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Friday 30 April 2010

Robotz and blog candy winner.......

First of all, thanks to all of you who took part in the blog hop. I used random.org to pick a number, and the winner of the goodies is
Congrats, Sandy, email me with your address and your images will be in the mail on Monday
On to today's card. 'what is this?' I hear you say 'has she finally gone nuts?'
No, I broke out my new Robotz cartridge. This is Robot 23 - I never thought I would like a cartridge with no other image on it than robots on it, and don't think this one will get a lot of use, but it certainly makes good cards for boys.
The papers are DCWV Generation tech stack, the metal accents are by Tim Holtz. The lettering is also by DCWV, the inside sentiment reads
The border punch used on the right hand strip is the square binder edge one by EK Success - I am finding this punch great for adding a punch (pun intended) to male cards, where flowers and scallops really don't work
My lighthearted remarks about sinkholes have come home to haunt me. Some neighbours in the next street have had 5 truck loads of concrete poured under their house in the last couple of days to stabilise it. How scary is that.
Off to DD to cheer myself up and take my mind off falling into a black hole at inopportune moments.
See you tomorrow

Wednesday 28 April 2010

Alcohol Ink and a bit of tape........

First of all, here's a peek at the first card done for Scrappy-Go-Lucky, click on the link to see the full card on the blog - I had fun using the Cri Kit pens, they are so easy to use, I used the gel and metallic ones on this card.

So here's a finished alcohol ink card. Because the flowers were so flamboyant, I kept the card quite simple, used a kraft card base, inking around the edges with colorbox bronze ink. The border punch is by E K Success, and the green ribbon leaf ribbon was a gift. The sentiment is Stampin Up.

Here's the finished flower as demonstrated on the video below........

Here you go -

I can't tell you the problems I had getting this onto here, I had totally forgotten my Youtube password. What a palaver it is when that happens. I must have typed in every combination of letters and numbers that I have ever used as passwords before they gave up on me and sent me an email suggesting I might like to change my password. So I did, and they sent me another email telling me that my new password was the same as my old one. Life never used to be this complicated.
See you tomorrow

Tuesday 27 April 2010

Get Well Card

Hmmm, you can tell that this photo was taken at night, the colours look bleached. I love this little turtle, haven't a clue who makes him, as it was stamped with a borrowed stamp at a crop - thanks Cheryl. I coloured him with copics, and added a few white highlights.
My sewing machine has been dusted off, so real sewing on this one instead of the faux stitching I have been doing for the past four months.

Wouldn't this card be perfect for someone who had just had a hip replacement?
We have been busy sorting out our house insurance today. It's so different in the UK, where you insure basically against fire, theft and accidental damage. Here in Florida, we had to discuss hurricanes, floods and sinkholes. Apparently Pasco county where we live is 'the sinkhole capital of the world'. (I found it rather sad that this was said quite proudly, it doesn't have the same ring as 'Paris, romantic capital of the world' does it?). The possibility of your house suddenly dropping into a large hole is rather fascinating really, would it just suddenly swallow it up, or do you get a warning, like pictures falling off the walls? I do hope you get a warning, I will get anxious everytime I am sitting on the loo otherwise. My whole life will be rushed ' ooh, must just finish this card before the sinkhole opens'. On the other hand, I may just have forgotten all about it by tomorrow.

Monday 26 April 2010

Just Because - for BBTB2 and a blog hop

Over on Bitten by the Bug 2 this week, Donna asked us to use the bee cut from the sentimentals cartridge - which I don't have, so I dug out my Walk in the garden cartridge and cut this little bee. I added some buttons on the antennae, the wings are vellum. The honey jar was cut from the Just Because Cards cartridge, border punch by Martha, sentiment by studio G

Today sees our monthly blog hop too, what do I have up for grabs? 12 of these images by Lili of the Valley stamps (UK), all ready coloured and ready to pop onto your cards. The images are adorable..................... I used one of them for my wedding card a few days ago
here are some of them close up...............
In addition you get a clear 'bunches of love' stamp from the Daisy and Dandelion series - again from the UK. I will mail worldwide, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post, if someone from the UK wins the draw I will substitute something not available in the UK to send them if they want. I will draw the winner on Thursday evening. (EST)
Now all you have to do is pop over to Joanna's blog, leave a comment there, and follow her link to the next blog. If you prefer, you can start at the beginning on BBTB2

So good luck, happy hopping and don't forget to join in with the challenge if you have a bee cut on one of your cartridges.
If the hop isn't up on the blog, go back later, I am not at all sure that I have the time zones worked out.

To finish for today - a source of great hilarity here yesterday was the Big Lots ad in the Sunday paper. They are advertising a furry tower with three holes in it, stacked one on top of the other, as a 'three cat condo'. So if you have three cats and want them to sleep teetering precariously on top of each other in their own little condo, then run, don't walk to Big Lots. They are selling them at 50% off, I wonder why? Demand not that hot maybe...........

Saturday 24 April 2010

Anyone for poker?

Here's another cut that I found tucked away on the designers calender cartridge, these dice, that I cut at 3", then sketched the lines with white signo pen. The cards are tiny real playing cards that I found in the toy shelves of a dollar store

and the lettering is, of course, making memories, those little things are so very useful
I am a hopeless gambler. Even when we went to Las Vegas I just hung around shoving the odd quarter into a slot machine feeling guilty. I certainly don't have a poker face, if I am playing cards the fact that I get up from the table and dance around waving my arms in the air is a pretty good indication that I have just been dealt a fairly good hand.

Apparently Milo has learnt how to crawl. He went from nought to 20 miles an hour all at once apparently. One minute he was sitting there placidly, the next minute his mum turned her back for 30 seconds and found him in another room eating raw fatty pork from the recycling bin. This is probably just the first little instalment of the ongoing adventures of Milo I fear......

I am still working on the video, well, to be honest, I am still thinking about the video, but so many of you have asked for alcohol inks, it is top of my to-do list

Friday 23 April 2010

Polkadoodle Friday

Such a simple little card today, the challenge on Polkadoodles this week is monotone (some gorgeous samples over there, made me a bit scared to put mine up there this week, but I was in a rush......). I cheated a bit and couldn't resist some black doodling to echo the black on the birdhouse.
The branch is cricut, winter woodland I think, studio G sentiment and everything else is printed from the new polkadoodles CD

I am trying to do a quick video on alcohol inks/cuttlebug - it may be finished tomorrow, having said that I haven't even started it yet so watch this space

Thursday 22 April 2010

Fairy Flutterbys

These are the new stamps from Polkadoodles - Flutterby Fairies. Introducing you to Maggie.....
The great thing about these is that the wings are a separate stamp, so you get to stamp them as butterflies if you want. I stamped the butterfly onto vellum, added a bit of colour on the back and stuck them on to Maggie with a foam pad...

The sentiment and toadstools are part of the set as well

I did a sort of easel card................

With this one I found a concertina aperture card, and covered the inside pages with pattern paper. I wanted some hot pink lines, they were red on the paper, so I went over them with a pink marker and added some doodling. The flowers on the front are a stamp from the set

Introducing you to Gracie, perched on the edge of the aperture

and here's Maxine....

I added a couple of rows of heart punched paper to decorate the last page, and dotted a few more stamped flowers about

the second 'page' has a border of hot pink ladybirds, another stamp from the set

I hope you like them as much as I do, it's rather nice to see funky fairies I think
I heard from home, Max has chicken pox, my son emailed me to see if he had had it as a child. Do you know, I really couldn't remember. When your children are small, when you bring that tiny precious newborn home, you gaze at them and think 'I will remember every little thing that you do, always'
Then you have another one
and another
and it all sort of gets a bit blurred
So I told him that he had had it, well, he probably did, I do remember his younger sister getting it, so he had plenty of exposure. Time has erased the memory of sitting up all night with fretful sick children.
When James (my firstborn) arrived, I remember going to visit a friend who had just had her third child. We sat there, me looking adoringly at my new baby. She said 'won't it be lovely when they go to school'.
See you tomorrow

Wednesday 21 April 2010

Little Boy Card and win a GYPSY competition

Isn't this image adorable? It's by Mo Manning, coloured with copics. The edge punch is by EK Success

These big letters by K & Co were the perfect match for the card and the huge button came from Michaels

Now a bit of news. I have accepted an invite to go on the design team of Scrappy-Go-Lucky, which is an online Australian based store who also have stores in the UK and USA. They specialize in all things Cricut and at the moment have a competition going where you can win a Gypsy, and a place on the design team, so click on the button below to see what it's all about. I have yet to get started, but I have just taken delivery of some Cri-cuts, the most wonderful gel pens to 'draw' with the cricut machine. I am still experimenting, but watch this space........(there are some glittery ones in the set, and you know how I love a bit of bling)

I am still on my voyage of rediscovering the USA, namely getting to grips with the currency. Why are the 5c coins bigger than the 10c ones? Why are the banknotes all green? Most importantly why is a British pound now only worth about $1.50, when last year it was worth $2? On to another topic, why are the staff in nail parlours all from Vietnam or Korea? Is there a huge pedicure and manicure training facility in that country where they can train to do the slapping the legs thing that really hurts, and do hand-strengthening-training for the scrubbing the soles of your feet with a ball of rolled up barbed wire (okay, so I'm a wimp).
Today is one of my very bestest friends birthday, she pops on here occasionally to see what I am up to
See you tomorrow with some rather lovely little fairy flutterby's.

Tuesday 20 April 2010


Here's another Cricut card made with a cut from Designer Calendar. I got a bit carried away with this one, I added glossy accents to the glass, then dew drops to look like bubbles, you can just about see them on the spotty paper. I thought the cherry and olive (a strange combination I know, it must be some very sophisticated cocktail that I haven't come across....) looked a bit lonely, so I added a cocktail stick then cut out a little umbrella to decorate that. The sentiment circle is by Craftwork Cards, and the paper is one of my anonymous ones. Spotty paper is by Making Memories
All things considered I am happy with this one, and rather glad I bought the cartridge in that sale.
We had rain all day yesterday, I made a couple of calls to the UK, glorious weather there apparently. Honestly, it happens every time, I leave the white cliffs of Dover behind and as soon as I am gone everyone climbs into their shorts and dust down the barbeque. Here? Well if I had a dollar for everyone who told me that we need the rain, I could buy a season ticket to Dunkin Donuts

Monday 19 April 2010

Happy Dad's Day Card

I bought the Cricut cartridge Designers Calender just because it was going for a ridiculous low price in an online sale. I had no idea if I would ever use it, but hey, a bargain is a bargain.
So I was quite delighted yesterday as I browsed through the handbook to find all sorts of really cute cuts, including this collar and tie. I don't often use words and sayings from the Cricut, prefering to stamp or computer generate them, but I love the font on this one. The base card is 6 x 6, the collar and tie was cut at 6 1/4", and the sentiment at 3"
All papers are by K & Co, I added some faux stitching and a couple of little buttons on the collar. The 'happy' that I turned into a label is a Papermania sticker.

I shaded around the tie with a copic pen - grey 02 - to give it a bit of depth
One thing has struck me since we returned, as it does each time, is how beautifully the little dogs are groomed over here - or at least they are where we live. You see no end of cute little white fluffy dogs bouncing around, some even have little ribbons in their hair. It reminds me of our little westie, Kirsty, who was a dearly loved family pet for 17 years. Not that Kirsty was white and fluffy, far from it, she was always rather scruffy looking, and peered out at you with black button eyes from behind a raggedy fringe. We did have her groomed obviously, but it was a bit of an occasion - I had enough on my plate taking three children for haircuts. So one hot summers day, my daughter and I were lounging around in the garden. Kirsty was panting happily by our side. 'I must take her to be clipped' I said idly, taking another sip of my lemonade. 'We could do it mum' said Alex, 'there can't be much to it, and I'll bathe her afterwards'.
So we got the scissors and started snipping. I will draw a veil over what happened next, lets just say that we couldn't take her for a walk for weeks, she looked such a mess (luckily we had a huge garden at that time for her to run around in). Pink skin in big patches on a little dog's back - not a good look. The more we tried to repair our mistakes, the worse she looked. A westie is supposed to have a 'skirt' - a 3" fringe of fur on the belly, well Kirsty had a skirt, the only problem is one side was a maxi, and the other a mini. We still howl with laughter when we remember the event. When Kirstie died, we had her cremated, and I bought a Italian terracotta pot, and put her ashes beneath a camellia - a beautiful white camellia with very raggedy edges and a yellow raggedy ring in the centre - nothing could be more perfect for our scruffy little pet.

Sunday 18 April 2010

Sundae Shoes

I was sent these stamped images by Nikki, one of my team mates from BBTB2 after admiring them on her blog. Thanks Nikki, I love them. I think the images are by Stampendous, not sure though.....I am sure one of you will know
The papers are by SEI and I used a Martha deep edge punch for the lacy borders.
I love a play on words, and this card would be perfect for a shoeaholic girlfriend
I've had a lot of emails from the USA asking about the Lili of the Valley stamps, used in yesterday's card. They are a UK company, click on the link to get to the site. They ship internationally and their prices are very good. The dollar exchange rate is roughly $1.50 to the UK pound at the moment.
Back in the swing here, in some ways it's as if we never left. I wandered into Dunkin Donuts (you may remember my addiction to their coffee), and the girl serving just said 'large iced caramel latte, cream, extra caramel, no sugar, right?
Now this demonstrates one of two things, either she should be using that memory to do some research for her PhD, or I go into DD far too often for that order while I am here.

Saturday 17 April 2010

Cute little wedding card.

When I went to the NEC craft show I was very taken with the Lili of the valley stamps and bought a few of them, but they also had sheets of some of their most popular images printed out and die cut ready to pop out, so of course I thought they would be perfect for quick cards, I just love them.
The pink vellum is embossed with the dots embossing folder, I inked the edges of the card and the die cut image with versamark baby pink. Some organza ribbon tied with a couple of hearts from a pack my Funky Hand teamie Jules sent me, all it needed was a sentiment.......

One of the things I did yesterday was to pop in and see my crafty friends here, we get together every thursday, lo and behold Cheryl had just bought these acrylic sentiment stamps from Stampin Up, so I had to stamp a few, and it's perfect for the card, a nice casual font, and not-too-gushing words
and yes, I did make this card last night, so back in production folks.

The car is mended, it needed a new battery, I don't think cars like being left on their own in a garage for months with just a trickle charger for company. We are settling into our 'new' way of life, and gradually adjusting to the time change. Did I really fly over here for just a week when I was younger, and go straight to work after an overnight flight on the way back? How did I do that? When did my internal clock change so stealthily? My clock worked well enough for me to make a trip to Michaels, I wandered around muttering 'I do not need any more paper, I do not need any more paper....' like a mantra, and managed to come away with just a few dollar stamps (oh and a couple of Martha punches, well everyone is allowed a little weakness).
See you tomorrow

Thursday 15 April 2010

A Lovely New Home......

Here's another Papercraft Inspirations magazine card from this month's issue (well, you didn't really think I was organised enough to start crafting today did you...). For this one, the request was a new home card with a luxurious feel. I used handmade paper (Papermania) for the background, and the chandelier was printed from the Polkadoodles love and cherish CD. The border is Bo Bunny. I used one of the tags to print out the sentiment, I love the way you can personalise these tags. Loads of bling, and it ended up looking quite luxurious I think.

Well here we are, back in the USA after a surprisingly easy journey, with, for once, no tales to tell you - unless you would like to hear about today. We called in at the bank, then got back in the car. Chunk chunk said the motor, before it died. Back into the bank to ask if we could use their phone to call roadside assistance. (Why is it that I carry my phone with me everywhere I go, except on the days when I really need it?). They were very nice in the bank, gave us a coffee. 'You can sit in here' said the coffee person sympathetically 'it's nice and cool with the air conditioning'. Cool? It was like a fridge. 'No thank you' I replied politely, 'we'll wait outside'. Well, I have just spent four months in freezing cold houses, wrapped around a hot water bottle, I am not going to continue the habit here in Florida!
You all got the puzzle right by the way, we are going to New York in November, staying for three days, the highlight of which will be watching the Thanksgiving day parade, which we love seeing on the TV every year. I got the idea from my pal Kath (Funky Hand teamie), who is going to be in New York that week as well, so we will be able to meet up one evening for dinner. Brilliant idea Kath, thanks, he loved his gift.
Let the sun shine..................see you tomorrow

Tuesday 13 April 2010

A Puzzle For You

As you read this, I will be 35,000 feet above the Atlantic, heading to the US. It's a milestone birthday for Mike today, I didn't have a clue what to get him, until I had a lightbulb moment, more of that another day, can you work out what his gift from me is?
Here's his card........................................

hint - we have plenty of time to plan what we want to do...................

I hope to goodness you can 'read' the card, otherwise there is no hope that Mike will decipher it.
See you in a couple of days, when I will be unpacked and ready to go again

Monday 12 April 2010


The paper is the star of this card, I wanted to see if I could make a card with no stamped image or cricut cut, just paper, and this is what I came up with.
I did use the cricut (george cartridge) to cut a silhouette circle

I rounded a square, and pop dotted some circles onto it. I used quite a lot of doodling all over the card. The letters are American Crafts thickers alphas
We had a lovely, lovely day yesterday with all the family, we all got together to celebrate a milestone birthday for Mike, my husband - the children were as good as gold and it was such fun to see them all. Max was quite carried away with it all, sang happy birthday about ten times, and kept wishing me a happy birthday - not me sweetheart, it's all about Pops today. Kiki was fascinated by the ladies room, but I had to accompany her on every visit, so we had long and meaningful conversations in there. The very gooey chocolate cake was a big hit with them all, and we had a communal blowing out of candles, then a lot of wiping some very sticky mouths. Some new photos on my sidebar.
I have scheduled a post for tomorrow, you will be reading it whilst we are doing the tedious travel day, so grab a coffee and think of me looking at my watch and wondering 'will this journey never end?'

Sunday 11 April 2010

Sneak Peek - Papercraft Inspirations Magazine

Every month in Papercraft Inspiration magazine, they have a Quick Cards section, where they ask four designers to interpret various themes, to give the readers ideas.
One of the briefs I was given this month (Issue 73, on sale in the UK on monday), was a male card, based on an old fashioned board game...............I really had to think about this one, but was pleased with the end result.
Here's the sentiment, can you guess what game I chose?

I drew the snake, I was quite pleased with him..............................

and here's the finished card - of course, it's Snakes and Ladders - do you have that game in the USA? The ladder was made using strips of black cardstock, the dice was doodled and cut out, then stuck on with a pop dot. The lettering was handwritten

I am finally feeling organised. Cases are packed, craft stuff sorted out and packed (one big case just for craft stuff, how can that be............), just last minute stuff to do now. We are down in London today to see the children and grandchildren, so expect a few new photos of the munchkins soon.
See you tomorrow

Friday 9 April 2010

a bit of sunshine.........

Here's another simple little card made with Craftwork Cards products, love this flowery paper. I wanted to punch three half circles on the left hand side, do you think I could find a circle punch amongst the mayhem that is my desk? No chance, so I cut them freehand, then as soon as I had finished doing that, up popped the punch. Life can be so difficult, sigh............

The flowers are ready cut, and I did find a small circle punch to make the centres.

The weather is gorgeous here, really mild and sunny. We have been having coffee out in the garden, enjoying the sun. It will continue like this for the forseeable future - I can confidently predict this, because as soon as I leave the shores of the UK the sun always comes out and shines non-stop until I return home again, which is the signal for the rain to start. So make the most of it, you have until the end of June to enjoy...........................
How is the packing going? Don't ask. I am so easily distracted by .... well, just about everything really

Wednesday 7 April 2010

Loralie again

I heard the other day that Loralie have made some ladies stamps, I believe they are cling mounted rubber and stamp beautifully. I have about ten yards of fabric to use up before I invest in any, and this sassy little lady is on the Gone Shopping fabric. See my tutorial on using fabric on cards if you haven't already.........
The sentiment is a MFT stamp, papers DCWV. Border punch MS

So I had a call on my phone from the bank, which I missed. As I had made a rather large purchase the previous evening on a US site, I assumed they were checking this, and called Mike at home. Now bear in mind that we have a joint account. Yes, the bank had called, no they wouldn't talk to him, it had to be me. 'But it's OUR money' he said helplessly...............nope, it had to be me. Eventually they caught me 'hi' I said 'I assume you want to know about the dollar transaction..............'
No, they wanted to tell me that I had a new number to call for personal banking (is there any other sort?)
'Oh, okay, while you are on, I will just tell you the dates that I am going to be out of the country'.
'Thank you' she said in a sombre voice 'but I must tell you that even with this information on our screens, your transactions may still be subject to scrutiny.'
Well I doubt it somehow sweetie, if you can't check how I come to be spending $$$ in the US when I am talking to you from Costa coffee .........
It's all down to data protection or something, and I am sure it drives the people who work for banks/electricity/water companies just as crazy as the rest of us. A friend of ours is driven insane by it, and when someone calls and insists on talking to the account holder i.e his wife, he noisily clatters the phone down, and then picks it up 'hello' he squeaks in a high falsetto 'yes, this is me' and of course, being his wife he can answer all the security questions that are thrown at him. Trouble is, he's getting rather good at it and now fancies himself as an actor, adding little chatty feminine type snippets to the conversation. 'Must go now dear' he squeaks 'just going to get my legs waxed'

Tuesday 6 April 2010

Getting All Poetical...............

First of all a Craftwork Cards card, all the supplies used are from them, including that lovely scalloped frame. The flowers were cut using the george cartridge and the cricut, and the 'brads' are paper card candy - I find them so useful

I thought you would all - especially those of you from overseas - like to see what our town looks like in the spring. It reminds me of Wordsworth's 'I wandered lonely as a cloud............' or Robert Browning's 'Oh to be in England now that April's there............................
Some years ago a local businessman planted some daffodils on the verges of the approach roads to the town, they have been added to and multiplied over the years, and now, if you are driving into Solihull you are met with the glorious sight of a sea of gold. They are late this year because of the long cold winter we have had, but I am so glad they decided to show their colours before we leave the UK for a while. It always generates a surge of civic pride in me to see the town looking so pretty.

Back with more tomorrow....