"When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul or brings joy,
care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life."
Jean Shinoda Bolen

December 24, 2009


Christmas is upon us and although we're celebrating the holiday away from our families, we were fortunate to see a good number of them at a pre-Christmas party at Gary's brother's house. I met Gary's other brother & his wife & kids for the first time and we had a delightful time. We saw the newest member of the clan again (haven't seen him since August!), and he's growing fast and just a little sweetheart! I was quickly warned to remove my glasses and earrings and sure enough, this little guy was quick to discover both! Gary's mom was trying to count all the great-grandkids and we all decided that as far as grandkids, Gary has all his siblings beat for the largest number of grandkids (10 & 2 more on the way)! This is actually a tough time of year for me, missing my dad who died December 23rd 13 years ago. This was his favorite time of year because he usually got to spend time with two of his three kids. I made it through yesterday with the help of a new "penpal" on line (Merry Christmas Nancy!) and my dear, sweet husband, who kept a close eye on me. My late husband was diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor Christmas night 2005, which just adds to my sadness this week. I'm very thankful for such a wonderful new husband by my side. The only company we have this Christmas season is Dixie, our neighbor's dog from across the street. She's twice the size of our schnauzers and although she doesn't actually harm the kitties, she is totally fascinated by them. The only time she's exposed to cats is when she's staying with us. It's a challenge keeping them all safe. Dixie usually settles in after the first day. If she doesn't, it's going to be a very long 10 days! Poor little Abby doesn't know what to think of this big, strong dog, who keeps picking on her favorite Varmint kitty. Not to worry, Varmint does know how to use those claws! Abby is very much a dominant female and doesn't take kindly to anybody playing with HER kitties or toys. There's been some snapping, but I think they'll settle in. Dixie is such a sweetheart and Dixie has a brother who is a schnauzer, in fact I got Prince from"grandma." Unfortunately, grandma has MS & it would be disastrous if rambunctious Dixie knocks her down, so Dixie's here with us. (Besides, when you have 3 cats and 2 dogs, 1 more dog doesn't make a lot of difference!) Blessings to all this holiday season. Stay safe, warm, and remember dear ones both close and far away. It only takes a minute to pick up the phone and wish your most distant relative or friend a Merry Christmas!

December 19, 2009

Christmas Puzzle Card

This was a huge challenge for me! I was okay with all the cutting on the Cricut and all the gluing, until I figured out I was going to have to cut around all the puzzle pieces to separate them! I sure hope my husband likes his Christmas card! The explosion box is just the outside shell in place of an envelope.


December 7, 2009

Aim 4 the Zone Birthday Card

Here is a combo card using stamps and my Cricut for one of my great nephews, who is really getting into "guy" stuff, like his bow and target practice. I used the shadow feature for all the letters to make them pop a bit more, then mounted them on puff tape.


Flaky Friends Christmas Card

Here is our second Christmas Card for 2009. It's an old SU set, and I decided to try some non-traditional colors (Always Artichoke & Bravo Burgundy) and really liked the results. I was really sick of cutting out snowmen from the other card and decided to make an easier card for Christmas!


All Decked Out for Christmas

This is one of our 2009 Christmas cards. Although I had it done in May, I'm just now adding it to my blog. I actually have a snowman display in my house every year and just fell in love with the stamp set from Close to My Heart, since it has a variety of hats, scarves, faces, & sizes in the set.


December 2, 2009

Choo Choo Birthday

Thanks to Denise January (SCS) for the original idea for this card. I tried to make HER card, but I used a different train stamp set and the engine faced the wrong way, so I changed the card a bit! This if for a 3-year-old little guy who loves Thomas the Tank Engine. I hope he enjoys it!


Still Knitting!

I'm still knitting! The above card is the first card I've made for a while, and I'm forced to put down my knitting (socks), and concentrate on some fun card making for our family's December birthdays. Last night we had our last stamping class, super fun it was, too! Tonight is my monthly 10-club for Stampin' Up, so I'll get some more ideas for cards & get to order my last set of marvelous Watercolor Wonder Crayons!). I hope everybody had a wonderful Thanksgiving and that each of you is looking forward to the colder weather in December (I know we're starting to keep the fireplace running around the clock). My computer mouse has finally given up the ghost! The left button refuses to work, so it's off to the electronics store for a new one very soon. I use a laptop, so I've still go a "mouse," but it's not my favorite means of mousing around my computer!

November 19, 2009

Penguin Card

Thanks to Lisa Takeuchi & Krista Fox (original concept) for the idea for this card! I followed Lisa's pattern and chose my own colors. Isn't he just a cutie? Super easy to make, too. The original card used the Top Note Die from SU for the body and the Curly Label Punch (SU) for the feet, but since I own neither, I used my Cricut & the Accent Essentials cartridge.


Knitting & Reading

I've been lazy about posting, but actually I've been busy knitting! I've always wanted to learn how to knit socks, but been afraid I couldn't turn that darn heel on the pattern. I finally tackled a pattern using worsted weight yarn & double pointed needles (a real challenge for me!) and the pattern went off without a hitch and was so much easier than I ever thought! I've made 4 pair how, but I'm only making "footie" socks (not full length socks) for keeping my feet warm this winter on our hardwood floors. I am usually an avid reader and the latest books I've read and thoroughly enjoyed are: Dan Brown's "Lost Symbol" (author of "The da Vinci Code"), and Nancy Grace's "The Eleventh Victim," which has a surprise ending. I'm not much of a Nancy Grace fan, but I've got to admit, I love it when she goes for the throat when somebody starts making excuses for the actions of criminals! A big shout out to the cool ladies who always are a joy to visit at the Glacier County Library. They always keep the "new" book shelves full of great books! I'm heavily into reading mystery fiction and really enjoy the female protagonist books, but I'll read anything that is good enough that I'm willing to stay up all night to read! Anyway, because I'm enthralled by how easy the socks are to knit, I haven't been reading or doing much paper crafting lately! My next attempt is to make a pair of wool socks to wear with shoes out of that horribly thin sock yarn and size 1 & 3 double pointed needles! Wish me luck! (I'm so glad I got my Thanksgiving & Christmas cards done months ago!)

Falling Leaves - Thanksgiving 2009

A really fun card to make - stamped the leaves then sponged the edges to give the leaves an "aged" look.
Original Design from "Originals" Book (CTMH)


Happy Blessings - Thanksgiving 2009

Although this looks like the "Top Note" Die from Stampin' Up!, it is actually cut on my Circut with the Accent Essentials cartridge. I discovered this by accident (that you can cut a solid image instead of a frame of this shape) when I pressed the shift key on my Cricut.


November 4, 2009

Celebrate Card

Another simple Birthday Card (it just looks fancy!) Some simple punching and embossing and it changes the whole card! The original idea for this card is from Pam M, my SU Demo! Pam's card had a robot in the middle, but I didn't have that set, so I made this a birthday card for my great-nephew.


Shirt Card #2

Here's another version of a simple shirt card (original idea by Charmaine Ikach - SU Demo at SCS).


October 25, 2009

October 22, 2009

Fabulous Flowers Birthday Card

I challenged myself to make a card with one or two shades of pink and white and this is the card I designed. I used Pretty in Pink only to sponge the edge of the white, otherwise, just two colors: Pixie Pink & Pink Passion from SU.

Scary Skeleton Halloween Card

I took my inspiration for this card from the SU 2009-2010 catalog, page 24, and revamped it for a bigger card. I adore the skeleton in the Scary Skeleton stamp set from SU. I knew I wanted to put a bat on the top of the card, but he wasn't showing up against the dark card stock, so I punched out a circle, cut it to look like a moon, used Crystal Effects (SU) on the bat, and I think it was just the right touch.

Roses Wedding Card

I was playing yesterday, trying to come up with a wedding card for our nephew and his new wife. I wanted something to match the colors in the present we purchased, and since I adore the roses in the "Golden Years" stamp set from CTMH, I decided to design a card to use the roses. Also, I'm not sure if you can see the design, but there is also a rose on the pale lavender "Lost Love" paper on the left side of the card. This is a 6"x6" card.

Navy/Silver Cherish Card

I designed this card for our a bridal shower because the wedding colors are navy & silver. I'm still trying to decide if I like the silver sponging on the card or not! I just know it was too plain without the sponging.

October 19, 2009

ViewMaster Card

Here is my first attempt at a "ViewMaster" card. By using the "center point" setting on my Cricut Expression, I was able to place the cut-out on the card front where I wanted it, plus any size I wanted it. If you don't have a Cricut, any circle cutting system will work.
Original Viewmaster Card design by Kyla Maestas (Splitcoaststampers.com). ViewMaster is a U.S. Trademark of Mattel, Inc.

Joy Forever Card

I admit, this card is right out of the CTMH catalog! I loved it so much, I changed it a bit and I think I like it just as much as the one they made for their catty!

More of my Favorite Things......

I recently purchased a a Scor-pal and I've packed away my old scoring papercutter with the scoring tool. The Scor-pal is much more accurate! I know I've told you this before, but - my Cricut Expression! Now that I've had it about 6 months, I really love it! I still have a few cartridges I want, but that will be a bit later on. I've learned a lot in the last 6 months and thanks to people like "The Pink Stamper," I'm learning to use all the features. I haven't mentioned my "army green" or is it "government green" map storage units. One has 2 deep drawers and the other is 4 shallow drawers and they stack. They hold lots of stuff: punches, pre-stamped images from others, ALL my bling for cards and scrapbooking, templates, and tools. I like to have everything within reach (or it really doesn't get used!), so this makes everything handy. Last item for now: my new Watercolor Wonder Crayons from SU! Love them! I just got them last week and used them for the first time on the explosion box for my friends. I have 2 sets - Soft Subtles and Bold Brights - but you can bet I'm getting the other two sets plus the neutrals!

Sponge Storage

I needed a way to store my sponges, so I found this "tackle" box in my sewing room. I labeled the compartments with all 48 ink colors from SU, then I cut up sponges I found at the dollar store (auto car-washing sponges) and each sponge can now be used for just one color!

Re-inker Storage

I recently moved all my re-inkers from the ugly boxes to a nice plastic storage container from Plano. It's originally from Walmart, I paid maybe $6 for it 10 years ago and decided to use it in my craft room - it works perfect and there's room for expansion!

Explosion Box for Crystal & Lloyd's 30th Avnniversary

It's finally finished! My dear friends are celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary on October 27th, so I decided to make them a keepsake explosion box for the occasion. It's hard to believe they've been married 30 years, since they're both a year younger than me! Happy Anniversary Crystal & Lloyd! (See photos below)

Explosion Box Photos

October 17, 2009

Western One of a Kind Card

This is a special birthday card for my "brother" Lloyd, who is very dear to me.

Thank you!

I just wanted to thanks to my followers! I'm so excited that anybody thinks enough of my blog to follow it! Also, a big hello to Stephanie, owner of Funkie Munkie Scraps in Greer, South Carolina! I got to talk to her today and she's one amazing lady (according to my sister, Jeanne, who has recently gone to work at Funkie Munkie)! I told my sister that her working in a scrapbook store was like a man working in a hardware store - dangerous! Check out the Funkie Munkie blog by clicking on the link to the right. Again, thanks to my followers - you make my day!

September 21, 2009

Wild West Card

This is just a simple western theme card for a man. "Man" cards are so hard to make sometimes, and I enjoy working with the Lovely Buckles stamp set from CTMH. Since I live in a western state, I've used this stamp set many times.

September 18, 2009

Boy's Birthday Card

Here's a fun card using one of my favorite stamp sets from SU - All Mixed Up. It's easier to stamp using the stamp-a-ma-jig to line up the three parts of the astronaut. The plain red picture is the inside of the card.

September 5, 2009

Celebrate Today

This is just a simple birthday card using the CTMH August Stamp of the Month Set. I don't seem to be able to pass up trying to create a card with every new stamp set in my collection!

August 13, 2009

Montana Hiline - Relay for Life

I forgot to post this earlier! The Highline Relay for Life crew did a super bang up job raising money for the American Cancer Society on August 1st - nearly $30,000! (Not bad for a couple of small towns in Montana!) At first, Gary and I just went to show our support for all the participants. First, I sent him home for our sneakers so we could walk. Then, water, then snacks, then warm clothes! For the first three laps, I cried my eyes out, but we walked 10 miles each in memory of my late husband, Larry, who died June 3, 2005, of brain cancer after a 6-month battle. It meant more than I can express in words that Gary walked with me. We walked around the football field on the high school track, and around 11:30 p.m., the luminaries around the track were lit in memory of all those who lost their battle with cancer. On the actual stands, the luminaries were arranged to spell out "HOPE" and started my tears again. At midnight, I left to let the dogs have a break outside at home, and when I got back, Gary did a "Lap for Larry" and RAN around the track (1/4 mile). Some of the participants walked 30 miles! I saw lots of friends and renewed many friendships that night. Many in Cut Bank knew Larry and cheered us on throughout the entire walk. Also, all night we had music to walk to, furnished by a local DJ and some other musical folks. It was a wonderful time and we've decided to walk in the Relay for Life every year, and next year, we'll have a whole team walking!

August 12, 2009

Bear in the Woods Trifold Card

This is one of my favorite stamps sets from the Close to My Heart Summer Catalog - bears and more bears! (Beary Best stamp set). This card is just 3"x3" and is really fun to make! The front of the card has a cut-out so the trees show from the second layer.

6 Love Notes to Gary

Below are 6 Love Notes, all 3"x3" and ALL layout designs are from the Originals Book from Close to My Heart

Love Note #2

#2 in the series of 6 Love Notes

Love Note #1

First in the series of 6 Love Notes

Love Note #3

#3 in the series of 6 Love Notes

Love Note #4

#4 in the series of 6 Love Notes

Love Note #5

#5 in the series of 6 Love Notes

Love Note #6

The last in the series of 6 Love Notes

Celebrate Today - Gary's Happy 4th of July Card

Very simple to make - super fast, too! Here is the card I made Gary for the 4th of July.
Original layout design by Close to My Heart (Originals Book)


As many of my friends know, I can't get through my day without at least 2 double shot iced vanilla lattes. But, it's 110 miles to buy the bottles of flavoring, so I decided to work on a recipe for latte flavoring. Here's what I came up with: 4 cups filtered or bottled water 3 cups granulated sugar 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract (not imitation!) In large sauce pan, heat water and sugar until sugar dissolves and is very hot (NOT boiling). Stir in vanilla, allow to heat an additional 5-7 minutes, but do not boil. Remove from heat, allow to cool. This recipe makes enough to fill 2 quart canning jars.

Sassy Suzie Card

Here is a card using an older stamp set, Sassie Suzie, offered by SU in one of their mini catalogs. I made this card for Crystal & Lloyd, as their friendship is very dear to me - thanks to both of you!

One of a Kind #2

Here's another, larger version of the "One of a Kind" card. Same color scheme and supplies as for the original "One of a Kind" card.

Way too long!

It's been almost 7 weeks since I've had any internet at home and I'm back on line! So, I'll download all I've been working on while away from the internet! I hope you enjoy it all!

June 25, 2009

Shirt Card 2009

This is Lloyd's 2009 Father's Day card. I hope he liked it!
Thanks to Charmaine Ikach (SU Demo - SCS) for the original shirt idea.

Vintage Father's Day Card

Here is a Vintage Father's Day card for 2009. I really like the "film strip" look the SU spiral punch adds to the card. I learned this technique in my SU demo's 10-Club.

Trifold Birthday Card

This is a super easy card that changes looks depending on the DP you use.
Inspiration: Keri Beneck from SCS

June 13, 2009

One of a Kind

This card is made especially for Cherinda, my dear "niece" - just because I thought she could use a little pick-me-up. It's two tone - just black and cream, together with my favorite paper from CTMH. Cherinda is all the card expresses and I love her dearly.

June 8, 2009

Taco Recipe Card

Last Christmas I received not one, but two recipe scrapbooks, so I've decided to begin this huge project of scrapping all my favorite recipes. This recipe is from my Mom, and I love it because there is no "taco seasoning" packaged mix required. Spices and salsa are used instead and it's a great recipe - thanks Mom! I've used Crystal Effects from SU on all the pop up peppers.
This was the second entry for my new scrapbook - the first recipe card is pretty plain and didn't turn out as well. I have a very long way to go before I'm finished! This "card" fits into an 8-1/2" x 11" scrapbook. (Don't worry, I won't be posting every single recipe!)