Sunday, January 31, 2010


Today we’re saying good-bye to two inaugural design team members, Amber and Merry. They have both been with me since Day One and I’m so thankful they helped me get things off the ground. Please stop by and wish them well as they move on to other crafty journeys. Bye girls!!!

This is the first of some upcoming changes here at IHP. I did make one change to the store, based on some of the survey feedback. Now, instead of alphabetically, items are listed reverse chronologically with the newest items/items recently changed being listed first. This way when you look at the sale and new pages, the top items are the most recently added items.

There is still the search function, manufacturer drop down (on the homepage) and under the category Open Stock you can view By Collection Name, in case you’re having a hard time finding something specific.

Perhaps the most major change is that beginning tomorrow, Feb. 1, the free shipping threshold will now be $50. I’ve always prided myself on offering the lowest free shipping around but honestly, with the postal increases I just can’t keep it this low any longer.

There were two postal increase in 2009 and I DID NOT raise my prices or up my threshold at all. But this recent one at the beginning of January was too much for me to absorb. Even raising my threshold to $50, I am still the lowest around to offer free shipping and to not have any restrictions on what “qualifies” or to charge extra for Priority shipping. I don’t have any restrictions or limitations on what you can order to qualify – it is just a set dollar amount.

Before I made this decision I looked at our competition because it was important to me to remain at the top in customer service and to definitely stay competitive. I did some comparisons to our top competitors and this is what I found:

Competitor #1

Free with $75 of qualifying items (12x12 paper does not qualify),

Competitor #2

Free with $85 order, ($3.95-$9.25 for less than threshold)

Competitor #3

Free with $100 of qualifying items (sale items do not qualify), $4.95 for less than threshold

Competitor #4

Free with $150 order, $4.95-$8.80 for less than threshold

Competitor #5

No free shipping option, $5 for all orders

Competitor #6

No free shipping option, minimum charge $6.30

Competitor #7

Free with $75 of qualifying items, must pay upgrade fee of $2.50 for Priority Mail

Competitor #8

Free with $55, $6.95 flat rate for lower than the threshold

See that? We’re still lower than everyone on this list! I hope you understand! And of course there’s still our great prices (almost ALWAYS below MSRP), super duper speedy shipping and stellar customer service/response.

I’ll be back tomorrow with a crafty post for you. Thanks for popping in today and for your understanding!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Survey winner! AND my first CHA delivery!

25dollar First, thank you to each and every one of you who completed the survey. I got a lot of really great feedback and think that these occasional surveys are something I may do again in the future. Of course, you’re always welcome to email me feedback if you’ve got something to say. A few of you did send me extra comments when you replied and I really appreciate that. I want to make the store as easy to use as possible (I got some feedback about the organization of the new and sale items and I’m checking to see if that can be sorted by date rather than alphabetically) and offer the best products with the best customer service. I can only do this with your feedback about what you’d like to see and how I’m doing. So please, don’t hesitate to ever email or call me if you have comments!

And now…congratulations to CAMMY WALL! She is our random winner of the $25 gift certificate. I’ll be emailing you your gift certificate code later today.

Thanks to everyone…and I truly mean that, who participated. Have a great weekend. I hope to get some stamping in but first I need to unpack from CHA!

ETA: HOLY COW! My first CHA delivery just showed up. All the new ultra fine Flower Soft. And I thought I had the fastest shipping around! :) It'll be up on the store later today.

Five Minute Friday: Ornament Thanks, again!

Happy Friday!  Are you tired of my cards yet?  I told you I made a bunch of them!

I used a scrap of Ivory cs and embossed it with my A2 Snowflake folder.  Then I wrapped a scrap of red faux suede ruffled edge ribbon, finished it off with a die-cut ornament from the Good Cheer line and stamped my Chelsea Sentiments in Palette Noir.  The DP is also from the Good Cheer line. 

Have a great weekend!  Thanks for stopping by today!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

There's No Place Like Home!

I had the most fantastic week with my girls and with SO many new people that I'm proud to call my friends. I can't wait to see them all again!

I've got a lot of things to do to catch up so please be patient for a little while so I can get back on track. The survey response has been amazingly overwhelming and I am itching to read each and every one and digest your feedback. My goal is to still have a random winner picked for Friday.

I'll pop back in once I adjust to regular life again and get some stamping done!

Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Doggie Treats and Christmas card

platter Oops! I found another lost project that I never posted.

Back when I was baking all of my Christmas cookies and making cookie platters like these, I decided I needed to make some doggie cookies (from my favorite doggie cookbook, Better Food for Dogs) too! So…I did! And then I needed a way to package them!doggietreatsgift

So I used one of the great Lauren Meader’s templates and made these cutie little boxes using some Heidi Grace paper and a little strip of Shawl paper for the edge. I used my Circle Nesties to cut the window and the tags on both the box and the card. The sheer red polka dot ribbon and metallic gold string on the box was my finishing touch.

The box is held together with i {stick} papers, of course. The greeting is from Jolly Christmas and is stamped in Palette Noir. Our vet, our poop lady (the BEST $10 I spend every week!), our obedience school classmates & teacher and a few friends got these.

Sorry I forgot to share this earlier but isn’t it nice to remember Christmas now that it is all over? *wink*

Oh…speaking of Nesties…don’t forget that all of the new ones being released at CHA are on PREORDER right now. Don’t wait – Spellbinders is ALWAYS backordered almost immediately after CHA so to ensure that you get yours, be sure to preorder today! I will be basing my CHA purchasing on these preorders.

Thanks for stopping by today! I leave bright and early on Saturday to head to California for CHA and meet up with a few of the design team for our DT dinner on Saturday night. YAY! I’m so excited to see my girls!

Have a great day!

Amazing day!!

I just got in from a great night with some amazing new and old friends. I can't even begin to tell you how much we all laughed.

But, first we had a lot of drama today when Lynn's bag (purse and all) was stolen on the floor. Thankfully it was recovered intact about 2 hours later in the Martha booth.

So to celebrate Susanna, me, Lynn, Lori, Deb and my two new buddies Kim (Burmeister) and Sankari all went out for delicious food (and alcohol!) At Fire and Ice. YUMMO. We were there for three and a half hours brainstorming, sharing, laughing uncontrollably and just generally having a fantastic time. This is the best part of CHA for me. All the new stuff is awesome but I love all the peeps!!

I got LOTS more goodies today and I'll have some *very* exciting news to share soon.

Some shopping highlights from today:

- stamps, stamps and more stamps! Stampendous, Hero Arts, Stampavie, Our Craft Lounge
- the new Scor-Pal buddy (a cuter, smaller, more portable, perfect for cardmakers, improved version of the original)
- Pink Paislee
- new fine Flower Soft
- Maya Road
- Spellbinders (shipping early-mid March)

There's some more but I've got to keep some secrets, right??

Thanks for popping in!

Monday, January 25, 2010


Deb is fabulous!

Tired feet!

Wow! My feet are exhausted. Actually, as my friend Susanna said "my everything is tired!"

But it was a great day. And I bought lots of amazing stuff! Coming soon highlights...

- all 3 new Graphic 45 lines in 8x8 pads
- all new Basic Grey lines including their new kraft line
- lots of new yummy ribbons including pompom trim and some gorgeous taffeta that is kind of like a strong bodied silk. GORGEOUS sheen to it.
- new My Mind's Eye papers
- new and old October Afternoon so I'll be fully stocked!
- BLING baby! New Zva!
- Glossy Accents in white and black!
- SEI, all 3 new lines in 6x6
- Cosmo Cricket, all new lines and replenished old ones

Tomorrow I have an exciting breakfast meeting in the morning and then back to the show for another day. On the agenda is Spellbinders (we stopped in today but I didn't put my order together yet), Hero Arts, OCL, Stampendous and Copic. And, we'll see what else I come across!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, January 24, 2010


AHHH!! 6x6 kraft paper pack from BG. 6x6 manilla ledger pack too!!!


Just a quick post before I head to bed...

We had our DT dinner tonight and had a blast. Ashley (from our Petal Press team) joined me, Lynn, Deb, Lori and Kendra. It was so great to meet Ashley in person and spend some good time with the other girls.

Then Ashley and Kendra ran off to other engagements while the rest of us met up with Susanna from PCP and headed to the huge SEI party. We all got gorgeous shirts from their new line, Claire. GORGEOUS. Oh, and we each got a sampler pack of paper that has one sheet of every new paper from their new lines. YAY!!!

I ordered all 3. Their new Happy Day birthday paper is my fav.

In other news Spellbinders is not only releasing big scalloped ovals but also squares, circles and rectangles. SO EXCITED about those!

I can't update the preorder section from here but feel free to leave a comment if you think you're going to want these other shapes.

That's it for now. Thanks for all the responses so far to the survey.

Hopefully my internet will cooperate from the floor tomorrow.

Stay tuned!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Five Minute Friday: Bell Ornament Thanks

Happy Friday!  I’m back with a Five Minute Friday.  I’m continuing my series of holiday thank you cards.  I took a scrap of Ivory cs and embossed it with my A2 Snowflake folder.  Then I wrapped a scrap of red faux suede ruffled edge ribbon, finished it off with a die-cut bell ornament from the Good Cheer line and stamped my Chelsea Sentiments in Palette Noir.  The DP is also from the Good Cheer line.  I used a rhinestone brad from my stash to finish it off.

That’s it!  Five minutes!  Have a great weekend!  Thanks for stopping in today!  I leave bright and early for CHA tomorrow!  I’ll try to do some posting from there but I’ve got some real posts scheduled just in case!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

DT Challenge: 4x6 Calendar Case

Today’s DT challenge is to use these 4x6 CD cases. I’m using mine to make a desk calendar, just like I did last year.

I printed out the calendar from and grouped them into seasons. I wanted them to have some continuity so I used the smallest of the Labels One that I sponged with Palette inks before I popped them out and various glimmer ribbons along the top. I also selected all stripy papers to help tie things together.


Here is my Winter design.

The embellishments are some leftovers from MME Colorful Christmas chipboard. The DP is the shimmery, beautiful Starry Eyed glitter paper.


For my Spring layout I used some daisies from my stash and a cutie little felt ladybug from my Lemonade Woolies. The DP is the backside to Play with Owl glitter paper. I love Best Creation’s paper. Their glitter does not come off.


For Summer I used some more felt embellishments from the Lemonade Woolies and paired it with some paper from my Colorful Christmas pack.

And finally….


for my Fall layout I used some more MME paper, this time from my Boo To You Collection Kit (on sale now!). I used another little feltie from my Indian Summer Woolies.

So there you have it! Please be sure to stop by all of the other DT members this month and check out their projects.


Thanks for stopping by! I’ m busy getting ready to leave for CHA at the end of the week.

A brief note about ordering – orders WILL NOT BE SHIPPING from Saturday-Wednesday. All orders received during this time will go out on Thursday January 28.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Five Minute Friday: Musical Ornament Thanks & request

Happy Friday! First I want to wish my friend and DT member Lynn a very happy birthday. I'll see you at CHA soon and can give you a big hug then!

The CHA sneaks have begun! Cosmo Cricket has some on their blog and they're running a little contest. Can you do me a favor and hop over to THIS POST and give i {heart} papers a little shout out? THANKS!!!

For today's Five Minute Friday card, just like last week’s, I took a scrap of Ivory cs and embossed it with my A2 Snowflake folder. Then I wrapped a scrap of red faux suede ruffled edge ribbon, finished it off with a die-cut ornament from the Good Cheer line and stamped my Chelsea Sentiments in Palette Noir. The DP is also from the Good Cheer line. I tied a little scrap of metallic gold string at the top as a hanger.

That’s it! Five minutes! Have a great weekend! Thanks for popping in! Be sure to stop by on Tuesday for an IHP DT Challenge.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Spellbinders now available for PREORDER!

spellbinderslogo Just a quick note to let you know I’ve made all the new Spellbinders CHA dies available for pre-order.  Please be sure to put all of your pre-order items on ONE order.  These orders will not ship until February or early March (according to Spellbinders) but I am taking orders for them now so you can be one of the first to get your hands on them! 

Spellbinders routinely sells out of dies immediately after CHA because of the high demand.  CHA orders always get filled but then the next shipment could be many weeks after that.  I will be using my pre-orders to determine how many dies to purchase at CHA…so don’t wait or you might miss out!


I will be updating this section as more CHA sneaks are revealed so stay tuned! 

Thanks for popping by today!  Remember there’s LOTS of stuff on sale now to help make room for all of the upcoming new goodies from CHA.  Won’t you help?  :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Ellie and Juliette


Oops!  I just realized this was saved as draft and I never posted it!

This is one of my favorite sets, Birthday Wishes from our exclusive line of stamps from Chickengirl Design.  This is Ellie, (stamped in Palette Charcoal) as I’ve named her.  She is colored with Prismacolor pencils.  The DP is from the SEI Juliette line and is called First Kiss.  It is cut with Labels One and wrapped with 1” Satin ribbon.  The brad holding the little tag is from the Bittersweet Glazed Brads and the greeting is stamped in Palette Toile Pink.

So there you have it!  I’m busy getting ready for CHA (that’s why there are about 800 items on sale right now – as they sell out they’re disappearing).

Thanks for stopping by today!  Have a great day!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Five Minute Friday: Snowflake Thanks

Happy Friday!  I’m back with a Five Minute Friday card after a short holiday break.  I’ve been working on some CAS holiday thank you cards and this is one of them.  I took a scrap of Ivory cs and embossed it with my A2 Snowflake folder.  Then I wrapped a scrap of red faux suede ruffled edge ribbon, finished it off with a die-cut snowflake from the Good Cheer line and stamped my Chelsea Sentiments in Palette Noir.  The rhinestone brad is from my stash.

That’s it!  Easy!  Five minutes!  I’ll have some more styles of these quick thank you notes to show you soon.

Have a great weekend!  Thanks for popping by!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Netflix gift

Hi there!  I’m still having a bit of a hard time getting back into the swing of things after the holidays.  We took the tree down for recycling last night and it reminded that that I hadn’t shared this gift packaging I  made over the holiday.  John gave his grandparents a Netflix starter gift (we {heart} Netflix) and needed a way to give it to them without just handing them a printed out piece of paper.

So…I put together this popcorn box which I cut and glued the stripes onto (because I didn’t have any DP that worked!) and made this card to go with it.  The gift certificate information is pasted on the inside of the card.  I used i {stick} papers redline tape to put the box together and then wrapped it with some red twill for accent.

I’ll be back tomorrow with Five Minute Friday!

Monday, January 4, 2010

One Little Word 2010 (long post)

clock Where did the time go?? The years are just flying by.  Sheesh. 
Happy New Year my blog friends!  If you’ve been a follower here for about a year then you know last year I joined in Ali Edwards’ One Little Word challenge.  My word for 2009 was balance.  I wanted to make a concerted effort to keep everything in check and learn to say no (or yes in some cases!) more often.  I think I did a pretty decent job in 2009 – at least it feels like I did.  I don’t think I got overwhelmed too much or too often and I worked hard to keep it all balanced without any one thing (work, personal, friends, etc.) taking a huge hit.  I even went on vacation a few times and things didn’t fall apart. (I want to do this more often now – it’s fun!)
So, I think I can keep that going alright and move onto a new word.   But first, an abbreviated (as much as possible) review of 2009…
2009 was a pretty mixed year good and bad.  For many people Ibandit easter 2   hold dear to my heart there was a lot of loss and sadness.  In March, John and I lost our 12 year old beloved dog, Bandit.  It look us many, many months to open our hearts and home to a new dog but in late October we adopted Mr. Barbo and couldn’t be happier.  We still miss Bandit terribly and I’m sure he’s trying to bite Mr. Barbo from doggy heaven but for now Barbo is safe here with us and has been the perfect fit for us. cutedog He’s ridiculously cute, cuddly and just incredibly sweet.  Plus he has a pretty cool and amazing backstory.  You can read some of the news coverage about his rescue here on his Facebook fanpage!
In July John and I took our first ever real vacation together since college, more than a decade ago.  With Bandit being so difficult (when he was alive) he couldn’t be boarded or safely left with anyone but one of us so for many, many years we each vacationed separately.  For my 35th Picture 442blog birthday we went to Niagara Falls and it was amazing.  On our way back over to the US we even stopped and met (in person!) my DT Coordinator, Tracy and her hubby for lunch. 
A short time after returning from Niagara Falls I jetted off to CHA with a huge chunk of my fabulous design team and boy did we have a blast.  July was definitely a highlight of my year.
In August the store launched our very first exclusive stamp line from Chicken Girl Design.  And then again in September with our new line from The Petal Press.
cupcake1 In October the store celebrated its one year anniversary with a week long celebration of challenges, prizes and lots of fun.  Thank you to each of you for helping us reach that incredible milestone!
henryyoda[4] November brought tremendous sadness and unspeakable grief to inaugural DT member Sarah Anderson, who joined with me last year to do One Little Word.  Her word for 2009 was believe and I made her this little frame as a gift.  On Nov. 2, 2009 Sarah’s 3 year old son, Henry, died suddenly of an unknown cause.  They have since learned that both he and his little brother had an undiagnosed immune deficiency disorder.  Henry’s little body had a bacterial infection it overtook his body and he was gone in a flash.  The next few weeks were filled with questions, tears and eventually fundraisers to help build a memorial for Henry at his favorite zoo/park
Henry’s passing struck me inexplicably.  I never met him.  In fact, I’ve never met Sarah in person either.  I have no children so it wasn’t a case of a mother grieving for another mother.  I was just so incredibly saddened by her loss and the pain she was in.  And as if grieving wasn’t enough, to learn that her other child had the same deficiency…you can imagine the thoughts going through her mind.  But she’s been so amazing.  She’s got unwavering faith and her strength going through this has been incredible and inspiring and nothing short of a miracle.  
Then, the week before Christmas, a good friend’s father died.  Christmas was subdued, to say the least.
Still with me?  *wink*  There were lots of other things in between this events but I’m trying to keep this short.  All of these things made me think about life, good and bad, its brevity and what we do while we are here.   Last year’s word for me was about doing it all and keeping it all in balance…this year’s word is about taking it all in and trying to enjoy it while I can.
This year’s word is savor
To appreciate fully; enjoy or relish;
To derive or receive pleasure from; get enjoyment from; take pleasure in
I strive to savor each event, each moment, each success, each interaction and each hour I spend with the ones I love.  It can all change so suddenly…I don’t want to regret anything or miss a moment!
Thanks for sticking with me if you read all of this.  Are you participating in Ali’s One Word?  I’d love to know your word if you are! 
I wish each of you your best year yet!