Sunday, May 31, 2009

Gemini birthday explosion #2

This is slightly mis-named because one is for a June Gemini, but the other is my sister-in-law whose birthday fell a few weeks ago when she was away. The Japanese influenced one is for my brother-in-law whose birthday is any day now. I've put them together because the family is all getting together this week to celebrate the other two Gemini birthdays, mine and my son's, over the next couple of days. Haven't made my son's card this year as I found the perfect quirky one at Readings (in Carlton) the other day....hope he remembers to sneak into the busy room to make one for me.

I love the Taylored Expressions window and I think it looks better with these flowers with it. They're SU Eastern Blooms with a grey pearl in the centre of each one. The background went through the cuttlebug to simulate timber. Looks like I was drawn to these colours for both... even the ink for the monkey which is from a set of chinese stamps featuring the 12 years. I looked up the characteristics of people born in the year of the monkey, and it suits my brother-in-law to a T. The creamy coloured paper is the last piece of papyrus in my stash.

Gemini birthday explosion #1

First for two dear friends whose birthdays are at the end of May. Doing really well this year... forgot to send the early one, and took the later one a week early. Just as well they both know me well!! Happy Birthday Sue and Ev.

The green one has pieces of SU Old Olive that I embossed one day at Debbie's place, as well as some Bali Breeze CS, a slip of satin ribbon and some half pearls. The blue one is really a celebration of blue because that's Ev's favourite colour. I picked out the circular shapes for the sentiment and echoed them inside too.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Friday Fill-ins #126

Another Friday, another set of cloze exercises!!

1. It's cold and my socks aren't long enough.

2. Mostly in winter I prefer pumpkin, but sometimes I might eat tomatoes.

3. My favorite health and beauty product is too expensive so I'll settle for a cup of green tea.

4. Travelling by tram gives me a nice long ride and time to read my book.

5. Well, first of all, this is going to be a l-o-n-g story, so sit down and get comfortable.

6. My students, some staff, and three old motorbikes; those were the cast of characters in a recent dream and it was a scary awakening.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to tea with friends, tomorrow my plans include spending time at Debbie's house playing with inks and stamps and Sunday, I want to put the new plants in the garden!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Opus Gluei #10 Off Colour

I hate green, I never wear it, I never buy it, I eat it with my eyes closed.......... and I love it in the garden. So that's why its my choice for an "off colour" challenge - to use a colour you dont normally think of. I tried closing my eyes and reaching into my CS, determined to use whatever I touched first, but it was black and white patterned, so I had to put it back.

Cant say I'm all that thrilled with the result, although I LOVE my new Taylored Expressions window and shutters, but when I make it in black and white it will look different, just wait and see. I used SU Old Olive for the ink, Bali Breeze CS, some heart shaped brads and a wisp of stone coloured ribbon from my "come-in-handy" box.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Opus Gluei Challenge #9 Getaway

Think I just made the deadline with this one.... the challenge was to make something that represented escaping from the routine. Since its always a choice between reading and anything else for me (except housework, that's NEVER a choice), I planned to make a cover for my book so I could pretend I was still reading the same one when in fact I was onto Book 2 (or 3, or 4). Its hard to justify "Just let me finish this Chapter..." when its really the second book for the weekend. But it was all too tricky, so I compromised with a set of bookmarks instead. There's one for Luxury Travel, complete with bling, one to take on that First Class Cruise in my next life, one that represents a postmark, and the fourth is a martini glass.....escape of quite a different kind!!

Everything was from scraps in the busy room, including the luggage labels which I have had for years (its hard to use up a box of 1000). The next time I break the routine, maybe I should tidy the table!!
In case you're interested, the books in the picture are "The Master Butchers Singing Club" by Louise Erdrich, "i before e" by Judy Parkinson, "The Brain That Changes Itself" by Norman Doidge MD, and "Maigret Travels South" by Georges Simenon, all on my to-read pile.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Friday Fill-ins #125

1. Moving house is too traumatic, so I'd better stay put.

2. Laughter is free.

3. My best quality is wishing I knew when to stop.

4. Sordid details.

5. In nearly 10 years, I've eaten far too much chocolate.

6. But that is what I need right now!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to my warm bed, tomorrow my plans include going to the market and Sunday, I want to catch up with friends!

A Gift Of Love

Thankyou to Julia from the depths of her Temple of Crafting for this award. Its one to pass on to people who have made a difference to you by their visits to your blog, the things they write, the interest they take. Its more than a little humbling to receive, but I do know what Julia means when she writes that its so uplifting to read posts from other people. I never dreamed that the blog I started just to see if I could, would turn into this chatty collection of new friends from all over the world. Its just a wonder where playing with paper can take you.

In return, and with great pleasure, I now have the challenge to send it on to 5 friends who have supported me. First of course, my dear friend Ali who spends more time guessing and commenting than she does actually making anything, but I wouldn't want her to change a bit. She's a dear and precious friend. Then without hesitation the talented and generous Debbie. Its absolutely her fault that I crossed the line from adding a stamped image on the occasional card to re-organising my busy room to make room for stamps, inks, pens, doublesided tape and *bling*. Then some new friends from the web... Lisa whose feline inspired blog is a favourite, and who always leaves a comment to brighten my day; Paula from Precioso whose creations are a delight and who's been leaving me cheery messages since the beginning; Michelle whose aptly named blog, Stamp & Smile, is full of friendly images and kind thoughts for her friends and family, and who has supported my blog for ages too.

Ladies, thank you all. Let's pass this forward and fill the world with a little more positive energy than it had yesterday. Lots of love........

Friday, May 15, 2009

Friday Fill Ins #124

1. If we had no wintery days, what would I do with all my woolly scarves??

2. Life is a perpetual astonishment.

3. If I had my life to live over again, I'd have started wearing black earlier.

4. Its amazing what I can do inside of four and twenty hours.

5. If you've never been thrilled by a smoldering look from the man in your life, you haven't lived..

6. To be interested in the changing seasons means taking your camera everywhere you go and capturing quiet stunning moments on film.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to finishing my book, tomorrow my plans include exchanging it at the local book swap stall and Sunday, I want to light the open fire and keep reading!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Opus Gluei Challenge #8 In Reach

A challenge, a clean up and a card.... all in one sitting. This week's Opus Gluei challenge is to reach out and make something with whatever is at hand. No opening boxes or drawers, no wandering round the room gathering bits and pieces. So here's my response, and the only thing I got up to get was the little box with the same paper on it, 'cos it looked good in the photos.

My desk was already cluttered so it was more a "sort and sift" operation to find these bits: some scraps of decoupage paper, a new Teresa Collins stamp from the recent Splitcoasters non-raffle, a pencil and a blender pen. Now to find someone heading off to Egypt.......

Creative Cinema Saturday Challenge #31 Steel Magnolias - the PINK version!!

This is my second attempt, trying to keep to the requirements of the Challenge (using pink), instead of branching off on my first magnolia tangent which was a bit orange!! I seem to be on a roll here, concentrating on the importance friends play in life. The sentiment reads "it takes a long time to grow an old friend".

So this second card is definitely PINK, and uses some DP from Sandylion, more of the Branching Out stamps from Taylored Expressions, a circle of acetate sheet, my cuttlebug and some sparkling bits too. I was thinking that if friendships are like leaves on a tree, even when it looks like the tree is bare, there are still diamonds.... Apologies for feeling very sentimental tonight.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Cinema Saturday Creative Challenge #31 Steel Magnolias

I am always moved by the scenes at the funeral where it seems to me that the women re-discover what is important about their lives and their friendship, and affirm their feelings with passion. It always makes me grateful for the women in my life and the strength we provide for eachother when life gets messy, and the laughter we share every day. Laughter or tears can be so close to the surface, just under the face we show the world - sunshine and shade in truth.

So I began with a single strong flower as similar to a magnolia as I had. I used the SU Fifth Avenue Floral stamp in chalk on the black CS, and also in black over a slim piece of Bali Breeze DP. There are strips of black and gray Dandy DP from Grace Paperz, and a matching piece of thin black satin ribbon. The sentiment is from Taylored Expressions "Branching Out" and I stamped it in gold to match the stamens of the main flower. I got carried away and added some colour to the inside too.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day

Woke up to find these on the kitchen bench this morning.... now I know what all the creeping about at 2am this morning was all about... Flowers are my very favourite gift to receive, especially ones like these from my son. Still smiling several hours later.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Friday Fill-ins #123

Something to start the weekend with..... Discovered this site the other day and this is my first contribution. Every Friday there's a new set of cloze exercises, which must appeal to the teacher in me, and you just have to fill them in. No prizes, just a lot of fun reading everyone-else's options.

1. Apples are to oranges as
silence is to loneliness.

2. All cats should be black and that's all I have to say about that.

3. I think I hear the smoke alarm from the kitchen which means my dinner is burning!!

4. I surrender, here's my white flag.

5. Do what you want to do, but just let me finish this chapter.

6. First there was a runaway chef and behind him was a Radio Flyer wagon; in the wagon was a bucket filled with potatoes.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to going to bed, tomorrow my plans include sleeping in and Sunday, I want to stay in bed!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Welcome Luca

The first grandchild in my circle of friends.... had to make cards to celebrate, so there's one for his lovely parents Barbara and Gary, and one for his very proud grandparents (and two of my dearest friends). Nothing makes you feel how long life is... like the birth of a new generation. Friends please note: not a bloom in sight!! The sentiment is from SU Figures of Speech, stamped with Versamark turquoise and with just a wee bit of colouring. I've used two different Cuttlebug folders. I like the way the flourish and "with love" turned out. Have to use that one again. There's a little bit of Celebrate grosgrain ribbon too.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Opus Gluei Challenge #6 May Day

I made this card with a special friend in mind... she loves things in golden and neutral tones so the choice of colours was already made for me. We've been friends since our boys were born (a l-o-n-g time ago) and the sentiment says it all. I wanted it to look like one lovely bloom on the embossed branch, but maybe that was a bit more of a challenge than I'm up to. Anyway, its my entry for May Day and gave me a chance to use my cuttlebug and just one single SU Bloom and some clear embossing powder. I promise to try another sort of flower soon.... perhaps.

Blog Candy with a twist

Is there something weird and wonderful about yourself that you'd be willing to share with the world? Are there TWO such details about you? Hop over to the Opus Gluei blog and leave a message which tells the world.....and you could win some great blog candy. This little blog combines crafty-ness with a sense of humour that's too good not to share.