Monday, November 30, 2015

Making Greeting Cards with 3x4" Cards (November Destashing Post)

Hi, everyone!  For those of you who celebrated Thanksgiving last week, I hope that you had a nice holiday.  Mine was great--over the course of the long weekend we saw both sides of the family, plus we found time to celebrate with friends, too.

Supplies: 3x4" cards from Jillibean Soup, teal chevron paper from Bella Blved, thin white cardstock from Pulp, woodgrain paper from Fancy Pants Design, corner punch from Creative Memories.

But before I run out of days in November, I had better share my November de-stashing idea.  It's a simple one this month, because we all need a little more "simple" in our lives at this busy time of year.  My idea is to turn leftover 3x4" cards, be they journaling cards or pocket page "filler cards," into greeting cards.  In the photo above I have a his-and-hers pair of greeting cards for your viewing pleasure.  I've mentioned in other posts that I have some relatives who are really into camping, and these cards were a big hit with them.

Additional supplies: striped paper from Fancy Pants Design, journaling cards from Jillibean Soup, clear photo corners from Scotch/3M.

Besides decorating the fronts of the cards with pocket-page leftovers, you can also use journaling cards on the inside, as a writing surface.

I like to use clear photo corners to hold the journaling cards in place.  That way, you can remove the journaling cards in order to write your message more easily, and then replace them in exactly the right spot when it's time to mail the greeting card.

Hope you like this idea!  Take care and enjoy this last day of November.  :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Autumn Acorn Embroidery

Looking for my T-Day post?  Click here.

Lately I have been showing a lot of Christmas embroidery on my blogToday I want to change gears slightly and show some autumn embroidery.  Here is a cheerful autumn acorn ornament.

Supplies: perforated paper from Mill Hill, embroidery floss from DMC, ribbon from Offray, cross stitch pattern adapted from Flowers2Flowers.

Thanksgiving, a major autumn holiday in the United States, is coming up on Thursday, so I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!  This post is pre-scheduled, but I look forward to visiting everyone's blogs again after the holiday.  :) 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Pleasant Surprises

Sometimes, life brings us pleasant little surprises.  Like when you just happen to go shopping on the day when the store is giving out free samples of peppermint mocha.  :)

Or when the day you visit the Science Museum just happens to be "Star Wars Day."  :)

Supplies: cardstock from Neenah Paper; all decorative paper from Echo Park; stickers, enamel shapes, and flair badge from October Afternoon; thread from Singer; ink from Hero Arts; pen from Foray.

As I mentioned on this scrapbook page, Darth Vader seemed interested in the museum exhibit on Minnesota natural history.  :)

Boba Fett, on the other hand, seemed to like a puppet show about the life cycle of a butterfly.

"Star Wars Day" was actually in February, but I hadn't gotten a chance to share this scrapbook page on my blog until now.  With all the hype surrounding the new Star Wars movie that's coming out soon, this seems like a good time to share this page.

Whether you are doing ordinary things like shopping or special things like visiting a museum, I hope that life will bring you some pleasant little surprises, too.  Linking up with T Stands for Tuesday.

Monday, November 16, 2015

More Library Love

Hmmm, so far this month I have not written much about the library...until now.  :)  The library scrapbook page that I'm sharing in this post is just my style: it uses bright colors and lots of scraps.
Supplies: red & yellow cardstock from Neenah Paper, blue cardstock from Bazzill, dotted paper from American Crafts, plaid paper from Bo Bunny, striped & floral papers from Pebbles, alphabet stickers from October Afternoon, punch from EK Success, journaling line template from Creative Memories, pens from Zig.

I've already scrapbooked and blogged about how much my son loved his summer library project.  But I also wanted to make a page that tells how much *I* love the library.  On my scrapbook page I wrote: "I think I enjoyed the library project just as much as A. did.  I explored parts of the county that were unfamiliar to me, checked out lots of library materials...& took lots of photos!  Clockwise from top: Brookdale (photo by A.), Pierre Bottineau (selfie), and Southeast (selfie).  A. & I had so much fun!"

Brookdale, Pierre Bottineau, and Southeast are all branches of the Hennepin County Library (HCL) system.  Librarians gave out HCL stickers to patrons this past summer, and I used my sticker as part of my title: "I Really Do Love My HCL."

There is nothing better, in my opinion, than sipping a cup of hot tea or coffee and reading a book.  The last book I read was a library book, which you can see in this photo.  It's hard to wait for the new Star Wars movie to come out, so I've been getting my fix by reading some of the old novels.  This one, called The Crystal Star, was very good.  As for tea, lately I've gotten into cinnamon vanilla herbal tea, from the same company that makes the pumpkin spice tea that I wrote about a couple weeks ago.  The cinnamon vanilla tea has a rooibos base, and the tea is so aromatic and scrumptious!

If you are a tea aficionado, why not check out the T Stands for Tuesday blog hop?  I'm going to link up now.  See you soon!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Blue Snowflake, Blueberry Crumble Cake

Hello again, everyone!  Today I'd like to show you another cross-stitched Christmas ornament that I made last year.  It's a flat ornament, which made it easy to slip inside a Christmas card.  Here is the front of the ornament...

Supplies: embroidery floss from DMC, perforated paper from Mill Hill, ribbon from my stash.

And here is the back...

Additional supplies: striped paper from American Crafts, mitten tag from Bo Bunny, pen from Zig.

It was fun to be able to use some scrapbooking supplies in an embroidery project.  The pattern for the snowflake came from a back issue of PieceWork magazine.  (Side note: I'm sure that no one will be surprised when I mention that I checked out this back issue from the library.)  The snowflake motif was actually part of a larger, more complex pattern, but I chose to use just the snowflake shape on my ornament.  In fact, I hardly ever stitch patterns just exactly as they are printed.  I change the colors, or I stitch just part of a pattern, or I combine different patterns.  I guess you could say that I view cross-stitch patterns as suggestions, not as hard and fast instructions.

Now that I've shared a blue ornament with you, I thought I'd share a blue (well, blueberry) recipe with you.  This blueberry crumble cake recipe comes from the British YouTube channel of "Cupcake Jemma."  If you cook using British measurments, you can simply follow the instructions in the video.

And here is my "translation" of the recipe, using American measurments: 
Streusel topping: 3-1/2 Tbsp MELTED BUTTER + 1/2 c. BROWN SUGAR + 1/2 c. FLOUR + 1tsp CINNAMON.
 Wet ingredients: 3/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp SUGAR + 4 Tbsp CANOLA OIL + 1 EGG + 1/2 c. MILK. 
Dry ingredients: 2 c. FLOUR + 2 tsp. BAKING POWDER + 1/2 tsp. SALT + 1 tsp. CINNAMON (my addition). 
Blueberries: 8-oz. package FROZEN BLUEBERRIES.  No need to thaw first--just fold the frozen berries gently into the cake batter.  If you have access to fresh berries, by all means use them in place of the frozen berries. 
Drizzle ingredients (I used this in place of the cream that Jemma used): 3/4 c. POWDERED SUGAR + 1 Tbsp MILK + 1/4 tsp VANILLA. 
See video (linked above) for assembly instructions.  Bake cake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 50-55 min., or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.
My husband is gluten-intolerant, so I used gluten-free flour, and the cake turned out delicious. 

I can say from personal experience that this cake tastes great accompanied by coffee, tea, milk, or juice.  (In this photo I had coffee in my cup.)  Since I'll be linking this post up with the T Stands for Tuesday blog hop, I want to wish you all a Happy T Day!  :)

Monday, November 2, 2015


Hello, everyone!  Today I'm joining in with the T Stands for Tuesday blog hop, as I often do on Tuesdays.  Today I actually am drinking tea, too.  It's pumpkin spice decaf black tea.

Last time I mentioned treating myself to a pumpkin spice latte from a coffee shop.  That kind of "designer coffee" is too expensive for everyday consumption, though.  This tea is a nice alternative for getting that autumn flavor at home and not blowing the budget.  :)

The little hang tag on each tea bag says "Cup of Joy," which I hope you can see in the above picture.  It's appropriate, because drinking the spicy, warm tea really does give me feeling of autumn joy.

The path from autumn joy to Christmas joy is short, and I have already started working on some handmade Christmas gifts.  I can't show any of the gifts that I'm making now (just in case the gift recipients read my blog, which would ruin the surprise), but I thought it might be fun to show you some gifts that I made for last Christmas.  Today, I'm showing you a Christmas ornament that I cross-stitched.  I adapted the design from the book Cross Stitched Cards for the Holidays.  The two robins and the word "joy" were actually three separate patterns in the book, but I thought that they would look good all together.

What kinds of projects have you been working on lately?  I look forward to catching up with you when I visit your blog!