Saturday, September 28, 2019

I heart Birthday's.. especially my own..


Happy Birthday to Me!!

Yes, I am super vain I like to write blog posts about myself on my own blog on my birthday :) But surely that is the benefit of having your own blog?!

This year has pushed my patience and ability to feel the joy.. We had to say goodbye to our beloved Boscat in January, I have gained a serious amount of weight thanks to an undetected Thyroid issue, I have had a blood pressure issue meaning I can do barely any cardio AND then I broke my foot in May and 4 months later we discovered a deeper fracture that had happened at the same time, so I am back in the boot AND on crutches.


These things have been taxing, to say the least, but I have realised that every grey cloud, comes with a sunny one..

We got Clint - he is amazing and we couldn't have dreamed of having such a wonderful, loving, gentle creature. The foot got fixed long enough for me to enjoy the trip to Ibiza for Hubby's 40th (and oh man did we enjoy that trip). The Thyroid issue has been tackled now and the tablets are fixing my blood pressure issue and once I am back on my two feet, I can deal with the journey that is required to shed the excess weight.

The reality of my situation is that I could be in a cast (UGH) and I could actually be waaay heavier, but they found a way to keep me out of my cast AND I found a way to keep going to the gym, despite the fact that I have been gaining weight no matter what I do!
I finally achieved my dream of being a deadlifter and reached my goal weight of 185lbs - YES that is right - me?! I can deadlift 185lbs. Every time I say it and watch the video of me doing it, I smile. I impressed myself.
I mean do you know what it takes to get your body to the point where you can do that? Trust me I did not. It takes a LOT of repetitive exercises that made me want to scream out in frustration and pain!

So remember - negativity doesn't help, maintain your joy at the little things in your life, no matter how hard that might seem sometimes, it's always better than feeling sorry for yourself.

I'm grateful, happy and feeling the joy for the life I have, no matter what the hardships, I still have Hubby, Clint, my family, and my friends and that makes everything A-Ok.


Friday, September 27, 2019

CASology: Dragonfly..


Happy Friday to you!

I have the day off today, my Goddaughter Amy is here and we are going to be spending a day doing fun things, ahead of the first of my birthday weekend events!

I wanted to play along with the currently CASology challenge..

I actually thought I had a couple more Dragonfly stamps, but turns out I only have this teeny tiny one, which is by Pink Fresh Studio and is from their 'Itty Bitty Elements' set.

I love Dragonflies and one of the great things about living in NYC is that I get to see them flying around all Summer.

For some reason, I have had a hankering to play with a tag! So I used a Tim Holtz 'Mosaic' stencil with Spiced Marmelade and Fossilized Amber Distress Oxides to create the background on my tag,

I stamped, coloured and die-cut my little Dragonfly and after I figured out where I wanted him to sit, I stamped the sentiment onto the tag.

I then used foam tape to mount the finished tag onto my card blank.

Super happy with this, it came out just like I pictured it..that so rarely happens.

Have a great weekend.


Thursday, September 26, 2019

Christmas Cards 2019: Whimsical Winter...


I wanted to show you another set of fun Christmas cards I made two weeks ago.

This time slightly more elaborate..

Two weeks ago the girls (aka Craftgang) and I went to the Mama Elephant birthday bash at the Westbeth Center - major fangirling moment for me, as I got to meet Kathy Rac, my colouring heroine and the creator of the Daily Marker 30 day colouring challenge.

I bought the fab Whimsical Winter set that I used for these cards at the event, it was on super bargain sale WITH THE DIES!!!

I was making Christmas cards over Labor Day and used texture paste through the Clearly Besotted 'Snow Day' stencil for a snow effect and as I had the paste and the stencil out, I made a few extra - smart.

So the backgrounds I used for these x3 cards were the extra ones. I really must remember to do this more often.

As I have mentioned before, I do the prep first and the fun stuff later - meh. To prep these cards, I stamped and die-cut the trees, the Deers, Squirrels and Robins first. Then I affixed my backgrounds to the card blanks.

I coloured all the stamped elements and started arranging them on the x3 cards, so I would know where to stamp the sentiment, before I affixed everything down.

I think they came out really well, there was a fair amount of prep, but the outcome was worth it.

Fun times ahead, it is my birthday on Saturday and my Goddaughter Amy arrives tonight to spend the weekend celebrating with's going to be interesting with the crutches and the boot!


Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Botanical Borders..


I bought a few new things in the Labor Day sales this year.

One of the things I bought is this awesome Botanical Borders set by Ink Blot Shop.

I love it, it is very versatile and I've made quite a few different things with it..

I liked the idea of leaving a border below the stamps, I had originally planned to put a strip of glittery washi tape along the bottom straight edge of the stamp, but I didn't like it when I tried it!

These cards were SO easy to make, I stamped and watercoloured the images and then I die-cut them using a stitched rectangle die and added the sentiments.

I used a new-ish watercolour block that I have - super cheap from Amazon, the colours are very vibrant.


Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Less is More: Love Your Face...


Twofer post from me today...

I really like the current Less is More challenge -

I love typography, I think that has to do with the fact that I work in advertising / marketing. The creatives I work with do such awesome things with type.

I decided to use a fave technique of mine - freezer paper masking.

I die-cut the Lawn Fawn 'Scripty Love' die out of freezer paper - making sure that the shiny side would be face down.

Then I ironed it onto my cardstock - I know sounds weird, but it works - just put a cloth over the freezer paper and you won't scorch your cardstock.

Then I added a patch of watercolour over the top and dried it with a heat tool. The freezer paper then just lifts off to reveal the word  - like a resist.

Easy and fun. I added the 'your face' stamp - which I had to mask off, as it says 'Love Your Face'.

I die-cut the panel, affixed it to my card blank and added a teeny bit of bling to finish it all off.

Super simple and I have a recipient in mind.


Retro Rubber Challenge #120.. Anything Goes..


Welcome to another fun Retro Rubber challenge.

We have everyone's fave this time - Anything Goes!!

Everyone loves Anything Goes! I especially love these challenges, I get to really root through my stamps and find something old and neglected that I can do anything I want to with it.

I chose a combo of stamp sets, that I have had since 2017. The giant sentiments are by Waffle Flower 'Eat Cake' and the cupcakes are by Hampton Arts 'Cupcake'.

I die-cut a white panel and then stamped and heat embossed the sentiment using my all-time fave embossing powder 'Liquid Platinum' by Ranger / Tim Holtz. I stamped and embossed the cupcake in the same powder and then die-cut it out.

I coloured the heart on the cupcake using a Spectrum Noir sparkle pen for a teeny bit of shimmer.

LOVE the outcome. I so rarely make cards with so little colour, so I am feeling pretty pleased about stepping out of my comfort zone.

It's my birthday on Saturday! And my Goddaughter arrives on Thurs from London to spend the weekend partying with me.. let's hope she can keep up ;)

Can't wait to see all your Anything Goes makes. Pop over to Retro Rubber and get inspired by the things the DT have made.

Challenge ends October 4th.

Don't forget to tell us the age of your stamp, that is part of the fun of our challenge and please only enter 10 challenges including Retro Rubber.


Monday, September 23, 2019



Happy Monday!

I had a great weekend, hanging with Hubby, as I am semi-housebound due to the crutches and the boot!

I LOVE pun cards and I had this fun idea to make a pun card from every punny set I have for a friend.

I have been cracking myself up with some of these cards.

I am in love with today's card.

It's actually a CASE of Kelly-Marie from Lawn Fawn's card.

I thought it was so clever, the way she made the 'card' in a frame and it gave me an excuse to break out my We R Memory Keepers Frame Punch Board.

I started my version of the card, by creating the sea, using the MFT 'Make Waves' stencil - I am super pleased with my sea, it is perfection and I am so happy to have finally mastered this stencil (big shout out to Jen at Newtons Nook for her tutorial..).

I blended more blue ink to the top part of the sea panel and then heat embossed my clouds in. The clouds stamp is from the Clearly Besotted 'Trouble in a TuTu' set and I had never used the clouds until I made this card!

This version is no longer available
I stamped, coloured and die-cut the Shark, Fish and Fin from the Lawn Fawn 'Duh-nuh' set and using the great Ocean Wave Accents dies, I added them to my frame.

Final touches were to stamp the sentiments, mount onto a card blank and add washi tape and a sequin.

LOVE this card, I'll be making it again.


Saturday, September 21, 2019

CAS(E) This Sketch: You're so fancy...


Happy Saturday.

As I am back in the boot and on crutches, my ability to get around NYC is limited. Giving me ample time to play with a challenge or two..

I liked the current sketch over at CAS(E)ThisSketch -

I thought it would work perfectly with a sticker from a new Project Life pack that I just bought and a Unicorn. Because.. is there anything fancier than a Unicorn?

Super simple card to make and I love how pretty it is.

The Unicorn is by Ellen Hutson and is from the 'Unicorns & Rainbows' set. I coloured and die-cut the Unicorn and popped it up with foam tape, so it would sit at the same height as the sticker.

Fun right?!


Friday, September 13, 2019

Oh for Fox Sakes..


Happy Friday to you!

I am looking forward to the weekend, loving having the NFL back.

I am hoping I can workout on Saturday, the foot has flared up again..ugh.

Not my usual style of photography today, but I thought it had come out well and decided not to retake it for my blog.

I remembered that I had this great set by Unity Stamp Co and dug it out to make a card for the pun set that I am making.

I love the simplicity of the Fox and the little details included around him.

I stamped the sentiment that came with the set and die-cut it out using a stitched circle die.

He pops on the kraft card blank - my all time faves that JT gifts me all the time.

Have a great weekend.


Thursday, September 12, 2019

Christmas Cards 2019: Howly Holidays..


So Christmas card making is in FULL swing in my house..

I really don't love making Christmas cards and I try and keep them simple, bar the initial ones to get my creative Christmas card mojo going!

Last weekend I spent oodles of time at my desk making Christmas cards.

First up is a fun card that I saw by Flora & Fauna, so I bought the set and had a little CASE.

Photo Credit: Ellen Hutson
It looked super easy and it was!

When I am making Christmas cards, I like to do as much of the prep as I can, before the fun colouring part. So I die-cut all the white panels and stamped the sled and the dog onto all x8 panels.

Then I created a mask for the doggie and added the dots and the sentiments to each panel. Here is a work in progress shot for you..

The Wendy Vecchi 'Stay-tion' makes things so easy...
One of the best bits about this card for me, was the fact that the spotty stamp is from a Simon Says Stamp ice-cream set from 2014 - love it when I get to stretch my stamps like that.

After the prep, I coloured them all in, added the little hand-drawn 'string' to join the sled and the dog and affixed them to my card blanks - easy peasy.

Love a easy peasy Christmas card..


Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Not quite Florida Playdate..


As you know I didn't make it to Florida over Labor Day weekend.

But I did manage to host a not quite Florida playdate at my house on the Sunday.

This meant that we could use the kits we had pre-made.

Basically the plan was that each of us (x5 of us, including Ava in Florida) would kit x2 cards (or projects) for the others to make.

The photo above shows the x8 cards/projects we made on Sunday.

I'll walk you through them starting top left with my cards :)

I was the most efficient of the group and I had sent my kits to Florida I had to make a couple of quick cards for the girls to make on Sunday! I decided to put my Pinterest board 'Look What I Made' to use. And it came up good, with x2 straightforward cards for the girls.

I used the Avery Elle 'Sea-Prise' set for my pufferfish card, the girls were horrified when they realised it was one candle that had to be stamped multiple times, so there were a lot of variations on this one.
The Unicorn card is by Pink Fresh Studio and uses all the stamps and dies from their 'Unicorn Dreams' set.

Moving clockwise to top right, these cards were Cheiron's kits. I loved her Toucan card - using Flora & Fauna stamps so much that I CASEd it (coming soon).
The floral card, used Altenew stamps and was fun to watercolour and we got to use Altenew markers, which are amazing and I do want!

Bottom right, kits by Tiff. She challenged us a bit, by getting us to make a fun envelope. Sadly I dropped the Panda stamp after stamping him, so I have a big black line across him, but hey as I always say, it's handmade, you gotta expect a little oopsie here and there. The envelope board was by We R Memory Keepers, stamps and stencils by Simon Says Stamp.
The Fox card used all the techniques and looks AMAZING!! Background stamp is by Simon Says Stamp, Fox and sentiment stamps by Rabbit Hole Designs. I love RHD stamps, the caffeinated range is hilarious.

Finally bottom left, kits by Lisette. The first card with the girl was fun, I have never ever stamped in a lighter ink and then coloured over it, very clever and way out of my comfort zone. The girl is by Picket Fence Studios, not sure who the dots are by. I love this card and the snarky stickers really worked well here. The Mermaid card uses the super cute Mama Elephant Mermaids and I loved adding the chunky glitter 'sea'.

The best bit about making all these things, were all the techniques we used - masking, heat embossing, watercolouring, blending, colour plucking. It was a masterclass in all the things that we have learnt over the years (mainly from our resident teacher Cheiron).

A fun playdate was had by all and we all left with gifts and 7 cards/1 envelope.
It wasn't quite Florida but it certainly made up for it.


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Retro Rubber Challenge.. #119 Fall Colours...


Welcome to another fun Retro Rubber challenge.

This time we have a fun colour challenge for you..

Fall - or Autumn in my English one of my fave seasons in NYC. It's always so beautiful here, a riot of colour and especially where I live (I live in 80 acres of parkland..)

So I thought the MFT Harvest Mouse set (that I have had since Jan 2018) would be a fun set to use for this challenge.

I started by stamping and colouring my little Mouse. I love that he is in such a hurry that berries are falling out of his basket.

The background paper is by Lawn Fawn and from their Harvest paper 6x6 pad (circa 2014) and this was the last piece of it (sobs).

I added a red banner to hold the sentiment also from the Harvest Mouse set.

How will you use the colours? Don't forget to pop over to Retro Rubber and get inspired by the things the DT have made.

Challenge ends September 20th.

Don't forget to tell us the age of your stamp, that is part of the fun of our challenge and please only enter 10 challenges including Retro Rubber.


Thursday, September 5, 2019

CASology LOL..


I love a pun / humourous card, so the current CASology challenge had me itching to join in.

I decided to use the great 'Life Alert Button' sentiment stamp by Riley & Company.. It makes me LOL every time.

I used a royalty-free vector by Vanilla Designs for my knitting lady and stamped the sentiment over vellum to keep my card as CAS as possible..

I love how it came out and I can think of the perfect person to send it to.


Wednesday, September 4, 2019

NND Inky Paws - Fintastic..


Welcome to September!

It was supposed to be a fun start to my birthday month, with a trip to Florida with my craftgang, but sadly due to Hurricane Dorian we had to cancel. I am sad that we had to cancel, but happy we are all safe and our friend in Florida did not get hit by the hurricane. And we did manage a playdate, I'll show you the makes from that later this week.

My thoughts go out to those that have been affected by Dorian.

On to nicer things..

I love Newton's Nook stamps, dies and stencils and weirdly, I have only recently discovered their challenge blog (Inky Paws)!

I love sketches, so the current challenge was a must enter for me -

I had a great idea the minute I saw the sketch, but Sue T on the DT had the same thought LOL. So I had to go back to the drawing board...

I pulled out 'Mermaid Crossing', which is a very overused and fave set by NND.  I used my newest NND purchase 'Sea Borders' dies to create the waves. The clouds were stenciled using a old fave stencil by Dutch Doobadoo.

I love how it came out and the best bit is that I can add it to my Pun card stash - I am making x1 pun card from each of my punny sets for a friend as a surprise.