Wednesday 29 February 2012

Leapday and Birthday wishes .....

Picture credit
.... It's Leapday today - if you're one of those born on 29th February, I'd like to wish you a Happy Birthday!!  I think it must be quite strange being born on 29th February and only having a "proper" birthday once every four years!!  Famous people born on 29th Feb include:
  • Jimmy Dorsey (band leader) b: 1904, d: 1957
  • Rossini (composer) b: 1792, d: 1868
  • Pope Paul III b: 1468, d: 1549

Things are moving on here. Yesterday, I had the oven professionally cleaned - looks wonderful now!  But I mustn't use it - so I'm going to be cooking on the hob and mircowave for the next couple of weeks!!  Today has been really good - I planned some "me" time and arranged for my hairdresser, Debbie, to come round colour, cut and blow dry my hair.  She's a fabulous hairdresser and I'm absolutely delighted with the cut and colour - it's going to have to keep me going until I can find a new hairdresser in Northville!

I managed to get into my craft room this evening and did some initial tidying - I'm going to be giving away quite a lot of the "scrap" piles.  It felt good clearing it all out this evening.  After that I decided to make a few cards.   You'll get to see the rest later this week.

My cousin, Neil, has his birthday on Friday and I suddenly realised that while I've made lots of cards for my Aunt, I didn't have one ready for me to send to Neil.  So I used the colours from this week's Colour Q - cQc126 challenge and the layout from Clean & Simple Stamping - FTL179 to come up with Neil's card.

I've used some of my lovely new stash from Stampin' Up! to make Neil's card.  I treated myself to a set of SU marker pens; it made colouring the sentiment so easy!  This card was so quick to make and I'm really pleased with it.  And it's one of the most clean and simple designs.

Stamps:  Stampin' Up! - Happiest Birthday Wishes (hostess set), Sprinkled Expressions
Inks:  SU - Early Espresso, Lucky Limeade, Daffodil Delight, Pumpkin Pie
Accessories:  Stamp-a-ma-jig to position stamps and card from stash

I also want to share with you a lovely notebook that Vicky sent me last week (along with my SU goodies - my last Stampers 6 parcel).  She made it specially for our move to America - it's fabulous and is the perfect place to record our adventures.

Don't you just love the sweet little plane?  I think the journal title is absolutely brilliant!  Vicky really is very creative!  Thanks so much for the lovely gift, and for all my super goodies as part of the Stampers 6 Club.  I'll be back in about 3 years!

Before I finish, I'd just like to welcome my newest follower - Susan - really pleased you've joined me!  Do join me tomorrow with the new challenge over at St Luke's Charity Card Challenge.  Bye for now!

Monday 27 February 2012

Don't Scrap it - Less is More 56 .....

.... I managed to get into my craft room first thing this morning.  I know I'm not going to get to play with many challenges - but I'm determined to do at least one or two this week.  So my first card is for this week's challenge at Less Is More - LIM56.  The ladies Chrissie and Mandi want us to use some of the scrap stash the we all have.  I have lots of big huge stash piles which never get smaller!!

I took some photos of the various piles and in the picture above you can see some scraps left over from my St Luke's Card - I really like the pretty papers.  The die cut shape was going to be used on last week's LIM card, but I went with a different idea.  So I thought I'd have a go at using up some of this stash.

I know that the rules say areas of white space and there's no white space on my card at all.  There is, however, a lot of turquoise space and the design is really clean and simple.  I used up the turquoise paper at the bottom of the photo, attached the pretty pink die cut and then found this lovely verse in the papers.  I cut it out using a circular paper punch.  I was going to leave the card like that, but I found this sweet little flower in my scrap box.  It was stamped onto plain white card and heat embossed, so I simply added a touch of colour with my distress inks.

Stamps:  Dawn Bibby - Flower Patch
Inks:  Versafine - Onyx Black; Distress - Evergreen Bough
Spellbinders:  Ironworks Motifs (S5-059)
Accessories:  Kaisercraft Gypsy Sisters Papers free with Simply Homemade; clear embossing powder

The photo below shows some of the drawers in my storage unit - all this is scrap paper - and I think that I'll be passing a lot of it to my local school and/or Scout group for them to use.  I don't think I can take it all to the States with me ;(  But they'll make good use of it all.

It's been a busy weekend.  On Saturday Kathryn and her friends were up surprisingly early!  So we went out to Staples - it was great all the girls love stationery and pens and pencils - I got them all a new notebook.  Then we went window shopping in Toys 'R' Us - the girls immediately headed to the Monster High section to see what new dolls were out.  To be fair to them, they didn't ask for anything at all, they simply came away with a wish list that was huge!!  And then we went to the cinema to see "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" in 3D.  It was a fun film - not outstanding, but a good way to spend a morning with the children.  Then we had lunch out and got home for about 3.00pm.  In time for me to watch the rugby - Wales V England.  It was a tough match to watch - but Wales eventually won!!

I had big plans for Sunday - tidying, sorting and cleaning, and then in my craft room to make some DT cards.  Unfortunately, I woke up feeling rather rough and I ended up spending the day just relaxing.  My head was thumping - I think it's stress.  So I simply watched some TV, read a book and chilled with Kathryn.  It was lovely!

That's all for now - should be back soon.

Sunday 26 February 2012

CR84FN49 - Happy Birthday ....

.... Good morning all!!   We had over 100 entries for CR84FN48 - I think those colours certainly caught the imagination.  Lilac, green and grey is a favourite of mine!

And we have some wonderful colours for CR84FN49 - pretty, fresh, subtle colours - I just love them and the inspiration photos, which are courtesy of Lesley at A Creative Mint, are just fab!  Don't you just love the quote too!

My Aunty Sue (my father's youngest sister) - celebrated her 60th birthday on Friday 24th and I wanted to make a really special card for her.  Sue is only 8 years older than me!!  She's more like a big sister than an Aunt!  And I thought our colours were just perfect for the job.

I decided on a large 8" × 8" card - it's a statement birthday and needs a statement card!!  I started off by cutting a square of plain white card and very lightly pencilling in some guide lines so that I could accurately position the stamps.  I used a large lacey doily and stamped it in pale grey.  After that I stamped the smaller doily into the centre of each large grey doily, finishing off the pattern with the slightly more solid fancy lace doily in yellow.  I used Promakers to add a touch of colour - making it look like tiny yellow flowers.  I mounted the finished background onto a piece of kraft card.

I used a selection of Spellbinder dies to cut layers of kraft, patterned and plain card and mounted them all to make the focal image of the card.  As I'd made a fancy background, I kept the focal image simple - just a birthday greeting.  I spoke to my Aunty Sue just after her birthday and she was absolutely delighted with the card!

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Large Doilies, Dainty Doiles 2, Say It Loud, Vintage Labels 18
Inks: Memento - London Fog; Stampin' Up! - Daffodil Delight, Crumb Cake
Spellbinders:  Fleur de Lis Squares (S4-318) #4, Labels Eighteen (S4-310) # 4, Labels Five (S4-229) #6
Accessories: Promarker - Canary, SU - Crumb Cake card

We have a new Guest Designer joining us for CR84FN49 and 50 - I'm sure that many of you already know Shannon White of Enchanted Ladybug Creations - she makes the cutest cards!  Not only has Shannon got a lovely card for you, but the rest of the team have been making fabulous cards to share with you too - do drop by and leave some love!!!

Before I finish today I've a request to make to those of you who use Word Verification - please can you turn it off!  The old version took a while, but wasn't too bad, but we now have to go through two words (some of which are really hard to read).  It really is very time consuming.  Both Mona and Susan have given instructions on how to turn it off.  I don't have word verification or moderation and I've only had about 4 spams in just over a year!  Thank you.

That's all for now - enjoy the rest of the weekend.  See you soon.

Saturday 25 February 2012

Jest for the pun of it .....

.... I like this title - I've borrowed, or should that be nicked, it from CAS-ual Fridays - CFC41.  The team would like us to make a card and use a pun or a sentiment in a silly way to make a joke.

This one was quick and fun to make.  I knew just which stamps to use and I've gone for a cute pun!  It's a little card, 4" × 4", and has a lightly textured finish.  I stamped my image onto plain white card, cut out it out with one of my new (and under used) nesties, added some colour with distress inks.  Then I stamped the image again three times and coloured it with Promarkers, carefully cut out the sections and layered them onto the main image.  I added some sparkle to the wings and a simple sentiment "bee mine"!

Stamps:  Pink Petticoat Stamps free with Papercraft Essentials; Waltzingmouse - L'il Buddies
Inks:  Memento - Tuxedo Black; Distress - Bundled Sage, Tumbled Glass, Faded Jeans
Spellbinders: Labels Twenty-two (S4-346) # 3
Accessories: A variety of Promarkers to colour the image and edge the die cut; glitter for the wings

Here's a close up photo of the image - you can really see the sparkle on the bee's wings!  She's really cute.  I'm not sure who this card is going to be for - it may simply be one that goes into my stash - for whenever I need a card like this.  I may give it to Jonathan when we get to the States!!

I've enjoyed this challenge - and I think I might have another go later in the week - provided I can find a spare hour to play.  Kathryn and her friends had a very good evening last night!  I checked on them at 10.00pm and suggested that it was time to sleep, and I checked again at just after 11.30pm - still not asleep!  Why do they call it a "sleepover"?  The kids don't sleep!!  But they've had fun and we continue at the movies later today!  Now I'm off to check out what Less is More and Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge have in store for us this week!  See you soon.

Friday 24 February 2012

Less is More and Waltzingmouse .....

.... I was beginning to think that I wouldn't get chance to make any cards this week.  I've been so busy with house stuff.  It's been completely mad here!!  I've had all sorts of workmen in to get certification done on the house so that we can let it while we in Michigan.  About an hour ago - I found I had a bit of time to play!  So this card has been made for two of my favourite challenges, both of which I missed last week.  The challenges are:

This is such a versatile sketch, and for my card I've turned it 90 degrees so that the circles are at the top of the card.  I've used my all time favourite sets from WMS - Free Spirit Boy and Off Beat Backgrounds - they make great cards for teenage boys.  This card is for my darling son, Ben.  Ben lives with his father now and won't be coming to America with us - he'll be out in the summer for a holiday - but I miss having him with us.  He's grown into a tall, handsome young man and I'm very proud of him, so I thought I'd send a card to let him know that I'm thinking of him.

For my colour inspiration I've used an old colour scheme from Colour Q - cQc49 - great for a teenager.  I think it's a funky, fun card for my boy.  I hope he likes it.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Free Spirit - Boy, Off Beat Backgrounds, Free Spirit - Sentiments
Inks:  Stampin' Up! - Night of Navy, Pacific Point, Marina Mist, Soft Suede
Spellbinders:  Stars (S4-092) # 2 & 3, Grommet Tags (S4-322)
Accessories:  Brads from my stash

Kathryn is having a fun evening - she has two of her friends over for a sleepover!!  They are playing at the moment and I don't think I'll see any of them until I call them for tea!  Then tomorrow we're off to the cinema!  While they play tonight, I'm going to try and play too.  Before I head off to make tea, I'd like to say hello and welcome to a couple of new followers - delighted to have you join me to Teresa and JJ Bolton.

That's all for now - I'm off for a nice cup of coffee and put the dinner on.  Take care all.  See you soon.

Tuesday 21 February 2012

Liebster Award ....

... Good morning all - this is a very quick post to say thank you to Helen of Helen's World.  Last week I was delighted to find that Helen had nominated me for the Leibster Award - many thanks, it's much appreciated.

Now there are certain rules attached to accepting the Leibster Award, and they are as follows:

  • The award is given to Bloggers with fewer than 200 followers; the aim to get some new followers.
  • Then pass on the Award to five other Blogs.
So the actual steps involved are:
  1. Link back to the person who gave you the award and thank them.  Done - thanks again Helen.
  2. Post the award on your Blog - Done - proudly displayed above.
  3. Pass on the award to five Bloggers who inspire you - Done, see list below.
  4. Leave a comment on their Blogs to let them know - Done.
I'm passing the Leibster award on to the following Blogs:
That's all for now - I'm off to the local hospital for a blood test now.  Back later to more tidying!!  See you soon.

Sunday 19 February 2012

CR84FN48 - Happy Birthday ....

.... Here we are again - week two of CR84FN48, with our lovely colours of lavender, chartreuse and grey.  We've already had lots of wonderful submissions and I hope you'll join us again this week.

The inspiration photos are from Leslie at A Creative Mint - she takes such pretty pictures.

I've made another birthday card with our colours - I think they're great for pretty, feminine cards.

This is another of the cards that I've been making for my Auntie Sue - as I'm off to America in a few weeks, she wanted me to give her a supply before I move.  I stamped the pretty daisy trellis design from Pic-Nic patterns onto the base of the card.  The flower image was stamped in Versamark, embossed with detail silver and coloured with my Staedtler pencils - they give such a soft look to the image.  I mounted the picture onto a pale green mirri card cut out using the ornate Fleur de Lis squares.  The image actually comes from a treasure box stamp, and the border beneath the flowers was made from the edge of the stamp.  I finished off the card with a simple sentiment in a fancy tag.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Pic-Nic Patterns; Creative Expressions - Treasure Box HHii80J
Inks: Memento - Lulu Lavender; Versamark
Spellbinders: Fancy Tags (S4-235), Fleur de Lis Squares (S4-318) # 3
Accessories:  Embossing powder, mirri card, and card from stash

Do check out the CR84FN blog to see more inspiration cards from our Guest Designer Monika, and also from the design team.

That's all for now.  This is a scheduled post as I'm away for the weekend visiting my Mum, Aunt and Uncle - the last chance we're going to get before we head of to America.  See you soon.

Friday 17 February 2012

Waltzingmouse Blog Party ....

.... It's time for February's Waltzingmouse Blog Party (full details can be found here) and the theme this month is Spring!

We've been so busy here, that I wasn't sure I'd be able to make a card for the Blog Party, but I managed to get an hour in my craft room yesterday evening and made a card.  I've used the layout from this week's Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge - WMSC84 as the basis for the design.  I used soft, pastel colours and made a background with the lovely doily sets.  I used some vellum to make the panel across the card and added some gems.  The tag was cut using my Labels Four Spellbinders die and I coloured the image with promarkers.  Finally, I added a simple sentiment.  It's been a bit grey here, so I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's Spring themed cards.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Bountiful Baskets Additions, Spring Baskets, Doilies Large, Doilies Small
Inks:  Stampin' Up! - Bashful Blue, Pink Pirouette, So Saffron, Certainly Celery
Spellbinders:  Labels Four (S4-190) #5
Accessories:  Ribbon, gems, promarkers, embossing powder and card from stash

Today is the official start of our move to America.  Jonathan heads off this morning and should arrive in Detroit by 4.30pm (US) time - we follow him in about four weeks.  It's all very busy, very exciting, but Kathryn and I both miss Jonathan when he's away.  But we do have a trip to my Mum's to look forward to.  We're having a weekend with family - the last time for a while.  See you soon.

Thursday 16 February 2012

Keep following me and news ....

...  It's been a whirlwind week here at Chez Frings!!!  Jonathan is pretty much ready to go back to Michigan.  The office booked Jonathan's flight yesterday, we packed his cases last night, sold his car this morning and apart from a few bits and pieces, that's Jonathan all ready to go!!!   Kathryn and I will be going out in March - so still a few more weeks here.

I've not had chance to get into my craft room since Monday evening - missing so many challenges!  But I am pleased and delighted to say that the birthday card I posted on Tuesday (see below) for The Play Date Cafe Challenge - PDCC118 has won Cup of the Week!!!  To say that I'm excited would be an understatement.  I'd like to say thank you to the PDCC Team for picking my card - an ambition achieved!

I was checking out Gay's OLW card just now and saw a note from her about the end of Google Friend Connect.  As I don't want to find my Followers disappearing, I've decided to join up with Linky Followers - it's free, and quick and easy to set up.  I've added the new Mr Linky Follower button to my sidebar,  and I'd love it if you would like to continue following me!

That's all for now.  Jonathan is out this evening with some of his friends, so I'm going to try and get an hour in my craft room.  See you soon.

Tuesday 14 February 2012

Circles galore and Valentine wishes ....

.... Good morning all - hope you're all fine and well today.  Life here is a bit hectic, but I got some time in my craft room last night to unwind a bit.  I've got quite a bit to share with you today and I'll start with this card which was made with two challenges in mind:

Last week I told you that my Aunt had asked me to make her a number of cards, including several birthday cards for her boys and husband.  This is birthday card number three - only one more to make.  As soon as I saw the PDCC colours I knew that they would be perfect for a guy card.  I really like Circle Circus, I think the set works really well for masculine cards.  The idea for this came really quickly, but it took a little while to make as there was a lot of masking involved.  I used post-it notes to mask off the sides of the card to leave a central panel, into which I stamped Circle Circus.  To create depth I stamped a few of the images, masked them off, stamped some more, did a bit more masking and some more stamping.  I finished off by adding birthday greetings above and below the stamped panel.

Stamps:  Stampin' Up! - Circle Circus; Waltzingmouse - Free Spirit - Sentiments
Inks:  Kaleidacolor - Blue Breeze; Stampin' Up! - Daffodil Delight
Accessories:  Card from stash

My second card is a Valentine card for my darling husband Jonathan.  The card has been made with two challenges in mind:

This card came together quickly and easily.  The hearts from Sewing Box Hugs just cry out to be paper pieced.  I simply found some coordinating papers (in Jonathan's favourite colour), stamped the hearts, cut out the layers and attached them to the card.  I stamped a simple frame and sentiment to complete the card.

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Frame-It, Sweethearts, Sewing Box Hugs
Ink:  Memento - Cottage Ivy
Paper:  Papermania - Inspirations Cool Tones
Accessories:  Card from stash

The postman brought me a very special envelope yesterday - it was from Meredith and contained all these lovely goodies.

Meredith set up a 100 Follower Giveaway where we had to comment on her post - and I was the lucky winner.  Thank you so much - I can't wait to play with my new goodies.  Not only did I get all these super bits to play with, but Meredith included this beautiful card too - it's gorgeous!

I've another new follower - please join me in welcoming Evelyn - Hi, great to have you here!  Now I'm off to do a bit more sorting out - we've still got quite a lot of decluttering to do, so while the weather is reasonable, I'm going to fill the skip!!  See you soon.

Monday 13 February 2012

A witchy birthday .....

.... My Aunt Jen loves witches.  She has ornaments and pictures all around her house.  Last year, when my Aunt Sue came to visit us she asked me to make Jen a special birthday card for this year.  I knew I had to include a witch - but how to make it look like a birthday card?  Well, this week's colours at Colour Q - cQc123 gave me the answer!  Sadly, I've missed the deadline to submit my card to the challenge this week - but I'm going to post it here anyway!

I started off by stamping a background on the card base.  I used the lovely Halloween bat circle stamp from Hocus Pocus, and stamped it in Peach Parfait.  I stamped the witch cameo (from the same set) onto plain paper and triple embossed it to give a deep shine and really make the Poppy Parade stand out!  The pretty frame was stamped in Regal Rose and it was cut out with an oval die.  I used several Spellbinder dies to cut out the backing layers.  I added some pink ribbon and threaded it through the little holes on the beaded oval.  I finished off with a fancy tag which was sponged with Regal Rose and the sentiment stamped in Poppy Parade.  A witch birthday card for my Aunt!

Stamps:  Waltzingmouse - Hocus Pocus, Cameo Maker; Dawn Bibby - Flower Patch
Inks:  Stampin' Up! - Poppy Parade, Regal Rose, Peach Parfait
Spellbinders:  Fancy Tags Two (S5-030), Lacey Ovals (S4-294) #5, Beaded Ovals (S4-294) #3, Classic Ovals Lg (S4-110) # 3 & 5
Accessories:  Card and ribbon from stash

Here's a close up of the Witch cameo - you can really see the depth of the embossing and gorgeous shine!!  You can also see the layers much better here!  I'm really pleased with the way the card turned out - it's tough making a Halloween Witch look like she belongs on a birthday card!!  I think it's worked - it is certainly one of the more unusual cards I've been asked to make!

We've had a really busy weekend.  On Saturday we headed to my in-laws for the day.  They live just outside Leicester - we did over 280 miles in one day!!!  But it was worth it to see them.  We were able to show them  pictures of our new house and some of Northville.  They really liked the look of both the house and town.  We have a spare room - so there'll be a place for them to stay when they visit!  I suspect we'll have a constant stream of visitors.

On Sunday, we spent the morning filling in various forms - there's so much to do before we go to the US.  For lunch we headed to our favourite Indian restaurant - it was delicious!  In the afternoon Jonathan headed out for a photo shoot with a model that he's been keen to photograph for ages.  And I managed to get an hour in my craft room and made Jen's card.

Kathryn is on her half-term holiday this week and at some point this week I hope to take her and a friend off to the cinema - we want to see The Muppets movie.  It's had great reviews.  But today, she's planning to spend some time with her friends out playing, while we do more house moving stuff!  Oh yes, I'm also off to craft class, it's likely to be the last one I get to.

Before I go, I'd like to welcome another new follower - Hello and welcome to Ann - great to have you here!  I'm going to try and get some time in my craft room this evening while Jonathan is at camera club - so drop by tomorrow!  Have a good week.

Sunday 12 February 2012

CR84FN48 - Birthday wishes ....

.... We're almost half way through February already and it's time for our new challenge at CR84FN.  We have the most gorgeous colours for CR84FN48 - lavender, grey (silver) and chartreuse.

Our inspiration photos are courtesy of A Creative Mint - don't you just love the cotton reels?  I really could spend ages just browsing through Leslie's blog - the photos are super!

I think you all know that I attend a Craft Club in our village - well, we had the first birthday of the year yesterday!!  We all gave Beryl her cards last Monday at class - it was such fun - so many different styles.

I opted for an elegant, but slightly funky card.  I used a large stamp for the focal image - Damask Floral by Impression Obsession.  I love the shape of the leaves and flowers - a bit different.  I stamped the image in Memento ink and coloured it with a variety of Promarkers.  I added some subtle sparkle with my glue pen and some glitter!  I used my Grand Labels 4 to cut out the image and also the backing mat.  In my stash I found this gorgeous piece of patterned mirri card.  I used my Distress inks to add a touch of colour to the edge of the image.  I stamped some flourishes directly on to the card base - in green, lavender and silver - before attaching the topper.  I finished off the card with a simple birthday sentiment.

Stamps:  Impression Obsession - Damask Floral; Waltzingmouse - Flourishes - Scallops & Dots
Inks: Distress - Milled Lavender, Shabby Shutters; Memento - Tuxedo Black
Spellbinders:  Grand Labels 4 (LF-190) # 2 and 3, Fancy Tags (S4-235)
Promarkers:  Amethyst, Lilac, Lavender, Leaf Green, Meadow Green, Apple
Accessories:  Shimmer mirri card, silver embossing powder and card from stash

I know that the rest of the girls have some fabulous projects for you to share - and we are joined again by Monika as our Guest Designer.  Please do check out the links below and leave a comment or three!  We all love to hear from you.

Monika - our Guest Designer

Just in case you missed my post on Friday - my big news is that we are moving to America!!  We are going to be living in Northville, Michigan.  To say that we're excited would be an understatement.  That's all for today. See you soon!

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