Saturday, September 19, 2009

Happiness Comes in a Flat-Rate Envelope

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Just before lunchtime today, someone started banging on the door. Great, I thought. Probably someone here to read the water-meter in the kitchen, and the apartment is a mess – I’ve been sick, and Seth is away on business. Why does this always happen? I reluctantly went to the door, Thor (our “ferocious” miniature schnauzer) barking all the way. It turned out to be one of our complex’s guards delivering this wonderful little package from America. (Sidenote: virtually all apartment complexes in China have guards who control entry to the buildings, monitor parking, watch the grounds, etc. It adds an extra layer of safety that I really appreciate.)

Just what was in the package, you might ask? It was chock-full of crafty goodness: three new cricut cartridges (Joys of the Season, Wild Card, and Home D├ęcor), a full set of new Studio G clear Halloween stamps, and two SEI Christmas stamp sets (Alpine Frost and Glitzmas). The USPS ships these flat-rate 9 ½ x 12 ½“ international envelopes for only $12.95; they hold quite a bit! I found great deals on everything on e-bay and had it all sent to my in-laws Stateside. They removed any excess packaging (like the cricut cartridge boxes – I don’t keep those anyway), and when it was all said and done there was actually quite a bit of room left over in the envelope.

Let me just say, clear/unmounted stamps are a life-saver when you live overseas! They’re easy to store, easy to move, cheap to ship (no heavy wood blocks), compact… When we moved back to China, I knew it would be a while before our crate arrived, so I just put a few cd cases of my favorite clear stamps in my carry-on. It hardly took up any space, didn’t add a lot of weight, easy-peasy!

Okay, enough babbling - off to go play with my new stuff!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A Little Chat Over Coffee

Morning Coffee

Boy, time sure does fly when you’re … well, let’s just say it flies. Tomorrow we’ll have been back in China for four months – I can hardly believe it! Let me tell you, those four months have been anything but routine. Setting up house in a new apartment, adjusting to a new part of town (when your city has a population of over 20 million, a different neighborhood can feel like a whole new world!), getting our crate through customs, multiple business trips, multiple guests (some friends, some business), new friends, new endeavors… And of course, things aren’t slowing down for us anytime soon. Seth has a business trip next week, then we’re going to Thailand for a few days, and then there’s a trip to Xi’an in the works… It’s a good thing we like travel!

The weather here is beginning to cool down a bit; not quite fall weather, but it’s a start! Today it’s barely above 80 degrees, overcast, with a slight breeze; we’ve got the windows open and some B&BW Pumpkin fragrance oil wafting through the air. In keeping with the theme, I’ve started making some fall cards. I realized the other day that even though fall is my favorite time of year, I hardly have any related stamps! Luckily, my Slice has been a huge life-saver – I’ve been using it to cut out pumpkins, leaves, even turkeys. For example:

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I’ve got a few other cards in the works, plus in a week or so I should be getting a couple of packages from the States with some crafty goodness. I’m just a TAD excited about that, in case you were wondering. Not that I’m going to be stalking the mailbox or anything…

Card Supplies:
Stamps: SU So Many Sayings; Ink: SU Chocolate Chip craft; Paper: watercolor paper, My Mind’s Eye pp; Accessories: Making Memories Slice, Fall/Back to School design card