Just Checkin' In

Good evening. We're just back from having a nice drive in heavy fog, after going to a delicious Mexican dinner. Then we stopped at a house that has magnificent Christmas decorations that must have been professionally done, and probably took a month or longer to put up. There's a sign out front that advises to tune to a local radio station, which is playing Christmas music. As the music plays (and especially if it's a tune with a boogey beat) - the lights display and change & it's a wonder to watch. We visited this place last year too, as it's close to where our kids live.

Yesterday was sunny & think the temp hit 80. I had my coffee out on the patio, reading & watching the boat traffic.  Thought I'd share a  few pictures of what we see from the patio, as I don't have any cards to share.

- Bird Sanctuary with a boat wake

- Where I had my coffee and read. Had to wear my sunglasses it was so bright outside. Got rather hot as well.

- What is on one side of the kids' place. This belongs 2 doors down from them. Glad we don't have to fuel it up.

Construction next door. The pink house is 2 doors down. The neighbors next door bought an old Florida beach house, just to get the property. They had the house torn down, and are building a house that will have parking underneath the main floor. The codes now will not allow a house to have the main floor on ground level (which is a good idea to my mind!). However the kids had remodeled their house before this code was enacted, so in case of high tides during a hurricane, guess what's likely to happen here?????
Looking the opposite direction about 3 doors down. And many of these people are not at home just now. What a big waste in my opinion. Oh well. No, our kids don't have a boat. And we HOPE they don't try to get one. It won't be one of these, fer sure. They are of the 'old Florida', but lots of immigrants to the State have bought in this area, torn down the beach houses. Built up some big ones, so that the natives are struggling to be able to live in the area. The property of an older places is worth more than the house that sets on it. A bit sad really.

I hope that all my lovely readers had a wonderful & blessed Christmas day, and were able to spend it in good health and with their loved ones. Expect we shall be traveling back to South Carolina on New Year's Day - according to my chauffeur. I'd prefer to go a day before or after, but since he's the driver, I will get in, keep my mouth shut and go to sleep! The trip goes a lot better that way and nobody gets too aggravated. I tend to be a white-knuckle passenger! Lots of crazies on our interstates.

Thanks for joining me. In case the sunshine is making anyone feel envious, we'll be returning to winter weather at home! So don't feel too bad about it! Come again soon, and hope to have some cards when we get back in port. In the meantime, Happy New Year and be safe with whatever you're doing. Big Hugs & God Bless.


Santa Chuck Says Merry Christmas

Chuck  put his Santa hat on last evening, and asked if I would allow him to convey his very best wishes to all the sweet bloggers who visit here. After looking into his soulful eyes, I could hardly say no, now could I?
So here's Chuck in his holiday hat, sending doggy Christmas kisses to all who visit here.
Now the other guys/girls weren't having any of that, so they had to get in the act too. Ogie got dressed in his holiday outfit, and after asking me to be sure to spell his name correctly this time, sends his Merry Christmas out as well. (He was quite cross with me for not knowing how to spell his name. He tells me he was famous in his racing days -  I didn't have the nerve to admit to him, that I'd never heard of him before. Oh these temperamental celebrities).
And when he is 'at home' and not posing....
Evidently this is how he likes to sleep

Dallas & Reilly said their outfits are a bit too tight this year, so they'll just send along their good wishes au naturel. Not sure which is which in this picture as their Mommy took it.

Ossie said he didn't care to dress up, he was tired of having us take his picture (he's an old man), but he would be pleased to say Merry Christmas just the same.

Now lest you think that South Florida is always warm sunshine and's a few scenes of what it looked like here Christmas Eve about 4:30pm. We watched this storm roll in and it looked fierce. These pictures were taken from inside looking out through the sliding glass doors as it was thundering.

The greenery is an island bird sanctuary, and each evening, the birds flock back for the night's roosting.

#3 was snapped just a few seconds before the rain started to pelt down along with the thunder too. It was actually much darker than these pictures show.  In Florida, it can rain & thunder and in a short while there will be sunshine again. Since this happened so late in the evening, it was rather gloomy until dusk settled.
I would like to extend a warm welcome to a new follower: Jennifer Spivey. Can't find a link to get back to Jennifer if she has a blog' so Jennifer, if you'll provide me with a blog address, I can share it with all my blog friends, and they can meet you too. Thanks so much for becoming a new follower here.
Hope you enjoyed the pictures and are having a wonderful day with your loved ones. This is a scheduled post, as I plan to spend the day with those I love most as well. Big Hugs, God Bless and Merry Merry.


Christmas Eve

Good afternoon, and the Big Day is nearly here. So whatever you've not finished, I hope you can stop, take a breath, calm down and enjoy a little calming time to really enjoy tomorrow. My wish for all my lovely visitors is that you have loved ones to share the day with & that you have the health to enjoy a peaceful & happy day. I'm truly thankful that my family & I are able to do that. It's what Christmas really means to me. It's lovely to have tiny ones about to enjoy the magic of Santa and the presents. Watch their eyes widen as they see the tree Christmas morning, with all the packages. I do remember that thrill with our daughter when she was small. Yet growing older brings its own pleasures too. We are just the four of us together and will be missing our best friend - who is DD's godfather. He is someone DH met when he was stationed at Pensacola, Fla in his navy days prior to his tours in Viet Nam. Our friend is a staunch New Englander, so it was really odd that the 2 guys hit it off. He's had some health problems recently and just not up to a trip at the moment. However, I'm thankful that at least the 4 of us can enjoy being together. That is always my special Blessing.

I unsealed DH's card to take a photo this morning, and here it is:


Still haven't located the pictures I took the night before we left, of which this card was one. Tried to take a photo outside where the light was better, and too windy. So the background is on DD's counter.

- SWilson Bevel die cut the kraft card base. Red glitter paper placed behind the cutout and some 'jewels' added.

- Tattered lace Peace die cut from the same red glitter paper. (took me 2 tries to get this as I did it on the wrong side of the paper first time! You have to look to be sure the die is positioned on the proper side of the paper that you want to show- especially if it is a sentiment!). Happy to report that after a couple rolls through the machine, the die released very nicely, even though this is one of the thicker glitter papers. Had a bit of concern about that at first.

- image  colored with copics, some WoS added, die cut with a S/B scalloped circle. Bottom portion of the card seemed to 'need something' and this was an image that was colored earlier. DH always likes to have something done with copics on his cards. Debated on adding a die sentiment of "husband" with the red glitter, and decided to leave as you see it. I think he'll like it.

Thought you might enjoy seeing what SIL did to amuse himself this morning.

Thanks for all the prayers & good wishes for DH. Thankfully he is improving some every day. He will be seeing our own doctors when we get back home. Don't know if the 12 hours of sitting on the drive to come south had anything to do with his problem. He felt well enough to go out yesterday with DD & me to go to some of the stores (oh the crowds). There are quite a few Michael's stores in the area, so whenever one is close, I have to check it out. Stock is pretty well picked over & nothing interesting. Yesterday after a quick stroll through one, walking to the exit - I spied a few Stampendous Christmas stamps - 70% off - on a counter end cap. I managed to get three that are normally $14.99/$15.99, paying about $4.00 for each.

Hope you're having a grand day whatever you may be doing. Thanks for joining me, and in case I don't get on the computer tomorrow, a Big Merry Christmas to all of you. If you don't celebrate the day as such, then Happy Holidays as well! Big Hugs.

PS: As I've been typing this post, we've watched dolphins playing out in the water in front of the house. So graceful & what a thrill.


Longest Day of the Year

Good afternoon on the longest day of the year,* official first day of Winter and a nice Sunday afternoon. Sorry, no photos today.We have had a quiet day after a very exciting one on Saturday (NOT!).

*My Bad: I should have written longest night of the year. I do know it's the shortest day! Please excuse this old senior! Thanks to the sweet blogger who caught this boo-boo.
Friday afternoon we visited Sparkle n Sprinkle in Ruskin Florida - which is about an hour from where DD & SIL live. Nice ride in what still looks like rural Florida. Not much of that left in the State nowadays.  Mr. started having plumbing problems on the way home, which caused quite a few quick bathroom stops. The situation worsened overnight, and neither of us got much sleep. Tried unsuccessfully on Saturday morning to persuade him to go to an Emergency Room. Finally SIL & I both noticed he was pale &  very bloated in the abdomen. With SIL's insistence, we drove to a walkin clinic. We walked in at noon & were told there would be a 2 hr wait. Sent SIL home to return later. Lots of patients coughing, sneezing, blowing noses. Errrgghh ..will we walk out with some germ we didn't bring in? So we availed ourselves of the face masks and antibacterial cleaner. Mr. finally got seen at 5pm. Very uncomfortable waiting time. After the clinic doc saw him, ordered an xray, THEN we are sent to another Emergency Room for a CAT scan as he thought possible bowel blockage or obstruction of some kind. Not happy news to hear at any time, but definitely not when away from home!

Called SIL to pick us up and then head to the ER. He was seen very quickly there. (No, I did not say "this is where we should have come to start"...but SIL did! Bless his heart). The medics there said "Put in a catheter first, drain the bladder, then do another Xray." Things would then be clearer on this xray, before doing a CAT scan. Having a catheter inserted for a male is NOT a fun thing to do. (DH has said that will NEVER be done to him again). By the time the bladder was drained, another xray done, the hospital medics didn't think it a bowel obstruction. Not 100% certain, but they sent him home with some medication and if the problem doesn't resolve in the next 24 - 48 hours, we are to return. Or if he gets pain or nausea, get back PDQ. I think he is a little better today, but very unhappy about the pain of the catheter, some side effects & still having frequent bathroom visits. Just not so bad as previously. We are saying thanks  be that so far, no emergency surgery to be done by doctors we don't know, and then convalesce here away from home.

On another note, in case you haven't seen the news over at DeeDee's Digis, the shop will be closing as of January 31, 2015 - due to the upcoming changes in the European VAT tax laws. While this is a very sad time for those of us who love these images, it also means it's a chance to scoop up some of your best loved images at a fabulous price reduction. I do strongly encourage checking out the link and taking advantage of the sale. I can personally attest to how easy these designs are to use. You can dress up the pre-colored designs as you desire or use the outline images to color as you choose. There's great sentiments in each set & some sets have digi papers as well. So do check out DeeDee's Digi's. There is a design to fit every card occasion.

In the meantime, have a wonderful afternoon. Thanks for dropping by for a visit, and big hugs.


It's a Dog's Life

Hi and thanks for joining me today. Brought 3 flash drives with me in the laptop bag, intending to edit & share some friends' cards that we've received. Got them photo'd and transferred off the camera disk. Thought I had copied to a flash drive to bring on the trip, and share these cards as I won't be making any myself, while away. Checked 3 flash drives, the laptop hard drive, and can not find any but the one photo'ed  late Monday night and transferred to the laptop just before it got packed! That has been posted to the Friends Cards page.

Took some photos of the grand dogs Wednesday - and we have a new one. He's called Og-gie, and is very black with a pretty shiny coat. The oldest (Ossie) is showing his age a good bit, has arthritis in his back legs. Makes getting up & down quite a struggle for him. Chuck (the dachshund) has the same problem, only in his front legs. He can hop around in the house & has to be carried outside. He used to bounce as he romped around, but now it's more of a waddle. So sad. DD has a vet coming to the house to give each of them a laser heat treatment and acupuncture, which is supposed to be helping.
Ossie seems to like to walk in the pool and around the deck - guess the sun warmed surface feels good to him. Also this surface is rather rough, so easier for him to not slip. Inside there is ceramic tile, and he has a hard time walking on it. We can see that he's lost weight, but DD says he still eats well. The vet has told her as long as he is eating well, doesn't appear to be in too much pain, they will keep treating him. He's the best mannered of all the dogs DD has had to date. Very much a gentleman. Friendly, but reserved.

Chuck pretty much stays in his bed, except when it's meal time. He doesn't bark as much as he did at first either. I miss seeing him bouncing around with the younger dogs. He is about 12 and Ossie is close to 15 yrs old.
Seems to enjoy going outside, but has to be carried out and put down in the grass, as he can't navigate the elevations involved now. He also gets 2 diabetes shots per day. He still wags his tail though, and is very friendly. I was watching him once he had been put on the deck after his trip outside. Showed no interest in going inside, so was left with me. I don't handle any of the dogs (except Ossie if the others are not around). He walked to the door but didn't appear to be able to hop up the 3 inch step up. I was calling for his mommy or granddad to come get him, and after looking at me with a "why don't you pick me up?" look, he finally just sort of hopped up and got himself inside. DD says he can still do that, but has gotten accustomed to preferential treatment.

This is the newest grand..he came here as a foster boy, but has such a nice personality, that he got to stay. He is more exuberant than the other greys, and I don't know his age. Very pretty though, and he hasn't been too boisterous. One of the dogs was a bit jealous at first, but that seems to have disappeared.

Daughter with Og-gie, Dallas & Reilly. Dallas & Reilly are sisters (8 yrs old), but Dallas came to live as a 3 month puppy. Liked to chew on my toes with her sharp little teeth. Reilly came about 18 months later, after the owners no longer wanted to keep her. Oddly, I'm allergic to Reilly, but have never noticed any of my respiratory symptoms with Dallas. They are difficult to tell apart, so I just don't pet either of them. They have matured into friendly, placid girls. Normally where you see one, the other will be right there very quickly.

This is Dallas (green collar) on what she considers her very own sunbathing property. I think the spa gets used by the dogs to sunbathe more than it gets used as a hot tub! The sea gulls like it too...they do a lot of target practice flyovers.

Hope you enjoyed seeing my granddogs. I'll have to share all our lovely Christmas cards when we get home. Or if I suddenly find them on a drive!!!

Have a wonderful Friday. Enjoy whatever it is that you are doing. If all those last minute Christmas chores are not completed as yet, just remember what the real reason for this season is for, and don't stress out too terribly. Thanks for joining me. Big hugs. Come again when you have time.


DeeDee's Digis - Christmas Cardinal

Good Morning & welcome to another DeeDee's Digi post. It's no secret I think, that I love cardinals. So when I saw this image at DeeDee's, I knew it had to be mine. This was the second card made in the wee small hours prior to leaving for Florida. Again, a fast make.

- DeeDee's Digi Winter Cardinal, die cut with S/B Label 42, sponged DI while still in the die.

- white gel pen added some highlights on the branch & pine cones. A bit of red shading (primarily because in my hurry, managed to get the gel pen marks on the body of the bird! Dunno how I did it). The copics covered it nicely.

- DP from a 6x6 Christmas pack that was handy. The border strip snippet is the reverse of the leaves dp.

- Impression Obsession tree was cut from white c/s and smooshed with a green ink pad. This had been intended for another project (snippet), thought it would work to dress up this card just a bit.

Another very easy get 'er done card (as my friend Lynn calls these). This will be for an early January birthday - so just needs a little sentiment & insert.

Do check out the fabulous images to be found over at DeeDee's Digis and don't miss the fabulous digi of the month Happy Brrr-Day.  Each month there is a new "Digi of the Month" set for just $1.25. Along with this special offer, there's a "Digi of the Month Challenge" at the blog. This is a monthly progressive freebie challenge. To join the challenge, simply use the current featured set to make any wholesome project. Then link your project to the challenge post on the blog before the challenge deadline. If you do so, Deedee will automatically email you the next month's featured set for FREE at the start of the next challenge. Keep playing, and keep getting FREE digis each month -- it's as simple as that!

There are two ways to get the Digi of the Month. You can purchase it outright, or get it for FREE with any $10 purchase of products. If making a qualifying purchase, Deedee will email the set to you once your order is complete. Easy way to build up your digi stash with some very adorable and versatile digis. Easy to store too!

Thanks for joining me this morning. It's a beautiful Florida day (apologies to those of you enduring nasty weather). Going to try to add some of the lovely cards we've received to the Friends Cards section while things are quiet. Ya'll have a grand day without too much stressing over what is not done yet for your Christmas preparations. Hugs


DeeDee's Digis - Winter Woods

Hello from sunny South Florida where it's a gorgeous afternoon. Warm, not hot, just very pleasant. We left South Carolina in rain & light fog, after stopping for breakfast at a local Cracker Barrel. For those not familiar with this chain, the restaurant serves old fashioned food, and we try to stop at these restaurants when we travel. You always know what to expect, prices are reasonable, and service is usually very good. I slept most of the trip, which saves wear & tear on both our nerves. My DH is a good driver, but I'm a nervous passenger. We saw 3 very serious tractor trailer accidents coming south, two of which were on our side of the highway. One slowed traffic down a bit, but we still made good time, and were thankful that it was an uneventful trip for us personally.

I was doing some cards late Monday night (actually early Tuesday morning...about 1:30 am!) to try to post for my DeeDee's Digi DT assignment. I've mentioned that I am a very slow cardmaker. Each of these cards took about 10 minutes, which testifies to the ease of using these digis. The longest part for each card, was finding a die to fit the image as I had printed it. Fortunately there were some S/Binders handy (received from Stamping Scrapping) so it was fairly easy to pick one and get started.

Here's one that is very simply done..

- Winter Woods Digi  printed and used with no shading. Die cut with a S/B Nestability Label 42 - purchased on Black Friday from Stamping Scrapping. Good price, fast shipping. Some DI blue for corner shading.

S/B Mary Border DCWV pack of gauze fabric like paper. Thought it looked nice with the shades of color on the digi. Neutral brown dp from a 6x6 pack.

Folks that's it! When you're in a big hurry to finish a personalized card, you can't beat this effort! This image has some nice sentiments with, that could be used for many occasions. I plan to add something for a winter birthday. May add a die cut deer prior to sending, but at least I have it ready. Apologies for the poor photo. No lightbox setup here with me, so this was taken outside in the sunlight, placed upon a glass table top. Laptop doesn't have my watermark files stored on it. Ah, the pleasures of travel when you can't take all your toys along.

Please do check out DeeDee's great supply of digis if you're in need of some cards in a hurry. I can personally vouch for the fact that even if you're slow like I am, you can still do a nice card using an image found there.

We have received some lovely cards that I hope to share on the Friends Cards tab. Just didn't get time to  post prior to leaving for our holiday. I hope to import them while away, if things work properly with the laptop & camera. And many thanks for all the lovely comments about the Noel cards. When able to access email via the laptop mail program - which is an online email different from the Microsoft program used at home - there were over 100 emails. I apologize, but I will not be able to return visits to all the wonderful bloggers who were kind enough to look & comment. I'm never certain how much storage space the IP allows me, so published and then deleted a lot of the emails. But thank you for each one...DH was pleased that most commenters liked the red background best. I was happy with each card (you know, I'm my worst critic!), but I have to 'fess up that my favorite was the green Noel.

Bye for now. Thanks for visiting & have a wonderful day. I think we're off to find some lunch in a bit. I'm ready! God Bless & Big Hugs


Christmas Noel - Purple

Hello once again. This is a scheduled post and the last of the Noel images done for the brothers. Mr. decided this would be for brother #3 (who is really brother #5 & closest to me in age. Sadly, we have lost the brother #3 & #4. We don't forget them though).

- Embossed this time with Versamark and Judikins Aegean Silver. Die cut with S/B Opulent Oval. The Pentel markers once again did all the coloring.

- Bazzill texture paper in a purple shade is the card base.

- Lightweight silver glitter paper (a snippet) was diecut on each edge with a Spellbinder border die. This glitter paper looked better as a border than the Silver Shimmer Sheetz product (at least I thought so!).

- Tiny pearls were added for trim.

On each of the card backgrounds, I purposely kept things simple. I wanted the pretty image to be the focus. I liked each of the cards and Mr. & I debated on which we liked best. He preferred the red background. I rather liked the green Noel best. What do you think????

Thanks once again for joining me. This schedule post will be set for late Monday night. Tuesday morning, if all goes according to Mr's plans, we will be on the road to Florida to spend the holidays with our DD. So very busy getting ready to depart. Will try to keep in touch while we're away, but won't be posting cards! Just blather & babble. Big hugs. Have a wonderful week.

Christmas Noel - Green

Good evening and welcome to another scheduled post. This is the 2nd of the PSX Noel image cards that was done for the brothers. Mr thought this one should go to Brother #2.

- PSX image stamped in Memento (Bamboo Leaves - I think). Started out using Polychromos pencils, but then covered most of the pencil coloring with Pentel marker pens. On the bottom left foliage - which I thought looked like mistletoe & berries - there is only pencil coloring, as I wanted it kept very light.  Shaded with DI sage green while still in the S/B die. If you click on the image to enlarge it, perhaps some of the glisten will show better. This image was done first - before the other 2 Noels. Tried to think of a different look for each stamping.

- Gold Shimmer Sheetz border - embossed with Sheena Douglas Holly.

- background is a sprayed piece - done some time ago, with Dylusions, Lindy's & other sprays during a play session.

- gold pearls at the corner and this one is complete. Hope you will like it. Thanks for joining me once again, and hope your Monday was a great start to a new week. Big hugs & come again when you have time. God Bless.

Christmas Noel - Red

Good Morning & Welcome. Today's will be a scheduled post. I made 3 cards from the same lovely PSX stamp (K-1624). Each card is for one of my three beloved brothers & their wives. Here's the first one, that will go to Brother #1 (Mr. made the selections as to which brother got which card)

- Stamped with versamark, heat embossed with Ranger Queen's Gold. Colored with Pentel marker pens. IRL this just sparkles, not sure how well it shows up on the photo.

- Elizabeth Craft gold shimmer sheetz embossed with Sheena Douglas Holly EF. This EF produced a very nice emboss on the shimmer foil, which does not always happen with the less deeply etched embossing folders. The sheet was cut to fit the side borders, since the part under the focal image doesn't show anyway.

- Focal piece was die cut with a S/B die. Don't remember which decorative die it was, but the edge in one place tore just a bit as it was removed from the die. Rather than try to mend it, just snipped the outside part away with the scissors and liked the trim on the resulting edge.

Would also like to introduce 2 new followers: Kristie Goulet of Kreative Kristie. I found Kristie's link over at another blogger - and zipped over to see her cards. Do please take a few minutes and say Hello to Kristie.
AJ Bodine of RutabagaPie Designs. I found AJ over at Darnell's, and when Darnell mentioned that AJ was from North Carolina, I had to check out what a neighbor Carolinian was doing. Enjoyed very much seeing AJ's blog and I think you will too! Pop over to say Merry Christmas, if you've a minute or two for inspiration.


Stay tuned for 2 more versions of this same image...wonder which one you'll like best?! Thanks for joining me this morning. Hope you have a grand day coming up. Ours will be very busy! Big hugs.


Christmas Card Club - Non-traditional

Good morning, lovely Bloggers. Today is the very last Christmas Card Club challenge for 2014. The theme of Non traditional Colors was chosen bythe lovely Margaret of Granmargarets Cards-n-Stuff. So here goes:

- Coordinations turquoise paper from the Vintage Collection (VOS) was embossed with a Crafters Companion Vintage Christmas Collection Embossalicious EF with an Ornaments design. Then sanded to bring out the core colors. Some ribbon from my sewing supplies (again, VOS) was hunted up to trim. The 2 sizes of width that I found in pink was not 'just the right shade of pink' to go nicely with the turquoise paper, so used an RV copic marker to change the color a bit. Also changed up the color of the small rose trim.

- Impression Obsession sentiment was cut from 2 snippets of white card stock,  with the 3 & top layer being from a snippet of pink pattern paper. Adhered the layers, and colored with the same marker that colored the ribbon.

That's it - another easy peasy. Please be sure to check my fellow card club members challenge'll find their links over  on the right side bar.

We're planning to head south to sunny Florida next week, so it's a scurry round here at our house to get things finished up, packed and ready to depart. Trying to get the last of the cards completed, mailed, and hope to get a few scheduled posts ready. In the meantime, have a wonderfully happy Sunday, and as always, thanks for visiting and spending a few minutes of your day with me. God Bless & big hugs. Come again when you can.

Just checked and it's Week 155 over at Pixie's Crafty Workshop Snippets Playground and the Playground will be open for 2 weeks...Since I do have a few snippets on this one (and guess the ribbons could rightly be called snippets too as it was pieces!) I think I'll just mosey on over & say Hello to my little buddy Bear, Parsnip. Won't you check out the Playground, and submit your snippets card as well? There's a bit of celebration going on, as well as keeping the Playground open who knows, you could be the lucky winner of some great prizes. Plus just enjoying meeting some lovely & talented crafters & getting some fabulous inspiration from the cards that are brought to the Playground. Do come if you can!


Gold Penny Black Starlit Christmas Tree

Good evening after a very busy afternoon running errands. This will be a short post, and I'll apologize right up front because I have so many email comments that I need to return visits. Just FYI, on the comments regarding the Word Verification, I will not be returning visits on those specifically ...but will do my best to get round to the others. I hope everyone has either gotten the aggravation fixed, or learned to ignore the box and make & publish the comment anyway. The comments do seem to be going through ok.

Here's a quick card that has been in the works for a while, and no good reason that it didn't get finished sooner.

- PBlack Starlit inked with Versamark, heat embossed with Ranger Queen's Gold. A WoL gold pen added small trunk.

- Snippet of lightweight gold glitter paper serves as a faux mat, (traced around outside of the S/B pennant die that cut the tree). The center of the mat was cut out with a smaller die from the set and ready for another project.

- White paper embossed a Nellie Snellen Christmas oval EF, which was inked with Brillance Galaxy Gold before embossing.

- Gold glitter ribbon and Starform sentiment sticker. Easy.

Ya'll have a wonderful evening. Tomorrow & Thursday will both be out-of-the-house days for us, so hope to catch up on visiting ASAP. Big hugs & God Bless. Thanks for stopping in this evening.


Word Verification

EDIT: A very savvy blogger left me a comment suggesting I try changing the pop-up comment setting to embedding (she had tried & it fixed the problem at her blog). She also left a 2nd comment, just ignoring the Word Verification, and I got both comments. So I just changed the comment setting from POP-UP to EMBEDDED, saved. I am not seeing the WV just now. Hopefully this will help anyone else who is having this aggravation today. (as one blogger put it "blogger playing Silly Billies". I loved that! I was saying something not quite so kind). Just for info, here's how I changed the settings, if you experience the problem, and don't know where to change it. Go to Design (at the top of the blog where you select New Post), Settings (- on the left side), Posts and Comments. Look for Show Word Verification - make sure it is OFF. For Comment Location (about mid way on the page) - I changed the Popup to Embedded. Be sure to save your changes! Hope this will help anyone else who is having the problem today. Thanks to Berni C (Chasing the Dream) for suggesting I try this!

Good afternoon. A very sweet blogger let me know that suddenly Word Verification is set to On for commenting. I did NOT set this to have verification turned ON. I've gone into the settings, and turned it off again, made sure I saved the settings, but I can see that the aggravating thing is still there. I've done this multiple times using Internet Explorer as my browser, saved it. I've gone to Chrome as a browser, with the same results. I do not want to aggravate my lovely readers with having to fight Verification to leave me a comment, as I know exactly how aggravating & time consuming it is to have to do this, when you're trying to comment on many blogs.

If ANYONE has any ideas as to how to fix this, I'm hoping I'll get some responses! I've googled "how to set word verification off" to be sure I'm doing it properly. (Thought I did know, but when the above didn't work, I started looking for help). One thing I read said perhaps something had changed on your computer. Nope, nothing has changed in the last few days that I know about. Not added any new software or changed any settings either.

Please bear with me until I can get this fixed!!! Many thanks. And so happy that you liked the Christmas lights..


Christmas Lights

Second post: Just took some photos of our afternoon's work. Still have some cleanup to be done, and Mr. has put a spotlight on Santa's Sleigh as another light fuse has blown. He didn't want to hunt for it in the dark, plus it's gotten chilly. So here's a look at what is going on round our house. A bit of refining still needs doing, and perhaps we'll put lights on the back deck, which will show in the photos. Our driveway ends in a basement garage, so one of the pics was taken with me standing in the drive, looking up at the front porch. Hope this won't bore you to tears! :-)

On each side of the front door. There's another small tree that will go beside the birdhouse and some containers of silk poinsettias on each side of the door. Also the Christmas wreath for the front door, & a Mr. & Mrs. Claus will go on the white glider. Mr & Mrs. C are fabric, so have to remember to bring them in if it rains.The door mat will get changed to a Christmas one. Maybe something on the bottom table shelf.

The sleigh & deer have LED lights, but are more golden than silver, really pretty. Mr. has a spotlight on the set just now, as another fuse is out. They were lighted earlier this afternoon.

This trio of wicker deer have the moving heads. We've had these a long time, and I was so surprised that no lights needed change out - just attached the heads & everything worked. Small trees that light up are along the walk. It's hard to see the icicle lights in the photo, but they all are working. Thank Heaven!

Coming up our front walk ...LED rocking  horse & gift box.

Rocking horse view from standing in the drive. We may add some garland & lights to the bannisters, if we dig it up from attic storage. At least from the street, all the extension cords don't show!!

Hard to tell in the photo, but these are penguins. The wall hides air conditioners & generator. The back deck rails show above this utility space, and possibly may get some lights on the deck rails.

Mr's lighted train that he has perched on the fender of his trailer - which sits in the driveway pull out. The closeup doesn't show that the lights flash as though the wheels are turning. The neighbors like this one!! Normally he has this decoration up on the deck rails.

Hope you enjoyed the little Christmas tour of our house. Mr. has worked hard today, and I shouldn't pick on him because he gets a bit testy now & again. Testy or  not, he stayed outside in the wind, and got all this put up, just because he's a big sweetie - who is a bit susceptible to coaxing.

G'nite. Hugs too.

Christmas Tree Recycle

Good evening - thanks for dropping by to visit. After a very gray & dreary Saturday we had some lovely sun and about 60F temps today. Very pleasant, except for occasional wind. We just finished up the front Christmas lights - for the afternoon anyway. Mr. had gotten our Santa sleigh & reindeers operational. Only part of the sleigh was lighted & then with the rain Saturday, we both just lazed around inside, staying dry. It wasn't the kind of day one wanted to be working outside. We got the icicle lights strung along the gutters hanging over the front porch. That went better than I expected (You'll remember that blurb that went around on email about when you're choosing the guy you want to want to see how he handles Christmas lights! Mr. is NOT that guy who has the real good humor with untangling/testing/putting up Christmas lights. Nah...he'd have lost out on that one!! - well, I would have too, as it's not my happiest thing to do). I untangled some strings of lights we didn't use on the front porch, so we may put some along the back deck rails. We both commented this might be our last year of doing outside decorations. Most of the folks in our neighborhood decorate, so we feel a little like Mr. Scrooge when we do nothing..which we have some years due to circumstances. Still need to get down some inside things, but that chore doesn't depend on the weather.'s card has been made, just haven't done the photo. For long years I've saved cards that were sent to us, with the thought that 'someday' I would do 'something' with they were just too pretty to throw away. During our declutter project earlier this year, I did go through & toss some humorous cards. Today's card was very simply done with the tree on gold & white. When I spotted it, I knew immediately how it would recycle.

- the tree is atop a black ribbon texture background, with a wider original gold mat on white. Trimmed to keep a scant gold mat, then added another white & gold matting frame with layers raised on dimensional foam squares.

- World Win white c/s was embossed with the Sizzix Knit Texture fade (looks like a Nordic patterned sweater, in case you can't see the pattern in the photo).

- Impression Obsession sentiment was cut from a remaining snippet of the original gold mat trim. Gold star was punched from the same snippet.  The star is a bit out of proportion, but it was the smallest punch I have.

Thanks for all the kind comments about the tribute to Bernie. I just felt some words were due for a very Special Lady who gave so many of us, so much encouragement. I forgot to mention that Bernie also introduced me to Our Darnell, with a link to a post about Onion Layers. It was very inspirational & I just tried to find that particular post but couldn't. Need to clean out my bookmarks as I have way too many to try to find something!

So have a grand evening, God Bless & big hugs. Hope to see ya later, if I can get some good photos of our Christmas decorations lighted up after it gets dark enough tonight.


Bernie...a Lovely Blogger Friend...

Good afternoon. Today will be a tribute goodbye to one of my very first blogger friends, Bernie of Bernie's Craft Closet.  Bernie was so encouraging to me when I first started a blog, and persisted in coaxing me along to submit a card at Pixie's Crafty Workshop (aka The Snippets Playground). With Bernie's gentle persuasion, I finally took courage in hand, submitted a card, and made an utter mess of linking. (Miss Pixie sent me very detailed instructions, which I thought I had followed, but still screwed it up several times, with Miss having to get me sorted). Finally, as they say "the Penny Dropped".Not only did I get to meet another very sweet & generous person in Diane - (Miss Pixie of the Playground), but what fun I've had since then, what lovely folks I've met & what inspiration I've seen. So Big Thanks due to Bernie for that.

Bernie developed a very serious illness later, but continued to post updates for a time.  We would email back & forth, then suddenly...none of the bloggers who 'knew' Bernie, were hearing anything. We worried that she had become just too sick to be on the computer. This morning, Diane (Miss)  shared an email that she'd received from Bernie's sister. Miss was very clever to sift back through some of Bernie's old emails to her,  and contacted some folks she thought were relatives. Bernie's sister replied to that email. We learned that we lost our lovely Bernie nearly a year ago.

Here's a link to a lovely card that Bernie had sent me. I was so totally blown away at the beauty & design of this card, not to mention the time it took Bernie to make it just for me. It made me feel very special. Bernie was indeed - a very special person herself, and I've missed her posts, her emails, and just her way of making someone she would never meet in person, feel like I mattered to her.

So this is me saying: Goodbye Bernie. Rest in Peace, and I know that someday, we WILL meet.
Thanks for visiting and listening. I was very Blessed to get to know such an outstanding person.

Busy in the background, dragging out some Christmas decorations for outside. Did some yard work yesterday afternoon, since it was such a beautifully pleasant day. My back & I were NOT friends last night. Also it was windy & someone in the neighborhood was burning, so rather expected to get my usual allergy problems. Thankfully I'm ok today, for which I said a big Thank you. Trying to do some sorting in the stamp area too.

Hope that you're having a good afternoon wherever you are. I treasure all of you who visit here. Big hugs, and will try to get back soon with a card. God Bless.


Silver Bells

Welcome to my Sunday afternoon world. The day got off to a late start, but no's a sunny day, temp is about 67, so quite pleasant. Today is our Christmas Card Club Challenge. It was our sweet Asha's turn to select the theme, which is Silver Bells.
{Had just started this post and our internet service went down for a this post was delayed again}

I have a PSX stamp that was perfect for this challenge, but it has decided to hide, so after several efforts searching for it, decided to go with the stamp on this card - it's bells - just not the ones I had in mind :-)

- Great Impressions image stamped with Memento Grey Flannel. Colored with Copics, WoS and a Pentel Gold fine point pen on the hangers & streaked through the greenery. WoS silver made these bells glisten so nicely, but don't think the photo shows it. S/B Standard Tag die cut, edged with DI Antique Linen, then Stormy Sky around the edges.

- Background: Canson #98 Mixed Media paper, sprayed with Dylusions Turquoise mixed with white, then added Lindy's Starburst sprays in blues, greens, along with some golds, silver & pearl oversprays. After drying, a Crafters Companion 8x8 Embossalicious Seasonal Music EF embossed in the Grand Calibur. Have purchased several of the 8x8 size EFs, but don't think I'll buy any more. Because: the GC has to be used for this size - which means moving from its storage, gathering the plates for the sandwich. I have to remember how to use the plates with a folder sandwich. Thought I was going to break the machine as it was difficult to pass the sandwich of:  base plate, folder with the mixed media paper, raspberry adapter plate and 2 thin cardboard shims. It did create a lovely effect though!

- snippet of red-white dot paper die cut with a small rectangle from S/B Nautical frames set.

- snippet of green pearl c/s, left from another project was embossed with a holly motif EF, after inking with Memento Cottage Ivy green.

- S/B Twisted Metal Tags & Accents cut the fancy mat behind the bells. This cuts in 2 pieces - used both for the mat.

- MB Jingle Bells with silver glitter paper. Cut the piece  to fit around the focal motif.

- Starform sentiment sticker.

Please do visit my Christmas Card Club teamies (the links are on the right sidebar) and enjoy their take on the week's challenge of Silver Bells.

Since the card has a few Snippets in the layers - there's a new week over at Pixie's Snippet Playground Week 153, I'm going to jump over to say Hello to my little buddy bear, Parsnip. Parsnip is the guardian of the gates at the Playground. Check it out, why don't you? In the meantime, enjoy the last Sunday of November, 2014. Thanks for joining me this afternoon.  Big Hugs.


More Shipping Boxes

Hello & welcome on Saturday afternoon. To update you on my last post: I contacted Amazon via their on-line chat. Thanks to the commenter who suggested contacting Amazon - it reminded me to do just that! I did think over what I wanted to say, as I didn't feel it was Amazon's fault...just that they should be aware that it happened. Dealt with a pleasant lady, who said she understood my frustration, and would make a report of the occurrence. I've purchased from Amazon quite a bit, and this is the first time I've been this aggravated over shipping practices. Supposedly if they get complaints about this kind of vendor policy, they will 'pull the vendor'. ?Maybe? She did offer me a credit on my next purchase. Which was appreciated, but I didn't complain to get a credit...just 'cuz I was so aggravated at such foolishness. One commenter did have a good thought that perhaps the vendor assembly lines packing, with a standard size box, and whatever size the product goes in it for speedy shipment. Could be --- but if so, it's a stupid waste of resources in my opinion. But then again, the buyer pays for it.

Ok, in the mail Friday, 2 more packages was part of the Amazon purchase where I added the tiny brush to the cart. It was a dvd set that shipped directly from Amazon. Here's how it arrived:

You can see the padded envelope size compared to the dvd size. Pretty much an appropriate shipping to keep the dvd safely while in transit. {Yes, I AM a big Martin Clunes fan!}

This package from Blitzy arrived the same day as the Amazon dvd. Again, the size of the box was appropriate to the contents. The box was full. All of the bottles were placed in sealed bags - several bottles to a danger of losing anything as the box was emptied. There was some crumpled tissue paper at the very top - 2 thin sheets.

Here are the 2 boxes side by side. You can see that the Artarama box was nearly twice the size as the fully packed Blitzy box...for one tiny brush.

I'm belaboring the point-- sorry. At least I felt a bit better after I contacted Amazon to let them know this happened. Will anything come of it? Probably not! But I got it off my chest. I hope by posting this situation on the blog, that it will make my readers aware that if getting something from an Amazon 3rd party vendor, and your ship charges look more than expected...just be sure you want that product badly enough to chance this happening. Oh yes, the ship charges from Blitzy for this very full box, were barely half as much as what was paid for the Amazon order which was the DVD & the brush!!! rant about shipping boxes is ended. :-)

DH has been gone yesterday & overnight, so Mrs. has been busy doing some much needed cleaning that doesn't get done when he is home. (he either doesn't want me to do it 'then', or he comes up with somewhere for us to adventure off. And I'm very susceptible to putting off  housework!) So I have been productive at least with house chores. He should be home shortly.

Back tomorrow with a card for our Christmas Card Club, and my plans are to try to do some visiting this afternoon. Happy afternoon. Thanks for popping in, and Big Hugs.


Miscellaneous - Shopping

Good evening. Thanksgiving dinner is eaten, dishes are cleaned, and now it's time to get the fall decorations out of the way, and start with the Christmas look. Some of the houses in our neighborhood already have their decorations up. I applaud their initiative, but that's just a tad too early for our house. I enjoy seeing the decorations, but after about a week, I'm ready to reclaim the space for the 'normal' look. Not sure how much we'll put out this year..

Thanks for all the lovely comments on the Thanksgiving card. What wonderful people my visitors are! This is a 2nd post for today, as I didn't want this one to be part of the gratitude feeling of this morning.

Recently I saw Heather Telford (bits & pieces) use a tool (Kemper Spatter brush) in this tutorial on her blog. Checked Dick Blick, and they didn't have it. Found one at Amazon and it was around $5, and since I'm a bit spatter challenged, and since I was getting 2 other items, I added the spatter brush to the order. The brush was coming from another vendor. I was surprised at the shipping charges. The brush came Tuesday. Here's the brush:

Here's the packaging it was shipped in:

Hopefully this indicates the size of the large box this tiny brush was mailed in. Absolutely ridiculous, as it would have fit very nicely in one of the small padded mailing envelopes and not cost the whopping ship charges. It was packed with the plastic air filled fillers. (not the peanuts...the picture below shows the stuff I hope). The brush was on the top of the bubble wrap, under the 2 layers of air filling stuff. I nearly missed finding it.

The bubble wrap in the bottom was ok...there were 2 of the air filled thing-a-majigs to fill the box so the tiny brush didn't roll around. I couldn't believe the stupidity of mailing something this small in a box this huge, and charging such fees to ship. I don't usually name a business but I will on this one, as I don't think it was an Amazon problem. The contract vendor who sent me the brush was Jerry's Artarama. This is my first experience at buying from this can bet it will be my last. And I'm giving some thought to complaining to Amazon about this. In future Amazon orders, I will be very careful to see where something is shipped from - if it's not directly shipped from Amazon.

Just felt I wanted to share this so that everyone else knows to watch out for this. Maybe there was a reason the huge box was used, but I sure can't think of it!!! Can't wait to try this brush though, and see if I can get spatters instead of blobs.  If  you aren't familiar with Heather's fantastic work, you are in for a REAL treat!

Big hugs. G'nite. (I'm behind on visiting again, so will take a blog post break while I try to catch up. Got a commitment for Sunday, and am looking for a stamp I want to use.) So bye again....


Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all my USA friends.
And to all my international friends: Although you may not celebrate the day as the holiday that we do here in the States, I hope that you will take a few moments to pause and think about all those blessings that you have in _your_ life for which you feel gratitude & thankfulness. We should not need a specific day to contemplate those things, but it's a good reminder when we have a holiday that celebrates them. I hope that you can spend the day with your family or someone you love.
Please check the tab at the top (Cards by Friends)for some lovely holiday cards we have received - and enjoy them with us. In our family, we have such a lot of blessings during our lifetime. One particular area for which I feel especially thankful, is that during this blogging adventure, I've gotten to know so many of you. Have enjoyed your crafting skills, and learned a bit about where you may live in the world. It's a blessing I never had considered some years ago...and I'm very grateful for it.  
Today's card is dedicated to all those lovely people who visit here, leave encouraging & kind comments. I always feel so humbled by that, and even more so, when I pay a return visit and can enjoy work that amazes me with the beauty & skill of the crafter.
- Sweet Stamps Avery (3044J) - colored with Copics & WoS & Pentel fine point pens.
- S/B Labels 39 (S4-462), edged with DI Spiced Marmalade, then Antique Linen  while still in the die. 
- card base covered with a white c/s that had been sponged with Wild Honey, Shabby Shutters, Pine Needles. Sponged Salty Ocean over the greens, then spritzed with a gold spray for some glisten.
- PBlack sentiment die cut - 2 layers, colored with Copics in oranges.  Added a few blue sequins.
Wherever you may be in the world today, I wish you Thankfulness and Happiness. Thanks for joining me today. God Bless. Big Hugs


DeeDee's Country Christmas

Good afternoon.Get set to see some old fashioned country Christmas images from DeeDee's Digis. Knew that I wanted this set as soon as I saw it. One of the things I love about DeeDee's Digi images is the ability to use the image as it is, shade or fancy it up as desired, or print the outline image and color with your own preferences.
Don't forget there's a terrific Customer Appreciation sale going on through December 1st. Good chance to build up your digi stash at great prices.

Additionally, I would like to welcome DeeDee of Stamping Sunshine as my newest follower. Hope you'll take time pop over to enjoy some inspiration with her wonderful designs at her personal blog. (as well as the Design Team and Challenge cards over at DeeDee's Digis  website). Okay, enough blather.

Today is the 25th, so that means Rudolph Day has opened over at Stamping for Pleasure. This is the final challenge for the year, so don't miss playing along if you have the time. Rules are simple: 2 festive cards. Easy Peasy. I did my 2 cards pretty fast.

- Images printed on GP card stock. Added some details with WoS & Pentel Fine Point markers - which sparkle nicely IRL.

- MFT pierced circle die, shaded edges with Memento Desert Sand. One of the angel wings got an ink smudge from my fingers. Fussy cut the wings from a copy paper test print done to check sizing, adhered to the wings - added some glittering Diamond Stickles. WoS added to the Angel's shoes, collar, sox stripes, halo & star on the dress. Mr. Snowman got similar treatment for his star, arms, hat band and vest buttons. Copic shading on the green scarf. Used Copic E40 & E41 for shading around the snowy body, to keep with a vintage feel. Usually I would use BG0000, BG000 for cool shading on the snow.

- Cheery Lynn Italian Doily cut the mat for each image.

- Background for the angel: Applied Sookwang (double sided tape) to c/s. Cut strips of various size from snippets pile. If you look closely, you'll see some pieces of past projects :-). Great way to use up some snippets. Thought it made a nice 'country quilt' look that was appropriate for each image. Some of the pieces were just card stock, but some were off cuts of spraying projects done on mixed media or watercolor paper.

Snowman: Smaller c/s snippet  got the Sookwang. Was not large enough to make a card base. Decided it would work as a border in the center of the card. Which was then obscured by the doily & image! Hence the smaller strip added at the bottom, underneath the sentiment. 

- Cream color seam binding colored with Copic reinkers to compliment the color of the doily. Sentiment is part of the Country Christmas set.

- Snowman card base embossed on cream card stock with a Sheena Snowfall EF after inking the EF with Memento Peanut Brittle Luxe ink. Add some Stampendous frontage over the embossing. Even though the Luxe is a pigment ink that I thought would stay wet long enough for the frantage to adhere, it didn't. Took some Versamark, sprinkled the frantage again, and heated from the underneath. Need more practice with frantage, I must confess. This time, it's covered up anyway. :-)

Off to link up at the November Rudolph Day. Then popping over to see my little buddy bear, Parsnip at the Snippets Playground Week 152- since I have lots of snippety bits on each of these cards. Would love to see you come along and play too.

Take care & have a blessed & wonderful afternoon. Big Hugs.


DeeDee's Digis - Snowman Soup

Good afternoon lovely Visitor. Today has been a rainy & very gray & gloomy Sunday here at our house. Requires the lamps to be turned's that dark. At least I got a few 'office chores' caught up (epaid some bills, worked in the checkbook, fun things of that sort). Then I was ready to take some photos of a card that I had finished Friday night, and found out the camera battery needed to be charged. Aargh.

A big hello to a sweet new follower who has several blogs, so I'll list one and hope that I get the right blog linked. If not, just go enjoy all of them....Hello to Ellie of Just For Fun Rubber Stamps. Thanks so much for becoming a follower here, and Ellie has some inspiring work on each of her blogs that I checked. You're in for a treat.

One other thing: Do be sure to check out the Snowman Soup over at DeeDee's Digis.  The Freebie time has passed (Nov 21), but it's still priced so inexpensively, that you can't pass it up. (Pssst: there's a 50% storewide sale going on too!) In the Snowman Soup set, there are precolored and outline images, along with some very seasonal sentiments.

- Snowman Soup Outline image - printed on Copic Xpress paper & colored with copics.
- WoS on the cup and Snowy's scarf. Candy cane stirrer & cup design colored with some Pentel fine point markers purchased in a set from Costco. Went over these marker colors with WoS clear - and on the cup design, there was a bit of smearing. Worked ok on the cane. I did like the fact that the fine point on the pens allowed good control in a tiny space. This set was approx. in Costco and has quite a few color selections.
- Die cut with S/B Labels 40. Used a mask and Memento Summer Sky & LuLu Lavendar to create some snowbanks for Snowy's grounding. Dabbed some Stickles around for a bit of sparkle on the snow.
- S/B Labels 40 Decorative Accents cut the mat from some stash paper..looks like Mulberry paper, but is much thicker than mulberry. VOS. The white card base is covered with a piece of glossy paper that had Copic reinkers marbled over it. (see this post for how it's done & there's a link to a tutorial in the post as well.)
- Sentiment is from the set, printed out, die cut with a S/B tag label, smudged Summer Sky lightly around the edges.
Do pop over to DeeDee's Digis  and don't miss out on the
Customer Appreciation SaleSave 50% off all digi sets store-wide through December 1st!  
A great opportunity to build your digi stash with some fantastic images for every occasion.
Thanks for joining me this afternoon. We are starting to get a thunder storm moving in. So I'm outta here! Ya'll stay warm & safe. Big Hugs