Sunday, November 29, 2009

nearing the end of NaNoWriMo

i am so close it's not even funny.

i am working on my National Novel Writing Month novel, which has yet to have a title, and i'm really close to reaching to 50,000 word goal... just a few more thousand words. i have been neglecting the blog here lately, and while i was going to update sometime this weekend with a new card or tag, i was suddenly unable to because of Internet issues at home.

so i'm writing this from the library, and thus writing it without any pictures to show you. yes, it's bad. i really didn't realize how awful it was to not be able to check your email until it i went by the living room computer about eight times in one hour, thinking every time, "oh, i'll check my email... oh wait... just kidding." it was embarrassing.

it's just bad. but i'll stop complaining and get back to writing. i'm really glad you stop by every once in a while and ask me how it's going--makes me accountable, which is good. thanks for that.

thought i'd leave you with a fun picture... it's of my Thanksgiving dinner on thursday. it was yummy.

and yes, i did put the broccoli "tree" in my mashed potatoes and then made a "lake" with the gravy. it never hurts to do fun things, right? i love playing with my food :D

hope you enjoy the last part of your holiday weekend (if you did have a holiday weekend), and i'll be back as soon as possible :D

Saturday, November 21, 2009

concert and cards

oh my goodness.

if i haven't mentioned this before, i'll say it again... i LOVE music.

right now i'm on a Christmas music and classical music kick (don't ask... it might have something to do with the fact i loved playing in the concert band [clarinet] from elementary school through college and then the marching band [tenor sax] in college all 4 years). so yeah, i love listening to stuff that makes me react emotionally. that's why i have a HUGE pile of CD's a super long list of favorite artists...

and i love going to concerts... there's somethings that's just awesome about seeing one of your favorite artists performing songs that you know all the words to (cause believe me--i KNOW the words!) SO, i just went to a super fun concert. Jeremy Camp, Natalie Grant, and Bebo Norman came to MY town as the last stop on the "Speaking Louder Than Before" Tour. it was so great :D such a great time to reflect on my life and what God has been doing in my life, and what i need to change. i think that a lot of times when i get busy with life, i forget that i have a greater purpose for being here on Earth. so, i thought i'd share a bit... i took some photos that i cropped and compiled to share with you... mostly for the benefit of my friend Paulina who wasn't able to be there... because she's in CA (lucky ducky!)

and here are some cards... yes, i know these are Christmas cards again, and that they have snowflakes, and that they are simple, but i haven't had time to make any new ones, and these have been waiting in my stack to be shared, and i thought i'd do that now while i'm scrambling to find time to create.

phew! now moving on to a non-Christmas card. SEI poppy papers, apron lace punch from Fiskars, some ribbon (satin) and TA-DA!

see those smidges of polka dots on the bottom? it's the double sided paper working its magic :D

and that's it for me tonight. hopefully tomorrow i'll get something new created and posted... really been missing out on some great sketches lately. bummer! hopefully with Thanksgiving coming up i'll do some catch up, right? :D

thanks for looking! (oh, and in NaNoWriMo news, i'm at 26,711 words... plenty more to go, but as i tell my students, "Don't worry. I'm competitive... I'll finish." hehe :D)

Friday, November 20, 2009

maybe the worst photos ever...

okay, so i admit--these are bad photos. can't help it. tried to edit them a tad so they'd look like, at least, half decent. (can you tell i'm talking in my "Valley Girl" voice? i really can't think in anything serious at the moment, cuz it's FRIDAY :D) buuut... no luck. so the red card above is actually a real red. and the vintage buttons in the middle of that amazing stitch stamp from Impress--LOVE THEM! the buttons come from a stash my mom had from who knows how long ago... they're being hoarded at the moment. minus these, of course. the snowflakes are Martha Stewart, and i embossed the stamped image to give it some more texture/ interest. i like how simple this card is--especially since it's instantly gratifying.

the next thing i want to share is a tag--not my usual card, i know, but it was a ton of fun, and i actually think i'll be making some more of these to add to gift presentations for friends/ family.

the pink button is threaded with some hot pink tulle, and tied in a bow, although you can't see it here. i used a smidge of the WeRMemory Keepers Christmas paper for the polka dot strip at the bottom (CK buy!) and the pink panel is dotted cardstock from Bazzill.

down below, you can see the other side of the tag. i did some more embossing, this time with white instead of clear powder. the Hero Arts "Merry Christmas" sentiment that comes along with the owl set is just adorable, don'tcha think? i used some more of BasicGrey's Eskimo Kisses paper... those trees are so cute in pink and green, don't you think?

ohhh! don't forget--i actually tried some new glitter--a bit chunkier than what i normally use, but i think it's cool... i used some double sided glitter tape to put it at the top. BUT, really, let's be honest...

the best part about this whole tag is the amazing ribbon selection at the top--loving the overflow of textures and lengths... it just seemed too perfect to pass up :D

wellllll, thanks for looking, and hope you have a great Friday. i'm busy tonight with a group of "college/ career" people coming over for a get together... need to do some last minute cleaning. i honestly cannot believe how fast Thanksgiving is coming, and then CHRISTMAS! **love love love Christmas**

okay, really, i'm going... thanks for your sweet comments <3

Thursday, November 19, 2009

smile in style!

so today has a smattering of everything that i love... Sassafras, Cosmo Cricket, rhinestones, ribbon, and bright colors!

it seems with the days getting shorter and no snow yet here in WA, i'm finding plenty of substitutes to make my evenings happy and bright. personally, i CANNOT wait until the Christmas lights go up--it lifts my mood so much in the evening.

i made this card for the Everything but the Kitchen Sink challenge, and i'm sending it off to Lynne along with her goodies from my blog-o-versary giveaway (sorry Lynne, i spoiled the surprise :D) i love the sketch--totally inspired me to use some double sided papers that i tend to hoard because of their loveliness.

i love how it turned out, and i definitely smiled when i was done with the card. i like the vintage feel to the Sassafras papers in their Anthem and Vintage Yummy lines... here i just used the Anthem papers.

anyway, that's all for me tonight--i'm behind in so many things (cleaning, NaNoWriMo, etc), but NEVER FEAR... i will catch up. i'm actually being a nerd and wearing my "i eat novels for breakfast" button right now, even though no one's around to look at my shirt and the decorations on it.

ok, this is farewell for now. have a lovely Friday coming up :D

Monday, November 16, 2009

brighten your day <3

i made ten cards last night.


i made TEN cards last night? (oh wait, i guess i did...)

hehe. they were sooo much fun to make. i used about six different supplies that i switched up to give each one a different look. i've got to say that the paper that i used was fantastic, it totally gives everything a special "interest" or detail to the card.

so i used: bling (all shapes, sizes, colors), corner punch and circle punch, buttons from DeNami Design (tuttifrutti pack :D), ribbon (satin, grosgrain, stitched), 3 sheets of 6x6 "sweet marmalade" paper from Sassafras, and some stamps (cupcake from DoodleFactory, a juggling dog from Poppy Stamps, and some sentiments from Stampin' Up).

all the cards are 5 1/2" x 4 1/4" and they've got similar, BRIGHT color schemes :D just my type of cards... i figured since two of my brothers, Lincoln and Joey are jugglers, i could definitely use these for them or just for cheering up, or birthdays!

that cupcake and the icecream on the first card are making me hungry--yummy stuff, right?
what a cute little dog, right? he's called Juggling Rex, and he appears on other images as well... i have some snowballs that i think i'll use for "winter themed" cards :D

here's a close up of him--i left off the top part, and just added 5 "balls" for him to juggle. my brother Lincoln is the most talented juggler in the family, and he's able to juggle 5 balls while riding a unicycle. and no, he's not a clown, but he is funny.

just fun stuff, right?
this card above i kept super simple, but i just love that sentiment, "just because i care." i might be sending this or another one like it to my pastor--he is so caring and faithful. he shared his heart yesterday during the sermon, and i was so grateful for that, and for him. i think he deserves to know, don't you?

ooh, again, simple. but who doesn't love gathered ribbon? sorry the lighting on this card is so distorted--it was hard to keep the yellow cardstock yellow and the kelly green ribbon green at the same time. it's just a fun 80's ish card :D
i think i'm getting better at tying bows! look at that fabulous yellow satin stuff... *sigh* heaven!
hehe, and here we are again, with that lovely patterned paper--so glad i have a whole stack of it! (and btw, Kristina Werner is giving a whole stack away in her craft room cleanup giveaway. you have until TONIGHT (11/16) to comment on her blog HERE. check it out!)
hmm, distressing! doesn't it just fit here? (i did use a flower on this card, it just was lying around my bins, and it looks so cool here!)
and on this card i finished a bit of the inside too--
the front doesn't need much in the way of additions--those little borders on that patterned paper really should take front and center, don't you think? a row of bling, and it almost looks Eastern Indian to me... what do you think?

this last card has to be one of my favorites--seriously, it's so stinkin cute! i love the duckies, and the button, with that ribbon... and *sigh* just about everything on it is amazing. i was definitely on a roll last night! hooray for productivity :D

thanks for looking, have a lovely Monday!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

WINNER, cards, nano, and more :D

okay, so O.M.Gosh! there were sooo many comments on the blog candy giveaway! this has been an awesome blog birthday, even though i'm the one giving away the presents :D i am still in awe that i have been running a blog for ONE YEAR! it's really a benchmark.

i loved hearing everyone's comments about their goals and how they accomplished them--so many of you have gotten into shape, and that is awesome!

well, i used to generate a random number for comments... and our winner is

comment #41 Lynne

of Ruby-Dooby-Doo's Stampin Spot!

congratulations--your zip-wire slide sounds like fun--what a super goal! :D

send me your info to larsenvt (AT) gmail (DOT) com, and i'll send out your goodies! thanks for playing everyone!

whether you know it or not, you've all encouraged me to keep on writing my novel... it's definitely something i'm going to follow through with because i have seen your successes. my story is getting interesting--so far i have about 7 characters, and they're going to be on a reality TV show--but i have only just been introducing them (in the first 20,000 words!) my characters include:

  • Jen - a 15 yr old girl and her dad, Jerry. they lost their mom/ wife 7 months ago

  • Melli - a 20 something year old, sister to Paul, dealing with a crazy pet dog

  • Aitken - bounty hunter from Moon

  • Derek - mechanic on a space ship that just had a major explosion

  • Ian and Jason - talking coyotes who get into bar fights

  • Meridian - female MC of "The Big Space Game" who wants to jump start her career again(needing a new title for the reality show, but won't have to worry about that now)

so yeah, if you can't tell, i'm mixing genres, time periods, and just using bits of everything from my imagination. the best part is seeing where i'll go next--so far, i don't have a fixed plan, so i can really expand however i want :D

anyway, thanks for participating, and *please* make sure to check back--i've got more candy coming next month, at least.

now, on to the cards :D

i bet you're getting sick of seeing snowflakes, border punches, and velvet ribbon... well, this is the last batch, for now ;)

don't worry, i've got some super funky and ultra bright/ colorful cards to share tomorrow if this isn't quite your thing :D

this first one was made with my brothers in mind. i might pass it on to an uncle, though, since my brothers have seen this card before... but they liked it for Christmas, and that's what matters, right?

so glad you could stop by again--it means a lot. hope you have a fabulous week ahead!

Blog-O-Versary Giveaway!

**note: this post will stay at the top until contest is over. please scroll down to see current posts**

oh hello there! the title of the post may be a *tad* deceiving as i'll be sharing more than just a blog giveaway with you.

in fact, i have a LOT to talk about, but hopefully i'll make it as short as humanly possible :D

so first off, i have some Christmas cards... my my my how i've loved making them! i actually used some "summer" paper from K&Co's ocean line (can't remember exactly what it's called) that i figured would make some great "guy" cards for the holidays... so i kept them simple (well, hey! it's ME here we're talking about... as simple as I can make them!)

border punch from fiskars, velvet ribbon, martha stewart snowflakes, and the paper. oh, a mcgill punch too. add a button, and YAY! guy card. i asked my brothers for approval, and it was given wholeheartedly.

and here's a closeup of one of the cards i made--dude, didn't i tell you i was in love with that snowflake punch?

the colors were actually chosen because my dad and brothers ALL love either green or blue, and who knows, maybe they'll be getting one of these. plus, the plaid/ stripes pattern was perfect for the masculine theme...

i like 'em a lot.

edited to add:

yay! i got to participate in the 2sketches4you challenge this week. it's Laura's sketch #38, and it's so fabulous. last night (friday, 11/06) as i was thinking about the CK convention in Seattle that i was going to, i decided to get a little crafty, and i couldn't wait to break out the BG eskimo kisses, so here's my card:
it's some of my favorite paper, and i love the BG letters and that MM heart (i actually stamped over the glitter and embossed it because i needed a lighter pink). the ribbon is from Michael's, and the dotted cardstock is from Bazzill. i like this card a lot :D

speaking of liking, i have some news! i like reading. i like writing (hence, the blog). so...

i am writing a novel. a 50,000 word novel. by Nov. 30th. (go here or to my post here for more info...) i think you can even track my progress with THIS link. if not, then just search for my username *ginnygurl* in the NaNoWriMo database, and you can add me as your "buddy." and ALSO speaking of "liking," can i just say a HUGE w00t! w00t! for all those participants from Seattle--we're leading the word count scoreboard :D (and i'm part of that!)

as of 11/04, 9:10pm, i have written exactly 6,088 words. amazing, huh? i'm a tad behind the daily goal, but as soon as i'm done here, i'm working on the story. maybe i'll divulge some details about the plot line... maybe... just maybe...

so i've included a widget/ picture in my sidebar in regards to the novel writing--just a reminder to encourage me to write the 1,667 words a day to keep on track. actually, the founders really do suggest telling as many people as possible about the novel--in hopes that those people will in turn encourage/ shame the writers into actually finishing on time. here's the quotation... i found it hilariously funny:

tell everyone you know that you're writing a novel in November. this will pay big dividends in week two, when the only thing keeping you from quitting is the fear of looking pathetic in front of all the people who've had to hear about your novel for the past month. seriously. email them now about your awesome new book. the looming specter of personal humiliation is a very reliable muse.

so there. i've done it. i've told you. please please please shame me into finishing. it's my goal.

so that brings me to the POINT of my post--giving away stuff!

how to enter...

  1. leave me a way to contact you (via blog, email, etc) and a comment answering the question:
    "What is a goal that you have made and accomplished? How did it make you feel?"

  2. leave a SECOND comment if you are or become a follower of my blog

  3. leave a THIRD comment if you are or become a follower on my twitter

  4. leave a FOURTH comment if you add my blog candy to your sidebar or a post!

so you have lots of chances to win these wonderful goodies... please play fair and follow the rules--that way everyone will have fun. internationals may enter too!

the contest will run until the BIRTHDAY (or blog-o-versary) of my blog on Sunday, November 15th, at 9pm PST.

after that, i'll pick a random winner and post the results on my blog on Monday. sound like a plan? well, good. check out the goodies and see if you like any!

here's the whole she-bang together--quite a lot of stuff if i do say so myself. you can see some lovely stickers on the lower portion--alphas, fuzzy velvet stickers, and then some fall chipboard pieces and stickers--perfect for scrapbook pages, or as embellies on cards :D

oooh, we've got some Basic Grey paper, Cosmo Cricket, Making Memories, and SEI

those snowballs i love so much are here, along with lovely 2' ribbon, and some chippie embellies and fabric brads

and don't forget the felties and blossoms from sassafras! then the woolies! *sigh* also, peeking behind the back you can see a couple of mini-albums from We R Memory Keepers.

anyway, hope you like what you see, and don't forget to leave a comment for a chance to win :D

thanks for stopping by, and have a great day!

w00t w00t!

okay, quickie post! i made the Fab 5 over at 2sketches4you again this week! WOW. that really made my day. i can't believe it--i'm still smiling :D

this card is sweet and simple. my martha stewart snowflake punches, velvet ribbon, gems, and some border punches. the paper is from K&Co, and it's actually the ocean stack (the name escapes me now...)
great rich colors for a Christmas card, don't you think?
well, there's still time for you to enter my blog birthday giveaway--i can't wait to announce a winner tomorrow!
i'm going to be posting some banners soon... this time with a winter theme--they're so sweet, can't wait to show you :D
thanks for the comments, and have a great day!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

jolly-ness (2S4U) and owls

hi! how are you? tonight, i am FANTASTIC. i feel so accomplished! why? you may be asking yourself... well... because i met my NaNoWriMo goal today! i was over 6,000 words behind schedule (you're supposed to write 1,667 words daily to stay on track in order to complete the 50,000 word goal for the novel by the end of the month), and i was a little upset... especially because my students ask me about my progress--which i asked them to do :D and i'm slightly competitive. so, anyway, since i had the day off, i knew i could spend some of it catching up. and i did!

as of 10:34pm PST, i am at 18,504 words! :D that's 37% of my goal completed :D oh, you don't know how happy i am. yes, i am crazy, yes, i am competitive, but most of all, i am HAPPY :D

so this card i made tonight (i know! i fit card making in as well!? amazing!) embodies all my joy--it says, "be jolly." no problem following directions tonight :D plus, i used some Cosmo Cricket with this cutie of a card--so really, how could i go wrong?

i followed Kazan's lovely sketch over at 2sketches4you for this one (see it at the top)--i haven't posted this early for a challenge in a while!

and check out the back here! i covered the inside with a panel from BG's Eskimo Kisses to cover up the extra ribbon, and then i thought it would be super cute to add a detail to the back of the card--you know, kind of like a little surprise. do you ever do that?

oh, and here's something else that makes me happy...

i just couldn't resist the Embellish Magazine color and owl challenge... so i made another card/ tag. i used some coral, green and brown, along with a cute Hero Arts owl/ sentiment. i love the chunkiness of all the ribbon i added to the top.

and that button with twine? DeNami Design goodness--oh, how i love their buttons!

and here's a picture of the whole thing. i added some fun fluff (via DeNami Design again) and the owl is embossed. the pompom trim comes from the CK shopping spree (yes, i know i bought a TON), and so is the new border punch from Fiskars. generally in love with this little tag--it's so cute. :D

what do you think? thanks so much for looking, and for leaving your comments--they're so sweet :D

also, just a reminder that my blog birthday is coming up in a couple of days--if you haven't entered my giveaway, you should! check it out HERE.

okay, have a lovely evening, and go be happy! :D

NaNoWriMo! + CPS #141

oh hey! well, i have something awesome to share with you today--it's my first banner EVER!

(also, if you haven't entered my blog-o-versary giveaway yet, then go HERE now!)

now, i had this idea in my head for school--i have a couple of students who are participating in NaNoWriMo with me (National Novel Writing Month--see more on it in my post HERE), and i wanted to do something special to encourage them...

so, with the help of my amazing Cricut, some new CK goodies, and the CPS Sketch #141 (and kind of a Caardvarks challenge, although this isn't a card [i'll make a circle card to post, i promise!]) i embarked on this journey of my first banner ever.

now, with 9 letters to create the word on the banner, i knew i wouldn't have any room for extra "in-between" spacer spots... so i decided i need my banners to be quite big to fit all the embellies i wanted to include.

so first i gathered all the supplies i needed, and broke out the blue card stock that i wanted to use as the foundation for my letters--i used the Simply Sweet Cricut cartridge to create the bases, as well as the letters (using white paper with the shadow feature, and then a *shiny* blue for real letter).

so here you can see the close-ups of each of the parts--i had sooo much fun making this, and even though it took a while (hey, i was watching Love Actually with my sister, Cecelia, too!) it was sooo worth it.

i have to tell you where i got some inspiration--Mish of PTI fame! she has been featuring some amazing mini-kits of office type paper supplies, and they've been so stinkin cute! :D and since this banner was going to hang in my classroom, i thought that things like paper clips, rulers, etc would be appropriate :D

i bought some October Afternoon goodies at CK, and one thing included the stamp set that has a ruler in it--had to use it here :D ooh, and that border punch that i've been eyeing for a while--it was a total deal at CK too!

you can see some of the bling i got at CK last weekend--i cut apart some of the pieces--they were way to huge to use on these banner bases, and i want to hoard them for a little while longer (good thing i got them in triplicate--hehe!)
see how shiny that blue letter is? it's from the DCWV Citrus Glitter stack, and i LOVE it! i wish i had a couple more pieces of that paper--it's fabulous.
and the felt, brads, and pencil paper are all buys from CK--couldn't wait to get home and use them. O.M.Gosh. can i just tell you that i am in love with Cosmo Cricket paper? it almost hurt me to use this stuff, but honestly, it fit the theme perfectly, so i de-hoarded :D the felt from CK came in packs of four 12x12 laser cut sheets with all these neat-O designs--i've already used some of the pink border for another card HERE.

these brads are velvety--i wanted to use a lot of texture on every single panel, and i think i love this "a" letter the best--or maybe not ;)
i think that the girls in my class loved these buttons the best--the yellow one is from DeNami Design, and the others are from my stash. here's another piece of the felt!
ooh, and here i'm using a yo-yo fabric circle (isn't that what they're called?) to embellish this second "n."
i don't think you can *EVER* go wrong with pompoms!
another close up--you can see some October Afternoon dictionary paper--it made some of my students do a double take :D
okay, so i got these little packs of pins that i'll be using more on cards--sticking them in ribbon, etc--aren't those little stars adorable?
another ruler on the "o" and some flowers--Bazzill and prima. more felt too :D
i really really love that ruler stamp--i can totally see myself using it over and over again.
okay... the "w" was the midpoint of the banner, and even though i didn't consciously plan this, i think it's my favorite panel of all. i grabbed a golf pencil out of our junk drawer at home and decided to use it here. then there's the bling...
and the felt/ ribbon keeping the pencil together...
and seriously--we're talking about NaNoWriMo here--WRITING! how perfect can you get? i would venture to say, you cannot!
some ric-rac, felt, brads, and a shiny heart cut with my Cricut (same cart.)
this is the "r." you might be wondering what i used to string this all up together--i used some thrift store bolt of trim--it had at least 7 yds of this white, and i thought--i can use this for somthing... right i was!
that flower, button, and felt heart pairing is just too cute, agreed?
ooh, here's the "i" where i used some bigger bling, a broken blue clothespin (w/ ribbon) and a chipboard piece :D
and omgosh--i tricked this next panel out with bling... cutie paper clip ($1 store!) and some more bling, Cosmo paper, and felt...
that crown is so top heavy--can you imagine if it was lifesize how expensive that crown would be? hehe :D
and last but not least, the "o."
i went slightly simpler--those buttons are just the perfect touch, i think.
here's a board-side view of the end of the banner...
when my students walked into class and saw this hanging on the whiteboard, they went up close and examined it--one of the girls asked me "Did you cut that out of a dictionary?!" regarding the October Afternoon paper (cause i'm an English teacher and cutting up a dictionary would obviously be sacrilege! :D hehe). the best part was when they asked me about it, and said, "Who made that?" and i got to reply, "I did." the look of awe on their faces was priceless :D and then there were a ton of girls who said, "Can you make me one?" hehe... they'll be papercrafters yet!

thanks for looking, and please let me know if you enjoyed this banner and whether you'd like to see more of them here on the blog.

hope you have a great day! XOXO