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Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Sunset Calm

Once again it is the second Wednesday of the month, so therefore it is time
for a new challenge at Words 2 Craft By. Our quote this month is
"Go Where You Feel Most Alive"
You may interpret this any way you wish.

Personally, I feel most alive when I am alone, but surrounded by 
mother nature, be it flora or fauna.

If you have been reading my blog for several years, you will know that due to
John's serious illness, we had no choice but to sell our farm and move into
a retirement village. 

I miss our farm, and the peace and solitude there more than I could have ever
envisaged. A short walk from the rear of the house, up a wooded hill, took me
to the highest vantage point of our farm, from which I had almost 360o views
into the far distance. Many, many years ago, when we were both young and
strong, we carried a heavy wooden bench seat to the small plateau at the top.

Just a tiny portion of the many magnificent vistas from "my" hill.

On countless late afternoons I would sit there and watch the shadows lengthen
as the sun set, and listen to birds settling down for the night. Also, there would 
often be kangaroos grazing nearby. Almost always, several of my cats would be 
sitting with me, while my horses would graze nearby, sometimes coming up to 
nuzzle me. Sunsets have always had a magical quality for me, and as the golden
light of day faded, I would feel all the tensions of the day disappear with it.

With my card, I have tried to replicate that atmosphere, and I have to admit
that as I have been writing this, the memories have made me a tad teary.

Inside my card.

Stamps - Hero Arts Silhouette Grass;  Lavinia (unnamed)
Inks - Versafine Onyx Black; Kaleidacolor Cappuccino Delight (brayered onto gloss cardstock); Distress Ink ?Scattered Straw?
Sentiment peel-off sticker is from my never-decreasing hoard collection

Challenges I would like to enter
Always Fun #62 - 'For A Male/Dad (brother's birthday)
Cards In Envy - "Lets Hear It For The Boys" (brother's birthday)
Crafty Cardmakers #213 - "For A Man/Boy" (brother's birthday)
Get Creative #70 - "Monochromatic"
Retro Rubber #88 - "Anything Goes" (Grass stamp is about 9-10 years old)
Unicorn #33 - "Masculine" (brother's birthday)

For a chance to win a fabulous prize, why not visit Words 2 Craft By, check out the great inspiration by my teamies, then enter your own interpretation of our theme, "Go where you feel most alive".

Until next time, thank you for visiting,
Jennifer. xx

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Golden Time

This is typical of me, isn't it...a drought of posts, and then several in
quick succession. Life has been rather hectic lately, and will continue
to be so for another few weeks, but then I hope to be able to settle
into a more steady pace after that.

This is another design team card from the bundle of cards I made for Kaaren at 
Fat Cat's Card Corner (see previous post). When I received this die, I was at
odds as to what to do with it, but after a while I thought that because the 
die was quite detailed, I would keep the embellishments to a minimum.

A close up look at the flower and leaves I cut using one of the other die-
sets that Kaaren sent me. The paper I used for the matting and the flowers
is a beautiful pearlised damask sheet I have had for many years, and 
honouring my resolution to start to use up some of my immense hoard
collection of beautiful papers, I cut into it. The photo appears as if
the paper is grey and silver, but it is actually gold on cream.

Dies - Find It Trading Yvonne Creations - Vintage Objects YC010132; Creative Expressions by Sue Wilson Passion Flower, Mini Expressions Get Well
Paper - Christina Re
Ribbon and tiny clock face are from my junk stash

Challenges I Would Like To Enter
Challenge Up Your Life #92 - 'Gold'
Creative Craft Cottage #107 - 'Dies and/or Punches'
Monochrome Magic #11 - 'Monochrome'

On a cold and very wet Sunday afternoon, I must be off to prepare dinner, so I will simply say "until next time, thank you for visiting".
Jennifer.  xx

Friday, 1 June 2018

Fat Cats

I'll bet the title of my post got your attention! 

I hope I don't disappoint you, but there is not a cat to be found in this post.

However, I do have some exciting news. A few weeks ago, I was invited to
join the design team at Fat Cat's Card Corner, which is an online papercraft
store in Toowoomba, Queensland (Australia). It is owned by a lovely lady, 
Kaaren, who was the demonstrator at one of the first (perhaps the first?) 
card-making retreats I ever attended many, many years ago. She 
regularly exhibits at craft shows all over Australia, and we
often see each other if I go to them.

As the title of her store suggests, Kaaren is an avid lover of kitty cats, as I am 
too, so we often swap tales (pardon the pun) of our feline furrbabys' antics.

Kaaren sent me a lovely package of dies and an embossing folder, and asked
me to design a bunch of cards for her to display at a show in Perth, W.A., 
which was last week. In between rehearsing for several music gigs, and 
extra days at the Fort, I managed to make 6 cards in just over a week, 
so I will show them to you over the next couple of weeks.

This card features the lovely embossing folder Kaaren sent me, plus flowers cut 
from Foamiran with a very versatile set of dies by Sue Wilson.

Some of the Foamiran flowers and leaves, sponged with
pigment inks, and Gelatos.

A closer look at the flowers. 

Kaaren also sent me this Get Well die by Sue Wilson. The tiny
butterflies were cut with a Martha Stewart punch, then softly
coloured with a cotton bud.
NB Foamiran can be cut with a punch, but I strongly advise you 
to place it in the punch with a piece of ordinary copy paper 
underneath it, otherwise it may tear and 'jam' in the punch.

I have a large supply of Foamiran that our son bought for me in the UK. It is .6mm thick, 
but Kaaren at Fat Cat's Card Corner sells Leane Creatief Flower Foam. 
It is .8mm thick, but otherwise is the same as Foamiran.

Dies - Creative Expressions by Sue Wilson Passion Flower, Get Well
Embossing Folder - Creative Expressions by Sue Wilson Heart Strings
Punch - Martha Stewart - Butterfly Trio
Colouring - Faber-Castell Gelato; unnamed yellow pigment ink
Stamens and glitter glue - from my junk stash

Challenges I would like to enter
Creative Craft Cottage #107 - 'Dies and/or Punches'
The Paper Shelter #341 - 'Flower Power'  WINNER

Until next time, thank you for visiting,
Jennifer.  x

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

"Thank A Teacher"

My goodness, this year is flying by so fast isn't it. Each month seems to last
not much more than a blink of one's eye, which of course means it is time
for a new challenge at Words 2 Craft By. This month our quote is
"If you can read this, thank a teacher."

In the northern hemisphere the school year is coming to a close, so let's show
our gratitude for all the hard-working teachers who have guided us along our
'learning journey'. Although I'm in my late 60s I still have fond memories of
several of my teachers. I LOVE reading, and constantly 
lose myself in a good book. 

For this challenge, I chose to make a fairly large side-step card.

Aren't these the sweetest little pair totally engrossed in their book, 
while their little kitty sleeps soundly, exhausted from playing 
with the ball of wool.

I made these tiny pencils by cutting down toothpicks and colouring 
them with Promarkers to match the colours I used for the image.

Inside the card on which there is plenty of space to write
a personal message.

A side-on view of my easel card.

Image - Sarah Kay Quiet Moments
Colouring - Promarkers
Paper - Kaisercraft Superhero
ABC Tag - Kaisercraft Show and Tell
Dies - Spellbinder Scalloped Long Rectangles

Challenges I would like to enter
Die Cuttin' Divas #368 - 'Teacher Appreciation'  SHOWCASE PICK
The Crafter's Cafe #195 - 'Gatefold or Step Card'

For a chance to win a fabulous prize, why not visit Words 2 Craft By, check out the great inspiration by my teamies, then enter your own interpretation of our theme, "If you can read this, thank a teacher".

Until next time, thank you for your visit, and "Happy Crafting",
Jennifer.  x

Friday, 4 May 2018

Musical Birthday

Do you ever sometimes feel like a mouse on a treadmill, going at full speed but
getting nowhere, or a little duck on a pond looking oh so calm, but paddling
frantically? Yes??? Well that is exactly how I feel lately. I foolishly thought that
when we moved into a retirement village, I would be able to 'play' in my craft 
room almost all day, every day...well we all know what 'thought' did, don't we!

In a rare break from the speeding treadmill, we recently went to a friend's 80th
birthday party. He loves music, so this is the card I made for him. I got my
design inspiration from a card I saw on Pinterest about 12 months ago.

The music paper is quite a luscious cream and gold. I bought it many years ago, 
but, like so many 'paper tragics' I could not cut into it...I have a collection of 
gorgeous papers that could rival any store, but I have come to the 
conclusion that I MUST be brave and start using it.

Inside the card. I love that music die, and have used it many times.

My head is hanging very low, as I bought the 'Happy Birthday' die about
two years ago, and I'm pretty sure this is the first time I have used it.

Dies - Memory Box Grand Happy Birthday Script, Virtuoso Music; Cuttlebug (2"x2") 
Music Notes: Crafts4U Stitched  Square; Spellbinder Scalloped Square

Challenges I would like to enter
Aud Sentiments #202 - 'Masculine + A Sentiment'
Seize The Birthday - 'Anything Goes' (must be a birthday)

I must rush off and prepare some lunch for John, as he plays billiards each Friday afternoon with a couple of other residents here at the village club house.

Until next time, thank you for visiting,
Jennifer.  x

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

"No Spring Skips Its Turn"

It is the second Wednesday of the month and that means it is time
for a new challenge at Words 2 Craft By.

Our quote this month is by Hal Borland...
"No winter lasts forever, no spring skips its turn,
April is a promise that May is bound to keep,
and we know it."

You may interpret it any way you wish.

What could represent Spring more than a daffodil, a chick, and a bunny?
Perhaps lots of beautiful flowers?!?!?

I have had this sweet image for several years, and am ashamed to
admit that it has never seen ink before now. 

I have so many lovely stamps, dies, and papers that have never
been used, so with (I hope) unwavering conviction, I will attempt
to resist all temptation to buy any more supplies until I 
employ much of my existing collection.

Last year I popped into a Spotlight store for some new bathroom linen, but
it would have been rude of me don't you think, to not pay a visit to the art 
and craft department also. There was a huge box of 12x12 paper that
was discontinued, priced at 10 cents/sheet! Much of it was 'yucky'  
or damaged, but on the very bottom there were 6 sheets of this 
lovely, heavy quality paper, all in pristine condition. I
bought all 6 sheets, plus several other very pretty 
sheets. Who doesn't love a bargain!

A close up look at my floral arrangement. I made the large orange
flower from white crepe paper which I coloured with Distress Inks.

The mushrooms are cut with dies from a set of 3, and coloured
with Promarkers.

Challenges I would like to enter
2 Crafty Critter Crazies #13 - 'Anything Goes' (must have a critter)  WINNER
A Gem Of A Challenge #216 - 'Female Birthday with a Sentiment'
Always Fun #53 - 'Anything Goes'
Crafty Animals #13 - 'Anything Goes'
Crazy #272 - 'Spring'
Fab 'n' Funky #389 - 'Cute Critters'
Fussy and Fancy #209 - 'Add A Sentiment'
Incy Wincy Designs - 'Nature and All of Its Beauty'
Make My Monday #68 - 'Things With Wings'
Papercraft Business #5 - 'Anything Goes' (option 'Birthday')  WINNER
Passion For Promarkers #439 - 'Blooming Days'  TOP 5
Rubber Buggy - 'Springtime and/or Flowers'  TOP 3
The Sisterhood of Crafters - 'Bunny Rabbits'

Image - Stampavie - Penny Johnson Clear Stamp Sweet Spring (retired, I think)
Colouring - Promarkers
Paper - American Craft Blossom Boulevard
Dies - Spellbinder Labels Eight and Decorative Labels Eight, Classic and Scalloped Circles; Cheery Lynn Flourish Leaf Strip, Olive Branches, Faerie Mushrooms; Marianne LR 0192 
Scissors - Fiskars Deckle Edged
Flowers, pearl sprays, peel-off stickers are all from my junk stash.

For a chance to win a fab prize, pop over to Words 2 Craft By, check out my teamies lovely creations, and enter your own project which is inspired by Hal Borland's quote.

Until next time, thank you for visiting,
Jennifer. xx

Friday, 30 March 2018

Happy Easter

This year has been rushing by so fast, I seem to be permanently behind.
With our son, granddaughter, and most friends either living overseas or 
many miles away, I have to make cards, and sent them well in advance
of any special occassion. This Easter has caught me by surprise!

Early last week I realised that I needed to make a card (in a BIG hurry) for our 
little granddaughter in London. I have had this pretty paper for ages, and because
I didn't have time to find and colour an Easter image, I decided to use some of
the cute stickers that were included in the paper pad.

Inside the card, again using paper and a sticker from the paper pad.

I didn't have a die that suited the shape of the larger sticker, so I 
hand-cut a matt for it with scallop-edged scissors.

The sticker that I placed in the inside of the card.

Challenges I would like to enter
Crafty Cardmakers #208 - 'Bunnies, Chicks or Eggs'
Cutie Pie #121 - 'Spring Cuties'
Deep Ocean #178 - 'Easter/Spring'

Images - Stickers from First Edition 12x12 pad Spring Drop
Papers - First Edition Spring Drop
Die - Crafts 4U Stitched Circle
Scissors - Fiskers Scallop Edge
Punch - EK Success Corner Punch

This morning, I washed our doonas and towels, so with the shadows lengthening, I had best go and take them off the clothes line.  

I will be on duty at the Fort tomorrow, as there is a very large cruise ship coming into harbour for the day. The 'boss' has asked for as many guides as possible, as we often have up to 1,000 people visit the Fort when these large ships come in. More unseasonally hot weather is predicted tomorrow (today is 30oC), so I will be in bed early tomorrow night, as I do not handle hot weather well, and I will be on my feet all day. Having said that, I find it ever so interesting meeting people from all over the world.

I wish you all a happy and safe Easter.
Jennifer. x