Saturday, November 30, 2013

FREEBIE - Printable December Calendar Page

Sorry I'm a bit late on this. With everything going on around here, I got a little behind. Here is your printable calendar page for December. It will print out a 4x6 inches at 300 DPI. You can grab yours on the FREEBIE page of my website HERE. You can print them this on your home printer or you can upload it to your favorite photo processing center.

Images used in the calendar page are from my Christmas Kitchen Clipart set which is shown below and is available at Etsy.

NOTE: From now thru December 2nd, my entire Etsy Digital Scrapbooking Shop, as well as my ETSY PDF Pattern shop is 25% OFF! Be sure to use coupon code SALE2013

Friday, November 29, 2013

From the Desk of Bubba & Punkie - Holiday Pet Danger

We are now into the holiday season and Bubba and Punkie would like to remind you of some dangers to their furry friends. Most you probably already know about, and some you might not, and some of you may be new to pet ownership.

Tinsel (also includes sewing thread and dental floss) - its pretty on your tree, but can cut through your pets stomach like a knife, or cause a blockage. It looks so harmless but it can be deadly. If you ever see a sting hanging from your pets rear area, DO  NOT CUT OR PULL! Get your pet to the vet IMMEDIATELY! This is an emergency! This is one that I never knew about until I worked for a vet. I've seen several animals die a painful death because of this.

Antifreeze - please check your garage floors and driveways regularly. Just the tiniest amount will poison your animal, wildlife, or a stray. It has a really sweet flavor that the animals love.

Chocolate - especially unsweetened baking chocolate. There is a chemical that is fine for people, but deadly for your pets.

Christmas lights - is an electrocution hazard, especially for a puppy or kitten who likes to chew.

Ice Melt - can cause all kinds of intestinal problems with ingested, even death. And you know your pets love to lick their paws!

Foods such as onions, grapes, alcoholic beverages, coffee grinds, and many more.

Also, if it's too cold for you to be outside, it's too cold for your pet! Please give outdoor animals a shelter of some kind for the winter. If you can bring them in the house, that's even better.

The above are just a short list of many. I found a couple of really good links with excellent information. If you are new to pet ownership, you might want to read them. I was actually surprised by a few myself!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing all my friends a Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Support Your Handmade Business Owners

My theme for this Christmas is all about making it a handmade Christmas. This is not only for my blog, but I'm also applying it to my life. Although I have a few special gifts tucked away that I've been working on for several months, I find that I don't have time to make everything I want to make. So that's when I pay a visit to my favorite handmade shops on the Internet. I've been shopping this way for the past few years and I've found some very nice and special gifts this way.

I was shopping at Pasque Flower a few days ago. I was actually looking at the oven mitts but then I saw it, a bib with elephants! Not just plain old elephants, but really cute elephants, and in pinks! It just so happens that my granddaughter's room is decorated in elephants so I couldn't pass up this little stocking stuffer! 

I might also mention that when I just now stopped by her shop, I noticed she has 25% off with a coupon code (thru Dec 2). She (LeAnn) is probably best known for her oven mitts. Stop by her shop and check them out and you'll see why.

The next couple weeks are perfect for stopping by your favorite shops, or even stopping by the fabric or craft shop to pick up some supplies. There are a ton of quick and easy projects out there!

Images in the graphic above are from "Elephant Dreams" which is available at Etsy.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Tutorial - Painted Snowman Wine Glasses

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Hand painted glassware is all the rage right now. I've come up with this super simple, quick, easy and cute craft. These make great hostess gifts, especially paired with a bottle of wine. They make great gifts for yourself as well!

Wine glass(es)
ENAMEL paints, usually sold by the acrylic paints
~white, black, orange, green, red, any other color(s) you want
Ribbon or homespun strip of fabric (optional for presentation)
Paint brush
Sponge or other “dabbing” type tool
Palette, plastic lid, or paper plate (my favorite)
A couple (soft) paper napkins
Cookie sheet to hold glasses while baking
(Image 1)

Always start with a squeaky clean glass and keep it that way. Before you begin painting an area, be sure to wipe it down with alcohol and if you accidentally touch that area during painting, wipe that spot again with the alcohol. The oils from your hands can actually prevent your paint from permanently sticking to the glass. While painting the upper part of the glass, I always hold the stem or put my hands inside the glass. At some places you may find that you want to add a second coat. I did this at the upper edge of the wine glass as well as on the bottom and on the stem. It’s also very important to allow paint to completely dry between coats and color changes. Also be sure to wash and dry your brushes thoroughly after each color or between coats. (Image 2) 


1.  Shake your paint well and place a small amount at a time on your palette. I used about the size of a quarter for most painting at one time. Begin with the white paint. Dip your sponge or other tool in the paint, then blot it on the paper plate or other protective surface a couple of times to spread it evenly on your sponge or tool. Gently blot the upper part of the wine glass until it’s completely covered. You can use a brush and paint it on using strokes if you prefer, but I really like the “frosted” effect I got by using the blotting method. Let dry. (Image 3 & 4)


3.  Paint two dots just above the center of the glass for eyes. Make five dots for a smile, or you can draw a curved line. After these dry, you can place a tiny dot of white at the upper part of each eye. (images 5, 6, 7)


4.  If you want to make some rosy cheeks, you can add a small amount of red to the white and gently blot it at the end of the smile. I did this on two of my glasses, but I really prefer it without the rosy cheeks. Personal preference.

5.  Using the orange, make a carrot shape for the nose. (Image 8)

6.  Using the red or green paint, do something fun and decorative at the upper edge. You can make dots, squares, curved lines, whatever you want. I made a simple scalloped strip and added a dot of another color in the center of each scallop. Making the dots are so simple. I used the flat end of a paintbrush to “dot” the colors onto the glass. Perfect dot every time! (Image 9 & 10)


7.  Paint the stems and the bottom of the wine glass. I used two coats for this part. After they are dry you can add another color of paint to make stripes, swirls, dots, anything you want. I actually liked them best a solid color. (Image 11)

8.  Once the glasses are completely dry, you will have to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for on the bottle of the paint brand you are using for finishing. For example, for the brand of paint I used, I was to allow my paint to dry for 48 hours. After that, I set them in a cool oven, I set the temperature to 325 degrees, bake 30 minutes, turn oven off, let them cool down in the oven before removing. (Image 12)


After they are baked, they can be washed but I wouldn’t recommend putting them in the dishwasher.

For a cute presentation, you can tie a bow or ribbon at the upper part of the stem. Perfect for a hostess gift!

For my Polka Dot wine or other beverage glass tutorial for any occasion, click HERE.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Buckeye Bars - So Easy!

Are you looking for a new recipe for Thanksgiving or Christmas that is as easy as it is delicious? Here is a recipe I found on the Internet a couple years back. It's now one of our family's favorite for the Holidays, or anytime.

Buckeye Bars
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
22 NILLA Wafers, crushed (I crush mine really well)
2 cups  powdered sugar
1/2 of 8-oz. tub COOL WHIP (Do not thaw.)
3 squares Semi-Sweet Chocolate

Line an 8-inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides. Beat butter and peanut butter with mixer until blended. Mix in cookie crumbs. Gradually add sugar, mixing well after each addition. Press onto bottom of pan.

Microwave cool whip and chocolate in microwaveable bowl on high for 1 min.; stir. Microwave 15 to 30 sec. or until chocolate is melted; stir until blended. Spread over peanut butter layer.

Refrigerate 2 hours. Use foil handles to lift dessert from pan before cutting to serve.

Turkey and pumpkin above can be found in Halloween & Fall Clipart Set at Etsy by clicking HERE.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

My Camera - I Never Leave Home Without It

Do you see a bird on this fence? We were out running errands yesterday and we pulled into a parking lot that was surrounded by an old and weathered wooden fence. As I was getting out of the car I noticed that it appeared as if someone had designed a bird in the wood. It was actually a combination of the knotting, a nail, and the wear and tear. I just thought it was cool!

I wonder if anyone thought I was strange for taking a picture of a section of fence. As we were driving home down this country road, I noticed a car parked off to the side and woman was standing there photographing something. I don't know what caught her eye, but I wonder if her photo will show up in a blog post somewhere today too.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Crazy and INSANE Christmas Deals!

To kick off the Christmas Season I thought it would be fun to have some crazy and insane specials. Specials that are priced so low you are going to think, "Is she nuts?" Some days it will be graphics, some days it will be patterns, but there will be LOTS of them!

To keep updated on the present sales, be sure to follow us on Facebook or Google+ because all the sales will be announced there. You can click the links below or you can click on the graphics at the right.


We will begin with my Christmas Clipart Bundle. TODAY ONLY you will get it for $3.00. Yes, I know that is less than the regular price of my clipart sets, but I told you it would be crazy! You can find this set at my Etsy by clicking HERE.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

To A New Chapter and A Good Start!

Yesterday was my last day of work at the clinic so I can start the next chapter in my life as a full time business owner. It was a  nice day at work. They bought lunch from my favorite restaurant in Chesterton, my co-worker (and very good friend) made me ice cream cake, and my extremely supportive and excited husband bought me a beautiful gift, a card, and took me to a really nice restaurant (Coopers Hawk Winery) for dinner and wine tasting.

I woke up today and saw that my Happy Snowman mug rug pattern made its way to the #1 best seller at Craftsy! I have to say this is a good sign. It's been working its way there for several days and today of all days, it made it!

I'm off now to start this new venture, and do some things around the house that I've been dying to tackle but never had time with two jobs!!!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

My New Job Commute - Across the Hall!

When I first started listing my graphics and patterns at my very first shop, I never thought I'd sell enough of them to actually quit my day job. Two and a half years, over a dozen shops, and a several thousand sales later, I have finally reached that point and have made that silly little dream a reality! Some might say that it takes a lot of hard work to run a business, which it does, but it's FUN work! 

Friday will be my last day at the animal clinic. I will miss the people and the job, but I felt as though I was holding down two jobs. It was so stressful and left me with very little time for anything else, plus I know that if I can focus on my business more completely, I can make it grow even more. Plus, I can keep a flexible schedule and even take vacations and long weekends anytime I want! Most importantly, I can spend more time with my family. Brian is happiest about that part.

When I gave my notice last month I was asked if I'd like to come back once in a while to fill in if someone needs a day or two off. They don't ask too many people if they'd like to stay on that way so it made me feel like my work there was really appreciated. It will also be nice to help out my co-workers when they need some time off.

So the photo above is my studio where I will spend my time creating along with my trusty assistant Punkie. 

So, to my friends who have been running their business on a full time basis, I'd really appreciate any tips or advice to keeping a schedule, organization, or anything that will help me. I'm taking all the advice I can get.

I'm so excited about beginning this whole new chapter in my life!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

A Handmade Holiday - Creating Memories

There is something about handmade gifts and decorations that makes Christmas just a little more cozy. Most of our decorations and ornaments are handmade. Not only do I like to make decorations and gifts for my loved ones, I also like to buy from the many handmade artists online and locally. As much as I enjoy a day of shopping and lunch, I also love to sit in my studio and create something special for someone special. When you are making someone a gift, you are also giving them a part of yourself. 

I was raised in a home that was decorated for Christmas where almost everything was handmade, and creating gifts for family and friends was something that I enjoyed doing so much. My grandma was a big influence to me when it came to crafting. Our home was filled with her wonderful creations for all the different holidays. Although they are old, and some very fragile, my mom and I still have some of her decorations today.

Be sure to check out my Craftsy shop where you will also find some fun and FREE Christmas patterns such as my Angled Stripes Table Runner, Lollipop Ornaments, Hobby Horse Candy Cane Holder, and Gingerbread Boy & Girl Ornaments

My hope is that this post will inspire you to create something special this Christmas for yourself, or someone else. Maybe you will even start a new crafty Christmas tradition!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Make it Special with Tablescapes!

I love tablescapes! You can create a beautiful table without spending a fortune. They add so much drama and elegance to your breakfast, lunch, dinner, or afternoon tea. I've been searching the Internet for ideas so I can make my holiday entertaining even more festive. Below are a few that I have saved for inspiration.

 From: Dwell On Joy

From: Take Six

Aren't they beautiful? I've decided that I'm going to do something different this year. I'm going to take some of the serving pieces that I already have and see how I can make them come to life!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Free Table Runner Pattern

Some of you already know about the free table runner tutorial I have on my blog as well as the downloadable pattern I have at my Craftsy shop. I decided it would also be a great way to use up some fabric scraps so I made up a Christmas version this week. I love it! This time though I used a cotton batting for a flatter look. This is a pretty quick project if you do it all by machine. I love them both!

You can get your free table runner pattern at my Craftsy Pattern Shop by clicking HERE.
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