MEWsager Gift Tag

Finally! After many technical difficulties and a few lost posts, I got my blog back to working!

Welcome to the 2020 Cat Lovers Hop, (our 6th year!) hosted by HerPeacefulGarden.

As you know, I look forward to this hop each year. Unfortunately, those of you who follow my blog know that I haven’t been able to craft as much this year, as what little energy I have has been used up caring for my folks. In trying to get ready for this hop, I find out I’ve been away so long that WordPress has completely changed up the format and it’s like learning how to make a post all over again. Argh! (I think there’s something to that saying about not being able to teach an old cat new tricks!) Ok, enough caterwauling!

I found this adorable little hand held massager at the Dollar Tree. Not only is it cute, but it’s perfect for my mom whose psoriatic arthritis makes it too painful for her to give my dad a back massage that distracts him from his pancreatic cancer pain. This allows her to knead his muscles without hurting her hands.

I was hunting for a cat stamp to shadow my printed punny sentiment, but couldn’t find what I was looking for. They say necessity is the mother of invention… So I drew and drew a likeness of the cat until I was satisfied with it — which reminded my why I really prefer buying stamps!! After printing the message on cardstock, I cut out the tag (Spellbinders Exquisite Labels 11)and then traced my cat image and colored it in. On the back side I used the cutout of the cat image and then wrote a personal note around it.

I copied my drawing and made this .jpg file (aka “digi”) in case you happen to find a similar massager at your local dollar store and want to use my kitty drawing for a card. You should be able to right click and save it. If not, you’ll have to take a screen shot or draw you own. I rarely use digis, so I don’t know anything about re-sizing, etc., sorry, but I’m sure you can figure it out! Tag me or come back and comment when you post your project so I can cheer your efforts!

This will be my only entry in this year’s Cat Lovers Hop. I hope you have a FURbulous day and enjoy the rest of the hop!

~D.Ann

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Superhero Thank You Cards

Welcome back! That’s both for you and for me! I finally made a couple of cards for the first time in weeks! It only took three days and several do-overs, but it sure felt good to be transforming plain old paper into something fun and beautiful again!!

I started out fairly simple, but wasn’t happy with the watercolor sky. (nor that I managed to get some on the inside. Fortunately, the recipient won’t mind.)

I like how shiny her little gold crown turned out!

The next one got a little more challenging with an animated inside, as you’ll see in a bit.

I like the blended Distress inks for the sky better, don’t you?!

Here’s the card in action (click on the image below to start the video):

I also love that amazing holographic paper… just perfect for a South Florida vibe!…

 

Supplies:

  • Altenew – Cityscape A & B cover dies
  • Altenew – Signature Words dies
  • Spellbinders – Palm Trees die
  • Motion Crafts by Uchi’s Design – Super Friends stamp set (SMS)
  • Motion Crafts by Uchi’s Design – Rotary animation set
  • My Favorite Things – Peek-a-Boo Circle Windows, Jumbo
  • The Ton – Most Interesting Cardmaker stamp set
  • Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black ink
  • Gina K Designs dye inks: Black Onyx, Lipstick, Sweet Mango, Wild Dandelion
  • Marvy Uchida Le Plume II markers: 53, 103, 8, 94, 67, 49, 83,  87
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress inks:  Mustard Seed, Spiced Marmalade, Worn Lipstick, Barn Door, Broken China, Chipped Sapphire, Dusty Concord
  • Copic Markers
  • Brea Reese Metallic Pens – Gold
  • Kuretake Zig Wink of Stella clear
  • Hunkydory Holographic Mirror paper – silver
  • Core’dinations cardstock blue and white
  • Sookwang Scor-tape
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue

Obviously, I’m still puttering along, but I have a huge backlog of cards I need to make, so maybe I’ll get back in the groove and you’ll see more posts soon! Thanks for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts!

~D.Ann

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How to Color Your Hair When Quarantined Card

Hello, all you poor, bedraggled peeps!

I was ecstatic when my hairdresser finally was allowed back to work! They have a huge retail space that’s broken down into individual salons and everyone has to stay in their cars until called. She is very fastidious, so with both of us wearing masks, we felt safe. I don’t color my hair, but thought these cute free digi stamps by Impression Obsession stamps (HERE) would give her a chuckle – So I colored up one for her and one to give to a friend. She like them both!

I started out easy, getting back into coloring with Marvy Uchida LePlume II markers, and Faber Castell Polychromos colored pencils with Pebbles Inc. chalks.

 

It’s always restful to take some time to sit and color — no matter what your age!!

While the markers are brighter, I had a hard time remembering how to blend and the paper kept wanting to ball up on me, so I switched to the colored pencils…

Hope this brought a smile to your face!

Hang in there and be very careful out there!!

~D.Ann

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You Have Survived 100% of Your Worst Days Card

When dad got home from the hospital yesterday, I had a special card waiting for him….

I like the sentiment so much, I made one for myself to hang on my inspiration board!

I especially like the part inside that says, ‘I puffy heart love you’ as I always sign my name with a puffy heart!

Materials used:

  • Tonic Studios Topnote Trellis dies
  • CAS-ual Fridays stamps: Doing Great & Puffy Heart Love
  • Park Lane Paperie 110# paper – jewels and pastels
  • Tsukineko Versamark ink
  • Stampendous Beach – Sky Blue embossing powder
  • Recollections Encrusted Jewels – Detail Peacock embossing powder
  • Misc. adhesives

Thank you all so much for stopping by and for your well-wishes for dad!

~D.Ann

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Thanks, Health Heroes Card

Just dropping in today with a quick card. With dad back in the hospital for emergency surgery and an unidentified infection, it has been heart rending not to be able to visit him! The past few days have been particularly rough with severe pain and today he sounded so down, I make a quick card for him and also one for the nurses on his floor caring for him, I was hoping to stop and pick up some flowers for him and a bag of chocolates for the sweet nurses. I called first to see where to take them and was surprised that the operator said they wouldn’t allow anything in, not even a card! How frustrating!! Later, I went to their website and found they have a way to send messages to the staff, so at least I got to thank them. It’s the thought that counts – and they are greatly appreciated!

Here’s the card I’d made for the nurses:

Materials used:

  • Waffle Flower Free Printables to Thank Health Heroes (HERE)
    • Thanks, Waffle Flower! I’m not much of a Digi person, but that made it fast and easy to get this card together!!
  • Sizzix Scallop Hearts dies
  • Hero Arts Window on Love Confetti Die
  • Park Lane Paperie cardstock
  • Pebbles, Inc.Pearlescent Chalks – jewel tones
  • Misc adhesive

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

 

 

DIY Cloth Face Masks

When I recently was asked to make some more cloth face masks for the coronavirus, COVID-19 requirements when out and about, I went back to my recent post (HERE) and was chagrined to see that I had only noted where I found the information for the mask covers, but not the plain masks. Hence I determined to add a little more detail in this post so I can refer back to it the the next time I need to make some more. Hopefully, it will be helpful for you, dear reader, should you choose to try your hand at making an adult reversible cloth face mask. Speaking of hands, make sure to wash your hands well before starting this project!

This time I used:

  • two 9″x7″ pieces of 100% cotton pre-washed material (last time it was 9×6 and I though it was too small),
  • a 4″x1 3/4″ piece of material to hold the pipe-cleaner nose piece,
  • two 4″ pieces of pipe cleaner (aka chenille stems) and
  • two 7″ pieces of 1/4″ elastic (thanks, sweet cuz, for sending me what you had, as there’s none to be found down here!)

To make the nose-piece, fold the small 4″x1 3/4″ piece of material in half and place the two pipe cleaner pieces inside, near the fold, then sew around the three open sides: across the pipe cleaners on the two short sides and close to them on the long side.

Place the two large pieces of fabric right sides together. Center the nose piece on the top of 9″ side, between the two layers of fabric, with the pipe cleaners hanging outside the fabric with the seam just inside the edges of the material and pin the two ends. Start sewing a 1/4″ seam across the bottom of the 9″ side (the side opposite the nose piece), starting about 4″ in from the 7″ edge.

Turn the corner 1/4″ from the edge and, after a stitch or two, put one of the elastic pieces in between the two pieces of fabric, setting the edge flush with the edges of the fabric. I sew back and forth over the elastic a couple of times to keep it from pulling out. Continue sewing this side, being careful not to tangle the elastic into your seam until you reach about 1/2″ from the corner. Gently pull the free end of the elastic between the fabric pieces, making sure it isn’t twisted, set it flush with the edges of the fabric and sew over it several times, then continue to 1/4″ from the corner.

Turn the corner and continue across the top edge, sewing back and forth across the nose piece before continuing to the next corner.

Turn the corner and stitch this side, adding the elastic just like you did the opposite side.

Turn the corner and stitch about 1/2-1″, leaving a 2-2.5″ opening. It will look something like the piece on the left of the picture below:

Turn the mask inside out by pushing the fabric through the opening and poking out the corners and press. Top stitch 1/8″ around the entire rectangle, making sure the edges of the unfinished ‘hole’ for turning the mask inside-out are tucked in. Trim any excess material from the nose piece, making sure not to cut the seams on either side.

Note: The above steps are easily found on most any other DIY post in case you’re totally confused by now.

Making the pleats, however, is where I had a little difficulty both times and really wished someone had posted a picture to help my pea brain figure it out. This time, I took a picture to help me out next time:

Fold back 1 1/4″ from the bottom. Fold up 1/2″ and pin. Repeat twice, 1/2″ further up each time, leaving 1/2″ at the top, as seen above. Sew across the entire edge several times to reinforce the pleats as they will feel the pull. (My old machine gave me fits a couple of times due to the thickness of the fabric. Repeat on the other end. Press with a hot iron. below, you can see the difference between the previous ones that were 6″ (left) vs these that were 7″ (right). I think the pleats turned out much better this time and hope they worked well.

Being in a family where all three of us have severely compromised immune systems, my thanks to all who have chosen to unselfishly wear cloth masks in public to help protect others during this pandemic!

~D.Ann

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An Adventure with Dried Morel Mushrooms and a Thanks So Mush Card

Ahhh… Morel mushrooms (genus Morchella)! I inherited my love of them from both sides of the family. If you haven’t had a chance to try them, you don’t know what you’re missing!! Part of the fun was hunting for them and there’s nothing that compares to a fresh batch of them fried! Not being able to go to our old stomping grounds in Southern Indiana was disappointing in more ways than one… I greatly missed seeing family, spring flowers and the chance to find some of these delicacies. I remember tromping through the woods and coming back with buckets full when I was little. (You saw my post about some of our finds in previous years HERE.) When some of my cousins posted and sent pics of their finds this year (one was as big as my cousins’ hand!), I said I was extra jealous. Imagine my surprise and delight when a few days later a care package arrived with a mess of dried morel mushrooms!!

This was going to be an adventure… We’d never tried them dried before. After doing some research on-line, we found out it was easy to rehydrate them… just cover them in water, wine or broth at room temperature, so as not to make them tough and soak them 15-20 minutes or more. We chose to use some beef ‘Better Than Bouillon’ broth. Stir them a couple of times so any leftover debris in the crevices can come out. When they’ve plumped out and are soft and pliable, no longer brittle, drain them in a colander. (You can run the broth through a coffee filter to remove any sediment and use it as a delicious base for soups, sauces, etc.)

Now you continue just as with fresh picked mushrooms… We like them rolled in a pan of flour (we didn’t add salt since they were soaked in bouillon) and then fried in oil (with a tablespoon or so of butter added both for flavor and to keep down the smoke).

The little ones quickly became crunchy chips, and the larger ones were the next best thing to eating them freshly picked and fried. Sooooo good!!! Nom-nom-nom!! We were extatic!! What a wonderful reminder of home!!  Thanks cuz!!

I sent them this card with “Thanks so mush!” written inside:

Materials used:

  • Power Poppy Wild Mushrooms stamp set
  • Spellbinders Annabelle’s Trousseau die from the Chantilly Paper Lace collection
  • Core’dinations cardstock: white, purple, kraft
  • Tsukineko Memento dye ink: Rich Cocoa
  • Copic Markers: B02; C1; E31, 33, 51G02, 82; Y000, 02, 13; YG17, V04, 06
  • Pebbles, Inc. Pearlescent Chalks – jewel tones
  • Misc. adhesives

Thank you all so mush for stopping by today!

-D.Ann

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Special Delivery… Little Stinker Tag for Baby Gift

Hello, sweet peeps! I hope you are all staying well in these crazy times!

I was finally able to finish up another post that was sitting in my drafts from last year for you… this cute little tag for a baby gift:

It goes just perf with those cute little stinker baby socks from Hobby Lobby! Doesn’t that sweet little baby boy blue bunny from the Dollar Tree look just darling wearing them?!

By carefully cutting apart the stamp, I was able to get it to say “your little stinker” instead of HB “you little stinker.” I folded it above the tail and kept the top part of the die off the edge of the second cutting plate when I die cut it…. That left room for the fold to hold it together and to punch a small hole to use it as a tag. I colored and cut out the paws and glued them over the sign once I’d stamped the “Special Delivery” sentiment, covering where it overlapped the paws and adding dimension, too.

Materials used:

  • Neat & Tangled Little Stinker stamp and die sets
  • Neat & Tangled Sweet Treats Sentiments
  • 150# white cardstock
  • Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black ink
  • Copic Markers: B21, C3,5,7; R10; RV 24, 63
  • Gelly Roll pen white 08

Stay safe and enjoy the rest of your day! Thanks so much for stopping by!!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

DIY Cloth Face Masks and Mask Covers

Yep, like everyone around the globe who has a sewing machine, I tried my hand at making some reversible cloth face masks for some friends, since they have been required by law down here while doing ‘essential activities’ during the COVID-19 coronavirus. I couldn’t find elastic, but did find an old piece of 3/4″ wide black elastic for a waist band that I was able to cut in thirds and use…

 

For more details on making the face masks above, please see THIS post (HERE).

We found a few N95 masks in our hurricane stash that were over 10 years old… so old the sponge nose rests had rotted (eww!). They weren’t good enough to donate. Plus, since we are all immunocompromised, we’ve always had a few of the surgical face masks on hand for use when going into risky situations like large public assemblies, doctors’ offices, etc. Now that we won’t be able to get more for the foreseeable future, I decided to make some washable covers for them to try to help make them last longer. I found a nice, easy pattern on Craft Passion’s blog (HERE) and adapted it some to be reversible and just slip the masks inside, hence no need for sewing on elastic.

After I made them up, I realized the N95 masks loop up and over your head, not around your ears! Oops! But it was an easy fix… just pull one opposite staple from each side and re-close them around the elastic on the same side.

If you’re trying this, they fit fine for larger faces, but smaller faces, you’ll have to cut off an inch or two of the elastic.

As you can tell, they are a smidge big, but after you get the mask inside, it’s easy to tuck the extra up… you can even pin it with a safety pin, being careful no to pierce the mask inside.

Once I got them figured out, they were fairly easy, but 9 were enough for me. My hat is off to those who have lovingly made hundreds of these for those in need!!

Y’all stay safe and healthy and wash those hands!!

~D.Ann

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Bear’s Paw Succulent and Hugs, Thinking of You, Paw-some Friend Cards

Hello all! I’ve found another old post in my ‘drafts’ folder and have finally gotten it polished off for you… These were some sweet gift sets I made up last year when I found some ADORABLE Bear’s Paw succulents and put them in some cute cactus shot glasses from Dollar Tree and paired them with some stuffed bears and a handmade card to make some sweet and encouraging gift sets for some beary pawsome friends. First up a set for a special couple needing encouragement:

Awww! That sweet Pink & Main bouquet on the front of the card is colored with some fabulous shimmery Shuttle Art Gel Pens and a hand-drawn edge.

The inside has some cute Pink & Main stamps to match the gift, too…

I’m just head-over-paws in love with those darling bear’s paw succulents (Cotyledon tomentosa)! Aren’t they just TOO cute?!!

Of course, this post was done in March last year (I TOLD you I was backlogged!). Today I stopped by mom and dad’s and saw how much they have grown in such a short time:

This set went to a single friend, so there’s just one bear inside…

 

Supplies used:

  • Pink & Main stamp sets: Fur Ever, Grandma’s Lace, Mini Faces Set 1, and Thinking of You Always
  • Shuttle Art Gel Pens

And, I had this darling interlocking ‘hugs’ card for another friend:

Supplies used:

  • Concord & 9th Hugs Card die
  • Concord & 9th Cuddles & Hugs stamp set
  • Essentials by Ellen All Inside stamp & die and Bear Hugs die
  • DCWV The Butterfly Garden stack cardstock
  • Hero Arts ombre ink pads: ombre dolphin ; pink to red;
  • Tsukineko Memento Rich Coocoa dye ink
  • Copic Markers C1 E 13, 33, 71; R20

I hope you enjoyed these Pawsitively darling little treats!

~D.Ann

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pps: UPDATE: Dad finished his radiation treatments Friday. YAY!! Doc said it’ll probably take a couple of weeks for the side effects to resolve. She’ll see him in 5 weeks and then order tests – likely a PET scan – to be done at 8-10 weeks. Meanwhile he’s to exercise, eat well, exercise and stay healthy so his body can clear out all the irradiated cells. We’re looking forward t a good report!

Hope you’re all staying healthy and sane in these crazy times.😉