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Friday, February 5, 2016

Baking and Pastry Passion

I have a serious passion for baking and pastry arts.  I have had this since childhood and the awe of baking in my mini magic bake oven.  I love watching cooking shows and seeing the artistry of marrying ingredients to produce a delectable dish that looks amazing too.  I love the smells of baking cake, breads, muffins, cookies.  That warm comforting aroma of toasted butter, flour, eggs, chocolate, sugar, and vanilla magically turning into something so much more than the parts themselves.  I love the interplay of flavors in a layer cake, filled breads, or pies and tarts.  I love the silky creaminess of real buttercream, the soft crumb of a homemade butter cake,  and smooth, decadent, rich texture of chocolate ganache all layered together in a cake.  Cinnamon wafts from the oven as I bake cinnamon rolls or cinnamon swirl bread.  Yeasty pillowy croissants and sandwich loaves call to me from the oven after all the patience and waiting for the bread doughs to rise, proof, and bake.  It is truly a gratifying experience to bake and make pastries.  I love every aspect of it.

I so enjoy watching someone eat the things I create and see their joy as they savor the flavors and textures.  It mirrors my own when I eat a delicious dessert myself.  I enjoy giving baked goods away, because I have yet to meet too many people who don't enjoy them.  Baking and pastry arts allows me to give gifts of happiness to others, one of my other passions.

If I wax a little poetic about this it is because I have been missing serious baking for awhile now.  I gave up baking as a part time job after my children were born and as we have homeschooled during elementary school and middle school, but I am so wanting to get back into it.  I am seriously searching for purpose and a way to use the gifts that God has given me to serve others.  I need something constructive to do beside spinning my wheels each day.  I must admit that what mainly holds me back from stepping into the baking business is fear.  Fear of this not being the right time or right choice.  I don't want to have something keep me from my relationship from God, my husband, or my children.  I am someone who doesn't like to be interrupted when I get started on a project, and baking isn't done very well with interruptions.  My sons still need assistance with school, and I am worried if I get into this again, I will neglect my duties as their teacher.  I am afraid of disappointing customers.  I am afraid to charge what I know I should for my cakes and baked goods for fear that someone will say, "That is too expensive."   Lots of fear going on.  But I do feel strongly that I need to use these skills.  I really do feel great when I bake and make something delicious.  I love perusing my myriad of recipes and trying something new.

I am praying really hard about this, researching, testing recipes, costing out recipes, and hopefully by the new year will have a clear direction and calling from God as to whether to go forward and offer baked goods to my friends and family as a "business".

Papertrey Ink Anniversary Celebration Day 1

Eeek!  It is Papertrey Anniversary week again.  9 years.  Can't believe I have been buying stamps from PTI for 9 years.  Crazy.  What is more crazy is all the money I have spent on stamps, papers, buttons, ribbons, dies, and other things from this amazing company.  I still gravitate towards PTI over any other company because the images and sentiments in their stamps are so timeless in style.  Even though PTI is a trendsetter or stays on trend, the way they execute the trends makes them timeless.



Case in point is my card today.  I used a very old set designed by Heather Nichols called Warm Happiness and Warm Happiness 2.  I used Amy Sheffer's color scheme in the colors I had that came the closest.  I don't have stormy seas or vintage jadeite inks, so I used some Stampin' UP! colors that I thought would work well.  I used a sentiment by My Favorite Things to make a somewhat "love/Valentine's Day" themed card.   I think it turned out kind of cute.  Amy Sheffer has become one of my favorite PTI design team members.  I used to follow her when she did a lot of stuff showcasing SU! and Verve.   She always has had a way with design and paper that has been so great.  Glad to have her on board for another year at PTI.

Here is my warm and cozy card:


Can't wait to make some more cards to play along with this day's challenge.  There are some other color schemes and things I want to try out.  Gotta pace myself for the days to come.  

Here is my second card using Dawn's color scheme.  

Of all the PTI designers, Dawn is my favorite.  It has been fun to see her style evolve, yet stay consistent in her use of color.  She is the color queen.  I haven't had much luck jumping on the watercolor bandwagon.  Just can't seem to get that trend right, and Dawn does watercolor backgrounds that are beautiful.   She always layers stuff so well too, using lots of bits of interesting things, but still manages to make it look clean and simple.  Thanks for all your inspiration and your friendship.  


I used a couple of new to me sets I got with holiday money: beautiful brushstrokes  (1st time using this one) and phrases and praises: both designed by Betsy Veldman.  Betsy's stamp designs are great.  She is one busy designer these days.    Tried to keep my rule of 3's by using the reds and pinks in groups of 3 on this card.  Ripe avocado and teal are "accents" I guess.  


Here is my last card for today's festivities.  I am using Erin Lincoln's color scheme: 


Erin is another favorite design team member.  I missed seeing more cards from her this year, as she is only showcasing her stamp and stitching die designs, but am thankful she is still on the team.  My picture doesn't show off the lemon tart bowl or the aqua mist colors very well.  Laura Bassen made a card like this when Bowl of Sunshine was released.  I thought her layout and design allowed me to incorporate this stamp set and use all the colors in Erin's color palette.  So here is a use of new to me sets and old sets to make a pretty and simple card.  




Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Papertrey Ink November Blog Hop

 Here is my entry into this month's blog hop.  It has been a long time since I played along.  Too long.  Maybe that will bring me luck in the contest.  Anyway, here is my take on the inspiration photo.  It was a beautiful photo.  Lots of luscious blues and silver and white and green.  Love all those colors.  I am a blue kind of gal.  I used a very old stamp set that is not PTI.  I used Rustic Wreath die cut and Tropical Teal CS, White CS, and lots of pretty sequins and silver pearls.  I think it is awesome and festive.  Couldn't decide if or where to put a small sentiment, so I left it off.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!  There are so many blessings from God to be thankful for.




Sunday, September 27, 2015

Childhood Cancer Fundraiser Auction Winners

Here are the winners from the auction last week.  I will contact you individually with your totals.

Susie Hilsman: red and blue card set in the file holder
Lisa Spence: cake of your choice coupon
Kim Saint: 3 dozen cookies coupon and Fruitful card set
Gwen Sibert: prayer journal, flower thank you notes, and special request Tenn. football cards
Deidra Sibert: beer card set
Leslie Kubik: pink and gold card set
Beth Ann Parnell: 10 card set
Melody Still: 10 card set and Sunshine gift bag and card with lemon cookies
Andrea Eckardt: teacher thank you, beautiful blooms notecards, 10 card set, flower thank you cards
Margie Arney : special request kids birthday cards

Thanks to all of you we raised $293.  Wow!!  That is pretty good.  Thank you all so much for participating.  I will be thinking about next years event, and hopefully I can figure out  more accurately what you might want to bid on going forward.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

3rd Annual Sibert Childhood Cancer Awareness Fundraiser September 20-26th

Hi, Friends and Family.  It is that time of year again for our annual Childhood Cancer Awareness Fundraiser.  Some of you may be new to this, so I thought I would give you some background info.  We started doing this fundraiser because we are so grateful to God for the fact that our son's brain tumor is not cancerous, because so many childhood brain tumors are very malignant and vicious.  In our recovery journey from John's brain tumor surgery 3 years ago and regular check ups with his neuro-oncologist, we have met and read about so many children who are suffering from different types of pediatric cancers.  It breaks our hearts to see so many children and their families when we go for our visits.  We wanted to do something to help them, even something small.  We are so thankful for our good prognosis, but know very well that it could have been so very different and we could be fighting a whole different battle.  Please join us to help give hope and a cure to these children.

Our fundraiser is a kind of auction of handmade card sets, gifts, and baked goods.  Here is how it works:
1.  Starting September 20th- September 26, I will be posting different card sets and items in their own separate posts here on my blog.  Each item will have a minimum bid amount.

2.  You will simply click on the comments section to bid on these items.  You may start at the minimum bid amount or go ahead and bid higher.  Bidding wars are encouraged and are always done in a friendly manner.  Check up on the items you want frequently to make sure you get the chance to bid up and win them before the week is up.

3.  At the end of the week, I will see who has bid the highest for each of the  items and post the winners.  Please make sure I get your email address, so I can contact you to give you your total donation amount and make arrangements to deliver your items.  If you live out of town, you will have to pay for shipping costs as well as your donation amount.

4.  If you do not want to get any of the items I have posted, but want to donate to our fundraiser, simply go to this link and you can donate directly to the Alabama Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorder Research Fund.

5.  All donations will go to benefit the Children't Hospital of Alabama Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorder research department.  We specify that all funds be used for neuro-oncology (brain tumors and brain cancers).


Any questions, please don't hesitate to ask.  Thank you so much for your participation in doing this.  Your generosity is such a blessing to so many people and motivates me to keep doing this.  Our goal this year is to raise $650.  I think we can do it!


Here are a couple of photos as a sneak peek of all the cards I have made for you to bid like crazy on.  It's a lot.



MIM: pocket tags with pull out embellishments

Whew!  I can't believe I got to play along with Papertrey Ink's Make It Monday challenge this week.  Seems like forever since I had time to craft along with all of you.  Here is my take on the challenge.  I used a card design I found from a Stampin' UP! and My Favorite Things design team member.  I used Christmas dsp from SU!, stamps from my PTI Tinsel and Tags and Christmas sentiments stamps.   I used the PTI holly leaves and vintage ornaments dies.  I kind of like how it turned out.   Love the mix of patterns.  I have to admit mixing patterns is kind of scary.

Hope everyone is having a blessed week.  Can't wait to see what you all come up with too.



Thursday, August 13, 2015

Masculine cards and more

Still playing with the designer papers from my paper share today.  I think I came up with a few clever ideas.  I did not copy anyone's cards that I know of here, they are my designs.  Might explain the subtle design flaws, but it feels good to flex my own creative muscles every once in awhile.  ;)

I also wanted to crank out a few masculine designs and when I saw that watercolored splat/blotch piece of paper, it just called out for masculine cards to be made out of it.  I sure wish I had a whole paper pack of just that print.  I love the soft yet wonderful masculine tones.  Feels woodsy in a way.










I am also entering one of these cards into the MFT Summer Card Class contests on breaking up straight lines with some curves or soft elements.  I have lots of straight layers, but the focal point softens them with it's curves in die cuts and patterns.  I like it.

Hope you all are enjoying your last few days of summer before school starts back.  Have a lovely day.





Papers: Stampin' UP! soft suede, grey, lost lagoon, sahara sand, hello honey, mint macaron, night of navy, kraft, mellow moss, and English Garden dsp

Stamps: SU! watercolor wings, PTI Cold Brew, Queen Bee, and a Think Big Favorites set.