Saturday, April 23, 2016

Fairy Cards for Administrative Professionals Day

You know how you see someone or meet someone and you just know that you know them from somewhere?  I had that happen last Saturday at a wedding.  Anthony and I both saw a woman that we swore we both knew yet we could not place her.  I did not have an opportunity to approach her to find out what the connection might have been.  It took me several days but I finally figured out that we worked together many, many years ago in retail.  That same feeling came upon me with this Hampton Art - Graphic 45 Fairy # 3 stamp that Kelly Reed gave to me recently.  I knew I had seen her (the image) before and just could not recall where.  Fast forward to today and I finally figured it out.  In the piles of card stock I have in my art studio I had one sheet of 12 x 12 card stock from the Once Upon a Springtime Collection of papers featuring the same Fairy.  I also had a couple of additional sheets of paper from the same collection but there was only one featuring her.  Sometimes when you purchase clearance papers you end up with odds and ends of collections that stores are clearing out and such was the case with the Once Upon a Springtime Collection.  It is funny that I ended up with one sheet of paper and one stamp at completely different times from the same line and was actually able to make the connection.

Wednesday is Administrative Professionals Day and I needed to make two cards for the admin's that support me.  I wanted the cards to use the same elements but I did not want them to be identical.  I had just enough paper from the collection (and one sheet from My Minds Eye as the base) to create a couple of cards.  The layout is similar but they are just individual enough to be two totally different cards.  Small gifts are sitting here ready to roll and it feels great to have the cards ready to give out too.  It beats me working on them late Tuesday night (which often happens).  Thank you rainy and windy day for my time today to work on cards.  Next up I need to work on more thank you cards and Mother's Day is just around the corner.

Paper:  My Mind's Eye - Miss. Caroline
Paper:  Graphic 45 - Once Upon a Springtime Collection
Textured Element: Petaloo
Lace: Bo Bunny - Buttercup
Heart Stamp:  Santa Rosa
Fairy # 3 Stamp:  Hampton Art - Graphic 45
Dream Stamp:  Inkadinkado
Ink:  VersaFine - Onyx Black
Embossing Powder: Lindy's Stamp Gang - Cleopatra's Copper

Topiary Trees Three Simple Cards

Sometimes you need cards that are simply stated and almost under embellished.  Such is the case with this set of three cards.  Anthony needed a sympathy card for a co-worker who lost their father last week.  I didn't want the card to be masculine or feminine but rather soothing and neutral.  My Topiary Trees stamp from Judi Kins came to mind and offered just the look and feel I was hoping for.  I only added a bit of color and depth to each of the three cards by stamping a second image of one of the trees and mounting it with double sided mounting tape so that it would stand out just enough.  There is a little green ribbon in the background but otherwise I kept it clean and simple.

Instead of creating just one card I made three - each with a different sentiment.  Each of the three  sentiments is from Hero Arts - "With Caring Thoughts," With Deepest Sympathy," and "Make Every Day One to Remember."  The paper I used is from My Minds Eye - Lost and Found.  This is some of the discounted paper I purchased last year from Craft Warehouse for .25 cents a sheet.  Although you can tell by the design layout of the paper that they really intended the paper to be utilized for 12 x 12 scrapbook pages.  However, it still transforms nicely for the creation of cards with just enough texture to add a little visual interest without overpowering the simple design.

Topiary Trees:  Judi Kins
Sentiment Stamps:  Hero Arts
Ribbon:  Offray
Paper:  My Mind's Eye
Ink:  VersaFine - Onyx Blaxk 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Sweet Sitting Shar-Pei Card

Having fun playing tonight with another Shar-Pei stamp from VivaLasVegaStamps. This cute little fellow is their Sitting Shar-Pei stamp.  He is stamped and embossed using Versafine Onyx Black Ink.  I used a line of Clean and Simple acid and lignin free card stock papers from Webster's Pages, blossoms from Petaloo and ribbon from Celebrate It (Michael's).  I like the image uncolored for this card but with Shar-Pei's coming in a host of fur colors you can use your imagination with this stamp in so many different ways.  I look forward to playing with this stamp a lot more in the future.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Shar-Pei Relaxing at the Beach Card

This card features one of my new rubber stamps from Viva Las VegaStamps! Anthony and I visited the store while we were in Las Vegas last weekend.  They have over 19,000 stamps.  No that is not a typo.  They did say that about 80% of their business is over the internet.  However, there is nothing like seeing that many stamps all in one place.  Anthony actually picked out both of my new Shar-Pei stamps.  I have not made any cards with the second stamp (Sitting Shar-Pei) but I did stamp it on the envelope above.  It was kind of funny because Anthony commented on how serious I was while we were inside the store.  Little did he realize that picking out rubber stamps is serious business.  I really have to put a lot of thought into how much I will use a stamp, what papers and embellishments I have that might compliment the stamp, etc.  I was in serious mental mode while we were there trying desperately to make good stamping decisions.  I do have to be honest that with their extensive inventory that it was extremely hard not to go wild with thinking I needed every stamp that captured my fancy.  And trust me there were a lot that didn't make the trip home to Boise with us during this visit but I have their web address bookmarked for future needs (wants).  A huge birthday thank you to Anthony for treating me to my mini stamp shopping extravaganza!  You just have to love a man that supports your rubber stamp/card making addiction. 

The card above also features papers from TPC Studio - Mediterranean Summer - Mosaic Tile.  I thought the colors of the paper were bright and cheery just like a warm summer day sleeping in the sun.  Just like Shar-Pei (and their humans) love to do.  I am looking forward to making more cards with my new stamps very soon.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Woodland Creature Thank You Cards

Tonight I also made a set of thank you "Thanks!" cards with a cute set of woodland creatures.  Oddly enough this set of four stamps came in a Tavern Coaster Kit from Inkadinkado.  I have no real use for coasters but the stamps were way too cute to pass up and the set was very inexpensive.  I used the papers from We R Memory Makers - Happy Campers again (I used these same papers recently in the Shar-Pei Camping cards I made on March 6th, 2016) and I think they worked perfectly with these stamps too.  Also each card has tiny paw prints added.  Both the critters, paw prints and words were stamped and embossed.  I used Versafine Vintage Sepia ink.  This ink is not a true embossing ink so you do need to work fast before it dries.  I love the definition that the Versafine inks give in your stamped images so I use the Versafine onyx black ink in almost all of my stamping.  I used my Hero Arts - Animal Print stamps to add this small touch to each card.  I will admit that I did get the prints mixed up while making the cards so hopefully no one looking is a paw print expert.  I would hate to be called out on my mistake.  Last but not least I glued Wooden Flourishes by Kaiser Craft to each card to really amp up the outdoor look and feel.


Creating with Gorjuss Rainy Daze

Thank you Kelly Reed for my new stamp set!  I just love this line of rubber stamps and Kelly picked out this adorable Rainy Daze set for me for my birthday.  This set of stamps is from Santoro-London, and is part of the Gorjuss collection.  Just like the Fox card I put together in October 2015 I used my Copic markers to color the images and then added a little depth with double sided mounting tape and finished the card off with Floral Embellishments.  I also added some distressing to the card to give it a softer overall look and feel.

Kelly also gave me a couple of small paper packs from the Santoro-London Gorjuss collection but I have not opened them yet.  The card tonight was made with various individual sheets that I had in my stash.  I really didn't want the paper to be the star but the stamps instead.  Since I am not a wiz with my Copic markers (coloring and blending is very time consuming for me) this card did take me an hour to create.  Usually I can make two to four cards in that amount of time.  I will work on a second one as I do have the back ground papers already assembled but I am out of flowers and will need to order more before I start on the second card.  Even with the time commitment I think the end result is worth the effort.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Butterfly Party Cards

A big thank you to Kelly Reed for sharing her crafting room with me this weekend to help revive my creativity.  With so much time spent on the hiking trails on the weekends it has left me with minimal time to work on my creative side including card making.  One advantage of being at Kelly's house vs. my own is that there were no chores calling my name as I was only surrounded by creativity vs. every day household needs and errands.  Although the embossing and coloring took all of my time at Kelly's house it really sped things up back here at home to get the cards put together tonight.

My three butterfly cards feature Penny Black - Butterfly Parade stamps, paper by Teresa Collins - Tell Your Story and I used my Copic Markers to color the tags.  I also used my We R Memory Makers - Vine Mini 8 Punch to cut out the background paper.  Although my pictures above are not as clear as they should be (suffering from the Spring Forward Time Change) I colored the tags to match the papers I used for my background.  I really like the finished look of only coloring one tag on each card so the cards are not too busy visually overall.  

Stamps - Penny Black
We R Memory Keepers - Vine Mini 8 Punch
Copic Markers
Teresa Collins 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Chinese Shar-Pei Camping Cards

I am creating cards for Merlin's Hope Rescue in Canada ( for their next auction to raise money for Chinese Shar-Pei and Chow dog rescue.

These cards are inspired in memory by Raisin's love for camping and the color pallet actually matches our R-Pod Camper.  These four cards are samples of the cards that are in the three baskets of cards I am putting together.  The colors of the paper might be slightly varied and the embellishments might be a bit different but overall the cards in the baskets match the set I have featured above.  Sometimes I like to follow the same layout but switch around the background colors a tiny bit depending on what I have available in my paper stash. 

I added in a bit of whimsy with the footprints and the paw-prints I included on a couple of the cards.  I also used Chestnut embossing powder by ZING! - American Crafts.  I found these amazing Chinese Shar-Pei rubber stamps at Dog Stamps Plus via their ad in Rubber Stamp Madness Magazine.

Paper:  Happy Campers - We R Memory Keepers
Chinese Shar-Pei Stamps - Dog Stamps Plus
Rubber Stamp Madness Magazine

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs

Last week I was in the mood for something simple for dinner.  Brown Eyed Baker had just posted this recipe and it was the simplicity I was seeking.  The meat completely fell off the bones and the recipe was deemed a keeper by Mr. Dally.  I will definitely make these again.  I served mine with steamed jasmine rice.  I did ask for rib selection assistance at my local Albertson's butcher block and the butcher was most helpful in the selection of ribs for the slow cooker.

Slow Cooker Korean Short Ribs
By:  Brown Eyed Baker


6 pounds bone-in beef short ribs
1 pear (any variety), peeled, cored and coarsely chopped
½ cup soy sauce
6 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 scallions, sliced
2-inch piece of fresh ginger, cut into two pieces
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons instant tapioca
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons minced cilantro


1. Preheat the broiler and arrange an oven rack about 6 inches below the heating element. Line a large baking sheet with foil.
2. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper on both sides. Place the short ribs bone-side-up on the prepared baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes. Flip them over and broil for 5 additional minutes.
3. Meanwhile, add the pear, soy sauce, garlic, scallions, ginger, vinegar and fish sauce to a blender or food processor and puree until completely smooth, about 1 minute.
4. Spray a 6-quart slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the pear puree into the bottom of the slow cooker. Stir in the chicken broth and tapioca to combine. Nestle the short ribs into the slow cooker (I set them on their sides so they could all fit in a single layer). Cover and cook on low for 9 to 11 hours.
5. Remove the short ribs from the slow cooker, place on a serving platter and tent with foil. Allow the liquid in the slow cooker settle for 5 minutes, then skim off the fat with a large spoon. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the cilantro. Pour 1 cup of the sauce over the short ribs and serve with the remaining sauce.

Crispy Parmesan Baked Potatoes

In addition to the Ultimate Meatloaf I also made Crispy Parmesan Baked Potatoes.  Although my potatoes were a little larger than the recipe called for (2 inches recommended) it was easy to bake them a little longer than the recipe called for to adjust for the size.  These were delicious and it would be easy to add some of your favorite herbs and spices to the recipe if desired.  It is also a very easy recipe to double.

Crispy Parmesan Baked Potatoes

1/2 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp. garlic powder
8 small Yukon gold potatoes (1-3/4 lb.), cut lengthwise in half 
3 Tbsp. butter, melted

Heat oven to 400ºF.

Combine cheese and garlic powder in shallow dish.

Dip cut-sides of potatoes in butter, then in cheese mixture. Do not cover the baking sheet with foil since the cheese mixture will stick to it.  However, I used parchment paper and it worked fantastic.  Place, cheese sides down, on baking sheet; drizzle with any remaining butter. 

Bake 30 to 35 min. or until potatoes are tender. 

Recipe from KRAFT.


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