Saturday, September 25, 2010

Salute to Fall: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

When it comes to Fall even the most devoted outdoor-o-phobes would have to admit that they love to see the leaves change.

Maybe that love exists only about as long as it takes for the first brightly-colored bits to create a pile on the sidewalk, but nothing lasts forever.

Much like my piece for this week's Drunken Stampers Challenge: Salute to Fall: This creation is definitely not going to last longer than a few days.

My background is a chunk of textured Grunge Board, inked with Vintage photo distress ink and stamped with an actual leaf dipped in crushed olive, then Colorbox gold ... don't feel badly that you can't see that part ... I'm right here and can barely see it.

The quote "Autumn is a second Spring when every leaf is a flower," is one I found online: The various additional embellishments are from here and there and everywhere and the Japanese maple near my front door.

What? You've never seen Japanese or dwarf maple leaves that looked like this? Well then! Let me introduce you to my newest "Using What I've Got Technique."

I plucked one dwarf maple leaf and two Japanese maple leaves from the trees, covered them in embossing ink and distress embossing powder and cooked the crap out of 'em with a heat gun.

Tada! A fun and delicate piece that elicits a strange, tormenting style of humor (My Guy suggested I give this creation to someone so they would feel badly when it falls apart). There you go, folks. I said a few days ago that he's the smart one. I didn't say anything about nice.

Now it's your turn! Grab your favorite drink and stop by the Drunken Stampers to show us how you honor this lovely season!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The fall harvest

Until this year we'd only dabbled in farming ... if you count a herb garden, neglected fruit trees, tulips and hostas as farming.

No, I suppose that would be less like farming and more like "Um, is that a weed or a plant? We better leave it alone."

This year we decided to reach out a bit more into the world of Real Food. Early on, as you kind followers already know, we lost tomatoes, fruit tree buds, boxwood basil and a first round of corn to a late freeze. And then, another later freeze.

Still, I was standing in our back yard recently clapping like a two-year-old at Christmas as we plucked out of the ground white and red onions.

We tugged corn off of stalks and even discovered that Yukon gold potato plants we thought long dead were actually busy building up beautiful blond globes of starchy goodness.

One look at my photos reveals that we've got enough freshly-harvested produce for only a few potato and onion breakfasts or grilled corn fests.

But who cares? We grew FOOD! And it's GOOD food! More than four pounds of potatoes! Eight edible ears of corn (plus a few Zombie cobs like the one you see here)!

Better yet though, we now have a somewhat educated plan for next year.

Using intelligence and careful planning we intend to drop in seeds and plants from virtually every known possible backyard garden food group and water them until they die or give us another fantastic fall flavor fest!

This means that for the first time in my adult life I'm looking forward to Winter and next Summer!

Maybe next fall we'll be serving pumpkin pie made from our very own pumpkins!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Alcohol ink agate on grunge: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

As much time as we spend trying to clean alcohol inks off of surfaces onto which they've accidentally dripped, sprayed and slopped, you'd think we'd hate them at my house.

Fortunately, this week's Compendium challenge, alcohol ink agate on grunge, is only another opportunity to spread around these awesome little bottles of creative outlet.

Today's foray into the messy dangers of alcohol inks left a swath of cranberry-colored overflow, but I also managed to get some of the goo where I wanted it to go, ending up with this mottled grunge paper background.

It's a cool base for my bird and wings, and do you love that vintage clock fragment? Me Too!

I only wish I could take credit for that part ... I decided on the copper-colored clock back and stamped the face and added the brad ... but it's My Guy who suggested a clock when I couldn't decide on an appropriate dimensional object.

Oh well. It was my idea to join Linda's Studio L3 Compendium Challenge, so who's really the smarter one? Alright fine. Well, I'm cuter!

Thinking of more important matters: The second piece you see here is a card I made on Saturday after returning home with a shoebox in my suitcase that was filled with Holtz stuff.

Finally! Grunge paper!

So, I jumped back through time and completed a grunge paper flower for the Compendium Challenge two weeks ago.

Just look at it! All distress inky with marmalade and worn lipstick and made crispy and shiny with distress embossing powders in fired brick and tattered rose.


What are you doing still reading? Get the hell on to Linda's Studio ... she's waiting to see what you can do with alcohol ink and something grunge-y.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Masking basics: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

Ouu, folks! I'm fighting the final 15 here.

So, we've got a French-ish piece using a Holtz borderline mask and worn lipstick distress ink, among other stamps and embellishments.

That's the card I think I meant to make all along.

The next piece was my first attempt for this week's Compendium challenge: It's funny ... looking.

The third photo is only to prove that you can use embossing folders without an embossing machine ... you'll even end up being able to put the embossing EXACTLY where you want it to go.

Just put your paper in the folder, grab a mallet and bang away!

Really! Take a look at my "Amite" card! See how the pressed embossing sort of wraps around the stamped image? All mallet baby!

So, you've got at least 10 minutes six minutes! Get on over to this week's Studio L3 challenge inspired by the fun and interesting Compendium of Curiosities!

Do you remember what's in it bean dip

As you know we spend a lot of time playing kitchen klutz around our house. Often this results in edible, but not very memorable dishes.

Occasionally however we discover something that is so delicious My Guy uses the phrase you see above, "Do you remember what's in it?"

Some time ago, for our Curry Bean Dip, I got to say "Yes!" Or, more appropriately "Sort of!"

You see friends, I remember what went into this dip, but the amounts are hit and miss. Sometimes we get extra curry, sometimes, as today, we forget that we're out of cheddar cheese and have to substitute with Monterrey Jack.

Stick to these overall ingredients and "about" measurements, though, and you'll have a sure hit at your next chip and dip bash.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Painted dry emboss: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

You crack me up! Really, you do!

And so does today's card for the Drunken Stampers dry emboss and paint challenge!

Whether that's a good sentiment pointing out how someone makes you laugh and enjoy life or a warning that you're being driven to a padded stall is up to the recipient.

So, I guess this fishy piece with a Holtz alterations embossed background, gold paint and a heat-embossed sentiment line is the kind of thing that could be sent to anyone ... whether a close friend or distant acquaintance.

After all, art is designed to be ambiguous, isn't it? Or am I confusing that with mysterious? Or, perhaps delightful.

Take a minute to decide where your own painting and embossing possibilities lead, then show us your creation at Drunken Stampers!

Friday, September 17, 2010

A quick hello

Hi everyone! I hope you're having a great week! We've been enjoying a few days with my parents in Southern Idaho, including a lovely afternoon drive to Sun Valley and more than a few lazy evenings on the deck.

My post tomorrow for Drunken Stampers won't be up until the late afternoon, so I hope you'll stop by again then.

After that, please plan to check in later this week when I post a recipe for Sangria -- a wonderful citrus-filled drink my parents seem to have perfected.

Also, you might already know that My Guy has been unemployed for a few months now, which means the general household budget is tight and the craft budget is even tighter. Still, which crafter can go Cold Turkey?

So, aside from a few bucks here and there, I've been tucking away extra dollars to spend while in Twin Falls (not only could I find a large Holtz selection here, but I feel obliged to "spread the wealth" and support small town small businesses).

Hopefully you won't mind then if I selfishly giggle with glee for a moment because I finally have Holtz numerals and grunge paper and masks and metal trinkets, among several other items that I've been "saving up" for (and, as mentioned, which I couldn't find in Reno).

Now I'm left feeling melancholy, thinking of leaving my parents' house ... while feeling dizzy with anticipation of arriving home where I can use my new Holtz products!

Prost to the weekend!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Going in Circles: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Today's post is about Going in Circles ... Going in Circles for Drunken Stampers' weekly challenge, and going in circles trying to stay seated long enough to get this post done.

We're not at home at the moment ... off on a great adventure while sitters, ahm, sit at our place entertaining two mostly-sleepy ferrets.

We adventure to this location occasionally and it's always a good time full of a daily circle from relaxed awakening with coffee and tea through late morning/early afternoon catching up always leading eventually to afternoon and evening cocktail hour(s).

Ah yes. Everything a vacation should be, don't you agree?

So, what you have here is a card which began with a background of dry embossed paper. We then stamped and heat embossed, in blue tinsel, four Dutch hex-look medallions and four phrases, also heat embossed but this time in silver, on cobalt card stock.

Each circle embellishment was appropriately distressed, inked and embossed.

So, as I write this, I'm wondering how you'll go in circles ... hopefully your circle leads always to the Drunken Stampers Craft Pub.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Serenity it's Back to School!: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Usually, the only pitty pats of little feets around my house are of the furry four-legged kind.

This means that while I can only invoke described feelings when it comes to back to school for little ones, we at Drunken Stampers still know how important it is to take advantage of small moments.

Among the described feelings I've been privy to are those from my sister. She once explained, in a long-unheard voice of calm, the relief at her new found hours of free time between morning and After School -- the first she'd had in months.

A whole day to clean and finish something, *anything,* and to perhaps watch an entire television show uninterrupted.

Of course, I also know that the time made little difference as, after only one week, this same woman was laughing at how, between school news and promised school projects and "getting involved," the time had melted away until every day had less hours than before school started.

Which brings us to my card, which is really more of a wish to you moms and dads and busy people with too many pets.

While your little balls of energy and joy are away at school, try to take a minute, even a few minutes to Indulge.

Don't worry about his or her first day, don't worry about the laundry. Forget the expenses every school year brings.

Sit down with a cup of something warm, a hot toddy if you're so inclined, and sigh. Life is good. It's wonderful and strange and silly and sometimes sad, but mostly it's good.

Then, Get Busy! You have a Drunken Stampers submission to create and post!