Friday, October 30, 2009

Thinking of Thanksgiving...

...and it's not even Halloween! Ok-so it's only a day away, Annie...but still...I can remember, as a child, you NEVER saw more than one holiday at a time in the stores! Christmas (items) didn't show up until the day after Thanksgiving! Yesterday at Wal-Mart, one part of the store housed Halloween, another corner Thanksgiving and, if you ventured as far as what was the garden center, you saw Christmas. It makes me weary just thinking about 3 holidays at once! And we wonder why we are such a stressed-out society?!
Well, I finished my fall/Thanksgiving items for Artistry and was to deliver them this morning when I realized I hadn't done the "photo shoot" for the blog. For whatever reason, even on a cloudy day, the light is best in our hall bathroom! I laid out the backdrop and set the scene, started to take the photos...and two "assistants" decided to show up! That's Bad Cat in the sink trying to get a drink, and Inky in the foreground...look close and you can see me in the mirror trying to get the shot! Glad the only "pay" they demand is in cat treats!
So...on to my've already seen the magnets (old post)--and these are a variation on project I saw on Martha Stewart's site...
The outer cones are made of-can you believe it-latch hook rug canvas! (MS had you using chair caining panels I believe-I had the rug canvas and trust me-it was much easier than her instructions on using the caining-probably a bit less expensive, too! ; ) They are sewn together with fishing line and then secured some more with lots of hot glue! They are decorated with some festive fall things-berries, leaves, flowers, colorful (wired) ribbon or twill. The inside cone is fall scrapbook papers (sorry-no clue what companies!) backed with white cardstock, then some what is almost wood-type raffia as a bit of filler. Fill the cone with your favorite after-dinner treat-nuts, mints, etc.-add the place card (a white oval punched with a Stampin' Up punch backed with a little larger scalloped oval (again SU) out of the decorative paper) and you've got a great addition to your turkey table! I was disappointed in one of the sets of paper I picked-it was so bland--just brown and light rust leaves...I don't know what I was thinking! So--on that set, I stamped the colored silk leaves with glue pad ink, sprinkled some MS glitter on them(need I explain those initials?!) and spruced that plain paper right up! What's the saying-"necessity is the mother of invention"? Maybe some day I will tell you about the time I had twist-tied new windshield wipers on my MB! Hey, it worked! lol! Well, it's now time for me to start working on....believe it or not-Christmas! Maybe I will at least wait until Halloween is over!
OH-that reminds tricks here...but how 'bout a TREAT? During the month of November, Close to My Heart is having a "buy two stamp sets, get one free" sale (e-mail me for details)! On top of that, for any orders you place in November and December, as a THANK YOU for being a customer this year, I will give you free shipping! You simply cannot beat these deals! Great time to take a look at the retiring stamp list and order up!
Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping!
Blessings, Sharon

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Ok-So I stole it...

I admit it---and I will give credit where credit is due! Today...was awful! I am a church secretary, it was newsletter print day and everything that could possibly go wrong--did. I cannot wait for the day-not just the work day-the day-today-to be over! That's why...I am incredibly surprised that my idea to improvise on THERESA'S EASEL CARDS (go to actually worked. I was afraid to really do much this afternoon the way the day has gone, so I was checking out different blogs. I happened to look at her blog (again-she does such beautiful work...) and I thought, gee, I wonder if a gift card holder would fit on that I dare try a craft project?! I did-and it worked. I won't say it's my best work---but I love the CTMH All Decked Out Snowman set (p.42 of the winter catty). THis set offers so many variations-you can literally build just about any kind of snowman you want! Last year, when I had the Christmas party for our groupies, we had a 4 year old attend. Fields had a BLAST stamping and making snowmen! One had a top hat, one had earmuffs, the scraves varied...too much fun! The "warm wishes" seal comes from the Just for the Holidays set (p. 54 winter catty). I used CTMH inks and the paper-well, that was just from my stash. Ribbon was most likely Offray. I used Liquid Glass (p. 98) to give him some shine along with Martha Stewart glitters. This whole thing took me less than hour...and was completely WET when I was trying to take the pics! lol. I just really, really needed something to go right today-and this did! Hope you like the idea-and, if so, come take a class with Theresa and I. Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon
side view...front folds back and up and tucks just in back of the gift card holder to form the easel...! ; )

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Lots to tell...

OHMYGOSH...I can't believe its been as long as it has since I "blogged" last! I am so sorry! We have been on the go. We traveled to the VA fair and then last week-end to Hemingway, SC for two nights of rodeo and a day of a Wooden Boat Show. FYI--if you buy a Cuttlebug die set...they give you the empty box...the cashier has to give you the actual dies. I bought my first set at Michaels when I went with Theresa the week before and yes, I got home...with an EMPTY BOX. So I spent Monday afternoon this week driving back to Wilm. to get the "real deal". Live and learn. Then Wed. Bad Cat had his first appointment with our current vet. They were all afraid after our experiences with Inky and Poppa Cat...but...the cat with the "bad name"...redeemed us! He was THE PERFECT PATIENT so there is hope that the Russell Family will not be banned from the practice after all! Whew! I am worn out just repeating all that! This week-end... I am trying to catch up on housework, the things I need to get made for Artistry, a local shop who sells my paper crafts, and finish the treats I made for Halloween handouts. Whew! If someone would please wave their magic wand and turn me into triplets...

Ok-first things first -- NEW TOY!!! I have been eyeballing for some time now the ATG Guns (which are large version of the small adhesive dispensers!) on the various blogs, e-bay, etc. Like anything, I've read good (easy to use, great tool, better than redline tape even...) and bad (they gum up and give you "snot balls" of tape, they are bulky and heavy...) I did what any stamper would do-I consulted my guru of the stamp world, the Stampqueen herself, Carolyn Hurst. Carolyn said..."I have one-I don't like it, it's too bulky. I will make you a deal..." Well, it was a deal I couldn't refuse so I took her up on it. And I've got to say....this is one of the few times I have to disagree with the SQ! WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG?!!! I absolutely love it! I am going to have a lot of wedding things to do for my stepson and daughter-in-law to be and I can't imagine doing a project of that magnitude without this tool!!! It is not heavy or bulky for me--in fact, I think if you can use a glue gun, you'll be fine with a tape gun. Granted, I am right-handed, and some have reported that's its trickier for lefty's to use (I'll let you know what Theresa says after she tries it). Yes, it occasionally leaves me "snot balls" of tape-but that's often operator error --when I lift up as I am releasing the trigger rather than keeping pressure on it and releasing...yeah, it gets snotty. But I wouldn't trade this tool for anything! While the top looks big-its really no heavier than two rolls of scotch tape would be that come in the plastic dispensers...I didn't find any "balance" issues with it at all--just point & press, pull the trigger, roll it and let go. Instant tape. No peeling off the plastic stuff (although there will still be times I will resort to redline...), no having to refill half-way through a small project and, thus far, no gumming up of the dispensing on a scale of 1-10, it gets a 10 from me!

Ok-next up...I showed my treat bags with toppers earlier in my posts---I knew I just wasn't going to have time to finish the rest of them that way and I saw this cute little guy on another blog (if anyone remembers who and will let me know... I will certainly give credit where credit's due...) She had used full-sized Hershey bars...I got the snack size...and I think they are adorable! I cut the crepe paper (can you believe we can still find that stuff-when was it invented-it's been around forever) and, to fit the snack-size, I cut the width in thirds. Then just attached an end to the back of the bar, wrapped it around randomly and taped it off. I color dusted it with CTMH Goldrush and added the wiggle eyes with glue dots. That's all there was to it! Instant Mummy! I think the kids will like them-if nothing else, who can turn down chocolate?!

I will post picks of the other week-end projects after I get them finished and delivered this week.

On closing I will add-Close to My Heart has a GREAT DEAL coming up for their November special--I can't spill it just yet---but maybe I will for a HALLOWEEN BLOG TREAT---so stay tuned! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mighty Magnets... help hold up my (many!) "To Do" lists...! Whew--time sure is a'flyin by! I have a whole list of things that need to be done (craft and household wise) and, as far as the crafts go, I have a whole list of things that I am waiting on to be delivered or on today's Wilmington shopping list so I can finally have everything I need to finish the list of projects. Soooo frustrating to be so far from resources!
Anyway...I worked on some magnets this week-end and each set is a little bit different-or at least the large "To Do" list magnets are. It was one of those rare times when I just let the whimsy take over---grab this, add, try that thing over there--I had fun and these just can't help but make you chuckle! Get the men to do the dishes so we can fall asleep on the couch-yeah, right! (Although--I do have to confess-my husband is the chef and the rest of the family assists as needed; I often do the table (it's a girl thing!) and the dishes with the help of our daughter-in-law to be (Meredith) and daugther-in-law (Dawn). Do I even need to say anything about the "Don't be a turkey" one or "Gobble 'til you wobble?" And, above all, let's not forget to GIVE THANKS. We take soooo much for granted each day---good health, having homes, friends and family, time and supplies to make art...the list is endless. Imagine my surprise this am when I took a peek at Ali Edwards blog...and she had a guest blogger that had made magents out of the old ones she had on her fridge that she didn't like! Can I say "great minds think alike..." : ) While mine aren't "redo's" I just thought sharing the theme was kinda cool! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Oh--what did I use to do these?! The Big Shot Top Note Die, the roll-a-dex SU punch, also SU scallop and oval punches, paper by WildAsparagus and Close to my Heart; inks-Spice by Kalidescope, Colorbox and CTMH, Liquid Glass by CTMH, misc. ribbon & fibers, plain white cardstock and, of course, Pop-Dots and magnets78

Thursday, October 8, 2009


...that I really was in the pig pen! Lol! My husband brought me home his photos from the VA SF and it seems that as I was walking around taking pictures of animals, plants, pumpkins and things, he was walking around taking pictures of ME taking pictures--or of me with various animals! He may not (or may--?) realize that us scrapbookers often have pictures of everyone else...but seldom pictures of/including ourselves! I'm not one that likes to have my picture taken but it is nice to have one or two to show that I was actually included in the family dinner (other than dish detail!) or trip or... So I thank him for that...and, he didn't stop there! He brought be a second cd that said "Sharon & Animals". I asked if it was different and he said "Yes, it is." When I popped it in, I was quite surprised--he had taken a # of photos from my childhood on of me with various pets and animals and made a disc...! What a treasure! I guess I am about age 4 or 5 in the photo of the elephant and me! I can see a small scrapbook coming out of the second one.Speaking of which, "Buzz" mentioned in class on Tuesday that, for the last 23+ years, she has created a scrapbook for each year! WOW! I asked if I could hire her! What treasures she has! Maybe its my age-or the fact that I actually FINISHED the wedding album last year, but I am motivated to get some of my pictures put together. We'll see where this goes. I've found myself perusing scrapbook magazines and blogs more and more and have some ideas for some classes as well. For now, it's back to the real world and work. Sigh. Until Next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon
The baby calf that was nursing on my fingers...and later my knees!

Watching the circus set up...
"Poppa Cat" discovered himself in the mirror...

My sweet, sweet girl, Onyx...
She was my guardian angel on earth & I
miss her terribly...

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

First State Fair Trip of 2009...

Hay-I mean "Hey" ya'll! Brook and I just returned late Sunday evening from the VA State Fair...our first fair trip of the year and yes, that is a picture of a pig nose! The pigs...are one of our favorite things to see at the fairs! I remember, however, when that wasn't the case...When we were first dating, he took this city-gal to the NC State fair...the same gal who, when taken on a field trip in first grade to a farm, walked around holding her nose the entire day! But I digress! I had no clue as to what I expected, but the first stop we made were the pigs. We walked into this huge building that had hay and dirt and mud and---well, you get the picture-all over the floor and pen after pen filled with pigs. I remember thinking "THIS is what we came to see? Two days of THIS?!" I was appalled--until I tweaked my first pig nose! The end of their somewhat tough and rubbery but the base of their, so soft! They snort and grunt and butt and ...well, I was hooked. And then when the baby calf tried nursing on my fingers (they are toothless when they are that little...) ohmygosh. Needless to say...most of my time at ANY fair is spent wherever I can get my hands on the animals-particularly baby animals...and I've tried to bring a few home (this year, it was a sheep!)
Another one of our favorite things to to try and guess the weight of the largest pumpkin-and this one was over 1,000 pounds! We sat in the sun (the "new" location for the VA SF does not have a covered horse arena much to our dismay) to watch the high school rodeo events. This is not aptly named as they have classes for middle as well as elementary kids. Brook loved the bull riding and the bulls this year did not want to be repenned after their events and put on quite a show with just that. The crowd heart-breaker was, by far "Cole", a KINDERGARTEN student, riding his pony named Munchkin. This little guy was way too cute! He competed just as the big kids did-in the pole bending and barrel racing events and did an awesome job, too. It was his first time to compete and, as I said, he stole the show. Next up...NC State Fair!
In my stamping and scrapping world...Sharon and Elizabeth (aka "Buzz") came over yesterday as well as Theresa and we made Flower Pot Cards. They are both new to stamping so it was really fun to pull out the tools and show them the

"tricks" of the trade. With one-on-one instruction, they went home well-versed in the basics. We all had fun and are planning next month's event, to be taught by Theresa. For now, I'd better go get myself ready for my
"real" job. Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon