Monday, October 31, 2011

APHA, Day 1

Today didn't start off the way I wanted to, but the day got progressively better as it went on.

I got a 4 AM wake up call from RJ, complete with bouncing on the bed, licking my hair, sticking his wet nose in my face, and messing with the dirty clothes bin. It got so bad that I shut him out of the bedroom, but then he proceeded to scratch at the door and carpet right outside the door and yowl. ARGH! I think I forced myself to fall back asleep because the next thing I knew, the cell phone alarm went off at 7:30. The automatic feeder went off at 5:45 AM, so I wasn't in a hurry to check on the him. I heard some crinkling noises downstairs as I was getting dressed for the day and didn't think much of it. I went downstairs to pack up and go to the Metro and I saw that the little terror had chewed a small hole through my plastic snack bag and sneaked a few nibbles of my oatmeal cookie. RAWR!

The world must be in balance today because while the Metro rides yesterday were a pain, the ones getting to the Convention Center today for the American Public Health Association conference today were smooth sailing. I didn't have to wait for trains very long and I got seats both trips. You'd think that with such a large conference, you wouldn't know anyone there, but in fact, I ran into many people from my previous job, former co-workers from my current job, and professors from graduate school. I went to a session this afternoon on work place wellness programs and one place did a Biggest Loser-like competition. The individual that lost the most percentage of body weight would win $500! The before and after pictures of the winner were rather dramatic.

The other thing I like about this conference is the freebies that exhibitors give out. Check out my loot below! 1 water bottle, 1 container for hot drinks, hand sanitizer, pens, tiny flashlights, a letter opener, and stress relievers. One thing that wasn't for free, but I had to buy because it was so cute was a "I heart guts!" stationary pack. I'll have to use it when I send my next letter to Suzie. I was surprised to see so much candy at a public health conference, but I guess everyone was in the Halloween spirit. I even saw a few people wearing costumes. One guy had fake spiders attached to his shirt and pants. It reminded me of that scene at the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark when the person has all the tarantulas on his back. Gross. One of my co-workers told me that some kid came up to him and asked him to guess which Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle he was. My co-worker guessed correctly and the kid was reportedly sooo happy.

This is my first Halloween at the new place, and while I didn't get many trick-or-treaters, I had enough where they took all but 5 pieces of candy (Almond Joy and Mounds), which I'm saving for myself. :) Even though RJ was acting crazy last night, he didn't try to make a dash for the door when the kids came for candy. I guess it all evens out at the end of the day.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Marine Corps Marathon 2011

The day has arrived for my friend Meg to run in her second Marine Corps Marathon. My other friend Robyn and I went over to Meg's place where Team Meg members (Meg's parents, sister, brother-in-law, niece, cousin and aunt) all had a big pasta dinner to wish her good luck in her race today. Meg's niece was especially cute. At first she was shy around me and Robyn, but quickly warmed up to us when Robyn started to read her a stack of books. In a Maisy book, I wanted to see how she would react to some of my trick questions. For example, I would point to a penguin and ask "What noise does a penguin make?" Her answer was "Waddle, waddle, waddle," complete with her doing a waddling motion. Freakin' stinkin' cute. Robyn and I camped out in the living room area for the evening and watched Big Bang Theory, while Meg went to bed early to get ready for the big day.

It was a very early and chilly start to the day today. I have to say that I'm glad that the race wasn't yesterday because there was legitimate snow going on. And with the wet snow on the ground, it made today's walk to the team tent very muddy. I'm glad that I decided to make a last minute switch-a-roo with my shoes- taking an older pair instead of my nice white running ones. Robyn and I walked with Meg to the start line and then parted ways so that the two of us could meet up with the rest of Team Meg.

There were some interesting things that happened as we were waiting for the race to start. We saw some cool parachuters and special Marine aircrafts flying by. The wheelchair races started first and one guy crashed his bike not too long after he started. It was really scary to see all the other bikers turning to avoid hitting him. Some Marines rushed over to right his bike and off he went. We were able to catch Meg a few points during the race. She wore a shirt that said Meg on it, so it was easy to spot her. With the race so close to Halloween, we also saw many costumes: the devil, Batman, a shark, several butterflies, and Thing 1/Thing 2.

Meg's goal was to get a time below 4 hours, but we found out later on that she took a spill at Mile 7 while probably slowed her down just a tad. Her knee was badly scraped and I'm sure the impact jolted her. But, at least it's all bandaged up, courtesy of the First Aid tent, and she completed the race and we are all so proud of her! Here are some pictures from the weekend.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Fall-To Layout #164

I decided to make some cookies for the Team Meg dinner tonight. I decided on oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and branch out from the usual peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. Maybe then I can pretend that they are healthier because I put oats in them. I used this recipe, and they were yummy. I already had a few for quality assurance purposes. I did cut down the sugars to 3/4 cup each, but other than that, I followed the recipe.

I continued working on my inventory of fabric flowers for the holiday crafty show season. I was running low on gems to put in the center, so I experimented with putting large buttons instead and they still look cute!

Here's my take on Fall-To Layout #164. I wasn't so sure about the paper pieces that came in my order, but I love them as an embellishment for this card.
Card Specs:
Embossing powder: Stampendous! in white
Embossing ink: VersaMark
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Ocean, Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Antique Linen
Stamps: Hero Arts- Cling Classic Fabric Design (background), Studio G (sentiment), American Crafts- Majestic
Embellishment: American Crafts Botanique Paper Pieces
Other: American Crafts Stamp Marker in Red

Meg's running in the Marine Corp Marathon tomorrow! Pictures to follow :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

One-Layer Wednesday #70

Yep, I gave in.

Gave into what, you ask? The Halloween candy? Oh, pish, I did that a long time ago.

I gave into turning on the heat in the house. Blah. I was hoping I could make it to next week to turn it on, but alas, it's just gotten uncomfortable in the house. Meh, I'll pay the money for the heat so that I can be comfortable in my own house.

Oh, yeah, and there's snow in the forecast. Before Halloween. Yep, I know, it's nuts. I hope this doesn't impact the Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday. That would really be unfortunate for Meg since she's running and for the rest of us that are cheering.

Crafty review: In the spirit of efficiency, I bought a rotary cutter to cut the fabric for my kanzashi fabric flower pins. Since I got a 30% off coupon in my email inbox the other day, I figured I could justify the cost. I ended up picking up an OLFA 28mm roatary cutter. I was looking for a Fiskars one since I was familiar with the brand, but they didn't have any at the fabric store that I went to. It works just fine and it definitely sped my fabric cutting process. I wanted to add these fabric flower pins to the inventory that I'm going to be selling this holiday season. I think it's a good idea to offer a variety. Even if one doesn't want to buy a card, perhaps they could be persuaded to buy a pin to accent their winter coat.

RJ: Another purchase that I made today was an automatic feeder. I don't want to keep depending on my parents to feed RJ when I'm gone overnight. I put some food in there already, and the cat promptly wanted to break in. I couldn't be mad at him since I'd probably do the same thing. I put one of my hand weights on the lid to keep it secure overnight. I will be both horrified and amused if he manages to get food out of there by tomorrow morning. Maybe this'll help with the 5:45 AM "I'M HUNGRY" wake up calls.

Card: Here's my take on this week's One-Layer Wednesday challenge #70: using only red and white. I grabbed two different shades of red chalk ink. I wanted the sentiment and accent butterflies to stand out against the flowers, so the darker red really helped with that.

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Warm Red, Maroon
Stamps: American Crafts- Herbs (all)
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper

Thursday, October 27, 2011

No Sentiment Card CARDS Magazine Challenge

At the office: We had an Oktoberfest event at work today, complete with beer, bratwurst, sauerkraut, German chocolate cake, cheese and crackers. While many of my colleagues enjoyed the beer and brats, I was very content with my cheese, crackers and cake.

Card: This week's CARDS Magazine challenge focuses on cards without sentiments. Ooo, this one was a toughy for me since I very rarely make a card that doesn't have a specific purpose in mind. I decided to try out the Cosmo Crickets Glubers that I got from They are like giant glue dots, and while they are very sticky, I still used my glue gun to make sure that the fabric flowers didn't unravel.

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Warm Green
Stamps: Hero Arts- Cling Dots (background)
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper
Rub-ons: American Crafts Rose Accents
Buttons: From Tuesday Morning and Michaels
White Gel Pen: Uni-Ball Signo Broad White Gel Pen

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Baked Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

I actually made an effort to go to the gym today to work out on the cardio machines and not for spin class. I can't remember the last time I did that. I just love spin class THAT much. However, they don't have one on WED evenings and I was feeling very guilty about all the Halloween candy I ate recently. I was going to go with a co-worker, but he flaked on me. I still went, woot.

An empty fridge is a sad one, which also makes for a sad Tina. I went grocery shopping tonight after going to the gym and stocked up on some vegetables. When I came home, I made a batch of baked pumpkin pie oatmeal. I wanted to try to make something for breakfast that wasn't a muffin, so I thought this was a great healthy alternative. Nom nom nom.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Fashion Forward

The dress that I bought from Target over Columbus Day is still getting compliments and I still laugh on the inside on how much of a bargain was.

Anna the spin instructor shared with us on Monday night that she was taking the exam to become an American citizen today (she's British). And tonight, Janice announced that she passed the exam. Yay for her!

It's been a while since I've done my nails so I did them tonight with some Konad stamping. I went with a dark grey with dark red images. I started with the fishnet patterned, but then I thought that the leopard print would showcase the red nail polish more. So all the nails don't biggie! Red: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Cinna-Snap. Grey: Wet 'N Wild Black Diamonds. Konad plate #57.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fall CARDS Magazine Challenge

Making new friends...or not: I brought RJ over to my parents' house last night. Mom and Dad were going to visit my sister for the night, so they asked me to take care of Ginger. I brought RJ over with me as an experiment to see how Ginger would react. I was a little surprised when she hissed at him and ran away. Sigh. Not quite the warm reception I was hoping for. I kept him in the guest room with water and a litter box, so he was settled. Eventually, Ginger stopped avoiding me, and even slept at the foot of my old bed last night. Oh well. I can't blame her. I wouldn't be keen on having strangers come stay at my house either. Perhaps this will be a gradual process. I'd like to get to a point where I can just let him run around my parents' house and Ginger would just ignore the youngster.

Online shopping:
I had a very nice surprise at my doorstep this afternoon when I got home from work. It was my order from They were having a clearance sale on Colorbox chalk ink, so of course, I couldn't pass it up. My French Blue, Olive Pastel and Deep Green inks in the Queue had gone dry so I figured this would be a good time to get a larger ink pad for each one of them. I threw in the Ocean one because I thought it'd be pretty color. I'm really impressed with the shipping too (ordered TH, received MON). It's definitely an online store that I'd purchase from again. Price information: $3.69 for each of the full size ink pads, $2.39 for the mini one. Shipping= $4.95. Total= 18.41. Card: I decided to try out this week's CARDS Magazine challenge of a fall-themed cards. Since I only have one fall themed stamp set, it was easy to figure out which stamp set I was going to use today. I decided on using a pumpkin stamp and doing some paper piecing and heat embossing. I stamped the image on the white cardstock first with Deep Green chalk ink and then stamped it again on watercolor paper with Versamark. I heat embossed the second image with black embossing powder and then colored in the pumpkins with an Aqua Painter. I assembled the card with the other cardstock pieces, but it still looked really flat. I dug through the bucket of buttons I bought in yard sale I went to on Saturday and found 3 orange buttons! Perfect, hooray!! :)

Card Specs:
Embossing powder: Personal Stamp Exchange- Black
Embossing ink: VersaMark
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Chestnut Roan, Deep Green. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Vintage Photo, Wild Honey.
Stamps: Inkadinkado- Autumn Foliage (all)
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Fiskars Threading Waters border punch
Embossing Folder: Cuttlebug (Swiss Dots)
Other: Brown Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saturday Yard Sale Finds and Apple Dumplings

Yard sale finds: I could not believe my good luck on today's yard sale excursion. I've been meaning to get a file cabinet for my office so that I could organize my paper files. They been cramped in an accordion folder. Meh, I suppose that's functional, but I was thinking that if I got a file cabinet, then I could use it to store some of my crafty things like they do at the Two Peas warehouse. At one yard sale, the guy had one for $10 but it was way to big for my Civic and too heavy for me to carry anyway. I was a little bummed, but then I found another one at a yard sale for $10. It was a little smaller and had 2 drawers less than the first one that I saw, but I figured it's better than nothing. The lady cut me a deal by giving 3 DVDs I wanted for free. At another yard sale, I found some hanging folders and a bucket of buttons and I paid $3 for everything. Honestly, it's laughable how much of a good deal you can get on used items. There's no freakin' way I'd want to pay for any of these things full price anyway. I feel like if you're also friendly (SMILE!) and willing to work with the seller, they'll be more likely to cut you a deal. I am so pleased with the way my office closet is looking. :D
Foody adventure: My parents went apple picking yesterday with my uncle. And now about 20 apples (maybe more?) are sitting in my refrigerator. While I can eat them plain, I think apples would be more interesting in dessert form, don't you? I decided on Country Apple Dumplings because I had the supplies on hand already. I ate two to make sure that they tasted yummy and yep, they do. I'll have to share with my family so I don't end up eating the rest!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Fall-To Layout #163

Ahhh, teleworking day.

Good news: I got a lot of work done today and I helped my boss finish a report that we've been working on for a while.

Bad news: I definitely eat a lot more when I'm working from home. When I'm at the office, the only food that I have available is what I bring from home, but then when I'm at home, there's so much more food around within reach. Sigh. I even caved and opened the third bag of Halloween candy that I bought recently. Ugh, I just couldn't help myself. I'll try not to buy more candy until later next week.

Those scientists that worked on getting seedless watermelons...why can't they work on making vegetables taste like chocolate? Wouldn't that be a more practical project to work on?

Family: My parents and uncle that's visiting from Taiwan went apple picking today and dropped by to share some of the apples. This is my uncle's first time checking out the house. He finished the tour and said "Well, there's definitely room in here for another person. You can get married now." o_0 Uhhhhhh, what? I wasn't offended by his comment, just surprised and amused.

House update: Speaking of the new place, what I like about it is that there are already some holes in the walls where the previous owners had poke in to hang their artwork. I consider them suggestions for where I can hang my stuff. Tonight, I hung up the $2 framed artwork that I found at a yard sale last week and also a frame collage that Meg gave me as a graduation present from undergrad.

Card: Here's my take on Fall-To Layout #163. I debated between an embossed background and using a background stamp. I went with a background stamp, since I used an embossing folder yesterday. I wanted the image to add texture to the card, but I didn't want it to be the focus, so I went with a Distress Ink instead of a chalk ink. I wanted the card to be a little on the masculine side so I chose some cooler colors. I think I'm on a button kick.
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Antique Linen
Stamps: Studio G (sentiment), Hero Arts- Cling Classic Fabric Design (background)
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Fiskars Apron Lace border punch
Button: From Tuesday Morning
Other: Black Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Butterfly Card

I had the intention of participating in a sketch challenge tonight, but I got further along and realized that it just wasn't going to work because I didn't account for some extra space that was needed for one of the elements. Instead of doing a landscape card, it turned out to be a portrait card. I used my new Aqua Painter to color in the butterfly with the Blackbird, Chipped Sapphire, and Broken China inks. Next time, I'll use some watercolor paper so that the paper doesn't warp so much. Good thing I was able to unwarp the white cardstock piece by zapping it with a heat gun.

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird and Chestnut Roan. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Chipped Sapphire, Broken China. StazOn in Jet Black.
Stamps: K&Company- AB Lotus Greeting Stamps (sentiment), American Crafts- Herbs (smaller butterfly), Stampin' Up- Stipple Butterfly
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper
Embossing Folder: Cuttlebug (Swiss Dots)
Button: From Tuesday Morning

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

One-Layer Wednesday #69

Monday night spin class story: I forgot to tell this story from Monday's spin class. One of the ladies that took the bike two seats away from me was singgging during class. I found this amusing. The music was blasting, so you couldn't hear her that much. At the end of class, the guy that had the bike in front of her turned around and asked "So, were you the one that was singing?" She smiled and looked maybe embarrassed..."What? Did I motivate you?" I had to laugh on the inside. I think he, too, was amused with her singing.

At the office: We had the first interview today for a new position at work. I appreciated that she did her research on the organization before coming in and seemed personable. While I liked her, I dunno if I really like the idea of having a new office roommate. I've had 2 already and was totally fine with them, but now I've gotten used to having the space to myself. Do I really gotta share?

Card: The One-Layer Wednesday challenge this week (#69) focused on stripes. I did a lot of masking in this card to a) create the label shape and b) the stripes. Post-It notes were my friend in this project. I added the gems as a finishing touch to make sure that the butterflies didn't get lost in the stripes.

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Ice Blue, French Blue, Orchid Pastel, Lavender, Rose Pastel, Blackbird. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Peeled Paint.
Stamps: Me & My Big Ideas- Sassy Icons (flourish), Studio G (sentiment)
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Martha Stewart- Classic Butterfly
Die: Spellbinders Nestabilities Labels 8
Other: Black Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chevron CARDS Magazine Challenge

I posted my calendar cards on my personal Facebook and actually got a request for the Hedwig January card from a girl that I went to middle and high school with. Woot.

Janice the spin instructor gave out some very smart advice on Halloween candy.
a. If you've already bought Halloween candy, keep the bags sealed. Do not open them.
b. Buy candy you hate.

Too bad I already failed at both of the above...major FAIL. I bought a bag of Twix, Milky Way, and Snickers, and the only one that's still sealed is the Snickers bag. Not because I don't like Snickers, but just because I'm trying to pretend that I have some self control.

Oh, but did you notice that I did go to spin class? Heh. See? I do have balance in my life. I also skipped out on coworker goodbye cake because the party was happening during a conference call. I dunno if I would have eaten much of it anyway because it wasn't chocolate cake, but some vanilla strawberry cake. Meh, not as exciting.

The CARDS Magazine challenge this week was to incorporate a chevron pattern into the card. Uh oh. After looking through several paper packs that I had, I couldn't find a single piece of paper that had this pattern on it. Maybe I didn't look hard enough, but I figured I could make my own chevron pattern by cutting up pieces of paper and adhering them together to create the pattern. Then I had a major debate on which color of Thickers I should use. I started out with brown and then I went to green and then I went back to brown and stuck with it. Tough decisions...
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Chestnut Roan
Stamps: Hero Arts- Cling Dots (background)
Paper: American Crafts- Metropolitan
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Recollections mini heart punch
Stickers: American Crafts Felt Thickers in Playroom
Button: From Tuesday Morning
White Gel Pen: Inkssentials

Monday, October 17, 2011

Co-worker Request: Calendar Cards

I finished the set of calendar cards this morning before work so that I could give them to my co-worker. Yep, I'm THAT dedicated. I tried to do a video tonight with a picture slideshow and voiceover, but that was just taking too much time so I'm giving up for now. Sleep is too important. Fortunately, I found this nifty tool on Picasa where you can create collages, so I figured that'd do the trick. You'll have to click on the image below to see the detail.While I was trying to figure out the video situation, I had a potato soup going on in the crock pot and nothing says comfort food like the smell of bacon and onions in the air.

Song of the day: "Without You"- David Guetta ft. Usher. Heard it at spin class tonight.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Dumpling Party

All the walking that we did on FRI and SAT tuckered us out, so there was not much walking today. Actually there was definitely more sitting and chatting. Mom was nice enough to buy some dumpling supplies so we could make and eat some. I did a similar thing for my birthday when I was in grade school, but my skillzzz have definitely improved since then. Mom was also impressed with the dumplings that Robyn and Suzie made. The best part of the event was obviously eating them, as evidenced by the huge smiles in the picture on the right. There were definitely leftovers for everyone to take home, so in true Tina's Family Fashion, you don't leave my parents' house without something to eat. (Meg had a bunch of things to do, so she couldn't make it to the party.)

After we were filled with dumplings, the 3 of us went to A.C. Moore...Robyn to get some yarn for her catnip mice and me to get some star rhinestones for my Christmas tree cards. We are planning to do a craft show together in November so it's time to get ready! I was so excited to see My Mind's Eye 6x6 pads there, but I resisted and ran away before I could buy all of them. Behold my self control. Suzie came along for the ride. After the craft store we went back to my parents' house to hang out until Suzie had to catch her train.

I went to my uncle's house for dinner tonight...of course, more eating. At least I did all the walking these past few days to balance everything out!

I'll have to do some investigating on how I can do a slideshow with pictures so that I can share the set of calendar cards I made for my co-worker. I have one more to finish up tomorrow and then I'll have a complete set. Too bad I didn't have more time to film a video, but at least I took pictures! Stay tuned.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Zoo Visit and Light the Night

Today, we did a lot of walking. Yesterday, I did a lot of walking. Do you see a theme?

Well, let me back up.

My friend Suzie is here visiting from New York. Suzie came here last year around the same time. The two of us met up with Meg and Robyn downtown yesterday and walked around the American Indian Museum, sat at Potbelly for a while catching up and then walked around the Botanical Gardens.

Today, Suzie and I started out at a block-wide yard sale event called Attic in the Street. Suzie found a sweater for a friend's kid ($1) and a unique plate ($1). I found a set of measuring cups ($0.50) and a piece of artwork to hang in my place ($2). As much fun as the event was, the parking situation was atrocious. There were cars parked on both sides of the street and then there were cars trying to go in both directions. This was very challenging given the crowd and made even more complicated when a huge delivery truck was in the way. Suzie and I sat there for a while and people were getting really frustrated. Hey, I have places to go too! You think I'm sitting here because I love traffic and not moving. Sheesh. Oh well. The goodies we got were worth the trouble!

Next we met up with Robyn and headed to the National Zoo, where we walked around for 4 HOURS. I thought this was amusing considering I was concerned last night that we wouldn't have things to do between the Zoo and dinner time. We were fortunate that many animals were out and about (panda, lions, bears, elephants, etc.).

After the Zoo, we met up with Meg and had dinner at Red Hot and Blue, a barbecue place. Yum! This was the same place that catered the office summer picnic so I knew the food was going to be awesome. Then the 4 of us went down to the National Mall to meet up with Robyn's friend Maria for Light the Night. It was amazing to see all the people holding lit balloons against the monuments and night sky. After the 2.5 mile walk, we went to a restaurant for drinks and dessert (apple pie, peach cobbler, and vanilla pound cake).

Yep, it's been a good day. :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

One-Layer Wednesday #68

Here's my take on this week's One-Layer Wednesday challenge: "Use one or more triangles on your card. These can be definite triangle shapes or implied in the design by arrangement or the shape of the card." I immediately associated triangle with a Christmas tree, so I decided to take out a Christmas stamp set for this card. I started out with stamping the sentiment at the bottom and then masking off the left and right sides of the tree and stamped the ferns with green ink. I added on the star at the top and drew in the tree stump with a marker as a finishing touch. Quickest card ever!

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Warm Green, Yellow Ochre, Warm Red
Stamps: SEI- Winter Song (ferns), The Paper Company Studio- Christmas Expressions (sentiment), Martha Stewart- Toy Transportation (star)
Other: Brown Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tuesday Trigger: Finesse the Dress

Funny RJ story: I was in the process of emptying my dishwasher last night. I opened a cabinet to put away my cutting boards and left it open. I turned around to put some other dishes away and then turned back to the first cabinet to close it. I finished putting away the other dishes and then thought "Hmm, I wonder where RJ is. He was just here. That's weird." I went into the living and dining room area. Not there. That's so weird. Then I hear a faint thump thump noise. Ah ha. I opened the cabinet where I put the cutting boards, and RJ walked out. Oops. This has shades of the time that I closed my closet with my cat in it back in high school. He started making a commotion in there that my mom, on the other side of the wall, wondered why I was making so much noise. Then later in the day, she wondered where Oliver was. She found him in the closet sleeping. He probably wore himself out from all the banging around.

At the office: I got my flu shot today. The office was offering them for free. While filling out my paperwork, I automatically started writing my parents' address. Sigh, old habits. I also got many compliments on the dress that I bought at Target yesterday. I wanted to blurt out that I got it on clearance for $13. ::evil laugh:: Style doesn't have to be expensive, right?

Card: Here's my take on this week's Tuesday Trigger challenge: Finesse the Dress. I wanted to incorporate the teal and grey colors into the card. For the background grey piece, I used the faux letterpress technique that I saw on the Hero Arts blog a few days ago. I love how that piece added some texture to the card, both with the raised dots and also the splotchy ink (since I used the a Distress Ink pad). Then I wanted to address the swirly design on the dress by heat embossing a swirly floral image with gold embossing powder. The sentiment, butterfly, and gems were added as a finishing touch.
Card Specs:
Embossing powder: Personal Stamp Exchange- Detail Gold
Embossing ink: VersaMark
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Weathered Wood.
Stamps: Hero Arts- Thinking of You Messages (sentiment), Inkadinkado- Floral
Embossing Folder: Cuttlebug (Swiss Dots)
Paper: American Crafts- Merrymint
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Fiskars Scalloped Sentiment border punch, Martha Stewart- Classic Butterfly

Song of the day: "I Wanna Be Rich"- Calloway. Heard it at spin class tonight.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Tuesday Trigger: Treat Yourself!

Card: Here's my take on this week's Tuesday Trigger: Treat Yourself! I was inspired by the layers and the different shades of brown. I dug out several different sheets of brown/tan patterned paper and cardstock and used 3 different border punches to create the strips. I was going to do a die cut label and put it in the center of the card, but then I realized that that would take away from the layered strip effect. Then I realized that I had some space up at the top for the sentiment. It looked a little lost up there, so I added a pop of color to draw the eye back up to the sentiment.
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird
Stamps: Hero Arts- Thinking of You Messages (sentiment)
Paper: American Crafts- Botanique, Recollections, My Mind's Eye- Stella and Rose
Punch: Fiskars Apron Lace Border Punch, Fiskars Scalloped Sentiment border punch, Martha Stewart Doily Lace border punch, We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper, Recollections mini heart punch

Song of the day: "Happy"- Leona Lewis.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fall-To Layout #161

This is the second post of the day, folks.

While I was in Salt Lake City, my parents were nice enough to stop by the house a few times to check on the house, feed RJ the cat, and pick up my mail from the mailbox. When I was going through my mail today, I saw that I got an anniversary card from the office. My 3rd year anniversary is in October, and the Executive Director sends out cards to the staff on their anniversary. Amusing thing: I was asked to make a set of birthday and anniversary cards for the office, but this card was not one that I made. Fist-pump worthy thing: he wrote a note at the bottom, "Thanks for all you do and for your leadership on so many association initiatives." Yay, it's nice to get that acknowledgment from the Big Boss. :)

Have you seen this video on YouTube about the kid who was surprised by her parents with a trip to Disneyland? I spontaneously burst into tears when I saw this video, and I don't even know why. I was so happy for her I guess. Credit: Paige Evans.

Here's my take on Fall-To Layout #161. Honestly, I was expecting this card to be more springy because I reached for the American Crafts Botanique items first, but then things turned fall-y when I was picking out an image stamp. Check out those bow tying skillz. :)
Card Specs:
Embossing powder: Stampendous! in white
Embossing ink: VersaMark
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blush Rose. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Vintage Photo.
Stamps: Hero Arts- Cling Dots (background), American Crafts- Herbs (sentiment), Inkadinkado- Autumn Foliage (leaf)
Paper: American Crafts Botanique
Punch: EK Success Circle punch (1 3/8 inch)
Other: Brown Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Hooray, 3 day weekend ahead!!

Salt Lake City, Day 2

First post of the day. I'll make a card later tonight for the Fall-To Layout challenge.

The Travel Gods were clearly not with me yesterday. My trip home might as well have been called the Odyssey. At least the meeting that I came to Salt Lake City for went well in the morning. I ended up hanging out on the 18th floor of the hotel with my boss and coworker, catching up on emails and enjoying the beautiful view. There was already snow on the mountain top! I also took a picture of my fortune cookie fortune from yesterday afternoon. I showed it to my boss as a hint. Fortunately, she has a sense of humor and laughed. "I'm working on it, Tina."
We left the hotel around 3 PM to go to the airport yesterday, and I didn't get home until around 2:15 AM today. We all got on the airplane, and I knew that something was wrong when it was 15 minutes past when we were supposed to have left. Crap. The pilot came on the PA system to inform us that the flight had not been cleared yet. There was some communication problem between the FAA and all Delta flights. We ended up leaving an hour later than we were supposed to. That really messed up my travel plans from the airport to the house. My coworker was going to drop me off at the Metro, but because of the delay, all the Metro stations had closed! Plan B was to get a cab to the Metro station that I parked my car, but then the cab drivers in DC didn't seem to know where the Metro station was. My coworker, probably putting on her "mommy hat", told me that it would make her feel better to drive me to my Metro station. I need to make sure to give her some flowers on Tuesday when we're all back in the office. She really saved me and made sure that I got home safely.

Ahhhh. Home Sweet Home.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Salt Lake City, Day 1

While it was a little bit of a struggle to wake up at 5 AM this morning, I was thankful for the grogginess because it allowed me to sleep through most of my flight coming to Denver. There was a child crying in the row behind me through the full 3 hour flight. You’d think he would have tired himself out, but no. Alas, that was not the case. With the help of a nice nap and my MP3 player, I was about to tune him out. Poor little guy.

I watched part of the Today Show this morning on the plane, and I was amused by their segment on Yard Sales. Yep, I’m all about “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.” The slow cooker that I got a few weeks ago is a good example of that. The lady sitting next to me was trying to figure out how to change the channel on the display and so she started pushing the buttons on the armrest that we shared. My display started changing and the Today Show went bye-bye. Whoops. I turned to her and told her that she could change the channels on her display with the left armrest and then we both laughed.

While waiting at the Denver airport for my layover, I was sitting writing up this blog post and I noticed something moving out of the corner of my eye. There were 3 sparrows paroling the waiting area, pecking around. Well, they certainly made themselves at home. I wonder if they’ll ever be able to leave the building and get back out to nature. Maybe they’d prefer to be in the airport so they always have access to food. I was also watching this little girl do handstands in the waiting area. Never a dull moment at the airport.

Yesterday, I was looking up some crafty deals and I noticed that had a local pick-up option for shipping. This was perfect since the pick-up site was not too far from my meeting site. Suh-sweet! Here are the goodies that I got (I’ll have to do a video on them when I get home): Cosmo Cricket Glubers, American Crafts Botanique collection, and a 6x6 pad from My Mind’s Eye. The taxi cab driver was nice enough to make a pit stop to pick up my order before taking me to the hotel. I was a little irked that there was only one person at the register. I didn’t like keeping the driver waiting, so it would have been nice if they found someone else to give me my order.

For dinner, I went with work people to a place called Squatters. I had a drink called Strawberry Fields and a BBQ pork sandwich (although that was a tough choice because there were so many good things on the menu).

Busy day ahead with an all-day meeting and then my odyssey back home.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Onward to...

Salt Lake City for a work trip. I've never been there before so this should be interesting.

On an unrelated topic, I'm participating in a Light the Night event next weekend with my friends and to encourage some fundraising, I took a bunch of my homemade cards and put them in the office kitchen with my piggy bank to see if any of my co-workers would be willing to donate a dollar or two. The cards are there as a thank you gift. I ended up with $14 at the end of the day, which isn't too bad considering most of my office is already in Salt Lake City. I'm going to try again next week when more people are here.

Oh, my piggy bank? Yes, it's a legit piggy bank. It's this one from Little Tikes.


Oh, of course I'm bad ass. Why would you think otherwise? Ha ha.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Wee Memories Challenge #70

Don't underestimate the power of a good hair day. This is coming from someone that usually wears her hair in a pony tail. I actually took the time and effort to use conditioner, a hair straightener, and hair spray this morning and wow, it really does make a difference.

At the office today, I was asked to lead a conference call and to make sure I covered everything I was supposed to cover, I ended up writing a script for myself. Meh, who's really going to know the difference, right? And if they do, at least I was prepared!

Here's my take on Wee Memories Challenge #70:"This week's theme is all about your favorites whether it be embossing, CAS, One Layer, etc. Any of your favorite techniques you can use on your creations!" I had to think for a minute, "What IS my favorite technique?" Errr. Well, I like to stamp with color and use my punches/dies, and add faux stitching as a final touch. I started out with a piece of white cardstock and masked off a strip at the top. Then I used Prussian Blue chalk ink, stamped it on some scrap paper and then stamped it again on the white cardstock. This left a lighter impression. Then I took off the mask and scored the top and bottom of the strip. Then came the embellishments, punch outs, and faux stitching. Ta-da!
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird and Prussian Blue
Stamps: Hero Arts- Cling Classic Fabric Design (background), Fiskars- Sentiments
Punch: Recollections mini flower punch
Flowers: Prima
Brad: Recollections- Pearl Brads
Pearl: Queen & Co.- Pearl
White Gel Pen: Inkssentials

Sunday, October 2, 2011

CPS #238

I HAD to get out of the house today. I was feeling cooped up since I haven't really been anywhere except for grocery shopping the last few days. I made a point to take care of a bunch of things all in one trip.
  • Got gasoline for the car at 3.37/gal. Is it sad to think that I think this is cheap?
  • Returned a book at the library.
  • Went to parents' house to return a laundry basket and say hi to Ginger. Conveniently, they had just gotten back from Costco, so I left with some cinnamon raisin bagels.
  • Dropped off some items at the local Goodwill.
  • Went to Michaels to get some cardstock that was on sale. I saw there was a 5/$1 sign on patterned paper, so I picked out 10 sheets. Did you know that Recollections makes mini punches? I didn't until I went over to the $1 section. I picked out 3. When I was checking out, the patterned paper was coming out to $0.59 each! Ack, what?! I asked the lady about it and she went over to the paper aisle to double check. Yep, there was a sign there that wasn't supposed to be there. She gave me the discount anyway. I was really shocked because this lady always has a sourpuss facial expression when I see her. I didn't expect her to be so generous.
  • Went to Bed Bath and Beyond. I've been meaning to get an air mattress for the new place for visitors to use and I got a great deal on an AeroBed. Originally $59.99. Clearance price $49.99. Using a 20% coupon brought it down to $39.99. Then I had some money left over on a gift card so the final price was $26.92. Bed Bath and Beyond was also doing a promotion where if you bought an AeroBed product, you'd get a $10.00 gift certificate! Woot! :) I blew it up in the living room and took a test nap on it this afternoon. RJ came over in the middle of the nap to cuddle. Awww.
Here's my take on CPS #238. I thought it was really convenient that this was a square card because I had messed up on a card earlier this evening, and I could cut the part that I messed up and use the remainder for this card's base. I also had some scrap navy cardstock and orange scrapbook paper. Perfect! Then it was time to select a stamp. I was looking for my robot stamp set. I went digging into my clear stamp box and ended up pouring out the whole box just so that I could find it. You'd think it'd be easier for me just to pick out another stamp set, but I was determined to find it! I did, and now my clear stamp container looks neater. I did some paper piecing and coloring with markers. I love how the robot looks so cheerful...cheese!
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird, Prussian Blue.
Stamps: Studio G (alphabet), Recollections- Robots (everything else)
Paper: Recollections- Orange Small Dots
Other: American Crafts Stamp Marker in Navy and Red