Monday, December 30, 2013

Finally Got My Crafty On!

Coffee of the Day - Gingerbread

It is snowing like crazy here, which is great since most of it had melted off in the past few days. I just LOVE the Winter Winderland I call home! :)

while my family was away this past weekend working at Winter Camp, I was actually able to do a bit of crafting for the first time in over a month! gosh, did it ever feel GREAT! of course it took me almost an entire day to make one card, and my poor scanner is on it's very last leg, sad to say. but I hope to get back to my craftroom again in the next day or so. wooohoooo!

The image is by Simply Betty and is called 'Angel Elizabete'. she cracks me up! back when I was in Jr. High, we had to draw pictures of what our friends thought of us, what our parents thought of us, and then what we thought of ourselves. this image is pretty close to the one I drew of myself! yes, I've always had that sassy, rebellious side to me! tee hee!

The sentiment is from Ginger's House, papers are from the Echo Park Winter Park collection, ribbons from rose are May Arts, white trim is Prima, accents to main image are done with stickles, spica glitter gel pen, and shimmerz paint. washi tape, buttons, and rhinestones finish the card.

Simply Betty Facebook Ch - add snowflakes
Sketch Saturday - sketch
Challenges 4 Everybody - Anything Goes
Party Time Tuesday - Anything Goes
Pile it On - 'P' is for.... pink, patterned paper, punches, Prima :)
Sentimental Sundays - pick one of the fave challenges (#160 for the girls)
That Craft Place - anything goes
Stampin' for the Weekend - anything goes
YNS - photo inspiration
4 Crafty Girls - anything goes
DRS Designs - frosted flakes
Digi Stamps 4 Joy - anything goes
Paper Shelter - anything goes

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Merry Christmas!

Coffee of the Day - Eggnog

I want to wish each and every one of you a most merry Christmas! I hope you are filled to the top with love and all you could possibly want & need in your life. :)

"8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 
Luke 2:8-14

as I was thinking about this post and writing to each of you, God really laid something upon my heart. so often our first question after the usual greetings of Christmas is 'so what did you get?'

my question for myself this year is a bit different - 'what did I give?' did I give love to each person I met? did I share peace with each person I encountered? did I leave joy under the tree and in the hearts of those who passed my way? did I share even  a brief smile with anyone who dared cross my path?

or more likely, did they wonder at the scowl on my face or the distant way I treated them....was I just another person in line or in the car beside them (or wherever) who brushed them aside as if they didn't matter. did I treat each person with respect? did I give more respect to the birds and trees I enjoy than the man who delivers my mail or reads my electric meter?

today we celebrate God gifting the world with His only son. God knew that Easter was around the corner. we didn't, but He did. He knew the road that cute little baby born in a manger was going to have to walk. but God gave the gift of His son to us nonetheless. man. I am not worth it. that is a huge sacrifice. do I respect that gift? not one tiny bit. but I'm going to try to do better. I am so thankful for grace.

all of you know about my cancer battle. I want to make sure that when I am called home, the people I care about know that I love them, without a doubt. they are going to get so tired of not only hearing me say it, but seeing it in action.   that's the key. I could say it 'til the cows come home, but if they don't see it, it doesn't matter.

so maybe things will change a bit here on my blog, and maybe they won't. but I am going to try to do better about getting around to all of your blogs and leaving comments. remember I said 'try'!!!
love and Merry Christmas to each and every one of you! new friends or old friends, you are special to me! :)

Friday, December 20, 2013

My Thoughts on the Entire Duck Dynasty Article/Issue....

Coffee of the Day - Eggnog

my thoughts in light of the entire Duck Dynasty article/issue~
(also shared on Facebook)

one day I will stand in front of God and have to answer many questions about how I lived my life. one of these, I'm sure, will be "did you love my people?" how will I be able to look Him in the eyes and say, "well, I chose to love only certain ones, God. some had different opinions than I did, some looked different than I did, some well, they just weren't really that clean or smelled kinda funky, so they weren't all that easy to love. and gosh, God, some just weren't very nice. some were down right mean to me."

and I have a feeling God will shake his head in sadness and reply to me, "and what about those times when you were mean and outspoken and said things in anger you didn't really intend to come out the way they did? or that time back in the 80's (and 90's) when you were just kind of a pain and thought you knew everything, but in fact still had a lot to learn about kindness? how lovable were you then? and didn't someone still wipe your brow and soothe your soul and tell you how beautiful you were?"

and He will remind me of the people who dropped off food at our back door when David didn't have a job or sent cards or texts when I was going through chemo or built a front porch as I went through more treatments for my cancer or the outpouring of cards when Tyler was hit by a car or the multitudes of other blessings that happen each and every day.

He will let me know that no matter what my sin, I was loved always and there were people who let me know.
so by following in HIS footsteps, I have to pass along that same love to others - regardless of their life choices. I am to love others unconditionally. understand that I am not asked to love the sin, but instead to love the sinner, for that is what each and every one of us is. we are all on a journey and can only do this with the help of one another and God's grace.

I am not the judge. I do not sit in judgement upon anyone. I can't. it's not my job. I am only called to love my neighbor. and I am working on it. it's not easy. it's one of the hardest commandments in the Bible. but it's worth it. we have to help each other out, not push each other down. that is what it means to be a follower of Christ, in my opinion.

I'm not here to debate the Bible - just stating my thoughts and opinions. each of us is entitled to our own. I'm weary of the hate and mud slinging from both sides. A & E has a right to suspend whomever they want as far as I am concerned. it's their network, they can do what they want. The Robertsons can say what they want when they are away from the series. they have that right as well. I just don't necessarily agree with them.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Gal without a Team....and it's okay

Coffee of the Day - Moon Pie

Well it is now official. I have left every one of my Design Teams. yikes. I'll be honest - it's kinda scary. wandering out here all by myself. but it's kinda freeing, too. a bit like the time when I was in my early 20's and heading off to Oxford, not knowing anyone at all, alone in another country, a new school. but excited. new opportunities, new things to learn. a chance to find out more about who I really am.

this time off has let me know that I need more of this.... I need to get back to the roots of my crafting. creating for the joy of it. creating to pass along that joy (hopefully anyhow!).

I was inspired by a post I read a little while ago on Jennifer McGuire's blog. she said that she isn't on any Design Teams and creates only with products she really truly loves. that is pretty cool.

so for a little while, I'm going to be playing. playing in my craftroom. organizing my craftroom. (eek!) finding new artists to experience. and finding myself creatively again. I do think I stay fairly true to myself with what I make, but I want to be sure. I want to be away from the timetables and deadlines and just play. I want to come out from behind my walls and not worry about making the top 3 or 5 in a challenge or contest.

and I thank all of you for your patience and kindness. you mean so much to me! :)  I'll try to do better at getting around and leaving comments. I've been horrid at that. I really want to stop by and let you know I've been around. right now I stop by as more of a gallery watcher.

I want to do better, be better. be a better me. well, as good a 'me' as I can be. with God's help. and I want to honor Him. I haven't done a whole lot of that lately either. thank goodness I am a work in progress!

Monday, December 9, 2013

If you enjoy music and singing....

Coffee of the Day - Chocolate Peppermint

Hello! I have several little things to share today. if you are a fan of fabulous music, then this is the post for you.

Today here in the States, a wonderful t.v. show starts back up for the holiday season. It is called 'The Sing Off' and features only a capella music groups. it is absolutely amazing the talent this program showcases! sadly, it wasn't on last year, but enough fans helped bring it back again. I hope you will pop in for a peek!

next, you know what LOTR fans we are in my family. well Tyler hooked my on this GORGEOUS song that is in the upcoming 'Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug' movie that premiers on Friday. every time I hear it my soul just cries at the beauty of it. I'm sharing the youtube video with all of you here. enjoy! :)


Monday, December 2, 2013

Two Dogs Go Out for a Walk......

Coffee of the Day - Oatmeal Cookie Crumble (I have GOT to get some new coffee flavors..... but a BIG thank you to Kathy C who sent us some for Thanksgiving! yum yum!)

okay, so the story goes like this..... 2 dogs go out for a walk in the snow.  a crazy lady goes out with them. (yep, you see where this is going, I bet!) no, she is not wearing a tiara this time. ;) the dogs sniff in the snow for squirrels, chipmunks, and other various friends and then decide it's time to go back inside where it is nice and toasty warm. crazy lady in her slippers starts to walk back in with them. suddenly dog #1 decides, 'hey, I think I want to race down the hill one last time!', but doesn't bother to inform either dog #2 or crazy lady in slippers. dog #2 goes toward warm toasty house, dog #1 goes back down hill, crazy lady in slippers lands on her face in snow.

so that was several days ago. I've been stuck in bed ever since. my poor knee is swollen bigger than a bowling ball where I landed on it prior to crashing on my face. I have bruises on my legs, torso, and shoulders. was bleeding out my ears for the first few days. that was an interesting development I've not had happen before. needless to say I missed the majority of the visit with all of my sons home because I was in bed unable to move. boo hiss blech.

never let it be said that cancer is the most interesting thing that goes on in this house! grins! of course no one was the least bit surprised that it happened...... bet y'all aren't either! tee hee!
good news is that I am getting a LOT of reading done. and sleeping.

hope all of you had a fabulous Thanksgiving! take a bit of time over the holidays to remember the reason we celebrate. don't get so caught up in the 'doing' that you forget the 'loving' part! :) hugs to ya!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Happy 50th Birthday, Doctor!

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice (the very last of it..... sigh....)

Today we celebrate 50 years of Doctor Who. not everyone knows The Doctor. if you haven't met him yet, I hope he lands in your backyard one day soon. your life will never be the same. truly. and you will forever look to the skies in a much different way. you will see a statue of an angel in a different light. a gas mask will not bring a feeling of security. and you will understand that fish fingers and custard belong together.

I first met The Doctor when I was in high school. yes, it was THAT long ago. ;) we met again off and on while I was in college. I introduced him to David, although I must say my soon-to-be husband wasn't all that impressed at the time. that would one day change.....

A few years ago The Doctor came back into my life. and what a delight it has been! I was able to introduce him to my sons, and they love him as much, if not more, than I do. David and he became reacquainted. They took adventures together while I slept.

now, when our family sees the Tardis appear, we joyfully go wherever The Doctor wants to take us. The years apart just melted away as if only seconds had passed.

So, dear Doctor, I say to you, Happy 50th Birthday! Allons-y!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Most Extraordinary Computer

Coffee of the Day - Pecan Buttered Rum

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope you are doing well.

not a whole lot is going on around here. I'm getting excited about Thanksgiving next week. all of my guys will be home, so I'm thrilled to have my entire family together again for a full house! :)

the other day, David and I went out driving into Cleveland. had lunch in Little Italy at our fave bakery/deli and then decided to pop into the most beautiful cemetery as we were driving back home. it was the Lake View Cemetery and truly one of the most lovely places I have seen in a long time. we spent well over an hour there, while I could easily spend several days roaming the grounds.

over on Facebook, I've been trying to do a month of thankfulness, with a post each day if I'm able. Today I am thankful for my computer. it might sound crazy, but I really am thankful for all I am able to do with my computer and the places it takes me. most especially, I am thankful for the people I have come to know. that includes each of YOU!!!!! :)

this quote seems especially poignant today.

have a great weekend! Jennifer

Friday, November 15, 2013

Just a Hello for the Weekend...

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice

Hello! I hope all of you are doing well! have big plans for the weekend?

not much is going on around here.... I'm spending a bit more time in bed these days. had some stuff come up that has knocked me down, so into bed I've gone. thought I had better do a little post before someone comes along and hacks into my blog... that seems to be happening more and more these days to blogs I've been following. one day it's crafty stuff and the next you're seeing posts about computers for sale or even more.... ummmmm.... 'interesting things! ;)  would hate to startle any of you with that! I'm sassy enough all on my own. grins!

on that note:

love and hugs to ya!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Toast to the Best and Finest Mo....

Coffee of the Day - Vanilla Nut

I wanted to try to play along in this month's Crafty Secrets linky party, so made this card in celebration of 'No Shave November' and 'Mo-vember'. their 'Mustache Men' stamp set is by far one of my fave masculine sets. I think I've made quite a few cards with it. although I must say this advertising image sorta reminds me of the Wizard's floating head in 'The Wizard of Oz'..... tee hee! add a little green smoke and mirrors, and voila! :)

anyway, papers are Basic Grey Clippings (how appropriate!), ribbon is May Arts, linen thread is SU!, and the sentiment circle is edged in barn door distress stickles. also used my SU! ink squirty tool.

Going to try to get a bit further into Cath's blog hop today as well as begin the HUGE chore of getting all of my digital items onto an external hard drive. thank goodness for a computer that plays music while I sit here.... I'd go batty bonkers otherwise....

enjoy your day to its fullest! hugs to each and every one of ya! :)

Craftitude - anything goes with twine or string
Crafty Hands - vintage
Sister Act - anything goes
4 Krafty Girlz - anything goes
Divas by Design - use a digi (actually used 4 of them!)
WAW - anything goes with encouraging senti
Crafty Sentiments - for the guys
Charisma Cardz - anything goes
That Craft Place - sentiment

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Cath, You Are Moxie Fab! :)

Coffee of the Day - Oatmeal Cookie Crumble

Today is a very VERY special day. a few friends, oh almost 300 or so of us, have gathered together to let Cath Edvalson know just how REALLY amazing we all think she is! :) some might even say she is pretty MOXIE FAB!

You may have come to know Cath from her time as the Trends Editor at Paper Crafts Magazine, as well as the author of the Moxie Fab World blog. I happen to know from person experience that she is also just a pretty fantabulous friend.

If you have just started the blog hop, you can find the entire list on the Moxie Fab blog. if you are in the midst of hopping, you should have arrived here from: Veronica Zalis

While you are here, top off your coffee and then we'll get going! if you enjoy a bit of music, both Cath and I share a fondness for the composer Claude Debussy. click on the Youtube video and have it play while you are here. ;)

I remember the first time Cath ever stopped by my blog. it felt as if the Queen of England herself had popped by for tea, crumpets, and a chat with the girls! you coulda knocked me over with a feather! but when I received my cancer diagnosis is when I got to know the 'real' Cath. she left not only blog comments, but sent personal emails to make sure I was doing okay. she took off her 'business' hat and let me know that she really cared about what was going on. she wanted to make sure that my family was handling things as well as possible. and when we thought I had gone into remission, well, she jumped for joy with us. when we discovered otherwise, she felt the shock as deeply as the rest of us.

Cath would tell me how excited she was to be back out in her garden again. we share a love of nature and the outdoors. so it seemed only fitting that I create a card that celebrates those passions. if you would like any supply details, just let me know either in the comments or send me an email. I've already rambled long enough. ;) the front is actually a modified stair step, so you really get a 3D effect irl.

Thanks so much for stopping by! Your next stop is: Lizzie Sanchez

365 Cards - create a shadow effect
4 Crafty Girls - anything goes
Little Miss Muffet - seeing dots
Crafting By Designs - anything goes
Inky Impressions - dies and punches
Lady Anne's - anything goes
Penny's Paper Crafty - lots of layers
Whimsy - anything goes
Bearly Mine - anything goes
Loves Rubberstamps - anything goes
Twisted Tuesday - anything goes
613 Avenue Create - anything goes
Craft Your Passion - more than 1 fold (grass is on 1 fold, fence on another, cottage & trees on card front)

Friday, November 8, 2013

Chalkboard Boy on Sled

Coffee of the Day - Moon Pie (found a little bit left. wooo hoooo!)

To help get you ready for tomorrow's HUGE post, I am sneaking in my last card made for Hope You Can Cling To. I actually made several others that never showed up here on the blog. will possibly add them some day. but goofball me thought the deadline for adding cards to the HYCCT galleries was tomorrow instead of yesterday. somedays I don't have any idea how in the world I survive moment to moment without my head falling right off of my shoulders.... so I quickly put this one together. well, not THAT quick. it still takes me a while.

anyway - this was for the last challenge, 'Pick a Team' in honor of "Breaking Bad". I have never seen this show, but it is on my list of things to watch. the idea for the challenge was to create a black & white card, but then add one other color depending upon which 'team' you chose. Since I knew I was making a Christmas card, I went with green, since red is not really one of my fave colors, although I craft with it all the time.

All stamps are from Flonz. they have the greatest vintage stamps. they take well to Versamark, too, even though they are clear. these stamps come from 3 different sets. I thought the chalkboard technique was a great one to use for a black & white challenge. other touches were added with white craft ink and my white gel pen. btw - Tim Holtz made a fab tag using real chalk on his. will have to try that sometime.

Papers are Basic Grey 25th and Pine, button is vintage, big die is Spellbinders while holly leaves are a Basic Grey die. little red holly dots are stickles that I added after uploading to SCS 'cause I felt it really needed a pop of red. a little doily piece, baker's twine, beaded poinsettia, washi tape, tickets, and rhinestones complete the card.

Hope you have a great weekend! See you tomorrow! :)

Flonz - traditional Christmas
Alphabet Challenge - T is for twine
Brown Sugar - anything goes
Chocolate, Coffee, and Cards - monochromatic (hopefully the neutrals are ok)
Craftitude - anything goes with twine or string
Crafts 2 Challenge You - monochromatic vintage Christmas
Jingle Belles - holiday traditions (my father & I used to go sledding every winter when I was a little girl. we took our sons and they kept going even as they became teenagers. it is great fun no matter what age!)
Art Impressions - Holly Jolly Christmas
CRAFT - Christmas
Paper Shelter - winter fun
TTCRD - anything goes
Top Tip Tuesday - seasons (winter) waving hi to all of my former teamies!!!! :)
Crafty Bloggers - Christmas
Created with Love - Christmas reds and greens
Incy Wincy - ribbon, twine, or fibers
Sparkle and Sprinkle - anything goes with embossing powder, glitter, and/or flocking
Crazy Challenge - 'B' is for: boy, bow, button, bling, berries, black
Crafty Calendar - all things Christmas
Christmas Cards All Year Round - Winter Wonderland
Card and Scrap - Christmas card
Papertake Weekly - anything goes Christmas

Thursday, November 7, 2013

So Thankful for the Nature Around Me....

Coffee of the Day - Caramel Pecan

Hello everyone! I hope you have been doing well! :)

All of the blog candy packages have been mailed out. in fact they should start arriving to happy homes today and on.... hope the winners enjoy their goodies!

my crafting hiatus didn't last long, as I am currently working on a big project. will share in a few days, so stay tuned. you will need a  BIG cup of coffee for this one, so don't say I didn't warn you! grins!

I've been feeling kinda yuck, but yesterday really needed to get out of the house after several days in bed. David and I drove around for a bit enjoying the gorgeous fall colors. it's interesting how about 30 minutes away there are so many more leaves on the trees than what we have left here in our little town. it's all part of sitting at the top of the hills and the way the winds come through.... sorry, the nerdy little geek in me was taking over. ;)

anyway, we stopped at a nearby park and walked around for just a bit. I took this one photo with my phone. it's a fabulous little shale creek that runs into a run that then runs north into Lake Erie. it still boggles my mind that the river runs north here. can't wrap my head around that one....

y'all take care and will see you in a few days! hugs and smoochies to ya!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Blog Candy Winners!

Coffee of the Day - Chocolate Peppermint

There were a total of 9 blog candy winners! congrats to each and every one of you! the whole thing won't show up on my blog because it isn't wide enough, and mr. blue linky froggie will only choose 6 by his random choosie thing. so I had to put the rest in my proverbial black top hat and pick out the other 3 by hand. very high tech, yes we are!

some of you are receiving Christmas goodies, because I thought I would just go ahead and draw that early. this way you'll have some things to get a little bit of a  head start. I hope everyone enjoys the little packages I've put together. some are more 'runner up' type prizes, but they are prizes nonetheless.....

please send me your mailing address just as soon as possible. several of these are going across the seas, so I want to allow plenty of time for you to receive them. my email is: jenscull @  (please remove spaces before sending)

thank you to EVERYONE who linked up and created a 'thinking of you' card to share with someone.

 Jenn Zeeb
 miss rach
Kathy Curry
Natasha Marr
Chris Boldovici
stamping sue

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Pinktober Blog Candy!

Welcome to my Pinktober Blog Candy post!

anyone may enter this blog candy. you do NOT have to be a follower or post it on a blog. all you have to do is be willing to make ONE card this month to tell someone you are thinking about them. even better if it has a dash ( or a whole lot more! ) of pink somewhere on it. :)  I'm not even going to ask you to link your card, although if you would like to in the comments, I will do my best to stop by! you can join the contest first and then make the card - I trust you. :)

I'll be adding a proper photo of the candy up for grabs later on, but I am going to have SEVERAL winners! I know for certain there will be at LEAST 5! :)  that is happy happy news for everyone!

some of the prizes included are:
  • Unity stamps (they were VERY generous and donated some for all of YOU!)
  • K & Co. breast cancer awareness stickers
  • hope silver charms
  • pink ribbons and cording
  • buttons
  • pink stickles
  • Quick Kutz awareness ribbon die
  • Crafter's Workshop houndstooth stencil
  • paper flowers
  • washi tape
  • and more!
all you have to do is add your name to our little blue froggy linky friend. the candy will be open all month. winners will be chosen the first week of November and announced here on the blog. I'll need addresses to be sent ASAP so I can get everything mailed out pronto quickly. 

Thanks so much to all of YOU who have given me so much support during my own cancer battle. you have made this journey so much easier to bear!

*Inlinkz tool removed per new privacy laws since all prizes have been claimed. thank you for your understanding. :)

Guess What I am Doing Today?

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice (kinda obvious on this one... grins!)

So what do you think I am doing today?

Hubby is getting himself ready for the big Hot Dog House we do every Halloween. in case you aren't familiar with this, we get together at a friend's house and grill hot dogs to pass out to families trick or treating. no charge, just a way to say 'hello' to all of the friendly people in our little town! we usually give away several hundred hot dogs in addition to hot chocolate and water every year. we've been doing this for over 10 years. I haven't been able to go the past few. it is such a wonderful tradition and we really have such a great time! :)

but I am getting envelopes of blog candy goodies ready to mail out!!!! I'll most definitely have 6 winners. after I get busy today, there might be more. I'll just have to see. you have until midnight tonight to get yourself linked for a chance to win! the majority of the entries are from outside of the USA, so don't let living across the pond stop you from entering! :)

yesterday I wrote about some of my crafting complaints. today you get the flip side. I am going to tell you about some FABULOUS stores and people who make this world a whole lot brighter! see, I'm not always a Debbie Downer. ;)

for customer service, you CAN NOT beat Stampin' Up!  I don't order from them as often as I would like, and yes, I do miss the days of being a demo. but if I ever ever have a problem, they are speedy fast to fix it with the happiest of people on the phone. if it's spilled re-inkers, broken stamp cases, or whatever, they go out of their way to make sure I AM HAPPY. their orders routinely ship out pretty fast, and replacements seem to ship even faster.

my son, Tyler, had a problem with something he ordered from Amazon a while back. he created a ticket on their website and actually received a call from their customer service dept within a few hours. here it is a few days later and an upgraded part has been sent. they told him they will call to make sure not only that the part arrived, but that it works properly. he is so very impressed!

now for some stores that go above and beyond......

I received, out of the blue, a package a few days ago from Simon Says Stamp. it's been a while since I last shopped with them. as far as I knew, they had no clue who I am.... inside this box was the most beautiful collection of pink crafty goodies - glitters, inks, perfect pearls, and stickles! you know I was beside myself!!! tucked inside was also a gorgeous handmade card. written inside it said, 'We were thinking of you and thought we'd send some things to help brighten your day.'  boy howdy, did it ever! last year my friend Lisa had sent me a wonderful box of things from their store when I was in the midst of chemo. Heidi and the people who work with her at SSS actually remembered that! and the really cool thing is that this box arrived right after I received my letter from the hospital, so I was needing a bit of cheering up. talk about God's timing! :)

next we have Unity Stamps. they are so very kind and generous! I wrote to them as soon as I was asked to be a hostess for Hope You Can Cling To and had my challenge approved. the 'Brave Boots' comes from one of their stamp sets. I just wanted to tell them what an inspiration that stamp set had been to me, and hopefully would be to someone else going through any kind of a battle. well, they sent a fabulous box of stamps (sets and individuals) for me to give away here on my blog! those of you who win prizes through the blog candy will be winning stamps that Unity has donated! how cool is THAT?!?! and just so you know.... I have kept one single sentiment stamp for myself. all of the rest are being given away. I want to be sure to pass along the kindness to all of you.

there are also multitudes of YOU who have sent me cards and care packages. my friend, Tracy, just recently sent me a zombie card that has me giggling every time I look at it! I never forget that I am blessed. really. I just need a bit of a break right now. there is a part of me that is weary. the sun still shines somewhere, the birds still sing. none of that has changed.

see you in a few days with the winners! :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Blog Candy Reminder and leaving for a while

Coffee of the Day - Eggnog

Just a reminder that the Pinktober Blog Candy ends tomorrow. not many people have signed up, so your chances of winning are pretty good! I will post the winners over the weekend sometime.

also, I am taking a break from crafting, probably until the beginning of the new year. I am weary of the drama behind it all, to be perfectly blunt. I am tired of entering challenges and no one from the team stopping by to comment on my entry or prizes not being delivered. I don't enter for the prizes, but it gets tiresome to be told time and time again that something is 'in the mail' or "I'll send it in an email to you", and it never arrives. almost all of my craft supplies come purely from my winnings.

don't even get me started on the number of 'artists' in digi land who spend so much of their time copying others and then calling it their own.... absolutely appalling.  it turns my stomach to see how rampant the problem has become.

then we have the companies that actually mail out an order, only to deliver part of it, promising a refund or credit, having no intention whatsoever of returning that money. no amount of messages to customer service seem to illicit responses. I don't like having to ask and beg. and I don't like the way I feel about this craft anymore. so it's time to back away.

I have cards that have not been posted here on my blog, and I honestly don't know if I will. just don't have the desire to right now. sure don't have the enthusiasm to play in challenges like I used to. tired of having team members comment on other entries except mine. yep, it's a pity party and I know it. another indicator that it is time to step away.

so I will enter the land of zombies, movies, books......
my love to all of you!

check back this weekend for the blog candy winners. thank you for putting up with me and my ramblings.

in response to a comment - I am not enjoying crafting any longer. that is one reason I'm taking a break. I don't even like to walk into my craft room right now. in fact, I'm happiest when my computer is completely turned off, and I am reading a book or watching a movie. 

as for not letting things get to me, I don't think I should have to write numerous emails to a store regarding challenge prizes. they offered to sponsor, plain and simple. if they aren't going to follow through with their end, don't sponsor. I'm tired of having to beg for a prize. in fact I don't. after 2 or 3 emails, I stop. in reference to the store that won't refund my money, that is a no brainer. I paid for something, if they aren't going to send it, refund my money. answer my message/email. bad customer service. and all of this happens way too often from stores big enough to know better.

yep, life is too short to spend time fussing over stupid stuff like challenge prizes or tracking down a refund. so I'm not going to. I'd rather spend my time doing things I enjoy. I spent tonight fixing a nice dinner for David and I. it was glorious. no rush to get a project finished/scanned/posted/linked/etc.  I could just spend time in the kitchen and then enjoy a lovely dinner with my husband. 

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Have Hope Mixed Media Owl

Coffee of the Day - Caramel Pecan

Today's Hope You Can Cling to Challenge is 'Mix It Up - Mixed Media.' While I have done this with other projects, I haven't really done it on a card so to speak. I knew I wanted to use this cute little owl from Tracey at The Stamping Boutique, but incorporating a digi on a mixed media card presents its own set of problems, especially when my printer at the time was on the fritz. rollers were messed up and nothing wider than about 5" would go through..... I was having to cut all of my cs before feeding it through.

as I mentioned before, life is pretty interesting at our house on a daily basis. ;)

the card base is sprayed with several shades of blue glimmer mists with The Crafter's Workshop mini fish scale stencil. 'have hope' is from the stamp set of the same name by My Favorite Things. the branches were cut from a Starbucks coffee cozy with a TH die. leaves were cut from Basic Grey Persimmon paper with a TH die. little baby flowers are Prima. I think the button is SU!. paint along the edges is white mixed with a few drops of baked brown sugar re-inker. I didn't have a tan acrylic paint, so I just made my own.

I also want to tell all of you thank you for your support as we have gone through the ups and downs of first thinking I was cancer free and then discovering I might not be. it means a lot to have all of you here with us. thank you!

Have a wonderful weekend! :)

Sister Act - anything goes
WAW - anything encouraging goes
Delightful Challenges - winged things
Craft Room - feathered friends
Cheerful Stamp Pad - stencil
Crafty Bloggers - anything goes
Ooh La La - things with wings
Path of Positivity - hope
Allsorts - treemendous

Friday, October 25, 2013

Coffee Together with My Best Friend

Coffee of the Day - Oatmeal Cookie Crumble

well as I am typing this post, I am sipping coffee from my ever faithful french press. thank goodness it always works so long as I can get hot water to it! :)  by 8:30 this morning I had moved all of the branches that had fallen yesterday up to right by the house. not sure if Dave wants to take them out to Camp for bonfires there or what, so left them by the driveway. my pretty pink Camp Burton hoodie is no longer pretty and pink. oh well. it had to happen one day, and better from good ol' dirt than me spilling food all down the front, which I seem to do with every bite I take.

more than anything, I am just so thankful that there wasn't any damage to our house. God kept us safe, once again. His angels ROCK! :)  I can just picture them all over and around the house like a big fierce, glowing bubble. oh yeah!

now on to crafty stuff -
today's Hope You Can Cling To challenge is 'A Listening Ear.' I was so excited to find this adorable image from A Random Fan that just so totally sums up my besties in all the world - my pups! grins! they have so faithfully listened to my cries, screams, yells, songs, whispers, and whatever noise I happen to make at any given moment. they have made this cancer journey so much easier to travel.

papers are Basic Grey Sweet Threads, fabulous flower is Prima, dies for image are MFT Mat Stax, dies for leaves are Spellbinders, 'together' sentiment is from Melody Ross Soul Food. pink shimmerz accents the hearts.

CRAFT - recipe: 1 or more die cut, 2 or more designer papers, 3 or more embellies
Basic Grey - food and drink
Paper Crafting Journey - anything goes
Creative Moments - anything goes
Inkspirational - anything goes
Paper Pretties - eat, drink, and be merry
WAW - anything encouraging goes
Deep Ocean - button it up
Craft Your Passion - pink
613 Avenue Create - create your own: image, sentiment, patterned paper, die cut, stickles, button, flower, ribbon
That Craft Place - think pink
Squirrel and the Fox - pink for breast cancer awareness

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Life is Never Dull

Coffee of the Day - Oatmeal Cookie Crumble

so much can change in 24 hours..... top off your coffee 'cause this is quite the post.

to start, it is snowing. you know I love the snow, so I would never complain about it. but this isn't just regular, 'oh isn't that beautiful' snow. this is heavy, wet, dangerous snow. there really is a difference. trees and branches have been breaking & falling since the night in our little town. we have them down around our house. not just little twig branches, but 6 to 9 foot branches. poor Mocha and I were almost taken out by one as it was falling a little while ago. in the almost 14 years we have lived in this house, we've never lost this many branches. the next town over has no snow at all. it's called 'Lake Effect Snow', so we get lots most winters. but not always like this.

still no heat in the house, so it's on the chilly side. then my coffee maker broke this morning. thankfully I have a french press, so I didn't have to go without. THAT would have been a really bad scene, folks.

letter arrived from hospital yesterday. "the results of your exam show an area that is probably benign, however we would like to have you return for a follow-up study....."  it was dated the 22nd. we were floored. this does not match the news I was given on Friday. so .....

life is still good. God still sits on His throne. He was in charge at the beginning of this journey, and He will be in charge at the end. of that I have no doubt.... it's raining branches, but there are showers of blessings every day. :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Room In Your Heart for the Unimaginable

Coffee of the Day - Chipotle

Today's Hope You Can Cling To challenge at Split Coast Stampers is a really fun one - Impossible Things Happen: a fairy tale theme. everyone loves a fairy tale! what is your favorite? I am a Sleeping Beauty fan from the word go..... I think that is probably my absolute favorite movie in the whole wide world!

I have many images I could have chosen from for this challenge, but the one that spoke loudest to me of hope was 'Dreams Do Come True' by A Day for Daisies. The great sentiment is once again from Ginger's House. paper is She Art by Pink Paislee, stitching is from an Inky Antics stamp set, pink shimmerz was added to both the sentiment tag and Cinderella's shoe, button is vintage as is the sheet music used to cut stars. a pretty flower, a heart doily, pink seam tape, and pink rhinestones complete the card.

Temps are definitely dropping here. it's frosty and rainy. our heater has been out of commission since last week, so we are hoping the part to fix it comes in SOON! it's a bit nippy in the house these days! ;)

don't forget to sign up for the Pinktober blog candy! :)

Creative Craft - anything goes
Ladybug Crafts - anything goes
TTCRD - anything goes
Crafty Sentiments - bingo: die cut, doily, flowers
Perfectly Rustics - patterned paper
Bunny Zoe - ribbon
Craft Your Passion - pink
Crafty Cardmakers - shabby chic
Melonheadz - fairy tale
Paper Playtime - ribbon and buttons
My Craft Spot - color inspiration
Great Impressions - buttons and bows
That Craft Place - pink
Allsorts - ribbons and bows
A Creative Romance - pink
Crafty Ribbons - anything goes with ribbon

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Salt Air in my Hair

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice (almost out - eek!)

After our busy week with the guys here, I am finally getting back on track with crafting again. not to mention having the cancer burden lifted just flat out feels FANTASTIC!!!!!  I know I  still have a long way to go on the road to healing, but just to know that the cancer is gone makes such a difference. the radiation from Friday is already causing lots of problems, so that is a downer. it's a nasty bugger, that is for sure. did you know there is a limit to how much radiation you are allowed to have your body exposed to over a lifetime? I sure didn't until we started down this road.... I'm pretty close to mine.

on to the fun of crafting though. and this card will most certainly brighten a day! it is full of happy colors! The new Hope You Can Cling To challenge at Split Coast Stampers for today is 'Sending Flowers.' so I piled them on! :) you'll see flowers in my paper, the die, the image, and the gorgeous Prima.

the wonderful image is 'Aloha Blooms' by A Day for Daisies, papers are Basic Grey Lauderdale,  sentiment is from a new freebie site I found called Ginger's House, fabulous floral die is called 'Daisy Doily' by Whimsy, and that stunning flower is a Prima. the flowers in her hair were highlighted with pink stickles. the lace trim is vintage. I painted in the little birds below the sentiment.

don't forget about the Pinktober blog candy! there are going to be a LOT of winners, so be sure to enter! :)

Artistic Inspirations - anything goes
TTCRD - anything goes
Creative Fingers - girls just want to have fun
Jo's Scrap Shack - anything goes
Sister Act - anything goes
Paper Pretties - lots of embellishments
Cards Galore - flowers
Catch the Bug - bingo: black, button, sentiment

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Battle is Over!

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice


edited - new information has been received since I posted this, but the message of this post still holds true. God is still good, every day. the battle might not be over afterall, but He is still in charge. thank goodness!
see post of 10/24/13 for more info.

 After almost 2 years I can declare myself a survivor, finally. as near as last week this didn't seem like a possibility - ever. David and I were talking about hospice and what my choice would be.

THAT is what kind of miracle we are talking about! Don't ever for one minute believe that miracles don't still take place. they are not confined to the pages of a book that tell only the stories of people long gone.....

Thank you to every one of you who has prayed, sent cards, texts, emails, donations, or whatever. You have done so much to help me and my family. You have reached out to let us know that we have not been alone on this journey, and that means so very much to us.

I would be remiss if I didn't drop to my knees and first praise God for all He has done for me and my family. don't ever FOR ONE SINGLE MOMENT think you walk through this life alone. God shows Himself so clearly in quiet, still blessings that take place every single day if we will but slow ourselves down enough to see them.

Celebrate with us! :)

Friday, October 18, 2013

HYCCT - Put Your Brave Boots On!

Coffee of the Day - Moon Pie (it's almost gone, boo hoo hoo!)

Happy happy Friday! this post is going to be loaded with LOTS of cards, so I won't go into much detail about products. if you would like more info, please either email me or head over to my gallery at Split Coast Stampers. each card will have a list of items used. :)

We also have a new challenge over at Jellypark today, so please stop by to see what everyone has created. We are celebrating Pinktober and breast cancer awareness, so get your pink on! :)

I am thrilled beyond measure to be today's 'Hope You Can Cling To' hostess at Split Coast Stampers! My challenge theme is one very near and dear to my heart. I am calling it 'Put Your Brave Boots On' after a stamp set made by Unity. the saying in this set has become my mantra during my cancer battle. it seems that every time I have another test, scan, or 'whatever' I have to face, I tell myself to put on my brave boots. in fact, as you are reading this, I am at the hospital going through more of those tests and scans. and oh my goodness, am I ever so weary of this battle sometimes. but I wear these brave boots not just for myself, but also for my husband and sons. I want them to know that we do not EVER give up in this family. things may get tough, but we can still find joy every single day.

So for my challenge I am asking everyone to make a card with images of boots and shoes. you can see some great samples created by other HYCCT hostesses in the gallery by entering 'HYCCT1318' in the search engine at SCS. also use this tag if you yourself create a card and upload it. thank you! :)

here are my projects:

my first card uses a fun image from Jellypark called 'pattern wellies.' I believe it was a freebie at one time or another. papers are Basic Grey True Love; sentiment was typed on computer. dew drops, rhinestone flourish, glimmer mist, and glitter gel pen are just a few of the embellishments used.

this card uses the 'Brave Boots' itty bitty set from Unity and Basic Grey Green at Heart papers. glimmer mist, enamel dots, tulle trim, and some wood veneer help add to the feminine touch. boots were stamped onto patterned paper.

this last card is done with the same Unity Brave Boots, but with a masculine feel. the barbed wire and star charm dies come from MFT, papers are My Mind's Eye Stella & Rose Mabel. lots of shading with inks give a rustic touch. this fabulous sentiment is also Unity. one of my fave sayings of late.

thanks for your patience! have a most wonderful weekend! :)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Peaceful Lake Scene

Coffee of the Day - Pumpkin Spice

Hello! First I want to share some cool news with you. Today in the UK a most amazing magazine goes on sale. Digital Crafting Essentials vol. 1, looks to be a fabulous magazine, packed with images and samples from some of our most fave artists! not only will you see my fellow Jellypark peeps inside, but also Saturated Canary, Heather Ellis (the artist behind Pure Innocence at MFT), Crafters Companion, and many others. I can't even begin to express what an honor it is to be included in this magazine!!! when you buy a copy, you receive 2 DVDs loaded with images. so cool! I'll show you my card in a later post.....

Next up is a card I made for the 'Peace and Quiet' Hope You Can Cling To challenge at SCS. the idea was to create a card using just images, no words or sentiments, to reflect a peaceful scene. I remembered that I had this wonderful image from Phindy's Place, so was glad to use it. papers are Basic Grey Serenade and border die is MFT. burlap ribbon is May Arts and button & seam binding are from my stash. pretty simple, but that is pretty much the idea.

------> TOMORROW is the day I am hostess at Hope You Can Cling To!!!!! I hope you will stop by both here and over at SCS!!!! I would love to have you play along! :)

don't forget the Pinktober blog candy! I hope to get to everyone's blogs and projects this weekend. sorry I haven't made it yet. y'all are fabulous for making projects though. thank you! :)

Crafting by Designs - anything goes
Crafting with Dragonflies - nature/trees/leaves
Penny's Paper Crafty - anything goes
Designed to Color - tie it up
4 Krafty Girlz - anything goes
Flourishes - burlap or canvas
Kaboodle Doodles - earth tones/colors
Perfectly Rustics - watercoloring (I color almost all of my images this way)
Inkspirational - anything goes

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Ribbon Boy in a Pocket

Coffee of the Day - Toasted Maple Nut

Well I was able to get a bit crafty yesterday, so I do have a card to share with you. don't forget to sign up for  my Pinktober blog candy while you are here. I would hate for you to miss out on some cool goodies! I've also passed 1000 posts this week, so have added another winner to the bunch! :) remember, you do not have to be a follower or post anything on your blog to enter. just promise to make a card to pass along to someone that lets them know you are thinking of them. easy peasy!

The new challenge over at Hope You Can Cling To for today is 'Pocket Full of Hope.' I added a pocket to my card using the Pretty Pocket die from MFT. the cutey image on the tag comes from Whimsy and Stars - 'Ribbon Boy.' I paper pieced the ribbon with Basic Grey Lilykate paper, while the rest of the card was made with Basic Grey Carte Postale papers. faux stitching is done with Inky Antics Sew Many Stitches stamp. card base bg was made with the inside of a padded mailing envelope. buttons, brads, a paper flower, and May Arts ribbons finish the card.

Crafting Cafe - anything goes
Bearly Mine - anything goes
Going Grey with Scrap Creations - cut it out
Crafting by Designs - anything goes
Crafter's Cafe - cute
Paper Playtime - ribbon and buttons
613 Avenue Create - pile it on
Challenges 4 Everybody - anything goes
Quirky Crafts - fave things: Basic Grey, pink, and buttons
Craftitude - anything goes with things that start with 's' (stitching, support ribbon)
4 Krafty Girlz - anything goes
Paper Pretties - embellish