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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

My last post of 2008

Goodness! It is now 11pm and it is the last hour of 2008 for all of us in this timezone.

I've been away from Sydney for a short Christmas visit to Melbourne and it had been my excuse to let everything drop including posting this picture of the wonderful things that I received from Beth Stewart - my INKlings Secret Santa.

Secret Santa Goodies
Beth fulfilled my Christmas wish for items from the Australian Summer Mini by bundling together some of the marvellous extra wide double-stitched Grograin Ribbon, a cute sampling of Flower Fusion and the versatile Carousel Notes (you can see that she has filled one with a few Lindor Lindt balls .... mmmmmmm chocolate). She also included my favourite Stampin' Up! bling in the form of rhinestone brads. The most amazing thing, though, was the little portable folder that she made out of Groovy Guava cardstock and the prettiest sheets from Ginger Blossom DSP. Everything was gorgeous and all most gratefully received. Thank you so very muchly, Santa Stewart!

I'm sure that I'll be looking back at 2008 in the next couple of days - it is always sad to see the end of any year as it marks the relentless passage of time. The new year also marks the beginning of a raft of resolutions that puts paid to all the excuses that I've had to drop the ball during the silly season... But it has been a great year for me - one in which I've started new endeavours, made some awesome friends and let go of past attachments including my previous career. I hope this year has been great in lots of ways for you too. See you in 2009!

Monday, December 15, 2008

The ocean commotion

(To the tune of Locomotion)

Everybody's checkin' out the brand new mini
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
I know you'll get to like it
If you give it a chance now
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
My little baby nephew could do it with ease
It's easier than drawing creatures from the seas
So come on, come on,
Do the ocean commotion with me

You gotta ink your stamps now
Come on baby, stamp it, hmmm lift back
Oh well I think you got the knack

Now that you can do it
Let's make a card now
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
Stamp-a stamp-a seahorse and an angel fish now
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
Do it nice and easy now don't lose control
Use a Stamp-A-Ma-Jig and a firmer hold
So come on, come on,
Do the ocean commotion with me
You gotta ink your stamps now
Come on, come on,
Do the ocean commotion with me

Stamp stamp (sampling)

Add shells to the sea floor in an ocean commotion
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
Do it with your hands if you got the notion
(C'mon baby do the ocean commotion)
There's never been a stamp set that's so easy to use
It even makes you happy
When you're Bordering Blue
So come on come on do the ocean commotion with me
You gotta ink your stamps now

Come on, come on,
Do the ocean commotion with me
Come on, come on,
Do the ocean commotion with me
You gotta ink your stamps now

INKlings Summer Mini 2008 Swap by Lin Mei Yap, Independent Stampin' Up! Demonstrator in SydneyStampin' Supplies
Basic Black
Not Quite Navy
Old Olive
Pumpkin Pie
Ruby Red
Sahara Sand

Curvy Verses set
Ocean Commotion set

Whisper White CS

1 1/8” Circle Punch
Glorious Green Marker
Sponge Dauber

Friday, December 12, 2008

Margaret's targets

Just-too-busy-ber1's INKlings Cyberstamp coincided with Mum's birthday. This one was very ably organised by the super clever Margaret Crawford. Oh! How I have tried to match her Scramble score on Facebook and fallen far far short! Margaret is also a tremendous photographer, so make sure that you check out her pictures on her China blog.

Margaret's first challenge was to use a sketch from the Australian Stampin' Up! demonstrators' website like in her example. I was a little naughty as I really should have been finishing off my preparations for a workshop tonight but I wanted to take part in the fun. As a bit of synergy2, I used most of the colours from the Winter Bright Simply Scrappin' Kit as I'm going to demonstrate a couple of projects made with it (ie the kit). The kit, funnily enough, happens to be 20% off during Just-too-busy-ber! This card also uses a few Stampin' Write Markers which will only be available individually until this Sunday, December 14 - so please choose your colours and send me your orders before then to avoid wailing and the gnashing of teeth.

Must run now to complete the last workshop project preps...

Margaret's INKlings Cyberstamp Sketch ChallengeStampin' Supplies
Certainly Celery
Real Red
Regal Rose
Wild Wasabi

Stamp sets:
Embrace Life

Certainly Celery CS
Ginger Blossom DSP
Real Red CS
Whisper White CS

Certainly Celery 1.6cm Grosgrain
Heat Tool
Stampin' Write Markers in Certainly Celery, Pretty in Pink & Real Red
White Embossing Powder
Wild Wasabi Double-Stitched Grosgrain
Word Window Punch

1. Just-too-busy-ber: December, remember?
2. Synergy: Reads as fixation, same thing, isn't it?! OK, OK ... not really *grin*

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Many happy returns Mum!

It is my amazing mother's birthday today. What else could lure me back to this blog after neglecting it for yet another week?! Just-too-busy-ber is living up to its name (I have to admit that it was me who named December as such) and I've been clinging on to the edge with my toes propped on my blog to keep me from falling into the abyss of "BELATED"ness. *pictures self falling from cliff, with arms flailing, towards a river* Please don't ask me about the river...probably to do with watching too many disaster movies when young.

Gee...that stream of consciousness took a windy route! Anyway, back to my wonderful mum who I have to thank for a great upbringing and for working so hard to make sure that I was never short of opportunity. I'd go on and on but it would just embarrass her especially if I told everyone how much I love her and miss her.

So, instead, I'd like to share with you the quaint beginnings of the phrase "Many Happy Returns" in my life. When I was a child in Malaysia, and subsequently, in Perth after our migration, my Auntie Kim and Uncle George (who lived in Sydney) would send me a birthday card every year along with a crisp 10 ringgit or dollar note along with wishes for "Many happy returns of the day". I was always perplexed by this as I wondered whether they wanted me send the money back. Even worse, why would they want me to return everything that I had received from everyone else? Sounded like a miserable thing to wish someone for their birthday if you ask me!

And then I consoled myself with the thought that perhaps the phrase originated from Aborigines and the fact that there is always much happiness when one threw a boomerang and it returned effortlessly to the thrower's hand. After all, I had heard that boomerang catching was a tricky business. Needless to say, I held on to the money and every other gift that I received for my birthday albeit with a sense of how inscrutable Australian phrases and customs were.

Many happy returns, Mum!

Wonderful Mum CardStampin' Supplies
Pumpkin Pie
Taken with Teal

Stamp sets:
Live Your Dream
Wonderful Favourites

Old Olive CS
Pumpkin Pie DSP
Taken with Teal CS
Whisper White CS

Mat Pack
Scallop Edge Punch
Stampin’ Write Markers in Rose Red, Pumpkin Pie, Taken with Teal and Old Olive
White Gel Pen

By the way, I didn't send this card to my mum - rather I made a card for her using "Summer by the Sea" and didn't take a photo of it in my haste to make sure that she received it in time. Just-too-busy-ber, may you know what it's like to be you! Er... ie too busy!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

No blather For Father

A marvellous stamp set for watercolouring and masculine themed cards is now available through the Summer Mini catalogue. For Father has three images and a sentiment stamp - and it's set to be one of my favourites.

Card using Stampin' Up! supplies from Summer MiniStampin' Supplies
Basic Black
Close to Cocoa
StazOn Black

Cheers & Wishes set
For Father set
Sanded background

Close to Cocoa CS
Watercolor Paper

Hodgepodge Hardware in Antique Brass
Twill Tape
Watercolor Wonder Crayons in Bold Brights and Earth Elements

Monday, December 1, 2008

Summer Mini skirt-ed

Farewell spring and welcome summer! Not that it has been particularly summery or that I like even summer (sorry summer! It's not meant to be personal). This unseasonal weather has suited me perfectly since I much prefer cooler climes. Who likes sunburn, sweaty brows and other non-brow body parts and the oppressive heat of a glary, angry sun, anyway?!! Yeah! I know - just about EVERYBODY.

Perhaps it because of what everyone can do during summer - like going to the beach, enjoying beach volleyball, scorching their soles on the hot sand or tripping over their rubbery thongs (flip flops for our Northern friends) which double-up when caught on the undulating grabby surface of said beach. D'oh! At least I started positively...

I do love December in spite of it being summer. Lots of special birthdays in my family during December, and there's always the good cheer that accompanies the holiday season which gives me the nerve to sincerely wish another person, who I had never met before, a joyful time ahead.

In terms of Stampin' Up! in Australia, December sees the start of the Summer Mini catalogue. One of the fabulous stamp sets available through this mini is Eastern Blooms which I used for a vivid colour challenge comprising Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Rose Red and Taken with Teal set by the lovely Alana as part of last month's INKlings Cyberstamp. I waited until today to post this card as I didn't want to pre-empt this mini too much before it was made public. But I can now safely say "Tada!"

Colour challenge card using Stampin' Up! suppliesStampin' Supplies
Basic Black
Old Olive
Pumpkin Pie
Rose Red
Taken with Teal

Eastern Blooms set
Short & Sweet set

Whisper White

Stampin' Dimensionals
Stampin' Write Markers in Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Rose Red and Taken with Teal
Whisper White Grosgrain Ribbon

Have a joyful December - regardless of the weather!

Tying up Christmas promotion

Stampin' Up! Tying Up Christmas Promotion
All tied up attending Christmas parties, searching for perfect Christmas presents and preparing for Christmas festivities?

Save time and money and a little bit of your sanity with Stampin’ Up!® Tying Up Christmas Promotion. Spend $20 on any Stampin’ Up! merchandise and qualify for 20% off selected accessories and stamp sets to wrap up your Christmas in style. The stamp sets and calendars would also make great presents for crafty friends and relatives...or yourself!

This promotion runs from December 1st until December 31st.

Item descriptionIB&C
Festive Favorites stamp set27108790$45.95$36.76
Crazy for Christmas stamp set28108772$39.95$31.96
Snow Flurries stamp set29110244$20.95$16.76
Tag Time stamp set43108930$53.95$43.16
Many Merry Messages stamp set111108869$64.95$51.96
12” x 12” Days-to-Remember Calendar133103604$20.95$16.76
6” x 6” Days-to-Remember Calendar133104144$18.95$15.16
Winter Bright Simply Scrappin'™138109663$36.95$29.56
Three for You Punch Box143112670$85.95$68.76
Very Vanilla 5/8” grosgrain ribbon146109055$14.95$11.96
Certainly Celery 5/8” grosgrain ribbon146109050$14.95$11.96
White Square Aluminum Metal Edge tags147103372$7.50$6.00

All prices do not include Stampin' Up!'s standard shipping and handling of 5% or $5.95, whichever is greater.