Friday, August 13, 2010

Bathing Beauties…

thegraphicsfairy12--by the sea with dog                  {image courtesy of The Graphics Fairy}

Good afternoon, my friends!

What a wonderful day it’s been…long and lazy….my two younger girls are in school and my college girl is home with me!  She flew in last night, and it’s such a beautiful  thing to have her back home with us where she belongs…!

While the girls were laughing and catching up last night, I snuck in a little card-making time in the kitchen while I listened and smiled…

Here’s the first:


I LOVE this new “Bathing Beauties” set from Crafty Secrets!


…so many adorable images to play with!


I decided to leave the stamped image plain…kind of like an old sepia-toned photograph…because I had some of my own old ones I wanted to share with you today…

This stamp reminded me of:

…while she’s not in a bathing suit in this photo, they ARE in a boat! 

These are my husband’s grandparents—I haven’t introduced you to them yet—this is Fern Ellsworth and Ted Gorrell before they married…aren’t they cute?!

She was just lovely…he was a big, well-known football player at USC in the ‘20’s…more of their story another day…

Here’s my other card…


I LOVE this sassy bathing beauty!  This is the kind of bathing suit I want!!!   From the same Crafty Secrets’ set…I framed her with chunky clear German glass glitter for a sandy beach effect—looks much better in person…(doesn’t it always?!)  Some of my favorite vintage mother-of-pearl buttons…lovely striped ribbon to match her suit, and LOTS of paper piecing!

Well, now for some more vintage swimming fun…we are lucky enough to have a bunch of wonderful photos of my husband’s grandmother Fern and her twin sister, Faun (great names for twins, aren’t they?!), here are just a few…

I really love this photo—isn’t the reflection wonderful?

Fern and her sister Faun were born in Southern California in 1905…adorable twins…I have some amazing photos of them throughout their childhood/teenager years that I’ll be sharing with you as we go along…

Not sure what this is…some kind of rope-climbing pole???

With some friends…not sure who was behind the camera, but…!  Look at that interesting gentleman in the far left background—very formal for the beach, don’t you think?  But, then, the 1920’s were a much more refined time, weren’t they?

Fern is at the top of this little pyramid…

…and lastly, here with a friend on the steps of a pier…

Well, that’s it for me today…off to play a rousing game of Double Solitaire with my daughter—I never win.  That’s okay, though, because it’s one of our favorite things to do together, and there’s no one I’d rather lose horribly to!

Have a beautiful day, whatever you do!


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Some Tricks…and a Treat!

Good morning, my friends!


Just got my girls off to school this morning…who ever thought that school would start the second week of August?!  To top it off, my BABY is now in high school…not sure how I feel about that!

But, life marches on, doesn’t it? 

I have a couple of Halloween projects to share with you today.  I know it feels early, but fall will be upon us before we know it!  Besides, I’m just in the mood for a little Halloween fun!

Here’s the first…


I have been having so much fun with Crafty Secrets’ new Creative Scraps!  This set—“Halloween”—is so full of wonderful images to play with!


Just added some fun gingham print paper, platinum Stickles, Dazzling Diamonds, a little lace, and a crazy assortment of rick-rack and ribbon in Halloween colors to mimic the Jester’s collar in the image…also added my own typed wording.

Now, for this one…first…have to apologize for the horrible lighting on these…it is SO gloomy today!  That being said, here we go!


Another of my favorite 3D Shadowbox cards by the lovely Vicki Chrisman, available pre-cut through Crafty Secrets

For this card, I used images from the “Halloween” Creative Scraps and the “Seasonal” Images & Journal Notes booklet…

Yikes!  I really hate all these shadows—sorry!  First panel close up…


…the center…


…and the right panel…


I first painted the card pieces with black and orange acrylic paint, the just used most of the same things I did on the first card…it was already sitting there on the table, so….!  Easy peasy!

Okay—now for the treat!

I’ve worked pretty hard this last year to keep off the weight I lost the year before, but I LOVE sweets!  So, I’m always looking out for yummy things to bake that I don’t have to feel TOO guilty about!  This one really “takes the cake”!

I love Angel Food cake, but it’s sometimes dry coming from the store, and I discovered that a boxed mix costs more than the bakery cake! 

So, I decided the other night to find a recipe, and as fate would have it, I fell upon another wonderful recipe courtesy of Alton Brown, the fabulous Food Network guy…


First, I have to say that this takes a BIT of effort—especially if you don’t have cake flour on hand, as I didn’t, but making your own is really not too hard—just adding corn starch to the flour  and sifting it A LOT!  (For every cup of regular flour, remove 2 Tbsp. and add 2 Tbsp. cornstarch—sift together 5 times.)  But, it was very satisfying to do it!

Here’s the recipe:


1 3/4 cups sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1 cup cake flour, sifted

12 egg whites (the closer to room temp. the better)

1/3 cup warm water

1 tsp. orange extract, or extract of your choice (I used orange—delicious!)

1 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a food processor, spin sugar about 2 minutes until it is superfine.  Sift half of the sugar with the salt and the cake flour, setting aside the remaining sugar.

In a large bowl, use a balloon whisk to thoroughly combine egg whites, water, orange extract, and cream of tartar.  After 2 minutes, switch to a hand mixer.  Slowly sift the reserved sugar, beating continuously at medium speed.  Once you have achieved medium peaks,  sift enough of the flour mixture in to dust the top of the foam.  Using a spatula, fold in gently. Continue until all of the flour mixture is incorporated.

Carefully spoon mixture into an ungreased tube pan.  Bake for 35 minutes before checking for doneness with a wooden skewer. (When inserted halfway between the inner and outer wall, the skewer should come out dry.)

Cool upside down on cooling rack for at least an hour before removing from pan. 


I followed this recipe as perfectly as I could, and I have to say this was about the most moist and delicious cake I’ve ever had—and NO FAT!!!

We covered our big, fat slices with a large dollop of light cool whip and some homemade freezer strawberry jam—absolutely delicious!


I’ll be making another one very soon—it was worth ALL the effort!

Well, that’s it for today…I hope you have a wonderful day, whether you’re still in the middle of a fabulous  summer vacation with your kids, or they’re off to school…enjoy every moment!

See you soon with something new…



Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Dad…

Good morning, friends!

My wonderful Dad had a birthday on Friday…we didn’t get to be with him, but had a couple of great chats on the phone.  I just thought today I’d give him a little gift this way—remembering lots of fun and all he’s taught us through the years--
Dad--you were a pretty cute kid…

Clayn Riggs Smith, about 1942 1

Love these photos of you and  big brother Grant clowning around…

The Smith Brothers--Grant & Clayn1

Clayn & Grant salute_edited

Such a wonderful family that loved you and taught you all the things you would one day teach to us…

The Rudger & LaPriel Smith Family1

You learned as a young man to serve the Lord, serve others, and to be a good leader…

Elder Clayn R. Smith1

You were wise enough to marry the most beautiful and wonderful woman on the planet…

Clayn & Karen on their wedding day 2-11
                    (Dad and Mom’s wedding day…1960)

You are the most amazing father…this may be the first photo of you doing this airplane move with a baby.  I’ve seen you do it with every one of my siblings and all of the grandbabies…one of my very favorite sights…

Daddy Clayn & baby Julie the airplane, 1962
                                  (Dad and me…1962)

You started a pretty great family…

Young Smith Family
                          (Dad, Mom, me and Steve…1965)

You have always patiently endured  our ways of showing you that we love you…

TV time with Daddy, Glendale, 1966 1

…told us countless wonderful stories, both from books and from your own imagination (our favorites!)

Storytime with Daddy, 1967-68

Taught us to love each other, no matter what…

Our  Family 1970's
(The family in the ‘70’s…not the most beautiful decade for fashion, was it?!  Okay, ladies…remember “Gunne Sax” dresses?  I LOVED them!)

…even the goofy kids…

Greg and Becky trailer kids
(Greg and Becky in the late ‘70’s…we’re still not quite sure what they were thinking here…a family favorite!)

You taught us the benefits and joys of hard work…(Dad STILL commutes each week between Utah and Los Angeles for work…)

Clayn shoveling snow

Given us all such a loving, amazing family that loves each other unconditionally…

The Clayn Smith Family-1988 1
(The family in 1988, right after Roger and I were married.)

And, look--we’re still here together! Thanks, Dad.  For being such a wonderful father…

The Original Bunch 1
(The original bunch this last June, while celebrating Dad and Mom’s 50th anniversary.)

…and a wonderful husband to our sweet mother…(for 50 years and counting!)

Dad & Mom 3 2010 1

…the best grandfather in the world…

Grandpa & some of his girls, 1997

Here’s a bunch of people that love you more than you’ll ever know, Dad…

The Whole Fan-damily! 1

Can’t imagine having a better life than you’ve given me, Dad…a wonderful childhood, teaching me to love those who came before me (which has always been a very important part of me!),

…thoughtful counsel and guidance as I grew into a woman, a great example of how to be a loving parent, and, well…just everything!


Happy belated birthday!  You are my father, my friend and my hero.  I love you, Dad!