Riley's sending sunshine! :)

Hi there!  Happy Tuesday :)
{lots of pictures to share today 
so the final product is here, at the top!}

Today's post is for both the new Riley and Company challenge and the Crafters of Faith - so if you happen to be stopping by for either, they are one in the same! :)

The new Riley and Company challenge is up and running and the hostess this week is ME! :)  Since the end of April represents Earth Day and many 'greener' issues concerning our beautiful planet, and since I'm a huge fan of recycling - both IRL and craft-wise, I thought it would be nice to use the recycling theme with our cards this week.  So "Let's Recycle!"  Anything from wrapping paper to newspaper, cereal boxes, mesh bags, ropes and tags - the sky is the limit!  

What did I recycle this week?  A canvas frame!  I bought it in the $1 bin at a particular store with a big bulls-eye on it (smile!) but my son wasn't so interested in painting it.  So I look at it again and thought "cool, let me just re-purpose it!"  I gave it a good 'ol slather of paint - love the mixed media behind this project! 

And in order to keep up with April's theme for the Crafters of Faith to use "April Showers bring May Flowers", I inked up/colored Rainy Day Riley and added a matching flower and sentiment to the bottom from an embellishment sticker pack, sand a plethora of buttons, of course :)  My son absolutely ADORES Riley and said "So cool!" when he saw the finished project and asked if he could hang it on his wall :)  I am thinking of making him a set of 4 to keep as a shadowbox set - one Riley for each season! (we have Spring covered, lol!)


Be sure to link up your cards to the Riley and Company challenge blog using the "Let's Recycle" theme.  If you use a gallery to upload your cards, please use the keyword Riley0913.  AND, be sure to stop in and see what the Riley DT have created this week and our lovely Crafters of Faith as well - you can find them in my sidebar.  

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!


Calendar Girls ~ New Beginnings :)

 Good Morning!
It's the 28th of the month and that means the Calendar Girls group
 post our cards with a theme chosen by the hostess :)
 This month, our hostess is the effervescent Carol with a beautiful April theme.   I have so many cards with the same theme of flowers/recycling due around the same time so my thoughts went into a different direction 
with the theme "new beginnings" :)  This year, I've been working 
towards my personal goal to use the stamps that I've had in my collection
(for a long, long time!) and use the stamps that have been gifted to me.  Like this one today!  So my new beginnings isn't a wedding or a new baby, but rather the beginning of using what's new in my stamp collection.  I added the recycled items as a checked ribbon (from an old holiday ornament and a wooden button that I've had saved for a special card.

Here is Carol's theme:

As the saying goes April showers bring May flowers....

To me April showers clean the earth of its worn out snow, dust and dirt along with nurturing new seeds and life to our surroundings (gardens, yards, trees, etc.). It also, to me signals new beginnings....so for this month I would like for you to create a card that does just that...it could be a wedding card, a baby card, even a New Years card...OR it could be a card that uses something worn out or pre-used and develop a new use for it...ex: mesh bag from fruit...used once to hold fruit: new beginning...used on the card...repurposed.. I know all of you are very talented crafters and I can hardly wait to see what you come up with...

Have fun with this challenge...     ((hugs)) Carol 

And here's my contribution!

I used the stamp from Whipper Snapper (a generous and cherished gift from Barb!) It's Raggedy Anne - colored with prismacolor markers and added to a simple card base of Kraft, pacific point and red to keep the red/blue theme that the image beckons.  I left the inside blank for now as I need to write a little note inside :)

Be sure to stop on over to the other Calendar Girls blogs to see what they've created with this theme!  

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!

Entering into:  SimonsaysStamp- Anything Goes
QKRStampede - Favorite things (dolly, ribbon, button)
Craftyribbons Challenge - Ribbon


We go together ....

like Salt 'n Pepper :)

20 years ago today, almost at this hour, I married my husband - the exact other half of me.  As I look back on this blessed day and reflect on our beautiful wedding day - I smile.  I smile because I know that on that day and each one since, we have had a life together that asks for nothing less than what it's been up to now.  A life of faith, 4 beautiful children, and a bond that after 29 years together {I think we had the world's longest dating/engagement} :) is still as strong today as it was then, if not stronger ~ although I do jokingly tell my husband he can stop taking the "in sickness and in health" part so literally :)
He's truly a rare gem of a man ~ with so much beauty in his soul, it's almost hard to imagine the depths of his love and I know that I am absolutely, unequivocally blessed.

Might I add, he's also one funny man, too.  Which comes in handy when you are married to a 'Dr. Phil' ~ he knows when that little bit of humor will unravel my attempt at being tough and unbreakable ;)   Many friends when we met that we could not be more different ~ like salt 'n pepper!   Naturally, I was inspired to create a quirky little card for my hubby with the sense of humor and amazing burst of love :)  

Side view of the card
Here is the card inside, left blank :)

I followed the TAWS challenge to use a color photo for inspiration - lots of orange and blue (awesome Miami colors, too!) I inked up the stamps and sentiment from the TAWS Kitchen Gadgets 2 stamp set.  This card was a blast to put together.  I love creating cards with 1. lots of bursts of color and 2. using different elements for embellishments ... I'm such a tactile crafter and just love touching and rearranging all the things to go on the card.  It somehow ends up looking a little collage-y in the end, but it's such fun!  
I used up some Basic Grey Lauderdale papers from a mat stack

Thanks for stopping by today! 
I'll be entering this card into the TAWS Be Inspired #26
 challenge here!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!


I love Recycling! :)

Happy Earth Day!!

What a beautiful day this is to celebrate the gift of our Earth! 
 I love recycling and the idea of it ~ a happier, greener, more beautiful earth!  And, in a family the size of ours, it's often a necessity ;)  It's not uncommon to take the empty oatmeal container and turn it into a drum for a school project - or the shoe box becomming a nature habitat for Science class :)  I was so proud of my son for getting a blue ribbon in the Science Fair for his recycled project of taking an old mason jar and painting it, cushioning the top with foam and filling with thread upon thread with pins in the cushion top as a sewing 'kit' for his grandma.  She got quite a kick out of it :)
We're always saving 'this or that' and the list is HUGE!

Me?  I'm all about saving ribbons, buttons, tags, twine and more - you never know when you'll need them for a small project! Like crafting!
I love, love using cardboard as a embellishment - there is something about the corrugated feel to it that makes it fun to use. So when creating this card for Earth Day, I went straight for my favorite color combo:  Green, blue and brown!  I used a Bugaboo image, hug a tree, and added 3 recycled items to this card:  Cardboard, a button from an old kids dress, and bakers twine from a package.  Ta-da! 

In order to keep up with my personal LINY card challenge(use every stamp, including those gifted to me), I added a Miracles sentiment to the inside.  I've had this beautiful stamp for a few years now and although I'm humbly embarrassed that I can't remember who gifted it to me, I appreciate it! This card wouldn't have been complete without it :)  I propped up the tree on 3D dots to give it extra dimension - this card is SUPER thick, esp from the side :)

Be good to your Earth! Not just today, but every day :)
Let's keep the oceans clean, the forests intact, the vast farmlands healthy and growing.  

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!

"Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours." (1 Chronicles 29:11)

Entered into:  The Kraft Journal: Recycling
Digi Darla - Recycle
CraftyBoots - Recycle
JoannaSheen - Recycle
CraftyBloggers Network - Anything Goes


Riley's all about Spring!

Happy day, everyone!

  It's always fun when a new Riley and Company challenge is beginning ~ just like Spring for so many of you :)  This week, our challenge is brought to us by DT member, Cindy, who asked us to create a card based on the flowers of Spring.  

For my card today, I went with a bold black colored cardstock.  Doesn't seem much like a Spring color, right?  I can't think of too many times I've actually crafted with it, other than Halloween but why not shake things up a little, hee hee!  Especially since when I crafting, I went straight for this paper pad I found at Tuesday Morning for a whoppin' .49c :)  It's filled with lots of bright colors, including the teal/green/black combo and I said to myself ... "Self!  Make it work!"  *smile!*  I inked up Daisy Chain Riley and colored it with prismacolor markers to match the colors pulled from the flowery dsp and added minimal embellishments.  

We'd love to see what you create with this new challenge ~ you can link up your cards on the Riley and Company blog.  And be sure to stop in and see what the DT have created using the new Spring flowers theme. 
If you use a gallery for your cards, please use the keyword Riley0813.
 Happy crafting!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!


The Dueling Darlings are in *Bloom* :)

Happy Monday, sweet friends!  
 I can't believe it's been a week since I've posted  - and even longer since I've crafted :(  I've been absolutely swamped here with the 4 kids and their schools/schedules - not to mention their End of year Chorus shows, after school activities, appointments, Taylor Swift concert and more  ::: whew! ::: 

And today is the 15th of the month and that means the Dueling Darlings post our card kits!  This month, our kit was sent to us by Tami and this month's duel chosen by Tami (for the Divas) and Darlene (for the Dazzlers) chose the theme of: Flowers!  What a beautiful theme.  Tami sent us this beautiful stamped image of a sunflower by (I think!) Delta Creative Sunflower II.  I colored it with prismacolor markers and added a bit of sunburst stickles to give it a bit more pop, and then propped it up on 3D dots.  I fussy colored this one imagining that as God created the flowers, he created each one unique and beautiful! Tami also sent a matching Bloom sentiment so I added that to the inside of the card, and carried over some of the left over dsp to the inside as well.  My eye went straight for the earthy colors of dsp and aside from the cardstock, everything is from Tami's kit.  Overall, it's a pretty simple card layout but I'm happy with how this 'sunny' card turned out! :)  This is one of those "I promise it looks better IRL" cards, LOL!


In addition to creating a card, Tami and Darlene asked us to share what our favorite flower is.  My favorite flowers are tulips!  I adore them!  I fell in love with tulips when we first moved to Germany ~ my mom planted rows of them in a garden she created.  We visited Holland one year and that was it - It was beyond replaceable as my favorite flower from them on :)  
Coincidentally, my second favorite flower is the sunflower!  We even have a field close to our home with wild sunflowers growing there and it's a gorgeous view, especially with the setting sun behind them.  I'll try to take that picture one day for you :)   Thank you, Tami, for a beautiful card kit to work with.  I hope I did it justice, and really enjoyed working with the Sunflower image and your lovely card kit!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!

Entered into: Simon says stamp: Spring Flowers


I hope you dance :)

Good Morning!  I hope your weekend was a blessed, wonderful one :)  

I'm happily continuing onward with my "Use Every Stamp" Challenge :)  What I usually do is grab a few SU! sets, mostly at random, and create :)  Like this card!  It was next in line of the "UES" pile and oh how it makes me smile at remembering my own daughters twirling around in tutos and ballet slippers.  I've used this stamp set once before but it was so nice to ink it up!

I found this wonderful sketch and just knew it was the one I wanted to use :)  I inked up the SU! Dance Sketches and fussy colored the image 
as there aren't really clear, crisp line to follow and I wanted to have
 the same link with the markers.  The inside is using one of the 
sentiments that come with the set and such beautiful words ~ hopefully we'll always have a little dance in every day!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!

Entered into:  Sketch and Stash Challenge - Sketch
Cutie Pie Challenge #41 - Favorite Films - The Black Swan
Kaboodle Doodle - Any Shade of Pink (Pixie Pink)


Howdy, Pard'ner!

Happy Weekend, all!
It's a whole lot rainy and yucky here in Miami, 
but onward we roll with the kid's weekend activities ;)

And I'm still moving along with my personal challenge this year
to "Use Every Stamp" as per the MCC challenge.
It's almost my BIL's birthday and I wanted to make a card
to reflect him, which is hard, since he does 'one of each!' 
He's raised and trained quarter horses for many years now, as well as did his fair share of rodeoing in the past :)  So I thought inking up my Bronc Buster stamp set would be fitting - keeping it pretty basic as he won't mind - LOL! 
As a confirmed batchelor (unlike his brother - my dh - with 4 kids!), he'll be tickled to see a card from his "olden days" :)   

Both images are stamped in Early Expresso ink from SU!
as well as the dsp - Western Sky from my hoarded stashed pile :)
I kept the embellishments to the bare minimum as I didn't want to 
add any flowers or over embellish it.  I added some hemp cord and hemp ribbon to give it that 'western' feel.  

And that's about it from me today!
Have a great weekend, friends!
Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!


The Boo-Boo card ...

Good morning, sweet friends!  

Yes, I made a boo-boo!  And even though I'm one of the clumsiest people ever, the boo-boo is actually my card! :)   

You know those moments when you are gettin' your craft on and you make a silly mistake?   Sometimes I catch myself looking at the 'error' and think "uh-oh, time to start over." But the real challenge is looking at it again - rethink it and craft onward :) 

That's exactly what happened to me when I inked up my Sweet 'N Sassy stamp set "Poppies and Greetings", a set I've had for forever-and-ever.  I inked up this darling stamp, and placed it on the paper, right where it was supposed to be - easy peasy!  Until I lifted it back up and realized a splotch of ink went with it!  Doh!

Rather than just start over, I challenged myself to a little creativity and just restamped the image again, cut out one of the flowers and added it over the splooch :) 

Take a peek at the boo-boo card, all mended and blended and healed up with love and care....

I started with the boo-boo ........ 

and ended with this! 

Here is the inside of my card - left blank for now :)

I added an extra blossom and an extra stem, propped it up for more dimension and then gave it a sprinkling of yellow stickles.
I'm so pleased with how this card turned out and how cheerful it feels, which is super since it started out as a boo-boo! :)

I would love to hear your boo-boos that you've made and how you turned them into something wonderful!  As always, thanks for stopping in today!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!



Riley Challenge: Int'l Children's Book Day :)

Hi, friends!  Just a little while ago, I tucked little man in after reading a few chapters of the book "we" are currently on *smile* :)  He cherishes the nightly 'mommy and me' time we have, snuggled up in his little bed, reading page after page of his current book.  It's truly bliss :)   

And today - April 2nd - happens to be Hans Christian Andersen's birthday and International Children's Book Day!  So Riley and Company stamps bi-weekly challenge is all about children's books, brought to us by the ever fabulous, Frances!  The theme to create with your Riley stamps this challenge:
Create a card/project using a children's book as your inspiration.   LOVE LOVE this challenge!

For my card today, I thought a little outside the box in order to create a card that I cherished when I was little, and in turn, all 4 of our kids have had this as a favorite, too.  Perhaps you've read - or own your copy of - The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams.  I remember the first time I read it to my children, I had teary eyes and their little faces looked up with such despair.  Fear not, it does have a happy ending:) Oh how I adore that book so much!

Here's the inside of my card :)
I went with a simple card design since the papers have such bold colors.  I colored Riley and his rabbit friend, Buster, with prismacolor markers and left the inside blank for now. 

Want to play along????

If you would like to play along with us of course we would love to have you! AND - if you do, you could be in the running to win free rubber ... One lucky person per challenge will win our Logo Riley image which isn't available for purchase. You will also get the chance to display a winner's button on your blog. So get stamping Riley fans :)

To play create a card using Riley and Company images

Once you have created your card/project come back here and place a comment with a link to your card/project to this post so that we can see what you created. If you upload your card/project to SCS don't forget to include the keyword RILEY0713. We can't wait to see what you create!

Be sure  to check out the Riley and Company Design Team's cards on their blogs - you can find them in my sidebar!

And in the words of the cherished Hans Christian Andersen, I leave you this:

“Just living is not enough," said the butterfly, "one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.”― Hans Christian Andersen

Big Hugs, Bigger Blessings!

Entered into:  Twisted Tuesday- Animals and Flowers 


Mornin', Nurse Margaret!

LOL, isn't she sweet!  *chuckle!*   With my daughter, we've had our fair share of appointments lately and I can tell you - I'm glad we haven't run into any nurses like Margaret! 

Today is April Fool's Day - a day all about jokes :)  But one thing not so funny is that it's time to say goodbye to Bugaboo as a Guest Designer :(   Thank you, Bugaboo, for the opportunity to work with your images and team - it was great fun!

Since today is all about jokes, I thought I'd showcase this hilarious Nurse Margaret and her thoughts on joking ~ apparently, none!  But don't worry - you'll see her again.  May is National Nurse's Month - maybe she'll be happier by then, hee hee!

Spring Break is over here and it's back to school.
I already miss the babies but it will be good to get them back on some sort of schedule - and me, too! 
Have a fabulously fun day!

Big hugs, Bigger Blessings!