Friday, December 26, 2008

Country French Clipboard Calendar

Well, now that I have finished the Countdown to Christmas, I am anxiously counting down the days until the New Year begins! This is a clipboard calendar I made for my mom using Stampin’ Up!® products: chipboard clipboard, patterned papers, versamark ink, gold embossing powder, ivory tafetta & certainly celery ribbons, the full calendar and Mark the Date stamp sets along with So Saffron and Certainly Celery Inks to highlight the special days. This project appeared in my 12 Tips article in Scrap & Stamp Arts magazine, Dec. 2008 issue.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Day - what this season really is about

Today there will only be an inspirational post — a story I have to share that has summed up the spirit of the Christmas season for me. It begins with a part time job that I started at the mall. I was assisting customers and tried to make my way over to this man who had a question. I apologized for the delay and he commented that he knew how it goes this time of year in retail— he had just gotten off work at Walmart. He wanted to find this lotion for his wife that she requested for Christmas, but we were sold out of it. The only thing I had left in that scent was a gift basket with some body spray, body wash, a body buff and some minty scrub. It was the only one left in the store and on sale for 50% off...a bargain at around $16. The man stood there perplexed pondering the decision. I thought it would be a pretty easy choice and a great price. I went on to help other customers and hadn’t noticed where the young man disappeared to until I felt a tap on my shoulder as he was leaving the store. Beaming with a smile, he opened his shopping bag to show me the contents. He proudly commented on his way out, “I splurged!” My heart immediately swelled as did my eyes with tears. It was at that moment, that I realized what the true spirit of Christmas was really about...a selfless gift of love that was truly a sacrifice. For this man, it meant splurging his last dollars on a gift for someone he really cared about. For God, it was sending us his son on Christmas day knowing that he would give up his life for us. I wish you and your family a blessed and wonderful Christmas Day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Day 1- Flurry of a Season

It seemed so appropriate to use this Flurry of a Season card as my post for the day before Christmas because at this time we are all in a flurry of assorted preparations for the big day. It may be baking goodies, grocery shopping for holiday meals, rushing to the mall for that one last gift you forgot to purchase or hurrying to another holiday event. It becomes a flurry of rushing here and there and not always getting to relax and enjoy the holidays. I hope that your Christmas Eve. is spent with family & friends and a little respite from the seasonal flurries!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Day 2 - Gettin’ Digi for Christmas

This tired little elf has to draw the line at how many handmade Christmas cards she can make. We have lived in too many places, made so many wonderful friends that how can we choose who would get cut from the Christmas card list. My solution...a Christmas E-Newsletter with pictures and a brief update. This way we can update our friends on all the latest events of the year and share some pictures of the highlights. Dan, my DH, took this amazing picture of our house lit up for the holidays, and I just had to include it in the card/newsletter. It also features pictures of Ashley & Kylie, my two girls, my niece Lauren, our sweetie Wheatie Bella, our family picture from my parent’s 50th anniversary party and a great group shot with my parents, my gang, my aunt, my cousins and their kids from our summer reunion in Orlando...always a fun time for all. All the digital goodies and papers are from, my favorite digital scrapbooking site. 

I am happy to announce one great benefit of Kylie’s food allergies and our dietary changes has been meeting and exceeding my weight goal set in January. Yay, me! Also, some career changes have allowed me to spend more time with my girls which is priceless to me. Although 2008 has been filled with heartache over illness of family members, friends and my immediate family, we have all pulled through and are looking forward to happier times in 2009! I am ever grateful for the support of my family and friends who lifted me up when the going got tough. I just can't imagine a life not being close to one’s family, not having a closeness with God or not having friends to lean on. So if I count up those things that have graced my life this past year, I feel very well blessed! For all my blog friends who I have yet to get to know, may you have a very Merry Christmas and a New Year filled with many blessings, too!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Day 3- An Elegant Holiday Trifold Card

This is definitely not one of those cards that falls into the annual Christmas Card category, however, if you are looking to send a special card to a family member or friend with a special Christmas portrait, this is an elegant & impressive choice. Pictured you will see the outside, inside fold, total open view of the inside and the back view with the decorative band closure. It was done using some old Inque Boutique stamp sets with gold embossing and some hand cutting. I used Glue Arts Glue Ring Adhesive throughout, gold brads & red glitter as accent along with some crystal effects from Stampin’ Up!® to get the glitter to be 3-D on the poinsettias. Hope this inspires you to think creatively with your stamps and papers. Banded strips are always an excellent choice to hold multi-fold cards closed. The photo inside is an older one of Dan and I with our girls when we still lived in Shawnee, Kansas.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Day 4 - Pocket Full of Sweets

These treat pockets are fun and easy to make using patterned papers, some punches, ribbon and cardstock trimmed to 4-1/4" x 11" and scored at 5-1/2" and 9-1/2". You can make two of these from a single sheet of letter sized cardstock! For the side two pockets, I used the cheery, brightly colored patterned paper from Cosmo Circket’s Get Happy Collection, which match great with the brightly colored stick candy purchased at Cracker Barrel. I used a large circle punch to spotlight the embossed snowflake from Stampin’ Up’s Snow Swirled set and rimmed the edges using a stampin’ sponge and ink. On the middle snowflake, I embossed using clear embossing powder on white cardstock and swiped a baby wipe containing drops of ballet blue ink over top of the flake for a streaked effect. Again, I edged the circle with ink to make it pop. For the middle pocket, I used the blue patterned paper from the Frosty Days collection found in the Stampin’ Up Holiday mini catalog. These can also be filled with gift cards and a candy.

Assembly of these is a piece of cake. First fold pocket in half, then bend down the 1-1/2" flap and use corner rounder on ends. On the white cardstock, I rimmed the edges with ink and a sponge to add a little something extra. Next, flip the bottom panel down, run one strip down each side of the pocket using Glue Arts’ Permanent Adhesive and a Glue Glider Pro. Fold up to secure the sides, place one small strip of adhesive under the flap to secure and punch two 1/8" side-by-side holes through the right and left sides of the pocket. These will be used to attach the decorative side bows. Cut taffeta or satin ribbon for the large bows and thread points through the holes so the two points are front facing. NOTE: Before you tie the bow, place small piece of contrasting ribbon in the center. Make two bunny ear loops from the large ribbon and tie bow. Knot the contrasting ribbon over top of this and trim the ends of all ribbons. Decorate the pockets with stamping, stickers, whatever you like and have fun filling! These are perfect last minute appreciation gifts for teachers, the post man, neighbors, as classroom treats or for party favors. They also are a fun way to present a gift card, gift certificate or check. Ho, Ho, Ho!