Thursday, October 7, 2010

Its Here Its Here

Look what I won from Core'dinations.  For the first time EVER I won something.  Core'dinations was having a blog swap with MyStampBox.  I was the lucky commenter.  I know, it wasn't tough, I only had to talk.  For those that know me well, finding something to say isn't normally a problem for me.

Anyway, I won this great package of Core'dinations.  I've been wanting to play with the Jenny Bowlin paper for awhile now.  So, now I have an entire stack.  I also won some White Wash cardstock, 80 sheets of ColorCore and a Dust Buddy.  I've never even heard of a Dusty Buddy so I'll let you know how that works out.  I promise to post pictures of what I make with my treats very soon.  I would love to play tomorrow but I'm guessing I may not have a project done until this weekend.

At the beginning of the week I showed everyone a huge pile of stuff I bought in Elijay.  Well, I've finally got it all canned and frozen.  I wish I could say I was good about taking pictures as I worked but when you are elbow deep in pumpkin guts, I just don't remember to grab the camera.

In the end I made 4 cases of Apple Butter and 20 cans of pumpkin puree.  I also have about 10 cups of pumpkin pie seeds drying.  I'm taking a lot of the seeds to the Wonderkid's teachers so they can plant them for next year.  I'm hoping some of those pumpkins come back to me for pies.

Here is the apple butter process.
 I started with 3 bushels of sweet apples.  In this case it was Red and Yellow Delicious, Mutsu, Fuji, Gala and Winesap apples.
 This is my best friend when it comes to making Apple Sauce and Apple Butter.  It is like my Cricut for apples.  In fact, it has some of the same quirks.  When you get something stuck on the blade it doesn't work as well.  You then need to clean off the blade and start again.  Short of that, it is amazing. 
 Here it is with an apple getting ready to be cored and peeled.  You turn the handle until it engages the apple with the blades on the base.
 Check out the lovely peel going into the compost bucket.
 Here is a close-up of the apple being cut, cored and peeled.  If you see, the apple is cut in a spiral. 
 This is the core stuck to the end.  I then pull the core off and put it in the compost bin with the peels.
 This is what the apples end up looking like.  I haven't cut the end peels off of these yet, but that would be the last step before they go into the crock pot.
Apples ready to start cooking.  Tomorrow I'll show you pictures of the finished product.  It is quite yummy, even if I do say so myself.

What do you think I should make with my new goodies?  If I chose your suggestion, I'll send you a box of sweet goodies.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cookie Monster Bucket

I swear I wasn't drunk when I took this picture.
I know everyone is moving out of the summer phase and into the Halloween fun but I had to post this bucket I made for the Wonderkid.  Most kids seem to be into Elmo.  He even has his own show these days but... the Wonderkid is a big fan of Cookie Monster. I believe the issue is Elmo is too cute so the Wonderkid thinks Elmo might be competition but who can help loving Cookie Monster?

When I asked the Wonderkid who he wanted on his bucket he immediately said Cookie Monster.  I lucked out because the "J" on the Sesame Street Font is Cookie Monster. Each letter has a different Sesame Street character with it.   I was initially a bit intimidated by the Disney, Pooh and Sesame Street carts.  They look soooo complicated.  I have found that true of most of the Disney ones but not Sesame Street or Pooh.  If you look at Cookie Monster, he only has 5 colors including the purple for the letter and the black for the shadow. There are only 6 pieces to this cut.   It is very easy to make.  The font is also cute, although I tend to use Mickey Font more than this one. 

A couple of tips on using vinyl.
1.  If you are working on something that isn't flat you need to work with the curve.
2.  Start with the smaller end of the bucket/glass and work toward the larger end, otherwise you end up with wrinkles.
3.  It is very difficult to have everything exactly straight without wrinkles.  I think the lack of wrinkles is more important than the straight so I work around the straight part.
4.  It is easier to make things "work" if you cut the base as all one piece.

I hope you like the Wonderkid's new bucket.  He is happily filling it with sand now but we'll soon be putting blocks in it to carry around the house.

Today I went to the Georgia "mountains".  For those of you not familiar with the Georgia "mountains" don't think Colorado, think foothills of the Blue Ridge.  Georgia has mountains like Ohio and Michigan have mountains not like Colorado and Montana/Utah have mountains.  That being said, I was in a wonderful small town in the Georgia mountains (bonus to these mountains, they are only an hour from our suburban house) called Elijay. Elijay has the Georgia apple festival which luckily is next weekend not this weekend. I can't imagine how bad the traffic will be next weekend.  So, while I was in Elijay I stopped at a roadside stand and bought some treats.  This is what they look like right now.  I'll show you pictures tomorrow and Tuesday as these are turned into more yummy goodness.

Want to guess what I'm going to make with these?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Halloween Squash Book

After naming this post, I realized it could be very confusing if you don't know what a squash book is or you think I'm talking about an October gourd book as opposed to a book that folds up or "squashes". 

It is funny how different designs seem to make the blog rounds and then you don't see them for a while.  Back in the spring, I saw a number of these little books being designed and shared.  I don't think I've seen one since around May.
 This is the outside cover.  I used some Core'dinations Black Magic paper which I embossed and sanded.  I added a couple of brads from Paper Treats.  I bought a box of the brads on clearance for $1.50.  I need to remember these now that Halloween season is in full swing.  I embossed the cover using a second piece of the same Black Magic paper.  I then cut out the circles and pop dotted them to give a little extra dimension.  The ribbon used to keep the book closed is simple Rafia. 

I must say that the entire time I was opening the Rafia I was thinking about one of my brothers.  My next youngest brother is a rancher, former bull rider and all around cowboy.  I know that if he had seen my Rafia he would have said, "You know, I've got a lot of that stuff out in the barn.  I won't charge you $2.50 for that little handful.  You can have a whole bail for only $10".  These are the things I think about while crafting in the middle of the night.  So, thanks, Jeff, but I'll stick with my Rafia. 

Here is the inside before I added the cover.  It is three pieces of square paper.  For this book I made the inside pages 12 x 12 (I was being lazy and didn't want to cut the inside paper and I like this size because a 4 x 6 picture fits all the way across).  This book requires 3 sheets of cardstock for the inside pages.

If you want clear concise instructions on how to make this book, check out this page at Splitcoast Stampers.  They have some really cool projects on this site if you haven't had a chance to look at them. 

 Here is a close-up of the embossing, sanding and pop dotting.  As you can see, I need to work on my cutting skills -- isn't that why I have a cricut?

One more.

I won't be posting on Sunday but I'll be back on Monday and I'm taking my first ever craft class on Tuesday, it is a stamping class.  I'm hoping it will help me take my crafting to another level. 

Check back on Monday for a vinyl project

Oh, and a happy card making day to you. 

Friday, October 1, 2010

Birthday Bag and Card using Tags, Bags, Boxes and Give a Hoot

Today I have a simple, quick and easy card and gift bag. 

The Wonderkid has been invited to a birthday party tomorrow so I needed to pull together a card and gift bag.  Given that the birthday girl is only 4, I didn't want anything too elaborate or time consuming.  I'm picturing the little princess dumping out the gift and unceremoniously dropping the card and bag on the ground or the heap with all the other cards and gifts.  I thought about just buying a bag and card but I couldn't bring myself to shell out $4 for a bag and another $2 for the card.  I knew I could make them for a fraction of that cost.

So, here is what I created.

Using Give a Hoot I made the world cut, continents cut and ribbon.  I then chose the shadow feature (one of my favorite things about carts like this one), copied the shadow, rotated 180 degrees and moved it so it would "connect" at the ribbon.  This cut has the best little notch on it for the ribbon which makes it SOOO easy to weld together.  I checked the weld button, check on preview that it was actually welded and I was ready to cut.
 I decided to do the shadow in white because I wanted to be able to print directly onto the card.  This is the front of the card. 
Here is the card opened up.  I like to print my sentiments directly onto the card.  I think it looks more professional.  I guesstimated where it should be on an 8 1/2 x 11 piece of paper.  Then I printed onto regular paper.  I then used my Tombow repositionable adhesive to affix the card to the piece of paper I had already printed.  I made certain my cut was centered over the printed part.  Then I put the paper with the cut into my laser jet and printed it again.  This time the sentiment was on the cut cardstock, not the 8 1/2 x 11.  

The sentiment says, "Here's wishing you the best birthday in the whole world".

Then I turned my attention to the bag.  I knew I needed to make it as large as possible so I pulled out a piece of 12 x 24 cardstock.  This stuff isn't easy to find.  Often times Oh My Crafts will have it at the bottom of this page.  Or you can buy it from Cricut but theirs is fairly pricey unless you find it on sale.  One of the nice things about Oh My Crafts is that they ship internationally.  I know a number of folks that have had issues with them but they have been very good for me.  They also tend to have some pretty good prices on cartridges.  I'm still kicking myself for not buying Rock Princess when they had it on sale for $23.95.  

But I digress...

I used Tags, Bags, Boxes and More to create a matching bag.  I sized this bag as large as possible on my    12 x 24 piece of cardstock.  I then cut the same world cut in the middle of one side.  If I had been thinking better, I would have used the shadow feature to make this cut, but oh well, this is what I did.  

The bag measures 8 x 2 x 6 (without the handles).  I then cut the world again so I could decorate the huge hole I put in the side of the bag.  I laminated the world which gave me a way to adhere the world to the bag.  I used my Martha Stewart score board to score all of the sides.  I don't like the little tick marks so I hid all of them using my design studio.  Normally the seams are easy to find and very logical.  Luckily that was true on this bag.  Then, out came my ATG gun, I applied tape with it and voila.  A bag. 

Just a reminder, Tags Bags Boxes and More is on the list of retired carts.  If you don't have it, I highly recommend this cart.  I love it and use it often.  This is the same cart I used for many of the tags in my suitcase paperbag mini album.  I also love a couple of the boxes on this cart.  Some of the retired carts don't worry me because I can find similar things in other places, that isn't true of this cart.  

I hope you liked my quick and simple card and bag.  I'll see you tomorrow with more fun (I haven't figure out what it is going to be yet but I'll come up with some fun).