August 29, 2023


As I'm sure, you probably already know that I love coloring in stamped images. It is such a great way to destress.

This gorgeous flower from the Happiness Abounds set was a delight to work with. I used Stampin' Blends to color mine in.

Paired up with a slice of Designer Series Paper, this makes  a beautiful, simply made, card.

Although I think the card with just the DSP and the flower encircled atop it would have been a beautiful enough card, I decided to make it into a thank you card by adding the strip close to the bottom.

Just a closeup of the colored flower.
Isn't she lovely?

Here you go: a tutorial on how to make a card similar to this one. Just use supplies you have on hand to make it your own if you don't have the same ones I used.

White cardstock
Petal Pink cardstock
Pale Plum cardstock
Coordinating Designer Series Paper

Happiness Abounds stamp set

Memento Tuxedo Black Ink
Stampin' Blends in: Light and Dark Petal Pink and Light Daffodil Delight

Die Cutting/Embossing Machine
Layering Circles dies
Stitched Shapes dies
Thanks die
White Mesh Trim
Stampin' Dimensionals

Fold a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" piece of Petal Pink cardstock in half, creasing it well with a bone folder.

Cut a piece of pale purple cardstock to 2 1/2" x 5 3/4" and adhere it to the upper portion of the card base, leaving equal margins at the top and sides.

To this, add a 2 1/4" x 5" piece of coordinating Designer Series Paper. 

On a 2 1/2" square piece of white cardstock, stamp in Memento Tuxedo Black ink the outlined flower. Color it in as you wish. I used Stampin' Blends in the aforementioned colors.

With a stitched circle die that measures 2 3/8" in diameter, die cut the flower. Using a circle die that measures 2 3/4" in diameter, cut the pale purple cardstock.

Adhere the flower circle to the purple circle. With Stampin' Dimensionals, add the flower portion to the DSP piece, overlapping onto the solid cardstock.

From the pale purple cardstock, die cut the word "thanks".

You have some options here. As in my sample, you can stretch a piece of woven white trim across the bottom of the card and adhere the word to it to the right. You can eliminate the trim and simply adhere the word alone. Or, you can leave the entire bottom portion blank.


I must have flowers, always, always.
- Claude Monet -



August 15, 2023


We are having a very fall-like day here in central Wisconsin. This time of the year is hard on me emotionally because this is when I come to realize that my deck sitting days are severely numbered. And my deck sitting days are truly blissful. 

With the fall-is-coming-sooner-than-I'd-like realization, I thought the card for today is quite appropriate. A maple leaf in all its autumn glorious colors.

A really wonderful, easy, messy and fun way to give a diecut leaf fallish colors is to do it with the shaving cream technique. Have you ever done that technique before? It's been around for, like, forever. 

When I do this technique, as long as I have the messiness going, I make sure that I treat several quarter sheets of white cardstock for later use. That is how I created my leaf: I simply die cut one of these prepared sheets.

To do the shaving cream technique is easy, but you need to get prepared before you start. 

Grab a paper plate and squirt out a nice mound of shaving cream -- NOT gel! Grab some bottles of reinkers. For this leaf, I used autumn colors. Drop a few of each of the colors of reinkers randomly atop the shaving cream. Take a popsicle stick or some sort of stirrer and gently swirl through the inks. DON'T be too aggressive in this. Be gentle. Aggressive gives you mud and not much marbling. 

Once you like the marbling you've achieved, grab one of the quarter sheets of cardstock and press it straight down into the marbled shaving cream. Be sure every part of the cardstock comes in contact. Lift the cardstock straight up out of the shaving cream. Using something with a straight edge -- a scrap of cardstock, a clean popsicle stick -- scrape off the excess shaving cream. Finish cleaning the shaving cream off with a paper towel. Set the cardstock aside to dry completely.

After you have your first successful piece, you probably still have some nice marbling left on the shaving cream mound, so grab another piece of cardstock and repeat. Do this until the marbling has gotten too soft and un-marbley looking. At this point, you can drop a few more ink colors and start again. If the shaving cream gets too muddy looking and you are sick of making a mess, call it a day. Either way you have some great unique pieces of paper to work with on future projects.

Now that you know how to do the shaving cream technique -- which I'm sure you'll try in the near future if you've never done so! -- here is a quick tutorial on how to make the rest of the card. Have fun!

White cardstock
Brown cardstock
Cajun Craze cardstock
Wood textured cardstock

Reinkers in fall colors

Die Cutting/Embossing Machine
Maple leaf die
2 1/2" circle die or punch
Woodgrain embossing folder
Word die
Shaving cream
Disposable plate
Paper Towels
Linen thread
Stampin' Dimensionals

Do the Shaving Cream Technique on a few pieces of white cardstock.. Set the pieces aside to dry completely while you work on the card portion.

Fold a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" piece of white cardstock in half, creasing it well with a bone folder.

With a 2 1/2" circle die or punch, cut a hole in a 4" x 5 1/4" piece of brown cardstock so the margins around the hole are about even on the top and sides. Run this piece through the Big Shot inside the woodgrain embossing folder.

NOTE: It is very important to cut the circle first. If you do the embossing first, then run it through again to cut the circle, the embossing gets flattened. Ask me how I know this little tip!

Select a piece of woodgrain paper and position it on the backside of the hole you just cut, adhering it in place.

Once your shaving cream piece is dried, cut out a maple leaf with the die, using the portion of the paper that is most pleasing to you. Use a Stampin' Dimensional to adhere it to the center of the woodgrain inside the circle.

Tie a small bow from Linen Thread and attach it above the leaf stem with a bit of glue.

From Cajun Craze cardstock, die cut the word. Add glue sparingly to the word and adhere it below the leaf image.


Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.
- Albert Camus -



August 7, 2023

#365birds MAY 2023

After surgery and my four-day hospital stay as memorialized in this post, I am in full swing with my personal drawing challenge, #365birds. Each day I randomly grab a bird's name from a jar, and that is the bird that I will draw that day. 

In this blog post, I share with you a handful of my favorites from the month of May. As always, above each drawing, I will not only include the name of the bird, but the area(s) of the world in which it can be found.

day #180. silver-eared mesia

southeast asia

day 183. brown cuckoo-dove

day 190. javan trogon
western java

day 191. dalmatian pelican
southeastern europe to russia, india and china

day 192. burchell's coucal
sub-saharan africa

day 193. red-bellied woodpecker
north america

day 194. diard's trogon
brunei, indonesia, malaysia, singapore, thailand

day 196. schlegel's asity

day 197. glossy ibis
east coast of united states

day 199. white-throated kingfisher

day 201. masked trogon
south america

day 202. flame bowerbird
new guinea

day 203. green honeycreeper
southern mexico to trinidad

day 204. collard falconet
indian subcontinent and southeast asia

And, that's it for May. If you ever have any questions about my drawing challenge, my media, anything at all, please let me know!

If you would be interested in prints of any of my bird drawings, contact me. Please do not use or reprint any of my artwork without my express consent. Thank you.


Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.
- Salvador Dali -