Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pumpkins, Pumpkins, and more Pumpkins!

Pumpkins, anyone?? Or I suppose I should more accurately say, Jack-o-lanterns, anyone?? I have jack-o-lanterns from '06, '07, and '08 to share. Where's '09?? Sitting on our porch, still waiting to be carved. Yikes! I better get to it!! If you hang in here with me through this post, the last carved pumpkin is one of my favorites.......

Can someone who is more skilled with a camera, please tell me how I took this first shot?! Everything around the pumpkin is in focus, so I assume I didn't move the camera. This is my pumpkin from 2006 and the faces jumping out of my pumpkin have me, three years later, still wondering what happened!

Above, from left to right, is the pumpkin we carved for our infant daughter that year, our son, and Hubby's pumpkin.

2007 pumpkins carved up to light the way for trick o' treaters. Above was baby girl's...sweet, sweet, sweet.

Here is my pirate ship pumpkin! I was so dismayed to discover that I do not have a single great shot of it. It is far more detailed than this pic shows. The cut out on the flag is a skull and bones. The pumpkin on the right is our son's and his first time carving!!

Look how gnarled and wrinkly this pumpkin is! No wonder Hubby chose it for his own. He likes the scarier side of Halloween and has to tame it all down since having kidlets. But, he still wears his scary mask, aka Uncle Charlie, every year and loves handing out Halloween candy while I take the kidlets trick o' treating!

And here comes 2008.........

These cute eyes were peering out from our front window ledge.

Some toothpicks came in handy here for holding the centers of the 'B' and 'O's for a "BOO" pumpkin.

Another standard pumpkin face, one that always sends me back to the faces my brother and I carved with Dad every year as a child. Mom helped scrape out the pulp and Dad helped with the carving. Thankfully, that is one tradition I've changed up a bit with our family. Hubby is the best pulp scrapper outer ever!! And so, he empties the pulp and all those yummy seeds to roast from almost all of the pumpkins................he can empty five pumpkins in the time it takes me to unload just one!

And here's one of my favorite pumpkins that I've carved.....

C3PO and R2-D2! This one about killed my hand and I was in danger of breaking those fine lines many a time, but it was so worth it. Our kidlets loved it! I love listening to the pumpkin discussions outside, before the door bell is rung.

Pics of the pumpkins that were carved with the faces of Darth Vader, the Old Hag (witch from Snow White), and Elmo are all on film and as I was arguing with my scanner, I was unable to get them up. But, there's always next Halloween, right?

I have an Optimus Prime (Transformers) and a Minnie Mouse celebrating Halloween here this year. They are anxiously awaiting costume time and the chance to show them off to the neighborhood. Do you celebrate Halloween? Are you dressing up? Any kidlets transforming into something cute, sweet, or ghoulish? I would love to know what you are up to tonight! Happy Halloween!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Have a Hauntingly Happy Halloween!!

With mere minutes before Halloween begins (although, if you check your friends emails, Facebook status updates, or are there yourself, you'd think tonight was Halloween for the sheer number of Halloween parties occuring!), I thought I would share a Halloween card of my own.

Now, since I have a mighty innocent Halloween on my agenda, here's my confession for the holiday.....this card is not from this season. I made it way, way, way back in 2007. But, I did get inspired by the rockin' blogger and creator, Taylor Vanbruggen at Taylored Expressions!! Thanks, Taylor!!

After digging around her blog a bit, I found the original post (scroll down to the second post) that I was inspired by. You know something strikes a cord in you when you remember it over two years later! :> And I knew I had the perfect stamps to CASE her creation with. I used my ooo-llll-dddd All Night Media stamps from back in my early stamping days of the mid-'90's and my Vintage Label stamp from Purple Onion Designs that I love as much today as I did when I bought it then!!

So, you are probably wondering, why two pics of the same thing, same angle, etc.??? Right??? Back in 2007, you know, waaaaayyyy back when, I wasn't worried about taking pics for blogging or anything other than remembering what I made. And since my son and I were arguing, debating, conversing, contemplating, and disagreeing on which pic to use, I put both up. He thought it was a "Before" & "After" shot, simply because the windows 'lighting' (colored in with Prismacolor colored pencils) was so much...more in the second pic. As he put it, "See!! The lights are on in this one and they aren't in that one. Its a "Before and After" shot!!" I haven't made him watch too much HGTV, I swear!!!

Hope tomorrow is Spooktacular for anyone celebrating Halloween and if you are not, well, then I hope your day is simply fabulous!!!!! If you are getting your spooky groove on, what ghosts and goblins, or fairy princesses are gracing your door?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Home is where the heart is....

Hello there! Long time no see, huh?! I have been running around like that proverbial chicken.....still! There was lots of company last month, a kidlet birthday that actually stretched three weeks into this month, a four day scrapbook retreat which takes a couple of days to pack for, two or three times that to unpack (I write this as we are still tripping over my dozen plus bags in our entry way), and a couple of weeks to recover from the uber late nights! We also had the usuals, school, homework, art projects, games, playdates, and the typical daily stuff. And one of my best friends unexpectedly lost her father.

I've been in shock since receiving the news and can only imagine her and her mother's grief. They were an extremely tight family and loved each other so much. We said good-bye to this wonderful man on Friday night. My friend asked us to hug our loved ones and enjoy them for whatever time we do have with them. She also asked and hoped that whatever we learned from her father, we take out into the rest of our worlds. He was an optimist, a problem solver, warm, loving, and opened his home and heart so willingly. And his whole family makes me smile!

Hmmmmm..........I suppose I've surprised myself as this is not where I was going to go with this post. But, because I think so much of this man and his wife and daughter, my friend, I am going to leave this in here.

And just so you do not think I have completely abandoned creative pursuits, including card making, I'll share a card with you as well. There are four of us best friends and I made this card for another gal in this group, my best friend that I met over twenty years ago.

My apologies for the shadows. I did not realize they were so strong when I took the pic and I have already given her the card and cannot retake the pic. I stamped images from PTI's Boards & Beams. The small topiary trees, I colored with Prismacolor colored pencils and then cut out with a craft knife. I stamped the house twice and cut the windows out on one of the images with a craft knife as well. I then layered the cut house on top of the uncut house with foam tape for depth. I wanted you to be able to look inside the windows. And as I have discovered many times now, I seem to like the graphic look of stamped images uncolored.

Here you can see those layers a bit better. I layered all of the pieces on a Kraft base, stamped the first half of the sentiment on the bottom, and added a Sweet Blush satin bow. On the inside, I stamped and punched out a heart from PTI's Heart Prints and stamped the othe half of the sentiment from Boards & Beams.

I chose to share this card today because the sentiment rings so true. My friend's parents built their last two homes and chose every detail, but it was the people inside that made them homes that they relished being in.

My own home definitely needs updates, new carpet, a redone kitchen, and some pruning in our yards. But, it is my family that lives inside these walls with me that warms my heart, makes me smile, share hugs with, laughter, and even tears that make my life what it is. And today, I am choosing to smile as football is on the tube, my daughter playing in imagination land under the dining table, my son yelling out at the top of his lungs for every touchdown, Hubby enjoying his first real down time day in over two weeks, and me, in the middle of all of them and finally checking back in with all of you! :> What are you smiling about today?

Cardstock: Stampers Select White, Kraft - Papertrey Ink
Ink: Onyx, Sepia - Versafine
Stamps: Heart Prints, Boards & Beams - Papertrey Ink
Ribbon: Sweet Blush Satin - Papertrey Ink
Punch: Small heart - EK Success (from PTI)
Other: Craft knife & Prismacolor Colored Pencils

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Oh September, where did you go??

October first?? Seriously?! September, where did you run off to? Oh September, the month that ushers in the new school year (even though my kidlet starts in mid-August.....but, my internal calendar is still set to all those years that school started in September), the beginning of fall, my first born, and the onset of the greatest season of the year!

Sinking into reality, I changed my son's calendar over to October (before he could put another hole into his Oh Brother Blue walls), checked the school's events for the month, realized that I have several creative and social events planned and marked in pen on my calendar for this month, and most of all, thankfully, blissfully, and happily welcomed the semi-fall weather that has finally approached us this week! Crisp and cool, the morning air has been, crunchy leaves (dead and brown, but crunchy) have fallen, thanks to a flighty wind, and even some cooler temperatures (although, it was nearly eighty degrees today......but, that's still about, oh say twenty plus degrees cooler than last week!!!) in the afternoon. Our windows are open and our wallets are thanking us that the air conditioning does not have to run. Fall is upon us!!!

Kitty cats on our deck are flighty, chatty, and quite opinionated this full moon night. Kidlets are slow to go to sleep. Hubby has retired to the desktop. And I am here checking in. Mucho apologies for the week's absence. I simply and totally was swept away in the busy-ness of the days. We had a kidlet birthday (that is continuing this weekend....for three weeks now), my inlaws visited us this weekend, and the usuals of school to-dos, kidlets milestones (my daughter has amazed us recently with a sudden leap in her coloring skills...she's turning into our little artiste! and our son is excitedly choosing books to read over toys in order to "take him......" to somewhere and sometime.....lately, its been Pennsylvania, New York, San Francisco, Paris, the desert, and all times of about wonderful!!!), and an insanely filled calendar. We are the kind of folks that either have absolutely nothing going on or everthing, all at once and this seems to be one of those times!

Not having forgotten about all of YOU, you wonderfully creative, friendly, and talented folk that you all are, I do have something to share with you. I have not been able to photograph it yet between company, birthdays, and oh, hmmmm..........responsibilities (that pesky "R" word). Here's my wee tease: think vintage, think 1940's, think handmade, think little girl, think handsewn, think delightful, creative family goodness passed on. :>

Hope your week has been sweet, autumnal-like, and full of wonderful little bits of goodness (you know, when you add up all those little bits, they can amount to greatness! :> ).
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