Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Hope Birthday Card

The theme over at CASology this week is:

I always hope my friends have a great birthday so I planned to make a nice card. However, when I checked my cardstock I realised I had run out of white! I know one of the CAS guidelines is plenty of white space, but unfortunately I had to go for lots of yellow space instead. I "hope" this card still counts!


This was my first time trying a two-step stamp technique, so I had to do a few test runs before I produced this one!
Supplies used: (All SU unless specified)
Very Vanilla, Summer Starfruit and Primrose Petals Cardstock, Summer Starfruit and Primrose Petals ink pads, Summer Starfruit ribbon, Occasions Alphabet stamp set, Reason To Smile stamp set, Mini Glue Dots.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Blossom Birthday card.

This coming week is full of celebrations- I have Easter, a wedding, and two family birthdays to celebrate. Luckily, Seize The Birthday had a great feminine sketch for me to create a beautiful card for my niece.


Here is my card creation:
I started with a Lucky Limeade base, and added Pink Lemonade cardstock and some floral patterned paper. The middle green strip was embossed using the Vine Street embossing folder, and I also added extra pink strips using my Adorning Accents Edgelits and then embossing them as well. I added some paper flowers to the middle strip and finished the flower with a brad. The last touch was a small sentiment stamped on to the card and I was finished!

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: Delight Designer Prints paper, Delight Paper Flowers, Pink Lemonade cardstock.
Stampin' Up: Vine Street embossing folder, Lucky Limeade cardstock, Flower brads, Adorning Accents Edgelits, Adorining Accents Embossing Folders, Bring on the Cake stamp set, Lucky Limeade ink.
Provocraft: Cuttlebug.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Snowman Salutations

Having Christmas in the southern hemisphere means that a lot of typical Christmas images don't really work for my Christmas cards. However, snowmen are always adorable and the theme for Merry Monday this week is:

I don't have any snowman stamps, but I found a cute digital stamp from Cre8tive Hands that was just begging to be coloured in!


I used a Cherry Cobbler card base, and added a white mat. I also cut the snowman out on white and used a patterned paper to frame him. I added some glitter to the falling snowflakes, and his buttons are clear buttons with little red circles behind them. The sentiment was stamped and cut out using the same framelits and edged in Cherry Cobbler, then popped up on Foam Squares. The patterned paper sweep at the bottom was already done like that on a 12x12 piece of paper so I just cut it out and added it to the bottom of my card.

Supplies used:
Crea8ive Hands: Snowman Digi Stamp.
Creative Memories: Primary Christmas 12x12 Kit, White cardstock, Foam Squares.
Stampin Up: Framelits Labels Collection, Loads of Love Stamp Set, Cherry Cobbler cardstock, Stampin' Write Markers in Cherry Cobbler, Pacific Point, Soft Suede, Temptng Turquoise and Tangerine Tango, Dazzing Details Silver Sparkle, Itty Bitty Buttons, Itty Bitty Punch Pack, Mini Glue Dots.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

My Cake Pop tips.

My friend is getting married next weekend and so we had a dessert potluck evening for her. My sister had recently bought me a Cake Pop Maker and so I was excited to try it out! I thought I would share a few of the tips and tricks I learnt along the way.

I started with a standard vanilla cake mix and put one heaped tablespoon of the batter into each mold. The machine works like a waffle iron or donut maker, in that it cooks and shapes the cake pops at the same time, which is very handy if you are pressed for time!

I popped them out after four minutes and left them to cool on a wire rack. Then I stuck some bamboo sticks into melted white chocolate and stuck them into the bottom of each cake pop. This helps the pop to stay on the stick so that it doesn't fall off in the coating or when you are displaying them.

Once the chocolate had hardened, I melted thre batches of white chocolate melts. One I left white, and the other two I coloured pink and yellow. Be very careful at this step and only add a drop at a time, as if you add too much food colouring the chocolate will seize.

Carefully coat each cake pop in the melted chocolate mixture and then stand upright to harden. I used the styrofam packaging from the cake pop maker to keep my cake pops upright! I just pushed the stick into the styrofoam. Add your choice of decorations after 30 seconds or a minute, as that way the chocolate has started to harden and the decoratios won't just slide off. I used sliver cachous, coloured sprinkles and love heart shaped sprinkles.

The last hurdle was figuring out how to display them. My mason jars didn't work, other jars were too deep or too shallow, and I was stressing out. I finally came up with the idea of toilet rolls to hold them up. I prettied them up a bit with silver wrapping paper, then clung them together with clingwrap and disguised it with a silver bow.


You can see my toilet roll display- I will have to figure out something else for my next round of cake pops but it worked well when I was in a hurry.

Here they are on the dessert table.

Overall they were fun to make, and after a few hiccups they were a lot easier than I expected. I can't wait to make Easter Cake Pops with my son this weekend! I am sure I will get a lot better with more experience, and I have started up a Cake Pops Pinterest board for inspiration.
Linking up with KC at Real Family Fun!

When you wish upon a star...

The theme at CASology this week is a great one!


I am not a huge Disney fan, but their songs have been in my head all week. I have been doing a few baby inpired scrapbook layouts this week and had some star embellishments in front of me today, and I kept singing this song:

When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true!

Did you know that this song won a 1940 Academy Award for Best Original Song? You learn something new every day.

My card was inspired by stars and wishes. I used a border punch for the three hues of blue paper strips. I used a patterned paper as it has some subtle shimmer and distressing as opposed to a solid cardstock colour. I used a star die cut popped up on foam squares to form the "i" in wish. The colours and the wand-like look of the letter "i" remind me of the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio.

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: White cardstock, Wishful Patterned Paper, Wishful Embellishments, Border Maker System, Twinkle Chain Cartridge, Foam Squares.
Bella Blvd: Mr Boy 12x12 Cardstock Stickers Alphabet and Bits.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

My Fitness Inspiration

If you are on Pinterest, you probably see them all the time. Pictures of super fit women, usually running up a mountain or doing some sort of exercise, with inspirational quotes written on them.


I used to look at those pictures and think- I will never look like that. I like my baking too much!

However, upon reading some blogs I came across Mama Laughlin. She is not a model, professional athlete or personal trainer. She is a mother and a real women. She has been inspiring me lots over the past few months and her latest post about her arm workout really spoke to me. Ecen though I am at my goal weight, I could definitely use some toning up and I think this arm workout is completely realistic for me to do. I tend to go all or nothing when it comes to training, so this will be my goal for the upcoming week- to do Mama Laughin's arm workout. It even comes with video tutorials!

I am still currently maintaining at my goal weight even though I have been baking up a storm- the walking to and from preschool is really helping as it adds up to an extra 80 minutes of walking per week that I wouldn't be doing otherwise. My two sons enjoy the fresh air too.

I really love it when I come across inspiring real women, such as all of the lovely ladies at Getting Fit Friday! It is great to see so many people coming together, and it would be great if you would join us to share your recipes, goals and workouts.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Up, Up and Away!

This week's CASology cue card had me stumped...


Of or from outside the earth or its atmosphere.
A hypothetical or fictional being from outer space, esp. an intelligent one.

I had no alien themed stamps or papers, and I saw that some of the Design Team had done cards relating to the weather and sky. I had a think and came up with the idea of using hot air balloons. I also tried to follow the CAS rule of three with three balloons and three elements on the card- stamps, paper and ribbon.


I also added a touch of glitter to the balloon baskets as well as in the middle of the letter "o" as glitter always reminds me of stars!

The end result is this girly birthday card with both muted and colourful accents and a touch of bling.

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: White cardstock.
Stampin' Up: Up Up and Away stamp set, Basic Grey ink, Pink Pirouette ink, Island Indigo ruffled ribbon, Dazzling Details, Glue Dots.
K and Company: 12 x12 Urban Rhapsody Candy Stripe paper.

Butterfly Best Wishes.

It seems that butterflies are a big thing in cardmaking at the moment. I have a butterfly punch that I have never used sitting in my punches box, and the latest Use It Tuesday challenge is to use Diecuts, Punches and Cutouts from your stash. I have never been in to butterflies, so this was a perfect time to get out the butterfly punch and see what I could do. I also used a label punch that hadn't been used, as well as an embossing folder I had never used!

The colours are not usually ones I would put together, but they were the first two colours sitting on top of my cardstock scraps and I thought they actually looked quite nice together. I embossed the vanilla cardstock with my never before used embossing folder, and inked out the sentiment then punched it out with another neglected punch! I also inked the punched out sentiment to make it stand out. The butterflies were attached and then folded to give them a 3D look, and I also added some brads in the top left corner for something extra.

I am really pleased with how this card came out, and also happy that I finally used some of my supplies that I never knew what to do with!

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: French Vanilla Cardstock, Cider cardstock, 12" Rotary Trimmer, Butterfly Pocket Punch, Precision Point Adhesive.
Stampin' Up: Regals brads, Cajun Craze ink, Island Indigo ink, Island Indigo cardstock, Cute and Curly stamp set, Curly Label Punch, Flower Garden embossing folder.

Primary Christmas Card.

Ever have one of those days where nothing goes right?

I love playing along each week with Merry Monday and this week was a sketch challenge.

I had a great vision in my head of muted colours, music notes and pears. However, my son only napped for 36 minutes and I couldn't find the right combination of papers from my stash, and I ended up finding more of my old Primary Christmas stash from Creative Memories. So this was my end result.
I feel like it needs something else- but not bad for a 10 minute card! Everything was from my Creative Memories Primary Christmas Kit and at least I can tell my husband that I am using up some of my massive stash of papers. Next week I will hope to use my original ideas somehow, but this card ended up being bright and completely different to what I expected.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Easter Hot Chocolate Truffles

Easter is coming up, and my son has been talking all week about making some hot chocolate balls. I usually make coffee balls, so I think this was his way of letting me know I needed to make a kid-friendly version! He was even the one who suggested adding marshmellows, so I may have a future chef on my hands.

 I love the pastel colours of Easter, and of course the chocolate, and these are combined to make a bite size treat that will be enjoyed by kids and adults alike.
You will need:
125g butter (1 stick or half a cup to those not using grams)
1 2/3 C icing sugar
3/4 C coconut
3/4 C rolled oats
1 dessertspoon hot chocolate powder
1 cup pastel mini marshmellows
110g (4 oz) dark chocolate
Cream butter and sugar till fluffy.
Stir in coconut, rolled oats, hot chocolate powder and marshmellows.
Roll into balls- I use about a teaspoon of mixture for each truffle.

Refrigerate or freeze until chilled.
Melt the chocolate and then drizzle over the truffles. I actually like to use a silicon pastry brush and brush the chocolate over the top of the balls, and then do another coat once it dries. The look reminds me of a fancy chocolate and that way you get an even coverage.


I hope you enjoy these as much as I do!

Linking up to Real Family Fun with KC.
Linking up to Kitchen Fun and Crafty Friday.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bookcase Makeover

Remember my bookcase from the last bedroom post over at Wow Us Wednesdays?


Not too bad, but it could do with some excitement. As one of my Pinterest Resolutions, I had wanted to paint the back of the bookcase and we finally had a spare weekend to get it done!

We masked the back panels and decided to paint them the same colour as the bedroom walls.


Much better!


I added some of Adam's favourite books and toys....


Even the iconic New Zealand Buzzy Bee has a spot on the bookcase!

Now that we have new curtains and new paint, as well as a spruced up bookcase, the next part of the bedroom makeover is the wall art- stay tuned for next week's reveal!
Linking up with Savvy Southern Style at Wow Us Wednesdays.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Flower Birthday Card

One of my good friends celebrated a birthday this week, and as she is a crafty type I thought I would make her a lovely birthday card.

The sketch this week over at Seize The Birthday was perfect for the card I had in mind.


My favourite colour at the moment is Rasberry Ripple, and I paired it with white and touches of green and yellow to make a sweet floral card. The floral stamp was inked on to white cardstock, then I inked it again and cut it out, bending the petals and placing it on foam squares for dimension. The yellow circle and leaves finished it off.

The strip down the side is a roller stamp, and I also cut out some cardstock with a wavy edge to add some more iterest to the side.


The result is a card I am very happy with to give away to a great friend!

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: White cardstock, Yellow cardstock, Cactus cardstock, 12" Rotary Trimmer with straight, scoring and small wavy blades, Foam Squares.
Stampin' Up: Little Leaves die, Raspberry Ripple ink, Raspberry Ripple cardstock, Petite Petals roller wheel stamp, Printed Petals stamp set, Create a Cupcake stamp set.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Saying Goodbye....

This week I lost a very special person in my life, my Nana. I am so glad I got to see her in her final days and tell her how much she meant to me and my family. There are some special moments I will cherish, such as when my son squealed and she opened her eyes and said his name, or when my other son said she must have had a lot of birthday parties and wondered if she had dinosaurs at her parties! I just thought I would share some special memories I have.

Nana will always be remembered for her hugs, the twinkle in her eye and of course her whitebait patties! We all have such fond memories of the moments we had with her.


As I have grown up, she has seen me get married and became Special Nana to Lucas and Adam.

I will always have fond memories of sneaking into her bed for morning cuddles, and holidays in Kaikoura with the caravan. More recently, seeing Lucas go for a ride wirh his Special Nana on the mobility scooter, and talking about Angry Birds, will be fun times remembered and cherished. The chance for Adam to see his Special Nana twice is such a blessing, and we are all sad to have to say goodbye.



Nana was always so generous and patient, and she always remembered what was happening in our lives. We had great times playing Skip-Bo, cooking, and playing at her house in Waimangaroa. Nana had a great sense of humour and still joked about things, even when she was unwell.

We love our Nana and Special Nana very much, and she will be missed and remembered as the small lady with the big heart.


Monday, March 4, 2013

Red and Gold wedding card

I have had this card in mind to make for my friend who is getting married at the end of the month. I even featured it as one of my Pinterest Resolutions for this year. I had bought the Love and Luaghter stamp set but hadn't used it yet, so it was perfect for the Use It Tuesday challenge of Uninked Stamp- making a project with an uninked stamp, with a bonus of using gold. I played with the original card a little bit, adding a bit of colour and using a different sentiment stamp.


I stamped the sentiment and the cake onto white cardstock, and wrapped it with the red ribbon. I then added red and gold glitter hearts to the card and matted it on red cardstock, then it was all placed on the white card base. Simple and elegant for a wedding card, but with a touch of glam!
Supplies used:
Creative Memories: White cardstock, Loveable mini heart punch.
Stampin' Up: Riding Hood Red cardstock, Riding Hood Red Tafetta ribbon, Red Glitter Paper, gold embossing powder, Love and Laughter stamp set, Basic Black ink.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Make A Wish

I love dry embossing, and birthday cards are one of my favourite types of cards to make. I love linking up to Seize The Birthday and seeing what sketches they come up with for birthday cards!

This week's sketch for a masculine birthday card:


I had a lone birthday sticker left over from a scrapbook kit that I wanted to use, so I also based my card around the colours of the sticker as well as using this sketch for inspiration.


I used Night of Navy cardstock for the base of my card, and embossed some yellow paper with a star embossing folder to match the birthday sticker. A strip of subtle striped paper was used as the smaller piece, and I cut out and inked a frame to place the sticker on. The papers were actually from a Christmas kit, but they matched my birthday title sticker perfectly. With two young boys I do not have a lot of time to create inticate cards, but I am happy with how this one turned out.
Supplies used:
Creative Memories: Festive Christmas paper, Rugged Baby Boy Celebrate Title Stickers.
Stampin' Up: Framelits Labels Collection, Summer Starfruit cardstock, Not Quite Navy cardstock, Not Quite Navy ink, sponges.
Craft Concepts: Starry Night Embossing Folder.

Polka Dot Pram Card

This week's CASology theme is:


We recently welcomed another baby boy into our family, and so my card today was made with him in mind. I got given the polka dot green paper at a scrapbooking retreat last weekend so I wanted my card to reflect the green polka dot pattern.

I love this pram stamp and the polka dot pattern matched my paper perfectly! I stamped the pram then coloured in the dots. I added a punched out heart to the buggy and popped it up with foam squares.

The sentiment was also stamped and then punched out, and I punched out the same shape in Lucky Limeade cardstock, cut it in half and attached it to each side to make it stand out. I also popped it up on the card using foam squares.

An easy, spotty baby card! The circles are reflected in the polka dots on the paper and pram, and also the wheels of the pram.

Supplies used:
Creative Memories: White cardstock, Colour Vibe paper, Loveable mini heart pocket punch., Foam Sqaures.
Stampin' Up: Everyday Wishes stamp set, Baby Bundle stamp set, Lucky Limeade ink, Lucky Limeade cardstock, Blender Pen, Modern Label punch.

My journey with FAI.

This week has been full of baking, coffees with friends and lots of walking! I am currently doing two 40 minute walks each week- I know I should be doing more but right now my hip is playing up. I have a condition called Femoracetabular Impingement (FAI) and basically it is a bony overgrowth of either the femoral head or the acetabulum. It restricts the range of motion in my pelvis.

There are 3 types of FAI as you can see in the image above; Cam, Pincer, or mixed. Cam is when the overgrowth is on the femoral head, Pincer is when the overgrowth is on the acetabulum, and mixed is when there is a combination of both. I am dealling with the Cam version, and currently if I get up too quickly or move the wrong way, it feels as if something is ripping in my hip. Currently I am not bad enough to warrant surgery, but it is definitely something that I will have to deal with in the future.

FAI is usually in issue in high performance athletes or active individuals, but it has been clear since birth that there was something wrong with my hip. If you look at the picture below, you can see me on the right with my legs completely twisted, whereas my twin sister on the left looks normal.

My first surgery was at seven months old, and back then it resulted in me being in traction for a while as well as having an interesting plaster nappy contraption!
I also had surgeries at age 11 and 13. I was initially diagnosed with hip dysplasia and did not get a diagnosis of FAI until I was 22, and so the surgeries I underwent were not actually beneficial to my condition. However, as my parents were once told I would never walk, I think I am doing pretty well. I have run in races, done a lot of fun walks, and can usually function on a daily basis if I am careful with how I sit, bend and get up.

I thought I would share this so that those of you dealing with injuries can see that there is hope, and that sometimes a doctor's diagnosis can be wrong. Yes, I do struggle sometimes and I have a large scar down my leg, but I refuse to let it hold me back.
Onto my Getting Fit Friday journey- I maintained this week again, so I am pleased about that. I still want to work on my arm toning and I also need to focus on drinking more water, so those are my two goals for this coming week. I am still only drinking two coffees a day, which I hope will become a long term habit as I definitely needed to cut back! I can't wait to read how everyone else is getting on with their journeys.
Linking up to Getting Fit Friday!
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