Friday, May 27, 2011

Night Ruler Bloomed!

Yesterday our iris, Night Ruler, bloomed for the first time. The day before I took my sister shopping and helped a little with her set up for a garden tour later in the day. While she checked the iris and other things in her garden I took a number of photos. So you'll be seeing more iris soon. It was really too bad that the rains came right at the start so almost no one came. Rats! Our weather is so wet it is getting crazy.

Still, we are so happy with our own iris! I used the May recipe challenge at MScraps to get me away from the rut I seem to have settled into this month. The recipe begins with two papers NOT in neutral colors, so that was good. Now, Helen, here it is in the very first bloom.
Designer Credits:
-Oscrap collab TrOpical: background: Danielle Young; patterned paper: Traci Murphy; green frame: Vicki Stegall; blue frame: Biograffiti; white paint: ctm
-stitching, white stamp, leaf spray (blended): Corinthia by Kitty Designs
-turquoise button: Merkeley Designs in Oscraps Collab Life
-pale brad: Sketchbook Artistry no. 1 by Sue Cummings
-double leaf: Black and Blue by Paprika
-green leaf, metal button: Love Poppies by Celine Designs
fonts: Sybil Green, Ahnberg, Pea Beth

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Iris About to Bloom

It seems like summer is here. We got up to an official 85 F. on Sunday, all the trees are fully leafed out and lilacs, dogwood, and so forth are fading away. The grackles nesting behind us have fledged, I think I heard fledgling starlings the other day and robins are feeding young in the nest. It wasn't really that warm today, but it was so nice having open windows and hearing an oriole singing. Meanwhile, Dick is eagerly awaiting the first blooms of an iris my sister gave him. He had greatly admired its very dark color and elegant form. She warned him not to expect it to bloom the first year which was last year. She was right about that, but it now has two bloom stalks with three buds showing on each. The first one will open very soon. I thought a free template from "Dumpty" would be fun for a photo of it today.
Designer Credits:
-template 110521: freebie by Dumpty
-papers, butterfly: Esprit poudré, Part 4 by Céline D. and Dydyge
fonts: Snell Blk BT, Pea Beth

Monday, May 16, 2011

More blooms on our hibiscus

Our hibiscus didn't bloom over the winter indoors though it grew a good bit. The first of April it went back onto our enclosed upstairs porch where it gets lots of light. It promptly showed two buds which opened on May 2 and May 9. It is such a delight. Hope it will make more buds and bloom over the summer. The photo effect incorporates reduced saturation, pencil effect and blending.
Designer Credits:
-template 110510: freebie by Dumpty
-darkest paper, hearts: Home Sweet Home by Maya de Groot
-all other papers, word art: Rachel by Lydia Designs
fonts: EngravrsRoman BT, First Order Shadow

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Raining on our spring...

It just seems to keep on raining! Now it has turned chilly too. There is a camera challenge this month on concept photography. I brought my wistfulness over the rain to bear on it.
Designer Credits:
all Oscraps Collaborative - Life
-background, stamp (blended) by ZuzannaH Designs
-gray paper by Lydia Designs
-blue paper by Julianna Kneipp
-dotted paper by Cinzia Designs
-flourish by Merkeley Designs
-pennant by Kitty Designs
fonts: Pea Aimee, Brisk, harrison

Monday, May 9, 2011

Violets in the Grass

The violets in the grass keep expanding and are in both the front and back yards. We love them and hate to see them go when the grass is cut, but it has been so wet Dick hasn't cut it recently so yesterday I got some nice photos. I thought they were apt for an Emily Dickinson quote I needed to scrap for a challenge.
Designer Credits:
all from Oscraps Collaboration - Life
-background by ZuzannaH Designs
-gray paper by Lydia K Designs
-border by one little bird
-frame by Merkeley Designs
-flower branch (recolored) by MaryPop Designs
fonts: Lithograph, harrison, King Things Wrote, etc.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Reflect on a new technique

This month's creative technique challenge contains a surprisingly easy tutorial on creating a water reflection to a photo. I had a lot of fun doing this one, a pedestrian bridge over a freeway along the lakeshore. The bridge isn't ON the water, but quite near. The tutorial (HERE) on creating a reflection was great and led me to use this photo from a rare snow-free day last February.
Designer Credits:
-papers, word art: November Rain by TaylorMade Designs
-doodle: Trail It by Merkeley Designs

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Pleasure of Nesting Robins

American Robins are so numerous among our human dwellings and a pleasure to share space with. Sometimes they will follow us around the yard when we might be digging something up for them. Right now we can look at a nest on the window ledge next door, but so far they aren't incubating there. Last Saturday we came across a nest in Lake View with the female sitting. She wasn't very concerned and of course our pictures are taken with telephoto lenses from a little distance. Dick took this photo and since she is looking over her shoulder you completely miss the distinctive bright orange front. I used it for a color challenge that also required lifting a page from another digi-scrapper named Trudy.
Designer Credits:
-left of LO by Trudy (taxed4ever): Quote Challenge
-background: The Gift by Fei-fei's Stuff
-word art, border: Sunrise Sunset by Fei-fei's Stuff
-mask: Bohemian August by Miss Crow's Magickal Emporium
-gray swirl: Fresh Start by Ashalee Wall
-brown swirl (darkened): FALLing In Love by ZuzanaH Designs
-leaves: Shimmer by Kitty Designs
font: Century Gothic

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Lovely Memory in March

The memory is a simple one of time spent together enjoying the world around us. This photo was taken by Dick when we had a small flock of Cedar Waxwings feeding low. The page design is based on a "web inspiration" challenge. This was at the same time as the raccoon looking out its hole in the tree.
Designer Credits:
-papers, flower, leaf (some blending): Primavera by Maya de Groot
-word art: Sketchbook Artistry no. 1 by Sue Cummings
font: Boopee

Monday, May 2, 2011

Flicker - a Different Sort of Woodpecker

Flickers are fairly large woodpeckers that spend time feeding on the ground as they particularly like ants. They are also more colorful than the usual woodpeckers in most of North America. They have a large patch of white on the rump that shows when they fly. Those in the east have bright yellow shafts to their wing and tail feathers and in the west that is red. Flickers migrate and when they are moving we might see good numbers of them. They are here for the summer now and I was so pleased to get some good pictures of one that cooperated on Saturday. I used one in a template challenge for May.
Designer Credits:
-template: May Copycat Challenge based on "Chilly" by OceanWideDesigns: 
-background: Shimmer by Kitty Designs
-paint splat, scatter: Sketchbook Artistry no. 1 by Sue Cummings
-staples: Sunrise Sunset by Fei-fei's Stuff
-ribbon, gold paper: Winter Escape from Creations by Tinamarie
-deep colored paper: from TrOpical Oscraps Collab by Maya de Groot
-pale paper: from Party On, Oscraps blog train, by Ashalee Wall
-diamond pattern paper: Family Tree by Joanne Brisebois
-dotted paper: Home Sweet Home by Maya de Groot
fonts: harrison, Hurry Up, Hans Hand