Friday, November 24, 2017

Only You

I love those calendar sites that give you fun holidays for every day of the year.

I really need to keep one by my desk to keep some humor in my calendar.

Today is Celebrate Your Unique Talent Day, so I'm a guest in a hop with the My Sweet Petunia team, celebrating Iliana's unique talent as the inventor of the MISTI.

When I fell in love with stamping, I actually fell in love with stamping. Inking a stamp and putting it on paper. As I got more skilled, and got better tools, nothing replaced the love that has kept me making cards for more decades than I care to admit right now - stamps, ink and paper. You could take away my Big Shot, my heat gun - all of that, but the one thing you can't take away is my stamps and my MISTI.

The MISTI is the only thing I own that has actually revolutionized my one true love and made it EVEN MORE enjoyable, something I didn't used to think was possible.

So from the very bottom of my heart, I thank Iliana for changing not just my stamping, but for changing the crafting industry, and filling a need even the most experienced stampers didn't know we had. I'm even more thankful for her friendship, and so glad that this incredible tool brought a woman I love so much into my life. She has a very tender heart, a very large brain, and is one of the bravest people I know. She's one of those people I know I could call at 2 AM and she'd be there for me. (Not that I'm ever awake at 2 AM, and not that I ever make phone calls. But she'd be there!)

Her unique talent has greatly enriched my life, and Thanksgiving week is the perfect week to tell her that. So thank you, my friend. And y'all should all thank her for her storewide sale this week! The whole store is 20% off - no coupon needed. Sale runs through the 26th.

I also love pandas. That is a stone cold fact. So the card I made for Iliana today is featuring a set that made me scream in my hotel room in Salt Lake when I saw it - I'm surprised security didn't break down my door. It's the new Hi There Bear set from Concord & 9th. I paired the card with a BARC Wood envelope that I stamped with another image from the Hi There Bear set. Yes - the envelope is actually made of a beautiful wood veneer. I used the size linked below, which is smaller than an A2 - but I liked it because it made the bear more prominent. The self adhesive sequins (SQUEE) and the striped paper are from the upcoming Occasions catalog. Click here if you'd like a copy in the mail.










Hi There Bear BUNDLE
[ C&9 | SSS | ELH ]
Doodlebug EERIE EYES Sprinkles Shapes...
[ SSS ]
Stewart Superior Memories India Ink...
[ AMZUS ]
Arc BIRCH WOOD ENVELOPES 4 Bar ARCBW55
[ SSS | ELH | AMZUS ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Big Shot by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]

Since I have a voice this week, I thought I'd do a video of the process for you, and share some thoughts about bears.



I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Since you're probably still in your stretchy pants, why not visit all the other blogs in the hop for your chance to win an original or mini MISTI - your choice!

you are here >>Lydia<< you are here

Also - I've updated my searchable sentiment database to include the Occasions catalog, so if you are already subscribed, you're all set. If you aren't - you can do so here.

Thanks for stopping by today! Please leave in the comments what YOUR unique talent is - I look forward to reading them!

Loveyameanitbye.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Better Living Through Bean Broth

I'm old enough to have lived through many a health/diet fad. Some of them you can spot from a mile away as complete hoaxes. Some of them are just reversals of old fads - so for example, when I worked in a movie theater in high school, we used coconut oil in our popocorn. Then along came coconut oil hysteria, and as far as I know there were DECADES where we were not allowed to even say the words "coconut" OR "oil" and certainly never together.

And now everyone is squirting coconut oil into their mouths before yoga, rubbing it all over themselves, making popcorn with it again and generally feeling like superior earthlings about it.

Also popular now is "bone broth" - or what in the olden days we just called broth. Bone broth (which come on - that's not the best marketing, people - I don't like my food described with the words bones, balls, loaf, head or chunk, tyvm.) is now the cure for absolutely everything, which every grandmother alive today knew long before a millennial thought of it.

I was puttering around the other day thinking about bone broth for some reason, and I realized that there's something I consume several days a week which is even more magical and restorative than bone broth, and that I now I have a new word for it, which makes it so much more sustainable, renewable, eco-friendly, cruelty- and gluten-free than ever before:

bean broth
Or what I normally call it - coffee.

If you start every day with a cup of bean broth, you will have better mental clarity, you will have more energy - you will be taller, more in touch with your inner peace, and it's far less likely that you'll murder anyone at work.

It's also very simple to make. You can store the beans in your pantry, and then just grind them as needed. To prepare the bean broth, just either shoot steam through the beans with a special machine, run very hot water over them, or you can sort of make bean sun tea with them through a cold brewing process. Either way, you are left with a magical broth that will make you look and feel 20 years younger. I should really write a book about the benefits of bean broth. It's now even acceptable to go ahead and put the coconut oil right into your bean broth, along with a pat of butter and some cream. Heck - next thing you know we might all be able to talk about bacon and eggs again! It's a milagro!

Just wait long enough - and everything will come back around. The key is to be the first one to write the book about it that touches off the reunion.

I might just take a book template, filled with studies about something that's amazing for you and then just do find & replace with whatever the next formerly-banned-but-now-the-cure-for-everything food. Do not steal my idea!

At my mini-retreat, we played with fun foam a lot, which is one of my favorite things to to. It can be used for so many things, like creating tiny T-Rex shadows. All I did was stamp the little dino onto fun foam, put a little adhesive on it and attach it to a block to use it like a stamp. Easy! And you can leave the little foam shape in the stamp case to use again. To stamp the image, I recommend a permanent ink so it doesn't smear.
Wild About You by Understand Blue
Online Extravaganza
[ SUP ]
Pieces & Patterns Clear-Mount Stamp...
[ SUP ]
Lemon Lime Twist Classic Stampin' Pad...
[ SUP ]
Amazon.com: WHITE FUN FOAM 9" X 12" X...
[ AMZUS ]
Staz On Ink Pads - Jet Black
[ SBC | AMZUS | ELH | SBC ]
Tuxedo Black Memento Ink Pad by...
[ SUP | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
TURQUOISE Studio Bag
[ MSW ]
Bar Magnet
[ MSW | AMZUS ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP | AMZUS ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]

There's a lot going on online as usual for Thanksgiving week, so don't miss out!

Now today begins the Online Extravaganza - starting with a 24 hour stamp sale! Then through the 26th, there are sales on many items - 10% - 50% off, and also a flash sale on the 27th. You can see all the details here. This is all while supplies last, so don't wait too long.

My Sweet Petunia is having a sale - 20% off the whole store - details here, no coupon needed. That goes through the 26th. I recommend bar magnets and a studio bag if you don't have those already - I take that bag everywhere! I should have taken a picture of my friend Gail's bag that she brought to class this weekend - I swear it had her whole craft room in it!

  • Sign up to receive an Occasions catalog here.
  • Sign up for my RAK database to receive random gifts here
  • See all my online classes (Occasions classes coming soon, and a new Christmas one this week) here
  • Sign up for my November Arkon giveaway here. You get extra entries for every order in my store, every purchase of an online class. You can always get 20% off at Arkon with my coupon code below.
  • Online Extravaganza is here! From November 20-26, select products on sale for up to 40% off! On November 20th, there's an exclusive sale for select stamp sets for 20% off. Shop here, and if you use host code Y3YE2BS9 during November, you will be entered to win Occasions catalog product! 

My favorite listen this week is the Case Files podcast. One good murder after another. Some solved, some not. Narrated by the Aussie host, which is a bonus. Did 11 episodes this weekend while I emptied my Scrapbox, which I sold to my friend and team member, Dana to make room for this beautiful antique mail sorting table from the Spicewood post office. I have a very small house, and so if new furniture comes in, old furniture has to go! It worked out perfectly, because Dana had had a scrapbox on her Amazon Wishlist for many years! I will miss all that storage, but I do love this table.

Antique Mail Sorting Table - Spicewood Post Office

Hope you have a great week!

Loveyayoulittleturkeysmeanitbye.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Not Seven, Not Ten

When I was at OnStage I got an email that my debit card had been compromised. It's pretty routine now, and for a moment, as I was telling some friends about it, I didn't think much of it - which made me then ponder something I see a lot online - an imperceptible creep towards a tolerance for perceived "victimless" thefts like these.

Many years ago I went to go see The Kite Runner, by myself.

I had listened to the audiobook, which was nearly more than I could take, so I am not really sure why I went to see the movie, but I did. By myself, in the middle of the afternoon. And I'm glad I saw it alone, because it was heartbreaking and I don't think I could have handled company.

But there was what I call a Milan Kundera moment in both the book and the movie that was magnificent. And that was the author's idea that there is only one sin. Not ten. Not seven. Just one.

And I truly believe this.

Here's how it's said in the book:

"...there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. When you kill a man, you steal a life... you steal his wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness... there is no act more wretched than stealing." 
                                                                        ~Khaled Hosseini

I love that. I believe that with all my heart. We shouldn't become numb to the even a hint of this particular transgression, because at the end of the day - it's the only one.

At my fall retreat, my friend Holly had really enjoyed a product that we were using in class - the Dina Wakely Scribble sticks. Holly is the most generous, kind person you'd ever want to meet, and has done so much for me, and so many things to help me with my retreats, that I wanted to gift her the Scribble Sticks. I walked over - and mind you - there is complete and utter chaos at all of our workstations at retreat - and I put a tin of them on top of one of her piles. I never said anything to her and promptly forgot all about it.

The following week, she emails me in a panic - apologizing and telling me she must have packed up a box of the sticks by accident and could she mail them back to me? I told her they were a gift, and you'd have thought I'd given her the Hope diamond.

I love people like Holly.

There's no such thing as a victimless theft. If you can be anything - don't be Batman, be Holly. :)

Speaking of retreats, at my mini-retreat in Salt Lake, we did lots of fun projects. One of them required creating eight masks for the little bear in Pieces & Patterns. We masked off some stamped bears with my favorite masking paper and then did some inking techniques. When I was prepping for retreat, I noticed how cute and colorful the masks were all lined up on my desk. So since the theme for this particular class was how to stretch your stamps, I thought I'd incorporate the masks into a second card. I don't think I've ever made a mask part of a card design before, but I hope you agree, these funky little bears deserved to be on one. I discovered that exactly eight of them fit around the round sentiment in the set too. To align them, I put them at 12 and 6, then 3 and 9 and then the last four were easy. Hello there, bears!

Pieces & Patterns Clear-Mount Stamp...
[ SUP ]
Smoky Slate Classic Stampin' Pad...
[ SUP ]
Avery Self-Adhesive Removable Laser...
[ AMZUS ]
KAI Scissors
[ SBC ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Dina Wakley Ranger SCRIBBLE STICKS...
[ SSS | ELH | JGG | BMS | AMZUS ]


A few things on my desk and in my head this week I thought I'd tell you about. First - I'm listening to the audiobook version of The Martian, and it's excellent.

Second - appetizer recipes, as I prep for my Customer Appreciation holiday party. This year I need to triple my cheeseball output because these vanished inside of ten minutes. The other two recipes in this post are outstanding as well. If you have a favorite holiday appetizer recipe - leave it in the comments!

Third - this Pinterest board, for when my brain needs a break.

Fourth, this stamp set, which is my next online class - it will be up by Monday.

Fifth - this locally produced brown butter ghee - OH EM GHEE.

I can't believe next week is Thanksgiving. I need a month credited to my account this fall, I swear.

I hope you have an awesome weekend.

LoveyameanitbeHollybye.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

You're So Extra

Between Falliday Fest and OnStage, there was such a brief period of time for me to do any crafting, that I was dying to just sit down and color something after I got home, and I had my eye on one of the host sets from the catalog that we'd been able to preorder - Cozy Cottage. It was crying out for my Polychromos, so I took my lunch hour yesterday and just gave in.

All week I kept asking people why they were so extra, so I thought this card would be the perfect tribute to all my extra friends here on my blog.
Cozy Cottage by Understand Blue
Cozy Cottage Host Set - Avail Jan 3rd
[ SUP ]
Smoky Slate Classic Stampin' Pad...
[ SUP ]
Faber-Castell Polychromos Pencils and...
[ BLIC | SSS | AMZUS ]
Artist's Choice 110lb White Card Stock
[ GNK ]
Smoky Slate 8-1/2" X 11" Cardstock by...
[ SUP ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]
Ipoint Orbit Pencil Sharpener, Turquoise
[ AMZUS | AMZUS ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
I wanted to soften the lines of the stamp image a bit, so I decided on no-line coloring.

I started by stamping the image in Smoky Slate onto some Artist's Choice cardstock from Gina K. I got to test this cardstock at a retreat last month and I fell hard for it. It has just enough tooth for colored pencils - which is really something she's an expert at, and I'm a tiny grasshopper at. So I was excited to find out that I loved the way my pencils worked on this paper. It's also a good alcohol marker paper. I haven't tried that myself yet, but if there's one person you can trust on the subject of paper, it's most definitely Gina.

Then I just selected some colors I thought would be harmonious - warm greys for the stone, and warm reds and browns for what looks like a thatch roof on the cottage. The only cool colors I chose are in the sky and on the mountains.

FYI for color geeks like me - the Prussian Blue in this set, which I used on the mountains, is SPOT ON and very vivid and beautiful. I actually had to tone it down with cool greys, because it's a very saturated color.

The colors I used (which you can buy in open stock at Blick) are as follows: Cadmium Yellow Lemon, Earth Green, Earth Green Yellowish, Chromium Green Opaque, Prussian Blue, Sky Blue, Brown Ochre, Terra Cotta, Burnt Siena, Burnt Umber, Warm Grey II, Warm Grey IV, Warm Grey VI, Cold Grey II, Cold Grey IV.

The other thing Gina got me addicted to at retreat was her pencil sharpener. I have hated all pencil sharpeners before this one and I am now in love. What's cool about it is that it has an auto-stop, so it's won't over-sharpen, but it gives you that tiny fine point you need for the rock shadows, the birds and the grass above. Life is too short for dull pencils. I'm so mad I didn't know there was a turquoise one!


So then I matted the image with Smoky Slate and put it on a Whisper White card base and called it a lunch hour. Not a bad way to do lunch!

A few things to note before you go!


  • Sign up to receive an Occasions catalog here.
  • Sign up for my RAK database to receive random gifts here
  • See all my online classes (Occasions classes coming soon) here
  • Sign up for my November Arkon giveaway here. You get extra entries for every order in my store, every purchase of an online class. You can always get 20% off at Arkon with my coupon code below.
  • Online Extravaganza is coming! From November 20-26, select products on sale for up to 40% off! On November 20th, there's an exclusive sale for select stamp sets for 20% off. Shop here, and if you use host code Y3YE2BS9 during November, you will be entered to win Occasions catalog product! 

LoveyameanityouareEXTRAbye.
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