Dec 11, 2008

I'm Back!!

G'day!!  How ya goin'?

My australia trip was fantastic!!!
Let me give you the highlights:
We got to see Melbourne AND Sydney!  
We took an opera house tour two days before the architect passed away.  

We also got to pet Kangaroos and Koalas! Kangaroos are surprisingly softer than Koalas are! 
We went to a place called Phillip Island where we got to see the smallest penguins in the world come ashore and return to their burrows to feed their chirping babies!  (no photos of any kind were allowed, unfortunately, so this is from their web site)

We went to Terra Bulga Rainforest (I had NO IDEA that there were Rain Forests in Australia) and I had wild parrots perching on my arms and head too!!  It was so cool!
Brings new meaning to "Parrot Head"

We saw a few wild kangaroos and we saw wild walabees too!  I was even 2 feet away from one of their wild ring-tail possums at a park in Sydney - nothing like our possums! 

The previews for that movie Australia (if you have seen them) shows the country being mostly dirt and red and bare - apparently that is the outback - in the middle of the country - there was nothing like that anywhere that we visited.  It was all green and farm land with cows and sheep all over the place!  Much like Wisconsin.

The cities were short - compared to the Chicago sky scrapers that I am used to - sky could be seen easily anywhere in the city, where in Chicago some times you have to look straight up before you see the sky ;) 
 Traralgon, a suburb of Melbourne (where we were staying with my Mom-in-law) looked like the midwest did 50 years ago.  There were almost no buildings above 2 stories tall - everything seemed very small because of the lack of height :)  Even the houses were short - everything was single story ranch houses - I didn't see many places that looked like a two story house. Our Cape Cod would have been a mansion compared to most of the houses over there!

Most of the food was not great.  They managed to screw up pizza.  But they had these pies - kind of like pasties (pronounced "pass-tees") or meat pies that were really more like pot pie shells filled with yummy egg and veggie and meat mixtures. Almost like a quiche but somehow, better. Nothing like the icky pasties I have had in Wisconsin.
And they had a bakery or chocolate shop on every corner!!  MMMmmmmmm!

Hope that's enough for now - I'm gonna have a cuppa and get back to work!!

Nov 21, 2008

Bon Voyage!

My Mother-in-Law took this picture at a park by where she is staying!

I leave in the morning for Australia!!  WOO HOO!!
Seems a little surreal - like it's still a month off.
I am hoping the meds I got for the flight help me to at least relax, if not sleep - it's a 17 hour trip over night.

Anyhow - Have fun while I am away!  I'll post some pics when I get back :)
Anna Banana

Nov 14, 2008

More Blog candy

I just found some very sweet Blog Candy!
You can check out Creating A Likeness for her wonderful Birthday Blog Candy!

Nov 13, 2008

For my Friends and followers

Please don't fret about me - I was terribly sick last week and am still not well - I went to the doctor again today and they say that this ear and throat thing may be a virus.  They gave me a perscription for some doozy antibiotics (they were $85 AFTER the insurance covered part of them!) and hopefully that will set me right again.

With this being sick and getting ready for my trip to Australia, I am going to put the Go Bananas challenges on hold.  They may not start up again until after Christmas, as I am fantastically busy.

It all starts this weekend with a 50th birthday party and my sister's baby shower.  Then I leave for Australia. I will get back from my trip, and the next day I have a recording session with my choir to make our holiday CD so we can sell them at the concerts.  The following weekend is our choir concert - two nights plus dress rehearsals.  Our 8th wedding anniversary on the 15th, my 37th birthday on the 21st, we have to go to visit both our families for Christmas and then whatever plans we may end up with for New Years Eve.  

That does not include the work parties, friends wanting to get together and other family obligations!!  Plus I have 3 friends with birthdays in December!  
Looks like I will need another vacation when December is over ... Maybe I will just stay in Australia until January and save myself from all this! :D

I'll post what I can when I can if I even have a spare moment to create anything!
Anna Banana

Blog Candy!

So Much Candy - don't get a toothache!!

Take time to browse the blogs when you go also there is some great stuff out there!
Stempelguri's stemplerier is celebrating!
Franmade is having some blog candy to celebrate her one year blogiversary!
Craft Stamper is a new blog and celebrating!
Creative and Stamping is offering some High Hopes Blog Candy!
You want the cookie is celebrating her birthday month too!
Stamping with a Whiff of Joy is Katarina celebrating her birthday!
AngelDrummer is celebrating her birthday also!
Over at Alice's Personal Space you can enter for some blog candy too!
Bootiful Stampz is also having some great candy offered up!
Carlz Cardz is celebrating a milestone on the blog counter too!
Ellieskeeper's Creations is offering some candy to celebrate over 10,000 hits!
A Necessary Creativity is also offering something to share with you also!
Check them out everyone - great stuff on all the blogs!
Great stuff so go and enter! Good Luck!

Nov 7, 2008

Blog Candy!!

I had a moment to check e-mails and Ann over at Creative Antics is having some wonderful Blog Candy.

I figured if I posted something nice, like Blog Candy, maybe I'd feel better.
Well - that worked mentally - but my ears and throat are still hurting  :(

Good Luck!
Anna Banana

Nov 6, 2008

Go Bananas this week

This week there  won't be a Go Bananas challenge posted.  I have been sick with an ear and throat infection topped off with a raging fever since Tuesday.
I'm going back to bed.
Have a good week and hopefully I will be well by next week.
Anna Banana

Oct 31, 2008


This is part of a fragrance carton that I created for Hot Topic a few years ago.  I scanned in the carton and I added the Happy Halloween for just today :)
By day I design perfume cartons and bottle art for a company based out of Chicago!
Anna Banana

Oct 29, 2008

Go Bananas #17

Go Bananas Sketch 17.
I hope you play along and take the challenge to create a card using my sketch!
If you do, please leave me a comment and let me know where your card is posted so I can see what wonderful creations you come up with!

This is our last week with my Guest Top Banana Christine.  She has done a FANTASTIC job with the sketches!

I am postponing asking anyone new to be a guest designer until after the new year.  My schedule is pretty intense between now and then - here is a sample:
October - I have three choir concerts
November - a baby shower for my sister, family birthday party, a trip to Australia
December - recording a CD for the Choir, two choir concerts, my anniversary, two work Christmas parties. my birthday, Christmas, New Years

That is all on top of trying to make christmas cards, getting day to day stuff done and sleeping!
I am sure you can understand why I am putting the guest designer on hold.

For now, here are our takes on this week's sketch:

Top Banana: Anna
Tiy can't really tell, by the photo, but there is glitter around the edges of the snow cat, there are really tiny rhinestones on the mat around the cat and on the scarf I used liquid applique, which puffs up when heat embossed.

Top Banana: Christina

Top Banana: Karyn

Oct 26, 2008

SBS 24 Challenge #5

This cute little witch was given to me by Karyn!  I can't remember where she said the witch is from.  I made this as a swap for halloween, and it fits perfectly for the SBS 24 Challenge this week with the theme of Halloween!
Anna Banana

Oct 24, 2008

Blog Candy!!

There is an awesome opportunity for blog candy at Frugal Mom's Blog
A $100 Gift Certificate to Amazon AND a fantastic hand made bag!

Go check it out and enter!!

I hope my winning streak continues...and I think I might go buy a lottery ticket too! BWAHAHAHAHA!

Anna Banana

Santa Card

I was in my craft room and made this one just because!!
I picked up the stamp at Michael's a few weeks ago...if you need to know who it is by let me know -I'm not going upstairs right now to find out :)

Here is what I did:
 I colored the image with prismacolor pencils adding a little blue into the hair to make it look really wintry.  There is white fun flock on the hat and glitter on the snowflakes.  I put some crystal glaze on the glasses and it looks amazing in person - I couldn't quite capture it with the camera.
There are 4 pixie pillows in blue on the corners and the silver ribbon is from Offray.
The blue paper is from Archivers and the metallic blue paper is a scrap from my basket.
The snow flakes are flat back embellishments from the Christmas department that I glued on and I doodled the white all along the card.
Anna Banana

SBS 24 Challenge #4

Here is my card and the original sketch:
This was a sketch challenge for the SBS 24 group that I am part of.
I had fun making this one!
Anna Banana

Oct 23, 2008

Thank you Chrissy!!

I wanted to thank Chris at Creating with Chrissy for randomly picking me as the winner of the Belli Challenge #38 to use Clips!

I was thrilled especially since I didn't actually realize that there was a prize drawing!  

I highly urge you to go over to her sight and give her challenges a try - it helps to get you to use the stuff you have sitting around gathering dust!

Anna Banana

Go Bananas #16

Here is this week's Go Bananas Challenge!!
Hope you participate!  Drop a comment in my blog if you do with a  note where I can see your post - I love being inspired by what other people do!

Top Banana:  Anna T.

Ok - so I learned a new lesson this week.  When designing sketches, make sure you have the tools to create what it is that you sketch!!
I don't yet have the rectangle scallop dies that I have been wanting, I didn't have scallop scissors that I could make work and the punches I have all make the corners turn out dorky.  So for my last ditch effort (I spent 3 hours last night trying to make scallops) I decided to draw the dang things on the card to fit the sketch!
I actually like how they ended up turning out, but it was a lot of sighing and wasted paper to get here!
All the stamps are from Hero Arts, Paper from DCWV, Red, white and black glitter, white and red fun flock on the hat and boots and the punch is from Martha Stewart.

Top Banana: Christina W.
Top Banana: Karyn C.

Oct 20, 2008


I think you may have guessed I have won something by now!
What is it you ask?
I won the gift certificate at Cheryl & Co!
I'm planning on getting these yummy assortments:

Oct 16, 2008

SBS 24 Challenge - Harvest/Autumn Theme

I was able to take time off from making baby invites last night - mainly because I ran out of flowers for the invitation fronts!
In those vast 12 minutes of spare time, I was able to create this little card!
I got the stamp in a bargan bin at my local Stamp store for $2! Couldn't pass that up - even this is a little out of my style.
I used watercolor pencils and a damp cotton swap to color it in and I mounted it on all scraps of card stock from my scrap basket.
Anna Banana

CBC 38 - Clip Belli Challenge

Over on Chrissy's blog she hosts a weekly challenge that I was able to participate in this week.
This Weeks Belli Challenge is to use CLIPS...You can Paper Clips, Mini Library Clips, hodgepodge clips, etc. Create ANY kind of project using a clip you have!

I happen to have a whole slew of these little clothespin clips that have been waiting to be used, so I came up with this:

The stamp is from Firecracker Designs.  The patterned background paper is a scrap from The Angel Company and the card stock is from Archivers.

Go Bananas #15

Thanks for being patient with me on this week' Go Banana's Challenge!
The ladies really outdid themselves on this one!!  I LOVE both the fresh, trendy designs they used!  Great Job!!

Here is this week's sketch:
Top Banana: Anna Timm
I like this card except for the bows.  They were a good idea when I started, but I just don't like how they cover the words Merry Christmas. 
Next time I would use something less dimensional or something smaller.

Top Banana Guest Designer: Christina Wernstrum

Top Banana: Karyn Campbell

Go Bananas

It's 1:30 in the morning - my card is done and in my camera, but I just really need to get some sleep - I will post tomorrow.  Sorry for the delay, everyone!

Oct 15, 2008

Recipe for Anna Banana

The Recipe For Anna Banana
3 parts Whimsy
2 parts Courage
1 part Difance

Splash of Vitality

Finish off with a little umbrella and straw

Oct 14, 2008

Baby Shower Invites

So I'm gonna be an auntie!
I'm planning the baby shower - which is proving to be very difficult.
My sister is due any time between January and March (Hi-risk pregnancy) so we need to plan the shower sooner than later.  I am going to Australia at the end of November, so we only have just days over 4 weeks to plan this shindig. and to top it off, I'm plannng everything for two hours south of where I live. It's kind of nuts.
Anyway, she is having a boy and I have done the invite and the favor bag ... take a look!

Oct 10, 2008

Something for a Friend Challenge

Create Something for a Friend!
I saw this challenge and I went right up to my room to create something!!

I decided on this door hanger. 
You can't see it very well in this picture, but each flower has either a pink or gold rhinestone in the center.  The 4 corners of the saying have pink and gold gems on it and the saying is popped up two levels with dimensional foam behind the striped layer and the text layer.
I think it will be perfect for my friend's craft room!
Go check out the challenge HERE ... there is an opportunity for Blog candy along with it!
Anna Banana

Being Tagged

Hey there everyone!
I have been tagged or awarded friendship awards etc over the past month or so.
Quite frankly I'm just too busy to "follow the rules" and tag others, so I really won't participate, but I did want to share some Random Facts  about me - most of them ask for 7 or so, so here I go:

1. I think I was born in the wrong century - I am a really big Elizabethan Renaissance lover - I have most all of the movies and lots of the books and I do Renaissance reacting - heck, my DH and I had a Renaissance Wedding!!

2. I love the ocean - So much so that my long term goal is to get a house in CA or FL on the beach - there is nothing more soothing than the sound of the waves to me.

3.  Fall is my favorite season - the smell of burning leaves can't be beat!

4. Pink is my favorite color.

5.  I am a princess and I can be seen frequently wearing one of my many tiaras ... Friday is Tiara day.  I wear them out too, not just around the house.

6. I frequently wear pig tails, and I am 36 years old :)  

7. I fell in love with my DH at first sight.

8. I was training to be an Opera singer when I was younger

So there are a few things about me:)
Happy Friday!
Anna Banana

Oct 9, 2008

Happy Birthday

Here is a cute hat I made for the SBS 24 Blog Challenge.  This week's challenge was to make a non-card item using paper and/or stamps.

I saved the post for today because it is Dori's Birthday :)
She is 2 ... and look at her show off for the camera!

Anna Banana

Oct 8, 2008

Go Bananas #14

Here is this week's Go Bananas Challenge.
This week is also Christina's Debut as a guest Top Banana Designer!!
I am so pleased to have her on the team - she did a fantastic job!

I hope you all participate, and if you do, please leave me a comment with your blog address so I can go check it out!
Anna Banana

Top Banana: Anna T.

Top Banana: Christine W.

Top Banana: Karyn C.

Oct 3, 2008

SBS24 Blog Challenge #1

"A Few of my favorite things"  Well - Whiskers on Kittens and Brown Paper Packages tied up with strings (and glitter) ARE a few of my favorite things, but I decided to go with this:

A beautiful corset, tied with laces, with soft eyelet lace accents.  I love how the blues and greens make the image very romantic and old fashioned looking.  

I am almost a week late in posting, but hey, at least I gave it a try!
Anna Banana

My Stamp Room

Well - it's been months and months ... well let's face it - it's been years in the making to get things cleaned up, sorted, displayed easily to find everything and just right for working, but I finally think it's almost ready!! 

It became a catch-all room for a while and I could have used the people from Clean House to help me, but now I think it's pretty much done.  I have some projects crammed under the tables that need to be completed so I can get them out of the way, but it's not too bad!
First are the before pictures from last winter - I think I may have taken them in December or January - there is snow out the windows, anyway.  The after pictures are from 3 days ago.

Here are the "before" pictures:


The after pictures will be in the next post...