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Monday, August 21, 2017

Army Wife Project with CTMH USA Cricut Cartridge

My friend and very first customer has given me permission to share with you a project she made yesterday using the new USA Cricut Cartridge. As an Army Wife, I'm always looking for new and interesting ways to catalog our various experiences. I love what April has done here:

Speaking of Army Wife stuff, I'm being interviewed at 8:30pm EST on Army Wives Network Radio tonight. We're giving away two copies of The Promise Bride set to release in eight days. I hope you'll join us after watching the eclipse today. Wasn't it nice of the army to move us to Columbia, SC just in time to be in the path of a full eclipse?

Until next time,

Sunday, August 20, 2017

USA Cricut Cartridge Hibiscus

As I've mentioned before, I love stretching stamps or cartridges beyond their obvious uses. I used the new CTMH USA Cricut Cartridge to create this card which meets Curtain Call's Hibiscus challenge:

If you have Cricut Design Space and the USA Cartridge, you can use this cutting file for the banner and flowers. The background stencil is the floral overlay of USA cut out of plastic. For the cardstock, I used the new dual sided Enchantment paper from CTMH plus Bashful, which is the color of the year. (Shopping links embedded and provided below.) As you can see from the picture, you actually get twenty colors, 2 of each sheet, in the combo pack.

I jazzed up the flowers and leaves with colored pencils and by sponging coordinating ink around the edges. The sentiment is from a promotional set that will be available next month. The smaller hibiscus is from Hawaii which I purposefully offset; the larger hibiscus is from Puerto Rico. I simply ungrouped the images and got rid of everything but the flowers and one banner then fiddled around with sizing until I was happy.

Here's another blog post using this same USA cartridge which also has cutting files. And here's a second blog post using the promotional stamp set that will be available next month.

In writing news, I'm being interviewed by Army Wives Network tomorrow at 8pm EST. If you aren't too busy watching the eclipse, I'd love to have you join us. We'll be giving away two copies of The Promise Bride which releases in nine days!

Until next time,

Shopping Links:

Saturday, August 19, 2017

From the Heart Teaser

Next month, Close to My Heart is running a special promotions called "From the Heart." People...this is the stamp set I've been waiting for! I could not wait to get it in my hot, little hands. Here's a look at one part of it.

No shopping links today since you can't get this yet, but I just had to share.

Until next time,

Friday, August 18, 2017

New CTMH Beautiful You and Country Collection Cricut Cartridges

I. LOVE. This. Stamp. Set!!

There. Just had to get that out of the way up front.

I also love the new Thin Cut "Thankful for You" which will be coming out on September 1. The words are separated giving you tremendous flexibility. I've made a number of cards using just the "Thankful," one of which is shown below.

However, what I really want to show you is the versatility of the new Country Collection Cricut Cartridges. Although more geared for scrapbooking, they can be stretched for card making. They are available for USA, Canada, and Australia/New Zealand. All of them feature states/provinces with both the floral and stripe overlay shown below.

I created a stencil by cutting Colorado out of a plastic notebook page separator. Both Colorado and Wyoming are basically a rectangle anyway, so all you have to do is insert the state into Design Space, ungroup the image and get rid of everything that isn't the stripe, stretch it big enough to cover a card front, and cut. The plastic notebook dividers I bought were so thin, I used the Cardstock setting on my Cricut dial and it cut perfectly. The only trick is to make sure your mat is sticky as plastic doesn't adhere quite as well as paper.

Once I had my stencil cut, I laid it over my card base and sponged Lemon ink over top. I cleaned off the stencil, flipped it over, and sponged Bashful. I concentrated most of the ink in the corner and faded out as it got higher on the card. The flowers were stamped using all three layers of images in the stamp set. For the largest flower, I started with Lemon for the base, then added the next two layers in Bashful and Pixie. The smaller flower was stamped in Bashful first, then Pixie stamped once for the middle layer and Pixie stamped three times for the top layer. The leaves were done in Sweet Leaf and Fern. To create the berries, I stamped the stem only from one of the leaf layers then used the tip of a pen to stamp the berries.

I cut the sentiment dies three times for each word and layered them together to get extra thickness. The sentiment banner was stamped in Fern and hand cut. This week CAS-ual Fridays and Addicted to CAS both have a "Friendship" challenge, so I've linked this card to their blogs.

Now here's another card I created by using the Slice and Weld feature on Design Space with the floral overlay shown on the USA image above:

If you have Cricut Design Space, click HERE for the cutting file.  I cut it at 4 x 5.25 and backed it with a piece of Bashful cardstock cut to the same size. I used the same "Thankful for You" Thin Cut set plus another stamp set coming September 1 for the banner. This time, I die cut once in Charcoal paper and once in White Daisy and layered them slightly offset. On this card, the Cricut cut does practically all the work!

Time for me to head upstairs and write. I'll be back with more cards using this digital only cartridge (list of compatible machines listed in the shopping link below). BTW, I'm going to be interviewed on Army Wives Network Monday, August 21, otherwise known as Eclipse Day. (We're in the direct path here in Columbia, SC, but the forecast is calling for cloud cover.) I'll be talking about The Promise Bride which releases in eleven more days. Yee!! The show starts at 8pm Eastern. Hope you can join us. We'll be giving away copies of the book.

Until next time,

Shopping Links:

Monday, August 14, 2017

H2H Sketch Challenge

My new consultant kit showed up, so despite my writing deadline (and that I've already taken several crafty breaks), I got inky. Ever since the sketch for this week's challenge was posted for the design team, this is the card I've seen in my head. I was tempted to change it when I saw a similar design from Alyson, but why not show two variations on the same sketch and same paper pack?

Once deadlines are over, I'm going to tackle learning how to make videos. In the meantime, I'm including some process pictures.

I started with a 4.25 x 5.5 piece of White Daisy Cardstock and used my paper trimmer to cut it at a diagonal. I wasn't worried about getting the corners exact because I knew I'd be cutting them off. 

Next, I cut a 2 x 6 piece of patterned paper from the new Adventure Fundamentals. Such gorgeous watercolor images in this pack!

Then I taped the white cardstock over the patterned paper in a spotlight rather than straight, laid a rectangular die cut from My Favorite Things over the top and ran it through my Cuttlebug.

What I should have done is put a piece of Washi tape over the top to keep everything together so I could turn it over for the next step.

Live and learn.
I had to refit the pieces inside the die to add these pieces of Washi so I could open up the top pieces for the next step.

After opening the white pieces like a door, I laid a 2x6 piece of Vellum Paper over the top, added tape runner over the inside of the white cardstock, and closed the door.

I might have been able to add the vellum into the original die cut, but I wasn't sure how many layers the die would take. Instead, I trimmed off the excess with Micro-tip Scissors.

Once I had the top panel done, I mounted it to a piece of Pacifica Cardstock using foam tape. I made sure to have plenty of tape along the seams where the patterned paper and white cardstock overlapped to keep everything secure. I left the Washi tape from the above picture in place, too.

I centered the panel on my card base and then added the sentiment which is from Short and Sweet stamped in Pacifica pigment ink and embossed with Clear Powder. I used another MFT die to cut the stitched circle.

To accent the sentiment and make it feel a little bigger, I added three White Enamel Dots.

I have about five more birthdays and an anniversary left in the month. I really need to get this story written. Wish me luck, I'm goin' in!

Until next time,

Shopping Links:
Short and Sweet Stamp Set
White Daisy Cardstock
Adventure Fundamental Paper
Pacifica Cardstock
Vellum Paper
Adventure Pigment Inks
Micro-tip Scissors
Black and White Enamel Dots
Clear Embossing Powder
MFT Stitched Circles
MFT Stitched Rectangles
Adhesive Runner
Craft Heater
Paper Trimmer

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Baseball Birthday Wishes with CTMH Artbooking and Graphically Speaking Cartridges

Second post for today because I got my son's birthday card done this morning and was so excited I had to share. He's a big baseball and Seattle Mariner's fan. There aren't any MLB images in the Cricut library, so I made my own.

Here's the cutting file for anyone who has Cricut Design Space. To use the cutting file, you'll need to own the CTMH Artbooking cartridge, but I don't know if you can buy the navigation image for $0.99 when you go to cut if you don't own Graphically Speaking. I used CTMH Enchantment Combo Paper Pack in Sapphire, Peacock (lighter side), and Ruby plus Heather from the Basics Combo Paper Pack paper. I've included both the combos and individual papers in the shopping links below.

The stitched edges around the top panel and banner were done with MFT dies. I love how it adds just a touch of interest without overwhelming. The stamped sentiment is from a retired CTMH set called Just a Number. I stamped it in coordinating Sapphire ink.

Now if this can just bring enough M's mojo to Safeco Field so the team strings together some wins, that will make my son's birthday complete.

Until next time,

Shopping Links:

CTMH Jack Gone Girly

I'm a big believer in finding ways to stretch your stamps to cover multiple occasions. I also love border stamps because of their versatility. For this card, I used the Buffalo Plaid border from "Jack-Scrapbooking" in Pixie ink plus the Flower Market Cartridge and a Zip-Strip from the Jack Paper Packet.

I'm not sure where I first saw leaves in colors other than green, but I'm a fan. Keeping the pink, grey, black and white color scheme gives this card a classy feel. To give the flower a little extra depth, I sponged Pixie ink in the centers and on the edges.

You might be wondering where I got that great big center button. Well, here's the thing...CTMH has packaged their stamp sets with a back snap for years. I saw where people were popping them off to create more room in their stamp storage. Um...BRILLIANT. As an added bonus, I can determine which stamp sets I'm using by popping off buttons as I pull them out. Anything with buttons left by August 2018 goes away. That's the plan anyway. Plus, they make great flower centers via the magic of Liquid Glass.

No sentiment on this because I need to build up my stash of any occasion cards. After a month-long move, I went through almost everything I had on hand.

For those of you who follow this blog, you're probably wondering how I can afford all this crafty time when I'm under another writing deadline. The answer is I can't. But I hate this story right now. It's okay. I hate every story at some point along the way. It usually means I don't have my character motivations right yet. So, while I talk to the current cast of characters residing inside my head, I craft. It's as much a part of my creative process as writing a synopsis or plotting.

Off to make one more card today. My son has a birthday in four days and I've yet to make his card. It needs to go out in today's mail if it has any hope of reaching him on the other side of the country before his big day.

Until next time,

Shopping List:

Friday, August 11, 2017

Hey! Hello, Jack!

My nephew is celebrating a birthday later this month. He's quite "on trend" with a full beard. I decided to use the Jack - Scrapbooking set along with coordinating Jack Paper to make this fun card to celebrate him.

I'm so glad Color My Heart is giving out their challenge colors in advance so I could make this a few days ago and link to them now. I used Copic markers to color his shirt: BG72-Ice Ocean (Juniper), BG75-Abyss Green (Peacock), and R39-Garnet (Pomegranate). Skin and hair are E50-Egg Shell, E11-Barely Beige, R01-Pinkish Vanilla, and E47-Dark Brown. (Links to the closest ShinHan markers available through CTMH included in the shopping list below. They are less expensive than Copics and do the same blending. I just bought Copics first.) After I had him colored, I added a little shading with some colored pencils. I'm no expert with alcohol ink markers, but I've taken a few classes and watch Sandy Allnock's videos a lot. That woman can make these markers stand on their heads and dance!

There are a few retired items on this card. The banner is a zip strip from Sugar Rush paper, "happy" comes from the Kaleidoscope Cardmaking Workshop from a few years ago, and "BIRTHDAY!" is from a set called It's Your Day which was a Stamp of the Month back in August 2009. I've decided that, even though I've signed up as a consultant, I'm not going to stop using non-CTMH or retired products. I love showing how CTMH plays well with others and giving new life to products that haven't seen use in a while. How perfect is that birthday font and the exclamation point with the zip-strip sentiments?

Jack retires at the end of this month. Get him while the gettin's good!!

Now to make my son's birthday card. Jack isn't going to work for my military son with short hair and no beard. Or maybe I'll make him jealous with what could be. Ha!

Until next time,

Shopping List:

Monday, August 7, 2017

Christmas in August

I need to get back to the writing cave and pound out about 2k more words before the end of the day, but I wanted to share another scrapbook layout I made this weekend. This one uses the Flower Market cartridge.

If you have Cricut Design Space, here's the cutting file.

As with yesterday's post, these pictures were taken on an old film camera.  Because the photos are dark, I chose a light background for contrast. Not all the papers are available now, so the shopping links are the closest comparable. I love how the single color Whimsy Fundamental background paper perfectly compliments the busy, colorful wreath and banner. To add a little depth, I sponged Nutmeg ink along the edges of the banner, flower, leaves, and pinecones plus the bottom of the sentiment. Love how the Cricut cuts did almost all the work for me.

Shopping Links:
I'm sure my poor son is hanging his head with embarrassment at this photo of his nose surgery recovery, but a memory is a memory. Isn't that why we scrapbook?

Lunch break is over. Back to work.

Until next time,

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Axing for Trouble with CTMH and Jack

Sometimes procrastination is serendipitous. For example, when a 2017 paper and stamp set from CTMH perfectly compliments photos which are about twenty years old.

Even though I'm missing one color for the challenge, I'm including my layout in this week's Color My Heart Challenge. I hope they don't mind, but I couldn't find a way to add Willow without having it jump off the page.

Again, these pictures are almost twenty years old. I'm not sure if digital cameras were around then, but I didn't have one. Yes, ladies and gentleman, these are pictures that were taken with actual film. I got to where I developed everything in 5x7 size figuring I could cut them down for scrapbooking.

I used four of the Picture My Life style papers because I needed to fill up space with interest despite only having two photos (and only because, as you see, my husband grabbed the boy child and forced him to face mom with her annoying camera) . The black axes on Slate background on the left is two pieces of PML paper with another PML paper cut into a circle over top to hide the seam. On the right, I stamped Jack over a PML piece, colored him with Copics, and then glued the "handsome" banner over top. I love that the bottom edge of that looks like beard hairs which have fallen off. Finally, the "Little Man" is a PML card cut down from the 6x4 size to 4x4. 

I should also note that the Sapphire B&T paper is two scraps glued to the top and bottom of the page with the focal picture glued over top. This was the last of my Sapphire B&T from the retired catalog, and I had to make it stretch. (I'm still waiting for my new paper to arrive, but I linked to the new because it also has a subtle pattern in Sapphire which would work to duplicate this.)

Shopping Links:
Jack - Scrapbooking stamp set (w/matching die cuts)
Jack - Scrapbooking stamp set
Jack Coordinating Cardstock (includes Ruby)
Enchantment Fundamental Paper
Sapphire Cardstock
Ruby Cardstock

Jack retires at the end of the month. I am sad to see him go, but I'll be pulling him out again when I find the photos of the log-rolling competition and others where my husband is sporting a full beard.

In writing news, I took the weekend off. Just needed a mental break. I did a bunch of scrapbooking...a bunch. I can't tell you how refreshing it was. Back to the grindstone come Monday, but at least I feel like I had a mini-vacation with my craft cabinet.

Until next time,

Saturday, August 5, 2017

New CTMH Cricut Collections

Would you like to see the complete set of images for the four--that's right, FOUR--brand new CTMH Cricut Collections? Every August, I've blog hopped to find the full set of images before I decide if I want to purchase. I thought I do the same for you.

 You Are Here

Hello USA
 Cricut Explore™, Cricut Explore Air™, and Cricut Explore Air™ 2.)
Hello Canada
Cricut Explore™, Cricut Explore Air™, and Cricut Explore Air™ 2.
Hello AU/NZ
Cricut Explore™, Cricut Explore Air™, and Cricut Explore Air™ 2.)
Here's a look at some artwork for "You Are Here."
My cartridge will be showing up soon, and I have a bunch of ideas to share with you. If I'm right about the Hello cartridges, all those images can be ungrouped and used individually. That's 50 state flowers in the Hello USA, 12 in Hello AU/NZ, and 14 in Hello Canada, plus flags and other distinctively national images. I'm not sure which box I'm more excited to get, my new CTMH goodies or my box of author copies for The Promise Bride.
Oh...who are we kidding? After five months in the writing cave, I'm ready to get CRAFTY!!
Until next time,

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Between Writing Deadlines

So...yesterday when I poked my head out of the writing cave after the big, fiery deadline was sent to the publisher, I decided to take the day off before plunging back into my third and final writing deadline for the year.  Because I don't have enough to do, I decided to sign up as a Close to My Heart (CTMH) consultant again. I've posted links to my new consultant website on the sidebar for now. I'm thinking about redesigning this blog and/or my author website.

And now back to my day job...

Until next time,

Wednesday, August 2, 2017


Just wanted to squeal about the brand new Facebook banner the publisher sent today.

My author copies should be arriving any day now. I actually ran out of the house to chase down the FedEx truck today because Google sends you to a house further down the street. I had to chase down our movers so I was giving the FedEx guy the same courtesy.

Only he wasn't looking for me.

Then the UPS guy slowed down and my heart rate picked up. But he wasn't coming to my house either.

I hate waiting.

Until next time (unless I get run over by a truck),

Monday, July 31, 2017

Celebrating Friendship with Heart2Heart

One of the great things about the army life is that you make lots of friends who then scatter in lots of different directions. It makes the country feel smaller when you have a friend in every corner. Keeping up with them all takes some effort, so I love that Heart2Heart chose "Friendship" as the theme for this week's challenge. I decided to use some old, some current, and some really old CTMH products for this card:

Another great thing about the army life is that it forces me to look through every stamp and paper pack I own every few years as it gets boxed up on one end and unloaded on the other. I get a refresher on why I loved the products enough to purchase them in the first place, which encourages me to pull them out and use them again. The teacup is a fairly recent product - a Stamp of the Month in March 2017. The tag and steam stamps are wood-mounted, so I think that means they are around fifteen years old. The paper is Ariana from the Spring/Summer 2014 catalog. The sentiments are both current and come from two different sets: "Sweet" is from the Artbooking companion stamps, and "memories" comes from "Finding the Words" (the whole stamp says "the memories" so I masked off the first word).

I stamped the tea cup three times: once on the vellum tag, once on the floral pattern side of the paper, and once on the green background. I did a lot of fussy cutting then glued the separate pieces to the vellum. After coloring the back side of the vellum to get the blue inner rim, I also added some shading with grey markers. The strings are Flaxen Thick Twine held in place by Liquid Glass.

I stamped everything in Outdoor Denim so, to create my double line border on the background matte of Ariana, I simply hand drew the lines with a blue ball-point pen.

The inside of the card says, "Good times are even better when shared," and comes from the same Tea-riffic stamp set as the teacup.

Off to bury myself in the writing office. Big, humongous, fiery deadline breathing down my neck.

Until next time,

Monday, July 24, 2017

Wedding Card for Color My Heart

One of my dearest friends is going to be a mother-in-law in a couple of weeks, so I asked her what the color scheme was. Gray and Lt. Blue...which worked perfectly with this week's Color My Heart challenge.

I used one of my favorite techniques for watercoloring when its comes to meeting color challenges. I squeezed my dye ink pads to get some ink in the lids then used a wet paint brush to fill in the images. I started by inking Blooming Heart in Black Momento ink, stamping it on scratch paper once before stamping it on watercolor paper. I used Glacier alone on a few of the larger flowers and a combination of Glacier and Slate on the others. I then accented with Tangerine, Poppy, and Willow. I added the touch of gold with the bow.

I cut my heart and background mat using My Favorite Things stitched square die cuts, backed them with Slate cardstock, then assembled everything on my card base.

Now off to the writing cave. Deadline in a week!!! Oh...don't forget to enter the GoodReads give-away of The Promise Bride. It ends on July 25th.

Until next time,

Friday, July 21, 2017

Blog Hops with Heart goes Red, White, and Anything but Blue

Well...the big move from Alaska to South Carolina is now complete. Whew! I wasn't sure if my craft area and photo light box would be done in time for this blog hop, so I completed this card before the movers in Alaska boxed up my craft area. I have to say it's one of my favorite cards of the year.

I used various shades of red, white, and then some green instead of blue to fulfill the theme. Yes, that's technically pink, but pink is just red with white added in, so...yeah, it works!

I used CTMH inks in Pixie, Poppy, Ruby, Fern, and Topiary as well as Baby Pink Gingham paper (retired). The stamp set used for the flowers is called "Lifetime of Happiness" (also retired) and the sentiment comes from "Happy to be Friends" which I think retires soon. The Ruby dots in center of the center flower of this close-up shot was done by touching the end of quilling tool into Ruby ink and then "stamping" multiple times.

The Fern vines in background are from Lifetime of Happiness and the long retired, wood-mounted Balloon String stamp. The sequins accents are from a mix of Hobby Lobby, Michaels, and anywhere else offering a 40% discount. :)

You might be wondering what's with all the retired CTMH product. Remember last month's Blog Hops with Heart theme? It was "Use It or Lose It." I created both my cards at the same time, which happened to be just before the movers showed up. I was trying to be ruthless about purging things, but in reality, I just find reasons why I bought the stamps and supplies I have so I can feel okay about moving them from place to place.

If you are a Blog Hops with Heart veteran, you know that we always have a circle. You probably came from Jayma's blog and now will hop on over to Amie's blog. Amie has a complete list of everyone participating in the hop, in case you need it. These ladies really know how to put on a show, so don't miss a single entry.

You probably won't see me for a few more weeks as I finish up two more writing deadlines. Then I'm going to spend some quality time in my craft area before we pack everything up and move again in a few more months. Ah, army life!

If you'd like to win a copy of The Promise Bride (releasing in about a month), here's a link to Goodreads. The giveaway ends July 25, 2017, so you might want to head there now and then finish the blog hop.

Until next time,

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Another Goodreads Giveaway

The release of The Promise Bride is just around the corner, and our publisher is going all out to help spread the word. From now until July 25, 2017, you can enter to win a copy through a Goodreads giveaway before the August 29, 2017 release.

Romantic Times gave it four stars, and Kirkus Review said this:

Co-authors Welborn and Whitham launch a new series, Montana Brides, with a dauntless, winning heroine, a complex hero, an engaging supporting cast, and a light message of faith...Sweet and appealing, this historical inspirational romance hits a nice tone as it touches on a variety of themes.

Gina and I are feverishly working to complete the second book of this series, so off to the writing cave I go...

Until next time,

Monday, July 17, 2017

H2H In Stitches

Oh, how I have missed crafting...not to mention I'm behind on sending a few cards for birthdays, anniversaries, and the like. But then I found out that a writing colleague was diagnosed with breast cancer. Before I could get a "Praying for You" card done, she had a biopsy and was told her lump was benign. Halleluiah, amen!!

I wanted to send her a card to let her know I was thinking of her anyway, so I decided to use the cheerful dots from the Little Dreamer paper pack with a fun sentiment from the Flower Market coordinating stamps to make this card for the H2H In Stitches Challenge this week:

I'm complying with the "stitches" theme in several stitches, laughter that has you in stitches, and the cross-stitch pattern on the banner from the Whimsy Fundamentals paper pack To get the sentiment to stand out, I used pigment ink (Emerald). I really wanted to use my sewing machine to stitch a border all the way around my polka dot piece before mounting it to the card base with foam tape, but my sewing machine is still in a box. 

The assembly guy comes on Monday to put my craft cabinet together, and then I can get it loaded up and be back in business. Yes, it's a lot of work for only five months, but it's necessary to my mental health.

I hope you will come join us at H2H this week and give us your best "in stitches" project.

Until next time,

Monday, July 3, 2017

No Worries

I've been sitting on this news for quite a while now, and I can finally tell you that I'm joining the talented group of ladies on the design team at the Heart2Heart Challenge Blog featuring Close to My Heart products. This week the challenge is to use the No Worries paper. Please excuse the weird photography. I was trying to be artsy and, well...yeah. To get the color and brightness right on the card, it totally whacked out the jar with the green marbles in it. I figured the card was more important.

I cut a white card base and then an extra piece of white cardstock measuring 4 x 5.25. I then trimmed out a one inch border using my Fiskars Paper Trimmer. I stamped the sentiment (from the Flower Market Cricut Cartridge companion stamps) leaving off the "happy" part. I die cut the "HAPPY" using a retired Thin Cut four times--three in white paper and one from the No Worries paper. I glued the four die cuts together to give it strength and depth. I then glued a piece of No Worries paper to the card base, mounted the trimmed out and stamped frame piece over top using foam tape, and glued the "HAPPY" in place.

I'm so excited to be part of this design team! Heart2Heart always has fun challenges.

On a personal note, this card was made while the hubs and I are on the road traveling from Alaska to South Carolina. You can read some previous posts and see pictures of our travels. We're almost done. A few more days on the road, and then we'll be in our new home...for six months before we move again. life! And some time between now and September 1, I need to finish two stories. Ah...the life of an author. So crazy!! But I wouldn't change a thing.

Until next time,

Saturday, July 1, 2017

More Pictures from our Move

We've made it to Colorado. Here are a few more pictures to show you where we've been.
Mt. Hood at Sunset

Mt. Shasta

Lake Shasta

Morgan, UT

Western Wyoming

South Western Nebraska 

Me snapping pictures out the window

NE Colorado

 And don't forget to enter the GoodReads giveaway of The Promise Bride. Here's the link to enter:

Until next time,

Thursday, June 29, 2017

GoodReads Giveaway: The Promise Bride

The publisher of The Promise Bride is giving away 25 copies on GoodReads between June 29 and July 6.  I'm still on the road, so I'm not sure how many times I'll be able to pop in here and remind you, so be sure to enter right away!

Here's the link to enter:

Gina and I are thrilled to finally get the first book of this three-book series in the hands of readers. We started brainstorming these stories four years ago in a Starbucks on Cache Road in Lawton, Oklahoma. Every book has it's own special "behind-the-scenes" challenges. This one involves a house fire.

We were about a month away from our deadline when Gina's house caught on fire. The damage was so extensive, her family had to move into a rental home which they still occupy. If you've read the Acknowledgments section of my story in The Secret Admirer's Collection, you know I wrote that novella in six days. The reason was because we had to push back the deadline for The Promise Bride by a month. Clearly, Gina had more important things to attend to--like her children and her husband who suffered third-degree burns on his leg. Real people trump made-up ones every time.

We are so grateful that Gina's husband suffered no permanent damage and nothing was lost that couldn't be replaced.

Come Fly with Me is the introductory novella to this series. You'll meet a few of the characters who will be important in The Promise Bride and future stories. This story is available now but only in e-reader format.

Gina and I hope you fall in love with Luanne and Roy (Come Fly with Me) as well as with Emilia and Mac (The Promise Bride). You'll be able to check back in on them as the series continues over the next couple of years. I know, it's a long time to wait, but each story stands on its own with just a few teasers to make you eager for the next installment.

The Promise Bride officially releases August 29, 2017, but pre-orders are being taken now.

And now on with our previously scheduled move from Alaska to South Carolina. We are currently in California enjoying time with friends...and trying to meet the next book deadline for the second book in this series.

Until next time,

Friday, June 23, 2017

Blog Hops with Heart is Using It or Losing It.

Every time the army moves us, I try to be ruthless weeding 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.


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,

Monday, June 12, 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,