Friday, December 30, 2016

CAS-ual Fridays CFC164

Hi!  I'm playing along with CAS-ual Fridays' weekly challenge today--my first with them!  The challenge is to create a card that celebrates something.  As some good friends recently had a baby, this is perfect timing.

My friends had a baby girl so I went with a pink and yellow color scheme.  Using Papertrey Ink's Bitty Baby Blessings I die cut and paper pieced some ducks and a bunny using scrapbook paper from my stash.  I lay them on top of a strip of May Arts' pink rosette ribbon and stamped a sentiment from Papertrey Ink's Inside & Out: Baby set.  To finish I set my white panel on a yellow card base.  Welcome to the world, little one!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

CAS(E) this Sketch #202

Hello there!  As I continue to immerse myself in the relatively-new-to-me world of stamping and card-making, I find that one of the easiest ways to create something is by starting with a sketch.  I'm happy to have found CAS(E) this Sketch!  Today I am joining by playing along with Sketch #202.  Seeing the first flurries in the air today easily led me to make a winter themed card.
I began by blending Distress Inks to create my background, and then simply stamped a series of snowflakes in descending sizes.  I used Versamark Ink and heat embossed them with white, adding a sentiment at the bottom.  Love how it came out! 
Inks: Distress Ink Chipped Sapphire, Salty Ocean, Tumbled Glass
Stamps: Papertrey Ink's What the Doodle: Snowflakes
Other: white card stock, Versamark Ink, Zing Embossing Powder (white)

Wednesday, December 28, 2016


I woke early the morning we left to spend Christmas with family.  Grateful for the chance at a quiet morning, I slipped downstairs, turned on the Christmas tree lights, and made a cup of coffee with Peppermint Mocha creamer--a new favorite holiday treat.  I settled on the couch to read the last of my Advent Devotional; it was the first time in 27 days I'd been able to read in silence and solitude, and I felt myself relax as the coffee wafted over the words from Matthew.
Not a second before I finished, another word came from on high..."mama!  Maaaama!"  I reluctantly left my coffee, hoping I could rock him back to sleep.  Alas, the wish was in vain.  So I gave myself up to my sweet, where-does-he-get-this-energy, almost three year old (!) little boy and carried him downstairs to play.  And finish my coffee.
As we walked down the stairs he noticed the tree lights on, and asked in his curious little voice "hey! Why you turn dis light off?"  Thinking he meant "on," I explained that I love to look at Christmas tree lights.  But he asked again, as I carried him past the overhead light switch.  Reaching out to grab it, he repeated "hey, why you turn dis light off?"  Instinctively I replied, "because it makes the tree more beautiful."

As long as I can remember, I have loved to sit in a dark room, in the quiet of a Christmas season morning or night, with nothing but the light of a Christmas tree.  There is just something about that shining cone that quiets my soul and fills me with peace and joy.  

Christmas lights are beautiful, especially when they are the only thing to light the darkness of a room or home.  Which is why we have Christmas in the first place.  Not to light the darkness that falls as winter begins, but to alighten our souls with God’s love.  The anger and selfishness and all manor of sin tucked away inside each of our hearts…this is the darkness we live in.  Until, wrapped in a blanket, Jesus brought light to Earth, to shine into the darkest corners of our souls.

We can look pretty on the outside, decorated with shiny ornaments and sitting atop stacks of material blessings, but without the love of God through the gift of Jesus, we will remain dark.  Let His love and forgiveness light our hearts and souls this Christmas.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

PTI's Create Along With Us: December 2016

I love so many of the new products and designs revealed this month over at Papertrey Ink, but the To Have & To Hold set particularly caught my eye.  The delicate pastels and flowers it showcased are so pretty!  I especially liked Laurie Schmidlin's take on it. 

To Have & To Hold by Laurie Schmidlin copy

 For my card, I cut a heart-shaped hole from my panel using a die from Heart Prints, and added floral images around it.  I stamped leafy prints from Turning a New Leaf in New Leaf and Mint Julep, and die cut the flower and heart from Flipping Out in Amethyst Allure, Lovely Lady, and Pale Peony.  I adhered the panel to some amethyst card stock and added a white embossed sentiment from Heart PrintsFeeling inspired to make some Valentines now!


Wednesday, November 30, 2016


"And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night."
~Luke 2:8

I never saw it before.  How many times have I read or heard this verse and not noticed?  The shepherds were LIVING in the fields.  Not hanging out during the day and then going home to be with their families.  LIVING.  Sleeping on the ground, hopefully not near sheep dung, out in whatever weather there was.  

Now, I like camping...and sheep...but living like that doesn't sound pleasant to me.  But they did it.  To keep their sheep safe.  Because they loved them.

All this going on right next to the place where God--Immortal, Invisible God--was actually becoming visible in the form of a baby boy.  He left His home, His throne, to LIVE among us. 

His sheep.  

Because He loved us.  Loves us still.  

Will we let Him?  Let Him love us and protect us from mortal danger, as sheep allow their shepherds to protect them?  We need Him.  We may not know it or see it (yet) but we do.  Let Him love you.  Let Him protect you.

"I am the good shepherd.  The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep." 
~John 10:11 
He did.  He does.  Amen.


Sunday, November 27, 2016

Stop! Potty Time!

I know that's a take-off on a line from a song, but I can't even remember the rest of it; nor do I have any sense about the artist.  Isn't it funny what little things stick in our minds?'s that time in our house.  Our little man is ready, though cooperative some days and stubborn others.  What toddler isn't?!  I know he would respond to candy as an incentive/reward, and we may use that as we work on...#2...but he already has enough of my sweet tooth so I decided to start with stickers on a sticker chart.  Two nap times in my craft room and I think we're all set!

 It's hard to see in the photo, but there are little dotted lines through all the squares, like a road.  One sticker per try, two for success!  And we are prepared to sit and wait if need be :)

  Here goes!!!


Friday, November 25, 2016

PTI's November 2016 Blog Hop Challenge

After a busy morning of shopping, I was ready for some seat time in my craft room!  Here is this month's photo inspiration for the PTI Blog Hop Challenge:
Bright and shiny!  I usually stick with traditional colors and looks for card design but I did like the bright ornaments on the white tree, so that's what I focused on.
I started with a Raspberry Fizz dot embossed panel on a white card base.  For the tree, I die cut my Hero Arts Christmas tree, embossed it with a holographic powder (it's MUCH more sparkly in real life), and added raspberry, aqua, and lime clear embossed dots for the ornaments.  I popped it up using foam tape to add some dimension, and finished with a sentiment strip stamped in lime from Keep It Simple: Christmas Mini Stamp Set.  Merry Christmas and happy card making!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Sketch Saturday #438


A new challenge for me!  I love following sketches when I make cards so this is perfect for me.  I just found Sketch Saturday this morning and jumped right in!  This is the design we need to use.  After several false starts I settled on creating a Thanksgiving card, which I've been meaning to do for awhile.  
I used Paper Smooches' Jive Turkey stamp set for this one!  I stamped the feathers in Hero Arts Red Royal and Distress Ink Spiced Marmalade, colored a few with a yellow marker, and fussy cut them.  I did the same with the turkey, coloring him with various markers from my son's stash.  This was all set on a background of some festive patterned paper, a triangle of brown card stock, and a deep cranberry card base.  Three orange sparkles finished it off.  Gooble Gobble!!!

Make It Monday #267: Assembly Line Card-Making

November is really marching along and the holidays are upon us!  Cooler weather has finally come to Virginia and I find myself mentally decorating and menu this time of year!  I was inspired to get a jump on holiday card making by this week's Make It Monday over on PTI's blog.  I tend to make one very personally designed card at a time, so Laurie's Assembly Line Card-Making this was a bit of a challenge but I loved how easy it was!
I have been wanting to use my Peaceful Pinecones set lately, so that's what I focused on.  I love the Distress Ink Color Evergreen Bough, and I found some coordinating patterned paper in my stash.  I began by assembling all the elements: cards, paper strips, and die cuts.

I stamped the die cut branch and pine cones in no time, thanks to my MISTI, and gave them a few spritzes of Perfect Pearls to add some shimmer.

I taped the paper strip to the side of the card, checked the placement of the pine cone branch, and then stamped my sentiment from Enclosed: Wreath.  Again, the MISTI was invaluable!  I'm pretty happy with they way they turned out.  I was hesitant to try and make cards for everyone this year, but with this method I might be able to!

Stamps: PTI's Peaceful Pinecones; Enclosed: Wreath
Dies: PTI's Peaceful Pinecones
Ink: Tim Holtz Distress Inks Evergreen Bough and Walnut Stain
Paper: white card stock; patterned paper from BoBunny Candy Cane Lane Collection 
Other: Ranger Perfect Pearls, Foam Tape

Saturday, November 5, 2016

PTI's Make It Monday #266

I don't think I have ever wrapped gifts this far ahead of Christmas, but thanks to inspiration from Lexi Daly I now have two done!  Over on PTI's blog, her Make It Monday video demonstrated ways to stamp your own wrapping paper design.  I loved her combination of red, green, and       
pink so I went with that scheme too.  
For my smaller gift I used the Sparkle & Shine: Holiday Additions set.  I stamped the light strand in Pinefeather and added bulbs in New Leaf and Picked Raspberry Distress Ink.  

For my larger gift, I stamped the Enclosed: Wreath in Pinefeather and added berries in Candy Apple Distress Ink.  To add a bit more interested, I stamped the Peace sentiment from the wreath set in Picked Raspberry.  

Not sure how to improve my lighting, since I always end up crafting at night, but I'm pretty happy with the way they came out!  I really enjoyed this Make It Monday and hope to stamp more of my own paper this year!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

PTI's October 2016 Blog Hop Challenge

I was sad to miss September's challenge due to travel, so I'm happy to be back this month for PTI's October Blog Hop Challenge!  I loved so many things about the inspiration photo for that it was hard to choose what to focus on.  I ended up making several cards in the process!

Using this sketch recipe as an additional guide, I began with a base of woodgrain patterned paper.  I added an ivory panel with rounded edges and a strip of cranberry card stock down the side.  The main thing that stood out to me in the inspiration photo was the branch of rich golden leaves, so that's what I focused on.  Stamping an image from Turning a New Leaf several times, I used a mixture of PTI's Summer Sunrise and Stampin' Up's Crushed Curry.  I die cut the main sentiment from Inspired: Blessed from the patterned paper and triple stacked it for some dimension. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

PTI's Create Along With Us: October 2016

I am so excited about this month's new releases from PTI, especially since I have been "hoping" for "Hope" in the Inspired Collection for awhile now...and Betsy Veldman is delivering!  One of my favorite parts of the new release is the Create Along With Us Challenge, a creative way to pass time until we can buy the new products! showcase projects inspired by the designers' use of the new products.

This month Nicole Heady's ornament card caught my eye.  I love looking at twinkling lights and ornaments on a tree, so decided to make mine a little more shiiiiiiiiny, as my son likes to say!  I was also inspired by this card I found on Pinterest awhile ago.

For my card, I began by die cutting three white circles from PTI's small Limitless Layers set.  I stamped them with the Flourish Background Cling Stamp from Hero Arts, the poinsettia from PTI's Year of Flowers Collection, and the star of Bethlehem from Paper Smooche's A Blessed Christmas.  I embossed the images in green, red, and gold, respectively, and added gold embossed ribbons and bows from PTI's Balloon Bash set to "hang" them from the top of the card.  A gold embossed sentiment from A Blessed Christmas and a white card base finished it off!  Hope you enjoy the rest of release week!  Happy stamping!

Sunday, October 9, 2016


A rainy, windy weekend courtesy of the outer reaches of Hurricane Matthew has definitely ushered in fall weather here in western Virginia.  Hooray for pumpkin season!!!  It's the perfect moment to take on the Monday Challenge over at Simon Says Stamp.  This weeks' challenge is "Halloween" and I couldn't wait to use my new Lawn Fawn Trick or Treat set!

For the background, I was inspired by this night sky photo.  God is truly an artist!  For my
background, I started by blending Distress Inks and then dry embossing the tree.  To add some spooky dimension I wet embossed the tree and the bat stamp.  Pumpkins had to be included, of course, and turning them into Jack O' Lanterns made them even cuter!  The sentiment finished it off.  Enjoy all the treats of fall! 

Ink: Distress Inks Black Soot, Wilted Violet, Seedless Preserves, Chipped Sapphire, Picked Raspberry, and Spiced Marmalade
Dry Emboss: Darice Leafy Tree Trunk
Wet Emboss: Ranger Emboss It Pen in black, Tsukineko Clear Powder
Stamps: Lawn Fawn Trick or Treat, PTI Tag-its #7.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

CAS Girl

As my fabulous SIL teaches me more and more about cardmaking, I have learned that there are different styles to cards.  My favorite, I think, is known as CAS--Clean and Simple.  Today I was searching for some CAS inspiration for an anniversary card.  Hubby and I are coming up on 5 years together and I was reminiscing about the beautiful fall day we got married!  I found this sketch recipe from PTI's March 2014 release, and was sold!  I knew it would work for the autumn leaf images I wanted to use. 

I stamped the smaller of the maple leaves from PTI's Leaf Prints using Mustard Seed, Spiced Marmalade, and Fired Brick Distress Inks, and added a leaf image from PTI's Turning a New Leaf in Vintage Photo Distress Ink.  I embossed all the images in clear, and added a popped up sentiment strip to finish it.  Hope hubby likes it...glad he doesn't read my blog ;) 

I also decided that CAS can stand for Cute Anniversary Salutations :)

Apparently Unicorns Make Me Happy?!

Who knew?  I was looking for an idea for my niece's upcoming 2nd birthday, and decided a unicorn was an appropriate image for her card.  Now I kind of want to add unicorns to a lot of cards?
I started with this sketch recipe from Papertrey Ink, but was also inspired by this card that I originally found on Pinterest.  I love how Erin Taylor made an exploding star above the unicorn!  

Using Paper Smooches' Spectrum set I stamped, colored, and fussy cut the unicorn image.  For the stars I die cut two different sizes in aqua and pink cardstock, then stamped a star from Paper Smooches' A Blessed Christmas and embossed it in silver, along with the Happy Birthday Sentiment from PTI's Botanical Blocks.  A strip of patterned paper on the side finished it off!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

PTI's Create Along With Us: September 2016

IMG_9793With temps still in the 80's here in Virginia I am having a hard time getting in the mood for fall card making, let alone Christmas!  But I loved so many of the designs by Heather Nichols this release that I just had to jump in!  I was mostly inspired by this beautiful, classy card.  I love the simplicity of the green and gold greens along with the single sentiment.  

I used the holly leaves from Spruce & Sprigs for my greenery, along with some berry clusters from the same set.  I die cut the leaves on white cardstock and then stamped them with Pinefeather Ink.  I used my Candy Apple Distress Ink for the berries, and grouped them together with the holly leaves in the left hand corners of the card front.  My sentiment came from Paper Smooches' A Blessed Christmas and was stamped again in Candy Apple.  I layered the card front on Pinefeather card stock and ta-da!  I made a Christmas card :)

This card is also entered in Simon Says Stamp's "Clean and Simple" Wednesday Challenge.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Bring on the Fall!

I love fall.  Have I announced that yet?  Cooler weather, gorgeous leaves, comfort foods like soup, and pumpkin everything!  So when I saw this sketch release from PTI I wanted to try it right away.  At first it was hard to think about creating fall themed things when it's 90 outside, but I got over it :)  Bring on the fall!!! 
I started with a white card stock base and added a piece of scrapbook paper that I found at Hobby Lobby (thank you, thank you, thank you for building a store near me!).  The pattern is called Pioneer Plaid by Aunthentique.  Then I die cut about a million sets of Taylored Expressions's itty bitty but adorable Leaves, and used my double sided tape to stick them in layered rows somewhat resembling a pile?!  I don't have a banner die, so I used two ovals and stamped Blessed from the new PTI Inspired set to finish it off.  Hmm, what should my next fall project be?!

Sunday, September 4, 2016

SSS Monday Challenge: It's A Stitch Up

I can sew a button onto a shirt, but that's about it!  Fortunately, Paper Smooches' adorable Needle Little Love set makes me look a little more accomplished, at least at card making ;)  For this challenge over at Simon Says Stamp (my first here!) I pieced together several clippings of patterned paper from My Mind's Eye: Indie Chic Nutmeg, along with some brown card stock, and stamped the xxxxxx stitch stamp using Vintage Photo Distress Ink where the pieces intersected.  The sewing machine was stamped in the same ink, on ivory card stock, and then fussy cut.  I added the heart and sentiment to the bottom panel, and then stamped the ------- stitch line around the blue card stock base to finish it.  At least if I can't sew, I can make cards for those who do!  Love to my mom! 

PTI's Make It Monday #259

I have never tried ombré stamping, but I loved this card from Dawn McVey and wanted to give it a shot!  I can't wait for fall to arrive, so I went straight for my Leaf Prints set.  I stamped the smaller oak leaf in Vintage Photo Distress Ink, PTI's Classic Kraft, and Antique Linen Distress Ink, and then added a partial sentiment in Vintage Photo from PTI's new Give Thanks set.  I anchored it with a strip of brown cardstock and set it all on a brown cardstock base.  Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

PTI's August 2016 Blog Hop Challenge

For this month's challenge I used the color scheme to create a card inspired by this sketch recipe from October 2014 along with this card, which I saw on Pinterest awhile ago and loved!

I started with an Enchanted Evening background layered over a Rustic Cream baseI blended Distress Ink in Antique Linen, Spiced Marmalade, and Vintage Photo on white card stock, then die cut an image from Turning A New Leaf.  I placed this over four 1 1/8" squares of Rustic Cream, and stamped a sentiment from Tag-its #7 in Vintage Photo.  I think I will send it to a dear friend who shares my love of fall!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Multi-strand Bookmarks

One of my goals for this year was to get back to regular Bible study.  While 'regular' has been rather irregular, I am pleased with my progress.  It seems that the more I read, the more I want to read!  But there are often so many things I want to study at the same time!  What's a scatterbrained girl to do?

Enter multi-strand bookmarks!  With three ribbons each I always have a way to mark the book I'm studying, memory verse I'm working on, an awesome verse a friend shares, the sermon scripture for the week, a topic I need to mediate on...whatever!  I am selling these
on my Etsy shop (also called RibbonsandRoots); take a look!  How do you keep tabs on what you're reading?!