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. Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!

August 10, 2020

Sunshine or Moonshine?

Hello Stamplings!

I hope this finds you doing well!

I just realized that now you're going to be expecting a recipe for moonshine. I asked Dr. Google and my, is it ever a long and involved process! I'm surprised there isn't a shortage of booze on the shelves by this point in the pandemic, so Justin Case, I'm going to stock up on corn mash.

🌞🌝🌞🌝🌞🌝🌞🌝🌞
(Interesting that the moon emoji is larger than the sun emoji.)

We have a fun, wide-ranging, far-reaching, and imagination-stretching prompt for you this month at the Twofer Card Challenge. It's sun🌞 OR moon🌝. And note: there are a lot of summertime/beach themed challenges abounding in Blogland right now, so the more challenges, the merrier! 

Here are the two designs I came up with:
The item my two cards have in common is a NBUS Hero Arts die called, "Safari Sunset."

Onefer
Everything about this card is self-exploratory. Onto a piece of jungle-y pp, I layered the sun cut from more pp and inlaid with clouds. The giraffe is a stamp from Fiskars, stamped onto pp from Bo Bunny and then fussy cut, and the sediment is from W Plus 9.  EZPZ!

Challenges
Please grab our logo
Twofer
This Christmas design on the other hand ... I mean, I don't even know what to say. I knew what I had in mind, but it took some convincing for my ginfers to put it together. Quite a few bits went into the circular file and a few handstands had to happen, but eventually Mr. Muse was happy with the black and white winter sun and the Swiss dot snowfall. The peace die is from Winnie & Walter. Hammy added the star to balance the design. Peace out.

Challenges
  Snippets Playground Badge
~~~

I would love to see you play with us and enter your beautiful sun or moon designs in the gallery at TCC!
Please remember that you can make two conventional designs or one conventional design and one unconventional design using the prompt. We have winners for both categories. The fabulous Team ~ and our talented Guest Designers Mac Mable and Linda W. ~ have made conventional designs to inspire you over at the August Twofer Card Challenge! Mwah!

~~~

In other news, we were surprised recently when two peacocks came strutting by our house!
They just calmly walked on by, even with me standing in the driveway, holding Nellie. Sadly, they were so calm, they didn't fan their tails for us. They must be someone's pets and I hope they made it home okay. Never a dull moment in Sublurbia! [ETA: Maxine tells me these are peahens, not peacocks and like so many birds, the ladies don't have much to show. Thank you, Maxine!]

~~~

Enjoy your day! 
No, seriously, enjoy! LITS!* Stay safe and keep well!

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to join as a follower! Please let me know you came by so I can be sure and return the flavor!

*Life is too short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrollingClick CTL + Home. Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post. Click Page Down to reach the end of the post. Click Comments and a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

August 4, 2020

Add Schparkle at The Flower Challenge!

Hello Stamplings!

Welcome to August already! Whoosh!

August's full moon is the Full Sturgeon Moon.🐟 It's a wonderful month for star gazing and the month of the Perseid🌠Meteor🌠Shower, which peaks between August 11 and 13. This year, the falling stars peak right around the last quarter moonπŸŒ—, which means the moon shouldn't wash out too many of them!

August 1-7 is International Clown Week!🀑

And August 4-25 is the running of the internationally popular Flower Challenge! I happily have the honor of being the Guest Designer this month and the challenge prompt is perfect for me: "Add Sparkle!" 

Who doesn't love a little schparkle on a card?!
This pretty flower (which in itself is shaped like a schparkler!) is a Penny Black cling stamp called, "Together." Loll taught this technique at our last retreat. In brief, you stamp your image with Versamark ink, set it with sticky embossing powder, brush it with Pearl-Ex pigment powders, and then heat-set it again. Loll does a great job of explaining it here.

I was itching to add schplatter, but decided to keep it simple with just a lovely sediment and a pointed narrow Poppystamps frame to draw your eyes in. You know, to the flower, but not so far in that you're cross-eyed.

Here's a closeup:
I hope my card has inspired you to glitterize, glossify, wink, or otherwise add schparkle to your pretty flower design for this month's The Flower Challenge! I can't wait to see what you create!!πŸ‘€

I. Hammy's Union Update

You might wonder if Hammy was upset that I used Pearl-Ex instead of letting him wink on the schparkle. He wasn't. I've given him some time off after several exhausting negotiating sessions with me about the advisability of joining/forming a union.

After my post about this, Hammy was very kindly invited to form an offshoot chapter of the Canadian Therapeutic Riding Horse's Union by his friend Susan. And then Mrs. A. (his friend from England) formed HAMAS (Hampster and Mice Appreciation Society) in Hammy's honor. Lastly, he discovered that there was an old unexpired Union licensing agreement available on Ebay in South America. 

But in the end, after a lot of defibrillation, he decided that I provide a pretty amazing environment for him and I meet his every little need. So we're all good for now, but I must hurry and finish this because he asked me for some peeled grapes ten minutes ago. 

II. Nellie Update

Nellie made it through her appointment at the vet where she had a great checkup and she got a passing grade on her teeth, except for her two teeny-tiny front teeth on the bottom which had to be pulled because of bad pockets of bacteria. Two days later, she was pampered at the groomers, so her needs have all been met now, too. 

Well, except for the ever constant . . .
Sugar-free from now on, little girlie!

~~~

Challenges
Please do grab our logo to display on your own blog...or Hedgie
~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy! LITS!* Please take care and be well!

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to join as a follower! Please let me know you came by so I can be sure and return the flavor!

*Life is too short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrollingClick CTL + Home. Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post. Click Page Down to reach the end of the post. Click Comments and a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

July 27, 2020

Christmas Critters

Hello Stamplings,

Welcome to the 27th day of July, 2020, more than halfway to Christmas. No one knows what the world will be like 21 weeks from now, but if nothing else, we can exchange or donate Christmas cards!

I hope so, anyway, because my creativity wagon wheels have traveled steadfastly down Christmas Road for several days now. This time my yuletide makes feature my faves: critters!
You know I do love froggies. I never tire of this old Purple Onion frog. He's been given googly eyes by Hammy and a pretty red bow in celebration of Christmas in July. The banner is from Concord & 9th, the sediment is from GKW, and the card base is linen. I mean, what can I say, another QACAS shazambam card.

Challenges
Twofer
Same design, different critter! The thing is, this is such an easy sketch and I have no end of critters, so once I started going through my critter drawers (excuse me?), I couldn't stop making them! This one is a dog from a stamp set by Paper Smooches called "Santa Paws." I do chuckle at how it turned out because the dog looks like he is walking a gangplank! Or a diving board!

On the off chance that you aren't familiar with this Christmas character, this dachshund is the star of a children's book called, "Dixon Destroys Christmas." It's really charming and carries you through the escapades of a miniature dachshund named Dixon who has an overbite, an overactive bladder, and an overachiever personality disorder. You can just tell by that goofy smile that a lot of ornaments are destroyed as you follow his journey through the book!

Sorry, wait. Before you go googling it for your grandchild, I just made that up. But it could be a book. If you want something easy and addictive that works for all your bird and critter stamps/dies, give this fun sketch a go!

Challenges


Nellie's Notes

Speaking of dogs, you haven't seen Miss Nellie in a minute:
You know how she likes to guard the table when I'm outside taking photos of my cards Justin Case any squirrels show up to startle me. Yesterday I dropped down on the other side and took this shot of her from underneath the table. Did someone say, "cookie?"

Tomorrow the poor thing is going under to have a complete dental checkup and clean. She just turned nine and the records from the previous owner show dental disease, so we need to have our vet take a look at what's going on in that sweet stinky mouth of hers. 🀞

~~~

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

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to join as a follower! Please let me know you came by so I can be sure and return the flavor!

*Life is too short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrollingClick CTL + Home. Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post. Click Page Down to reach the end of the post. Click Comments and a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

July 22, 2020

Celebrating Christmas in July!

Hello Stamplings!

How are my fellow Covid Shut-ins today? Weary? I don't even have any uplifting advice to make that go away except to suggest you turn on your favorite kind of music and enjoy!  Try not to get a black eye like I did.  

I'm all about QACAS Christmas today. You might think, oh, thank goodness, I'll forget that it's 96 and humid outside. Or you may think, oh, no, no, no, forget about it, I am not looking at Christmas cards in July. You go on then with your bad self and I'll see you next time. No worries.

Onefer
This is a one-layer card made with a NBUS stamp and die set from Simon Says Stamp called "Winter Scene." It was the most fun Hammy and I have had since the time that Greyhound bus filled with members of a British football team took a wrong turn and ended up in our driveway. (That was back when they still allowed drinking on the bus.)

This set has the frame and hills as one stamp and then separate stamps of mountains, reindeer, trees, a house, stars, moon, and four sediments. After I colored, Hammy handled the winking. There are many possibilities for laying out scenes and we told each other stories as we created.

In this scene, we are looking out one of the windows of Santa's house and we see Wilbur and Walter, two of the reindeer out for a nighttime stroll. The problem is they have no sense of direction, as you can plainly tell, and they can't agree on which way to go. Because of that, Santa doesn't use them to pull the sleigh. Well, you ask, why then are they there? Many people don't know this, but Santa has a whole stable full of shelter reindeer that nobody wants. They live long and happy lives because of him. πŸ₯°

Challenges
 

This QACAS Christmas card features a NBUS nativity scene called "Heavenly" by Penny Black. I die cut it from gold paper and then used MFT stitched dies for the popped-up oval and the rectangle panel. The sediment was heat-embossed in gold.

Challenges
Right Click to SaveTake away banner
~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy! LITS* so take care!

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to join as a follower! Please let me know you came by so I can be sure and return the flavor!

*Life is too short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrollingClick CTL + Home. Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post. Click Page Down to reach the end of the post. Click Comments and a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

July 17, 2020

Butterfly ~ Butterfly II

Hello Stamplings!

I hope you're doing okay as another week whooshes by. I walked by a store yesterday and they had Halloween costumes in the window! 

Mmm, no. That's a lie. I'm not going downtown and, hence, I didn't walk by a store with Halloween costumes. But the way this year is flashing by, perhaps it is happening! 

I'm here to remind you that there is only one week left to enter your cards in the 29th showing of the Twofer Card Challenge, where the prize is ten million dollars and the prompt is:

πŸ¦‹BUTTERFLIES!πŸ¦‹

What? Wait. No. Move over. You see what happens when I let Hammy type my post! What a liar he is! (Well, that's a bit harsh. He thinks of it as teasing.) There is no prize other than the possibility of seeing your name up in lights on the winner's post! But, hey, that's always fun!

We made these two designs to inspire you:
These are a bit artsy-ish for me, aren't they? You could say I've spread my wings! πŸ˜† This time the item my two cards have in common is a NBUS stamp from Docraft Papermania called, "Square Urban Stamp."

Onefer
For this encouragement card, I simply stamped the image with Versamark and heat-embossed it in gold on black card. The gold-embossed sediment is from STAMPlorations. To focus your eyes, I added gold border strips on each side. QACAS.  (Wouldn't this image be perfect stamped on coasters?)

Challenges
Please grab our logo
Twofer
For this birthday card design, I placed a square card over a piece of scratch paper and verrrrrry carefully stamped the image in black four times around the corners of the card (after first stamping off once to mute the black ink). Then I had a lie down and asked myself why I hadn't just used my gray ink pad.

Then I cut two circles out of the center. I replaced the center circle after gold-embossing the sediment from Stamps of Life, "Sentiments4Circles." I colored the butterflies in oranges and Hammy added his winking, even though you can't see the schparkle nor the juiciness of the oranges. Finally, for a little dementia, I ran an orange marker around the inner rim of the outer circle.

Challenges
OUR BLOG BADGEGrab the Badge
~~~

I hope my cards have inspired you to make two butterfly designs per the rules and join in the fun at the Twofer Card Challenge! Mwah!
~~~

I will leave you with a photo of one of the butterflies I am blessed to see enjoying the butterfly bush outside my Playhouse window. It's not a Monarch visiting this time, but the large tiger swallowtails are equally mesmerizing!

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 join as a follower! Please let me know you came by so I can be sure and return the flavor! I'm slower at visiting now, however, because I'm older and I look out my window a lot.

*Life is too short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrollingClick CTL + Home. Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post. Click Page Down to reach the end of the post. Click Comments and a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)