Monday, August 31, 2009


Please take a moment to scroll (all the way) down and sign my guestbook!!

I love to see where everyone is located!

Por favor, tome un momento para llegar al final de la pagina del libro de los invitados para que lo firmen!
Muchas Gracias!

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009


I entered the Kitchen Sink Stamps Challenge #16 with quite a few cards... and this one won!!

I'm so excited! I got a free stamp set for winning the challenge!


Thanks to the Kitchen Sink Crew, and Maria!!

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cards for Soldiers "Help Wanted" - and a little break...

Two things in this post...
First, I want to tell you about Cards for Soldiers!

Follow that link to help make cards for our fighting men to send home for their families!
The (very simple) rules are there on the beginning post!
Basically, you sign up to make cards on the theme provided, send them off to your shipper (based on your time zone), and they are then whisked away for the service men to send to their families!!
It's a GREAT cause, and helps others!!!

I'm taking just a teeny-tiny break from my blog for right now. Why, you ask??
1. We had some pretty devastating news this past Monday, and I'm still trying to work through it. I had all my hopes and 'dreams' pinned on this promotion my husband applied for and he didn't get it. I know it sounds a little superficial, but it was one of our major 'life' goals... and now we are derailed for quite awhile.

2. I've got some big projects I'm working on and will preview them SOON - but I don't want to give away the surprise!!!

Yes, I'm keeping up with my Design Team projects, and the one swap I'm finishing...

3. I'm beginning a new school year on a new campus, and I need to get into a new routine with ALL new teachers. That just takes lots of time.

I appreciate all the wonderful comments so much!!! Thanks to those who leave the encouraging words.

Sue V.
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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Lime Light Design Team August Project -Cards for Soldiers!

Our Lime Light project for this month was to make Cards for Soldiers! I always love doing these projects!

There are a total of 25 cards, all ready for someone's birthday! How cool to get a card with your own birthday number on it! I was even able to make them all identical because the cards are so small, I could get all 5 out of one 12x12 sheet. That doesn't happen often!!

Using the challenge from My Pink Stamper, I got out the Pomegranate ink (I really LOVE that color!) and used my star wheel behind Elmo, Cookie, and Big Bird! It was a WHEELIE great challenge! One I'll use often, for sure.

Again, I used one of my shortcuts to make the face pieces. I cut all the eyes, noses, all of Big Bird's face pieces in white, and used my Stampin' Up markers to color in the pieces. Saves SO much aggravation with cutting those teeny tiny things!! I used: Elmo's nose: Only Orange, for Big Bird: Pink Passion for his eyelids and tongue, and Real Red for his mouth. Cookie's cookie is colored in Close to Cocoa.

Though we can't use glitter, I used my black glaze pens to make the eyes shiny, and the white to mark the highlight, and Brilliance Blue ink so the Happy Birthday was nice and shimmery.

I'll apologize for the glare, I already had each card individually wrapped before I took the pictures. They're in a protective covering to make sure they make the journey safely!!

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Monday, August 10, 2009

Kitchen Sink Crew Challenge #16 4th and final entry

Here's the link to the Kitchen Sink Stamp challenge!

I think this strawberry patch card is one of my very favorites.

I used lots of different ink colors for stamping these berries.
They seem more realistic - you never get all deep red berries in a container anyway.
Stickles accent the berries just like the dew on the strawberries in the early morning.

The photo corners can be found on the Jasmine Cricut Cart.

It sure was fun making the berry patch!!

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Sunday, August 9, 2009

Kitchen Sink Crew Challenge #16! 3rd entry

Here's my third entry for the Kitchen Sink Crew Challenge...

The recipe I used for the raspberries:
Stamp #1: Cameo Coral
Stamp #2: Real Red
Stamp #3: Pomegranate ?? I can't remember the entire name.

for the leaves/stems, I used:
Stamp#1: Wild Wasabi
Stamp #2: Old Olive

One thing you don't know.... I HATE raspberries... HATE 'em!! LOL BUT, this set of stamps is my absolute favorite. What a contradiction, I know! I just can't believe how real these raspberries look!
Now, why do I hate them so much?? Because my mother grew an enormous raspberry patch down the center of our garden when I was a kid, and we had them coming out of our ears!!! We ate them with everything, had to pick them and get scratched up all over the place, had to sort through them, had to finish picking off the stems, and get them ready for flash-freezing so we would have some ALL YEAR LONG! UGH! If I never have to eat Raspberry Torte again, I will be VERY happy! LOL

So, please do enjoy how realistic these raspberries are... because they've done an amazing job in creating them... but just don't offer me any for a snack or in my dessert!! LOL

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Kitchen Sink Crew Challenge #16! 2nd entry

Here's the link to the Kitchen Crew Challenge for August.
I can't begin to tell you how much I LOVE these stamps!!!

This blueberry inspired card is my 2nd entry.
I use the Stampin' Up inks, and they turn out perfect!

The recipe I used for these blueberries is:
Stamp #1: Bashful Blue
Stamp#2: Ballet Blue
Stamp #3: Brilliant Blue - stamped off once
Stamp #4: Brilliant Blue

for the leaves:
Stamp #1: Wild Wasabi
Stamp #2: Old Olive

The stamps are so perfect, they even show the little frilly tops on the blueberries where they attach to the stems!!

For the corner pieces on the card, I used some new Sizzix dies I found.
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Hello Kitty for Get Well Wishes

There's a little girl who's Mom is on our Cricut Messageboard - and she's having some major surgery on Tuesday.. I found out that her favorite character is Hello Kitty and her favorite colors are pink and purple!! SO, these are the two things I made for her.
The card and notebook will be sent separately so she'll get 2 different packages.

Hopefully she'll like them!

As always, click on the picture for a screen-sized view!

Instead of actually cutting the colored paper for the rainbow pieces, I just used my stickles. They're coated so thickly, the glitter actually took most of the day to dry!! It does look GREAT!

Inside the notebook, I used my Hannah Montana cart to cut her name in the Music Staff option. It turned out really cute!! So sorry I won't post it - don't want to give her name... she's just a little one going through a lot!

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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Silly Kitty!

So I've said already how he's just not a cuddly kitty... but he does LOVE to be near me wherever I am in the house. If he has access to my feet, even better - because he loves to cuddle with Mama's toes!!!

He was, just a second ago napping in his kitty condo... but I had the camera ready, and just had to wake him up... isn't he CUTE!! LOL

I have them both trained to meow when I call them... so out of a sound sleep... I get a "WHAT!?" meow. Here he is!

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Sharing a Tip!!

I started seriously stamping this past January with my Stampin' Up card club, and had the hardest time with the ink pads slipping!!!

After 'just dealing' with it for awhile, I got out some of the non-stick kitchen shelving I had, and cut it to the size I needed for my stamp pads.... it works GREAT!!!!!

I can smoosh the stamps as much as I want, and I don't have to chase the pad all over the table anymore!

You can find this in the shelf liner section at Wal-Mart - it's non-stick
shelf liner.
Hope this helps!!!

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Cards for Soldiers "I Love You" 7/28 - 8/14

Can you see the WHEELIE cute hearts in the background of these two cards?

Our CFS challenge this time wasn't so much "I Love You" cards, but there was a request for more of them.... so I made 29.. and I just got this very adorable cupcake/cake stand stamp and I just had to play with it... so that was the 30th card.

Robyn, My Pink Stamper, made a WHEELIE cute challenge. I also love the Stampin Up Wheels - and have many... so after I saw her video, I got out my heart wheels, and ran them on the papers in Pink Pirouette ink for a cute background. I also just got my Color Spritzer, so I used that on the background of another card with the wheel prints!

What fun!!

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How to Re-stick Your Cricut Mat!

Something I Learned About Using My Cricut!
This is an article using the benefit of the experience of a new Cricut user.
**Reprinted from November, 2008

Topic this time: Re-sticking Your Mats!

How many mats do you have? THAT many?? I’ll admit that I have quite a few mats too, but I’m not planning on buying any new mats for a LONG time! …and Yes, I do use my Cricut Expression almost daily!

Here’s the scoop on re-sticking your mats. Zig Pens! Get yourself the wide tipped Zig pen. I’ve seen them up to $6 in the craft stores – use a coupon to save some $$ for carts and paper! Even if you don’t have a coupon, for $6 a glue-pen, you can re-stick a LOT of mats!

I’ve read that some people clean off their mats by washing them with soap and water. When I used this method, I just made sure I had all the little bits of paper off the mat.

Take your Zig pen and apply adhesive all the way across your mat. Be careful that you don’t get any adhesive on the outer green area – or it will mess up your rollers. Really, it’s easy! Apply the adhesive to the entire mat, and then let it sit out, uncovered, until the mat has ‘dried’. Be sure to let it air-dry before you place the cover sheet back on your mat.

This is just the easiest way to re-stick your mats! I’ve already done 5 of them, and they work just like new. I actually think this adhesive lasts much longer than the original adhesive that came with our mats!

Here’s a link with a video from Ms. Robyn, the Pink Stamper showing exactly how this process works.
Good Luck, and let me know how this works for you.
Update to this article: (August 2009) I've been using this mat re-sticking method since a short time before I wrote this article for Gracie, and haven't bought any new mats since! I actually have a few still in the packaging. I just clean off the mat really well, and re-stick it with the Zig Pen!

There’s so MUCH to learn!
Until next time,
Susan Vilar
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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cricut Helpers! Paper Piecing and Layers!

What I’ve Learned About Paper Piecing and Layering Cuts

I looked a long time at the Happily Ever After and Dreams Come True carts before I made any of the cuts – they looked so good, but also really complicated! Yes, the cartridge handbook has a detailed explanation of the cuts – but I’ve learned over time that some people can read directions (like me) and some people aren’t so good at that – they have to see it, or hear the directions (like my Mom). I’m also including pics with this explanation so you have a good set of visuals.

When I got the courage up, I jumped right in and learned a few things about cutting Disney characters - order matters! I make lots of cards for a project on the Cricut Message Board called Cards for Soldiers, so I’ve cut LOTS of these characters.

First, if you’re cutting a lot of one shape, set up an assembly line so you can glue the pieces while the next set are cutting on your bug. For example, if you’re cutting Ariel – cut the shadow and set it aside.
Cut out the base piece, the cut with the guide lines to show you where to glue the other color cuts. Then cut out the hair (I also cut the lips from the same red) and glue it down to the base while you are cutting the flesh tones.
Glue down the flesh cuts while cutting the white layer. Cut the eyes while gluing the white layer. You will layer the blue iris over the whites of the eyes.
Finally, cut the outfit layer and glue down. When you have your Ariel (or other princess) finished – glue down the shadow.
I know it doesn’t really seem like you need it, but it does make a difference having that extra black border around the character.

Ariel’s shadow - I always cut these first, and set them aside so when I’m finally finished with all the color layers, I can finish them in a snap and glue the shadow without waiting for it to cut.

Ariel’s base cut with the hair and lips - if you look closely, you can see the guide lines to show where to place your cut pieces.

Ariel’s flesh tone layer -

Ariel’s white layer – there’s usually more white on the Disney characters, but her white layer are only the whites of her eyes. Isn’t she looking better!

Ariel’s eye layer (yes, they’re teeny tiny) - tweezers can be your friend!

Ariel’s outfit layer –

Notice the difference with the shadow when it’s glued on the back!
Next time – how to use your computer to see all those eensy, weensy, teeny, tiny, little pieces - without getting a headache!

Until next time,
Susan Vilar

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Cricut Helpers! Keeping Your Mat 'Alive'

This is a series of articles I wrote last year about this time for Gracie at the Everything Cricut (Now Imagine That) Blog. The purpose was to assist new Cricuteers in getting over some of those learning curve issues we all have with a new Cricut!

Here is the first.

August 5, 2008

What I’ve Learned About Cricut!

This is my first little article about my Cricut experiences, and I’m flattered to say that Saige/Grace asked me to write. I thought about lots of things, and took some ideas I’d seen on the Cricut Messageboard, and here are my thoughts.

I think one of the most important topics to learn quickly about your Cricut is the mat.

Do you know how important the plastic cover sheet is? I learned that one VERY quickly! I now mark my mats so I know ‘which side is up’.

Use a Sharpie before you ever remove the cover on a new mat, and mark it TOP around the little hanging hole at the top.

I also write it around the sheet in other places so it is readily visible. WHY is this tip so important??? Mat Life!!!

Have you ever noticed that you place your clear sheet back on and some of the ‘stick’ from the mat is on your clear cover sheet?? I did, and ruined an entire mat that way.

If you mark your clear cover sheets, you won’t have that sticking problem. It turns out they are NOT equal in non-stick properties on both sides of that coversheet.

I’ve been able to keep some mats for quite awhile.

There are techniques out there for extending mat-life and products to use… more next time!

Susan Vilar
Sue's Cricut and Crafts
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Monday, August 3, 2009

Kitchen Sink Crew Challenge #16!

Here's the link to the Kitchen Sink Stamp Challenge!

The challenge this time is to "Decorate the Card Corners".... and this is what I came up with!

Both my husband and I LOVE strawberries so much that when I saw these, I just had to have the stamp set! I've even got my kitchen decorated all in strawberries! Plates, clock, burner covers, cookie jar, serving platter, sugar/creamers, toothpick holder, paper towel holder... Oh yes, there's more!

I used my Stampin' Up inks for the strawberries and leaves, with ranger clear embossing powder to make them shine.

The Storybook Cartridge is where the corner pieces inside and out can be found.

Please enjoy! Don't they look YUMMY!!?? I know they smell even better!

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2 More Altered Notebooks!

I had a request to make 2 more of these covered notebooks.
Here they are!
My personal favorite is the pink Hello Kitty.
I started attaching the RSVP pens made to match with paper from the notebooks. I found that attaching them while traveling really helps! It's so easy to lose track of pens when you're moving around so much!

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Sunday, August 2, 2009

Birthday Cards for My Cousin!

My husband started a little 'tradition' that when we give cards to each other for any special type occasion, we give one silly, and one serious card. It's always fun to see what silliness we can each come up with, and my husband always picks the BEST cards that say exactly the right things.
SO, with that in mind, I have a cousin with a birthday coming in a few days, and I made him these 2 cards... He LOVES the movie Cars, and so even though I've had this cart since Christmas, I just got it out today. Yes, I know... BAD GIRL! LOL

I had a good time with my glaze pens highlighting the wheels and eye centers... but a trick I've used a lot recently is to cut the small pieces in white or a major color, and then use my Stampin' Up markers to finish the coloring. On the 95's and the yellow front headlights, I cut them in yellow, and then colored them with the Mustard marker! What a hassle saver!!
The pop-up card is something I've done many times already, but they're just so much fun!!! I used one of the EK success punches for the candles, and my Cupcake SU wheel for the 2 borders. I had fun with the markers and the Crystal Stickles!! It's amazing how they just pick up the underlying color and make it sparkle!! I used it on the candle tops, the cupcake confetti, and the other little things that needed accenting.

Please enjoy..... Leave a comment, and sign my guestbook!
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