Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Masculine Birthday Card

Creating a masculine card is not always the easiest task, but I think that this card will qualify. The patterns in the papers sort of remind me of something you might see in a men's tie. Agree?

Since the card was 5-1/2 inches wide, it was easy to just cut
all the strips 1/2 inches wide.
Instead of running adhesive down each strip, I ran double-
sided tape horizontally--three lines if I remember correctly.
Then if necessary, I adhered the ends down.  

I started on the left side--since I am left-handed--that seems more natural--
and worked my way across.
I could see  about halfway that the strips were getting a little "wonky" and I wasn't
going to end up right, so then I started working in from the right.
You do have to be careful and place then before you adhere them down.

Tip: Stamp the sentiment FIRST in case you mess up and have to start
over on a new piece of cardstock.
No sense going through all that trouble only to ruin it at the very end
and have to find a way to salvage it.

The sentiment is from a retired Stampin' Up set and I cannot
even tell you the name of it.
It has a coordinating sentiment for the inside.

The paper is from a retired Stampin' Up designer pack also.
This is a great way to use scraps, one of my favorite things to do!

I finished it off with a piece of black twine from a spool that
I got at an upholstery store eons ago.

Edited 2/29-- I noticed today that this card was perfect for the challenge over at
Less is More this week, so you can find it there along with many others that are using scraps.  

"Those truly linked don't need
correspondence. When they meet
again after many years apart their
friendship is at true as ever."
--Deng Ming-Dao

Do you have a friend like that?

Sunday, February 26, 2012


I pinned this clever idea onto my In the Garden pinboard a few hours ago and it has already been repinned 302 times. Who knows how many more times by the end of the day!

Concrete bench @ Better Homes and Gardens

So when something gets that much attention,
I thought you might like to see it too.

There are plenty of other ideas for all sorts of planters,
garden paths, borders, and birdhouses--gardening hints and tips-- 
on that pinboard too.

Here are a few of the more unusual items that have been
upcycled for planters:

Rusty toolbox @ Funky Junk Interiors

Flower bed (literally!) @ Ivy Road  

Chest of drawers @ Belle Inspirations

Enamel colander @ The Micro Gardener

Garden boots @ Flickr.com

Don't junk it! @ Inspire Bohemia

Tire planters @ More Design Please

Hanging herb garden @ More Design Please
(Would be great for condo living with only a patio.)

Tackle box planter @ Craftzine.com

Hanging gutter garden @ Apartment Therapy

What  do you have in your basement, attic, or garage
 that would be just a fabulous accent in your
garden this spring?

Butter churn?
Metal milk can?
Filing cabinet?
Antique high chair?

Friday, February 24, 2012


Who doesn't love a BLT sandwich, and this great appetizer shares the same flavors. Bacon makes anything taste good, right? It's very easy to put together and only calls for four ingredients.


1 cup Hellmann's (or Best Foods) mayonnaise (depending on if you live east or west of the Rockies)
1 cup sour cream (can be lite)
6 slices bacon--fried crispy and crumbled
1 ripe tomato, chopped in fine pieces

Mix all ingredients together gently and refrigerate until ready to serve.  Give it a few hours to allow  the flavors to marry. Serve with melba rounds, which mimic the toasted bread of the sandwich version of the BLT. This recipe can be easily doubled for a large crowd.

Freebie Friday
Since we're in the kitchen, how about these:

Kitchen gift tags

Vintage kitchen motif clip art

3 FUN Kitchen Printables

How to substitute yogurt for just about anything

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A (Totally Special) Card and a Personal Gripe

Usually when you see this sentiment--Totally Special--it's spelled "Toad-ly Special," accompanied by a frog. Although I do love cards that use puns, it's not the case on this card!

 It's an easy card to make--just three--1-3/4 inch squares with
 two rounded corners.
They are adhered to a pre-made DCWV card.
The fourth space is punched the same size and
the sentiment is stamped on the inside of the card.

Another punch, this time a flower punch from Stampin 'Up,
was used for the center piece.   
A little bling and a strip under the sentiment finished it off.
The strip really is even--it looks crooked because the card is open
for photographing purposes.

And now please indulge me for my personal gripe--
I don't do it too often!

Attention--If you work in an office where you give directions
to customers or patients who will be visiting there for the first time,
please listen up!

Yesterday I have to go see a specialist because my dentist's office
felt that the symptoms I was describing over the phone sounded
like I might need a root canal.
Oh joy, not what I wanted to hear!!!

They gave me a referral and fortunately I was able to see them in the afternoon.

I asked where their office was located since I had never been there.

She gave me the address.

I asked her the cross streets.

She gave me the cross streets.

I asked her to be more specific.
(Hello, there are four corners!!)

She gave me the cross streets again, reversing the order of the streets.

I asked her which corner.

She said the NW corner.

My tooth is hurting even worse after that ordeal!

So I drive to the appointment and fortunately am approaching this intersection
from the west.

Suddenly I see a large building with the address that she gave me.
It is NOT on the corner but before I reach the corner.
There is a shopping plaza on the NW corner!

Had I come from any other of the three direcctions I surely would have pulled into
the shopping plaza, as per her directions! 

So I do a quick left and pull into the parking lot of the correct building.

Now I notice that there is another large building direction behind this one
with the same address, building B.

I see no directory.

I drive around both buildings and see no names
on any of the windows.

I am fuming by this time.

I take a wild stab at it because I see a dental van parked in the front so
I chose Building A.

Turns out there are several dentists in this building,
including the one I am supposed to see.

I am sure I did not have a very "chair-ful" look
on my face when I walked through that door.
(Can I make that into a card?)

So, please, please, if you are giving directions, be specific!
The more information you can give, the more helpful it is.
Just because you drive there every day does not mean
the rest of use are familiar with the area.

If you want us to show up on time,
this information can make the difference.

And that's all I have to say.
My mouth hurts.

BTW--Diagnosis--No root canal needed!
(But my mouth still hurts.)

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Thank You Card and A Find

Today's card was made from Crate Paper's Sweet Branch collection. There was a sheet of punch-outs so I used several of the circles. Sort of the easy way out, but you have to find ways to make life easier when you can, right?

After adding a little bling, it still seemed to be missing something.
So later, I added the faux stitching and then I was much happier with it!

This morning I remembered that I had a box left over from last year's craft fair
that I made out of the same paper.
And I actually found it!

It is the 2-5-7-10 box like I made at Christmas.
I apologize for not capturing the dimension! 
If you refer back to that post you will know where to find
the instructions for it.  

So now I have a gift box and a thank you card when
the occasion arises.

 I will just have to decide what to put in the box!

Any suggestions?

Have a wonderful day,
 especially if it is a holiday for you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

One Paper Equals Three Cards

I had this sheet of designer paper in my hand the other day ready to put away, but then I just decided to make some cards out of it instead. Why not, I'm trying to use up my stash. I would hate to think how many times I would have to repeat that exercise to use up all of the paper I have squirreled away in this room!

I am happy to report that I walked past all of the SALE paper at Michael's this week without hardly a glance in that direction! It used to be that I'd have to have at least one of each! And if it was double-sided and coordinated with other pieces, who knows!

My objective was to let the design in the paper be the focal point, and work my stamps and embellishments into the bare spots.

Stamp--Michael's $ stamp
Spellbinders Fleur de Lis Accessories die

EK Success butterfly punch

Stamp--Hero Arts
Spellbinders Labels 16

Freebie Friday

 2 -4-1/4 x 5-1/2" flat note cards and matching front address labels

Print and frame

Free art shared by aspiring artists

What about you?
Do you have a shopping fetish?
Perhaps it's shoes, jewelry, purses? 
Time to fess up!
You'll feel better for it!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Love is All Around

Have you been wearing everything red that is in your closet recently? Valentine's Day sure does get a lot of hype. Maybe because retail can capitalize upon it for all ages. Are you looking for a last-minute, easy gift that won't break the bank? Here's a few suggestions.

@ Then She Made

@ one.simple.addition

@ Love Actually

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Popular Pinterests for the Week

Last Sunday I share with you a thought-provoking quote from my Pinboard that had received a lot of attention. It continues to strike home with a lot of people, and now has been repinned 3263 times!

 Also Popular This Week

Sangria @ Childfree Chic

@ Flamingo Toes

If you want to see what else is on my Pinboards, follow me
to it by clicking on the red button in the right sidebar!

Have a relaxing Sunday!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Cheery Heart Box and Hershey Kiss Stickers

Last year around this time I made a paper cornucopia and a heart candy holder from The Toymaker.

It is a wonderful website filled with free templates of paper toys, party favors, and other paper printables. I receive their newsletter and decided to see what other Valentine goodies they had this year.

This triangular box prints out easily on an 8-1/2 x 11" piece of paper
and is a snap to put together.

to embellish the candy bottoms of the Hershey Kissses I decided to put inside.  

I printed a sheet using regular copy paper and then ran it through
my Xyron machine. I have the 900 model.
I punched the circles out with a 3/4" circle punch and then came
the only hard part of getting the paper off to reveal the sticky backing.
It may have been easier if I had used cardstock.
But I did it in front of the TV and have nails, so it wasn't too bad!

There is a matching bag topper if you want to use the kisses and put
them in a cellophane bag instead of a box.

And for those extra Hershey kisses, here's two more ideas for them:

So there's two downloads for you on this Freebie Friday,
but I have more!

Eight Last-Minute Valentines Ideas
filled with super cute printables
and great easy tutorials!

Go check them out!

Happy Friday to all of you.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mah Jongg--Have You Heard Of It?

Mah Jongg is a wonderful game played with tiles that is gaining more and  popularity among all age groups. What I love about it is that unlike bridge, you do not have a partner, so you do not have feel beholden to another person if you make a mistake. You're on your own and no one has to know if you make an unwise decision--you either recover or are just glad to get that game over with and move on to the next!

It's takes a certain level of concentration and there is strategyy involved, but you can still enjoy yourself and socialize to some extent during the game. Typically the game is played with four people, but it can also be played with three.

The object of the game is to be the first player to use 14 tiles to make a mah jongg hand, one of many which are printed on a card. Once a year, a new mah jongg card comes out, so you play with this same card throughout the year. Some people even take their mah jongg card with them on a cruise, hoping to get a game going with others on board.

I enjoy teaching mah jongg very much and delight in seeing others appreciate the game as much as I do. I just completed teaching a series of four classes with a group of six lovely ladies in Litchfield Park, located west of Phoenix.

If you enjoy games, you might want to look into mah jongg.
Check with your community center, library, senior center,
golf club, or online to see if there are any groups in your area.

If you live in the Phoenix area, feel free to email me


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Word Play with Tagxedo

Now here's a fun card that I made last night for my daughter's birthday! I made it with a program called Tagxedo. You put in words, chose one of many shapes available, along with one of many color combinations and word layouts, and voila....

Since Kristin is a botanist, I thought that a tree was an appropriate shape!

I can think of all sorts of possibilities for this free program, can't you?

Isn't it amazing what people create, and what they so generously
 share with the rest of us?
I am forever grateful.

If you have trouble figuring it out, let me know and I'll try to give you
some help. I had to do some playing around before it came together.

Have a wonderful day.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Food for Thought

Hello Friends,
I leave you with this one thought today...

Yesterday afternoon I pinned this thought-provoking quote on my Musings and Affirmations Pinboard on Pinterest.

Apparently others have found it meaningful also because thus far
it has been repinned by 3237 people
and liked by almost 600 others.

I thought it might strike a cord with you too.

Have a wonderful Super Bowl Sunday!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Beer Bread

I have company this week until next Wednesday so my blogging is a little sporadic.

If you have never made Beer Bread, you are missing out on a very quick and easy recipe, and one that tastes yummy, straight out of the oven, or toasted.

We had spaghetti this week and I made this because I didn't have any garlic bread. I keep self-rising flour in my freezer since I don't use it very often. I won't even tell you how long it has been in there, but the bread still turned out great!

Beer Bread

3 cups self-rising flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 can (12 oz.) beer

Preheat oven to 350. Mix ingredients together and put into a greased loaf pan. The dough will be very dense, not runny. Bake for 45-50 minutes. Cool before slicing.

Now how's that for easy???
     Freebie Friday
    Valentine Wall Art

Vintage Valentine's Day Freebies

In case I don't get back to you over the week-end,
I hope yours is wonderful!
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