Happy Saturday. I hope you are all having a great weekend.
It's the fabulous LeAnne's turn to host our Paper Players challenge this week and she has a great color challenge for us.
Lovely autumn colors and perfect for this time of the year in our woodland. We have a couple of maples that have gone a gorgeous red - the ash trees are turning yellow and some of the trees are still green. So.... even though I really felt like creating a card with fall colors, I decided to do something totally different :-)
I received a new set from Altenew (yep... my new crush - and I think they are Sandy's, too! I layered the stamp with the colors equivalent to Crushed Curry and Cajun Craze and it created this lovely lily. I then die cut the lily and used two shades of green - Pear Pizazz and one just a little darker - for the leaves.
I used a pair of nesting dies to create a frame and used it as a template - along with my MISTI - so that I could see where I needed to stamp the sentiment. I used a sentiment from the same set and stamped it in Cajun Craze. I then cut some foam tape and mounted the frame onto the card. I then arranged the die-cut flower and leaves and adhered them with dimensionals. Quick and easy. The hardest part of this card was getting the frame into the middle of the card without being skew!
Here's my card:
I had to take the photo of the card close to 6pm - so it had some shading behind the flower when I photographed it. I might try taking another photo tomorrow. However, I love the clean lines and that lovely flower.
I hope you will join us this week and, as usual, if you are looking for some inspiration, you have to look no further than our amazing design team:
On a personal note:
I might have been on vacation this week, but I seem to have had so little time to do anything! I did spend some time taking some on-line coloring classes and that took up much more time than I had anticipated - but they were so worth it! I'll share some before and after photos with you later this week.
On Wednesday night I spent about an hour just sitting under the deck doing nothing other than just looking at the birds. Generally when I am out there late in the afternoon I am doing something - catching up with email, etc. However, there were so many birds flitting around and making lots of noise that I decided to just sit and watch. It was amazing what I saw. 5 new bird species that we haven't seen in the garden before including a couple of immature Evening Grosbeaks, a flock of about 12-14 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks - many of them immature and a little flock of Red Eyed Vireo. Sadly, I didn't have my camera but thought I would be able to take photos the next morning. However, the next morning the garden was quiet. They had all disappeared including a flock of about 12-14 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks - many of them immature and.... all of the Orioles. Everything except our normal birds and the hummingbirds. After so much activity, it was strangely quiet.
I must have just been incredibly lucky to see them all flying south in loosely associated groups. I was happy that they had been able to use our feeding stations as a place to fill up their stomachs before they went on their way again. Hopefully, they will come past on their way back North next spring.
However..... two of the birds that I noticed - that we have never seen before - never mind in our garden - are hanging around. It took me ages to get a really good look at them and get a photo. They looked and behaved like woodpeckers, but were much quieter and less visible than our normal guys. They have been hanging around since Wednesday and are still here. I managed to get a couple of shots of one of them tonight.
See... looks like a woodpecker - but not our normal ones! It took me ages to get a good luck at him and when I did I noticed that he had a red throat -
These things move so fast around the tree that it was almost impossible to capture any decent photos.
We believe that this is an immature Yellow Bellied Sapsucker and, when you look at the holes that he makes around the tree - it certainly fits with his MO. Here are the holes they make.
It's always so gratifying when we find that we have attracted yet more new birds to our little neck of the woods. They are welcome to stay - although I hope they move to another tree, as I happen to be very fond of this particular one!
I was cleaning out space on my iMac this week as I had so many photos that I was running out of disk space. When I was cleaning up I noticed that I had a photograph from June 2014. Take a look at this shot from our deck in June 2014.
Keep your eye on the feeder on the right hand side of the screen. See.... no trees - except the poor fir tree.... but see how devoid it is of trees just behind the feeder.
Let's take a look 1 month later - when we were planting the three river birch and 5 other trees - including maples and ironwoods. (the ironwoods were saved from destruction in our neighbors yard when they were building their house.... they were marked to be bulldozed and we asked the builder if we could rescue them... I mean... they were 30 year old trees! Sadly...we were only able to save two of the 7 - otherwise we would have taken all the ones that were earmarked. Luckily, our tree guy Jim was putting in the River Birch the same day as the other tree guy was chopping the ones down on the neighboring lot! So, he was able to spade them out of their location - and relocate them in our garden.
So... here's the shot 1 month later than the one above - and before the maples and iron woods had been put into place.
Certainly a difference - but you can see the gaps behind the feeder - and you can certainly see how there is almost no prairie planting yet.
Here we are a month later - when most of the trees have been planted - we added another couple of maples after this.
A huge improvement - and even small amounts of prairie planting coming in. I was so surprised when I saw these photos during my clean up - because this is what we are looking at now
What a difference just two years make. Check this out!
See how everything has come in and how the area has filled up behind the feeder - and my.... how those River Birch have grown! If you look at the feeder - which has not moved position in the two years - you can really see how much that area has grown in. Lou walked around the middle of where we had planted all of the trees this week and said it felt like a veritable woodland hideaway. No wonder the birds and wildlife have adopted the areas :-)
I'll be back tomorrow with another card and some more photographs. In the meantime, warm hugs and prayers for those of you who need a little lift tonight - including Tinkerbell.
- Cardstock: Neenah Solar White
- Stamps: Layered Lily Stamp and Die Bundle - Altenew
- Inks: Altenew: Summer Afternoon mini cube ink set