Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Winter vacation update!

I was so excited, and had many plans of things I wanted to do during this week’s vacation.

Sunday was getting the lawn mowed and garden cleaned up.

Monday was dump day – one load of garden waste and clippings, and a small load to the garbage dump after we tore down my old greenhouse (3.5 ft x 6 ft).

The exciting news was making room for a new greenhouse! I’m more than doubling the size of the old one! It will be 7.5 ft x 6 ft! It will have a permanent roof (Sunroof – suntough), and be in the corner of our yard, so the fence sides of the greenhouse will be lined with landscape fabric. That will leave only two walls of plastic to replace every third year or so! There will be a gutter the garden side of the greenhouse, emptying into a rain barrel.

Yesterday, we had hoped to get the basic greenhouse structure up, but it was so rainy and windy that we delayed doing it. Last night it snowed 3 inches, so that nixes the outside work for today!


As you can see, the temperature is well above freezing now, so by tonight we should have mostly slush to deal with – typical Pacific coast weather Sad smile I hate slush!

So, with the snow delay, we will only have time to construct the greenhouse frame in the time left before I have to go back to work.  I really wanted to get a lot more done(getting a truckload of manure and mulch for the gardens, digging out and dividing stuff in the front flower bed etc)!

Crossing my fingers for warmer weather, as I need to create the space to harden off the  plants I’ve started already!

News on the seedlings, planted February 24th and 25th (4 to 5 days ago!):

All 16 plugs of Brachycome are up and starting to form their first true leaves.

The Bacopa is just starting to look like they are germinating.

The Godetia and Begonias show no signs of life yet Sad smile

All 6 Brussel Sprout seeds are up! About 2 days behind the Flowering Kale.

About 1/2 of the petunias have started (36 plugs seeded) and are showing leaves.

12 Flowering Kale are growing well, true leaves beginning to form, and roots reaching the bottom of the plugs.

No sign of life from the Phlox.

I downloaded a garden journal for free from Gardens and Crafts, and Arbico, and will combine favorite pages from each to make my own journal for my seeding entries… Much better than seeing which comes up so slowly (if at all!). I’m hoping this will help me plan next year on what to plant and when.

When we start building the greenhouse, I will be sure to post some more pictures!

A Card Variation

Here’s a quick way to alter my card from last post…. Simply cut out the flash in cardstock (I used two layers to completely cover the background color). Faux stitch the edge and sentiment. Attach it to the center of the card.I actually like the depth it provides. I could have added even more depth by using dimensional adhesive to attach it too!

On this Day – a wedding card

Hi! Thanks for visiting my Card a Day blog post! I have the last scheduled card for the Wedding theme, and have made a basic card with lots of possibilities to make it for all sorts of occasions!
First of all, the card base is 5”x7”. I cut a 1/4 fold card front and embossed it with Crafts Too “Invitation” embossing folder.  I then cut out a piece of light purple gift wrap tissue paper, just slightly larger than the embossed card front. I used an art deco edged craft scissor that I got from the dollar store!
I really had fun making the central embellishment.  I made the flash “on this day” base with Craft Artist. I had fun using the stencil’s to air brush color and depth. Here is what my Craft Artist screen looked like:
on this day
I printed and cut out the shape, and glued it onto cardstock that I had previously glued regular kitchen foil on top of. All I had to do is cut it out so the foil framed the embellishment!
Ribbon under the embellishment and around the embossed card front. Inside the card I plan to make a personalized note for the couple I give it to.
I was thinking that you could have all sorts of fun, using different shapes for your embellishment, making the embellishment a frame for a picture of the happy couple or whatever the celebration was for! More depth could be added by using ModPodge or similar gloss finish, just on the colored portion of the embellishment too --- really a lot of possibilities! I have a post on how I've altered this card too!
Remember to visit the Card a Day Blog tomorrow for more inspiration! Make sure to enter the Card a Day Blog as well! We have some awesome monthly prizes to give away, but you won’t have a chance to win if you don’t enter!

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Of Plants & Pearls


Its cold and windy here today. The good thing about it, is that the sun is shining, and the lawn will dry out finally!  I have a week’s vacation coming up starting tomorrow morning, and will be out in the yard doing some major work while the sun shines! I have to rebuild my green house, move one garden shed, do a dump run (LOL) and get some mulch and manure for my garden. I’ll be sure to post my progress along the way!

Today has been a good day to finish off some of the planting I’m doing inside…

News on my previous post: Can you believe it! Under 2 days, and the Brachycome Blue Splendor is starting to sprout!

I paid $2.99 Cdn + tax, seeded 16 plugs, and still have well over 100 seeds left. Usually I buy these in individual pots for my hanging baskets, at 75¢ a pop. What a savings! This is the first time I’ve grown them, so I hope they do well!


Things I did last night and this morning:

Now that my Aerogardens are full, I’ve seeded my windowsill planters using a hydroponic grow tray product called “steadyGRO”. The tray pack I bought has 5 rows. I find 2 rows fits my containers perfectly. I find that this product waters well from “below”, but will probably just mist it daily until the plants are bigger.


I used one tray to plant 6 Cardoon seeds, 6 Martha Washington Geranium cuttings, 4 Lemon Scented Geranium cuttings, and 2 Dragon’s Leaf Begonia cuttings. The other tray has 6 plugs of Lobelia, and 14 plugs of Alyssum (lower right photo). As you see, the Alyssum plugs I’ve pre-divided into 4’s, as I will be able to separate them and pot them up much easier that way. I did not do the Lobelia, as the seed was from 2009, and I was not sure of the germination rate.


Now, all of the above was topped off with what I had for lunch!

Friends gave me 4 oysters that I cooked for lunch today…. and out of the four, I got 5 pearls!!! They are all around the same size, so I’m going to have to be very inventive on what I do with them…. I see a necklace pendant in my future! Now just to find some appropriate findings for them (or make my own!)!!!


That is it for now! Hoping you enjoy your day!


Friday, 24 February 2012

2012 Gardening Season Begins!

I’m notorious for having an all or nothing attitude about what I’m working on…. Gardening is especially like that for me – I have a hard time in the fall, when the rains start, to motivate myself to do things out in the yard. By the middle of September, you would be hard pressed to see me in my yard at all!

A dear friend of mine started me on the path to seeding my own plants for my garden (I love having lots of flowers)… The nice thing about doing this, is that it does get me in the mood to be out in the garden much earlier than I normally would! I’ve titled this post as the “2012 Gardening Season Begins!” and hope to make it an annual type of post, for when I start my official seeding for the coming year! To see the results of how my seeding goes, click on the label “seeding” – this is the first post with that label, so give it a month or two Smile.

Today’s efforts, between being up and around or in bed (I’ve come down with a nasty cold):

Started three aerogardens with the garden starter inserts.

In two of the aerogardens (1/2 full of plugs, see the picture at the end of this post):

  • Brachycome Blue Splendor – 16 plugs
  • Bacopa – White – 9 plugs
  • Godetia – Grace hybrid mix – 9 plugs
  • Begonia – Bada-bing Scarlet – 27 plugs
  • Brussel Sprouts – Long Island – 6 plugs

brachycomebluebaracopagodetia1badabing (1)brussel_sprouts

The last aerogarden was planted with:

  • Heliotrope Marine – 12 plugs
  • Petunia – Super cascade, pink – 12 plugs
  • Petunia – Double cascade, burgundy – 12 plugs
  • Petunia – Double purple pirouette – 12 plugs
  • Flowering Kale, Peacock Red – 12 plugs
  • Phlox – Peppermint Candy – 6 plugs

heliotrope marinepetunia pinkpetunia burgandypurple petuniaflowering kale peacock redphlox peppermint candy

Most of the seed is at least 1 year old, so I’m hoping their germination rates are still good! The older seed I put in a couple of seed per plug, and hope I’m not having to get the scissors out to thin them too much!

I’m hoping that in a month I will be able to pot these plugs up and start the rest of the garden seeds I usually start inside (tomatoes, lettuce, squash and cucumber).

Other flowers I plan to start from seed inside:

Lobellia, trailing (I have three different colors which I think I will mix and seed)

Allysum, snow carpet

Other flowers I plan to start from cuttings:

Wandering Jew

Lemon Scented Geranium

Martha Washington Geranium


I will have separate entries for the tomatoes I grow Smile


Pictures above are from google searches, and from the seed companies I purchased from if possible.

Below is the first two gardens I planted.


When things start growing, I will try to take another picture that matches this one, so you can see the differences!

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Come to my house ~ Card!

I’m really extending myself making cards for the Card a Day Blog. The neat thing is how much easier it is getting to come up with an idea, using things I have around my craft room!
This is the last card of the theme – invitations.  Most of the invitations I’ve made in the past were just posters advertising luncheons at work and such. The only official invitation I’ve ever made was for my sister’s wedding (I’m saving that one for an upcoming post).  
I’m hoping you like this easy to replicate card. It’s a digital one, done with a twist.
The card base is 5” x 5” folded. I chose a green patterned scrapbook paper that matched the print I made.
In Craft Artist (or the graphics or word processing program of your choice), design your card front and insert. You could even opt for to use similar stamps if you have them.
Here is what I came up with ~ I used the Birds digikit from Daisytrail for my elements:
Invitation print
Print, cut out and tape on the appropriate sides of your card base.
The twist in the card is to use mod podge or dimensional clear glue to highlight the bird houses.
I couldn’t find mine in time to finish the card, so I quickly used regular glue and applied clear embossing powder on it. It didn’t turn out exactly how I envisioned it would, but I’m happy none the less Smile Every card is a learning experience!
Visit the Card a Day Blog tomorrow, when Diana will have something inspiring for St. Patrick’s Day for us!
Remember to enter in the Card a Day Blog challenges! You can enter a card in for every theme we have running in the month! Your cards inspire us too!

Monday, 6 February 2012

And the winner is…..

I’m so excited to post the winner of the blog candy offered on my blog entries for the Card a Day Blog hop February 4th and 5th! There were 38 comments! WoW! Thanks for all of the encouragement!

I used the draw straws generator at to choose the winner.

Kelly S!!! You are the winner of the blog candy from Gardens, Crafts ‘n’ More! I’ll be emailing you today to get more details to send you your prize!

For everyone…. remember your names are also being entered in the grand prize for the blog hop at the Card a Day Blog… so check back there to see if you won! Remember that we have other contests going on there too, as well as great ideas for cards – everyday!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Card a Day Blog Hop! Grab your paints!

The designers at Card a Day Blog are joining together to do a blog hop this weekend! The theme is Masculine cards!Let's not let the guys have all the fun on Super Bowl Sunday....let's get a little of our own fun in!
To join in....visit all the participating designers by visiting their sites, some are having prize give make sure you pop in! Make sure you comment on all the blogs too, because at the end of the weekend, they are going to send a list of all who commented on their blog, and we are going to do a grand prize drawing of all comments on each blog! Blog Hop Prize
So JOIN IN TODAY....comment on the main blog page, and visit the other hop pages and comment there too!
I’m so excited that you have returned to see what I have designed for the second day of our blog hop!
One of the men in our family loves to sail.  I wanted to do a project that would have a sailboat in it, and use an alternate method to using markers. Watercolors! (hey, sailing and water go together right!)
I hope you enjoy this card’s journey:
First of all, a pattern to color. One of the crafts I have done in the past is stained glass. I wanted a stained glass like pattern for my project and found this one with a Google search:
Rainbow Sailboat Opal 600x807sailboat4
You can get the pattern here at (left)  The pattern was a full sized letter, so I simply resized it and added the sun and some rays (right).
I printed two copies out with my laser printer, so I would not have problems with lines “bleeding” when I painted the picture. I believe that you could do this with a photocopy as well.  I used semi-gloss paper. Straight cardstock works too, but you really have to watch how wet your brush was when using the plain paper.
Now, which watercolors to use?! I wanted to try some water color pencils I had received at Christmas, and some plain ol’ Crayola watercolors I’ve had for eons. Both work well, although I think the pencils created more of a glass like mixture of color than regular water colors… what do you think?

The rest of the card is simply finalizing which colored cardstock to use as a background, and figuring out what to put in the inside.  Most of my cards are blank inside as I usually don’t make for specific occasions. It’s a big birthday for the person who will get this, so I will probably make an insert that says….
Now that you’ve reached (I’ll keep that figure private LOL) - it will be all smooth sailing!!!

Now as promised yesterday… I am having a random draw for some blog candy this weekend! Leave a comment on February 4th or 5th’s blog posts, and be entered for a chance to win two packages of red sable brushes, perfect for fine painting of cards or what have you! I will contact the winner on Monday evening, February 6th.
Remember to visit the rest of the blog hop participants as well! Every comment you leave will be combined for a chance to win a great prize at the Card a Day Blog! How’s that for having some great fun on Superbowl Weekend!?!
Thanks so much for visiting! Hope to see you again soon!

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Card a Day Blog’s February Blog Hop!

The designers at Card a Day Blog are joining together to do a blog hop this weekend! The theme is Masculine cards!Let's not let the guys have all the fun on Super Bowl Sunday....let's get a little of our own fun in!
To join in....visit all the participating designers by visiting their sites, some are having prize give make sure you pop in! Make sure you comment on all the blogs too, because at the end of the weekend, they are going to send a list of all who commented on their blog, and we are going to do a grand prize drawing of all comments on each blog! Blog Hop Prize
So JOIN IN TODAY....comment on the main blog page, and visit the other hop pages and comment there too!

I’m so excited to be involved in the second blog hop from the Card a Day Blog! For the blog hop, I made a textured card for my grandson’s birthday.

The card is pictured on a dark green surface to help highlight the textures of the card. I used Cuttlebug’s happy birthday embossing folder, and a fern leaf embossing folder I believe is from Craft Concepts. I created a quilted block design by separating the “pieces” by a simple green lined “sashing”. The floral picture on the top right hand corner was salvaged from another birthday card.

All the colors tie together, and with the texture, I think anyone would like it! Even when watching the Superbowl (ok, that may stretch it a bit in my household anyways!).

Make sure to come back tomorrow, as I will have another card to post for the blog hop! I will also be having a surprise blog candy draw, to enter, please leave a comment! The winner will be chosen by random on Monday, February 6th at 7pm Pacific time.

Make sure to enter the main draw at the Card a Day Blog too!