Saturday, December 19, 2009

(Almost) a month between posts!

oops! So the juggling isn't really happening at the moment. 2010's new year's resolution - be organised!! Off to Canberra tomorrow until next Saturday. Christmas with my brother and his in-laws will be educational!

Monday, November 30, 2009


Well, after 7 months of no luck in the employment area, hubby has been offered 4 more positions or interviews. Serious Murphy's Law happening in this household! I've been offered a teaching spot at my local craft store and will start in January. I'm also going to be continuing as a casual at a nearby primary school weekly on Thursday and Friday next year. Both my kids and husband are thrilled with this prospect of regular additional income which means we can all stop panicking about money. It also makes it just that little bit easier to run my Stampin' Up business as a hobby demonstrator, indulging myself when I want to! I'm also now secretary for our kids' P&C and will be serving on the canteen committee and the fundraising committee too. Of course, with Toby starting school, its also an attempt to keep myself involved 5 days a week. So all in all, I think I'll be (happily) busy next year! Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

He got it!

Hubby got the job! Next week he'll start at Fox Sports in IT. And he'll be catching the train in and walking over to the office!! Good for his self-esteem to get the job and good for his fitness to be doing the walking!!!

Soooooo happy!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Thoughts and Prayers

But not the stamp set!! I'm asking for some special thoughts and prayers for hubby's second interview for a permanent job next week. Would make the best Christmas gift for our little family!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Work in progress, demo website

I've started setting up my demonstrator website hosted through Stampin' Up. Very basic so far, but will endeavour to keep it up to date. Please visit!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Classic Alien Punch Art

I've now got an alien bug in my bonnet about Alien punch art. More research and the ideas kept buzzing and popping and fizzing in my brain. I'm a long term Star Wars and particularly Yoda fan - "Do or do not. There is no try." - hence the following card which was SOOO much fun to make!
And of course, who could forget dear old Marvin the Martian. "Where's the Kaboom? There's supposed to be an Earth-shattering Kaboom!"


Thursday, October 15, 2009

aliens among us!

Punch art Aliens created for my SU sister Clare. She lamented the lack of alien punch art online and this is something like what I came up with yesterday. The only thing they're lacking is some punny or catchy alien message... I was thinking they are perfect for boys birthdays but can't think of a good message. Drop me a note and let me know what you'd suggest!

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

China Dolls

I was so happy with my little punch-art Asian dolls, I suggested to Caitlyn that we make another similar card for her best friend Bronte who celebrates her birthday this weekend. Bronte is Chinese and her favourite colour is red so we made this little dolls to represent Bronte and Caitlyn. Aren't they cute?

Monday, October 05, 2009

Inklings Cyberstamp Punch Art Challenge

My final challenge for the evening is a Punch Art Challenge. Like my Russian doll last cyberstamp I hosted, this is inspired by images that Stampin' Up! Australia currently doesn't include in the Idea Book Catalogue. There's no reason why we can't create punch art of images we demonstrators might wish were in the catalogue, is there?? So here's my Asian Dolls card:

Inklings Cyberstamp Colour Challenge

The second challenge for tonight's cyberstamp is a colour challenge. I picked the colours and then used the ColorCombo picker to create this image. Its a great resource! Pumpkin Pie, Garden Green, Riding Hood Red and Perfect Plum

I set myself the additional challenge of creating an Aussie Christmas card with this colour combo, so here's my sample:

Inklings Cybercrop Sketch Challenge

The first challenge tonight is a sketch challenge. Here is my sample:

The sketch is the first of Becky Fleck's September CardMaps

I love using sketches as a starting point when I'm stuck for ideas and Becky Fleck's sketches include quite a bit of detail so you can use as much or as little of the sketch as you like!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Caitlyn's birthday

At the specific request of the birthday girl, we made her a rather large chocolate cake which ended up rising quite a lot in the middle. Since she wanted a rainbow in smarties, it turned out quite well. Everyone enjoyed it!

Here's the card I made for Caitlyn's birthday. She loves purple and she liked the flower-pot card I made for Alana's cyberstamp so the decision was quite easy! The photo is quite speckled with shadows because my favourite picture window is covered in dust streaks from the dust storms we've had in Sydney this week - so apologies!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Alana's Cyberstamp

Alana set the challenges for our most recent Inklings Cyberstamp. The first challenge was to use embellishments we've been hoarding. This one started out really simple but kind of grew... I even used one of Alana's tricks adding tiny strips of paper to the buttonholes.
The second challenge was to create a flowerpot card. I was going to make a really tiny one using the Boho Blossoms punch again, but this one evolved in my mind based on a recent card by Tessa. She's so clever - embossing in white on vellum and then shading underneath - Tessa's version is much softer with the shading just touching the centre of the flowers. Would you believe the colour under the vellum flowers is Only Orange? Love how this turned out! Its so soft and pretty and the Bashful Blue and orange go so well together!
Lastly, I'd like to show a picture of some of my Father's Day stall creations - little phone message fridge magnets. The phone is from "Taking Care of Business" set and I added the letters "note" to the bottom of the pegs using "Calendar Alphabet and Numbers" set. Very happy with how they turned out, but ended up with 8 left over from the stall. Still, I can change the sentiment and sell them elsewhere.
That's all for now! Hope everyone is having a lovely Sunday!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Wow! Followers!

Wow! I just noticed I've got Followers! WOOHOO!

I just gotta post a link back to Tessa's amazing interpretation of my snowflake/ornament card using Tree Trimmings. She's a clever chick-a-dee! And a constant source of inspiration for me!

Okay, best dash away - its Darren's birthday today - 09/09/09. A bit auspicious! Reads the same in either date format too! ;) So, Happy Birthday my love! Its going to be a lovely day!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Project "just chuck it"

I don't have cards to show just now; I wanted to share that I've been working slowly at getting a few things in order. Darren lost his job in April and is still going to interviews trying to find somewhere he won't "be bored". *sigh* That's employer speak for "we don't really want you". Anyway, I've been rather glum about it all and been a particularly sad person to be around until I started going out to Westmead Children's Hospital as a volunteer with Play Therapy. Fellow Inkling Fiona and I travelled out two weeks in a row and sorted out our parking, volunteer badges, etc, as well as sat and created with some children having chemotherapy in both outpatients and the Oncology ward. After all my crappy behaviour for the last few months, I'm finally snapping out of it. I don't have anything to be gloomy about. I don't need to be an Eeyore. These kids and their families are going through so much more.

So I'm grateful that Darren is around so much. I've started running "Fun Friday" every week at my place (in an effort to get the housework going!!) and went and did some planned spending at Ikea buying some much needed storage, drawers for Ryan and desks for Ryan and Caitlyn. We have also started "chucking" with a couple of loads to the dump, scoping out neighbours recycling bins every second week to get rid of our overflow (we always overflow our recycling bin!), and a bit of tree surgery to get the yard starting to look a bit more friendly. Little steps and I'm getting there slowly - focussing on the accomplishments not the bunch of stuff left to do.

Okay, Universe, I'm now ready for Darren to get a job! Please? Pretty please? Wouldn't mind one myself - we'll see how that goes...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Footy Fascination

So attempting to find something fascinating about the footy the other week while hubby was watching and seeking a cuddle, I started messing with SU colours to find out what his favourite team colours would be. Yo-yo Yellow and Pacific Point are the answers - can you guess the team? Here's the card which made my footy watching much more enjoyable!
And here's a card that has been floating around my mess scrapbooking spot for a couple of weeks. Its a cyberstamp challenge from fellow Inkling Alison (will try and track down a blog). She posted a colour challenge using her curtains of Pumpkin Pie, Riding Hood Red, Pacific Point and Basic Black (or gold). Inspired by both the striped curtain theme and the colour combo, here's my take on it using Faux Woodgrain which Jayne showed us at the team weekend. Oh, and Colleen, my bestie, suggested the puppies and sentiment cos she's a star!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Spring Mini due 1 August

So there's a new mini catalogue for Stampin' Up! due out on 1 August. Here's a card using the stamp set "Tree Trimmings" and Ski Slope designer series paper as well as a 5/16" jumbo brad from the mini. The colour combination is also from the Ski Slope DSP - a great cheat to making great colour combinations is to use colours already mixed up in scrapbook papers! Anyway, hope you enjoy this card. Very simple and I think its a bit nice.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Cyberstamp 10 July Challenge 2 & 3

So here's Challenge 2, a colour challenge... The colour palette:

And my sample:

Challenge 3 is a sketch from Becky Fleck Pagemaps. I love using these as a starting point when I'm having trouble coming up with something on my own. I've been pretty faithful to this one - but I usually use sketches to start me off and get the juices going.

And here's my sample...

Hope you enjoy my first Inklings Cyberstamp!

Cyberstamp 10 July Challenge 1

Here's my first challenge for the Inklings Cyberstamp...

Stamps: Heartfelt thanks, Season of Joy, Trendy trees, Basic Phrases
Paper: Naturals Ivory, Elegant Eggplant, Old Olive, Whisper White
Ink: So saffron, Elegant Eggplant, Old Olive, Regal Rose, Basic Black, Blush blossom
Accessories: Scallop edge punch, Felt Fusions I, Rhinestone brads

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Elite challenges

Couple of challenges from the Elite team challenge blog. I love the colour combination Carol chose for this month's challenges, hence the hasty completion of the challenges! :) The first card covers Challenges 1 & 2, using the stamp set Circle Circus and the colour combination of Not Quite Navy, Kraft and Very Vanilla. I really like this card! :)

This second card is based on a sketch made from a card on page 31 of the current Australia/New Zealand Idea Book Catalogue from Stampin' Up! I was a bit caught on the blue and vanilla theme. Used the Fresh Cuts stamp set and some Bashful Blue instead of Kraft card. I'm quite happy with the result!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy new home

Something I've been thinking of ever since receiving my Neighbourhood wheel and have had these little houses cut out individually for a while. Teamed up with some of my autumn Trendy Trees, I'm so pleased with the result. It looks so friendly!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Mr Bump

Had a bit of fun with my spinner cards - I've been making loads of Elmo, Grover, and Cookie Monster spinner cards lately. This one turned up in my head while watching the Mr Men Show with the kids the other day. How would Mr Bump look on a spinner card? I think this would lend itself well to Mr Messy, Little Miss Sunshine and Mr Bounce as well! Don't you?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Happy Thoughts

This is a card I threw together for this month's Elite Challenge and is a combination of the Breezy Pirouette colour challenge and the sketch challenge. I kept both in mind while creating this card. Loads of distressing on this card too - isn't a fingernail a wonderfully handy tool?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Designer Series Paper sampler

My DSP sampler for 2009/2010 is made up of 3" square segments of each of the DSP appearing in the Australian 2009/2010 Stampin' Up! catalogue. I've used my tab punch after carefully measuring the size of the punch and making a template in Word to print the name and code number of each type of paper on an Avery A4 sheet. I used Avery labels because they tend to be a heavier weight label and I wanted the tabs to be fairly strong. I punched using a standard hole-punch and threaded the papers onto a 50mm hinged ring which I bought at my local newsagent.
We have some good news at the Gibbs' household - my husband has an interview on Friday. Keeping everything crossed that it goes well. And only two more sleeps til I head down to Canberra for my first Stampin' Up! convention. I'm SO nervous! The excitement about the convention ALMOST eclipses the THRILL of the children returning to school tomorrow. HALLELUJAH!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"And the walls came tumbling down"

At least we have a roof over our heads and will manage for a while. But the rug has been pulled and we're swept off our feet. Hubby lost his job today - another victim of the "technical" recession. Our home is feeling very very sad today.

Monday, April 20, 2009

You (still) float my boat...

Its been 10 years of wedded bliss... Well, okay its not exactly been blissful all the way, but there's been better and worse, richer and poorer, sickness and health... And we're not dead yet, though I'm sure there have been occasions... ;)
Here's the card I threw together last night for my beloved. I realised on Saturday evening that I hadn't yet made one for him. So as soon as the kids were in bed last night, I started. About one and a half programs (watching telly) later, this was done. Quite pleased with it myself! :) All 'In Colors', Boatloads of Love (my sale-a-bration gift) and much use of the beloved scallop edge punch.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Team cyberstamp cards

I think I needed a distraction on Sunday - I made these two cards for the team cyberstamp which was actually held on Wednesday. The first card, below, is based on a card featured on p113 of the 2009/2010 Idea Book & Catalogue. I've used some of the new DSP "Urban Garden", cutting out the flowers and sticking them to Baja Breeze + Basic Gray card. For a bit of interest I pleated the Basic Gray and scalloped the edge. Looking at it now I think it needs one less Baja Breeze flower - the one under the staple, so I'll pull it off. Kiwi Kiss ribbon, pleated again with staples to hold. Corner is the reverse side of the same "Urban Garden" sheet with a filligree brad to hold it.

This card uses "Fresh Cuts" a lovely versatile set and was for Dani's colour challenge of Chocolate Chip, Baja Breeze, Certainly Celery and Taken with Teal. I had stamped the Baja Breeze some time ago and simply tore it out of the sheet, scrunched and flattened the paper. The teal piece was one I'd scallopped some time ago too, and the celery I'd used for something else, tore it up and placed the stamped side face down. Bit of ribbon, word window punch, added some choc-chip stamping and Voila!

Hope you enjoy!

On a somber note, Grace's funeral is tomorrow and I'm praying that we all get through it okay. I'm also wishing I could be of more help and use to Tab and Michael, Grace's Mum and Dad. Rest well little one.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Sad news...

Our family grew a little on Monday with the arrival of Grace Rosemary Gibbs thanks to Tabitha and Michael (Darren's brother & partner). She never stabilised enough to have the operation she needed and despite struggling for 45 hours, she passed away early yesterday morning. This is the card I made for her family using a set borrowed from my upline Jayne.
Rest in peace little angel.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

You're a Blast!

Super cute little card. Took minutes to create with the most time taken drawing more stars and dots around the space-ship! :) The set is Pun Fun and I used Night of Navy cardstock with the spaceship stamped on Whisper White in Night of Navy ink. White gel pen to extend the star field.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Don't fall off your seat...

I scrapped!!!

Here's one using 2 year old SU In Colors, Dazzling Diamonds and the "Everything" from the Always set + a Basic Grey rub-on.

This one is of my darling hubby with his 2nd newest niece, Emma. I just had news that there's another one this morning: Grace Rosemary. Anyway, this was a couple of weekends ago and Emma is 1 1/2 weeks.

And this is using my absolute favourite paper brand, Basic Grey. This layout fell together so easily! Just adore it.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Sunny Boy box with a twist (excuse the pun!)

The box below contains the incentive stamp for my hostess at tomorrow's workshop. I designed this box when looking for something simple to do for our school Mother's Day stall. This will hold 3-4 heart foil choccies and have some kind of SU tag on the end. This one is made with Afternoon Tea designer series paper, a price-tag bought from a newsagent (sold in lots of 100 for about $6) and a scrap of ribbon. I think the scallop edge punch just adds a tiny touch of "special", don't you?
Thanks muchly to Kylie for her much needed inspiration to make this card work! Yeah, I cheat and visit OTHER DEMONSTRATORS blogs to get inspiration!! SHHH! Don't tell anyone! ;) Its crayon resist, a technique I hadn't mastered until now! Pale colours are very forgiving for this technique, so I've used Pink Pirouette and Baja Breeze as my jump points. Easy to add some Pacific Point and Baja Breeze cardstock at the other end. Stamp sets are Embrace Life and Say it with Scallops.
My new favourite stamp set - Bloom Away is coming from 1 April in the 2009/2010 Stampin' Up! catalogue. A lovely lovely stamp set for Aussies! I've stamped on Naturals Ivory card, water-coloured with Riding Hood Red and Always Artichoke and mounted it on Sage Shadow and Always Artichoke cardstock. Kraft is the base card, and choc chip 5/8" grosgrain ribbon. Simple but immensely satisfying to do!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Gorgeous colours - beautiful stamps!

The new "In Color" set from Stampin' Up! is just totally gorgeous! I'm addicted to the Tangerine Tango, Pacific Point and Kiwi Kiss colour combo. But I just can't seem to stop myself including Baja Breeze, Pink Pirouette and Riding Hood Red to make it a full set of all colours! Here I've used "Window Dressing", a new hostess level 3 set (party sales of $1000). Its quite addictive - and I just adore the little pussy cat and girl - the second image is (of course) Caitlyn and Mishka in the window.
I'm also enjoying the pretty "Bloom Away" stamp set, here coloured in Pink Pirouette and Always Artichoke on Naturals Ivory, matting Sage Shadow, Always Artichoke with Kraft backgound.

These new colours and stamps have revitalised my interest and enthusiasm! Hope they do yours too!

Friday, March 13, 2009

A myriad of things...

Maybe it was my birthday (this week), maybe it was the very helpful government handout, maybe it was any number of things. Or maybe it was just articulating on my blog how I felt and accepting it was a blip and be ready to move on. Anyway, I feel so much better. I think getting to SU! training at Jayne Mercer's place also helped. Everything is much easier when its put into perspective. Its also better when I'm able to break down the "insurmountable" into small tasks which are really much more achievable. Don't expect too much, and don't be so hard on myself. As long as I get there in the end. Setting goals, whether it be personal, financial, family or house-work (my HUGEST "insurmountable") related!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

New In Colors

Stampin' Up!'s In Color range is changing as of 1 April, and there are also some new stamp sets due out. Here's a sample of some cards using these new colours: Pacific Point, Tangerine Tango, Red Riding Hood, Pink Pirouette, Baja Breeze and Kiwi Kiss. I have to say that I really love these new colours - I was dubious at first, but they are all just gorgeous to work with. And those who watch far too much television will notice that Freedom Furniture features three of the colours in their logo! I've also used Fresh Cuts, a lovely new stamp set which will also be available from 1 April.

When I started making these cards, it wasn't my initial intention to include every colour in every card, they just kind of built up into these images. My favourite would have to be the fishie. His scales are done with the feather part of the owl image from "Love Owl-ways".

Thursday, March 05, 2009

A better day

I'm not counting chickens yet: today's been a better day. Perhaps because its Ryan's 8th birthday today. And I found a few jobs in the paper to apply for. I've been finding it hard since my kids' new school principal decided to stop using me as a casual in the office. Kicking myself for not trying harder to get the permanent two day a week spot that I interviewed for last year. Lost the plot just before the interview and didn't get it. Going from working almost full time last year to absolutely nothing this year has been hard - more so than going on maternity leave because at least then I had a bundle to look forward to. So, socks are being pulled a little further up and the black dog has shrunk back down to a more manageable size. Thanks for the concern from Jesse and Jody... Was lovely to receive your comments, ladies!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Black dog

There's been this little black dog at my heels lately. Its gotten just a wee bit bigger over the last few weeks. Despite knowing this is just a "blip" in my life and it will get better, I'm struggling. I keep starting emails to send to people to appeal for help and then closing the messages down, not knowing what to say. It used to help to write it on my blog, so I'm back here just before collecting the children at school and typing furiously in my last few minutes with a couple of tears rolling down my cheeks.

This blog used to be called "Optimist with PND". My youngest son just turned four, so I'm guessing that I'm a wee bit past PND. Anyway, I'm struggling at the moment. I'm finding it hard to be motivated to do anything much - clean the house, wash my hair... The bigger things seem insurmountable - clearing up my scrap stuff so I can actually scrap or make cards. I feel helpless much of the time and "what's the point?"

Okay, its out there now. I do know this is a blip and things are going to get better. I'm searching for the motivation to start...

Monday, February 23, 2009

In the Garden

I made these cards today when stuck for something to do for a watercolour workshop tomorrow. I'm so pleased with the blue/purple one! Stamped with the Hostess background "In the Garden" in Stazon ink, I used Stampin' Up's watercolour crayons in Bold Brights colours to colour the images. Actually, I scribbled over the images and used my aquabrush to tidy it all up afterwards. The effect is gorgeous, I think!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Stampin' Christmas

A very Stampin' Christmas was had in our house. I recycled all the packing paper from my orders and sat the kids and hubby down with my stamp sets. Here are some of the results:
Recently had a demonstration and my hostess wished to see Time for You, so I did this card for the workshop:
And one of my regular ladies is an owl enthusiast so I had to show this set off "Love Owl-ways":
All Stampin' Up! products and the owl card is SO simple to make but looks great, I think!

Okay, back in my box for now as my two older kids have chicken pox. Just waiting for number 3 to get it too. :(