Fantabulous Cricut Challenge #3: Bling It On!

The Fantabulous Cricut Challenge this week is called "Bling It"!  How fun!!!

I made a card using the Storybook cartridge to cut the layered scalloped circles and the Home Accents cartridge to cut the butterfly (shadow feature).  The lace borders are made with the Martha Stewart lace border punch.  The sentiment (stamp) and the rhinestones are Close To My Heart.  Simple card, but it's really jazzed up with the rhinestones, don't you think?

Now it's your turn!!!  Head over to FCCB and link up your own "blinged" project...I can't wait to see what you come up with!  And don't forget to check out the other fabulous projects by the super-duper Design Team while you're there...

Have a creative day!


FCCB Scrappin' Saturday #2: Custom Die-Cut Background Paper

My topic this week for FCCB's Scrappin' Saturday is creating custom, die-cut background papers for your layouts!  You know those super-expensive laser-edge or die-cut edge papers you find at the scrapbook store?  They typically cost a LOT more than your standard papers and come in very few patterns/ why not make them yourself???

Using your Cricut and the blackout feature on many images, you can cut your own die-cut papers to match any theme you're working with.  Here, I used Storybook to create a 10 1/2 x 10 1/2 inch decorative shape.  I used the shadow feature to cut in in turquoise, then used the standard mode to cut the black/white patterned piece.  I layered them to give it the look of a bordered die-cut paper.

Give this a try and let me know what you come up with!  You can go super-simple, like a scalloped circle, or super-detailed, with lace-look edges and details.  I promise you'll be excited at the endless options this technique provides!

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!  :)

Sweet Blogger Award!!!

Thank you sooooooo much to ScrapCrazyyyy who just gave this Sweet Blogger award!!!

To receive this award, I must list 10 things that make me happy:
1.  My family
2.  Scrapbooking and paper crafting
3.  Chocolate covered toffee  :)
4.  Birds
5.  New growth on trees/flowers in the Spring
6.  A clean house!!!
7.  Unprompted love from my kids
8.  Reading a good scrapbooking magazine
9.  Learning how to do something new
10.  Rainy days

Thanks for thinking of me, ScrapCrazyyyy...if you haven't checked out her blog yet, head over there...some BEAUTIFUL creations to look at!!!  :)



Back with another challenge for you this week at Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog (FCCB)!!!  The criteria for this challenge is to use pastel colors on an Easter can be a card, layout, 3D item, etc.  Use your creativity and head over to FCCB and enter your project today!  And be sure to check out the other Design Team members' will truly be inspired!

I made a card using Doodlecharms for the egg and George for the circles, ovals and triangle that comprise the rest of the card.  For the egg, I cut out two idential eggs from white cardstock using the shadow feautre, layered them on top of each other and then used my craft knife to cut the "crack line".  I discarded one of the tops.  I cut one egg from patterned paper, followed the crack line on the white egg, and cut it in half.  I inked each piece and adhered the patterned paper onto the white cardstock pieces.

To assemble the card base, I placed adhesive around the bottom and sides of the bottom half of the egg and adhered the two bottom halves together...this made a pocket for the chick.  I attached the top and bottom of the egg with a brad, accented with a pink acrylic tag and a flower.  This allows the top of the egg to be lifted/rotated to reveal the chick!

Next, I cut out two ovals (George) for the body and face of the chick.  I cut a small orange triangle for the beak, and inked each piece.  I accented the face with google eyes and some pink chalk for the cheeks.  To finish, I hand cut a bow from green patterned paper and accented it with a button and ribbon.  I printed "chick" onto white cardstock, trimmed it into a tag shape and attached it to the bow.  I placed a small piece of adhesive on the bottom of the chick body and inserted it in between the two white egg halves on the bottom.

For the sentiment, I printed "Happy Easter" onto an oval that was pre-cut (George) and then layered it with a green patterned oval (using the shadow feature).  To accent this oval, I added two flower brads with two paper flowers.  The I used pop dots to adhere it on the front of the egg.

When the recipient gets the card, it reads, "Happy Easter....chick!".  :)

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!


FCCB: Scrappin' Saturday Feature: Custom Shaped Mini-Albums

I am just so proud to be part of the awesome, super-talented group of designers over at Fantabulous Cricut (FCCB)!!!  And I am so excited to announce that Robin has put me in charge of the "Scrappin' Saturday" Daily Inspiration, which will be featured every Saturday at FCCB!

The topic for my first Scrappin' Saturday at FCCB is "Custom Shaped Mini-Albums"...did you know you can make these yourself???  With a little help from your Cricut, of course!  :)   I used the front and back of two ceral boxes in place of costly chipboard and used the George, Plantin, Accent Essentials and Walk In My Garden cartridges to cut the four different flower shapes (and patterned papers to cover each) at 6".  Here are some photos of my project:
Be sure to head over to FCCB to see my original post and information on how to make your own custom shaped mini-album.  And become a follower to make sure you don't miss any of the other great daily inspirations, including:

1.  Challenge Me Monday:  Weekly Challenge along with us!
2.  Quick Tip Tuesday: A great tip on using your Cricut is revealed
3.  Wednesday's Winners:  The winners from the previous week's challenge will be announced
4.  Thursday's Tutorials:  A fantastic weekly tutorial on a Cricut project
5.  Fantabulous Friday:  A wonderful themed Cricut project spotlight
6. Scrappin' Saturday:  Everything related to using your Cricut for scrapbooking

Don't those sound fun?!?!?  Now head on over to FCCB and check out this week's Daily Inspirations!


FANTABULOUS CRICUT! Challenge #1: Birthday/Balloon

This announcement is a little overdue, but I would like to let everyone know that I have been selected as a Senior Design Team member over at Fantabulous Cricut, (FCCB) the brand new Cricut challenge blog!!!

I, along with three other Design Team members, resigned from Just Buggin a couple of months ago, and I am so excited to be taking part in this awesome, FANTABULOUS new challenge blog!  Fantabulous Cricut will have some super-fun, informative and interesting tutorials, tips and challenges each week, so make sure you check back daily for a little crafy inspiration.  And be sure to head over today to take a look at the other DT members' creations and take part in the very first challenge!!!  :)

Challenge #1 at FCCB has two criteria (in addition to using at least 1 Cricut cut on your project):
1) use a balloon shape
2) use the word "birthday"
(neither of these have to be the Cricut cut)

My project (photo above) is a birthday card for a little boy turning 2.  For the balloon shape, I used three small balloons tied together and embellished with a glittery button and turquoise ribbon.  I printed the sentiment with my computer (including the word "birthday") and cut each word out separately.  I used the number "2" in place of the word "to". 

I used the following cartridges on this project:
Card base: George (circles welded together in Cricut Design Studio)
Scallop circle: Storybook
Number "2": Plantin Schoolbook
Black arrow: Street Sign

To get the glittery look on the number "2", I coated the surface of the number with liquid glue and sprinkled it with turquoise glitter.  I used a scrap piece of paper to press the glitter down, then shook off the excess glitter and let it dry.  Then I matted it with a black shadow for dimension.

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!  :)


Paper Flower Topiaries!!!


This is the project I've been working on!  I've been wanting to make these ever since I first saw a paper flower!  But, if I'm being completely honest, the task seemed soooooo overwhelming to me.  But, Spring has arrived and I'm ready and so I thought my house needed to be ready, too!  :)

These really weren't hard at all, just somewhat time-consuming.  But worth it I think.  Here's what I used:
Floral Foam (for inside vase)
6" Round Styrofoam Ball
Wood Dowel
Acrylic Paint
Excelsior Moss (wrapped around dowel)
Reindeer Moss (glued onto ball)
Paper Flowers
I made two of for each end of my dining room table.  First, I painted the dowels.  When they were dry, I hot glued them into the floral foam that was inserted into the vases.  Then I hot glued reindeer moss (had never heard of this stuff until today when I was browsing the "Moss Aisle" at Hobby Lobby) all over the styrofoam balls.  I adhered my paper flowers and leaves over the moss.  Then I inserted the dowels into the bottom of each ball.  I rolled excelsior moss in my hands like you would with play-doh, and then twisted it around the dowels and hot glued it in place.  Then I just tied the ribbons!

Okay, now I need your photography skills could very obviously be I need some input as to whether my crafts look better when photographed on a white background (top photo) or a black background (bottom photo).  I need honest opinions!

This project was entered at Me & My Bucket:

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!  :)


Dimensional Paper Flowers

I made some paper flowers a few days ago for a wall hanging using instructions provided by Marta Gladden, but I decided to come up with some new varieties, for a special project that is currently in the works.  I didn't ink these or emboss them, as there are a LOT of them and I think that kind of detail would get lost with the project I'm using these for.  :)  If you want to see my project, check back in a day or two...I'll be posting photos.  :)

As always, I used my Cricut for these little guys:

Pink Rose (New Arrival)
Yellow Spider Mum (Accent Essentials):
White Spider Mum (Accent Essentials):
Red Star Flower (Stretch Your Imagination):
Coral Hibiscus (Storybook, Home Accents):
Yellow Daisy (Walk In My Garden, Stretch Your Imagination):
(didn't notice the hot glue string on this one until I photographed it...oops!)

The leaves are cut with Storybook.  These aren't hard at all, they just take a little patience.  Okay, a HUGE, TON, GOB of patience!  :)  But I think they're worth it.  Can't wait to finish my sure to check back!

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!  :)


I Was Featured At "Me & My Bucket"!!!

Ever heard of  a "Linky Party"?  I hadn't until my friend told me about them.  And I found this super-cute blog called Me & My Bucket and thought I'd enter my little tin accordion album:
And guess what?  I was one of the top three featured projects...woo hoo!!!

I am so honored that Jessica likes my project so much.  Go check out her blog and all of the FABULOUS ideas featured's truly an inspiring place to visit!  :)

3D Cupcake Mini Album

This looks just like the cupcake giftcard holder, doesn't it?  Well, it's NOT!!!  It's made very simliarly to the giftcard holder but this one is actually a mini album!!!  Don't believe me?  Check this out:
Ta-da!!!  Isn't that the cutest thing you've ever seen???  Wish I could take credit for the idea, but I can't.  This idea came from the creator of the giftcard holder cupcake: The Stamp Goddess, a CTMH consultant and YouTube sensation!  :)  Go check out her blog and look at her "fabulously artsy" projects!

For this cupcake, I used my Cricut (George) to cut the flowers for the icing and for the circles for the album pages, (and for the bottom of the cupcake to cover the chipboard cupcake holder).  It's a somewhat lengthy project, but not difficult...what a great gift for a birthday girl or just for someone that LOVES cupcakes!  I made this one for a friend of mine that just had a baby boy...just in case you were wondering about the blue.  :)

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!

Idea Journal (CTMH My Creations Journal)

I'll admit that when CTMH came out with the My Creations Journal, I didn't think I'd use it.  I'm not much of a "journaler".  But then the other day a friend and I were talking about how we both wake up in the middle of the night with ideas or visions of craft projects and can't go back to sleep.  Both of us either get up and go craft, or we lay there awake with the crafty wheels spinning in our heads! 

She came up with the idea to keep a journal and book light next to her bed so that she can jot down the ideas/visions when she wakes up, without having to get out of bed and lose sleep.  What a GREAT idea!  That's where the CTMH My Creations Journal comes in!!!

This journal has 75 pages...plenty to jot down ideas and sketches...and a protective 5x7 front pocket that you can insert your cover into, and then change out if you grow tired of it!  I used the Felicity collection of papers to make this cover.  I used the coordinating Felicity stamp set for the bird and flourish.  I printed the journaling strips with my computer, inked everything, and then adhered it all on to the papers.  To finish, I tied coordinating ribbon on the spine.

Thanks for looking and have a creative day (and night!)!!!  :)


Live-Laugh-Love Wall Hanging

The front of my fridge is not magnetic (why?  I have NO idea!) I wanted to make something to put on the front that would attach with a suction cup.  And this is what I came up with...a three-framed wall hanging showcasing one of my most favorite sayings:  "Live, Laugh, Love".
I found these square chipboard frames at Michaels in the paper mache and craft aisle.  I inked the edges and covered them with patterned paper that coordinates with my kitchen color scheme.  I hooked them together with some CTMH metal hinges and matted the openings with taupe cardstock.
I used the Cricut Home Accents cartridge to cut the words "live", "love" and "laugh" using the shadow feature for dimension.  I adhered them onto the taupe mats and then stamped a flourish in the open space.
The flowers are an idea by Marta Gladden, who posted her original flower designs on the Cricut messageboard.  She was kind enough to email the instructions to me and I got to work creating some of my own!
I used the following cartridges to create my flowers:  Walk In My Garden, Plantin Schoolbook, Accent Essentials and Storybook.  I cut several layers in various sizes, embossed them with my Cuttlebug, inked the edges and raised embossed designs and then curled the edges of the petals.  Then I attached the layers of each flower together with a brad.  The result is a very dimensional and beautiful paper flower!

To finish, I adhered a ribbon on the top, hot glued it to a suction cup and covered the top with another paper flower.  That's it!  Now I FINALLY have a fridge decoration!  :)
Thanks for looking and have a creative day!!!

Houston Livestock Show And Rodeo!!!

The Household Board Of Directors took an impromptu trip to the Houston Rodeo this weekend!  It was a fun time, especially for the Mess Maker!  Here are some photos from the day:
She wore herself out...she conked out about 10 minutes into the drive home and slept for about 30 minutes after we pulled into the garage and turned the car off.  Notice the hot pink guitar in her lap?  That's a souvenir from the Rodeo and she doesn't go anywhere without it now!!!

Recipe: Easy Chicken & Rice Casserole

Can you say, "COMFORT FOOD"?!?!?!?!?!

When I was a school-based speech pathologist in Oklahoma, I worked with a lady who was a FANTASTIC cook...she always came to the lunch room with some heavenly-smelling dish leftover from the night before and made our ramen noodles and Lean Cuisines seem like dog food.  :) One day she came in with a dish of chicken & rice casserole and as it was heating in the microwave, the most delicious-smelling aroma began filling the room...

I asked her for the recipe and she told me she didn't really have a "recipe" but rather just threw things together.  So I had her make me a "recipe" of the things she just threw together and I've been making this version of chicken & rice casserole ever since.  Thanks Terri!!!

Here's what you'll need:
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can (after emptying soup) of white or sherry wine (I prefer sherry)
1 can (after emptying soup) of long grain rice
1 stick of butter
1 pound of chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 small can sliced mushrooms (this was my addition!)
Sprinkle of garlic powder
Splash of Kitchen Bouquet
Shredded cheese

To make the casserole:
Place chicken cubes in a 9x13 dish.  Melt the butter in a skillet; add other ingredients except chicken.  Stir to combine and then pour over chicken in dish.  Cover with foil and bake 1 to 1 1/2 hours.  When done, sprinkle with cheese and re-cover with foil for 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.  That's it!  It's sooooo easy and soooooo good!  I've also made it with water instead of the wine and it was still really tasty. 

The photo above does NOT do this dish justice!  Let me know if you try this recipe and what you think!  I know you'll be hooked!!!  :)