Monday, April 30, 2007

Saying goodbye

... to the old stamps ... HELLO to the new!! That's right, the SU! retirement list comes out tonight at midnight {mountain time}. Although I will not be staying up to see the list, I will find out first thing in the am and let all my peeps know the news. I can't wait to see what is leaving, and while I will be sad, it's exciting because retirement means new stamp sets are on their way!!
Stay tuned for more info ....

and Happy Stampin'!!!

a Good Thing ...

Shhhh .... I was able to sneak over to Michael's Sunday afternoon, before my son's band concert. That means I was able to see the new Martha line in person ... and WOW, I loved it! Now, I didn't love everything, but I saw some items that were calling my name. I ended up with 2 new punches, 2 spools of ribbon and a set of bird stamps. I also came away with some non-Martha $1 acrylic stamps that are sooo cute. When I get something made with the new loot, I'll post here for you to see. And, if you've made anything cute w/ those $1 stamps, preferably the newest ones, I'd love to see them. I am always looking for a good card to case!!

I have to say that, as prepared as I was to NOT like MS scrapbooking line, I think they've done a good job producing items that are new and fresh. The packaging is clean and simple, but one criticism is that there is not a lot of description on the packaging, which I found frustrating. I wanted measurements, descriptions, etc. Some of the crafting paper I *heard* is tissue and/or vellum weight, but looking at the packaging, I couldn't tell that. There were also some cute necklace kits, but no length for the finished product. More description on the packaging would be a benefit.

I didn't see anything revolutionary in the line, but Michael's is wise to get this line exclusively for a year. And, I think MS will help bring Michael's out of a slump. I had gotten to the point where I rarely went by there anymore, preferring to shop at Hobby Lobby. As Martha would say, It's a good thing.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday Challenge - Are you dowdy?

all images © SU! 1990-2007

Before we get into the challenge, I wanted to share a card I fell in Love with today; created by Cyndee Rush. The subtle colors work perfectly with the slightly distressed images and cardstock. I think I am going to be forced to case this card ... but I don't have the same stamp set, so I'll have to find another one that will work.

This weekend's challenge is due in large part to the discussions this week on the entry of Martha Stewart into the scrapbooking market. There are two specific articles to which I am referring, and if you are interested in reading them click White Trash Hobby and Dowdy Crafts.

I found the media take on scrapbooking to be hilarious. Evidently we crafters are quite an undesirable lot! Scrapbookers are described as dowdy, quaint, mundane, bad cooks and have ugly homes {quote: "including legions of Middle Americans who may never have used her tips on home decor or holiday cooking"} Let me be clear -- this is the media talking, not MS herself. Don't blame her {yet}!

So our challenge this week is two-fold:

  1. Create a scrapbook page to be proud of and

  2. then go submit it online to Martha's Scrapbook Contest.

If you happen to be the winner -- be sure to let me know!! Wouldn't that be cool????

Disclaimer: I have not seen Martha's products, so I can not comment on them {thankfully!}

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Spring card

I love this card -- it is spring to me. The colors are refreshing and the ribbon adds just the right touch. What do you think??

All images © SU! 1990-2007 card by Jolene Gremmel

This particular stamp set is a Hostess set which will not be available after June 30. If there are any Hostess sets you have your eye on, now is the time to do something about it! No Hostess sets will be in the new catalog which debuts July 1 {woot!}.

Also be on the watch for the SU! retirement list which will be announced May 1. I don't know about you, but I am making a list of "must-haves" because last year I missed out on getting some discontinued items {chalk ink refills, etc.} and I've been on the prowl for those items most of this year.

Remember to come back Friday for our weekend challenge. And, if you participated in last week's challenge, it's not too late to email me a picture or link to your blogs.
Happy Stampin'

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Great response to challenge!!

I'm pretty excited here ... I received several responses to the weekend challenge. First, I'll show you my example {made in January}. It is an old shelf that I was planning to throw away, or donate, but before I got rid of it I thought why not play around with it and see if I can alter it. No loss since I was going to dump it anyway.

I covered it in Basic Grey papers and now I really like it. It's still not quite finished, I need to embellish it a bit more, but it's functional enough to hang in my dinning room w/ a few photos of my kiddos on it:

Tami emailed me w/ a few links to her blog. This is how she has made something old new again:

A new use for an old door:

Link to post: Door Shelves

A new use for antique levels {this one is totally cool} :

link to post: Level Shelves

If you made anything you want to share w/ me send me an email w/ a picture or a link. Maybe I'll blog you!!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Weekend Challege

I love challenges, but I don't always have time to participate. So, I'm going to try posting a challenge here on Fridays and take the whole weekend to work on it. If you play along with me, email a picture of your challenge project and I'll post it for the whole world to see! {ok, maybe not the whole world, but at least 60 - 75 people? maybe}

The first weekend challenge is:
Take something old and make it new again.

"New" can mean many different things: repurpose an item; or redecorate it so it fits in w/ your decor; take an old scrapbook tool that you don't use anymore and find a new use for it; dig into your stash and use whatever is at the bottom ... anything works!!

Remember to send me a picture of what you did with the challenge. My email address is to the right ....

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

this makes me smile

These two guys are so talented. They make me smile for many reasons; most of all because they are a lot of fun to have around. Check out their myspace -- they write and record all their own songs which is amazing to me, especially for their age. The Window Shoppers Band.


I've been tagged by Stefanie! Now I have to list my top 5 favorite blogs. That's cool. It's always fun to see what blogs other people read.

This is way harder than I imagined. There are so many interesting blogs. Some offer challenges; some heartfelt humor, and some bloggers list links to so many cool sites on the web. I had a really hard time narrowing down my choices. Here are the top 5 blogs on my list:

  1. Cathy Z's Bits & Pieces
  2. Jan Tink's Stamp, Paper, Scissors
  3. TIE: Donna Downey's Simply Me and Debbie Olson's Thinking Inking
  4. Kurtis' Stampin Kub
  5. Susan ... Seriously

{Did you like the way I cheated and listed 6 blogs instead of 5? LOL. I told you, this was really hard.}

And, just for fun, here are Stefanie's top 5:

1) Susan's got some great eye candy over at Grateful Heart!
2) Michelle is quite the master! Check her out!
3) You must visit the uber-fabulous Kristina
4) Vic is always there for great inspiration at My Stampin Smiles
5) Jen is always there if you need someStampin Therapy. :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


If you're out there, email me. I can't find your blog address.

Coaster Book

This was our stamp club project Friday night. I had trouble getting the colors to look accurate ... the pictures are a tad bit darker than in real life. And the ribbon matches better than it appears, honest!

all images © SU! 1990-2007

The "memo" on the front cover will serve as the title placement for the book. On the last page we stamped the calendar from Office Accoutrement so that a date can be recorded for the subject matter.

We used Doodle This, Doodle That, Office Accoutrement, Petals & Paisley + the wheel that coordinates {forgot the name - oops}, Round Tab punch, Flower punch, ribbon and coasters. The papers are Cool Carribbean, Marigold Morning, Whisper White and Artichoke. The Doodle flower was stippled with Rose Red ink for a soft effect.

Click on these horizontal pictures for a larger view:

I thought this book would make a great gift album, or mini album of a specific event. I think it will look even better once I get photos added to it.

I think I need to add some bling to the book. Maybe some rhinestones or glitter would be nice. A few more embellishments may be in order once I select the photos.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

little pieces in my thoughts ...

all images © SU! 1990-2007
This card uses the stamp set In My Thoughts which just happens to be on sale during April. I especially like the buttons for flower centers. The flowers are from the set Little Pieces.

Stamp club was great Friday night, even though it was small. We had a ton of food {thanks Kim!} and was it ever yummie. Who doesn't like pizza and cheesecake, hmmm?? We made a coaster mini album. Once I get it scanned, I'll post it here.

For those following the saga of our moms, here is the latest update. My mom is doing well in rehab; some confusion at night, but ok most of the time. The nurse said my mom actually slept last night which is wonderful news!

My husband's mom has settled in to her room at the long term hospital. She is still so very sick and it's going to be a long time before she is well. We don't have a time line for her coming home. She occasionally gets disoriented, but not for long thank goodness. At least she is closer, within an hour drive, and my hubby can work and sleep at home in-between visits.

Please continue to pray for both moms. And thank you for remembering us!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Do you love Wal-mart?

If so, you probably don't want to continue reading ...

I'm not feeling the love for our big box retailer today. Maybe it's the stress of having 2 moms in the hospital, maybe not. But this morning before work I needed a quick birthday gift for my son's friend so I ran to the only store open in town before 9 am -- Wal-mart -- to get a gift card.
I quickly ran through the store to pick up allergy meds and look for a little something to go along with the gift card. I found what I needed and went to check out. This is where my story really begins...

There were 5 lines open {ummm, out of 16 or 17 I believe}. Only one line had a real person checking out customers. Now that our store is remodeling and getting all spiffy they are adding self-check out lanes.
Self checkout lanes always work perfectly and never cause delays.
Of course, the remaining 4 open lines were all self-checkout.

No one told me you couldn't purchase a gift card in a self-checkout lane.
I guess they missed that one at the customer training meeting.
So after the nice lady helped me cancel my transaction and took me to her post to re-ring everything I had already rung up and placed ever so neatly in my bag, she reminded me that change is a good thing. And that Wal-mart is changing for the better to help ME the customer.

How wonderful!


I decided it was time to let this nice person -- who probably works for next to nothing -- know that W-m was not providing self-checkout lanes for my sake
... goodness knows it's not about me ...
it's to save the W-m company more money by not paying peanuts to 4 perfectly good employees who probably need the job to help buy groceries for their kids.

No, self-checkouts are for the good of the budget.
That's also why if you go in my W-m around 5 pm you'll find the store strangely dim ... and if you look up over 1/2 of the lights will be off to save energy.
Thank you.
I guess the ambient lighting is for me as well. To enhance my shopping experience.

Ok -- sorry to continue ranting.
Wait ... that's not true ...
On with the story: As I am leaving, the security system beeps and I have to stop and again be assisted by an employee. This time she is even sweeter and possibly 1,000 years old.

She reassured me it's not my fault, that the girl who checked me out just didn't do her job. Oh, but wait ... that would be ME again! I guess they forgot to tell me during the customer training meeting about how to demagnetize items when I am going through the self-checkout lane.

Silly Wal-mart.

Friday, April 13, 2007


Yes, Thank Goodness it is FRIDAY! I truly mean that one. I was hoping to sleep late this morning and catch up on my beauty rest {LOL}; but I couldn't do it. I was wide awake at 7 am.
That's ok. I guess that means my body has had enough rest, right?

My mother-in-law is being transferred today to a long-term, acute care facility. The best news is that this facility is only an hour away. My hubby can now spend his nights sleeping at home, yay! Plus we can all take turns staying and helping her. At this point, we don't know how long she will need to stay at this facility, possibly a couple of months.

My mom is doing well at rehab. She has settled in and is receiving therapy 2 times a day. She is having some problems with confusion, especially at night. When she gets really confused she doesn't' sleep a wink. I don't understand how she can stay up all night and the whole next day too. But all in all, she is ok {but she doesn't like the food!!}

Thank you all for praying. I appreciate it more than you can imagine. And thank you for the comments and emails. It's uplifting to receive a message and know that somewhere, someone is praying for us.

I'll update as I have time. Tonight I must prepare for my stamp clubbies. If you are in the area, feel free to come on over and stamp with us.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


I wanted to stop in quickly to give you all updates on our family situations. My mom fell and broke her hip last week, just as we were looking into a hospital transfer for my mother-in-law. Great timing ... when it rains it pours, right?

My mom had hip replacement surgery and today moved to a rehab facility near home. She seems to be content for now. Great news.

My mother-in-law was transferred to a medical university hospital and her diagnosis was confirmed. Relief. She has a very long recovery to look forward to; and most likely will not be able to eat or drink anything for 3 months. Unbelievable. The medical team put in a PIC line today, she already has an IV line for nutrition in her chest. We don't have a time line for discharge. We also don't know if she will come home after discharge, be transferred back to a local hospital, or possibly even a rehab facility.

There is a lot up in the air today. Lots of questions to be asked, and decisions to be made. My husband is holding up well, but he is tired. I can hear it in his voice. He is emotionally drained. And, he is missing the kids.

Both moms are going to need a lot of care and prayers. And their children {me, my husband, and his sister} are going to need those prayers too. Strength, peace, sound mind.

Thanks for checking in. I'll update again as I have time ... and one day soon, we'll get creative again!!


Sunday, April 01, 2007

Do you like a good sale??

Well, let me tell you I DO! Stampin' Up! has a promotion during April that is HOT. After I tell you about these incredible specials I'll post a few cards ... so be sure to read all the way to the end of this post.

Here it is straight from the SU site:

Say It With Stamps
Nothing says "buy me now" like stamps at a discount! Until April 30, you can purchase the following versatile greeting and alphabet sets at 20 percent off with no minimum purchase required.

Warm Words p. 177: $13.95

Tiny Talk * {retiring June 30} p. 190: $15.96

In My Thoughts p. 183: $23.16

All-Year Cheer II * {retiring June 30} p. 178: $23.96

Short Order Alphabet p. 194: $31.16

Everyday Flexible Phrases p. 191: $31.96

Oh, but wait! There is a second promotion going on for those of you who have decided it's time to join SU! as a demonstrator. Again, straight from the site:

Fun, Friends, and Free Stamps!
Offer ends May 31, 2007
Get all three when you become a Stampin' Up! demonstrator! Being a demonstrator isn't just an incredible chance to combine a fun-filled pastime with a flexible home-based business, it's also your chance to make a difference in the lives of others by sharing what you love. And now is the perfect time to join us. Right now, when you sign up as a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, you'll receive two free hostess sets from our upcoming Fall-Winter Collection 2007 before anyone else! These sets are exclusive and won't be available to hostesses until July. The sets you'll receive are:
In the Spotlight (level 2 hostess set)
All about Occasions Bundle (level 3 hostess set)
All about Occasions stamp set
All about Gratitude jumbo wheel*
All about Birthdays jumbo wheel*

*Jumbo Stampin' Around handle (item #103661) not included.

Polka Dots & Paisley by Melany Watson for SU! © 1990-2007

Office Accoutrement by Linda Payne for SU! © 1990-2007