Friday, February 19, 2010

Owl together with polkadots!

I seriously love these owls. They are just adorable. This is a little card that we'll be making at a workshop I am running this morning. It's just a fun bright card. My blog candy from Just add ink arrived the other day which included this bright and chirpy Real red polkadot grosgrain ribbon. Isn't it fun? And you can use the other side as well to just have plain real red grosgrain with the stitch down the sides. I also love the little curly label punch bundle which contains the curly label punch and four stamps that co-ordinate. This is what I have used for the sentiment. I was thinking this could be a card for male or female, young or old... Maybe to boy it up a bit you could just tie a knot in the ribbon instead of the tie... but other than that I think it would suit most tastes!

Thanks so much to the girls from Just add ink for my fun new things including this ribbon! I love it. I also received a background stamp (my first ever) so will have to show you some ideas with that very soon! Go check out their website for some awesome challenges, tutorials and ideas.

Happy Stamping!
Love, Claire

PS Contact me if you'd like to host a Sale-a-bration workshop as my diary is filling up!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Hello girls!

Shooshi is Ethan's name for Sushi :)

When I started this blog I mentioned that I might post recipes but really the task of photographing my food has just been too huge. I am not a great photographer - still learning even some very basic tips but I thought I would give this recipe a go.

Sushi is a healthy food, really quite easy to make and so cheap! We often visit Sushi Train and can spend about $25 there as a family for lunch but these were so cheap to make at home that I don't know that we'll be back at the Sushi train for a while! I will include some costings so that you can see what I mean. It was also fun to make as a family. I prepared all the ingredients and then we all had a go at rolling our own sushi.

Lets start with a cute photo of my little chef:

Get your ingredients ready: (Everything I purchased from my local Coles so they're accessible ingredients. Check out the Asian food section.)

  • 5 x Nori sheets ($2.89 pack of 10) $1.45
  • 1 cup Sushi rice ($4.27 for 1kg) $1.07
  • 2 tblsp Rice wine vinegar ($1.99 for 250ml) $0.25
  • 1 1/2 tblsp sugar (pantry)
  • Kewpie Mayo ($4.19 for 300g) $1.05
  • Carrot, Cucumber (I used less than half one), Baby corn, Avocado and Tuna (half a large tin) for fillings.


  1. Combine 1 cup rice with 1.5 cups water in a saucepan with a lid. Bring to the boil.
  2. Reduce heat to low, make sure lid is on firmly and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Whilst rice simmers combine Rice wine vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan. Stir over heat until sugar is disolved. Set aside off heat.
  4. Turn heat off under rice after 20 minutes. Stir with a fork to fluff rice up. Pour vinegar mixture over hot rice and gently stir through.
  5. Tip rice onto baking paper lined tray (I used a cookie sheet/tray) and spread out gently. Allow to cool.
  6. When ready to assemble your sushi place one Nori sheet onto a bamboo sushi mat. The Nori is crispy at this point. The rice softens it. With moist fingers pick up the rice and spread over Nori sheet right to the edges except leave a 2cm space at the far end of the sheet.

7. Place your fillings onto the rice. Here I have used tuna, cucumber, carrot and kewpie mayo.

8. Using the bamboo mat gently roll the sushi up. Apply some pressure so that the sushi rolls compactly but not so much as to split the Nori sheet or ooze your filings out the ends. Moisten the end of the nori sheet with water and rub gently to seal.

9. Slice the Sushi into 1.5cm pieces (not pictured) or leave as hand rolls as below. Use a serrated knife for this

The other thing that I love about sushi is you can make it in the afternoon and refrigerate only to pull dinner out of the fridge a moment before serving. Great for a hot night when you can't face turning on the oven.

Other filling ideas are: cooked prawns, teriyaki chicken, smoked salmon, cream cheese, capsicum.... any other ideas out there?

Happy sushi rolling!

Love, Claire

Monday, February 15, 2010

You're too kind....

I am spoilt for choice with some beautiful new stamp sets at the moment! I am really enjoying using Whimsical words which is one of our Sale-a-bration sets which I received for free! So I knew I had to use this set in my entry for this weeks Just Add Ink challenge 4 which is a colour challenge. The colours are:

Which is exciting for me because I LOVE Kraft cardstock and Rose red is one of my favourite Stampin' Up colours! Woo!

Don't you just love the little More Mustard button? They are so gorgeous. I tied a little linen thread through her and adhered her with a glue dot. The ruffled ribbon was inspired by Lisa Johnston. Isn't that such a great idea? Having the stitching down the sides means you can just pull on the thread to ruffle your ribbon. So easy.
It might be a little tricky to see but for the flowers I stamped them in versamark on Sage shadow and then sprinkled with clear embossing powder and heat set. So they have a lovely darker tone to them and a nice sheen in real life which the photos haven't really captured.

And here is the final product. A thank you or appreciation card.

Ingredients: Cardstock: Kraft, Rose red, Sage shadow.

Ink: Versamark, Rose red

Stamps: Whimsical words, Eastern blooms

Accessories: Double stitched Rose red ribbon, Playground designer buttons (More mustard), Linen thread, Glue dots, Stampin dimensionals, Scallop circle punch and 1 3/8 circle punch.

I also want to say a big thank you to Amanda at Just Add Ink for the photography tips. It really did help me out with these photos.

Thanks for looking! Happy Stamping!!

Love, Claire

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Saturday morning

Well we've had a busy morning! We started playing with the cuttlebug with my 4 year old son Ethan because he loves helping me make the sandwich and rolling the cartridge through! So he embossed and cut a few shapes and then I did a few for myself. Including the circles below. I of course have on my wish list the Stampin' Up Circle scissors as they look so versatile and I hear easy to use. They are on the last page of our Summer mini catalogue.
Then it was to vacuuming, baking chocolate banana bread and finally onto making my entry (using my circles) for this weeks challenge over at Just add ink. This week it is a layout challenge:

Cardstock: Garden green, pink pirouette, Rose red, Whisper white
Ink: Pink pirouette, Rose red
Ribbons: 5/8"striped grosgrain Pink pirouette, Double stitched grosgrain Rose red
Accesories: Gorgeous Kiwi kiss designer button (I threaded a teeny tiny thread of Kiwi cardstock through the button to look like thread).
Well I better go check on that choc banana bread... the aroma is divine!
Happy Stamping!
Love, Claire

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Just add hearts!

Well I have been thinking about all things Valentine's with it being February and all and then the lovely girls at Just Add Ink have come up with a super challenge for the week called "Just add hearts!" What a great idea. This is my contribution:

I wanted to go for something a bit masculine so started on the basic black and I have done a bit of tearing and distressing edges and scrunching the little circle to give it that kind of worn in look... I never really considered the stamp set Always to be a Valentines day set but the sentiments are really sweet for the special man in your life. This one says 'always on my mind-forever in my heart.' There is another one that says 'You mean everything to me' - also a delightful sentiment for your valentine!
Stamp set: Always
Cardstock: Basic black, Kiwi kiss, Whisper white
Ink: Whisper white craft, Kiwi kiss
Accessories: Kiwi kiss satin ribbon and jumbo grommets (Summer mini catalogue)
You can always take the whisper white ink up a notch by heat embossing it to really make it stand out.
Happy Stamping!
Love, Claire