Monday, August 25, 2014

The Creative Blog Hop

You just could not imagine my delight, or the honor I felt, when I received an email from none-other-than Tracey McNeely asking me if she could introduce me to the blogging world - WHAT?  I fell in love with Tracey's style and grace very early on when I discovered reading/following card blogs. Read all about Tracey here and please do spend some lots of time looking around.  Tracey is a design team member at many of the favored challenge blogs, and her style is CAS which I've found to be my favorite.  Tracey provides me with plenty of inspiration with her gorgeous creations..  and she's Canadian as are my grandparents! As I climb my family tree, I'm hoping to find a connection =]

Tom and I have three grown children who have blessed us with six adorable grand kids.  They all live pretty close so we do enjoy getting together as often as their busy lives allow it.  When we share a meal, improvisation is necessary to seat 14 people.  Here is the result of a little crafty innovation: one side chalk-board, the other for crafts!!


Ready for Thanksgiving dinner semi-picnic style =]

After dinner, Anna 9, Lola 8, Sam 7, Madelyn 6, Drew 6, and William 5 get to make their placemats for the next gathering - Christmas!!

I'm happy to say these guys really look forward to the cards I make them for their birthdays =]

So now, in The Creative Blog Hop style, here are my answers to the four "getting to know you" questions:

1. What are you working on right now?
I just started blogging in May 2014.  After struggling with a name, I came up with a fun take on a sign that is posted in many stores in the States today where your legal age is checked - they call it "getting carded."  I try to make it a fun place to share the cards I've created for the challenges I submit to. I'm working on a new Christmas card design, too, that I'll share later. While blogging, I throw in a little bit about my life on occasion, too.  Like nesting baby wood ducks for a cute factor:

Challenges are a great way to hone my skills and an outlet for what I call my Pun-y style.  In fact, when I found CASology I believe I found my niche. For example for Cue word WOOD:

I love that Melissa hasn't curbed my sense of humor - in fact I think she's embraced it looking at her Magic card!  Which leads me to:
2.  How does my work differ from others in my genre?
It is a little bit of work imagining myself worthy of being included in a genre!  But, as I get more comfortable with CAS and learn from all the greats out there who have perfected the style, I do find that I'm a little bit "out there" with my designs, and really do love it when I receive comments that tell me some of you really do "get me!"  By the way, I'm not always trying to be pun-y... I do have my soft, and sensitive side, too!  I still love it when there is a card in the real mail box and send cards often.  I really look forward to participating in Operation Christmas Cards each year.  Here is one I designed in the past.

3.  Why do I create what I do?

I've been encouraged to be creative since I was a tiny little girl who was given a new box of crayons on each birthday - I cherish the many hours spent with my Dad who taught me to outline, and how to blend colors to make new ones, or add a rosy cheek!  Mom taught me to sew my own clothing, or a new outfit for Barbie!  Today, beyond a stitched embellishment on a card, the machine is hiding in a closet.  Card-making opened a whole new world to me about five years ago.  Now, there is no going back, as I love it so.
4.  How does my creative process work?
Words.  Words are definitely important to me... I'll admit to having an alter-ego who would love to write children's books some day.   Whether a Cue, or a quote, a term used, a photo posted - much more than a sketch.  I know it sounds crazy, but I even dream about cards now.  For example:

I seriously woke up with this card in my head... sadly, my sewing machine is ancient - 41 years old - and drops stitches often... no one seems to mind my imperfections which is really why I love you all! 

Finally I come to the best part... introducing you [like they need introductions!] to my chosen three FABULOUS Creative Bloggers!!  Yay!  I was just thrilled when they accepted my invitation =]  I must admit I lured them in with virtual pie... oh yes I did!  Peach pie to be exact...SEE: 
I've already shared how new I am to Blog-Land.  I have found such fulfillment creating cards, but even more in the friendship and bond from these fabulous like-minded gals who stop by with a sweet comment or encouragement.  In no particular order, 'cuz I love them all. 
Amy Rohl
Amy Rohl - Ink about Me 
Design Team Member - My Favorite Things
Amy's is the first blog I head to during the MFT release blog hop!  Her eye for color combinations, composition, and design are spectacular. If I'm honest, I am drawn to CAS design because I fail miserably when it comes to cards with more than one layer!  Amy excels at it... I hope to learn by following her creative example. I also hope to learn even more about her, and how she started.
I love My Favorite Things products, by the way.  Please do check out Amy's use of their fabulous Blueprints dies, and fabulous stamps.
Amy Tsuruta - Tsuruta Designs
Current Design Team Member for:
Of that long list, CAS-ual Fridays and Curtain Call are two challenges I try really hard to submit cards to.  Amy never fails to inspire me with her creative brilliance and you can find her everywhere with the sweetest comments.   We've quickly become email friends. Which is funny because I'm in Michigan and Amy is in Seattle... there are at least three time zones between us! She is up way before the chickens, believe me!  And, like me, she's a coffee drinker!

 Michelle Williams - Amusing Michelle

Since I share a name with this wonderful lady, is it a coincidence that she also has a sense of humor?  For a very long time I would comment on Michelle's blog and sign it as "One L" - I wonder if she ever figured that out?  Michelle is another fabulous designer that I follow through CAS(E) this Sketch, CASE Study, and The Fusion Card Challenge.  She is also faithful at making sweet comments on many blogs.  Living in Brisbane, Australia it does get a little more tricky to email... it's often midnight or later when my responses reach her... I try to be very quiet though =]

They will all three be sharing much more with you next Monday, September 1st.  In the meantime spend some time at each blog... you will not be sorry... pack a lunch!

I hope I didn't lose anyone along this very long way!  To say "Thank You" just doesn't cover it, ladies. 

Tracey, we will meet some day!  Y.P.O.M? As I travel back in my Canadian family tree, I wouldn't be surprised if we end up cousins, but 'til then, I feel you are so my adopted little sister!!  Being youngest of nine - I've been waiting a long time for one =]

Amy R., I'll continue to learn and hopefully grow to be great at composition thanks to you.   I cannot wait to play with my newest MFT goodies I won during the August Release! Love new toys =]  In fact, you may want to look around here today.  I've had a busy crafting week- end.

Amy T.  I will be coming to Seattle again and cannot wait to continue our bonding experience- and maybe back to that fab restaurant we talked about? Or will it be The Cheesecake Factory - Hmmmm? Wherever, there may be lots of coffee =]

Michelle Two 'L's' thank you for your ready acceptance to my invitation to be one of my three guests.  I also have traced my paternal branch to Canberra... one never knows! =]

Most importantly, thank you to those of you who stop by on occasion, are kind with your sweet comments, and generous with your time, hearts, and friendship.  Hope to see you here again soon!

Much love... Michele one L
[I think there's a new Beatle-esque song there! =]



Judy1223 said...

HI Michele, what a lovely post! I had no idea that Tracey lured you into blogland...I'll have to thank her, because I love your blog, your cards, your style, and your positively POSITIVE attitude! Best wishes for many happy bloggy days! :)

~amy~ said...

Yay! I LOVE reading more about you! I love your style and your cards always shine with your creativity and humor:)

I can't wait for that slice of Peach Pie:) Thank you so much for nominating me!

Anita in France said...

Oh Michele, that was brilliant! Loved seeing the photo's, loved reading your post ... full of enthusiasm, interest, energy ... and your fab sense of humour! Thanks, my friend, I had a lovely time!! Anita :)

Darnell said...

You are spiraling up the creative ladder of Blogland in no time, Onel! I'll be proud to say I knew you when!! I'm happy you were tagged for TCBH and I really enjoyed your post and getting to know you better!! Hugs, Darnell

Taunya Butler said...

Totally cool for you and it was fun to learn more about you!! You are completely taking the blogworld by storm - Yeah for you!!

Tracey McNeely said...

Oh Michele what a wonderful wonderful post my friend. I loved seeing a little more inside of your head, your life and your creativity. I am so glad that you accepted my invitation to the creative blog hop, you were one of my first thoughts! Surely you must know what an impact you have made in blogland in your mere 4 months on the scene. I really hope you do come my way when chasing your family tree, a pot of coffee will always be waiting for you. xoxo

Bobby said...

It was definitely fun getting to know you a little better, MI buddy (get it, Ms Wordsmith?) lol I can't believe how fast you've made an impression on this fabulous community of card makers. You've got something special, Michele, so continue on.

Laurie said...

I loved reading more about you! How fun to be nominated! You are so sweet and I love your cards! Hugs!

Michelle said...

Mee-shellll, one L, these are words that go together well, my Michele! Yes, you got me singing. When I was growing up I think I heard that song at least once a week from people singing it to me, lol! Three kids and six grandchildren! You're blessed! I'm glad you recognised that I have a sense of humour, sometimes I wonder if my sense of humour passes people by, lol! Thanks for nominating me for this blog hop. It may take me a little while to play along (life is so busy!), but I'm definitely playing!