Sunday, April 29, 2007

Southern California Stamp Mania 2007

4:20 AM -- Wake up, get showered and dressed, make sure I have my phone, IPOD, etc and all the stuff I need for my trip packed. Kiss my family goodbye while they sleep.

5:15 AM - Drive to gas station and fill up tank and get a 40 oz. cup of mountain dew.

5:30 AM - Leave Phoenix on the I-10

10:30 AM - Get on the 215 in California as per Mapquest directions. Drive about 30 miles and it becomes the 15 -- directions said it would become the 91W but apparently not. Backtracked back on the 15 until I came to 91W -- drove on that in mild traffic until I came to the right exits.

12:30 PM - Arrived at the site in Southern California.

2:20 PM - My Make and Take time -- here are Emily, Joy and Taylor showing girls how to use the bind it all. It is really cool. We used the bind it all to bind our rosters together -- it is the cutest book of addresses I have had in a long time *grins*

SoCal stamp mania was a blast. I got to meet a whole bunch of people that I had only previously known online and that was fantastic. Since pictures are worth a thousand words, I thought I would upload a bunch of pictures with brief captions and that should sum the event all up . . .

Here is Aubrey (Montigg), Me (Amanda_Sewell), Denier and Sencie -- I have talked online to these girls for a long time and Denier was my secret sister and I sent stuff to her over a year ago. It was fabulous to be able to meet them for real.

Here is your close up of me and Aubrey.

Here is me and the famous Jenn Balcer. We met originally through a Stampin Discuss board where I was looking for Bunco directions and she directed me to Splitcoast and the rest is history. It was great to be able to finally meet her in real life. She is just so sweet (even if she was tired).

Here is me and Lori (stamp_momma) -- I was lucky enough to sit at the same table with her. In fact, our table had all people from out of California. It was cool. Lori was the sweetest thing ever and I hope that we can meet and stamp together another time.

Here is Lynn -- she came from St. Louis to be at the event and she was totally fun! I am so glad I got to meet her. YAY for splitcoast friends!

Here is my other brush with SCS celebs -- Sharon H and I were sitting at the same table to start our swaps with. She is just so nice. I absolutely loved her swap. It was beautiful!

Me and Karen Rose (the other Canadian at the event). She came all the way from Manitoba to play and stamp! She was just too cute! But then again, what Canadians aren't??? *wink*

Here is me and Tandra (inkalicious) -- taking a self photo. Tandra was bunches of fun and I voted for her nametag cause it was awesome and had a ton of ribbon -- would have made Jody proud (thanks for sending this picture to me Tandra). This is what I look like after I have Taylor's Puppy Chow and am all sugared up *grins*

I didn't actually get to meet Beth (showmestamper) until at dinner at Frantone's but she was super fabulous and fun in person and I am so glad that I did. Hopefully next time I will get to hang out with her a bit more.

I made this card using Tim Holtz blending solution, my ink pads and an aqua brush pen to color the flowers and some twinkling H2O's to go over the top. Oh, and I used SU reinkers (vintage violet and lavendar lace) to get that great color for the background on glossy cardstock. I was so nervous about my swap -- Would it be good enough? Would people like it? Would it take too much time? I was really happy and excited when I saw that everyone did do it and my supplies were used nicely and nothing was ruined! YAY! Thank you all so much for showing so much care!!!

The door prizes were just amazing! WOW! Here's a peek:

9:00 PM -- Got in my car to drive home to Phoenix -- took the 605 straight up to the I-10 -- fairly traffic free

12:00 AM -- Stopped at McDonalds and bought a large Dr. Pepper -- was starting to feel tired

2:00 AM -- Pulled into my driveway. Went inside, and posted on splitcoast that I made it home so that all my SCSM mommies would not worry. Went to bed. I can't believe I was almost awake for 24 hours . . . YIKES! Talk about a long day!!!

Here is my DH modeling the prize I won at SCSM. I won a splitcoast hoodie and he thought it would be soft and comfortable inside and so he put it on and the drifted off to sleep. Happy stamping dreams . . .

Friday, April 27, 2007

Fabulous Floral Fridays - Because of You

Happy Friday! Wasn't Greys awesome last night? I cannot wait till next weeks 2 hour dealio!!! WAY COOL! Mer and Der -- they just can't break up! Oh, and Alex and Addison -- um, hello, why was he such a jerk! I really, really, REALLY want them to hook up! Oh, and I cannot wait until Callie blows about George and Izzie. I really think that George belongs with Izzie, but isn't that how is goes sometimes -- you don't realize how deeply you care for your best friend until after you have made another commitment. I also watched October Road Season finale after. It was the most calm finale I have ever seen. Like, basically, I am NOT dying to see the next episode right away. I think that is a bad thing. I like that show though -- the characters are interesting, it just needs something more . . . . anyway, enough TV talk . . . on to the good stuff!

So guess where I am headed tomorrow -- yep, Southern California - Long Beach to be specific to go to Southern California Stamp Mania (put on by some awesome girls on the splitcoaststampers site. There are over 100 girls coming to the event. It makes me freak out. I am so excited. I am so not prepared. It is going to be so much fun. So, because I am still getting ready and such . . . I decided I would post one card for today's fabulous floral friday . . . because of the time crunch. Know that I wanted to post more though, I just LOVE this set!!! If you love coloring in images -- this one is totally for you! The patterned paper is by Sandylion Sticker Designs and is called Floral Crochet - Blue. I LOVE it. The eyelets I just happened to have in my collection. Ooh, and the brown behind the sentiment was stamped with canvas -- it was just a scrap I had leftover from another card and I just dropped it on there and it works! The flowers are watercolored in with more mustard, not quite navy, cranberry crisp and old olive. I also used some of my twinkling H2O's in matching colors over the top of those to set it off and make it sparkle. It looks pretty! Also, not sure if you can see it, but the main card is stamped tone on tone with the floral background stamp from this set. Gotta love SU's "Because of You."

The other thing I wanted to show you today, is what I have made for SoCal mania. I made three thank you containers of chocolate for Joy, Emily and Jami (these are just crystal light containers filled with nuggets wrapped in matching paper and then the outside decorated - I actually used Frys brand faker crystal light and the labels peeled off so easily it was like a dream -- plus, their drink tastes nummy too so I can drink a lot of it). I made my door prize -- a lunchbox tin filled with some small goodies. The goodies are stuff like a notepad that matches, a matchbox filled with prima flowers and brads, a cello bag with wrapped chocolates and a matching bag topper, some pens, etc. I found the random piece of eyelet in my big ribbon jar and thought that it would look cute on this tin and make it uber girly. I really hope they like them. It is nerve wracking to stamp knowing that such awesome stampers will be there checking out your stuff! Anyway, tell me what you think . . .

Okay, well, that is all for me . . . I am SoCal bound and won't be on again until I return with pictures and stories of the fun I had. I will be sure to report on Sunday how things went and post some pictures so that you can live vicariously though me! Have a good and safe weekend everyone!

Oooh, and don't forget to link your creations to the comments under this post for your chance at winning a great prize. This week, I think I will send one of the crystal light containers like seen above full of embellishments and fun to the winner of the drawing -- all you have to do is link your creation to this post, and for each creation you enter using this stamp set -- I will enter you in the draw! Good luck and get stampin'!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

And Everything Nice

Sometimes I start stamping and I get in a rut -- like I feel like playing with the same set and using all of the stamps from it. Well yesterday, I pulled out "And Everything Nice" and I had this desire to make not just one -- but two cards. I made one using soft subtle colors and one using bold brights. The cards did not turn out amazingly spectacular, but they are at least nice enough to send to someone. I was really supposed to be working on my card swaps for So Cal Stamp Mania -- but I just felt unmotivated, so maybe tonight after everyone is in bed. We shall see.

The first card is watercolored in using my LuminArte twinkling H2O's. I really love them. It shimmers so much. The colors used were: Ballet Blue, Pixie Pink, Green Galore, Basic Black and Whisper White. I made this card intending to use the Levi tag challenge (TLC113) -- but then I decided I wanted to use this longer sentiment and so I made it an EXTRA large Levi tab!

The second card I made uses colors in the soft subtle family. It is also colored in using the twinkling H2O's and the image was stamped in timber brown staz on to avoid the edges running. The colors I used on this one are tempting turquoise, sage shadow, pretty in pink, and whisper white. The layout was inkspired by this layout by reneejul1 who was the featured stamper this past Sunday. I really liked a lot of her work and plan to use some of her other awesome layouts on my cards in the near future. I used white mulberry paper over the turquoise to try to soften it a bit and I think it worked well. The paper piercing along the edge was done at the end to add interest because it just looked like it needed something there.

Off to begin preparations for SoCal Stamp Mania -- I am so behind . . . as usual - good thing I work well under pressure. I really hope the girls like the card I come up with . . . ooh, and my door prize.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

What's For Dinner Wednesday - Quick and Easy Turkey Pot Pie

This is a super easy version of turkey pot pie. I cooked a turkey and had leftovers and this is how I used them up. I found that one of my pie shells was sticking and would not come out of the pan, so I took it out and rolled it between two sheets of wax paper, then laid it on top and pressed the edges with a fork and poked some vent holes on top. M and the kids thought it was delicious! Super easy too!!!

Quick and Easy Turkey Pot Pie

2 (9 inch) unbaked pie shells
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
2 cups cooked, chopped turkey meat
1 (10 ounce) can mixed vegetables, drained (Veg-All -- or one with potatoes)
1/3 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Place one pie crust in an ungreased pie dish.
2. In a medium bowl, mix the mushroom soup and milk. Stir in the turkey meat and mixed vegetables. Pour the mixture into the pie crust in the dish. Top with the other pie crust, and seal the crust edges by crimping with a wet fork.
3. Bake in the preheated oven 45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown

Monday, April 23, 2007

Manda's Mailbox Monday - A Unique Card

I got this great tri-fold card in the mail this week from Debbi Rippentrop! Thanks Debbi so much for the RAK! It really did put a smile on my face and I just love what you did with the resist and the glossy paper and the faux stitching -- WOW! What a great card!!!

I am so glad that I joined the splitcoast blogger RAK club. Seriously, if you are a blogger and you have not joined it, go check it out -- link is on my sidebar. It makes it not so annoying to check my mail and just see bills, junk, junk, junk, bill . . . and then a card -- it always makes me eager to open it and see who sent it! I truly treasure this wonderful mail!!!

I also got another wonderful package from my favorite dirty dozen girl - Jody . . . (texasjodylynn) but it was something she posted on splitcoaststampers for the dirty dozen gallery showcase -- so I cannot post it here -- but it was AWESOME and if you want to see it, all you have to do is contribute to SCS and you will gain access to the gallery! Hope you do!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Creating Keepsakes Mesa Convention

I had the chance to volunteer at this event, and I participated in some classes for free because I volunteered. It was a good experience. Tiring, but really fun.

On Thursday night, I arrived at about 6:20 pm, and checked in at the volunteer station and then headed to the ballroom to work at the crop. At this crop, it was no ordinary crop, it was an album crop, and each of the pages was sponsored by a different company and therefore had a different teacher to guide you through the creation of it. Because I was not participating in the actual crop, but just there to volunteer, I decided to make it my goal to learn one thing. I spent the evening helping girls out with their pages when they missed something, handing out door prizes and displaying the pages in the book so that all could see (aka, being Vanna). It was great fun. I learned a really cool way to make scalloped chipboard circles turn into chipboard hearts. You just cut into the center of the chipboard at two places leaving two scallops in the middle of your cuts. Then just sand it off and ink it up and how cute is that?? Simple, but cute and I know I will use it!

I was unable to attend Friday because I had volunteered my house to have my church's monthly scrap night at it, so I had to stay home for that. I only had one person show up, but we had fun anyway. We watched The DaVinci Code and I managed to get two cards stamped for a card call that I needed to get done.

I left my house bright and early (7:20 am) because I needed to arrive by 8 am. When I checked in at the volunteer station, I was assigned to the door prize table for the morning. I thought that sounded like fun because I would then get to be on the vendor floor and since it was me and another girl we could take turns looking at the vendor fair. We got set up and then I ran to put some gas in my car because I knew I would not be leaving until midnight and had just barely made it there on fumes cause I was in a hurry that morning, and the other girl I was working with went to go get breakfast. When we got back, there was someone else assigned to that job. Apparently they do it every year, but they had arrived late so the volunteer coordinator had thought they were not coming. Anyway, I got reassigned to help in the Palo Verde I room.

The first class that was being hosted where I was to volunteer was the free class - Get Started! - hosted by Simple Scrapbooks. I got to meet Wendy Smedley who was just too super sweet and nice. She spoke with the class and what I learned in this class is that there is such a thing as teflon coated scissors and that they are awesome for use when there is an adhesive involved in your cutting (like a glue dot or something), because they adhesive won't stick to them. Very cool. She also talked about a site called that she had heard was very good quality.

The second class that I helped out with was called "Holiday Highlights Made Simple" hosted by Simple Scrapbooks. This class was taught by Kris Parkin. She was very charismatic and fun! After we set up all the tables and handed out kits and collected tickets, my job was basically to be the "Vanna" and hand supplies back to rows that needed them that had not had them yet. Really simple. The class made a 6 x 12 book with 4 different schemes (layouts) that were repeated twice. Most people only got done about 4 pages and the covers. New volunteers came to replace me at noon so I could go to the first class that I had signed up for.

I got to attend the class called "Board Book Mania: Disney Magic" sponsored by Lickety Split Scrapbooks. They have some great board book kits on their site and once they are gone, they are gone -- they redesign them each year I think I heard. I signed up for this class because our family is planning on going to Disneyland next month for a weekend, and I thought it would be the perfect little book to put our memories in. The one thing I found about these classes is that they are all very slow paced and yet some people are still frantically trying to finish. I managed to get my book together and leave early.

Since I got out a little early, I decided to check out the vendor fair, since I did not leave a lot of time for that. There were lots of vendors, however, nothing really struck me as "hard to find" or "new" and I think that is because in Phoenix and Mesa we are super spoiled and there are a ton of scrap stores locally. I did shop the dollar scrapbooking booth (which is always crowded and has cool stuff). I got a great Heidi Swapp album for only $6 and a bunch of awesome goodies for $1 each. I also had a chance to browse through the "Write On" booth, but I decided not to get anything cause they had a website I could order from later.

My second class of the day was "Through the Years" sponsored by Cara Miller Designs. There were only 4 people in this class, but Cara was absolutely darling. Loved her. We were allowed to choose to do her "Through the Years" board book, or another one if we wished, and I chose to do a recipe book that she had designed. It turned out cute! I sent it to Jody as our monthly swap but when she has it I will add pictures of it here.

My third class was called "Tool Time With Tina" and I took it on a whim because there were no other classes really left that I wanted to take and I still had lots left on my vouchers for helping. Tina Masterjohn was a lot of fun as a teacher and made us laugh more than once and had fun stories to tell. We made an folded album that used zip ties, and air conditioning tin duct tape stuff, and washers, and these cool rubber letters. Basically the goal of the class was to make us want to raid our husbands toolbox, or look differently at the things that were piled in the junk drawer, and I think it did that.

At the conclusion of my third class, I looked at the time and realized it was 5 pm and I had not eaten yet. I skipped breakfast because I was in such a hurry to get there on time, and then lunch never even crossed my mind. I was shaky and so I went and got myself a big drink and a chicken burger and fries. I felt MUCH better after I ate it. I would not recommend scrapping that long on an empty stomach.

I came back to help out with the Saturday Evening Send Off crop. It was a lot of fun. Each participant got some magazines and two goodies bags. Door prizes were given out throughout the night and the Technique Tuesday girls got everybody laughing and having fun with their "Cheer" contest. Hysterical to watch the ladies come up with their cheers and perform them. After the last door prize was given out, we were allowed to go home. Micaela kindly allowed us to take magazines for ourselves and then gave us the goodie bags that everyone had received during the crop, so that was a nice surprise and fun!!! I bet you are wondering what was inside the goodie bag . . . we got paper, some adhesives, two DVD's - one with fonts and the other a digital scrapbooking program, eyelets, and all sorts of small gifts from sponsors. It was a blast! I fully intend to volunteer in Phoenix in the fall!

Thursday, April 19, 2007



PAID($8.10) Kristin -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)

PAID($8.10) Rose -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Melissa C -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Crystal -- 4 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Leslie B -- 2 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Dawn B -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Erica P -- 4 boxes (SHIPPED)
($8.10) Jessica H - 4 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Karen G -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Patti C -- 5 boxes (SHIPPING 4/23 or 4/24)
PAID($8.10) Dorothy W -- 5 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Emily A -- 4 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($8.10) Paige G -- 4 boxes (SHIPPED)
($8.10) Robyn K -- 5 boxes (SHIPPING 4/23 or 4/24)
PAID($8.10) Jen M -- 5 boxes (SHIPPING - PACKAGED)
PAID($8.10) Wendy B -- 3 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($12.35) Tracy T -- 4 boxes Jody -- 8 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($10.50) Amy I -- 10 boxes (Plus $19.40 past due for the adhesive) -- TOTAL: $29.90 DUE (SHIPPING 4/13)
PAID($8.50) Stephanie S -- 6 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($10.50) Nicki -- 8 boxes (SHIPPED)
PAID($10.50)Lyn -- 10 boxes (SHIPPING 4/18)

4/9 -- ISSUE SOLVED -- shipping will continue . . . I dropped off a ton of them today at the Post office

4/11 -- still waiting for money from Lyn

4/18 -- all monoadhesive has shipped - please let me know when you get yours so I may keep track of it all -- I want to make sure everyone has theirs. THANKS!!!

4/19 -- Ooops, might have missed someone, I just noticed I have more extras than I was anticipating. . . *stressing* If you live in Vickery, OH (Zip: 43464) -- please email me and let me know -- you are the one I have sent but not accounted for sending *feels like such a flake*

Stomach Flu and my first ever crop

J was up all night with the stomach flu I think. He has been vomiting hourly and his tummy is doing waves right before he vomits. Poor little thing. I am just trying to keep him feeling okay today. Have I mentioned recently how much I love love love my steamer! What a lifesaver that has been. Vomit and carpets sure don't mix well . . .

Tonight I will be helping out with the creating keepsakes crop in Mesa. It will be interesting because I am more of a cardmaker than a scrapper and this will be my first crop I have ever been to. I will report and let you all know how it goes.

Tomorrow (Friday) -- I have my monthly ward gathering for Scrapbooking and projects at my house, so I will be home. It will be a nice rest. Then Saturday I will be back working at Creating Keepsakes all day -- I work 8-12 and then have 12-6 off and then work the send off crop that night. Should be fun! Anyway, all that said, I will be scarce. I will try to post at least one project today . . . but it all depends on how things go with the sick boy.

Have a happy Grey's Day! -- NEW EPISODE TONIGHT - I will have to watch it online tomorrow *sigh* Busy, busy, busy!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

What's For Dinner Wednesday - Salmon with Tomatoes

Sorry I have been missing in action. I have been spending a lot of time with my family and been working on things for a couple of card calls, which unfortunately I cannot post, but not to worry, I will soon be posting some fun cards again. I took a whole week off from my blog to relax and renew. This weekend I am headed to Mesa to the Creating Keepsakes convention to help out. I am really excited, it is a lot of fun. I will post some updates from that event also.

DINNER - Okay, so really, M is driving out to the lot that we are looking at purchasing tonight to get an idea on how long the commute will take tonight, so the kids and I will probably eat pizza or mac and cheese -- but I couldn't let you guys eat that, so I offer you what we ate for dinner last night. This recipe was found on allrecipes when I was looking for something different to do with a salmon fillet that I had in the freezer. It is definitely different, but M and I both agree we would gladly make it again.

Salmon with Tomatoes

1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
2 cups water
2 1/2 tablespoons garlic oil (I used olive oil with a bit of crushed garlic added)
2 (6 ounce) fillets salmon (Because you mash it up later, you could perhaps use canned salmon -- I don't know for sure cause I did not do it, but I imagine it would work in a pinch)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/4 teaspoon paprika to taste
2 fresh tomatoes, diced
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley (I used dried)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons butter (good and fattening, you could probably reduce this by half)
4 dashes hot pepper sauce (I used Pico Pica - M's dad's fave)

1. In a medium saucepan, bring the rice and water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 20 minutes.
2. Heat the garlic oil in a skillet over medium heat. Season the salmon with salt, pepper, dill, and paprika, and cook in the hot oil 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until tender enough to break apart. Break salmon into cubes with a spatula or fork. Mix in the tomatoes, garlic, and lemon juice. Continue cooking until salmon is easily flaked with a fork.
3. Mix the parsley, Parmesan cheese, butter, and hot pepper sauce into the skillet, and continue cooking 1 to 2 minutes, until well mixed. Serve over the cooked rice.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

What's For Dinner Wednesday - Salsa Chicken Burrito Filling

UPDATE: We both really liked this. M and I ate second helpings. The only thing M thought would be better is to add more chicken to tone down the flavor a bit, so I think next time I make it I will use 4 boneless breasts. It was not too spicy and tasted SO much better than Taco Bell chicken burritos! We served it on flour tortillas with sour cream, tomatoes and cheese.

I found this one on -- it sounds super easy and I am in the mood for burritos. Now I just need to head to the store to pick up some fresh tortillas and some sour cream. Let me know what you think . . . as always . . .

Salsa Chicken Burrito Filling

2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 (4 ounce) can tomato sauce
1/4 cup salsa
1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
hot sauce to taste

1. Place chicken breasts and tomato sauce in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a boil, then add the salsa, seasoning, cumin, garlic and chili powder. Let simmer for 15 minutes.
2. With a fork, start pulling the chicken meat apart into thin strings. Keep cooking pulled chicken meat and sauce, covered, for another 5 to 10 minutes. Add hot sauce to taste and stir together (Note: You may need to add a bit of water if the mixture is cooked too high and gets too thick.)

Monday, April 09, 2007

Manda's Mailbox Monday

Sorry I am so late in posting this today . . . I am dealing with carpet guys coming in, and cabinetry guys and door guys and sometime soon, paint guys -- basically, we are trying to get all the stuff done on this house that was supposed to be fixed or done at the year mark. Can you say HECTIC??? I almost have all the furniture moved back in my bedroom now though, and then I need to put away laundry, clean up and pick up the house and the kids want to go to the library today . . . PHEW! I am exhausted just thinking about it.

It was a slow mail week for me . . . apart from a Paper Wishes catalog, I got one RAK card that is just SO pretty. I hope you will like it as much as I do. It is from Jill (CTRMom3 on splitcoast) and it really brightened my week. I was doing a lot of mailing out last week, and running around trying to get stuff done and it was super awesome to have this beauty in my mailbox. Thanks Jill!

I love the sentiment Jill used on this card (so much I own it already) and I love that Jill used Primas on this card -- that is a huge sacrifice right there to be able to part with a card with primas. The big brads are really fun and I like the strip of designer paper she added across . . . I just love all the funky patterns and the colors on this card were so pretty! Basically I am trying to say . . . I love it and will treasure it! Thank you again Jill!

FOR LINDA & MARIE: The sentiment stamp is by Delta Rubber Stampede (3774C - Be the Change) -- I think I bought mine at Michaels -- but if not there - it was Jo Ann's! HTH!

Sunday, April 08, 2007


I decided not to go over the top this year with Easter, because I think that my kids are already too spoiled. I got them each one $5 toy and I bought a big bag of peanut butter M&M's and separated it into plastic eggs for them to do an egg hunt. Then we dyed some easter eggs to eat for breakfast and just hung out together for the rest of the day. The egg dyeing was a lot more fun this year because my kids participated more and it was less just my hubby and I doing it and way more the kids being really hands on. It was a fun, relaxing day. I am glad I did it this way. We had a lot of fun being together and my kids were not too hyper.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Easter Egg-stravaganza Hunt in Surprise

We woke up early this morning so that we could take the kids to the Easter egg hunt. It was organized by age -- our goal was to get there by 9:30 for the 2 year old hunt. We got there late, so I let J do the three year old hunt and that was funny because he was clearly younger than everyone. He had fun though, and managed to pick up about 10 eggs and 3 suckers, and a little toy deer -- which he was super excited about.

It was fun trying to get him to run and get the eggs. He was kind of slower than the rest of the kids -- but he had a blast. I was a little shocked that after about 5 times of the announcer reminding parents that the hunt was for the kids and parents were to only participate by taking pictures, etc -- there were SO many parents that sacrificed their integrity for $1 worth of plastic eggs and candy. Really they just made it less fun for everyone and I thought it was rude. Anyway, mini rant over. I think from now on though, I will stick to egg hunts in our own backyard in the years to come.

Then the four year old hunt was at 10:30 and E got to participate in that one with her dad. She got a ton of candy and eggs too. They both had a lot of fun. We got to see a clown on stilts and they thought that was too cool. We stopped and talked with one of the police officers as we were leaving -- he was on a motorcycle and he turned on the lights for J to see. J is already really into motorcycles and cars and it was one of the highlights of his time out today. We had a good day. Plans for this afternoon, relax and recover.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Fabulous Floral Fridays -- Love Without End

Okay, this set indeed needed some dusting off, I have not used it since I got it about 2 years ago. YIKES! Anyway, I tried to use some trendier for now types of stamps with it and such to make it more modern and I was really impressed with the results of my efforts. Sorry I am posting this so late today -- but as you know, time just seems to keep moving even when I would like it to stop for a bit so I can catch up on things. I used my "starburst stains" on two of the three cards. I am really liking them. They are the ones I got at the Rubber Stamp Spring Fling I went to in Mesa -- if you have no clue about them, scroll down a few posts and find out more. They are really just gorgeous and I want to get more, but I am on spending restriction because we are working on buying a new house! Ooooh, I forgot I had not told you about that yet . . . we are waiting for them to release the lot we want and then hopefully if all goes well, we will get it and start building our new home (hopefully the last one we will build for a long long time). When we have actually signed a contract I will post you the floorplans so you can all have a browse!

Okay, here are the cards:

This card was created using twinkling H2O's over top of some ink pad watercoloring with an aquapainter. Also, I am not sure that you can see it, but the celery paper is diamond embossed -- I did it using a crimper like tool that I got from a friend for my birthday. I embossed the flowers and then colored them in and the silver edge on the celery is done using a Krylon silver leafing pen. This card really shimmers in real life.

This next card was for sure my favorite of the ones I did this week. I was playing with my starburst stains and I used coral first and did some starbursts and then did a wash with a gold color over top and some more starbursts and the paper is just gorgeous. SO shiny and pretty and -- WOW! I pierced on the stem to make it look stitched and stitched around the middle of the flower too. I think you almost forget this is Love Without End set, which is totally the main idea! I love that it turned out so modern looking. I am telling you -- you need those stains.

This final card was my attempt at SC 118 on splitcoast. For some reason the sketch was really hard to me. It looks unbalanced all the time and that bugged me. Eventually, I just decided to go with the unbalancedness of it all . . . and let the flowers go wild. I love PRIMAS! How fun are they? I used Polka Dots and Paisley to liven up the card because when I was looking at the butterflies from Love Without End, I decided to draw in chocolate chip marker around the dots on the wings, and it just sort of matched perfectly with that set. The butterflies are embossed on the sheet of starbursts that I posted the other day (YAY, I used it).

Anyway, I hope you liked these cards and that they inkspired you. Now it is your turn . . . inkspire me with your gorgeous work using Love Without End -- and post a link to your card in the comments section of this post! See how modern and different you can make this set look!!!

Oooh, and there was that matter of a winner . . . from last week . . . I have not forgotten . . . and the winner is . . . *drum roll please*
Lori said...

Hi Amanda,
I've forgotten about Heartfelt Thanks, too! Here's my card:

Lori, email me your snail mail address so I can send your cube set out. Thanks so much for your participation and even though no prize is listed this week . . . there will be one, so upload and link your creations by next Friday for your chance to win this weeks prize. Good luck!!!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

What's For Dinner Wednesday - Pierogies, Salad and Cake with Berries

WOW, that is like the longest post title I have ever done. Spring has spring here in AZ. The trees are blossoming and the weather is just gorgeous. So today it is 85 degrees, and I don't want something casserole like -- so we are having pierogies. I decided I would just tell you how I prepare my dinner and if you want, you can copy my menu plan -- so not really a recipe per se -- but a yummy dinner for sure. Oh, and Jen, my friend, is dreaming of spring, so here are some pictures of my gorgeous tree in bloom! It is so fun to go outside and look at it!

Stuff you need: 1 box of pierogies, seasoning salt, bacon (2-3 pieces), cooking spray or butter, sour cream, shredded cheese, romaine lettuce, 2-3 roma tomatoes, garlic croutons, english cucumber, white cake mix, strawberries, sugar, whipped cream, salad dressing

I have a box of cheese and potato pierogies. I got these ones at Target -- and I have never tried this brand before, so I am excited. They were cheaper than my usual brand. So first, I boil them until they are soft. Then I drain the water and then I place bacon (I use turkey bacon) and cooking spray in my pan and pan fry the pierogies until they are crispy on the outside. While I am cooking them, I sprinkle them with a dash of seasoning salt. I serve with the bacon crisped, some sour cream and a little cheese. Mucho fattening, but totally YUMMY!

We are simple folks when it comes to salad at my house. Our favorite salad contains romaine lettuce, 2-3 roma tomatoes, 1/2 an english cucumber, peeled, and 1/2 cup of garlic croutons. Top with your favorite dressing and enjoy! Sometimes we add garbanzo beans to this, or boiled egg pieces when we are looking for a heartier salad.

I am just going to make a white cake, let it cool. Then chop up my strawberries and let them sit in the fridge with some sugar on them. THEN, when it is time to serve, slice a piece of cake, cover with generous whipped cream, and then spoon strawberries over the top!

That is what is for dinner here today! ENJOY!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Inkspired by Wannabe Handmade

I got a really cute card from my sister in law the other day, saying thank you for her baby gift. The card was by American Greetings and was just a little notecard but I just loved the card. It was cute and I thought I could totally duplicate it but using stamps. SO, early yesterday morning, I worked on two cards -- one using a floral set (Springtime Stems) and the other, an Easter theme, using an egg (Inkadinkado). I was totally happy with the results. Tell me what you think?

The first card is the one from my sister in law. The second one uses an egg stamp that I got from The Creative Quest -- it is by Inkadinkadoo! I really like it. The paper used on that card (stripes) is by American Crafts. The vanilla card uses the SU set Springtime Stems. The paper used on that one is EK Success - Inspirables - Simply Seasonal Collection. I just loved the way the SU colors really worked with both of these papers. I used stickles on both of my cards to mimic the glittery effect that had been done on the original notecard. All in all, I love how these turned out!

Oh, and if you have not visited in a couple days, scroll down to Saturday's post from the Rubber Stamp Spring Fling, lots of ideas and no comments on that one -- I think some people missed it somehow . . .

Only a couple more days to submit your entries in last weeks Fabulous Floral Fridays contest -- you don't want to be left out of the drawing -- so do your card and post it . . . easy peasy and you could win the kit!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Manda's Mailbox Monday

I always get so many cool and wonderful things in the mail, and so I decided to make Monday my day to display all sorts of wonderful things that have made me smile when I have opened the mailbox in the past week.

I got a wonderful package from my BFF Carrie who was my college roomie and now works for Cosmo Cricket! She said she would send some samples, but she spoiled me rotten! I am so so thankful and excited. She sent me a papercrafting kit in Dutch Girl, and Halfway Cafe. She sent 3 packs of buck naked stuff . . . alphas, buttons and more, and some lacing cards which are the coolest things ever. Oh, and two rolls of 6 yards of love, vintage palette and nursery palette. YAY!

That same day I got another package of stuff -- JenMarie was kind enough to send me some gorgeous beaded pens and a really cute card! It really brightened my day and I totally appreciated it. You so did not even have to do that! What a sweetie!!! I have never actually done the microbeaded pens because I am usually a bit too A.R. and I am scared of the mess it will make, but you have inkspired me to want to try them because they were just stunning. You can bet I will be bragging about you when I use them and anyone says anything about them. THANK YOU!!!

I got my first ever blogger RAK today! Isn't it just beautiful???? YAY! I was totally stoked!! Thank you to Debbie Seyer who sent me this most adorable and perfect card in my fave SU colors -- she is really on the ball *smiles* -- pale plum and perfect plum! I love the card because it has multiple layers of embossing in different colors. Oh, and guess what? She is a blogger too: -- Tell her Amanda sent you!

THANK YOU DEBBIE! I really appreciate your generosity in sending this gorgeous work of art to me. I will treasure it!!!

Also today, I got some more happy mail, this time, the blog candy that I won on Taylors blog. I am seriously so spoiled rotten. I am so excited to play with these acrylic stamps though because my store did not have them. I am so glad that Taylor sent some of the little blocks to match too because my blocks that I have are mostly really big ones. YAY! I cannot believe I actually won. I never win stuff. Oh and she sent a really cute card -- but I think the tin smushed against it a little too much in the mail cause it had a crinkle -- but I am trying to lay a book on it to get the wrinkle out. The tin was adorable! I fell in love with it when she posted it on her blog, and to own it in real life makes me feel very giddy! I love it! The best thing about this whole blog candy gift is that I get to meet Taylor in person to thank her at SoCal Stampmania coming up a little later this month! WOOHOO!

Finally, I got a really really cool package from Heather at Skipping Stones Design. She sent me both sizes of her S* Purse, and a bunch of acrylic stamp sets, including: Angelina Alphabet, Greatest Hits Vol. 1, Winters Jewels, Well Behaved and another one I can't remember the name of. I was so excited. The S* Purses store all your acrylic stamps as well as tons of accessories. I was really surprised at how much they hold and how darn cute they look when you are toting them around! THANK YOU HEATHER. I already stamped some more stuff for you and will send it on to you soon!!!

PHEW! Talk about your good mail week. Watch, next week I will have like nothing . . . hehehe! Hope you have a great mail week this week too!