Sunday, April 29, 2012

Tea Shoppe

The Occasions Mini Catalog ends tomorrow, so I decided to make a couple of cards from the Tea Shoppe stamp set. I must admit that these two are my first creations from this set. I ordered them a couple of months ago, put it up in my shelf and sort of forgot about them. It is so delightful to break-in a brand new stamp set.

Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Tea Shoppe (Wood 125545 Clear 125547)
Paper: Pool Party, Soft Suede, Daffodil Delight and Whisper White card stocks, DSP Attic Boutique (125407)
Ink: Soft Suede Classic Stampin' pad, Calypso Coral, Pool Party and Lucky Limeade Stampin' Write Markers
Accessories: 1/2" Daffodil Delight Seam Binding Ribbon (125583), Large Pearl Basic Jewels (125577), Punches: Decorative Label (120907), Blossom Bouquet Triple Layer (122464), Eyelet Border (119853) Extra Large Oval (119859), Neutral Brads (119736), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430), Paper Snips (103579)

Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Tea Shoppe (Wood 125545 Clear 125547)
Paper: Pool Party, Calypso Coral and Whisper White card stocks, DSP Everyday Enchantment SAB
Ink: Calypso Coral and Pool Party Classic Stampin' pads
Accessories: Paper Doily Large Sizzlit Die (125592), Neutral Brads (119736), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430), Paper Snips (103579), Modern Label (119849) and Word Window (119857) punches

I finished my son's Graduation Announcements today. It was sort of monotonous making twenty identical cards. Oh well, I am putting them in the mail Monday and check that off from my to do list.

That's it for now. Have a wonderful week. It will be in the mid 80's here in Northern California. Summer is definitely on its way. One month left in the school year. Yay! Thank you for stopping by.
Friday, April 27, 2012

Retired BNF Friday #3

I have been functioning the past week with very little sleep. Not intentionally, it's just been very hectic both in the office and at home that my brain is "open for business" even when I'm "supposedly" resting. Constantly making a to-do list. I am so exhausted. I remember being a single mom in my early twenties, going to college full-time and working full-time. Getting three hours of sleep back then was plenty. I could go non-stop sustained by strong coffee and candy bars. Fast forward twenty years...I don't do well without down time any longer. My brain needs sleep, my body screams for rest and my skin sure shows lack of both. I have been looking forward to the weekend. I plan to sleep-in and do minimum house work. I must recharge my batteries some. Having just typed that, I apologize that the Retired BNF (But Not Forgotten) Friday card today is so simple. I am too tired to summon my creative vibes, so I just quickly put this one together. However, I was surprised to find how nice it turned out after I downloaded the photo. Or it it just me because I like Clean and Simple cards? Oh well.

After all these many years, I still love this Long Stemmed Stamp Set and Warmest Regards Hostess Set. To say that I am not much of a gardener is an understatement. I have killed a cactus before and I bet given the chance I can even kill plastic plants. Hahaha. Perhaps that's why I just love flowers and butterflies themed stamps, fabric and paper. Paper flowers are the best!

Card Recipe

Stamp Set(s): Long Stemmed and Warmest Regards (Hostess Set)
Paper: Whisper White and Real Red card stocks
Ink: Basic Black and Real Red Classic Stampin' pad
Accessories: Watercolor Crayons and Aqua Painters

Well, TGIF indeedy!!! Have a wonderful weekend, y'all. I have been working on my son's High School Graduation Announcements and they are turning out really nice. I promise to share.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Charming & Cupcakes

Just as promised, I am sharing a couple of the birthday cards we made in class last Saturday. It's only Wednesday, midweek...I can make it to Friday. I feel like the Little Engine That Could, "I think I can, I think I can." Tomorrow is going to be a twelve or so hour work day/night. It sucks big time that I will miss my daughter's concert because of our Board Meeting. Oh well, let's hope she finds it in her heart to forgive me someday. Sad face. 

I am still heart-broken that so many of my favorite stamp sets are going to be retired end of next month. So, I am going to do my best to use and showcase them in my classes as much as possible. These two right here are one of my top faves. I know I will never part with them.

I distressed all the edges to give it a "worn" look.
 Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Charming (Wood 116519 Clear 125829) and Elementary Elegance (from the previous SAB)
Paper: Soft Suede, Cherry Cobbler and River Rock card stocks
Ink: Soft Suede and Cherry Cobbler Classic Stampin' pads, Whisper White Craft Stampin' pad
Accessories: 1/2" Chantilly Crochet Trim ribbon (118480), Basic Rhinestones (119246), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430), Glue Dots (103683), Eyelet Border punch (119853), Finnial Press Embossing folder (115963), Cutter Kit (106958)

I put a Stampin' Dimensional under the awning to make it stay down.
 Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Crazy for Cupcakes (111618)
Paper: Whisper White and Calypso Coral card stocks, and Domestic Goddess DSP
Ink: Basic Black Classic Stampin' pad (101179), Stampin' Write Markers in Pool Party, Calypso Coral, Basic Gray and Poppy Parade
Accessories: 3/8" Ruffled ribbon in Calypso Coral (122976), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430), Glue Dots (103683), 1 3/4" Scallop Circle punch (119853), 1 3/8" Circle punch, Edgelits Dies Adorning Accents (125595)

Well, that's it for now. Thanks for stopping by!
Sunday, April 22, 2012

High School Reunion Blues

Last Friday was the grand reunion of my high school senior class in the Philippines. It has been twenty-five years since I walked-out of Saint Paul's School and I have not been back since. I would like to say that my biggest excuse is that we left the Philippines for United States only a couple of years later. Surely I have been back home several times, but I remained invisible except to those few people I wanted to hold-on to after all these many years. High school is indeed a lifetime ago and my memory has been made dull by becoming an adult. I don't remember many things or perhaps I don't wish to. Memory as I found out is a collection of things and events the person deems important. I remember the boy who opened the door of the service/bus for me my first day of school. He became my husband. I remember meeting my best friend under the acacia tree. I remember hanging-out with Miscen, Judy, Ochie, Catherine and Annie in the cafeteria eating bland spaghetti with banana ketchup and hotdogs and drinking bottled Sarsi. I remember giggling with them when our crushes walked by. I remember listening to Menudo (the band - not the dish) in the Sony walkman my dad sent me from Saudi Arabia. I remember many things, the important ones I wanted to carry with me in this lifetime. The journey to Adult Land is a treacherous climb and I've been told that traveling light is the way to go.

You see, I neither hated high school nor loved it. I neither look back with fond memories nor bitterness. I simply don't understand it, I never did. Now that I have lived my life twenty-five years away from it, I do not see the point to go back. I am not the same person I was back then. Not by a long shot! Actually, when I look back at the foolish things I did or the fools I gave my heart to, it's as if I am remembering someone else. I see myself as a third person and I'd sigh thinking..."she was a mess." She sure was, and most of the kids made sure she did not forget what a basket case she was. They talked crap and spread horrible rumors about her. They made fun of her and excluded her as if she had the plague. She sure was famous. She was expected not to amount to anything. Absolutely nothing, that's how unforgettable she was. Sure, it was only four years - those four years helped me become the person I am today. I did not allow high school to decide the kind of life I was going to have. It might have scarred me some, but it has also fueled me to always do better and to constantly look forward. I don't care what continent, high school is brutal no matter where or what language is spoken. Many kids don't get out of high school alive or sane, for that matter. Every single sh_t that happens in your life in high school is intense. You are judged every day by kids and teachers who know absolutely nothing about you. I know, I remember wanting to get run over by a bus just because of a boy or because the popular girls rejected me. Auggh! The rumors are real even when they are not. There is no justice. After awhile, one will just give in to the gossip and let it run its course. There is no defense. It's futile to even try. The "plastics" and the "jocks" get the adoration as if they will forever reign. It took me years to learn that they usually don't. They've mostly peaked in high school and the light goes out as soon as they step-out of the gates. See? I am not bitter! Haha.

I will not say/write anything final or something I will end up retracting later on, but I still don't understand high school and for the love of God, please someone explain to me the inexorable purpose of a high school reunion. Should I feel guilty that I have not the slightest desire to go? Actually, I did try to connect a few years back via Facebook. However, it did not take me long to find out that not much has really changed with the people who lynched me back then. They still found a way to put me down only this time via the internet. So, to make this babbling short, I tried and made an effort. It's better to stay guarded and away. Does it make me a horrible person because I don't want to have anything to do with that period of my life anymore? I am writing this without any disrespect to those people I went to school's just how I feel at this point in my life. I did not turn out to be a recluse or a snob. I am not hiding from the past. It's not so much that I don't want to see the people I went to high school with, it's actually the opposite. I don't want to be seen just so people could surprisingly say, "she turned-out just fine after all". She does not need to redeem her fifteen year old reputation. I simply feel connecting now as unnecessary, irrelevant even. I've heard how fun high school reunions are. I was told everyone has grown and calmed down. You think? It's been twenty-five years. I sincerely hope everyone has grown by now. This is one of the reasons why I don't wish to go back, it's because I grew-up. I am good and have put everything behind me. If anything, shouldn't there be an Elementary/Grade School Reunion? I'd want to see the kids I played with and the ones I sat next to in class. As for my High School, I wish it can be sort of like a One Night Stand thing - no strings attached, no questions asked, no guilt involved. I don't regret it, don't wish to forget it, but for the love of everything pure and holy, I sure don't want to ever relive it - in whatever way, shape or form.

Oh well enough of that, I would like to share this card I made sort of as my way of saying hello to those people I met during my old life. It was wonderful to have met you.

Card Recipe

Stamp Set(s): Flores Suaves and Elementary Elegance
Paper: Crumb Cake, Basic Black, Daffodil Delight and Whisper White card stocks
Inks: Basic Black in Classic Stampin' pad and Craft, Daffodil Delight, Crumb Cake
Accessories: Embossing Folder in Houndstooth (123134), Scallop Trim Border punch (118402), Sponges,
Irridescent Ice Embossing  powder (101930), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430) Stampin Write in Daffodil Delight, Paper snips (103579)

Well, that's it for now. We had our Feminine SAS yesterday. It was so much fun. I just love creating and sharing what I know. We made broaches/pins and hair clips using the Flirtatious fabric, the Big Shot and Fun Flowers Bigz die.

Thanks for stopping by. If you've been to your high school reunion, please share your experience with me. See you next time!
Friday, April 20, 2012

Retired BNF Friday #2

Thank goodness, it IS Friday! I so needed it four days ago. Hahaha. It has been such a hectic week both at work and at home. Sometimes I really feel like things are happening too fast - my life is swooshing down into a whirlpool of nothingness.

I have a SAS (Stamp-a-Stack) Feminine Cards class tomorrow and I am so excited because it seems like it has been too long since my last class. I have really missed the gals. It is fun getting together with them, telling stories, laughing and creating pretty things.

I am sharing a really simple card from the retired stamp set called A Flower for All Seasons.

Card Recipe:

Stamp Set(s): A Flower for All Seasons, Easter Blossoms
Paper: Crushed Curry and Whisper White card stocks
Ink: Basic Black Classic Stampin' pad
Accessories: Stampin' Write Markers, Stampin' Dimensionals, Stampin' Dazzling Glitters

Well, that's it for this Retired BNF Friday's post. I am so glad that I decided to start this series because I have honestly discovered new excitement for my retired stamp sets. Life is good.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Upsy Daisy - Clean and Simple #5

I was up extra early this morning to view Stampin' Up!'s Retired List. I am plenty annoyed that so many sets are retiring. I seriously felt like I just got robbed. I realized that I will not have that many current stamp sets left to use for my classes - since most of them are going to say adieu end of next month. They retired my entire shelf! Gasp! Oh well, I guess I'll just have to be extra creative and resourceful with my cards/projects. I don't do enough or make that much money out of my Stampin' Up! hobby to justify huge orders, so I am really not a happy camper today. Oh well.

After finding out Upsy Daisy will be retired, I all of a sudden felt like I just had to use it. So here it is. I think it will pass for Clean and Simple style, don't you agree? I just love making simple and easy cards that still communicate the message.

Card Recipe

Stamp Sets: Upsy Daisy (111710)
Paper: Melon Mambo, Pool Party and Whisper White Card stocks
Inks: Melon Mambo Classic Stampin' Pad
Accessories: 3/8" Ruffled Ribbon Pool Party (122975), Modern Label Punch (119849), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430)

That's all for now, Mad Men awaits. Have a fabulous weekend, y'all! It will be a sunny week. Time to take out my skirts and sandals. Yay!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Retired BNF Friday #1

I have been thinking about all my retired stamp sets that I can no longer use in classes or workshops...most of them I also cannot bear to part with. So, I decided to start a Retired BNF But-Not-Forgotten (and what better day to do it than) Friday series. This will be a very good motivation for me to make a card or project using retired stamp sets and other retired/discontinued papers and accessories and share them with you. This way I can still enjoy my not-so-current stash. Hopefully, it will also encourage you to dig and dust yours. Smile. The Retired list is coming up April 15th, which means there will be new addition to my ever-growing collection stored in boxes. It kind or makes me sad to see many of them put away and excited to see the new items that will be in the new catalog. Okay, okay, I confess perhaps it comes with the territory of becoming middle age when I am beginning to feel sort of obsolete or tossed aside. Don't get me wrong, I think the forties rock. I have never been more comfortable in my own skin. Then again, there is also that indefinable, dreaded and dull glimpse of the afternoon of my life. There are days when I can't wait to be sixty, so I can finally retire and stamp all day. There are also moments when I wish life would slow down some or at least I could get back the metabolism of a twenty year old. Smile.

Oh well, I quickly put together this card last night. It's very simple, but this Two- Step Terrific Tulips stamp set does not need much embellishment or bling. They are pretty on their own and it made me smile to use them again. Also, isn't that sentiment from Vogue Verses stamp set just perfect for this layout?

Thank goodness for Fridays, although today is Friday the 13th. Have a wonderful weekend, everyone. It has been a rainy week here in Northern California, but we've been promised of a sunny weekend by the weather people. They do get it right every once in a while.
Monday, April 9, 2012

Old is New Again

Aughh! It's the last day of my mini vacation. How can something I waited for so long be over so quickly? I guess, just like everything else, it's bound to end and back to work tomorrow. I must admit that I did not accomplish anything from my to-do list. I wasn't able to sort and organize my closet or put together an LBC box for the Philippines. I didn't clean-out my pantry like I planned to or iron a hamper full of clothes. Instead I made cards, organized my papers and sorted my stamp sets. I set aside so many retired stamps I was thinking of selling, but I was at war with myself and had to justify why I must keep them. Oh well, so I made a couple of cards from a couple of the retired sets I can't seem to say goodbye to. I used my Aqua Painters with the Wonder Crayons, isn't it lovely? I just love this Summer by the Sea stamp set.

Here's another one and so easy to make from the Spring Garden stamp set. I guess I'll be keeping most of my retired stamps for now. I remember how I used to trick my kids when they were small...I'd hide some of their toys for a couple of months and then they will be like new when they see them again. I feel the same way with my stamps. The retired ones that I can't use in my classes are put away in boxes, so seeing them again this past weekend felt like Christmas. I think to get more mileage out of them, I will try and create a card a week from the retired stamps that I have stored away and share them with you. That should be fun! However, I still have to make room for the new ones because the new catalog is less than two months away. I am so excited to get a sneak peek of the new catty. One of the amazing things about being a Stampin' Up! demonstrator is that I can view the catalog a month before they are released. I can also pre-order some of the items. I am a bit glad of the change and that the catalog will not be as thick, which means my wish list won't be too long. Hahaha! Oh, how I wish that's possible.

It's going to be a busy week in the office. I need to save up my good mojo to last me until Friday night when I can spend time in my "corner" and create again.

Thanks for stopping by. See you soon!
Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Sunday 2012

I remember Easter Sunday in the Philippines as a joyous celebration. At dawn of Easter Sunday, we used to go to church to join the "Salubong" (the meeting). There would be life size statues of the resurrected Christ and Virgin Mary in a procession to meet, usually outside in front of the church. It re-enacts the reunion of Jesus and Mary after the Resurrection. The statue of Virgin Mary would be wearing a black veil as a symbol or mourning for the death of her Son. A girl dressed as an angel sings and then slowly removes Mary's black veil to signify the end of Mary's grieving. I remember doves being freed into the air, choir singing, church bells ringing and fireworks, followed by the Easter mass. I have not celebrated Easter in the Philippines in over twenty years. Someday, I would like to bring my kids back home around that time so they can see and experience the stories I always tell them about. I would like them to see a little bit of my childhood.

I almost dialed the phone to call my grandma two days ago. I used to always phone her around Holy Week. It pinched my heart to remember she's no longer alive. Oh, how I miss the sound of her voice.  

I made this very simple Easter card last night which can also be used for Sympathy card, just change the sentiment. The stamp is not Stampin' Up! I am truly enjoying my short vacation at home. I have been making cards and broaches/pins. I even made a few hair clips using the new Summer Smooches fabric. I will share photos next week.

That's it for today. I have to start cooking, my sister and her family are coming over for lunch in a few hours so I better get started. Have a wonderful Easter, everyone! Please stop by again soon.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday

I was born and raised to observe Easter religiously in the Philippines. It was always a solemn week beginning Palm Sunday. Every establishment back home would be closed during Holy Week and reopen the following Monday to give people time to spend Easter with their families. It was a pretty big deal. I grew-up listening to the "Pasyon" during Lenten season. There was a "Pabasa" at church for several days and it ends before 3:00 pm on Good Friday. Pabasa is the reading/chanting of the story of Christ's Passion, life, trials, death and resurrection. Readers chant the PasyĆ³n from beginning to end without pause; this non-stop recitation is facilitated by the chanters working in shifts. We lived two houses from the church/chapel, so there was no escaping it. There was also a "Pakain" meaning to feed. It's a custom that has been passed down to families, the host of the Pabasa provides lots of food and refreshments for the chanters and church goers.

No Easter Bunnies, Easter Egg Hunts or Easter Baskets for us as kids. Instead, at a very young age we watched the "Senakulo" aka the dramatic presentation of the Passion of Christ in "action" blood, wounds, thorns and all. Everybody included in the play were in costumes and there was a man playing as Christ who walked around town carrying a cross and wearing a crown made out of thorns. There were also other devotees who joined the procession wearing a cloth mask doing their "penitensya" where they flagellate themselves. They do this as their "panata" or religious vow every year during "Kuwaresma", "Semana Santa" aka Holy Week. They cover their faces because this is their way of doing penance or as a way of giving thanks for a wish granted; and they want to do their vows anonymously. By Good Friday, the man portraying as Christ would often also be nailed on the cross and would pretend die by 3:00 pm that afternoon. I remember how as kids, older people would scare us that the water would be tinted with Christ's blood, hence we weren't supposed to take a shower on Good Fridays.

My grandma always made us go to church during Holy Week until when I was about fifteen. I remember my younger sister and I went with her to mass on Good Friday. The man who was giving the litany kept repeating himself saying "Ganitong-ganito" which means exactly like this (how Christ died on the cross) and we just exploded in laughter. He wasn't trying to be comical or anything, he just sounded so angry and he kept pointing his finger at everyone. At first we were just giggling, but he just kept saying things over and over and we just lost all control and laughed like hyenas in the middle of a solemn Good Friday mass. Our grandma took one stare at us and we left. Remembering that just brought smile to my face. Oh, I miss Easter back home.

Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Bordering on Romance (Wood 125480 Clear 125482), Teeny Tiny Wishes (115370)
Paper: Cardstocks - Basic Gray, Pretty in Pink, Lucky Limeade, Very Vanilla, Watercolor Paper (122959) and DSP Twitterpated (125406)
Ink: Basic Black
Accessories: Brads in Soft Subtles (119738), Framelits Die in Labels Collection (125598), Watercolor Wonder Crayons in Soft Subtles (119802), Aqua Painters (103954), Punches in Modern Label (119849) and Word Window (119857), Stampin' Dimensionals (104430), 3/8" Tafetta Ribbon in Pretty in Pink (retired), Sizzix Textured Embossing Folder in Elegant Bouquet (115964).

I had a busy day today with my youngest sister. We had lunch and then went to the mall. It's always so much fun shopping with someone. Thank you for stopping by, I am enjoying my spring break. Got to go, my wine awaits.
Thursday, April 5, 2012

Easter Goodies

Today begins Day 1 of my own Spring Break. I have been baking and cooking all day. It's such a treat for me to have a meal with my family lately. My son was always at dance practice and this week he stayed pretty much at home to rest and finish reading the Hunger Games Series. So, I don't mind cooking as long as we can all dine together, because I know times like this are becoming rare since the kids are growing-up just too darn fast...wanting to do their own things.

It will be a short post, I would like to share a few of the projects we did during our Easter Cards/Giftables class.

I cased this one from my upline. Isn't it so cute? Put together with just different kinds of punches. 

This Bunny has Cadbury Eggs in it.

Hershey's Air Delight Slider. 

 That's it for today's post. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Earth Laughs in Flowers

This year is going way too fast for me. I notice that as I get older, time seems to go by much quicker. It is a brand new month and I reminded my kids this morning during breakfast that there's only 36 days left in the school year. My son is turning 18 in a month and will be graduating high school end of May. I try not to think about it so much because I get overwhelmed by the fact that he will soon leave the nest. It saddens me that my children are growing too darn fast for me. I often wish there's a PAUSE button somewhere. I am sure this is what Simba's father meant when he explained about the Circle of Life.

I just finished the book, While I was Gone by Sue Miller and I was blown away by how much I appreciated it. I am surprised to find books that wouldn't have appealed to me five years ago, but they make me cry now. I think this is indeed Mid Life, but I refuse to call it Crisis...and I am grateful for the wisdom it has brought me and I completely welcome growing older and wiser.

It was very gloomy and rainy yesterday, so I made this card to brighten my day. Don't you just love the color combo? It makes me think of refreshing sorbet and tarty lemonade on a hot summer day.

Card Recipe

Stamp Set: Fabulous Florets (Wood 118750 Clear 120618)
Paper: Card stocks: Pool Party and Whisper White, Attic Boutique DSP (125407) from the Occasions Mini Catalog
Ink: Pool Party, Calypso Coral, Daffodil Delight
Accessories: Daffodil Delight 1/2" Seam Binding Ribbon (125583), Eyelet Border Punch (119853)

That's it for today. Thank you for stopping by!