Welcome to Chapter Three

Welcome to Chapter Three: Taking Life One Page at a Time -- a space to blog about those things that keep this retired gal from getting into ...

Monday, December 5, 2016

CIE Wouldn't That Be Sweet!

Hi, everyone! Welcome to a Cards in Envy Monday!

"Sweet" is the operative word for this challenge. Seems like a theme with lots and lots of possible interpretations. A card featuring holiday sweets... A romantic card for a special sweetie... A sweetly themed birthday card...

When I saw this little punch in the Stampin' Up! holiday catalog, I thought it would make perfect "sweet" birthday cards in addition to gingerbread holiday cards.

Momenta spirit; Stampin' Up! sahara sand, whisper white, stash pinkish-red cardstock
dp inked with Distress Inks black soot and evergreen bough
SU cookie cutter builder punch, inked with DI wild honey, vintage photo, walnut stain, barn door
icing: Lawn Fawn booyah and Paper Smooches holly jolly images, embossed with Versamark and SU clear powder
accents: Lawn Fawn mini snowflake dies; SU cupcake and owl builder punches
Inkadinkado birthday cupcake sentiment, stamped in StazOn and Distress Ink black soot, heat embossed with Ranger clear embossing powder
Stampin' Up! linen thread; embellishments coated with Glossy Accents
adhesives: Scotch ATG; Ranger multi medium matte; Zig 2-way glue pen

I'm thinking retired me should start a "Making Do with..." blog feature... LOL  In spite of not purchasing the coordinating SU stamp set, I think I came up with some pretty cute little ginger gals. Face features, bows, and hearts were stamped with Lawn Fawn's Booyah set, and the pearl necklaces were stamped by with a Paper Smooches' Holly Jolly stamp.

Because this is a CIE card, my ginger gals are just two layers of paper and not popped up. Because of I used multi-layers of paper for my panel, I didn't want to add extra bulk.

We hope that you'll join us for this sweet challenge. CIE cards should be flat enough to fit into a standard envelope and light enough to be mailed without additional postage.

See you over at Cards in Envy.  :)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Teens, Seniors, and Cards... Oh, My!

Whew!!!! I survived Santa Saturday!

  • Santa Saturday at our local library is one of my favorite days of the year. This is my third year to help out with the day's festivities. Being able to volunteer for events like this is one of my favorite things about retirement.  :)
  • The first two years, I helped run the little kid craft activity. This year, the staff asked if I'd be interested in spearheading a holiday card-making service activity, helping tweens/teens make cards for residents of a senior facility.
  • Let's see: making cards.... working with tweens/teens.... promoting community service... and bringing a little joy to local seniors. Yes, Yes, Yes, and YES!!!!

So, here are some notes about processes, organization, and logistics that helped this {first annual?} event go pretty well.

Card Designs

  • The event was scheduled to run for 90 minutes. I originally came up with four possible designs. We later decided to go with three of the four cards.
  • Each card featured a different skill: paper-piecing, working with stamps and punches, and creating texture with an embossing folder.
  • By focusing on three specific skills, I could create stations at which no key tools needed to be shared. For example, the embossing machine was used only at the Santa hat card station.
Card 1 Skill: Paper-Piecing

Card 2 Skill: Stamping and Using a Punch

Card 3 Skill: Embossing
  • I shared card designs at a meeting with the tween/teen library staff members. The conversation included decisions to: limit the number of participants and post an online registration, make labels for card backs, place an order supplies like tape runners, and recruit teen volunteers to assist at card stations.
  • We decided to limit registration to 15 tweens/teens. I offered to prep 18 kits for each card.
  • We also decided to have a make-and-take table for kids who might drop by. One of our uber-crafty librarians took this on.

Card Prep

Now it was time to prep cards. I assumed card-making and crafting would be new to attendees. So, I set out to create card kits that would be as fool proof as possible.

  • Each card's elements were self-contained in an A2 envelope. 
  • Non-featured skill elements were done in advance by me. For example, I embossed all the white panels for the trees card so that the embossing machine would not be needed for that station.
  • I debated about having students trace reindeer pieces but, in the interests of time and quality control, I decided to have these ready for the kids to cut out.

  • After cards were prepped, I prepared tool kits -- one for each card. The post-its on the lids are to remind me of last-minute, day-before additions that needed to be made.

  • I also put together a what-in-the-world-could-I-possibly-need kit of my own. My kit included a folio containing extra papers... just in case.

  • The day before, I boxed up card kits... and purchased some baby wipes. LOL

  • Over the course of a week, I wrote -- with editing suggestions from hubby -- and printed out how-to corrections for each card. If you're interested in receiving these directions, just e-mail me

  • Finally, I added a couple of ornaments and some Ghiradelli chocolates to give to our teen station volunteers.
Room Logistics
  • We chose to hold the event in a self-contained room, a little ways away from Santa. I was able to set up Friday afternoon. 
  • Tables were arranged to seat six people and covered with butcher paper. A table at the front of the room was set aside for administrative purposes and my tool kit. 
  • Card-making tools and supplies were placed in blue baskets at each station. Pencils, scissors, rulers, etc. were borrowed from the library's Homework Help supplies.

  • Card directions were taped to all four corners of each station.
Day-Of Notes

  • I arrived about noon, our two teen volunteers arrived about 12:30, and our event started at 1:30. In spite of all the pre-event prep, I needed all of this time to attend to last minute details.
  • One change I made from the night before was to move the embossing machine to the very front of the room.
  • Our two volunteers timed their arrivals perfectly, about 20 minutes apart. This gave me time to walk through that station's card with each girl. And, we had enough time for each girl to make one of the cards herself.
  • One of our librarians handled the embossing station. I was very thankful for this because we were using a borrowed machine... and some very sharp (twine cutting) scissors here.
  • I was provided with the registration list. I set out a 3-card set for each registered student. This left us with six available cards for any drop-in crafters.

Parting Thoughts

  • All-in-all, things seemed to go pretty well. The library staff  seemed very happy.... and seem interested in a card-making event of its own.  :)
  • We had a few no-shows and, since the cards are going to senior residents, some of the librarians offered to make the leftover cards. 
  • Now, I need to let the events of the day percolate, and come up with a what-to-differently.... provided we do this again. One possible change is to simplify card designs. Our cards were definitely do-able... and lasted about the right amount of time.... but maybe we can simplify things just a little.

Any suggestions for future card-making events? I'd love to hear from crafty friends who have hosted similar events.  :)

SAS4Kids Winter Fun 4 Kids

Ooooooh.... I'm so excited to be joining the uber talented SAS4Kids DT! I was honored -- and just a tad bit humbled -- by Karen's invitation to join the team. Huge thanks to Karen for the invite and to the gals for their warm welcome.  :)

For the next few weeks, we are focusing on Winter Fun 4 Kids cards. Dollar Graphics Depot ad Dies R Us are our sponsor's for this challenge. Both of these wonderful sponsors are offering $15 gift certificates so two lucky card makers can add a few new goodies to their stashes!

For my card, I used an adorable pre-colored Little Mouse Cocoa and Snow image from Dollar Graphics. I have to confess that I'm totally new to digi stamping. But with cute little images like this... I'm wondering what took me so long!

Dollar Graphic Depot Little Mouse Cocoa and Snow image
sentiment: Stampin' Up! good greetings in Distress Ink walnut stain
Stampin' Up! whisper white and chocolate chip; stash blue cardstock; Recollections silver glitter paper
acetate cut from stash 12 by 12 scrapbooking page protector
fill: Recollections snow glitter and TM Venezuelan beads
Su/Sizzix embossing folder; EK snowflake punch and SU gingerbread punch (for snowflake center)
adhesives: Scotch ATG; Zip 2-way glue pen; Elmer foam tape
snowflake embellished with Wink of Stella and Glossy Accents

We'd love for you to join in the winter fun over at SAS4Kids. We can't wait to see your snowmen, penguins, and polar bears!  :)

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Gift Wrap? What Gift Wrap?

Hi everyone! Happy December! (Did I really just say that? What happened to the other eleven months?)

I'm here today with a Merry-Monday-Mojo-Monday-inspired masculine Christmas card for my dog-loving hubby.

Years ago, I found this "Dear Santa, Define Good" stamp set in a bargain bin of some sort. And, I first saw the Crazy Dogs, I knew I needed to make a few holiday cards that featured that sentiment and a few of these crazy pups.  :)

Echo Park This and That; Recollections nostalgia pack and black; Distress Ink peeled paint
Tim Holtz Crazy Dogs and stencil, MFT You Make My Tail Wag, Studio G sentiment
images and sentiments stamped in StazOn jet black
images colored with Prismacolor pencils
elements inked with DI vintage photo, walnut stain, and black soot, applied with Ranger blending tool
Paper Smooches stitched die; Stampin' Up! buttons Sizzlit; SU linen thread
adhesives: Scotch ATG; Ranger multi medium; Zots glue dots; foam backing

Design considerations and techniques:
  • I went with this kraft/brown card because hubby commented on how much he liked these colors on a previous card.
  • Embellishments were kept to those that had previously received hubby's stamp of approval -- meaning no brads, no sequins.  :)
  • The ripped package was a multi-step element. 
    • I started by masking out part of the side ribbon lines when stamping on the main layer and on the dp. 
    • After stamping on the dp, I snipped off a "torn" edge with a pair of Fiskars scissors.
    • Next, I stamped the entire package on the (sanded) textured side of the core paper and the reverse side of the core paper. 
    • The package was then pieced together using the dp as the wrap, the sanded textured paper for the ribbon, and the reverse side of the core paper for the bow. When I attached the sanded textured piece, I then snipped off the left-end bow tie.

  • Finally, I carefully cut a little slit in our pup's mouth, and played with various snippets of paper until I was happy with the itty bitty piece of paper hanging out. 

So, what do you think? Is this a pup that hubby will love?

Gonna share this over at a couple of Simon Says Challenges: the die-themed Work It Wednesday Challenge and the Anything Goes Wednesday Challenge.

Parting Thoughts

A new Sparkles Christmas Challenge started today. And, our Words 2 Craft By Challenge -- with two ways to win SSS gift certificates -- is still open.

Thanks so much for stopping and happy scrappin'!

Sparkles Christmas: Anything But a Card

Hi, everyone! It's the first of the month... which means it's time for a new Sparkles Christmas challenge.

This month's challenge theme was selected by Debs. Debs is asking for anything but a card. Wrapping Paper. Gift Tags. Gift Bags. Ornaments. House Decoration. Anything Christmas-y that's not a card will do.  Easy, peasy!

For my project, I decided to make a set of three little mouse ornaments for a friend. I used some Little Mouse Cocoa and Snow images from Dollar Graphics Depot. I just started working with digi stamps a few weeks ago. So, I took this opportunity to practice downloading, sizing, and positioning.

Stampin' Up! whisper white and expresso; stash blue
Dollar Graphics Depot Little Mouse Cocoa and Snow pre-colored images
edges enhanced with clear heat embossing, using Versamark pen and clear SU powder
Celebrate it jute ribbon; SU linen thread
adhesives: Scotch ATG; Ranger multi medium matte

Our fearless leader Caz is sponsoring this month's prize. She is offering up the goodies shown below to one lucky crafter.  :)

With so many possibilities, we can't wait to see what you create! See you over at Sparkles Christmas.  :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

'Tis the Season

Hi, everyone! Happy Tuesday!

Hope you all had wonderful Thanksgiving celebrations. It's good to see our computers have survived the craziness of Cyber Monday and the pledge-iness of Giving Tuesday.

'Tis the season for giving gifts to those we love and those in need.  :)

I have three things to share today: a card from an SAS4Kids package, a card drive donation, and a holiday card that's kinda my own.


Vivian Lake of Texas sent to a wonderful box of cards -- absolutely precious cards for the littlest ones at Nationwide Children's and some cute, cute, cute cards for the older patients. Here's a pic of one of Vivian's works of heart.  :)

Hug a Heart Card Campaign

I know... 'Tis the season for card drives. Lots and lots of card drives.

However, I've learned about a card drive that benefits kids in the cardiac unit at our local Children's Hospital -- arranged by a fellow Central Ohio crafter.  :)

I know how scary it was when my father-in-law was having heart issues. I can only imagine how frightening it is when that happens to a child. So,  I'm sending a few cards Christina's way.

Here's the link for Christina's Card Drive -- just in case you have a few cards to send her way: "Hug a Heart" Card Drive.   :)

All that Glitters

I've been so busy prepping for this Saturday's card-making service project at the library and unboxing cards for SAS4Kids, that I've really neglected sharing any cards of my own. Truth be told, this card is kinda my own. It was made at one of the station's at Christine's mega Stamp-a-Stack event.

When I was checking out a few of my favorite challenge blogs, I came across a few Christmas-y challenges and remembered I hadn't shared this card. So, without further ado...


JB Photo
I'm sharing this at:

Parting Thoughts

Although Thanksgiving has passed, our A.A. Milne gratitude-inspired challenge is still open at Words 2 Craft By. Simon Says gift certificates are up for grabs. Hope you'll pay us a visit and link up a card/project of your very own.

Have a great week! And, as always, thanks for stopping and happy scrappin'!

Thursday, November 24, 2016

A Very Special Thankful Thursday

Happy Thanksgiving!

When I started doing Thankful Thursday posts, I went with Thursday for the alliteration. How appropriate that the American Thanksgiving holiday falls on a Thursday. Just plain luck on my part.

I am always thankful for our SAS4Kids card makers. And, this time of year... as I'm preparing a holiday  box of cards for Nationwide Children's, I'm blown away by the generosity of kindness of our card makers.

Tonight, my sincerest thanks go to Lee Mae, Cori, and Sherry for the packages they've sent this past week.

On a Personal Note...

Okay, the men in my family are rather stoic. They've never much cared for the tradition of going around the table and saying what we're thankful for. So, here's my list. I'm thankful for:

  • Family: The Stoic Ones: Hubby, Dad, and Father-in-Law; My Brother's Family; Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins.
  • Memories of holidays past.
  • Family Fur Babies.
  • A great house in a wonderful neighborhood.
  • Friends who like to shop, eat, craft, go to movies, and talk about books.
  • Time for volunteer activities.
  • Fellow crafters who donate their time and give of their talent to help those in need.
  • Artists who create works that make us think, make us feel, and celebrate diversity.
  • America.

May you enjoy a blessed Thanksgiving celebration with loved ones, family, and friends and a joyous holiday season.