUS.

Absolutely loved seeing Hammy's contribution to your trip. How lovely for him to meet all your friends too, sounds like he got lots of attention not to mention to the new tricks he learned along the way.

Glad you are back safely, so sorry to have missed you on your trip, we were in France for most of the time you were here - typical!

Carol L said...

I just love those collaged corners on all of your beautiful cards! I love the colors too! Jack is one handsome pointer and looks right at home with Duke. Since you already have a hamster named "Hammy", it seems you need a frog named "Froggy." Cute photos of Hammy's trip, tfs!

shirley-bee said...

Love your Brusho backgrounds, and those fabulous dies! And thank you for my thank you card :). Hammy looks so pleased with his 15 minutes of fame, and with his new playmate. And Jack - what a handsome boy!

Sybrina K said...

Well, it sure didn't take long for you to get back in the swing of things. Fab cards, fun hammy pics, and a new furry family member... Perfect!

Jean said...

Welcome home! lovely cards!

Loll said...

Your brushos cards are so beautiful Dolly! It's great to see you having fun with the magical crystals. Enjoyed seeing Hammy's view of the trip to England ... he sure was popular! :)

And welcome to Jack ... great addition to the family. :) xx

Kathyk said...

FAB post and loving the pix of Hammy and his new playmate! Glorious Thank you cards and dog pix too - love visiting your blog.

Not had the issue with the follow button so can't venture an opinion on a possible cause/fix - sorry

Happy Friday


Jenny L said...

Hi Darnell,
wonderful array of superb cards.
I love all the very fab designs, and they are so superbly created.
Great phots of Hammy, and I'm sure he is enjoying his dose of fame.
I think his new Frog Friend should be called Freddo as in the UK they have a small chocolate bar in the design of a frog and it'scalled Freddo.
Lovely phots of the dogs,and they looks so great.
Love and big hugs from my house to yours.
Lots of crafty love. Jenny L.

Di said...

What a fabulous post Darnell and Hammy :) Love the cards you've been making and the photos of Hammy enchanting us all are so cute! Jack is pretty amazing too I might add! Can't believe it's over a month since Southampton, sigh.


Di xx

Greta said...

I'm on the next plane! You made my day with the puppy dog pictures--big surprise, I know! Gorgeous thank you cards, Darnell! I really love the 2 with the little squares--gotta steal that design!

Diane said...

Fabulous cards, and as always a fabulous write up!! I love the hammy story as well..what about 'hopper' for hammy's new playmate...hammy and hopper..cute..teehee!!

Tracey McNeely said...

Darnell I love this post. So glad that you are creating again and those thank you cards look fabulous--wow, wow, wow and those two other cards. Boy you have been busy. I have yet to try Brushos and just recently heard about them so you've got me beat! Laughing out loud. So glad that Hammy enjoyed his trip. I had to show my daughter, so cute! Now Jack is adorable and in good company too. So nice to have granddogs! Have a wonderful weekend my friend! xo

Anita in France said...

I'm even later on the Brusho bandwagon, Darnell ... not a single pot graces my little craft space! Those backgrounds are just so yummy ... delicious colours, fabulous dies ... all those lovely ladies you met must've been so chuffed to open up one of these treasures! Hammy seems to be coping well with the fame and adulation ... no tantrums, no demands ... clearly he's very well brought up! His new playmate ... I know he's arrived via England, but of course he must have French ancestry (he's a frog after all!!). How about Fabrice the French Frog ... he could be Fabby for short :):)! Cute new playmate for Duke too ... don't they look happy together ... firm friends already! LYASMYLAL! Hugs & bisous, bisous, Anita :)

Birgit said...

Such fun, fun picture you took of little hammie. My you just have had a fun time and must now need a vacation from your vacation! Your sets are cards are so sweet and I'm loving your backgrounds. They inspire me to pull out my powders and play again too. Your always a great inspiration.

MRS DUCK said...

Hi Darnell
My beautiful "Thank You" card has arrived, thank you, just at a moment where I needed a cheer up . So kind of you ....you're a thoughtful gal!
Poor Duke looks a bit miffed, bless him.
It was a delight to meet Hammy. So well behaved!
As for your new friend, how about Phileas Frog to commemorate all your travelling?
Have a great weekend.
Ang x

Cornelia (fun stamping) said...

Pretty cards, but Hammy steals the show (as usual...)

Helen F. said...

Hmmm, brusho backgrounds, I have to give that a try. LOVE the effect of this technique on both of your sweet cards.
Great pics of Hammy's trip to England.
AND I just think Jack is adorable...not so sure Duke is on board yet though (?) :-)

Sue - said...

Lots of lovely cards Darnell and I can honestly say much better IRL! Thank you so much! Of course I loved the corner die so much I just had to add one to my growing stash! Your new grand dog is gorgeous, hope they both get along with each other!

cm said...

An array of amazing cards, my friend; each will be treasured all the more for YOU having spent time with those lucky to be receiving them! Duke and mini-Duke...serious cuteness! I can just imagine the shenanigans! And Hammy's travelogue: hahahhahahah! Awesome! Hope his whiskers have unbent themselves and that he's enjoying time with his new friend, Freckles! Mini Olympic torch of love...how fantastic is that!