Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! To thank you for visiting my blog during the holiday, I'd like to share a video of my son David playing at the piano recital (see here). Also I have some funny pictures to share . David's Latin teacher did an"Ugly Gift Exchange" within the class. We went through our storage room to find one. Alas!! Here's what we have to offer...

She is not exactly "ugly"... just not quite right :) We got this little kitty statue from our Chinese restaurant Lai-Lai" for being the loyal customers! In return, David received a Sudoku puzzle, it's not ugly at all, his classmate just wanted to be rid of it!
 By the time you read this post, my family and I will be somewhere in Caribbean...under the Aruba sun perhaps! Yes, we are spoiled to go on another cruise to Southern Caribbean. I will definitely take a lot of photos to share upon my return. Wonder what food they will be serving... hm....
Meanwhile, I have a few cards to share. They were made for the blog hop, but weren't posted as I narrowed down to three cards for the blog hop. I like these nevertheless. For the background of this card, I used my new favorite stamp, Row of Houses! So subtle yet so pretty!

For the next one, I cut the stamped image (Row of Houses) half way off the houses and then piece the cut image over the dark brown background as the skyline.  It actually look kind of neat!

And then there's this one similar to the one I made for the blog hop.

Here's doll card that has two removable bookmarks using photo corners with the flowers as covers (one more inside). I made this for Sue's Gradndaughter Megan! Pink and purple are her favoite colors!

Here are hugs from me to you! It's been a wonderful ride thanks to you, my friends! Wish you a A Happy and Healthy New Year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

EBTK Challenge (Sketch #2 )

I love sketch challenges... but this time the challenge for me is to find time to create in the midst of holiday, getting ready for a vacation to the Caribbean (YES!!!) and sending out those Christmas cards/gifts that I had prepared. I am still amazed at responses and comments from the Hero Arts Blog Hop that took place just a few days ago. I will never forget this awesome experience!! So finally I found a few minutes and saw the sketch at EBTK (see here). I didn't want to miss out!

I made this card based loosely on the sketch. I turned the sketch clockwise and just went from there... If there's any downfall to this is that I wish I could follow more strictly with the sketch, but I decided to post it anyways.

Hero Arts stamp: H5328 Row of Houses, PapertreyInk (Everyday Buttons Bits), HA buttons, small flower punch
Thanks for stopping by. I want to thank my friend Kathy R.who sent me this Papertrey Stamp set (see here) for my birthday! I abosolutely LOVE the thoughtful gift that she gave me! I hope you enjoy this fun and wild ride as I did this year. This hobby of mine really took me to places and help me meet /make friends from near and far!
Enjoy the ride!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Hero Arts Blog Hop

I'm absolutely thrilled to be part of this hop (details here)  and can't wait to show you what I have been working on. You just saw the amazing creations from Jackie's blog (The Card Castle, see here), how about some more "excitement" from the 2010 new catalog stamps!!?

First off, let's wake up and smell the coffee! The sleeve of the coffee was embossed in white and cut out and then attached to the stamped image on the card.

Here's the hidden message (I heart U).

For the inside coffee sleeve, I embossed it in white on white paper and then colored the shape (diamond) with copic markers and stamped the message. Hope you enjoy this cup of coffee:)

CL138 Bird Branch Alphabet (I heart U), CL280 elephant (don't forget-sentiment)
K5332 Cup of Coffee
Others: Starbucks coffee sleeve and stir stick, embossing powder

The Row of Houses stamp is perfect for make-your-own house-warming or hostess cards and gifts. I used this stamp to create my own matching wrapping paper and card. I think anyone will be very happy to receive this!

H5328 Row of Houses, CL380 Truly Appreciated
Others: HA kraft card, ribbons, twine, Stickles, charm (heart), HA ink (Apricot)
Last but not least, I love the new dolls! The images are just the right size and so easy to work with. I want to show off the two dolls in the set. So making a window card seems like the perfect choice. For the very faint background of the doll in the window, I used the Row of Houses stamp.

CL 381 Sweet Wonderful You, H5328 Row of Houses
Others: HA note card, buttons, CB (scallop circle), copic markers, Prisma pencils
Thanks SO much for stopping by and now please hop over to Kandis Smith blog (My Creative Treasury (see here) ! HAVE FUN HOPPING!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Keeping up with the "traditions"...

Since my kids started in preschool, I started baking Christmas cookies as our gifts to the teachers. Over the years, I got ambitious some times and one year I made 12 kinds of cookies and squares....and then the kids grow older and now there's just one in high school. Here' the making of the Chocolate Tarts.

 I thought maybe it is time to stop. Do high school teachers really want cookies (heehee)!? My son David still insists in giving all his teachers the cookies. So there goes my12 days of baking -on and off. Today I finally finished making them! Phew! Now I can concentrate on something that's more important...stamping!
I made Christmas Shortbread, Pecan Almond Squares, Lemon Squares, Chocolate Chip Oatmeal and Chocolate Tarts....Keeping it simple is hard to do! 

Here are the goodies....I used the plate that a friend who kindly sent it to me for my birthday. She loves hearts and flowers...and she is close to my heart. So you-know-who gave me this BEAUTIFUL metal plate all the way from Ohio! Isn't it lovely?

And now I will present the goodies to David's 8 teachers. My tags are super simple. I must say after spending much time baking, I simply ran out of mojo to make tags. Have fun with the baking if you are planning to do so this holiday...Thanks for dropping by! Feel free to claim a cyber cookie :) All recipes are from Martha Stewart Website and blog!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A digital card for Carrdvarks Challenge

I am so blessed to know Linda (see here) through Hero Arts Flickr back in Spring. To me, she reminds me of Diane Lane in movie "Under the Tuscan Sun". Linda's new life in Italy is like an adventure of her own. This is what Linda wrote about herself : "I'm your not-so-typical LA girl who took the plunge and moved to the Tuscan hills of Italy! Now pursuing a freelance life of designing, illustrator and becoming a working artist full-time." Linda has been designing her products and has a shop in Etsy (here) and has her on-line store at Zazzle (here). I was given this beautiful digital image that she created.

So I tried my best to make this LOVELY digital stamp image shine!

I am entering this card for the Carrdvarks challenge see (here).

Thank you, Linda, for creating these incredible images as they are so FUN to work with!! Linda has some free downloadable Christmas list (here) and many goodies in her sites. Do check it out when you have a chance!

Yup, it's my birthday:)

I am posting a birthday card that I made a little while ago. I didn't make it for any particular reason, but it seems appropriate to share TODAY.

A BIG thanks to those of you who come to my blog and make your sincere comments and give me your positive feedback. I wish I could give you a big hug and give you my home-made cookies!!!! These are the highlight of this past year....they made me smile :)

As I look back this year, I have SO much to be thankful daily dose of Hero Arts  friends, Hostess sistas and my supportive family. Your encouragement mean so much to me.
Thank YOU from the bottom of my heart!
Here's a video of David's school orchestra (see here). Hope you enjoy!

Monday, December 7, 2009

EtsyInspired Challenge #65

I know I want to make a card as soon as I see the EtsyInspired Challenge (see here). I love the awesome soaps called So Stinking Sweet Body and Soap shop (see here) that are featured. Those soap bars are simply yummy-licious and I want to ...well, eat them !

 I made this card with the Hero Arts stamp called Funny flowers. It was a freebie from Hero Arts when I ordered stamps one time. I just love Hero Arts! Can't wait  to see the new 2010 stamps that is being revealed (see here) this week!

It's fun to do these challenges as they give my little brain a big work out :) I hope you have a great week ahead! Thanks for leaving me your sweet comments! I appreciate every one of them!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Mr. Mouse on skis!

Just sharing a card that I madefor Everything But the Kitchen Sink challenge (see here) which requires the use of toothpick. This is my 2nd entry. I had the idea of the Dancing Mouse skiing. After much consultation with my son David (who skis), I managed to make the mouse looking like he is skiiing ....hope you like his "ski poles" ! I am also lucky to capture this shot with our first snow for some cool effect!

On the personal note, I also SURVIVED hosting a party for 14 teenagers last night. What a civilized bunch! I definitely will do it again next year! There is a video of David's cello-playing (see here, if interested). Here are some pictures of my BIG pre-birthday dinner at the local Frech bistro with my family...

And the goodies for the teenager party...

Thanks for dropping by :)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Cute As Buttons!?

First of all, I didn't win.... :(  if you are interested, see the winning list
BUT I decided to share anyway...what are the cards for if they are not appreciated?
When I found out about the CARD blog challenge (see here) about buttons, my heart simply raced FASTER and my eyes opened WIDE! I LOVE buttons. There's just something special with that little piece of hard plastic with two or four holes in them. They added the warm and fuzzy feeling to a card! The shape of buttons convey friendliness and sweetenss. My initial idea is not really original, I had seen button cards of snowman before, but I actually have never made one.

I added the string through the button for the hand and the little scarf ....and the eyes. I love the button snowman! I counted the buttons, there were 10 of them!

That's got to be a record for me. So I thought. Then the button challenge was extended for another week, so I got thinking again. Here's my next card. I made it very quickly...once I have the idea!

I kept it fairly simple and was just happy that I made another card with 12 buttons (broke my own record!). I was blessed with two talented card-making friend Jane (see here) and Tainan Jane from HA flickr group! They sent me their precious hand-made buttons (the flower one from Jane, the tiny ones from Tainan Jane). I shared my card with Kathy just for fun. Kathy is such a hard-core coloring artist. I bet when she saw my coloring , she must have gasped! She gently gave me some fantastic suggestions, I decided to re-work on it and add some finer details. Here's the revised version.

I must say a little details do go a long way! I am happy with both versions, but the revised veersion does look a bit better, at least for the coloring (LOL)!  I'm not ashamed to share the original card with you. We all need to step back and remind ourselves from time to time: "What can I do to make it better...?". For this very lesson, I am sending the Elephant card to Kathy who make me want to be a better BEST stamper/card-maker that I can be. She is truly amazing! Check out Kathy at Carrdvarks see here.
I hope you enjoyed the cards....even though I didn't win. It was fun :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

EBTK Challenge #4 and Lucy's #2

I love the challenges at Everything but the Kitchen Sink challenge #4.  This challenge requires to use a toothpick on the card/page.
 I made an umbrella card with toothpick before, I want to make another one with a different twist. So I used a toothpick as the handle of the umbrella and added a few things.... This is what I came up with.

It took me a long time to get the right umbrella for the elephant. She has to travel in STYLE! I used the Stripe Circle and stamped it in criss-cross way. I then run it with CB (Swiss Dot) and highlighted some of the dots in brown! I think this card is great for anyone who needs a little encouragement (like a Mom? or a friend?). Since Lucy's challenge's theme is wings and strings (see here ) I think this card fits the theme too! Yay! Thank you, Lucy, for hosting such a FUN challenge !

Stamps used : Stripe Circle, Modern Line, Elephant Others: twine, ribbons, CB (label 8), embossing powder, TH distress Ink, HA gems, small flower punch (for the rain drops), heart brad
I'm going to bake some more for David's party tomorrow (18 teenagers as of the last count) at my house . I'm also contributing cookies to Stephanie's party in her college....yup, I will be busy! AND we'll have a little celebration for my upcoming birthday.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Carrdvarks Micro Color Challenge

Create a *NEW* card using the color scheme below! This is a Micro Color Challenge - a fast & furious 24 hour challenge!

Oh my! I find it really challenging because all these colors are GORGEOUS! To have all of them together on one card, that will be a true task! I put my thinking cap on and this what I came up with

I hope I got the colors right, it sure is a cheerful card :)

I managed to find the colors as close as possible. All I can say is :" It was FUN" :)
Hero Arts stamps : B4160 Funny Flower, CL288 Scallop Border, Friendship (digit kit)
Others: Buttons, MS butterfly punch,  white Styrofoam
Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sorry, Virginia...

It's DECEMBER! This is always a busy time for me. My birthday is just around the corner.Another year older...yikes! My family plan to go to the local French bistro to celebrate this Friday! Then on Saturday we are hosting a party for approximately 20 teenagers! I'm not really looking forward to the work and noise, but it's too late to back out now.... It turns out that David's friends can ALL come! I am planning to serve desserts and appetizers while they watch the latest Star Trek new release DVD. It should be FINE :)
I came across with this article Sorry, Virginia, but Santa Claus won't be writing to you . Here's a excerpt:
"Thousands of starry-eyed children all over the world are writing letters to the jolly man at the North Pole this holiday season, but they're not likely to get a response from Santa Claus or his helpers. The U.S. Postal Service is dropping a popular effort begun in 1954 in the small Alaska town of North Pole, where volunteers open and respond to thousands of letters addressed to Santa each year. Replies come with North Pole postmarks. Postal Service officials said they are tightening rules in such programs nationwide after a postal worker in Maryland recognized a volunteer in the agency's Operation Santa program as a registered sex offender. The postal worker interceded before the individual could answer a child's letter, but the Postal Service viewed the episode as a big enough scare to make changes to the program....:"
I sure hope the tradition will live on. It's sad to give it up because of this incident. The world needs Santa Claus!

I'm sharing another butterfly card here. It was my last submission for the blog day challenge at Hero Arts. All the pieces were scattered on my desk, so it was easy to put them together. I'm loving all that glitter...

Thanks Very Much for coming to my blog. Two months ago, I started this blog and I never knew that I can have so much fun with it.