Er... um... you may have noticed that I neglected to post a sample for Jen's Sketch For You To Try on Saturday. It wasn't that I didn't like this week's sketch -- it's fabulous, as always, and in fact I will be utilizing it tomorrow for the My Favorite Things' Wednesday Stamp Club Challenge.
And it's not that I'm not terribly impressed with September's Guest Designer, Tori Wild. In fact, I gave her a shout-out during The Cat's Pajamas Customer Blog Hop a couple of weeks ago for her delightful (and ultimately Swanky-Stamper-worthy) entry.
No, it's that when I sat down to do a little stamping last Thursday, I was seized with guilt. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I realized I was absolutely down-to-the-wire and in dire need of getting invitations put together for Carter's birthday party. It's this coming Sunday -- the 12th -- and I had to get something out the next day to ensure invitees would have at least a week's notice. And, owing to Carter's longstanding devotion to the #1 blue engine, it's a Thomas the Tank Engine-themed affair.
What to do? Go out and try to find some store-bought Thomas invitations? Or make my love for Carter tangible by finally put to use those Thomas stamps I have from my days as a designer for the now-defunct Cornish Heritage Farms? Those Thomas stamps were one of the big reasons I started designing for CHF in the first place, you know. How many opportunities does a stamper have to be an official designer for her child's hero? The worlds of stamping and toys don't collide like that every day. Of course, once I joined CHF, there was never another Thomas release. Well, there were plenty of Thomas Kinkade releases, but not Thomas the Tank Engine...
Anyway -- on Thursday afternoon I had a choice to make. And as much as I love you girls and hold the SFYTT in the highest of esteem, this was probably going to be the last time those Thomas stamps were ever going to make themselves useful.
There was no way in heck I was about to color 15 or so of these detailed images, so I decided to heat emboss them with some sparkly Sapphire embossing powder from Powder Keg. And, thinking that would look a little plain on ordinary white cardstock, I went online to find some free printable graph paper, which I printed out in red on Georgia Pacific cardstock.
The yellow background paper was created by inking the large Thomas track backgrounder stamp in Versamark, and stamping it off onto YoYo Yellow paper. I know y'all make fun of me for using YoYo Yellow all the time, but it comes in handy on projects like this!
I heat embossed a sentiment from the (no longer available) Mona Lisa Moments Train Sentiments set in China red embossing powder, tied off some Cherry Divine Twine from The Cat's Pajamas, added a couple of brads, and rounded a corner.
For being fairly simple, I think it turned out pretty cute. And best of all, Carter LOVES them! He walked around with the prototype all evening long as I set up a table in the living room with all of my supplies and churned them out, finally wrapping things up around midnight.
The next morning, I got these babies in the mailbox and we promptly left town for the holiday weekend to go watch Truman in a soccer tournament. Though I felt a little guilty for not doing my SFYTT, I was also feeling pretty Mother-of-the-Yearish, sure that when those envelopes were opened on Saturday, I would be the subject of awe and envy as a chorus of "How does she do it?" rang throughout northeastern Oklahoma.
I should have called you, Jen, on the five-plus hour trek to the tournament site, which was actually in your neck of the woods, but I was overcome by the stench of Truman's reeking equipment bag and the narcolepsy that immediately hits me whenever I am a passenger in a vehicle. That, and I was dreading telling you that I would be flaking out.
But know that I received my karmic due: I came home Sunday night to find that my mother, who took it upon herself to bring in our mail while we were out of town, removed the invitations on Friday from our mailbox before the letter carrier could pick them up. How she mistook 15 identically shaped envelopes bearing our return address and no postmark to be incoming mail, I can't fathom, but nevermind...
I had to send an email and/or call the invitees as the invitations won't be getting mailed until today. *sigh*
So, anyway, there you have it. My confession. I hope you will find it in your hearts to forgive me. Until then, I remain your humble servant.