Monday, December 15, 2008

Finally Done!!!!

I don't know why, but I really had a hard time making Christmas cards this year. It was partly just getting motivated to do it, but also coming up with a design. So at long last, yesterday I finally designed and made my cards. It's nothing exciting, and actually kind of basic since I was making so many of them.

Recipe: cardstock SU Kraft and blue bayou, PTI ocean tides, DP SU soft sky collection, ribbon SU cranberry crisp, PTI chocolate, spring rain, ocean tides, dark chocolate, Michael's gold, Ink PTI vintage cream. Stamps SU Star Studded Season, Cornish Herritage Farms Christmas expressions--the sentiment says "O holy night the stars are brightly shining", inside the sentiment says "may the blessings of the season shine upon you"--also from SU Star Studded Season.

As you might imagine, there were a few problems with designing and making my cards so late. For one, I kept running out of supplies (especially ribbon). I had to change colors several times because I didn't have anymore ribbon in the particular color I was using.

I'm loving the Hansel and Grendel story additions. Who knew the turns it would take?
Have a great week!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Whatever Martha!

Have any of you seen the new show hosted by Martha Stewart's daughter, Alexis, and her friend, Jennifer? It's called "Whatever Martha". The basic premise of the show is this; they watch old clips of the Martha Stewart show and joke around about how unrealistic her various crafts/ recipes are. I could totally be another of the hosts of the show because I've never been a big Martha fan. I mean seriously, when the recipe calls for the finest Madagascar cheese cloth to strain the Veuve Clicot champagne infused sheep's brain you're a little out there. So this brings us to last week when YaYa Kimberly calls me and invites me to make Christmas cookies. She was so inspired by the latest issue of MS Living and heck, it's Christmas. Time to do some baking. So YaYa Stacie and I went over to Kimberly's house for a Christmas cookie baking extravaganza.

Kimberly and Stacie had both already made some cookie dough. All we had to do was get the cookie cutters, bake, and decorate. Easy right? I mean just a few simple steps and we would have edible works of art ala Martha. Well, they are definitely edible. Works of art? I'll let you be the judge. Here are some of the cookies before baking. They look okay, right?

Here are some of the finished products...not too shabby, but not quite up to Martha standards I would guess.

Now these next cookies are straight out of the magazine, and they are absolutly precious! It's just 2 Nilla Waffers for the bun, 1 grasshopper cookie for the meat, red/ yellow icing for the ketchup and mustard, and sesame seeds on top for an even more realistic look. Aren't they too cute? Kimberly whipped out a dozen of these in no time at all.

As you might imagine, a teeny tiny bit of cookie consumption was going on through all of this decorating. I think we might have had just a bit of a sugar high going. We started having a little more fun with our creations....

To further illustrate the crazed sugar high concept, here is exhibit B. Why yes, that is me, holding a lovely little cookie. What is that cookie you ask???

Well, it's a traditional Christmas outhouse cookie of course! I'm not sure I can even remember how this whole outhouse topic came up, but I think it went something like this. Stacie brought a gazillion cookie cutters to use. Some of my favs were the little bitty stars. Stacie cut out a teeny star out of some dough, and commented that it looked like the star/ moon cut out in an outhouse door. Being in my sugar induced haze, I thought, "an outhouse, yes, that's what I'll make next". So with no cookie cutter, or pattern; nothing but my own brilliance I made this super fab outhouse cookie. Take that Martha!

Debbie, I know you're traumatized already reading this, so you'd better cover your eyes and scroll down. After I had crafted this work of art, I thought that it still needed something. I thought perhaps it needed some words above the door. When I asked what I should write up there, without missing a beat, Kimberly suggested "Sh*t happens". So, thus it came to be. My little Christmas sh*t house. My mother must be so proud of me...

By this time, the sugar was REALLY kicking in. We even made a little Christmas vignette.
We weren't sure if these guys were rejects from a Dutch boy band, or what. We named them Hansel and Grendel (no, not Gretel, he's a boy! He's named after the character in Beowulf). There was a minute there in my sugar induced state of euphoria that I was afraid they'd break out singing "Macho, macho man..." ala The Village People.

I thought perhaps my readers could create a little story. You could just add on to the story in the comments. Here, I'll start. Once upon a time, there were two young boys named Hansel and Grendel. Grendel had grown very tired of his life as a back-up clog dancer for Abba. One day, he convinced Hansel to take a trip out into the lovely Dutch country side....

So, if you've made it this far through the post, you should probably reward yourself with a fresh, homemade cookie. Just remember, friends don't let friends create on a sugar high!
Have a great week!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas music

During all my curtain hanging/ Christmas decorating I listened to some Christmas music. It's no secret that I love to listen to music, and sing. I have lots of Christmas favorites, but this one has to be near the top of the list. Click on #5 "A Stable Lamp is Lighted". The text is taken from a poem by Richard Wilbur.

A stable-lamp is lighted
Whose glow shall wake the sky;
The stars shall bend their voices,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry,
And straw like gold shall shine;
A barn shall harbor heaven,
A stall become a shrine.

This child through David's city
Shall ride in triumph by;
The palm shall strew it's branches,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry,
Though heavy, dull and dumb,
And lie within the roadway
To pave His kingdom come.

Yet He shall be forsaken,
And yielded up to die;
The sky shall groan and darken,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry
For stony hearts of men:
God's blood upon the spearhead,
God's love refused again.

But now, as at the ending,
The low is lifted high;
The stars shall bend their voices,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry
In praises of the child
By whose descent among us
The worlds are reconciled.

The link above(if it works)is to a version of this that is so lovely. You'll only get to hear a snippet, but it gives me chills every time I hear it.
We're singing a song with these lyrics at midnight Mass this year.

My other all time Christmas favs (in no particular order):
O Come All Ye Faithful
Joy To The World
I Wonder As I Wander--as sung by Vanessa Williams
Gabriel's Message---as sung by Sting
O Holy Night---as sung by Josh Groban
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas---as sung by Judy Garland (this is probably the saddest Christmas song ever, but I still love it)

So how about you? What are your favorites?

Productive weekend

I had a busy, but productive weekend. Friday, the last 4 windows were installed at my house. This meant I had no more excuses to stall with window treatments (I've had SHEETS taped up to cover windows in my living room/ dinning room), and decorating for Christmas. I found some red shades and curtains at Tarzhay that I hoped would look okay. The only problem was the Target by me only had 2 of the shades. I found the other 2 in NLR. I hung 2 shades and the curtains on Saturday. I might have used some inappropriate language when I was trying to figure out how to get everything up, and have it be level... Sunday I hung the final 2 shades. Those went relatively quickly now that I had it down to a science. Gotta love the tape measure and level. Once I got the curtains up, I couldn't procrastinate with my Christmas decorations any more. Here are a couple views. I think I'm really liking the red curtains/ shades.

The added bonus with the red curtains/ shades is that maybe it won't look so bare when I take down my Christmas decorations.
Next project: Christmas cards---I don't even have a design thought up yet!
Hope all of you have a great week! Happy birthday to Lynnetta-butta-kid!

Monday, November 10, 2008


For Christmas last year, YaYa Kimberly gave us all a paint bucket full of monthly crafting challenges. She included some rough instructions/ ideas of where to start and some embellishments/ supplies we could use each month if we wanted to. Then, once we had completed our project we were to mail it to one of the YaYas according to the mailing list she had made up. Up til last month I had done fairly well meeting my challenge goals. I can already feel that we're coming up to the time of year when the frenetic pace begins. There are always lots of events to get to, and things that must be done. Is it just me, or does it seem to start earlier each year???
Anyway, I finally did my October and November YaYa challenges and they are literally in the mail.
Here's my October card. (Janna, close your eyes if you haven't gotten yours yet). It was supposed to use a picture of a leaf/ leaves, but I used this pretty little stamp instead. The sentiment says "Happy fall Y'all".
Fabriano mediovalis, Just Rite Stampers, Rubber Stampede
Recipe: Fabriano Mediovalis card, PTI summer sunrise cardstock, Stamps Rubber Stampede, Just Rite alphabet, Ink PTI dark chocolate, summer sunrise, pure poppie, ripe avacado.

This next card uses the Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge
TECC41, BasicGrey Figgy Pudding, Stampin Up Cute and Curly
Recipe: Cardstock PTI pure poppy, SU cool carribean, DP BasicGrey Figgy Pudding, Ribbon/Ink PTI pure poppy, oval hardware/ brads SU, sentiment from SU Cute and Curly.

So my challenge for you in this holiday season, dear reader, is to only take on those projects/ events which will truly enrich the lives of you and yours, and feeds your spirit-like crafting. If you're doing something just for the sake of doing, let that be the thing you say "no" to. Speaking of "feeding the spirit", tonight is my choir's Requiem Mass at the Cathedral of Saint Andrew. The program begins at 7pm, and is free. Come join us (if your spirit could use some feeding). It is a memorial service for our loved ones who have died, especially those who have died during the past year.

Have a great week, and happy crafting!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Road Trip!

I got a call last week from LaThonya (one of my dear college roommates from University of Dallas). She invited me to an impromptu gathering of a few old friends from college. The real occassion was to hear the Faure Requiem performed by a mixed group of UD choir alumni, and current UD choir members. It was an opportunity I couldn't pass up. I've sung the Faure Requiem with my choir twice in the last ten years, and it's a favorite of mine. Of course, it was also a great excuse to see LaThonya, Angela, and Elisa. We were missing our other roomie, Lynnette. She had just visited Texas the previous week, and had to get back to NYC. On Saturday, LaThon and I met up and went directly to North Park Mall to do some power shopping and to have lunch at La Madeline. Yum! Their tomatoe basil soup is the best! LaThonya informed me of her wish for a picture perfect, Martha Stewart Thanks Giving at her house. This involved lots of shopping in kitchen stores to find all the accoutrement (table linens, and serving pieces). Then we had dinner at Uncle Julio's, one of our old favorites. Love those fajitas! Next we took a tour of all the old hot spots in Dallas. It's weird how so much has changed, and yet stayed the same. Late that night, we finally got to meet up with Elisa who had been rehearsing with the choir all day. It was so good to see her! Here are a few pics.

This is me and Elisa---otherwise known as Lisa2 (that's supposed to mean squared, I can't figure out how to do a super script 2).



Sunday, LaThonya and I slept late, did a little more shopping, and then had brunch at the Mansion on Turtle Creek. It had been quite awhile since I'd been. They have a new chef so the menu had totally changed. The one thing that they did keep on the menu was the tortilla soup---thank goodness. That soup is the whole reason for eating at The Mansion! After gorging ourselves we did yet more shopping, and then headed to the Requiem Mass at Cistercian Monastary. At Cistercian we met up with Angela-another UD roommate, her mother Syvia, and JP-another UDer from back in the day. We were treated to a lovely service. The monastary had great accoustics! I had to hum along in my head, and restrain myself from singing along. Afterward, we all got to talk with Elisa (the star of the whole performance), and her sister Gloria. Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures after the Mass. With Monday work looming we all then headed our separate ways. I made VERY good time getting home, and was blessed not to get any speeding tickets.
It was so great to see everyone. I love that we all picked up and drove/ flew from different areas to spend a bit of time together. I think I will have to make more road trips. I've missed my old roomies!

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I've just been tagged by fellow YaYa, Denise
Here are the rules:
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself. (See below)
4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them. (See further below...)
5. Let each person know they've been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Random facts:
1. I've never had a cavity, or a broken bone (yet).
2. I'm a Jack of all trades, master of none. I speak (some) German, Italian, and Spanish, but am fluent in none. Someday, I want to be fluent in another language. I also play piano, baritone, and the bugle (none of these at a level that anyone could call "good"--think "easy big note").
3. I subscribe to over 50 blogs, most of them are crafting related.
4. My sister and I used to play "Electra Woman and Dyna Girl". This involved me riding in our pedal powered car (nick-named "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang") while my sister pushed so I could go really fast. I of course, was Electra Woman.
5. I love to sing when I'm alone in the car. It's hard to really get into it if I'm worried about other drivers seeing me so I do my best singing at night when no one can see me.
6. I have a punctuation addiction. As you may have noticed, I love elipses...(is that the proper plural form of elipse?). I have a hard time remembering all those punctuation rules, so I often throw in an extra comma, or twelve. (I'm also a big fan of parentheses).

All of my blogging friends have already been tagged so I won't pick on anyone. If anyone would like to play along, feel free to post in the comments section.

Have a great week!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Back in the groove

I can't believe it's been so long since my last post! I've had a fun weekend. Friday night I went out with friends to celebrate YaYa Debbie's birthday. Happy birthday Debbie! Saturday, Kimberly and I did some crafting. The results can be seen below. Saturday night I went to an Oktoberfest party at Carol and Eric's house. My sister brought my nephew for a few minutes to show off his lederhosen that she bought when we were in Germany earlier this year. I taught him to say "guten tag"...too cute! I probably should have taught him guten abend, but oh well. Anyway, look at the cutest little nephew EVAH!

Now, on to the crafty stuff.... I don't think I'll ever tire of SU's Baroque Motifs. The color combo was from an SCS challenge that I jotted down a while back, and finally remembered to use.
Stampin up, baroque motifs
Recipe: Cardstock- SU certainly celery, not quite navy, bashful blue, ink- not quite navy, stamps- baroque motifs, sentiment PTI.

Judging by these next few cards, you might think it's really cold here in Little Rock. Not so. We had gorgeous weather this weekend, and even did some driving around in Kimberly's convertible with the top down.
This card uses SCS sketch challenge 187 for the layout.
See d's, inque boutique, chai latte, papertrey ink
Recipe: Cardstock and ink PTI dark chocholate, vanilla, DP PTI chocolate remix, ribbon PTI.

These next cards use my new Papertrey Ink set Snowfall. I love the little mittens and snowflakes.
Papertrey Ink Snowfall
Recipe: Carstock/ Ink PTI Ocean tides and aqua mist, Ribbon PTI, Stamps PTI Snowfall- mittens are covered in Martha Stewart brownstone glitter.

Papertrey Ink Snowfall
Recipe: Carstock/ Ink PTI Ocean tides and aqua mist, Ribbon PTI, Stamps PTI Snowfall

Papertrey Ink Snowfall
Recipe: Cardstock PTI kraft, pure poppy, Ink PTI pure poppy, Pallette Noir, Ribbon PTI pure poppy, twine SU.

I just had a call from LaThonya, one of my old University of Dallas roommates. I may meet up with some of the girls for the weekend. The UD Collegium Cantorum is celebrating is 15th anniversary, and will be singing a Requiem Mass. That will be a nice excuse to get all of us together. Unfortunately, I think Lynnette will have just ended her Tejas visit, and will be back in NYC. My choir at the Cathedral of Saint Andrew will be having it's Requiem Mass November 10th at 7pm. It is free and open to the public.
Have a great week, and happy crafting!

Monday, September 29, 2008


Wow, I actually have a "follower", and it's someone I don't even know! I'm not sure I'm super comfortable with the term "follower" since that would make me a leader. How about we just walk along side by side? Click on the "follower" link in the top of the right side bar to join me in my "adventures".

Sunday, September 28, 2008

One month

Wow, a whole month has gone by since I posted anything. How did that happen??? What have I accomplished in the last month? I did get my windows put in (except for the last 4). I saw The Pajama Game with my friend Lisa (not me, my friend Lisa). It was pretty cute. I really need to get back into the swing of being "Julie, cruise director" (remember from The Love Boat) and book some tickets to see Les Miserables at The Rep. I've heard it's awesome. I've seen it a couple of times at other venues, but I would love to see it again. Last weekend we had a YaYa day here at my house. We had a good time seeing each other, crafting, and eating. As always with the YaYas, the topic hit the gutter at some point in the day. I can't go into it here in "polite" company. ;-)
This weekend Kimberly, Pig, and I did a virtual YaYa day. Here are some of the cards I made. The first uses SCS sketch challenge 195. I am so loving this SU Urban Garden DP.
Stampin Up sketch challenge 195, Urban Garden
Recipe: Cardstock SU basic gray, going gray, and kiwi kiss, DP SU Urban Garden, Ink SU night of navy, Stamps PTI Floral Frenzy and SU Upsy Daisy.

This next card is a super simple one I did last weekend.
Stampin Up Urban Garden
Recipe: Cardstock SU basic gray and kiwi kiss, DP SU Urban Garden, Stamp SU Upsy Daisy.

This card uses SCS sketch challenge 187. I like this layout. Seriously, did I mention that I love this Urban Garden DP???
Stampin Up Urban Garden
Recipe: Cardstock SU kiwi kiss, basic gray and soft sky, DP SU Urban Garden, Rub-ons SU Bella Chateau.

This card uses that same SCS sketch 187.
Basic Grey Figgy Pudding Stampin Up Cute and Curly
Recipe: Cardstock SU Real Red and Cool Caribbean, DP BasicGrey Figgy Pudding, Stamp SU Cute and Curly with punch, ribbon Michael's, ink Pallette Noir.
Have a great week!

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Friday, August 29, 2008


Yes, I'm a slacker. It's been awhile since I've posted, but in real life I've been somewhat productive. While away from the blog, I've been helping fellow YaYa Kimberly with some home remodel projects. So far, I've taken down old 3X3 blue tiles circa 1970 out of a bathroom, and yesterday did lots of priming walls. What a difference a fresh coat of paint makes! I will share one "adventure" that happened at her house last weekend. I went to the restroom only to find myself "trapped" inside when I tried to leave. The door knob was messed up (partially hanging from the door). I tried for a couple of minutes to jiggle the knob, and the lock. I even tried to unscrew the screws with my fingers (like I said, they were sticking out already). The whole time muttering to myself, "Seriously? Seriously?". Typical me to get stuck in a room... Finally my knocks on the door were answered. Eventually Kimberly and Floyd (the floor guy working in the kitchen) heard my cries for help. After some fruitless tries of jiggling the door knob, and even a couple of TV cop tries of breaking down the door (them, not me), they were able to squeeze a screwdriver under the door for me to use. Thank goodness for the 70's when doors had to have the bottoms trimmed to accommodate shag carpet! With a little coaching from Floyd, I got the screwdriver between the door jam and the door and was able to spring myself free. Too funny. My dear friend Kimberly was there with camera in hand to document the event, and no, you won't be seeing those pictures here.

Anyway, here are some cards that I made last weekend. They're very simple, I just needed to try out some of my new PTI order stuff.
First is the PTI card made with the Remember set and all that beautiful poppy red. We did a little comparison, and the PTI pure poppy is VERY close to SU real red. I think the linen vellum gave a bit of a 3D effect to the flowers.
stampinup,  paper trey ink remember, poppy
Recipe: SU kraft cardstock, PTI pure poppy ink, cardstock, linen vellum, ribbon, stamps

This card is pretty boring, but I just had to use this scrap of SU summer picnic DP. Love it!
stampin up summer picnic, paper trey ink poppy, cornish heritage farms motivational centers
Recipe: PTI pure poppy cardstock, ribbon, SU summer picnic DP, Cornish Heritage Farms Motivational Centers sentiment.
Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend, and happy crafting!

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Looking at what I made today, I think I may be on a bit of a circle kick.
This first card is my take on Taylor's cupcake challenge Taylored Expressions: Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge #29 It's not all the way true to the orginal design, but I think it turned out okay.

circles,stampin up,papercrafting,SU Wonderful words
Recipe: SU kraft cardstock, DP SU sky blue designer series, SU Summer picnic, SU spring silhouettes, Anna Griffen, Autumn Leaves Lotus, K&Company Margo Large botanical wallpaper flat paper, Sentiment SU wonderful words, Ink Pallette Noir

Michael's margarita stamp, stampin up, paper trey ink
Recipe: SU kraft cardstock, stamps Michael's margarita stamp, PTI mixed messages

This last card is my version of the sketch challenge found here at Our Creative Corner.

Anna Griffen paisley, stampin up seeing spots
Recipe: SU certainly celery, real red, and so saffron cardstock, Anna Griffen paisley DP, stamps SU seeing spots, ribbon Michaels

That's all I've got for today. Hope you all have a wonderful week.
Happy crafting,

Saturday, August 16, 2008

My Celebrity Look-alikes

Click on the link at the bottom of this collage. It's free and pretty entertaining to see what celebs you look like. I'm thinking not so much...

Of note, Gaines at work has always said I look like "Kristen Drunst" (he mangles her name everytime), so it's pretty funny that she turned up as one of my look alikes.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

August Challenge

Our YaYa Challenge this month was to make a purse for our swap buddy. I had never tried this, but found a super easy pattern over at (where else, this is a stamper/ papercrafter's home away from home). I don't think my swap buddy for this month is much of a blog reader so you guys are seeing it first.
purse, Stampin Up, Paper Trey Ink, Just Rite monogram, K and Company, Wild Saffron
Pretty cute, huh. I used double sided paper so the inside would be cute too.
purse, Stampin Up, Paper Trey Ink, Just Rite monogram, K and Company, Wild Saffron
Still, it needed a little something to jazz it up. What else but a monogram?
purse, Stampin Up, Paper Trey Ink, Just Rite monogram, K and Company, Wild Saffron
Much better, right? Love my JustRiteStamper Monogram set!!!
Here's my coordinating card to go with. At first the color combo was kind of overwhelming so I toned it down (I think) by putting it on kraft cardstock.
card,paper crafting, Stampin Up, Paper Trey Ink, Just Rite monogram, K and Company, Wild Saffron
I think I'll have to fill the little purse with some goodies for my swap buddy. Try out this super easy purse over at SCS. Here's the link to the pattern All it takes is one 12X12 sheet of patterned paper, lots of folding and some adhesive---no cutting!

Purse recipe: DP K and Company Wild saffron, Cardstock: SU taken with teal, PTI summer sun, Ribbon PTI summer sun, Ink SU real red, Stamps Just Rite monogram

Card recipe: Card Stock SU kraft and taken with teal and PTI summer sun, DP K and Company Wild Saffron, Stamps Just Rite monogram.

Happy crafting!