Sunday, May 27, 2012

Happy Unofficial Start of Summer!

Good morning, Dear Readers, Well, another month is coming to a close. How fast time is flying by! I had promised you photos of the solar eclipse. Here is one that shows the sequence of events. I did NOT take this - I wish I were THAT talented! I thought this photo pretty much included it all. It was professionally taken.

We were in the perfect spot to see a symmetrical corona. Years ago, in Bucks County, PA, where I grew up, we had a solar eclipse that was VERY disconcerting. It was so dark, a weird color of dark, too, that the street lights automatically came on. It was like twilight, but with an odd shade of gray. The birds quieted down, and I remember my stomach feeling weird. This eclipse was not like that at all due to the ring of fire which still provided much light to the area. It was impressive in that I realized just how much light we get from that burning ball of gas in our sky 93,000,000 miles away!

Now, for today's cards. The Magnolia card (2nd card in today's posting) is at the bottom of this post. Here is the information on first of two cards:

Since it is approaching the official start of Winter in the Southern Hemisphere, I chose to make my card have a winter theme. Today's card is my example of a card using glitter! It is the current challenge at Hooked on Craft. The challenge is to use glitter on a card. Let me tell you, it is really difficult to photograph the glittered elements! LOL! This challenge runs from May 28 until June 30. You may create a card, layout, or craft that includes glittered elements. What are you trying for? How about this:

How about that? Pretty nice lot, huh?

Now, on to my card. I chose to use colors that were somewhat unlikely together - mint green, brown, red, and white. Here is the cover. I'm showing two photos just so you can see the glittery elements. One photo was taken in one type of light while the other was taken with simple room light. You pick the one you prefer, LOL!

I used kraft colored cardstock for the bird cage and then applied Perfect Pearls in Verdigris to the cardstock. It made it look a shiny shade of aged copper. Love the effect. The rhinestones were clear, but were colored with Copic Markers. The paper is so pretty. You cannot tell from the photos, but the red flowers are foil. That added even more shine! Keeping the rustic look was important so I added twine to the top of the birdcage. The accordion flower is trimmed in glitter as are the roses. The snowflakes are covered in sparkles. I heat embossed the middle-sized one to get the sparkles on the punched cut.The largest snowflake came covered in sparkles. The bird was cut from cream colored glitter cardstock. I used ink along the edge of the bird and some of the paper mats. There are also distressed edges and machine stitching. Here is the inside:

Again, I used machine stitching on the mats as well as distressed edges. I cut the corners using my Quickutz die, added rhinestones, a mat cut from my Nestie dies. I have a sentiment stamp coming, but it isn't here yet. Here are the materials I used and are available at Hooked on Craft:

Crystal Stamen -

Pink Rose -

Burgundy Rose -

Small Red Rose -

Small Carnations -

Holly Leaves -

Medium Green Leaves -

Clear Rhinestones -

Well, that pretty much covers this card's components with related links. I hope you like what I created for this wonderful challenge and that you will join in with us. You've got a month, so why not?

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Stampin'Sisters in Christe Challenges - #141 - ends 6/2 - Do something you're afraid of - on my card, I did not include a stamped image! The sentiment stamp was ordered and is on its way, though. No image here!

Christmas Card Challenges - #26 - ends 6/2 - Use Bling

52 (Christmas) Card Throwdown - #5 - ends 5/31 - embossing

Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge - #74 - ends 6/1 - Christmas foliage

Craftymess Challenge Blog #9 - ends 6/1 - non traditional Christmas colors

Just Some Lines - ends 5/31 - Show Us Those Birds


This card was made for a very special friend. I wanted to use masculine colors and embellies. Here it is:

I love texture as you can see with the addition of the burlap and feathers. I stacked the flowers and added some rosebuds and die cut leaves. I applied inking and machine stitching for more interest. I love the contrast of the rough looking burlap and the soft looking feathers. I wanted the colors to be warm. The papers were perfect for the gardening theme.

Here is the inside of the card:

I often thought I should have added more embellies to the inside, but I didn't want to make it too girly looking since it was for an adult male. I chose to keep it relatively simple. Again, I inked and stitched. I created a pocket for a personal note or giftcard. The feathers were repeated, and those gorgeous papers were perfect together.

Thank you, dear visitors for stopping by. I hope you will return soon. Thank you so much! I so appreciate the time you took to visit. I'd love a comment if you have time to do so!

XO, Chris

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Chocolate, Coffee, Cards#13 ends 5/31 - for the boys

Crafty Catz#134 ends 5/31 - For a man

Here Come the Boys Challenge Blog #28 ends 6/8 - Anything Goes

Sentimental Sundays - #104 ends 6/2 - Pocket Full of Posies

The Squirrel and the Fox - #18 ends 5/29 - Best Friends

The Official Magnolia Inspiration Challenge - #51 ends 5/28 - Fruity Pocket

Monday, May 21, 2012

How to Ruin Your Eyes During A Solar Eclipse

OK, this is MY blog and I can write my opinion (to a point), right? If you don't like blog posts where someone is on "the peck," STOP NOW, and do not read any more of this post. I am on a rant!

I am fighting to keep my vision. Some of you may already know that. Each year, my vision is diminished more and more. I have an autoimmune issue that is attacking my eyes and has been for almost 20 years now. Some days are just very difficult for me because of the blurry vision caused by what I call my "Jellyfish." These are clear floaters covering my line of vision. I also fight Glaucoma which has damaged my optic nerves. I treasure my vision. I treasure each and every card I make because I was able to see to do it. Granted, I may have enough light on my work space to illuminate a small city, but it works! This is one of the many reasons I often say that I am blessed. I am! I am still able to see my husband's gorgeous face, my son's precious "laughing eyes," a rainbow, a sunset, snow.

It is for the reason above that I am "on a tear." I am going to share photos which I found on a website where people are looking at yesterday's Annular Eclipse through 35mm camera film! It is my understanding that this is NOT a safe method for EVER viewing the sun! What bothers me so much is that there were ample warnings given day after day regarding how to safely look at the sun as well as what NOT to do when looking at the sun. What MORON thought it was a great idea to look though 35mm camera film? The photos were taken at a mall. I think people just went and bought film after seeing someone else use this harmful technique.

Does the father in the first photo shown below realize what he is so innocently doing to his son's young eyes? Whomever put the goggles on their pets had more sense (even though the pets probably wouldn't be inclined to view a solar eclipse)! I have blurred the faces so that their identities are protected.

I hope and pray that significant damage was not done to the viewers'eyes. If I am wrong and camera film is safe to use, then I apologize for this diatribe. I would never want anyone to experience what I am going through each and every day with my failing vision. Treasure your vision. Don't forget to protect your eyes whenever you are outside. If you are older, get Glaucoma checks. Glaucoma is "silent." You can't feel the increased ocular pressure unless it is so high that your eyes rub against the bones of the eye socket.

I wrote this out of love and concern. If I can prevent just one person from looking at the sun in a careless manner, then I have helped one, who, in turn, will help another - like a ripple in a pond.
Blessings to all. Thanks for sticking with me this far.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Magnolia Tilda Graduation Card #2

Happy Annular Eclipse Sunday! I am sooooooooooooo excited because this evening, there will be an Annular Eclipse in our part of the world. We live in an area that will have prime viewing of the Ring of Fire. The moon will be centered on the image of the sun. The Ring of Fire will be perfectly symmetrical around the black shadow. How cool is that? We'll be able to see it from our front lawn. We've contemplated going out into the desert to view it, but are still undecided. This will be my fourth solar eclipse of my lifetime. I don't expect to experience another one, LOL. Age tends to put "ending points" of life's interesting events - such as solar eclipses. LOL I remember one while I was a child, living in Bucks County, PA, that was VERY dark. Even the street lights came on. I expect that this one will be just as dark. I'll be sure to take photos and share them with you.

A dear and treasured friend of mine, the owner of Happy Scrappin' Scrapbooking asked me to make a couple of graduation cards for her. Because she is a friend I hold close to my heart, I wanted my card to be keepsake quality. Sharon just LOVED the cards I sent! I would like to share one of them with you. Here it is:

On the front panel, I've used multiple layers, machine stitching, die cuts, lace, imported flowers from Australia which are available at Hooked on Craft. There is a hidden tag in the upper right corner. I also have added two charms. One is on the hidden tag while the other is hanging from the flowers is the lower left corner.

The paper I used is my all time favorite paper. I only use it for very special reasons. When I saw it, I just fell in love with the designs and colors. So, I bought quite a bit of it.

Here is the inside:

The inside of the card features another pocket in which I have placed a bookmark. I have also repeated the layering, machine stitching, and imported flowers. I even stitched the areas along the horizontal pieces on the right panel. They were already printed on there, but I chose to run the sewing machine along the printed stitches for more texture.

Well, that's my card. I'm off to anticipate the eclipse! LOL Have a wonderful week!


I would like to enter my card into the following challenges:

The Crafty Pad #171 ends 5/26 - Bingo I chose the bottom horizontal row with ribbon, flowers, and bling

Just Us Girls#137 ends 5/24 - Color Challenge

Crafty Ann's Challenge Blog#65 ends 5/24 - Hide and Seek

4 Crafty Chicks #90 ends 5/22 - Graduation

Crafts and Me Challenges #84 ends 5/21 - Pearls and Lace

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Magnolia Tilda Graduation Card

Happy day before Mother's Day! I hope your day will be filled with sunshine, warmth, and love. Bless each of you for all you do. The job of being a mom is one that is so underestimated. Mothers are WONDERFUL, STRONG, WISE, CARING, SHARING, GIVING, SELFLESS, PATIENT, NURTURING, AND A MIRACLE TO ALL. Being a mother is one of my most treasured gifts from God. I wasn't "Fertilla the Honey" so after many prayerful moments, I was given a gift that blessed me even more that I could ever imagine. I love my son - our son. If you are reading this, Darling, I love you and am so proud of the man you have become. Thank you for being my son. Thank you for the gift of motherhood. I love you. OK, enough mushy stuff! LOL I have made a graduation card to share with you today. I hope you like it. I loved making it. It features Celebration Tilda. Here is the cover:
I am having this thing about using up my vellum, LOL. When I added it to the card, it just blended into the background. So, I chose to add a doily under that which was perfect as the pink vellum was more defined. I cut the vellum using the Magnolia doily doohickey die. I used flowers from my stash, inks, pink and white baker's twine, EYELETS (remember those, LOL), ecru colored lace, and paper which was pink, green, and ecru. The elements are all on an ecru colored Bazzill base. Let's look at the interior:
The inside left has the pink, green, and ecru colors. I wanted to keep the inside flat so I used little posie flowers. In the center is a handmade flower with a chunk of lace doily in the center. Suspended from the center flower is a little cap and diploma charm. The inside right has the companion paper, vines made with Magnolia Doohickey dies, another handmade flower, and a poem that I thought matched the Celebration Tilda's "rah, rah" demeanor. Tilda just looks like she is exuberant, doesn't she? I just love that Tilda. Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you will come back soon! I'd love a comment if you'd like to leave one. XO, Chris I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:

Magnolia-licious Challenge Blog - Color Challenge - ends 5/21 - pink, green, and ecru

Totally Gorjuss #131 - ends 5/19 - Pink and Green