Monday, August 31, 2015

Hello Christmas

Hello Christmas!  Wait! What I really meant to say was, "Go home, Christmas! You're drunk! It is way too early for you!"
Well, unless of course you plan to make cards for it; then Hello, Christmas you are right on time especially since the A Muse Studio holiday catalog goes live in one more day. That's right TOMORROW!  The countdown continues, One....

The Fine Print: All products by A Muse Studio. Stamps--Christmas in Our Town and Very Merry; Cardstock--grass, sugar, and cherry petite polka dot; Other products--corner chomper, card catalog stitched die, peppermint baker's twine and Christmas in our town matching dies.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Spooky Girl

The A Muse Studio 2015 Holiday catalog goes live September 1st and that's just a couple of days away!  I know I've been in denial about the holidays coming but you know the old saying:

Warning: Dates on the Calendar are Closer than they Appear.

I'd certainly hate to miss my favorite holiday--Halloween.  Halloween lets you be someone you're not and eat a ridiculous amount of candy.  Plus you know you get to celebrate all sorts of interesting things like cats, bats, toads, witches, warlocks, and ghosts.  I mean it's all just good clean fun!  

This spooky gal and her feline sidekick are part of the holiday catalog. Stay tuned for more holiday fun as we countdown until the new catalog goes live.  TWO.....

The Fine Print: All products by A Muse Studio.  Stamps--Spooky Girlfriend and Matching Dies (available September 1); cardstock--Seattle, Pumpkin and Sugar; Other products--Mysterious Manor 6x6 Paper Pack. Colored with Copics.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Rudolph on Rudolph Day!

I know, I know! I keep telling anyone who will listen that I'm quite sure "they" are cancelling Christmas this year so I don't have to worry about making Christmas cards this year.  I'm starting to suspect that "they" are going to let me down and let it go on as scheduled.
So on that note I made a Christmas deer card based on a previous deer card. I made my Christmas-y deer earlier this month with the idea of saving it for Rudolph Day.  Then I went and almost forgot all about Scrappy Mo's Rudolph Day!  Whew! I'm glad that y'all are around to keep me on the straight and narrow.

This holiday deer also kicks off a countdown towards the unveiling of the new A Muse Studio holiday catalog!  THREE.....

The Fine Print: All products by A Muse Studio. Dies--Word Art and Card Catalog Tag; cardstock--French Roast, Apple Petite Hexagon, and Fern; other products--French Roast Flocking, Cherry Twinkle Sticker and Fern Stitched Grosgrain.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Lighting the Way

Yesterday I shared some shoreline cards with you and today it will lighthouses! 
The Fine Print: I'm a woman of little words today.  Card parts 'n stuff by Club Scrap "Cape Cod." Check out that star shaped eyelet! Remember when eyelets were all the rage?

Thursday, August 27, 2015

By the shore

Awhile back I played with a stamp set/kit that I thought would be good for summer since it was all about the coast and the shore and getting away.... doesn't that sound nice?
It is true that happiness is being near the water. That's why I carry a water bottle everywhere I go.  It is a wonder I can contain my happiness!
The Fine Print: I actually water colored that boat in the top card which is about unheard of coming from my desk.  Card parts 'n stuff by Club Scrap "Cape Cod."

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

First Day of School

Today is the first day of school where I work so masses of students are coming back. I've always enjoyed the first day of school and helping students get on the right track.
I do have to say those who try to help themselves are a much bigger joy to help than those who just show up and throw up their hands.  I don't know if they are used to mommy doing it for them or what. Some of them are quite pleased to be given so much freedom and others still want us to hold their hands.  I'm not always sure that students make my world a brighter place, but they certainly make it a busier place.

The Fine Print: Seriously, untie the apron string, you are not doing your kid any favors.  All products by A Muse Studio.  Stamps--School Supplies and Happy Thoughts; cardstock--toffee, eucalyptus and sugar; other supplies--buttercup tiny sequins, lemon whip loose glitter, and toffee twine.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Last Minute

It is officially now The Last Minute where I work.  Last semester we instituted a rule that you had to be registered for your classes the day before classes start (very revolutionary, eh?) and classes start tomorrow.
That won't stop folks from showing up tomorrow and acting clueless and surprised but at least we no longer have to bend over backward to get them enrolled.  It is never too to go back to school.  You may, however, be told you have to delay until October when our late start classes start.

Meanwhile, here is a sweet little felt bird I made at a class once.  The class was all about cards without stamping.  The instructor had all sorts of shapes that we traced and cut out to make a variety of bird cards. It was a lot of fun. I own too many stamps to be ignoring them like that though!

The Fine Print: Wait, I just told you all about that card. I got nothing else to tell you about it except if you really must know the greeting was computer generated.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Suspending Reality

I recently commented to a friend that the book I just finished was really good, but I added the caveat, "You know, if you realize you have suspend reality a little bit for fiction to work well."

My friend totally disagreed. She said that it's fiction and you don't have to let reality get in your way. I do agree with her to an extent but I think reality gives you some excellent guidelines.  This book was about an FBI agent who was assigned a case where it was obvious a flea infestation had been introduced. An oriental gentleman comes along and says he knows who is behind it and what it is all about (biological warfare, the introduction of bubonic plague through fleas). The two of them hook up and work together to find the whodunnit to stop his diabolical plans.

That's a bending of fiction I'm willing to accept.  It would be boring to read the reality about how the oriental gentleman had to go through hoops and bureaucratic BS just to get his story heard and the multiple futile trips he made to the FBI.  The author did give nod to the FBI checking out the gentleman and his story.  Would the FBI immediately listen to his every word and include him in the resulting investigation? Probably not but I could let that go without an eyeroll.

But then came the part that I had queue the eyerolls, and to me it almost ruined the book.  The grand finale involved a big confrontational scene. Our FBI guy was ready to go in with his agents and suddenly, oh the oriental guy wants to come too so what the heck, let's invite him. And hey, while we are at it let's bring along the ex-wife who also insists on coming along.
That's where I felt it overstepped the lines. Once I got over that the book was really good.  If that hadn't happened, then the book would have been excellent. I feel the author should have found another way to get them involved in the final scenario rather than insisting they be included in a freaking FBI sting.

My friend said that wouldn't have bothered her at all.  Different strokes for different folks. Where do you fall in the realm of real reality vs. fictional reality?
The Fine Print: Card parts 'n stuff by Club Scrap "Dream in Color."  Paper flower, brads, and clip from my stash.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Feeling Catty. And Bratty.

Have you ever hung out with someone that you usually enjoy hanging out with but for some reason they grate on your nerves that day?  Yeah, that's how I spent the day... hanging out with someone I normally like but today she just irritated the heck out of me.
Oh, did I fail to mention that I home all alone today?  Yeah.....  it turns out that person I mentioned?  That was me! Usually I enjoy my own company but today I was annoying.  Too hot, nope too cold, wanting to do this, nope want to do that, totally motivated, nope not motivated at all, feeling happy, nope feeling witchy...

At least I got a nice card made today.  That front panel is pre-printed (minus the cat) and has a matching envelope to boot.  I found it in my stash today so I thought I'd use it and try it out since I have several more just like it.

The Fine Print: No idea who makes the panel and matching envelope or how long I've had them. I do remember that they came in some crafting grab bag. Cat by Penny Black.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Formal Occasion

Here in Tucson, Arizona, USA, we are not a very formal bunch.  Like really laid back.  Darn near comatose actually.  What that means is we don't dress up for anything.  You can always tell those new in town or on their way to an interview by the suit and tie or similar attire.
If you ever receive an invitation in the mail for a shindig in Tucson and it says "formal attire" that means don't wear plastic flip flops.  Really, that's as hoity toity as we are willing to get.

The Fine Print: Card stuff by Club Scrap "Cape Cod."  Or if someone is all decked out in fancy attire check to see if there is a coffin around them.  Sometimes the dead get all dressed up like they never did in life.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Bachelor's and Beyond

During my life I watched someone near and dear to me climb the career ladder, being rewarded for his excellent work ethic and hard work with promotions and an increased salary.  Along with that came more responsibility, longer hours, and tasks that weren't to his liking.  This man who once enjoyed his job and his work became agitated, cranky, and hated going to work.  He developed a lingering illness.
Few people could understand why he wasn't happy with his good fortune. He had achieved the American dream! There was no reason to complain. This is what everyone wants, isn't it?

Um.... no.

Some of us are quite happy where we are and have no desire to climb and claw our way to the top of the career ladder. Some of us prefer personal happiness over workplace achievements.  A job isn't always a career, and a career isn't always your life, and if you are happy, why is that an issue?
Where I work is an educational institution and lately there has been some hoopla about how much education those who work here should have regardless of experience or length of employment. A large line has been drawn into the desert sand: the haves and the have nots.  We're talking advanced college degrees here: Bachelor's and beyond.  The highest degree our institution grants is an Associate's.  Suddenly the haves are yapping up a storm saying it is inexcusable for anyone who works here to not have at least an Associate's. And once you have that why haven't you gone on for your Bachelor's? And then your Master's? You never thought you'd get ahead without those, did you?!

There's the catch.  The have nots never wanted to play the ladder game.  They were happy where they were.  They did not want to be promoted out of a job they loved and into something they didn't.  Oh sure, some folks dabbled with the idea and got a few college credits here and there but their hearts weren't in it.  The haves don't seem to understand that.  They wanted it; they got it.  Doesn't everybody?

Again... no.  Someone has to peel the damn potatoes.
The Fine Print: Random weird cards to fit my random weird babbling. Card stuff by Club Scrap "Dream in Color" except metal embellishment and glitter flower.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Desk Day!

What's on my workdesk this Wednesday you ask? Why let me tell you!  Not all this stuff:
That was what my desk looked like on Sunday when I was having a play day with myself (and a couple of kitties because I never do anything truly by myself). I was making seashore themed cards and having a grand time.
Apparently seashore themed cards take an amazing amount of scissors as I spy four pair all clustered near each other along with the one in the organizer on top of the desk.  I also have lots of markers, inks, and stamps lying about. My desk today is a cleaner version of what you see up there.

The Fine Print: Like many of you I am in shock over the news of Janet/Fairy Thoughts' passing. She was always very encouraging--encouraged me to try new things, to clean my desk (or not), and to enjoy life.  She will be missed. Seaside stuff by Club Scrap "Cape Cod."

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Rhymes with 'Witch'

I saw my dental person today and he said things would start tasting normal again soon. I'm excited about that.  I promptly went and celebrated by having chicken nuggets for breakfast. It turns out that was a good idea because barbeque sauce trumps weird tastes in the mouth.

Good thing too because I was becoming a:
Yes, it is true, I was becoming a little Miss Witchy Poo, and not in a good way.

The Fine Print: Stamps by Prima/Julie Nutting, glitter paper by DCWV, and shimmer cardstock by A Muse Studio (retired).

Monday, August 17, 2015

Pineapple Upside Down Cake!

This card makes me think of birthdays and pineapple upside down cake (which is rightside up if you live in Australia). Part of me says a pineapple upside cake would be awesome right now and part of me says, "Why bother?"
That's because everything tastes lousy right now as my mouth is still all yucky from last week's surgery.  One of these days pineapple upside cake (rightside up in Australia) will taste awesome again. Just you wait and see!

The Fine Print: Card stuff from Club Scrap "Welcome Home" except for embossing folder by Cuttlebug.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Surreal Sunday

Here are some more of those very different cards. I absolutely hated the kit when I first got it. I didn't like the colors, I didn't like all the glossy or mirrored papers with it, and I truly detested the stamps and those card toppers weren't much better.

But holy cow! However, after playing and playing and playing with this kit, it really has grown on me. I've been having a lot of fun with it.  These are a few more of the cards I made from it.

The Fine Print: Club Scrap "Dream in Color" except brads and paper flower from my stash.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Down by the Sea

Some nautical themed cards for y'all today.
This one started its life as an ATC but got upgraded to a card.  The next one is a notecard. That's all I got today. I hope you are enjoying your day by the sea, or buried in homework, or whatever it is you are doing.
The Fine Print: Top card ATC by Helen R, anchor die by Cheery Lynn. Bottom card all supplies by A Muse Studio "You're a Lifesaver" set.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Easel Cards

I made these easel cards recently. What I mean to say is I started them several weeks ago and just got around to finishing them off.  I was following the directions provided in the infamous Dream in Color kit. The easel they teach fits into an A2 envelope, which is what I prefer to make.
My first go at it got me confused and I ended up with a card whose backside was much longer than the front. I tossed it aside disgustedly.  Later I got the brilliant idea of just cutting it down to make a short and squat easel.  This one fits into the personal correspondence size envelope (whatever they call that).

It was just a happy accident that it worked out that way. Not wanting to distract much from the surreal background I just added a greeting, some punch art, and a metallic purple butterfly.  It was impossible to photograph without glare.
This is what that first card was supposed to have been. We were even given dimensions to cut the red and green overlay pieces as well. I like that brainless crafting. However, I took the brainless too far and stamped the greeting sideways on its layer.

I tossed that aside with the card with too long of a back to be fixed right on another day. For whatever reason, I decided I would try a third easel.  The third time is a charm, right?
I cut and folded this easel on plain white glossy cardstock. I didn't want to add more red and green to it so I tossed it aside with the other reject easel cards and called it a day.

I finished it off this past weekend with the others. I used the dream word collage pieces for the edges and the same greeting as the previous card.  I used paper flowers for embellishments because the card needed something and it needed something that wasn't too weird.

The Fine Print: Stamps, papers, card bases and card toppers by Club Scrap "Dream in Color."  Paper flowers, metallic butterfly, sequins, and punched flowers from my stash. So glad to have mastered the A2 easel!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Hello, My Deer

Do you ever look at a card and just dismiss it?  That is what I did with a recent workshop serving suggestion from A Muse Studio. They said, "Hey make this card for a workshop!" and I responded, "Yeah, right..."
It just didn't speak to me, yet I kept it around.  Since I lack samples I thought I'd just go ahead and make this darn card.  I had a ton of fun making it and really like it once I saw live and in person. I liked it so much I made a second one. It uses a variety of products which is why it is good for a workshop. I'm not sure I want to do flocking at a workshop, but it is a cool card.

Sometimes you just never know.  And that's today's lesson, My Deer.

The Fine Print: All products and supplies by A Muse Studio. Stamps--Hexagon Background and We Just Click; die-Word Art; Cardstock--Mushroom, pistachio, and pebble; inks--mushroom; other supplies--Mermaid splash ink, Bermuda crepe paper, and French Roast flocking. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Out of this World

Sometimes I just outright lie to y'all.  Okay, it isn't intentional.... it just happens.  Recently I said I don't like find directions and then try random things and then promptly showed you my round step card where I did just that.

Strangely enough when I was looking for the link to it to share with someone else I ran across another card that caught my eye and yes, I had to try it.
Here is my first (and so far only) try at making a flap fold card. The card on Splitcoast is made with all Stampin' Up supplies that I don't have so I had to make do with what I do have but it worked out. The folded over flap goes around the circular part and tucks in behind the greeting which is raised up on foam tape.
Here is the card with the top flap flipped up.  The piece that is decorated with star paper and has the alien glued to it flips down to reveal the inside of the card where you can write your note. I didn't photograph that because I had already written a note in it.

The Fine Print: Alien by Paper Smooches, Greetings from Roswell from an old foam set (Stampendous maybe?), star border by Martha Stewart, circle punch by Stampin' Up, scallop circle by Spellbinders, and star paper by unknown.  And yes, that is shimmery yellow paper (retired A Muse) making me an extra liar since I said don't like shimmery, shiny or metallic paper.  I'm a woman, contradiction is the name of the game.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Silly and Summery

Here is a colorful, silly, and summery card for you to enjoy today. I found a cool box that had a designer paper pad with matching cardstock tucked in as well. I knew I could use the box for something else if only it didn't have that bit of stuff in it.  So I made this card, then I decided that was enough card making for one day and that maybe I didn't need that box so much after all.  Yeah, sometimes I am that lazy.

The Fine Print: Flamingo by Stampin' Up, designer paper by Echo Park, ribbon, flowers, and brad from my stash. I'm off having dental surgery today so pray for me if that is your thing or sacrifice a chicken in my name if it isn't, just no flamingo sacrifices.  That way lies madness.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Dream of Colored Flowers

After this weekend's posts where I shared all sorts of wacky weird cards I'm sure you all are glad that it is Monday in hopes I won't be showing off any more cards from that kit. Let  me dash those hopes right now!

Wait, I know you are confused now since these cards are downright normal.  See I was working on that kit when I realized that I needed a sympathy card. Since I had so many random cardstock pieces and card bases lying around I decided to use what I had in front of me.

Then after making one normal card it seemed only right to make another. This kit came with some high quality glossy paper that was a dream to use. I knew it would be perfect for stamping a stamp colored with markers. Yes, this means I still have water based markers that work! Go me!

The Fine Print: Flower stamp by Stampin' Up, Flowers Whisper greeting by A Muse Artstamps, all other supplies and stamps by Club Scrap "Dream in Color" kit. I had lots of vivid dreams last night, inspired more by what is coming up than the surreal cards I've been working on. They were in color though. I think I only ever dreamed in B&W once in my life (after saying that I never did).

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Weirder and Surrealy-er

Here are some more! This card came about because this kit has directions how to cut, fold, and decorate a step card including putting this selfmade topper on it. Only I stamped up the topper in the wrong direction so it won't fit right.  That's how this card was born.... and the step card is still not finsihed.
This card has/had stamping on the red portion in red ink.  The day I made the card it was a nice subtle background.  By the next day it had faded to oblivion. If you hold the card up to the light, squint and twist it back and forth the faint lines can barely be seen.  Lesson learned: don't trust red ink.
This next card has the same story only for whatever reason it didn't fade as much.  You can kinda sorta see it on my photo and it shows up a bit more in real life.
And once again the red ink rears its ugly head (or buries it beneath the sand).  All the other cards are A2 size but I made this one an A6 size. I thought the larger topper rather overwhelmed an A2.  Plus this way I got to use this nifty sheer red ribbon that was included.
The Fine Print: Most everything from Club Scrap "Dream in Color" kit except green jeweled brad, silver brad, red swirly brad, felt flower, photo corners and sequins.  Yes the kit had embellishments but they were beads and charms--too bulky for my taste. Loved the ribbon though. And yes "surrealy-er" is a word.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Weird and Surreal

Do I have to s'plain this to y'all or have you already figured out that these cards are me using up the leftover parts from the latest Club Scrap kit I'm working on?  Kit cards make good weekend blog fodder. I make 'em on a week and I post 'em on a weekend, just not usually the same weekend.

This card was me trying out a blue mirrorcad piece of cardstock. I'm not usually into mirrored, shiny or shimmery cardstock. My inner crow finds it terribly distracting.  However I decided that since everything about this kit was weird and distracting that it would work out and it did.
This card came out really striking for being so odd. I copied an idea they had on their sample page. Their card was a large square card so I scaled it down to A2 size.
I thought all the extra "scraps" of cardstock were plain but I discovered that some of them were printed with more of that surreal stuff. So I paired this one with a card topper and called it good.
Lastly I tried out another version of one of their samples to come up with this card. I really like how this one came out too. I'm not into stamping my own backgrounds (there is way too much designer paper out there to ignore) but my favorite two cards in this bunch are the ones I did.  Go figure.
The Fine Print: All things by Club Scrap "Dream in Color" kit except green glitter brad and tiny sequins.

Friday, August 7, 2015

We'll Always Have Paris

Of course, in my case Paris looks rather industrial and grunge-worthy. I was doing some experimenting of stamping on patterned paper.  It is what it is.
The Fine Print: All supplies by A Muse Studio: "C'est la Vie" stamp set, Haunted House designer paper, Pebble and Slate cardstock with a clear jewel sticker.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

There's Magic in the Air

Actually if there is magic in the air, it is black magic, bad ju-ju magic.  And smoke. There is a lot of that in the air too.  This was a photo shared on Facebook last night of one of our local mountain ranges. I like how it looks like an erupting volcano but it is just an average run-of-the-mill forest fire.
It is also the first day of school for the public schools (yes, already), the city bus drivers are on strike, and there is rain in the city (but not in the mountain where we need it).  It is making for a really odd day thus far.
This is one of the cards I made awhile back where I took an ATC I received in a swap and turned it into a card. I still have a whole box of ATCs but haven't ventured back into playing with them since that first sit down.  You know, one of these days...

Updated to add: Photograph by David Boulton

The Fine Print: I got nothing for credits, no idea who took the photo or made the stamp. I do know the originally ATC was made by Mark G.  The other bits came from my stash.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Workdesk Wednesday: Messing with Shelves

Here is what is on my workdesk on Tuesday, which my husband says is just illegal and wrong to show you Tuesday's desk.  But really either it will be cleaned off by Wednesday (boring) or it will look the same.
There is a pile of cards, my pink princess box, more cards, a floral box that holds label tape for my P-Touch, a dollar, some A Muse orders, drugs, doilies and the new RSM magazine (as of yet untouched).  What I fussed with lately is this. These two are the before shots.

And these two are the after shots. Maybe it didn't make a huge difference in the realm of things but I thought it looked a bit more tidier. I took all the white units with white fronts and put them on the shelf near my desk and the other white furniture. I took all the black units and made all their fronts black and put them on the big shelf with the darker furniture.

I switched the drawers around so the same stuff is in the same place. I also changed the labeling so it is black lettering on clear tape.  When I was messing around I came across these two black and white patterned paper pads:
One my hubby gave me for Christmas and the other I picked up from my friend's crafting estate. For a brief moment I thought about deciding which pad to part with. Then I remembered that I am doing an Iris Folding class in October to a large group.  Guess what? They will be doing black and white cards!

The Fine Print: There is one cat in one of these photos so don't be saying I left them out. Do you want to play 'Where's Charles?' I'll be by later to see what's on your workdesk!