Tuesday, December 25, 2007

My first Acrylic Album

Last night we got together on Christmas Eve with my husband's family where I gave my father-in-law this acrylic album I made of a trip we took at the end of summer. He flew us to the beach to go airplane camping!

The front and back cover are from Plexiglas cut to 8x8. I used my cropadile to punch the holes on the side. The inside pages are transparencies with various vellum cloud stickers placed on the different page layers.

My youngest got to fly the plane while the older two sat in the back with me.

Here is grandpa helping Natalie to ride her bike.

Some cute shots of Hayden and F-I-L. It looks better in real life. I think it's hard to photograph something that is mostly clear.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Olive Penguin Tutorial

So here's the scoop on the olive penguins...they are easy to assemble in just a few steps:

1. First drain the juice from a can of Jumbo olives.
2. Next cut out a slice of olive.

3. Then fill with softened cream cheese. I used a sandwich bag with the tip cut off to pipe the cream cheese into the olive. (you can also just use your finger).
4. Smooth out the cream cheese and wipe away any cream cheese from the outer part of the olive.

5. Cut a small carrot into 1/4" disks. (This will be the feet.)
6. Now cut away a small triangle for the beak. (hey looky...it's pac-man!)

7. Cut a slice vertically down the long side of a small olive.
8. Insert the carrot triangle. (You may have to slice the triangle thinner to fit inside the slit.)

9. Now that you have all your pieces, just insert a toothpick through the head, body and down into the carrot feet.

Repeat this process until you have enough penguins for your party. I found that it worked best to prep all the parts and then assemble all at once. If you need to store these over night, keep them in an airtight storage container with a little olive brine.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Holiday Elegance

My husband asked me to make some custom Christmas cards for a few of his clients. It took me a while to think up a card design, but he really liked how they turned out. It was my first time using transparencies and now I am hooked.

The swirl stamp, paper and greeting are from Stampin' Up! The snowflake is from Jolee's. I looked through all my Christmas stamps and I couldn't find one that said "Merry Christmas," so I used this one and it seemed to do the trick.

I embossed the greeting with silver embossing powder and it came out great.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Looky what I got yesterday!

Sneak Peek!

The new Spring and Summer Stampin' Up! Catalog/idea book will be released in January and I got my advance copy yesterday!

All the examples and art shots are AMAZING and so inspiring in the new catalog. They keep getting better and better! A lot of the stamp sets I recognized from previous years, but there are some really great additions. I am more excited about all the new background paper and accessories like these:

Rub-on transfers in black and white.

Felt flowers available in 3 colors!!! So cute. These will be on my first order for sure!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Zander's Penguin Party

Sunday was the big day for Zander's 5th birthday party...a penguin party! This one was so much fun to plan.

The Cake

For the big cake on top I used a half round dome shape cake pan to make an igloo shaped cake. The little door was made from a cupcake cut to resemble the entrance. I frosted it with a quick frosting (similar to 7-minute frosting). The next tier was easy...donut holes (snowballs), and the bottom tier had little cupcake mounds that were frosted to look like snow mounds or large snowballs.

The penguins are made out of olives, cream cheese and carrots. I will be posting a tutorial on how to make them sometime this week.

Here is a close up of the igloo cake. In the middle of the cake there was an ice cream center...which made choosing a frosting a little tricky. Normally I make a really yummy butter cream frosting, but since it had to live in the freezer due to the ice cream center, I didn't think the butter cream would hold up very well.

Here's Zander blowing out his candles...they were trick candles!

Igloo Cheese Ball
The other igloo I made was a cheese dip made from cream cheese, feta and pesto.

Cheesy Pesto Spread


7 packages (8 oz. ea.) cream cheese, softened
13 oz. goat or feta cheese, at room temperature
2 small tubs prepared pesto sauce
Spray Soccer Ball Pan and 1 jumbo muffin cavity with vegetable pan spray; line with plastic wrap. In large bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer until creamy. Add goat cheese; continue beating until smooth.
Press about 3/4 cup cheese mixture into prepared muffin cup. Press 1 cup cheese mixture onto bottom of soccer ball pan; spread cheese mixture around pan edges to 1 1/2 in. thickness. Spoon pesto sauce from one container into pan. Add second container of pesto to remaining cheese mixture. Scoop pesto cheese on top of pesto layer. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight. Unmold onto serving plate. Serve with crackers

Zander wanted to make sure we had fish crackers too...because "penguins eat fish."
Ice Cream Snow Balls
The Happy Feet Penguin pinata is guarding the ice cream snowballs. I just pre-scooped all the vanilla ice cream and rolled them into balls, then in coconut. Brrrr. It makes my hands cold just thinking about it, but boy were they good!

One happy/messy birthday boy!
10 happy party goers (not all pictured)

I set up the dining room to look like a cold winter wonderland, just the kind of place where a penguin would want to hang out! I hung small snowflakes from the dining room light...and large snowflakes from the ceiling. Then I used an icicle border along the chair rail. The centerpiece was a baby penguin stuffed animal with some fake snow, fake snowballs and fake ice.

Now that the party is over I'm going to leave up the decorations for a while. These snowflakes were purchased at the Dollar store and are huge. I think I will use them as chargers/place mats under our Christmas plates after I take them down.

Activities and Games
For a craft project I found these snow globe sticker scenes at Oriental Trading and they turned out so cute.

My son came up with the games for the party. In the picture they are having a relay race with "eggs" (balloons) between their legs as they waddle to one end of the room and then back. The next game involved dancing like Mumble from Happy Feet. I borrowed the Happy Feet soundtrack from the library and we played a fun up beat song...when the music stopped all the kids had to freeze. This was the most fun and some of the kids had some pretty great moves...very entertaining!

Party Favors
For party favors we passed out penguin snow globes. The penguin drawstring bags were used to put the candy in from the pinata.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Just the coolest albums ever!

Today while searching 2 peas for acrylic album ideas, I came across these AMAZING house shaped acrylic albums made by Camille McClelland. They are so creative and I love that the doors open and each section of the house is a section in the album. (you really need to click on the picture to enlarge it to really get a feel for all the details). I've never seen anything like them and can only imagine how much time these take. She posted one on ebay that sold for over $80!!!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Sweet Shoppe Party

Sugar and Spice and all things Nice...

Well, we just had another successful birthday party...this one had a candy theme:

I set up my kitchen counter to look like a candy boutique.

Here are the cupcakes...with a giant cupcake on top!

Mmmm lots of sweet things to eat.

For activities, the girls (looking very cute in their pjs) made bracelets with cupcake and ice cream charms, made their own custom lip gloss and decorated gingerbread men.

Here is Natalie and her gingerbread cookie.

Fresh out of the box...Natalie has a new doll to love.

Make a wish...

After watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (the original version) it was time to go home...but not before filling up a sundae glass with candy. I found these pink breast cancer awareness edition m&ms and they were perfect!

It was a whirlwind of fun...now I think I'm going to crash!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Penguin Invitations

This year, thanks to all the animated penguin movies, my son wanted to have a penguin themed birthday party. I just created these and mailed them out this morning...

Now I can continue getting ready for my daughter's Candy Shoppe party this weekend!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Happy Birthday Katie!

Today is my friend Katie's birthday...our husbands went to high school together and over the years we have become friends too!

I just love this Stampin' Up set...I need to use it more often. I also love the dazzling diamond glitter. It looks great over any color...and what girl doesn't like a little extra sparkle?

Katie is one of my only friends (besides my blogging friends of course!) who is as crazy about scrapbooking and crafty stuff as I am...so when I saw these I had to send them with the card:

FYI: I found this super cute "Scrapbooking Girl" mint tin at Joann's

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Happy Birthday Dad!

Today is my Dad's Birthday and my mom, brother and two sisters, their spouses and kids all came over for a late birthday lunch. We had a baked potato bar and a salad bar...and for dessert, my Dad's favorite – angel food cake!

I made my dad this card because he likes to spend time at the beach. I usually make his cards with lighthouses on them, but his time I thought I would give him a nice beach chair to relax in.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Happy Birthday Grandma!

This card is on it's way to you...

Today is my Grandma's birthday (I think she is 83!). Unfortunately, she lives in New York and I am in Oregon...so I don't get to see her very often. The last time we were able to visit was in the spring of 2003. I have been dropping hints to my husband that I would like to go back next year, so let's hope it all works out!

My grandma and I have been pen pals ever since I learned how to write, but now I am able to keep in touch with photos as well on our family blog.

This was a fun card to make and I wouldn't normally think to pair brown with green, but I love how it turned out. I sponged the flower with cocoa ink so it stands out more against the cream colored lace paper.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Paper Confections

Birthday season is about to begin around here and I've been a busy girl.

Here is my daughter's 7th birthday party invitation...a lollipop. The swirl is made with glittery pink card stock cut out with a Sizzix die. On the back of the lollipop, it reads: "Sugar and Spice and all things nice...that's what little girls are made of."

A bouquet of yummy treats!

On the back of this tag are the party details.

Bon-bons anyone?