Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Halloween Tradition Lives!

I am an old fart. You know, one of those people who grew up in the 50's and 60's, when neighborhoods were still safe to walk at night, and when you went door-to-door for Tricks or Treats, you and your parents knew the people handing out candy, and the people handing out candy knew all the kids. It was a very nice time to be a kid.

The past 10 years or so I have been "not home" on Halloween night. I either strategically planned to be out, or I watched TV in the dark. C'mon, I know there are a few of you out there just like that!

I am not sure where I lost the fun bug for Halloween. I think it was one year when I opened the door and faced 3 football-sized teenagers, with voices that had already dropped to below baritone, saying "Trick or Treat". They got candy, but sorry - they were not kids.

The following year, I really had to be gone that night, so I left a bowl of candy out on a table with a sign that said "Please take one. Happy Halloween!" When I got home, the table, bowl and sign were gone. I found the sign down the street, and the table was broken and tossed behind the building. Never did find the bowl. After that I stopped being home.

So, enough whining, right? Well, tonight renewed my faith in tradition. I had planned to not be home, of course, as I had conveniently scheduled my monthly 1-hour massage for this evening. I have to drive through an old, historic section of town to get to her place, and on my way home back through that neighborhood, the streets were literally clogged with parents standing at the curb waiting for the kids to run up to the houses. And there were other gaggles of kids and parents walking for blocks and blocks. It warmed the cockles of my heart!!!

So I must just live in the wrong neighborhood or something. Hmmm... I'll bet all those teenagers have moved away by now, because I have seen lots of young families with small kids lately. Maybe next year I will stay home and dress up and hand out candy, just to see how it goes. Who knows, could be fun!

Happy Halloween! And remember, after your kids have gone to bed and you are "checking" their candy, try to leave them some of the "good" stuff! ;-)

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I cheated...

Yep, I cheated. I am so close to uncovering the table in my Craft Room, it is almost scary. I am, however, running out of places to put all the stuff that is still left on the table. Add to that my need to clear off the two tables in the Dining Room - this is the stuff that usually lands on the Craft Room table - and I was feeling very challenged.

I am a realist. Where I can see, given enough concentrated, uninterupted time, in theory I could completely organize the Craft Room, it's not going to happen in the next few months, much less the next few days. So I cheated. I just needed another 6' table, so instead of stressing over the one in the Craft Room I went to Lowe's and bought another one. DONE!

So then I still needed to clear off the two Dining Room tables, which are really the Dining Room table and one of the 6' tables I leave up between classes - it's just pushed up against the bookcases so I can walk around in here. After I cleared off the real Dining Room table, I decided to disassemble it into its parts-is-parts (top and base). It is a round table and can be part of the challenge in getting more people in here. The top is now propped up against the wall, and the base is in a corner of my bedroom.

I now have two 6' tables and 12 chairs all set up, and the new table is even clutter free! Yay!

I also made sure I had all the project directions printed so I can hand them out as we do each project. I did manage to find all of them this afternoon, so I think I am all set! I do not have to make up kits for this event, I just need to have all the supplies staged so we can easily moved from project to project next Sunday. I see a light at the end of the tunnel!

As I was out and about yesterday, I stopped by Michael's to get the latest Paper Crafts Holiday Card issue, and, well, I meandered and found a few more things I simply had to have. They had pillar candles on sale, so I grabbed a bunch of them to use as Holiday gifts for all my customers. I like to do something nice for them since they make my business hum along at a pretty steady pace, and they are very forgiving in the 'it is cut crooked' area. I mentioned to one of my customers today that I had figured out how to stamp on candles, and she asked if they could do that as a project at the November or December workshops. Well, I see no reason why not! Except now I need to come up with another idea for gifts for them! I actually have an idea in the back of my mind; I just need to see if I can make it happen. ;-)

Also while at Mike's, I sauntered down the Martha aisle. Normally I skip it, but a few of my friends have caved and bought one or two things, so I decided to look at what was there.

Durn it, if there was not a set of clear letters! I missed out on the Karen Foster Snap Stamps (I found out about them as soon as they stopped making them), so I thought this would work just as well. A lot of the cards I make to sell have sentiments on them that come from many sources, and I usually do them on the computer and either figure out how to print directly on the card, or I print it on a separate piece of card stock and cut and layer it onto the card. I hope this will let me set the sentiment into a 'stamp'. We'll see.

By the way, some of my favorite sayings besides "You are older than dirt" - a best-seller - are things people say to me that I then have to quickly write down before I forget them. For example, "I drive way too fast to worry about my cholesterol." and "It's hard to be optimistic when your Fat Pants don't fit". One of the Farmers at my Saturday market has a sign in his truck that says, "If you think OSHA is a small town in Wisconsin, then you're in trouble." I am still trying to figure out how to use that one. ;-)

Also while at Mike's, I was looking for white tissue paper to use for making the candles, and right next to the tissue paper were bags. The little light bulb in my brain went off and I realized I needed some for my Stamp Camp. You know - another project to eat up time so I do not have to clean off my tables! ;-) Normally when people come over here for classes, they make 5 cards and those fit easily in the zip-top bag I give them with their kits. For the Stamp Camp, they are making 3D projects, and they will need something to hold all their stuff and to get it home.

One of the only issues I have at classes is people getting their bags of cards mixed up, so I thought I'd hang a tag on the outside of each bag for them to write their names on. That way they can use the bags again, and it keeps me from messing up the bags by stamping or wheeling crooked! I used the SU font CD to print the words, and stamped the bracket image from the new Gift Labels set and snowflakes from the Snowfall set. I like how they turned out. I have them hanging on the back of a wrought-iron lamp, and they are perfect! My attendees will just grab one as they come in next week. And the best thing is they take up zero floor space!

All this cleaning and furniture re-arranging has me weary, and I just threw in a load of wash so I can go to work in the morning. I hope to actually stamp this week after work so I can be ready for my show on the 10th and my workshops on the 11th & 13th. I have a lot of ideas, and I hope to get to work on them soon!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Back in the Groove

I am desparately trying to clear off the tops of all my tables, including the one in the Stamp Room where I dump all the stuff from the Dining Room table to have room for my classes. Then, once the Stamp Room table is free-and-clear, I need to figure out where to put all the stuff from the Dining Room. Ugh.

So when I got home from work this evening, I started stamping, of course! In a Good Demo moment had I ordered two of the Holiday Glitz kits so I could have my customers touch and feel them in early November. Naturally, I had to change up the suggested design, because I did not want to have to use staples. I thought I could create a really cute slit with the Slit Punch and just tuck the big flap into the little flap, but nooooo, our slit punches in the wrong direction for that. Next thing I knew I'd fired off an email to Demo Support asking them to consider making the slit punch the other way, and they asked for pictures. I'll do that later.

So instead of a cool slit-and-tuck, I opted for embossing some Hodgepodge Hardware with Winter White EP. It works fine until you pick up the card ... guess I did not get the brad tight enough. But they will get the idea, which is what this is all about, anyway.

I also put the card together sideways to get this look. And I stuck on the ribbon piece with some sticky strip. Not sure I'm lovin' the HPH, but it has promise.

Since I am in Stamp Camp mode lately, I decided it was time to learn how to stamp on a candle. I carefully read the directions in the SCS tutorial and proceeded to not follow the directions. Well, I did mostly, but instead of the suggested outline stamp that can be colored, you can see I opted for a more solid stamp. Less work, what can I say? And this set was out, so it was a natural.

I did follow the rest of the directions, and it is so easy, I cannot believe it!

I took two photos, with and without the ribbon. This candle is really small, just to let me play without a huge expense. I think I may have to make some of these as gifts, or to sell at the few shows I am doing this Fall.

Off to clean some more. I need all my tables to hold the people who signed up for my Stamp Camp!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I am SO glad to be back!

NOT! This post may be subtitled "Rant Du Jour". Grrrrr.

Back in early September I posted "Driving Laws as understood by DC-area Drivers." That was one heck of a bad commute day. I actually experienced every one of those examples in that one day. Really!

Now that I am back from vacation, I realized why I needed the break, and it is amazing I am still alive to rant about this...

In the past two days, not only did I see all of the previously-posted examples of stupidity, I saw a few more, plus a few in combination. These drivers are nuts!

[Editorial comment: All the following references to #'s refer to the list in the original post.]

I saw someone try to move from the driving lane into the merge lane to pass someone. But - and this is #5, with a twist - he waited until the merge lane was already gone before he tried to swerve into it, putting him immediately on the shoulder. The doofus immediately swerved back into the driving lane, but (get this) re-considered and tried to get back onto the shoulder to pass the guy in front of him! I kid you not! He finally opted for tailgating the poor soul in front of him who was not moving much because the car in front of him was not moving much. Funny how that works.

Then, when I finally got to my exit off the mis-named 'express'way, I got in line like a good driver to exit. Of course, someone, who absolutely had to be somewhere faster than the rest of us, sped along in the driving lane to the very end of the solid double line separating the exit lane from the driving lane, and proceeded to cross the solid double line (a la #6), and drove on the left shoulder of the single-lane exit, parallel to the cars already lined up to exit, hoping someone would let him in. Most people did the bumper-to-bumper thing to cut him off ( I love when that happens!), but he eventually found some slob who let him in. Pooh!

Then someone decided he was going to merge into my lane without regard to the fact that I was there. I will give him some extra credit since he did have his directional on (must have been from out of state originally, see #1), but just because you use a directional, IT DOES NOT MAKE CARS DISAPPEAR! It is my understanding that directionals are for the driver to indicate their intent to make a maneuver; it does not (last I looked) give them the right-of-way, nor does it work magic on obstacles like other cars. I honked, and he kept a-comin'. I then layed on my horn, which made him swerve back into his own lane, speed up, and become someone else's bother. I also strained my thumb on the horn...bummer.

And last, but not least, I survived three parking lots. You see, I needed to stop and buy candy on the way home. Not for ME, please understand (I am one of those freakish people that can live without chocolate), but for my upcoming Holiday Stamp Camp. I promised the Ladies that any serving suggestion (which I call all my card and project samples) that shows candy or chocolate will, indeed, include the same candy or chocolate when they make their own at the Stamp Camp. So I had to get enough to go around, didn't I?!?!?!

Anyway, I had to hit three stores to find more of all the candy-type stuff I had bought to make my mock-ups. Can you believe when I asked one of the guys at the big-chain grocery store if he could tell me where they were hiding the candy corn, he responded that he did not even know if anyone even bought that stuff any more? BAH, I say, BAH! So off I went to the car to go to the store of last resort to see if they could save me, and as I started to pull out of my parking space, some ying-yang was going somewhere way more important than *I* was, so he was doing about 45 mph in the parking lot. I am surprised he did not nail someone, as you cannot even move in that lot without at least 2 other people trying to back out at the same time you are, creating the ever-popular bumper-car situation.

And THEN, to top it all off, as I was very close to escaping the dreaded parking lot, another yahoo (ying-yang's brother, I think), decided that the guy in front of HIM was going way too slow, and was stopping way too much, so he tried to wiggle around him to pass him, in the parking lot. Think NASCAR drivers doing the can-I-pass-now-can-I-pass-now wiggle thing and you'll get the right image. At one point the guy actually started to pass, and then he found out that the reason the front guy was stopping is that we were in a parking lot, at a grocery store, and, um, there are people that shop there, and these people need to get from their cars to the sidewalk to get into the store, so they were crossing the driving lane, in the crosswalk, and the guy in front had the nerve to stop to let the people cross the street. Can you imagine that!?!?! Sigh. I just watched and laughed.

But, an incident on the way home yesterday renewed my faith in the system. We have an HOV lane (High-Occupancy Vehicle) for 'rush' hour (HAHAHA, rush hour!) and more often than not, people in that lane have no passengers. Almost every day I think, "So where are the cops when you need them?" Yesterday, as some poor passenger-less fool tried to merge out of the HOV lane back into the regular driving lane behind me, I saw up ahead a motorcycle policeman on the shoulder. This policeman sauntered across the HOV lane, held up his hand to the guy behind me, and pulled him over. YES!!! Made my day.

It almost - almost - made up for the nuts I encountered today. There's always tomorrow. ;-)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Back to Real Life

I am back home in Maryland and the weather is PERFECT! I love the Fall! I do not think I could live in Florida where it is 90+ degrees with 90%+ humidity in the middle of October.

I have unpacked the clothes - had to do them first to get the nasty suitcases out of sight so the cat stopped checking them out. I need to leave the house to go to work tomorrow, and I cannot have her freaking, ya know?

Today I unpacked the stamps and supplies I had taken with me. As I did, I rediscovered the card fronts I made in FL and realized I had a few I have not shared yet.

I found this stamp in a gift shop. My Dad and I were looking for trinkets to bring back, and there was a whole rack of stamps "Made in Florida", so I grabbed this one and one other that has not seen ink yet.

I never had the SU flamingo stamps, so this one just called to me. If you look closely, he looks a bit under the weather, so he would be perfect for a Get Well card. For this one, I just paired him with some Basic Grey papers I had out.

I brought my Supersize Snowflake stamps with me and mounted them. This stamp is the same size as our background stamps, and has both a solid and an outline snowflake in the set, in addition to a sentiment that I cut off and mounted on the end.

As with the Pick A Petal set, I like these large images to hang off the edge of the card. It lets me use the image without overwhelming the card, and leaves room for a sentiment or for some bling.

I got the idea for using the Joy sentiment with the snowflake from a post on Julie Ebersole's blog where she showed the cover of the latest Paper Crafts Holiday Cards issue.

Recipe (all products by Stampin' Up!): Stamps - Supersize Snowflake, Love & Joy, Short & Sweet; Ink - Versamark, Old Olive; Paper - Whisper White, Bashful Blue, Retired DS paper; Other - Silver EP, White gg ribbon colored with Old Olive marker, silver brad from retired Vintage Brads, Dimensional.

One of the things I labor at is serious cards. I like the whimsical and full-of-attitude ones much better! I know several sections of my Craft Show offerings are thin, and Baby cards is one of those areas. I bought the Everything Baby set because I have been looking for an "Oh, Baby" sentiment for a while now. I know it does not meet the 50% rule, but hey, I am my own best customer! I packed it for Florida so I would use it!

I paired the sentiment with the Lockhart baby carriage, which I inked in Basic Gray and stamped off once to soften it a bit. I did not color the carriage, just the blanket. I colored the ribbon by rubbing it on the Soft Sky ink pad. It came out a little dark, but it gives some contrast that way. I made two more of this in pink and one in apricot.

Recipe (all products except the carriage are by Stampin' Up!): Stamps - Everything Baby, Carriage (Lockhart); Ink - Basic Gray, Soft Sky; Paper - Soft Sky, Whisper White, Soft Sky DS paper; Other - White gg ribbon, Ticket Corner punch.

One other area of my offerings where I could use some more designs are Wedding cards. People seem to look for more traditional, serious, classic-type cards, so I thought I'd work on that. I actually have a Happy Anniversary card similar to this design and someone asked if I had any that said 'wedding' instead. Well, now I do!

I had forgotten what the Anniversary card looked like, so I had to wing this one. I knew I wanted to use the flourish from Baroque Motifs, and I looked and looked for a Stampin' Up! wedding sentiment but had none with me, so I broke open my Impression Obsession clear stamp sentiments I had packed. I like how it came out!

Recipe (All products by Stampin' Up! except the sentiment): Stamps, Baroque Motifs, sentiment (Impression Obsession); Ink - Sahara Sand; Paper - Very Vanilla textured card stock, Sahara Sand, Very Vanills; Other - Vanilla Tafetta ribbon, Ticket Corner punch.

This is the one card I managed to do today amid all the unpacking. I saw the directions for making this snowflake on SCS and I just had to try it! It uses both the small and large Tag punches - so simple! The original card and a link to the instructions can be found here.

I can see the possibilities with this technique. I used Shimmer Paper for the tag punch-outs, but it is difficult to see in the photo. I plan to try other variations of this design, like using patterned vellum or adding glitter so it is more showy.

Recipe (all products by Stampin' Up!): Stamps - Short & Sweet; Ink - Sage Shadow; Paper - Sage SHadow, Soft Sky, Wintergreen DS paper, Shimmer White, Vellum; Other - Lg & Sm Tag punches, Snowflake punch, Ice Rhinestone brads, Soft Sky double-stitched ribbon, Dimensionals.

Enough creating for today. I have to go finish the laundery so I can go to work in the morning. ;-)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Leaving Paradise

I am now at the end of this beautiful vacation. I love coming to Sanibel Island because there is absolutely nothing to do unless you golf or shop - neither of which I do; or like to eat out, which I do not. I have biked in prior years since the island has wonderful bike paths; I even brought my own bike one year, but not this sounded like work. So this year I was a very successful total slug. As it should be. ;-)

I am ready to leave this lovely place, and ready to go home, but I am NOT ready to go back to work. Nuh-uh! Unfortunately there is that pesky thing called a 'mortgage' and, oh, yeah, that last order I placed with Stampin' Up! so I could be maybe prepared for my Holiday Stamp Camp in early November. Details!

I do miss the cat, though large parts of her in the form of hair are attached to everything I have here. ;-)

So it will be life as usual when I get home Saturday afternoon, barring the cat that will be attached to me at the hip. I'll give her some luvin' and put away the nasty suitcases, and head back to work on Monday. I'll get back to my normal stamping routine as I start to prepare for my two Holiday Shows and maybe a do few more Farmers Markets. Looking forward to being home.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Culinary Adventures in Paradise

My Dad buys green bananas. Not the yellow ones tinted with a little green - just green. He puts them in the drawer of the fridge and a few days later they are ugly, but just the right ripeness for him.

While shopping for food for week #2, he picked up some green bananas, put them in the drawer of the fridge, and 2 days later they were still green and rock hard. So he put them in a brown bag on the counter. Two days later, still green and rock hard. Then he put them on the patio table to see if the hot & humid would prod them along. Nope.

We started to think they were plantains, not bananas. Does Del Monte do plantains?

So this morning I'd had enough of these mis-behaving bananas and decided to treat them like plantains - I fried 'em! I spent a few minutes breaking into one of them...peeling the little bugger was NOT fun. I sliced it up and fried it in a little oil and butter (that's all the lubricants we have left). Then I used the flat side of a large knife (the only 'flat' thing in the whole kitchen) to smash them and put them back in the oil. They came out okay - not a lot of flavor besides 'fried', but okay. At least we did not have to throw them out. I hate doing that...

And last night we cut into the mini-pineapple we got. It is really just a mini-pineapple, not a picked-too-soon regular-sized one. It was sweet and yummy!

Today we need to go to the grocery store again. Normally we buy just enough food to make it through the week, and Thursday night is traditionally 'left overs' night for dinner. After dinner we purge the fridge because we head to the airport at O'Dark Thirty Friday morning.

But, we had all our leftovers last night! What are we to do!? We figured we could make it through breakfasts and lunches with the meager bread and cheese we have left, but dinner? Oh, darn, we'll have to go OUT - TWICE! Life is really tough, dontcha think? ;-)

I am also winding down on my desire to stamp. I think I forgot enough stuff this time (like white EP) that I got stopped in my tracks one too many times, and I've started to pack things up. No, really! Can you imagine ME giving up on STAMPing? Sigh - I think I've just had enough of nothingness and I am ready to come home.

After we go out for dinner, of course!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

More Stash Diving

Another day at the beach, and it was heavenly. I actually sat by the hot tub instead of by the pool to be as far away from the screaming kids and their screaming parents as was humanly possible. The sun is out and it is hot, but there is also a pretty stiff wind blowing which makes it tolerable. I got in about an hour of sun so I did not feel like I wasted a perfectly good day by staying inside ALL day. Then I started to stamp.

Did you ever try to use up stuff, only to find out it was really difficult to make a dent anywhere? Or at least a visible dent? I tell ya, if I never buy anything else (yeah, right!), I'll never use up what I already have. But I will certainly keep trying! :-)

This card and the next one came about when I simply had to have the two sentiments from Gina K. I immediately thought to use them with my Stampin' Up! Best of Cluck set (that I could not bring myself to sell when it retired) and so they all went into my boxes o'stuff to take with me for this trip.

Instead of breaking into a virgin piece of paper, I used scraps from the already-started-cutting-into pack of Basic Grey Blush. It took me a while, but I got it laid out to my satisfaction.

The biggest challenge for me today was stamping the chicken part of the image without the ink schmearing! Man, oh, man! First I used a black marker, then the Basic Gray marker, both on Very Vanilla - even let it dry for a while - and it still schmeared! Then I thought I'd win the battle and used a Versamarker, intending to emboss the darn thing. Nope - I could not get a clean image to save my soul. Probably Operator Error.

Last resort - I switched to Naturals Ivory card stock. No schmear since the ink soaked right in. Fine with me! ;-)

I just love these chickens and am glad I found some more sentiments to use with them!

Recipe: Stamps - Best of Cluck (SU) and sentiments by Gina K Designs; Paper - Taken with Teal and Naturals Ivory (SU), Basic Grey Blush paper pad; Ink - Basic Gray (SU), Taken With Teal, Cameo Coral, Sahara Sand and More Mustard markers (SU); Accessories - misc. gingham ribbon.

The last time I was in my LSS back in Maryland I picked up yet another Lockhart veggie stamp because I finally figured out what to do with them! I just needed the right sentiment, and "Salad Dressing", also by Lockhart, was perfect! I actually decided the Lavender one looked better without the sentiment (who puts lavender in salad, anyway?)

Most of the Lockhart samples are very simple, with just one or two layers of color behind the image, so I decided to go with what works.

For both of these I used a scrap of paper from the SU Porcelain Prints paper. I matted both the images with Wild Wasabi, adding either Lavender or Lilac (I forget!) to the Lavender one, and Blue Bayou to the Leek. Both of them got the double-stitched Wild Wasabi ribbon. Except for moving the sentiment up a bit, I like how they turned out!

In this last shot, the card front is simply for perspective. While shopping for groceries for week #2, I bumped into this tiny pineapple. Isn't it the cutest thing? I had to have it! Once we finish up the normal-sized pineapple, we'll break into this one.

My next challenge is to play with some of my Rosie's Roadshow stuff I've collected and try to make something with it. ;-)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Necessity, the Mother of Invention

One of the first things I do when I hit the island is to get my bones to the liquor store. It's not that I drink much, but I do consume more here than in the whole year at home. I just love walking the beach during the heat of the day, then sitting around in the evening sipping an icy Margarita.

So I went to make a blender of the stuff the other evening, and I found I had forgotten to get Triple Sec! Lotsa Tequila, but no Triple Sec. Oh, well, I did without and lived through it. Barely.

Then tonight I had a brainstorm - use Pomegranate juice! And I did! I used the same amount as I would have put in of Triple Sec, and they are yummy! Success!

While I have pomegranate on my mind, I wanted to share this bookmark I made. I had talked myself out of buying any of the new SU wrapping paper and coordinating satin ribbon since I do not celebrate Christmas, and I knew I'd have a TON of the stuff left over. Then I was enabled by a thread on SCS, and I bought ALL of the wrapping paper and ribbon. Sigh. I am weak.

I was playing with the ribbon the other day ... actually I was fondling it - it is GORgeous - and I decided to make a bookmark out of it. I had seen one in a previous SU catalog with a set I broke down and finally bought, just before it retired, but I never got around to making a bookmark. This ribbon just screams bookmark. It is heavy and soft and I just love it, can you tell? :-)

I stamped four images from the True Friend set in Purely Pomegranate ink on Very Vanilla card stock, then cut them out, then put a brad in the center of each.

I ran snail adhesive on the back side of one of the cut-outs and stuck on one ribbon end. I stuck on two Dimensionals, then lined up a second cut-out image to cover up the ribbon end.

I repeated this on the other end of the ribbon. Done!

I think this will be a perfect Holiday Stamp Camp project.

Now back to that blender full of Margaritas...they are beginning to melt!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Another day in Paradise

I am not sure how I got so lucky, but the weather in FL has been amazing! No sign of the dreaded rain clouds ... just beeeautiful!

So I got up this morning and walked the beach. As soon as I hit the sand, I turn left and head towards the Sanibel Lighthouse at the end of the Gulf side of the island. Round trip it is about 3 miles. The first two days I only walked a little, being as I have been so recently a total slug, and was not sure if I'd collapse in the surf or not. So far, so good, so this morning I just kept going and found myself AT the lighthouse. My, oh my. That meant I had to now walk back. I made it okay, but called it a day in the fresh air category.

Along the way I saw a ton of birds - mosly having breakfast. The surf had pelicans galore in addition to the shore birds that were sunning in between snacks. And, as an added bonus, on the way back I saw some dolphins between the sand bars. Too cool! (the tide was coming in, so they were fine...not trapped or anything)

After some breakfast and chatting with family for a while, I settled down to stamp. I am in "Limited Supply" mode again - stuck with whatever I could pack. I mostly packed all the stuff I had to have but have never used. Trapped, with nothing else to do, and no easy access to other stuff (the local stamp store has given up most of its stamp space to scrapbooking supplies), so I must use what I brought with me!

First up is a card I made for someone who ordered a bunch of sentiment-free cards. I have been wanting to try the shadow technique, and I actually had this card in mind before I left town.

First I stamped the image in Sahara Sand (the shadow) followed by a second stamping in Basic Gray. I thought the pure Basic Gray was too dark, so I stamped it off to get a lighter color. I like how it came out!

Recipe (all supplies by Stampin' Up!): Stamps - Baroque Motifs; Ink - Sahara Sand, Basic Gray; Paper - Very Vanilla and Basic Gray cardstock, Charbon DS paper; Accessories - Vanilla Taffta ribbon, SAMJ.

This card was totally inspired by one of the ribbons in the District Ribbon Originals set (SU). It is Sage Shadow and Blue Bayou, and it is gorgeous. I think one of the original reasons I became addicted to SU 5 years ago was they had a Sage-color card stock!

Anyway, I think my ah-ha moments with this card were (1) I had no Blue Bayou marker, so I used Not Quite Navy and it worked GREAT! and (2) the background was a little plain, so I Versamarked one of the other images as a background.

Recipe (all products by Stampin' Up!): Stamps - True Friend; Ink - Versamark, Not Quite Navy and Sage Shadow markers; Paper - Blue Bayou, Sage Shadow, Very Vanilla.

Then I broke into my stack o' Basic Grey paper pads. I have 4 of them, and I got them because they were there and they called to me - you know how that goes, right?

This card started out to be for today's SCS Sketch Challenge, but since I liked the bird so much, I did not want to cover it up, so I moved the tab/overlay down a bit. I am pretty sure this was enough of a change to disqualify me from the challenge, but I like how it came out! I was still inspired by the challenge, so all is well. ;-)

Recipe: Stamps - Savvy Stamps; Paper - Naturals Ivory and Basic Black (SU), Basic Grey Blush paper pad; Ink - SU's Basic Gray; Other - SU's Vintage Brads (copper - retired.)

My last card for today is based on Beate John's tutorial for a file folder card. I changed the size a little bit, and I like how it came out.

This one also uses some of my Basic Grey stash, so these last two cards technically qualify for my Stash Dive self-challenge. ;-)

Recipe: Stamps - My Sentiments Exactly; Paper - Naturals Ivory (SU), Basic Grey Stella Ruby paper pad; Ink - Basic Gray (SU); Accessories - SU's corner rounder punch and Round Tab punch.

That's all for today. That walk on the beach did me in, and I am ready for a nap. Unfortunately it is dinner time, and we are going to Cheeburger, Cheeburger to make up for how well we have been eating the rest of this week. All the calories and cholestorol you could want in one sitting! Gotta do it,'s TRADITION! Yep, the whole deal - a Cheeseburger with all the toppings (I get bacon and grilled onions, too), onion rings AND fries, and a malt. YUMMO!

I am sure once we get back from dinner, it will be nap time!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Toto, we're not in Kansas any more ...

At 12:00 noon today, I crossed over the causeway from Ft. Myers to my timeshare on Sanibel Island, unpacked the car - food first, then stamps, followed by clothes - and by 12:30 I was on the beach looking at the Gulf of Mexico (see photo.) Man, can life get any better?!?!

I expected it to rain all week, or at least be overcast, but imagine my surprise when I woke up to this! And there is a pretty stiff breeze, too. Gotta love it!

So far I have sunned and soaked at the pool with my Brother & Dad to do a little catching up, I walked the beach a few times, and this evening I am going over to their unit to have dinner. After that I think I'll call it a day. Tomorrow I start in with the heavy decisions - beach or pool. Actually, I usually walk the beach in the mornings for a few hours, then decide between pool or stamping, usually splitting my time between both. Life's tough, I know. I hope to crank out some projects for my Holiday Stamp Camp I am having two weeks after I get home. LOTS of time!

Let's pray for no big wind (think Hurricane)...rain I can handle. ;-)

Friday, October 5, 2007

More Deep Thoughts - Older Women

I first found reference to the following list on another blog I happened by today. It was widely believed shortly after its original publication circa 2000 that the author was Andy Rooney, but after doing some research (nothing personal, that's just how I am...), it turns out the actual author was Frank Kaiser, whose original can be found here.

Now that I have given credit where credit is due (thanks for the lead, though!), I present you with these excerpts from the article that I found pretty hilarious, or should I say 'observant'. Now I do not feel like such an old fart. Enjoy!

  • An older woman knows how to smile with such brightness and truth, old men stagger.

  • An older woman will never ask out of the blue, "What are you thinking?" An older woman doesn't care what you think.

  • An older woman's been around long enough to know who she is, what she wants, and from whom. By the age of 50, few women are wishy-washy. About anything. Thank God!

  • Older women are forthright and honest. They'll tell you right off that you are a jerk if you're acting like one. A young woman will say nothing, fearing that you might think worse of her. An older woman doesn't give a damn.

  • Most older women cook well. They care about cleanliness. They're generous with praise, often undeserved.

  • An older woman has the self-assurance to introduce you to her women friends. A young woman often snarls with distrust when "her guy" is with other women. Older women couldn't care less.

  • Women get psychic as they age. You never have to confess your sins to an older woman. Like your mother, they always know.
Unfortunately, it's not reciprocal.

For every stunning, smart, well-coiffed babe of 75 there's a bald, paunchy relic with his yellow pants belted at his armpits making a fool of himself with some 22-year-old waitress.

Ladies, I apologize for my fellow geezers. That men are genetically inferior is no secret. Count your blessings that we die off at a far younger age, leaving you the best part of your lives to enjoy and appreciate the exquisite woman you've become. Without the distraction of some demanding old fart clinging and whining his way into your serenity.

I love this guy! I only wish I'd stumbled upon this years ago!

Monday, October 1, 2007

I've been tagged!

I am one of those Bah, Humbug types when it comes to online games. And I am not talking about gamers games, just stuff, like forwarding emails to 20 people. Fooey on that! I barely have time to even read my email much less forward stuff to everyone I know.

The same goes with blog tagging. I only look at one or two blogs per week, fer goodness sake! I do not even know 20 people who have blogs! Okay, I do have other blogs listed under my 'Blogs I Read if I have Time' section, but you will notice most of them have challenges, and it was the challenges I am after. C'mon, who has the time?!?!? If I have time to surf, I'd rather be stamping!

So even though I have declined to respond to previous tags, I will respond to this one from Captain Crafter. After all, I do his challenges on occasion, and his is one of the few blogs I look at more than once per week. Well, apparently not, since he tagged me a week ago! See what I mean?!?!?

Anyway, I liked the questions, so I decided to go for it.

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car) - Gabby Miata
2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fav ice cream flavor, favorite cookie) - Rocky Road Oatmeal Raisin. [This one is not working for me ...]
3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name) - L-Han
4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal) - Green Meerkat
5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born) - Ellen Dayton
6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first)- HanLe
7. SUPERHERO NAME: (2nd favorite color, favorite drink put “The”) -The Blue Water [lol!]
8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers)- Harry Max [spew!]
9. STRIPPER NAME : (the name of your favorite perfume/cologne, favorite candy) - Eternity Circus Peanuts [not working for me, either ...]
10.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names ) - None None
[Neither of my parents HAD middle names - now what!?!?!]

These next few questions were from a similar list I saw somewhere else. Even though Captain Crafter did not have them on his list, I thought I'd add them on to the end of my list, mostly cuz I liked them. :-)

11. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (Your 5th grade teacher's last name, a major city that starts with the same letter) - Hoffman Harrisburg
12. SPY NAME: (your favorite season/holiday, flower) - Autumn Dahlia
13. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you're wearing) - Orange Jammies
14. HIPPY NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree) - Bagel Crabapple
15. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (The + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element+ Tour) - The Stamping Sunshine Tour

Okay, that was fun. But you, my readers, are safe, since I will break the chain right here and now. Like I said - Bah, Humbug. I think I'll go stamp something ...