Monday, 27 July 2009

Just because...

...they make me smile :-)...

ETA: Guess what this means...?

...SPRING is a comin'!

Have a bee-utiful week ;-).

P.S. I have been mucking around trying to make my own watermark and signature block using the silhouette from some of my flower pictures. I am using the instructions found on the CoffeeShop site...if you like playing with Photoshop, you MUST visit :-).

P.P.S. More mucking around:

I have used one of the free Photoshop storyboards on offer from CoffeeShop blog
(although I did not use the action, I followed the tutorial for using the template independent of the action). The font for the text (SPRING is nigh!) is also a freebie called 'the Blue Cabin' from Free Scrapbook Fonts. I need to say a big thank you to Susy for introducing me to these two sites by way of her blog (which is also filled with beautiful pictures and fabulous papercraft projects). Thank you Susy!...I've been having so much fun playing with this stuff over the last week!!

Monday, 20 July 2009

Stuff that makes me Smile...

Just thought I'd show you my 'Smile' journal:

List of Ingredients (all from Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):

Cardstock: Whisper White textured cardstock
Ink: Tangerine Tango classic ink
Accessories: Urban Garden DSP (my favourite of course), On Board Timeless Type, On Board Essentials, On Board Art Journal, Versamark, Heat and Stick powder, heat tool, Fine Supernova Stampin' Glitter, Spiral punch, Pigtails Ribbon Originals, Beachfront Ribbon Originals (retired), crop-a-dile, eyelets, sanding block, craft knife, SNAIL adhesive, sticky strip, mini glue dots and Anywhere glue stick.

The chipboard heart is tied onto the top of the journal spine with a long piece of the ricrac ribbon, and acts as a bookmark.

This journal is for putting down the things that make me smile (pictures, lyrics, poems, reminders, anything...a mini scrapbook of sorts), so when I'm not feeling so smiley...I can go look at it for inspiration. It is especially good because it is a craft project in itself...and crafting makes me smile. Two birds, one stone! :-).

Speaking of are a few snaps of some of the local avian pretties (more things that make me smile):

Have a smiley day!

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Traveler's Inspiration Challenge: {three}

Well, its that time of the week again, time for Tina's Traveler's Inspiration Challenge. This week, the beautiful inspiration photo is supplied by Amy, at Tethered 2 Home:

I have been looking forward to Friday night all week, and not just because it is the start of the weekend! Tina's challenge comes online on our Friday night, and it is the perfect wind-down from a long week. I get to sit down, and think about what I am going to do, and then get up early on Saturday morning and have a play with my craft goodies. What a perfect start to the weekend!

So last night I made a sketch, and this morning I put together this 12 x 12 scrapbook page:

List of Ingredients (all from Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted, stamped images © Stampin' Up!):

Cardstock: Tempting Turquoise, Real Red and Brilliant Blue textured cardstock, Brilliant Blue, Yoyo Yellow and Summer Sun smooth cardstock
Ink: Real Red and Yoyo Yellow Classic ink
Stamps: Nursery Necessities
Accessories: Hoppy Memories Simply Scrappin' kit, Petals & Paisleys DSP, Jersey Shore DSP, On Board Timeless Type, White Gesso by Plaid, stipple brush, yellow embroidery thread by DMC, yellow button by Bazzill Basics Paper, 3/4" circle punch, scallop edge punch, crimper, mini glue dots, SNAIL adhesive and sticky strip.

I am very happy with the way this page turned out. I was scribbling away last night and my husband says to me...'are you making a list of things to buy?'. I laughed and showed him the sketch...the relief on his face was obvious!

I painted the chipboard letters with white gesso, then added the Yoyo Yellow classic ink with the stipple brush. I dried the letters off using the heat tool. Also, there are red boats stamped all over the red strip on the left hand side of the page...some have been stamped off, and don't show up well in the photo.

This was the first time we took our little 6m trailer sailer out on Lake Burley Griffin, and we had the dinghy attached. The kids loved every minute of this day. We went swimming, riding in the dinghy, had lunch, bought ice creams at the National Museum of Australia (which has a jetty where we were able to tie up) and generally had fun. The dinghy got stolen from the lake shore one night not so long after this photo was taken, which is a bit of a shame...but we still have the sail boat and we use an inflatable dinghy now instead.

Thanks so much for the inspiration Amy and Tina. Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Sweet Sunday and undercooked cupcakes...

It has shaped up to be a beautiful day here in Canberra. After a foggy start the sky is now a lovely shade of blue and there is some snow on the ranges. Pretty!

Yesterday I decided to participate in Karen Giron's Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge #26, and this is the sketch:

I decided to go with a 6 x 6 scrapbok page, and to use up a piece of background cardstock where I had trialled the wax paper technique (see the details on Splitcoaststampers here):

Ingredient List (all from Stampin' Up! unless otherise noted):

Cardstock: Pacific Point textured and plain cardstock, Whisper White plain cardstock and Glossy white cardstock
Ink: Baja Breeze classic ink and Whisper White craft ink
Accessories: Waxed paper from Black and Gold, iron, brayer, paper piercer, sticky lettering from Creative Memories, white embossing powder, heat tool, photo corners punch, On Board Timeless Type, Styled Silver Hodge Podge, Pacific Point striped grosgrain, SNAIL adhesive, mini glue dots and dimensionals.

As you can see, the wax paper technique worked well, and I love the shot of hubby and Mr2 (YES...despite the shoulder length hair that IS a MR under there ;-). This page falls down though with the colour of the sticker letters I have used. The orange is completely lost on the striped can hardly read what it says. I am contemplating lifting them off and using black instead...but am fretting over the waste of lettering that will be! What do you would you fix it?

One of the reasons I like blogging, apart from the social networking and sharing of ideas, is that I really like pretty pictures, and one of my blog-goals is to be a place of pretty this end, I give you...MORE NAUGHTY FOOD PICTURES!

Before you leave any comments about my cooking, I thought it fair that you know that these cupcakes are waaaaay undercooked and taste like egg and flour! Also, because I am no MasterChef I manged to curdle the butter/sugar/egg mix while I was making them.

I had to go online and see what causes the batter to curdle like that and I came up with this list:
1/ ingredients not at room temperature
2/ insufficient creaming of the butter and sugar
3/ adding the eggs too quickly
I am guilty of all three, so no wonder my batter looked icky by the time I was finished. I was looking around for Miss Muffet to come eat her curds and whey! But the photo looks that's why its here. I like to show you the pretty stuff, and I try not to think about the mistakes :-).

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Sweet Slumber Calendar

The other day I found this great tutorial for a 12 x 12 calendar page on Tina's blog Travelingmama. Her beautiful work inspired me to make my own calendar page:

Ingredients used for this page (all from Stampin' Up! unless otheriwse noted, and Images © Stampin' Up!):

Cardstock: So Saffron plain and Baja Breeze textured
Ink: Whisper White Craft ink, Baja Breeze Classic ink and Tuxedo Black Momento ink by Tsukineko
Stamps: Calendar Alphabet and Numbers
Accessories: Sweet Slumber Specialty Designer Series Paper, On Board Timeless Type and On Board So Tweet, White embossing powder, heat tool, scallop edge and 1 3/8" square punches, sponge daubers, SNAIL adhesive and mini glue dots.

You might note that some of the numbers are a bit wonky....I was having a bit of a brain malfunction, and forgot that Stampin' Up!'s Calendar Alphabet and Numbers set actually comes with complete numbers right up to 31 (they were sitting right in front of me the entire time)...but I went and created all my numbers using the digits 1 - 9. You would think I would have cottoned on when I had to use the 'o' from the alphabet to make 10, 20 and 30 (because there is no zero...but I didn't! DOH!).

The groovy thing about this page is that once the month is over, you can print out a few favourite pics of the things you did, and punch them out and stick them into some of the days and then put the page in your scrap album.

Also, the other day I saw this lovely box on Debbie's blog and I was inspired to make my own box to go with a card I made some time ago:

I used the instructions by Laurie Schmidlin on Splitcoaststampers here, and you can see the original post for the little birdie card here.

The box, which measures 6 x 6 x 3 inches, is now filled with beautiful Paddington Chocolates, as part of a birthday gift. I won't show you those because you might throw cyber-tomatoes at me (too many naughty goodies popping up on here eh?).

Thanks so much for the inspiration Tina and Debbie!
Have a great day everyone.

Saturday, 11 July 2009

Traveler's Inspiration Challenge: {two}

WOW...this week's Traveler's Inspiration Challenge photo was like a blast from the past for me!

This is the beautiful inspiration photo:

...and it is from Anthonette at Chavez Designs.

...and this is the blast from the past that it evoked for me...

This photo is taken in Bolivia at the Bolivian/Chilean Border post near Laguna Blanca, in the Andes. In June 1998 we spent a day at this far-flung, altitudinous outpost (5000 m), as part of our travels in South America and Antarctica. The locals gave me Coca leaf tea to help alleviate the altitude sickness I experienced up here...but it didn't do much for me (apparently Coca leaves contain an alkaloid which is the basis for Cocaine [Wikipedia] no wonder it didn't do any good!!!!!!!). One of the volcanos in the background of my shot is Licancabur (5921 m). No, we didn't climb it, but two french guys on our tour did!

I have a bunch of other pics I'd like to put in here...we saw flamingos, llamas, guanaco and geysers, and the landscape of the Bolivian altiplano is awe inspiring, but lucky for you they are all slides (as was the one above), and we haven't scanned them in yet (maybe later ;-)...besides which, this post is about Anthonette's pic..not mine...sorry for the sidetracking!

Here is the card that Anthonette's photo inspired me to create:

The Ingredients (all from Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):

Sahara Sand and Ballet Blue plain cardstock, Whisper White textured cardstock
Accessories: Cuttlebug folders, Linen Thread, On Board Accents (retired), A Perfect Day rub-ons (retired), Sahara Sand Classic ink, sponge dauber, SNAIL adhesive and dimensionals.

I hope you can see where I have tried to recreate the texture and feel of the desert sand, and then the mud buildings...same colours, different textures, and the white to help delineate. This card was a lot of fun to make!

Thank you Tina and Anthonette. This has been a great way to start my day.

PS. Like my new watermark? I got it from Karen Giron....I might even have to get some more. They are soooo cute!.

PPS. We've been having some fun this afternoon, and scanning in our here are a few more shots from Bolivia:

Me, outside our 'motel' room...with the world's worst headache.

The toilet (baño)..which is a very elaborate building housing a unisex hole in the ground (aka toilet)...which, being at 5000 m altitude, was frozen solid..ICK!

Laguna Blanca, complete with Flamencos (the small dots of fluff in the lake).

Bathing in a thermal pool...blissful!

Bogged in the magnificent Salar de Uyuni. The guy on the outside is a fellow traveller from Norway named André...André if you ever read this blog...HELLO! The large foot that you can see extending past the others at the back belongs to my hubby...I think he almost fell flat on his face trying to push this 4WD out of the salar bog.

This shot taken from the Isla de Pescado, looking out over the Salar de Uyuni. MUY MAGNIFICO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just me and the Salar!

The salt can actually stay here. The whole place is made up of blocks of salt, cut from the salar...GROOVY, but not so good for the skin ;-).

One of the things I remember best about this trip is the sky...such an awesome shade of blue, and the landscape...such stark contrasts and extremely beautiful. Bolivia is an amazing country and I'd go back there in a jiffy!

Tuesday, 7 July 2009


I've recently made a decision to USE some of my older, retired Designer Series Papers (DSP), rather than hording it endlessly for the proverbial rainy day. So, when I recently needed some purple-toned paper to make a box and card, I immediately thought of the pretty Enchanté DSP (from the Summer 2007|2008 Stampin' Up! Mini Catalogue).

The ingredients (all from Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):

Cardstock: Basic Black and Whisper White
Stamps: On Your Birthday
Ink: Black Stazon
Accessories: Enchanté Designer Series Paper (retired), True Black Luxe Satin Ribbon (Papertrey Ink), Clear Rhinestones (Kaiser), Eyelet Border punch, SNAIL adhesive and mini glue dots.

The beautiful beads are handmade glass lampwork lentils by Terry of Silverfish Designs on Etsy. I really love the unusual shapes, patterns and colours that Terry works into her beads. They are truly unique!

While I am here...I wanted to show you how the cake that I was making yesterday turned out:

It is an Orange Poppyseed cake, and for a packet mix it tastes pretty good!

Better go bring in the washing before it gets damp again (and yes, by 2 in the afternoon, it is almost damp again...BRING ON SPRING!!!!!!!!! :-).

Thanks for dropping by.

Monday, 6 July 2009

Chocolates from Kim!

Saturday night was my friend (and new downline) Kim's first workshop as a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, and she invited me along to join in the fun. She did a wonderful job, and it was very relaxing not to be the one in the 'hot' seat for an evening ;-).

I just wanted to show you the lovely thank you card and gift that Kim gave me on the night:

Aren't they STUNNING? The chocolates were originally in a cello bag inside the fold out pack on the right. I simply adore the card. Kim made a similar one with different colours a little while back, and you can check it out on her blog here. It is such a groovy idea. Kim has used one of the tree patterns from Funky Trees to create the dots on the flower, and they are all embossed mind you. The faux ric-rac flower stem that she has created using the scallop border punch is so pretty. Kim's attention to detail is second to none. Thanks so much Kim!! (PS. The chocolates WERE very yummy ;-).

Also, while we were all outside yesterday, catching a few weak rays of sunshine, my daughter and I decided to check on some of our little carrots. We pulled up a few and were very pleased to see that they looked good. A little crooked and wonky, but carroty-looking nonetheless!

As my daughter pulled one carrot up she exclaimed...'LOOK MUM! It's a carrot with Dancing-Legs!!'...I laughed:

It IS a carrot with dancing legs!! I love how they come up with such apt and descriptive names for things.

We don't know why our carrots grow in these crazy shapes. If you have any words of wisdom on the carrot growing industry, we'd love to hear from you :-).

Have a lovely start to your week! I am going to hang some washing up and get a little cake out of the oven now.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Traveler's Inspiration Challenge:{one}

One of my favourite bloggers, Tina of Travelingmama has started her own creative challenge...the Traveler's Inspiration Challenge.

First, I want to say a huge thanks to Tina because I think this is a fabulous idea. I love looking through my photos of trips is one of the reasons I've been posting those clips from allposters...I like looking up places that I have been and seeing how other people have captured their beauty/mystery/allure.

The first challenge photo is a stunning combination of colour and design...not to mention the texture of the bling!

I found it very inspiring, and as I first saw it while sitting up in bed on a Sunday morning...I immediately thought of slipping my feet into a pair of those dainty little slippers and frolicking around the house (luckily I don't have any, so the neighbours were spared that spectacle...but you, on the other have the visual firmly planted in your head...don't you? Sorry ;-).

I did eventually leap out of bed, and went hunting through my beads, microbeads, glitters, bling and In Colours...they ALL wanted to play. In the end I limited myself to glitters...but I did use LOTS ;-).

List of Ingredients (all available from Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):

Cardstock: Kiwi Kiss plain cardstock and Whisper White textured cardstock
Paper: Bella Rose Designer Series paper
Accessories: Bright Delights rub-ons, Sweet sticky cuts, Fine Supernova Stampin' Glitter, Fine Cosmo Stampin' Glitter, SNAIL adhesive and dimensionals.

I must say that I good part of today's renewed Craftin' enthusiasm comes from having attended a fun workshop last night (thanks Kim!)...but more on that later ;-).

Have a wonderful day, wherever you may be in the world!


PS. I have been meaning to say a very big thank you to everyone who left such lovely commments on my last two posts. You are all very sweet!!!

PPS. I have also been meaning to explain the lack of watermark and photoshopping of many of my more recent you may remember, my laptop expired some time ago, and now I am using my husband's. He does not have Photoshop on here, and I do not have easy access to most of my files anyway (like watermarks etc). Its getting old real quick...but what can a girl do? PLEAD for mercy, BEG forgiveness and GROVEL for a replacement powerboard? It won't be happening any time soon I'm afraid :-(.