Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Pssssst . . . have you heard????

Hanna Stamps is having a sale -- well, kind of sort of. You see, there is a coupon code floating around offering 10% off your total order. Wouldn't you like to get your hands on that code? Well you can . . . it is "SUPPORT" -- just enter that in while placing your order and VOILA!!!!

Kristi wants to thank all of the awesome people who love Hanna Stamps as much as she and the design team do, and have supported us this year. Coupon is good until Jan 31st, 2009. Go check out all the cool stuff for sale on the Hanna site, there is so much more than just awesome fun stamps! Treat yourself, you deserve it . . . and besides, you can just tell your hubby everything was on sale or that you were doing your part to stimulate the economy *wink wink*

Friday, December 26, 2008


It has been so long since I have touched ink! I had such a good time this evening stamping for this challenge. Jeanne got all busy and just got the challenge posted now (hey, better late than never right) and I jumped right on it. Her challenge was to use a Riley image and an accessory image from one of the Hanna sets. I used garden Riley and the flowers from Hippy Chick Hanna. Layout was Jen's SFYTT (sketch for you to try). The blue background layers were created by coloring white paper with a copic marker to get a perfect match.

Stamps: Garden Riley, Hippy Chick Hanna (Hanna Stamps), Bonjour (Stampabilities) Paper: Chocolate Chip (SU!), Close to Cocoa (SU!), Whisper White (SU!), Solar Crest White (Neenah), Granny's Kitchen - Kitchen Stripes (S.E.I.) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine Accessories: Clear Embossing Powder (SU!), Nestabilities Scalloped Circles, Handheld 1/8th inch circle punch (Fiskars), Sewing Machine, brown thread, ciao markers (Copic), brown dotted satin ribbon (American Crafts Premium), 3D Zots glue dots (Therm O Web), Inkssentials Opaque White gel pen, silver prismacolor pencil

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good Night

We had a fun and relaxing Christmas Day here at the Sewell home. Hope you all did too and that Santa was good to you and you remembered the true meaning of Christmas at least once throughout your day. Here are some photos (I know my mom is dying for more pictures so pardon the picture-palooza):

E modeling her new Christmas Princess PJ's

J opening a present

E opening a present

E looking at a couple of her new CD's and J opening the last gift in his stocking

J dressing up like Indiana Jones (using his Woody hat) and when he opened WALL-E

E thanking J for the present he got her and J with a HUGE smile

E and J playing with some toys they got in their stockings

Me and Santa baby open up a new baby swing

Baby E testing out said swing

My cute kids, BIL Joseph & M

Santa Baby 1

Santa Baby 2

Monday, December 22, 2008


I can't believe I have slacked so much on posting. I guess that is what happens when you are busy trying to keep up with life. Fortunately, as of this morning my blood pressure was 117/75 and that was with me being due to take a pill, so that is a good sign. I think it has mostly regulated itself back to normal. YAY!

This weekend, I spent some time with the kids baking cookies -- well, it is more like, I bake the cookies, and the kids and M taste test them for me. Heheh! I think we are going to make some sugar cookies and gingerbread next. We made some Martha Stewart Chocolate Thumbprints, and some oatmeal scotchies and oatmeal, cranberry, and white chocolate cookies *(I love Betty Crocker cookies mixes that you can just add stuff to)*. My computer decided it wanted to have blue screen of death again -- but since it had happened before, I did not panic and did the steps to repair it that I did last time and VOILA! I am back as of this morning!!!

Since I know lots of people are waiting for some updated pictures of the little guy, here he is:

12-8 Watching a movie together - daddy loves snuggling his baby

12-11 E and E - Little mommy always wants to hold her brother

12-20 Such an alert little guy - when he's awake that is . . .

12-22 Little guy is an awesome sleeper and eater
(you can see his small birth mark on his left eyelid in this picture)


I saw this at the local scrapbook store and decided I needed to make one. The one there was on a tree wrapped around and around. I purchased lots of the boshers I would require, but as I worked on it, I figured out I would need TONS more to make it long enough for a tree. When I went back to the store, they did not have the ones I needed, so I will have to order some online. At any rate, I may continue on it next year. The boshers are made by Bazzill Basics (they are a combination of buttons and washers - hence the name). I just tied them together using fun Christmas ribbons and easy peasy made a garland. Hope you like it! I hung it over some pictures on my wall for this year. Here is a close up on a piece of it so you can see the ribbon detail.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

All I Want For Christmas . . .

Okay, so it is not MY two front teeth, but speaking of teeth, my sweet little girl E lost her first tooth today. It was one of her front ones at the bottom. It had been loose for about a week and when she was brushing her teeth, it just popped out. She was so excited because she knew it was coming. Her new tooth is already there starting to come up. We forgot to put the old one under her pillow tonight -- she fell asleep already, so tomorrow we will and see if the tooth fairy comes -- which reminds me . . . what is the going rate for teeth? HELP!

Friday, December 05, 2008

HE's HERE!!!

My new little bundle of boy arrived Dec 4th at 8:25 pm!

Weight: 6 lbs, 6 oz.
Length: 19.5 inches
Delivered by: Dr. Partridge

I know, I know, you want all the details (or not), but you get them anyway because this is a journal of MY life . . . and I want to document my less than wonderful experience so I remember the details. I went to my Dr.'s appt. on December 3rd, and my blood pressure had increased dramatically, I had been having some signs and symptoms of pregnancy induced hypertension (pre-eclampsia), so I was instructed to go to the hospital. I went in, (called Mon the way and he met me to take the kids) and I was thinking it would just be some monitoring and then I would be able to go home, but my blood pressure was so high, I was taken back quickly, into a gown before I knew it and had to call M to tell him that he needed to take our kids home to a friends house because we most likely were not going home without a baby.

By the time M got back to me, they had me in a labor and delivery suite, with an IV in my arm, and were working on giving me some medicines to get the blood pressure down. They put me on magnesium sulfate (brutal evil medicine) and that made me sick and throwing up. Awful. Anyway, M and I watched our Wednesday night shows (Private Practice and Dirty Sexy Money) and then went to sleep. At some point early in the morning, my water broke on its own, so they decided to induce me. Because of this, and the fact that I did not sleep comfortably -- I decided to get an epidural so I would not have to feel pain. After all the throwing up and such, I needed a break. I was nervous about it because of the last experience I had, but we had the most AMAZING anesthesiologist who took things slow. My epidural took really well, but he made it so I could still feel and move my legs. This was NEW for me because the last two times, they were like dead logs and it was bad. At about 6:30 or 7:00 pm, I started to be able to feel the contractions (in spite of the epidural) and after getting the nurses to believe I was in pain, they got the anesthesiologist to come back and he gave me his "special concoction" and it made all the pain go away! Seriously, that guy was AMAZING!!!!

At about 8:00 pm, I felt like I could push, but the Dr. was still finishing up a c-section, so the nurse suggested that we "labor down" and just wait and that it would go smoother. So we waited and when the Dr. arrived, everyone got set up really fast and I literally pushed the sweet little guy out in one push! It went so smoothly and easily. He arrived at 8:25 pm. He weighed 6 lbs 6 oz. He had lots of fuzzy dark brown hair and really dark eyes. He was 19.5 inches long.

After the baby had arrived, we were informed that since the hospital was in the middle of renovations, they had a room for me, but I could only get there in a wheel chair because the path to it was skinny, and since they had had me on magnesium sulfate, I could not get out of bed and step to a wheel chair, so they said I would have to sleep in the labor and delivery suite. Let me tell you, those beds are not meant to be in for long periods of time. I was not a happy camper at all. I was throwing up still, and the bed felt like I was laying on a plank of wood. My back ached. The only reason I got any sleep that night was because my nurse gave me some anti-nausea medicine that made me fall asleep. When I woke up in the morning, they were planning to move me soon, so somehow, the forgot the fact I was in there and I got no breakfast. They ended up moving me around 1pm or so. I think I ate finally for the first time in like 48 hours that afternoon. Everyone said I was looking really good for someone coming off magnesium sulfate. Perhaps the starvation helped?

My family came to visit me. The kids were really wound up and excited to see me. It was challenging for them being away from mommy for a couple days, since they are used to being with me all the time. They were really excited to meet their baby brother too!! I love E's face in the picture where she held him for the first time, a combination of amazement and fear. She almost *never* looks that serious!

I rested lots and then the real fun began. Because my blood pressure was not going down as fast as it needed to be, the Dr. and nurses were worried about me, so they made me rest and do nothing (I was SO bored and alone) and they kept telling me every day that I needed to stay another day. It was awful. I knew my family needed me but at the same time, I knew I needed to get better. The Dr. told me if I did not start to get better, they would have to start magnesium sulfate again and that made me stressed out so bad. Fortunately that did not happen. Sunday night I really wanted to go home, but the nurse told me she did not think that would happen, so I called M and told him to see if he could leave the kids with a friend and just come hang out with me all alone. I spent the afternoon crying and praying that my blood pressure would regulate so I could go be with my family again. Right before M arrived, my Dr. came in and told me that things were looking better and that I still needed to rest a lot and take medicine, but that she was going to let me go home. When M arrived I told him the news, I was still in shock and so thankful that I could go home. Then my nurse came in and said that the baby's bilirubin levels had been checked and he was borderline needing to go under the lights, so they had put a call in the pediatrician, but we may have to stay for him to go under the lights. I was so sad! But then the pediatrician said to just take him in to our pediatrician the following day and it would all be okay. We managed to escape the hospital at like 9:30 pm or so. I cannot express how much it felt like I was escaping from jail. I have never liked hospitals, but after this experience, I think if we have another child we will be birthing them in a gentle birth clinic or somewhere else. It was for sure not the birthing experience that I wanted to have at all, and it felt completely like everything was out of control, I had no say, and I was stuck in prison without my family, never to see my family again unless I could get my blood pressure calm. A total nightmare. But the sweet little guy we got out of the deal was worth it all. He is such a blessing and such a good baby. He sleeps really well, eats really well -- I am the luckiest mommy in the world! I promise more pictures soon as soon as I get a second to take some!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Have you been naughty or nice this year? Hanna *may* have been a naughty girl -- posing in her first ever calendar! lol! Hanna has become a pin-up girl. *shock* Don't worry, it's tasteful!!!

I absolutely LOVE this set from Hanna Stamps! I know, I know, I always say that huh? But seriously? What is not to like???

I came up with this Christmas card idea, using Hanna dressed up in santa wear, after hearing that "Santa Baby" song on my cable one too many times. It *may* be my sons favorite Christmas song right now -- he's 4, but every time it comes on he sings along with it -- too funny!!! I think we have heard every possible artist rendition of that song. *giggles*

Here is a close up of the detail on the brads (I colored each of the raised letters using a red copic marker) and you can see the black spica pen on her shoes shimmering a little bit better! The white word "baby" came from some actual baby rub ons that are meant for a baby book, but worked perfectly here!!!

Another idea I had that I thought I would share is creating a small calendar of your own with a Hanna for each season/holiday.

Stamps: Pin Up Hanna (Hanna Stamps) Paper: Paper Pizazz - Green Plaid (Hot Off The Press), Real Red (SU!), Handsome Hunter (SU!), Solar Crest White (Neenah) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine Accessories: Red Grosgrain Ribbon (SU!), The Paper Studio Letter Brads (Hobby Lobby), Deja Views - Wonderful Words Rub Ons (Baby Boy), Making Memories - Christmas Blossoms Paper Flowers - Poinsettia Cranberry, Copic Ciao Markers, Sewing Machine, White thread, Marvy Uchida Liquid Applique (White), Spica Black (for coloring in her glittery heels), 3D Glue Dots.

Here is one more card I made -- a valentine using some of the smaller stamps in the set (lingerie, bubbles etc.) The layout is from Card Positioning Systems (CPS 93). I blended two colors of pink together (copics) to get closer to the shade of pink the paper is. They really do look more perfectly matched in real life (please forgive my poor photography and lighting skills).

Stamps: Pin Up Hanna (Hanna Stamps), Feeling Groovy (Verve Visual) Paper: Solar Crest White (Neenah), Soft Sky (SU!), Metropolitan Collection (Madison Avenue - One Heart, One Mind) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine Accessories: Copic markers, 3D Zots, Pink Brads (SU!), 1 1/4 and 1 3/8 inch circle punches (SU!), 5/8 inch Pink Dots Satin Ribbon (Offray Kaleidoscope), sewing machine, white thread, clear embossing powder, heat tool.

NEED MORE??? Here are some samples from some of the other Hanna DT gals:

Candice & Judy

Tuesday, December 02, 2008


A fun memory that I have from when I was a kid, was the Christmas that we spent at Disney World -- just me, mom and my little sister. It was so fun! The weather was PERFECT! I remember decorating cookies in the resort lobby, going to see this awesome show with all the characters, Pez dispensers on our pillows on Christmas day when we came back to our room, awesome fireworks at Epcot and I am not sure if this even happened there, but I think it did -- I remember my mom crying over these round/star shaped santa and mrs. claus tree decorations because she loved them -- I think that was in Epcot Center where they had the around the world at Christmas stuff. Maybe my mom can chime in and remind me where this was for sure. Weird thing to remember, I know. However, when ever I see a round/star shaped santa now, I think of my mom. (Seriously, not even sure - this could have been anywhere).

Well, while I was at xpedx a while ago, I saw this stamp by Stampendous and I had to get it! He was just too adorable! I created a couple of these little Christmas gift tags using my new Chubby Santa. I also made some other tags at the same time, these ones I used some of the pop up stickers that you can buy at Michaels (I think they are like $1), made by "Recollections" -- if you don't have time to stamp, color and cut out, but want a home made look, these are for sure the way to go! Hope you find some time to add a personal touch to gifts this year using home made gift tags.

HANNA PREVIEW: Slumber Party

Happy December 2nd! Only 13 more days till my due date, not that I am counting!! I will be posting my Christmas Countdown project a little later today as I neglected to pick up the picture I needed to and need to go get that still. So be sure to check back in later!

For this first card today, I rotated Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #67 (WSC67). It started out looking very close to the challenge layout still, but in the end, I added the circles of "shut up" and "no way" and the popcorn and so it strayed quite a bit. Oh well, it happens. I really like the end product though and that is what matters! What do you think? Can I still count it for Beate's sketch???

Stamps: Slumber Party (Hanna Stamps), Just What I Meant to Say (Hanna Stamps) Paper: Me & My Big Ideas - Dandelion (DP-07), Certainly Celery (SU), Pumpkin Pie (SU!), Basic Black (SU!), Solar Crest White (Neenah) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine Accessories: Ribbon FX sheer black polka dots (Hobby Lobby), 1 3/8 & 1 1/4 inch circle punches (SU!), Spare Parts by the Paper Studio - glitter brads (Hobby Lobby), copic ciao markers, clear embossing powder, white thread, sewing machine.

I was trying to remember what we used to do at Slumber Parties when I was younger and the only things I could remember is watching movies, drawing with makeup pencils (lip liners and eyeliner) on the face of the person who fell asleep the earliest (yep, mean mean, but I remember waking up with a tree on my face one morning - crazy girls), freezing bras and taking quizzes out of Teen magazines, which would often lead to a pillow fight over someone's reply. Fun times. Gossip and talking about who we had a crush on (or having that information coaxed out) fit in there some where too! I decided to focus on making a notepad to write your quiz answers in and came up with this idea -- although, as I remembered all those things, I was thinking how funny it would be to come up with a slumber party survival kit, or a slumber party attack kit. LMBO! Since my DD is only 5, I have a few years on this one.

Stamps: Slumber Party Paper: Tempting Turquoise (SU!), Basic Black (SU!), Rainbow Stripe (Die Cuts With a View - DCWV) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine, Printer ink (black) Accessories: Black and White Prima Flowers, Black Polka dotted brads (Spare Parts by The Paper Studio), white mini brads, black mini brads, orange thread, sewing machine, copic markers, clear embossing powder

My final project of today is just a friend to friend card . . . I used the layout from Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge #43 (TECC43). I think this image in the set has an "older" look to it and is just perfect to send hugs to a friend who is dealing with a less than perfect hubby.

Stamps: Slumber Party (Hanna Stamps) Paper: Anna Griffin (AG1138), Chocolate Chip (SU!), Solar Crest White (Neenah), Wizard Dark (Prism Papers) Ink: Onyx Black versafine Accessories: Brown thread, sewing machine, nestabilities (plain and scalloped circles), Heidi Swapp Grunge brads in chocolate brown (Hanna Stamps), Xyron Create a Sticker 150, Dimensional Dots (SU!)

Have you seen some of the AWESOME stuff the design team has come up with for this set???? Here are a few if you want a little more of a peek of this set:

Monday, December 01, 2008

HANNA PREVIEW: I Dream of Hanna

I am so excited for the sets being released this month! They are being released this THURSDAY night. I really hope you can make it to the release party on SCS in the Hanna Forum from 9-11 pm (EST). They always do giveaways, and challenges, and in general there is lots of insane and fun chatter!!!

I tried to make this card a little funkier and out of my normal color palette that I tend to use. I absolutely adore how this card came out! These images are just SO fun to color!! Please leave me a comment and tell me what you think. Your opinion matters to me and helps me to become a better designer!!!

I stitched the outside edge of the card in gold thread. Each corner is adorned with a gold brad. The little lamp at the bottom is colored with a gold copic marker and then I used diamond stickles to make it shimmer like it does.

Stamps: I Dream of Hanna (Hanna Stamps) Paper: Orchid Opulence (SU!), Almost Amethyst (SU!), Solar Crest White (Neenah), NRN Designs (Madagascar Paisley) Ink: Onyx Black Versafine Accessories: Gold thread, sewing machine, corner punch (SU!), American Crafts Green Ribbon, gold brads, copic ciao markers, diamond stickles, pop dots

Want to see more of this set??? Check out what Bev, Candice and Sandra created!