December 30, 2014

The Art of Card Giving

I have no image to post today...maybe, if I get a card image edited, I'll add it later...but I wanted to speak about the lost art of card giving.  I remember lots of Christmas cards taped around the double doors in our home when I was a child growing up...a signal to me that Christmas was just around the corner. I loved looking at all of them and was always excited if mom let me tape some up!  But technology, or indifference, has pushed the art of card giving to a tradition of old.  As much as I embrace the new technology and love its convenience, there is still no greater thrill to me as opening up the mailbox and seeing it packed with greeting cards.  With Santa covered in glitter and ribbon, beautiful Nativity Scenes, Bells and Christmas trees and the glow of a candle, nothing compares to it. The feel of the paper, the sentiment on the inside and the signature of friends and family that we see every day or haven't seen for years.  No email or Facebook post will ever replace the feeling of this type of love!  Just knowing that the sender thought about you in such a loving way as to get in their car, drive to the store, purchase a card and then sit and sign it and add a stamp and then drive to the post office to mail it; this is priceless!  With technology, I'm sure the art of card giving is never coming back but to those folks that still send out personal greetings, my heart swells!  And every Christmas, my greatest thrill will be opening that mailbox and seeing another card from a thoughtful, loving friend or family member! Maybe its my age and my memories of cards of yore, but physically touched greetings surpass an email tremendously in my book!  As long as I can still sign my name (in cursive, by the way), I'll continue to send this art of happiness to the folks that are nearest and dearest to me!

As you can see, I got one image of the four cards I made this year!

To all my family and friends, may 2015 bring you peace, love, joy and contentment!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

May this morning find you happy and well!  Our wish is only the best for 2015!

Merry Christmas, dear friend!

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December 12, 2014

A few Christmas shots

I finally got around to taking a few Christmas shots but as you can see it wasn't easy. I either has to much light or not enough and some shots I have to much light on one side and to dark on the other. But since I'm not a professional I guess they are OK.

I have added a few new trees to my collection this year I even found one of the old clear glass ones in an antique store a couple of weeks ago.

I got this beauty last year and love it the picture doesn't it justice it's very sparkly.

The Dashing through the Snow is from Dear Lillie that I had printed and framed. The Drummer boy I cut out with the silhouette machine and stuck it on the plate with double sided tape. Can't decide if I need something on the other plate or not.

This sets in the corner of the kitchen I just love the scrabble words.

Table in the sun room. Putting things in trays keeps things neat if you have to move them.

Another scrabble word.

I'll try getting a few more shots later. Maybe some at night.
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December 9, 2014

Forgot this!

I really meant to get this posted before Thanksgiving but I'm have lots of memory problems any more...can't remember what I'm doing from one room to the next.  Anyway, here is the be quite honest, I'm not sure it was even appreciated...she took the bag from me and never even looked inside of it.  But, I was grateful for the lovely meal and wanted to show my gratefulness.  I added strips of paper to the bottom and then made the tag to match.  I got 3 gifts made today....if the sun shines tomorrow, maybe I can get a shot of them....but don't hold your breath...LOL
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December 8, 2014

Welcome to my Home!

I've had this wreath and letter for a few years now...bought the wreath ages ago and the letter was bought the last year that I worked. (Can you believe it will be 3 years, in less than 3 weeks, since I retired!).  I had some faded red balls and a Santa face on it and decided it was time to spruce it up for the holidays.  I used spray adhesive on the letter and added glitter to give it a more festive look than just the gray painted metal did.  I then hot glued some new balls, berries and snowflakes to it.  I think I must have at least 3 dozen of those berry to decorate with them.  I'm an old fashioned traditional Christmas my green and red with just a hint of silver and gold. Jerri Ann likes blue and silver and, while I admit its very pretty, its still not Christmas colors to me.  Anyway, the front door is a much more inviting now!...Hopefully, I'll get some shots of the inside and post them before long.  My Christmas cards all went in the mail today and the decorations are complete.  Now to do a few projects for gifts.  

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November 16, 2014

A Thankful Gift

Can you believe it?  I made something...LOL....not that I don't make stuff all the time but this was actually done way ahead of time...We are invited to Jerri Ann's In-laws for Thanksgiving.  This will be the second time we've been invited and we are always grateful.  So, this year, I decided to take a hostess gift to thank them for their hospitality!  I bought the file from the Silhouette store, made my own matting out of cardstock and framed it in a dollar store frame.  The wording is just printed on to cardstock but then I cut the word Thanksgiving and one arrow out of cardstock and popped them up to give the saying a bit of dimension.  I've thought about adding some colorful leaves but haven't committed to that yet...maybe...just not sure.  I'm going to make a tag for the gift bag this afternoon and will post it later.

I will be glad when I've used up the ink in my old a good deal on a new one and can't wait to hook it up but I had some ink left for the old one and am too fugal to waste it.  If you look closely, my old printer doesn't always print the best...leaves some lines in some of the colors.  I'm sure, once the Christmas cards are done, my ink will be gone too...


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October 26, 2014

My colorful Wall

Since I mentioned this in my last comment, I decided to take a shot and show you...should have dug out the tripod and made it clearer but I just wanted you to see.  Love these markers!

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October 21, 2014

My Beautiful Bench

Gavin made this for me in 4-H.....his dad is the shop director, so Gavin has some really good instructions and help.  He brought it down to me for the finish work...neither of them really like the painting end...but I do!  I wish I'd made it a bit darker but it works!  Of course, he got a blue ribbon at the exhibit.

We got the plans from here...Shanty2Chic  I had had it pin for some time and when Gavin said he'd make something for me...I didn't hesitate to pull this one out of the pin files!  I love, love, love it!  The little yellow pillow is one he bought me for Christmas a few years back. Now I need to add something to the wall above it...just not sure what it will be yet...maybe a window with vinyl saying on it.  I'll post when I come up with something!  My plans for the drawer are to store all my 1000's of photo's that I never find time to put in albums...LOL...maybe, just maybe, I'll at least try to organize them before storing...

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October 15, 2014

Trying to play catchup!

I've really gotten a long way behind with my card shares.  This was done clear back in April for Gavin's 13th birthday...I can NOT believe he is 13 and it was a really sad day for me...not only because he is growing up so fast but it was the end of an more birthday parties...he chose to invite just a few friends to go to a huge bounce house and spend the night...this granny felt so down!  LOL....he did invite me to go along but that was the day my little sister almost lost her leg and I spent it at the hospital instead.

Anyway, I got this image from JustInked and colored it with my Spectrum Noirs...I need a lot more practice but thought it really looked like our little man once it was done.  All done on the Silhouette.

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October 10, 2014

Vinyl Words on Window

Just finished this up....a job for my friends daughter in law.  I like how it turned out...makes me wish I was a farmers wife...LOL...not really!  But, it does make me want to make something similar for me.  I'll have to do some checking to see what quote I might like.  This was a bugger to weed and now I know why they charge so much for pre-cut sayings.

I hope you have a wonderful time at the lake in our beautiful state.  The colors are just starting to turn around red yet, mainly yellow but hopefully its better in the south.

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October 4, 2014

Fall is time for Apple Pie

Made this Dutch Apple Pie yesterday and was going to get another snap of a piece cut out with ice cream on top but it got to late by the time we were ready to eat it the I didn't have the light anymore.
You'll just have to imagine how it looks on a nice plate with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Brent's Dad is visiting for a few days and he didn't leave a drop on his plate so he must have liked it.

Neal brought me the apples and recipe, it's the one he always uses.


3/4 c. sugar                                       2 tsp. ground cinnamon
6-7 c. apples, pared and sliced      1 1/2 Tbsp. butter, optional
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour                 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract 
1 unbaked pie shell

1/2 c. butter                                       1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. all-purpose flour                                   1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
For the pie, mix sugar, cinnamon and flour; mix in apples.    Heap in unbaked pie shell. Sprinkle vanilla over top of apple mixture; dot with butter.

Mix all topping ingredients until crumbly; sprinkle over apple mixture.
Bake @ 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes. or until apples are tender and topping is golden brown.
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October 1, 2014

October Puts me in the Mood for Pumpkin!

This is on the menu for tonight...along with Maple Chicken Breast and a large garden salad. 

Pumpkin Pie Squares 
3/4 cup Bisquick Heart Smart baking mix
1/2 cup quick oats
1/4 cup Splenda Brown Sugar Blend
1/3 cup Fat-free sour cream
2 Tbs. + 2 tsp. low calorie margarine ***
2 cups (one 15 ounce can) pumpkin
1 1/3 cups Carnation Non Fat Dry milk
1 (4-serving) package Sugar Free Vanilla Cook n Serve pudding
2 tsp. Jo's pumpkin pie spice
1 cup water
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup Splenda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9 x 9 inch baking dish with butter-flavored cooking spray.  In a medium bowl, combine the baking mix, oats, and Brown sugar blend. Add sour cream and 2 tablespoons margarine.  Mix with a fork until mixture is crumbly.  Press mixture into prepared baking dish and bake for 15 minutes. In a large bowl, add pumpkin, dry milk, pudding, pie spice and water. Mix well with a wire whisk.  Spread mixture evenly over warm crust.  Continue baking for 15 minutes. In a small bowl, melt the rest of the margarine in the microwave.  Stir in  the pecans and Splenda and sprinkle evenly over the filling and continue baking for 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

185 cal. 1g fat, 7g Pro, 28 g Carb, 163 mg Sod, 197 mg Cl, 3 g Fi.

I messed up with the margarine....put all of it in the crust when I was suppose to save out 2 tsp. for the nut mixture...then I melted too much margarine and my nuts and Splenda 'stuck' together so they don't look nice on the top.  I added a few more nuts to make it look prettier...but I will be cutting my servings into 9 instead of 8, so the extra pecans won't be too hard on my waistline!

I know you can't eat this with the Splenda but needed to post something!

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September 17, 2014

Hello Fall

This is it so far for my fall decorating and I don't think I'm going to do much more. Maybe some Mums and pumpkins outside. Not a very good shot but I don't get nice bright light in my kitchen like I do in the sunroom and I didn't have the time to move everything around just for a quick snap.

Here's the printable if you would like to use it help yourself.

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August 19, 2014

Our Wonderful Crew

Oh, how we have grown!  We had a super time in Wisconsin and a wonderful 10 days with the grands this summer...we even got a family picture for a change!

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July 20, 2014

Individual Blueberry Crisp

This is going to be our evening snack. Love these cute mini hobnail ramekins that I found at Pier 1 just the right size to keep me from eating to much.

I made a batch of Crisp topping and have it stored in the frig so I can make these whenever we want. These are blueberry because I had some fresh berries on hand but made some apple the other evening with canned apple pie filling. I used ¼ of cup fruit or pie filling and a ¼ cup crisp topping baked at 375° for 30 minutes. It makes a wonderful fresh baked snack.
I think I just may have to pick up some cherry pie filling on my next trip to the grocery store.

Crisp Topping
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup soft butter

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, sugar, salt and cinnamon. Cut butter into flour mixture with pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Bake  at 375° for 30 minutes or until topping is golden brown.

Store extra crisp in frig.

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July 13, 2014

After the Rain

Went out after dinner and snap this of my Mandevilla Vine in the rain. It has reached the top of the pergola and starting to grow across the top. Hope I can keep it going.
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Bing Cherries & Watermelon

This has been my afternoon snack for several days. Love these cherries and the watermelon with a little ground sea salt is perfect.

I noticed you got the butterfly deleted. Thanks.
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July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July

Wishing everyone a Happy & Safe 4th of July.

The Pledge of Allegiance free Printable can be download On Sutton Placed.
 It's it cute and I think it goes prefect with my Liberty scrabble tiles.

 Hope you get to spend time with family and friends today.
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June 20, 2014


Finally got around to doing some photo editing today. Some of these have been on the camera for a month or more. A couple I took today and one of my favorites snaps of Jessi is from last year.

Brent's Dad was here today and I took this shot while we were relaxing out back. This is the same Hibiscus that I had last year and we wintered over in the garage. When we brought it out for the summer it didn't have a leaf on it but it's now covered with blooms. Wonder if I can keep it until next year.

A snap of the pink Impatiens that I have in the middle of my table out back. I think they are so pretty.
Love the shade of pink but I don't like the mess they make on my table. Have to wash it off every time I go out to enjoy a cup of coffee.

I have been trying to get some good shots of the Grands that I can have printed and framed but it's hard to find time anymore. They are so busy with school, track, football, band, flag practice, (learning to drive) and just life in general that's hard to find a few minutes to spare there Grammy and her camera.

This was taken of Jess last summer at the beach and it's my favorite of her.

I got this one of Jason a couple of weeks ago when they came for a visit.

This one was snapped in May on our trip to Canaan Valley. Is it just me or does he look a little like Jimmy Dean......or maybe it's just that cool look he has going.

This is the way he normally looks. Phone in hand and smile on face.

A snap of a Brook Trout that Neal caught in Canaan .....yes my son bites his nails but the trout is pretty.
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June 19, 2014

In Bloom

Am I lucky or what?  This beautiful flower bench was made by my multi-talented daughter-in-law.  We spent last weekend up there for Amanda's dance recital and I got to bring an early Christmas present home with me....Love, Love, Love it!

This is made out of a twin size bed and she even thought to put a mesh bottom in it for drainage.  It's covered on the inside with heavy burlap that will be replaceable as needed.  I can't thank her enough!
I'm thinking she could sell a ton of these!

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June 6, 2014


I started to post this the other day and than didn't. Wasn't pleased with the image the wind was blowing just enough and I had my 70-300 lens on and I can't hold it still.......results image not as sharp as I would like. But I liked the colors.
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June 5, 2014

Those poor Boxwoods are showing signs of life again!

I finally got around and trimmed these completely back.  As you can see, there is signs of green and each day, they get more and more little leaves on them.  I'm hoping by July to have them covered back in greenery but I'm sure they won't look as lush as they once were for a year or two.  I'm just glad to see the greenery on them...I so hated to see them die out.  They make a spray that you can apply before winter that will protect the leaves from the dry, cold winds.  I just might have to do some investigating and buy some before next winter. 

And just a shot of one of my pretty flower pots.  We had a 60% chance of huge hail and high winds on Tuesday night so I spent about an hour and a half moving all my pots inside the garage and covering the ones I could not move.  Luckily, we only got a bit of wind with some much needed rainfall.  It's cloudy here today and we have chances of rain now through Saturday.  The insurance adjuster was here for the house...ended up with around $29,000.00 in damages.  Not sure when we will get the new roof on...I've signed with a company but have not got a start date as of yet.  

Miss you!
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May 8, 2014

The effects of a long, miserable Winter...

You don't really realize the effects a super cold, long winter has on the landscape until Spring arrives and things should be greening up.  This is just two of my dozens of boxwood's.  As you can see, the damage is beyond repair...I'm still holding out pulling them up for a while longer to see if anything greens up on them. Do not be fooled by those so called botanists that say you don't have to water established plants...they all need moisture, no matter how well established they are.  I believe if I'd watered my boxwood's before the cold winter set in, they would have survived...maybe not 100% but not to the point of damage that they are now. I've had these for over 20 years and hate to lose them. The Azalea that I babied for 3 seasons to get established took one hard winter to die!  My ornament pear trees look like they have developed a disease they are coming down...I will not fight for their lovely white flowers any longer! I'm sure there is a better alternative for these disease trodden beauties. My Korean Lilac is blooming but the beautiful, full bush I had last year is just a memory cause its sparse in leaves this year.  I'll be cutting it way back after the blooms are gone to try and shape it back up into the beautiful lush bush it was last year.  Most of my Hosta survived but not all....the Shasta Daisy that I fought for years to get established is struggling to even get itself started and it should be 6 inches tall by now.  No matter how much you want it, fighting with Mother Nature is a never ending chore.  I'm getting too old to continue this fight and think I'll throw in the towel and admit defeat...the lawn won this battle!  Next week, I'll be feeling more optimistic and give it another fight! LOL and pray that Mother Nature is kind to me and brings me more rain this summer than it has the past 3 summers.

Wind Burned Boxwood's

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May 4, 2014

Apple Cinnamon Muffins

Made these the other day and haven't had time to get it ready to post until this morning. They are just from a mix that I pick up at Aldi's but they are so good. Even better when they are still warm with a hot cup of coffee or tea. Little bits of dried apples and then topped with a cinnamon sugar crumble. Brent's Dad was here and he thought they were great.

Don't you love the tea towel that I used in this shot. Looks like vintage linen but I spotted these at Wal-mart and had to have them to use in what little dab of food photography I do. Or maybe I just like to collect food photography props.......I think the later.
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April 21, 2014

Outside my window

I love seeing these quick moving little birds at my feeder but they normally don't stay still long enough for me to get a shot. He must have been extra hungry because he hung around long enough for me to grab my camera and snap a few quick shots. Luckily I had my zoom lens on but didn't have time to put it on my tripod and I have a hard time holding the camera still with this lens on and zoomed full out. Grabbed a chair and used the back of it for support.
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April 14, 2014

The Last Sympathy Cards (for now....hopefully, I don't need anymore for a long while)

This is the last sympathy cards I made up...I just changed the colors on this one so I could have two cards but not send exactly alike.  The image is a file I bought from JustInklined. The images from here always print up nice and crisp.  I wanted it to look layered up on several layers so I took it into Studio Design and placed it on the top layer of my card...this way I knew how much to extend it out over all the layers so it would print on three layers of my card.  Once I figured out how big to print the image, it then was just a matter of downsizing each layer but leaving the image the same size.  I embossed the sentiment and the border on the top layer after I printed out the image. I then printed out two more layers with the image and started lining them all up and putting them together with foam tape.  This first one has three layers and I used yellow ribbon with black pearls. 

On this second image, I messed up the middle layer and didn't have time to re-do it.  So...I just added two layers instead of three...on this one I used white pearls and teal ribbon.  I like the colors of this one better but I like the three layers of the first card the most. 


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April 10, 2014

Sharing a few more cards

As you can see, I had a rash of Sympathy cards to make...I'm going to share 4 of them today...the last three are alike except I changed up the color of the blossoms and pearls.  Nothing much to share about these...I used embossing folders and cut the blossoms on the Cameo.  On the first card, the brush was by Katie Pertiet. I cut the butterfly with the Cameo and then added glitter to it.  I printed the sentiment on the velum and then cut the strip for the front of the card.  Layered it on some new cardstock I found by Bazzill called has this linen look with a beautiful sheen to it.  I wish I'd picked up a lot more. The only difference between these two cards is the pearls and the color of the bottom layer.

As you can see...all I did was change up the colors and on the last one, I rounded the corners.  I was going after a frame/matted look for the sentiment..I can't emboss but I can fake it...LOL...I think the purple one is my favorite..if you look closely, you can see the beautiful sheen on the purple sentiment frame. And yes, they are all the same white...LOL...I still can't take pictures and get the exposure correct...

That's all for tonight...I've got a couple more Sympathy cards and then Gavin's birthday card...will share those this weekend.

Thanks for looking!

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April 9, 2014

Card in a Box

I finally gave this technique a try....the first image is the first one I did and I wasn't real happy with it but the second card was more to my liking.  They were fun to design and I can see myself making more of them.  Might do one for Mother's Day...

On this image I used elements from a kit by Lori Whitlock called Maggie.  The paper is from Birthday Celebration...a collaboration by several different artists.  The box cut file was purchased from the Silhouette store.  The rhinestones were from a roll that Jerri Ann bought me for Christmas...first time I've used them...I'm a hoarder...can't get myself to use the really pretty stuff...LOL  Everything was traced and cut in the Cameo and then I added liquid pearls and glitter to the flowers. 

I liked this one much, much better...just more up my alley in colors and design.  Everything is from a kit called Little Charmer by Laurie Ann HGD. 

My last share today is a birthday card I made up for a friend of mine who turned 60...she is kind of a tom boy so I knew I couldn't do frilly and this is the best I could the colors!

The red dotted paper is from a kit called Retro Red by Robin Sampson and the blue chevon paper is from a paper pack called Breezy Summer by My Clipart store. I added white pen stitching and ran my stars through my Xyron to add adhesive and then glittered them up.  The kraft card base is from PaperTrey Ink.  The sentiment is by Kolette Hall...I just changed the color and did a print and cut onto the oval shape. I cut the tag shape from kraft cardstock and then made a bit smaller size of the tag, cut it four times and layered it on top of each other with adhesive...then used it to emboss my larger tag shape.  That is one thing I wish the Cameo could do..emboss around a cut shape but it doesn't. 

That's all for now...if I don't get busy with a birthday card, it will be too late and my grandson will be cardless...LOL....this is the first year that I do not have to make any party stuff...he's finally outgrown the parties and is just having a few over night guest.  I kind of miss it! 

Thanks for looking!

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April 4, 2014

Bunny Banner

Saw a bunny banner some what like this on Pinterest but it was to buy on Etsy. I didn't want to pay for something this simple to make so I started looking around for a bunny silhouette that I liked that was similar. Found another one but didn't like because the ears were different so I just drew my own in Photoshop. After I finally got the pattern loaded into the Silhouette I cut them from some pastel cardstock that I had on hand. Didn't have any white pom-pom's and didn't want to try making any that small so I got out my collection of white pearl buttons and finally found 8 that was almost alike some shinny and some dull but I think they look great. Stung them together with some orange twine.
I haven't crafted anything for a long time and forgot how much fun it is.

If anyone wants the pattern let me know.
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