Monday, April 13, 2015

Paper Issues | All You Need


The newest link party went live on the Paper Issues blog today!  This issue is called “Prints Charming’s Beautiful Papers” and is sponsored by Scrapbook Circle


I used the March Scrapbook Circle kit “Here’s The Story”.  There are lots of colorful patterned papers in the kit, which works very well with the Paper Issues prints charming theme.  I decided to scrap one of my favorite photos of my cat Noodle that I haven’t scrapbooked yet.  I also used the Scrapbook Circle Be Happy Digital cut files to cut out the “today” banner and adhered it below the photo. 


Part of this Paper Issues link party theme is also “subway art”, so I decided to make my title into some stacked words that I cut out on my Silhouette with patterned papers.


I added in some journaling onto a pink circle punched out of paper.  Date-stamped a label sticker and my layout was complete!


Be sure to link your project to this Prints Charming link party at Paper Issues for a chance to win the March Scrapbook Circle’s main kit!  Great prize!

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Friday, April 10, 2015

Evalicious | Destination


Good morning!  I am on the Evalicious blog today to show you a layout I created using mainly stamping as my background. 

I started with a white cardstock background and drew some horizontal lines in pencil with my t-square ruler.

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Then I picked out some Evalicious stamps and stamped in alternating colors across each line. 

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When I was done, I had a colorful stamped background for my layout.  I added some paper strips in matching colors across the top and bottom of my layout to anchor and balance.

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I filled in the “Date / Place” stamped images with the information from our trip.  On our trip to the Big Island of Hawaii, we celebrated my birthday with lunch at the Four Seasons.


I added some paper and embellishments around my photo to make it stand out from the stamped background.


I love how the stamped background turned out!


Try stamping a background next time you make a layout!  Evalicious has lots of travel and everyday stamps that are just perfect for this purpose.

Hope you enjoyed having a look at my process of putting this layout together!  Thanks for stopping by!

Evalicious Products Used:

destination stamp set

daily life stamp set

field notes stamp set

photo shoot clear stamp set

adventurer stamp set
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Monday, April 6, 2015

Make A Card | Lots of Cupcakes

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On Friday 3/27, I had a birthday girls happy hour with my friends from work to celebrate all of us who have March birthdays.  I decided to make birthday cards for all the other girls who have March birthdays.  I used the same stamp & die set to make each card assembly-line style.

Size: 4.25” x 5.5” vertical

Techniques:  stamping, manual diecutting, coloring 

Project Supplies:


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Thursday, April 2, 2015

What I Cooked | March 2015

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Since we went on vacation to Hawaii in March, I only got to cook three dishes in the month.  I’m still enjoying learning new skills and making dishes that are not only edible but some were delicious!  I used the food processor!  I cooked tender chicken!  These wins make me more confident in the kitchen for sure.  I almost feel like I could cook for guests now!  You can follow along every dish I’ve cooked in 2015 on my “Stuff I Cooked” Pinterest board.


Baked By Nature | 30-Minute Sriracha and Chicken Lo Mein

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I didn’t have thicker noodles, so I used thin noodles.  I think the thicker noodles would have made this dish better.  I made this on 3/4/2015.  This took much more than 30 minutes, especially with all the prepping and chopping. And it was also way too salty. I would use half the soy sauce and dilute it with water.  That would definitely make it less salty.  This also taught me a lesson about using recipes I find on the internet.  Not all of them are created equal.  Now I would trust established sites with user-reviews much more than just finding a recipe on any site and trying it out.


Cooking Light | Gnocchi with Shrimp, Asparagus, and Pesto

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I trust Cooking Light a lot.  Most of the dinners that Todd has made for years has been from Cooking Light.  We get the paper magazine.  If it’s not Cooking Light, then Todd makes dishes from America’s Test Kitchen.  I made this on 3/25/2015.  I used frozen shrimp from Costco. 1 lb of this frozen shrimp = 21 shrimps. We put the frozen shrimp in a big ziplock bag overnight in the fridge to thaw it.  I made this dish in about 30 minutes.  Needed to add a little bit of salt. The pesto just coats the ingredients but gives lots of flavor. It was really good, I would definitely make it again!


Cooking Light | Sweet Sesame Noodles with Chicken and Broccoli

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I made this on 3/31/2015.  I added more broccoli, used 18 oz chicken, and 1/3 more sauce ingredients. Broccoli got overcooked because they were in the colander with the noodles and stayed hot. I should separate them next time, or rinse the noodles & broccoli with cold water. Very yummy dish!  Took me about 45 minutes to cook this.  I love anything made with sesame oil.

And that’s what she cooked in March.  Todd cooked all our other homemade meals.

Let me know if you are still interested in these “What I Cooked” posts.  It’s hard for me to gauge interest since I assume that no comments means that you don’t care about them.  But one reader told me that’s not true and she enjoyed trying out the recipes that I’ve made.  It takes time for me to gather my info for blog posts, so if you guys aren’t that interested then I’ll stop posting them.

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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Paper Issues | Cards Using Stamps, Dies, & Patterned Papers


Good morning!  I am up on the Paper Issues blog today to show you some cards that I created using stamps, dies, and patterned papers! Usually when I make cards I use my stamps & dies the most.  But I challenged myself to use some patterned papers this time.  I’m loving the layered paper look on cards and it’s such a bonus that you can use scrap leftover patterned papers!

For this birthday card that I gave to my next-door neighbor Fred (who takes care of our cat Noodle when we go on trips), I used a piece of rectangular patterned paper and I sewed a border around it with Caribbean baker’s twine from The Twinery.  I stamped the handdrawn frame onto patterned paper using Lawn Fawn’s Flirty Frames stamp set.  Then I use the coordinating Flirty Frames metal dies to diecut the frame out.  I love how the Lawn Fawn dies are an outline and not solid through the middle, so it’s really easy to stamp first, then line the metal die up and make the perfect cut!



I made this next birthday card for my nephew.  I used Lawn Fawn’s Year Five Otter stamp set and coordinating dies to make this card, along with some patterned papers.  Otters are one of my favorite animals and I love the punny sentiment “Have an otterly great birthday”! 



For my last birthday card that I made for a friend, I used the same stamp from Lawn Fawn’s Scripty Sayings stamp set with different colored inks to create a festive rainbow background.  I love how colorful it looks.  On the bottom of the card, I used the Happy Birthday Border Die to create a bigger “Happy Birthday to You” that stands out.  I love how the die cuts the sentiment just long enough for a horizontal card!



Lawn Fawn has also come out with some brand-new inks that I can’t wait to check out.  I just received some new Hero Arts ombre inks that I’m excited to use.  It would have worked really well with the Scripty Sayings stamps, but I didn’t have the ombre inks yet when I made the card. That just means I need to play with my new inks more and make more cards!  :-)

Hope you enjoyed having a look at how I used some new stamps, dies, and patterned papers to make some birthday cards for family & friends!  Don’t forget, you can use my code LISTGIRL to get 20% off your entire Paper Issues order!


Have a great day, and thanks for stopping by!

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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Big Island Day 6: More Of Everything

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Today is the last post about our trip to Big Island.  I hope that you’ve enjoyed having a look at our travels & adventures.  Friday 3/20 was our last full day on Big Island.  We didn’t have any plans, so we decided to just take a relaxed approach. 

Woke up at around 6:30am.  Went on FB and found out that Mannie (Kristina Werner's cat) died.  I was so sad that I cried.  I've loved all the Mannie photos and videos that she's posted the last few years.  I love using the stamps she designed in Mannie's image.  I will miss him.

For breakfast we had some of our last strawberry papayas from the farmer's market.  Todd had his popcorn and Coke.  Then we walked down to the Akule Supply Store cafe down at the marina for breakfast.  I didn't like their special today so I ordered the Breakfast Bento Box.  It was spam with scrambled eggs, rice, and some fruit.  I also had a big cup of Kona coffee.  

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The bento box was just OK.  And there was way too many flies bothering me and my food. It was gross.  They had a TV mounted and there was March Madness basketball already at 8am Hawaii time.

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After breakfast we hung out in the condo.  Then around 10:30 we left the condo to drop off our Redbox movie and to get some gas and drinking water at the Aloha gas station nearby.  Then we were on our way to the Four Seasons' Beach Tree Cafe for lunch again.  We had such a good time and good lunch on Monday that we wanted to go back!  We made it there around 11:45.  

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Todd got the hamburger this time and he LOVED it.  He said it was right up there with the best burger he's ever had.  He had French fries too.  

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I had the grilled & chilled shrimp salad with avocado, corn, black beans, and cilantro lime dressing.  So good!  

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We had to have the lemon meringue ice cream pie again, because it was so good the first time we had it.  It was delicious!  

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This time lunch cost only half as much as on Monday, since we didn’t get an appetizer or a cocktail.

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After lunch we drove back.  It took about an hour to get to Mahina Cafe.  They had THREE malasadas left and we bought them all!  We hadn’t had any malasadas on this trip yet.  Our favorite and best malasadas are from Leonard’s on Oahu.  Unfortunately they aren’t on Big Island. 

After that we drove up to Kona Earth coffee farm and met with the owner Gary and his wife Valerie.  We got a brief tour.  They had some workers pruning the trees.  

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Todd got to rake the coffee berries on the drying deck with Gary. 

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I guess it was a “working vacation” for Todd, ha ha!

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Usually the drying deck has coffee in the “parchment” stage, after pulping the coffee cheery skin and pectin.

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But Gary had a bunch of “naturals” on his deck when we were there.

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And by the way, a few days after we came home, we were checking on the Kona Earth blog and were surprised to find a photo of Todd raking the coffee beans on their blog!  So fun!

Gary showed us the bean dryer that he designed and put together.  Quite different than farmer Bob’s at Lehuula Farms!

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We got to taste the dark roast and even that was good.  We chatted with them and it was quite nice.  They have two cute dogs who roam around the farm.  We bought four 8oz bags to give to friends.

After the coffee farm, we drove back to the condo and by then it was 4pm.  We turned on NCAA basketball and ate our malasadas.  They were ok, not great.  

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I typed up some of the journaling about the trip that I hadn't done.  We rested.  Then around 6pm we went to dinner at Kenichi Pacific nearby.  I had fried calamari and they were good!  

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I also ordered tempura udon and that was only ok.  The udon noodle soup was too salty.  I gave Todd my tempura onion stack and he loved it.  

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Todd got a NY strip steak and he liked that, but he didn't like the rosemary potatoes or squash.  They took forever to get our dinner out.  Service was very slow on a Friday night.

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After dinner we went back to the condo and packed.  The vacation was awesome, adventurous, and relaxing all at the same time.  But as with all vacations, we were ready to go home and cuddle with Noodle.  Somehow on this particular trip the island “vog” was pretty prevalent.  There was always a haze of volcanic smog everywhere we looked.  It didn’t seem like that on our last trip in 2008.  Maybe the Kilauea Volcano is erupting at a different spot now…

The next day (Saturday) our flight left at 9am.  On the way to the airport I took a couple of photos of the scenery.

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The agricultural check and security check lines were very long, due to three flights leaving the island at the same time.  But we made it in time.  Goodbye Big Island!

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On the way out, we flew over Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea.  I could see the summit was still covered with snow and I could see the little dots which are the observatories that we saw on our trip.

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The flight back to San Diego was only five hours (versus the six hours going to Big Island).  I watched “Big Hero 6” and LOVED it so much that we rented it with Redbox when we got back so Todd could watch it too.  Noodle was so happy to see us, even though Fred took VERY good care of him when we were gone.  It was good to be home, but I wished that we had a few more days off at home before having to go back to work!

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