For the Love of Books

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Hey, y'all!  I'm back, as promised in yesterday's PLS Pinterest Inspired: New Neighbor post and just in the nick of time, as if you can believe it, today is the last day of August, to share this month's book pick.  I know that I shared a school-themed story last month, but we found this one, written for children ages four to seven, on a recent trip to our local library and couldn't resist starting the school year out right with another.  It made us laugh so hard!  Sitomer's Daddy reminded us so much of my hubby.  Enjoy!
Daddy's Back-to-School Shopping Adventure, written by Alan Lawrence Sitomer and illustrated by Abby Carter, is a story about its namesake, back-to-school shopping with Dad.  Before heading out the door, Dad is sure to remind his little Pickle Quackers, Jake and Jenny, of "the number-one rule for school-supply shopping... We only buy what's on the list."  Regardless, Jake wants a pogo stick, and Jenny wants a portable popcorn maker; and Dad has to remind them, once again, of their rule.  Reminders aside, shopping progresses as planned; so, Mom steps away to another part of the store.  That's when Dad spots something so nostalgic he can't possibly live without it.  Thus begins the bartering for glow-in-the-dark glue sticks, sparkly purple wet wipes, strawberry-scented pencil boxes, neon paper clips, and even a zebra-striped three-hold punch, which all, now, seem reasonable to Dad; until Mom shows up.  "Gulp," Dad says sadly, "I guess I'll just put [all] this back.  Meet you at the checkout."  While he is away and even though it is, unquestionably, not on the list, Mom and the kids purchase a little surprise for Dad that is sure to bring back his smile.

Thanks so much for stopping by, friends!  Happy reading!  And I apologize for being behind on my blog visiting lately.  Actually, with the start of school and all the activities that includes, not to mention losing power for several hours right during "my" time last week, I'm running behind on all fronts.  I get so much done when I can just find a few uninterrupted hours to myself.  Unfortunately, that nearly never happens until I'm so exhausted, I can barely keep my eyes open.  But I promise that I'll be around soon.  I just need to get through the first of the month.  Thank you so much for your patience!  Hugs!

PLS Pinterest Inspired: New Neighbor

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Morning, y'all!  I'm up again today on the Pretty Little Studio blog, sharing a page inspired by one of our August Pinterest Photos below.  I was drawn to the tree/nature elements from this month's picks and knew these photos, of a raccoon living in the tree next to our home, would coordinate perfectly with our Reilly the Raccoon Vintage Die Cut.  Enjoy!
I started this page by watercoloring a piece of 12x12 watercolor paper with an olive green puddle.  I then smeared Tattered Rose Distress Ink, through a leafy Memory Box stencil, behind where my photo strip would lie, before splattering everything with that same olive green watercolor used above, as well as Gold Color Shine and Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints.  That set the stage for my prints.  Two of those prints were hand-cut in the shape of pennants, and all of them were anchored with gold-threaded, straight, machine stitching.  A couple strips of white cardstock, die-cut with scallop edges, add a touch of softness and just the right amount of bright white to offset all those scrumptious patterns.
After adhering my photo strip, which was matted with white cardstock, I created the cluster in the bottom left corner.  It all began with that fantastic wood chip, backed with a tangle of gold thread.  I then tucked a couple of die-cut, from our Gold Metallic Confetti paper, branches, as well as a floral die cut, under its top edge; snuck a hand-cut, "weekend" pennant under its left side; and topped it with the Reilly the Raccoon Vintage Die Cut, along with a "Most of the time, beauty lies in the simplest of things." Define. Travel. Ticket.
A Monarch Die Cut dresses up the top two photographs...
and my "NEW NEIGHBOR" title, which was made from Gold Metallic A to Z Die Cuts and Noir ABC Stickers, borders the vertical right edge of my stacked prints.  I also tucked a "STAY HOME" Nature Word Flag Sticker under the title's right edge and a striped Rose Bush Tab, to which I stapled an "ENJOY THE VIEW" die cut, just below it.
The title itself also leads the way to my journaling, which reads, July 26, 2013, It was so fun to spot this cutie in our neighbor's tree, when Ezekiel & Adina were camping out w/ Daddy in the backyard.  It was just as if we were @ the lake.
That covers things, for today, folks.  I'll be back tomorrow to squeeze in this month's For the Love of Books pick.  Until then, thanks so much for humbling me with a visit!  Have a blessed week!

{Supplies & Tools}
Paper: watercolor (Master's Touch); white (Paper Studio); Woodland: Tree Bark 8x8, White Oak 8x8, & Coral Caterpillar 8x8 & Here Comes the Sun: Gold Metallic Diagonal 8x8 & Gold Metallic Confetti 8x8 (PLS) Ink: Tattered Rose Distress Ink (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: gold thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); watercolors (Kuretake); Garden Falling Maple stencil (Memory Box); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); Gold Color Shine (Heidi Swapp); wood slice (Amy Tangerine); Scallop & Sizzlits Little Leaves dies (SU!); Big Shot (Sizzix); staple & stapler (office supply store); Hello Heather Here + There: Noir ABC Stickers, Woodland: Rose Bush Tabs, Bloom Die Cuts, Botanical Die Cuts, Monarch Die Cuts, & Nature Word Flag Stickers, Here Comes the Sun: Gold Metallic A to Z Die Cuts, Let's Go: Define. Travel. Tickets & Paradise Phrase Strips, & Reilly the Raccoon Vintage Die Cut (PLS)

The Studio Mood Board Challenge

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Morning, y'all!  We've got a fabulous, new, Mood Board Challenge up over in The Studio.  It's so deliciously girly, I couldn't help but pull some pics of my girl.  Enjoy!
I started this page by free-hand watercoloring some hearts onto my 12x12 watercolor paper background.  I then splattered the page with the same watercolors I chose for the hearts, as well as Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints, before tossing a number of die-cut, from patterned paper, open hearts into the mix.  After adhering my photos, which were matted with white cardstock, I created the "MY GIRL" title, from Starlight, puffy, letter Thickers, in the top right corner of the design.  A couple of phrase stickers; stamped, in Jet Black ink, "GORGEOUS"; and "love you" acetate phrase...
turns our attention, clockwise, to the gold, foil, "HAPPY" ephemera, tucked under the vertical right edge of the "1" photo.  All of my photos were numbered with these die-cut, Taken with Teal, cardstock numbers, which were given a little shine with Glossy Accents.
The bottom photo was grounded with a gold, foil, scallop strip and embellished with the stamped, in Jet Black ink, on watercolor paper; watercolored; and hand-cut peonies in their vase, which were backed with a couple of white, cardstock, branch die cuts and tangle of gold thread.
My journaling rounds out the bottom left corner and reads, My beautiful 5-yr.-old girl, You hadn't stopped talking about getting your ears pierced since your last try.  You walked right in & jumped up in the chair.  You had your sights set on a pair of Hello Kitty earrings you saw last year; asked me to hold your hand; & the next we knew, you had cute, little piercings.  You didn't shed a tear & haven't complained since.  Your courage took me completely off guard.  At the same time, it reminded me so much of myself & gave me a whole new set of worries. {heart}, Mommy.
A cut-apart, "love this" tab; couple more phrase stickers...
gold, foil tag, laced with white string, tied in a bow; and number of gold, puffy, star stickers complete the look.
Further inspiration for this page came from Citrus Twist's August 21st Sunday Sketch...
and here's your Mood Board Challenge graphic to get you off and creating in the right direction.  Obviously, I was inspired by the color palette, but I also had to tie in a vase of blooms and some woodgrain elements against a scrumptious field of white.
You have until Sunday, September 11, 2016, to link up your takes, on this challenge and/or this month's Sketch Challenge, in the right-hand column of The Studio blog.  Be sure to stop by the challenge link above to see how the rest of the team was inspired.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have a blessed week, y'all!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Peonies (Avery Elle) Paper: watercolor (Master's Touch); Taken with Teal (SU!); white (Paper Studio); bright pink gradient, woodgrain, & teal triangles (Crate Paper); floral (Dear Lizzy) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: gold thread (Coats & Clark); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Clear Cut Stackers: Circles, Under the Mistletoe, & Modern Numbers dies (Wplus9); Big Shot (Sizzix); watercolors (Kuretake); gold puffy star stickers (Freckled Fawn); Here Comes the Sun: Think Positive Stickers (PLS); Glossy Accents (Ranger); white string (Hobby Lobby); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); gold tag, scallop strip, & "HAPPY" die cuts (Dear Lizzy); "love you" acetate words (Paige Evans); Starlight puffy letter Thickers (American Crafts); "love this" cut-apart tab (Citrus Twist)

Friday Faves

Friday, August 26, 2016

Happy Friday, y'all!  The weekend is finally here.  Woohoo!  We've had a long week at my house...  nothing too out of the usual.  I'm just feeling the need for a little downtime now that the weekend has arrived.  Plus, all this rain and humidity has me living with headaches every minute of the day.  But we get to spend some time with sweet friends tomorrow evening, and that always helps to put things in perspective.  I've also got a number of DT projects knocking at my door, so I'm hoping to convince my family to let me sneak in some creative time.  Wish me luck!

It's the last Friday of the month, and that means it's time for this month's Friday Faves.  So, let's get started with Sweet 'n Sassy's gorgeous Scribble Flowers.  I absolutely adore this stamp set!  There's just nothing not to love.  You've got to check out what Monika did with it here.  Brilliant!  I mean, I can think of about a million uses for it; but I can't get over the price tag, especially if you throw in the coordinating dies.  Ugh!
Oh, but this Camping Friends cutie, from Pretty Pink Posh, is totally pocketbook friendly AND has my name written all over it.  Gosh, it makes me miss our camping trips.  Living in Kansas is just not the same as living in Colorado, where it gets cool in the evenings, and the mountains beckon you to come play.  Sigh.  I think it's time for another trip to the Rockies.
I couldn't help but throw in Drive by Crafts' Fancy Mix Fairy Dust.  It is hand-packaged, with love, by Annette and her hubby and full of possibilities, especially for you shaker lovers; but if you're ever unsure of what else to do with this colorful concoction, just pay a little visit to Annette's blog.  She's packed to the brim with cleverness!
Sew Yellow Co.'s darling Navy Rainbow Snow Clouds Pencil Pouch needs to make it into Adina's school desk ASAP.  I'm positive that it could bring a little happy into her everyday.
I'm so excited to be starting my mornings with Dunkin' Donuts' seasonal Pumpkin Spice Ground Coffee.  It's back in stores, and I'm hopelessly addicted.  Mmmm!
And wouldn't it pour perfectly into this Hand Painted Mug from Morning Sunshine Shop?  If you're not familiar with this etsy shop, run check it out today!  She's got a plethora of mugs for every member/personality of the family and just in time for cool-weather season to boot.
That's all, for today, friends!  My hubby should be walking through the door any minute, which means I'd better get the homemade pizza started for family movie night.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope you enjoy seeing a few of my faves every month, as much as I enjoy sharing them with you all.  Hugs!  Have a great weekend!

Poppystamps & Birch Press Blog Hop

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Hey, y'all!  I'm so excited to be here today, showcasing my first project as a member of the Poppystamps Design Team.  Eeek!  Gosh, y'all are going to love all these amazing, new, holiday goodies!  We've paired up with Birch Press Designs for today's hop.  I had such fun playing with their Circa Layer Set; but before I get to that, you should be coming here from my amazing friend Jeanne Jachna's blog.  If you didn't or simply want to start at the beginning, a complete list of hop participants can be found at the bottom of this post.  Now, let's get started.  Shall we?
I started this page with a little gesso on the woodgrain, patterned, paper, base page, behind where my groupings would eventually lie.  Once that was dry, I smudged the page with lots of red and blue watercolors; rubbed a little modeling paste through a Winter Scattered Flakes Memory Box stencil for texture; and splattered everything with those same watercolors mentioned previously, as well as Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints.
I then layered a number of prints to set the stage for that fabulous Circa Layer Set, which I die-cut from white, Wild Wasabi, Riding Hood Red, and glitter cardstocks.  Before I anchored the prints with gold-threaded, straight, machine stitches, a couple of die-cut, white, cardstock Laurette Snowflakes were tucked into their edges.  I also snuck a Tucked Corner Tag, laced with Baker's Twine, tied in a bow, under the layered set.  Once my photo was matted with white cardstock and adhered in its respective position, I embellished its bottom right corner with a stamped, in Jet Black ink, on a watercolor paper die cut, Purrfect Holidays kitten, which was watercolored; detailed with a white gel pen; dressed up with a die-cut, Riding Hood Red cardstock String Ribbon Bow; and backed with a tangle of gold thread.
The top left corner of the photo was decked out with a hand-cut, "Remember this" arrow; "NO. 2014" label sticker; and a couple of Holiday Holly leaves, die-cut from Garden Green cardstock and grounded with a red button, laced with Baker's Twine.
Along with a number of stamped, in Jet Black ink, snowflakes, the stamped "wishing" completes the main grouping...
and directs our attention the right side of the design, where you'll find more stamped snowflakes and phrases, along with a couple more hand-cut phrases, one of which was anchored with more gold-threaded, straight, machine stitching.  The other had the "NICE" square stamped, in Riding Hood Red ink, with the heart.  I also added a little Glossy Accents to it for shine.
The "christmas EVE" title was made from a partial, Riding Hood Red cardstock, Old Fashioned Merry Christmas die cut and gold, puffy Thickers.  An "a Good Memory" sticker, which I popped up with foam tape, and number of white, cardstock Ava Snowflakes, scattered throughout the design, complete the look.
Further inspiration for this page came from Stuck?! Sketches' August 15th Challenge.
One lucky hopper will be awarded a $25 gift certificate, so be sure to leave lots of love along the hop route.  You have until 12 am EST, on Monday, August 29, 2016, to do so.  A winner will be announced, on the Poppystamps blog, later that same day.  Good luck!

AND we want you to know that we think you're all winners, so we're offering FREE shipping (USA only) on all die orders from Birch Press Design through this Sunday, August 28, 2016.  What a great time to stock up and try out these new dies!  You can see all the layered dies here.

Poppystamps is having a special sale, too!  You can enter the code FRESH for an additional 20% off items already on sale.  Just go to the Summer Sale page to see all the great deals.  As a bonus, we're also offering FREE shipping on Poppystamps orders through this Sunday, August 28, 2016.

Thanks so much for visiting!  Now, off you go to the talented JJ Bolton's blog to continue your hop.  Be blessed!

Poppystamps Blog
Ilona Zbieg
Irena Kowalczyk
Jeanne Jachna
Jinny Newlin (You're here!)
JJ Bolton
Lezlye Lauterbach
Marybeth Lopez
Michele Henderson
Olga Direktorenko
Pam Simpson
Patty Tanuz
Sue McRae
Yoonsun Hur

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Purrfect Holidays & Christmas Greetings (Poppystamps) Paper: white (Paper Studio); Wild Wasabi, Riding Hood Red, Garden Green, & glitter (SU!); watercolor (Master's Touch); all patterned (October Afternoon) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger); Riding Hood Red (SU!) Other: gold thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Purrfect Holidays, Holiday Holly, String Ribbon Bow, Ava Snowflakes, Laurette Snowflake, Tucked Corner Tags, & Old Fashioned Merry Christmas craft dies (Poppystamps); Winter Scattered Flakes stencil (Memory Box); Circa Layer Set craft dies (Birch Press); modeling paste (Liquitex); gesso (O'Leary Paint); watercolors (Kuretake); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); button (JoAnn Fabrics); Baker's Twine (Clean Country Paper Supplies); "UNDER the TREE" tab, "a Good Memory", & "NO." label stickers & cut-apart phrases (October Afternoon); gold puffy letter Thickers (Dear Lizzy); Glossy Accents (Ranger); white Gelly Roll pen (Sakura); 3/16" Handheld Circle Punch (SU!)

Pretty Little Studio: Scenic Drive

Monday, August 22, 2016

Welcome to the work week, y'all!  I'm up again on the Pretty Little Studio blog, attempting to hasten the fall weather's arrival with a page that oozes autumn scenes, colors, and memories.  The photos were taken on my family's vacation to South Dakota in September of 2011.
I started this page by painting a piece of 12x12 watercolor paper with a golden yellow puddle of goodness; smudging Pumice Stone Distress Ink through a chevron stencil; and stamping little leaves in Old Olive ink and the irregular grid in Jet Black ink.  After layering a happy mix of mostly Woodland prints, I splattered over everything with more of that same delicious, golden yellow watercolor, as well as Gold Color Shine and Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints.  Once everything was dry, I anchored a couple of my papers with gold-threaded, straight, machine stitches and adhered my photos, which were matted with white cardstock, in their respective positions.  A Vacation Clear Word Cut-Out was then tucked into the vertical right side of my patterned papers.
Moving counter-clockwise, the top photo was dressed up with a Fluffy Cloud, topped with a Monarch Die Cut, as well as a Rose Bush Tab, which I used to etch the Sept. 27, 2011, date.
A Salt Lake Clear Shipping Tag, laced with white string, tied in a bow, was tucked under its left side.
The bottom photo was partially framed with a France Frame and topped with a hand-cut, "scenic drive" phrase strip, which serves as my title and was anchored with an "adventure awaits" flair button, backed with a tangle of gold thread.  A couple of gold, metallic chevrons point the way to adventure...
and a Gold Metallic Label Tag, on the opposite side of the photo, provides balance in addition to bringing a little more presence to that darling Felicity Mini Vintage Die Cut.  I cannot possibly say enough how much I adore the sheen of these metallic bits, not to mention the cuteness of these vintage die cuts!  LOVE!
A sprinkling of Baby Avery Yellow Confetti Mix throughout, as well as my journaling, which can be found along the vertical left side of my prints, completes the look.  The journaling reads, I still can't get over how beautiful the Black Hills are!  This was our 1st good view of Mt. Rushmore, while taking the scenic route back to camp, after the Buffalo Roundup.
Thanks so much for stopping by my neck of the woods!  Have a truly, fabulous week, friends!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Off the Grid & Petite Patterns (SU!) Paper: white (Paper Studio); watercolor (Master's Touch); Woodland: Gold Metallic Pebbles 8x8, Tree Bark 8x8, & White Oak 8x8, Marigold: Yarrow 8x8, & Let's Go: Gray Here Vellum 8x8 (PLS) Ink: Old Olive (SU!); Jet Black & Pumice Stone Distress Ink (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: gold thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); white string (Hobby Lobby); watercolors (Kuretake); Gold Color Shine (Heidi Swapp); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); chevron stencil (Jenni Bowlin); Gold Mine: Gold Metallic Label Tags, Let's Go: Paradise Phrase Strips, France Frames, Vacation Clear Word Cut-Out, & Salt Lake Clear Shipping Tags, Marigold: Fluffy Clouds, Woodland: Monarch Die Cuts, Fawn Flair Buttons, & Rose Bush Tabs, Here Comes the Sun: Gold Metallic Number Die Cuts, Baby Claire & Jack: Baby Avery Yellow Confetti Mix, & Felicity Mini Vintage Die Cut (PLS)

PLS Feature Friday: Summer Adventure Flair

Friday, August 19, 2016

Well, hello there, friends!  I'm up again on the Pretty Little Studio blog, sharing a sunny page of my family's trip to Lake of the Ozarks, in Osage Beach, Missouri, six years ago.  We are featuring flair buttons this Friday.  I usually like to mix collections across the board; but while I've done that with the majority of the products used here, all of the flair buttons you see below came from the Treasure Island: Happy Journey Flair.  They inspired a page of the portion of our vacation spent on the water.
I started this page by smudging Jack Frost and Patina Glimmer Mists, onto a piece of 12x12 textured white cardstock, behind where my photos would lie.  I then splattered the whole page with those same mists, as well as Key Lime Glimmer Mist and Sunshine Mister Huey's.  Once that was dry, I rubbed Squeezed Lemonade Distress Ink through a sunburst mask; stamped lots of little clouds and stars in Jet Black ink; and splattered everything with Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints to set my background stage.  I then anchored a variety of color-coordinating prints with black-threaded, straight, machine stitching.  Doesn't that Fish Scale Reef Clear 8x8 Paper work so well here?  Gosh, I adore all of Pretty Little Studio's clear papers!  You should really run check out the beauties in the new Summer Vibes collection.  Can't wait to get my fingers on some of those, but I digress.  Once my photos, which were matted with white cardstock, were positioned, I created the "summer adventure" title from die cuts.  A number of clouds...
white doily; orange tag, laced with white string, tied in a bow; and "HAPPY" flair button, backed with a tangle of black thread, round out the top of the design.
The far left photo was dressed up with another flair button.  I used it to ground the hand-cut, "sail away", phrase strip, as well as a couple of leaves, hand-cut from our Let's Go: Maui print.  The hidden journaling explains that my sweet girl wasn't a fan of wearing her life jacket.  So, the "It's all gonna be all right" phrase sticker seemed to fit perfectly here.
One more flair button, dressed up with a cloud die cut and grounded with a couple of phrase stickers, creates a visual triangle around my main photo grouping...
and a fourth and final, along with a cut-apart phrase label and Crabby Vintage Mini Die Cut, embellishes the top left corner of the photo at the bottom of the page.  A simple Tues. & Wed. labeling is all I needed here, as all the other necessary details have already been captured on previous pages of this trip.  There's no need for redundancy.  Right?
A couple more cloud die cuts, another doily, and a Define. Travel. Ticket, as well as that hidden journaling, tucked away on a Chrysanthemum Shipping Tag, laced with white string, tied in a bow, that I alluded to above, complete the look.
The full snippet of journaling reads, Adina wasn't a fan of the life vest, but she was such a trooper for everything else a great day on the water had in store for us.  Ezekiel was nervous...
on the jet skis with Daddy & demanded to be brought back to ride with Mommy, but he loved tubing all around.  We all made such wonderful memories.
Further inspiration for this page came from Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge: Summer Fun...
and The Memory Nest's Make It Monday No. 68, which I flipped upside down.
Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have an adventurous weekend, y'all!  XOXO

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Special Delivery (Avery Elle); Birthday Celebration (Simon Says Stamp) Paper: white (Paper Studio); textured white (Bazzill); Treasure Island: Fish Scale Reef Clear 8x8 & Magic Island 8x8, Woodland: Clouds Clear 8x8 & Big Dipper 8x8, & Let's Go: Siesta Key 8x8 & Maui 8x8 (PLS) Ink: Jet Black & Squeezed Lemonade Distress Ink (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: black thread (Coats & Clark): sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); Jack Frost, Patina, & Key Lime Glimmer Mists (Tattered Angels); Sunshine Mister Huey's & sunburst mask (Studio Calico); white string (Hobby Lobby); Treasure Island: Happy Journey Flair, Crabby Mini Vintage Die Cut, & Out to Sea Clouds, Let's Go: Paradise Phrase Strips, Define. Travel. Tickets, & Salt Lake Clear Shipping Tags, Marigold: Lantana Cut-Apart Labels, Summer Watercolor Word Art, & Chrysanthemum Shipping Tags, Here Comes the Sun: Higher Die Cuts & Think Positive Stickers, Here + There Hello Heather: Bonjour Die Cuts, & You & Me: Cambridge 4" Doily Pack (PLS)

Let the Monkey Business Begin

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Hey, y'all!  I hope you're having a great week.  We've been diligently plugging away at our studies.  Fall baseball has begun, and Ezekiel's band class starts up again next week.  Basketball begins again in just a couple of short months and Awana in half that time.  All the kids have moved up in their Sunday school classes; and I know the weather is still telling us differently, but it is officially fall, folks.  Woohoo!  I truly love this time of year!

Oh, and I'm thrilled to be back to my exercise routine after a foot injury this summer.  My doctors were super unhelpful, promising that, "It's probably not broken."  Ugh!  So, I did my research, asked a lot of questions, and came to the realization that I was experiencing extensor tendonitis.  It took far longer than I wanted for it to heal and even longer for me to come to grips with the fact that my hubby wasn't going to join into our exercise routine again, but I finally began on my own and am feeling super good about it.  Yay!

Anyhow, my nephew celebrated his 10th birthday last week; and today, I wanted to share the card he received in the mail.
I started his card by piecing together a number of coordinating prints to create the background of the sketch below.  The "it's your birthday, LET THE MONKEY BUSINESS BEGIN" sentiment was stamped, in Jet Black ink, on a strip of vellum.  All bits and pieces were then anchored, in one way or another, to a Brocade Blue, cardstock frame, with black-threaded, straight, machine stitches.
The monkey, stack of gifts, and bundle of balloons were all stamped, in Jet Black ink, on watercolor paper die cuts; watercolored; detailed with a white gel pen; and popped off the surface of the card face with foam tape.
A mix of silver, star sequins and lots of Clear Wink of Stella, as well as Glossy Accents, completes the look.
Inspiration for this card came from Reverse Confetti's August Sketch for You to Try, which I flipped upside down.
Happy birthday again, Grant!  I've got a summer-weather page, for Pretty Little Studio, coming your way tomorrow.  Until then, thanks so much for humbling me with a visit, friends!  Be blessed!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Monkey Business (Reverse Confetti) Paper: white (Wplus9); all patterned (Citrus Twist); watercolor (Master's Touch); vellum (Paper Studio) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger); Jet Black (StazOn) Other: black thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scotch); Clear Wink of Stella (Zig); white gel pen (Sakura); watercolors (Kuretake); Monkey Business Confetti Cuts die (Reverse Confetti); Big Shot (Sizzix); large silver stars (Pretty Pink Posh); little silver stars (Hobby Lobby); Glossy Accents (Ranger)