Sunday, March 27, 2011

Goodbye Santa Fe

During my week-long visit to Santa Fe, I stayed at the Inn at Loretto. I soon discovered that the famous and mysterious Loretto Chapel was just next door. Can you imagine that!

It is believed to be the first gothic structure west of the Mississippi. However, the chapel had a design flaw... there wasn't any way to get up to the choir loft. The Sisters made a Novena to St. Joseph, their patron saint for divine guidance. Legend has it that upon the ninth day of the Novena, a mysterious carpenter arrived to design and construct a circular stairway to the loft. The stairway contains thirty three steps in two full 360 degree turns. The stairway has no center support nor is it held from it's sides. it's full weight rests on its final tread. There are no nails or screws used in the construction of the stairwell.

Upon completion of the stairway, the carpenter mysteriously disappeared without seeking payment. Legend has it that many believe the carpenter was the embodiment of Saint Joseph the Carpenter.

Engineers and architects marvel at the design. The little chapel has a constant flow of visitors. I have taken some pictures so you too, can see the wonderful design of this mysterious staircase. I tried to take pictures from many different angles.

People come from near and far to see the chapel and the miraculous staircase. the Many leave an offering of a Rosary upon a tree branch outside the chapel upon departure.

It was a wonderful week In addition to getting to see this wonderful staircase, I really enjoyed the city. I was able to spend some time at the Georgia O'Keefe Museum. That was a very special treat. The mystery book conference, Left Coast Crime was full of activities and wonderful sessions. I listened to many new authors whose books would be of interest to me. One author, Joe Bazel sat next to me during the award's dinner and I was fortunate enough to be able to have a delightful conversation with him and to be the winner of one of his fabulous signed books!

I spent the morning in conferences and was free to spend the rest of the day shopping, dining out and shopping some more! I ate too much and don't think I want to look at any southwest food for awhile. I had some difficulty breathing with the altitude and allergies but still enjoyed myself.

And this is me... getting ready to say goodby to Santa Fe and catch an early morning flight back to (Sunny???) California!

Hugs and Smiles

Monday, March 21, 2011

I Heard It Through The Grapevine!

Hello everyone! The celebration at Color Me Creative Classroom continues.It it isn't too late to join in. You can see all activities Color Me Creative Classroom

Even Dottie from Bugaboo Digital Stamps joined in on the fun! This cute little image is called "Dottie Birthday". This is a sketch image I did I for the week long birthday celebration.

I must pack today for a week trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico. I will be attending a mystery book conference called Left Coast Crime. I just LOVE mysteries!! I need to work on some cards today before I leave. Check back soon and thank you for stopping by!

Hugs and Smiles,

Friday, March 18, 2011

Toby Celebrates Color Me Creative Classroom

Color Me Creative Classroom continues a activities filled with fun and prizes this week. This is crard I made from a cute digital image from The Greeting Farm called "Toby Painter". Isn't he just cute?

Some lucky winner will receive the new Provo Craft Cricut Expression - Limited Edition! Anyone can participate. Just click HERE and go to groups to sign in. You may be the lucky winner! See ya there!

Hugs and Smiles,De

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Happy Birthday "Color Me Creative Classroom"!

Color Me Creative Classroom
is celebrating a “BIRTHDAY’! Starting on March 15th, 2011 we will be celebrating with daily fun activities and wait until you see the grand prize!!! Anyone can participate – you just sign in and you are ready to join in the fun.

March 15th---Kick Off Party
3 Random Prizes will be given to members of the Birthday Group just for leaving a comment there on March 15th. To join the group, click on GROUPS tab at top of site and join Birthday Group! Anyone can do it!

This is the Sketch Challenge. You will have until March 24th to create a project using any image AND must be colored with COPICS of course!

Check out Color Me Creative Classroom site for more information and details about how to win those fabulous prizes!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Versatile Blogger Award

Good morning! I want to extend a big Thank You to Pat at
Rubber Stamping is My Game for pres me with the Versatile Blogger Award!

Thank you! I am pleased to share the award with Pat!
I need to list 7 things about myself and send the wonderful award on to 15 bloggers that have inspired me.

7 Things About Myself:

1. I love love, love to travel. I love going anywhere and seeing new things!

2. I love reading mystery books. I plan to go to Santa Fe to attend "Left Coast Crime" - a mystery conference.

3 I will be attending Bouchercon in St Louis in the fall.... yes, another mystery conference!

4. I LOVE Asian, Indian and Thai food!

5. I love all types of craft activities and try to learn at least one new thing every day.

6. My secret dream is to get an email from Gina K someday inviting me to be on her Design Team! Her Site can be found HERE

7. I am so proud to have been selected to serve a 3 month term as a member of Suzanne Dean's first Color Me Creative Challenge Design Team. I am over the moon! Her Web site can be found at Color Me Creative Classroom Anyone can participate in activities. You just need to sign in to access all the fun activities!

And now I get to select 15 wonderful bloggers that deserve the Versatile Blogger Award!

Theresa @ Crafting the Web
Lee @ Luv Lee Stamper
Rosie @ In Rosie's Book
Sharon @ Paperfections
Linda @ Linda Marie Designs
Wini @ Looney Bug Designs
Lisa @ You Make Me Ink
Jennie @ Stamp Away the Day
Barbara @ A Time to Create
Bonnie @ The Pink Dawg House
Aletha @ AJS Designs
Julie @ Paper Pleasing
Sonya @ Appel Quilling Garden
Robin @ Robin's Rubber Room
Ignacio @ Nicecrane Designs

Thank you for this award and for the opportunity to say Thank you to all the extraordinary crafters that I have included in my link. I know it takes time to link websites but I believe it is important to recognize all the people that I spend time with - looking at their wonderful creations on a daily basis!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Let's Experiment

Copic Instructor, Suzanne Dean, creator of Color Me Creative Classroom encourages her students to EXPERIMENT. Well I decided to take today and just experiment with Copics and have fun! No pressure - if it doesn't turn out... you will understand. We must take risks and try new things in order to grow. I have a lot to learn and I am willing to share my successes and my "not so good" experimental journey with you! Alright, Suzanne is probably saying... "Don't show them ALL, Marie"!! LOL. She has a copy of my very first image I colored with Copics ! I cannot believe that I first held a Copic marker in my hand about one year ago!

Card Base 5.5 in. X 8.5 in.
Score and fold at 4.25 in. (This makes card for a 2A envelope)
Base Layer 5 in. X 3.75 in.
Focal Image Layer 4.75 in X 3.5

Focal Image: Digital Image by Digi Doodle Shop “St Paddy Birdie”, Backgrund image from Stampscapes, Inc called "Naure sheet #1". Sentiment GKD clled "Spring Hilidays"

Copic Markers : Y0000, Y00, Y02 Y04, Y06, YG63, G20, W3, Colorless Blender
(For background wth airbrush system: R03, B00, B03, E33, E93)

Prisma Pencil: PC1003

Card stock : GKD Pure Luxury White, Cryogen Paper for focal image.

Ink : Memento Summer Sky, Paris Dusk and and New Sprout

Embellishments: Green Rhinestones

Tools: Scor-Pal or Scor-Buddy, Paper Cutter (I use Fiskars), Scissors (Tim Holtz helps reduce pain for those with arthritis!), Quickie Glue Pen, Adhesive,large sponge daubers,
Spellbinders Nestabilities “Fancy Labels”

Tip of the Day: Did you know you can Color you background wth a Copic Airbrush System and still sponge with your Mimento Ink Markers in order to give more depth?

I know red is to be the most difficult color but I struggle with yellow. So I decided to color this image by Digi Doodle Shop called "St. Paddy Birdie". It has a lot of yellow space for my practice.

Coppics: Y0000, Y00, Y02, Y04 and Y06. I think I needed to add a little more shadow, I added YR 20. I decided to practice adding a Prisma Color Pencil to give a little more texture.

I listened to a wonderful tutorial by Suzanne Dean in her Class 3 series. She discussed using Copic markers to give the effect you are coloring with "Distress Ink". I just had to try it. YG63, G20, W3 and Colorless Blender. I used this technique on the hat and clover. I used C7, C5, C3 and C0 along with my Colorless Blender for the band around the hat.

I airbrushed my background with B00, B03,E93,R03, E33 and E93 Copic markers and then added more depth by sponging the outer edges with Paris Dusk and Pear Tart Memento Ink. I watched a tutorial on using a Copic Colorless Blender on a stamp to achieve an interesting background effect. This was a tutorial from Splitcoast Stampers. I tried the technique and realized I needed to use a more solid image. It is a great technique and I will try it again... but it got lost on this background. I lightly stamped the image again with New Sprout Memento Ink.

I mounted the image on Gina K Pure Luzure "Pure White" 120# Cardstock. I cut out my focal image and adhered it to the facal backbround. I added gree rhinestones for a little "pizazz".

I hope your enjoyed this tutorial. Please stop back soon.

Hugs and Smiles,

Monday, March 7, 2011

Color Me Creative Classroom Color Challenge

Happy Wednesday morning! I am off work today and wanted to post this wonderful challenge that is in going on at Color Me Creative Classroom This cute little nursery image is the inspiration for this creative project. Isn't it just sweet?

This is my take on the challenge. Hummmm, I have a friend that is going to have a baby soon.... maybe it will be a girl!

Card Base 5.5 in. X 8.5 in.
Score and fold at 4.25 in. (This makes card for a 2A envelope)
Base Layer 4 in. X 525 in.
Focal Layer Label Eleven Nestabilities
Focal Image Layer Label Eleven Nestabilities

Focal Image: Digital Image “Bambino” by Sweet Nellie

Copic Markers E000, E01, E11, R20, R22, R000, E43, E41, E40, G99, G82, G40

Card stock : GKD Pure Luxury White, Crème de Menthe and Bubblegum Pink.

Ink : Memento Angel Pink

Embelishments: Rose, Ribbon sprayed with Copic Airbrush System, Pearls

Tools: Scor-Pal or Scor-Buddy, Paper Cutter (I use Fiskars), Scissors (Tim Holtz helps reduce pain for those with arthritis!), Quickie Glue Pen, Adhesive,large sponge daubers,
Cuttlebug or die cutter, D’Vine Swirls embossing folder and Spellbinders Nestabilities Labels Eleven, Cricut and New Arrival Cartridge for sentiment.

Tip Did you know you can color your ribbon with your copic markers in order to obtain a perfect match to your image? How cool is that!

I used E000, E01, E11 and R20 for the skintones. I used R000, R20, R22 for the cap. I added just a little R24 for the shadows in the cap. The little tassels were colored creme with E43, E41 and E40. I used G99, G82 and G40 for the Green blanket the baby is resting on.

I used my Nestabilities Label Eleven for my focal image and sponged Memento Angel Pink around the border while the focal image was stil in the frame. Tip: Secure the bottom of the image to the Nestabilities frame to prevent the image from moving while sponging your edges.

This is how the focal image looks after you remove the Nestabilities frame.

Click image to enlarge.
The focal image is mounted on Pure Luxury Bubblegum Pink paper. I sprayed an ivory colored ribbon with a pink shade of Copic marker with my airbrush (first attempt!) and attached a rose. Embellish with pearls I cut the sentiment with Pure Luzury White and Bubblegum Pink using my Cricut machine and the cartridge "New Arrival".

I hope you like this card. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. Thank you so much for stopping by. For a real treat, check out the Color Me Creative Classroom site and see all the fun activities that are going on. We have a great bunch of Copic Lovers and we always have fun exchanging ideas, tips and just laughing and supporting each other! Also, check out the other Design Team members' sites...( listed on my sidebar)... There are a lot of beautiful cards that are sure to inspire!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Ah, How Exciting

I feel very humbled and pleased that Lisa at You Made Me Ink gifted my site with the coveted "Stylish Blogger Award". Thank you so much Lisa!

This gift comes with the rules that I must follow in order to accept this award.

1. Thank the person who gave this award to me and link it back to their blog
2. Share 8 things about myself
3. Pass this award to 8 other individuals that I have recently discovered and am inspired by
4. Leave a comment on their blogs so that they can pass along the recognition!
5. I need to go on each of my inspiring stampers sites and tell them that I think they are all winners in our stamping world and then have them pass along an award of recognition to some other lucky stylish bloggers out there!!!

Well to start with, I would like to thank Lisa for gifting me with such a wonderful award. I love her site and would invite you to check it out Here I visit her site on a daily basis!

And now for 8 things you may not know about me: (This is hard!)

1. I have been a Registered Nurse for more years than I care to say... I am employed by Kaiser Permanente and work as a Patient Care Coordinator in an Emergency Department. I work 12 hour shifts and absolutely love helping people!

2. I spent 22 years as a Franciscan Sister in my earlier years and worked in our Franciscan Hospitals throughout the United States. Our hospitals were primarily on the East Coast and the West Coast. Our motherhouse was in Chester PA, near Philadelphia.

3. I was attending a conference in San Diego and decided to go with friends across the border to Mexico. Great fun! Right? NO. Someone bumped into me and a piece of pottery fell.... I spent the entire morning, afternoon and evening in a Mexican jail (when I wasn't in the back seat of the police car as we raced through the city on a high speed chases! LOL Finally got back across the border around midnight!

4. I adopted an adorable adult dog named Astro. He was a professional model until he lost his vision. I adopted him from the rescue society for Labs. He still poses when he hears my camera shutter go off when I am taking photos of my art!

5. I have three birds. One is called Mo Mo and she talks all day. She calls herself Baby Mo Mo when she needs love and Mo Babe when she is feeling like hot stuff!

6. I had an opportunity to go to South Africa as an International Delegate on Gerontology. After the conference I had an opportunity to go of a Safari. No one could find the elephants in the area.... I discovered they were in the back of the tree house I was staying in.

7. On the same trip to Africa, my guide and tracker took us on an early morning trip. We came across a Black Rhino that was ill. He had a wound on his face and was in a very foul mood. He stood rocking our land-rover for hours. We had to keep quiet because he could tip the Land-rover over very easily. We finally had another guide try to distract the Rhino while we took off.... hitting 50 mph in a very short amount of time.

8. I am thrilled with all my new friends i have met through surfing the web. These are 8 of the sites that that inspire me (Pat) (Anary) (Brook) (Melanie) (Charlene) (Ruby) (Tracy) (Suzanne - Our fearless leader)

This has been very special to receive this award..... I say with a BIG smile on my face. Thank you! I am off now to tell each person on my list just how much they inspire me!

Hugs and Smiles!

Over the Moon!

I wonder how I can say "I am so excited" in a million different languages?
Do you notice anything different on my sidebar?
Yes, Yes, Yes! I made it! I have wanted to be on Suzanne Dean's Design Team ever since she posted a Design Team Call. I was so excited when an email arrived from Suzanne with the invitation. However, she then swore me to secrecy. Do you know how hard it was to keep that secret? I wanted to shout if from the rooftop! It is NOW official! Check out Suzanne's Color Me Creative Classroom I promise you will be in for a real treat! Check out the sites from the other Design Team Members as well and see what wonderful creations they are posting for you!

You may wonder how this all started. I was surfing the web and came across a card by Suzanne Dean. I checked out her site, Scrap Bitz and discovered that she not only makes awesome cards - she has online classes on Copic markers. It all began at Suzanne's Classroom for me I started out not knowing what a Copic marker was. I started her classes... and I am now addicted. The classes are reasonable and they are soooo worth it. If you surf the web. you will frequently hear Suzannes' name referenced in the "Land of Copics".. What can I say? She is the Guru of Copics! Each class she offers has many videos and resources. I am currently taking class 3. She keeps adding more classes.. See, the possibilities are endless! You can check out her site HERE Check it out!

Tip for The Day:
I want to post a picture of how I organize my reference manual for my rubber stamps and my digital images. It is easy to have so many that you do not know what you have. This is a method I decided to use for quick reference. I have a 3 ring binder and I organize my digital images like this:

Click to enlarge image
I have since edited this page on the computer to read "Animal Digital Images" and have created a different page for Animal Stamps to use with rubber and/or clear stamps.

For my rubber or clear stamps, I take a picture of my cards and then treat the picture like a digital image. I copy it to Microsoft Word, I size it to approximately 1.5 to 2 inches and copy and label them like the digital images. I discovered the hard way that it is always easier when you are posting and want to credit the artist and company when you document the information under the image on your reference book. for my original digital images, I keep a folder in my computer under pictures and have a folder for each artist.

I hope this tip was helpful! Thank you for stopping by. Please come back soon!

Hugs and Smiles