Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Time to Move On!



Move on from 2011 that is!!! I think I flunked all my last years New Years Resolutions, so I'm going to be careful what I commit to this year! I'm trying to find some sort of challenge for me to be a part of...I belong to a group that mails cards out and so far, I have not fell behind my committment. I have so many fun cricut cartridges that I have never even registered let alone ever put them in my machine!!!!


I have stamp sets galore....and I'm afraid my inks are going to go dry because of lack of using them!!!! I want to find a challenge out there that is open to a wide range of supplies...not one that is exclusive to a particular company....


I'm going home early tonight from work...as soon as the employees leave for the day...I'm heading home .... I'm going to clean the craft table and start "something"....so many ideas...so little time....and a few too many little boxes of 80% finished projects. YIKES!


Going to bed and catching up on much needed sleep sounds good too!


Picture: This was a project we were contracted to do over the holidays. Not working direct with the buyer, I'm not 100% sure what it is for...but, I think it involved an executive meeting....our claim to fame for the day....this was the "last big" day for us...(December 9)...I shipped these out (about 600) the same day we shipped a 70 gift basket order out. I came home in tears that night...it was a meltdown day for me....so much stress/business/activity that leads up to our final days before it all comes to a quick end....this year, it was December 9th...(we still had Christmas business...but not the huge stuff....the Nike order wasn't huge...the basket order was and it about killed me...these were HUGE baskets....)


Anyhow...now for some fun again and rejoining the land of the normal people...whatever that is...I'm convinced I'm far from "normal"!


Trudi



Friday, December 16, 2011

Believable/Unbelievable

My first thought was to start this posting out as UNBELIEVABLE...because relating to "crafting" and the card that I have pictured here...it is unbelievable that I made a card in less than 10 minutes. Any of you who have ever received a card from me will/can testify...that "less than 10 minutes" in NOT my way....I have to tweak and add and embellish until it's the Las Vegas showgirl of cards...(I almost put a famous singer's name in that...but thought twice...afterall, this is a public board and I want to show NO disrespect...just envision a famous singer who has lots of bling bling...definitely a country singer, been around for a LONG time...and one of the most talented "legendy" singers I know...)


So...when I thought...I'll title this post..."unbelievable"... I started reading more into that "title"....Because...of the image I stamped. How can I say "unbelievable"...when the image is a "believe" image?!


For unto you is born this day

in the city of David a Saviour,

which is Christ the Lord.

Luke 2:11


This is not an "unbelievable" type card....it's one that brings us back to the beginning...to what Christmas is about...not that commercial stuff that my business world revolves around. I was raised with faith and I'm glad that the warmth of this is part of my value system...so...that's my "believable" part of this post.


That being said....I LUV Santa...and red and green and all of that too. I LUV the fact that my kids still believe that Santa sneaks into our house and leaves presents....that at the North Pole the elves are busy making toys for kids and even thinking about what "pre tweens" might want to find under the tree on Christmas Day. The "commercial part" of Christmas...if you want to talk economics....(which IS my background)...plays an important role in keeping our economy moving....when someone buys from me...I make money, pay taxes, employ people who spend money elsewhere (more taxes are paid by them and ME again...yada yada yada....)...you get the picture....


I also like Santa because he's INNOCENT...it's innocent and magical and it keeps my kids still young and innocent....my son covers his ears when I watch the nightly (local) news...I never really paid attention to it...but, he's right...the first 10 minutes is filled with car accidents, shootings, gang busts, meth labs, robberies...stuff a 10 year old doesn't want to know is going on in the very same city, sometimes only 5 miles away from his very own house....so...I'm open to Santa sticking around in our lives for a long long time...


Yet....I have close to my heart...."for unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Chirst the Lord." Luke 2:11


I didn't intend for my post today to go down this path....but, it did...and after glancing over what I wrote...thought I'd keep it. I'm still surprised with the card...My original thought was to make this look like a "sign"...like one you might see at the Inn in Bethlehem...but, the "sign" die I have for my big shot what not big enough to stamp the image...If you look closely, this is the "wood" sheets (I bought mine from SU)...I've kicked it around to do this simple card now for a couple of years now and have never used my wood sheets! Next option was to "tear"...hahaha...be careful on that....that was the hard part of the card...I felt like I was getting little "slivers"...so if you try...be careful....beyond that....I intended on putting some warm toned designer paper behind the wood image...but, I kept thinking I wanted this SIMPLE.....I stamped the verse in gold encore (too much to emboss, plus, I don't like to emboss...I like to see it...just don't like doing it!)....the more I thought about the card...the more simple it got! I did stamp the Chocolate Chip card base in Canvas....I thought Canvas reminded me more of what textile would have been available back then.


So....believable/unbelievable...now you know...


Trudi





Sunday, December 11, 2011

Completed Project






I have something to share this week!!!! I don't have a picture of it yet, I like to take pictures at the factory and I'm taking the weekend OFF! Christmas is on the decline for us, thank goodness...I had a meltdown on Friday...worked so hard I was almost crippled when I came home. The herniated disk in my neck is acting up, and I think it's time I find out what's wrong with the lower back....unfortunately, learned some hard lessons this year about not getting things looked at "timely".


In the meantime, this picture is from years and years ago....my :) and joy...my 2 kidlets.....I will always beam with pride that they are so close....hopefully, forever and ever, always and always.


Trudi

Saturday, November 26, 2011

My Friends

Wow!~

I just hit a button and now I have a whole new writing format for my blog!  I will have to play with it to learn it...so bear with me!

So, here is what I want to say....before it's December, I wanted to get the last little bit of fall on my blog....and along with that is the result of a card that I started in 2008!!!!  This card required a LOT of cutting little details, designing and refiguring...I refused to send it out "after the matter" and so a few years have come and gone and it was still left undone in my little box .... (I have about 6 "boxes"....this year was my year to "finish"....I cleaned my studio, added new storage (my daughter's hand me down dresser!)....and I tackled what I think has been a huge factor in my inability to let my creative self out of my stumbling block of a cage....my cage being myself.  I can also blame things on "life" in general...I've had some pretty ugly cards dealt to me over the last 4 years....and I'm not one to take the bad hands very well...I'm pretty self-destructive in that category. My life has been filled with huge blessings...so, when it is MY turn to deal with sadness...I simply do not and did not know how to "deal"....

Over the summer, my pastor asked me...Trudi, how HAVE you overcome these last few years?  You appear to be a strong individual...I think you would be good for others who are faced with tragedy...just how do you cope?  (If she only knew...not well...I guess I appear to be strong?)  This was all told to me during a casual conversation at our local club, where my son in his neckbrace was enjoying the 100 degree weather splashing around like other boys his age....

I think it was about that time that I decided it was time to get through my obstacles...and face the music.  My response to her was somewhat "made up on the spot"...but as I drove home that day....I thought about it and thought about it....I either need to accept what fate is mine...or simply not....and by not accepting "fate"....is basically to deny living....I could continue to be down in "that valley" that I've been getting quite used to...or I can choose to reach the peak of the mountain....so climb climb climb I do....and will, I'm not ready to exist at the base of the mountain....

Here is what I know.....as I climb back to the top....I've had help....lots of help.....help from family...although my traged(ies) have been their tragedies too...we have bonded together....when my son was diagnosed with the tumor this summer....it was my sister who dried my tears in the waiting room...and my family was with me 24/7...at midnight as I sat with his surgeon...it was family who anxiously waited by the phone to hear my tears of joy...and it was FRIENDS....friends, who also reached out with encouragement...who listened when my niece was killed, who were with me every step of the way with my son's surgery and who recently sent prayers for my Mom, who is also a walking miracle today.....

As I ramble on and on and on....I can't say enough...how much I have appreciated so many....today and everyday is the "season of friendship"....I know it's just a card...but the sentiment is one that has huge meaning...

Thank you my friends, from the bottom of my heart!

Trudi

Friday, November 18, 2011

6:00 Friday Night



And...I wanna go home!!! Wanna Wanna Wanna! Waaa Waaa Waaaa....It's crazy busy here....and I hope that some day soon, I will have time to actually see what kind of business we are doing. The paperwork part is getting neglected. As long as I pay our suppliers promptly, I guess I'll worry about the rest "later"....


Anyhow, while rummaging through my craft studio...I came across this card....it looks rather "autumny" and thought I'd share. This was made in my pre-sewing machine stitching days, I see the faux cross stitches....also...early button days too...these are way too geometrical for me...my current style is to slant them somehow...I am consistent with the odd number rule though...3 buttons are better than 2, much more pleasing on me eyes! Oh dear...the card I just finished only had TWO! YIKES! Well, it did have 3 "elements"...that will have to do!~


Come back in about 3-4 days, and I will have that puppy posted...as promised, I want the recipients to see first! I'm thinking some of those recipients pop on here once in awhile, you know who you are! LOL!


In the meantime...here is a PARTY MOOSE....something which I want to be doing in about 45 minutes...after I tidy up my desk to make my coming in to work over the weekend...a little easier! ha! I guess it's better than no business!


:)


Trudi

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

MIA for awhile



It's the season, and I'm a bit crazy at work...plus, have had the 2nd scare of the year with a near sudden tragedy, this time concerning my Mom. She had to have emergency surgery on her spine for a spinal cord injury...I'll skip the scary stuff...this was right up there scary....but all ended well...and she, like my son, is a walking miracle. I'm so ready for 2011 to leave. It's almost like it has been hexed!


This all happened last week, this week, I'm in a very happy place. Busy with chocolate...yes...and about ready to land a very big account...this cold calling stuff isn't that bad...I'm getting good at it! When and if I get an order ... I'll post a picture of who it's for. I have to keep you in suspense, don't I? hahaha Actually...I want to keep it quiet for now, just in case I don't get a PO. The buyer was uber excited, and we are fast becoming friends....so, I'm optimistic...but...I have said the same thing over the years....sometimes it works out....sometimes it doesn't....I will give a hint....


April ... and opening day .... something to that effect ... although, an order would go out earlier than that ... cross fingers and hope I don't strike out on it ... (oh what a sense of humor I have!) I *might* know in a couple of days!


So...it SNOWED today...YUK...I don't like cold...at all...and...GOOD NEWS!!! My dear daughter was offered a spot on the U14's volleyball team this year...pretty good, since she is only 11. I'm not saying this because I'm her Mom...but, I suspect the game will be a part of our lives for many years to come....like way beyond high school....we saw this in her play when she was only 8 and playing with 12 year olds. She can hit like a rocket...(serves) and is ready to set way before the ball even comes near her...she knows where the ball is going before it crosses the net...like I know what I'm talking about....anyhow...it's fun to watch...and I'm thrilled for her. You never "really" know until you "get the call"...there were 106 girls at tryouts...and sadly only 30 spots to fill...she played this club last year, but...you never know. I'll be making lots of citrus green/black and white things for the next season...goes til June...so...be prepared!


I have a card to post in the next few days. I really want the ladies who are receiving them in the mail to get them before I post a picture...so...for now...this pic will have to work! This is an old picture...she had just turned 9 and had learned that killer serve!




Trudi

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Visit Tri-Cities!







(sorry about the picture glare...these are not done professionally, just for MY reference)


I'll give a little plug to my customer, the Tri-Cities Visitors and Convention Bureau. This is an order we put together for them yesterday....I'll emphasize, "we" is actually "I". I kept this project for myself! :) It was a fun one. I did not pour the chocolate piece, I'll give credit to others in my company for that...but, I did order the mold for the TCVCB, if that means anything! Oh...and made the bows...we imprint the ribbon here.


Lately, I've been ordering quite a few custom molds....as you travel throughout the country, to "touristy" places...you very well may see our label on the bottom of a chocolate piece! Our recent tradeshow, although not many, did bring in some good business, and also good contacts (ouch...I need to cold call...shy little me...although, is it really cold calling IF the customer gave me their card and advised me to call? I still stutter and stammer...I'm not the best at "hard" selling, and never will be...either you want my stuff or you don't...period...so, that's my philosophy...of course I have other elements which contribute....like good service, I'm sort of the "good experience" kind of company....from the very first phone contact, all the way to opening the order....it just has to be all warm and fuzzy!

Anyhow, I know this isn't a crafty card or scrapbook page...but, lately, my life has been sorting out tradeshow and holiday orders...I'm pretty ready to go home and chill at night! (And play WWF) So, for now, this business card holder with the chocolate "smart phone" (for trademark reasons, I think I better not specify which "kind" of smart phone)...customer branding on the face of it. If you had never heard of our fine (3)cities....and you have time...you ought to pull it up.

http://www.visittri-cities.com/

There is NO place like here...I'm convinced of that...doesn't have all the bells and whistles that a major metro has...but, we do have some pretty cool things to offer...especially if you are into wine tasting, fishing, agri-tourism, GOLFING, sports tournaments, yada yada yada....not sure it compares to Hawaii, but, there's some history here too...like the names: Sacajawea, (sorry Sacaja, I didn't bother to spell check your name, but since you are pronounced differently HERE than in the midwest...then...I can get by...you know there is a story to that comment!) Lewis & Clark, Oregon Trail...sort of cowboys and Indians...oh, and Ancient KENNEWICK Man, I think he was dated 1000 years old bones...maybe it was 10,000 (I know, huge difference I know it started with a 1 and had 3 to 4 zeros)...it sparked a LOT of controversy here (he was discovered about 6 miles from my house!)....should ancient Kennewick Man's bones be buried in sacred tribal fashion? Or....should a scientist be able to study this ancient man? We sat next to one of the tribal leaders on a flight to Vegas once....my input, I kept to myself...I had a chuckle listening to my husband digging himself deeper and deeper on that one....Seriously, hard to say....if I were part of the tribal nation...I'd want my bones back...but, if I were a Viking, not sure I'd care...ok...enough about ancient man...

Just thought I'd ramble about my "homeland"! LOL

Bye for now!

Trudi

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

25th Anniversary



So, not your typical guest book. The idea was to make this book inviting enough to write a memory, sort of casual, personal notes to the teachers who have been there from the start. I had offered to make TWO books...but, the committee advised against it, there are 2 new teachers on staff, and they felt one was enough, and the 2new ones might feel slighted. I even offered to make FOUR...Who am I kidding? I barely pulled off enough time to make ONE...and that ONE wasn't to perfection...but, it is what it is...my word "Treasures" didn't fit on one line...but, like a preschooler might also not fit on "one line", I didn't fret too much about it! Anyhow, here is the book. I was hoping to get a few more "entries" in this book...the dinner was at an event center, the room and dinner was above and beyond...lots of chatter going on...my little book, although there were full pages of writing...there is still room for about 2/3ds of a book! Oh well...it is what it is...glad I only spent 5 hours on it...rather than 5 weeks! hahahaha

I need to clean up my very messy studio...then, I might find craft inspiration AGAIN! Speed creating...was NOT fun!

In the picture: Those crayons, are chocolate crayons. We make these and sell them by the thousands to a certain franchise that makes Candy Bouquets. (not exclusively)...anyhow, FYI...

gday

Trudi

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Our booth

Tomorrow we head back home. We have been gone now for a week and so much to share. I'm learning how to blog with my iPhone. I can't figure out how to upload a picture. I guess just picture the lights and ding ding bling bling that you would see in Las Vegas. If I can figure out how to I'll upload a picture or two of our booth. We wrote some good orders up and have some too good to be true potential. If even one of my handful of "potential" deals do come through, we will be very chocolate busy!!! In the meantime I am thrilled with the real deal orders that we are going to be working on. I see a long term relationship with several!!!!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

My Display



Will have about 12 different tourism themes...one being:


ZOO


Did I mention that I'm off to a trade show in VEGAS ... next week at this time, it will be 1/2 over. I'm still gathering my display...it seems like after the brochure is done...most of the stress is over...or...maybe just beginning. I do NOT like making brochures, which my assistant once questioned me why...since I like scrapbooking so much!


Gotta go...lots to do!


Trudi

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Need To Scrapbook This!



No time to write...this was taken October 2005...look at the little penants in the background...I LUV this picture!!! I need to get this one scrapbooked.....






Trudi

Friday, August 26, 2011

Today




The phone is going nuts...and I'm trying to multi-task...and feeling my blood pressure going up. I need to STOP...take a BREATHER...it's JUST CHOCOLATE....I really enjoy working for the advertising world and public relations...but YIKES....instant sometimes is not doable. It IS fun working on promotional events for big companies...just the chain of command is what it is...I can only do what my suppliers will do for me!


So, here is MY breather (for now)...I will hopefully unwind later, after the matter...it's been a chocolate challenging week! Lots of stuff going on!


Yesterday, I sent an order out...the last of a particular product...as we are no longer going to offer this item. Unfortunately, the customer could not get what she originally wanted, because our supply was short...but working with her for over 15 years...she told me ... just make it look good ... it has to have some sort of apple theme.


There was absolutely no profit in this order, IF I were to pay myself an hourly wage (she ordered 40 only, but the apple making, with interuptions took about 3 hours to make!).......after chasing lost chocolate down in hot parts of the nation, meeting impossible deadlines for others, bidding on projects we have no possibility of getting (you never know though, so I bid) ... I wanted something fun to do! I value all customers, but this one in particular has been through thick and thin with me...so...I made a little apple for her!


My crafty thing for the day....


I used "Give A Hoot" (this cartridge is the sweetest cartridge...I think I (heart) it. The cookies...are cookies with cinnamon and sugar sprinkled on them...sort of like pie dough (cookies) ... a thing my Mom used to make for us when we were little with the leftover pie dough...(what is this with PIES lately! LOL!)


Speaking of pies...over the weekend, I'll tally the results to "Trudi's Friends Favorite Pies" I have a feeling it might be in the holiday kinds...pecan was pretty popular....but so were the cream filled ones....


Back to my reality...enough unwinding for now...


Trudi

Friday, August 19, 2011

TGIP!!!







You know the saying, TGIF?! Well...TGI .... PIE DAY!!!!!! At first, I felt funny about printing God on my card...this is not a serious card, and I don't want to offend anybody. If you all have followed my postings, you already know, and if you haven't followed since the beginning...I'm careful to not misuse anything to do with faith. I have faith, and I don't willy nilly abuse it...however...this card has inspired so much conversation with family and friends...that I can't help but think that *maybe* this was meant to be....let me explain...




Before I get started I wanted to make note that this card was inspired by the BBTB2 card challenge:

http://heather-bittenbythebug2.blogspot.com/2011/08/pie-challenge-paper-dolls-dress-up.html

Boo Hoo....I missed the deadline to upload this to the challenge!!! I dawdled and missed it...but, truly wanted to upload it on a "Friday".... I was :( (not really...missing a card challenge isn't the end of the world...but...I was wanting to add it to the other fun "takes" on the challenge...you ought to go browse, if you haven't already" Anyhow....I was pleasantly surprised to see that my card met the criteria for the current card contest on the BBTB2 board!!!!! I stamped the word "apple" on my card and used a very old SU alphabet set of mine on the inside (crayon kids lower case alphabet).....the whole card is inky and my duplicates will probably even have MORE stamping on them....the "red" I used was Red Riding Hood Red from SU current c/s offerings....the rest...is retired stuff and supplies from the big time olden days...I have no idea where I acquired the green gingham dp...all I know...is it was what I was looking for! Here is the link! (I was saying oodles of oohs and aahhhs viewing the "ippity" stamps offerings....me thinks there is room in my studio for a few of these sets!)


http://heather-bittenbythebug2.blogspot.com/2011/08/new-contest-ippity-stamps.html

Here's where I'm coming from, when I say, how I think *this was meant to be*....you all know the wonderful world of facebook? So, I've had a bit of hardtimes this summer...and I have received tons of facebook support... I know how nice it is to see comments in the double digits...I pitched a question out there....expecting only ONE person to answer...I had told my sister about my TGIP day....(will elaborate on that next)....and as a joke...I facebook marketing researched it...."WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PIE"....I'm not kidding...I had facebook friends from all 4 corners of the U.S. answering this question...stories to share and all...from "Grandma's special rhubarb pie" ... to "I luv the smell of the holidays...pies"..... so what's cool about all that ... WHAT A COOL WAY TO CONNECT WITH FRIENDS! It wasn't a heavy hearted thread...it was one of fond memories and fun stories....hmmmm....




My original thought...why I didn't nix putting God in my card....MY idea was to TGIP my friends! You know, maybe a friend who is sad for whatever reason...I have a girlfriend very sad right now because her oldest child is off to college for the first time....another because her "baby" is starting kindergarten....a friend struggling with very personal issues...another leaving the country for 2 years....and then there are for good reasons....a sister who was so so supportive to me while my son and I were in Seattle...without her, I would have been alone there, possibly....another sister who unconditionally, no matter what...is my soul mate...another who is the leader of us all...and one far from home, but close to my heart....THEN...there are people who I DON'T KNOW...but, I see them at church, or hear about things...who have hit a spot in their lives, who being the recipient of a TRAK...a TOTALLY Random Act of Kindness...just might give them comfort, if only it's for the length of time to eat a bite of PIE. (I've been there...when STRANGERS offered comfort...this happened a few years ago after my niece was killed....it's the little things sometimes that help get us through....baby steps)




...THAT was my idea....to bake a pie...and deliver to (fill in the blank) with a homemade card.




OK...my facebook question was a 2 part ? You see...it takes me an eternity to make cards...that I know...I am making about 16 right now....so, the liklihood of flouring up my kitchen on top of that...plus run a business...sounds a little optimistic...so, I involved Cyrus O'Leary. I think the company makes the same kinds of pies that my cards will be... :)




I have to thank BBTB2 for giving me inspiration on this!!!! This card sparked so much conversation...it's unreal! And...I had to put my thinking cap on it......I hope I'm not out of the wakky world with my idea...my 11 year old "doesn't get it" .... nor does her friend....my son thinks I'm a little weird...but, I sure enjoyed making this..., I guess that's all that matters! I also kind of know a company that sort of named their chain of resturaunts after the "concept".......it's not that far of a stretch!




NOW..............go make a pie.....and give someone a SMILE!




I will/can follow up with the results of my research...as to which won as favorite...




Oh...forgot to add! I used supplies that I thought I would never use again!!! My original sizzix alphabet!!! (for the chipboard TGIP) How cool is THAT!!!




Hey...I still don't know how to e-mail back to anyone who leaves a response...so, don't think I don't want to...if I can I will..but..if you would like to share....I'd really like to know...WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PIE!!!





Trudi




Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Celebrate!




I guess today is a day to celebrate...(it's my husband's birthday)...although I didn't make this card for him. My 11 year old daughter made him a cake...it is the first she made on her own without anyone around to help her...I suspect this will be the best cake my husband has ever eaten...she was worried it didn't look good...to me...it was award winning! :)


Another reason to celebrate....I stumbled upon this card while in my craftstudio...I snuck home during lunch and pulled out dp for my NEXT card...if I EVER make it home tonight from work....(I'm back at work after a long day...just came up to "finish" after birthday dinner)....I plan on hiding out in my little papercrafting playground....I have to say...I really enjoy attempting these challenges....(on the BBTB2 board...)...I'm pretty slow, and since I can't seem to make JUST one...I obviously can't participate every week....but, I sure have the ideas going....and this last week isn't any different (pie cut)...so, by the weekend...I'll have my "take" up....I have to see this one through...I've involved all kinds of facebook friends in on it too...GREAT choice for a cut!!! You'll have to wait for my idea with it though...my sister and I have laughed ourselves silly on it....maybe only she and I will think it's "a keeper"....I guess that just goes to show how much fun this obsession with cardstock can be!


Celebrate....I'm not going to lie...it's been a rough rough summer...I find myself bursting into tears....thinking...what "could have" happened with my son...if that tumor hadn't been caught....time really was running out on us...Celebrate...lots of meaning there for me....


I went to my class reunion...the one that I wanted to wear a slinky dress to...those who know me here locally, will vouch that probably a year ago...I could have...but...with stress...that you know about, which I share openly about...and stress...that I keep to myself....which although not as devastating as what my son went through, but rocky times just the same...things I don't ask for that make me feel "trapped" stress....added on top of everything....somehow, fitting into those skinny jeans wasn't important...what was important was being there....I feel sorry for those, for whatever reasons, felt like they couldn't/shouldn't wouldn't go....I know some of these people....being fat, in hard times, hated high school, people are jerks, kind of excuses...that's sad...with the exception of making a teeny fool out of myself *thinking* I knew someone (OK...it was a big school)...I'm *glad* I went!


Back to celebrate....you all know why I celebrate. I look at my kids faces...I celebrate ... what a blessed Mom I am ... and Happy Birthday to my husband....uh...this card wasn't designed for you, but, you know what your gifts are! Really, probably one of the best birthdays...you know it! I didn't proof read this post...I wanna go home...long day! :)


Trudi

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Bees

So, I *try* to stay in the crafty mode on my blog, since this is a paper-crafting blog...but...the last couple of years, I started to nix the 2 a.m. crafting...I get my sleep that way, and I'm a little healthier because of it. I am getting back in my groove though, and have been really enjoying finishing up my last cards...taking about 3 weeks, but that's OK...I sketched something out this morning...


To look forward to is a card using my "A Kids Year"? (not sure if I'm recollecting the name right)...you know, how what is chic right now are all those cool sillouettes EVERYWHERE...even on "America's Got Talent"...there is the coolest dance routine, sillouette style...so, an idea has sparked...and I sketched out my design this morning....I *plan* on using one of my impulse SU sets too...that's all the deets I'm sharing...you will have to wait and see in the next week or so for the result.


I *might* make a PIE card before it....BBTB2 has a pie challenge:

http://heather-bittenbythebug2.blogspot.com/


We'll see...so many hours in the day, and it's been suggested to me A LOT lately, that I need to take "something" to calm my emotions...(not sure how to take THAT advice)...honestly, I'm working on it!


So...factory stress....this little project, I bid on, while I was in Seattle with my son....late night correspondance with the distributor...and sadly, I underquoted in price...so...my hope is to BREAK EVEN on this project....it's all good if we do...I have our employees here working and not having to take short days...business is still a little scary out there, so we'll take it...imagine (the picture you see)...this little guy


6000 times. ....


Yep...you read that right...6000 of these...all hand done....YIKES!


As tigger would say....TTFN! (ta ta for now!)


Trudi

Friday, August 5, 2011

SU Order





So, I received my box...my order was filled with all kinds of fun things...I ordered a little out of the ordinary, and splurged on some fun dies. Although I have a cricut, there are times I prefer (a lot of times actually) using my old sizzix or my Big Shot to make the diecuts that I need. I think, actually I KNOW...having a die that makes the cut PLUS puts the score lines on the cut is worth every penny to me...IF I intend to use the die in volume. Time is money in my work world, in my craft world...any way I can streamline my creative efforts...gives me more time to do something else.

About a week ago, an online friend was asking me about the little milk carton die that I had ordered in. I told her, once I had this in my hot little hands...I would cut one out and take a picture for her...

This I know:


  • CUTENESS!

  • WILL BE MAKING CHRISTMAS FAVORS WITH THIS...IN BIG VOLUME

  • A tad bit tricky to "assemble" at first attempt, IF you don't read the directions, which I didn't. Duh..pretty easy after you do ONE


  • Itty Bitty...but perfect size for favors

The actual dimensions are: 3-1/4" tall from base to the very top, 1-1/2" face width....


SIDE NOTE: This is very plain jane....(for me)....the first piece of cardstock I saw, sitting next to my big shot, was the piece I used....no particular reason....the ribbon I used, is a #3 ribbon...I spent no time thinking about it...I did this ON THE FLY...and when I make them for real...yes, there will be stamping and fun stuff...this is only for size purposes....

THAT BEING SAID: I think I could fill this up with blue and white jelly bellies and call it done, it is still cuteness...whether it is bling blinged or not!


So...there you go!!!! My picture for the day!


Fun Picture: this is PART of our gummy candy that we use for our business....the jars are for the "opened" bags...keeps the gummies ... GUMMY!!! You will see the "empty" jar on top...it USED to contain gummy COKE BOTTLES!!!! It was FULL too...and I can't recall a recent order where we used them....(let's just say, I did NOT lose my 15 pounds I needed to prior to my class reunion, which is TONIGHT!) Stressful month....I LUV gummy coke bottles! :)


Toodles,


Trudi

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Going Buggy







So, I'm thrilled I'm motivated to create again, just that my shell card turned into not the 4 that I wanted to make...instead it's 12. I have a lot of people I want to send one to....my timeline is getting late with it to...I really want to send out thank yous to many who held my hand through my scary time with my son. I had many who helped me here, there, through prayer and through cyberland....now I'm at TWELVE...


That being said....this card caught my eye...I display my cards in my craft studio every time I finish one. I try to make a couple of extra...but some I only have one of...it's been awhile since I made the one pictured here...and it's still on the shelf, has not been replaced with another card...(either I have not managed to make much over the 4 years OR I (heart) this card!!!


Business is calling me right now, so I'm not going to go on and on and on like I usually do....for now, my deets on the card is that this is THE FIRST card I ever made using COPICS ... which in my mind are WAY UP there as must have supplies as my cricut is!!!!! OH...and I refuse to not use my beloved sizzix...this was one of the first major tools I ever got...12+ years ago....something like that...a long long time....I luv using it to cut out felt and chipboard and such! (the stamp set used is from Crafty Secrets...isn't it cute?!)


Gotta Go!


Trudi

Thursday, July 21, 2011

My Personality



I've been accused of dwelling on things...and being obsessed with itty bitty details...I've actually been told some very hurtful things by close family who I think were trying to give me some constructive criticism. (my husband...I guess you could call it constructive criticism...I'm being nice here...I didn't call it that...by you could.) Anyhow, point being...

I'm going batty here...I have a ??? Something that has bothered me for awhile.


For bloggers out there who use blogger....


How do I e-mail people who leave comments on my blog? Is there something I can add? I'm a self-taught computer user...I tend to get a little frustrated. (Maybe this is why I haven't take the digi plunge yet....I just don't like computers...I have to deal with computer communication ALL DAY...yep...I can't avoid the 21st century...the scribbles on the side of a box day and a good ole fashioned handshake days ARE GONE...)


Back to my ??? IF anybody knows...I'd LUV to know!


So...a picture for you...these were done WRONG today...(breathe deep, breathe slow...not a big deal...even after I met with my team...I'm SURE...I failed somehow to communicate...) That being said...I have 250 of these now to sell...and no home...I've been contacting my closest retailers and "nudging" them a bit....these may be donated to my class reunion...I have to say, they look nice! And taste good...but, for a custom chocolate company...I don't get this requested often...and 250 to sell...we'll see how good I am at my job!






Trudi

Friday, July 15, 2011

Peep Peep







Or tweet tweet...chirp chirp...whatever a little chickie would say...although the little beak and web feet sort of look like a duck...not sure if this is a baby chickie duck or what. All the same....this was my intended "bit off more than I could chew" Easter card...(I could have done it, if I hadn't decided to make 16 of these...if I had kept it to 7 or 8...I could have done it...so, when I didn't...I lost interest)...These became a "spring card" which soon became a summer thing...grrrrr....


note to self....don't cut it close and do too much...if I'm gonna do too much...only do a couple...not a couple of dozen....because I'm "hard" on myself if I can't complete the mission...and the project then will sit UNDONE...this is the year for finishing UNDONE projects...and...I will be getting back to my Christmas Monday....took a little detour...note to self....(leave an "out" on my resolutions...just in case an emergency pops up!)


Anyhow...this funky little duckie chick...went out to my RAK friends. I *think* they are already delivered...so...I'm sharing!


Deets on this: Simply Charmed Cricut Cartridge...this is the one that my 11 year old daughter just had to have...not sure why since she doesn't make cards or scrapbook...she's consumed in volleyball....I reluctantly bought this...and then decided before I used the carts that I had to have...I'd make something with hers...I was trying to PROVE to myself that I didn't want this....well....this cartridge is absolutely adorable...the little faces on the different cuts are precious....I'm already planning another project...and this one fairly soon...since it's in my mind already...I need to be impulsive and JUST DO IT! (sort of borrowed that slogan there)...oh...and this time...I'll stick to just a few....they will then have a better chance of getting finished timely!



Bye now!


Trudi

Monday, July 11, 2011

Creative Therapy







So...what an overload of emotions I've had this last 2-3 weeks. Still have that "perspective" word going through my mind....you know, the reminder...that when you get right down to it...there are very few things in life that are important. My children...my husband...my parents...my sisters...my friends...the air we breathe...our freedom...you know...sometimes the people and things we take for granted....until we are "reminded" that in an instant ... we could lose any and all of the above....


Petty little things become unimportant and you want to hold tight and close to you the things that do....


So...during scary hours with my son...I sort of overlooked my faith. I admit this openly and I'm ashamed of it. I have struggled with this...and it occurred to me...that it wasn't just my son who needed prayers and who received them...but me too...and for this...I am thankful. Sort of like the "Footprints in the Sand" message....I too, was carried through a tough situation. (The prayers were heard...my son is recovering very fast...and the tumor was benign, no spinal cord damage...I could go on and on and on...)


The overflow of cards/e-mails/phone calls/and the knowledge of prayers has been very comforting ... and without hesitation I created a few cards yesterday...cards I want to mail to a few ladies who brought us dinner when we came home from the hospital. (Therapy...this was the FIRST time I created w/o a block in a LONG LONG LONG time...like over 2 years...everything up to this point...I've had creative blocks....)


I purchased the stamp I used...probably 12 years ago...a "sale" item at Michaels...and never ever have used it....it just seemed like a nice message...one of comfort and a "reminder" of "the bigger picture". I have to admit, when I saw the challenge on the BBTB2 board...I purposely made it to fit the criteria....to use a STARFISH on the LIFE'S A BEACH cartridge. All four of my cards are spoken for...and I have only completed ONE. The one I'm showing is my "test" card....I'm 100% positive I will TWEAK it a bit...in fact, already have....(my next 3 have my very favorite background stamp....LINEN (SU) stamped on it...this one is NAKED. Not that you can really tell...since the margin is only 1/8"....I will probably change my "mat" on the actual ocean scene...I'm not diggin it 100%....we'll see...the shells, though WILL REMAIN. They are ready to use on whatever I come up with. (the added shells are covering up a stamped image on the stamp that I was too lazy to cover up with tape...)


I don't want to be unfashionably late mailing my "thanks" out...(like I usually am)....perspective....how blessed I feel to have family and friends...and I want to let them know...I could not have gotten through the last 3 weeks without support. Life lessons...what we already know...just get "reminded". How humbling.


That's all for now...nuff said....thanks friends....I know many of you sent cyber hugs ... and I appreciate that ... (((hugs back)))...oh and some cyberchocolate foiled shells.... :)


Trudi

Saturday, July 2, 2011

My Life




Where do I begin...a few of you may already know, but for those of you who don't...I'll fill you in. A couple of months ago, my son started complaining of mild neck pain. It bothered him, but not so much to not play sports. As parents, we don't always know how to "make the call", when is it time to have things checked out?


My son plays catcher and looking up with that helmet on, we all figured it was neck strain. As the season progressed, I decided to call the doctor, it seemed to be bothering him more and more. She wanted us to do a heavy dose of Motrin, 2x a day for a week...and if it didn't get better, she wanted to take a look. He made all-stars, was so excited...but after the first tournament...the pain seemed to be a little sharper...and I wasn't going to let him go on without our doctor taking a look. We all "knew" it was a minor muscle strain....even she, our doctor was thinking this...we followed what we thought was perfect protocol.


24 hours after the x-ray...I got a call...she was in the process of scheduling a CT scan for the next day. She was making all the arrangements...my role was to get him there...they found an "incidental finding"...that was the term....my world went numb...we did the CT scan...but was unable to leave...we turned around and did CT #2 with contrast. I've had this done before, and I know what they are looking for.


How does a parent stay strong during this? My child was so vulnerable and if I could have swapped places with him...I would have in a heartbeat. 2 hours later, I had a phone call from the doctor...she had an appointment lined up the following day at Children's Hospital in Seattle.


Last Friday, a team of specialists....Tumor/Spine/Neuro/surgeons....met with us for a 4 hour consult...and surgery was quickly performed this last Monday.


Aneurysmal bone cyst


This is what it turned out being. Benign, but locates in senstive and dangerously close proximity to the spinal cord...My son's tumor did not cause damage to the spinal cord nor his main artery...the surgery from prep to finish was 5 hours. What it did do, was corrode the 3 vertabra, which is now replaced with 2 pins and donor bone. We had a very good outcome.


One of the very first posts I ever made was about my use of certain words. One was LOVE the other was GOD. I am one of those that does not throw either of those 2 words around lightly. I don't pray to win games, I don't love craft supplies....I really really like (LUV) craft supplies. I have always thought..."Say what you mean" and "Mean what you say".... I have to admit...sometimes, I have a hard time with both of those...I'm not the most articulate, and the analogies that I come up with at time...confuse people...but, that's me...it's that creative side of my brain...


I bring this up, because after all was said and done...I know God listened to all the prayers that were coming in my son's direction...


My son is home and mending quickly. He will be wearing a neck brace for 8 weeks, and doing some heavy duty TLC for about 6 months. There will be limitations in his future activity...no wrestling and most likely football...I'm not sure he knows that yet. I'll take it. This is the least of my concerns. We have 2 years of follow up, and we will get to know the trip to Seattle pretty well, especially for the next 6 months. (I already do, since we *typically* do a trade show there once a year).....all of that...is a non-issue...just me babbling...


Now...to LOVE....My love for my kids is so deep, as any and every Mom knows. My world stopped...without a doubt...my hardest hours in my life were spent in that waiting room Monday night. I know I'm not alone in this...there were "Moms" and "Dads" all over the hospital...and the outreach from friends (Laura, your support meant a lot to me) was huge. If not for my family too, especially my sister...


So...that was my week(s). It's been a very difficult Spring on so many levels...but, once again..."those" issues seem trivial....and that dang "perspective" surfaced. I've learned "perspective" before....(not necessarily "learned"...probably more "reminded" is a better term)...and I've been "reminded" perspective again. When it comes right down to it....there are only a couple of things in life that really matter. Perspective...ahhh


Today, this mom is thanking the brilliance and skill of the surgeons, the support of family and friends and thanking God for saving my son, who I love with all my heart.


Happy Birthday, my Dear Son...Double Digits!


Trudi

Thursday, June 16, 2011

It's All About Baseball





Couple of things...I finally broke down and now have a new digital camera to use in the factory. I am learning the new thing...keep in mind...I like reading manuals about as much as I like doing computer stuff. I don't...so, a little frustration here and there, but at least I won't break my thumb trying to hold the battery holder down, since the little spring on my last camera broke. My old camera I think was a 3 mega pixel, if that tells you anything...it's been awhile.

Now, on to baseball....my family is consumed with the sport right now...my son earned a spot on the All-Star "B" team...and once he did, my husband offered to coach post season as well. (We just finished his 2nd season of coaching minor league, Cal Ripkin program...I know way too much) It wasn't until a few years ago did I learn really how baseball talented my husband is. I knew he ate, slept and drank baseball his entire life...from young until about 4 years before he met me...you see, during a 96 mph pitch, he threw his elbow out on the mound...walked off and never looked back...I did not know that at 18, he was drafted to play major league baseball (the Dodgers)...he is not one to brag...so I will for him. I did not know him in that life...we met as young adults, after college...and after his career took a screeching halt.

So, now, as a coach, I see his knowledge being poured onto our sweet 10 year old son...I guess it's a little about reliving his boyhood...yet, the approach he is taking with our son...is definitely not the route he went. We do not LIVE at the baseball field. We don't have a career that lends that way of life for us...(sometimes I think it would be much simpler if we did have 9 to 5 jobs...)...(I still wouldn't change a thing)...that being said...the growth that we have seen our son take...is like leaps and bounds...and how proud we, as parents, are to see him blossom ... it should be all about having "fun"...yet, any baseball parent will tell you ... the politics is way more than that...I guess any sport...the politics gets dicey.

Fate ended my husbands career in baseball, but if not for fate...he and I would never have met...and our 2 beautiful children would never have come to be...

The pictures I have posted for you...are 2 of the very first creations I ever did with stamping. I'm almost 100% positive that I semi-cased the first card a long long time ago off of SplitCoast Stampers. (The saying) In the beginning, I perused SS for hours (when I learned about it)...until I got brave enough to start stamping w/o a plan! Creating is one of those things for me...that I just have "DO IT"...kwim?


The other card..literally is the first card I ever watercolored, and probably the first card I ever made. I've been in gift / chocolate design now for 25 years...and scrapbooking for about 12-13...but stamping probably only 7 or so (my style has really changed in the last 7)...which makes these precious little signatures on here from my daughter about 4 years old and her baby brother 2-1/2. This was one of the first SU sets I bought, and I have cherished it. The "thank you" card...was one that I made for my nephew to give to his sponsers.......wow...for a girl (me) who grew up on the farm, never ever watched a game of baseball in her life until I met my husband...I sure have it all around me now!

Tonight: Game ONE for dear son...of his post season...

I (heart) Baseball!

Trudi

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Bah Humbug!


So, I flaked on last month's Christmas card...I wonder if it is even possible that I get one done before Monday. We'll see....I do have my RAKS almost ready to mail...first things first! (baby steps)

I'm having to get tunnel visioned with our holiday stuff...we are in a show in Las Vegas this September, targeted towards resort gift shops and touristy places. We have been planning for a couple of months now, and while business is slow...I need to work on it...just don't have that motivation, and every thing I do, seems to require a computer...something I really am not that savvy with...(baby steps again)....this show will be 100% new to us...for the last 25 years, we have attended tradeshows targeted towards Gift Basket Businesses and Gift Shops....we needed to be a bit proactive, however...the world is changing...all we need is one large customer and it will be worth it. If we don't manage that...then, at least we are in a fun place trying!

Hang in there, I tell myself...now, back to work!

Trudi

Saturday, June 4, 2011

MIA



Hope sis doesn't mind...I did not crop this either, so her fingers are in the picture...this is one that she designed for our nephew's graduation. She has one up on me...I'm such a sheepdog...I haven't had the energy to even make a card for my nephew who just graduated from WSU and is on his way to Disney University!!!!! Not sure what has happened to me in the last month...my adrenilen dissapated (not sure of spelling on either of those 2 words...sunburnt, tired and sick...I'm not going to check it out either! so there!)...anyhow...

I have flaked on my resolution to make an XMAS card for May...I could have ventured into my studio today...but...here has been the way my life has been:

1. Volleyball Tournament: THIS WAS HUGE...180 TEAMS IN THE HUSKYDOME, SEATTLE...wow is all I can say

2. BASEBALL
3. BASEBALL
4. BASEBALL
5. BASEBALL

6. Ear infection: (out in the cold during baseball and on the way to Seattle for volleyball)

7. BASEBALL

8. Oh, a little work too...had some fun shipping experiences exporting into Canada this last week NOT...my shipment is still waiting to get cleared through customs

So...I OWE...I owe my people their RAKS...I owe my dear friend Nance an e-mail at a minimum (dear Nance...I have a little something more than that for you!)...I owe my dear friend Laura P a "how's it going e-mail...I think if you look up the definition in the dictionary for friend...Laura should be one of the meanings....)

and I owe my people who read my blog...my MAY CARD....I am not DOWN...just a little overwhelmed...I will feel MUCH BETTER WHEN MY PACKAGE MAKES IT TO MONTREAL....and we are still in the city tournament...so BASEBALL is still part of my LIFE...RAK peeps...I have THREE cards waiting to be bundled up and mailed....

life life life life

Now...off to bed with pain meds and antibiotics for this EAR thing...in my almost half century life...I have never had such a bad ear infection...this made my FACE swell...and landed in my THROAT, JAW, TONGUE, etc...ick

Trudi

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Country Living




I know why I didn't like the picture that I posted on the previous post. It was because it wasn't the picture that I used. Geesh. I have the one I ultimately used (baseball chocolates) stored on my computer at the factory. This has been bugging me! I'm not there, so you will have to trust me!

I'm slowly chipping away at my baby journal. I never did buy my new camera, so that is on the agenda for tomorrow.

In the meantime: Living in the country, we get all kinds of wildlife on our lawn. These pictures are 4 years old. I woke up one morning to this awful screeching sound. Outside my window was this beautiful creature. Our neighbors are few, and I know for a positive fact that NONE OF THEM have peacocks! This majestic animal quickly came and quickly left...I guess they travel fast. I would have luvved to get a picture with his tail fanned out...no luck. This was right after my niece had been killed and I had been so so sad...this was the first day that for a few moments my thoughts were directed in a different direction....my kids were fast asleep, it was about 5:30 in the morning...it was just me and the peacock (camera and coffee)....so...later that day, we all looked for evidence of him...it was fun to find the print.

Yes, some day, I WILL do a scrapbook page of this. The morning moments with this fast moving bird (very very fast) had some meaning to me...even if it was only in my mind! I see ALL kinds of fun peacock stamps/designer papers, and an image on "French Manor" Cricut cartridge....(a couple of years ago, peacocks were BIG...I'm a little slow)...and the colors are my colors...(I had my colors draped while I was in college...I'm a teal/purple kind of girl")....so many ideas...so little time!

Trudi

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Camera is FRIED


That's not why I have not uploaded a picture....I'm going like a turtle on my recent project. Here's the scoop....my son obligated me to donate to a school fundraiser....that I'd make baby cards or something like that to add to a huge baby basket. Each classroom is making a GIGANTIC basket to raffle off at the carnival this Friday. Well...I started it...but could NOT finish it. Our 2 weeks of babysitting an orchard in deep-freeze weather...threw my whole system off...and I literally got craftwise off my "routine"...so...he said...just donate money, which I did. Here's the problem...I started the project...and now I'm WELL INTO IT...I can't "move" it ... or change creative gears. I have my "cards" that I'm working on during my daughter's piano lesson....but front and center in my studio is this BABY JOURNAL.

I was so so so excited to buy NURSERY RHYMES for this journal...(cartridge)....which I did....funny thing....my designer paper didn't "look" like Nursery Rhymes...SO...I used another new cartridge of mine: GIVE A HOOT!!!!!

My book is a work in progress...and I'm enjoying every moment of this process!!! I've found all kinds of treasures in my craft studio to complete this...and I intend to follow up with 3-4 more of these to give to my 2 nieces who each had a baby in the last year, plus a cousin...and my daughter's newly pregnant volleyball coach! You will have to wait for the picture...I need a new camera, plus I need to finish! All I can say....there are some REALLY cute cuts on this cartridge, and I know the illustrator had to be in my generation, the cut I chose to use...is one patterened after a popular nursery rhyme that I don't believe is even known by the generation below me! Hopefully...in a couple of days...I'll be able to share with you!!!!

Meanwhile: the picture: I'm not particularly in like with this picture, but it was about the time my camera was going kaput, so I used it anyhow for our current advertisement. Since our team is red and blue...I decided to go with this color scheme and have these ready for the sponsor gift. Clever, huh? No last minute running around this Saturday since he will be there throwing out the first pitch. "He" is our neighbor as well, who purchased property from us...and raised about 15 kids (seriously)...all have been candy buyers from us since they could walk across the field! How fun is that!!!!

It's game night tonight....will miss half of it...I'll be at my daughter's piano...finishing little duckie cards...they were SUPPOSED to be my RAK ladies (I still remember you all...don't worry...your wait will be worth it...) Easter cards...well...they took a little twist and now are SPRING cards...having fun with these too...just got impulsive with them in the beginning and now, I'm not sure I like them. :)

Gotta go...close up and scoo-daddle!

Trudi

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

This One Was MINE!

All MINE!!! I've had stress packing this week, having to deal with some shipments going into Arizona, which requires ice and special handling. I really am used to it, and it is easy to do...but stress hits, realizing that in about 2-3 weeks...I'll be doing this to every shipment that leaves here!!! No complaints, however, business is business, and I'm glad to have it.

In the meantime, I could have given the task to package and bow this order up to someone else, but chose not to! I did not make these, my head chocolate designer did...but, I thought the presentation was so cute, that I sat down and packaged and bowed all of them up myself. (It was a small order, less than 100) It was nice for me to dabble a bit at it too...it's not always fun doing the "other stuff"...like making decisions, distribution, sales/marketing....AKA...(summer shipping/hard sales/brochures!!)


These were made for an event that has a Cajun theme...cuteness!


Craft News: I'm working on a NON Christmas item right now! I was supposed to have it to my son's school TODAY...so, it will be finished SOON!


Trudi

Thursday, April 21, 2011

2nd Verse Same as the First


I have NO idea why that little jingle (my title) has been playing in my mind ... I have struggled to remember the little diddie....and what concerns me is WHY DO I EVEN CARE? For some odd reason, when I was designing my Christmas Card Monday card...mind you I was delirious...and probably reached a point of sleep deprivation that was making me wonky ... my creative thinking kicked into high gear...this my friends, happens to me from time to time...and when it does...I have to pounce on it.

So...2nd verse, same as the first...WHY? I think it was because I was trying to duplicate a previous design and give it a twist...so, WHY TODAY? Here's the answer....when I learned that this week's Cricut Circle Challenge was to add a handmade flower....I was glad that my project just so happened to fit that criteria...when I read the rest of the criteria....TWO CUTS....I realized, although I have THREE flowers...they are the same ole same ole....if you read my yesterday posting....I was almost pass out tired...so I am accusing myself of "settling" on my card...when I took the picture yesterday, I felt all along that it still needed yet one more element....yippee to me for reading that fine print....TWO CUTS!!!! All along, I intended to add "something"...sort of like my little birdbath on the pink version of this card....but, I "quit" .... and in my sleep last night...I decided to do a SECOND version of my FIRST!!!

A Christmas Candle...my first choice....I looked through 3 cartridges that I own to "see" my options....Christmas Cheer...NADA...I don't recall seeing a Christmas Candle in this one....Joys of the Season (yes, but a very wide one...) and Nursery Rhymes. (Jack Be Nimble Jack Be Quick)....I say this, because as any cricut cartridge buying addict knows....you can never "label" a cartridge.....For instance....look at the Disney "CARS" cartridge...as much as my son LUVVED these figures...I suspect I will use them only once in awhile.....I will use the SIGNS and sayings in this cartridge however, for so much AND BEYOND the theme of Disney "CARS"....(thus Nursery Rhymes)...I settled on "Joys of the Season" however....After I took a second look...I was STUCK for what color to cut it out...(oh joy, NOW WHAT? I am NOT going to obviously pull this apart....and I can't put a burgundy candle against a burgundy flower....green? not gonna fly....) grrrrrrrrrr.....flip the pages over a bit...and there it was: A PINECONE!!!!

I know me...and I know I'm going to find a way to make that candle work....I have 7 more copies of this card in the making....so, most likely...this card will take a few more changes! (MY PERSONALITY IS SHOWING NOW....I OVERTHINK...AND NOW YOU ARE SEEING PROOF OF THAT...) I probably will make the pinecone bigger....maybe play with these colors a bit differently...I don't want to add any other colors to this...and as much as I want to add glitter...it's not going to happen...it does NOT look like a bling bling thing!

So....Cricut Challenge Week #29.... Handmade Flower...2 Cuts...I used the same cartridge (although I did search, but not oversearch like I usually do....)....I used "Joys of the Season"...pages 67 and 69...Each poinsettia is cut and then cut again 1/2" smaller...the smaller petals, are adhered with dimension...ALL of the cuts are stamped with pattern for character and the edges inked. I used my beloved True Thyme cardstock for the green and Baroque Burgundy for the flowers...both...retired colors...boo hoo on the True Thyme!

Long explanation, but...it sort of is a repeat of yesterday...just a little extra!

Trudi

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Christmas Card Monday

OK...If I typically sleep a regular night ... about 8 hours ... then by combining my last 3 nights of sleep time....it would be about 8 hours total...It must be Monday...(this makes absolutely NO SENSE...but, it does to ME)...I'm so so so tired...so tired so tired....3rd night of below freezing temperatures. Just hope we got the machines on in time....we had a little mishap with the alarm....I turned it OFF...thinking that the machines were ON...and they weren't. I'm so tired right now...that I'm not even going to think about it...


BUT....so, TODAY is MONDAY to me....and I'm getting my card uploaded to share my April Christmas Card. I did previously indicate that I would be casing my Bingo card...




I sort of did and sort of didn't. I actually decided to case a different card of mine....which was sort of happening....and then...I flipflopped back to sort of case the first one. Totally not making sense here...so...I'll be brief.


First, this week's Cricut Circle Challenge (Challenge #29) was to create a handmade flower/flowers. It didn't say it had to be a spring flower...I wasn't sure if I picked the best sizes, or maybe that I may even need to include yet one more....I stamped a pattern on the Burgundy (and the True Thyme leaves)...inked the edges as well...when I came to the punched out branches....green just didn't seem to work for me....I like the brown....wouldn't have been my first thought...but, to be honest, I can't imagine the branches green.


I like this stamp...I really do...but, there are a few things you need to know. Stamping these little images is TIME CONSUMING...What I liked about the pink version, is that I was dealing with ONE color only....this multiple color thing is a bit tedious....


The other observation, and it's merely a thought...the card it BIG....I'm not used to making BIG cards....I guess I'll mail these to friends that I have lots to say on....


In the meantime....as much as I tried to add more bling...this really didn't remind me of a bling thing...but more distressed and old fashioned....I adored making the poinsettias...and because I was in a hurry...instead of searching through my 60+ cricut cartridges, I picked 2 that I knew would have one ... and decided I liked the one found in "Joys of the Season". My greens were hard to match with my designer paper (which I think I paid a nickel for in a grab bag at my local craft store...Basic Grey too!!! I have about 8 sheets...perfect to make my extra copies, since I can only get 2 cards out of a 12x12 sheet....big stamp big stamp big stamp I say....)


For those of you who know me....It didn't take much for me to choose the True Thyme for my green of choice of the cardstock......(one of the bestest colors SU has ever launched...too bad it was one of the "in colors" and was only "in" for a year. As a scrapbooker/card maker ... I have to say, this green is an easy match....it looks vintagey to me...and I have had this giant pile of Baroque Burgundy c/s staring at me for awhile (my own stash, plus I inherited a bunch from my friend who was reducing her inventory)....


Lastly, I don't think I have EVER stamped on colored cardstock for my main stamped image! I've always used a white (Whisper White) or an off-white (Very Vanilla) or a light cream (other quality brand)...so, this was a FIRST for me....I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome...I will do this again!


So, that's the skinny on this card. If I wasn't so tired, did I say so so tired, so very very tired...I'm sure I'd be a bit more full of info, and a little less of "trivia"....


On a FUN scale of 1 - 10 ... I'd say this card deserves an 8 or 9...as it was pretty "fun" to make...just not when I was so tired...so so tired...when I make the "copies"....I'll be all awake, and I'll let you know then!


So, pretend it's Monday....aka Christmas Card Monday (April)...the next Christmas Card Monday is: May 16 I have something fun and light brewing for this one!


Thanks for stopping by!



Trudi


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

WHO KNEW!!!!


That Mother Nature was going to deprive me of my precious sleep.....For those of you who know me...I'm sure you have heard me sing the blues about cold, rain, wind, etc...all the elements that can wipe out 1/2 of our livlihood for the year....(thank goodness we are diversified!)....well...WHO KNEW...that the last 2 nights we'd be babysitting our trees with freezing temperatures. What little apricots we have left (the 10 degree temperatures 2 months ago wiped out 2/3 of our crop) are in danger...and a very abundant crop of cherries are now at risk...plus peaches too! (26 acres total in trees)....NOT TOO MENTION...26 acres of asparagus simply cannot grow when it's cold! (thank goodness the 10 degrees didn't kill the crowns buried deep in the ground...)

SO....last night and the same the night before that....we anxiously waited for the temperature alarms to blare....when that happens...it's MY job to rally my husband out of the house to turn the wind machines on....he likes to talk himself out of it...and I can't sleep until I hear the truck leave the driveway up to the orchards.....so....NO sleep for me Sunday night....(it didn't dip down that low until about 3:00 a.m.! I can't sleep until he's GONE remind you.....last night was better.... 1:00 a.m....but something at about 4:00 didn't seem right....the WIND came up...and what was once 31 degrees...was climbing back up...so, not only did we have to worry about frost damage....WIND MACHINE DAMAGE...which is costly costly costly....OY! OY! OY! He had the machines on at 1:30 and at 4:00...I was nudging him back out of the house to check the mph of the wind...(can't exceed 7)....so...the machines went off...and I never ever slept....I was watching those temps so closely...as the coldest time is *typically* DAWN...

So, my friends...this long story explains why I didn't have my Christmas Card Monday to share yesterday! I planned on uploading LAST NIGHT...afterall, it was still MONDAY!!! BUT BUT BUT...I layed down to "rest" at 9:30 or so...(still had about 1 hour left to "finish"...) and FELL ASLEEP! (I could have made the midnight deadline)....I knew I needed to stay asleep for a few hours...as last night proved to be SLEEPLESS...(I really couldn't leave my alarm system, although that alarm is very loud...I probably could have heard it in my studio...maybe...we have a fairly big house, and my studio is in our daylight basement....

I couldn't risk it...

Good news...it is ALMOST finished....I snuck in for about 15 minutes this morning...and I only have a few finishing touches....So, I'm going to cut myself some slack on missing my deadline....I guess our livlihood does pay for my supplies...and I'm a work hard, play hard kind of gal...Since I'm not the one out in the chilly orchard...the least I can do is stay in my cozy bed...and watch the temperatures...(I don't completely trust the temperature alarm....)

On the positive side...I think I've seen almost every episode now of Housewives of Miami, Orange County, New York...and now...New Jersey...there isn't much on TV this time of the night...and it seems like BRAVO is playing these! I think they need a Housewives of Eastern Washington....could be fun!

For today....I am sharing something we shipped out yesterday...in the 25 years of business...this is one of the prettiest orders we have shipped...I sell to a jeweler who ordered 300 of these for a Mothers Day promo...I have a great team who takes a lot of pride in their work!

I will post picture tomorrow! Just have a little of this and a little of that to do on my Bingo Card! I didn't overthink it either...still have lots of "steps"....but, it's coming along! I was able to join in on a Cricut Challenge too!

Til Tomorrow, TTFN!

Trudi

Saturday, April 16, 2011

My Dear Niece



4 years ago today, I tragically lost my niece to a senseless act of violence. One would think that over 4 years time...it may be possible to move the pain away and find a way to trudge forward....Although this indeed is the case...the pain has shifted from the center of my heart...to another place that surfaces, although less frequently, still appears....as if it were yesterday, I can't forget...and never ever will. I can't drive past the baseball field I was standing at when one of my sisters indicated to me...that my dear niece was one of the 32 victims, her precious life being taken in Norris Hall. I can't drive past here without thinking about that phone call. I can't stand at the post office window that I was at when I chatted about being concerned that we had not heard from her yet...I can't stand there and purchase STAMPS...without recollecting that conversation. I can't stand in the express grocery check-out at Yokes...without remembering the tears running down my face in front of complete strangers...and recalling a "stranger" who put her arm around me and shared how she tragically lost her brother years ago too...that things WILL get better....


Since 4 years have passed...I have grown so much....I try to be a better person...I am ashamed at all the times where I "could have" been a better friend for friends who may have struggled through a loss, or tough situation. It is only until I personally endured such horrific pain, do I realize that often times...people "don't know" what to say or do...so true that was with me.....I pray that I have become a better person...and I know my sweet niece, Leslie, would not want any of her family to live a lifetime of hurt and pain....grasping to find a new direction, I've channeled my pain at times very unproductively and inappropriately, but have caught myself in moments where finally I've started the path to being more positive. My niece, in her 20 years gave so much kindness to others...so so so much...that in a lifetime...I could never imagine giving so so much. I would hope that all of mankind was so generous, but I know better. We give, we help, we do what we do...but this young woman did so with such ease and grace. In her young years, she taught me much....

I can't let today go by, however, without lifting a prayer to her, and her 31 classmates and faculty....if only we could turn back the hands of time...I'm sure we all would have done and said things differently to others...I know I would have. And for that I need to share her favorite quote


"And we should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once. And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh."


-Friedrich Nietzsche


Sweet Leslie, I love you,


Trudi