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Monday, July 31, 2017

A Little Wild Bundle


The title of this post made me think of each one of my babies! A wild little bundle each time! This adorable stamp set with matching dies is sure to please. Great for baby cards and gifts or anybody, really! I love the sentiment "wild about you!"



Here is a great video showing how it all comes together. Scroll down for links to the products in my online store.




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Friday, July 28, 2017

Tie Dye Birthday Cards


This was such a fun technique to play with! Use coffee filters, baby wipes, and ink pads to make a quick and easy tie dye background! See the tutorial here on Splitcoaststampers. I used Smoky Slate, Dapper Denim, and Lemon-Lime Twist so the cards would work for anyone.

The background is applied to a layer of white cardstock with a glue stick! Kids would have a ball giving this a try!


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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

ASEA Healthy Wednesday: Ashwagandha for Stress

photo credit Organixx.com
My family always says "Bless you," when I say the name of this herb! If you remember all the "a" vowels will be pronounced "ah," you'll be saying it correctly.

Why do I take ashwagandha? Mainly for its adaptogenic functions: it helps my body deal with stress and decrease production of cortisol (a stress hormone).  It is sometimes called Indian Ginseng and has been used in traditional ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.

From the website Organixx.com:
Ashwagandha is primarily used as an “adaptogen.” Adaptogens are substances that stabilize and balance various physiological processes within the body, especially in response to stress and a changing environment. For example, ashwagandha is known to reduce overall cellular sensitivity to stress.
Chronic stress is an ever-present facet of our modern lives and has been linked to a higher risk for a number of illnesses. In a 2016 study, a double-blind, randomized clinical trial was carried out on 52 people who were subjected to chronic stress and who received either 300 milligrams (mg) of ashwagandha or a placebo control twice daily.
Treatment with ashwagandha reduced stress levels felt by the study subjects, as assessed by various questionnaires. At the same time, blood cortisol levels (a reliable indicator of stress levels), body weight, and body mass index (BMI) were noticeably better in the ashwagandha treatment group when compared to controls. 

Similarly, 60 days of treatment with ashwagandha significantly reduced both stress and cortisol levels in 64 subjects in another double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial.
Learn more about ashwagandha at organixx.com

Monday, July 24, 2017

July Paper Pumpkin Hearts


The July Paper Pumpkin kit was so cute! The only things I added were a few ink splatters and some pink twine from my stash. The heart punch-out from the first card is used as a focal point on the second card. Genius! 

Here's the video: 




You can add a prepaid subscription to any order, and you don't pay shipping on the Paper Pumpkin kit! Or go to PaperPumpkin.com to subscribe month-to-month.


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Friday, July 21, 2017

Fabulous Flamingo by Tandra Boyer


I wanted to share a few of the swaps I received back recently. This gorgeous card features lots of Polished Stone Technique on Glossy Paper. My friend Tandra has such a gift for watercoloring, and I love the way she made the background piece behind the die cut opening, as well as the gorgeous flamingo!


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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

ASEA Healthy Wednesdays: Essential Oils

Did you know that inhalation is the most effective method for absorbing essential oils?



". . .molecules of essential oil constituents travel along the olfactory nerves and into the brain itself, by-passing the so-called blood-brain barrier." Read more at the Tisserand Institute.

Essential oils are everywhere these days! Your friends are probably selling them, or at least using them! I've been using essential oils for more than 10 years, and I'd like to share a little bit of what I've learned.

There is a lot of misinformation out there. Essential oils are not automatically safe because they are "natural." Lots of poisons are from plants! So do your research and use safe essential oil practices.

First rule: Never use an essential oil neat (undiluted). You can cause a chemical burn or an allergic reaction, or trigger a sensitivity which will prevent you from using that oil again.

Second rule: Never ingest essential oils unless under the care of a *licensed* practitioner. Your consultant doesn't count.

If you'd like to learn more about essential oil safety, visit http://tisserandinstitute.org/safety/

Ok, now with that said, essential oils can be a great way to improve your quality of life! There is no "one great source" for essential oils. Lots of very reputable companies have been around a long time, and they are selling very high-quality oils. My favorite is Plant Therapy, but Mountain Rose Herbs and Bulk Apothecary are both great too.

I will continue to share what I know about essential oils, wellness, and healthy living both here and on my AskAmyASEA Facebook page. Please follow or subscribe to get the latest updates!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Happy Birthday Gorgeousness!

Can we ever have enough birthday cards? I don't think so! It's what I use the most.

These are samples from Stampin Up of the set Happy Birthday Gorgeous. I just love the colors and the layouts--this set is on the list for my next order! The Happy Birthday thinlit has already seen lots of use in my crafting. It's a great size, and the font is fun!

You get 32 stamps in the set!



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Friday, July 14, 2017

Watercolor Backgrounds Become Actual Cards!



I hope this isn't too shocking, but I actually USED some of my special watercolor backgrounds to make cards! It's so fun to mess around with watercolor that I sometimes forget to take the next step and turn them into something.

The card on the left is a Brusho background, and I added just a strip of Calypso Coral ribbon and one of the new Lovely Words die cuts.  They only cut the center image out of the cardstock, so I added a stitched oval to cut out the entire piece.

For the card on the right, I knew I wanted to stamp florals in black, which would entail using my MISTI. Why? because watercolor paper is too bumpy to get a good, solid black image unless you can re-stamp your image a few times. The MISTI allows me to re-stamp as many times as I need to, without having to mourn a splotchy image.

My Soft Sayings kit has been calling my name lately. As usual, I am afraid to use it because I might mess it up, but the stamps are safe! So I brought them out to play. I had to hand draw the stems and leaves (as if you couldn't tell) because I wanted to crowd the flowers all together. I also added a bit of Fine Tip glue on the flower centers to give it a little dimension.



Includes set of 15 photopolymer stamps, clear stamp block, 20 printed card bases and coordinating printed envelopes, giftable kraft box, die-cut accents, Stampin' Spot, Baker's Twine, washi tape, Stampin' Dimensionals

You can also buy refills for the Soft Sayings kit, and I am probably going to do that so I can quit being a chicken about using it.

If you have any favorite background panels or pieces of Designer Series Paper hanging around your desk, try putting just a couple things on them and sending them out to people you care about.


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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

ASEA Healthy Wednesdays: Asthma and Allergies



I suffer from asthma. Both my parents had it, and so does my older brother. Mostly, for me, it's a mild thing, only brought on by extremely bad air quality or a virus. But oh, when those things get me triggered, I am in a BAD way. Unfortunately, I have also had bad reactions to a few inhalers. So what does an asthma sufferer do? No one wants to just *survive* on constant asthma medications, with all their lovely side effects. I wanted to breathe again, to sing again, to live without daily pharmaceuticals.

Here's some advice from Robertson D. Ward, M.D. FAAFP, The Redox Doc:

The most promising novel therapeutic strategies now target the correction of REDOX abnormalities in treating asthma. People with asthma have very low levels of endogenous antioxidants like SOD and catalase. The airway tissues are under oxidative stress so massive that inflammation develops through the airways. It is so severe that in ICU’s today doctors measure the amount of REDOX molecules (nitrous oxide) in exhaled air to measure the severity of the case from hour to hour. Genetic factors that cause the expression of antioxidant gene polymorphisms are linked to susceptibility.

The immune system seems to be confused about who is a friend (tissues) and who
it should attack, and the endothelium of the airways becomes a target for attack resulting in inflammation. Insufficient cellular communication is a root cause, and, of course, is related to imbalances of REDOX molecules. Supplementing with certain molecules can restore opportunities for the body to balance the molecules and restore homeostasis. Sinus allergies have similar pathways of disease in different tissues.

*** For more information visit: www.theredoxdoc.com ***

All illnesses and chronic health challenges are due to an imbalance in cell communication. Fixing the imbalance can be tricky. Most pharmaceutical solutions have side effects, which trigger new imbalances, and a cascade effect begins.

Redox signaling molecules help restore cellular communication. Without side effect, without toxicity of any kind. My quality of life has improved beyond what I ever hoped.






I would love it if you followed my ASEA Facebook page! I share ASEA information, healthy recipes, new health research, wellness tips, and other information regarding improving our health and quality of life!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Copper Options on the Way to a Swap

This was one of my prototypes for my big swap project. I thought you might like to see that designing is a process, and sometimes it takes a few tries! Here's another one:

I just had to keep trying things out to see what I liked. I still like this one, but it wasn't the dramatic effect I was going for.

Here is the final product, which I shared in late June.


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