Thursday, December 29, 2011

Our Christmas Trees

I just had to participate in the December Challenge "Happy Helmar Holidays".  They have another fabulous sketch to use. As long as they have monthly challenges I'll be playing along! It's been fun playing along recently. It's always a challenge for me to get scrapbook pages made.  I guess I just love making cards and always need to make a Thank You card. I used the "Deck The Halls" alphabet die from Lifestyle Crafts for the title. I made the red sparkle ornaments with their circle nesting dies and Cherry Bomb Glitter Blast spray paint from Krylon. It's so awesome!!!
I decided the trees needed to be the actual pictures of all my Christmas trees. I fussy cut  photographs of my trees then used Helmar's Zapdots foam mounting squares to pop them up. Have you tried the Helmar Premium Craft Glue? It's like using a hot glue gun, but with out the wait for a hot glue gun to heat up or burn your fingers. So Awesome!!! The Gingerbread tree goes on my kitchen table, I made some of the ornaments with polymer clay. I just love gingerbread! The large tree with burgundy ribbon is for in my living room.TheTop Hat tree is in Parker's room - it has all the handmade beaded snowflakes and garland I made on it. Here's the link for my photo tutorial on how to make them.  Last year I got Chad to help me make a Charlie Brown Christmas tree, it goes in the bonus room. 
  • Along the bottom the sentiments read "There seems a magic in the very name of Christmas. -Charles Dickens",     "We never outgrow our love for presents. -Alexandra Stoddard",      "The beginning is giving. -Muriel Rukeyser.     The white sentiment square reads "The best of all gifts around and Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family. -Burton Hills" The background paper is called Icon Dot Mistletoe from the Mistletoe collection of Making Memories.

Isn't it a great sketch!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tea, tea it's time for tea!

This week at Papercraft Star the challenge is tea or coffee. I decided I would take the challenge of tea since I am a coffee drinker and the inspirational photo is a tea party scene. I used a template from Layers Of Color along with the digital image Roses Botanical 064 from The House Across The Bay to make the teacup.
 I can't help but think of Alice In Wonderland when I think of tea. I love the scene at the Mad Hatters Unbirthday Tea Party.The inside of the card is a pop up teacup. I think I will be sticking to dies to try this technique again! I love the way it turned out, but took me a while to get it glued down just right to pop up when the card is opened! Our Sponsor The House Across The Bay has some fun digital images of scenes of Alice In Wonderland. I thought this image would be fun to use as the tag for a teabag!
Come play along with us and you could win some fun digital images, you have until 6am eastern time on Monday to link up your project. I know the other designers are sure to wow you too!

I'm sharing this with Layers Of Color, Passionately ArtisticMake It Monday and The Stuff Of Success.

Stampers Select White Cardstock, 2008 Bitty Dot Basics paper from Papertrey Ink
Pink Damask paper from Stampin' Up!
Teacup Template from Layers Of Color
Adhesives from Helmar
Ribbon and twine from my stash
Metallic Gold Ink

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Rocky Road Brownies

This week's challenge at Papercraft Star is to make a tag or gift card. I decided to make a simple gift tag and box using digital images from our sponsor The House Across The Bay. I used Christmas Squares 055 to make the box and Vintage Frames 100 for the gift tag.
In the box you can see the gift tag and the Rocky Road Brownies! Yummy!
I'm sharing my recipe with you below.
I hope you will come play along with us this week at Papercraft Star. You have until 6am eastern time to show off your tag or gift card holder. Plus possibly win some fabulous digital downloads!
I know the other designers that will have some things sure to inspire you!
Mmmm, look at all that gooey goodness!

Rocky Road Brownies

1/2 cup melted butter
1/4 milk or buttermilk
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
3/4 chopped nuts  - I prefer pecans
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cocoa powder
1 cup marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease 8x8 pan. Mix butter, milk, egg, vanilla and sugar. Add in the flour and cocoa powder. Stir in the chocolate chips, nuts and marshmallows. Pour in pan and bake about 30-35 minutes. Let cool and serve.

Martha Stewart Gingerbread Punch and scoring Board
Stampin' Up! Merry Christmas Stamp
Green, Red and White cardstock from stash
Red Satin Ribbon from my stash
Holiday pick from Hobby Lobby

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas Ornament

I made this card by fussy cutting several branches from the Christmas Botanicals digital paper. I made the ornaments with Fabric Circles, covered them in Liquid Glass, glued a paperclip to the back, tied a bow on them and attached them to the card with foam mounting squares. Finally I stamped Peaceful Wishes.
You have until 6am eastern time Monday to come play along in this week's challenge at Papercraft Star to win some digital downloads from our sponsor The House Across The Bay.

 I'm sharing my card with The Stuff Of Success and Passionatley Artistic.

Digital Image Fabric Circles 065 & Christmas Botanicals 069 from The House Across The Bay
Ribbon from my stash
Peaceful Wishes stamp from Stampin' Up!
Foam Mounting Squares
Liquid Glass

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Snowman Poop

Today I'm sharing my hot cocoa recipe and a fun little gift I will be giving to my sister Roxanne for Christmas. She's getting Snowman Poop!
Here's the inside of the treat packaging. You can see I stapled a snack size ziploc bag in it full of marshmallows, I mean snowman poop ;)
I made a matching card too. I think the snowman is so funny! I won this digital image recently from at challenge at Sugar Creek Hollow. It's called Bad Hair Day.
I used my Windsor & Newton Iridescent Medium to give a nice shimmer to the snowman. No onto the recipe for the best hot cocoa!


1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup white sugar

1 pinch salt

1/3 cup boiling water

3 1/2 cups milk

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup half-and-half cream


Combine the cocoa, sugar and pinch of salt in a saucepan. Blend in the boiling water. Bring this mixture to an easy boil while you stir. Simmer and stir for about 2 minutes. Watch that it doesn't scorch. Stir in 3 1/2 cups of milk and heat until very hot, but do not boil! Remove from heat and add vanilla. Divide between 4 mugs. Add the cream to the mugs of cocoa to cool it to drinking temperature.

Papercraft Star Challenge 74

The challenge this week is a Tree at Papercraft Star. I used my Copic markers to color my Melissa Frances Tree. For the background I used several digital images from our sponsor The House Across The Bay. The green postcard digital image reminds me of a letter to Santa.
I hope you will come play along with us. I know you will be inspired by the other designers too! If you play along you could win some digital downloads. The challenges are always posted far in advance, which makes it easy to plan and make a craft ahead of time! You have until 6am eastern time to link up!

Christmas Tree - Click Image to Close
Isn't the tree lovely plain white too!
Melissa Frances Tree embellishment
White satin ribbon from my stash

Monday, December 5, 2011

Peace Love Joy

I had fun playing with my twine making this Christmas card. I used a spirelli technique to make the wreath. There are a bunch of video tutorials on You Tube here is the link for one. The stamp and the embossing folder came from Stampin' Up! Spellbinders Labels Sixteen is one of my favorite dies!
I'm  excited to see that Scrapscene posted my card on their blog today! Yay!
Here's the link to it. They are going to highlight a new Christmas card everyday!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Papercraft Star Challenge 73

For Papercraft Star this week the challenge is to use a sketch by Kim Duran of Paper Loves Glue.
I used a digital image from our sponsor The House Across The Bay called Christmas Botanicals 069.
I fussy cut two of the wreaths and glued them together to make it fuller. I put red glitter glue over the berries for a bit of sparkle then added a red bow.Finally I stamped Peaceful Wishes and the poinsettias, added more ribbon and twine. Ta da!
You have until 6am Monday to come play along in this week's challenge to win some digital downloads from our sponsor The House Across The Bay.

I'm sharing my card with The Stuff Of Success and Passionatley Artistic.
Digital Image Christmas Botanicals 069 from The House Across The Bay
Ripe Avocado and Stamper's Select White cardstock from Papertrey Ink
Twine from The Twinery
Red satin ribbon and glitter glue from my stash
Stamps from Stampin' Up!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Pre K

I made this scrapbook page to play along in the Helmar November Challenge "All About YOU and Helmar". I blew up a digital image from The House Across The Bay from the Blank Backgrounds set. I think the report card is just perfect for this Pre K page. I added a few rub ons from Pink Paislee and some fun little foam stickers I found at The Dollar Tree. I used a punch from Stampin' Up! to make the film strip. The twill measuring tape is so fun! I used alphabet dies from Lifestyle Crafts to cut the title "pre-k".
I hate my handwriting, but I know someday Parker will appreciate seeing it in the scrapbooks I make all about him.

Never Ending Card

Today I made a Never Ending card using Christmas Emporium from Graphic 45 and
glue runner from Helmar. There are some great videos on the Internet showing you how to make a never ending card. Basically it is a 6"x6" square card that keeps opening and opening. It's hard to describe, but you cut one 6"x6" paper in half vertically and the other horizontally. Then glue them together only on the four outer corners and start folding.
This is the front of the card.
The first fold.
The second fold.
 I used a few digital images from The House Across The Bay one the final fold.
I was so very excited to see my name listed here as one of the winners of the Graphic 45 Thank You card challenge! These are the goodies from the Christmas Emporium collection Graphic 45 sent me.
Thank you Graphic 45!
And I was totalled thrilled to see my name here as the winner of the Helmar Out Of The Box Challenge winner from October! These are the goodies Helmar sent me.
Thank You Helmar!
I'm sharing this fancy fold card with Graphic 45, Helmar, Sugar Creek Hollow, Passionately Artistic and Tatertots And Jello.

Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake

This recipe was shared with me by my friend Nena in November of 1995. Our families shared Thanksgiving together for a good 10 years before they were assigned another duty station. Sniffle, sniffle, Chad and I still hope that someday they will make it back here to retire. I can't imagine a Thanksgiving or a Christmas dinner without her Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake. Thank you Nena!

Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake

For the crust
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

For the filling
2 eight ounce packages cream cheese softened at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

For the topping
1 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup pecan halves

In a 9" spring form pan mix graham crackers, sugar, butter and pecans. Press mixture on bottom of pan and place in freezer until filling is ready.
In a large bowl cream cheese cream and sugar until smooth. Beat in one egg at a time. Stir in whipping cream, pumpkin, maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. Pour into chilled crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes.
While cheesecake is baking prepare topping by mixing sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Refrigerate until cheesecake is finished baking. Spread topping over hot cheesecake and decorate with pecan halves. Bake for additional 10 minutes. Let stand until it cools down, then refrigerate at least 4 hours.

I know once you try this Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake it will become part of your family tradition too!
Yep, it's that good!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Banana Nut Bread

I got this recipe from my mother probably 20 years ago. It's simple and Oh So Good!
Here's the original recipe card my mother gave me. You can tell it's been well loved because it's a bit stained and no longer white. Notice my notes of baking times for cupcakes (muffins) and mini's. And yes my mother's name really is Mona Lisa.
You can bake a loaf and easily store it in the freezer for 6 months. That's if it doesn't get gobbled up right away! Two loaves will fit in a gallon ziplock bag, I like to wrap them individually in saran wrap first.

Banana Nut Bread
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
4 very ripe bananas
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 3/4 cup flour
1 cup chopped nuts
Preheat oven to 350. Blend eggs, oil and sugar together. Add in bananas. Sift together salt, baking powder, baking soda and flour. Stir in dry ingredients a little at a time. Stir in nuts (I prefer pecans, or you can use walnuts). Pour mixture into greased and floured bread pan. Bake for about 50-55 minutes.

Note: Once a banana gets too ripe for me to eat I will place it in the freezer until I have enough to make Banana Nut Bread. The bananas stay good for at least 6 months in the freezer. Once I'm ready to bake the bread I place them in the sink to thaw. You can run under water to help remove the banana peel.

I'm sharing my recipe with Sugar Creek Hollow, Passionately ArtisticThe Stuff Of Success and
Tatertots And Jello.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Papercraft Star Challenge 72

This weeks challenge at Papercraft Star is Anything Goes!
This lovely vintage image is from our sponsor The House Across The Bay. I just adore the images in the digital collage Garden 117. I love the rich color combination of pumpkin and cranberry.
I hope you will stop by and see the other designers fabulous creations. Plus come play along to win some downloads from The House Across The Bay! You have until 6 am Monday to play along.

Happy Thanksgiving!
Digital image from The House Across The Bay Garden 117
Cardstock Terracotta Tile and Scarlet Jewel from Papertrey Ink
damask embossing folder from Paper Studio
Lace from stash and Snug Hug seam binding

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Gifts In A Jar

For years I have been making Gifts In A Jar to give as Christmas gifts. I've put together jars of  all sorts of recipes like my Rocky Road Brownies, Blondies, Strawberry Muffins and Chili Mac. This year I thought I would make everyone's all time favorite.

Chocolate Chip Cookies In A Jar
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 sugar
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1/4 cup chopped nuts

Sift the flour, baking soda and salt. Layer the ingredients into a 1 quart mason jar. Pack the ingredients down slightly before adding another layer. Cover the jar with fabric and attach a gift tag with ribbon.

Gift Tag Instructions
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 jar Chocolate Chip Cookies Mix

Preheat oven to 350. Beat butter, egg and vanilla until blended. Add cookie jar mix and stir until well blended. Drop heaping spoonfuls of dough onto cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Place cookies on wire rack to cool.

I made the gift tag using Happy Holidays  paper name from Graphic 45, it's part of the Christmas emporium collection. I used  Spellbinders Labels Sixteen to die cut the tag. My handwriting is terrible, so I typed the instructions and taped to the back. Isn't the mug and plate the cutest! It was given to me as a gift years ago, it's something I wish treasure forever!

I'm sharing this with Sugar Creek Hollow, Passionately ArtisticVerve  and Tatertots And Jello

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Christmas Cookies

I just adore Gingerbread men! I think they are the cutest!

I made the bottom of the box out of 12x12 textured red cardstock.
I made the lid out of 8.5x8.5 kraft cardstock. I used a Martha Stewart Gingerbread Punch for the outside edges. I punched scallop border on red cardstock to line the inside square window.I used Scor-tape to attach a piece of clear acetate and to adhere all the edges.

The Gingerbread man stamp came from Stampin' Up! I love kraft and red together! This box can easily hold a dozen homemade chocolate chip cookies.

Thank You

This weeks challenge at Papercraft Star is to make a Thank You card.
I had a piece of color shifting ribbon in my stash that beautifully accents the digital image Halloween from The House Across The Bay. Yes, it's from the Halloween collection! I heat embossed the thank you sentiment on another digi from Vintage Frames, punched it out, outlined the edges and popped it up with some Zapdots.
This is a picture that can be used for inspiration if you choose.
 You have until 6am Monday to share your Thank You Card and have a chance to win some digital downloads from our sponsor The House Across The Bay.  I'm sure you will be inspired by the other designers as well!

I'm sharing my card with Passionately Artistic and The Stuff Of Success.

Thank You stamp and punch from Stampin' Up!
Brown cardstock, ink, embossing powder, zapdots and ribbon from stash

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Merry Christmas

I just love this reindeer from Lifestyle Crafts! I've had if for a couple of years now and it always makes me happy to see it on one of the Christmas cards I make. I popped it up with foam squares and added a red baker's twine bow. The paper and sentiment  came from Stampin' Up! years ago. The other die is from Spellbinders labels 16 also one of my all time favorite dies!

I'm sharing this card with Sugar Creek Hollow and Lifestyle Crafts.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Be Thankful

Do you ever by stampsets because you really love only one of the set?
I had to have the Gift givers stamp set from Stampin' Up! because I just loved the one with the pumpkins.
Gift Givers Clear-Mount Stamp Set - by Stampin' Up!
They are all cute, but I don't think I'd ever make anything with the rest. If anything I'll let Parker ink them up to make cards for his teacher and grandparents.
I just love this twine color! It's called Cappuccino from The Twinery. The paper came from Stampin' Up! It was from one of those simply scrapping sets.
Where has the year gone? I can hardly believe Thanksgiving is almost here! I love this time of the year!
Time to Be Thankful!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thank You

I really love this paper from Graphic 45! Poppy Fields is so fabulous! I'm almost out of it so I need to order more! The base is a piece of Poppy Red cardstock from Papertrey Ink. I love just how heavy their cardstock is! I then cut a piece of poppy Fields to layer over the base. I wanted to highlight just one poppy so I colored it a deeper shade of red, colored the stem a deeper green, then covered it in Liquid Glass. I stamped "Thank You" on vellum using black craft ink and black embossing powder. I trimmed that strip to about 1"wide. Then I made a couple of tiny marks to give me a guide of where to cut with a craft knife. I then slide the vellum under the flower, folded the excess behind the patterned paper and glued the whole piece down in place on the red cardstock. I love that shine on both the sentiment and the flower!

Advent Calendar

This week's challenge for Papercraft Star is to use numbers. So I decided to make an advent calendar and a matching card to give as a Christmas present.
I made a huge white satin bow for the top of the box.
The patterned paper came from BoBunny. It's called Snowy Serenade from the Glitter Series. The shine and sparkle is so gorgeous! I also used a glitter card stock to die cut the numbers.
On the back of the advent calendar I used a digital image "Presented To" to add the finishing touch.
 You have until 6 am Monday to play along with us at Papercraft Star for a chance to win some digital images from our sponsor The House Across The Bay.

Digital Image "Presented To" from The House Across The Bay Blank Backgrounds 045
Designer Paper from BoBunny called Snowy Serenade
Number dies from Lifestyle Crafts SOPH-16-12, SOPH-17-34, SOPH-18-56, SOPH-19-78, SOPH-20-90
Wish Big stamp and ink from Stampin' Up!
White Glitter paper, cardstock and white satin ribbon from stash
White paint
Chipboard Box from Christmas craft section of Hobby Lobby

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Poppy Fields

As soon as I saw this paper from Graphic 45 I knew I had to have it! It's called Poppy Fields.
I just love poppies! They are such a delicate and beautiful flower.
In this picture you can see just how pretty the glitter is. You can also see how I fussy cut the flowers and layered them. They are slightly popped up for a bit of dimension. Did you notice the paper I stamped "Give Thanks" on? I used the same poppy fields paper but white washed it with watered down white acrylic paint to soften the flowers. By doing this the sentiment could stand out. There are some papers I wish would never retire! This is one of them!
I'd like to enter this in the following challenges...Creative Card Crew, Die Cuttin' Divas, My Craft Spot,

Sleeping Death

Today is the last day for Stampotique Designer's Challenge Altered Poison Bottle. I really love all the stamps that Stampotique has for sell! After finding this bottle I couldn't help but think of medieval times, and of Snow White. I stamped the head from Linda on white cardstock then stamped an apple over it. I then used a clear embossing powder to give the apple a nice shine. The tag is a digital image called Grunge Tags from The House Across The Bay. The words actually my own handwriting! I have such terrible handwriting I usually print everything if I need someone else to be able to read it! I think I did a decent job making the little skull and cross bones.