New haircut and fast little post...

Busy busy busy around here: lots and lots of reading, midterms, lesson planning, house cleaning, car selling, getting inspections, event planning, trying {still} to get in shape...I have been uber-busy these days with work and school and other important obligations. I am hanging on tight until after next week, when I will finally get a vacation and rest!

For today, just a quick photo. I had been toying with the idea of getting my hair, which has been growing longer since the wedding, cut off. I decided to take the plunge, but I didn't go as short as I have before. I am liking it. Here's a pic of the day it was done. She blew it out straight, which I have decided I like. Maybe we'll see more of that. Jimmy really liked that, so.... :)
Hopefully soon to come are some projects that I am saving until after the recipients get them...stay tuned!


Happy Valentine's Day!

I hope everyone is having a great Valentine's weekend so far. I know I am. :) I awoke this morning to a big surprise bouquet of flowers in the middle of my dining room table. Then we had heart shaped blueberry pancakes, eggs and turkey bacon for breakfast. I have spent the afternoon doing some housework and some crafting. After this past week, while I was laid up with a nasty cold, I sure was in need of both. Tonight we are off to a dinner date--someplace new and I need to dress up?! It is a surprise for me and I am looking forward to it, especially since we are trying to save money and eat better by not eating out as much. This will be a treat indeed!

I am also gearing up for the midnight release of new products over at PaperTrey Ink. This is one of those companies that as soon as you find them, you wonder why it took you so long. I just recently ordered a few things from them and have really fallen in love with their products-stamps, neat packaging materials. I have yet to try their matching paper, inks, and ribbon-which I hear are to die for- but my wish list is quickly growing longer and I am sure I will soon. They also seem like really nice people and I am always happy to deal with those kind. :)

I have a quick share before I head off to get some more housework done before dinner. This is the Valentine's card I made my hubby. I usually struggle doing masculine cards and on top of that, add that it is for Valentine's and I am stumped. But, I tried a slightly more masculine version of the traditional pink, red and white color scheme that I wasn't sure would work, and I ended up quite pleased with the results.

I finally found a use for this neat Collage Press journaling card that I had, highlighting the date for years to come. The hearts on the front and inside (and the "xoxo" inside) are from this nifty set from PTI.
Thanks for checking this out. Have a lovely day!!

Cardstock (base red, blue, white): Bazzill
Heart patterned paper, blue fiber: BasicGrey

Journaling card: Collage Press
Ribbon, photo corners: American Crafts
Stamps: Papertrey Ink (hearts, "xoxo", "love"), Hero Arts (small letters, tiny heart[on journaling card], woodgrain[on background, hard to see]), Inkadinkado(large "u"), Studio G (inside sentiment)
Other: Colorbox chalk ink, Versamark ink, white acrylic paint & brush, staples


Several Birds with One

Card, that is! Having limited time to complete crafty projects lately, I am trying to maximize those things that I do do to have more than one purpose. This week there are several exciting things going on.

Firstly, Papertrey Ink is celebrating its two-year anniversary this month and is offering lots of contests and huge giveaways on their blog. I am having fun looking at all their awesome new products and am making an awfully long wish list. :)

Today's(2/7/09) challenge was to create a card based on the sketch in this post. Since yesterday's challenge there was to use a color combo of red, blue, green and yellow, and I didn't get a chance to participate, I thought I would combine the two. Then, to add another element, I thought I would make a birthday card and incorporate a Hero Arts stamp to get the card into this week's birthday challenge over at HA. Here it is!

This card, rather than opening up the traditional way, is flat and just the small blue card in the center opens to the left to reveal the message. Instead of buttons or brads along the side, I opted for a trio of butterflies.
Materials used:
Scalloped note card-Staples
Patterned paper-October Afternoon
Ribbon-American Crafts
Birthday and message stamps-Papertrey Ink
Flowery box stamp (in center)-Hero Arts
Buttefly punch-Martha Stewart
Other-Colobox chalk inks, pop dots

That's it for tonight...I am sleepy! Thanks for looking!


Language links

This past week I have been busy busy with school/work and creating and organizing my Etsy shop. And because of that, I haven't had much time to do crafting and I don't have much at all to post in that department. But, to give a little taste of what work I have been doing, I thought I would share some cool websites that I have discovered for language learning. I am soon starting a job giving private group French lessons and I have been exploring some new options for my students to continue learning and hear pronunciation outside of our lessons. Here are a few of the best ones:

BBC languages: has a 12-step learning program, interesting dialogues and videos, helpful worksheets, practice quizzes, and learning games for French, Spanish, German and others

Language Guide: has a site for many languages including English, Spanish, French, German with pronunciation, grammar review, and picture vocabulary guides-all with sound!

French Assistant: has lots of free basic lessons in French grammar, pronunciation, and vocabulary with sound

As per usual, I also recommend "the pods" : FrenchPod, SpanishPod, ItalianPod (I use ChinesePod to supplement my quickly-fading Mandarin skills). Each site also offers an RSS feed of their newbie lessons for free through iTunes and some other sources. Check it out!

That's all for today. I am off to do some reading for class tomorrow. Bonsoir a tous!