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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

New Scenic Stamping Blog

I'm soooooo excited!  I received an email from a very talented blog friend, Olga, introducing me to a new blog.  The name of the blog is Craft a Scene, and it was created by Nancy D of Crafting Passions (she was hooked on scenes by Sheree Campbell of Vancouver Island Craft Junkie).  This is a monthly challenge blog, and there will also be weekly samples and tutorials.
 
I copied the purpose of the blog, so you could see the easy criteria about this scenic blog:

"This is a special focus challenge blog that provides an opportunity for paper craft designers to showcase their scene projects. We especially love Stampscapes and will showcase techniques and tutorials using these wonderful stamps.
However, there are lots of companies that provide images for background scenes such as Stampscapes, Art Impressions, Magnolia, Make It Crafty, Digital Delights and too many others to name. You may also draw in your own scene background.
As long as your project has a background (or foreground) scene you meet the first challenge criteria."

Check this blog out for yourself, and see why I'm so excited!  Sheree is also having a design team call, so you may want to check this out, too.
 
~~~Lee~~~
My apologies go out to Nancy D of Crating Passions for not initially giving her proper credit for starting the Craft a Scene Challenge blog!!!  Thanks!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Elizabeth Dulemba's Halloween Images

I've been a big fan of Elizabeth Dulemba's at Coloring Page Tuesdays (and her awesome children's book illustrations) for well over a year now, but I forget to take pictures of the cards before they get sent out.  I made sure that I didn't let this happen again with these Halloween cards I made for my grandkids.  I love Halloween almost as much as Christmas, so it's not surprising that I make so many Halloween cards.
The first card uses the image called Witchy Potion.  She was printed out on Georgia Pacific cardstock and colored with Prisma colored pencils blended with Gamsol (odorless mineral spirits). 
I have a ball playing with all the fun embellishments that you can find now for Halloween, so I'm not sure who enjoyed these cards more, me or the grandkids!  I'm not a big fan of Walmart, but I'll stop in some of the smaller stores when they're not very busy.  Luckily, I was able to pick up lots of these goodies that they don't carry in my area.  The first of these goodies was the large epoxy brad with the words, Hocus Pocus, on it.  The colored rhinestones were in a set of clear stamps by Studio g.  I found the spider brad last year at the Target $1 Shop, and the Hocus Pocus rub-on this year.
 
The second card uses the image called, Ghost With Pumpkins.  This one was also colored with Prismas and blended with Gamsol. 

I love coloring Elizabeth's images.  They all have such wonderful facial expressions, and many of them focus on reading.  I was lucky enough to have won some of her autographed books last year, and my grandkids still ask me to read them again and again.  They also can't wait to see what Elizabeth will offer as a free image every week on her blog, Coloring Page Tuesdays.  What are you waiting for?  Hop on over to her blog to see all of the wonderful digi images she has to offer.  Don't forget to check out her books, too.  I know that my grandkids will be getting more of her books for Christmas.

Since I've been MIA again, I thought I should share some of the pictures of my youngest grandson, Caleb, that has been taking up so much of my time lately.  I've also been  helping out one of my daughter's friends by watching her baby, Marion.  It's hard to believe there is only 6 months difference between the two of them!

Check out Caleb's rolls on his rolls, and how he loves to laugh!
 

Don't you just love Caleb's baby blues?

Marion loves to lick her toys before she'll play with them.

Marion can't believe I caught her catching flies!
  ~~~Lee~~~
CHALLENGES:
Crafts 4 Eternity - Magical 3
Crafty Catz - Halloween 3
Divas by Design - Something Spooky 2
Forever Friends - Anything Goes with an animal 4
My Mum's Craft Shop -  Spooktacular - 2
There She Goes Clear Stamps - Seasonal (Halloween or Fall)  1
Paper Play - Halloween/Witches! 3
Crafting for All Seasons - Halloween or Color Challenge 2
Stamp-N-Doodle - Halloween 1
Stempelsonnen - Halloween 3
Top Tip Tuesday - Trick or Treat 31

First Card:
Card Base: Rubber Stampede
Card Stock:  Best Occasions Textured (flat black), Glossy Black - stash
Design Paper:  Target $1 Shop (purple),  Hobby Lobby (spiderwebs)   
Hocus Pocus Brad:  Studio G
Spider Brad:  Target $1 Shop
Rhinestones:  Studio g
Rub-Ons:  Target $1 Shop (Hocus Pocus) Basic Grey
Fibers:  My stash
Adhesive:  Scotch Glue Stick
Ink:  Vivid! purple and Memento Tuxedo Black

Second Card:
Card Base:  Stampin Up!
Design Paper:  Cloud 9 Design - Chitchat
Cardstock:  Best Occasions Textured
Boo Brad:  Studio g 
Ribbon:  Target $1 Shop
Stickers:  Stickopotamus (bats), stickeroni (trick or treat), Current (spiderweb & candy corn)
Adhesive:  Scotch Glue Stick & Scotch Quick Dry Adhesive
Ink:  Vivid! purple

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Digi Stealing 101

I've been MIA again, but I saw that Mo Manning  of Digital Pencil Too has been having problems again with people offering her digis to others for free on their sites.  Mo has been very vigilant about this problem, and started a group called "Stamp Out" that's linked on my sidebar.  I wanted everyone to have a chance to read the letter which I included in its entirety below.  Although it's long, please take the time to read it, so you'll understand the significance of sharing digis with others.

"Dear Crafter,

First of all, I do not think you're a horrible person, and I really do appreciate you writing to me.  I wanted to give you a chance to respond -- which is why I didn't simply put up your name and let people "at you."  So I have shown I CARE about you -- even after people cried to know  your name -- but do you care about me?

NONE of us can sit here drawing for hours and hours every day to put new stamp images up if we are not being paid a livable wage.  If you can't buy a stamp -- why in heaven's name would you think that gives you the moral right to steal it from me?

I am a single mum.  I adopted two special needs (from abused homes) children as a single mother, and have raised them all by myself without asking anyone for anything.  I couldn't work in a regular job because my kids had difficulty in regular school for many years . . . so besides trying to heal them emotionally, I had to home-school them AND try to earn enough money to keep a roof over our heads.  For YEARS I slept on a couch in the living room because I couldn't afford a place with real beds for all three of us and I wanted my kids to be the ones to have the beds. Six years ago I almost died because I waited too long to go to the hospital because I couldn't afford health insurance.  I am still under thousands and thousands of dollars hospital bills because of that.  My youngest is 19 now -- and both kids are just out on their own . . . but my own mum is blind, has lung disease and severe arthritis so now I need to take care of her.

The only reason I'm telling you this is because I want you to understand that EVERYONE has their sad stories.  In all these years I have never taken anything that wasn't mine.  I would never say, hey, I can't afford to buy this music CD, so I'll go ask my friends if they can burn a copy for me.  If I can't afford something I want -- I save up for it or I go without.  I can't tell you how many times I've wanted to do something simple like take my kids to see a movie but simply couldn't.  Stamps are a luxury -- not a need.  If you (or someone else) can't afford them -- you can't simply steal them. (And my images are NOT expensive.  They are $3 US no matter where you live in the world because all of them are available through my digital shop.)

And here's the BIGGEST thing.  Every moment that my images are up on a site like yours, people are downloading them freely.  And those people who download them freely think, "Hey, it was just FREE" so they pass them along to OTHER people freely and pretty soon NO ONE needs to buy them anymore because they're available for FREE!  Magnolia now has people like you taking their images and scanning them in.  Here is the history of Magnolia:

1: Magnolia does popular stamps everyone loves.
2: For years people buy them and Magnolia thrives as a business
3: The Internet happens.
4: Crafters enjoy the Internet and become skilled at using computers.
5: Craft forums and Blogs become popular and crafters from all over the world meet and interact.
6: Large swap groups are formed in forums everywhere, sometimes with hundreds of participants each.  People mail each other stacks of stamped images.
7. People start using printed images they have found on the internet -- mostly clip art.
8. Digital stamp companies run by solo artists start springing up.
9. Someone gets the idea to scan in their Magnolia images to make THOSE into digis they can share easily.
10. Others see the scanned in Magnolia images and scan theirs in too.
11.People start emailing each other  "OOOh -- I don't have those ones!!" and scanned images exchange hands.  10s of images multiply into 100s and then 1000s.
12. SOME people decide to compile these thousands of Magnolia images on CDs and sell the collections on Ebay.  Other people decide to BUY these Magnolia CDs.
13. Magnolia's profits DIP because a growing number of people are getting hold of the pirated "digi" Magnolias and don't need to buy the rubber.
14. Magnolia decides it's not worth it to put out new stamps, and there is one more company who needs to find a different product.

We're at about number 13 right now -- Magnolia is a member of my group "Stamp Out" and I happen to know they are confused, worried and not sure what to do about the theft besides GIVE UP.  If this can happen to a long established company like Magnolia -- how quickly do you think it can happen to a small company like mine, or Lily of the Valley, or the Greeting Farm or Stamping Bella, Stampavie or any other.  I don't think people realize most of us are small businesses barely skating by.  This GROWING theft by crafters who care more that they have "this cute stamp too" than that the artist can feed their child -- is KILLING stamp companies.

I am one who will fight to the end to protect my art -- and the art of all my friends.  I will be retaining a lawyer soon, because this is just going too far and in the future someone is going to need to be made an example of.

So to wrap this up, Crafter.  I do believe a person can be redeemed.  I'm hoping you're a person like that.  I will believe your apology is sincere if you not only stop giving (AND RECEIVING) stolen images yourself -- but if you take my letter to heart and help spread the word this is wrong, wrong, wrong.  It worries me that you say you have gotten my images from Photobucket but didn't give me the information to have them taken down.

Please let me know that you have understood my huge frustration is not just with you - but with all who are being "nice" by sharing when in fact you are making artists struggle (even more) to put food on their tables.

xoMo "


The original post of the letter is on Mo's blog here.


Thanks, Mo, for sharing this issue with us!

~~~Lee~~~

Since too many people don't understand the significance of sharing digi stamps, I believe that Mo has done a great job of explaining the problem so eloquently. The people that steal digis remind me of  people that don't spay or neuter their pets. They say that a cat producing 2.8 kittens a liter just two times a year will be responsible for the births of 11,606,077 cats within nine years. So if one person takes just 6 digis a year and reposts them for others to take for free, they could very well be responsible for well over this number thanks to the Internet.  I realize this number seems extraordinary, but I hope that it helps to explain how sharing just a few digis with others can go totally out of control in such a short time period.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

My Bad!

Several months ago I offered blog candy that was won by two very patient people.  I was very sick at the time with my Crohn's Disease, so I had one of my daughters mail the prizes...or so I thought.  I was helping her clean out her car yesterday, and guess what I found.  You're right, both of the blog candy packages!  One of the reasons that I don't blog as often as many other people is due to the problems with my Crohn's Disease, but that is no excuse for me not asking my daughter if she had mailed the packages.  I even had delivery confirmation on the packages, but thought I may have deleted the details when I felt good enough to check my emails again.

I can't believe that Rufus and Velda have been so patient, and both of them never contacted me to see if the blog candy had been shipped yet.  To both of you, I sincerely apologize for this mixup, and I intend to make it right with additional items.  Thanks to both of you for being so gracious!  The packages will be in the mail on Monday...I promise!

~~~Lee~~~

Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Day for Daisies Birthday Card Trio

A while back, A Day for Daisies offered these three birthday digital stamps for free for people to use.  I meant to post them sooner, but life has gotten in the way (as usual).  All of the images are colored with Prismas and blended with OMS.
The first card uses design paper from the American Traditional Design Celebrate Scrapbook Bundle mounted on two layers of cardstock by The Paper Company.  I haven't been using my corner punches very often, but this All Night Media one was perfect for this image.  The ball and balloons have both been given dimension with the use of Glossy Accents.  After looking at this again, I realize that I probably should have also added the Glossy Accents to the snake and snail's shell.  Oh well, I might try it on the next one (or add it later). 
You may probably notice all those nasty little air bubbles that are sometimes caused by shaking the bottle or moving the solution around too much.  If you see these forming before the Glossy Accents dries, you can just pop them with a pin (that I usually have stored in the hole of the applicator tip to also help clear any clogs in the tip). 
The little girl on this image reminds me of a doll that I used to have many moons ago in my youth.  We would always gravitate towards red-headed dolls in our family since two of my sisters had red hair, so the color scheme of this image started with the hair color.
Glossy Accents was also added to the balloons and strawberry on this image.  The cardstock was run through the Cuttlebug.  I was going to go over the dots with the green ink that I used on the background of the image, but it really muddied up the color of the cardstock.  I need to remember to use non-white core cardstock when I use the Cuttlebug unless I'm planning on distressing it or needing the white core to show through the design.  The paper lace was two-sided, so I cut it in half to fit on this card.  The rick-rac was from my mom's stash of trims that I received when she died. 
This image is still driving me a bit more nuts than usual.  I was going to write Happy Birthday on all of the cards, but I wanted to do something unusual on them.  Any ideas that you have to write on the cards would be much appreciated.  Even though I didn't use Glossy Accents on this card, I think I will add it to the cherry, starwberries and grapes.  Due to the lines being so narrow on the wire portions of the image, I used a gel pen to color in the silver to make it show up better. 

If you look closely at the pansies, you may notice that I also used a gel pen on the purple portion to cover up my boo-boo.  When I tried to add the purple to it, the yellow and purple mixed too much to a yucky brown color.  Thank goodness I was able to save it since this was one of the last things I colored.  Since the gel pens were already out, I decided to add some yummy sprinkles to the tops of the cupcakes and some highlights with a white gel pen.
That's it for my A Day for Daisies images for now, but I have tons more to show you later.  I love so many of Tammy's collections that I'm surprised that I have any money left to spend for food!  I adore the ones with the babies, and of course the fairies will always be a favorite of mine. 
~~~Lee~~~

SUPPLIES
Card One:
Paper:  Cardstock by The Paper Company, Celebrate Scrapbook Bundle by American Traditional Designs
Punches:  All Night Media
Distress Ink:  Tea Dye
Bling:  Rhinestones by K & Company 
Ribbon and Charm:  My Stash
Dimension:  Glossy Accents
Adhesive:  Scotch Glue Stick

Card Two:
Paper:  Cardstock ?, DP from my Scrap Stash
Ribbon:  Paper by K & Company and Rick Rac and Ribbon from My Stash
Flowers:  Sandylion Essentials Stickers
Ink:  Stampin' Up! Certainly Celery
Bling:  Colobok Adhesive Flourishes (cut apart)
Dimension:  Glossy Accents
Adhesive:  Scotch Glue Stick

Card Three:
Paper:  Cardstock by The Paper Company,  DP by MME Penny Lane  Chic Stripes and Sweet Blossoms
Punch:  Fiskars Corner Punch
Die Cut:  Creative Memories Oval Cutter
Ink:  Vivid Lavender
Ribbon:  My Stash
Bling:  Rhinestones by K & Company
Adhesive:  Scotch Glue Stick

Challenges:
Card Two:
Stampin' Royalty - Bring on the Bling - 29
Tuesday Throwdown - Dimension and Texture - 29
Other Cards:
Bearly Mine Challenges - Bring on the Bling - 29
Digital Tuesday - Cute and Girly - 2
The Stamping Boutique - Stripes and Dots - 28

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Another Rubber Stamp Company is Closing

I just read an update on the Softpencil Studio facebook page that The Angel Company is closed.  I went to their website to check it out, and this is their statement:

"It is with great sadness that I must announce we are hanging up our wings.  These past several years our industry has faced enormous challenges and as a result, we have seen many companies close their doors.  We continued to hope we could see The Angel Company through this recession and back into prosperous days and we held onto this hope as long as we could.
One of the largest challenges affecting each of us is our industry not being able to support all of the direct sales companies in our field.  Even in a healthy economy, we are a niche market trying to compete for a very limited number of distributors.  As a small company, this has been a grueling challenge for us.  Times are tough for everyone ~ in direct sales and retail environments.
I would like to thank each of you for being an customer and Angel these past 14 years.  Indeed, it has been a pleasure to serve you.
The Angel Company"

We have lost so many fabulous rubber stamp companies, and many of them have been in the last year or so.  The bigger ones have had as many problems in this economy as the smaller ones.  I couldn't always budget to buy stamps from companies like Cornish Heritage Farms or The Angel Company, but I really loved so many of them and figured I could buy some of their items...later.  Well, later came, and they closed, so now people like me have to take a chance to get their favorites from Ebay, Etsy or other sites or stores.  I guess the lesson here is get them while you still can to help make sure that the company will be there tomorrow.    

~~~ Lee~~~

Monday, August 22, 2011

Elaine Cox's Katie Card

I thought it was about time I posted something before all you bloggers think I bit the dust!  Now that school is about to start, I'm going to have much more free time available without the grandkids. :o(

I've actually been making cards when I can, but I haven't posted them for awhile.  This card uses one of the Sweet Pea Stamps called Katie by the artist Elaine Cox.  I received this one from Jennifer Willis in a bloghop.  I love Elaine's images as well as sooooo many other ones offered by Sweet Pea Stamps.  I could easily spend every dollar I have buying all of these gorgeous stamps!
This image was stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black ink and colored with Prismas blended with OMS.  Who couldn't resist added a little sparkle to the leaves with a bit of Stickles.  You probably can't see it from the pics, but I used Glossy Accents on her eyes to give them a bit more depth.  The border was cut out with a Fiskars leaf border punch with some Stickles on it to tie it into the leaves on the image.  The mulberry paper matting was added to add more of an organic feel to the card.  To fray the mulberry paper, all you need to do is run a wet paintbrush around the edges, and then you pull the paper away around the wet sections.

I've been hoarding this gorgeous design paper from the DCWV Once Upon a Time paper stack, but I had to use it with this gorgeous image.  The leaves are embossed paper charms called Artsy Additions from HOTP.  All of the edges of the papers were inked with Tea Dye Distress Ink.  What's an earthy image like this without a bunch of fibers and ribbons from my stash?  It was also time to break out my stash of beads and start using them.

~~~Lee~~~

Supplies:
Ink:  Memento Tuxedo Black, Tea Dye Distress Ink
Color:  Prismacolor Colored Pencils
Dimension:  Glossy Accents
Papers: DCWV Once Upon a Time, The Paper Studio, Mulberry by unknown
Glitter:  Stickles
Embellishments:  HOTP Artsy Additions, Fibers, Ribbons & Beads from my stash

Challenges:
Clear It Out Challenge - Glitter - 29
Craft Us Crazy - Anything Goes -1
The Corrosive Challenge Blog - Girlie - 27
Happileigh Scrappin' Challenge - Girly Girl - 28
Karen's Doodles - Use your punches and diecuts - 28
Paper Crafting Journey - Anything Goes - 1
Paper Playtime - Anything Goes - 26
Pollycraft Monday Challenges - Autumn Colors - 28
Shelley's Images - Show Us What You Got! - 24
Stamp Insanity - Anything Goes - 25
Stamps R Us Challenge Blog - Anything Goes - 4

Saturday, August 20, 2011

1000 Sheets of Paper MEGA Blog Candy!

WOW!  Amy over at 1000 Sheets of Paper is at it again.  Not only is she offering 1000 sheets of paper this year again as blog candy, she is also offering some really awesome stamps from her favorite companies as an added prize!  She decided to break the 1000 sheets of paper into groups of 200 sheets each and I can see why when you see what 1000 sheets looks like: 
The mega prize she is offering is jam-packed with blogger lusciousness.  Take a peek here:
In case you can't see it all, here's what' included:
  • Tickled Pink Lil Steampunk Lilith and others
  • Kraftin Kimmie Clarabelle, sentiments and others
  • The Emerald Fairies Larakins
  • Some Odd Girl Balloon Kaylee and Mooey
  • My Favorite Things Pure Innocence Book in Hand
  • The Craft's Meow Frieda stamps
  • Stamping Bella Arthur and Annie
  • Unity/Bella Blvd house
  • The Greeting Farm Wild Sprouts that I designed (Stella, Ruby, Chelsea and Gigi)
  • CC Designs Birthday Gretel
  • and a Sweet November stamp from each release of this past year (Raspberry Flitter Friend, Briar and Sonata, Princess Isadora, Splash and Wave, Penelope and Juniper, Gemini, Darby and Dazzle, Milk and Cookies Christmas boy, Neva snowflake fairy, Fairwee Josie, jar and sentiments)
Random commenters also have a chance to win some more prizes like the one pictured below.

Since I can't possibly win all of these goodies myself, you will want to hop on over to 1000 Sheets of Paper by September 23rd if you want to have a chance to win any of these goodies!

~~~Lee~~~

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

Please take a moment today to remember those that are still fighting to make this celebration of freedom continue today.  We tend to take so much for granted.  When you're like me and have a servicemember in your family, it helps to remind you what this group of people have to sacrifice to continue to protect our freedoms.

I finally decided to post a card!  I wanted to make some cards for Operation Write Home that could be used for everyday, but yet conveys a patriotic message.  I think this card fits the bill!

You don't have to use patriotic design papers to make a patriotic card.  The design papers I used on this card are from the Winter Wonderland Specialty Pack from K & Company.  Look through that stash of papers that you've been hoarding and start using them!  It's hard to show all of the shimmer of these papers, but here's another angle:
Have a safe and happy 4th!   

REMINDER: More animals end up lost and in shelters on July 4th than any other day of the year. You can help by: 1. Keeping animals inside. 2. Create a calm environment for them with music, fans, etc. 3. Have updated ID tags on all animals and microchip.

~~~Lee~~~

Supplies:
Design Paper:  K & Company Winter Wonderland Specialty Pack,The Paper Company Cool Metallic
Cardstock:  Unknown Red High Gloss
Ink:  Memento Tuxedo Black
Ribbon:  K & Company Smitten Adhesive Paper Ribbon
Stamps:  $1 Rock On set, portion of sayings from Clear Breast Cancer set
Punches:  Martha Stewart Star Hand punches
Adhesive:  Ad Tech
Challenges:
Alota Rubber Stamps, Alota 62- The Star Spangled Banner Lyrics (...whose broad stripes and bright stars...) 7/9
Amber's Crafts and Stuff - Red, White and Blue 7/6
Crafting For All Seasons - Red, White & Blue  7/6
Creative Inspirations Challenge - Red, White & Blue 7/8
CS Designs Challenge - Red, White & Blue 7/31   I won honorable mention for July!!!!
Digi Stamps 4 Joy - Red White & Blue 7/6
Ellephantastic Challenges - Celebration 8/5
Fairy Tale Challenge Blog #18 - America  7/8
Heart Song Inspirations - Red, white and blue and/or paper piecing.  7/9
Little Red Wagon - Patriotic  7/6
Mark's Finest Paper - Patriotic  7/9
Off the Wall Craftiness - Red, white & any shade of blue  7/7
Photo inspiration to the left for Off the Wall Craftiness
Pattie's Creations Design Challenge - Colors of Your Flag - Red/White & Blue 7/14
Pixie Dust Studio - "Be Proud" Red, white & blue with optional stars  7/6
Rainbow Lady's Challenge Blog - Red, White & Blue and patriotic  7/7
The Shabby Tea Room - Happy Fourth of July photo inspiration  7/8
Stamp, Scrap & Doodle Saturdays - Stars & Stripes  7/8
Sugar Creek Hollow - Patriotic with your country's colors  7/8

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Surprise from a High School Friend

Thanks to facebook and other social media, I have had the pleasure to be able to reconnect with some high school friends and others from my home town.  Many of these people I haven't seen or talked for almost 30 years. 

As many of you may already know, I've been trying hard to overcome a 24 hour bug that went overboard on me thanks to my Crohn's Disease.  From what little time I wasn't sleeping or trying to force myself to drink more fluids, I've was able to talk to one of these high school friends while he was waiting on on his truck to load or unload.  Imagine my surprise when I answered the door to this:
Talk about making my day/week/month!!!  I really miss my gardens, so this really helped bring the garden into me.  Since I'm finally up and around again, I do believe that this is just the medicine I needed!  I can't thank Tim Malone enough for cheering me up with these gorgeous flowers!

Since I can never show you enough pictures of my grandkids, I had to show you all how fast Caleb is growing.  He's six months old now and weighs over 19 pounds!  Talk about wanting to always pinch his cheeks!  He is really into laughing hard as you can see by his picture below.
And of course, here's my version of a perfect little Gerber baby here:

~~~Lee~~~

Saturday, June 4, 2011

OWH Memorial Day Bloghop Winner

I hope everyone had a great time checking out the wonderful cards during the Operation Write Home's Memorial Day Blog hop.  I now have tons of new blogs to check out, and hopefully they will spark my mojo since it's been lacking lately.  My computer is finally cooperating enough to post the winner of my blog candy even though Yahoo mail system is down again right now.  Go figure!
I had my grandson, Bradley, pick a name from all of the followers that commented from the OWH Memorial Day blog hop. 
 The winner of the first set of goodies above is:
RUFUS
The winner of the 2nd set of blog candy above is:
Velda

Congratulations ladies!  I will be sending you both an email shortly to let you know that you have won, so I can get your addresses to mail your prizes out to you. The real winners are all of us thanks to our brave men and women that serve in the military!

One last note.  I just talked to Chelsey who is stationed in Haiti for some military training.  She has asked me to ask for your prayers for the people who are still living in horrible conditions even after all of the support that this nation has sent after the Hurricane.  Because of the corruption in the government, most of the lumber that was sent is still sitting in warehouses where it is rotting due to the weather conditions.  The children are supposed  to be able to attend school next year, but this may be too late for many of them.  Human trafficking is still a problem, as well as the government corruption that has pilfered most of the aid to their cronies.  The new president doesn't have the support of the congress, and the people are saying they will revolt if the president isn't able to get his legislation through.  It's easy to forget about regions after a natural disaster, so please take the time to include these people in your prayers.

~~~Lee~~~

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Operation Write Home Memorial Day Bloghop Part II

Welcome to all of you that didn't make it here on Saturday!  Even though I still haven't finished the blog hop yet myself, I was inspired so much that I had to make some more cards.  If you would like to start at the beginning of the hop, you need to go to the Operation Write Home Stars and Stamps blog.  I want to thank everyone that makes and send cards to Operation Write Home, and if you aren't one of those people yet, please check them out!  You won't be disappointed!

This card uses one of my favorite soldier images that is made by Firecracker Designs by Pamela.  Unfortunately, she went out of business earlier this year, so you'll have to check out ebay or other aftermarket places to find it.  I actually won this set on one of my first blog hops with OWH from Shelly Schmidt of My Creative Rumblings.
I am one of the few people left that didn't have a Cuttlebug or other type of diecutting machine.  My daughter wanted to buy me a Cricut, but I decided I wanted the Cuttlebug more mainly due to the cost of the cartridges and lack of being able to use other company's files.  This stars embossing folder is perfect for making OWH cards!  It shows up much better on plain cardstock, but I like it this way also.  I couldn't resist using this Tim Holtz vintage photo Distress Powder for the image and the sentiment.  What better way to add distressing to the rest of the card and the soldier image than by using Distress Ink!

What's a blog hop without blog candy! I've already showed this candy on the previous post, but I wanted you to have an opportunity to win it, too!  I also have another bunch of blog candy that you can also win, but you must be a follower and comment on the May 28th post.  You can win this blog candy by commenting on either day, but since I love to give stuff to my followers, I ask that you must be a follower to win this one too.  I will pick a random winner on Wednesday, June 1st.

Blog candy includes:  New, unmounted Stampin' Up! Eclectic Corners stamp set, numerous ribbons and fiber, a 4 1/2"  round piercing template (this actually is a plastic canvas circle), 2" inch book rings (I use mine to store my longer ribbons on) and additional goodies.

Well, I need to get back to the blog hop, so I hope you will be as inspired as I have been!  Please take a moment this Memorial weekend and give thanks to those that have given the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms!

~~~~Lee~~~~

Card deets:
Stamps:  Firecracker Designs by Pamela, unknown clear acrylic stamp
Ink:  Tim Holtz Distress Inks - tea dye, old paper and walnut stain
Distress Powder:  Tim Holtz vintage photo
Design Paper:  Stripes - kismet by Glitz Design, stars paper unknown
Cardstock: The Paper Company 
Embellishments:  Dimensional Star Stickers by K & Company (another RAK I won from a OWH blog hop!)
Adhesive:  AdTech
Punches:  Corner Rounder EK Success, Corner rounder with star by Carl



Saturday, May 28, 2011

Operation Write Home Memorial Day Bloghop

Sorry for the problem...I was so worried about reporting that Blogger wasn't taking my comments that I didn't even check my own blog to see if it posted.

Welcome to the Operation Write Home Memorial Day Bloghop!  If you want to stop at the beginning of the hop, you can go to the  OWH Stars and Stamps blog

Sit back and relax, and pour yourself your favorite beverage.  This bloghop is long, but I'll guarantee that you will be impressed at the fabulous cards you are about to see!
 I've been honored to call OWH my favorite charity for about two years now.  You see, my daughter, Chelsey, is in the Army National Guard, and she knows first-hand what a box of cards for her troops to send home mean to their morale.  She was stationed in Iraq for over a year, and I sent her cards while she was there that she shared with her troops.  When she returned home, I wanted to continue to share the joy with other soldiers by making cards for them, but I had to have names of soldiers to be able to do this.  Then I found Cards for Heroes, the former name of Operation Write Home.  After reading about their mission, I knew this would be a perfect place to send my hand-made cards that would go directly to the troops that requested them.  Chelsey just left on Wednesday to go to Haiti with the National Guard, but she sends her thanks for all of the wonderful comments that she has received from all of you!  
My card today uses a Stampin' Up! stamp from the set, Nature Walk, that I won from Holley's Hobbies, another OWH blogger.  Holley Smith has been with OWH as long as I have.  She is also on the bloghop today, so you want to make sure and stop at her blog to see her gorgeous projects as well as the Blog Candy she is giving away.  I love all of the red, white and blue cards, but I wanted to do something a bit softer for a missing you card.  I also clear embossed the leaves from this set with Versa Mark, but I don't think you can see it on the picture.
P.S. This pic was taken before I realized that I had forgotten the rhinestones.
I have a bit of Blog Candy that I want to offer to my followers in appreciation for all that you do for Operation Write Home.  You must be a follower and leave a comment below to be entered.   This Blog Candy offer will stay open until Wednesday, June 1st, so everyone has a chance to go through the bloghop.  Sorry, but I can only ship this candy anywhere in the U.S. at this time.
Blog Candy includes numerous fibers and ribbons, an Inkadinkado birthday mini clear stamp, a studio g clear stamp block and an unmounted Sweet Pea stamp by ching-chou kuik called September Rhythm.  More than 50 comments will mean more candy will be offered!
In celebration of receiving more than 50 comments even though I'm not on the "official" blog hop list, I've decided to offer more blog candy!!!  You must be a follower and leave a comment below, and the random drawing will be held on Wednesday, June 1st.  I can only ship in the U.S. at this time.
Blog candy includes an unmounted set of 4 Stampin' Up! stamps called Ecletic Corners, assorted fibers and ribbon, Staples 2" book rings (I hang my long strips of ribbon these and hang them on a clothes rack behind my door), a 4 1/2" piercing template and ???
If you just started  the hop here, the next stop is at Nicolette's blog, Beyond Scrapin.  She has some fabulous projects on her blog along with some more Blog Candy!

~~~~Lee~~~~

Card Deets:
Stamps:  Stampin' Up!
Cardstock:  Bazzill
Design Paper:  The Rouge Bird by My Mind's Eye
Ink: Versa Mark, Top Boss Embossing Ink, Walnut Distress Ink 
Embossing Powder:  Creative Zoo, ?clear detail
Adhesive:  Ad Tech

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

More Stamping and Scrapbook Store Closings

In case you haven't heard yet, Addicted to Rubber Stamps and Addicted to Scrapbooking are going out of business.   The owner has had health issues for a few years, and he is now unable to continue to run the businesses.  In their email, they stated that their suppliers are paid in full, so they will close in style.  The sale started today with everything in the store being offered for 30% off or more as supplies last. 

We all have seen lots of little stores closing lately, but these stores were open for over 15 years.  Hopefully, the employees will be able to find new jobs.  I'm sure this will also be a major hit to the local economy.  I pray that they can recover quickly from this major closure. 

I've only purchased small amounts from then over the years when they would do their progressive sales, but I was always pleased with my purchases.  They offered a 100 day satisfaction guarantee which is unheard of in most retail businesses.  Hopefully, some other companies will be able to pick up with the loss of this major player in the industry.

~~~~ Lee ~~~~

Monday, May 9, 2011

Computer Problems Still %#@&$%@#

I've had my share of computer problems lately which is why I've not been posting or reading blogs lately.  Do you think it could have something to do with the fact that my computer is over 8 years old?  Most people would've kicked a computer to the curb that is this old, but due to many obstacles (i.e. $$$$), I'm not able to replace it anytime soon.  I always replaced my computers every couple years since the 80s, but I was married and had the money to do it then.  Now, I find it challenging to make it through the month before the big $674 I get a month on SSI disappears. 

This brings me to the problems I'm having now.  I usually download my pictures to a version of Adobe Photoshop that I've had for years.  When I went to download some pics when I got my computer back from the shop, a window came up for me to register the software.  Needless to say, it was originally a free trial version that they no longer offer.  I sent an email to the company see if I could at least get my pictures that are locked up but visible when you go to the initial sign-in.  I'm not holding my breath on this, but if they could at least unlock the pics, I'd be very pleased.  I also had a version of Kodak Easy Share that is also MIA along with a version of HP Photosmart.  It was bad enough that I lost my pictures and thousands of digi stamps, but now I lose the photo programs, too!

I've been all over the web the last couple days trying to find ways to do things differently and hoping to learn some new tricks.  One of the websites I came across was called the Blog Guidebook.  Boy, I wish I had found this blog a few years ago!  I was able to find more tips and techniques in a few minutes than I've learned in years.  If you have some unanswered questions about blogging, or you're feeling overwhelmed with all of the new stuff that keeps popping up, then you're in luck!  Check out this blog, and don't forget to check out the other blogs, too.  I'm always amazed at the amount of people and/or blogs I find through different sites.  Oh, another thing I forgot to mention earlier was that all of the blogs I was following through my dashboard are also gone.  That will be my next item I need to investigate further after I finish combing what's left of the hair I pulled out in the past couple days!

I haven't posted any pics of my newest grandson, Caleb, lately, so here's a few to catch you up!


Yes, you're seeing this right.  Our little sweetheart has hearing aids at the ripe old age of four months!  He actually has had them for a couple months, and they don't seem to bother him at all.  He does have hearing, but he can't hear whispers, or anything below 50 decibels.  His mom and dad are involved with an excellent program called Colorado Hears.  I was surprised that they could fit a child this young with hearing aids, and the fact that every state has a program much like Colorado Hears.  If you're wondering how they found his hearing loss so young, they test all newborns at the hospital after they're born.  It took a bit longer to know for sure with Caleb, because he is a VERY sound sleeper. :o)  They usually just clap around them to see if it startles them, but it took a couple extra appointments before they were able to determine the depth of his loss.  Now, grandma just has to remember to keep it down when he has his ears in! lol


I told you the other day about my youngest daughter joining my oldest by graduating from the Department of Corrections Training Academy.  Here she is just after receiving her certificate.


Many of you might recognize her in another type of uniform.  Yes, she is the one that is a sargeant in the Army National Guard.  She just started her new job on 3rd shift last week.  On May 25th, she puts her other hat on and goes to Haiti for several weeks with the National Guard.  She said there are 5 other guards in her prison that are also in the Guard, so I would hate to be the one that has to do all of the scheduling around their Guard duties.  
~~~ Lee ~~~

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