SU! Regional Seminar

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 17, 2007 in Crafts

Yesterday was the Stampin’ Up! Regional Seminar in Philadelphia at the Convention Center – it was a blast! I was SO tired when I got home, though – it was a LONG day.

I worked as a helper yesterday – it was actually lots of fun! I got to meet Her Stamping Royal Highness, Shelli Gardner (the CEO and co-founder of Stampin’ Up!) – she’s my hero! Here we are together…

Shelli and me

I told her that I had to take the photo really fast because if not, I might be fired…she actually got my joke! I felt like such a dork asking for a photo, but I wasn’t the only dork there – when she comes to these events, she really is like royalty. And she was SO sweet and gracious – and I just LOVE her clothes (and I told her so!).

I was surprised that there were only four helpers there for over 500 attendees. But we really didn’t have THAT much to do – we just checked everyone in, walked around and helped during the make-and-takes and ushered everyone out to lunch. We also helped clean up the tables after the seminar – it was great to be a part of the event – I really had a good time.

But I had to be there at 7:30 am and left the house around 6:30 am – on a SATURDAY! I am such a wimp at driving in the city, too – I intensely studied the map before I went and had a plan for where to park…but when I saw the garage, it just didn’t feel right – they weren’t open yet and closed at 7 – plus, it was really dark and all the spaces were marked, “Reserved” with yellow tape. So after driving through, I stopped at the gate and told the attendant that I was going to park elsewhere, then pulled out the other side of the garage. I ended up on another street and was so turned around! I found another garage, but after I got into the Convention Center, I wasn’t exactly sure where I had parked. Luckily, I did find my car at the end of the day 12 hours later, but not without lots of wandering around the city streets trying to find a way into the garage. Again, I’m such a dork!

I missed the Pitman Craft Show yesterday…but it was worth it. I got so many great ideas and took lots of photos for reference – I can’t wait to go play in my craft room!


Some Mini-Scrapbook Ideas

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 17, 2007 in Crafts, Scrapbooks

Just a few little ideas I was playing around with the other day…

Here’s a little ‘scrapbook’ (I guess it’s not really a scrapbook – more of a scrapfolder) made from a manila folder:

Manila folder

Manila folder open

I think this turned out much cuter in person – you’ll have to trust me on that. :)

I used a sponge to rub Close to Cocoa ink on the folder, then stamped images from the Wanted stamp set.  I added a photo of my dog, Daisy, and stamped her name using the Wild West alphabet stamp set. Inside, I put a few photos too – this would make a nice little gift.

I also was playing around with two pocket file folders (can you tell it’s back-to-school time?  It’s all about the school supplies…) and came up with this project:

Two pocket folder closed

This is a white two pocket folder folded in half and tied closed with double-stitched ribbon.  I used the Creative License scrapping kit for this project…

Here is what it looks like after you open the ribbon…the folder edges are both folded in toward the center…

Two pocket folder halfway open

It then opens like a gate-fold…

Two pocket folder open

Again, I think this turned out so cute (if I do say so myself)!  I must have been on a roll that day…

I used photos taken from a day at the beach in Cape May and put them all along the bottom of the folder.  I visually separated the four sections with different patterned paper and ribbon and also added chipboard letters covered with paper at the top.  Inside each pocket is a tag with more photos from the day at the beach.

Again, this would make a really cute gift…


First Day of School

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 7, 2007 in Family Stuff

This week was the first day of school for both the kids AND me.

First day of school

You can see in the photo that Emily is in motion trying to protect herself from her big brother who is in the process of tickling her…sigh…but doesn’t she look cute in her little outfit?  Although, looking at this photo again, they are quite the colorless-khaki-kids on the first day of school, aren’t they?

Emily is just starting kindergarten, Andrew is going into eighth grade and Matt is going into third grade.

Emily was more than willing to start her first day of school. I kissed her goodbye, then she pushed herself to the front of the kindergarten line to be the first one inside and as she went in, she wiped off my kiss. So much for my little baby! She knows several of the kids in her class already and is very familiar with the school after ‘helping’ me with so many school events, so she feels totally comfortable, obviously!

Matt was excited to see his friends again and says he’s looking forward to third grade. Grade 3 is always a tough year for kids – a transition from being a little kid to being a big kid with more responsibilities and independence. Poor thing wasn’t feeling good this morning – he has a cold and has been having some issues with his asthma as a result. But he made it through the day with no major problems and seems to be feeling a bit better this morning.

Andrew actually started school yesterday, but I made him take this picture today anyway (very much against his will, as you can tell by him aggravating his little sister). This is his last year in elementary school before heading off to high school next year. Yikes! Can I really be the parent of a kid in HIGH SCHOOL?!?! Not ready for that…

I mentioned that it was also my first week of school – I began teaching my Computers and Society class on Tuesday. Now, I need to be careful what I say about my lovely class since I’m sure some of them have already Googled me and have found my blog… 😉

Unfortunately, the secretary did not order the books for the class until very late in August, so only one of the students actually has the book. I’m trying to wing it until the books come in…

I have eighteen students in the class, the majority of whom are Computer Science majors. And they are all young men – there is not ONE girl in the class! What has happened to all the women in Computer Science? When I graduated, our class had mostly men, it’s true, but there were at least SOME women…maybe about 10-20% or so.

The students tell me that as far as they know, there is only one female currently majoring in Computer Science at Rowan…that’s a real shame. Working in software is a great career – the work is interesting, pays well, jobs are readily available and…do the girls not realize that’s where all the MEN are?!?! That’s where I met MY wonderful husband… 😉

Next week my schedule starts to become REALLY crazy as all our activities begin. I have a church meeting on Monday night, my book club meets at my house on Tuesday night (Tuesday night Bible study classes also begin this week, but I’m going to have to miss the first week), Emily starts her hip-hop dance class and ‘Back to School Night’ is at the elementary school on Wednesday, Daisy starts her advanced puppy class on Thursday (fortunately, choir practice on Thursdays doesn’t start until the following week) and my stamp club meeting is at my house on Friday night. Then Saturday is the Stampin’ Up! Regional Seminar at the Philadelphia Convention Center where I’m working as a make-and-take helper…not to mention teaching my class on Tuesday and Thursday, preparing for my Scrapbooking Ministry, Sarah’s Circle, an upcoming scrapbooking workshop and dealing with training our new puppy, Geddy…no wonder my house is a wreck – no time to clean!!!


Meet Geddy – Part 2

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 4, 2007 in Our Goldendoodle Puppies

I recharged the camera battery and got a couple of cute photos of the puppies…

Daisy and Geddy-2

Daisy and Geddy-3

See – he’s starting to warm up already…


The Evolution of a Swap Card

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 4, 2007 in Cards

In my last post, I showed you some swap projects that I made for Stampin’ Up! Regionals. I also made some general swap cards- although since I’m a helper, I don’t know how much swapping I’ll get to do. But I thought I’d bring around 25 or so and keep them in my apron pocket to swap when I can.

I wanted to keep them simple since I’ll be making so many of them, and I can’t use TOO many accessories since I’ll have to have enough for all the cards.

Many of you ask where I get my card ideas. Most of the time, they evolve. My unsuccessful card attempts lead me to better designs (or at least I hope).

Here’s an example…

I saw a scrapbook page on the cover of Creating Keepsakes the other day. The page had a sunflower and denim accents and it inspired me to create this card…

Sunflower card

It turned out okay, but it wasn’t quite the look I wanted to do for my swaps. I really didn’t like inking the edges of the circle – it makes it look uneven.  And stamping with Vanilla craft ink was a PAIN! I had to heat set it to let it dry and I don’t really have time to do that for all those swaps!

So I scrapped that idea and moved on to something else…

I saw a pretty card in another magazine that was stamped right on to patterned paper. So I picked up a sheet of Soft Sky designer paper and stamped a flower from the Garden Silhouettes stamp set that I really like with Basic Gray ink. I also wanted to use my sewing machine on a card, so I came up with this…

Swap try number one

But stamping the baroque background on the soft sky paper looked too dark against the main image. And I couldn’t find a ribbon that I liked to tie through the hardware piece…plus, I didn’t have enough hardware pieces to make that many cards.

So I scrapped that idea and tried this one:

Swap try number two

I added some glitter to the flowers and some Pretties pearls on the bottom piece. I kept the sewing, but decided to eliminate the soft sky background piece. I also clipped the corners to add a little shape to the card.

But I still wasn’t happy with it. For one, it used too many pearls for that many swaps. And It was just a little too busy with the baroque background and the patterned paper. Plus, the flowers didn’t look as delicate as I wanted and I didn’t like the ‘cherish’ font with the rest of the card.

So I scrapped that idea and moved on to this one…

Swap try number three

This one I liked for my swap! It includes the colors I wanted but with fewer accessories – plus, I don’t have to sew each card. I used a different flower stamp from the set and kept the glitter. I also used the flower stamp as the background instead of the swirl. And I liked the font of the ‘lovely’ sentiment. I kept the oval, but without the hardware – and I used less ribbon, too.

So if you see me at Regionals and you’d like to swap for this card, come find me! I’ll be the one with the black Stampin’ Up! apron… :)


Regional Swaps

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 4, 2007 in Cards, Crafts, Other items, Scrapbooks

As I mentioned before, I will be attending the Stampin’ Up! Regional Seminar in Philadelphia later this month. It’s tradition to bring some cards and other projects to swap with other demonstrators at our events, so I’ve been working on a few.

I signed up for one swap where we are exchanging fall holiday ideas. I chose Thanksgiving and decided to make gratitude journals for my swaps.

Gratitude Journal

Graditude Journal Open

I made these using paper lunch bags and the new Apple Cider designer paper from the Holiday Mini Catalog. I bound the book using the Crop-A-Dile and twill tape, and added a few Wild Wasabi page inserts to fit in the book openings as well.

I also signed up for an ATC swap and I decided to make a card front-type ATC using the free stamp set, “So Much”, that we will be receiving at the seminar.

Thanks ATC

I stamped the flower image on vellum using white StazOn and then added some Dazzling Diamonds on the petals. I also used the Crop-A-Dile to emboss small circles on the textured Groovy Guava paper as done on one of the seminar projects.

How did I get the free stamp set and see the Regional Seminar projects, you ask? I am going to be a Make-And-Take helper at the seminar and received my goody package the other day!

Here are two of the scrapbook pages we will be making, modified slightly to include my photos and use other stamp sets I currently have (unfortunately, SU! didn’t provide us with ALL of the sets that will be available at the seminar).

I love you camping page

Regional page - Emily

I had SO much fun making these – I can’t wait to get there!


Meet Geddy!

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 4, 2007 in Our Goldendoodle Puppies

Well…the crazy Torrences did it – we got another goldendoodle puppy!  His name is Geddy and he is about 4 1/2 months old.  Yesterday was a LONG day – we were in the car for more than seven hours! 


Poor thing – because he is an older puppy, he’s REALLY timid and shy.  We just picked him up yesterday, so I’m sure he’ll be okay in a few days, but for now, he spends most of his time hiding from us…

Geddy hiding

He doesn’t seem to be very well socialized around people and pretty much runs whenever we approach him, but I’m sure he’ll adjust quickly to his new home.

He does LOVE Daisy and they have been playing together quite nicely outside.  Although Daisy is treating him very much like the big sister she is – he follows her everywhere and she looks at him sometimes like, “Get lost, little guy!”.  But for the most part, she seems glad to have another dog to play with. 

Side note – I just missed such a CUTE photo!  The two dogs were cuddled up together sleeping and my darned camera ran out of batteries!!!!  But I’m sure there will be lots of other cute moments, right?

And interestingly enough, Geddy is actually from the same litter as Bella.  And Geddy, Bella and Daisy all share the same father, too.

 Wish us luck with our new little guy!


Have The Torrences Gone Crazy?!?!?

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 2, 2007 in Our Goldendoodle Puppies

Kind of a rhetorical question, I guess – I KNOW we’re crazy!

Why this time, you ask?  Because we’re thinking of getting another goldendoodle puppy, that’s why!  Let me explain…

We’ve been puppy-sitting Andrew’s other dog, Bella, all week while her family is on vacation.  Bella is also a goldendoodle just a few months younger than Daisy.

They are SO cute playing together!  They’re like their own little pack – they eat together, sleep together, go outside together – and there’s nothing like two furry creatures climbing into bed with you in the morning, either (and I don’t mean my children).

I took a few photos of the two dogs together…

Bella and Daisy - good

Daisy and Bella-2


Bella and Daisy sleeping

So anyway…Mike and I started talking about how we might like to get another puppy…and before I knew it, he was on the Internet and put a deposit down on another little doodle!  This one’s a boy and is about 4 months old – we found him at the same kennel where we bought Daisy. 

And as of right now, we’re scheduled to pick him up on Labor Day…

So are we crazy or what?


Some Cards and Scrapbook Pages

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 2, 2007 in Cards, Crafts, Scrapbooks

I made a few cards for my workshop last night – thought I’d share them really quick.  Most are based on projects from the Stampin’ Up! demo website – altered slightly to accommodate my supplies and tastes. :)

Thank You card

This card uses the stamp set In the Spotlight and uses So Saffon, Purely Pomegranate, Old Olive and Bashful Blue.

Snail card

This card uses the stamp set Garden Whimsy and Soft Sky, Groovy Guava and Blue Bayou.

Tiny card

This card uses Double Line Doodles is watercolored and is 3″ X 3″.

I think I actually used all of the new In Colors in these three samples.

I also put together a few scrapbook pages, playing around with the new hostess Simply Scrappin’ Kit and a few other supplies.

Andrew and Daisy scrapbook page

I LOVE those photos of Andrew and Daisy!

Family scrapbook page

For this page, I was playing around with stamping on acetate as a photo overlay.  I used the Priceless stamp set, Groovy Guava, Soft Sky and River Rock.  It didn’t come out quite as I planned it, but it’s an okay page.

Now go create something of your own…


Some Back-to-School Crafts

Posted by Kathy Torrence on Sep 2, 2007 in Crafts

Between running after two dogs, camping, attending various meetings, hosting a workshop, trying to keep up with my laundry, holding a crafty yard sale and trying to keep my kids entertained during the summer months, I had a few minutes to work on a few crafts.

Here are some cute back-to-school items…

This is a little french fry box (use a pattern or trace a clean box) that I embellished – it would be cute to hold a little box of crayons or other school supplies.

Crayon Fry Box 

I also made a little pencil case from some Old Olive cardstock…

Pencil case

And here’s a cute bookmark made from one of those giant paperclips you can find at office supply stores…

Paperclip bookmark

Another cute idea is to take large laminate chips (countertop samples you can find free at home improvement stores) and turn them into little mini-clipboards.

Laminate clipboard

Cover the back of the chip with paper (Stampin’ Up! Outlaw, in this sample) and trim it to size.  Then add a little binder clip at the top, tie on some ribbon and a tag and you have a sweet little gift, perfect for a party favor, to hold a favorite photo, receipts, sticky notes, business cards…whatever you’d like.

As a side note, I also use the smaller laminate chips as gift tags – here’s one on a Christmas box…

Christmas box with tag

I have some more little projects to share…I’ll put them in another post…

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