Sunday, January 30, 2011

My week-end's work...

Hi All! It's been quite a productive week-end. First Theresa and I got together on Friday and made a card we've been trying to get together and try for at least 3 months if not more! It was FUN and there's a class (hopefully) coming out of it! Stay tuned! Here's what we were up to Saturday morning and then I finished this afternoon: just about everyone who sees the layout on page 25 of the new Close to My Heart Ideal Book---wants do it! So, knowing a class is coming out of that, too, I wanted to have a sample done. Besides, CTMH didn't consult with me but I gotta tell you---the colors of the new WINGS papers--match my step-son and daughter-in-law's wedding colors PERFECTLY! I was so excited when I saw them! This is my husband and I dancing at the reception...then the companion page has the bride and groom, the bride and her dad, the groom and his (biological) mother. I used the the new BOHEMIAN ALPHABET (you can $ave $10.00 if you order from the Inspirations flyer before tomorrow night!) Just go to, order the Workshop on the Go and start racking up the savings! This offer expires TOMORROW so don't miss it! I love that the closer close up of the bride and groom dancing has a photographer in the background! Just makes for an interesting shot! One other interesting thing about the Close to My Heart Catalog you may (or may not-until now!) know...if you look at page 25 of the catty, you will see that underneath the sample page it says Reflections: Title Topper-Pieced Together. HUH? Let me explain! In CTMH's book Reflections (see pg. 4 of the new catty)--If you go to the section called Title Topper and then look up the page called "Pieced Together"--you have the instructions to make this page! And--as if that isn't a "YA-HOO!" enough...for those of you who don't like the idea of

just one photo per page...there are also gives you the photo sizes and cutting diagrams for a page with 3 or 5 photos! Do I hear a "YIPPEEE YA-HOO?!" The Magic Book and Reflections are my new best friends, let me tell ya! Well, right after Theresa! I have to go put stamp pads away before I have kitties walking through them. We tried playing Scrabble last night...see the last photo to see how that went! Lol! Until next time--check out INSPIRATIONS before the clock runs out-- and happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Another "don't fall for it" warning...

Good morning all. Things have been crazy here-and I know Sat. I will get back to some scrapping and stamping with things to post, so stay tuned. In the meantime, the Stamp Queen was perusing the Archiver's e-mail and drooling and wishing we had one closer than 4 hrs+ away! Sigh. Saw several things I would like, several classes I would like to take---if only. There was one thing I saw, however, that made my hair stand on end. They are advertising the new Vagabond cutting machine. It looks like a tattered suitcase (ugly to me--but oh well!) and from what I read, is similar to the Cricut or other such machines. It also has a name attached to to it-Tim Holtz. Yeah, anybody who does anything with stamping and scrapping recognizes that name even if they don't know quite what he does. Well, Theresa and I know-he makes junk! Literally. And Tim is right up there with Martha Stewart and her punches but that's another post!) Ok-so some of his new die cuts are cute and, I have to confess, we have bought some. But I would NEVER EVER spend the kind of money I am sure they are asking for for the Vagabond with his name on it. Why? Well, some years back his name was on some adorable little canvas storage bags! Polka dots, pretty plaid-I bought two. Theresa bought some. In a very short period of time, the zipper pulls broke, the zippers themselves broke---and I was quite disappointed. They weren't cheap (in fact one bag was at least double of the Close to my Heart Accessory bags-p. 123 Spring/Summer catalog; $ 12.95 with removable dividers--granted, they are plain black--but I just tie a pretty ribbon to the handle and it dresses it up just fine! They hold A LOT and are quite durable-I've used (and abused!) mine for two + years now and they are still going strong! Check it out (Item # z4200) at http://okistampqueen@myctmh,com.) When I contacted Tim his reply was "The company that made those have gone out of business-sorry." That was it. End of story! He could have cared less! If you're good, got something good-the Stamp Queen will shout it from the rooftops. But---if you are bad, poor product, poor service---I am just as quick to share that as well! Word of mouth advertising says a lot! So---I flat out refuse to endorse his products. They are junk. Unlike Fiskars--and, in case you didn't know this-now you will! ANYTHING that Fiskers makes, if it breaks, you simply contact the company, send an e-mail photo of the product (or you can snail mail the damaged product to them)---and they will replace it--free of charge, no questions asked, in a timely manner. Now THAT'S the way to do business! So-save your money-get a Big Shot from Theresa or check the stores for deals on REPUTABLE products such as the Cricut---but stay away from JUNK (aka Tim Holtz' products!) That's my advice for today!
Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Oh, Baby!

Good morning all! First and foremost, THANK YOU for the good thoughts and prayers! More on that later! First up-the little baby boy brag book I whipped up yesterday for the new grandma at the OKI Library...this little embellishment on the front is too cute in that, if you push that little red button on the left...the lights on the mobile light up! Tried to capture that in the photo but it didn't work. The cover is out of some chipboard cards that I purchased. The perfect size and weight for mini books! Bound it of course with the Bind It All. The inside pages are white cardstock cut to size, some pages embellished a wee bit with some baby stickers that have been in my stash for forever (as was the cover embellishment! Somewhat surprised it still worked!)

Think she will like it? Hope so! Off to deliver it soon! Wanted to use the Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing folder but it's MIA in the magic disaster-eh, craft-room. Theresa, when I find it-make sure it gets stuck, somehow, to my person! I cannot seem to keep track of that one and it's always a "go-to" for me. I used my *new* "Spots and Dots" folder instead. Going to try a new way of storing the folders-my little notebooks worked well but my collection is outgrowing them!

We have two feral cats....and, it seems, a baby opossum as well...we call him (or her?) Simon/Simone...(ever read Rita Mae Brown Sneaky Pie series?)
The feral cats don't seem to mind sharing their food-they know Momma will take care of all the critters--"Moe" is actually sitting just outside the picture watching! And I couldn't help but take this photo of Inky and Poppa Cat yesterday...

The baby (on the left) was still feeling puny. The diagnosis was...he ate the Christmas tree. Funny-because I kept telling the vet that, after he eats, he gets this "I can't believe I ate the whole thing" look (if you're old enough to remember the Alka Seltzer commercial...). Yep, cats may have tough tummies but they cannot digest (artificial) Christmas tree spines. I'll spare you the details of treatment. He was just laying around all day and wanted Momma. When I wasn't available, he "reached out" to his buddy! As long as he was touching PC he was ok without me! The good news is, thanks to our awesome vet and staff, prayers, and some healing time, today he was eating, playing and acting NORMAL! The sun is out, it is not snowing (was yesterday!), and even though it's cold--with the sun, it's much more tolerable. Ok. So now I need to go do the flylady thing. I have to confess-the Christmas decorations are taking over the guest bedroom! Still. Time to get them back to the attic! Mt. Washmore needs some attention, too. I hope that this week I can get back to my normal Flylady routine(s). This week was just crazy. Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon ps/Only a week left on the January Inspirations sale and deals-so check it out and take advantage of it

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Where oh where have I been...

What a week! Not a single post since last Sunday! So sorry! There's been absolutely no craft time this past week, either so there's the second disappointment of the day! The wee hours of Monday found me in the throes of another gall bladder attack. Stress, cheating on the diet and running out of pear juice were three "whammies" against me. A sick kitten (aka Inky who is actually 3 -or 4?) didn't help. Thursday found me needing to be in three places at once: vet's office, work, and on my acupuncturist's table. Somehow-it all worked out and we are both recouperating slowly. If anyone has any ideas on how to keep the cat from eating the Christmas tree (artificial at that!), PLEASE share them! Constipated kitties are not happy kitties! is very, very cold at the beach-my husband even said there were some snow flurries. Good excuse to stay inside and make the card and the baby brag book I need to make. The housework can wait!
On another note...we got a new laptop and although my stepson was gracious enough to send instructions to help import/export my favorites (aka the blogs I follow...) I couldn't get it. I was behind in checking them out anyway so I got cup of coffee and got comforatable. I went through my "active" list. 2 hours later and I have a list of ----drumroll please--55 blogs that I look at um, haveta confess-almost daily! Oops-wait, no-make that 57--forgot two I already have on the new computer! Guess I know where a chunk of my time goes! In all fairness, it took me longer today as I was writing down the names and links as I went!
Well, need a coffee refill-and better get craftin'! Hopefully tomorrow I will have some goodies to post. Until next time, KEEP WARM, stay positive (hard to do in the gloam of winter), and happy stampin' and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Men In Black...

How about 4 good-looking guys (at least I think so! May be just a wee bit biased...!) for some INSPIRATION?! If you haven't checked out the Close to my Heart Inspiration's flyer...time is running out! The bargains end January 31st. And believe you me, there are A LOT of bargains! The flyer features the new WINGS papers along with some awesome stamp sets-including the Bohemian Alphabet you see here. I had this photo from my step-son's wedding this past June. Their wedding colors match the paper colors PERFECTLY---so that alone was some inspiration to get them scrapped! Can't do anything "too girly" so I thought (what I call) a "break-out" frame would be ideal--that and the dark paper! I color dusted the edges of the green side, folded out the dark side to frame the photo...This is a pic of where I left my page last needed something--I dreamed about the page all night! After church and a little housework, I went back, removed the border pieces, color dusted, added the black mats along with the two photos of my husband and NOW I am happy with it. Done tweaking! My photography does not do the papers or the photos justice. I am sorry. Gotta go back to early morning photos in my bathroom of all places! That just seems to be the only lighting that works! lol!
Now, it's Sunday--so I have to do a little bit of preaching here. This wedding was back in June of last year (although the photo in the bottom left was taken at our wedding in June 2008). The wedding this year was an extremely difficult time for my husband and I and, in all honesty, we weren't sure our marriage was going to make it! We were really struggling. Not sure the boys or the rest of the family knew that at the time. We put on smiles and got through it. We came home and struggled some more. We talked about the tough stuff, we sought counsel from other couples we trust and respect from our church. We asked for prayer. My "groupies", Theresa in particular, did a lot of listening and praying for me (and us) as well. I was at wits end and about to give up when one of my gals, Mary Cobb, said "You don't want to quit 5 minutes before the miracle." I remember getting angry and thinking she just didn't know how bad it was. But I went home and kept on keeping on. Fast forward a few more months and a trip to the ER turned things around (Christian speaker and author Howard Hendricks once said, "sometimes it takes a crisis to precipitate a change.") God decided to show us the miracle he had in store for us. Our marriage is better and stronger today than it has ever been. And we are committed to making it even better. It's not easy-life sometimes isn't. But reach out. Get help. Find someone to listen, to pray, to walk with you through whatever valley. Hang on, and hang in-after all, as MC said, you don't want to give up 5 minutes before your miracle...! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The rest of the W-M Photo Saga...

Last night...we stopped to pick up the problem photos (read yesterday's post for "part one" of the photo saga...). The customer service guy, standing around with his hands in his pockets, no customer in sight besides me--walked away. So I had to wait until the gal at the REAL customer service desk got done issuing a money order to check out. I got the photos home and started to organize them for today's crop. Every single picture...has a white streak down the right-hand side. 57 photos will now have to be trimmed (they also look like they were cut with the dullest paper cutter in the world)-well, at least the ones that are usable out of those...which is maybe 1/2 to 2/3--for some unknown reason, looks like the "photographees" had a major case of smallpox or something-their skin and photo is all mottled and distorted. Trash those. Several of them...had heads cut off (didn't in my uploads...or I wouldn't have ordered them). The paper is flimsy and the finish is crappy. All said and done, I wasted a entire afternoon and evening -not to mention about $20.00. Oh-and stress aggravates the gall bladder which = uncomfortable pain. Wonderful. Just what I need. Wal-Mart is so not worth it! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping-and stay away from Wal-Mart Photo Dept.! Blessings, Sharon

Friday, January 14, 2011


So the Stamp Queen declares on Wal-Mart's photo lab and (male) so-called "customer service" person! In the 3 times I have tried to use our W-M's instant photo lab in the past 6-8's not been working. I need photos for our crop TOMORROW that I have had a number of difficulties getting, cropping, downloading, uploading, etc. I succeeded with those steps today. I met Theresa for lunch so we could catch up. I was in a GOOD MOOD. Then I went to WM. Mistake. BIG mistake. Discovered if I wanted photos I had to do the one-hour thing. I live...20 minutes + from WM. Ok. We have to go back to that town tonight for visitation at the funeral home so I could either hang out at WM for an hour...or pick them up on our trip tonight. Opted for the latter. The machine...had to upload all 2,000 photos on my flash drive. Once that was done, I had to manually deselect all but one file, then start putting my order in. Which I did. I was almost done. One of my volunteer workers stopped to say hello. I stopped to say hello back. The machine flashed in 2 split seconds that the machine had been idle for over 2 minutes and without time to do deleted my entire order! I asked the male clerk if that was true-or just my "assumption". He bit my head off. Literally. He was not nice about it---and I was not happy. Yes, I took a deep breath and started again. Then another lady approached the other machine. She was not happy-why didn't the instant machine work (good question) and why wasn't this machine reading her disc? He wasn't nice to her, either. I simply looked at her and said, "SHUTTERFLY.COM" --she started asking me about that and he interrupted with "It's not WM's fault...!" I simply said, "If I didn't need them tomorrow-I wouldn't be here and I won't be here after this order!" He walked off in huff. Yes, I'm sorry--it IS WM's fault....when the machines they have in their store never work; when machines they have that supposedly do do a poor job and when clerks are offering less than acceptable customer service--it IS WM's fault!! So-the Stamp Queen says, "OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!" Ok. I feel a little better. Theresa did not have to come and make bail. I have a headache and it is NOT because my tiara is too tight! I will (hopefully) be able to pick up the pictures this evening and, from here on out, you can bet www.SHUTTERFLY.COM is getting my business! I will just need to plan ahead-and that's not a bad thing!
Ok-now that that's out of my system I gotta go feed the boys-and Oh Lordy, the "baby" had to go to the vet yesterday--what a TAIL that is I've yet to tell! Picture this...two vet techs and one vet trying to corral an 11-lb. kitten--at one point they were all 4 smashed up against the front picture window of the office! That is one photo op I am sorry I missed! Good news is...kitten is acting like he feels a little better. Momma needs a rum drink, though! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Monday, January 10, 2011

Scrapbook Rewards---DON'T FALL FOR IT!

Ok-so I said I was going to be MIA--and I am--things have gone from bad to worse and 3:30 pm finds me in my pjs, under the blankies with a drink. And the cats. The rest I will leave to your imagination. It's not been a good day. BUT-I need to try and keep you from having a worse here goes. In my e-mail in box, and in the new Creating Keepsakes magazine the postman left in my mailbox (yes, the mail did come despite the 10 snow flakes and rain...)--is an advertisement for a GREAT LOOKING credit card-you can have your pick of (scrapbooked) designs--AND it promises you FREE SCRAPBOOK STUFF! And yes, once upon a time...the Stamp Queen fell for it. You know the saying...if it sounds to good to be true...? Well, my BEST advice to you is--DON'T FALL FOR IT! What they don't tell you is...very, very little of your purchases COUNT toward your so-called "Rewards". The rest of the story is---that the "REWARDS" they offer are sky high in price so that you get very little bang for your buck in the end. And their collections department is your WORST NIGHTMARE and then some! Having fallen on some hard times some time back, I enlisted the help of a (Christian) credit counseling organization. They were-and are-awesome. Scrapbook Rewards group (aka Visa/National City), however, was even their undoing. Despite a written agreement between the three parties and a payment plan in place, 8-10 months later I was still getting 6-8 phone calls in one day! It took my threatening legal action against everyone involved before it ceased! My so-called "reward"? A one-year magazine subscription that would've cost me $ 25 tops. LOTS of headaches and hassles. It was so not worth it! So-take my advice and DON'T DO IT! Until next time, STAY WARM---and happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Sunday, January 9, 2011

MIA for a week...maybe...

BRRR! Don't know about where you are ---but baby, it's COLD outside here at the beach with the weatherman calling for SNOW FLURRIES and SLEET. Uh, doesn't he know-this is THE BEACH-it's supposed to be HOT, SUNNY---did I mention HOT?! Oh well! It is January, after all...!

The StampQueen has not had a good day (computer issues out the ying-yang) and she has an overflowing week-so I just wanted to give you a heads up that I may be MIA for a few days or a week. Don't forget about me! Say a prayer (and help save my sanity, please!) and check back soon. Don't forget to take a look at the great bargains in the Inspirations flyer- are only good until the end of January so take a peek and place your order now! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping.
Blessings, Sharon

Friday, January 7, 2011


there are a number of things I am thankful for:

  1. My doctor was gall-bladder was fine-without surgery! I wasn't surprised. I did the research. I made the changes (low fat diet, pear juice, hot water and honey). I sought holistic approaches (acupuncture, homeopathic remedies.). They worked.
  2. I lost 5 lbs. since my last visit--even with the HOLIDAYS! (see # 1-low fat diet...)
  3. My blood pressure was fine (see # 1 and # 2! Did I mention the HOLIDAYS (are over?!))
  4. My other test results (labs, mammogram, etc.) were ok, too!

GO ME! I was feeling pretty good about myself after that. Then I got our weekly edition of the paper--

5. The cat's letter (Inky, to be exact!) made Sydney's Space (a column written by a local dog-with a little help, of course!) Flylady got some free publicity--and the world is wiser about taking along vet records when you travel with your pets. Ya never know when you might need them (I speak from experience! We were glad we had them!) Want more time to stamp and scrap in 2011? Want to get organized? Check out She has all the answers!

There's more!!!

6. I checked the Close to My Heart website-my order hadn't shipped yet according to the schedule posted there, but then---THEN I CHECKED E-MAIL---and lo and behold-FED-EX has my package and it should, God-willing, be here next week! THAT was a MAJOR surprise and I cannot wait to get my hands on the new goodies!!! New paper, LOTS of new stamps, storage container for my new stamps, and a new paper cutter (one of mine died.)!!! I can't wait! Have you checked out the Inspirations catalog? Go to and do some drooling! And ordering! Great deals, my friends! You will want it all! Trust me!

So, all in all, I'd say it was a pretty good day! OH-I even managed to at least corral all the Christmas things to be packed into one room! So some of the house is looking a little more like normal!

Better go feed the boys! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Note of Thanks...

Good morning, all! There are *still* great things being posted on the BLOG HOP-so scroll down when you are done with this post to FINDING YOUR STYLE and click on the thumbnails for some great inspiration! Today---I am posting the thank you notes I made yesterday afternoon for my office volunteers. I am a church secretary. When I was hired, there was an assistant. Things change, and that position was eliminated. While there have been people willing and able to "assist me" all along, it wasn't until my "heart incident" that this stubborn red-head realized that she cannot do the jobs of two people. Well, and be healthy, too! So--I enlisted the help of four great gals who rotate coming and helping me on Wednesdays each week. Just having someone to answer the phone and meet and greet people takes a lot of pressure off me! I wanted to show my appreciation and, using the new January CTMH stamp of the month, Finding Your Style (see the Inspirations flyer!), I did just that! I will post a list of my supplies below, as usual. As you can see, I stamped the butterfly image twice, cut it out, and layered it using ___________ (fill in the blank! If you've read any of my other posts, this is a n0-brainer! Need a hint? It starts with "pop" and ends with "dots!" I simply cannot create without them!) My photo isn't really clear but the outside of my butterfly's wings are blue, the inside and body, green. How did I get two colors on one stamp? Well, I used a magic tool: CTMH sponge daubers (p. 121 of the Spring/Summer 2011 catalog; p. 98 of the Autumn/Winter 2010 catty). First I inked my stamp as usual using the Crystal Blue. Then I dabbed my sponge dauber onto the Pear ink pad and then dabbed it onto the center portion of my stamp. Presto, chango! A multi-colored butterfly! I love these little tools and will try again to show you the difference it can make. Oh-and don't forget--the StampQueen NEVER EVER sends NAKED MAIL! lol! What's "naked mail" you ask? Surely you jest! No Naked Mail ALWAYS add a design image to your envelope as well! It's even been known to make the post office people SMILE! Until tomorrow-don't forget:
  1. the BLOG HOP

  2. Leave a comment. please; and

  3. if you're not a FOLLOWER...please please sign up to be one!

Happy Stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Supplies used: Close to My Heart: Stamp Sets-January Find Your Style stamp of the month & Card Chatter: Thank You;cardstock: colonial white; inks: crystal blue, pear; Stampin Up: blue cardstock; embossing folder, Big Shot machine, punch; Misc: Crop-A-Dile; brads, ribbon; clear embossing powder, heat gun

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Good Morning! We're still at THE HOP! I won't tell you what came up on clipart when I put in hop-but it wasn't 1950's, that's for sure! Lol! THE HOP is going strong so scroll down to my next post FINDING YOUR STYLE and be sure to click on each thumbnail image to go to each blog and view the great things that are being cooked up! If you want your own set of stamps to play with-just click on the link at the top of the page!
It's back to work for me today-and although I don't have a "new" post/project today, I am working on storing a few up for later this week! Until next time, HAVE FUN AT THE HOP and Happy Stamping and Scrapping! Blessings, Sharon
ps/THANK YOU for all the wonderful comments! They make my day! Did you sign up to be a FOLLOWER? If not, please do-and please pass my site on to others who might enjoy it as well!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Finding Your Style...

Happy Monday! Last boss said..."We will be CLOSED the Mon. following Christmas and New Year." Today, as I am sitting here with my coffee, in my pj's, my phone rings...and my coworkers and boss are calling to see where I am?! Lol! I surprised the heck out of everyone by actually taking the day off as I was told! Everyone is laughing-and I was told to please stay home and enjoy my day like I was supposed to! I am doing just that! Type A personality went out with 2010! I am also keeping a close eye on the "baby" of the family who doesn't seem to be feeling too good today. Praying a vet visit isn't on the days agenda...!
Moving right along...FINDING YOUR the *NEW* Close to My Heart January Stamp of the Month! And I've been playing with it! As have a number of other consultants. I will be updating this post later today as Tresea Black of Fabulously Artsy is going to host a "BLOG HOP" to show you all the great things we're doing that you can do, too with this stamp set! "What's a 'blog hop? Do I need to get out my poodle skirt, saddle shoes and..." What? Maren (age 11) is asking "what's a poodle skirt? And saddle shoes?!" sigh. No, you don't need any of that for a BLOG HOP. There will be links you can click on to visit other blogs showcasing this stamp set and who has created what. It's fun! It's a great way to get new, fresh ideas as well as see how versatile one set can be! So, without further ado, here's what I came up with:I used the Clear Cards again (without the protective coating-see previous post for a good laugh!) and, although you can't see it well here-the polka dot background and "A Friend" sentiment are on the inside of the "card" while the shoe, torso and "Friend" tag are on the outside. Rather than a card I turned this into a cute little display I did with this one, too... I actually cut the scalloped circle card in half and put the straight, cut edge at the bottom. This creates an even "base" to stand it on. I stamped two sets of wings and, although it doesn't show in the photo, embossed them with holographic embossing powder to give them some sparkle and shine. "Tweaked" the cardstock so it would curl some, used pop dots of course to give it added dimension. Added clear crystals (note to self: order more!), a pretty bow...a cute little reminder that one should reach for the stars...and SOAR. So-what are your goals for the day? The week? The New Year? Me? To stamp and scrap a whole lot more! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon
Materials: CTMH: Find Your Style Jan. Stamp of the Month (Inspirations Flyer); Inks: Crystal Blue, Black; Other: White Daisy cardstock, Clear Cards, Clear embossing powder; clear blocks & Block Buddies (the grid that goes on your clear blocks so you can line your sentiments up straight on the first try! ; ) );
Other: Stampin' UP: Big Shot machine, embossing folder

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Something (else) New...

Good Sunday Morning to you! Our lovely island is blanketed today in a thick, dense fog! Kinda nice to be back home from church and tucked in for the day--the fog is pretty-as is the ocean in her dark grays and blues-a sleepy, don't do much of anything kind of day. A GREAT day (and excuse, if you need one) to STAMP. So let's get to it!
I got something NEW (besides the January stamp of the month set Find Your Style) to play with and that is CTMH's CLEAR CARDS. These cards are clear acrylic and something I had not tried before! I needed a thank you note and wanted to use the new stamp set so I went to work. I cut 4- 3 3/8" circles out of colonial white cardstock.
For the front of the card, I ran one circle through the Big Shot using the Divine Swirl embossing folder. Next, using the "direct to paper" technique, I inked the edge of the circle as well as the raised portion of the swirls. I attached it to the card base using double stick tape. Next I stamped the bird image 2 times and the "for the wonderful gift" sentiment once. I used Crystal Blue ink and, for the sentiment, I embossed it with clear embossing powder. I carefully cut the bird images and layered them onto the background paper with my favorite-can't-live-without-it item: POP DOTS (no surprise there, huh?!) Next I punched out the sentiment as well as the scalloped background paper. Now-I did not have Crystal Blue cardstock--and I wanted to back my sentiment with it to give it some "pop". What to do? Well, I took my trusty BRAYER, inked it well, rolled it over the colonial white piece I had punched and presto! Crystal Blue cardstock! I layered the sentiment on to it as well (just tape-no pop-dot!) and the front of my card was almost done.
I then inked the edges of the other 3 circles again using the direct to paper technique. I stamped the sentiments and embossed with the clear embossing powder. Attached double sided tape, lined it up with the circle on the front and attached the top panel. More tape to the bottom panel piece, centered it and attached it. I printed (using the red, blue and green printer codes to match my ink color) the "Made especially for you by..." sentiment and attached it to the back of the card. Since the card is clear, you need to be sure to cover whatever paper pieces you attach or you will see your adhesive-hence the layers and lining up. Back to the front panel--I punched two small holes and attached some fibers and ribbon, tying in knots and a bow. Presto! Pretty thank you note ready to go. Well-almost. Contrary to what some of our "groupies" think---the StampQueen is NOT PERFECT! I have to confess-as I was typing this and getting ready to give you the low-down on where to find these items-I read the description on the cards. It said, and I quote, "Remove the clear protective film before use." Film? WHAT FILM? I didn't remove any film...! Mad dash, get card, CAREFULLY scratch at edge of card and, sure enough-there was the protective film! OOPS! The good news is...even though as it came off-and my card front and back panels came off with it-I was able to peel my decorated panels off the protective film and put them back without any damage-and anyone besides me being any the wiser. Now you know, too! Learn from my mistakes! I did not rephotograph the card-it is a good bit clearer vs. the somewhat "hazy" look without the film! You'll see the difference when I post the photos of the cards I am working on today! These cards are fun to play with and I have two more designs going around in my head-BUT I WILL REMOVE THE PROCTECTIVE LAYER FIRST! Lol.
Of course I've got to post some new CUTE CAT PICTURES as well...first Poppa Cat got impatient sitting at the front door waiting for Poppa to come home for lunch and decided to bunch up the rug...Momma caught him in the act...then somehow I think I may have gotten
something you won't find on any page in the old or new CTMH catalog...first the "baby" (aka Inky)had to check it out...and then the "grandpa" of the bunch had to see what was going on as well...! Lol.

I am off to do some blog hopping and then to whip up the card ideas I mentioned so be sure to stop back by tomorrow to see what I cooked up. Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon
PS/One of my goals in 2011 is to increase my blog following! If you have enjoyed my blog and know someone else who might like it as well--would you please tell them about it? Do you follow it but haven't "signed in" as a follower? Please do! It's not hard and, of course, COMMENTS are always welcome! Tell me what you like (even what you don't!)-or if there is something you want to know, learn or see-let me know!
Materials used: CTMH: Colonial White cardstock & Crystal Blue ink (p.100 & 101,) Clear Cards (p. 88); Card Chatter Thank You (p.74); 3"x3" block (p.33)--Autumn/Winter 2010 Catalog;
January Stamp of the Month: Find Your Style-Inspirations Brochure (avail. Jan. 1-Jan. 31, 2011 only). Other: CuttleBug Embossing folder Divine Swirls; Stampin' Up: Big Shot machine, oval and oval scallop punches, heat gun, clear embossing powder.
Visit my Close to My Heart site at to shop-or contact me via e-mail (there is a convenient e-mail link on the site as well!) with any questions you may have. Thank you for allowing me to show you how to scrapbook-and stamp-faster, simpler and easier!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, ya'll! Wishing you and yours a happy, healthy, blessed and prosperous 2011! We celebrated by attending our church's "watchnight service" at 11:30 PM. It is a time to reflect on the year past, renew your covenant with God, and begin the New Year well, renewed! It is usually a very small crowd but it is quite touching and profound. I can't think of a better place to be to begin a fresh, new year!

And, speaking of such...I HAVE NEWS! There's a NEW IMAGE on the right-hand sidebar--didjasee it--huh, huh?! (hint: scroll down-it's below what I call my alice in wonderland pic--at my feet and it has the words "PhD" on it!!) Yep-that's right! As of today, I r a graduate! I have, in the mere past week, completed the bachelor, masters AND PhD Close to My Heart Training Academy courses! GO ME! The new catalog and products have really inspired me! Check out my CTMH site at to see the latest-just click on the "View January Inspirations" on the bottom right hand side of the main page. The INSPIRATIONS flyer is the "transition" catalog since CTMH is going from 3 to 2 catalogs a year, the Inspirations catalog is valid for the month of January ONLY---and believe me, there are SOME GREAT DEALS! I want just about everything in there! Considerable price breaks if you order the Workshop on the Go kit. With WOTG you can make 2-2 page layouts or 6 cards...with paper left over and of course stamps to use over and over again. It comes with instructions that will walk you through each step of your creation---or, better yet, come take a class with me! The January Stamp of the Month is by far the prettiest I have seen! It is only available through Jan. 31st and, as usual, the more you order the better the deal-you can even get it for FREE! Check it out!
I've not felt the greatest and when I've not been working through my courses I have been drooling over the new catalog! I post some projects soon! I need to make a thank you card for Carmen, my stepson's girlfriend who graciously sent us a Harry & David salsa sampler box for Christmas. Hmm...I have some acrylic cards, the Jan. stamp of the month set, a few new inks...think I will head to the craft room now as I feel some INSPIRATION comin' on! ; ) Until next time-see if you can't get INSPIRED at and, as usual, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon