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Thursday, May 30, 2013

From the Heart - May Stamp of the Month

This card is for the monthly challenge at Delightful Inspiration {from the heart}. Faith Skrdla will gift you a digital image for each month you participate in the challenge. Isn't that way generous of her?!? The challenge started in September and at the time, the first image was free. Imagine my disappointment when I discovered this in January. In order to receive the freebie, you must make a purchase and request the freebie of the month, and as long as you continue participating in the challenge, you'll receive a free digi each month. For the month of May, the freebie image is For You Mouse.

Here is the card:
All pearl beads, tag, printed paper and card stock is from my stash. The flowers are home made and you can read how I made them here. The white silk ribbon is from Raisin Boat as is the sentiment and it's from the Formal Phrases clear stamp set. I punched "grass" with a Fiskars border punch. The image is colored with Copic markers.


Thanks for stopping by! :)

Birdie Brown - May Challenge

This is May's freebie image for the Birdie Brown monthly challenge. It's called DIY Dad.

I actually thought of skipping this month's challenge. My birth father abandoned our family shortly after I was born. My mother's second husband raised me and he is who I grew up knowing as Dad. He fed and cared for me. Most importantly... he taught me the morals I chose to live by. He never treated me like a step-daughter but instead I grew up feeling loved. He passed away December 21, 1983. So I really don't feel I have a reason to make a Father's Day card. 

I do have four brother's. All are over 12 years older than me. All my siblings were married and out of the home by the time I started developing a personality. So I grew up as an only child among my nine siblings. lol If you can understand that. I've not been really close to any of them but I love each and every one of my siblings. 

My oldest brother, Gilbert, is over 70. Now that he's reached that age, he does seek me out. I think it is because his girlfriend likes me and she wants to see me. Even then, I rarely see him.

My brother, Fred, who, for the most part, helped my mother raise me as an infant when our birth father abandoned us but I don't remember this. All I know about that time is what my mother has told me. This same brother stayed with me for awhile when he was going through a divorce and was one of two uncles my children got to know. I think Fred is in his late 60s or just turned 70.

My brother, Manuel, is a Vietnam vet. He was exposed to a grenade explosion and was severely burned so he was honorably discharged. He's always reminded me of a very tan Alan Jackson. He's also my tallest brother and in his late 60s.

Height doesn't run much in our family. I think Manuel is probably 5'10", Gilbert about 5'8", Jimmy about 5'6". Fred currently sits at about 4'+. He lost both of his legs to diabetes and is confined to a wheelchair. When he did stand, he stood at about 5'4".

Jimmy is the "baby" brother by default. Our youngest brother, Jesse, died when he was 16. I didn't get to know him. I was about 6 years old and have no memories of him at all. What I know about him is from pictures and family member memories. So Jimmy became the "baby". :) He is the other uncle my children grew up knowing. 

He is a painter by trade. Manuel is and Gilbert was an independent roofing contractor. During one of Jimmy's down times, he helped either brother with their crews. On one occasion, he fell off a roof. All my brothers have fallen off roofs. They've all jumped up, dusted themselves off and got right back up on the roof and then would entertain us at family gatherings with their latest escapade. lol This one time though, Jimmy broke his hip. He was unable to work for months while he healed. 

He stayed with my mother a bit. My mother is not known for her patience and when it wore out, I asked Jimmy to stay with me. He did for about six months. When he did move out, it was because he was able to work once again and he wanted his own place. For a time, I was employed with a company that sent me out of town for training once a month for a week. Jimmy stayed with my children whenever I went out of town. Jimmy and his first wife, gifted me my first bicycle the Christmas I was eight. For this reason, I'm the only one in my family who knows how to ride a bicycle. I love riding a bicycle!

Because he was a painter, I could always count on him to paint whatever home I was in. He never asked me to pay him. I was a single parent. He also painted our siblings homes... but they paid him. He was also my handy man on occasion. I'm very independent. Whatever fell apart in my home, I'd always attempt to fix on my own before I called him. Sometimes... I even amazed myself with my handy work! ;) Sometimes though... he'd have a funny story to tell at our family gatherings... much to my embarrassment of course! Jimmy lives in an efficiency apartment Lilly, our oldest sister, has behind her home. I once offered Jimmy our extra bedroom rent free but he declined for whatever reason. Jimmy is 63 years old.

I found out his age yesterday because I attended an appointment with him. He had this appointment with an oncologist. Jimmy had originally gone to see a doctor... I think it was back in April. He developed a cough after a bad cold and it kept getting worse. He finally went to see the doctor for what we all thought might be bronchitis. Instead, within weeks, he had a biopsy in a lung and was sent to see a specialist. When he went back to see the specialist for the results, Lilly went with him. They were informed Jimmy had kidney cancer. The option from what Jimmy and Lilly informed the rest of us, was surgery to remove the kidney. Jimmy; however, refused surgery. He wanted to be treated with medication. For whatever reason... this is all the information they pretty much left with and reported to the rest of the siblings. We all wondered why there was a biopsy in the lung and he was diagnosed with kidney cancer. No one knew why. 

Well, I like to research things. When I don't understand something, I run to my computer to explain it to me. I will read a minimum of five articles to make sure I'm getting accurate information. What I found out was disturbing to me. I did not understand why Jimmy was taking oral chemotherapy and why Lilly was so calm about it. 

When I arrived at Lilly's house to pick up Jimmy, I went early because I felt I HAD to share what I knew with Lilly and she could help me decide if Jimmy should be informed beforehand. I explained to her there are four stages of kidney cancer. Stage I is isolated to the kidney. Stage IV has metastasized and spread to other organs. Chemotherapy is NOT an option at Stage IV because it will do almost nothing for the cancer. Surmise to say, kidney cancer only has a good remission chance at Stage I. However, I know MDs will always treat the patient as the patient wants to be treated. Jimmy wanted to be treated with medication. I wanted more detailed information about what was said at the appointment she attended with Jimmy. It was filled with optimism and plans for treatment; however, they did want Jimmy to bring a family member to the following appointment that could help him understand the prognosis and make decisions. After much debate, it was decided I should go with him. I am in remission from CML. I am college educated and I would understand the medical jargon and, according to my siblings, I would know what questions to ask because of what I'd been through and I'm the smartest of the bunch. Doesn't that make you sad? lol 

So the oncologist confirmed what I'd already read. Jimmy is in Stage IV kidney cancer. Surgery is NOT an option. The chemotherapy is an attempt to keep the cancer from spreading further than it has. If this particular drug does not help, there are other "new" drugs that can be tried. The kidney has metastasized to the lung and it is in the lymph nodes and when I heard that... I knew it was bad. Finally, patients with this diagnosis have a life expectancy of two years. Some go sooner, some last a little bit longer. All the information that was shared yesterday had only one final message. Jimmy is going to die. The only intervention we have now, is a miracle from God. We are, of course, praying for that.

It was kinda of a slap in my face for different reasons. First, I'm gonna lose my brother. Then... I've been feeling really sorry for myself of late because the Sprycel I take to keep me in remission from leukemia has put me in early stages of heart disease. My life expectancy with CML is 10 to 30 years. I felt sorry for myself because I've lived with this diagnosis for about a year and a half. If it isn't one thing... it's another. I'm sick to death of being sick! My original thinking was geez... I have 10 to 30 years of THIS? I even thought about stopping my medications. The only reason I did not is because of my son. He's still very dependent on me. He has trouble understanding money. He cannot make rushed decisions. I feel he's not ready to be without his mom. He's the ONLY reason I continued taking my medication. After yesterday's news... regardless of all I go through... I will continue to live! Not once have I been told heart disease is an immediate death sentence. I could live with the heart disease 10-20 years with proper treatment. WHAT do I have to complain about? All I've been doing is having a pity party and from what I can tell... ENJOYING it! :( I have NOTHING to complain about. 

So... as I was looking at this DIY Dad image... thinking of Jimmy... it reminded me of all those times he's been a good brother to me. So I made this card... to thank him for all the times he's helped me when he didn't really have to. I love my brother... it grieves me what he's been through and will go through. He told me once he'd like to see NYC. I wish more than anything, I could gift him this. Instead, I'm gifting him a card... lol... with lots of love and appreciation for helping me when he did with no expectation of payment of any sort.

Here's the card:
All the supplies are from my personal stash. The images in front of the card are from Tiddly Inks Carpenter Jane. All images are colored with Copic markers. The cording on the hinge will remind him of an inside joke between us. lol Suffice to say... he did have a VERY funny story he could have shared at a family gathering but he promised he'd keep it between us and as far as I know... he's not ever shared THAT particular story... and it's a whopper of a funny story! :) lol

Sorry I took so long to show an itty, bitty card... but I had a lot to say. :)
Thanks for stopping by! :)

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

I'm Special!

Did you miss me? :) Did anyone even notice it's been over a week since my last post. I've had health issues and did not feel like writing and sharing all of these at the time. Shocking! I know! I have laid in bed quite a bit of late. Watching a LOT of television. Fatigued, short of breath, feeling yucky and a little sorry for myself.  Not necessarily because of my plight... but because I've been carrying extra burdens and I'll tell you about it but first...

Despite all life has handed me, I am resilient... I've always seen the glass half full... trusting the Lord's infinite wisdom for my life... proof:

Me: Oncologist tells me I'm an anomaly. You know what that means?
Hershey: Odd? Peculiar? Unusual?
Me: No! I'm special!

:)

It IS this way of thinking that has gotten me through many trials and tribulations throughout my lifespan. I've had LOTS and LOTS of bad things happen to me... and not just the ones I've shared over the past five and a half years on this blog. I've always been determined to not sit and feel sorry for myself but instead make a plan and institute it. Immediately. Sometimes I fail though... I'm only human.

A few weeks ago, I posted on my profile page on Facebook, a prayer request for my brother, Jimmy. He was having a biopsy performed on his lung because MDs thought they found cancer in his lungs.

Well... I like to do research. I've not pestered Dr. Cruz, and now Dr. Chilli, about my worries but needless to say, I've had questions each time I went to see either one. :) I want to be educated about what I am going through.

So... I researched Jimmy's official diagnosis which is KIDNEY cancer and not lung cancer and it IS SERIOUS. I've had weeks of knowing things Jimmy and our sisters do not suspect. Today, I am attending the MD appointment with Jimmy to ask questions he did not ask. My oldest sister, Lilly, went to the last appointment and when they left it was with even more questions. :-\ I don't understand that. From what Jimmy and Lilly DO know is that he does also have cancer in his lung. My brother opted for treatment with chemotherapy. 

In my research, kidney cancer that has metastasized to other organs is Stage IV cancer and chemotherapy does NOT do anything much to help. The reason Jimmy opted for chemo is because one, he's a stubborn male, and two, he refused surgery. Plus... his original response was to refuse acceptance of the diagnosis and discuss any options for treatment. His oncologist wanted to remove the tumors from the git go. I'm not sure what brought my brother around to opt for treatment but after taking the chemo and becoming quite ill, he's prepared to go in discussing surgery. Yay! :)

Knowing what I know, my list of questions is quite short. In discussing these with my sisters, their list of questions are rather long because they are asking questions I found answers to in my research. The only reason I did not share my knowledge with them is because of fear that they would insist on telling Jimmy and, again I feared, he might change his mind about further treatment. I do not trust my sisters to keep things to themselves. Based on his past decisions, I don't trust Jimmy to make wise decisions. I have felt a great deal of guilt about this. I would want to know these things if someone else knew what I did not know.

When I pick up Jimmy to take him to his appointment, I'm arriving early. I thinking of asking him if he wants to know what I know. I'm more scared of this than I've ever been in facing any kind of treatment I've had to go through. I'm hoping he will not give up and decide not to follow through. This is my biggest fear. Should I continue to keep what I know to myself? I don't know what the right thing is here. Do I tell Jimmy? Do I wait and allow the MD to inform him?

The appointment is at 1 PM. Please say a little prayer as you go about your day that, one, when the time comes I know to do the right thing and, two, surgery is still an option. 

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Monday, May 20, 2013

Fashionista

I've posted a card to Scrapbook Stamp Society featuring a Sherri Baldy BestiesTM digital image called Fashionista Fannie. You can read all the details here

This is my card:
Thanks for stopping by!

Santa Muerte by Mitzi Sato-Wiuff

I altered this frame for Scrapbook Stamp Society's Challenge Blog. This week's theme is flowers. This image is Santa Muerte by Mitzi Sato-Wiuff. I colored the image with Copic markers.
 Here is a better look at the beautiful image:

I used silver cording to wrap around the picture frame and added rhinestones to mimic the bead necklaces in the image. The three flowers on the frame are made from tissue paper. I added feathers from my personal stash and the butterflies are from EK Success Layering Butterfly punch. 

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you'll join us at Scrapbook Stamp Society Challenge blog. As I wrote earlier, the challenge this week is flowers. You can use an image of flowers or add flowers to your project. 

Please leave a comment so I'll know you were here! :)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Really?

Hello Blogger world! I'm sitting here contemplating my next move. I'm writing this here because it is safe for me to share across the miles to no one in particular. I have to tell someone about my thoughts. I just found a lump under my left arm. It's not in the armpit. It's over the rib cage. It's not painful but it's very firm. I actually felt it back in March and I brought it to my oncologist's attention and he said he thought it was probably a pulled muscle. :-\ I don't think a pulled muscle should get bigger. That's just my thought about that. I also kinda think I should be a little more freaked out than I am right about now but then again... nothing really bad ever happens to me. I've always believed that. The thought has gotten me through life somehow... not entirely in one piece... but it got me through whatever I was facing at the moment.

Till later... I hope! :)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Blog Candy!



Using images from HERE and HERE.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Also Blog Candy available!
One lucky follower will win six fabulous digi images of their choice.
You can choose from here or here.

All you have to do is:
1. Become a follower ~ click the 'Join This Site' button at the top.
2. Add the blog candy badge to your blog and link back to our challenge group:
3. Spread the word.
4. Leave a comment with your blog address and some love.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Don't forget our first challenge starts on Monday, May 27th,
'Anything Goes'!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Kenny K FB Contest

I want to add this to Kenny K's FB Page and cannot figure out how to do it! lol I'm gonna give this a quick write up and then I guess PM my card to the group. 

Here is the card:
This image is a Kenny K Download. It is the free image for May and called Anime DJ. You can find it on the left hand column. I colored the image with Copic markers. The card is a portrait 5X7 card. I used a The Paper Studio from Hobby Lobby embossing folder. All card stock and ribbon is from my stash. I dotted the image with some Robin's Nest Black Dew Drops. The sentiment comes from Raisin Boat's Rock Star clear stamp set.

Now to go back to FB and try to figure out how to get this uploaded to the group! lol Thanks for stopping by and if you're playing along with my EMA-gination Celebration please don't forget to leave a comment! :)

This Card Makes Me Happy!

Sharing a little card that makes me happy... and gives me the urge for sherbet... whenever I see it! :)
I've used two embossing folders, Floral Fantasy from Cuttlebug in pink and from The Paper Studio at Hobby Lobby in green. I colored the image in Copic markers and added some Stickles in Firefly and Tropical Tangerine for some shimmer. I accented the image with three Robin's Nest Clear Daisy dew drops. The image is Tulip Umbrella by StampArt Design by Kathryne from Whimsy Stamps.

Hope this card puts a smile on your face too! Now I'm off for some sherbet! lol ;) Thanks for stopping by! :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

La Mer by Mitzi Sato-Wiuff

In an earlier post, I shared my exciting news about designing cards for Mitzi Sato-Wiuff. I absolutely love her interesting images! You can find her images at Scrapbook Stamp Society. This digital image is called La Mer.

Here is the card:
This is a 6X6 landscape single fold card. I colored the image with Copic markers. I purchase my Copic markers at Oozak. The background printed card stock is from The Storyteller's Club. The white satin ribbon is from Raisin Boat. The white pearl beads are from Michael's $1 bins. Seashells are from The Dollar Tree. I used a Heidi Swapp distresser around the mat and image and folded down a corner to add interest to the image. I added Stickles in Star Dust to add shimmer to the image and a silver gel pen for some definition.

Be sure to join our weekly challenge at Scrapbook Stamp Society! This week it's Anything Goes and you can use any kind of stamp from any company; however, there is a freebie from Mitzi Sato-Wiuff available for your use on the challenge blog. 

There will be one random draw for a $30 gift card from Scrapbook Stamp Society and the DT will pick their Top 3. 

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you'll leave a comment, especially if you're interested in playing along with my EMA-gination Celebration. :)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day. :)

I visited with my mom and sisters after Sunday service. My son took me out for some fried chicken. Yummmm... ;) lol Came home and spent a quiet afternoon coloring with my Copic markers. My baby daughter dropped by for a visit. Nice quiet Mother's Day for myself. Just like I like it. :)

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

New News!

Haha... I didn't know how to announce this... it's not necessarily "good" news... "good" news is a cure for cancer has been found! Technically, it's not "new" news either... I've already shared this info on FB but it's new news to blog world. So here I am! :)

I've been placed into TWO new design teams! 

One is a sub-division of Scrapbook Stamp Society (SSS). No team logo. No different website... well... not really. It's specifically for the SSS Challenge Blog and featuring artwork from Mitzi Sato-Wiuff (MSW). SSS carries her images and I've used many in my DT work. I like her images. The challenge blog will feature MSW artwork the first two weeks of each month.

The second IS an entirely separate entity of SSS. It's called Fitztown Challenge Blog. Has it's own separate website and a team logo. You can see it proudly displayed on the right hand column of my blog! :) This is featuring artwork for Morgan Fitzsimons... thus the name. :) It's set to be a WEEKLY challenge blog and officially starts it's first challenge January 27th. Would love for you to come check it out! :) There is no set schedule at the moment and I will show up when I show up. lol Perfect! It's like my real life! :)

So now... when I pick my images to design for SSS Blog I can use Sherri Baldy Stamps (SBS) and those are scheduled for the 5th and 20th of each month. I felt guilty in the past because I did not always pick SBS images. These are adorable girly images! I like working with lots of different kinds of styles. 

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Mother's Day Card

To be honest... I'm horrified I named this post Mother's Day Card. The post I named Mother's Christmas Card gets looked at ALL the time. Apparently, what to write in a mother's card is quite mind boggling and folks Google it quite often and up pops up my Mother's Christmas Card. I imagine that will be the case with this card... but I am getting ahead of myself. 

First let me tell you about my "blind date" ... ;) lol We did meet... and as I wrote... I did't feel well... I had to throw up! :'( And there's no hiding it when you've done that. I splashed cold water on my face and then I not only had a beet red face... but the front of my top was soaking wet. :-\ Nonetheless, I believe it went very well and I am still super excited about making a new "crafty" friend in my home town! Yay! :)

Then, she brought gifts too! I was pleasantly surprised and horrified at the same time. Her gift was way over the top and I felt my gift was ever so mediocre after I opened hers. Look what she gave me:
I was just so THRILLED! My immediate thought was "I'll never part with these!" When we were saying our goodbyes that is the first thing she said "Don't hoard the flowers!" *GASP* It's almost as if she knew me already! lol ;)

Then she gifted me... The. Most. Awesome. Card. EVER! I. Love. It!
I had to find out where she got the image! I thought it was too cute! I recognized the eyes to be a Heather Valentine image and I was right. It can be found here. :)

Now... on to my Mother's Day card. I used a La-La Land Crafts digital image called Heart Key Marci. La-La Lands is having Contest #13 on their Facebook group and I am entering this card in that contest. Here is my card:
First, it's a massive card... 5.5X8.5. I didn't want to have to squeeze things in. I wanted there to be plenty of room and boy howdy... there is room! :-\ I used Graphic 45 Fashionista paper pad for all the printed card stock. Lace ribbon is from my stash. I used a Michael's Recollection lace border punch to add to the center row of ribbons. The white satin ribbon is from Raisin Boat. I used two Fiskars punches, Lace 3-in-1 Corner Punch on the image and Heritage 3-in-1 Corner Punch on the papers peeking out from behind the image. I colored the image in Copic markers. Then... I. Forced. Myself... to use three of the flowers Maria gifted me. I did as she did on my card... added Stickles in Star Dust on the flowers to make them even prettier! 

Thanks for stopping by! :) Don't forget to leave a comment if you're playing along with EMA-gination Celebration! :)

Thursday, May 9, 2013

It Is ALL About Me

A couple of weeks ago, I met Maria M. on Some Odd World. She introduced herself to me as a fellow crafter living in the same fair city I call home! Talk about exciting! :)

Today, as this posts to my blog, we will be meeting for the very first time. We plan to have lunch at a deli near the town university. I am bringing a bag of goodies I got for her. A few scrappy items I hope she can use, a Dove milk chocolate bar with almonds and this card:
I made this for her yesterday and posted it to my blog last night. I just couldn't write it was for her because she reads my blog. :) Isn't that nice of her! I hope she likes the card and gifts. :)

Today almost didn't happen. If you've followed my life, and I imagine my imaginary friends have to some degree... ;) lol... you know I have been taking Sprycel to control the CML. When I began taking this medication, I knew a side effect could be heart disease and / or renal failure. I took the pills anyway because I want to live!

Well, I haven't been living for the past few months. I've been having severe anxiety, massive headaches, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, nausea and, on occasion, diarrhea. I thought at first it was from a stomach bug I caught at a family picnic. Turns out, after many tests, it is the onset of heart disease. How diarrhea and nausea have anything to do with heart disease is beyond me. My brother has been diagnosed with kidney cancer but they took a biopsy from his lung. He went in with what we all thought was bronchitis. He caught a cold and it lead to a bad cough. :-\ The wonders of science and medicine!

Once again, I do not believe I survived a near fatal accident in 2007 and went into remission from leukemia to be brought down this easily. There are treatment options to explore. It might be putting a little bit of a stumbling block for my schooling but not anything that cannot be overcome. I refuse to lose my optimistic view on life. I refuse to wallow in self-pity. In all of this... I've tried desperately to not complain. Some days, it's a wonder I get out of bed at all much less bathe and dress myself. On occasion, I've found myself having an awesome pity party and wishing I'd sent out invitations. Because in the midst of ALL. Of. This... I am only human. 

Why post this here? Because I don't know where else to post it. In case something should happen to me out of the blue, I'd like to know someone could come on here and read it and realize... oh... that's why she hasn't been on FB. :) I'm considerate that way. lol I don't want to post this on FB. It cannot be said with a status update. It needs to be a post. I have so much to say! :) 

So last night, about 3 AM, I woke feeling ill and I continue to feel ill as I write this. I'm still going on my ... what I've been affectionately calling ... "blind date". If the last thing I do is meet someone from my home town who loves crafting as much as I do, I'll be a happy camper! :) What if I were to have to go to the hospital after meeting with her? I'd like to think she'd be kind enough to think, "Gee, maybe I should go to her house and pick up her Copics and some images for her to color!" and then she would! :) lol My world inside my head is a very pleasant place to be where all the people are kind to each other. :) It has to be... my reality sometimes sucks. 

In all that has happened with my health, my MD has always stressed to reduce the amount of stress in my life. haha I've tried. I do only what makes me happy as often as I can. If I had been born rich instead of beautiful, there would definitely be much less stress. So if you are reading this and you've not heard from me, remember this.

Do not judge me because I do not do the things you think I should be doing. No one is walking my path with me. I am doing this alone. Some days... it takes more courage than others and so for now... to me anyway... It. Is. All. About. Me.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The Explorer

Here's a little card I made just for myself. No challenge. Just paper, glue and me. :)

This image is from Penny Blossom called The Explorer. It comes with the sentiment already printed and I originally thought I might not ever use this. It came across as a Valentine's kinda greeting to me but I did discover someone recently and decided... haha... I CAN use it! :) I'm so glad I grabbed it when it was available! 

Here is the card:
I've used The Storyteller's Club printed card stock and a Paper Studio embossing folder from Hobby Lobby. Plain card stock, ribbon, beads and flowers are from my stash. I colored the image in Copic markers. I added some Inkssentials Glossy Accents on the goggles and the magnifying glass to add some interest to the image. The mat is from an HOTP Design Tool Kit #3. I went ALL out on this card.

Here's the back:
Here's the inside:
I'm ever so happy to report, there were very few scraps of paper left! Yay! lol :) Sentiment is from Inkadinkado.


Thanks for stopping by and please leave a comment so I'll know you were here! :)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I'm a Professional! :)

Today was spent running errands... mailing packages to the girls in the FB group who participate in the swap... filling the truck up with gasoline... it was only $60 today! Woohoo! :) Picked up dog food, an auto water bowl and a new dress for Fish! I cannot wait to bathe and dress her in it. It's lilac with a big white bow and it's a SUNDRESS! Sorry, didn't mean to yell but I am pretty excited about it! lol ;) Strolled the mall for a bit... hadn't been there in like forever! Gosh... it has to have been a good year or maybe even two. 8-O Picked up two new prescriptions... I'm exhibiting some symptoms that are freaking me out. These were NOT freaking me out when I called the doctor... it's when HE appeared worried that I got freaked out! I'm scheduled for yet ANOTHER EKG... had some blood drawn today and results won't be in till next week. :-\ Went by our LSS. Bought some Stickles... :) ... I needed something to make myself feel better after talking to the MD. 

Oh, before I forget... let me tell you what makes me a professional.
I'm needing a page to start listing my own color combos! lol Also, I'm fixing to outgrow my Copic storage... 
I just bought this container last week! It's from the kitchen aisle. I think it's meant to hold sponges and brushes... cleaning products... stuff like that. I thought it would get the job done and I. Was. Right. :) I received $100 for Mother's Day from both of my adult children... I've already placed an order with Oozak.com for 14 new Ciao markers and two refills. I'll be placing a second order probably Friday for another 15ish. I'm a happy camper! My kids told me to buy myself something nice. What could be nicer than adding to my Copic obsession? ;) lol


Thanks for stopping by! :)

Monday, May 6, 2013

Cleaning

Today, the plan was to clean my Copic markers. After dropping off Jay at work, I was gonna come home, clean the bathroom and start the laundry, sit and clean my Copic markers, take inventory and shop at Oozak.com for some refills and markers. Jay is generous to his mother! He gave me $50 last night to buy myself something nice. lol Copic markers are nice! :)

Well... the thing is... I cleaned my bedroom yesterday and it made quite a mess in the rest of the house. I am desperately trying to trash some of these things and my son is somewhat of a hoarder and cannot be home when I am trashing otherwise he'll retrieve them. These aren't things I can easily slip into a trash bag either. I'll show you:
Plastic bins! The thing is... I started all of this! We moved into this house on September 1st. I thought we could stick them under tables and beds until needed. Well... eight months have gone by and we've not had reason to use them. Jay wants to save them in case we need them one day. :-\ I created a MONSTER! :) lol

I cleaned my room because these bins were in the closet and interfering with getting things in and out of the closet. Now look at all the space I have! :)
I'm gonna go get me something to put my shoes on. I'm a little embarrassed to tell you this... but this is only one of my clothes closets. Here's the other one:
This closet is in the craft room and mostly used for storage. These are mostly clothing that I've been hoarding because... someday... I'll fit into them again! :-\ I tried getting rid of them... I really did. I use to have BOTH of these closets PACKED with clothing. The effort I made can be seen because half of this closet is empty and the closet above is pretty empty as well. I'll admit... once the laundry is done... ALL the clothes could probably fit into one closet and we'd have an entire closet empty for storage but... I watched episodes of Hoarders Saturday and Sunday. Some of these shows were about people dealing with a person unable to rid themselves of things that a deceased loved one left behind. Well, I do not jest when I tell you Jay is a hoarder. I don't want Nina to be put into the position of someday calling the show to come help him. :-\ Seriously!

So I decided to get rid of the stuff we had stored in here because again... the stuff has been in there for EIGHT months and not once have we needed to use any of it. This is what was in there:

So while Jay is at work, I'm packing things to take to Goodwill, trashing what cannot and hope the dump truck comes by. I'm not sure what day it normally comes. I just hope it comes before Jay has to throw out the trash. I think I might be having to toss all the trash for this entire week. lol I'm NOT risking it! I found some family portraits I had forgotten about and a couple of bedspreads. I should probably gift these as well. But these belonged to my mother... and I AM the one having a hard time ridding myself of these. Actually, I'd like to offer these to family members before I drop them off at Goodwill. I have childhood memories of seeing these bedspreads on family beds. There may be someone who'd want to keep them and use them. I hope they get used. I think it's sinful to just keep something in a closet! I'm very sinful. :'( 
Except for the comforter in the plastic bag. That's a comforter set I purchased for my bedroom a couple of years ago. I used it once and have not used it since. It's satiny... and slides off the bed easily... and I'm not sure why I even bought it. The color does not say "Ema"... NOT at all! :) lol I'll be taking it to Goodwill... as anything else that might be salvageable. 

I wish I'd taken a picture of my clean bedroom before I started with all this. Because as it always is when one gets to cleaning and sorting, I found things that didn't belong in one room. Since I didn't want to stop what I was doing in order to find the right place for it... I kinda started piling things here and there. :-\
Smaller things managed to work themselves to a more appropriate spot... ;) lol
 

A part of me wishes I hadn't started this... I see it as a HUGE project... but another part of me is excited at the possibility of having space! :) I'll take after pics and share these too. I'm sure it will look prettier and all! lol ;) I am hoping I can finish soon too! I want to play with my Copic markers for a bit! :)

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Snow Queen

This is my card featuring Mitzi Sato-Wiuff's digital image called Snow Queen:
I colored the image with Copic markers. For the skin, I used E02, E00, E000 and R20 for the cheeks and lips. I used N0 for her eye color and to give her a little bit of eye shadow. For the hair, I used N4, N2 and N0. The gray shadowing on her crown is from N2 and N0. I also used B00 and B000 on the icicles. That is the hint of blue you see. I then lined all the icicles with Zig 2-Way Glue and sprinkled this with Stampendous Crystal Snow. I followed all that with Stickles Liquid Pearls in Silver Pearl. I dabbed this anywhere I saw little circles. Finally, to give the eyes a more interesting look, I lightly ran a silver gel pen over the gray eye color.

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

First. Ever. Shaped. Card!

Be forgiving! :) This is my first ever shaped card. I was kinda winging it. I used my We-r Memory Keepers Lucky 8 Mini Scallop Punch to cut out the shape. I started by cutting the mat. I then cut the card. I knew enough NOT to cut the top off so I could have a card... just wasn't sure how to follow through with it. I'm happy enough how it came out for sure though... considering I didn't know WHAT I was doing! ;) lol

Before I show it to you, let me give you a heads up. I got kinda carried away with the scalloped circles. Maybe a tid bit with the feathers as well... and well... maybe even with the glitter. :-\ I tried to make myself stop plenty of times. It was almost an out of body experience! ;) lol I. Just. Couldn't. STOP! So... with that...

Here is the card:
All card stock, feathers and printed paper is from my stash. Flowers are from Michael's $1 bins. I used Spellbinders Classic Scalloped Circle SM dies on the circles behind the image. The smaller pink one is from a Michael's scalloped circle punch. I dabbed Stickles in Firefly along the outer circle and along the edge of the ruffles on her dress, Platinum on what I interpreted as rhinestones on her jewelry and crown and Cotton Candy on the boa feathers. I colored the image with Copic markers and colored all her jewelry and the crown with a silver gel pen. I absolutely love this Mo's Digital Pencil image called Diva. I have SEVERAL young nieces who fit this bill! ;) I was feeling pretty cocky and thought I could handle the folds in her dress. I had watched a couple of videos and thought I had a decent grip on the concept. Kinda different between watching a video and actually doing it. In case you didn't know! :-\ The stamped sentiment comes from Raisin Boat's Onesie clear stamp set. Oh, and in case you didn't know this, feathers... are just as bad as glitter! I made the mistake of dumping them out of the bag to find the right colors. It was a NIGHTMARE getting them back in the bag but I didn't shed a tear! ;) lol

I am submitting this card into Mo's Digital Challenge. This is for Challenge #183 - Anything Goes With a Mo Manning Image

I am also participating in Charisma Cardz Challenge. This is for Challenge #17 - Shaped Cards.

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave a comment so I'll know you were here! :)

Friday, May 3, 2013

Didn't Make the Cut!

I'm still baffled by it all! I've been playing along with Some Odd Girls' Odd Idol Competition (I think you have to be a member to get in ???)... this is one of the cards I submitted... AND... I. Didn't. Make. The. Cut! Like I wrote already... I'm still baffled by it all! ;) lol But now I can show you the card and I've been dying to! :) Yay! lol

Well... it is what it is... I suppose. I don't have a challenge to post this to. Once again... it's just my card and little ol' me. :)

So here's the card:
I can tell you what paper I used this time around because I've been hoarding it! lol I don't know why! Other than I find Graphic 45 paper just so gosh darn pretty and can't part with it! :-\ All the background papers are from Graphic 45's Fashionista (you have to scroll down the page a bit) paper pad. I cut the mat the image is on from my HOTP Design Tool #1. I used Stickles in Baby Blue to line the mats and the frill of the dress on the image. I have Aqua but I didn't want the color to cover her party dress so I went with Baby Blue so it could have shimmer but not cover the details. I added some Robin's Nest Clear Daisy Dew Drops on the small scalloped circle from Spellbinders' Classic Scalloped Circle SM die. The image and sentiment are from Some Odd Girl Party Girl Gwen clear stamp set. Oh gosh darn it! It happened again! While looking for the link to Party Girl Gwen I saw this one and now I have go to back and get it! :-\ I do! I do! I must have her! lol ;) Oh... the ribbon IS from my stash! Of course, I colored the image with Copic markers and I added some Inkssentials Glossy Accents on her eyes. 

I'm always frustrated by the amount of scraps left over after making a card. I'm always looking for ways of ridding myself of these scraps. I have a pen pal who decorates... get this... the ENTIRE card! I love the idea! Sadly, she shared this with me about a year ago and I am just now implementing the plan. I'm slow like that. :) lol 

So here's the back of the card:
This is the inside:
It's probably not a big deal to folks who have always done this but like I wrote above... this is my first time... I. Love. It! Let me show you the scraps left over!
That's right! Two 6X12 sections and a 6X10 only because there was some playing around with the size of the sections and I cut a second strip from the blue... otherwise... I'd have had THREE 6X12 sections! Awesome! lol I. Love. It! Did I say that already? I feel like I'm repeating myself. ;) lol I'd originally thrown out the three small sections but I couldn't leave them in there! I had to pull them out cause I decided these are still a pretty good size. Don't you agree?

Ssooo... as always... thanks for stopping by! If you're playing along with my Ema-gination Celebration don't forget to leave a comment! :) Leaving it on Facebook doesn't count! :( I've written some rules too in case you're interested. Cause life makes sense for me when there are rules! I'm just a stick in the mud cause of that! lol You can read about them here. :) Yes! I figured out how to make pages! lol I saw it on my best pen pal's blog and I figured out how to do it on Blogger! Awesome! I also made a page for my ramblings and if you're interested you can find those here. I'm also gonna start a THIRD PAGE! Sorry! Didn't mean to scream at you but I'm just so gosh darn excited! I'm gonna post my craft space there as soon as I can get to it. :)

Again, thanks for stopping by and don't forget to leave a comment if you're playing along with my Ema-gination Celebration! :)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Diamonds

... are a girl's best friend... you know what I'm talking about? ;) I've not ever seen the movie. I'm thinking it's a movie. Right? With Marilyn Monroe and whoever else is in it. Or is it just another music video like Madonna redid? I really don't know! lol *blush* But I saw Diamonds are a Girls Best Friend image at Sassy Studios Design and I had to have it!

I have to tell you... I like how the card came out! I do! I do! lol 

I made the card to participate in two challenges.

First one is at Artistic Inspirations. It's a Lots of Layers challenge! I like those! Doesn't everyone? I cannot figure out how to link the challenge! I cannot find a direct link to the challenge, only to the blog. I hope this won't disqualify my entry! :-\

The second challenge is an Anything Goes challenge! I love these too! Who doesn't right? It's Challenge #19 over at Challenges 4 Everybody.

I needed a card sketch and I went with Christmas Challenges' Challenge #71. I didn't participate in the challenge... it's a Christmas blog. I only used the card sketch. I like it! :) 

So here's the card:
All plain and embossed card stock, vellum, shimmer and printed paper, ribbon and rhinestones are from my stash. The embossed scalloped hearts are from Spellbinders' Classic Scalloped Hearts die. The "Sparkle" sentiment is from a Raisin Boat clear stamp set called Wonderland Wishes. I stamped the sentiment with The Essential Glue Pad, sprinkled it with Cat's Stick 'Um Potion (I couldn't find a link for you!), heated it per the instructions and added Stampendous Crystal Snow glitter for the "sparkle". :) Of course, I colored the image with Copic markers. :) I dabbed Stickles in Diamonds on all her jewelry. The belt buckle was colored in with a silver gel pen.

I just love the "bling" of it all! :)

Thanks for stopping by. If you want to be included in my EMA-gination Celebration, be sure to leave a comment! :)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Happy Cinco de Mayo

Well... OK... I'm a little early but I've got to get these in the mail and I've got a final tomorrow I have to prepare for and hopefully a job to report to on Saturday night. :) So here I am! lol

I've got four I made for this festive holiday our culture celebrates! No challenges... just my cards and me this time around. :)

These are two I made for my two sisters:
All ribbons, rhinestones, card stock, printed paper and chip board come from my stash. This image is a Meljen's Designs called Chili Chihuahua. Sentiment is from a Raisin Boat clear stamp set called XOXO. I colored all images with Copic markers. I used a Spellbinders' Lacey Square die for the shape of all the cards.

I made this card for a niece:
All card stock, rhinestones and brads are from my stash. I made the larger flower from tissue paper and the smaller white flowers from a petite daisy punch from Michael's. I dabbed all the flowers with Stickles in Frosted Lace. I colored the hair piece on the image with a silver gel pen. The sentiment comes from a Raisin Boat stamp set called You Said It! The image is from Elizabeth O. Dulemba's Coloring Page Tuesdays called Cactus Dance. By the way... it's a freebie! :)

I made this card for a good friend:
All card stock, printed paper, ribbon and brads are from my stash. I made the flower from tissue paper and dabbed it with Stickles in Christmas Red. The sentiment is the same as above. The image is from Mo's Digital Pencil called Rosa.

Thanks for stopping by! If you're wanting your name in for the EMA-gination Celebration be sure to leave a comment! :)

Ema-gination Celebration!

Last time I posted, I shared my desire to have a celebration of some sorts for my 6th blog anniversary. I requested assistance in finding just the right name with a little oomph for this. You can read all about it on my "Save the Date" post, if you haven't yet. Thank you to all who participated! I loved that y'all jumped in there with me! :) I reviewed the few submissions and I liked "EMA-gination Celebration" because Patti at Scrap Close 2 the Heart got me! lol Her suggestion hit it right on the nail. This IS what I am all about! Celebrating life, me and my "Ema-gination"! ;) lol Thanks Patti! :) I promised a $10 gift card to whomever helped me find an appropriate name and well... by golly... she did! :)  

Now, to officially announce my EMA-gination Celebration kickoff. I've given this a lot of thought over the past few days. This is how I plan to celebrate! Woohoo! lol ;)

The original purpose of setting up the blog was to showcase the many cards I make... but also... to tell you about my life. This was meant specifically for my children.. but for whoever else decided they absolutely HAD to read about what all was going on in my life. *giggle* Trust me when I say... there aren't many of those readers! :-\ I don't get that! lol ;) Nonetheless it has not deterred me in any way. I have written about what has gone in my life... as frankly as I could at times. I've had lots and lots of things happen over the past six years... not all good... not all bad... I've shared when I could. To know me... is to read my blog. :) I've fallen way short of my original intentions of maintaining a blog. I'm here today to rectify all of that! 

My EMA-gination Celebration will consist of a "loyalty reward program". lol It seems to be all the rage of late. Everywhere I shop, I am presented with a "rewards" program. I fall for these hook, line and sinker! lol I'm a faithful shopper at CVS, Kohl's and Dustee's because of these cards! First thing I ask when I check out, "Do you offer a rewards card?" Sadly, there are some places that don't. I still shop there... but only if I cannot get it at any other place that offers rewards points. lol What can I say? I like free! lol One of the things I am gonna start doing... starting with my anniversary celebration... I am gonna keep track of the comments. Every quarter, I will gift my most faithful follower (have to be a follower of my blog) who leaves the most comments a $25 gift card to Scrapbook Stamp Society (until further notice) and a $25 gift certificate of their choice from one of these online stores:

Then once a quarter, I will also offer a gift card from all others who leave comments. I'm just gonna add all these into a pile and draw a name. Whomever gets picked will receive a gift card of their choice from one of these digital stores [in no particular order (prize value TBD)]:

Now... for my EMA-gination Celebration, I plan to enter all the names of followers (you have to be a follower) who comment into a random drawing. This prize package is the most I can afford to give as a single person who just loves crafting. :) I've no sponsors of any sort so this is just little ol' me sharing what little I have. :) This is the prize package I am comfortable gifting:
$25 Gift Certificate to Scrapbook Stamp Society
$25 Gift Certificate to Raisin Boat
$25 Gift Certificate to Oozak.com 
$25 Gift Certificate to Paper Wishes 
Winner's choice of a Gift Certificate to one of these digital stores:
Mo's Digital Pencil, Meljen's Designs, Saturated Canary, The Paper Shelter, Simply Betty Stamps, Some Odd Girl or Whimsie Doodles (prize value TBD).

I surely wish I could tell you the dollar amount of each item; however, I've sent emails requesting information for gift certificates and have not received a response as of this writing. I'll come back on here and update the info as soon as I have the correct information. :) Also, if there's ever a tie for the most comments from any one person, these names will be placed in a random drawing separately. :) It's the fairest way I could think of! :)

Now the whole point of doing all this... is so you can see what I've made! So here is today's showcase! ;) lol

I am submitting this card into five challenges:

The Paper Shelter... one of my all time favs! :-D ... I doubt I will EVER win one of these challenges because they always have oodles and oodles of participants but what can I tell you... I'm just ever so optimistic! This is for Challenge 110 - Music Maestro. I've used the image Rock Star.

Fab 'n' Funky Challenges is having Challenge #169 ~ Lots of Pink.

Crafting for all Seasons Challenges is having a Challenge 51 - Monochromatic. What can I tell you? I love using monochromatic color schemes on my cards! They just FALL into place with this super easy challenge. I love these! :)

I needed a card sketch! I went with Sweet Sketch Wednesday #204 Challenge QKR Stampede! They asked for a QKR image if I had one but well... I don't. :( It's all good anyway! They are a generous bunch! :) 

Finally, a freakish coincidence! Really! I have an older niece... who is turning 29... again! I haven't seen 29 in a few years... and this niece is... did I point this out earlier... OLDER than I am. Yes! I'm the youngest of ten so I've got plenty of nieces and nephews older than myself. She's one who would not appreciate me telling folks this but... hey... it's OK! She doesn't come on here and you're not going to tell on me right? lol ;) So Divas by Design Add a Number challenge also fell right into my lap! Awesome! 

Man! I think I am getting pretty good at this! Use to be I could only do one challenge at a time cause I was overwhelmed by them. Even then... I'd miss deadlines or requirements! I kid you NOT! If you only knew! Once... I boohooed something fierce too... but at the time... I had been to the lab on that particular day and was having a fantastic pity party! I should have sent out invites it was just so awesome. So I cried to no end because I missed the deadline but it's all good. I learn my from my mistakes and here I is! ;) lol

So, here is my card:
I still feel ever so silly about the whole watermark thing but I keep having one person or another remind me about the importance of one. I can't help but think, who in their right mind? If I were to see one of my cards somewhere I did not mean for it to be at... I'm afraid my first thought would be I'm flattered! lol So anyway... all paper and card stock is from my stash. I used a rubber stamp set from The Angel Company (TAC) and from what I could gather  was bought out by Red Rubber Designs. I know I saw some of their images there and they have a department called TAC Swag so what do you suppose that means? I have no clue... I'm baffled by it all but there you have the info anyway. :) I made the flower myself! I dabbed Stickles in Star Dust to make the flower prettier! :) lol It needed help! I also placed a pearl bead in the center of the flower. I purchased these beads at Hobby Lobby from their $1 bins. The tri-colored twine is from Whisker Graphics. It's that marvelous Divine Twine. I colored the image with Copic markers. 


So... as always... thanks for stopping by! Please, leave a comment so I'll know you were here but most importantly... so you can be in my random drawings for prizes! :) 

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