Thursday, December 31, 2009

A year of cards and a year in review!

This has been quite the year. It will probably be one of the most
EXPENSIVE years of my life, but hey, this is what happened:
  • Had my first surgery: gall bladder removal. Not fun! 
  • Completed a very successful first year at my new school as music director
  • Bought my first new car, a Mazda 3 Sport (fully loaded!)
  • Got married
  • Went on a month-long honeymoon across Canada and the US
  • Started my second year at school with a 300% increase in choral students! YAY!
So all-in-all, a great year!! I have had more time and have MADE
more time for blogging and crafting, and I just compared my post numbers for '08 and '09, and for
many months I have DOUBLED the amount of posting I did. (May 2008 I had ONE post! Yikes)
And I pretty much blog everything I make, so that tells me I wasn't creating
much in 2008 but really turned it around this year!

Here are my favourite cards from 2009:





May (this is one of my all-time fav's!)

June. This is one layout from a scrapbook I made for my SIL.


August (and this was made on my honeymoon in a hotel by the Mall of America!)




and finally: December!! Phew!

Thank you for the year of inspiration, support, and kind words!
I wish you all a very Happy New Year, and I'll
see you in 2010!!!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Couple of cards and an announcement!

These are a couple of cards I made today for SCS's color challenge: Banana, Grey, and Rust.. Weird, eh? This is what I came up with:

 LOTS of Copic colouring on the Mushroom house! Ain't it cute??

And now for the news!
For the past 2.5, almost 3 years I have taught classes at my LSS Precious Memories, but recently decided to take my show on the road! For the next two months I am teaching Copic colouring at Clipper Street in Langley in hopes of reaching some Clipper customers I may not have met yet, and help people to delve into the addictive world of Copic!! *evil laugh* If you've taken my classes that I designed at PM the classes will be similar at Clipper, but if you haven't taken a beginner class or need a refresher, COME ON OUT!! The classes are 2.5 hours, you'll colour a whole sheet of images to use later, make a card, and hey, you get 3 markers to take home!!

This is a sample of what you will do! I try to cover my favourite and most-used techniques in the class, and will help you "get" the whole Copic thang.... So SIGN UP HERE (they have on-line registration) and I hope to see a couple of your faces there!

Monday, December 28, 2009

It's the last Jacksonbelle Challenge of the year!

This week's challenge was to use ribbon in a unique way... Ruffles aren't SO unique, but it's something I don't do every day, so that's the special ribbon "technique" I chose to do on this card:

Now I know this card is dreadfully simple, but it's the colours that are making me LOVE it. I used a couple different papers that are BRAND NEW from Pink Paislee. The first paper is actually called a "postcard" and is from this sheet that includes a whole bunch of different sentiments, images and frames for you to use on a project. I stamped the sentiment (hero arts) in the centre of the circle and it looks like it came that way! So awesome. The bottom of the card is from this sheet of heart-clouds that are so cute, not to mention versatile.. Lastly, the pleated ribbon from May Arts adds some dimension and a secondary focal point that takes the card from "nice" to "WOW.." or at least "VERY nice.." hahaha...

Check out the DT (especially all of the NEW girls) for more ribbony inspiration. If you want to play along, link your card to this Jacksonbelle post. Take care!!

Carly Robertson ~ Paper in Bloom
Shemaine Smith ~ Scraptastic
Lynda Benden: Stamp Act
Jill Dunn: Ink Genious
Lindsey Botkin: Embellished
Heather Lee-Reppen: The Best in Life
Stephanie Severin ~ Ingenious Inkling
Amy Tsuruta ~ Tsuruta Designs
Pam Varnell ~ The Stamping Addict
Dawn Lusk ~ Dawn a New Day

I'm gettin' it scrapped!

As I stared at this year's Santa picture my thoughts went to LAST year's Santa picture and lingered on the fact that I have not scrapped it yet!! So with the slight burn of guilt in my heart I decided to get this layout down right away so I could at least feel good about that! And I do!

I used this week's sketch from Pencil Lines provided by Donna Downey. At first I cut out all of the snowflakes to actually be used on the layout, but I had the brilliant idea to use them as masks and airbrush with an E25 Copic Marker.. It is a better choice because now the focus is on the picture and the snowflakes are subtle, and yet still a lovely feature! *happy dance* Phoenix's smile is questionable because he has a lot of teeth issues going on and the poor thing is embarrassed to smile. It makes me so sad that he's self-conscious, but he knows that after the "Rapid Palette Expander" that's in right now to widen his mouth will soon make way for braces, that will eventually bring him perfect teeth! He's young for braces, but one tooth is completely sideways and is causing damage to not only his psyche, but to his lower teeth. :(

This next card I made as I was cleaning up my craft/crap area and I had this image coloured and just sitting there!! I HAD to make a card for it....

I'm really enjoying colouring lately.. I have started to pay attention to the shading AROUND the main image, and it's amazing how good it makes the image look. So much pop and pizazz...

So I have a bunch of Christmas photos to edit and a couple challenges to play so I will be back soon! Have a great day!


2009 Layout: Paper: Kraft, Elzybells; Chipboard shapes and die-cut numbers, Basic Grey; Snowflake shapes cut with the Slice; Lace, unknown, journaling tag, Basic Grey Origins.

Card: Paper: Bazzill, PTI; Stamp: Stampavie; Ink: Ranger lamp black; Ribbon; Amuse; Brads, Nestabilities, Copic markers, rub-ons (Cosmo Cricket).

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

This is a Christmas of new traditions for our little family. We are departing from the usual Christmas dinner with my family and opting for a less stressful, less "DRAMA" -filled holiday that includes activities we have all opted to do, including:
  • Ice skating on Christmas Eve (we did that today and it was GREAT!)
  • Dinner with Ian's family on Christmas Eve
  • Uncle Ryan sleeping over and opening presents with us
  • Going to the movies (we're thinking Avatar) after presents and breakfast
  • A small Christmas dinner that includes the following:
    • Turkey BREAST (I brined it... yummy!)
    • Mashed Potatoes (with cream cheese)
    • Broccolini with a smoked gouda cheese sauce
    • Kraft dinner (Phoenix's choice!!!)
    • Apple Crisp and Ice Cream for dessert
  •  Go to Uncle Marks after dinner for some good hangin' out
And that's it for this year! I am so excited to not have the stress of my family weigh heavily on my heart. It's time I make my holidays the best they can be, and I truly think this will be the best Christmas yet!

Thankyou dear blog readers for a wonderful year. I have really enjoyed this past year of creating and blogging about the many changes in my life this past year. On New Years I am preparing a post of my top 10 favourite cards from 2009.. If there are any particular cards that were your favourite I would love to hear from you! I would love to send one contributor an RAK (I don't send enough happy mail...) for your trouble..

So Merry Christmas to you all. I wish you all a happy, peaceful, and FUN Christmas day!


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Gifts, gifts, and more gifts....

Ian and I are BROKE this year (as many of us are) so I have made a lot of handmade gifts for people, not that they were totally without cost, but they were within our budget.. I try to use my areas of talent and interest when making home-made gifts and in the past I have made a holiday CD, a scrapbook, a painting, aromatherapy items, handmade soap and bath-bombs etc etc... This year I combined my interest in aromatherapy with my interest in papercrafts to make some unique gifts...

The first few items are pockets and bags (the pockets are a template cut out with my Silhouette) filled with scented bath salts. It's my own blend of Lavender (which I HATE, but everyone else seems to love it..) Orange, Neroli (in the citrus family), Rosewood and Cypress. It's a very fresh, clean smell, and it's perfect for a bath or a foot soak..

These are the pockets."Merry & Bright" is also a Silhouette cut and it was
flimsy enough to bend it into a curve.

I backed the tree shape with vellum.

This pocket is actually the same as the previous pocket, but I deleted the tree and
swaped in a different cut, making sure it was a bold enough silhouette that
it would keep it's shape.

The recipients were very pleased with their gifts and I'm anxious to hear if they've tried out the
salts... Doreen?? Did you?? lol..

This next gift is a set I made for my brother and sister in-law, as well as my
baby neice, Georgia.. There are few oils that are completely safe for babies and
you guessed it, Lavender is one of them. So I made a Lavender body wash as well
as a room/body spray for her. I used essential oils a lot with my son
as he was going from infant to toddler and he really responded well to the scents of the oils, and
actually asked for me to spray him daily with his special blend!

I used papers from My Mind's Eye "Colorful Christmas" to adorn this 6-pack style holder..
I made the ingredients/instruction tags in Photoshop, then cut them out with

This is another favourite blend of mine.. All sexy oils.. But if you try this at home,
only use a DROP of Champa.. It's strong!!

So that's the set! Isn't it fun? I hope they like it, and USE IT!

Hey! It's Christmas Eve!!! Can you believe it?????

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Jacksonbelle Tuesday Challenge

It's a countdown to Christmas around here and I don't know about you, but I'm WAY behind!! So what's a good solution? MAKE MORE CARDS! Hey! Makes sense to me!

This week's Jacksonbelle challenge was to make a holiday card. Easy peasy!! I also used today's colours from SCS's color challenge to help me out with some ideas! 

I loved this stamp when I first got it. It was one of my first stamp sets and still one of my fav's. I don't think I'll ever give it up... Anyway.. I used Copic markers to colour it and I did some really dramatic shading for "DRAMA". For the "Curry" colours I used a custom Y20, Y21, YR23, YR25.. For some of the deepest shades of curry I added a hint of brown (E25) and blended it out with the curry colours..

I used Basic Grey patterned papers and a button with some ribbon from May Arts.

Check out the DT's creations here, and go to Lindsey's blog to read
about the NEW DT Members!!

Lynda Benden: Stamp Act
  Jill Dunn: Ink Genious
  Heather Lee-Reppen: The Best in Life
  Jimmi Mayo ~ Stamping & Shopping
  Michelle Philippi ~ Inside My Own Private Idaho
Windy Robinson ~ Card and Page
  Carly Robertson ~ Paper in Bloom
  Stephanie Severin ~ Ingenious Inkling
  Shemaine Smith ~ Scraptastic
  Amy Tsuruta ~ Tsuruta Designs

Friday, December 18, 2009

Simply Silver Mini-cards!

I played along with the Limited Supplies Challenge at SCS last night and I actually made 14 of these mini-cards. I have just given them out to all of the secretaries, vice-principals and the principal of my school with a couple left over for other gifts and what-not over the coming week.

These cards are going back to my roots: versamark, embossing powder, and stamps! Simple! On some of the cards I used a silver foil pen to add a fancy silver outline! I think they turned out pretty nice!

Merry Christmas!!

Supplies: Cardstock: Papertrey Ink, Stampin' Up; Ink: Versamark; Stamps: Denami Designs and Papertrey Ink, Stampin' Up; Other: Amuse ribbon, Silver Embossing Powder, twine.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Moxie Fab Challenge: All Creatures Great & Small

I bought this stamp because of my son. He loves anything with kitties. He calls our cat "his brother" despite our cat not having a particularly friendly disposition. I will say, though, that every night our kitty climbs up the ladder to my son's loft bed and cuddles with him right by his face. They wake up every morning intertwined and it's truely a touching sight!

I combined a couple of challenges, the Moxie Fab challenge, and this week's CPS sketch. The sketch has a few more layers than I usually like to do, but I wanted to colour this image and GET THE CARD DONE! So why not use a great sketch? Here's the card:

The red twill is actually recycled gift packaging. My mom gave me a bunch of holiday face cloths and they were bundled together with the twill. SCORE! The bottom paper is last years (or even 2 years ago) Cloud 9 Christmas, and the other two layers (brown and golden) are Basic Grey, also a few years old... The kitty is coloured with Copic markers and I used a little Liquid Applique on the Santa Hat! The stamp is from Penny Black!

Merry Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

MORE Christmas cards continued.....

If you're here, that means you read blogs. MAN am I ever addicted to reading blogs! I have about 50 subscriptions in my Google reader and I read all of my blogs down to 0 every day. I love the inspiration! These are some mini-cards inspired by Jenyfur. Check hers out HERE.

The partridge image is an Amuse stamp from last year coloured with Copics. Yes, I'm still
on a yellow kick, but only because I have so many yellow supplies this year! The ribbon
is PTI, and the patterned paper (scalloped circle) is Basic Grey, as are the buttons. The curly
tree is a stamp from Hero Arts?? Some old red buttons are the decoration..

This is my Elzybells stamp that has been cold and lonely for a year. Man, is she cute!
I coloured her with Copics, adorned her with Liquid Applique, and cut it out with
long rectangle nestabilities. I am going to package these with two in a pack
to sell at the flower shop.
The snowflake stamps are random Amuse stamps stamped in white! 

MORE Christmas cards?? Are you freaking kidding me??

This has, by FAR, been the busiest year for Christmas card making in the 4 years I've been doing it. I have had my big company order come and go, I've had a 12 days of Christmas event and blog hop with Jacksonbelle, I've made and sold 30+ cards to my community choir, AND have had to keep the stock plentiful and fresh at the flower shop I consign at. It's been difficult keeping up and luckily I have had the chance to sit down and make some cards this past week. Here are some designs I've been playing around with:

"Christmas" and the Damask design were cut out with the Silhouette. I doused the damask in glitter and it really sparkles in real life:

I made a bunch of these cards with various papers on the bottom. LOVE this image!! (Hero Arts)

I'll share a few more tomorrow. I still have a LOT of work to do before Christmas, that's for sure!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Jacksonbelle Tuesday Challenge: a Sketch!

It's my dear son's birthday on Wednesday, but we're having the party tomorrow and he absolutely LOVES a Kim Hughes stamp of mine, so I HAD to use it on his birthday card. It's going to be a pretty lean birthday and Christmas this year, so I hope this card and the couple things that we bought for him will bring him joy. 

Here's the card I made with this week's sketch, and Dawn's color challenge:

 So I used a piece of unlikely birthday paper, and that's the blue piece which is actually from the MME Christmas collection! The rusty coloured paper is also from MME but it's from the Bloom and Grow collection. Here's a close-up of the "Cuteasaurous" on which I used a technique called "Nasty Rag." 

The technique is simple. Colour the area of the image you want to "nastify" and ONLY that section. Grab a rag with a lot of texture (I used a very old bath towel) and spray some colourless blender solution on it. Dab your image with the rag and you will get the "Nasty Rag" effect. Cool eh? 

Here's the sketch:

Please play along and link your creation at the Jacksonbelle blog

Remember that Inkadinkado stamps and sets are 75% off at the store. That's crazy!! Check it out!. 

Check out the rest of the team's creations and have an awesome week!

Jimmi Mayo ~ Stamping & Shopping
Michelle Philippi ~ Inside My Own Private Idaho
Carly Robertson ~ Paper in Bloom
Shemaine Smith ~ Scraptastic
Lynda Benden: Stamp Act
Jill Dunn: Ink Genious
Lindsey Botkin: Embellished
Trudee Sauer: Follow Your Bliss
Heather Lee-Reppen: The Best in Life

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Jacksonbelle Blog Hop!

Welcome to day 12 of the Jacksonbelle 12 Days of Christmas!  Today we have a super fun blog hop for all of you.  The entire Jacksonbelle design team has created some gorgeous Christmas projects to share with you today!  Be sure to follow through the entire blog hop and leave a comment on each blogThere will be some fabulous October Afternoon blog candy given away on one of the blogs…but which one?  It is a mystery!  Be sure to leave a comment on every blog in the hop because you never know which blog will have the mystery candy!

Here are a couple of cards I made JUST FOR YOU!! 

The patterned paper is Cosmo Cricket paper pack. I cut out "December" and the star with my Silhouette and added some pizazz by inking the edges with brown ink and
adding some "shine" with a white gel pen.

Now this card was a total mistake. Do you see the details in the star? Those were actually
mis-cuts (or should I say, NON cuts) from my Silhouette machine. I didn't have 
the paper setting right and I did a whole sheet of snowflakes that didn't cut all the
way through. So what was I gonna do? Throw it away? No way!! I cut stars out of
that sheet of mis-cuts and when I inked it up a little the details popped right out. Happy mistake!! (PS.. This is a CPS Sketch.. isn't it great?!?!)

Here's a close-up:

I used that paper from Making Memories I've been addicted to again, and a button or two from Basic Grey

Now remember to comment on this post for your chance to win a whole bunch of October Afternoon, and head on over to:

Michelle Philippi's Blog

*When you're done hoppin', check out the sale on Inkadinkado stamps at
the J-belle store. 75% off!!  

Friday, December 11, 2009

On the 11th day of Christmas Tobi made for thee....

11 crystals sparkling...

I counted and there are actually 11 crystals! haha....I used
some Zva crystals from this set, and just cut
up the line to use the individual crystals to accent the tree.

I made this box for the 12 days of Christmas celebration at the Jacksonbelle Embellishments blog. 12 days of wonderful projects, cards, ornaments etc...I used my favourite paper of the season (Making Memories) as the base, and some White Papertrey Ink cardstock for the coordinating tag.

I made a 2-5-7-10 box... Kinda.. I changed the dimensions a little to make
a wider front and skinnier sides. My scores are at 2.5, 4, 6.5, 8, 9 (the last score gives you a lip to glue)..

And the final product: Isn't the lighting SO cool??? It was a fluke, but I love it!

Additional info:
I used the Scor-pal for all of my scoring, and Zip-Dry adhesive for all of the gluing! I sponged
around the tag with the Nestabilities die on the tag to create the white ring.

Take care!