Merry Christmas

"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 'Fear not: for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men."

"That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown." ~ Linus

Merry Christmas ~ Jovi

It's My Party

Today is my daughter's birthday, I can't believe my baby girl is!

I'm so proud of myself, I actually stamped a card for Riley instead of purchasing one. I used the House Mouse image It's My Party and since Riley isn't into pink frilly girly things I had to sneak a bit of pink in there for the cake frosting… which was a surprise today when she suggested I frost her Red Velvet birthday cake with pink frosting and green lettering and with the same misspelled words like the cake from Harry Potter. I told her I was surprised she wanted pink frosting and she replied "and this will be the last time you will see pink on my cake"…lol

I used both Prismacolor Pencils blended with Gamsol and Copic makers to color the image. It took me a few stamped images to get the colors right, I couldn't remember what browns I like to use for these little critters… has it really been two months since I did anything creative?!

It's My Party

A quick update about me…

I've been going through so many book the past five months (mostly Romance) that I didn't take the time to update my blog or Goodreads with any written reviews and I honestly can't see me going back and writing them now… that would take too much time away from upcoming books I want to Currently I'm reading a literature classic, Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov, it is ranked as one of the Top 100 Fiction of the 20th Century, so of course I must read it.

I've also been running, running and running for over a year and I had been slowing working on increasing my distance so I could be prepared for a half marathon in 2013. In early October I started getting leg pain, icing, resting and decreasing my miles didn't seem to help, I finally went to the doctor and was diagnosed with tendonitis and muscle strain… crap, which meant no running! I was prescribed Naproxen and physical therapy, both have been helping tremendously, I still have some discomfort going down stairs but nothing compared to before I went to the doctor. Yesterday my physical therapist gave me the go ahead to start running again, but only two miles, not the five or eight that I would like but it's a start. I have to confess… I think may have developed some sort of depression from not running and to top that off I've gained 7 lbs. It's been difficult for me to adjust my eating habits while not burning off 500-800 calories that I was while running. I'm sure everything will work out in the end and I just need to slowly work myself back to avoid any further injuries.

That's about all for me… thanks for taking the time to visit. ~ Jovi

Stamps: It's My Party (House Mouse) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: White (PaperTrey Ink), Twilight (CTMH), Chocolate (CTMH), Grey Flannel (CTMH). Wonderland Reflections (CTMH) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils blended with Gamsol, Copic Sketch Markers, Diamond Stickles (Ranger), Chocolate Grosgrain (CTMH) ~ Card Size: 5.5 x 5.5

Inky's Christmas Blog Hop

Welcome to Inky's Christmas Blog Hop, which features our newest holiday releases!

If you've come from Tex's blog, Savor the Journey, you're in the right spot. If not, you'll want to start at Inky Antics blog and work your way through the group so you don't miss anything!

The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, October 28th at midnight Central time. Please visit each Design Team members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). Two people’s names will be drawn at random to receive an Inky Christmas clear stamp set. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

For today's card I used the clear stamp set Heavenly Friends (11135MC ), drawn by the very talented artist Tammy DeYoung. You can find all the stamps the Inky Designers used to create our projects on this Inky page:

I colored the image using Prismacolor Pencils which was blended with Gamsol and then outlined the image using Copic Sketch Markers. A bit of Frosted Lace Stickles was added to the angels wings to give it that heavenly sparkle and added Glossy Accents to the candle flame.

Heavenly Friends

For the inside, I used the same layout as the front of the card leaving one panel free of designer paper and added white cardstock to add a message to the recipient.

Heavenly Friends (inside)

Your next stop will be to visit Trudy's blog, True's Gifts from the Heart. Thanks for hopping along with Inky ~ Jovi

Stamps: Heavenly Friends Clear Set (Inky Antics/11135MC) ~ Paper: White (Papertrey Ink), Sky (CTMH), Snowfall Ice Blue (Dasher/Basic Grey), Bunny Hill (Dasher/Basic Grey) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils, Gamsol, Copic Sketch Markers, Eyelet Border Punch (SU), Oval/Scalloped Oval Die (Nestabilities), Frosted Lace Stickles, Glossy Accents, Pearls, White Ribbon

Inky’s Action Wobbles Co-Hop

Welcome to Inky’s Action Wobbles Co-Hop! We’re excited that the Inky Antics and Action Wobbles Design Teams are hopping together this month.

The blog hop starts today and ends tomorrow at midnight. Please visit each DT members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). Inky Antics will be drawing THREE people’s names at random, who will each receive an Inky Halloween clear set and a dozen Action Wobbles. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog on Monday morning, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won. The AW folks will also be giving away even more Action Wobbles, so there will be lots of prizes all around!

If you've come from Kate's blog, Kate's Creative Corner, you're in the right spot. If not, you'll want to start at Inky Antics blog and work your way through the group so you don't miss anything or you can jump right in with the blog line up:

Main blog for Inky Antics
Main blog for Action Wobbles
Crazy About Cricut
ME ~ Jovi

You can find the Action Wobbles on the main Inky website here and the stamps used in this hop are shown here.

For today's project I made a mum-orific Halloween card using the adorable mummy stamp Mortimer Mummy (1071F-Inky Antics) drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung, I also used the "Trick or Treat" sentiment from the Halloween Hijinx Set (10919MC-Inky Antics), along with an Action Wobble. I stamped and colored each Mortimer Mummy image with Copic Sketch Markers and Prismacolor Pencils. I cut one image out and used an Action Wobble to adhere it to the other stamped image. I applied Glossy Accent to the spider and wormy creature, I then added a bit of Crystal Stickles to the spider web.

Mortimer Mummy

Here is a short (really short) video of Mortimer wobbling.

Your next stop will be to Monica's blog, Scraps 2 Treasure. Thanks for wobbling with us and have a wonderful weekend!

Stamps: Mortimer Mummy (1071F-Inky Antics), Trick or Treat from Halloween Hijinx Set (10919MC-Inky Antics) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: White (Neenah), Yam (Bazzill), Raven (Bazzill), Haunted Hallows Designer Paper (Teresa Collins Designs) ~ Other: Copic Sketch Markers, Prismacolor Pencils, Glossy Accents, Crystal Stickles, Spider Web Border Punch (Martha Stewart), Action Wobbles, Mounting Tape, Halloween Ribbon (Michaels), Spider Web Embellishments (Michaels) ~ Card Size: 5.5 x 5.5

Slammed & Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover

(Slammed #1)
by Colleen Hoover
(Kindle, Young Adult/Romance)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she's losing hope.

Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.

Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.

"Slammed is a heart-wrenching, emotional, yet somehow humorous journey of two souls that are destined to be together, despite the factors that stand in their way. So much more than a romance, Slammed teaches lessons about love, life and the soul-deep moments in between. Not to mention the's oh, so good." ~Katie's Book Blog

Point of Retreat
(Slammed #2)
by Colleen Hoover
(Kindle, Young Adult/Romance)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: Hardships and heartache brought them together…now it will tear them apart.

Layken and Will have proved their love can get them through anything; until someone from Will’s past re-emerges, leaving Layken questioning the very foundation on which their relationship was built. Will is forced to face the ultimate challenge…how to prove his love for a girl who refuses to stop ‘carving pumpkins.’

My thoughts: I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED Slammed and Point of Retreat! After finishing Slammed I immediately purchased Point of Retreat and then read both again (I tend to get excited about a story and read quickly... I have to be certain I didn't miss anything the first time around). I couldn't put down either book, they were so captivating, heartbreaking and incredibly romantic. Be prepared with a box of tissues, both had me crying... I was a pathetic sight. Will and Lake are so likable I felt like I was a part of their love story and forgetting everything else around me. In Point of Retreat the story continues from Will's perspective and Colleen Hoover's writing is absolutely incredible.

This story is truly butterflying amazing!

Reason to Breathe & Barely Breathing by Rebecca Donovan

Reason to Breathe
(The Breathing Series #1)
by Rebecca Donovan
(Kindle, Young Adult)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  "No one tried to get involved with me, and I kept to myself. This was the place where everything was supposed to be safe and easy. How could Evan Mathews unravel my constant universe in just one day?"

He knows there’s something more to the girl sitting in the back of the class the moment he sees her. She’s beautiful, intelligent, and athletic – but she slips quietly through the crowded halls, trying not to exist. Determined to get to know the elusive girl, Evan soon discovers…

Emma Thomas is hiding a terrible secret.

Reason to Breathe is an electrifying page turner from start to finish, a unique tale of life-changing love, unspeakable cruelty, and one girl’s fragile grasp of hope.

Barely Breathing
(The Breathing Series #2)
by Rebecca Donovan
(Kindle, Young Adult)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  Emma’s struggle with an abusive home life came to a heart pounding conclusion in the final chapters of Reason to Breathe. Now everyone in Weslyn knows Emma’s secret, but Carol can’t hurt Emma anymore. Some are still haunted by the horror of that night, and some must face the repercussions of their choices. Fans of Rebecca Donovan’s debut novel will discover there’s still much to learn about Emma’s life.

My thoughts:  Have you ever felt so emotionally drained after reading a book?  Reason to Breath and Barley Breathing had me feeling that way.  I found it difficult to stop thinking about Emma and her story while I wasn't reading it, once I did finish both books it took me almost a week to pick up another book because I felt like I was still on that emotional rollercoaster.  Few can really understand the journey of abuse unless you've lived it or witnessed it first hand, Rebecca Donovan makes us part of  Emma's journey and helps us understand her conflicts within.

Nothing I say can accurately portray just how incredible this series is.  I'm just hoping that the third book Out of Breath leaves us with Emma finding happiness and stability that includes Evan.  

Weekends Required (Danver's #1) by Sydney Landon

Weekends Required
(Danver's #1)
by Sydney Landon
(Kindle, Romance)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  Claire Walters has worked for Jason Danvers as his assistant at Danvers International for three years, and he has never thought of her as a woman until the day she jumps out of a cake at his friend's bachelor party.

Claire is forced to work a second job at a party planning company to support her ailing mother. She is horrified when Jason not only finds out, but has a front-row seat to the action. With Danvers in the process of merging with another company, Claire is forced to travel with Jason as well as work weekends. Suddenly all the fantasies she has entertained for years about her boss seem to be coming true. Her outspoken best friend Suzy thinks that just getting laid will solve everything. The problem is, Claire sees much more in Jason than just sex.

Jason is determined to know how the beautiful, sexy woman in the cake could also be his Plain Jane assistant who tries her best to blend into the background from 8-5 every day. Now not only does Jason see her as a woman, he fully intends to give her the fairy-tale ending that she deserves!

My thoughts:  Weekends Required was okay... the story itself was enticing and it was a quick light read.  I felt that Claire and Jason fell into love to quickly and the story was too predictable but, it was still entertaining.  I didn't particularly care for the ending, it got to the point rather quickly.

Deadly Obsession (Deadly Vices #1) by Kristine Cayne

Deadly Obsession
(Deadly Vices #1)
by Kristine Cayne
 (Kindle, Mystery/Thillers/Romance )

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:
 When an Oscar-winning movie star meets a department-store photographer…
Movie star Nic Lamoureux appears to have a playboy’s perfect life. But it’s a part he plays, an act designed to conceal a dark secret he carries on his shoulders. His empty days and nights are a meaningless blur until he meets the woman who fulfills all his dreams. She and her son are the family he’s always wanted—if she can forgive a horrible mistake from his past.

A Hollywood dream…

Lauren James, a widowed single mother, earns barely enough money to support herself and her son. When she wins a photography contest and meets Nic, the man who stars in all her fantasies, her dreams, both professional and personal, are on the verge of becoming real. The attraction between Lauren and Nic is instant—and mutual. Their chemistry burns out of control during a photo shoot that could put Lauren on the fast track to a lucrative career.

Becomes a Hollywood nightmare.

But an ill-advised kiss makes front-page news, and the lurid headlines threaten everything Nic and Lauren have hoped for. Before they know what’s happening, their relationship is further rocked by an obsessed and cunning stalker who’ll stop at nothing—not even murder—to have Nic to herself. When Nic falls for Lauren, the stalker zeroes in on her as the competition.

And the competition must be eliminated.

My thoughts:  Deadly Obsession contains the perfect blend of mystery, suspense and naughtiness.  It held my attention from the very beginning and kept me flipping pages... okay, not so much flipping more like pressing the "next page" button on the Kindle.  The stalker storyline was disturbing and kept me just as entertained as the romance between Nic and Lauren and I pretty much figured out early on who the stalker was but, I had no clue on how things would end.  If you enjoy romantic suspense, I'd recommend this book.

The Marriage Bargain (Marriage to a Billionaire #1) by Jennifer Probst

The Marriage Bargain
(Marriage to a Billionaire #1)
by Jennifer Probst
(Kindle, Fiction/Romance)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  To save her family home, impulsive bookstore owner, Alexa Maria McKenzie, casts a love spell. But she never planned on conjuring up her best friend's older brother—the powerful man who once shattered her heart.

Billionaire Nicholas Ryan doesn’t believe in marriage, but in order to inherit his father’s corporation, he needs a wife and needs one fast. When he discovers his sister’s childhood friend is in dire financial straits, he’s offers Alexa a bold proposition.

A marriage in name only with certain rules: Avoid entanglement. Keep things all business. Do not fall in love. The arrangement is only for a year so the rules shouldn’t be that hard to follow, right?

Except fate has a way of upsetting the best-laid plans…

My thoughts:  The Marriage Bargain is a quick, fun read that had me laughing out loud and falling in love with the characters... I liked it so much that I read it twice!  I enjoyed that Alexa and Nick weren't two strangers who meet at the right time, they actually know each other since childhood... Alexa had a crush on Nick until he broke her heart.  With their history and hidden attraction for each other, the dialogue and interactions between them was very entertaining. 

This is the first novel by Jennifer Probst that I've read and I'll definitely read more of her novels in the near future.  I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a light romantic novel with the typical "happily ever after" ending, and let's face it... I'm a sucker for happy endings.

Fifty Shades Trilogy by E.L. James

 After reading the Fifty Shades Trilogy I sort of turned into a romance/smut junkie... I embarrassed to admit that I couldn't get enough of the hot and steamy. I stumbled upon a few recommendations that Amazon thought I would like and I was pleasantly surprised that I did enjoy a couple.

Even though my blog posts of lately have been absent of stamping related projects I do appreciate those of you that have stayed with me and still stop by for the occasional visit. ~ Jovi

Fifty Shades of Grey
Fifty Shades #1
by E.L. James

(Kindle, Adult Fiction)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: When literature student Anastasia Steele is drafted to interview the successful young entrepreneur Christian Grey for her campus magazine, she finds him attractive, enigmatic and intimidating. Convinced their meeting went badly, she tries to put Grey out of her mind - until he happens to turn up at the out-of-town hardware store where she works part-time.

The unworldly, innocent Ana is shocked to realize she wants this man, and when he warns her to keep her distance it only makes her more desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her - but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey's singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success – his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving adoptive family – Grey is man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a passionate, physical and daring affair, Ana learns more about her own dark desires, as well as the Christian Grey hidden away from public scrutiny.

Can their relationship transcend physical passion? Will Ana find it in herself to submit to the self-indulgent Master? And if she does, will she still love what she finds?

Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.

Fifty Shades Darker
Fifty Shades #2
by E.L. James

(Kindle, Adult Fiction)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: Daunted by the singular tastes and dark secrets of the beautiful, tormented young entrepreneur Christian Grey, Anastasia Steele has broken off their relationship to start a new career with a Seattle publishing house.

But desire for Christian still dominates her every waking thought, and when he proposes a new arrangement, Anastasia cannot resist. They rekindle their searing sensual affair, and Anastasia learns more about the harrowing past of her damaged, driven and demanding Fifty Shades.

While Christian wrestles with his inner demons, Anastasia must confront the anger and envy of the women who came before her, and make the most important decision of her life.

Fifty Shades Freed
Fifty Shades #3
by E.L. James

(Kindle, Adult Fiction)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: When unworldly student Anastasia Steele first encountered the driven and dazzling young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both of their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and, ultimately, repelled by Christian’s singular erotic tastes, Ana demands a deeper commitment. Determined to keep her, Christian agrees.

Now, Ana and Christian have it all—love, passion, intimacy, wealth, and a world of possibilities for their future. But Ana knows that loving her Fifty Shades will not be easy, and that being together will pose challenges that neither of them would anticipate. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian’s opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own identity. And Christian must overcome his compulsion to control as he wrestles with the demons of a tormented past.

Just when it seems that their strength together will eclipse any obstacle, misfortune, malice, and fate conspire to make Ana’s deepest fears turn to reality.

My thoughts: Oh my gosh, where do I begin.

I heard and read so much about the Fifty Shades Trilogy from TV talk shows and magazines that I had to looked it up, read the product description and decided that it didn't seem like my kind of book. Later my two nieces and several friends mentioned it to me again and I decided to read the first one to see what all the hoopla was about, I downloaded it and kept an open mind.

I was a bit intimidated about these books in the beginning because of the intense sex scenes and subject matter (BDSM), I felt so out of my comfort zone. Once I started reading I couldn't put my Kindle down, it kept my interest from page to page and I quickly downloaded book two and three.  I enjoyed these books, all three, each one more than the last, so much so that I read the trilogy twice.

I've read many different reviews about these books and it seems that you would either love it or hate it because of the way it's written or the fact that the author originally published it as a Fan Fiction story. I have to agree with the people who said it was not well written, if you can get pass the writing and go with the story line itself you would find a very sweet love story about two people with a lot to learn, one being more messed up emotionally than the other.. at least that's what I found.

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments #5) by Cassandra Clare

City of Lost Souls
(The Mortal Instruments #5)
by Cassandra Clare
(Hardcover, 534 pages, Young Adult)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace freed from captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing, so is the boy she hates: her brother Sebastian, who is determined to bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

The Clave's magic cannot locate either boy, but Jace can't stay away from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith's magic has wrought - Jace and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other.

Only a few people believe that Jace can still be saved. Together, Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle bargain with the sinister Seelie Queen, contemplate deals with demons, and turn at last to the merciless, weapon-making Iron Sisters, who might be able to forge a weapon that can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. If the Iron Sisters can't help, their only hope is to challenge Heaven and Hell - a risk that could claim their lives.

And they must do it without Clary. For Clary is playing a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing not just her own life, but Jace's soul. She's willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?

Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

My thoughts:  I have been a fan of Cassandra Clare's Mortal Instrument Series for a few years now and I think it's a safe bet to say that it is my one of my favorite book series, City of Lost Souls is the fifth book of the series. Clare is an author who proves to me time and time again just how brilliant of a writer she is. The story is developing into being centered on a lot more characters other than Jace and Clary, it really gives those secondary characters that we all love a chance to stand out.

I highly recommend this Young Adult series to everyone, Clare has created a fantastic world that has captured my imagination, it's going to be difficult to wait until March 2014... the expected release date of City of Heavenly Fire.

Inky’s Summer HoneyPOP Blog Hop

Welcome to Inky’s Summer HoneyPOP Blog Hop!

If you've come from Bev's blog, Savor the Journey, you're in the right spot. If not, you'll want to start at Inky Antics blog and work your way through the group so you don't miss anything!

The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, June 24th at midnight Central time. Please visit each DT members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). TWO people’s names will be drawn at random to receive a HoneyPOP prize pack. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

For today's project I created a bag topper, using Inky Antics new HoneyPOP set Just Peachy, drawn by artist Darby New. After stamping the peach onto cream cardstock I colored the image using Prismacolor Pencils and then applied Crystal Glitter to the peach. I also used the Beautiful Borders HoneyPOP Set designed by our very own design team member Michelle Pearson (yippee) and Inky Antics Apricot Honeycomb Pad, to create the fun little border that I placed across the candy bag. I filled the baggie with Peachie O's candies and used double side tape to adhere the topper to the baggie.

Just Peachy

Your next stop will be to visit the very talented Debbie's blog, The Paper Garden.

Thanks for visiting and playing along ~ Jovi

Stamps: Just Peachy (Inky Antics/11107MC), Beautiful Borders (Inky Antics/11103SC) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: Cream, Sunbeam (Bazzill), Cantaloupe (Bazzill), Sugar & Spice Designer Pad (Doodlebug) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils, Apricot Honeycomb Pad (Inky Antics), Circle & Circle Scalloped Die (Nestabilities), Crystal Glitter (Stampendous), Goodie Bag (Wilton's), Peachie O's Candy

Inky’s “Action Wobbles” Blog Hop!

Welcome to Inky’s “Action Wobbles” Blog Hop!

If you've come from Michelle's blog, Inspiration Blooms, you're in the right spot. If not, you'll want to start at Inky Antics blog and work your way through the group so you don't miss anything!

The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, May 27th at midnight Central time. Please visit each Design Team members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). Three people’s names will be drawn at random to receive a pack of Action Wobbles and an Inky Clear Stamp Set. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

For today's project I used an Action Wobbles spring along with ever so adorable walrus image Wallace, drawn by the very talented artist Janie Miller, I also used the Mini Birthday sentiment. You can find all the stamps the Inky Designers used to create our projects on this Inky page.

I colored Wallace using Prismacolor Pencils and added a bit of Glossy Accents to his nose and tusks. I applied pink Pebbles Chalk to his nose and cheeks, then added white dots using a white gel pen.


A short video to see Wallace wobble!

Your next stop will be to visit the very talented Trudy's blog, True's Gifts from the Heart.

Thanks for visiting and playing along ~ Jovi

Stamps: Wallace (10730K-Inky Antics), Mini Birthday (0821D-Inky Antics) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: White (Neenah), Dessert Sand (CTMH), Key Lime (CTMH), Sugar & Spice Designer Pad (Doodlebug) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils, Pebbles Chalk, Glossy Accents, White Gel Pen, Sandpaper, Boutique Buttons (Doodlebug), White Waxy Flax (CTMH) ~ Card Size: 4.25 x 5.5

International Female Ride Day

May 4th is International Female Ride Day, a one-day event designed to promote female motorcycle enthusiasts. No matter where you call home, you are encouraged to ride on this day and show the world what a great activity motorcycling is for women! Also on this day Women on Wheels held its 2nd Annual Photo Contest, rules pretty simple... your photo must be taken on May 4th!

This year Mountain Shadow Riders submitted a photo. Lisa, a MSR member, suggested we take our photo at Garden of the Gods and use our fabulous backyard mountain, Pikes Peak, as our background. It was also planned to spell out "WOW" using our motorcycles, that later changed to using our motorcycles for the "W"'s and our helmets placed on a white sheet for the "O". Lisa's brother Ron came and helped us maneuver our bikes, he also took the photo that was submitted. You can see other WOW Chapter photo submissions here, sorry you have to be a member of WOW to actually vote!

Here I am...

4 May 2012 IFRD

After the "photo shoot" a group of us rode to Palmer Lake for lunch at O'Malleys.

4 May 2012 IFRD

This weekend I'm leaving to New Mexico to attend the Red River Memorial Day Motorcycle Rally, hopefully I'll have plenty of pictures to share next week.

If you would like to see more pictures from our International Female Ride Day, I have them posted in my Flickr gallery: International Female Ride Day 2012

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Inky’s “Clearly Fun” Blog Hop

Welcome to Inky’s “Clearly Fun” Blog Hop!

If you've come from Inky Antics blog, you're in the right spot. The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, April 22nd at midnight Central time. Please visit each DT members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). Two people’s names will be drawn at random to receive a surprise Inky prize pack. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

For today's project I created a Gable Box, using our Heavyweight Clear Cardstock along with the adorable turtle stamp, Turtle's Flowers (0780F), illustrated by the very talented Tammy DeYoung, which you can find on this Inky page, Also, during the month of April, you can try out this fun product for FREE, just place an order of $40 or more and Inky Antics will send you a free pack with your order. More details can be found here:

To create the Gable Box, I scored the Inky Clear Cardstock on the 11" side at 1/2", 3 1/2", 5 3/4", and 8 3/4" (I placed pink cardstock under the clear to show the score lines). Be careful scoring, the clear cardstock is slippery and it's easy to jump out of the grove.

On the 8 1/2" side, score at 3" and 6 1/2".

Then cut each score line up to the intersecting score line to create flaps. Cut off the two 1/2" flaps on the ends, this will leave the center flap. Use a punch to create handles and a corner rounder punch to round the edges of your handle flaps. Add your adhesive to the flaps shown (I used very little).

Fold the box into shape so that the ends meet the adhesive. Peel the liner from the side flaps and adhere them to the interior sides of the box for added stability.

To decorate, I scored a 2 1/4" x 11" piece of Garden Green cardstock and a 2" x 11" designer paper each at 1/2", 3 1/2", 5 3/4", and 8 3/4" and then wrapped it around the box and adhered the ends with tape.

I used a large circle punch to punch a piece from white cardstock, stamped the Turtle's Flowers image onto the punched cardstock, colored and then added lot's of sparkle. I then adhered the colored image to pink cardstock which was cut using a circle heart die.

Using mounting tape, the image was added to the box.

I then wrapped green twill ribbon around the box and secured it with a ribbon slide and used a spiral clip to hold the handles closed. I have to admit, I dislike making projects that use chocolate candies, I have no will power and end up eating way too many, so I must fill the box with more chocolates!
Turtle's Flowers Gable Box

Your next stop will be to visit the very talented Crystal Irwin's blog, Crystal's Crafty Creations.
Thanks for visiting and playing along ~ Jovi

Stamps: Turtle's Flowers (0780F/Inky Antics) ~ Heavy Weight Clear Cardstock (Inky Antics) ~ Paper: White (Papertrey Ink), Garden Green (CTMH), Blush (CTMH), Patterned Paper (DCVW) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento), Sky (CTMH), Garden Green (CTMH) ~ Other: Copic Sketch Markers, Chocolate Ribbon Slide (CTMH), Pear Pizzazz Stitched Ribbon (CU), Diamond Stickles (Ranger), Large Circle Punch (Marvy), 2 1/2 Circle Punch (SU), Heart Circle Die (Nestabilities/Spellbinders), Hershey's Nuggets

Inky’s Spring HoneyPOP Blog Hop!

Welcome to Inky’s Spring HoneyPOP Blog Hop!

If you came here from the very talented Keri Lee Sereika's blog, Pink Lemonade you're in the right spot. If not, you'll want to start at Inky Antics blog and work your way through the group so you don't miss anything!

The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, February 27th at midnight Central time. Please visit each DT members’ blog to view their projects and leave a comment for each designer. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please). Two people’s names will be drawn at random to receive a surprise Inky HoneyPOP prize pack. The winners’ names will be announced on the Inky Antics blog next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

Today I'm sharing two cards I made using the set Teacup Mouse HoneyPOP and for the HoneyPOP surprise card I used the Lilac Honeycomb Paper, which you can find on this page:

For this card I stamped the mouse image onto cream color cardstock, colored her with Prismacolor Pencils and blended with Gamsol. I paper pieced her dress using the same designer paper that was used on the bottom layer of the card. For the inside surprise... I used the Lilac Honeycomb Paper to create the 3-D teacup.

Teacup Mouse with HoneyPOP

Inside Teacup Mouse with HoneyPOP

For the second card, I used the same mouse head, handle and plate stamps that I used inside the previous card, instead of using the Honeycomb Paper I used the teacup stamp that comes in the set. The HoneyPOP stamps sets are very versatile and can be used for any cards and not just with the Honeycomb Paper. The mouse image was colored using Copic Sketch Markers and cut using Spellbinders Circle & Scalloped Circle Dies. I also used Spellbinders Oval & Scalloped Ovals to create the tag as well.

Teacup Mouse (alone)

Your next stop will be to visit the talented Debbie Fisher's blog, The Paper Garden. Thank you for playing along ~ Jovi

Teacup Mouse with HoneyPOP:
Stamps: Teacup Mouse HoneyPOP (Inky Antics/11089MC) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: Cream, Amethyst (Close to My Heart), Sweet Treads (BasicGrey) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils blended with Gamsol, Lilac Honeycomb Paper (Inky Antics), Light Orchid Grosgrain (SU), Pinking Hearts Border Punch (SU) ~ Card Size: 4.25 x 5.5

Teacup Mouse Alone
Stamps: Teacup Mouse HoneyPOP (Inky Antics/11089MC) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento) ~ Paper: White (Papertrey Ink), Fawn (Bazzill), Sweet Treads (BasicGrey) ~ Other: Copic Sketch Markers, Spellbinders Circle & Scalloped Circle Dies, Spellbinders Oval & Scalloped Oval Dies, Scalloped Edge Border Punch (SU), Mini Safety Pin (CTMH), Mint Crochet Ribbon (American Crafts), Pop Dots ~ Card Size: 5.25 x 5.25

Weight-Loss Apocalypse: Emotional Eating Rehab Through the Hcg Protocol by Robin Phipps Woodall

Weight-Loss Apocalypse:
Emotional Eating Rehab Through the Hcg Protocol
by Robin Phipps Woodall
(Kindle Edition)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads: This book was written to start a new conversation about how Dr. Simeons' protocol has relevance, not only as a hormonal therapy, but as a means to end our national eating disorder. Instead of continuing to apply the protocol as a short-term diet, it shoulder be discussed as a real solution --a tool to end irrational eating for emotional fulfillment. This country is dealing with a crisis: an addiction to eating emotionally, and the obvious result is the overwhelming increase in obesity. Think about the number of people in our culture who eat without hunger. When you observe our nation's behavior with food, it's very clear that fat isn't what we should be obsessed about, and weight shouldn't be the target of the problem. We need a genuine desire to eat less, one that isn't dependent on weight loss as a reward. This requires each of us to be accountable for our own emotions, and find happiness in life not centrally stimulated by food.

My thoughts: This book is helpful for anyone considering using the hCG protocol. It's also helpful for anyone who wants to get control of their emotional or dysfunctional eating which is causing their weight gain. I would definitely recommend first reading "Pounds and Inches: A New Approach to Obesity" by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons (1967) before reading anything else if you're doing the hCG protocol.

I've completed four rounds of the hCG protocol (using homeopathic hCG) before this book was available. I went from 190 lbs to 130 lbs and I've been able to maintain my weight between 130-135 lbs for the past eight months. It hasn't been easy, I was and still am an emotional eater, at least now I'm very mindful of what I'm eating and when I eat. Also, keeping a daily food log has helped me tremendously along with exercise.

I would recommend this book to those that have struggled with their weight or for those considering the hCG protocol.

The Mill River Recluse by Darcie Chan

The Mill River Recluse
by Darcie Chan
(Kindle Edition, Mystery)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  Disfigured by the blow of an abusive husband, and suffering her entire life with severe social anxiety disorder, the widow Mary McAllister spends almost sixty years secluded in a white marble mansion overlooking the town of Mill River, Vermont. Her links to the outside world are few: the mail, the media, an elderly priest with a guilty habit of pilfering spoons, and a bedroom window with a view of the town below.

Most longtime residents of Mill River consider the marble house and its occupant peculiar, though insignificant, fixtures. An arsonist, a covetous nurse, and the endearing village idiot are among the few who have ever seen Mary. Newcomers to Mill River--a police officer and his daughter and a new fourth grade teacher--are also curious about the reclusive old woman. But only Father Michael O’Brien knows Mary and the secret she keeps--one that, once revealed, will change all of their lives forever.

The Mill River Recluse is a story of triumph over tragedy, one that reminds us of the value of friendship and the ability of love to come from the most unexpected of places.

My thoughts:  This book was a pleasant surprise, the author was able to weave the story together in such a way that you will fall in love with the woman in the marble mansion.  The story centers around a wonderful friendship between Mary and the town priest, while introducing you to the folks of Mill River.  It is a touching story that will leave you with a feel good attitude and with memorable characters that will have you thinking about them long after you read the end, it's well worth reading.

Benton's Heart

Here it is barely February and I've already turned into a blog slacker. Even though I haven't been posting regularly I have been staying busy crafting, reading and spending time with my family.

I've decided to jump back in to learning the piano.... serious this time. It's been about a year since I quit lessons, I figured I would save the money and practice sight reading on my own... that didn't work out like I planned. The last few months I rarely touched the piano... except to dust it, I would open it, play a piece and then close it until it needed to be dusted again. I'm determined to learn some new pieces on my own and not get discouraged.

On to Benton...

Heart Benton

The image is from one of Inky Antics new clear stamp sets, Heart Benton. Benton was colored with Copic Sketch Markers. For the layout I used another fabulous sketch from The Sweet Stop (SSS143) favorite sketch challenge blog.

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Stamps: Heart Benton (Inky Antics/ Clear Set 11079MC) ~ Paper: White (Neenah), Real Red (SU), Enchanted Woodland (Martha Stewart) ~ Other: Copic Sketch Markers, Lace Heart Edge Border Punch (Martha Stewart), Red Heart Ribbon, Mounting Tape ~ Card Size: 4.25 x 5.5

Chasing Rainbows by Kathleen Long

Chasing Rainbows
by Kathleen Long
(Kindle Edition, Fiction)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  What's that saying about the devil you know? For Bernie, it's the devil she never expected that changes everything.

Her father's sudden death leaves a gaping void in her life and is one in a series of events that rock her world. Her husband leaves for another woman, and her best friend announces an unplanned pregnancy at the age of forty-one. Bernie's behavior goes from acting out to out-of-hand, and she finds herself in trouble at home, out of work and banned from the mall after a confrontation at the cosmetic counter.

When her mother discovers her father's book of cryptograms, Bernie realizes his encoded lessons in living might be exactly what she needs to survive. From dealing with her family's grief and bonding with her best friend's thirteen-year-old daughter, to dieting, dating and mindless almost-sex with the landscaper, Bernie discovers what her father always knew.

In life, you either choose to sing a rainbow, or you don't.  For Bernie, the singing is about to begin.

My thoughts:  Chasing Rainbows is about a woman who is dealing with so many issues throughout the book, until the end when she chooses to go through life in a positive way.  The story line was easy to follow but this book didn't captivate me like other books have, it held my interest but it became very repetitive and I found it difficult to relate to Bernie and all her problems.

Inky Antics Spring 2012

If you've been visiting Inky Antics blog this week, you've had a sneak peek at some of the new sets that Inky is introducing at CHA. Great news... today is the day you can start ordering these fabulous stamps, the Spring 2012 Inky catalog is now posted on the main Inky Antics site.

Grab yourself a drink and take a peek through the Inky Antics Spring 2012 flyer.

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Don't Look Behind You Crime Files #15 by Ann Rule

Don't Look Behind You
Crime Files #15
by Ann Rule
(Paperback, 480 pages, True Crime)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  Walking home on a dark night, you hear footsteps coming up behind you. As they get closer, your heart pounds harder. Who is closing in with dangerous intent—a total stranger? Or someone you know and trust? The answer is as simple as turning around, but don’t look behind you . . . run. Ann Rule, who shared her own nerve-jangling account of unknowingly befriending sadistic sociopath Ted Bundy in The Stranger Beside Me, chronicles other fateful encounters with the hidden predators among us in this riveting collection, fifteenth in the bestselling series drawn from her personal files. First in line is a stunning case that spanned thirty years and took a determined detective to four states—ending, finally, in Alaska—where he unraveled not one but two murders. A second case appears to begin and end with the hunt for the Green River Killer, focusing on a Washington State man who was once cleared as a suspect in that deadly chain of homicides. But the millionaire property owner believed he had successfully buried his own murderous past and the awful truth behind his young wife’s disappearance. She vanished soon after she left for a day at the Seattle World’s Fair, and her three small children grew up believing their mother had abandoned them. But one amazing witness remained—the missing woman’s best friend, who heard her last words in a frantic phone call—“He’s coming!”—before the line went dead. Only since Robert Hansen’s suicide has the monster within been revealed. In another true story, a petite woman went to a tavern, looking only for conversation and fun. Instead, she met violent death in the form of a seven-foot man who had seemed shy and harmless. You’ll feel a chill as you uncover these and numerous other cases of unfortunate victims who made one tragic mistake: trusting the wrong person—even someone they’d known intimately, or thought they knew.

My thoughts:  I have read all of Ann Rule's True Crime Files and most of her novels, and she is still one of my favorite authors but I found this collection to be just okay.  It didn't hold my attention and I seemed to get bored with it pretty quickly, good thing my mom let me borrow her book and I didn't have to purchase it.

The Maid of Fairbourne Hall by Julie Klassen

The Maid of Fairbourne Hall
by Julie Klassen
(Kindle Edition, Historical Fiction)

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:  Pampered Margaret Macy flees London in disguise to escape pressure to marry a dishonorable man. With no money and nowhere else to go, she takes a position as a housemaid in the home of Nathaniel Upchurch, a suitor she once rejected in hopes of winning his dashing brother. Praying no one will recognize her, Margaret fumbles through the first real work of her life. If she can last until her next birthday, she will gain an inheritance from a spinster aunt and sweet independence. But can she remain hidden as a servant even when prying eyes visit Fairbourne Hall?

Observing both brothers as an "invisible" servant, Margaret learns she may have misjudged Nathaniel. Is it too late to rekindle his admiration? And when one of the family is nearly killed, Margaret alone discovers who was responsible. Should she come forward, even at the risk of her reputation and perhaps her life? And can she avoid an obvious trap meant to force her from hiding?

On her journey from wellborn lady to servant to uncertain future, Margaret must learn to look past appearances and find the true meaning of "serve one another in love."

My thoughts:  This is the second book I've read by Julie Klassen and once again she did not disappoint, I truly enjoyed this book immensely.  It's a tale of the very wealthy, their loyal servants, beautiful gowns and masquerade balls, deceit and unrequited love.

The things that Margaret "Nora" had to go through as a housemaid certainly made for some amusing moments, especially her first time at emptying a chamber pot.  Margaret's character goes through tremendous growth and maturity throughout the book and she becomes aware of how badly she treated people prior to her going into hiding. I enjoyed how she gets to secretly observe both brothers and realize just how wrong she was to judge them on appearances alone.

If you love the Jane Austen classics, then you have to try one of Julie Klassen's novels.

Birthday Dog

Another birthday card to share that I made for my dear friend Betty. I had to wait to post it on my blog, at least until it arrived at her house.

Birthday Dog

The image Birthday Dog is from Inky Antics Delightful Dogs #1 clear set, he's so adorable with that cupcake on his head.

I've been trying to use colored pencils without blending with Gamsol, something to learn and I just like the look. I did most of this image without blending but I had to finally break down and use some Gamsol around the edges. What I really should be doing is spending less time with the pencils and start using the Copics I have.

Until next time, thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Stamps: Birthday Dog/Delightful Dogs #1(Inky Antics) ~ Paper: White (Papertrey Ink), Petunia (Bazzill), Juniper (Close to My Heart), Happy Go Lucky (6x6 Pad/My Mind's Eye) ~ Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento), Sky (Close to My Heart) ~ Other: Prismacolor Pencils, Prisma Glitter, Liquid Appliqué, Clear Glass Beads, Glossy Accents, "Hello" Twine (My Mind's Eye), Scalloped Edge Punch (SU), Mounting Tape ~ Card Size: 5 x 5

Music Saves My Soul

This past weekend we took a trip to Cheyenne to spend time with my parents, it's about a 3 1/2 hour trip from Colorado Springs. Bryan and I are in the front seat rocking out to Matchbox Twenty, we must have easily listened to all their albums. My son is in the backseat playing a video game on his ipod, my sixteen year old daughter is updating her Facebook status with "they should play Matchbox Twenty to prisoners because this is torture"... sixteen years old can be so dramatic!

Being the great mom that I am... I've been "torturing" her the last few days in her little prison (she's grounded because of her Math & Chemistry grades) by playing Matchbox Twenty songs/videos louder than normal (inserting evil laugh here), she needs to appreciate great music when she hears it!

If you would like join in Music Saves My Soul Saturday, it can be any day of the week, not just on Saturdays, head on over to Marcea's blog and link up.

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Birthday Hugs

Just a quick post today to share the card that I made for my sister's birthday. I have no idea what took me so long to make my first Popcorn the Bear purchase, I've seen this little bear for years in the galleries and on blogs and I always thought he was so adorable.

Birthday Hugs

Popcorn the Bear is easily turning into my favorite beary images. I just need to figure out a way that I like to see him colored, blending him more and try to make him look furrier... I better start watching those You Tube coloring tutorials.

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi

Stamps: Birthday Hugs (Popcorn the Bear/Crafter's Companion) ~ Paper: White (Papertrey Ink), Juniper (Close to My Heart), Springtime Collection (Echo Park Paper Co.) ~ Prismacolor Pencils blended with Gamsol, Paper Flowers (Bazzill), Princess Brad, Pinking Hearts Border Punch (SU), Ultra Fine Prisma Glitter, Mounting Tape ~ Card Size 6 x 6

Music Saves My Soul

Every Saturday Marcea shares her favorite music on her blog and I've been wanting to join in with her Music Saves My Soul Saturday for a few months now... all you have to do is post your favorite song at the moment on your blog and link up at her blog. Easy peasy... right?

Here it is, an older Coldplay song but is still one of my favorites. I hope you enjoy it.

If you would like join, it can be any day of the week, not just on Saturdays. Just head on over to Marcea's blog and link up... if you need help with embedding a video into your blog post she has instructions there as well.

Thanks for visiting ~ Jovi