I Said I Wouldn't Do This!

Ok, I was talked into creating a blog to showcase my creativity. I have been resisting this for far too long, but now is the time to finally get the ball rolling.

So here goes. Come with me on my journey into creativity.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Caregivers Cruise

Hi everyone!  I need your help.
I nominated myself for a caregivers cruise which I saw on a newsletter that I get for caregivers.  It has all sorts of good information it for those, like me, that are now in the position of caring for a loved one.

A little bit about my story, since I didn't write the full story when I nominated myself.

Back in 2004, I moved my parents from the East Coast out here to Tucson, AZ.  In 2007, shortly after my dad had his 90th birthday, he became ill and passed away in October 2007.  About 6 months later, my mom suffer a TIA (stroke).  After rehabilitation, she was able to move back into her apartment, but still needed assistance.  She lost most of her vision after that time and I took on the task of taking care of her on a daily basis, all the while working a full time job.  I eventually moved her in with me after losing my job and on her insistence so that I could stop running myself ragged.  

I eventually found a new job almost 2 years later, but my job doesn't stop once I get home from work.  I tend to all of her needs, including having to use my vacation days to take her to her doctors appointments. We have traveled together to see family members, but I have very little downtime because I worry about her and not wanting to feel like I'm pawning her off on someone while I visit with friends.  I could really use some me time and this cruise would be just the thing to energize me.

So if you could please click this link and vote for me on a daily basis from now until August 24, 2013, I would deeply appreciate it.  Feel free to pass the link on to anyone that could assist me in winning this cruise.  The more the merrier.

Vote for Helen

Monday, April 8, 2013

A Card Box Holder aka Mama Nell's Organizer

Wow!  Once again, I've been slacking.   I have been creative, but just not enough time to take the needed pictures to put into blog posts.  I've been working solo at the job that enables me to be creative since October 1, 2011 supporting 3 hospitals as the sole lab analyst.   We just hired a new analyst that started @3 wks ago, so I have a reprieve and can play catch up with delayed work.

So after much ado,  I've been oohing and aahing over some of the creativity being done by my fellow scrapbook artists.  I'm loving quite a bit of their creations and marking things for inspiration.  One of my favorite online websites that I frequent is the Graphic 45 blog .  There are some fabulous paper crafters from all over doing some phenomenal work on this website.  So if you've not been there, type quickly or click the link after you've read my post .. ;) .... and head on over there.  

After getting a posting on Facebook of a new entry,  I went to look and my jaw dropped.  It was a project created by Jim Hankins aka The Gentleman Crafter .  I bookmarked it and told myself that this would be my next project.  I found he had a tutorial, so in support of his efforts, I bought it.

Once a month on Friday evenings, my large scrap group meets, so in preparation on Thursday night, I cut out all of the chipboard pieces that I needed to create this organizer.  While watching TV, I assembled the box and was all set for Fridays crop.  Of course, those 5 hrs are for being quite creative, but it's usually my social hours (keyword = hours) because not much scrap wise gets done by me.  I didn't cover this one, but created a new holder using Kraft colored chipboard.  The finishing of this one would have to wait.   On Saturday , I managed to finish it up and I'm pleased with the outcome.

I'm in awe of my own work (pats self on back) and have requests to make more.  I'm thinking Christmas gifts with card sets. 

So Here's my Card Box Holder.  I used Graphic 45 Paper collection - Curtain Call.  I really love these images and had a hard time trying to decide which papers to put where.

Here's the front of the box.  I used Tim Holtz Hinge post on the front to enable me to hang the Crystals.

Here's a side view of the box.  The Rhinestones that I added to the top are now more noticeable.

This is the base of the card holder.  I think I might go back and add some of the pattern paper to the bottom of the inside so it doesn't look so plain when the actual holder is not sitting in it.

This is the open view showing the tab folders.

Closeup of the tab folders.

I opened the lid to show that I added pattern paper to the inside to hide the screws from the door knob.
Mama Nell's Organizer Tutorial by The Gentleman Crafter
Patterned Paper: Graphic 45 Curtain Call (2011)
Graphic 45 Color Box Dye Ink - Dark Cashmere
Black Chipboard
Double Sided Tape
Scotch Quik Dry Adhesive Glue
Recollections Rhinestones
Tim Holtz Foundations
Tim Holtz Hinge Fasteners
Tim Holtz Ornate Plates
Tim Holtz Crystal Curio Knobs
Tim Holtz Baubles
Tim Holtz Paperclips

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Give Us This Day

Wow, can't believe how long it's been since I've even able to blog something.  I have been creative, but haven't have time for posting my creativity.

While browsing one of my favorite scrappy forums, a member posted a card that she's created using a MTC file.  I have so many friends with Cricut machines that are so disgruntled with the lack of support with the product and everything else, that they are jumping ship and going to other cutters such as the Pazzles, Silhouette and Zing.. To name a few.  They are doing fantastic things with these tools.

But since so many are flooding the market with their used cutters, cartridges, gypsies and the gamut, you really have to hope that someone that really wants your discards will come along and swoop these tools up.  For now, I will hold onto my Create, Pink Expression, E2 and my yet unopened  Imagine (that I've not been able to sell).  Offers are still being taken.  ;)

After coming home last night from my monthly Friday scrap group, I decided to break out a cartridge and use it for an intricate cut.  So many have complained of not being able to cut these types of cuts.   After making a minor adjustment on blade depth and speed, I cut out a gorgeous intricately cut cross. I'm happy with the way it turned out.

I used my E2 machine and have the setting cut for the thin paper at medium, blade was on 4, speed at 3.  I find that slowing the speed down help to decrease the paper tearing and cutting all the way through.

I used the Cricut New Testament cartridge using the cross on the Shepard 1 image.  I cut two out... One at 2.75" and the other at 3".  I used the 3" cut on the card since the 2.75 was too small for this card.

Here's a closeup of the cross.  I do see 2 spots where I didn't weed correctly, but I love it.

I've been trying to decorate the insides of my cards as well to give a bit more character. What do you think?

New Testament cartridge
Patterned paper - Recollections stack Graceful
Ribbon from my stash
Studio 18 Rhinestones
Coordinating plain paper from stash
Versa Magic Pumpkin Spice Chalk Ink


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Sherry Mendoza Workshop in Tucson, AZ

I'm pleased to announce that we're bringing Sherry Mendoza to Tucson, Az on December 1-2, 2012 at The Little House.

Please go to this post for further information regarding the class workshops.
Sherry Mendoza Workshop

Sherry is an Educator for Prima Marketing Inc.  You can find out more about her by going to her blog .

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Blues Cigar Box

Ok... I can finally post this since the recipient received it today!

I've been working on this for a little while and finally got a chance to finish this at my recent scrapbook retreat.  I made it for a very good friend of mine and have been teasing her about making one in Green ... a color that is not a favorite for her.  Since her Soro colors are Blue and White, this was as close as I could get to those colors using papers that I thought were oh so pretty.  I hope she treasures this as much as I enjoyed creating it.  We had a side joke about my altering a cigar box for her using the color green (which she isn't too keen on).  I managed to add a little green surpise in the box.   I hope she got the significance.

First off, I want to say thank you to my dear friend Karen Atkinson who had her SO (Robert) get me a boatload of cigar boxes for me to alter. So thank you for helping me keep my creativity going.

While shopping at Hobby Lobby, I found this gorgeous paper stack and knew exactly what I was going to do with it.  I  mod podged the paper to the box and added some Tim Holtz feet to make it stand up.  I used some lace to cover the bottom of it.  Bling and flowers on the outside added just the right touch that I wanted.  I didn't want to distract too much from the pattern paper, so I decided that enough was enough. 

On the inside , I used some of the plain blue cardstock that came from the stack.  I could not find    any blue cardstock to match this paper like I wanted to.  I added some string rhinestones and some Recollections flourishes.

The mini, ah....the mini.  I wanted it to be unique and able to add lots of pictures and journaling.  I measured the inside so that the mini would sit perfectly inside of the box.

So I chose to do a mini in which the pages alternated from left to right.
This is the mini all wrapped up.

The cigar box also had a piece of wood inside, so I altered it by painting it blue on the edges and the bottom and adding the patterned paper to the top.  I added the lace under it so you can pull the entire piece out along with the mini at one time. 

The closure from the mini is made with a button I picked up at Joann's and secured with ribbon.  I embellished the top with some Recollections rhinestones.

Here are a few photos of the mini and the tags that were created to go inside of the album.

Cigar Box
My Minds Eye Paper Stack
Tim Holtz Feet
Recollections Flowers
Recollections Flourishes/bling
Ribbon from my stash
Button closure from Joanns
White Coredinations cardstock

Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Scrapbook Retreat

Today, July 20th,  marks my 27th birthday (x2) and to celebrate it, I was looking for a local scrapbook retreat to attend.  I had found one, but it did not include hotel accomodations, so I decided not to do that one.  This is a long story, so get your chips, dip and drink of choice.

Then, I found out about another group that was having one and it was the weekend before my birthday.  Boy, was I excited.  The price was right, but there was one draw back... it started on a Thursday and I was going to have to take some additional time off and rearrange my work schedule.  Piece of cake... everything worked out and I was granted the 2 days off of work.

I invited some friends to go along with me, but they couldn't make it happen.  I then asked some other scrapbookers if they were interested since they'd never attended one before and got excited when they agreed.   I contacted the organizer and she sent me the information.  I was told that for 4 in a room, the price was one thing.  But if you only wanted 2 in a room, then it was an additional $20/day.  We decided on doing 2 in a room.  I stopped past her store and paid my deposit.  Then the fun began.  I started getting emails outlining the event, but things kept changing.  A week before the event, an email went out to most requesting information such as your request for lunch.  The email was a bit discombobulated to say the least, and I thought I read it right and responded to it.  The next day I get a response of  "the email clearly stated" ... hmmmm, ok.   I see how business is done.  I'll deal with it.

So, the event is to start at noon on July 12 and the day before, an email is sent to all with " I also wanted to emphasize that lunch on Thursday will be served from noon to 1pm in the Copper Canyon room. Lunch will be over at 1pm. Please understand that we cannot extend lunch beyond 1pm. Thanks for your understanding."   I'm thinking, what kind of ish is that.  Ok... we'll deal with it.  Alas, what was I in store for.

The scrapbook retreat day arrives.  I get there just about noon to check in and the drama... I mean ... fun begins. SMH! 

I was soon to find out that one of the ladies that was supposed to attend, had not paid her money in full, nor had she returned any calls to the organizers or responded in any way to them.  So instead of there being 4 of us, there were 3 of us.  The person that she was sharing a room with was left hanging and that person was not informed prior to the retreat date that there was an issue.  When she arrived at the event, she was told that they were unable to get in contact with "M" and they needed to discuss the hotel room with her.  Since we arrived prior to check-in, it was stated when the rooms were ready, the keys would then be passed out.

We were the first table at the door.  A couple on the far side of the room leave out with their bags and state they are going to their room, they just received their keys.  I look at my soon to be roommate and we're wondering why we were bypassed given they had to pass by us to get to the others.  All of the others receive the keys to their rooms and we are finally approached.  "G" and I are given our keys.  "S" is told "we need to speak to you about your room" and is pulled away from us.  And it continues to go downhill from there.  "G" had left to get her bag from the car and take it to the room.  I continued to work.  "S" leaves, comes back and starts packing her belongings.  "G" comes back and says what are you doing.. to "S".  She says, I'm leaving.  Because "M" was a no-show, they want "S" to pay additional fees for the hotel room.  She breaks out in tears and thats when I got involved.

I leave the room to find the organizer, and confront her in the hallway outside of the room.  I ask to speak to her privately and this other person stands there.  I said I'd like to speak to you alone, and the other person says "we're a team".... to which I respond "Oh, I didn't know because I've only dealt with her".   I then say "S" is in tears and packing her belongings because you're not giving her a key to the room and requesting more money from her.  She's paid the stated fees and she should be allowed to attend this crop as paid for.  They then tell me that "M" has not responded to their emails/calls and in order for "S" to stay, she must pay the additional money.  I said I don't think that is right seeing that she is only responsible for herself and not another cropper that didn't show up.  I then ask, if she leaves are you refunding her money... to which they responded "No, the money has already been spent".    More was stated and they agreed to go speak to her.

Into the crop room we go.  "S" is still packing her belongings and the conversation continues.  She was asked what can we do to make this right... to which she responds "nothing".  After further conversation, "G" and I agreed to share the room with "S" so that she didn't have to leave.  I then stated if we do that, then you owe us money for having 3 in the room vs 2.  They at first said no, and I said yes... if we were charged an additional $20 each per night for 2 in a room, then it should be less for 3 in a room ... so it should be @$30 that all of us should be refunded.  The organizer says Oh no, its not that much... I have the calculations over there and walks to get the figures.   She returns and says it will be a refund of $26.75 each, but I can't pay you until next week because I don't have my checkbook.  "G" jokingly states, but I want my money now.  (you can sing kumbaya at this point).  Things are worked out, hugs all around .. sort of.  "S" makes a note to herself in her phone of the amount.

Now, here is where I have issue.  If you are organizing an event and you have a deadline of when the final payment is due and someone doesn't pay it, they don't respond to your phone calls or emails and they are rooming with another person, in my opinion, the organizer should have contacted the other person to let them know there is an issue and these are the options.  They did not do this , and this is where I find fault with the entire fiasco that shouldn't have been.

The point that I attempted to bring to them is this.  You're having an event.  I'm a single person that wants to attend.  You tell me the cost and I say ok.  I send you the money and pay it in full.  If I didn't have anyone to attend the event with, would you have placed me in a room with others?  Would you have told me that I would have to find my own roommates for the event?  Would you have given me a price for a single person in a room?   My thinking is this... you gave me the cost for the event and you should honor it and if you can't then you need to reimburse me my money. 

Well, we decided to make the best of it.
Now, on to the retreat events.  We were given 3 tickets for prizes, one of which is the grand prize of $100.  You put one ticket into 3 different baskets.  Both "G" and I's numbers were called, but "S" numbers were never called .... coincidence... you decide..... but she was allowed to pick out 2 prizes at the end.

Lunch ... the lunch choice that we were asked to send to them for Friday....... was lost by Subway.  About 1130, the organizer comes running in the room and states to each table, they lost our order.  Please write down what you ordered so we can resubmit it right now.  I'm thinking, didn't you keep a copy of what we requested so that you could make sure we all got our correct orders when it was delivered.  Nonetheless, we wrote down our selections so we could eat.

Dinner .. hmmm... dinner.   Ok... it was tasty, but ... lol.... if you wanted something to drink with your dinner, you had to bring it into the restaurant with you.   We were reminded of this as we headed out the door to the restaurant.  Is there something wrong with that picture?  Could you not have had the hotel to put out pictures of water, or iced tea at the tables???

On the table were goodie bags....... uhhhhh, if you can call them that.
 What does AVON, Professional photography advertisement and
Pampered Chef have to do with scrapbooking??
These are the only items in there that were scrapbook related, along with 4 sheets of alphabet stickers that I forgot to pull out.  LOL!  I dunno why I pulled out the nail file. 

There were supposed to be 5 challenges, but one was pulled  because there were only 2 of us submitting something for that challenge.  I won 2 of the 4 challenges.  "G" took my picture showing what I created during those 2+ days.
Don't say nothing about my hair.  LOL!  It was hot, and musty in the room.  A really bad moldy smell that no one seems to know where it came from.

On the final day, with all of the issues that were occuring at the hotel, we were allowed to stay to 9 pm on Saturday night.  At dinner , the grand prize drawing was being selected.  Just prior to this happening, I had stated that I was winning it because it was my birthday week and I deserved to win it.  Well... guess what??

What a way to end a drama filled weekend retreat!!

On Wednesday, July 18,  we had not received our refunds that were due to us.  "G" calls the organizer to find out if it had been sent.  She was informed that she would only be receiving $6 back because the hotel was charging them $20 for getting chalk on the 'white' tablecloth that were put on the tables.  Yes, I said "WHITE" tableclothes at a scrapbooking event.   She calls the hotel to find out if this was true to which she was informed no, it was not.  She then calls the organizer back and states you have lied to me.  I called the hotel and they stated they were not charging for the table cloth.   To be fair, other conversation and hang ups occured.   Long story short, "G" had called me with the scoop about the refund and I stated that I would called the organizer and let her know that I would just stop by to pick mine up.  In one of her conversations with this person, she was informed that she had already sent my check to me.   An email was sent to the organizer to state that if she didn't receive all of her money, she would be filing a small claims suit against her.    "G" received an email response with other verbiage and this to state that  "Any invitations for monthly and annual events are withdrawn effective August 2012."

 I received my refund on Thursday as well as "G".... although I probably should have received mine before "G" did given the phone calls and email exchange that she had with the organizer.

Needless to say, I will not attend another event sponsored by this group.  It was not worth it by no means given the way that we were treated.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

An All Occasion Mini

I attended a scrapbooking retreat this past week and got a few things completed that I wanted to get done.  Out of the 4 projects that I wanted to do, 2 of them were completed and one of them was half-way completed.  I even did a last minute card that was entered into one of the competitions.

Of the projects that I wanted to get done, was the All Occasion Mini that was done from a tutorial by Kathy Orta .  I used the Bella Amoire DCWV stack and I think it came out quite well.  Now to decide if I will keep this for myself or gift it.   I don't show the tags that were created for this mini, but in total, there are potentially 45 places for pictures and/or journaling.   I added a pocket on the inside and back covers, and included 6 small tags for journaling and pictures.
For the cover, I used some Recollections Flowers and bling.  The larger flower was Prima.  The Ribbon is from my stash which I purchase from a local fabric store called "SAS".  I love it.

Mini Standing Open

1st Page

 2nd Page

 3rd Page

4th Page

5th page

6th Page

7th Page

All Occasion Tutorial (Kathy Orta)
DCWV Bella Armoire Stack
Coredinations Black Cardstock
Recollection Bling/Flowers
Prima Flowers
Ribbon/Lace from Stash
TH Old Paper Distress Ink

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