Life at the ‘Big C’ Compound

Good Morning Friends,

Wow, what another totally crazy week here at the “Big C” Compound.  It seems the flood doors are opened and things are rolling quickly here.  I do have some cards to share with you but first I want you to see my awesome awnings we added to the front porch.  I’m thrilled with them.  Besides looking fantastic, they were pretty easy to install, do a fantastic job of blocking the high noon sun from my front yard and best ever, they operate using a remote control.  I can sit in command headquarters and operate the awnings up or down. How fun is that!!!

First I want to show you the porch as it was several weeks ago before anything was done.  Nice but plain and no shade at all making it impossible to enjoy the outdoors in the afternoons. We’ve been suffering with this problem for 35 years. So we added painter’s cloth drapes.  When the sun comes out, I just release the drapes, slide them closed and instant shade on the porch.  What a huge difference it makes.  We also added rope lighting inside the porch eave so we have twinkle lights for the evening. They, too, run on remote control.As if this wasn’t enough, the awnings were finally delivered last week and were installed on Friday. This pic shows the awnings fully extended but I can adjust them to wherever I want.  We opted for 2 awnings, each independently operated so I can have shade wherever needed.  FYI: If anyone wants info, I’d be happy to clue you in.  Great price, great quality and great fun!!!  And just so you realize how much of a difference these awnings make, I took the temperature using a infrared temperature gun. On the lawn it read 133 degrees.  On the porch, 84 degrees.  Impressive, huh???

Now onto serious business, cards.  First up are the next 2 cards for the Alphabet swap I’m doing on one of my card making groups.

E is for Elephant. For this card, I used my Brother SNC.F is for feather.  Here I chose to do some embroidery on paper.

Lastly, a few more cards that will be donations for my ‘Share Kindness’ campaign.

A pretty shaker card using tulle and a beautiful layering stamp.Another star shaker card.And finally, a stamped background and vellum card.  I used a white gel pen to highlight the clear embossed flowers and a stamped sentiment on vellum.

I have many, many more cards that I will share with you in the following weeks.  But for now, I’ll leave you with this clue:  Big things will soon be happening here.

Your friend,



Posted in Cards, CASE, Die Cut, Embossing, Embroidery on Paper, Garden, greeting cards, Handmade cards, Home, Scan N Cut, stamping | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Kindness Cards

Hello Friends,

Wow, what another crazy week.  I’ve been busy almost every day with non-crafty things like computer repairman (to hook up my printers to WiFi), pest control (I have (had) a flying ant issue), Demi and Dommy’s birthdays on Tuesday, doctor appointment (all is good), food shopping (don’t ask) and multiple deliveries every day including (finally) my outside porch awnings.  My household single handedly keeps FEDEX, UPS, private carriers and USPS in business.  I know all the drivers on a first name basis.

I did, however, manage to squeeze out some cards.  This can only happen because I get up before the birds, anytime after 12 midnight.  It’s my quiet time and I can get lots done without interruption.  Plus, I’m making donation cards, using the assembly line method so things go quickly (usually).

These cards below are my most recent endeavor. I’m really making an effort to be a better stamper and have purchased some better quality dyes.  Currently I’m experimenting with Ranger’s Distress Inks.  My goal was to have all the colors but now the new Distress Oxide Inks have caught my attention so I may go with a complete set of those.  Of course, I can’t afford the entire set at once so I’ll buy a few each time they’re on sale somewhere.  But for now, here are some backgrounds that I made using the regular Distress Inks.  These are all earmarked as donation cards.

I used the same 4 ink colors on all the cards.  I used a stencil and sprayed with water, added some sparkle with Wink of Stella, dry embossed, and a bit of glitter paper resulting in 7 different inked backgrounds.  I pulled them all together in various ways to give each card a unique look.  I only made one of each this time.

I plan to do more background using these Distress Inks.  For me, it’s a bit time consuming since I’m still learning but I think the new Oxide inks would work better.  I hope I don’t cave in and purchase the entire lot!!!!

I’ll be back next week with more goodies.  Have a great week.



Posted in Cards, Die Cut, Embossing, greeting cards, Handmade cards | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Stencil and Inlaid cards

Happy Friday to all,

This week has been sort of crazy and hectic with the 4th of July  and a long weekend for everyone.  These long weekend holidays just cut into my card making time so I don’t have lots to share.  A few cards that I did manage to make are a bit of this and that.

Here are 2 rainbow stencil cards.  Stenciling was big a few years back but now is making a comeback.  Easily done, stenciling adds so much to the background of a simple card.

Next, another stencil, this time clouds.

These next cards are inlaid cards.  Great thing here is you get 2 cards with each die cut.

I have been trying to get ahead of my  cards that I will be donating.  I think, so far, I’ve made about 150 cards which I will share with you soon.

Thanks for stopping by.  Be sure to come back next week for more goodies.



Posted in Cards, Die Cut, greeting cards, Handmade cards, Scan N Cut, Spellbinder Dies, stamping | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Back in Business

Hi all,

I had my Mac in for service and am now back in business….well, sorta.  My MS Word still isn’t working correctly but, for now, I’ll have to deal with it.

So we left off 2 weeks ago with a review of new technique cards that I’ve been playing around with.

Continuing forward, first is a window card using tulle as a backing for the window on the card front.  I then attached the cut out with a duplicate on the backside of the tulle.  How cute are these card.  I got some inspiration from Jennifer McGuire’s video on making window cards.

Next are some fun cards using cupcake sprinkles.  I cut the word using my Brother SNC and used a strong 2 sided adhesive to attach all the sprinkles to the card stock.Here is a closeup.

I’m working on lots more cards and will share with you in the coming weeks.  FUN! FUN! FUN!!!

I’ll end this week’s post with a something that Papa made for our granddaughter.  Demi saw this on YouTube and just had to have one!  How hilarious is this. Can you guess what it is??????  A kitty cat toilet/litter box.  Demi just needed to have this for all her stuffed animals, kitties, doggies and dinos.Look inside, little toilet seats and an entire roll of toilet paper.Don’t be too embarrassed.  Some kitties just have to go!Demi is loving this and is having so much fun.  Papa did a great job duplicating this idea from YouTube.

That’s all for this week.  Be sure to stop by next week to see what else I’ve come up with.



Posted in Birthday, Cards, Die Cut, Handmade cards, Handmade Crafts, Kids, Scan N Cut, stamping, Window card | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments


Hi Girlfriends,

Last week I shared my shaker cards that I’ve been experimenting with.  This week I’m going down the shiny brick road of FOILING.  Years ago I tried some gold foiling with the transfer liquid and rubbing the gold foiling or flakes on when the liquid dried to the touch. It was ok but I didn’t go any further.  Now it seems foiling is back with a new and improved way of dealing with it.  I’ve been watching tons of videos by various crafters, their different techniques, methods and results and hearing their advice.

Feeling confident and armed with a wealth of knowledge, I dug out whatever supplies I had on hand including a laminating machine that I’ve had for many years.  I did need to get a few more updated supplies and waited patiently for my orders to arrive.  I also was able to find some items in Joann’s, Walmart and Hobby Lobby.  Once all my supplies were assembled, it was time to dive in!!  And here are my results.

Let me say up front, all the samples I will be showing you are trial and error.  As with any new technique, practice makes perfect.  I did have several failures along the way, but all in all, I do think that as I progressed, my foiling images were coming out much more precise.

These first cards I made using double sided tape for a quick and easy touch of foiling. This was really simple to do and the results were good.  I accomplished the stamping using some peg stamp sets I got years ago and still love their effect.  I also used foiling flakes that I had in my stash and like the results.  Finally a way to use the ton of flakes I had on hand.

Here a few more examples using different widths of double sided tape.  The sentiment greetings were from a new stamp set.  Love how they look!  The flowers and embellishments are from my stash.Then my orders started arriving, oh I love happy mail.  I purchase several stencils, foil sheets and some new word die cuts and stamps.  This time I used the laminating machine with good results.

While shopping at Walmart, I came across the section for Waverly stencil products and found a great selection of small stencils for $1.97 each!  Of course, I got almost all of them. Again, using the DecoFoil Transfer Gel, stencils and laminating machine, these are the results.  How beautiful them came out.  I used a variety of foils, gold, silver, rose gold, iridescent and rainbow.  Some die cuts and embossing for the sentiment element make the perfect touch.

This is the laminating machine I have.And these are some of the supplies.

I did have a few failures as far as the foil adhering but I think it may have been user error. All in all, I had a great time experimenting and will definitely continue on with this technique.  Note:  I did try using an iron instead of the laminating machine as some suggested but it didn’t work well.  I may have had my iron too hot.  I’ll try again and let you know if I have better results.

I also picked up some toner paper and a toner pen.  I have learned that you can make your own toner sheets using a LASER printer.  This technique does NOT work with ink jet printers.  I read that the toner is actually some sort of plastic which, when melted, acts as the bonding agent.  My next experiment.

Afterthought:  I probably should have written down exactly how I did things and will do so in the future.  All this has been an experimental adventure using different techniques, products and methods and I’m zoning in on the best way for me with the best results.

Any questions, I’ll be happy to try and answer but remember I’m still a novice at this.

Till next week,


PS:  My computer is going out for service this Saturday and I’m not sure when I will get it back so I may or may not be able to post next week.  Let’s hope for the best.

Posted in Cards, Die Cut, Embossing, Foiling, greeting cards, Handmade cards, Scan N Cut, Spellbinder Dies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shake It Up, Baby!!!

Good Morning,

Here it is, the first in a series of new-to-me techniques and supplies.  Actually, I have tried several of the upcoming techniques and supplies before but not whole-heartedly and not with the correct supplies or instructions so I didn’t have much success.  Now I’m armed with information to help me better accomplish my projects more successfully.  It’s still trial and error and practice does make perfect so off I go down a new path.

Today I will share with you the all well-loved shaker cards. I’ve done some in the past but sort of made it up as I went along.  Since then, I’ve watched numerous videos and have found that there are several ways to do this technique, some easier than others but all with good results.

There are actual little acetate box type holders for the shaker material but they are bulky, cost money and would add to the postage so I opted for a few more streamline and less bulky techniques.

Most of what I will be showing you come from videos/instructions by Jennifer McGuire. If you’re interested, just do a search for her and you come upon all her videos, blog and YouTube channel.  I like her because, although she shows specific supplies, she also gives alternatives.   Most of the following cards are made from guidance via her videos.

These cards are quite flat and easy to mail.  Tape runner and clear acetate hold the sequins and is attached to the card front.

This is Jennifer’s sample.                                             Here is my version.


These sparkle cards have a silver backing behind the acetate to you can not see through the card.

These heart shaker cards have a window on the front and the same cutout on the back so you can see clear through the entire card.

On this star shaker card, the star is made separately and adhered to the card base using dimensional foam.  A bit time consuming going around the star shape with the tape but I like the results.

This last card is actually made using tulle and not acetate.  I love the more feminine look. This is made the exact same way but using tulle instead of acetate.  On my card, I tried a new layering floral stamp I just got.  Not too bad for my first attempt.  I’m actually waiting on an order for more inks so I used a punch for the green leaves.  I also included some seed beads along with the sequins inside the tule for something a bit different.

This is Jennifer’s sample.                                                    Here is my version.


Lastly, another pair of shaker cards but with a twist.  Instead of using sequins, I used actual sprinkles.  How fun is this as a birthday card. The pink card I think I got a bit carried away with the amount of sprinkles.  I printed the card bases off my computer and used a square die for the opening.  I attached the acetate in the same manner.

I definitely will be making more shaker cards.  I especially like the tulle effect.  Most of these cards will be going to Card Care Connection as a donation.

Be sure to check me out on Pinterest at  (abitofmelac) where I have separate board for Jennifer’s videos.  I also pin most of what I do there so be sure to follow me, too.  Come back next week to see what my next technique/product will be.



Posted in Birthday, Cards, CASE, Die Cut, Embossing, greeting cards, Handmade cards, Paper punch, Scan N Cut, Spellbinder Dies, stamping | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

An Interesting Birthday Card

Hello all,

Not very much happening here (yet).  I’ve been busy cleaning and  rearranging things (again) in my craft area.  Why, you ask???  To make room for some new toys.  To treat myself for my birthday, I went on a mini shopping spree and ordered several (well, a lot) of things that I’ve been wanting but kept putting off spending the money.  I finally decided to take my birthday money and get the things I’ve had on my wish list forever.

Some new dies, some new stamps, some new inks along with foil.  These new supplies will be used to make some new style cards using techniques that are new to me.  Hopefully, I’ll have some things to show you next week.  Right now I’m on the hunt for confetti.  Can you guess what I will be making?

I’ll leave you with a card that I received for my birthday. This is NOT handmade but was purchased by my daughter for $6.99 courtesy of Hallmark Signature Line.Isn’t this genius?  Yep, you’re seeing clearly….those are sprinkles for cupcakes.   I’m so going to CASE this card.  These sprinkle letters are sitting on top of the card but my friend, Robin, suggested to die cut the card base and set the sprinkles inside, sort of like inlaid work.  I’ll let you know how I do.

See you all back next week with some cards to share.


Posted in Birthday, Cards, greeting cards, Handmade cards | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments