Sunday, November 29, 2009

Banana Split Sunday!

It's time for another Banana Split Sunday challenge, and if you're like me, you're happy that it involves Christmas cards! I still need to make a few more, so I am happy that many challenge coordinators are keeping us procrastinators in mind as December approaches! ;)

I had so much fun coloring today's image! When I was about 6 years old and in first grade, they stood me on a stool in a red and white flannel gown and had me sing *I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus* for the school Christmas program. When I first saw Penny's Christmas Tree, for whatever reason, that was the first thought that came to mind! I thought this cute Cosmo Cricket Jolly by Golly paper would be perfect for paper piecing her pj's, along with some liquid applique fluff for the cuffs, collar and hemline. I colored the rest of the image with Copic markers, adding a little Spica sparkle to the bow, star, and Penny's eyes. I used a gold gel pen to dot in some beaded garland, and used pearls of graduated sizes to add ornaments to the tree.

As simple as it is, I wrestled with the layout of this card. Maybe that's exactly wanted to be simple and I kept fiddling around trying to add more. I finally added a big stitched twill bow and a sparkling snowflake and declared it finished.

Visit the Banana Blog to see the creations from our other designers. You'll want to link your card there so you'll be eligible to win this week's prize, Penny's Christmas Tree!

Friday, November 27, 2009

CenterStage Spotlight Challenge

It's time for another GinaK CenterStage Spotlight Challenge Blog hop! You might have expected more Christmas cards and I should still make several more, but I needed a soft, serene card for a friend who is going through some tough times and this is what I ended up know how that is when a card just seems to take on a life of its own?!

Our challenge for today's CSS Blog Hop was to stamp on patterned paper. Most of the patterned paper I have is bright and busy and would not elicit the calm peacefulness that I was hoping for, so I opted to try one of Emily Giovanni's textured digital prints. I printed it on a single sheet of card stock, trimmed it into several pieces, stamped the pears (from Asela's Fruitful Harvest) in Memento Rich Cocoa onto one, then used OMS with Prismas in greens and teals to add some shadows and highlights. I added a light umber shadow with the pencils where the upper pear overlays the lower, but all the rest of the shadows around the images were added with Copic markers (W1, W3 and W5). I used a waterbrush to layer on a thin glaze of Stickles to add the sparkle that was the second requirement of today's challenge.

For the card base and layers, I used GinaK Pure Luxury card stock in Green Apple, Moonlit Fog, and Tan Leather. All of the edges were inked with Tim Holtz distress ink and then distressed and stitched. I kept the embellishments simple, using some organdy ribbon and self-adhesive pearls. For the bonus challenge to coordinate the inside, I repeated the same layers and embellishments, including a sentiment framed by pearls, with plenty of room left to write some encouraging words.

For me, even though this isn't a spectacular card, it epitomizes the ideal in was simple and relatively quick to create, it uses classic imagery and embellishments which transcend time, and it was made specifically for the personality/style (classic, understated elegance) of the one who is to receive it for this particular time in her life...every stroke and stitch was made with compassion and care, and it will be sent full of prayers, well-wishes, blessings and hugs. That's what it's all about!

Here are the links to the rest of the designers participating in today's hop!

Black Friday SALE!

Kate from i {heart} papers is having a huge Black Friday Sale from now through Sunday, so head over to Splitcoast Stampers or Paper Craft Planet to grab the code from the ihp banner ads, then run to the store to fill your cart! You can click HERE for all the details! Have fun!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Birthday Nona!

Turning 75 is something really special, so I wanted to make a special card! I used JustRite's beautiful Autumn Blessings, a Karen Foster leaf print with some harmonizing Basic Grey Porcelain dp, Kaiser pearls, and gold metallic card stock to make an easel card reminiscent of the one I made for our Thanksgiving menu.

Here's a picture of Nona (my MIL) from last summer with Emily and Matthew!

I hope you have a very special day! We love you!

Color Dare #44

Just as I was about to start my Color Dare card for the week, I got an email from Kendra asking our OCL designers if they had any samples of the set Giving Thanks to share on the OCL's this week's Spotlight Set of the Week. After considering this week's colors (So Saffron, Soft Suede, and Real Red) I thought hmmm...I could make this work!

It LOOKS like I cheated and added some orange, but I didn't! I love that about prisma pencils! I colored red and yellow on opposite ends of the leaves and blended them toward the center and they made a beautiful, soft orange that is perfect for this image. That smooth transition of color is one of the things that drew me to this medium in the first place!

I wanted this layout to be relatively clean and simple, so I chose to mat my image with some layers of square Nesties backed with a little bit of texture. The light, open space really makes the colored image stand out. I actually tried adding a bit of red (ribbon, buttons, paper) to the mix but it overpowered the softness of the image, so I went some So Saffron ribbon embellished with a Basic Grey button that was a perfect match for the Soft Suede.

Giving Thanks is from OCL's Winter Release...but just this weekend we had our brand new Valentine Release! Kate from i {heart} papers is carrying every set of this new release! You should go check 'em all out! AND...she's having a big Black Friday Sale in a couple of days, so you can find great deals on some of your favorite papers and other card-making supplies! Watch for the discount code on ads that will run on SCS and PCP!

As you're reading this, I'm probably busy in the kitchen preparing for tomorrow's feast! This Fall wreath is a wonderful symbol of the beauty that surrounds us every day...we have so much to be thankful for! I hope you have a wonderful day!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Calendar Bits Blog Hop

It was an adventurous weekend in the Felts household! Because of Patrick's upcoming work schedule we decided to try to get some holiday decorating done. For me, that is like an extra Christmas in itself, bringing in boxes and unwrapping each decoration to put it in its special place! We've got a LOT of decorations because before I became a card-maker I was a tole-painter...each piece has a story behind it and many special memories. I just LOVE this time of year! Here's a picture of our hallway with some of my hand-mades.

I don't know how it is for you but it seems that for us, nearly every year, there is some little decorating fiasco! Sometimes it is something small, like a button coming unglued...this year, the fellas got the pre-lit Christmas tree light cords tangled up in the mechanism of the attic ladder, so...heheh, we'll be shopping for a new tree sometime this week! ;) (This tree is history! LOL!)

My calendar stamp set arrived Saturday afternoon, but with all the excitement of an upcoming Thanksgiving dinner with guests, and Christmas decorating, I didn't get to stamp until this afternoon. I had this idea loosely organized in my head, and I'm wishing the daylight hours were longer so I could have gotten a brighter picture (re-take in the morning!).

Each year our community has a Messiah Sing where local church musicians of all ages, denominations and skill levels gather to sing the Christmas section of Handel's Messiah. The feature soloists prepare in advance, but the choir has a single impromptu rehearsal before the crowds appear to listen to their performance. With Tami's Calendar Bits and Pieces, Nina's Vintage Borders, and Melanie's Festive Frame I had the perfect combination of images to make a special invitation to this event. I used Pure Luxury Card Stock (tan leather and cranberry tart), a Nesties Labels 4 and some pretty satin ribbon, but kept the design very simple. Loved adding that tiny embossed crown for The King of kings down in the corner! There are even a couple of treble clef flourishes! The details of the performance are hand-written on the pull-out tag that is tucked into the pocket on the front of the card. Plenty of room inside to include directions and a scripture or Christmas greeting.

For more inspiration, please visit Calendar Bits and Pieces' illustrator, Tami Mayberry, then to the following Blog Hop Participants from the GinaK Designs team:

{the GinaK Designs CSS team}
Deb, Sharri, Sue, Melissa.

{Tami's Guest designer}
Jennie Harper

Make sure you stop by Gina's blog to leave your comment for a chance to win this amazing stamp set for free! Remember to check our Idea Center for even more samples, tutorials, and links!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Banana Split Sunday!

I missed last week's 2RB challenge, but all week long I had an idea rolling around in my head, so I was happy to get to combine this week's gratitude challenge with last week's sketch. Here's what the sketch looked like:

I flipped the sketch upside down to make this matchbook fold gratitude journal. Inside there are pages for each month of the year, with room to jot down a word or two each day for the things I'm grateful for. At first I had planned to use some Indian Summer paper and a Fall image, but then I decided that it should be something that would look at home on my coffee table or night stand year-round whatever the season, so I opted for this adorable Rachelle Anne Miller magic fairy, Lily, along with Colorfall and Mushroom Fancy designer papers from Imaginisce's Twitterpated Collection. I really love how she turned out, bright and fun in colors that are timeless.

I colored my image with Copic markers and highlighted her dress bodice and edges of her wings with some Spica sparkle! I then used my Nestabilities Labels 3 to cut and emboss the image...since this was the largest of the set and matting therefore was not an option, I sponged heavily around the edges to define them and give the illusion of layers. I did the same with the tag for the sentiment, from the October/November Journaling Spot. The only embellishment is a dotty bow tied with a button and some cording.

I like for the inside of my card to look as pretty as the outside, so I finished this with more of the orange dotted paper on the flip side. Normally I would adhere a flap to the clasps of the brads so the mechanics would not show, but in this case I would like to be able to replace the pages each year, so I left them accessible.

I hope you'll play along with this week's challenge...we each have something to be grateful for! I also hope my fellow Americans have a marvelous Thanksgiving! Have a terrific week!

Friday, November 20, 2009

OCL Blog Hop!

Are you ready for Our Craft Lounge's new release? I know you've enjoyed the sneak peeks that we've been sharing and you're probably ready to get your hands on these wonderful new sets! You can find 'em at i {heart} papers or at these retailers!

Today I'm sharing a card made using the Our Craft Lounge set Jungle Love and the November sketch (Thanks, Joy, for the Ooh La La for Him!). Such adorable images and fun punny sentiments in this set! Would you like a chance to win it? There will be a random drawing for a winner from the comments left on this post (ending midnight EST tonight)! Be sure to leave a contact address if your blogger ID does not already have email!

Check out the challenges on the OCL blog! Then visit these designers to see the rest of the sets of this release! Comment to have a chance to win a can enter on each blog, but you can only win one! We gotta share the love!

Bird and Groom - Beth
Hang it Up Cupid - Carol, Vicki
Hearts & Hugs - Holly, Joy
The Journey - Charmaine
Life Is - Amber
Love Notes - Heather, Beate
Out for a Spin - Pam
Fairy Dust is a Must - Cami, Broni
Granny's Truffles - Val
Jungle Love - Deb (you're here), Kendra
Shamrock Blessings - Cindy
Sweet on You - Kisa
Wanted - Lila

Winners will be posted next week on the OCL blog! Hope you have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Vintage Borders Blog Hop

I love Nina's set, Vintage Borders! My favorite image in the set is the music border, but I love them all and will probably wear them out making Christmas cards. Right now, though, I'm feeling the pressure of preparing for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, so I decided to use this set to make a pretty easel card to display our Thanksgiving dinner menu.

I started with the Vivaldi font in MS Publisher to print the menu on Pure Luxury card stock (yay! it went through my printer...sometimes my printer is finicky!) and then embossed a flourish at the bottom with gold superfine detail embossing powder. This was matted with a narrow border of gold metallic paper, and then symmetrically placed onto a pretty Fall designer print. I love the formality that the symmetry brings to this simple design. For the inside, I repeated the matted layers, then added a gold embossed, pearl-studded border and a satin bow. A single larger pearl holds the card fully upright when it is opened.

I just got confirmations from our guests, so I'll be making some pretty place cards to match this card! We have so much to be thankful for! I am happy to celebrate! Blessings to you and yours for the entire holiday season and the year to come!

How about some more inspiration with the Vintage Borders stamp set? First, check in with the Illustrator of this versatile stamp set, our Senior Designer Nina Bracket and her friend Lisa Hjulberg joining in the blog hop tonight.

Then, stop by these GinaK Designer's & Center Stage Spotlight blogs for even more samples:

Asela, Carolyn, Cindy, Emily, Erika, Jessica, Kurtis, Lee, Lynn, Melanie, Tami, and Theresa

Before you finish hopping, be sure to check in on GinaK's blog to enter your comment for a chance to win Nina's Vintage Borders stamp set. If you already have purchased Nina's set, you can substitute any GinaK Designs stamp set valued at $23.95 or less.

For those of you are who looking for a quick and easy Christmas card idea, check out the Vintage Borders Card Kit available online in GinaK's store tonight. The Kit includes the step by step tutorial as well as all the card stock cut to the exact measurements needed to make 4 cards. For more details and photos of this card kit, see Jessica Fick's blog link as well as this Class Kit link.

OCL Sneak Peeks!

I have two very simple, quick projects to share with you today! The first is a hot little gift for the love of your life using Our Craft Lounge's soon-to-be-released Hearts and Hugs, which will be available at i {heart} papers along with all the other sets of this release! I couldn't resist jazzing up a little bottle of red hots to go along with this fun sentiment. It would have been equally adorable as a stocking stuffer using Christmas colors, but this scrap of Basic Grey Nook and Pantry was already right there on my table...I stamped a heart and quickly swiped it with Copic markers, cut it out, then inked up the sentiment with water-based markers. A couple of quick punches, a button, some ribbon and twine, and it's all done! The whole project took about 10 minutes.

My second project is another sneak peek of OCL's Jungle Love, which I made for today's Color Dare using Rose Red, Chocolate Chip and Green Galore. It came out bright and fun!

Here are the links to some of our talented OCL designers for more of today's previews:
Bird and Groom - Cindy, Kisa
Hang it Up Cupid - Heather
Hearts & Hugs - Deb
The Journey- Kendra
Life Is - Kendra
Love Notes - Pam
Out for a Spin - Lila, Vicki
Fairy Dust is a Must - Carol
Granny's Truffles - Pam
Jungle Love - Charmaine, Joy
Shamrock Blessings - Holly
Sweet on You - Amber
Wanted - Beth, Carol, Cami
Hope you'll come back again soon! more thing! I'm grateful that quite a few of you have recently decided to follow my blog (thank you!!!)...but my follower widget is invisible to me (browsing w/ Firefox)! Can you see it? Do any of you know the fix for this little quirk? If you do, please let me know!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

ihp DT challenge

For this month's i {heart} papers design team challenge we CASED a sketch that you can find here. The original card was so beautiful...the angles are so interesting!

I stamped Stampendous' Joyful Note Angel and colored her with Copic markers, accenting her harp with a Sand Spica marker. My card is made using Jolly by Golly designer paper distressed with Tim Holtz ink, with a Spellbinders' snowflake 2 as the focal embellishment. I accented the snowflake and the small notes on the angel's dress with Kaiser pearls.

I hope I've inspired you in your Christmas card-making! Take a look at the ideas our design team has provided!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

My Last One

Since it is my last Dirty gallery, I'm showing a couple of teasers! It was a fun theme, and I hope you'll go take a peek and scatter some love for all the team's hard work! I can't believe how fast these six months have flown by...what an enchanted, magical time it has been!

Congratulations to Melody Rupple, and to my friend online and IRL, Latisha Yoast! I'm so excited for them both!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Baby's First Christmas!

I am lovin' Asela's set, First Christmas! I thought it would make a cute little onesie card for someone with a new wee one! This was so easy to make using punches, the Cuttlebug, embossing folders and nesties. I added a little snowflake border on the collar, then sponged, faux-stitched, and comma-stroked with a white gel-pen to give it the look of an eyelet border. Love that plaid ribbon bow!

Are you ready for some more Eye-Candy tonight!? Stop in at Asela's blog (our featured Illustrator tonight) and see what she has prepared for us.

Then, check out these GinaK Designer's blogs for their projects:

as well as my Center Stage Spotlight Designer team mates' blogs:

Remember, the Idea Center has lots of tutorials, photos, and links that will provide even more ideas for you with this stamp set!

And, if you haven't already done so, be sure to leave a comment on GinaK's blog for a chance to win this stamp set tonight too! If you have already purchased this set, you may swap it out for any other GinaK stamp set valued at $23.95.

Happy Birthday OCL! Come Party with Us!

Big congratulations are in order for the owners of Our Craft Lounge, Cambria Turnbow, Joy Kennedy, and Kimberly McCausland! OCL is turning one year old! Wooohoooo! We're havin' a party!

It is gonna be a huge celebration, so hang onto your party hat and get ready for a fun ride! It all begins with a Scavenger Hunt this starts today and ends at midnight Pacific time on Sunday. The list of questions for which you must find answers is posted on the OCL blog and forum. Visit our designers to find the answers (did you see the one I posted here?), email 'em in and hope to win! There will be one first place winner and one randomly selected honorary winner who will be announced Monday.

Then, also on Monday on the OCL forum, the week of challenges begins. Each challenge has a certain number of points which you accumulate as you play...and you will definitely want to play along, because the grand-prize winner will win a $100 gift certificate! We'll still be holding our regular monthly sketch challenge too, so that's another chance to win the OCL set of your choice.

On Wednesday, we will begin sneak peeking the sets from our upcoming Valentine Release. You can catch a glimpse of these new sets on Wednesday and Thursday and then join us for the big Blog Hop on Friday, November 20th. As usual, we'll be giving away at least one of every new set! It's gonna be so much fun and you won't want to miss it so bookmark The Lounge, and mark your calendar!

I am SO honored and thrilled to be part of the OCL team! I love Our Craft Lounge images...they fit my style and just make me happy! :) My very first design team was i {heart} papers and since Kate sells OCL sets I was using them in my design work from the very beginning. So grateful that my DT mate Kendra thought of me when OCL later gathered their own team of designers!

I thought it would be most appropriate to post one of my (if not THE) most favorite cards of all the OCL cards I have made this year. This stair step card is from my 2nd Dirty Dozen gallery, which was themed Tropical Paradise. Granny just cracks me up! So much fun to work with.

Just last night I was working on another fun/funny Granny card for the upcoming DD gallery which will open Saturday night. (I guess that will be a sneak of the sneak peeks because it will be really early!) I'm not giving any hints, except that I was covered in Sparkly Fluff and made another big scene! ;) I can't believe that my six months as a Dirty Girl have sped by so quickly and that this will be my last month! SOB! Parting is such sweet sorrow! It has been such an amazing experience, and a truly enchanted time in my life. I'm so glad to have an ihp Design Team Challenge and the OCL Birthday Bash to keep me busy and help keep my spirits up as I transition from Dirty Dozen to Dirty Dozen Alumni! Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's, CHA! LOL! Woohooo! Lots to look forward to!

Thanks for visiting! See you soon!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Melanie's Festive Frames

I am so happy to be participating in Melanie's blog hop for her set, Festive Frame. I love this set and have wanted to try some techniques that I've never tried before, so today I stamped and colored on vellum. I embossed it with fine black embossing powder, then colored the reverse using Prismas and Gamsol. I trimmed the center oval, then layered the piece over a rectangle of ivory card stock stamped with the sentiment. This was layered atop a mat of black attached to an ivory card base. I added a row of black jewels, and a big sheer black bow with a tiny dangling notes charm. I am very pleased with how this turned was a great learning experience, and I will definitely try this technique again.

Melanie Muenchinger, the Illustrator of Festive Frame has invited a couple of her friends to join in on the blog hop tonight, so click on their blog links to see the projects they've created for us:

Then, check in on these GinaK Designer's participating in the Blog Hop tonight:

After you're done hopping to all the Designer's blogs stop by GinaK's Idea Center here: Festive Frame for lots more ideas on how to use Melanie's stamp set. And, don't forget to check in on GinaK's blog so you can leave your comment to be entered as a chance to win this stamp set, too!

Day 2 of the Recipe Hop!

Welcome back to Day 2 of the Creative Cuts & More Mega Recipe Blog Hop which features the Apron Holiday Treats Recipe Kit. We have 24 designers who will be showcasing wonderful pages and yummy Holiday Treat recipes.

recipe cardsAs part of the celebration CC&M will be having a great sale. For the next six days, we will offer 20% off the entire store. But act quickly, it is only for six days – this sale will end on Nov 14th. Make sure you enter this code: recipebloghop2009 during checkout.

As a continuing part of the celebration CC&M will of course give away great gifts. Each day we will give away one kit. Here is the twist – go through the blog hop, leave wonderful comments for the great designers. After you have finished the blog hop, return to and instead of leaving a comment, you need to share a recipe to have a chance at winning the kit. Share the recipe on your blog and link it back and get another chance to win the kit. Help us also make this a great recipe swap.

Die Cut Diva
Pam Smerker
Nathalia Castellon
Dawn Lusk
Stephany Zerbe
Jennifer Hansen
Lisa Somerville
Lila Holgate
Kazan Clark
Rachel Hope Baird
Ellen Sosnoski
Cecilia Stricklin
Lori Craig
Cambria Turnbow
Angie Pearl
Laura Davis
Noelle Reese
Holly Brown
Rachel Sztonyk
Deb Felts
Jen Johnson
Amber Hillman
Carla Mayfield
Cindy Lawrence
Chris Dickinson
Die Cut Diva

Auntie Pam's Special K Bars
3 cups Special K cereal
1/2 cup karo syrup
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 oz chocolate chips
6 oz butterscotch chips

Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan with butter. Combine sugar and karo in heavy
saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat, add peanut butter and vanilla.

Combine mixture with Special K and press into prepared pan. Cool in

Melt chocolate chips together and spread on pressed mixture. Cool and slice.

Cranberry-Marshmallow Salad (We call this *Pink Fluff*...I make it every Thanksgiving and Christmas)
2 cups sugar
1 large bag marshmallows
1 large can crushed pineapple; well drained
1 lb. fresh cranberries
1 cup shredded coconut
1 pint whipping cream

Put berries through food grinder. Cover with sugar. Let stand overnight.
Mix marshmallows, pineapple, coconut, and cranberries.
Whip cream to firm stiffness and fold into above mixture.
Mom's Chocolate Covered Peanuts (Love you Mom!)
1 cup
semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup salted peanuts

Melt together chocolate and peanut butter over low heat. Add peanuts, then
drop by the spoonful onto wax paper or greased cookie sheet. Refrigerate.

Mom's Chocolate Peanutters
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup, firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1 package (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup salted peanuts

Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

Combine brown sugar, shortening and vanilla in large bowl. Beat til
creamy. Add egg. Continue to beat. Add flour mixture alternately with
1/4 cup milk. Stir in chocolate chips and salted peanuts. Drop by level
teaspoonsful onto greased cookie sheets.

Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes.

Mom's Peanut Butter Fudge
(It doesn't feel like Christmas without this!)
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1/2 jar (~1 cup) marshmallow cream
1 cup peanut butter
2 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cook sugars, butter, milk and salt to form a soft ball in cold water
(~234-240 degrees). Stir constantly over low heat. Remove from heat and
add remaining ingredients. Beat til creamy (be quick!) Spread onto buttered cookie sheet. Let set; slice into squares.

Perfect Apple Pie Filling (from Irene Matsumoto, who was my patient when I worked as a physical therapist in
Straub Hospital in Honolulu)

5-7 tart green apples; peeled and sliced (love my Pampered Chef apple thingie!)
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoon flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoon butter
1 recipe double-crust pastry or a package of prepared piecrusts

Mix sugar, flour, salt and spices. Sprinkle half over 9" pastry-lined pie
pan. Heap apples into pastry shell. Sprinkle with remaining sugar
mixture. Dot with butter. Cover with top layer of crust. Brush top with
milk. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 450 for 10 minutes, then lower oven
temp to 350 and continue to bake for another 40 minutes.

Here are the additional products I used to complete my album (although I still have 5 pages yet do complete!).
  • Stamps:
    • First Christmas, Have a Cookie, Signed with Love (all from Gina K)
    • Recipe Favorites (Stampendous)
    • Lovin' from the Oven (Our Craft Lounge)
    • What's Cookin' (Hero Arts)
    • Vintage Picnic (Paper Trey Ink)
  • Accessories:
    • SU grograin ribbon, metal rimmed tags, potholder incentive stamp, word window and circle punches,
    • May Arts glimmer ribbon
    • stitched grograin
    • Making Memories sparkle brads
    • Nestabilities labels, Cuttlebug
    • tiny and teeny tiny buttons from A Small Cleverness, one of our LSSs
    • Microsoft Publisher (to format the recipe cards, and tags)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Recipe Collecting!

I'm very excited that my friend Chris Dickinson invited me to take part in this week's Creative Cuts and More Blog Hop. This is a 2-day extravaganza of recipes, with 24 artists participating each day. Can't wait to see what delicious new ideas are along the way! I'll be back tomorrow to share the album I've been working on, and to share some favorite Sweet Treat recipes, but for today I thought I'd share with you a couple of old family favorites.

This first recipe is one that I use on *everything* when it comes to savory dishes. You may have seen the gourmet brands of Creole seasoning at the market...I like to make my own because it is fresh and fabulous, plus I can adjust the proportions (some like it hot!) and leave out the MSG, so here's my own version of Cajun yumminess that gets my authentic stamp of Louisiana approval! ;) (I think that sizes of jars/bottles change doesn't have to be exact!)
Creole seasoning
28 oz box Morton's salt
1.5 oz box ground black pepper
2 oz box ground red pepper
1 oz bottle pure garlic powder
1 oz bottle chili powder

Mix well (be careful for the *fumes*'s strong stuff!) and store in an airtight container. As you can see, it makes a bunch!
The second recipe I'd like to share is from my days at Westlake High School in Mrs. Farley's home economics class! She taught our class how to make yeast rolls, and I've made this recipe nearly every single year since! We love having fresh bread with our holiday meals. It goes quickly around here! Last year when I made it, I called Mrs. Farley to let her know how much we have enjoyed having them each and every year.
Refrigerator Rolls
2 pkg yeast
1/2 cup lukewarm water
1 1/2 cups milk
2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup shortening; melted
1 egg; slightly beaten
5 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour

Add warm water (~80 degrees) to yeast.

Scald milk. Pour into mixing bowl with sugar, salt and shortening. Mix

Add 2 cups of flour, softened yeast, and beaten egg to milk after it has
cooled to lukewarm. Add remaining flour and milk. Turn soft dough out
onto lightly floured board. Knead until satiny.

To refrigerate (option to bake later): Oil a bowl. Place dough in bowl and cover with wax paper and a towel. Allow to come to room temperature before using.

Spray muffin tins (or loaf pans) with Pam. Shape dough into rolls. Cover lightly with wax paper. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk.

Bake in 425 degree oven for 15-25 minutes, until golden brown. Brush with
butter as rolls come out of oven. Remove immediately from pan. Serve hot.
Fresh bread is a lot of work but it is SO worth it! I like to make about 1.5 dozen clover-leaf rolls and use the remaining dough for loaves. Goes great with leftover ham or turkey! You could probably half this recipe to make it in your bread maker if you wanted to. I did that with a Southern Living sourdough bread recipe that I kept going for almost 10 years.

I hope you have fun as you make your way through today's hop! There'll be lots of yummy eye candy as well as recipe goodness to enjoy! Come back tomorrow for the Sweet Treats round! Hope to see you then!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Banana Split Sunday!

It's time for another Banana Split Sunday challenge! This week we're using a 3-2-1 recipe for our cards: 3 eyelets, 2 ribbons, and one oval. I used card stock from CutCardStock with some paper from last year's Fall DCWV designer paper pack, which went perfectly with sweet, adorable Autumn Leaves Penny. I even managed to give her brown hair instead of red! I thought that would balance the colors better, but in my heart, Penny will always have red hair! ;)

I don't know about you, but I sure love the Crop-a-dile for setting eyelets! Makes 'em much less of a headache to set! I tied a scrap piece of ribbon with a bit of raffia so my card qualifies for the recipe challenge. It is bright and a bit different than what I would normally choose, but it is kinda fun for a change.

The Banana Blog has inspiration from our other designers, or you can see their individual blog posts on the sidebar to the right for the details on their creations.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Tree for Henry

I have been filled with sadness and overwhelmed with grief for my friend and former design team mate Sarah Anderson, whose 3 1/2 year old son Henry passed away on Monday. He was a happy, seemingly healthy child on Thursday, awoke with fever and vomiting on Friday, and by Sunday was having difficulty breathing. Monday morning doctors performed surgery on his heart in an effort to save him, but his little body had just had enough.

Henry was an amazing child! He was an avid Star Wars fan, with Mickey Mouse a close second. He loved visiting the Menominee Park Zoo where he would watch the feeding and care given to the various animals. Friends are gathering funds to purchase a memorial tree at the zoo in his honor.

If you would like to contribute toward the purchase of Henry's memorial, click on the giraffe image at the top of the sidebar on the right. This digital stamp is available for purchase from Pink Cat Studios, and we invite you to make a card in Henry's honor. My card was made using card stock from and Cosmo Cricket designer paper from i {heart} papers. I heat-set the printed image and colored it with Copic markers. I hope it will bring Sarah, her husband Darrin and younger son Jack some small measure of comfort.

Whether or not you contribute toward Henry's memorial, there is one huge thing that you can do for his family...please whisper a prayer for them, that they will find strength in the days to come, and God's peace, just when they need Him most.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Center Stage Spotlight Blog Hop!

I am so excited to be part of the current Center Stage Spotlight Design Team, and that Jessica Fick, the Design Team Coordinator for GinaK Designs, has invited all of the past and present Center Stage Spotlight artists to participate in this blog hop! I am sure that you'll see all kinds of incredible inspiration along the way! Talk about creativity! It certainly makes one hope to stretch and grow, being among these amazing artists!

The challenge that Jessica issued to us was to make a Christmas card using one of these sketches.

I wanted to use an image I had not yet worked with, so I grabbed the ornaments from Asela's set, First Christmas, the Prismas, odorless mineral spirits, and some rub-on gold metallic paste.

They came out soft and shimmery...and they look quite elegant when paired with Basic Grey's Eskimo Kisses designer paper, some gold card stock, and a gold-embossed music score from Nina's Vintage Borders. My nesties got quite the workout too!

I am having such a great time with my Gina K new release stamps! I'm grateful for the friendships I'm making as part of this team, and I will be looking forward to our monthly hops! I hope you'll be a return visitor!

You're going to LOVE what everyone has designed for tonight! Here are the links for GinaK's Current CSS Team Members:

Deb Felts (you're here!)
Diana S. Queen
Karen Knegten
Melissa Cash
Sharri Seffens
Sue VanDeVusse

and the links for all of the past CSS Design Team members participating:

Brenda Turner
Carla Suto
Carolina Buchting
Charlene Merrick
Dawn Lusk
DeeMarie Kelemen
Geri Utterback
Giovanna Smith
Janice Melton
JenMarie Taylor
Jennie Harper
Joy Hadden
Kay Simmons
Linda Payne
Lori McAree
Melisa Waldorf
Pam Imholz
Selma Stevenson
Shannon Bracken
Shelly Wilson
Sue Walsh
Tina Gilliland

Some of GinaK's Senior Design Team Members and Illustrators wanted to get in on the fun tonight too:

Asela Hopkins
Carolyn King
Cindy Lawrence
Jessica Fick
Lee Murphy
Lynn Mercurio
Nina Brackett
Melanie Muenchinger

along with Nina Brackett's Guest Designer, Lisa Hjulberg and GinaK herself!

All of these gorgeous cards from the entire team will be added to the StampTV gallery throughout the next few days with the tag cssjf1 (which stands for center stage spotlight jessica fick 1)

These sketches are also our sketch challenge for this week, so be sure to check out all the information in the discussion in our Challenge group over on StampTV Thursday morning. We'd love to see your cards with the sketch too!

Think Cocoa!

I'm very happy to be posting my Color Dare card today! I missed last week (lots of card deadlines and too many hours on duty at the pumpkin patch)...I really hate missing, but sometimes real life intervenes. I'm grateful that Riley and the other girls are so lenient with me!

Today's creation is a combo challenge card for Color Dare #41 and Inspirational Card Sketches #41. Such a fun card to make! I used my new Changito Snow Play set from i {heart} papers, along with this Sassafras Lass designer paper, my nesties, and some embellishments that have been hanging around in my stash for quite a while! I am very pleased with how it turned out, although I must admit that I did cheat a little! The designer paper had an ivory background so I used ivory card stock instead of Whisper White as the challenge specified. I hope the challenge police will let it slide! ;)

I hope you're having a warm, cozy week!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

New Release from The Stamps of Life!

Today is Release Day for The Stamps of Life November're gonna LOVE 'em! This set has so many fun options! As it is with all SoL sets, there are both line art and solid stamps that work together, so you have the choice of quick two-step stamping, or coloring with other media. For this card I chose to two-step stamp the tree, and then dress things up with some bling and gold embossing. I love how rich and elegant these colors are and I am very pleased with the way this card turned out (plus I'm still having fun playin' with Beate's layout!)

I love to color, so for my next card I stamped four Christmas lights on a scrap of card stock, colored and shaded them with Copic markers and then cut them out so they could be popped up for some dimension. I added some green *electrical* cording and lots of MS fern punched branches to nestle them in among the greens. Again, the greeting is embossed in gold. What do you think?! It's sorta CAS but very colorful and full of holiday spirit!

The gallery for this set is already full of great samples and it is still sure to check 'em out! I'll be back with more soon!

Banana Split Sunday!

This week's Banana Split Sunday challenge is a Fall color challenge! Make a card or layout using three of these four colors: yellow, orange, red, or brown. So fun to do with this new adorable Autumn Leaves Penny! I stamped her with Memento ink, colored her with Copics, and tucked her onto a layout inspired by Beate's weekend sketch. I used some paper from an old K and Co tablet, and distress inked all the edges with Tim Holtz distress ink.

Lots of cute new stamps! Go check 'em out, peek at the samples (links to the 2RB design team are on the sidebar) and get to work! ;)