Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Tutorial: How To Create a B&W Photo With Spot Color

I've created another fun tutorial on eHow with detailed instructions for creating a beautiful black-and-white photo with spot color. The tutorial includes steps for editing in Adobe Photoshop Elements, and also includes step-by-step pictures to assist you.

Check it out: How To Create A Black-and-White Photo With Spot Color

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Tutorial: How To Create A B&W Hand-Tinted Digital Photograph

I've just posted a new tutorial on the eHow website with detailed instructions for creating a black-and-white hand-tinted digital photo using Photoshop Elements. This technique can be used on any photograph, and involves just a few steps.

Check it out: How To Create a B&W Hand-Tinted Digital Photograph


CC! Hand-tinted Photo

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Photo: Grunge Effects

Well, I just tried my hand at editing a photo for the "grunge" look, and I'm pretty happy with my first attempt. I was inspired by a Christmas photo we received from an aunt & uncle - he is a professional photographer and their grunge-style photo looks awesome.

I used a photo of myself and hubby - our Christmas portrait. Here are the before and after photos!


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Photo: A Little Birdie in the Snow

I shared this cute photo on TwoPeas as part of a photo challenge, and thought I'd share it here, too, with all of you. A few days ago, in single-digit temperatures, I caught this little black-eyed junco kicking back beneath the birdfeeder for much of the day. He just hung around and enjoyed the sunflower seeds scattered in the snow.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Flip Mino on Good Morning America ...

Remember you heard it hear first, two weeks ago, that the Flip Mino is a hot seller this season! LOL

Sitting here this morning I thought it was great to see the Flip Mino featured on Good Morning America as a top gift item for this year's Christmas season. You'll remember I shared my two custom Flip Minos, Retro Red Checkered Linen, and Pink Daisy. Both are available from my CafePress Shop. If you'd like another look, here they are (click to see details):

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Passing the Word: Scrapbooking Give-A-Way

Leah Killian has a beautiful Christmas Mini Album she's been sharing instructions for on her blog - it's beautiful! Well, now she's added a wonderful bonus: a $150 Give-A-Way of papercrafting kits, ribbons, rub-ons, & more. Just leave a comment on her blog & you will be entered. Good luck! :)

Leah Killian's Blog Give-A-Way

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Blog Trains for Digital Scrapbooking Freebies

Just want to share with you all the three Christmas Blog Trains I've been downloading from this week. There are some very talented digital designers offering beautiful free kits for the Christmas season. Each of these sites will offer previews of the kits being shared and links to the individual designer sites where you can download them. If you're on dial-up, as I am, these pages can take a few to load, but is it ever worth it to see the vast selection of designs. Most of these sites will only have the links available through December 31st - so hurry! Have fun!

Christmas Around The World

Worldwide Christmas Scrapbooking Freebies

Holly Jolly Express

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Digiteez ... Poinsettias Ultra-Mini Kit

Like most of you I am busy, busy, busy getting things done for Christmas. I wanted to give you all a little "gift" for Christmas, so have created an ultra-mini kit featuring beautiful poinsettias - one with glitter and one without. These are both png files with transparent backgrounds. They will look beautiful added to Christmas cards or in those Christmas layouts you will all be working on soon. I'd love to see how you use them, so please post a link in the comments where I can see your projects!

Merry Christmas!

~ Download here ~

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunset on MTA in Arctic Chill

Like much of the country, we are having quite the cold snap here. We reached a lovely ELEVEN degrees for the high today. It is currently THREE degrees. That is still warmer than Sunday morning's temp of ZERO. And it is supposed to get colder! Weather, however, is not something I like to hear complained about. Rather I see it as something to marvel at, and enjoy. God is so creative and gives us such a wonderful variety of diverse conditions here in North Idaho, and I can't help but enjoy each day. Today we were blessed with brilliant sunshine all day, which is all the brighter bouncing off the endless white snow. The sunset was gorgeous, and I just have to share it with you! Don't you love it?? :D

$10 Coupon for Oriental Trading Company

I've already shared how much I love shopping at Oriental Trading Company, & my recent order had a coupon in it for $10 off my next order. Well I looked a little closer and the coupon says "share this great offer with everyone!" So I am! :D

To get $10 off any order of $49 or more, use keycode NOVBB09 at checkout! Just click on the image below to go straight to OTC.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Just a reminder, today starts ScrapnArt's 12 Days of Christmas - I am heading there *real quick* before I go shovel! ;)

We have SNOW

Yesterday morning we had a 1/2-inch of leftover, partially melted, frozen snow on the ground ... here is how it looks at my house this morning:

Isn't it beautiful?? That's my Jeep Patriot under a FOOT of new snow! Of course, now I am heading out the door to start hand-shoveling the walkway, the driveway, the trail to the woodshed, and my beloved mail trail. (I'll be sharing pics of my mail trail soon!) At least I won't have to do my Pilates workout today -- shoveling will be a great workout! (Bend - pull that tummy to the spine - keep that back straight - lift & throw!) ;D

Enjoy your day!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Giving The Shirt Off Your Back ... A Must Read!

Well I just read an awesomely inspirational entry on someone else's blog that I want to share with everyone. It is about GIVING ... even when you think you have nothing to really offer. I hope you all will take two minutes to read this, and will be blessed by it as I was.

(For those of you who are scrappers & paper crafters, you will find this even more interesting as it involves that amazing designer, Tim Holtz!)

The Shirt Off Your Back

Craft Goodies For Cheap

I just received a wonderful package full of goodies from Oriental Trading Company - had a gift certificate last month I "had" to get used up. ;D  I also receive their e-newsletter, and they are offering FREE shipping, NO minimum for a limited time. They have such awesome deals, and with all the scrapbooking items they've begun carrying, I just had to share this with you all. Just click the stack of scrapbook papers:

Christmas Fun For Crafters ...

Just found out about a great bunch of fun on one of my favorite sites, Scrap n'Art. Starting tomorrow, the 13th, they will be having a 12 Days of Christmas countdown to Christmas Eve. Whether you are a paper scrapper, digi scrapper, card maker, or any kind of crafter, this promises to be a ton of fun. They will have demos and tutorials and freebies every day. And for those of you not familiar with Scrap n'Art, they have a digital magazine that is just amazing! It is huge, full of dozens and dozens of awesome scrapbooking layouts, ideas, and digi freebies. This is for any papercrafter/scrapbooker, not just digi scrappers. And it's FREE. Head over to their site and check it out!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Retro Country Linen ... on a Flip Mino Camcorder?? You betcha! :)

Recently in my CafePress shops I added a "retro country linen" red-checkered design on a Flip Mino camcorder. I really did it just for fun and as an alternative to all the flashy modern designs available on this awesome little video cam. Amazingly, it has become one of my best-selling products this Christmas season. If you'd like to see the item that's "hot" for the holidays, check it out here:

Red Checkered Flip Mino

I also have a beautiful Pink Daisy Flip Mino available:

While you're there, you may enjoy checking out my other CafePress shops - just start at CafePress.com/CariCreates!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Views From Moose Trail Acres (MTA)

You will often hear me refer to our home and small acreage as Moose Trail Acres. Years ago I dubbed our wonderful property this in honor of the many, many moose who stop by during the year. I never grow tired of seeing them lumber into the yard, oftentimes with a youngster in tow. We had an awesome bull moose pass through last month ...

After a record-setting winter last year, we are currently enjoying a bit of a respite - it's already December and while it is cooollld, we don't currently have any snow on the ground. As a native Northwesterner, I know better than to think it can't make up for lost time if it likes, but I am enjoying this special "treat" for now!

We had fog all day Monday, December 1st ... (love this shot!)

On Tuesday, December 2nd, we had a good bit of sunshine ...

On Wednesday, December 3rd, it was clear & sunny, but the day started out at a frosty 17 degrees Fahrenheit! brrrrrr!

While there was still frost on the ground, the wild turkeys made their daily visit to our yard, and while they usually kick around under our birdfeeders to find leftover seeds, I decided to try feeding them myself once ... WHAT FUN! I threw a few handfuls of squirrel food (mostly sunflower seeds & dried corn) to them, and they responded like tame chickens - albeit wary ones! :)

I hope you all are squeezing every last drop of enjoyment from whatever beauty God brings into your life each day. I came across this wonderful quote this week and included it in my Christmas letter ... I will end this blog entry with it:


Tuesday, December 2, 2008


And finally we have a download available! Click on the link below to get the free digital paper pack "Earthy Graffiti" ... and enjoy!

Download Earthy Graffiti Paper Pack

Monday, December 1, 2008

Wouldn't you know it ...

Well, a small setback has hit -- the 4shared file sharing site is not working properly today, so I have not been able to post the paper pack for you all! I am working on an alternative and will have it available some time this evening. Sorry for the delay everyone! We will get things rolling here though, in short order. :D

Here's The Preview...

I have a preview of the paper pack mini-kit for you to see... the download will be available this afternoon!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Cari Creates! Blog Kickoff!!

I finally decided to dive in and start a regular blog ~ glad you could be here! :D In the coming weeks and months I will be sharing craft designs, digital designs, crafting news, fun photos, updates on where I'm getting published, and so much more. I look forward to having a lot of fun on here and to getting to know visitors to my blog.

To celebrate my blog kickoff, I will be sharing a digital scrapbooking mini-kit later today right here on my blog ... for free! So be sure to check back to get 4 beautiful coordinating papers in my "Earthy Graffiti" paper pack!

For those who have been subscribed to my newsletter, I hope you will find my blog is more convenient, offers more content and has more frequent updates.

Thanks so much for taking a look!


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Beautiful Autumn ... and Turkeys!

Original Cari Creates! ~ Craft Corner blog entry - GO!

Beautiful Autumn ... and Turkeys!

Thought I'd share few photos taken here at/near Moose Trail Acres yesterday, October 21st. Today is even more beautiful, so I will be out shooting this afternoon as I drive around the county. For now, here are 3 beautiful shots:

Calico Mountains & Snow on Schweitzer) ~ Out on the Highway from MTA

Autumn Trees Along the Roadway ~ Next Road Over From MTA

Turkey Crossing ... single file! ... "This sheriff's rig has us covered!" :D


Monday, October 13, 2008

Painting Pumpkins

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Crafteez by Cari ~ Project Sheet #4

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Painting Pumpkins

If you receive my newsletter, you heard me mention the adorable painted pumpkins I found on DecoArt thanks to my twittering friend, DecoGirl. Be sure to check these projects out as they are just too much fun! And if you get the chance, drop a note to DecoGirl on twitter and let her know I sent you! :)

Crafteez by Cari ~ Project Sheet #4

The fourth Crafteez project sheet is now available at CariCreates.com! This adorable card features a "puffy" quilted-look giraffe on a welcome card for baby. As a bonus, you can also download the printable of the giraffe outline. Just visit my Crafteez page!

Crafting For The Holidays? Great Ideas Here!

I always love to create beautiful handmade gifts to give to family and friends at Christmastime. The time to start on those projects, of course, is *now*. And just in time to get you started, I've added some new selections to my Books Etc Shop! You'll find some fun crafting ideas for the holidays in these books - including the latest Gooseberry Patch Christmas book, an all-time annual favorite of mine! Just visit the book shop and you can get really great prices through my association with Amazon.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

My Photos on Alamy

I am please to announce my photography is now being hosted on Alamy, which means my photos can be licensed not only for professional use, but also for personal and educational use at very affordable prices. If you'd like to use any of my photos on your blog, facebook, myspace, or other social networking site, you can license them for just $1 to $3 each. This pricing also applies to certain educational uses as well!

Just visit my Alamy page - Alamy Images by Cari D. Cruse.

As I am getting my photos moved to Alamy a few at a time, I will keep you updated here on my blog as to what's added each week. So far the photographs include:

Purple Crocus

Ripe Red Apples on the Tree

Pine Siskin Held in Hand

Western Painted Turtle

Bowtie Pasta

Microscope and Slides

Purple Iris

Yellow Onion

Avocado and Tomato Salad

Water Gun on Firefighter Boat

Columbia Lily

I'll let you know as more are made available!

My Photos On Alamy

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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Autumn Discounts & Pink Ribbon Deals

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Autumn Discounts & Pink Ribbon Deals

Visit CariCreates.com right now to get great deals for Autumn & Halloween at Oriental Trading Company and Terry's Village. You can even shop for items that will help with breast cancer research as these companies - just click the Pink Ribbon on my site!

~~ Visit CariCreates.com ~~

Monday, October 6, 2008

Moose Crossing At Moose Trail Acres

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Stump Cake by Cari :)

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Stump Cake by Cari :)

Here it is, the Stump Cake! Friends provided me with photos from the internet of the kind of cake they wanted, with just a couple adjustments. They wanted a Christian cross between their initials rather than just a plus sign. I went with cheesecake filling between the layers - yum! The groom, a logger for many years, came to the cake table with his CHAINSAW! LOL! Thankfully, they chose to cut the cake with a regular knife, though. :D

For anyone wondering about the bark texture - I found a new use for my all-time favorite kitchen tool. It's the Pampered Chef "Hold'n'Slice" tool. It was *perfect* for "texturizing" the stump cake! :D


Moose Crossing At Moose Trail Acres

Ahhhh, the thrill of seeing moose at my house just never wears off for me! Yesterday morning this huge bull moose crossed out front, went down into the big "Pit Pond" just over our fence, then crossed the road. My oldest son spotted him & I ran outside with the camera (not *too* close, though).

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Blue Heart Cakes

A photo of the cakes I made for today's reception...white with royal blue roses!

Blue Heart Cakes

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

First Snow on Schweitzer & Selkirks!

On Monday, the first day of Autumn, we received a beautiful thunder and rainstorm. As the storm approached, I commented to hubby that the storm coming over the Selkirk Mountains sure looked like it held snow to me. We got our rain, and as dusk approached the clouds lifted....and lo and behold, there was snow up on Schweitzer and the Selkirks! Beautiful! I took a few shots last evening of the view, but this morning's view was just spectacular, so I am sharing that photo here:

First Snow on Schweitzer & Selkirks

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

County Fairs & College Kids

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County Fairs & College Kids

Last week we hit the county fair - checked out all the entries (I took two 3rd places, two 1st places, & a reserve grand champion for my photography & papercrafts!), ate the *best* bratwursts around at the Wurst Man trailer, petted the critters (took photos to add to my galleries), ate a delicious elephant ear, and had a great time visiting folks! Whew! Such fun!

Over Labor Day weekend, we had a house full of young adults. Our 2 sons and a multitude of college friends came and camped here for two nights. I cooked pizzas (Papa Murphy's are mmmm mmm good!), and the rest all homemade: fried chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn on the cob, sticky buns, salsa, chocolate chip cookies, french toast & bacon, pulled pork & bbq sauce sands, hot caramel corn.......... all heartily enjoyed by our family & guests! Everyone enjoyed video games, Bananas family comedy videos, horseshoes, darts, croquet, and keep-away giant frisbee. A wonderful weekend!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Bugs, Frames, Deer, Tstorms ...

This week I've been busy prepping photos for the county fair - framed and entered a few of my favorites along with a handmade greeting card and a miniature scrap album of my dog and cat. I'll let you know how I did after we get in our visit to the fair this weekend!

I also found time to photograph some really icky bugs - :) - out here on my driveway. Got some nice shots of a momma deer when she stopped by last night. I also tried to shoot a very faint rainbow over our house - got it, but you have to strain to see it! :D

We've quite a few thunderstorms this week, so my computer has had to be shut down more than usual, but at least we're getting some *rain* with those storms. It's been pretty dry around here for the past couple months, and the rain is very welcome. Besides, I'm one of those loons who likes to go out and dance in the rain - woohoo!

I've been looking for a good Irish webcam to add to my Google homepage. I found one of downtown Dublin, but I was really hoping for something more scenic. Ahhh, the search continues.

I've had a good week for getting photos prepped and sent to PhotoShelter Collection. Hope to see those live on my portfolio in a few days - I'll keep you posted!



Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Papercrafting On Other Shores ...

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Papercrafting On Other Shores ...

Just received a subscription offer for a British papercrafting magazine ~ Beautiful Cards. Looks delicious! So went searching about the internet to find their site - they must have one, right?? Well, let me tell you, it took a while to find them. None of the usual search engines had them, but once I did some digging and found out who the publishing company was (Origins Publishing), I was able to locate their neat site: www.cardmakingandpapercraft.com. It's so fun to read about a favorite hobby on a site from across the sea - to find a "connection" with those from another country. Even when I'm reading my favorite craft blogs, I always like to notice where people are from. Somehow, it adds a bit of excitement when I think I am reading the post of just another "girl next door" and then discover she's from Australia, or Germany, or even if she's a military wife who's stationed in the Philippines. It just makes my world seem a little bigger for a moment in time, you know?

So off I go again, visiting international craft sites for a bit of "virtual globetrotting!" :D

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Newsletter #6

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Newsletter #6

The Cari Creates! Newsletter ~ Issue 6 went out last week featuring the latest desktop wallpaper and Crafteez downloads. If you aren't yet subscribed, be sure to do so ~ click here! The next newsletter will be out after the 15th. Don't miss it!

  Free projects!

  Free desktop wallpaper!


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Crafteez Project #3 ... Free For You!

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Crafteez Project #3 ... Free For You!

I've just added another great Crafteez project for my website visitors! This time it's a Jumbo Tag celebrating "Back 2 School." Add this tag to the stack of back to school supplies, or clothes, or make a great scrapbook layout with your student's first day of school photo.

Jumbo Back 2 School Tag

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Awesome Free Fonts ...

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Awesome Free Fonts ...

In case you miss my Twitter, want to let you all know that ScrapnFonts is offering some great new *free* fonts!! If you haven't already signed up for their newsletter, it is so worth it to see what they have that's new, and also to hear about great free fonts like these!


Monday, June 30, 2008

A Favorite Haunt For This Font-aholic!

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A favorite haunt for this font-aholic!

Okay, so I doubt I would ever 'fess up to how many fonts I actually own, even if I *could* count them, but it is a guiltless addiction as I use those fonts to create all kinds of wonderful things. (Boy, doesn't that sound like a classic "justification argument" from a bonafide addict?? :D ) A font really can bring out the best in a project - whether a greeting card, a scrapbook layout, or anything else. I have gathered fonts from many different places over the years -- discs that are nothing but fonts & more fonts, design software with unique font collections, and from all over the web. One of my favorite places to find amazing fonts, though, is ScrapNfonts.com. If you've never been to ScrapNfonts, you are truly missing out! I long ago signed up for their newsletter, which announces new fonts, offers links to their Idea Gallery and Featured Projects, and they often have some wonderful freebies! The freebies can include fantastic quote pages for use in projects, and some really great fonts for free, too. I have tried to get every free font they offer, and I've used them many times over in my projects. Of course, I've also purchased a number of their fonts, which are usually just 2 or 3 dollars and are available to download right away.


So now you know where I get some of the great fonts seen in my projects. Be sure to check out ScrapNfonts to see how much more they offer, as I have only touched on a portion of it in this blog entry.



Sunday, June 22, 2008

Crafteez Project #2 ... Free For You!

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CC! Free Desktop Wallpaper ~ Irises & Garden Friends

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Don't Miss The "Cari Creates! Newsletter"

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Don't Miss The "Cari Creates! Newsletter"

Have you signed up for the great newsletter from CariCreates.com? Subscribe to this twice monthly newsletter and you'll be among the first to hear when beautiful new desktop wallpapers and exciting craft projects are available for *free* download! You can also learn all about the new items in Cari's galleries, and find out what fun craft books have been added to the Books, Etc. Shop.


Go to the newsletter sign-up page now: CC! Newsletter Sign-up

CC! Free Desktop Wallpaper ~ Irises & Garden Friends

Here's the latest beautiful wallpaper free for your computer's desktop:

Irises & Garden Friends

Visit CariCreates.com to get yours - you'll find it on the Freebies page!

Crafteez Project #2 ... Free For You!

The newest Crafteez project is now available on CariCreates.com! Visit the Freebies page to get your copy.

Make your own beautiful gift bag for giving flower bulbs, seeds, cut flowers, or a small starter plant.

Friendship & Flowers Gift Bag

Friday, June 13, 2008

Scrapbook.com ~ Win A Little Shopping Spree

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Scrapbook.com ~ Win a little shopping spree

I just signed up on scrapbook.com so I could review products ~ they're offering a $10 superstore shopping spree each day to two lucky product reviewers! To learn more go to scrapbook.com and click on the Blogs tab, then scroll down the blog titles list until you see one that mentions the shopping spree. Good luck! ;)

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Free Craft Design ... Just For You!

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Free Craft Design ... Just For You!

Looky! Looky! Introducing:

"Crafteez from Cari Creates!"

- original craft designs free for you! Visit my freebies page for complete instructions for a Purple and Black Tag & Pocket Greeting Card.


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