Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Another tag done!

Here's my version of Tim Holtz's 12 Days of Christmas - Day 3. I didn't have the right size fragment so I substituted a diecut piece of acrylic and edged it with a gold Krylon pen. However, I started edging it while the glossy accents was still went so it was getting my Krylon pen all gummy so I started scraping the pen against the edge of the acrylic and it made it look more like a frame. I like it! Except for the "Believe" tag, the charms are from I love layering that swirl charm!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Take time to play...

It’s a busy, busy week prepping for two classes this week, Raquel’s birthday, a Christmas party, a birthday crop, and at some point this week, we need to get a Christmas tree! It sure doesn’t sound like there’s much time to do any playing in the craft room with so much on the "to do" list.

But just watching Tim Holtz’s blog, makes you want to create! My friend, Leah, was feeling the same way and suggested that we have a "schedule" to get it all done. She has a busy schedule too because her family Christmas party is this weekend. So, even though she’s on the East Coast and I’m on the West Coast, we have decided to take an hour (or two) a day to coordinate some crafting together via Skype.

Today was our first day, and with both of us so busy, it was hard to coordinate being ready at the same time, not to mention the time difference, but we finally played around 10:30ish this morning. We had so much fun making our version of Tim’s Day 1 tag.

Here’s mine.

About an hour or so after we logged off Skype, Leah texted me that she had fun and can’t wait until tomorrow. I texted her back and said let’s not wait! Let’s do it again later today! So, we did and here is my version of Tim’s Day 2 tag.

By the way, in addition to crafting today, I got lots of things checked off my "to do" list too. When Jose came home, he even said "Wow, the house is clean!"

I can hardly wait to play again tomorrow!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

More playing with Glimmer Mists

Last night, I was thinking I would add some snow to a page in my Christmas album but I couldn't remember the exact recipe. I know I saved it somewhere, but didn't want to spend the time to look for it, so instead I thought I would go from memory. Then I remembered that I didn't have one of the ingredients (white UTEE). So, I thought, hmmm...I wonder if I could make something that resembles snow using UTEE and glimmer mists (because those glimmer mists were still sitting on my table from playing the night before).

Well, what I made did not look anything like snow unless you count the white flurry of a mess that I created all over my table (and my pants...and the floor...) with the UTEE! However, the mess that remained on the paper was looking pretty awesome even though it didn't look like snow! So, I added some of the other glimmer mist colors that were sitting on my table. I was really liking the results of this big mess (and I know how to contain it next time). The little bit of stuff that stayed on my paper had so much texture and depth and color, I thought that it would make a great ATC background since it was just the right size. But the problem was that the background was so pretty that I didn't want to cover it with anything. Aha! I'll put one of Tim Holtz's keys on it! and when I did, well, it just screamed "Leah" ! AND, I happen to owe Leah an ATC (and she's probably one of the few people I know that I would actually be willing to give this up to!) So Leah, here is your ATC, I hope you like it. If you'd rather have something different, just let me know because Kathryn thinks I should keep this one!

So here it is, my nonsnow glimmer mist mess (along with more experimenting on a Bazzill chip. Oh, and before I went to bed last night (past midnight of course), I checked Tim Holtz's blog to see what his new tag of the day would be, and guess what was on there? His snow recipe!

I love happy accidents!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Playing with Glimmer Mist

Wow, it looks like I was in Portland for a long time - like two months! But no, it's just been a while since I've updated my blog. Portland was certainly fun. I need to get busy soldering stuff before I forget how.

Today, I played with Glimmer Mists, their stencils, and of course charms from

I sprayed the tags with two colors of Glimmer Mist, put down the stencil and sprayed with a third color, heat set it and then stamped the tag with a script stamp.

The flowers are made from coffee filters that I sprayed with two colors of Glimmer Mist, heat set, scrunched and then folded the coffee filter in half, and then in half again and tore out the center. I was left with an "O" and then tore the "O" in half and made two flowers out of it (the two tags on the right). The tag on the left, I tore a little less out of the center of the coffee filter, so the flower is larger. The flower centers are glue dots covered with german glass glitter.

For the "Joy" tag, I sprayed glimmer mist on the chipboard letters, heat set, and then embossed them with clear embossing powder. While the embossing powder was still warm, I stamped into it with a script stamp inked with gold ink, and edged them with a gold Krylon pen.

The frames are transparencies that I edged with a gold Krylon pen, and added my favorite swirl charms.

It was fun! I'm going to work on a glimmer mist book cover next. Hopefully, it won't be another two months before I post again!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Portland bound...

I’m headed to Portland, OR today to make Pretty Little Things with Sally Jean. Or, since I’m in the halloween mood, maybe a few spooky little things too!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Halloween ATCs

At the birthday crop last Sunday, I brought my recipe pages to finish up for Michelle's swap. Hayley at ACharmingPlace was hostessing a Halloween ATC swap, so I also brought some halloween papers and embellishments with me. If I had time, I was going to make a few ATCs and then join Hayley's swap. I know, that's are supposed to join the swap and THEN make the ATCs, but I wanted to see if I was going to get into making Halloween ones or not before I committed to it. Well, I got two done, and I was really feeling into it! So, I went online to join the swap but it was already full! Oh well, he who hesitates...

Well, I just couldn't stop making those little ATCs, so I ended up making ten of them. And each and every one of the ATCs has a charm on it from ACharmingPlace. I colored some of the charms with black ink and there's an arrow in there that I colored a purplish color using Primary Elements. One of my favorites is the "Boo-tiful Ghosts" ATC. On the middle and right ghost, I cut this filigree charm in half, bent it a little, and turned it into a "crown" for the ghosts. For the ghost on the left, I cut the sides off this flourish charm and used it for a crown too.

Since I missed joining the swap, I've decided I am going to use the ATCs as embellishments in a Halloween book I am going to make. I even went to Scrapbook U today and bought some new halloween papers for the book. Now all I have to do is make it!

Monday, September 22, 2008

It's nice to know you're out there...

Apparently, Raquel has been watching my blog (there’s one more for your name count Raquel) and told me one day that "Joy" always comments on my blog. I told her, "Yes, Joy is a sweetheart." Whenever I go to Joy’s blog, I always leave a comment on her blog too. But the truth is, I too look at blogs and rarely comment on them. So it is really nice when someone tells me they saw "such and such" on my blog. It let’s me know someone is out there reading this thing.

Last week, one of my friends told me that she saw my dragonfly ATCs on my blog, and that one of them had that special word that she likes so I decided to make one for her too.

So tonight, I took out my Primary Elements, my transparencies, glitter and my dragonfly stamp and got ready to make those little dragonflies. Well, I went to squeeze out just a tiny little bit of the medium, but instead a WHOLE bunch came bursting out onto my craft sheet - oops! What a waste! I almost wiped it up with a papertowel to throw away, but instead decided to just throw a bunch of the primary elements into it and do a "Tim Holtz" type technique and "swooshed" a few ATC cards into the puddle on my craft sheet.

So now I have a few pretty cool backgrounds for ATCs. I just have to figure out what I am going to put onto them.

And after that, I did get these two dragonfly ATCs done for my friends that I will surprise them with...unless they come back and see this post! And I am going to send a little something to Joy too for always commenting on my blog. And for Raquel, I gave her a vegetarian lasagna.

She's Smiling!!!

While I was at the birthday crop yesterday, Raquel picked up Kathryn and took her on a photo shoot at Stanford University. If you have seen my previous attempts at trying to get Kathryn to smile for her school pictures (here and here), then you must know that I am absolutely ECSTATIC that Raquel did such a fabulous job getting pictures of Kathryn...smiling!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Drama Queen Birthday Crop

Today was a Drama Queen birthday crop for birthday girls Leilani and Michelle. Michelle loves cupcakes and Leilani loves owls so you can imagine some of the gifts they received. I’ve never seen so many different owls and cupcakes in my life!

It was such a fun day! And, I actually cropped instead of just gabbing all day!
I made a quick card for Leilani, did a bio page and 10 recipe pages for the swap (which was due today).

For my birthday crop, Michelle made me such a fabulous birthday cake. There is no way I could ever make her a cake anywhere near as nice, nor would I want to try! (I was so thankful that Veronica made her a delicious strawberry cake!) So instead, I made a vegetarian lasagna and made Michelle a faux cupcake (which was my birthday card to her). That cupcake was so fun to make and Michelle seemed to enjoy it too.

Here are some pictures I took as Michelle opened her cupcake. (You can click the picture for a larger view.)

I love this expression on Michelle's face when I told her I made it from a yogurt container.

Here's a closer look at the faux cupcake. When the lid is lifted, the birthday wishes dangles. The charms are from ACharmingPlace.

And here are the goodie bags that Michelle and Leilani gave all of us...including a new stamp that Michelle had signed by Tim Holtz just for her Drama Queens!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My "Old Man"

Since retiring, I have been making dinner nightly, trying to cut-back on fast food and eating out. But today was one of "those days" and I just didn’t want to cook. In fact, I just wanted to have a nice big strawberry margarita! Kathryn went to a Maroon 5 concert with a friend, so it would be just Jose and I for the evening. So when Jose called to say he was on his way home from work, I told him, "We’re going out, and I’m having a margarita!" He laughed and said, "I don’t know what has happened today, but ok!"

I’m so glad we went out. It was a night filled with laughter, mostly on my part, and that was before the margarita ever arrived! The reason for the laughter...the realization that "my old man" has developed "old man" tendencies! Repetitive complaining about something that bothers him, and by-golly, he’s gonna tell you about it! What bothered him at the restaurant? The lighting!

As soon as we arrived, it started, nonstop:

"It’s so dark in here.

Why is it so dark in here?

This isn’t a romantic french restaurant, it’s The Outback! There should be a little light in here!

They could at least have a candle on the table to make a little light."

The more I giggled, the more complaints he came up with. He even looked across the way from us and saw an elderly man and commented, "I’ll bet he couldn’t see the menu either! Next time we are going to Denny’s! I can see the menu at Denny’s!"

I was giggling at hearing the continuous complaints that he couldn’t read the menu. But I nearly lost it when Jose continued to complain but this time to our waiter! He even suggested a dimmer switch to the waiter! And even asked "don’t you have a flashlight?" By this time, I was no longer giggling, but just outright laughing out loud. I couldn’t believe he was actually complaining to the waiter about the lighting! Thankfully, even the waiter thought it was funny after Jose suggested a flashlight. And I about lost it completely when the waiter produced a key chain flashlight from his pocket and handed it to Jose!

It was so ridiculous and hilarious, I had to take a picture of Jose trying to read the menu (and paying the bill) by flashlight. And when I thought it couldn’t get any funnier, Jose looks at me and laughs after I took the picture and said, "And what’s so funny? You know YOU can’t read it either!" BWAAHAHAAHA! It’s true! I couldn’t read it either, but I didn’t complain or ask for a flashlight!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Art and Wine Festival

I thought I would write a little bit more about my daughter Raquel, especially since Angela told me at Stamp Club that she read my blog and thought I had two children, not three!

This year Raquel had a booth at the Santa Clara Art and Wine Festival
to promote her photography business, Life Stages Photography. She did such an awesome job. This is one of my favorite shots she took.

It was exciting to see people lining up to try on the various costumes to get their picture taken. Raquel was so organized for the event. I got these couple of pictures before my battery went dead.

Raquel sets up and takes the pictures. Jennifer (Raquel’s childhood friend) shows the customers their pictures, and if they like what they see, Jennifer collects the money. Kathryn did the computer work for the order and prints it out. Kathryn really did a great job too. She was so concentrated on her job and she kept up with the fast pace. What a great event this was.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

A Day Off...

I distinctly remember years ago when my father-in-law would make statements like, "Good, tomorrow is Saturday. My day off!" Or, maybe, "Monday is a holiday, I don’t have to work." I always thought it was strange that he would make those comments, and would think to myself, "But he’s retired...everyday is his day off!"

Well, now I know what my father-in-law meant as this is my first "holiday" since my "retirement." I used to look forward to nice, long, four-day holiday weekends like Labor Day. But this year...nothing. No excitement. None, whatsoever. That’s when I realized why my father-in-law made those comments. He did his usual fix-up work at home and at the triplex during the week, but when it came to the weekends and holidays, he took the day off!

So today, I took the day off too. No cleaning, no organizing, and no checking things off the "to do" list. Instead, I got a pedicure with a nice foot massage (my favorite part of the pedicure). Then I went home and played. I turned on the computer and webcam and virtually scrapped with Hayley and Leah. We worked on our ATC Swap for ACharmingPlace. The theme is dragonflies, and we only have to do six.

Here are my ATCs. I just need to sign the backs of them. I used distress inks, perfect pearls, stamps, transparencies, Luminarte Primary Elements and glitter. The dragonfly, alphabet and filigree charms are from

It was a fun play day!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Now, this feels like retirement!

Finally, things are settling down, deadlines are out of the way, and Kathryn is back in school.

Today, I went to our local Farmer's Market. I have wanted to go since it opened many months ago, but have only driven by every Wednesday—a day I went to work. I bought fresh rasberries, blackberries, strawberries, white nectarines, apples, zucchini, fresh flowers and, my favorite, kettle corn! It was so much fun!

After farmer's market, I drove to Palo Alto to have lunch with my daughter, Raquel. She's always so much fun and makes me laugh. I brought her some of the fresh flowers and kettle corn from Farmer's Market. I arrived in Palo Alto earlier than expected, so Raquel pointed me in the direction of a cute little stationary store I could walk to while waiting.

On the way to the store, I passed a Korean BBQ where people were sitting outside and enjoying their lunch. The food sure looked good! So when Raquel met me at the stationary store, I told her about the BBQ place I had passed, so that is where we had lunch. It turns out, Raquel is a regular customer there! It was yummy!

After lunch, I visited our local scrapbook store and picked up a "few things."

What a great retirement day! I got to do two things I couldn't do on a "work" day!

Here's a picture of Raquel with her kettle corn and flowers. When I look at the picture, it makes me giggle, because I see that she is not wearing her natural, beautiful smile (unlike Kathryn who will NOT smile). She's saying as she smiles, "Why are you taking a picture of me in the lobby...with my kettle corn?"

Finally, she says, "It's for your blog?! Isn't it?!" Well, yes it is! As I was "informed" that after performing a "search" of my blog, there were NO pictures of my first born.
Now there is :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Someday she'll smile...

Kathryn's first day of her Sophmore year. Of course, I wanted to take pictures but she still won't smile for me. And to top it off, this morning she had a tiny pimple on her forehead (seriously, you could barely see it, even up-close), so what does she do? Tries to cover it with her bangs! So, now, in addition to telling her to smile, I'm telling her to move the hair from her eyes.

I was looking at last year's "first day" pictures, and today, we pretty much had the same photo shoot conversation as last year:

"I don't wanna smile"
"would you please stop already???!!!"

with bonus conversation:

"Aren't we done yet?"

"You're gonna make me late."

"I've only been standing here for five minutes..." (that's because you WON'T smile and take the hair from your eyes!)

"WHY are you taking pictures of me while I am talking???" (Because you won't smile! And maybe I'll catch one!)

"Ok - that's it, I'm done!" and she walks off....I call her back for "just one more" and I get the MEAN look lol

As I drop her off at school, I figured I would try to get one of her walking towards the school...but she saw my camera in my hand and as she got out, said, "OMG, you're gonna try to take another picture of me, aren't you? UGH" and runs off.

Oh well, not one good picture. I may have to try again when she gets home. Or, I may call in "the professionals" - my daughter Raquel. She always gets her to smile!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Trip to the City...

We went to San Francisco yesterday to get Kathryn’s hair straightened. It turned out fabulous and she is very happy! It was 8-1/2 hour process. So, while Kathryn was getting "straightened out" (just her hair was straightened, she still acts like a teenager lol), Jose and I visited his brother who has a fabulous condo next to Ghirardelli Square with beautiful views and overlooks Alcatraz Island. (The above picture is from his living room patio -- see the railing?) He took us to lunch and gave us a tour of the city: Coit Tower, Lombard Street, The Presidio, Golden Gate Bridge - it was nice for both of us to be driven around by a local and not worry about parking!

Today, Jose and I are spending a few days in Lake Tahoe. I am really enjoying this thing called "retirement"!

Here are before and after pictures of Kathryn's hair. Amazing! Just amazing!

Monday, August 4, 2008

A very busy weekend!

It has been a very busy, nonstop, but very fun weekend! On Friday I drove all the way to My Daughter's Wish (that's about a 120 mile roundtrip, and you know how driving is not my favorite thing!) to take Tim Holtz's Assemblage of Flight class.

Here are my pieces. Later, I will pop off the back of the pocketwatch and add a little more dimension. My favorite tip from this class was when Tim told us how to make "super glue dots". As you can see from the picture of the pocketwatch, the wings look a bit out of place but that's because they are "flexible" because of the "super glue dots". (The wings are attached with glue dots but super glue was added on top of that!)

On Saturday, I drove back out there again for his Industrial Grunge class. I've wanted to take that class for a long time. It was so much fun! Although, in retrospect, it could have been more fun for my friend Laurie who saved me a seat next to her. I was so involved in the class and "in the zone" that I wasn't my normal social self! I will have to make that up to her! I will post pictures of the things I did in that class as soon as I find them!

And in between all the fun from the Friday and Saturday classes, I was cleaning, shopping, wrapping and prepping for the family BBQ on Sunday for my baby boy's 20th birthday!

I can't believe he's already did he go from one to 20 so quickly?!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

I did it...

After 23 years of working as a legal assistant for Sue, I’ve decided to retire. (not sure how long that link will work—out with the old and in with the new!)

Today was my "retirement" luncheon at A Bellagio and about 20 of my former co-workers and attorneys from those past 23 years were there. Mark (the attorney that both Sue and I worked for before she started her own practice) even drove down from Sacramento to celebrate with us - that was just the sweetest!

A few of my favorite lines from Sue’s "retirement" speech for me:

"Christine has been my right-hand man for 23 years and I have needed her! Especially since I’m left-handed AND dyslexic!"

"...we’ve been together so long it’s like we’re an old married couple."

"I blame the reason for Christine’s early retirement on one thing, and one thing alone! SCRAPBOOKING!!!"

I especially loved Sue's personal note to me, which began: "Christine, this is probably your last chance to decipher my handwriting..."

I will definitely miss everyone, but now I will be able to devote more time to the things I REALLY love to do...creating and teaching!

Left to right/front to back:
Ted and Sue
Maria, me (the retired one), and Matthew

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Photo Walk and Adobe Digital Crop

Here's a picture I took on Friday when I went on the "photo walk" in downtown San Jose with Michelle and her husband Dave.

Dave graciously let us (well, me lol) follow him around and take pictures, while Michelle asked him what settings we should have our cameras on for the particular situation. I did actually learn something from this process! I am not able to repeat it verbally, but a few more of the knobs on my camera make more sense to me. This setting was for stopping the droplets of water!

And here's a very tired looking picture of me, the digibear (every time you finish a layout, you ring the bell and get to keep the bear until the next person completes a layout), one of my digital layouts and the Wacom Bamboo Fun tablet that I won.

I was operating on about 4 hours of sleep that day, and planned on leaving early, not staying for the entire 9am-9pm crop.

And here's Veronica, Michelle and I at the end of the day of the Adobe Digital Crop. Surprisingly, the three of us stayed from start (7:30 for breakfast) to finish! It was a lot of fun!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

My Birthday Crop

We had a belated birthday crop for me yesterday. The Drama Queens out did themselves, especially Michelle who baked this beautiful cake. It was delicious! Drama Queen Kathie was paying me back for my "tattoo" prank and gave me a lovely birthday card with a very tattoo-faced person on it and brought me a delicious "possom pie" (it was really lemon meringue).

Inbetween all the fun, I just about finished my 9 pages for the recipe swap.

I made a pull-out recipe, a handmade paper apron, and traced a Basic Grey chipboard vine shape onto grungeboard and stamped, inked, bent and outlined it. I was hoping to distract the girls with the pretty embellishments to make up for my "easy" recipe!

And the night before the crop, I finished up the "Drama Queen" book party favors I had started in Hot Springs. I had fun making the interactive pages, layering charms, hanging pages onto the binding with charm holders (for your cell phone), making the UTEE "Drama Queen" embellishments with the stamp I found in Hot Springs, and making lots of grungeboard flowers!

Here are a few of the pages...

And here's a closer view of the UTEE "Drama Queen" embellishment. I made a bunch of these when we were in Hot Springs.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hot Springs...

Spent four great days in Hot Springs, Arkansas, scrapbooking with Leah, Joy, Chandra, Sandra and Hayley from ACharmingplace.
We always have a great time together.
I did manage to actually do a little scrapbooking too. I got started on my pages for Michelle's recipe swap and even finished a few books I will use as party favors for my birthday crop next month.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

More ATC Cards

The girls from ACharmingPlace were doing another friendship swap, but this time on ATC cards. I made 22 of them, but unlike my mermaid ATC cards where I used a lot of stamping techniques, this time I decided to make them more scrapbook-like and interactive. Here's one of my favorite ones, simply because it's interactive (one of my favorite things) AND because I recycled the product packing from my Basic Grey Rub-on Roller and used it as the pull-out tag information. Do you see the big pink bling on it? That is where the "hanging hole" was on the packaging. I also used one of Tim Holtz's ATC Stamps and a skeleton grungeboard element on this one. The little flower charms are from ACharmingplace.

Here's a slideshow of the other ATCs for this swap.