Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Eve ...

Do you have plans for New Year's Eve, a chance to reflect on the year past and look with hope to the year ahead?

Some years we have done it up with quite a lot of fanfare -- one year, we spent it at the New Year's concert by the Philadelphia Orchestra (a formal affair), followed by a night's stay at the city's Four Seasons Hotel and a brunch in the City with Mummers.

Another year, we were aboard a cruise ship in the Caribbean, and unwisely made plans for an early excursion to the Emerald Falls in Dominica.  They were gorgeous ... and we were not, having had only an hour's sleep after a full night's revelry.

But we have no plans this year.  Secretly, I hope we'll be asked to babysit -- we love spending time with our grandbaby and "the kids"Whatever you do, have fun! 

...And Happy New Year!

Here's a chevron-patterned cut on a circle card, made with the Silhouette Cameo.
I cut a separate yellow glitter backing circle, and also separated out the
2013 and cut it out of a darker purple. I layered that 2013 on top of the
original one, using pop dots. And of course, I Stickled.  Because what's
a celebration without Stickles??

DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Celebrating Michele's Craft Room's 1st Year Blog Hop!

Whether you're a blogging newbie or have been at it for a while, isn't it fun to look back to some of your first posts and see how your crafting has grown?

One of my friends, Michele, who blogs at Michele's Craft Room, is celebrating her first anniversary of blogging, by hosting this Blog Hop.

My, it seems like just yesterday when she started and I became a follower -- and here Michele is with just shy of 200 followers!  Congratulations, Michele -- may we be blessed with many more years of your sharing your cards etc with us!

Personally, I've been blogging for about 2.5 years now, and have just crossed the 500 posts milestone!  The other statistics for the CardMonkey blog are incredible -- there have been more than 200,000 page views, by 1,237 followers.  Those statistics, and $5.00, will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks, ehhh?  (Stay tuned, and you may get that cup of coffee!!)

This is a Wee Stamps digi-image I colored using Copic markers.
I mounted fussy-cut the left side of the image so I could lay it upon
a wood-patterned paper strip on the left. I used a straight stitch
around the designer paper mat, and a decorative stitch down the
wood patterned paper.  The chipboard sentiment is by Farm
House Paper; the two gems above are from my stash.
I am very grateful to those who choose to follow me and have inspired me to try new techniques and tools ... I get as much out of other bloggers as I put into my own blog.  So to you I say, "Many thanks", with this card, at right: 

So now for a little blog candy to help Michele's guests at her party celebrate:

A random commenter on my blog today will win a $10 gift card to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts -- your choice!  All you have to do to qualify is to be a follower of the CardMonkey blog and leave a comment with your blog address. If you don't have a blog yet or don't plan to blog ever, just let me know that instead. You're still eligible to win!

OK, so for now, I don't think there is anyone else tailing me on this blog hop, so I'll just leave you with my gratitude for stopping by and making my blogging fun. If you missed any stops along the way, here is a full list.  Be sure you swing by Michele's blog (at the start) and "follow" -- she has some sweeeeet blog candy!  

Michele ~
Ashley -
Miranda -
An'Jenic -
Robin -
Tabetha -
Melissa ~
Lori ~
Ellen ~ CardMonkey:

 Thanks for stopping by!
CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Friday, December 21, 2012

A Cardmaker's Conundrum

What a conundrum Christmas is for cardmakers! Or am I alone in this?  I want to personalize each of the cards I make for those about whom I care, and I do enjoy thinking about each person as I make their card. However, it's not always possible ... especially from a time perspective.

Here is a card I made for a friend. I am enclosing with it some art I made for her -- it was a "moment worth remembering". When I found this vellum piece in a stack from Little Yellow Bicycle, I knew that my design was almost done.  The paper I used is from Bazzill Basic Papers "Believe" collection. 

I cut the holly leaves using a cut file from the Silhouette Online Store. I tried to cut the same design from extremely fragile "cork paper", but it fell apart on the mat. So, using the off-cut as a stencil/edge, I cut a complementing holly leaf by hand.  The brad, gems and ribbon are from my stash. 

This post today marks my 500th post since I started blogging 2 years ago. I hope you've enjoyed the projects I've made and the tips I've shared. Here's to many more! Thank you for "following" me, and growing with me.

DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Merry Chickens!

I'm sure that time escapes most of us (as it has me) at this time of year, and hopefully you are able to sneak in some fun time to replenish your creative spirit.  

What have you been up to?  I've been playing chicken. 

Earlier this year, I played along with an art challenge issued by my good friend Jenn (my sister from another mother, living in Nanaimo, British Columbia), and drew and Zentangled (then colored with Copic markers) this first chicken:

Jenn purchased this chicken 
-- "Whackdoodle" --  
my first art sale! 

I rewarded her kindness (and crazy enthusiasm) 
by gifting her with my second chicken:

Well, she started a trend. 
While visiting my parents in Florida earlier this month, 
I drew a few more chickens and got some help sketching some from my Dad and nephew Ed, too.

Here is another chicken I just finished:

Introducing the third in the 
Chicken Challenge series, "Della" ..

And so, in the spirit of the holiday spirit, 
and because my Christmas cards will be late, 
I bring you these very Merry Chickens
full of holiday cheer:

Merry Christmas one and all!

DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Happy 13th Birthday M&DD's Emily - Blog Hop!

Hi everyone!! Thank you for joining us today as we celebrate the birthday of the daughter of my friend, Beth McGee. Beth's daughter, Emily, is the other half of Mother and Daughter Designs. I "met" the precious duo when they started making banners for special needs children.  

Emily's turning 13 today, and so friends of Mother and Daughter Designs have gathered here to celebrate the life of a sweet, talented young lady. 

Here is the card that I made to celebrate Emily's special day:

These fun papers are from the
"Cakewalk" collection by October Afternoon

Now, what's a birthday celebration without cake, candy and game prizes!?  We've got the Prizes for sure ... Be sure to check out our Hostess' Blog (Beth) to see how to qualify to win the following prizes:
  • Cricut Cartridge "Jubilee Celebration" donated by Beth of Mother and Daughter Designs
  • Digital copy of "Creations by Crafty Card Gallery Issue 2" ~ Sponsored by Jennifer Restivo.
  • $10 gift certificate for Close to My Heart products ~ sponsored by Lucy Kelleher, Close to My Heart Independent Consultant: 
Move on to see the next project for Emily. The next stop is with CONNIE at Connie Can Crop.  In case you get lost along the way, here is the full blog line-up:

1. Beth ~
2. Shawnee ~
3. Rachelle ~
4. Lucy ~
5. Christine ~
6. Miranda ~
7. Mickie ~

8. Ellen~
      (YOU ARE HERE ... so go to CONNIE [# 9] below next)

9. Connie~
10. Suzanne -
11. Ashley~
12. Janis ~
13. Amanda~
14. Lori ~
15. Anita ~
16. Jennifer~

.... and Happy 13th Birthday, Emily!
DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Peace on Earth card

'Tis the season ... for yet another holiday card. This one, I am planning on sending this week to my favorite neighbors who are Jewish and celebrate Hanukkah.  They, like many who are deeply concerned about the unsettled situation in Israel, pray for world peace daily. I do, too.  I hope we get to a time when all of our troops are home with their families at the holidays, and always. 

Once again relying on my Silhouette Cameo and a cutting file from
the Silhouette Online store, I cut this overlay using Brilliant White #130
cardstock on the double cut feature. I mounted it on Bazzill cherry
stock and adhered the whole thing to a card also made from the
Brilliant White #130 cardstock.  The finished size is 5x7".
Peace be with you, and your family.