Archive for October, 2008

Sunday Scrappin’ #50: Bonne Fete!

Join us over at Sunday Scrappin’!


Well, given that official moving day is WEDNESDAY, the only papercrafting I did was “necessary.” My godson/nephew and MIL both have their birthdays on the same day. So, with some fun chipboard and some embossing powder, I whipped up these two. The first card also completes the Sunday Scrappin’ challenge: “FUZZY” (velvet ric-rac!) Next week’s challenge is: use up some of your ribbon stash. Make a border, make a bow… it’s up to you, but let’s see some ribbon on this week’s projects!

This first one is for the nephew. He’ll be TWO! I heat-embossed each piece of the ladybug by hand with striking pigment inks and clear e.p. I had red embossing powder, but I liked how the scarlet pigment turned out against the black, so I went with clear e.p.)

MATERIALS: ColorBox pigment inks (scarlet & black); “Butterflies and Bugs” chipboard kit (Maya Road); “Sentiments” sticker letters by Pamela Woods (Creative Imaginations); velvet ric-rac (stash); Designer Mat pad by Amy Butler (K & Co.); Clear embossing powder (Ranger)

This card is for the MIL. I was pretty stressed about this one. Like my nephew, French is her native language (although she speaks English too), so hence the “Bonne fete” instead of Happy Birthday! She is a trained artist, so I had to set my standards pretty high, LOL. I rarely do anything this modern, so I’m very happy with the results! She’s a wonderful person so I’m sure she’ll say she likes it too!

MATERIALS/TECHNIQUES: The “B” is from “Hello Sunshine Alphabutton Fashions” (Cosmo Cricket); the chipboard letters are Maya Road–heat embossed with scarlet and black pigment ink (ColorBox) and clear embossing powder (Ranger). The accent circonflexe is an upside down “v” sticker from “5th Avenue Shimmer Stickers” (Making Memories). The patterned papers are both Marah Johnson for Creative Imaginations.


‘Nuf said.

Have a great week everyone!

Menu Plan Monday: Oct. 20, 2008

Ok, I’m cheating this week and posting this on Wednesday (better late, than never, right?).  But we did eat earlier this week–I promise!  And, I had our menu planned since Saturday (I do my menu planning on Saturdays). So, for the sake of participation, I hope you’ll forgive this late contribution to Menu Plan Monday over at

I promised I would try and be less meat-based this week, so I didn’t cook any beef, LOL.

Saturday, 10/18: Had dinner out, with my husband, like, you know, a real date!!  We went here.

Sunday 10/19: Roasted Chicken with Apples & Leeks (one-pot meal from Oct 2008 issue of Real Simple magazine) with wehani rice on the side.  If you’ve never tried wehani, I HIGHLY recommend it.  It has the heartiness of brown rice, so it goes well with autumn meals, but it is VERY aromatic and reddish in color.  This meal was awesome!!

Monday 10/20 : leftovers!

Tuesday 10/21: frozen pizza (Kashi).  I know my life has changed when I actually PLAN on having frozen pizza, LOL.  I sliced up some tomato (one of the last we’ll eat before we get into mealy-gross-tomato-season) and called it a “salad” by virtue of putting balsamic vinegar on top.

Wednesday 10/22: Salmon, Zucchini and Corn Frittata (Cook’s Encyclopedia of Thirty Minute Cooking) with salad

Thursday 10/23: on our own for dinner…I’ll probably grab something here

Friday 10/24: Real Veggie Chili (Fix-it-and-forget-it, p. 65).  This recipe called for “textured vegetable protein“, which I find uninspiring, so I’m substituting tempeh instead.

See you next week!!

Sunday Scrappin’ #49

I feel like Sunday Scrappin‘ needs a theme song, don’t you? 😉 Come join us in this weekly blog meme for papercrafters where we post our TA-DAs, TO-DOs and participate in optional challenges!

TA-DAs for this week:

  • Three halloween cards (my first!)
  • contact papered the drawers at my new house, LOL
  • An encouragement card (see below)
  • A “Thank You” card that I can’t show yet. 🙂
Encouragement card

This card also fulfills last week’s challenge to use something clear (or clearish).  I know the picture isn’t great (sorry).  This is one of my favorite quotes which I have used for a different card, and I had this leftover piece of vellum with the quote on it (the margins weren’t large enough for the other card, so I stashed it in my stash).  Well, I pulled it out for this challenge, cut the cardstock to size, added some Martha Stewart paper, tacked the vellum on with four eyelets (Paper Source), and added a Victorian kitty sticker (Punch Studio) because the recipient likes cats. I also used a Hero Arts “designed by” stamp on the back (not shown). The vellum has rose petals and pieces of grass in it.


  • birthday card for my MIL
  • birthday card for my godson/nephew

NEXT WEEK’S CHALLENGE: “something fuzzy. It could be a fuzzy embellishment… a layout with photos of your favorite fuzzy sweater… anything you can connect to the word fuzzy. Have fun with it!”


Blog Action Day 2008: Poverty

Well, it is here–Blog Action Day 2008. The day that bloggers all over the world take time out to write about a topic that matters. This year’s topic: POVERTY. This is a long post that I’ll hope you’ll take the time to read since I took the time to write it. 🙂

Perhaps, given the financial crisis in the United States, poverty may seem even more resonant to some. But I’m not talking about people who make 100K/yr and are worried about higher taxes. I’m talking about the people in the United States and all over the world who don’t even ONE full meal every day, who don’t have any shelter, any love. They are men, women, and children for whom a “stock portfolio” is not even a blip on the radar screen. And then there are other kinds of poverty: poverty of culture, poverty of education…

Incidentally, I don’t want to appear sanctimonious about the financial problems facing most Americans at the moment. It is definitely a legitimate concern. But I heard a woman who makes a combined income of over 100K a year complain that she was in “abject poverty” due to the financial crisis. I think that’s insulting to people who REALLY know poverty and are dying every day because of it.

So, since this is a craft blog, I did some research on how crafting can help poverty. I hope you will take some time out to look at the links I’ve provided. I’d encourage us all to think of ways we might help. Some of this links are focused on the U.S., but I’d encourage you to consider the ways to help poverty and learn about poverty in your part of the world!

  • Next up, read about Direct Trade and Fair Trade. This is very important in the import of materials produced by low-income farmers and craftspeople around the world. If you buy handmade from commercial retailers (e.g. NOT Etsy), you’ll want to know where they stand on Fair Trade and Direct Trade. The latter, Direct Trade, applies mostly to coffee at this point, like Intelligenstia, sold at my local coffee shop (yay!)
  • Here’s some UNESCO information on how handicrafts can lead to economic sustainability.
  • Check out SERRV. They used to be “A Greater Gift,” now Serrv works with artisans around the world to integrate fair trade handicrafts into poor economies. From their website:

Our goal is to alleviate poverty and empower low-income people through trade, training and other forms of capacity building as they work to improve their lives. SERRV has worked to assist artisans and farmers for more than 55 years through the following:

* Marketing their handcrafts and food products in a just and direct manner.
* Educating consumers in the United States about economic justice and other cultures.
* Providing development assistance to low-income craftspeople through their community-based organizations.

  • Global Exchange has an online store that sells Fair Trade handicrafts from all over the world.


I did some surfing on Etsy, near and dear to many a crafters heart to see what was being done in terms of sending proceeds to help poverty (and related causes: hunger, sustainability, etc). Top causes seem to be cancer research and animal rescue–both REALLY important. However, the thing about poverty is that it is at ground level…poverty snowballs into so many other problems (health, political, overpopulation, etc). Here are a few sellers and Etsy teams who are trying to help:

  • SewShaz, who is sending proceeds to help fight hunger locally (Chicago) and globally (UN)
  • Our public school system is impoverished in more ways than one, and organizations like the Etsy New England Street Team are trying to help…and they are promoting crafting at the same time!

Finally, I’d like to link to one of my favorite blogs, Crafting a Green World. Being responsible about resources and the materials you use as a crafter IS relevant to poverty. That’s what I meant when I said poverty is a ground level problem…you can look at almost any environmental issue, health issue, etc. and trace it all the way down to poverty and sustainability issues. There is nothing quite like repurposing, upcycling, and recycling materials (aka “crafting”) to demonstrate the unused abundance around us.

Thank you for reading!

Halloween Cards–Finally!

I’ve been saying for years that I’m going to make halloween cards…I’ve had all these materials for about three years and it is the first time I’ve used them!
MATERIALS (for all three Halloween cards: orange and black card stock; orange label (Paper Source); Halloween Punch set (witch, cat, & jack o’lantern); Halloween ribbon (Michael’s); Gelly Roll white pen (Sakura); jack o’lantern mini stamp (Mini All Stars II from All Night Media); spooky tree, bats sticker (Paperchase); ghost stickers (Mrs. Grossman’s).

I used the witch punch-outs from one card on another card.

Menu Plan Monday: My First!

I’m pretty excited to participate in Menu Plan Monday. Because we are trying to save money, I am cooking at home more…not such an easy endeavor when we both commute to other states (husband does it five times a week, I do it twice). I’ve got a choir rehearsal on Monday nights, and a night class on Thursday. I’m taking advantage of the fact I have this Tuesday off. 🙂 As the weather gets colder, I get more and more reliant upon my slow-cooker. That takes more planning when you have 6-8 hours of cooking time. This week is rather meat-heavy for us, so I’ll have to plan some vegetarian meals next week.

Sunday – Dh cooked (sweet!) a pasta with linguica; carrots

Monday – Leftovers OR Curried Shrimp in Coconut Milk; salad (SOURCE: The Cook’s Encyclopedia of Thirty Minute Cooking by Jenni Fleetwood). I couldn’t find yellow curry paste at the store and I don’t have time to make my own, so I am cheating with an equivalent store-bought simmer sauce.
Tuesday – Leftovers or Monday’s meal, depending on how Monday goes.
Wednesday – Hungarian Goulash (SOURCE:Fix-It-and Forget-It Cookbook: Feasting With Your Slow Cooker); egg noodles; cabbage. We’ll see how this goes…I’ve had goulash IN Hungary (many times), so I’ll be a tough critic, LOL.
Thursday – I have a late class, so husband and I eat on our own (he’ll probably eat leftover Goulash and I’ll catch a bite to eat downtown…most likely a salad here.
Friday – Go out to eat/take-out
Saturday – I have no idea yet (I plan on Saturdays).

Sunday Scrappin’ #48

Yep, it is Sunday Scrappin’ time again–the weekly blogmeme for papercrafters! Come join us!


Since I basically decided I was going to spend some of Friday crafting (due to the long weekend), I had a pretty incredible day of crafty accomplishments (for me). I did one project, then either worked or cleaned, another craft project, worked/cleaned…you get the picture. I wanted to get some stuff done before I have to pack up my supplies to be moved to the new house.

MATERIALS: old Christmas wrap, cardstock, rub-ons (Hambly), snowflake sequins (Queen & Co.), gel pens (Sakura), “To From” stamp (A Muse Artstamps)

  • A thank you card for our awesome realtor

MATERIALS & TECHNIQUES: red cardstock, stickers (Target), house sheer keychain (Maya Road), which I edged with VersaMark (Hero Arts), embossed with Gold Sparkle EP (Judi Kins); American Crafts ribbon, and a black eyelet to finish the hole from the keychain. (Psst…don’t tell, but the reason the letters are so random is because dummy here used glue dots to adhere the house, and then had to cover them up so you couldn’t see them…ahem).

  • Last but not least, a birthday card for my stepmom

MATERIALS: Here I refashioned a pre-existing notecard from Papyrus with some Anna Griffin paper and a letterpress tag (Paper Source). I also inked the deckled edge with “Rosebud” pigment ink (ColorBox)

Last week’s Challenge was to use orange! Well, I think I got that covered (see Moos, Thank You Card, and Birthday card for my dad). This week’s challenge is:

Use something clear. It could be acetate used for a shaker card, an altered container that’s clear, a piece of clear-ish vellum…. use your imagination!


  • stay sane as we get closer and closer to move day
  • a birthday card or two

Thanks for looking, commenting and generally, just being there.

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October 2008