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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Back in the Saddle With an ODBD Challenge Submission

Hello Cyber Friends!

It has been over three months since my last post and almost that long since I have been able to sit down and create something worth posting.  During the past 3 months we have changed addresses, I have taken on extra responsibilities at work, and our teenage daughter has flipped out and become a total stranger to us (said with tongue in cheek.)  Thus, the mojo has been literally non-existent and it is time to get back in the saddle and doing what I love: making cards for Operation Write Home to send to our troops.

Yesterday I put out a plea on Facebook for some encouragement and suggestions on how to get started and received some great advice that I was able to capitalize upon.  Sandy suggested that I get out something that I had been hoarding to use and Yolanda suggested that I then post it on the November ODBD challenge (which will help pay to ship some cards for OWH)  Here is what I came up with:

So, what was I hoarding that I had to dust off?  Everything but the card base and the envelope!  Let me explain.  Over a year ago my BFF hosted a card making event with her Sunday School Class and I was the fortunate recipient of the "not quite good enough" cards.  Well, if they weren't good enough for them they certainly were not good enough for our troops so I set them aside for triage and totally forgot about them until I was packing up for our move. What you see is actually two separate cards broken down, trimmed up, and combined for one unified product.  The stripped piece with the stars was all together and the red card stock was the base for a totally separate card that pretty much fell apart on it's own.

I was able to finish up with 11 new cards that are definitely "good enough" for our troops.  I also took a few minutes to stamp red and blue stars on the envelopes as an added touch. 
Thank you OWH Facebook family for helping me out of the drought!  I won't be taking such a long hiatus ever again if I can help it!
Blessings and Happy Stamping,


Saturday, August 11, 2012

OWH Midweek Throwdown & Sketch #51

Hello everyone!  So glad you could stop by for a moment today - I have another fun card to share with you today.  This card was inspired by my oldest daughter, Alyssa, who shared a youtube video with us on her last visit home from college that was so funny we are still quoting it!  So, I made this card for her and liked it so much I decided to make a dozen more for my Operation Write Home box.

I used the precolored version of Doodle Pantry's Oh My Ant which comes with the outline version of the ant as well as the precolored ant, 4 phrases, and two patterned papers (one of which I used on my card.)  I layered the image and sentiment with Stampin' Up! Green Galore and Basic Black then mounted it on Creamy Caramel that I had dry embossed with my Cuttlebug.  I also used a black gel pen for the faux stitching. 

Here is OWH Sketch #51 that I was working from:

I am entering this card in the Operation Write Home Midweek Throwdown Challenge - Kids Cards.  This catagory is one of my favorites because I love the idea of the link that is made between a Hero and their child when they send home a handmade card filled with words of love that the child can hold on to whenever they are missing Mommy or Daddy. 

Other Challenges:

Friday, August 3, 2012

Doodle Pantry New Release and OWH Sketch #120

Wow!  I can't believe it is August already!  I absolutely refuse to let my emotions head down the "summer is almost over" water slide!

The best thing about a new month is that so many of our favorite digi artists have new releases - like Doodle Pantry!  I am so excited about this month's releases, too.  It is a great combination of Back to School, Holiday/Winter, and just everyday goodies.

Since my focus (or "mission," if you will) is Operation Write Home and we are always working ahead of the seasons, to allow time for mailing, I chose the new set Snowflake Sheep to highlight today.  Isn't he/she adorable?

I used OWH Sketch #120, dry embossed the white layer with snowflakes, and added bling to the center of each printed snowflake.  The focal image is pre-colored but also comes in the outline form and the sentiment and patterned paper are included with the set as well.  All this, and so much more, for only $2.25, you can't beat it!

Doodle Pantry is also running a special on their School themed sets now through August 15th - 30% off their already low prices!  Check it out here!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Frosty Kisses on Sketch #38

Christmas in July continues as I try to beat the heat making winter themed cards!  I am working toward filling a large flat rate priority box for Operation Write Home's Early Bird Card Challenge to help our shippers get a head start on the winter/Christmas rush.  I liked this card enough to make 24 total for the  box!  Yay me!

This adorable snowlady is from the July new releases over at Doodle Pantry called Quirky Snowmen.  The set includes 3 different snowpeople with corresponding sentiments.  I chose to use the digitally colored version (thanks Laurie!) but they all come in outline form for those of you who like to customize your images.  The patterned paper is included in the set and I just love how Laurie used a similar pattern in the hat and scarf so it actually looks like I paper pieced it!  (wink wink) I don't normally post such a large picture but I wanted you to be able to see the shine of Glossy Accents that I added to her nose, twigs, and buttons - it really does add some dimension in real life.

As many of you know it has been my goal for 2012 to use all of the Operation Write Home sketches and this one is Sketch #38.  I have found that deciding what sketch to use before I print my images really helps me to be able to size them to fit the sketch and thus make the best use of my ink and cardstock.  Love that! 

Here is the sketch:

So glad you took the time to stop in...your comments are always welcomed!

Operation Write Home Midweek Throwdown - Encouraging Cards
Simon Says Stamp - Anything Goes
Love to Create - Spots and Dots
Make it Monday - Anything Goes

Thursday, July 19, 2012

OWH Sketch #124 with Doodle Pantry Snowball Ants

Here we are in the middle of July, the anticipated temp today in Mid-Michigan will be a record high 99 degrees, and I am making WINTER cards for Operation Write Home!  At first I found this really odd but once I started rolling with it I was suprised that it really did help to take my mind off the July heat and thinking about cooler temps and snow showers (not such a bad thought today but very discouraging in January and February I must say!)

My card today was inspired by a combination of  OWH Sketch #124 (see below) and one of the July new releases from Doodle Pantry called Snowball Ants.  I must admit that I am not a computer geru by any stretch of the imagination but I did find it very easy to manipulate the .pgn files (with Microsoft Word) in this adorable set to come up with my own unique focal image.

The ants and the shading around the snowballs were precolored digitally by the creator (Laurie Wilson) but the blue sponging around the edges was added by me.  The snowflake embossing was done with a Cuttlebug folder.  I did pop the focal image with dimensional tape but it is difficult to see in this photo.

Here is the OWH Sketch #124 I used:

Thanks for stopping by!  Your comments are appreciated!

Totally Stampalicious - Christmas in July
There She Goes - Christmas in July
Ruby's Rainbow - Cute Animals
Crafters Cafe Blog Challenge - Christmas in July - Non-traditional colors

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

USA Birdie - Patriotism is not limited to July 4th!

Hello Everyone!  At first it seemed odd to me to be posting a patriotic card just a week after July 4th (as if I am posting it late) but as an Operation Write Home cardmaker I KNOW that Patriotism is NOT limited to July 4th!  Can I get a witness?!?

This card was inspired by the adorable birdie (from the Doodle Pantry USA Birdie set) that I had printed, fussy cut, layered with Night of Navy, and fussy cut again.  I had indended to use him on the thigh of the swim trunks that I posted a few weeks ago but he turned out to be too big for that so I set to work determined to use him because he is so stinkin' cute and I had already expended so much energy into getting him to this point!  And, I have to say, I really like the final result.  The designer paper is from the Doodle Pantry Stars & Stripes Paper Pack.

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings,

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

S & S Midweek Throwdown - Monkey Challenge

It's Tuesday evening and I am getting my card in for the Midweek Throwdown Monkey Challenge at the very last minute!  The card has been ready for at least 24 hours but I just haven't taken the time to get it out there....but here it is! 

The monkeys are actually a picture frame from Dustin Pike - I love his monkeys, they are my favorite of his characters.  This one came precolored (hooray!) and I layered it with black card stock.  The sentiment is from Create with TLC and is actually popped up with dimensional tape which adds just enough interest that I was happy with the result without adding any further embellies.

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings,


Monday, July 2, 2012

Doodle Pantry FREE Digi Set - TINY TRICERATOPS

Wow!  It's July already?!  Yep, it is!  This week is actually one of my most antcipated weeks of the year, along with Christmas and Easter, because it means a full week off work and that thought keeps me going through the last few months of school.  So, here I am, writing to you on my first full day of vacation....with a cup of coffee and the early morning breeze to keep me company.  I love it!

But that is not what we are here to talk about, is it?  *wink, wink*  My card today is featuring the TINY TRICERATOPS digi set by Doodle Pantry that Laurie is offering absolutley FREE until July 15th. (read on for more details!)

The pre-colored image and sentiment I merged and printed just using Micrsoft Word and the .pgn files from the set.  The designer paper is also included with the set. The card stock is Stampin' Up! and matches the colors perfectly.  The half pearls are from Pizzaz APlenty (I could never get them that uniform with the Viva Pearl Pens and have just about given up on trying!)  Oh, almost forgot, the layout is another Operation Write Home sketch that I can mark off my list for completing in 2012.  It is Sketch #114! (Yay for me!)

So, are you wondering how you can get this awesome set FREE?  Hop on over to the Doodle Pantry blog and download it...then enter your creation in the montly challenge and you may win a shopping spree with Doodle Pantry.  Yep, it's that easy!  Wondering what the whole set looks like?  Here it is.....

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings,


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

OWH & Doodle Pantry - Sketch #127

Doodle Pantry is sponsoring this week's Sketch Challenge with Operation Write Home and just have to say, with the utmost humility of course, that I love my card!  When I put all of the elements together on this card (before adhering) I nearly giggled with excitement because it was even cuter than I had envisioned...don't you just love it when that happens?  I know I do!

The image and dp are from the newly released digi set Quirky Elephant by Doodle Pantry.  I chose to use one of the precolored versions of the elephant (of course!) and paired it with Stampin' Up! cardstock.  The sentiment is from Hambo Stamps.

Here is OWH Sketch #127 that I used as my springboard:

Thursday, June 21, 2012

ODBD June Challenge - Shaped Cards for OWH

What a great, and unexpected, challenge from Our Daily Bread Designs this month!  The funny thing is my first thought was "Oh no!" but what really happened was alot of fun for lots of us.  We did a bit of internet searching, and imagination stretching...and we have almost met our goal of 50 shaped cards to earn FREE shipping for two boxes of cards to our heroes overseas! 

No, ladies, they are NOT boxers!  They are swim trunks (the guys would know this because of the waistband string.)  This isn't a new idea...but it has been several years since I have made any of these.  The patterned paper is from the Doodle Pantry patterned paper set Stars and Stripes which is so absolutely versitile and inexpensive to boot (hello?  15 different patterns for only $2.00? Uh-huh!)  The stars are cut with Nestibilities and the waistband is texturized with my Scor Pal.

I had so much fun making these that I have decided to make several more and use up some wild and crazy 12 x 12 paper that was given to me (and I thought I would never use!)  They are very easy to make once you get the hang of it - anyone interested in a tutorial?  Now would be a good time since I have all of the stuff spread out on my workspace.  :)

Update July 10, 2012:

I made a total of 24 swim trunk cards and have sent them off to Sandy at Operation Write Home in a special shipment because they need to be sent overseas while it is still summer!  Here is a pic displaying 3 of the designs I went with (I think there were 6 different patterns in all.)

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings,

Friday, June 15, 2012

Hang In There - OWH Sketch #36

Hang in there....the weekend is almost here!

Just a quick post today to share this adorable (if I do say so myself) card I made for the Operation Write Home "Duty. Honor. Cards." card drive. 

I started with the Doodle Pantry set Hang In There COLOR plus and then found an OWH sketch that I felt would work well with it (Sketch #36 shown below), resized the image (already colored for me, yay!) and words, printed them, and away I went!  The green polka dots paper is scrap from the Balloon Ants cards I posted a few months ago (click here to see them.)  The embossing folder I used here for the first time and LOVE it! 

Sketch #36:

Gotta run...please leave me some love, I can surely use it!

Friday, June 1, 2012

New Release Day at Doodle Pantry!

Can you believe it is June already?  May was crazy hectic for our family and has gone by in a blink!  Today was our last official school day - for the kids anyway.  They are finished for the summer but as the "financial guru" I must work through the summer, but with a much more relaxed schedule and atmosphere.

The first of the month means it is New Release Day at Doodle Pantry and this month's new releases are fantastic!  It seems that Laurie has been really 'upping the ante' (so to speak) with each month!  And to make it even better she is offering a special "Start Off Summer With A Sale" which means a 35% discount on all sets now through June 10th.  If Doodle Pantry is new to you now is a great time to check it out!

The set I chose to showcase this month is called Salute Bunny - I chose it because I knew it would be perfect for Any Hero cards for Operation Write Home (these are cards with a personal note of gratitude and encouragement that our military contacts can keep to remind them that they are loved and apprecited.)  The is set includes both outline and colored images of the saluting bunny, five sentiments, four different colored hats, and two patterened papers.  I couldn't decide on just one card to share but I did narrow it down to my three favorite!  Which is your favorite?

(a close up so you can see the embossed stars)

The photography leaves a bit to be desired but the cards are really cute, and perfect for the latest OWH Card Drive.

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

OWH Memorial Day 2012 Sketch Bloghop

(click on the red button to go to the master link for all of the blog posts)

The day has finally arrived....and I am so excited!  I love the annual OWH Memorial Day Bloghop - it takes the entire weekend to get through all of the posts and I get totally overwhelmed and have to take breaks....but I really enjoy all of the inspiration!

It is no secret that I love Doodle Pantry images and the turtle is certainly one of my very favorite DP characters.  This cutie is from Turtle Trio - the digitally colored version (I have neither the time nor the talent to color this good!) The sentiment is part of the set and I placed it using MS Word and the .pgn files included in the set.  The patterned paper is also  included in the set and I have layered it with Stampin' Up! Garden Green and placed it on a Cuttlebug embossed piece of Stampin' Up! Pumpkin Pie.

For this card I used Sketch #21

Thanks for hopping by my blog today...your comments are always appreciated
Have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!

P.S.  The link to the next post on the Bloghop is located on the Master Post - click on the banner at the top to find more wonderful inspiration!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

S & S Midweek Throwdown - Patriotic

The Midweek Throwdown over at OWH Stars & Stamps blog is to make a card for our heroes using a Patriotic or July 4th.  Most of us OWH card makers use the patriotic theme on a regular basis on our Any Hero cards so this challenge is "easy" but fun at the same time because we get to share our creations and be inspired by the creations of others at the same time.

My card was made using up my scraps of patterened paper from the Doodle Pantry Super Birdie set (ie:  the red/blue star paper.)  The sentiment is from Verve Stamps called Just for You.  I used my Cuttlebug to cut the circles (with Spellbinder Nestabilities) and to emboss the stars on white cardstock.

Happy Stamping and God's Richest Blessings,


Sunday, May 6, 2012

Being a Rebel with Operation Write Home - Blue and Gray

Today (or yesterday now) is National Scrapbooking Day and I am choosing to celebrate it in a very rebellious way...I am making cards for our troops with Operation Write Home "Be A Rebel" Virtual Card Making Party.

Challenge #8 - Use Blue and Grey by Allison G. in TX

Blue and grey...what a great theme to go with our VCMP  Rebel theme!  But grey...really?!?  I had to chuckle because I was pretty sure I didn't even have any grey card stock, and I was right. I was looking around my craft area wondering what in the world I would do for this image, colored by my BFF Lucy, and what do you know?  It has both blue and grey in it!  Eureka!

The patterened paper I picked up over a year ago at either JoAnn's or Hobby Lobby specifically to use with this digi but I was always too afraid to try coloring him.  Lucy to the rescue!  She loves to watercolor and I love to let her!  LOL  This adorable little guy is from Bugaboo Stamps but unfortunately has be retired.  It is difficult to tell but I attached the focal piece with dimensional mounting tape to give it even more dimension.  The silver eyelets in the corners were thrilled to see the light of day and do a good job of  pulling it all together.

Being a Rebel with Operation Write Home - Use a Die Cut

Today (or yesterday now) is National Scrapbooking Day and I am choosing to celebrate it in a very rebellious way...I am making cards for our troops with Operation Write Home "Be A Rebel" Virtual Card Making Party.

Challenge #6 - Use a Die Cut by Beth

The Cuttlebug is one of my most valued stamping tools - I use it in some way on almost every card.  I have slowly been building my die selections but seem to always revert back to circles.

This card is one that I have been meaning to put together for the past week or so...I had printed the sentiment and background paper but  just couldn't settle on a layout until I actually started working with it today.  The sentiment and paterened paper are from the newly released colored version of Reel 'Em In by Doodle Pantry.  It is worth a minute to click on the link and view the entire set since this card only uses two small elements and the set is sooooo great for masculine cards.

Being a Rebel with Operation Write Home - Use Bright Colors

Today (or yesterday now) is National Scrapbooking Day and I am choosing to celebrate it in a very rebellious way...I am making cards for our troops with Operation Write Home "Be A Rebel"  Virtual Card Making Party.

Challenge #4 - Use Bright Colors by Yvonne

I love bright colors - so I guess this is the perfect challenge for me!  When I read the challenge I knew exactly where to look for the brightest/loudest of patterened papers, too! 

And I liked the first card so much I made another...and another...until all of the patterned paper was gone!  (yep, no hoarding of this paper any longer!)

Whew!  I am almost caught up!  Off now to sort through my dies - I even have some new Spellbinder's Nestabilities to break in!

Being a Rebel with Operation Write Home - Five Elements Challenge

Today (or yesterday now) is National Scrapbooking Day and I am choosing to celebrate it in a very rebellious way...I am making cards for our troops with Operation Write Home "Be A Rebel" Card Making Party.

Challenge #5 - Use Five Elements by Our Daily Bread Designs

Our Daily Bread Designs is a wonderful company that has been supporting Operation Write Home over the past several months by hosting specific monthly challenges on their blog and then donating the shipping costs for one package to be shipped overseas based on our participation.  25 entries = 1 box of cards shipped, with a maximum of 2 paid boxes per month.  It is probably a good thing that they put the limit on because we have risen to the challenge and met the limit every month since the challenge began.  Thank you ODBD for your support of Operation Write Home and your inspiration for our card makers.

Their challenge for the VCMP is to make a card using five different elements.

The five different elements I used are:
1) Layers
2) Sponging
3) Masking
4) Sentiment
5) Viva Pearl Pens

This card was so fun and easy to make that I made 6 to include in my OWH box.  Now I am off to find some BRIGHT colors for the next challenge! 


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Being a Rebel with Operation Write Home - Use Something Hoarded

Today is National Scrapbooking Day and I am choosing to celebrate it in a very rebellious way...I am making cards for our troops with Operation Write Home "Be A Rebel" Card Making Party.

Challenge #2 - Use Something Hoarded by Carol

For me the most hoarded stamping supply is patterned paper scraps...after all, they looked great on the first bunch of cards and I am certain that I will use them again someday, right?  Ha!  Not unless I make myself...but throw them away and deny myself the opportunity to bring them to life again later?  Never!

Did I jump on the "wrangle your scraps" bandwagon?  No, not exactly.  But I did select this bunch of scraps to get me started.  I used what I could and then forced myself to toss the 'unusable' pieces.  It was tough, let me tell 'ya!  But, I did it.  I made it through the navy blues today.  Tomorrow I will pick another color, at least that is the plan!

The stripes are all scraps from a Stampin' Up! 6 x 6 pack that was discontinued a few years ago.  The sentiment is a digi that I will have to research it's origins (it was also hoarded since this time last year.)

Two challenges done, and the third is mine so I guess that makes three challenges done.  So on to challenge #4!!!