December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Can you believe there are only HOURS left till Christmas? I am supposed to be wrapping presents while the kiddos are out but I thought I'd take some computer time (again..while the kids are out and not hogging this machine) to post some things I promised earlier. Christmas decor.

Many of the photos I took came out so blurry or I just couldn't get the right angle. I do have some a few worth while shots though. I simply puttered out after all of this decorating. >>> *sigh* come the neighbors kids up the drive...ringing the bell. They come over EVERY day! I guess it's better to have them here than my kids down the street out of eyesight. <<<>

First I'd like to share this Be-U-tee-full sunrise (5:45am). Look at the blues and corals in here! It was VERY cold when I took this photo, but no snow like most of my Northern friends are getting.

OK. Here is a photo of my mantel with a silver theme. The lights are so bright in the photo so it's hard to see how much it sparkles.

These 3" votive look HUGE. Bad angle (I warned you). It's a red and gold theme.

Now, are you ready for this?! My neighbor has over 100 pieces of faux Department 56. I say faux because they are not truly department 56 but ceramic houses she purchased from Joann's years ago. For those who don't know department 56, they are the small ceramic villages and figurines you see at Hallmark and various other shops that show small scenes and characters from Charles Dickens and...several other themes, I just can't remember them. You can light them up and they are wonderful to look at.

My neighbor sets her houses on a hand-made layered tier most of the year, just like sitting on steps, but this year she went vertical and made table bases in decreasing sizes to stack on top one another, making her village a sort of Christmas tree. I can't explain, you'll have to look at the photos below to understand the time and effort she put into this! It's AMAZING!

Here it is from the other side.

Here's a close-up of one of the villages. Each village is placed in a specific spot so it all works together. She really takes a lot of time and effort to do this so it all is strategically placed. Most of what I learned from decorating has come from her. She is not a professional, only enjoys the art of crafting and making things. I'm going to send these images to some magazines and nominate her for...something! I love looking at it.
Below is a small scene from the left front. If you look in through this window from the back of the house you can see that she made a snowy scene by putting some polyfil around her window panes, so it has that wintery Christmas feel.

December 21, 2007

Blogger Challenge Week 26

Bloggers Challenge for week 26 was to create a moving card. This is a shaker card. There are tiny black micorbeads inside the circle but you can't see them becuase they've fallen to the bottom when I took the photo.
This ribbon could really use something on the left but I had a card-making block. Everything I tried took away from the focal point of the circle.

December 15, 2007

Bloggers Challenge 25

This weeks Bloggers Challenged was to create a Sympathy card. This is what I came up with. I like to put the sentiment on the inside.

I still owe you pictures for my holiday deocrations. They are dull in comparison to my neighbors decorations. I'll be posting them later tonight.

December 11, 2007


I need to clarify my item #5 "Tag" fact. It was supposed to start out as "Do you believe in alternate dimenisions". It was late, and I was trying to finish up my "Tag facts" and deleted part of my sentence. So, here it is again:

Do you believe in alternate dimensions? I do. Now, I bet that's a fact you didn't know about me. There could be one floating right here besides me, (or you) at this very moment. You probably think I'm crazy, but there have been MANY oddball things happen in this world, that to discount an alternate dimension as existing would not be fair. This oddball fact could stem some serious discussion..but it's getting late and I have 2 more facts to let's move on.

Can you believe it is only 12 days before Christmas? Where has the month gone? Haven't done a lick of holiday shopping yet...i'm dreading the stores. Although, I do rather well when I shop under pressure.

OK..time to hit the sack. I DID finally finish up my Hoilday decorating. I'll be posting some photos tomorrow; just hope I get home from work at a reasonable hour.

December 10, 2007

GOSH it's warm outside!

Can you believe it is 71 degrees outside today and humid as can be. It sure is hard to get into the Holiday spirit when it feels like summer! I can't complain though. While I prefer it cold, I know many of you are dipping into the freezing weather. Keep warm and send some of those winter flurries this way!

Well, I've been tagged by little miss SUE! We all know these tags are made for sharing links with our fellow Blogging friends (you never know what you'll discover).

The name of the game is to share something about myself that you don't already know. Hum, anyone in the world can read a blog, so unless you know me personally, I'd say you probably know nothing about me, LOL, which in turn means I can share basicallly anything and it'll be news to you. goes.

  • I am the QUEEN of typos. Those who receive my Rubbapalooza newsletter can attest to that! What's bad is now that I have a Blog, the WORLD will know of them as well.

  • I fall asleep when reading even for 5 minutes! I've never been one for long stories. The only books that peak my interest are Visually Stimulating books (i.e, Home and Gardening, Somerset Studio, etc.). Maybe it's due to the fact I like instant gratification. Maybe this is why I gave up on needlepoint and crochet LONG ago!

  • I'm a trash to treasure girl. My husband would disagree...he'd say I'm a JUNK girl. If there is something that catches my eye and I think it's useable, I pick it up..regardless of where it is. My closets in fact are overflowing with my 'useful' findings, LOL. One night we took a family walk and I spotted this AMAZING old Remington typewriter the neighbors were throwing out. Yes, I know! This beauty was out by the curb just calling to me "bring me home".

  • Now, if you are into Altered Art, then you KNOW what a gem this was to find! It was rusty and used; and even had the old typewriter ribbon still in it. Apparently my husband didnt' think it was as valuable, so he threw it BACK out to the trash and OFF came my head! I'll leave last comment to your own imagination. of those man vs woman showdowns. If I threw out the crusty old golf bag sitting in the shed for 7 years now I'd never hear the end of it!
  • Hum, I think I'm supposed to do 7 of these things 'things about myself''. Oddly I can't think of's becausse I'm under pressure. Maybe I should ask what you'd like to know? We'll count this one as #4 and call it "The Gap".
  • <<<>I do. Now, I bet that's a fact you didn't know about me. There could be one floating right here besides me, (or you) at this very moment. You probably think I'm crazy, but there have been MANY oddball things happen in this world, that to discount an alternate dimension as existing would not be fair. This oddball fact could stem some serious discussion..but it's getting late and I have 2 more facts to let's move on.
  • OK, who's looking for typos, LOL? Here's another nothing fact about me: I don't read the newspaper or watch the news. Is that a worthy fact? I tend to look away from all the terrible things that are happening in the world. My co-worker calls it "Melanie's land of denial", while I simply call it "Melanie's happy dimension". With a family of 5, a full time job and my 'extra cirricula' activites, who has the time to deal with all the trama going on in the world? If there is something of REAL importance then it will trickle down to me somehow. My husband is good at keeping me informed of things I "should" know going on about the world.

OK..I am wiped out and need to hit the sack. Luckily for my victums (I mean, fellow Taggers), they will only need to post as many fun facts as I did.

Now to spread the LOVE! It's time to TAG some fellow Bloggers. Make sure you check out their blogs; they are some FABULOU-SO stampers!

You know what to do girls! Spread the LOVE.

December 8, 2007

Blogger Challenge Week 24

Here's my Blogger Challenge for week 24. The challenge was to create a card with a watercolor technique. The image here was colored in using Watercolor Wonder crayons and then blended with an aqua brush. Crystal effects on the dots and lots of sponging.

This card should have been posted last night. Time seems shorter during the holidays with shopping, parties and the decorating. Speaking of...I just finished the last touches on the living room after 2 weeks! Of course, everytime I walk by something I tweak it....drives my husband ba-zerk!

December 2, 2007

Sisterhood 3 of Blogging Stampers

Well, it was an eventful weekend. Still working on decorating for the holidays (which will probably take me till next week). I'll be sharing some of my creative displays soon. I only wish I could work on them an entire day and get it done, but I need to make time for family and holiday shopping as well.

Speaking of holiday shopping...has anyone had to stand in a line for more than an hour for something? I left the house 1/2 hour early to head to Best Buy to purchase a Wii for the kids and found out 'while' I stood in line that they were out. Ever notice there is always one HOT holiday item that everyone seems to want? Well, I have no intentions of traveling to the far ends of the earth to find one of these...they will be available everywhere once the Holiday is over.

Now, onto the big news. I subscribed to a great new group called "The Sisterhood of Blogging Stampers". It's basically a group of stampers that support one another by sharing artwork through their blogs. I'm really looking forward to getting to know the group. It's always nice meeting others who enjoy the same hobbies as I do.

It felt like Spring here today (well...more like the beginning of Summer). I went outside yesterday to clean the kitchen wire rack and saw these beauties in full bloom. Of course, they have been in bloom for over a week now; I just slooooooooooooowed down enough to get a photo of them.

These mums are from last years Halloween display in the front yard. I threw them in the side yard until I could find them an official home. Looks like they decided for me.

These photos are gonna be what brightens my day when the temps eventually dip into the 30's.

Look at the little cucumber beetle! Doesn't he know it's December? He should be in hiding until Spring.

November 30, 2007

Blogger Challenge Week 23

I've recently joined a group of Blogging Stampers. This week is my first Blogger Challenge. The goal was to create 2 cards using the same stamp but with two different points of views. The stamp I'm focusing on is one of the SU! level 2 hostess sets.

Card 1 was created using watercolor paper and watercolor crayons. Just mist your rubber stamp and scribble the crayon on top of the wet rubber; then stamp the image onto the watercolor paper. I tried to lighten the image but the cardstock is so dark. The flowers were also outlined with an eggplant colored marker.

For card 2 I just stamped the flower mulitple times to create the background. The base cardstock is Saffron but the ink used was mustard and close to cocoa (the close to cocoa was stamped off once before applying to the cardstock.

November 29, 2007

Holiday Gold

I'm still working on getting the house set up for Christmas. Sadly, there is not much time left in the day when you get home at 6pm every night.

I call this Holiday Gold. It's one of the displays I have set up on my side table. My original color scheme for this year was going to be blue, white and silver for a winter wonderland, but it seems I've acculated more gold and white peices through the years; so the theme will be Holiday Gold (with a bit of traditional thrown in).

November 25, 2007

A Charming Christmas

Well, today's the big day of decorating the house for Christmas. It'll take ALL day so I'm making a blog post early as I doubt I'll get back at the end of the day. A great day for being indoors as it's pouring outside.

Lately I've been working on my Flickr account. I have had a Webshots account for YEARS but really love the clean and crispness that Flickr offers, so I'm slowly changing over. I won't be getting rid of my Webshots as there are many who refer to it for ideas, but it's time to move onto something more modern.

For those not familiar with Flickr, it's a site that allows you to upload your photos/projects to share with others. I came across the site back in the Summer (can't remember how...probably due to my continual Internet surfing). It is a place that offers many, many ideas for inspiration and art.

Today I created a mosaic with images from some of my favorite Flickr members. It's called "A Charming Christmas". Many of the photos have a Vintage charm (which is why I selected them). Below you can view the images, but if you select this link "A Charming Christmas", it'll give you access to view the sites where each photo is published. Beware, it's addictive! I've spent hours jumping from one Flickr account to the other. Completely justifiable if it enriches your spirit and brings you joy!

November 24, 2007

Baroque Cut-out

It's been a very busy day! In fact, I've been busy since Wednesday, trying to cram in as much as I can during my 4 day weekend. Really, is it even possible for a woman to have an EMPTY "To-Do" list?

Tommorrow my day will be dedicated to making Christmas cards and decorating the house for the Holidays. I really should have worked on those Christmas cards tonight but I took a trip to the fabric store and purchase from the 50% off big-bolts (what you typically use for covering pillows, sofas, etc.). I have NO idea what I'm going to do with it...but it's Ga-orgeous and had to have it! We'll see if my husband feels the same way when I show it to him. He's learned to accept my "gotta have it for the future" purchases, LOL, (honestly, if you only knew). Actually, I do have a few ideas for putting the fabric to good use, but it'll have to wait. For now, it's going on the bottom of my "Future Projects" To-Do list.

A trip to the Bead store was fit into tonights outing. I walked into that store and had no clue as to where to start. That is, until I found the "Vintage" beads section. Drooooooool!

Beads from the 30's, 40's and even Germany. I can think of many uses these little beauties, but none of them include using them for jewelry.

Now, on to stamping business. Here's my latest card using the Baroque background stamp. This is one of my favorite stamps of the the year!

I stamped in Artichoke Ink onto Artichoke cardstock and cut out the big flourish. Then I stamped the entire cut-out with the Floral background.

The Soft Sky cardstock was stamped with Soft Sky ink using the Linen background and Finest Flourishes stamp set. The gold lines were created using a gold Zig pen.

The entire cut-out was lifted with dimensionals.

November 23, 2007

Holiday Shopping ~ $10 in Free product

OK, WHO woke up at 4am to head off to a Black Friday sale? Oh, I husband! Even more interesting...he took my 11 year old daughter with him. My thoughts the previous night, "Don't wake me up on your way out" LOL!

I'm not sure about all of you but I plan on doing as MUCH holiday shopping from the comfort of my home as possible. Now, I do enjoy seeing the decorations, lights and music inside the malls, but I'd rather just look around and enjoy the atmosphere with the kids instead of having the pressures of buying something or standing in those loooooooooooooooong lines! Honestly, you can get anything online now a days and what makes it even more Enticing this time of year; most companies offer Free Shipping and Handling. I know, you're cringing at the thought of paying $10 for S&H but if you think about it, the airlines, UPS and other delivery services are doing all the leg work for you. In turn you're saving the cost of a $5 gallon (or more) of gas to use for the really FUN visiting family and friends during this time of year. Now, on to my special.

Purchase an $50 of product and get an additional $10 in product for FREE!
SALE DATES: November 23rd - 27th.

Now, WHAT to purchase? Let me help you with that also! Below is a "Wrapping Up the Holidays" sale on crafting supplies. BIG, BIG savings (my personal favorite is the Satin Ribbon.).

View this special offer here: Wrapping Up the Holidays Special and all supplies listed in the Holiday Mini

Item Number Description Price
112409 Holiday Tag Bundle ~ $4.95 (more info below on this package)
110380 Tags for All Stamp Set* (20% off) ~ $24.76
110264 Designer Gift cards* (30% off) ~ $4.55
109862 Chocolate Chip satin ribbon* ~ Buy 1, get 1 free!
109863 Purely Pomegranate satin ribbon* ~ Buy 1, get 1 free!
108333 Tin 3-Pack ~ $9.95 (empty tins, great for altering or gift cards; see idea link below)
110147 Celebration wrapping paper* ~ $17.95
110228 Hand Selected Accents & Elements (25% off) ~ $8.21

NOTE: There is no limit to the amount you can buy by remember, all items from the Holiday mini are while supplies last.

Wondering what to do with all these goodies? Take a look at these great IDEAS

Holiday Tag Team Bundle: Bundle includes 15 of each of the following pieces (see "Idea" link for images and ideas):

Whisper White card stock
Real Red textured card stock
Soft Sky Prints Designer Series Paper (Dotted Diamond pattern)
Real Red twill tape

The pieces for this bundle make 15 cellophane bag toppers that are perfect for neighbor or teacher gifts. These pieces are from the Holiday Glitz card kit and will come shrink-wrapped individually (for example, all 15 pieces of Real Red twill tape will be shrink-wrapped as one package).

Interested in this special, simply contact ME

November 18, 2007

Simply Delightful

It's been a non-stop weekend BUT I did get in some stamping time (after spending 6 hours cleaning my studio, LOL). What can I say, I've been on the go with several big events and workshops and the holidays are closing in.

First up, my Winter Bright Christmas Card Class. You can find out details at my website and a sneak peek of the cards below.

All guest receive a package fo the Winter Bright Simply Scrappin' Kit.

Here is a close-up and a few other creations using one of the SU! Simply Sent Kits Simply Delightful. The base for all of these cards uses only the stamp sets and dye pads including in the kit along with 1 pack of the 12x12 textured "In Color" cardstock.

Here's a rather blurry image of a donut card, along with directions on how to make the flower border surrounding the circle.

November 12, 2007

Le Jardin magnetic easel

These mini magnet photo frames came from Target during Valentines Day last year and I just found them in my 'stash' closet; and here I thought they were all gone!

I've altered it to be a magnet calendar/memo holder. The small round marble has a magnet on the back. The image behind the marble is from the Carte Postale set, the large square stamp. I simply used a Bordering Blue marker in the center of the square, stamped on Vanilla card stock and punched it out with the 3/4" circle punch. The designer paper is Le Jardin and was designed to go with the Carte Postale stamp set.

The calendars came from Vippies (they're the medium self-stick calendars). These are gonna make perfect gifts for someone.

November 11, 2007

Jumbo Holiday Gift bar

Well, I'm certainly feeling the effects of the "Holiday Crunch" here at home. I've committed myself to 5 must-do events, 3 of which have passed, now to focus on the next two, neither of which includes preparing for Thanksgiving!

Here are some Jumbo chocolate covered Hershey bars wrapped with the festive Dashing and Cerise designer paper from Stampin' up! How quick was this and SOOOOOOOOOOOO festive! My favorite are the polka dot papers. The snowman of course is from the Merry and Bright stamp set but the other round circle images are from the Big Pieces stamp set. I really love that Big Pieces set. Depending on the colors you select, it can be used for any occasion. What makes that set more appealing to me is, the multiple layers you get just by using any of the circle and scallop punches! I could sit for hours just punching out circles and using them for embellishments on cards.

What do you think about that petals in the back of the circle? That was made with the 5-petal flower punch.

For those who were keeping up with my Mistletoe Market blog and adventure, the show was great. I met many wonderful and creative artist. I'll be sharing some photos later, but for now, I'm back to my stamping studio to get some more Holiday projects done.

October 28, 2007

Holiday Gifts at Mistletoe Market

The Christmas season is approaching FAST. Only 2 more months to prepare! It's time to make your Christmas card and Gift list.

One of the most diffcult things for me is deciding WHAT to get someone. I like the quick and easy but at the same time FUN!

Here's a great gift idea! For those who LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE chocolate. A GIGANTIC Hersey chocolate bar covered with Dashing Designer Paper and embellished with the snowman from the Merry and Bright stamp set. The set along with the Elastic Gold Cord can be found in the Holiday mini. This cord is great for those hand-made holiday gift tags as well. It's such a quick and fun gift to create.

What's even better than chocolate? How about Designer paper that is on SALE! Novemeber 1st starts the Buy 1 get one Free Designer Paper sale. Check out my demo website Novemeber 1st for more details.

Below is another one of my Holiday Gift card Kits. It's called the Merry and Bright Card Kit offered at the upcoming Mistletoe Market November 3rd in Baton Rouge, LA.

The kit includes the Merry and Bright stamp set, scallop punch and more to create 20 holiday cards, for a sale price of $55.00. Once you have the set, you'll be able to make more than just cards! Use your set over and over to create holiday gift-tags, place setting cards and GIGANTIC chocolate bar tags. Feel free to email me for more details.


You can see the Merry and Bright card kit samples up close along with 100's more at the Mistletoe Market coming up November 3rd in Baton Rouge, LA. Not sure what Mistletoe Market is?

Mistletoe Market is a once a year event where over 50 vendors gather to offer their product and hand-made goods for those on your holiday gift list. This is the 7th year for the event. The shows popularity has grown so much, that this year they have moved into the Downtown Sheraton Garden Atrium to fit all there vendors.

Find something for everyone on your holiday gift list! It's so much better than rushing out to those "Day after Thanksgiving" sales.

Stop by my Stampin' Up! booth and see all my hand-stamped samples. Get ideas on how to use your supplies to create beautiful and inexpensive holiday gifts for teachers, co-workers and friends; AND you'll get to stamp yourself a FREE Holiday Greeting card!

Hanna goes shopping

I've recently purchased some cutie rubberstamps from the 'Hanna stamps' line from friend and former demo Kristi Ferro. Here's my first creation. She was SO much fun to play with! Check out her Dazzling Diamond shoes! The ribbon and little rhinestone stick-ons came from Michaels (over a year ago, LOL).

October 27, 2007

Altered Candles

Here are some candles I picked up and added a few embellishments to. Stitched ribbon from SU! and flower from the SU! "Three for You" punch box kit.

October 26, 2007

Baroque ~ All My Love

A quick post of what I did today; well, I did lots but this is what I STAMPED today. It uses the Baroque Backgroud stamp set, River Rock cardstock, Shimmery White and a Chocolate Chip marker.

October 21, 2007

Think Pink ~ Baroque Kit

Apparently Mother Nature is still hesitant to flip the Winter switch. I'm one of those people who believe things happen for a reason, even in nature, so I'm anxious to see why we are experiencing 80 degree temps in the tail end of October! A cool front did come in last night and lowered temps to the 50's, but I'm not getting too excited because it jumps right back up to the 80's during the day.

I've had the Baroque Background stamp set now for over a month and still have not utilized it like I have wanted. So, with the cool breeze of air that arrived this weekend (even if it was for a short time) I sat down and created something nice (I think) in honor of Breast Cancer awareness month.

The "Think Pink ~ Baroque Kit" includes the wonderful Baroque Background stamp set, dye pad and paper supplies to create cards, treat boxes and a cute little Dove chocolate holder. Adhesive and punches used for embellishments are available for an additional 'add-on' if you do not currently have these items (I find that most stampers do as we use them constantly in our artwork). Kit cost is $45 and is mailed directly to your home. Contact me today for more information MELANIE

Here's something I created for the grey walls in my office space. Apparently the 'cool front' works wonders for getting movtivated to create fall arrangments.

I purchased all these flowers at Wal-mart. Yep, Wal-mart, and the corn came from our local fresh market ($.99). Great deal! The wire basket I purchased 3 (maybe 5) years ago at a garage sale. I was going through a 'wire' stage, LOL! Hey, whatever makes you happy.

October 13, 2007

Halloween Tussey Mussey

Yes, I know, I've been away TOOOOOOO long! I blame part of it on this heat wave we've had during October. Doesn't Mother Nature know it's FALL?!!!

We've had a cool front come through in the past few days and wouldn't you know, it's got me in the mood for making all those Paper Crafts that are tossing around inside my head.

Here are two fun Tussey Mussies I made using the Creeply Crawly Halloween paper in the new Stampin' Up! catalog. The black scallop edge is simply a peice of black cardstock punched with the SU! Slit punch.

Now that i've got my paper crafting mojo back i'll be posting more festive projects real soon.