Curt's Best Shots Slideshow

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Hey All!

Well, here we are less than a week from Christmas.  We have had a very mild winter here in Indiana so far.  No snow and none in the foreseeable future, so no white Christmas for us.  I haven't even used the fireplace yet!

I hope this post finds you warm, safe and happy.  I would be remiss if I did not mention the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut.  What a very sad day for this country.  I was heartbroken for those families and can not imagine the grief that they are enduring.  They have been close in my thoughts with every news piece I've seen or read.

Here are the last of my Christmas cards for this year to share:
Aren't they sweet?  They look so cold!  I made this card for the House Mouse Monday Challenge and their theme "snow".  I used to be on their design team and hadn't colored up one of these images in awhile so I thought I would play for old times sake.  I used colored pencils and oms to color it and the snow is done with liquid applique.  The star was given a squirt of gold Stickles.
I love the simplicity of this stamp.  This is one of those "negative image" stamps.  The only way I know how to use them is to ink them up with Versamark ink and use embossing powder.  I used white ep on this one then used a marker to color in the birds.  Embossed the white panel behind it to continue the "falling snow" look and done.  Quick and easy.
I love gingerbread people and this stamp and die set from Hero Arts is one of my favs.  I love the little stitching lines around them.  And may I say, the person who invented the stamps and matching dies needs to be nominated for sainthood!  This is the first set I've had and I could have sets like this for every stamp!
I had one little gingerbread guy left over so I made a card just highlighting him.  He looks happy about it doesn't he?  Not much explanation needed here other than I drew in the white with a white gel pen and the buttons are done with red liquid pearls.

Pic of the Week
Since this is the last post before Christmas, I want to take this opportunity to wish you all the Merriest of Christmases and the Happiest and Brightest of New Years.  I hope that you all get everything you hope for and then some, and that you are surrounded by those you love the most.

Love you guys!


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

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Hey All!

Happy 12-12-12!  Countdown to Christmas: 13 days  Countdown to End of World: 9 days  Christmas card count as of today: 27   Ah, the numerology of it all. . .

I hope this post finds you all well, houses decorated, goodies baked, shopping done, cards made and sent, gifts wrapped and trees trimmed.  If it doesn't find you this organized, then I hope it finds you with your choice of beverage in hand still believing strongly that it will all get done.  You know the policy here on my blog is BYOB.  Keep the faith Kiddos!

Seems like this post has an animal theme. . .Here are my cards for this week:
I wanted to make a "manly" Christmas card and I think I did that here.  Believe it or not, all pictures of my cards this week were shot in direct sunlight outside, and it still didn't make a difference on photo quality.  The outside mat on this was ran through an embossing folder then I went over the raised elements with a silver sparkly pen.  It looks awesomely frosty in real life.  I used a Memory Box die for the deer then colored them with marker.  Set them against the snowflake paper and then matted the whole thing.  The inside reads "Wishing you peace at Christmas".

Next. . .
I so love this frolicking reindeer complete with festive sweater.  I used Stickles on the dots for a little shine and he is colored with markers (Bic).
Again, the sun was no friend to this photo.  I created a scene using another Memory Box die (country landscape) and it is super sparkly.  The rooftops, snow, and outline of the big moon are all glittered up.  I like doing witches flying across moons for Halloween so I thought this stamp would be fun to do that with as well.
And lastly. . .
Sometimes I like to do "self-imposed" challenges.  When I'm stuck for an idea for a card I try to think outside the box.  So my "self-imposed" challenge was to use an image that is in no way meant for Christmas and use it to make a Christmas card.  So that is where this came from.  The image is a digital image from Doodle Pantry.  I bought it a long time ago and never used it.  So it became the target. I even challenged myself to use a pun for the sentiment.  I drew the Santa hats freehand with a white gel pen and cut them out and glittered 'em.  Everything is colored with markers.

Well, that's it for another Wednesday Evening Post.  I hope you enjoyed your time here.  I sure have enjoyed visiting you all and seeing your wonderful work.  I sure do have some mega talented blogging friends.

Pic of the Week
Hugs to all of you!

Curt O'Brien

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

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


Hey All!

Can you believe it is DECEMBER already???  And that Christmas is just 20 days away!!!!  I've been producing cards like a crazy person.  I was up until almost 2 AM this morning working on cards.  I figure if the end of the world is going to happen on the 21st, then that leaves me even less time to get these in the mail!  LOL  Great, just what we all need, more pressure!

Here are my cards for this week:
Is this little guy the cutest snow person ever???  This is a new image from artist Stacey Yacula in red rubber.  This one I colored in with water color pencils, but I've done several versions of this card also using markers too.  He's fast and fun to color and just puts a smile on my face.
Another new Stacey Yacula image.  I have a new found favorite artist for sure.  This image was colored with my colored pencils and oms.
Yes, this too is a Stacey Yacula image.  The sentiment is computer generated and I used this line from 'Twas the Night Before Christmas because it is what came to mind the first time I saw the image.  I created the brick background using an embossing folder then rubbing it with Fired Brick Distress Ink.  The image is colored with a combination of markers and colored pencil.
My last card was unfortunately necessary this week.  A friend of a friend of mine suffered a very sad, and tragic loss.  I have never met this person, but was touched by the tragedy of her situation so I felt compelled to make the card.  It was also nice to be able to get away from red/green/white/blue for awhile.

Well, that's it for yet another post.  I hope you are all well, warm, and happy and that your excited about the holidays.  Every since my heart attack, I view many things differently.  For example, I really didn't get excited about Christmas, but now it is fun and I realize that every holiday is a milestone in our so very short lives.  They should all be celebrated. . .

Pic of the Week

Hugs to all of you!


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

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Hey All!

There you are!!!  Welcome to another edition of the Wednesday Evening Post!  How was Thanksgiving for those of you here in the US?  I can tell just by looking at you that you were all good and didn't overeat!  Look at you!!!  Have you lost weight???  You all are looking incredible!

I have just a few cards to share with you.  I've started my Christmas cards!  How about that!?!  How are you doing on yours???  From all of you I visited last week, I see you are getting them done too!  My first is not for Christmas, but for a friend's birthday. . .take a look:

What is special about this card is that this is my FIRST ATTEMPT at using water color pencils.  I'm really loving them!  I just can't believe that you touch the tip of a water brush right to the pencil and paint.  I was able to blend and shade with ease and no oms!  I think I'm hooked!  This is a Gruffies image.

OK, now the Christmas cards:

Here are two cards using the same image but different background papers.  I plan on making several of these.  They are easy to color (Bic markers) and fast to put together.  I added gold Stickles to the star and red liquid pearls to the ornaments for some texture.  The image is from Art Impressions and I so love these penguins.
This is a whimsical card created with two different stamp sets.  The trees are from Lawn Fawn and I paper pieced each one and mounted the middle and top layer of each tree on foam tape to give it some depth.  The reindeer is from Recollections and is also on a dimensional. 
I have seen people doing cards for challenges that are supposed to be done in "non-traditional" colors, so I thought I would try a version of my own.  I like the red/white/black combo and think that this is not a traditional Christmas color scheme.  The tree (Penny Black) is embossed in white and I used red liquid pearls to dot all over (faster than I thought).  The "Joy" is embossed in red tinsel so it is very sparkly.

Pic of the Week

Well, that's it for this edition. I do hope all of you are doing well.  Thanks for coming to see me. . .it is always good to see you and I love having you here.  I'll be seeing 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."

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Hey All!

Happy Thanksgiving Eve!  I hope you find yourselves tomorrow surrounded by those you love.  I'm having seven for dinner tomorrow with all the trimmings, turkey, ham, sweet potatoes, home made dressing, etc.  And those of you who don't splurge or who have excessive will power, think about this. . .if the world is supposed to end on December 21st this year, then technically this is the last holiday forever!  So splurge!!!!  LOL  (Hey, it is a great excuse huh?)

I have 6 more cards to share with you today.  All Thanksgiving.  The top two are my favorites:

This is the card I made for my Mom.  It is made with a die cut from Memory Box.  I cut the image from 3 different papers, added the ribbon, stamped the sentiment, and done.
I'm never comfortable mixing patterns, but I like these together.  One fun thing I discovered when making this card. . .see the dots on the pumpkin image?  That was strictly by accident!  I stamped the image on the back of a "dotted" paper by Bazzill.  The front has raised dots on it, but the back seemed smooth.  When I started coloring with my colored pencils, the dots appeared.  How fun!
This is the card I made for my sister.  Another side step.

I saw this sketch where they used various pennants so I tried it out and ended up making 3 more cards.  You can't see it in the photo, but the one with acorns has dark copper glitter on top of the acorns, and I went back after the photo of the one with the pumpkin and added glitter to the swirl patter on the pumpkin.  The other, of course, is a House Mouse image that is actually a Halloween stamp, but worked well for this card.

Well, that's it for this edition.  I wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and I want you to know that as I think about all of the things I am thankful for I certainly count you all on the top of that list.

Pic of the Week


Curt O'Brien

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

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Hey All!

How is everyone????  Can you believe we are just about a week away from Thanksgiving???  OMGosh. . .it's like I was just swimming with the boys and now it is time for Thanksgiving!  Where does the time go???

Well, I know where some of my time has gone. . .into making more cards.  I decided to play along with the House Mouse Monday Challenge this week.  I did it for two reasons: 1) I thought I would get a start on my Christmas cards, and 2) It has been a while since I played with my House Mouse/Happy Hopper stamps.  The challenge this week is to create a card that depicts one of the many things you do to get ready for Christmas.  Here is my entry:
I know lots of people who bake Christmas cookies so I thought this image would depict that.  However, I didn't think that bunnies would make gingerbread "men" so I made a gingerbread bunny!  LOL  The image is colored with my cheap colored pencils and oms.

I also got stuck this week on making side step cards.  I love dimensional cards and this style lends itself to so many ideas I just couldn't stop.  Here they are:
While I was looking for an image for the challenge above, I saw this image in my collection and this card popped into my head.  I made the little bath mat by stamping the word "bath" on a cloth ribbon, then fraying it on both ends to create "fringe".  I made the side panel into a chest of drawers with a little lacy towel hanging out of a drawer and added the wine glass and bottle.  Again colored with pencils/oms.
I created this winter scene and made it even more dimensional by cutting out the tree and having the limb extend out into open space to allow the birdhouse to hang from a piece of twine.  I also added liquid applique for a "snowy" effect.  It is glittery too, but it doesn't show in the pic.   The stamp set used is by Crafty Lounge.  There is no name on the wood tree stamp I used for the background.

 I used this stamp set again from Technique Tuesdays to create this stair step card.
The pumpkins on this one were made with an oval punch and two different colors of card stock that had textured dots.  I used the single wheat stamp in multiple distress ink colors to create the background panel.
I've been wanting to use this giant pumpkin stamp for the longest time and finally did.  I'm not used to having such a large image dominate a card like this one does, but I LOVE pumpkins and I love the vintage look of this one.

OK, that's it for another Wednesday Evening Post.  I'm off to see what you have all been up to, so you'll be seeing a comment from me in the very near future.  Can't wait to see what you've been up to.  Until then, thanks so much for stopping by and looking at my crap stuff.  LOL

Pic of the Week
Hope you all are having a great week!


Curt O'Brien

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

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Hey All!

I hope this post finds you well, happy and safe.  I've been thinking so much of my blogging friends on the East coast and hear that more nasty weather is still in store.  My thoughts are with you.

I promise this post has nothing to do with pictures of my house but of cards!  I've been feverishly making thank you cards to send to those who came to my open house and brought gifts.  So here they are:
Ever since I've seen the "triple stamping" technique on SCS, I wanted to try so this was my first attempt.  I wanted to keep it warm and simple.  The flower images have copper Stickles centers to give it just a little bling.  I think the next time I do this, I'll do a little more background stamping.
This is one made with the SU French Foliage stamp set.  The background piece was ran through  the CB in a woodgrain embossing folder.
This card was done with a wonderful stamp by Deadbeat Designs.  I stamped them with Distress Inks.
I used a single leaf stamp from the "French Foliage" set again on this one but kept stamping it in different Distress Inks on top of the image to fill the panel.
I love this new stamp set from Technique Tuesdays.  
This was a super fast and easy card since my friend Sue in Washington sent all the components to me (thank you Sue!!!).  I just had to put it all together, stamp the thank you, glue on a couple of leaves and attach the copper brads.
I tried to go for a European postcard look on this one.  The dot on the "i" is done in red Stickles.
I shamelessly used this hilarious sentiment on the front and inside.  The inside says "It's pasture birthday."  LOL  It just makes me laugh.  I stamped and colored the barn scene and punch/pieced my little sheep.  This was for my Aunt's birthday which I missed because of my heart attack.

And finally, this is a note card set I made for a friend that I used to work with who has faithfully followed my blog since I left work.  This is a Mo Manning image (whom I adore)  I colored them with my colored pencils and oms.  My friend Brent and his wife have Chihuahuas and I thought they would get a big kick out of these.  The card box is my standard go to box from Gina K. Designs.  You can find the instructions to make it HERE.   Instead of keeping the box closed with a ribbon tied, I simply used velcro dots to keep it closed.

Well, there you have it.  I'm working on Thanksgiving cards now and hopefully will have the design figured out and some cards to show for next post.

Thanks so much for coming to see me!  Thanks to for all the wonderful comments you leave me.  Every one of them mean so much to me, not just because of what they say, but because you took the time to leave it.  And I appreciate that so much.

Hugs to all of you!

Curt O'Brien

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

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Gruesome Greets All!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN to you all (yes Bonnie that means to you too!)  I hope you are all having a creepy good day in your neck of the haunted woods.  It is cold and grey here with the wind blowing the leaves around.  I didn't get many Halloween cards done this year since my "heart event" so no pics of cards.  However, I did decorate the house and front courtyard for the holiday, so I thought I would share those photos with you.  Take a look:

This is my courtyard as you come to the front door

These are the inside decorations:

Printed creepy photos off of the internet, framed them and set them around.

Spider web lace draped on lamps

Disgusting Dining Room (Plates say "Poison")

Jars I made - brains, tarantula, skeleton fingers 

Bloody Hand Print on Glass at Front Door

Gunther Sleeping with Rat on Pumpkin (real pumpkin)

I Made This Miniature Graveyard Topiary

Real Pumpkin (Isn't it beautiful???)

Witch's Broom I made (painted handle black, added various ribbons and added weird markings on the handle with Stickles)
Something Creepy in the Fireplace!

Pumpkin "Throwing Up Dip"  LOL

Baked Werewolf Hand!

I got a lot of my ideas from Pinterest (the meatloaf hand, graveyard terrarium, bones in fireplace).  I am so hooked on Pinterest now.  Such a great idea for a website.  If you've not been there, go join - it's free and what a great place to go for ideas!

Picture of the Week:

Thanks for visiting.  And thanks too for the great comments you left on my last post.  I can't tell you how much they are appreciated.  I love reading what you have to say and thank you for the time you spend to do it.

Again, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!  Love you guys!


Curt O'Brien

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