Friday, 15 December 2017

Merry Music | #tgifc138

This week at the TGIF Challenge blog we are celebrating holiday music.
Well in the 2018 Holiday Catalog Stampin' Up! came out with the most amazing Merry Music Designer Series Paper, which was the inspiration for this project.

To create this card, I made some die cuts from the Musical Instruments Framelits and played around until I got my style just right.  I am running out of the Merry Music Paper so the perfect combination took a little time.

Be sure to play along with the TGIF team - I can't wait to see your projects!

Hope you are enjoying your Holiday Season so far.
Until next time,

Thursday, 14 December 2017

Santa's Magic Key | Fancy Friday Blog Hop

"Mommy. But how does Santa get in our house if we don't have a chimney."
"Come on now Jane. Magic."
"But how?"
"Magic. We have a fireplace."
"But no chimney."
"Just magic hunny."
This month's Fancy Friday Blog Hop brings plenty of new friends. Fancy Friday Design Team Members are past and current Stampin' Up! Artisans and as our team evolves, I have no doubt that it just might be the most inspiring blog hop you'll follow along every year. We are playing with "Mixed Metallic" today so I took this challenge quite literally as I held the cast iron keeys in my hands.

I had heard of them before so I researched "Santa's Magic Key".
Taking bits and bobs from different people I created a tag with some instructions on both sides.
I added the perfect stamps from the Stampin' Up! Hearts Come Home stamp set.
Finally, I tied everything together with trims and ribbons to the cast iron key.

Where did I get the glorious keys? Well, I found them at Books-a-Million a couple years ago and then I bought all 10 of them and hoarded them until now.

Keep in mind that this key gets hung outside on Christmas Eve. Therefore, I went to my local Staples store and got the tags laminated. It worked out perfectly and ever so easily.

We all know I love easy.

I can't wait to see how my amazing Kiwi friend, Susan Wong played with mixed metallics! I can't wait to see!

Until We Meet Again 2017 | Stampin' Up! Artisan Design Team Blog Hop

Like many things, as another year draws to a close so does the 2017 Stampin' Up! Artisan Design Team. This team has helped me grow in many ways. I have been inspired outside my comfort zone - Heck, I've never used an embossing folder so much in my life! I have developed true relationships and friendships with these 19 beautiful Artisans from around the globe and along with them, all their friends...

.. yeah, yeah.. 
.. no really. I have so many more friends!

I think I could count the number of Stampin' Up! demonstrators from outside North America that I knew prior to 2017. However, now I feel like I could travel anywhere and feel comfortable enough to say "Hey! I am coming. Can I stay with you?"

And I do like to fly off my island.

While I have many things to say to each member of this team privately, as a group I'd like to remind them that this isn't goodbye but instead...

... "until we meet again. See you in the blogosphere, Insta, Facebook and everything else."

Today's project focuses on the Merry Cafe stamp set and co-ordinating Coffee Cups Framelit Dies. This bundle was a must buy for me as coffee in paper cups triggers memories of happiness for me. I love waking up to a steaming hot cup of coffee (black please) and waiting for the sun to rise... typically before my family of wild banshees charges down the stairs yelling for yogurt drinks and smoothies.

Coffee in paper cups reminds me of the holiday seasons and conversations with friends.  It reminds me of travel and trips. It reminds me of watching curling on TV or the World Junior Hockey Championships.  It reminds me of Christmas parades and working long nights... and on and on.

So for me, this bundle is perfect for anyone who smiles when someone hands you that cup...
Dare I say...
...Yes, I will.
... "Hands you a cup of Christmas Cheer."

While saying goodbye to my 2017 team is very hard, I am very excited to tell you that I will be continuing on with the 2018 Stampin' Up! Artisan Design Team.  It gives me great joy to introduce you to each of them - most of whom are not strangers. They will be sure to inspire you in more ways than I can imagine.  So please open your hearts to these talented ladies!

United States
Connie Collins (returning)
Cathy Caines (returning)
United Kingdom
Sylwia Schreck (returning)
Jessica Winter (returning)
New Zealand
Susan Wong (returning)
Jennifer Frost (returning)

I can't wait to show you the amazing talent of the 2018 Stampin' Up! Artisan Design Team.
In the mean time, have an amazing holiday season from my family to yours.
Next up is my Beautiful (and probably cold) friend, Dani.
Love, Cathy

Cathy Caines (YOU ARE HERE)
Tanya Boser

Products used in my projects today includes the following:

Friday, 8 December 2017

Mini Christmas Tree are too cute | #tgifc137

This cute little tree is from the Sugarplam Dreams stamp set by Stampin' Up! Its so cute that you can almost miss it! Using my Stampin' Blends alcohol markers, I brought this tree to life.

And well, if you have a cute little tree than you don't need much else.

This week's TGIF Challenge is a sketch challenge. Sometimes you can take a sketch quite literal but other times you can look at it and think "hey. I have paper that looks like that." I adore stripes and polka dots so I knew exactly what background I would use.

I hope you play along with us - you have a week to upload your links to the TGIF Challenge Blog post.

Thanks for hanging out with me today!

Friday, 1 December 2017

Holiday Random Acts of Kindness For Kids | Christmas Advent Calendar

You can feel the crisp chill in the air here on the East Coast of Canada. As I put on my mittens, you can almost hear the jingle bells in the distance. Honestly, it makes me a little bit giddy inside. I truly feel the magic every single year. Like every year, I vow to get organized early. Typically one of the first items on my agenda is to get our advent calendars ready.  The tradition in our family is to select a wrapped holiday book every evening as well as a Lego Advent calendar for each child in the mornings. However, this year my kids are now seven and five.  It’s a great age to begin some Random Acts of Kindness. This Holiday List works the same way as a typical countdown to Christmas where my children will select a note each day.

The Trim Your Stocking Thinlets Dies (144682) is a perfect product to hold the twenty-four pieces of rolled up paper containing the Random Act of Kindness.

To begin this project, I cut out 25 stockings using the Merry Little Christmas Designer Series Paper (144621) and the Merry Little Christmas 12x12 cardstock pack (144622). Carefully I pieced each holiday stocking together and placed a number made out of Real Red Cardstock (102482) and the Large Numbers Framelits (140622). Finally, I attached each stock with Real Red 1/8” Solid Ribbon (144631) and hung it on a large decorative frame using the Jute Twine (144625). If you don’t have a large frame, you could use a three foot Christmas Tree to hang these stockings quite easily.

The Trim Your Stocking Thinlets Dies (144682) also comes with a pillow box shaped die, which fits a gift card perfectly.  It allowed me to have a pocket on each holiday stocking where I could place a rolled up Random Act of Kindness.  Since my children are young, I selected some Random Acts of Kindness that did not take a great deal of time and would not be a financial burden. While I researched online for some ideas, it was easy to select twenty-four acts. I encourage you to tailor your own family’s Random Acts of Kindness list to what best works for you.

Here’s the Caines Family Holiday Random Acts of Kindness List:

1.         Send a card to a stranger such as a service man or woman overseas.
2.         Donate new toys to the Happy Tree.
3.         “Sock” a friend by putting a treat in a holiday stocking on someone’s doorknob with a special note.
4.         Make 5 sticky note messages and place them on a mirror or a door. A drawing or a note like “you are beautiful” would be perfect.
5.         Bring a joke to school to read to your class.
6.         Donate food to the food bank.
7.         Help Nanny put away the dirty dishes.
8.         Draw a picture for your teachers along with a treat.
9.         Shovel for a neighbour or clear off their cars before they wake up.
10.       Donate 10 books you no longer need.
11.       Help clean the neighbourhood on a walk. Be sure to wear your gloves and bring a garbage bag.
12.       Go through our old towels and blankets to donate to the animal shelter.
13.       Drop by to the senior’s home and bring them a poinsettia. Be sure to say hello!
14.       Donate some cards to Ronald McDonald House.
15.       Write a list of 5 things you are thankful for.
16.       Pay for someone’s coffee.
17.       Donate some money to a charity.
18.       Leave candy canes on someone’s windshield.
19.       Put a treat in the mailbox for the Post Man.
20.       Call both your Grandmas just to say Hello.
21.       Bring coloring books to the doctor’s waiting room and the gymnastics viewing room.
22.       Decorate rocks using paint and place them around the neighborhood for strangers to
find (Kindness rocks).
23.       Be a helper by picking up 10 things off the floor each.
24.       Give 5 people a compliment. Or more!
25.       Merry Christmas!

I am so excited to share these adventures with my children and I truly believe that these little gestures will make a big difference in our small community. 

I am wishing you all the best in your holiday preparations!

Cathy Caines
2017 Stampin’ Up! Artisan Design Team

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Always add a Santa hat | Stampin' Up! Artisan Design Team Blog Hop

I can feel it in the air now.
Yesterday we had a little dusting of snow.
And my first Holiday Party is this weekend.
Naturally my craft room has been an explosion of Christmas for some time now.

With all my holiday prep, I started to put this little Santa hat on all the little stamped critters and images. I just can't help myself - almost any critter is adorable with a Santa hat!

This little cutie came from the Color Me Happy stamp set, which was released when the Stampin' Blends came out.

Of course like most birds and cats, they've gotten themselves into a tangled mess of baker's twine.
Pretty much exactly how my brain feels every morning.

Thanks for popping by! Next in this Stampin' Up! Artisan Blog Hop is Dani, whom always amazes me.  I've been so lucky to share these blog hops with these ladies as their talent and creativity blow me away each and every time.


Cathy Caines (YOU ARE HERE)
Tanya Boser

Products used in my projects today includes the following:

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Happy Birthday Carolynn! | Stampin' Up! Display Stamper Blog Hop Day Seven

Happy Sunday!

Welcome back to Day 7, the final day of a week long blog hop bringing together 20 Display Stampers around the world.  A "Display Stamper" is a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator that is sent product from a future catalogue in order to create projects for large display boards to inspire those at a Stampin' Up! event.

Over the course of this week long blog hop, we will each show you projects that we created for those display boards in the respective regions for OnStage events around the globe.  My projects were displayed in the only North American event in Salt Lake City. Keep in mind that these projects showcase products that will not be available until January 3, 2018 in the Stampin' Up! Occasions and Sale-a-bration catalogues.

If you'd like to see all of my projects that were on display at the Stampin' Up! OnStage event in Salt Lake City in November 2017 be sure to check out this link.

It's a birthday wand.
Something I make a lot of.
Today is my friend, Carolynn Sander's birthday.
And she's pretty special. I'll tell you why. It's because she has the kind of happy sparkle in her eyes. She loves her friends. And she loves Stampin' Up! She certainly has a way to make people feel special. And well. I like to surround myself with people like that.
So - "Happy Birthday" to Carolynn.
And yes, she's a Display Stamper too so here's my hint to send her some serious love - especially if she's ever made you feel special.
Happy Birthday sweet pea and thanks for the support over the past year! Mwah!

And every birthday wand should come complete with a gorgeous card.

Both of these projects are made of the new paper trim, as well as the foiled Painted with Love Designer Series Paper.

As you can see the products that will be released on January 3rd in the new Salebration and Occasions catalogues are amazing. I can't wait for you to get your hands on these items!

Thanks to everyone who took the time to hop along with us. Your time is pretty valuable so I can't tell you how much it means to me.  In the mean time - I hope you had an amazing weekend especially in the United States for their Thanksgiving weekend.

Keep hopping along to Diane Browning and be sure to check out all 20 of the display stampers!
Are you lost? 
Be sure to follow the hop from start to finish and anywhere in between!
Cathy Caines - YOU ARE HERE
Diane Browning