Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A Day Late And A Dollar Short . . .

. . . did your parents ever used to say that when you were a kid? I remember my mom always sayin' it and for some reason it has just always stuck in my head. A day late and a dollar short has always been so appropriate for my life. I am always a day or two or three late for things I want to do or get done and it seems like I am always digging in my purse for that extra bit of change for something I want to buy. I have good intentions of getting things done . . . like paying bills, balancing the checkbook, sending out packages, doing the grocery shopping, announcing the 5,000 hit winner on my blog . . . but there are just never enough hours in the day.

Many of you who know me well know that I am totally a home body who loves to stay at home and play with Willow and Izzy and make my cards. I get invited to things but most of my friends know that I would rather stay at home and do stuff around my house. I didn't used to be like that, but ever since I bought my townhouse four years ago and have had fun decorating it and have my own stamp room and then added little Willow to my family . . . I just love staying at home in my own house that I pay a mortgage on every month. After a long day of working in the hectic stressful mortgage industry it is so calming to be home in my little ol' stamp room with my persian cat sitting up on the table watching me stamp waiting ever so patiently for me to get out that ribbon so she can really play, and for little Willow to be laying on one of her beds chewing a flossie or barking at Izzy to jump down off the table and play with her instead of Mama's ribbons. Who needs to leave home when you got all this?

Well . . . after four years of being self employed and having the luxury of working from home and setting my own hours . . . I did something really crazy and accepted a job at a bank. Crazy for me because now I get up every morning and head off to an office and leave my babies at home to fend for themselves for 8 hours (yes I have banker's hours) and then I come home and I bring work home with me and don't have time to stamp or blog or do anything but finish up work, learn new things about work, and crawl into bed . . . dead tired I might add . . . and get ready to do it all over again the next day. And what's even crazier . . . I LOVE IT!!! This has got to be one of the best things I have done in a very long time. I'm still doing mortgages, but it is so nice to be Pegi Taylor from a bank rather than Pegi Taylor who is just a lonely little mortgage broker on the street corner just like everybody else out there trying to get a deal. I think you get much more respect in this industry being from a bank.

Okay . . . enough rambling about being a day late and a dollar short . . . you get the point . . . and now after a very hectic week settling into my new job and learning everything the bank has to teach me and having just the time of my life . . . it is time for me to announce the winner of the 5,000 hit giveaway for that $20 Archiver's gift card. I have to tell you all that you had me laughing so hard at some of the funny things you had to tell us about yourself. I randomly chose a winner and it just so happend to be Cindy Jacobson. Congratulations Cindy and please send me your snail mail address so I can send you your gift card.

And I want to thank everyone for continuing to read my blog even though I haven't posted in a week. Your loyalty means everything to me. Once I finish all this bank training and get totally settled into my new position, I have some really fun things planned here at BellaWillow. I am also teaching my card classes at Memory Creek starting in September so if you live in the area, please come in and introduce yourself.

I missed last Friday's card giveaway, so there will be two cards this Friday to be given away, so please come back and check it out. And is it to early to start making Christmas cards? And speaking of a day late and a dollar short. I made 25 Halloween cards last year and never sent a one of them out. I made them in September and by the time I remembered I had made them, Halloween had just passed and I was too embarassed to send them out. Isn't that stupid!!! So maybe we will have some Halloween giveaways this year at BellaWillow.

Take care everyone and I will be posting my three cards I made for my card class as well as some Friday card giveaways.

Big Stamping Hugs

~ Pegi

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Celebrating 5,000 Hits ! ! !

I was at my favorite store tonight wondering what kind of blog candy I should buy in celebration of BellaWillow's 5,000 hits. There was so much to choose from and I just couldn't decide . . . so I bought a $20.00 gift card instead and one lucky winner can decide. This gift card is good at any Archivers store or at

First of all I want to say thank you to everyone who reads my blog and takes the time to leave such wonderful comments. Your kind words have really touched me and I have enjoyed meeting people from all over the world. It is my goal to not only make cards and put them on my blog, but to take time and visit everyone's blogs and see what kinds of wonderful things you are making as well.

If you would like to have a chance to win the $20.00 Archiver's gift card, just leave a comment and tell us something funny about yourself that people might not know. I will randomly draw a name Saturday afternoon and announce a winner at that time. Also, I plan on having the Friday card giveaway tomorrow as well, so come back for that too.

Have a great night everyone, and don't forget . . . something funny about yourself that people might not know. Thank for stopping by.

Big stamping hugs . . . Pegi

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Thanks . . . I Needed That ! ! !

This card is me tonight. I finally took some much needed time for myself so I could stamp. I got to break out my new Stampin' Up! stamp sets . . . that were still sitting in their UPS box from two weeks ago just calling out my name . . . and finally put some ink on 'em!!!

I made this card using the brand new Fun & Fast Notes set. When the new catalog first came out, I didn't put it on my wish list because it was kind of expensive, but you get eight darling stamps, each with their own little words. It has Christmas, birthday, get well, congratulations, new baby, wedding, and two thank you stamps. I can see myself using all eight of the stamps which is nice. I hate to buy a whole set just for one or two stamps. I'm really glad I decided to get it.

The base of the care is made with Bazill paper and the designer paper is Cosmo Cricket's "Dutch Girl" line. I paper pieced my bird and flower with the paper and sponged Soft Sky ink around the circle. I used my Marvy Giga Scalloped Circle punch and put Cloud 9 Rain Dots on all the scallops and the corners of the card. I don't remember where I got the red ribbon, but I do like the wider 5/8" width.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope everybody is having a good week. Don't forget blog candy will be posted sometime tomorrow for reaching 5,000 hits, and another Friday Card Giveaway.

~ Pegi

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Happier Because Of You !

This was a fun card to make because I absolutely love this Crate Paper "Baby Bee" paper. Crate Paper is such high quality paper and very easy to work with. The card base is SU's Certainly Celery . . . isn't it funny how all the great designer paper out there totally matches Stampin' Up! colors? These people must know how crazy us cardmakers are for our SU cardstock. I used my SU Because of You stamp set and I paper pieced the flowers. The tiny button brads are from Making Memories.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day tomorrow! Don't forget . . . blog candy on Thursday celebrating 5,000 hits and another Friday Card Giveaway.

Okay . . . after a week of mortgage training . . . I am off to stamp. Be watching for something new tomorrow (I got some new Bo Bunny paper that I am going to create three cards for my first card class at Memory Creek).

~ Pegi

Winona, Minnesota . . . Beautiful ! ! !

I had such a wonderful time last week at my mortgage training, and I wanted to share this picture with you. Winona, Minnesota is located in the southeastern part of the state and is one of the most beautiful places I have visited in a very long time. It is nestled between the covered limestone river bluffs that rise 500 feet on one side and the Mississippi River on the other side.

This picture was taken from Garven Heights Park and you can see the Mississippi River in the background. Beautiful!!!!

I am sad to say that a few days after I left that beautiful town there was a horrible rainstorm and flash floods. The area in the picture suffered no flood damage, but farther to the east and to the west did. Six people lost their lives in the flash floods and many people lost everything. It is so beautiful to live around water, but horrible when Mother Nature turns ugly.

We Have Some Winners ! ! !

I apologize that I am so behind on announcing the blog banner winner and last Friday's card giveaway winner. I was out of town all last week and this week I am trying to get caught up on everything.

First of all . . . I want to thank everyone who gave their ideas on what I should use for words on my new blog banner. They were all very good . . . and some of them were hilarious!!! Linda SS had a great one of "Where it's raining cats and dogs and cards" and Bethany had a great one of "Where stamping has gone to the dogs". I have to say that although I changed my mind at the last minute and used my favorite Helen Keller quote, I really loved Kristina Lewis' suggestion of "Where beauty and creativity grow". I really liked how she incorporated my sweet Isabella and Willow into the title. So . . . I am naming Kristina as the blog banner winner of the Basic Grey paper and Archiver's Tote. Congratulations Kristina!!

I want to thank everyone for coming here last Friday for the Friday card giveaway and leaving such wonderful messages for me. I had a very hectic week last week as I was out of town learning a lot of new mortgage stuff and missing stamping and Willow and Izzy very much. It was so nice to be able to have my laptop with me and read all your beautiful comments. The winner of the card is Rebecca. Congratulations Rebecca!!

Thank you all so much for your continued support of my little 'ol blog and I can't believe we are fast approaching 5,000 hits already. I plan on having some really fun blog candy to be announced on Thursday and another card giveaway on Friday. So keep coming back!!!

Have a great night!!

~ Pegi

P.S. Rebecca and Kristina please send me your snail mail address via my e mail and I will send out your blog winnings.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Friday Card Giveaway!

It has been a very hectic week for me and I am just now getting back into the swing of things after being gone all week receiving some extra special mortgage training from some very wonderful ladies that took time out of their busy schedules to train me, show me some sights of their darling little city, and take me out to a couple of really fun little spots for lunch. So Martha, Sue, and Dawn . . . . if you are reading this . . . . thank you so much for everything this week. I had a lot of fun and I think I learned a lot too.

So here is the card I have selected for our Friday card giveaway. I made this card with my brand new SU Illuminations stamp set. The minute I saw this set in the new catalog last month . . . I just knew I had to have it. The base of the card is SU's Blue Bayou and the designer paper is Basic Grey's "Periphery". The green ribbon goes perfectly with the paper, but it doesn't photograph like that. The Cherish part is stamped and cut out and then stamped again and only the C is cut out and put on a stamping dimensional. The antique brass filigree brad is from the En Fuego Collection of Chiquita Charms from Imaginisce.

It feels great to be home again with Willow and Izzy and I can't wait to have a weekend of stamping. I hope everyone had a great week and I thank you so much for stopping by.

~ Pegi

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Check Out BellaWillow's New Blog Banner

We have a new look here at BellaWillow and a very big thanks goes out to Nicole Seitler for designing BellaWillow's beautiful new blog banner. Nicole has been so awesome and I had so much fun working with her. She just asked me a few questions about colors I like, designer papers, styles, and she came up with this absolutely beautiful design. I just love it . . . and I hope you do as well.

Thanks for stopping by to see our new look.

~ Pegi

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Penny Black Stickeroos?

Stickers . . . can you believe these are stickers? Yup . . . Penny Black Stickeroos. I have no idea what a hedgehog even is . . . and I don't know that I would like to meet one in person . . . but I think these little Penny Black hedgehogs are darling. I needed to make some more cards that can be sold at Memory Creek and I can't have any Stampin' Up! images which pretty much counts out my whole stamp collection. And I don't really want to invest in a lot of stamps that I won't use very much, so when I saw these cute little stickers I thought they just might work.

The card base is SU's Real Red and the designer paper is from Crate Paper's Samantha line. Those little red dots are Cloud Nine Rain Dots. I love them because you just peel and stick and you don't have to punch holes to stick the brads through. The little hedgehog is cut with a Marvy Mega circle punch and layered on top of a Marvy Giga scalloped circle punch from the reversible Samantha paper. The sentiment is from my computer printed in red ink and printed out on SU's Whisper White cardstock.
So . . . although this card may look difficult to make . . . it was pretty easy. No stamping!!

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week.

~ Pegi

We Have A Winner!!!

Thank you everyone for your wonderful support and kind comments on what you would like to see on my blog as I continue to grow and learn this beautiful art of papercrafting. The winner of this week's Friday Card Giveaway is Pat S. Pat could you please send me an e mail with your snail mail address and I will get that card in the mail for you.

Again, thank you everyone and we will be doing this every Friday here at BellaWillow.

~ Pegi

Friday, August 10, 2007

Friday Card Giveaway ! ! !

Did you think I forgot about our new tradition here at BellaWillow? I can't believe it's Friday already . . . and another Friday Card Giveaway is here!! So here is the card I made for today's giveaway.

This card was made using SU's new Fabulous Flowers stamp set and Basic Grey's new "Periphery" line of paper. I hope you like it. The card base and double stitched ribbon is from SU and it is the new 2008 In Color "Blue Bayou".

If you would like to receive this card, please leave a comment on my blog telling me what you would like to see more of here at BellaWillow. For example . . . more cards, more projects, tutorials, shopping, more pictures of Willow and Izzy, etc. There are so many blogs out there, so tell us what you look for when reading your favorite blogs.

Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by.


P.S. Sorry for the delay in sending out blog candy packages to previous winners. All blog candy is being mailed out today. Patty, Tami, Christine, Rebecca, and Peggy be watching your mail for our special packages.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Lot's Of Fun Stuff!!!

Lot's of fun stuff going on here at BellaWillow these days. My dear sweet friend and SU upline, Paris Otremba, got a sweet little nine week old baby yorkie and I got to go help her and her daughter pick up the sweet little puppy. I am such a yorkie lover and was excited when Paris told me the kind of dog her and her family had decided on. She is a sweet little girl . . . and I can't wait for her and Willow to become good friends. They named her Izzy after Izzy Stevens of Grey's Anatomy. Look at this little cutie!!

More great news!!! I got picked to be a card instructor at Memory Creek in Farmington, Minnesota. I will be teaching card classes three times per month starting in September. So if you live anywhere near Farmington, Minnesota, please stop by sometime for one of my classes.

And . . . when I went in to meet with Anne, the wonderful owner of Memory Creek, she asked me to make 50 cards right away that she could sell in her store. I was so excited and honored . . . and now very overwhelmed on how I am going to get 50 cards made so quickly for her. I have gotten 20 done in the last two days . . . so I am hoping I can get the rest done by Saturday afternoon. The only hard thing about making these cards is that I cannot use any Stampin' Up! images . . . so that is going to be kind of hard. Here are a few of the cards I have made so far. I hope people like them.

Thank you everyone for the suggestions for my blog banner. Nicole is out of town for a long weekend and will have something for me next week, so keep your suggestions coming. I hope everyone has a good weekend and thanks for stopping by.


Monday, August 6, 2007

BellaWillow's Blog Banner Contest!!!

OMG . . . I'm just too excited to announce that I won a blog banner from Nicole Seitler. Nicole contacted me this morning and told me that I won her blog candy from last Friday, which was for her to design a new blog banner for one lucky winner . . . and I was that winner!!! This is so very exciting because I need a blog banner rather than the generic one that comes with Blogspot.

I already know what I want for the design of my blog banner . . . pink, chocolate chip, flourishes, swirls, whimsical, vintage, funky . . . and I want it to say BellaWillow of course. But now I need your help and we are going to make a contest out of it, with a prize of course.

So here is where BellaWillow's contest comes in. I can't just have BellaWillow in my blog banner . . . I need some cute little phrase mixed in too. So . . . I would like you to please give me an idea of what those words should be. Please leave a comment and I will vote on the one I like best and award you a very special prize. I have a brand new pad of 6 x 6 Basic Grey "Phoebe" paper, an Archiver's bag, and a few other surprise goodies.

Good luck and may the best words win!!!!

~ Pegi

Friday Card Giveaway Winner!!!!

Thank you all so very much for your beautiful comments about our new BellaWillow tradition of giving away a card every Friday. The very first winner was Peggy Maier. Peggy, please send me an e mail with your snail mail address and I will mail your card out to you.

Thank you again everyone for participating, and we will have another card to give away this Friday so be watching.

~ Pegi

Count Your Blessings

How many times have we heard this throughout our lifetime? Count your blessings. After the tragic Minneapolis Interstate 35 bridge collapse this past week . . . I have really been counting my blessings. I used to travel over that bridge twice a day for work and I still find it baffling to think something like this could happen right here in my very own city. I am sorry for the delay in posting, but I have just been glued to the television since this happened and trying to connect with old friends that I know are still living in the City and traveling over that bridge on a regular basis. I have so many friends that I have lost touch with throughout the years and find it sad that it took a tragedy like this to happen to pick up the phone and let them know I was thinking of them. Luckily all my friends were okay, but I do know people who knew some of the people that lost their lives traveling home from work last Wednesday and some who are still amongst the missing. I continue to pray for all of them that they might be found and returned to their loved ones. So today I am really counting my blessings. I have a good life, beautiful friends, loving family, successful career, and time to do what I love . . . make cards. I am truly blessed.

So this card was made for all my friends. Childhood friends, work friends, neighborhood friends, cardmaking friends, and blogging friends . . . this card is for you . . . and like the sentement reads . . . "Friends are like flowers, each with it's own beauty".

Have a beautiful day!!!!!

~ Pegi

Friday, August 3, 2007

Funky Vintage Style

I recently found this stamp set in an old Stampin' Up! catalog and just knew I had to have it. All of my dear friends are such "Fashionistas" that I thought it would really make some cute cards. I used to be quite the fashion queen myself . . . but now I spend all my extra money on stamping stuff. Who needs that new Coach purse or those cute little shoes when Basic Grey just came out with a new line of paper and Stampin' Up! just released their newest catalog ! ? ! ? !

I was very lucky to find this set for sale on SCS at a reasonable price. If you are ever looking for a retired SU stamp set, just go put a request in over at SCS and you will probably get a few e mails from people who would like to sell you theirs. My cute little set had just been sitting around in Arkansas not getting used and made the trip up to Minnesota where it will get inked up on a very regular basis. I love this set!!!!

So for this card I used SU's Chocolate Chip for the card base and used the Weathered stamp with Whisper White craft ink as a background. The designer paper is Basic Grey's "Infuse" paper. The brads are from Archivers as well as the brown polka dot ribbon. I paper pieced the dress forms. Paper piecing and layering are my two most favorite techniques.

Thank you everyone for stopping by, and have a blessed weekend.

~ Pegi

We Have Some Winners ! ! !

I want to thank you all so much for stopping by and participating in my latest giveaway. Congratulations . . . and a little bag of Basic Grey "Infuse" paper and coordinating ribbons are going out to Tami, Rebecca, and Christine. Congratulations ladies!!! Please e mail me at with your snail mail addresses so I can get your prize out to you.

Thank you everyone who stopped by and particiated. Keep coming back because we will be doing this a lot here at BellaWillow. It is so nice to learn more about everyone and to be able to see your blogs as well.

~ Pegi

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Friday Card Giveaway ! ! !

I have been having a lot of fun with this blogging thing . . . and the Blog Candy and Giveaways have been very successful. I love it when you come and visit and leave comments . . . and now I have linked all of your blogs over to the right under "My Blog Friends" and people can come and visit you as well.

I have decided to start another tradition over here at BellaWillow . . . a Friday Card Giveaway. I make so many cards and then they just sit here. So this will be a reason for me to start sending cards out.

So here is the very first card for our very first Friday Card Giveaway. I hope you like it. All you have to do to be eligible for the card giveaway is to leave a message . . . any message at all . . . tell everyone a little bit about yourself. The randomly chosen winner will be announced on Saturday.

I made this card using my SU stamp sets Happy Harmony and Petal Prints. I used SU Close To Cocoa for the card base and a stack of Fairy Tale paper for the card itself. I stamped my flowers on SU Confetti Natural paper and cut them all out and layered them. The pink dots are Rain Dots from Cloud 9 Designs.

Thanks again for stopping by . . . and thanks again for all your continued support.

~ Pegi

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

We Have A Winner ! ! ! And Another Giveaway!

Thank you everyone for helping me celebrate 2,500 hits here at BellaWillow. I have had an amazing time as your blog hostess and reading all the wonderful comments you have all left about my blog and about your favorite stamp sets and stamp companies. Thank you everyone who left a comment. And now for the winner of that cute little All My Memories bag stuffed full of goodies . . . . drum roll please . . . . the winner is . . . . Patti Jo. (Patti Jo, please send me an e mail with your snail mail address and I will send out your package right away.)

Now . . . on to another giveaway. Like I said before . . . I have had so much fun being your blog hostess that I thought I would give you all another opportunity to win another prize. We are going to do this a lot here at BellaWillow, so don't be disappointed if you don't win this time. There will be many other chances in the near future.

I have three prizes today . . . so there will be three lucky winners of this fabulous little package of Basic Grey "Infuse" paper and some beautiful coordinating ribbons. All you have to do to be eligible for this giveaway are two things. 1. Let me know how you found my blog. 2. If you have a blog that you would like readers to visit, please leave a link on your post and I will add it to the Blog Roll. This contest will be open until Friday evening at 5:00 p.m. CST and the three lucky winners will be announced sometime later that evening. Who knows . . . maybe we'll have another prize to give away.

Congratulations again to Patty Jo, good luck to everyone else on the new giveaway, and thank you again everyone for stopping by.