Monday, October 31, 2016

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

National Pumpkin Day

Even the Pumpkin gets a day! What a wonderful country we live in. It would be a great day to enjoy a slice of pumpkin pie or a pumpkin spice latte or even roasted pumpkin seeds. If you haven't already done so, carving your Jack-O-Lantern would be a way to celebrate the day, too. Whatever you choose, have fun. I did manage to get in a card today that featured pumpkins and harvest and all things October.

I did just a little bit of pencil coloring on this card and die cut the banner. The sentiment stickers and wagon outline stickers are Dazzles from Paper Wishes. An easy to make card using the autumn colors I so love.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Heading into much cooler days here in the northwest...... I'm ready for soups and stews and hot chocolate, warm sweaters and sweatshirts and the holidays.  Well, I'm not really ready for the holidays but I am happy to see them on the horizon. 
It's been a busy time for me; been working on taking care of some preventative health tests; labs and a colonoscopy; had an EKG and will do a stress test later in the month. So far every thing is looking to be okay. I'm trying very hard to stay as healthy as I possibly can for my little Jacob's sake as well as my own. I want to be here to see him into adulthood. 
There have been some days when I did get into the craft room to work. With the holidays approaching I have many cards to work on.  Sometimes I seem to work in spurts that have no rhyme or reason but I did get a few cards put together for Thanksgiving greetings.

I had fun with both of these cards filled with sweet little creatures.  Used some different techniques but each are mostly just very basic card making using papers, ribbon, sequins, etc. I did die cut the leaves on the foxy card and my greeting was stamped. I just love the House Mouse images and this one is a favorite. Wish I could say that the coloring was mine but the image was pre-colored this time.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Halloween is coming...

much more quickly than I had imagined. I have made a few new cards for this fun filled day and even got to crafting a new bottle for my apothecary shelf.  We have all our indoor Halloween decorations up. Our Jacob just loves them and has added the words "Halloween" and "Trick or Treat" to his growing vocabulary. It may not sound impressive but to us it's a major accomplishment. As well as being on the Autism spectrum he deals with speech apraxia and sensory processing disorders so every new achievement is something we celebrate with great fervor.
Our northwest weather has turned the corner. We had a frost this morning, not a heavy one but frost nonetheless. The harvesting of our garden is just about done. The last of the cayenne peppers are drying in the dehydrator but I still have tomatoes ripening on the windowsills and a few more on the vines yet to pick. Soon the work of preparing the beds for winter will begin.
Here are a few of the Halloween cards I'v been working on for some of the grandkids and the Spider Venom bottle I mentioned earlier in this post. Let me know what you think.


Sunday, October 2, 2016

In every gardener there is a child who believes in the Seed Fairy. Robert Brault

I learned that over the past gardening season and I'm so hooked on sowing and reaping and preserving the fruits of gardening's labors. My harvesting is coming to an end as the days keep getting cooler but I'm enjoying every minute of it that I can. Over the past few days we have picked peppers and I stretched my knowledge a bit further and made pepper jelly. I found a delicious sounding recipe on Pintrest. It's called Sweet & Spicy Christmas Pepper Jelly. Using the two bell peppers, four jalapenos and four Havasu peppers from my garden and a purchased red bell pepper I made the jelly and ended up with a yield of five half-pint jars. I was able to taste what was left in my sauce pot after filling the jars for processing - it tasted pretty good. The recipe says after allowing the flavors to blend for a week or so it will be fully developed. Yummo! 

I have also been busy in my craft room. Seems like the beginning of October always brings thoughts of the approaching holiday seasons. The realization that I don't have enough Christmas cards struck me so I decided to work on some to catch up to my goal of four a month. It's only a goal; some months I achieve, some I don't. Here are two that I managed to complete. Both are 3D Paper Tole decoupage.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Feelin' Fall

Just a beautiful autumn day here in the Pacific Northwest; sunny, cool, crisp - glorius! I think I am truly feeling fall. It was a bit chilly this morning, only 36 degrees at eight o'clock. No frost yet, but the chill spurred me into doing more harvesting from my garden beds. I have been very gently nursing the one good bell pepper along and I finally picked it this morning as well as some Havasu peppers, more tomatoes and finally some celery. My stalks of celery did not get large but there was enough to harvest for drying in the dehydrator, mostly for soups and stews later this winter.
Feeling fall in the craft room, too. Worked on a falling leaf "House Mouse" card. Will probably send to my Mom later this month. She likes the House Mouse cards I've previously made for her - hope this one will put a smile on her face.
This one was colored with colored pencils and blended with Gamsol. I am getting a bit more comfortable with my coloring, tho, I'm still no expert. I tried using some pan pastels for the blues and lavender in the background. Also used a Spellbinders fancy rectangle die for the white background and the design paper and sentiment stamp are from a Simon Says Stamp card kit.

My sister, Bonny, is also feeling fall. Her passion is home decor and she's so very talented.  She has begun her fall and Halloween decor in her lovely dining room. I'm sharing a few of her pictures - they look like she could be setting up a major magazine shoot! 
Beautiful, Bonny, love your work.



Sunday, September 18, 2016

Happy National Respect Day - wish there was more of it out there...........

Bombs, stabbings, ugly politics all YUK, not much respect seen in the news. We do need a day to change all of that and to share consideration, politeness, tolerance and all that can be good in society. So today show respect, spread some kindness and display civil decency. 

Made this card to celebrate Independence Day. It highlights the Statue of Liberty and what it stands for. Thought we could use a reminder.......  We are so lucky and blessed to live in a nation built on the strong foundation of freedom and must remember that to keep that freedom alive it must be respected and allowed to embrace all citizens of our country, no matter their race, religion, gender, sexual identity or preference, age, social status or any other" divisive" category. That is all!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The "Good 'Ole Days" were a lot of work

Spent the last two days harvesting and preserving tomatoes........ it's very labor intensive.
Yesterday I put up six pints of salsa and then peeled and prepared enough tomatoes to fill a six quart slow cooker. After cooking down, my yield was three quarts and one half pint jar of rich thick tomato sauce. I'm still not finished with the tomato plants and should have enough coming ripe to make at least another batch of sauce. I did taste and it's so good and so different from the canned tomato sauce in the stores. I'm still happy with this learning experience; it is work but very gratifying.

Thought I'd share a Halloween card I made last week. Used the cut then print feature of my Cricut machine and a free cut image from Little Scraps of Heaven Designs. The design papers are from Paper Studio and bits from my scraps bin. Purple stars and spiders are HOTP Dazzles and the ribbon from my stash.  Halloween has always been a favorite holiday at our house. DH loved to dress up and decorate just as much as the kids and I do. I think we have calmed down a bit, maybe just grown up but I still enjoy sending cards to family and friends. One of my cat loving granddaughters will probably be the recipient of this one.

Friday, September 9, 2016

That awkward moment when you walk into a spider web and suddenly become a karate expert...............

Exactly what happened to me this morning while harvesting tomatoes. It had my head all enveloped and I think if it wasn't for the sputtering I would have swallowed a bug. Certainly I wasn't very graceful at all, defensive without form. I'm sure if there were any of my neighbors looking out the window they were very highly entertained.
Visited with my Mom yesterday; a great day out for both of us and my daughter, Kim, joined us as well. I hate that mother no longer lives with me but am glad I get to see her often. She seems to be doing well, finally adjusted and relatively happy. I know the complete care she receives is better than I could do and for that I'm  grateful.
With school back in I have managed to get back into the craft room. I have been working on some cards and now have a new major project to undertake. My granddaughter, Amber, is getting married in December and together she and I have designed her invitations. I do have a initial workup of what we have come up with that I will post. It will be a project that will keep me busy for quite a while. It entails lots of embossing and die cutting and ribbon tying. Her colors are Navy Blue and silver and we have used those colors. My watermark covers her name and the date, etc.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Rains have returned

Wow, the evening and night of Labor Day the rains returned to western Washington in earnest. There is a low spot in front of our house that turned into a pond overnight. Even the schoolbus driver was amazed. I know summer is going to hang around but the rain really makes it seem like it's over. That and "back to school" signals fall, my favorite season. Love the rich warm colors of sweater weather, the falling leaves, apples, cider, pumpkins, turkey and stuffing; can't wait.
Our garden keeps producing. The peppers keep sending more fruit. I tried a new to me recipe - made bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers for DH on Sunday. It's something I've never before tasted and hubby says he hadn't either. How can you go wrong with bacon wrapped around anything???? Well, they were yummy but a few of the jalepenos were hot, hot, hot. Here's a picture. Mixed a bit of dry  ranch dressing mix in with the cream cheese because you know I can't leave anything alone. DH says - make them again.

Catching up of birthday cards, too. My granddaughter, Emily, turned 21 yesterday. The fun sentiment I put in her birthday card read "Adulthood is like looking both ways before crossing the street - and then getting hit by an airplane." She was amused, I think. Her birthday was the first of many for our family in September so I've been working on more. Here's one of the most recent. This one for a younger granddaughter.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Thoughts on creativity

 Had some time to spend in my craft room yesterday.  Sometimes I feel a little selfish when I'm in there trying to be creative,  Then today I was browsing some of my favorite blogs and one just spoke to me and all those doubting thoughts I was dwelling on. Artist and owner of Power Poppy,  Marcella Hawley, stated on her blog that creativity is essential. 
 Here are her words of wisdom:  

"Do you ever feel guilty for taking time to do something creative? Do you stuff the urges back down inside while you run around doing things for other people, or working hard all day, or planning the family meals — putting creativity second or third, or most likely, about tenth or twentieth? We might feel guilty or scared or unworthy or silly using our time to be creative. Creativity is huge and important. And then again, it’s not meant to be put on a pedestal. It’s essential. Creativity adds a little beauty or light or fun or insight into this world. We deserve to allow ourselves time to create. You can still help others, work a ton, be a family taxi, all that jazz. But if you claim some time — in your planner, if you have to, or set an alarm on your phone — to sit and make something every day, imagine where this commitment could take you! It can be exhilarating, gosh-darnit. “A wonderful privilege.” Essential to happiness. Give yourself license to make. Make cards, make a cartoon. Make up a song, make a sweater. And don’t feel bad about it, because the work wants to be made through you. It really does. Let it out."   Marcella Hawley

Don't know if it was coincidence or what but I really needed those encouraging words and hope they can be an inspiration to any of you who read them as well. My friend, Louise, a wonderful poet, will appreciate the essence and I'm happy to share with her.  Now I'll share the work that came from me yesterday. Just a little Trick or Treat.

Thanks for looking.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Last weekend in August

I can hardly believe it's almost September but here we are in the last weekend of August and summer is nearly over. Noticed some trees that are beginning to don their fall color as I drove to an appointment yesterday. Yes, autumn is really going to arrive with all it's rich strong colors. On Tuesday our young son starts his second year of school (first grade). He loves school and riding the bus. How did that happen? Seems like just yesterday we were bringing him home from the hospital and praying we would be good parents to this little miracle grandchild. Despite the many challenges and obstacles he's had to face he continues to shine brightly and is the light of both our lives. Never ever a dull moment.
Since my last post, I was able to try making another batch of jam. This time I made a raspberry and nectarine jam. Just a very small batch this time; it resulted in five 8 ounce jars. I experimented with a recipe that called for peaches (I used nectarines) and reduced the sugar content to help my diabetic husband be able to enjoy more of it. The taste is great, the texture a little "softer" than I would have preferred but all in all I consider it a success. Next time I will cook the mixture a bit longer to get more of a hard set to the jam.
Of course, I have another card to show you today. Must create many many more for all the upcoming September birthdays on my calendar. This one goes to one of my granddaughters - a true "fashionista". She has a room in her home set up for her make up, clothes and shoes. Lucky girl. I used my Cricut machine to cut the delicate leaf sprig. The pink background is Distress Ink (Worn Lipstick) over the embossed printed words. Just enough bling for a girly girl!

Bye, till next time.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Jams, pickles and now, salsa.

Tried my first ever home made salsa yesterday. My yield was five and a half pints. I canned the five pints and refrigerated the half a pint to use at dinner time.  DH says it could have been "hotter" but it had enough bite for me. Maybe after it sits for a while it will be spicier. I used the tomatoes and jalapenos from our garden - about as fresh as you can get. This experiment has been so satisfying for me. I'll never become a sustenance farmer but will continue to grow some vegetables and fruits and preserve what I can. Knowing there are no chemicals added to your food is comforting in this day and age, too. I plan on making and canning tomato sauce (I have a "bumper" crop of tomatoes) and my next "jam session" is already in the works. Trying a peach and raspberry combination jam tomorrow.  Here is a photo of my five pints of salsa.

Worked really hard on this greeting card, as well. I'm in love with the peacock stamp. It was a recent freebie from Cardmaking & Papercrafting, a magazine I subscribe to. Just couldn't wait to ink the stamp up and get to coloring. I used distress inks to water color the image; my favorite technique at the moment.  The labels die cuts are from Spellbinders and the "jewels" are Dazzles from Paper Wishes in Canby, Oregon. 


Saturday, August 20, 2016

Vacation is over!

Hi, Y'all,
I took a month off to recharge my life a bit. After a year of many changes it was much needed. In fact, I did stay somewhat busy but it was with new and exciting adventures. My daughters and I learned to pickle and made an enormous amount of kosher dill pickles and relish. DH was so happy when we were done. He likes pickles but said the vinegar smell was too much. Everyone is enjoying eating the fruits of our labors, especially our little granddaughter, Jaimie, who would never turn down a pickle. She calls them "garden candy".  Jacob has not developed a taste for them yet.

This photo is just what I kept, we actually made what seemed like tons of pickles and split them up among three families.  Those tomatoes are some of the first from our garden. By Monday I should have enough ripe tomatoes to make six pints of salsa. We have jalapeno peppers coming in like crazy and cayenne and Havasu peppers, as well. It's been a learning process and lots of work, but it's fun and very satisfying. Just glad I have the ability to enjoy it as a hobby and not have to do it as in years ago.

We visited with family, our usual summer BBQs and gatherings. Granddaughter, Sierra, returned from her deployment to Afghanistan and was welcomed and celebrated with joy. She now lives in Maryland and was only here for a short time but we are grateful she is back in the states. We all hope this was her last deployment to a hostile environment.

My craft room did not see me as much over the past month but I did get a few cards made.  Water-coloring and pencil coloring have become my favorite forms of relaxation lately.  Here are a few cards from this month.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Birthdays - I'm aging like fine wine, getting complex and full bodied.

Been thinking about birthdays because I've been working on birthday cards.  Don't know how I came up so short but I really have fallen behind and now it's catch up time. I was able to make three cards that I will be sending very soon. My sister, great grandson and one of my granddaughters have birthdays in the very near future. Sometimes I really enjoy crafting cards with the recipient in mind. Here are the two cards I made for the little ones.

The die cuts on this card were cut using my Cricut Explore. Dressed up the party hat with sequins and just poured on the glitter for the number three. As you can guess Lucas is turning three and he likes turtles.

Coloring was the time consuming element on this card. I used colored pencils and blended with Gamsol(mineral spirits) and paper stumps. In real life the cupcakes are glittery as I used Wink of Stella clear glitter pen over all. The cupcake outlines, sentiment and small embellishments are actually Dazzles stickers from Hot Off the Press. The pink background cardstock is from Bazzil and the dotted background is paper from Paper Wishes. Both the circle and scalloped circle are die cut and I fussy cut the squares and banner.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Summer did not arrive in Tacoma today.

There is a saying that summer officially arrives in the Puget Sound area on the 5th of July; well, it didn't, at least not today. There was a cool feeling in the air most of the day - no sunshine, just gray skies.  Believe me, I'm not complaining. It was perfect for me! However, I'm sure many Washingtonians were a bit disappointed. It was fantastic weather for the July 4th celebrations last night, very clear and crisp. We sat in the back yard and enjoyed the fireworks going off all around the neighborhood. My youngest, Jacob, and my granddaughter, Kaitlyn, learned the "OOOhh, AAhh" routine.  Even with his sensory processing disorder or should I say in spite of his disorder Jacob enjoyed the experience very much. I've been extremely concerned the noise would be too much for him but after the first few boomers he did fine. Earlier in the day we had a BBQ with most of the family in attendance, fun time: good food, great company. 
I was able to pass out jars of my latest venture into jam making. This time I made Blueberry Lemon Jam with berries from my plants and some my son-in-law picked from Blueberry Park in Tacoma.  Very sweet and tasty with just a slight overtone of lemon. I'm really loving this preserving thing.  So far I've canned the two different kinds of jam, have frozen three jars of chopped green onions and have dried and crushed two jars of flat leaved parsley from the garden. We have harvested lettuce, snap peas, spinach, green onions, parsley and cabbage from our patch and are watching and waiting for the tomatoes and peppers. They are growing but not ready to pick any time soon. After that we are hoping to have wax beans, celery, basil and thyme. Thinking of fall planting, too.
And I'm still trying to keep up in the craft room as well. Many more birthday will be coming in the next few months so I have to keep up. Here are two of my most recent cards.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Harvesting from my garden

It is so gratifying to be able to harvest food from my garden - even if it's just a small amount. 
We have just two blueberry plants but they are producing lots of berries. There were some very ripe ones today. I picked just enough to use with two overripe bananas to make 
Blueberry Banana bread. 

Here's the before and after......yummo! Hubby had the first piece and said he approved so I guess I did alright. The recipe I used came from All Have made this bread before but not with my own just picked berries. Very satisfying to really cook from "scratch".

Thursday, June 23, 2016

No excuses - way behind

Couldn't make myself decide if I wanted to continue to blog or not. I'm not sure if anyone is interested; just don't want to bore people.  I will share some Christmas cards I've been working on. For a few weeks I have been just coloring with colored pencils - trying to learn how to blend and shade. I tried it with watercolors and wanted to experiment with the pencils as well. The images on the three cards I am displaying today were all done with colored pencil. Enjoy.

This is the first of the colored pencil images that I thought was good enough to go on a card. The cute penguin reminds me of what I must look like when I take out the Christmas decorations.

I'm very happy with the coloring of this image. In real life it's quite vibrant and really pops off the glittered background paper. The photo doesn't show that well at all. I tried to keep it flat for mailing but wanted the colors to stand out.

A fun card to work on. The image is popped up on foam tape for dimension. This one was fairly easy but I worked mostly on the shading of the polar bear - trying to give him some depth. I did add some Wink of Stella clear glitter for a bit of bling. Background blue paper was embossed with the snowflakes folder and then the snowflakes highlighted with silver pigment ink.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Father's Day approaches

We enjoyed a big family get together for Memorial Day - loved having all the family together in one place. A few were missing but only because of distance and obligations. We played games and ate our fill of the beginning of summer fare; salads and BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, baked beans, deviled eggs, chips and dips, hot dogs and all the fixin's. Two kinds of cake were for dessert and a very special strawberry lemonade. With some of the strawberries I got last week I made a batch of strawberry vodka and we used the concoction to make the grown up lemonade. Yummy!

I have been working on a few cards for Father's Day that I will share here. Masculine cards are sometimes difficult for me but I do like working on ones for Father's Day. Enjoy.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Back Again after home repair

The new furnace, air conditioner unit and hot water heater have been installed and seem to be working just fine. Many days of stress are a thing of the past again. I have been back in the craft room a bit. Many summer birthdays are coming and I try to send my Mom a card each week so I have been trying to be productive. Here are a few recent makes.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The one constant is change.

Home maintenance always means something is going to change......  We found ourselves having to replace a water heater, furnace and air conditioning unit this week. Our heat pump compressor gave out and will be more expensive to repair than replace. Then we discovered the hot water heater was leaking and also so old it, too, needed to be replaced. Next the construction engineer delivered the news that our furnace was now out of "code" because the space where it is located happens to be next to a bedroom and only separated by sliding doors; another replacement. The work is only half done and already there are yet more changes. Due to size restrictions the water heater has to be moved from it's original location by the furnace - thank heaven we have a closet in the utility room that will suffice. What a mess! It's always something new around here. Needless to say, I've not spent a lot of time in the craft room. Only one card to show today.

Another card I put together to send to Mom. Most of the papers came from a Simon Says Stamp card kit. The flowers and sequins are from my stash and the leaves I cut from green card stock using my Cricut Explore.  It was very fortunate to find colors and patterns that work together.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Roasting..... and not a chicken

It is unusually warm in the west; actually it's God awful hot and it's only April. Not only that but we are having heat pump cooling problems. Didn't realize how extremely spoiled by the air system we are. Must be our age, huh? On the lighter side, my lilacs are in full bloom and fragrant as ever. With the windows open for a breeze I can smell the lilacs all over the house. Heavenly! We have been busy in the garden, too. My son-in-law set up another raised planting bed for me and so far I've planted basil, thyme and celery. Looking to put in both curly and flat leaf parsley soon and maybe one rosemary plant. I truly hope this experiment goes well. So far everything looks healthy and strong. The strawberries and blueberries are flowering like crazy. 
Hope we get a good crop - enough to make jam.

Here are two quick cards I made over the last week.  My Christmas card for the week and a thank you, because I always need thank you cards. I enjoyed using non-traditional colors for the Christmas card and I tried my hand at foiling again for the thank you card. Also used a cricut cut paper stencil and an ink sponging technique for the scalloped circle behind the Project Life journal cards. Very simple and came together quickly.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

"Joy is the feeling of grinning inside."

Had to take my mother to the doctor yesterday and was a bit apprehensive about the visit because she was very unsettled the last time we saw her.  So happy to report that she was happy and contented and seems to be adjusting to her new life at assisted living. What a relief for both my sister and me. We had the doctor visit and a wonderful lunch; my niece and her little sweet baby joined us. It was great - thus, I'm grinning on the inside. The quote is from Melba Colgrove.

The card I'm displaying today is a very quickie all occasion card I put together from things I've had in my stash for a long while. The Fleur de Lis background paper is from a 8 X 8 paper pack from Deja Views.  The French blue color is so cheerful. My sentiment inside says "Take time to laugh for it is the music of the soul." 

The Fleur de Lis is often associated with the French monarchy. Writers described the three petals of the  stylized French lily as symbols of faith, wisdom and chivalry. Today it is the official emblem of New Orleans, Louisiana.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Spring has sprung!

Near seven in the evening and it's still 73 degrees here in Tacoma! Spectacular weather for the 2016 Mariner's home game opener. Hope it's nice tomorrow for the 83rd Daffodil Parade; another of our local spring festivities. I'm a bit sunburned from being outside for most of the past few days. We added some red cabbage plants to the garden and have been trying to clean up all the over winter yard mess. There was an exceptional amount of moss this year, it nearly took over. Hopefully, we'll eventually get grass again.
I have been able to get some things accomplished in the craft room, too.

Here are two very different cards. I sent the first little Hello card to my Mom to let her know I was thinking of her. Very simply done using stamp and water color markers.

This is a more masculine card but has some sassy bling, too. Just delight in the Steampunk style at times. This is another 3D paper tole die cut project from Hot of the Press.  I've had the background paper in my stash for a very long time; it matches so perfectly. Serendipity!!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Springtide rituals.

Had a wonderful spring weekend, sunny and dry here in the northwest part of our nation.
Hubby and our son spent lots of time outside doing yard work and I was able to slip away into the craft room after tending my garden for a bit.  Time just flys by now - I realized I needed to work on some Mother's Day cards before May is here. Seems like just yesterday we were still in February. The two cards I'll tell you about today are both for family members for Mother's Day.  Both cards used paper tole 3D decoupage die cut kits I receive every other month from Paper Wishes, the company that really got me "hooked" on card making. Still love their products and use the paper tole as well as their Dazzles stickers frequently on my creations. One other thing I relish is that the company is located in Canby, Oregon so it's somewhat local and not a chain.

The pictures do not display the dimension on the focals as it looks in real life. There are at least three layers of cut outs on each focal and I've used foam tape in between to lift each layer. No sentiment on the outside of these, left the Happy Mother's Day for the inside. Two down - many more to go.

Friday, April 1, 2016

No foolin' it's April!

A beautiful day in our area of the country, too. My windows are open to a slight breeze and sunshine, gorgeous sunshine. Can't get enough of it. This is the third day in a row - so spoiled are we.Yesterday I planted four tomato plants - my small garden patch is looking greener. We have lettuce, green onions, spinach and snap peas in addition to the tomatoes.  My daughter is planting a variety of peppers, cucumbers, squash and more tomatoes, too. My son-in-law is helping and has donated lots of strawberry plants to add to the two blueberry bushes we started last year.  We're no where near self-sustaining but we are at least trying to get a nice harvest. Lots of salad stuff! 

The card I'm showing you today is a very simple card I've put together for one of my granddaughters. I used paper from Die Cuts With a View for the background. Sponged the edges with Distress ink (Broken China) and rounded the bottom corners. The butterfly and clock focal is a 3D foiled paper tole from Paper Wishes. I raised the layers with foam tape for the dimensional effect. The sequins were such a match for the paper I just had to include them and the bling is just to make it "girly".
Inside the sentiment reads "Happy Birthday  This time may be the time that matters most".