Crafted Living

Living a crafted life!

Archive for the month “January, 2013”

The Mysterious Flower

What is it?

What is it?

A few weeks ago, my husband noticed this flower blooming in the backyard.  Hmmm.  What is it?  I contacted my friend who is a flower expert and asked her opinion.  She put forth the following theory:

  • probably a sunflower of the native variety, not a hybrid
  • possibly a seed from a bird mix that magically landed in our back yard

It definitely was very happy in its location receiving the maximum amount of sun each day.  Now, I am on the hunt to figure out exactly what it is.  Has anyone seen this flower before?  I would love to hear from you.

Enjoy this little ray of sunshine!

*Tina

Crafty Today: Happy Mushroom Card

Such a happy mushroom

Such a happy mushroom

A dear friend is going through cancer treatment and doing well.  But, the process is grueling and I thought she needed a little something to cheer her up.  You need the following supplies and tools to make this card:

Fold the yellow cardstock so it is a finished size of 4.25″x5.5″, cut the red cardstock to 3.25″x 2.75″ and cut the pink cardstock to 3″x 2.5″.  Cut all of the pieces for the mushroom at 2.5″.  Adhere all of the layers of the mushroom together.  Run the pink cardstock through the Cuttlebug machine to emboss.  Adhere the mushroom to the embossed cardstock.

The mushroom is so happy and just makes you smile.  I hope it brightens her day!

*Tina

Recipe File: Blackberry Buckle

Scrumptious blackberry buckle

Scrumptious blackberry buckle

I am on a quest to use up my stash in the crafts arena as well as the pantry.  I had all of the ingredients on hand to make this recipe and here is how I did it:

Blackberry Buckle

Buckle

  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1/4 c butter flavored shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 2 c flour
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c milk
  • 2 c frozen or fresh blackberries

Cream sugar and shortening by beating until fluffy, then beat in the egg.  Sift together flour, salt and baking powder and add to shortening mixture alternately with milk.  Blend in the blackberries and pour into a buttered and floured 10″x 6″ or 8″x 8″ baking dish.

Streusel

  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 c flour
  • 1/4 c butter, softened

Mix sugar, cinnamon, flour and butter together until the mixture looks like peas and sprinkle over the top of the buckle.  Bake at 375 degrees until top is browned, about 45 minutes.

This original recipe calls for blueberries and plain shortening.  I changed it up by using the butter flavored shortening and frozen blackberries that I froze myself.  It was delightful and a nice change for the weekend.  I hope you try it.  Enjoy!

*Tina

Photography Monday: Tivoli

Our visit to Rome was magical and all I dreamed it would be.  Being a lover of Renaissance and Baroque art and architecture, I was seeing the pieces come to life that I studied in college.  It was amazing!  We were part of a large group traveling together and Tivoli was our day trip.  Less than an hour outside of Rome, it is definitely worth a visit.  Tivoli is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and has been under restoration for many years.  Known for its fountains, nymphs, and grottoes, it is an extraordinary display of the battle between stone and water.

The largest fountain at Tivoli

The largest fountain at Tivoli

My favorite fountain because of its charm

My favorite fountain because of its charm

Built into the hillside, Tivoli has a terraced landscape

Built into the hillside, Tivoli has a terraced landscape

In its heyday, this downspout would be filled with running water

In its heyday, this downspout would have been filled with running water

One of the more dramatic displays of water

One of the more dramatic displays of water

Some fountains were quite formal

Some fountains were quite formal

If you are planning to go to Rome, you must take a day and spend the time at Tivoli.  When we go back to Rome, we will definitely do the same since we were unable to see even half of the property.  Tivoli is charming, witty, formal and beautiful and the play of water is fascinating.  You can read more about Tivoli here.

Next week, I will showcase the Colosseum.  Hope you enjoyed the glimpse into Tivoli!

*Tina

code: YGGGBJ5RMCKW

Cricut Friday: Valentine’s Day Card #3

Owl be yours forever!

Owl be yours forever!

My two teen nieces will be receiving this fun card.  You need the following supplies and tools to make this card:

  • Cricut machine
  • Cricut Create a Critter 2 cartridge
  • Cuttlebug machine
  • Cuttlebug embossing folder
  • cardstock
  • adhesive

Fold the pink cardstock so it is a finished size of 4.25″x5.5″ and cut the lavender cardstock to 5.25″x 4″.  Cut all of the pieces for the owl at 2″.  Cut the Owl be yours at 1.25″.  Adhere all of the layers of the owl together.  Run the lavender cardstock through the Cuttlebug machine to emboss.  Adhere the owl and Owl be yours to the embossed cardstock.

I wanted to make an adorable card that wasn’t too cute and owls are trendy right now.  A perfect combination.  It is my favorite card so far and I hope they love it as much as I do.  Happy paper crafting!

*Tina

Crafty Today: Marbled Paper Cube

Marbled paper cube

Marbled paper cube

Time to use my marbled paper again and I created this simple project.  It is a 2″x 2″ glass photo cube and I swapped out the photos for the paper.  So simple, yet fantastic.  I love it!

*Tina

Crafty Today: Punched Heart Garlands

Red, pink and purple punched heart garlands

Red, pink and purple punched heart garlands

When I found this inspirational photo on Pinterest, I knew I had to make my own.  You need the following supplies and tools to make these garlands:

  • scrap patterned paper
  • colored twine
  • heart punch
  • adhesive

Each scrap is cut to 1″x2″.  Fold in half then punch out the heart.  Apply adhesive to the inside and fold over the twine.  Repeat until you have the desired length of garland.

Purple hearts galore

Purple hearts galore

I love that I was able to use my scraps for this project, which adds to its eclectic, crafty feel.  I draped the garlands over my favorite wire tree and I am thrilled with the results.  It is so colorful and festive!

*Tina

Crafty Today: Dragonfly Card

Dragonfly Get Well Card

Dragonfly Get Well Card

My 91-year-old grandmother was feeling a bit under the weather last week so I decided a beautiful get well card was what the doctor ordered.   You need the following supplies and tools to make this card:

  • Cricut machine
  • Creative Memories/Cricut Cheerful Seasons cartridge
  • Cuttlebug machine
  • Cuttlebug embossing folder
  • cardstock
  • adhesive

Fold the yellow cardstock so it is a finished size of 4.25″x5.5″, cut the lime green cardstock to 3.25″x 2.5″ and cut the light blue cardstock to 3.5″x 2.25″.  Cut all of the pieces for the dragonfly at 2″.  Adhere all of the layers of the dragonfly together.  Run the light blue cardstock through the Cuttlebug machine to emboss.  Adhere the dragonfly to the embossed cardstock.

I hope it cheers her up and I know that it means the world to her when she receives cards in the mail.  You can find the Cheerful Seasons cartridge and cardstock here.

Happy paper crafting!

*Tina

Word of the Year: Creativity

Pasta sculpture

Pasta sculpture

In the past few weeks, I have read some articles about women who choose a word for the year.  The word is to keep them on track and to provide a touchstone throughout the year.  I find the idea fascinating and decided that my word would be creativity.  The definition of creativity is originality, progressiveness, or imagination.  Keeping the definition in mind, I am going to expand on it and include the following:

  • being creative in all aspects of my life including crafting, photography and cooking
  • use inspiration from Pinterest and publications to fuel it
  • use the items that I have in my stash to create beautiful works of art
  • be more proactive in the recycling arena by creating upcycled pieces

Being creative is essential to my soul.  When I am in the creative mode, all worries and concerns disappear and I become very focused.  I just create and enjoy the process.  I often tell my friends that creating pieces of art is therapy for me.  So far, I have had a very creative year and look forward to it being very productive as well.  Do you have a word of the year?  Please share if you do.

I chose the photo above because it is a creative way to use pasta.  I took that photo outside of a restaurant in Rome and many people have mistaken it for a real flower.  For the next few Mondays, I will share photos from our trip to Rome.  Stay tuned!

*Tina

Cricut Friday: Valentine’s Day Card #2

Bananas 4 U Valentine's Day card

Bananas 4 U Valentine’s Day card

Above is the card for my soon to be 5 year old nephew.  You need the following supplies and tools to make this card:

  • Cricut machine
  • Cricut Create a Critter 2 cartridge
  • Cuttlebug machine
  • Cuttlebug embossing folder
  • cardstock
  • adhesive

Fold the red cardstock so it is a finished size of 4.25″x5.5″ and cut the yellow cardstock to 5.25″x 4″.  Cut all of the pieces for the monkey at 2″.  Cut the Bananas 4 U at 1.25″.  Adhere all of the layers of the monkey together.  Run the yellow cardstock through the Cuttlebug machine to emboss.  Adhere the monkey and Bananas 4 U to the embossed cardstock.

Isn’t it fantastic?  I hope he loves it!  Happy paper crafting!

*Tina

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