Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas - Christmas Tree Chipboard Book

Merry Christmas Everyone!

I am on the road for Christmas... visiting family in Iowa. We got my parents here safely after a long two days of driving across Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska and half of Iowa. I'm a little late posting this fun project because I've been so busy getting ready for Christmas ( and playing with the neice and nephews), but I've been dying to share it with you all.

This project was something I was dreaming up after I made my Mummy Book for Halloween. I wanted to make something fun and fabulously Christmasy... and I had this fun idea, but wasn't sure if it would work (see last Thursday's TFT) and out of the ordinary.. at least *I* think it's out of the ordinary.. It's definitely out of my box and a little wonky and I love it! (Thank you Alisha Trussell for the idea to string the beads on wire!!)

Merry Christmas friends! I wish each of you a very merry Christmas and a blessed and prosperous new year!

Love ( & Inky Smiles),

(EDITED 12/26/07: OOPS! Looks like Google gobbled up the first pic soemwhere... I'd saved this post in edit mode before I left Utah and I don't have the original digi pics with me. I will have to repost a full pic of the book when we get back to UT.)

Stamps (Delightful Alphabet & Playful Flourishes)/Paper/Glitter/Ink/Beads/Photo Hanger - CTMH, Chipboard letters - We R Memory Keepers, Brads - Making Memories, Misc Embossing Glitter, Misc Beads & Wire - Michael's Craft, Ribbons - American Crafts, Perfect Pearls - Ranger Ink, UTEE, Gold Pigment Ink & Red Pigment Ink - Colorbok (I think...those little cats eye shaped ink thingies), Chipboard - Graphix, Bind It All Machine & Red Owires - Zutter (purchased from myself... hehe - and I have lots more available!)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Thoughts for Thursday - Merry & Bright

Last night, as I was laying in bed after a LOOOOOOOONG day of work (I have to go back today to finish up some accounting) and a super long evening of Christmas shopping with my sweetheart, I was thinking, "What on earth am I going to talk about for a TFT tomorrow???" Then this am I woke up and checked my email and the Foundation for a Better Life (FBL) saved my tired bum again! YAY! This cool little quote was waiting for my in my inbox and it's perfect for a piece of art I've been working on and can't wait to show you all!

“ Trust that still, small voice that says,
'This might work and I'll try it.' ”

- Diane Mariechild, author, speaker

Sometimes I think that we doubt that little creative voice within us. Initially we have this GREAT idea... but then we think, "nah... no way.. I can't do that" or " it's not gonna work" and we don't keep trudging through the creative process. I know that quite often I get frustrated and annoyed if something isn't working how I think it should and just pack it up and quit working on the idea. This time I kept on trudging.... and although I didn't reinvent the wheel or anything like that, I'm excited about it, another fun and out of my box project. I used some elements of a really fun Bind It All project that I will show you later this week.

I think I mentioned previously that I have discovered Perfect Pearls and I am very much in loooove with them! I made this card for a friend last night. I wanted something merry and bright and cheery. I think I accomplished merry and bright.. Tee hee!

Perfect Pearls are sooo awesome! You can mix them with a tiny bit of water and use as a "water paint" (which I did over the Liquid Glass on the r, i, h, t) or brush on to wet ink (which I did on the MERRY) and then spritz with a tiny bit of water which will "set" the pearls. I also "water painted" the edges of the Honey (CTMH) card stock that the BRIGHT letters are mounted on. I love how the Perfect Pearls transform the card stock to a metallic card stock.

I strung plastic and glass beads (CTMH - red, white, green; generic - yellow) and 32 gauge gold wire and "hung" the strands from a brad.

Cardstocks, Inks, Liquid Glass, Beads - CTMH
Delightful Alphabet & Rustic Alphabet Stamp sets - CTMH
ATG adhesive - Scotch 3M
Perfect Pearls - Ranger Ink
Glass micro beads & glass beads - misc. vendors.
Scalloped scissors and hole punch - Fiskars
Handwritten Font - Yours truly

WINNNER ANNOUNCED: Viewers Choice: Sketch Challenge {007}

It's taken a little longer than I planned on to count the votes for this contest. I've counted them up and the winner is:

#4 - Laura Casey

Please send me your address and I will get your prize sent out to you.

Thank you everyone for playing along!


Saturday, December 8, 2007

Bling RAK Winner & Sausage Cheese Balls - MmM MmM Good!

We've drawn a random name for our Bling RAK......
Amy said...

Shopping for toys with money raised from our toy drive at work. I love this part of to those in need. Specially children!

December 8, 2007 12:31 PM

Congratulations Amy!
Please email your address to me at inkysmiles @

And.... as requested by Tilda.... here's my recipe:

The most fabulous Sausage Cheese Balls
(A former family Christmas Tradition - before Mom quit cooking)
This recipe is on the package of Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sausage... we've modified it for a smaller batch, added extra onions & celery, and increased the Bisquick amount so that the balls are not so greasy.

Pkgs (16 oz) Breakfast Sausage
1 Cup Bisquick
2 Cups (8 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 Cup finely chopped onion

1/2 Cup finely chopped celery

Tsp black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

1. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl & stir well.
2. Form into 1" balls. Place on ungreased baking sheet.
3. Bake 18-20 minutes or until golden brown.
4. Remove from oven; cool 5 minutes before removing from pan and set on paper towels to absorb any grease.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Bling RAK - Bling... kisses from papercrafting angels...

Like I said, I'm wrapping presents today and am in the gift giving mood!

One of my favorite Christmas traditions is making Sausage Cheese Balls for Christmas morning breakfast! Brent and I will get up and pop them in the oven and then go sit on the couch to read the Christmas story from the Bible (Luke 2) and open presents together. I love Christmas morning with Brent. It's laid back and peaceful.

Here's your chance to win some fun BLING (paper flowers from Heidi Grace, Rhinestone flowers from CTMH, Paper Bliss 3-d embellishments and stickers from Cloud 9) for your paper crafts.

Leave a comment on this post and tell me one of your favorite Christmas traditions and I will draw a random name on Sunday afternoon to win some fun Bling.

Random Subscriber RAK: RAK RAK RAK!

I am wrapping presents today and want to give something away on the blog today! I am in the mood for Blog Candy! I have some fun candy for your scrapbook pages, cards and other projects to give away.

My dad drew a couple of names from my subscriber list and today's winners are:


Please email me with the email address you subscribed with and let me know your mailing addresses so I can pop these in the mail for you!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Erin's card for the Sketch Challenge {007}

Here's the card that I drew up Sketch Challenge {007} for. I first sketched the idea and then went a little crazy with the design elements. This card was made for that swap from AAAGES ago... this card is made with random stamped paper by Susan Hankins. Click on the pictures for a larger view.

I loved it so much that I recreated Susan's RS paper and made a card for myself! Yes, that is real stitching. :)

Machine Stitching, Tone on Tone stamping, Dry Embossing, Beading

Cardstocks - Close To My Heart, Chipboard E & S - Basic Grey, Cuttlebug Machine - Provo Craft, Textile Embossing Folder - Provo Craft, Ribbon - Offray, Inks - Close To My Heart, Stamp Set - Playful FLourishes - Close To My Heart, Liquid Glass - Close To My Heart, Tiny Glass Marbles - Michael's Craft, Brads - Making Memories, Crop O Dile - We R Memory Keepers, Foam Adhesive - American Crafts

Viewers Choice: Sketch Challenge {007} Voting Open

Whew! It's been a loooong day. I hadn't planned on working today, but I was needed, so I went in and spent several hours at work today. It was a good thing and this means next week won't be so crazy!

Anyway... on to the VOTING!!!

Here are the entries for Viewer's Choice: Sketch Challenge {007}

1.) Each entry has a # on it.
2.) Please leave a comment on THIS post with the # of the entry you are voting for.
3.) Voting closes on Sunday, Dec 9th at midnight.

Good luck to the contestants and HAVE FUN!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Sketch Challenge {007} & Viewer's Choice

*EDITED* - Slight change - Voting will open on THURSDAY morning. I need to wait to post the entries until Wednesday afternoon. E.

So it's been a while since I gave away some treats.... I thought I would give an opportunity for you to win a treat! Yesterday I posted about "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" and this morning the sun is shining on the snow that fell yesterday and last night. It's sparkly and BEAUTIFUL! I just looooove bright cheery days when the ground is covered with fresh snow.

Here's the sketch I drew up (actually, I drew it up on paper and then re-created it in PSE today for the blog) to create a really fun card which I will show you Wednesday :)

1.) Use this sketch, create a fun, "wintery" (does not have to be Christmas) card
2.) Send UNMARKED photo to me via email.
3.) Voting opens on Wednesday, Dec 5th and you will have until Sunday, Dec 9th to round up your friends to vote for your card. Post your votes ONLY to the post of artwork.

Twist - this time I am not putting names on the photos... I will number each photo and voters will cast their votes not knowing who's card it is. Once a winner is chosen, I will post the creator's names with their artwork.

The prize will be some American Crafts ribbon (mini spools) and a package of Double Churned Scrapboard Alphabets (Vanilla Bean/naked - 209 pieces of alphas, numbers, and punctuation, retail $12.99) by We R Memory Keepers.

Good luck and happy creating!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

OOOOH Friends! Nina Perrin of Purple Faerie Paper Crafts invited me to be a Featured Artist on her blog and newsletter... HOW COOL IS THAT??? Here's the article I wrote for her. What an honor!! Thank you Nina!

It's Beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

My fall decor has returned to its storage boxes. We've put the lights on the outside of the house, Christmas tunes ring out of the stereo, we've pulled the garlands and nativities from their boxes under the stairs, and we started putting the tree up this week. So far we have 8' of artificial evergreen glory with about a zillion lights that Brent neatly wound through the branches. With any luck we will have the ornaments and ribbon on it tomorrow night and can finish up the Christmas decorating. My parents are visiting with us for the month of December. This year we will introduce them to one of our favorite family traditions: Santa Cookies. The making of Santa Cookies is quite the production, but the end result is FABULOUS! But, before we get on to making Santa Cookies for our friends and neighbors, I must tackle my messy studio in preparation of "The Great Card Making Adventure".

There's something extra special about giving handmade gifts and cards for Christmas. I mean, it's fun and all to pick out a box of pre-printed generic cards at the local stationery store, but there's something extra special about a card or a gift when it comes from your hands and heart. This year there are a few things I will be making to give to close friends and family. I will be making a fun desk top flip calendar using a digital design from I will digitally add the photos and create the calendars, then print them out and will add traditional elements like brads, flowers and ribbons to the printed project. For the "art part" of each month, I will put a photo of myself, Brent or Sadie or combination of us with other family members. Each page will be adhered to chipboard and spiral bound for easy flipping. I think that this will be a hit with the grandparents and great grandparents.

This year I will be making a couple of different cards to send. (Variety is nice when making a large quantity of cards.) One of them will be a revamp of a card I made using the "Tons of Tree's stamp set from Skipping Stones Design this summer and posted on my blog. I drooled over the Tons of Trees stamp set since I first saw it and decided I had to use it. I used a "new to me technique" - mixed media...I used FELT on a card...way out of my crafting box. LOL! I'm adding a little ribbon to the eyelets and a little more texture on the Kraft brown areas. I will send this card with our family Christmas letter, which I also needed to tackle this weekend.

Christmas is fast approaching. It's time to pull out our paper crafting supplies and get cracking on our gifts and cards. I hope you have much fun this year crafting marvelous holiday paper crafts! Here's to a blessed and joyous Christmas and a prosperous New Year! Inky Smiles!

Merry (early) Christmas!!!!