Curt's Best Shots Slideshow

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Hey All!

Gosh it's great to see you here!  And look how wonderful you look!  I hope this Thanksgiving Eve finds you well and surrounded by friends and family.  And because it is the eve of Thanksgiving, at the end of this post, I'm going to list the top 10 things that I'm thankful for.  OK, on with the post!

I have 4 cards to share with you and it is a variety of cards.  Here is the first:

This is a pet sympathy card I did for the medical office manager at my doctor's office.  When I was there last, she told me that she had lost her beautiful dog to cancer.  I wanted to make her a special card.  I kept it simple and somewhat sombre.  To make it special, I added the little silver paw charm on the ribbon.  I was given this charm by my very sweet friend, America, who used to be my team member when I was with House Mouse.

The next two cards are Christmas cards.  One has a little surprise!  Take a look:
I made the three trees simply cutting out triangles in 3 different sizes then adding DP in the center.  I colored the back part of the trees with distress ink.  The SURPRISE on this one is the "sky".  Can you guess what it is?????  It is a sheet of paper towel!  LOL  When I bought this brand (Sparkle) every time I would look at it, it reminded me of a quilted wintry sky.  And I kept that idea in the back of my mind until it was time to use it.  I tore the "hills" and glittered the edges for some sparkle, then drew the star, cut it out, and covered it in gold Stickles.  I really like how the "sky" turned out.  For once this is what I had visioned in my head.

This next Christmas card is a little different too for me.  I normally don't do shabby or vintage, but I wanted to use this new background stamp and it just reminded me of vintage Christmas cards.  Here it is:
The background script is by Stampabilities, and what I love about it is that it goes horizontally instead of vertically as most word stamps go.  I stamped it on white card stock then changed the color by using Old Paper distress ink all over it.  I did the same on the face of the base card as well.  It was originally white.  I stamped the tree on white as well then colored the paper too.  Added the red ornaments using Stickles.  I also just tore all around both the red and the worded paper to give it a very distressed look.  Added the photo corners colored with the same distress ink I used for the tree (forest moss).  Added the greeting and done.

I saved this next card for last because it is a Thanksgiving card which ties into my list of things I am thankful for.  Here is the card:

I made the background paper!  I used a tiny set of leaves by Hero Arts combined with two peg stamps (curly vine and pumpkin) by Tapistry stamps.  I used 6 different colors of distress inks and randomly stamped the pattern.  I colored the turkey with Sharpies.  I hate that I don't know what stamp set this is.  I bought it two years ago and didn't label it as I do now with the stamp sets I buy.  But I really love this turkey.  The sentiment is also part of the set.  I actually "mass produced" this card and sent it out to friends and family and some neighbors.  It was really quick and easy to make once I got the production line down.

OK, here is my list of the top 10 things I am thankful for (although I have many more):

1.  I am thankful for my family.  Even though there are just a few of us, we are close and I'm grateful for that.

2.  I am thankful for the men and women in the armed forces that are sacrificing so much so that I am free.  I can't thank them enough for their sacrifice and their families' sacrifice, and I think of them and pray for them everyday.

3.  I'm thankful that I have a roof over my head and live in a safe community.  I will think of those less fortunate who are homeless and hungry today and keep them in my thoughts and prayers.

4.  I am thakful for my beautiful dogs, Shotsy and Gunther.  They are what keep me grounded and have taught me so much about unconditional love and loyalty.  I will always be grateful for their lessons.

5.  I am thankful that I live in the best country in the world.  Though we have our problems, there is nowhere else on earth I would rather be.

6.  I am thankful for my relative good health.  Although I have some problems, they are far less than some people who suffer horribly every day.  I keep them in my thoughts and prayers too.

7.  I am thankful for my 24 year relationship.  Even though it is difficult sometimes taking care of Jay, we have had a great run so far.  I know that there are lonely people who have no one, and I keep them in my thoughts and prayers too.

8.  I am thankful for my creative side and that I have an outlet for it.  It has given me an escape from the day to day struggles and helps me put things into perspective.

9.  I am thankful for the every day necessities that we sometimes take for granted.  Food, clothing, warmth in the winter, cool in the summer, a craft room of my own, etc.  I always try to remind myself that these every day things are something that some people would consider a luxury.  How fortunate I am.

10.  And finally, I'm very thankful for you, my blogging friends.  Without you, what would this blogging thing be worth?  You don't know how you all make my day when you leave comments to brighten my mood and bring smiles to my face.  You have all been so kind and have truly become an important part of my life.  I love you guys!

OK, last but not least, is the "Pic of the Week".  I took this photo this week.  The boys and I were sitting and resting after our walk on some steps leading down to the White River.  It was a grey dreary day, and as I looked down I saw this really stunning (at least to me) reflection of the trees linking the riverbank:

Kind of reminds me of the tree stamps that are so popular.  I love the monochromatic look of the photo.

Again, thanks so much for stopping by and looking at my "stuff".  I hope all of you who celebrate Thanksgiving here in the US have a wonderful holiday tomorrow.  And to all my other blogging buddies all over the world, I hope you have a great weekend!


Curt O'Brien

"God, please help me be the person that my dogs think I am."

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Hey All!

There you are!  You are looking great!  I'm really glad you are here. . .thanks for coming by!

Boy has this been a week!  First, Shotsy and Gunther got into a fight (which they never do) over their dinner (I'm cooking for them now because I can't handle giving them the commercially made crap in a bag/can).  They were really going at it (Shotsy had Gunther's face in his mouth), and without thinking, I jumped in and tried to separate them.  Well as you can see below, I got the worst of it!

Yes, it hurt!.  I had to go to my doctor for a tetanus shot.  While there, he did the blood tests to check my diabetes.  I got the test results today, and the news was not good.  The tests indicated that I am probably going to have to go from pills to insulin injections.  Errrrrrrrr  We are going to give a final effort to watch my diet and a new medication.  However, it doesn't look good. 

OK, enough of that stuff. . .you didn't come here to hear my misfortunes so let's get to the cards!

My first group of cards is what I am calling my "Silhouette Note Card Set".  Again, I apologize for all the pics tonight.  I need to do something about the lighting I use.  Here is the set:

I needed a set of note cards that had a Fall theme.  I also made them to have a lot of commonalities such as using all silhouetted images, using Stickles or metallic embossing powder, and using some form of bling.  I also stayed withing the browns/tans colors for Fall.  Here is a shot of each individually:

Image is from Stampendous.  Embossed background and paper piercing in the corner.

Not sure who this fern stamp is by, I've had it for a few years.  I stamped the two fern leaves with dark brown ink, and the middle one is stamped in Versamark then embossed with copper ep.

This weed stamp is by Hero Arts.  You can't see it well in the picture, but I used dots of copper Stickles all over the branches.  I looks beautiful when it sparkles in the light.

The image is by Inkadinkado.  Again, you can't see the copper Stickles on the caps of the acorns.  The big round blog up there in the corner is actually a really pretty brad that has copper sparkles in the center.

OK, now for my RECYCLED material card!  Let me show you the material I used first before I show you the card I made with it.  Here is the "material":

This is a silver shipping package that contained a mini pecan pie that Jay ordered from "Nuts Online" (really good stuff by the way).  When I saw it, I knew exactly what I was going to use it for and what it would be perfect to use for.  Take a look:

I wasn't sure that I could get the material through the Cuttlebug because it is almost like bubble wrap material.  I had to run it through twice (once on each side) so that the Nestie circle cut through it.  I colored each circle with a red Sharpie pen.  Again, the pic doesn't do it justice.  The pine branch is by Stampendous.  I embossed it with white detail ep.  Then added glitter (which again you can't see)  I added silver cord and tied the bow with the Bow Easy.  The ornament feels quilted and is so shiny.  I just wish I could get a better picture.

OK, that's it for this post.  Thanks very much for coming by and looking at my stuff (and listening to me whine). . .I'm sorry that I've missed some of your blogs this week, but I think you can understand why with the week I've had.  I'll be catching up the balance of the week.

I'll leave you with the Pic of the Week:



OMGosh!  I forgot to tell you all about a wonderful blog candy give-away over at Dawn's Craft Place.  The ever talented Dawn is having a progressive give-away and this is what it is starting with:

You can find all the details about it HERE.  I also have a pic of it in my sidebar.  Good luck!

Thanks again for stopping by.  I'll see you on your blogs soon!

Hugs to all of you!


Curt O'Brien

"God, please help me be the person that my dogs think I am."

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Hey All!

I hope this post finds you well and happy!  You look absolutely incredible by the way!  It's time for another edition of my Wednesday Evening Post.  I got to thinking the other day that Christmas is only a little over 6 weeks away!!!  I can't get over it. . .where did the time go?  If you throw in that you should mail your cards at least a couple of week in advance, you only have about 4 weeks left!  So, with this motivation in mind, I got started on my Christmas cards this week.

The first one is actually for a challenge!  Can you believe it????  I actually am participating in a challenge.  I've discovered ANOTHER MALE card maker!!  There are so few of us.  His name is Ted and he is a teacher.  He dose great work, and his writing is wonderful.  He has a great sense of humor and is very creative.  You can visit his blog HERE.  His challenge is to look in your pantry for inspiration.  I thought this sounded fun and had a ton of possibilities.  Here is my "pantry inspiration":

I wanted to select something that I could make a Christmas card with and I thought this would be perfect.  Here is the card it inspired:

I love these gingerbread people!  The gingerbread man stamp is by stampabilities and the sentiment is from Hero Arts.  Those red brads were perfect for that cranberry in the inspiration picture.  I stamped the gingerbread man 3 times on kraft card stock and cut them out.  I used distress ink to give them their browned look like they were fresh out of the oven.  I used Stickles for their frosting and buttons.  The sentiment was stamped with Versamark and white detailed ep.  Kinda looks like frosting.  This was such a fun challenge.  You should give it a try and enter.  He is giving away a set of his cards and a gift certificate to a lucky winner.  So, if you want to play along, you can find the post HERE.  You have until the end of the month!

Here is my next card:

This has to be one of my all time favorites when it comes to Christmas stamps!  I just got this stamp in the mail this week and I was so excited.  It is by Eat Cake Graphics.  I made the sentiment list scroll using Word, printed it off and cut it out.  The image is colored with distress inks and an aqua brush.  Look at his little tail wagging. . .OMGosh he is adorable.  Can't you just hear him rattling off that list super excitedly?  LOL

My final card is this one:

This is a stamp from Northwood Stamps called Birch & Cardinals.  Colored it with distress inks and stamped an extra set of the birds, cut them out and set them up on dimensionals.  The trees are really sparkly, but once again, I couldn't get it to photograph.  Errrrrrrr.

Now, on to the "Picture of the Week":

This is a "woolly worm" I found yesterday crossing the path that we were walking on yesterday.  These are supposed to portend what kind of winter we are going to have by how thick their coats are.  Looking at this one, I think we are going to have a CUTE winter!  LOL   The poor little thing was so frightened that it never did come out of that fetal position.  Hope I didn't scare him too bad!

OK, 3 down, many more to go!  LOL  Hope you enjoyed your visit here tonight.  I'm off to take a look at what you've been up to on your blogs.  I'm actually going to fix dinner, then bring the plate right to my computer and dine while looking!

Thanks again for coming to look!  It still amazes me to think that you want to.  It is so appreciated.  

Hugs to all of you!


Curt O'Brien

"God, please let me be the person that my dogs think I am."

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Hey All!

Welcome back to another edition of my Wednesday Evening Post.  Well, Halloween is over for another year.  Mine was uneventful, how about yours?  I want to thank those of you who sent me fabulous Halloween cards.  I LOVED each and every one.  It was very thoughtful of you!

OK, on to this week's post.  My Mom asked me if I had any stamps that had a theme of "dentistry".  She wanted to give her dentist and her hygienist a card to thank them for all they do for her.  She wanted them to be House Mouse if possible.  I didn't have any in my stock, so I jumped online and found two that I think were perfect.  Here is the one for her dentist:

I have not done a House Mouse card in quite awhile, so I was glad that I got the chance to do these.  THIS IS MY FIRST HOUSE MOUSE IMAGE THAT IS COMPLETELY COLORED WITH DISTRESS INKS AND AN AQUA BRUSH!!  I love how vibrant the colors are.  This stamp is called "Toad-ily Open".  I try to make the House Mouse cards fairly simple so that I can highlight the image.  I made the background paper by running it through my CB then using distress ink to darken the spots so it looks like frog skin.  I added a green "raindrop" on that little piece below his eye to give it a shiny look to enhance it.

Here is the card for her hygienist:

This stamp is called "Floss Boss".  Again, totally colored with distress inks and an Aqua Brush.  The background on this one was done exactly like the first only with a different CB folder.  This looks so much like alligator skin.  I added an orange "raindrop" on his eye for more realism.  The ribbon and bow are kind of weak, but it looks better than the embroidery floss I tried to use.  I hope my Mom likes them as well as her dental staff.

My last card for this post is one that I'm sort of disappointed with.  I had a card in my head, but what was created didn't even come close.  I hate it when I have something in my head, but the card takes on a design of its own due to size of stamps and area to work with.  Oh well, I'll stop whining and show it anyway:

Couldn't get a good photo either. . .It really is warmer looking in person and very "manly" even with the gingham ribbon LOL.  I stamped a woodgrain stamp (All Nigh Media) on some kraft card stock then used distress inks to darken it a little.  The acorns are a stamp by Inkadinkado which I colored with a combo of cheap markers and colored pencils.  I had to color the ribbon again with a marker to make it more closely match the other browns.  I just wanted a Fall note card that I could use for whatever I need at the time I'll use it.

OK, that's it for this post.  You guys have been doing some wonderful work.  I've enjoyed my visits to your blogs!  BTW, thanks to all the new followers and welcome to my blog.  I hope my blog is worth your effort!  LOL  Remember, I'll be doing another BLOG CANDY as soon as my followers reach 250.  I'm almost there!

Here is the "Pic of the Week":

This is one of two horses my Mom and I feed near a trail we take the boys for a walk on.  I buy them organic carrots and they love them!  I just love his beautiful face and eye lashes.

Hugs to all of you!


Curt O'Brien

"God, please help me be the person that my dogs think I am."