Monday, November 30, 2009


I finished gluing the angel bookmarks together before Leah came over and then pressed them. Leah worked at the table here.
Using the Japanese Screw Punch... make holes in the snowflake parts that don't already have holes in the center.
She finished!
I was working here at the end of the table.
Stamping on the white card stock strips (which might have to be trimmed 1/8th of an inch)...
...and then embossing with the embossing powder and the heat gun.
I didn't get too far. Pretty sore by now as you probably guessed--hehe!
But I'll keep working on them little by little. I want to have the entire stack done and ready to go by Wednesday when Leah comes back so we'll be all ready for our assembly line construction. *she shudders in anticipation*
In the meantime--during one of my many breaks--I am going to go thru my address book and count to see how many cards I will actually need this year.
Let's see...
I showed Leah some things I found on youtube. Using metallic sheets for Spellbinders die storage--awesome! Demos on how to use our new Flower Soft. Oh--and we re-watched the Bow-Easy video and Leah practiced making a few bows, too. I forgot to take a picture of them before we found a specific storage spot for them and put them away--hehe!
Leah's day off today. She is bringing cars in for oil changes (including PitaPaseo), picking up our Nestability sets from K&Krafts, buying some more brads, going to Office Max to laminate the angel bookmarks, checking at OM for magnetic sheets and photo boxes, going to the Post Office with one of my journals I posted on Etsy (mailing it to a lady in Australia!)...and I don't know what all else. Whew!
Me--sore--but not really bad. Not enough to pull me back to a complete stop--just enough to slow me way down. Which is a funny statement coming from someone who lives the tortoise life to begin with--ROFL! (I crack myself up!) Everything's relative, right? I can still keep puttering away a bit today. :)
Do you send out Christmas cards? Do you buy them or make them? Or do you send ecards across cyberspace these days? Or nothing--and think they just clutter up the postal system? :):)

Sunday, November 29, 2009


Wow! I got my first Christmas card already yesterday! Thanks, Doug!
The first thing I did yesterday was to set about cutting the last snowflakes. And I realized that I should make a video for my youtube--since I haven't made one for like three months. So, I moved things over for filming and actually got a video made--tada! Showed how I've been cutting and embossing the snowflakes. I need to remember to make more videos!
Anyways, I finished up the snowflakes so I could clear off my favorite end of the table and start on the angel bookmark order. :) I made a few extras--just in case. We have had strange things happen with the laminating. The bookmarks are fed into the laminator as it is moving and the results depend on who is doing the job. We've had them overlapped or too close together to even separate. Sure--we don't have to pay for the lamination on those, but it took time to make them--duh! You want to find a conscientious employee, that's for sure.

I got the card stock cut, the angels stamped, and then hand painted the accent details with burgundy shiny paint. But the heart needed to pop and be even more shimmery--and I couldn't remember which paint I had used.
So, I did some trials. Here's a couple other brands. Ended up using the ones on the bottom.
Meanwhile--the mailman (a new one?) called to tell me I had a package. The Bow-Easy arrived! And she even sent a little "thank you" gift package!!
Wow! I've never gotten a thank you like this before. A sticker, embellishments, and a tiny rubber stamp rose!
Susan hand wrote a personal thank you on the invoice and because we only ordered the Bow-Easy and nothing else she also refunded us $2.85 on the shipping so it was only $2.00. As you can tell, I was impressed!
You can make seven sizes of bows with this little piece of plastic. Always the same size--a godsend for the anal, bow-tying impaired--hehe!
I had seen these before in a catalog, but had absolutely no clue how it worked...
...until I accidentally ran across a youtube video a while back. And look what came right in the package! Obviously they realize that there are a lot of less imaginative folks out there (like me) who need to be shown. ROFL!
And the how-to video I found was made by Susan herself--tada!
I will never be afraid of making bows for cards again! :)
Last night I finished painting the hearts (again) and added the golden halos.
As you can see, depending on how the light hits the heart it can change color! Cool! In normal light they look more burgundy.
I like these hearts even better than the ones on the original angel bookmarks I made! Love they way they change color in the light. I hope the lady likes them. :)
Okay--the angels have been drying all night (that shimmery paint can take quite a while to totally dry) and this morning I will glue the angels to the burgundy background card stock so they will be ready to go to the lamination machine! Happy dance! Because Leah is planning on coming over this afternoon to work on the Christmas cards--and I actually have the angels ready for her to take to Office Max Monday (it's her Monday off tomorrow--perfect!). Perfect timing that this order happened while I am on a streak of good days!! :)
Our next step on the Christmas cards is to pick a sentiment and then stamp and emboss them on the white strips of cardstock. Another task of about a hundred. Then we can begin the best part--the actual construction. Yipee! Fun! Fun!
The sun is trying to peek out thru the clouds, but it looks like a lost cause unless this blanket of clouds gets blown over to Minnesota--ROFL!
Well, I hope to have pictures of some finished snowflake cards to show you tomorrow--whee! :):)

Saturday, November 28, 2009


It is easy to see how Miss Karma may have chewed on her tag--and may still be secretly chomping away--despite the fact I never saw her or heard tooth on metal.
A red heart does look good on her, tho. :)
What have I been doing for days? Cutting snowflakes...
...then flipping them over and running them through again to emboss them (using that tan rubber mat)...
...then, with this biggest one, taking a pin and poking through each of the dozen little round holes...
...poke out the center star...
...and then carefully pop or poke out the snowflake, as the case may be. The smaller ones pop right out. This bigger red one and the bigger white one do take some time.
But aren't they wonderful!! :) Almost all of them will be burgundy and white, as you can see. But I am cutting out some extra red ones so that maybe we can have a few to post on Etsy--tada! If not in time for this year, we can always post them next year, right? :)
I will be done today with all those stacks I had pre-cut. Like I said, we had a lot of uneven piles. I added more white paper because a few of the big delicate snowflakes tore while getting them out of the die. So, not even exactly sure how many we have all the parts for--but close to a hundred, I'm sure. And we'll have a lot of different extra parts.
You can see why they sell the extra plastic plates everywhere. You can see how mangled up they get from the cutting of the dies. After while all that roughness can effect the cutting process we found. I've been moving the dies all over the plates so I am not cutting in the same place all the time (like I was in the beginning) and we flip the plate back and forth, too, so we are using both sides. I am really glad now I bought up an extra set of B plates at the time. After cutting hundreds and hundreds of snowflakes--we actually could use another set of B plates for back up now. We have pretty much mangled up the first set of two--hehe!
This is so awesome! I am sooo excited to start putting them together!
But--I have to wait a bit. We got a special Etsy order for a dozen of my angel bookmarks with cream and burgundy paper. So that is what I will start on today--right after I finish up with the last of the red snowflakes. Band? Confetti? ROFL!
No lie! It is soooo exciting when you finish a step when you are assembly-lining. Especially when it's a really time consuming or intricate step. You do really feel like doing the happy dance--hehe!
Leah will probably be over tomorrow. I hope so! I am really hoping she'll be here for the constructing of the very first cards so we can concur and make the final decisions together on how they will look. :)
So--off I go--me and my timer--hehe! Have a good one! :):)

Friday, November 27, 2009


What a gorgeous sunrise this morning!

Had to take a few pictures. Love a prairie sunrise.
The big excitement up here--K & Kraft's is having their own Black Friday weekend sale like everybody else and they have the big sets of Spellbinders basic shapes on sale! I called on Wednesday to ask Kay if we could order them over the phone and pick them up later since Leah is out of town this weekend. Yes! She said to call on Friday.
So, I was up and on the phone when they opened at 8am. Sounded busy over there! Nothing ever runs smoothly, I guess. Didn't have the expiration date on Leah's card, had to call Leah, she was out of phone range but it did ring - thank goodness. Long story short, we finally got online together, problems were resolved, and decisions made--hehe! And when I called back to K&K's half an hour later--they still had the four sets that we wanted--TADA!!! Leah will pick them up on Monday. :):)
Meanwhile, we may have an order for a dozen bookmarks. Waiting on a return email. If we get the okay I will start on making those right away. (We don't have any stockpile, but people can email us and request things.) Otherwise--I will continue to work on snowflakes today. Yesterday I took the day off from everything. Just relaxed and hung out with Miss Karma--hehe!
Did watch Angels and Demons. Was really exciting and I don't want to give anything away.
After the murder of Italian physicist Leonardo Vetra, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon's (Tom Hanks) investigation with Vetra's daughter (Ayelet Zurer) leads to a secret society, the Illuminati, and a quest for the world's most potent -- and deadly -- energy source. Ron Howard directed the crime thriller, which is based on The Da Vinci Code author Dan Brown's novel and co-stars Ewan McGregor and Stellan Skarsgård.
And another movie called The Limits of Control...
An enigmatic stranger (Isaach De Bankolé), with no friends to speak of and no one to trust, is on a shadowy criminal mission. His moves are always marked with the knowledge that the law is never far behind. Acclaimed indie filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers, Coffee and Cigarettes) writes and directs this tale, which is set against the backdrop of contemporary Spain. Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, John Hurt and Gael García Bernal co-star.
...which I thought was a total waste of time. Very arty and cinematic, I suppose--but I never understood it--at all. Made no sense--and I think that was the point. I felt like when you are at an art gallery and don't understand the symbolism of a giant circle on canvas. Frankly--sometimes a big dot is just a big dot, you know? Duh!
I'm glad I watched Angels and Demons second--hehe!
Today--sunny day and back to snowflakes. Putter! Putter! :):)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Little bit of snow during the night.
What an interesting design on this hood.
We may get a little more snow, but not much.

Well--here's the proof I made it over to Hobby Lobby and the car started after two months--ROFL!!
They didn't have any of the art deckle rulers by Logan--at all. Searched and asked. So much for checking that out on the Internet. No wonder I do so much shopping online, eh? I will probably order the deckle rulers from Dick Blick in December.
Anyways, I got out and about--tada! I wandered around the store for a while and ran across something that I thought would serve a good purpose. A little treasure.
We have been accumulating a variety of leftover paper shapes from our Cuttlebug use. As they have increased in number I went searching for some way to store them. Have been using these tiny glass jars.
But then I spied an entire end cap of these!
Only $2.99 and very lightweight. Perfect for our Cuttlebug saver scraps!
Talk about room for expansion!
It wasn't until after I was in the car and halfway home that I realized I had carried around that 40% off coupon the whole time I was in the store--but forgot to use it for my little gem because I guess I still had my eye on the big ruler prize.
ROFL!!! Sooo funny!
I'm sure people wondered what that crazy woman was laughing about alone in her car at the stop light--hehe!
Anyways, let's see...I mostly worked on Etsy postings yesterday. And I am (finally!!) all caught up with all the photos for products that Leah brought over--tada! We still have a few more things for her to take pictures of after the holidays but--you know me--I could almost hear the band and see the confetti--ROFL!
I also continued where Leah left off with cutting out and embossing the five snowflake parts for the Christmas cards. That is what I will be doing today, too. Putter...putter...putter. :):) Leah may come over Sunday after they get back and we'll work on cards. I am hoping I will have all the snowflake parts cut out by then. Goals, right? Got to have goals--hehe!
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!! :):)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Good Morning!
Well, I posted some more cards on Etsy yesterday. I was going to post the journals, but they are over at Leah's and we forgot that I need the measurements and number of pages. And then Leah apparently forgot to email me after she got home from work. So--until I get those details, I can't post them. Sorry. I hope to get the last of our finished cards posted today, tho. :)
Kind of using myself up at the computer lately. Could do that again today because I am also behind on emails, of course--hehe! It is such a rarity for me to ever actually get caught up that I'm surprised a band doesn't start playing and confetti fall from the sky. Ahhh! Such is the life of the tortoise...or the snail. :)
Every once in a while I notice Karma's tag on her collar. She chewed the metal tag as far as she could reach when she was a kitten--thereby rendering it useless for anything beyond her name.
I have thought of replacing it many times. What is stopping me?
1. Karma is terrified of the hallway, strangers, and we live on third floor. I doubt she'd ever get lost in the first place. But--one never knows and we do have false fire alarm problems once or twice a year (why I bought the cat stroller). One might be real one day and who knows where we'd end up?
2. I never, ever saw her chew on this tag. No lie! And we're together basically 24/7. For some reason tag chewing is a totally private activity for Miss Karma. I have always wondered how she managed it. All the times I am up and down at night or lying there and can't sleep, I have never heard teeth on metal in the dark either? And because it is clandestine, I don't know if she still indulges and would destroy another tag as well? The obliteration may have become denser over time. I'm just not sure.
Karma and her secrets! Who knows what else she does in her private time, eh? Like a double life--ROFL!
Rained all day yesterday and I was feeling only so-so. Supposed to be drier today. I am hoping to make it over to Hobby Lobby. I wondered how people make journals with the raw edged paper--investigated online--found stainless steel art deckle rulers by Logan. Looks like they would work. According to their website, Hobby Lobby carries them in Fargo--and I have a 40% off coupon good till tomorrow. So--that's my big plan....if my body cooperates. Wish me luck! I could call and see if they actually have any in stock the sizes I want--but, you know, I really do need to get out of here once in a blue moon. Right? Right. And they are predicting snow for tomorrow, too. So today would be the best day to go--if all goes well. We'll see how the day unfolds. :)
Sometimes I think about how my life--my body--used to be and how much I took that for granted. Driving cross country. Walking all day long. Lifting and carrying--pushing and pulling. Running (not that I did much of that, but I could if I wanted to). Climbing stairs. Dancing with abandon. Being able to do what you want when you want. To say, I am going over to Hobby Lobby today at such and such a time--and I could actually do that--no problem. It would be a choice--not a tentative plan--a goal that's out of your hands, your personal control.
You adjust and get used to it, of course. But I do have days where I become frustrated...or wistful. You probably don't believe me, but today isn't one of them. Because it doesn't really matter if I make it to Hobby Lobby or not. The ruler is not that expensive. I will only save a few dollars. There is no pressure at all over this particular trip. When it really bothers me--a lot--is when I have appointments to keep! Like federal housing, doctors, dentist, etc. Or when I had plans with other people and they fall through--because of me. When I am really worried or stressed about it--that's when I can't talk about it. If that makes any sense. It is too close. I can talk about it now because leaving the apartment came up as a possibility--but it is not a necessity, you know? Not all up in my face with the clock ticking--hehe!
Karma and I live in a small world, don't we? chuckle! Most of the time it doesn't bother us at all. But appointments and fire those are a horse of a different color. :):)
Thanksgiving is coming. A time to remember all the things we are grateful for. There are a lot of things that might not have even crossed your mind. The truly taken for granted aspects of your life. I hope you think of them. Your blessing are uncounted! Innumerable! Enjoy--enjoy--enjoy them all! Spin with your arms wide or fall to your knees and say--Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!!
We are all limited in one way or another.
Life is truly an amazing, miraculous gift! Have an absolutely wonderful day! :):)

Monday, November 23, 2009


Leah came over last night and did a lot of cuttlebugging. :)
And I even remembered to get a picture!
Now this week is Thanksgiving, so no Leah for crafts. I will continue to putter along with the Christmas cards this week. :)

But today I plan to work on Etsy postings. I decided to part with my very first coptic stitch and my very first hardbound watercolor journals. I still have a couple more coptics left for myself. Never seem to have the time to sketch and paint enough to fill up the journals I have made--hehe! I think I enjoy making them more than filling them up, you know--hehe! Leah took pictures of the two journals for Etsy and brought them over last night. Time to part with more treasures I don't use, right? :):)

So--a rainy day Monday has begun. Can't believe how close to December we are already! Got to get moving! :):)

Sunday, November 22, 2009


I walked by the table yesterday and wondered--where did that pile of small burgundy rectangles come from? Duh! The stack had been so high to begin with that I had grabbed about half of it and moved it over closer to me while I worked...
...forgetting later that I had only half the pile! I guess it's not a good idea to get too preoccupied watching crazy DVDs, eh?

BTW--I have no clue how they could have assumed anyone would think that Twin Peaks International version was a movie with an ending?! It was just as flaky and odd and left all questions unanswered as the TV show--ROFL! Do you remember the dancing dwarf in the red room? Made no sense almost 20 years later either. No wonder it was cancelled. I think it only lasted two seasons, didn't it? I think the second season just got too...

Weird! Weird! Weird!


So anyways...
...guess what I did again yesterday all day--hehe!
Cut and embossed the middle sized snowflake for which we need duplicates.
[I was trying to be more grammatically correct. Don't ask me why. It is really hard to write proper sentences when you write like you talk. Sounds awkward to my ear. People don't usually talk that way. At least I don't--hehe! Forget it.]
By the time I got done there was quite a stack! And this is only half of them! I know we will have extras. The number of rectangles I cut for the parts are not all even, but I figured we could always use the extras in another way--or--we could even them up and make some additional cards to sell on Etsy.
The sun is trying to peek out from behind the clouds this morning. Happy be be back on days! I already have the washer going. Leah wasn't sure if she might make it over to work on cards or not this afternoon. Not sure what I'm going to be up to today either. Looks and feels like a good day, tho. :):)

Saturday, November 21, 2009


...interrupted. :)
All day I worked on the second medium sized snowflake that we need.
Cutting and embossing...
...while I watched Twin Peaks--the pilot movie--first of three DVDs for season one.
The full first season of bizarre, ingenious, hysterical and terrifying stories set in the Pacific Northwest logging town of Twin Peaks follows quirky FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) as he tries to solve the murder of high school student Laura Palmer. As Cooper settles into the case, the town's facade of extreme normality begins to crack, revealing a barrage of schemes, fronts and secrets.
Do any of you remember that strange TV show from 1990? Driest, strangest, sickest humor with stilted overacting. Was the most bizarre thing I had ever seen on TV at that time. I saw they had it on Netflix and couldn't resist. By my recollection, only the first year was really good. Seems to me that they lost the right combination of weirdness and camp. I can watch it again now and see if I still think that almost 20 years later, right? Hehe!
Twin Peaks was always like a top-of-the-line, bad B-movie to me. The kind that gets a cult following like Rocky Horror Picture Show, you know? Well, I thought I'd find out if it seemed the same to me after all these years? The awkward silliness is still there. Maybe a little dated, but still feels like they are making excellent fun of all those old drive-in movies. They exaggerate expected aspects and then they have things that don't fit--like at the local tough biker bar the band is singing dreamy, new agey music. Stuff like that cracks me up. People who loved Twin Peaks generally loved Northern Exposure, too. Good grief! I might have to look that up on Netflix, too--ROFL! :)
The pilot DVD also includes an alternate International movie version! Yes! Apparently they released a complete movie with an ending?? Not for American eyes--hehe! Naturally, I started to watch that one, too, last night. I am really getting a big dose of Twin Peaks, aren't I? But I couldn't resist seeing a complete movie version that I never knew existed, right?
Love the music!! And the Log Lady, the deputy who cries, the cheating spouses, the clueless law enforcement, the over-the-top bad boys & bad girls, the sheriff's receptionist with the squeaky voice, the overdone Great Northern lodge, the stoic FBI agent....
Guess it's time for me to go watch the movie version. :):)

Friday, November 20, 2009


I do this all the time! Whenever I have company or go anyplace I forget all about the camera and taking pictures--duh! It's always been such a solitary activity for me, I guess.
Well, this is what Leah worked on last night. Cutting out the pieces of the snowflakes.
Well, cutting and then embossing. Everything has to be run through the machine twice.
But--awesome!!! They turn out so clean and crisp. :)
We're using the burgundy cardstock. Leah prefers the darker burgundy and I like both the burgundy and the red. Doesn't matter to me. I think they both look great. Our cards this year might all end up being burgundy and white. Even Dagan liked them. :)
This is why I was cutting out the rectangles.
And why we are saving scraps for making handmade paper. A bit of excess--waste--but it was the easiest way to cut up an 8 1/2 by 11 inch paper--and easiest for assembly line work.
Dagan and Leah rode together, so Dagan stayed all evening, too! He monkeyed with my computers--desktop and laptop--updating and such. And Dagan showed me the new laptop they bought him for work--my goodness! It was almost like being on my desk computer--and probably even has a bigger brain for storage, they said. Nicest laptop I have ever used. Honestly! Light, too! They might finally make a laptop one day that I actually like and would use? No lie! You know I haven't been a big fan of laptop keyboards and screens. But this one was really, really nice, I must admit. Brand name? No idea. Just thought of that right now while I am talking it up--hehe! :) Well, look how far I have come from learning on the old Underwood! ROFL!
Anyways, happy day! I was in bed not long after they headed for home and slept till morning--hurray! Maybe finally back on days?? Knock on wood! :) That would be nice.
It's a sunny morning and Miss Karma is parked in the chair by the window watching the world go by. I am sitting here typing and smiling to myself. Life is good! Life is good! :):)