Wednesday, December 31, 2008


I've begun preparing for the New Year. My first workshop is scheduled for the 3rd and we are leaving Christmas and Winter behind. If only it were THAT easy to leave Winter - but at least we can in our cards.

This is one of the cards that I will be demo'ing on Saturday. It is a CASE of a card on Splitcoaststampers. I loved the layout and the beautiful colors Ibirus used - but I changed it up by changing the papers, stamp sets, ribbon and bow placement.

All products used are Stampin'Up! DP is Bella Rose, Cardstock: Riding Hood Red, Pirouette Pink, Old Olive. Ribbon: Old Olive Grosgrain. Stamp Set: Bloomin' Beautiful. I also used the Top Notes Bigz Die with my Big Shot and trimmed around the scored area to achieve the double layer.

I received so many beautiful handmade cards for Christmas that it would be impossible to share them all - so I picked the first 5 I received to share here.

The first one I received is from my niece, Alanna Weishaupt. The inside featured a photo of her two beautiful daughters, Annabelle and Aubrey.

The next is from my friend, Sarah Johnson. I love that she put the verse on the FRONT of her card to make it the focus of the card. The antiqued parchment look really makes this a favorite for me.

My nephew, Joseph, and his wife, Katie, welcomed their own Christmas Blessing this year: Layla Ann Hersemann. The addition of their family photo next to the Holy Family reinforces to me that Jesus, while 100% divine, was also 100% human and that his birth was a joyous event then and now.

Isn't this the cutest little snowman???? I am a snowman FANATIC and this guy looks so happy - and a bit mischeivious. Doesn't it look like he's throwing snow everywhere???

This card was made by my newest friend, Gloria Williams.

And last but certainly not least is this card created by my oldest (not in age but in time) friend, Cindy Christensen - who may NOT be speaking to me as I convinced her to stamp and CUT-OUT all the cross/baby combinations for each of her cards. She only makes A HUNDRED so I don't know what all the fuss is about!!!! LOL!

Thank you to all who sent Christmas Greetings - whether handmade or storebought. I appreciated the thoughtfulness of the sentiment in each and every one.
Have a good day today and be careful if you are out and about tonight.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


My new SU! stamp sets arrived yesterday and I got a few minutes to play with them this afternoon. I LOVE both sets! One is a 2nd level hostess set and the other is a for purchase set - both being offered in the upcoming Spring/Summer 2009 Catalog.

I fell in love with this set! How cute are these little fellas???? I stamped the bees on Creamy Caramel, colored them with markers and a Gel Pen - them stamped them a second time on Whisper White, cut out the bodies on two of them and the body and wings on the one in the upper right. The wings on this one are folded out to make them 3 dimensional and all have a light coating of stardust stickles to make them sparkle.

This little honey jar and greeting are stamped on the inside of the card. I just LOVE this set!!!!!

This card is made with the hostess set. It is a two-step stamping flower (though I did not use it in this manner), flower buds, leaves, hummingbird and small flower. It has hundreds of possibilities for use - but I tried to keep it fairly simple and just used the outline flower - stamped it three times, cut two out and popped the layers up with dimensionals. I'm not happy with the background treatment - I wanted a distressed, grungy look - but it didn't quite turn out as I envisioned.

That's it for now. Hope you enjoyed the sneak peek of a couple of the new stamp sets.


Friday, December 19, 2008


Who knew husbands could be creative geniuses??? My dh usually spends his downtime in his recliner, tv on, sawing logs - and is in no fit state to be creative. Not a couple of nights ago though. He was busily working away all day and evening in the basement. Last night while I was tidying up the house so I could get right to my playtime after dinner John (my hubby) came up from the basement carrying THIS!
John is from the Middle East - near where Jesus was actually born - and takes exception to our little wooden stables that we use here in the U.S.A. to display our nativity scenes at Christmas. Structures over in that area were NEVER made of wood and in that time period stables AND houses were often carved right into the mountain side or made of the white stone common in that part of the world. Therefore, I now have this wonderful cave to display my nativity! What do you think of it? I LOVE IT!!!!

I have been busy trying to re-package edible gifts that I've picked up for Christmas gifts. Store packaging is usually so UGLY - and besides - its fun to devise ways to make them look better! This particular box contains yummy Butter Fudge that will be going to one of my husband's brothers.


SU! Holiday Treasures Designer Paper

SU! Old Olive Card Stock

Tan Linen Card Stock from Hobby Lobby

SU! Chocolate Chip Card Stock

SU! Very Vanilla Card Stock

Diamond Dust

Stardust Stickles

1/2 Pearl

Brown 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon

Cuddlebug Snowflake Die

Martha Stewart Branch Punch

Martha Stewart Snowflake Punch

Greeting - SU! Season of Joy

Chocolate Chip Ink

Sponged - Close to Cocoa

White Gel Pen

Thanks for visiting - and a special thank you to all TEN of you who subscribed to my blog this week!!! How exciting for me!!!

Remember - whether you say Merry Christmas or simply Happy Holiday - there would be no holiday to celebrate on December 25th if not for the birth of Christ. It would simply be just another day. HE is the reason for the season.


Sunday, December 14, 2008


I was looking through the Splitcoaststampers gallery today and came across the sweetest little Santa Treat Box by Samantha Parisi! I've been trying to come up with an idea for cute little Christmas favors for my nieces and nephews and thought these boxes would be perfect! Once filled with candies, toys, money etc they can be hung from the Christmas tree as ornaments. One for each of the kiddos pretty much fills my 4ft tree. LOL!

Red,White,Black,Blush, & Gold Cardstock
Sticky Strip
Papercutter with Scoring Blade
1/8" hole punch or Crop-a-dile
Sponge Dauber
Regal Rose Ink Pad
Cuttlebug Embossing Folder & Die Cut Machine
SU!Scalloped Circle Punch
SU! Word Window Punch
1 1/2" Circle Punch
1 1/4" Circle Punch
3/4" Circle Punch
1/4" Circle Punch
White Gel Pen
Small Gold Jingle Bell, White Pom-Pom & White Holiday Twine

1. Cut red cardstock to 4.25" x 11". With a pencil mark the middle (2 1/8') of each 4.25" end.

2. Score at 5 1/2" lengthwise.

3. Line up the pencil mark on the short side with the middle of the long side. Score along this line. Repeat on all four sides.

4. Fold along all score lines keeping pencil marks to the inside. Lay the piece lengthwise in front of you. Apply sticky strip to the top-left and bottom-left sides of the piece as shown. Adhere the box together by folding in the middle and bringing the sides together.

5. Using a 1/8" hole punch, punch a hole on each side approximately 1/4" down from the top.

6. Emboss a 3.5"x 3.5" piece of white cardstock using the Cuttlebug embossing folder. Punch a scalloped circle for Santa's beard, and a hat band using the Word Window punch. Keep the remainder of the embossed cardstock to make Santa's mustache.

7. Since I didn't have a punch that would work for Santa's Mustache I made a template by folding a 3/4"x 2" piece of cardstock in half lengthwise and drawing a leaf shape from corner to corner against the fold. Cut along the lines to create your template then trace around the template on the back of the scrap of embossed white from creating Santa's beard and hat band. Cut out Santa's Mustache. Punch a 1 1/2" circle and a 3/4" circle (or 1/2" circle for a smaller nose like on the box shown at bottom of post) from Blush Cardstock and punch two 1/4" circles from Black cardstock.

8. Using a sponge dauber and Regal Rose Ink Pad, create cheeks on the largest Blush Blossom circle and lightly sponge the edge of the smallest Blush Blossom circle.

9. Assemble all the punched pieces as shown in the photo on the left and trim off the top of the Blush Blossom circle that shows above Santa's hat band.

10. Add catchlights to Santa's eyes using a white gel pen.

11. Place Santa's face so that the edges of his hat band meet the edges of the triangle box.

12. Cut a 1/4"x4.25" strip from Black cardstock. Adhere it onto the triangle box leaving more hanging from one side than the other. Trim both sides to the edge of the box. KEEP THE LARGEST PIECE OF BLACK SCRAP. You will use this to create Santa's belt buckle.

13. Cut a 1/2" square from gold (or yellow) cardstock. Trim the 1/4" scrap piece of black created from step 12 above to make it square and adhere to the center of the gold square. Place the buckle in the middle of Santa's belt being careful to line up the upper and bottom edges so that the belt looks as if it continues through the belt buckle.

14. Gently squeeze open the top of the box and fill with candies, money, small gifts etc. Run a piece of holiday twine through the holes and tie the top closed then tie the top of the twine to create a loop for hanging.

15. Tie on a gold jingle bell, add a pom-pom and hang him on your tree! Isn't he adorable?????

Thanks Samantha for the inspiration. I hope you all have fun having Santa visit your house during the holidays.

Thanks for visiting and I hope you enjoy the tutorial.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I made this card out of the pits and pieces of scraps laying on my desktop. Some of you might think "it looks like it!" - and while I admit the colors ARE a bit much - somehow it still seems to work! Besides - how can you really go wrong with icy snowflakes????

The design is a sketch challenge on Splitcoaststampers today - which when I first looked at it reminded me of a stoplight! (I still haven't discarded THAT idea completely!!!!) My particular card took shape when I gathered up a scrap piece of Stampin'Up! Holiday Treasures Designer Paper and took note of the shapes and colors. I had used Taken With Teal just last night and there was just the slightest edging of baja breeze in the DP and as I learned last night - Taken with Teal harmonizes beautifully with the Baja Breeze. There is also Red in the DP - and I used Real Red on my card from last night so I had scraps of that color on my desk as well. The only color I actually had to dig out was the Old Olive to match the backside of the DP.
I punched three snowflakes using the Martha Stewart snowflake punch, added adhesive and dipped in Diamond Dust. To finish the snowflake, I added a half-pearl to the center. Then added white dots all around in the tradition of Faith Hofrichter - her work is AMAZING.

Not my usual style for sure - but definitely a fun card to create!!!!

Thanks for visiting and feel free to comment. Just remember to be kind in your criticisms!!!! :)


Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Today's color challenge on Splitcoaststampers was a toughie for me today. Who in their right mind uses Taken with Teal, Baja Breeze, Real Red and White together???? Ugh! Gag me! Not to be defeated by a simple color challenge I pulled out all the colors and immediately decided the key was to accent only with the bright colors and make the bulk of the card the more subtle Baja and White. Those two colors reminded me of a Winter's day - but I have made enough Christmas Cards this year - so what else could I use. Birthday? No - not in the mood. Animals? No - not the right colors. Wedding? Red and Teal on a wedding card? Why not give it a go?

I used a wedding set I purchased off the internet as well as SU! Holiday Tag Time (dove) and SU! Seasons of Joy (swirls). White Craft Ink and White embossing powder. Martha Stewart scalloped punch , white ribbon and a Signo White Gel Pen.

Can you see the Real Red? The Taken with Teal? They are there - but ALMOST invisible.

Hope you enjoyed visiting today and be careful if you are out and about. The weather is terrible (at least in East Peoria, Illinois).


Thursday, December 4, 2008


WooHoo! I've actually comleted Day Four of the 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS on Day Four!!!!! Miracles never cease!!!! (While it is true that God still performs miracles all the time - I don't REALLY consider this a true miracle you know?!?) Anyway - back to the subject at hand - today's challenge was to create a gift card set (cards and container).

My sister bought this rooster stamp set several years ago. She loves roosters/chickens and she loves to color - however after purchasing several stamp sets she realized she DOESN'T love making cards!!! So I inherited this set. Since Christmas is right around the corner, the economy is bad and funds are tight, I decided what better time to gift her with greeting cards from her own unused stamp set!!!! In addition to 8 of the greeting cards, the box will also contain 8 - 3x3 gift cards with a lovely little hen on the front of them and some gift tags with some adorable little chicks.

Stampin'Up! Stamp Sets: Holidays & Wishes; Itty Bitty Backgrounds; Name of Rooster set is unknown because sistah threw away the label.!!!
Papers & CardStock: SU Bravo Burgundy; Watercolor paper, Others are from Hobby Lobby
Ink: Stazon Jet Black for Rooster; Chocolate Chip for Greeting, Close to Cocoa for sponging; Creamy Caramel for dots.
Accessories: Burgundy Buttons, Brown Ric-Rak, Twine
Markers: SU Ruby Red, Real Rust, Creamy Caramel, Close to Cocoa, So Saffron, Handsome Hunter, Garden Green

Hope you enjoyed your visit today. Don't forget to check out the challenges and the blog candy being offered during this 12 days of Christmas party. The ladies have some really great stuff to give away and their handiwork is awesome!!!!



There is a party going on - the 12 Days of Christmas - and it is proving to be a lot of fun with a group of very talented ladies. In celebration of her 1 millionth visitor to her blog, Sharon Johnson
and several of her friends are hosting an online party. Each day anyone who visits has a chance to win some fantastic blog candy (in this case stamp sets, accessories, etc) just by leaving a comment on a blog and is invited to play along with the challenges. There are two different sites offering prizes each day. This is Day 4 of the party - but since I don't get to play along until evening - my posts are always from the previous day.

Day Three's challenge was hosted by Tammy Herschberger. The challenge was to create a card that can be mass produced in a short amount of time. My card for this challenge takes about 4-5 minutes to create. All 8 were created in 42 minutes - with some of the time hopping up to run to my craft room to grab an item I forgot to bring out to the dining room table (e.g. ink pad, stamp etc.).

Supplies Used:
Big Shot
Cuttlebug Snowflake Die
Cuttlebug Snow Dots Embossing Folder
Cuttlebug Swiss Dots Embossing Folder
Whisper White Card Stock
Bashful Blue Card Stock
The Paper Studio Gemstone
Fiskars cutter with scoring blade
Savvy Stamps Greeting Stamp
Stampin'Up! Bashful Blue InkPad

I had originally intended to use a light blue ribbon adorned with snowflakes just above the greeting - but the blues didn't match so instead I added two embossed stripes. You can just make them out in the photo. If I make more of these I will use Bordering Blue so that I can use the ribbon - I think it will give the cards a little added "POP".
Thanks for visiting today. If you have time check out the links and come join the party - you might even win some blog candy! Wouldn't that be fun!!!!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


There's a funny story behind the tasty cookies hidden inside this treat bag. It goes like this:
We had our office Christmas party last night. There were 7 of us and each of us brought our own "prepared ahead of time" cookie dough so that we could bake cookies and then have a cookie exchange. We were to plan on 6 cookies for each person. I made snikerdoodles. I love them!!! Two of the girls made Chocolate chip cookies, 2 made Buckeyes or Peanut Butter Balls as one of the girls called them, 1 made orange spritz and the other made traditional sugar cookie cut-outs.

There is a challenge called the 12 days of Christmas I wanted to participate in and the first day is to find your favorite cookie recipe - bake the cookies - create a nice little package to hold them then take a pic and post to your blog or your Splitcoast Gallery. Perfect. I would use my Snickerdoodles recipe.

Then came the 50 minute drive home. In the first 10 minutes I ate a Snickerdoodle. In the next 10 minutes another, in the next 10 another and in the next ...well you get the picture I'm sure. I promise I only ate 4 Snickerdoodles - but somehow my pan only HAD 4 Snickerdoodles!!!!

So what to do ... how about using the Buckeyes that one of the other girls made. I LOVE THESE TOO! Of course by the time I got home from the Christmas party last night it was too late to create my treat container - so I thought about it all day at work today. Psyched and ready to go when I got home I headed straight for my cookie/candy tin. WHAT!!!! Apparently Mr. Diabetic husband and HIS son found my cookie tin!!! No Buckeyes, No Snickerdoodles, only a couple of Snowflake sugar cookies, one orange spritz cookie and a dozen Chocolate Chip cookies!!!

So guess what kind of cookies are hiding in my treat bag???? You guessed'er Chester - Chocolate Chip! I hope that Janine will take pity and still let me play along!

Here is my recipe for the Snickerdoodles:

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Cream together butter, shortening, 1 1/2 cups sugar, the eggs and the vanilla. Blend in the flour, cream of tartar, soda and salt. Shape dough by rounded spoonfuls into balls.
Mix the 2 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon. Roll balls of dough in mixture. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes until tops split. Remove immediately from baking sheets onto cooling racks.

Give them a try girls - THEY ARE DELICIOUS!!!!
Thanks for visiting today and make sure to check out the other cookie creations and the other 12 days of Christmas posts at the Splitcoaststampers Gallery. Mmmmm - mmmm good!