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Friday, June 23, 2017

Blog Hops with Heart is Using It or Losing It.


I try to be ruthless with every time the army moves us in order to weed out the stamps I'm not using. Hubby and I are in the midst of a move from Alaska to South Carolina. We are currently in Washington State visiting family and friends. Before the movers packed us up, I went through my stamp stash again. I was within an inch of getting rid of a sentiment set, but I decided to use it instead. I went clean and simple and paired it with an old Stampin' Up set.

The sentiment was stamped in Lemon Ink first and then offset and stamped again with Saffron using the State of Mind stamp set. The sandals were stamped in Pacifica ink, colored with Copics, and accented with red enamel gems. I popped them up with some foam tape to add just a touch more dimension.

I sent this to a friend who loves the sunshine and beach. I happened to be visiting her when she opened it, and it made her smile.

Win!

As always, the blog hop this month is a circle, and as always, you won't want to miss a single project. (I got a sneak peek!) You probably came from Kelly's blog, and you're heading to Stephanie's blog next. If you get lost, you can always go to Amie's blog. She'll have a list of all this month's participants.

Until next time,
Becca


Sunday, June 11, 2017

On the Move

We've spent the last week traveling, most of it on a ferry from Whittier, AK to Bellingham, WA.  Here are a few pictures I've taken along the way.







A tunnel to Whittier built for the railroad. It's so narrow, traffic can only go one way at a time.







Our ferry, the Kennicott.





 
 
 It's impossible to capture the magnificence in pictures. Truly an unforgettable experience (although I could have done without the seasickness the first day).

Popping back out again so we can spend time with family and friends. More pictures and an exciting announcement to come.

Until next time,
Becca

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Big News in the Writing Part of my Life

There are certain milestones that you start ticking off when you get published. The first - and biggest one, of course - is actually getting published. There's something incredible about seeing your name on the cover of a book and then seeing that book for sale online and in bookstores. After that, you start ticking off a few others. Today is one of those days. The series that my friend, Gina Welborn, and I are writing together is with a publisher who sends what's called Advanced Reader Copies, or ARC's for short.

These books have some grammatical errors or missing words since they were printed before the final round of edits are done, but you can still get the story. They are to be sent to people who agree to review the story.

Pretty exciting to get this in the hands of actual readers!!

In addition to that, today is release day for the promotional novella that kicks off this series. Come Fly with Me is only available in e-book (purchasing link along the sidebar).  Gina and I have been working on this set of stories for about three years from brainstorming to now. It's quite a thrill to see that much hard work pay off.

Gotta run. I have four guys here packing up my house as we prepare for our move to South Carolina.

Until next time,
Becca

Friday, May 26, 2017

Blog Hops with Heart is Going Green

I'm in the final push for deadline number one of the three I need to meet this summer while promoting two books I wrote last year with May release dates (see sidebar for links to The Secret Admirer Collection and Come Fly with Me). I'm also exactly one week away from signing out of our house in Alaska for a move to South Carolina so my husband can attend a six-month long school.

Yes, I still have my hair, but my nails are a total wreck.

Anyway, one of the things I do to help me de-stress when I'm under deadlines is escape to my stamping room. This month, Blog Hops with Heart decided to "Go Green." My original thought was to do something with recycling, but remember those deadlines I told you about. Yeah...just didn't have it in me to be that creative. So I went green. Like totally green.

Here's my first card. It uses current CTMH products:


To create the inset sentiment, I cut the "thanks" at an angle along the bottom of a 5.5 x 4.25 piece of white cardstock. I then cut it again from patterned paper out of the Some Kind of Wonderful paper (still available for purchase) and glued the two sentiments together. I then used my paper cutter to trim the bottom edge of the white cardstock and set everything aside.

Next, I smeared Topiary ink over top of the Confetti embossing folder and ran it through my Cuttlebug with Willow paper. The effect is known as two-tone embossing or something, but the basic idea is that you can get a multi-dimensional effect. As you can see, I ended up with sort of this splotchy look which, while it was okay, wasn't as much contrast as I was hoping for. So...sanding kit (which is set to retire...boo!) to the rescue. I often forget to take advantage of the white core in CTMH cardstock but love how it gives me a fun option like this.

I glued the Willow piece to the bottom of a 5.5 x 4.25 card base then glued the white panel with "thanks" cut out of it over top. Then I fit the die cut "thanks" into the white panel. To complete the card, I stamped "so very much" in black on a leftover piece of white cardstock and hand cut it into a banner. I then decided that I wanted the banner to hang off the edge of the card, so I trimmed the assembled card down to 4 x 5. 25 and used foam tape to mount the banner. I used my craft mat to make sure the banner only hung off by 1/4 inch so I could still fit inside a standard A2 envelope.

Here's a second card that uses the same basic design principle of an angle across the bottom but uses products that are close to thirty years old.


And here's a picture of the stamps and ribbon that, you heard me right, are close to thirty...as in 3-0...years old.


In case you can't read it, this is Aspen Green. It was my favorite green before it retired. I still have a ton of coordinating paper, but I love the simplicity of just the inked bottom with torn vellum over top and a ribbon with a plain knot. Easy and elegant.

I got a sneak peek of a few projects included in this hop, so I can tell you with absolute certainty that you don't want to miss a single one. You should have come from Stephanie's blog, and now you're headed to Amie's blog. The hop is a circle, so keep going until you get back to where you started.

This will likely be my last post for a while. I have packed a crafty bag so I can create on the road, but it might be tricky to photograph and post from the road. It will take us over a month to get from Alaska to South Carolina because we plan to add a vacation into our travel. I'm particularly looking forward to the ferry ride from Whittier, AK to Bellingham, WA through the Inside Passage. The ferry might not have the same amenities as a cruise ship, but the views will be the same. I'll try to post pictures as I can. And so...

Until next time,
Becca

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Catch Up Card

I'm buried in deadlines for three new books, promoting the novella collection that released this month, and getting ready to move from Alaska to South Carolina.  All that means I haven't had much time for making cards. However, I found a card I made I don't know how long ago that I never shared. It uses a retired CTMH set called Blossom Workshop on the Go.


Because it's been so long ago, I can only guess at the colors. I think I used Poppy, Blush, Canary, Pear, and Pacifica with Saddle or Cashmere as the wooden sticks (all CTMH).  The stitched frame is a die cut from MFT, and the sequins came from Hobby Lobby.

The trick to making this card work was using my MISTI.  In fact, I think this might have been one of the first cards I made after purchasing the MISTI. Yeah...it's been that long.

Off to do some more writing. If you don't see me for a while, don't panic. I'll be doing enough of that for all of us.

Until next time,
Becca

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Blog Hops with Heart - Photo Inspiration

When we first got the photo for this month's Blog Hops with Heart challenge, I stared at it for a long time trying to come up with something--anything--and just couldn't find inspiration. Maybe that's because I'm feeling pressure from writing deadlines, but it was killing me. Usually when my writing stalls I go to my craft room to give my brain something different to focus on.

Then, in desperation, I said to myself, "Fine, I'll go literal." (Yes, I do talk to myself on a regular basis.)  Here's what I came up with:


I used the color photo Amie turned black and white for out badge as my literal guide. I started with woodgrain paper that I dry-brush painted with some green acrylic paint. To get color variation, I smushed some Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Peacock Feathers, Salty Ocean, and Mowed Lawn on my craft sheet and mixed some of the paint in with them as I painted. After letting the paper dry, I cut it into strips and layered them over top of a piece of New England Ivy cardstock I'd swiped with Tim Holtz Walnut Stain Distress Ink. (The technical term is "direct to paper" but swiping is  more descriptive of the actual process.) I trimmed this down to 1/8 inch smaller than the brown mat at 4 x 5.25 and glued the two together.

Next I stamped a wreath in Cocoa ink. I chose the wreath from the retired White Pines set, but any wreath will do. I then cut another wreath using the Flower Market Cricut cartridge in Chocolate and retired Twilight. The spray and leaves are also from Flower Market and cut in Fern and New England Ivy. I drew veins in the leaves by hand. Once all the layers were glued together and glued to the card, I got out embellishments and went to town. I don't know about you, but I tend to collect embellishments faster than I can use them up. I think all of these save the blue enamel dot are retired, but I'm at the point where I need to move again (Army wife) so using lots is a good thing.

Our hop is short this month, but I'm sure you'll find lots of great inspiration.  This is an incredibly talented group of ladies! You should have come from Stephanie's blog, and now you're off to Jayma's blog. Have fun hopping!

Until next time,
Becca

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Welcome Baby - Watercolor Whimsy

This week at Heart2Heart the theme is Whimsy. I needed a baby card, so I pulled out an older CTMH set called Baby Steps and my watercolors for this soft card.


I stamped in Antique Linen Distress Ink from Tim Holtz on water color paper then just painted to my heart's content. I did a light wash of blue for the sky, a wash of green for the grass base, and then pounced and splatted paint in various shades of green, brown, and blue green to add more dimension to the grass. After painting and drying, I ran it through a stitched die from My Favorite Things and mounted it on old CTMH paper. Why all the older supplies? Because I'm getting ready to move...it makes me dig into my stash of stuff to see what goes with me and what just goes.

Time to head upstairs and pound the keyboard for a few hours. Hopefully I won't have to delete everything I write at the end of the day. Yeah...some days (or, in this case, several weeks) are like that. Wish me luck!

Until next time,
Becca