Thursday, March 29, 2012


We live in the San Fernando Valley, a thriving suburban community with a population of around 55,000. We love our neighborhood because it’s quiet, peaceful and has a wonderful vegetarian restaurant within walking distance. Everything was near perfect. And then he arrived.

“Cock-a-doodle-doo! Cock-a-doodle-doo!” There was no Welcome Party for our newest neighbor, no Welcome Wagon came a calling and Mr. Rogers was a no show. 

Once a day I could have tolerated it, but we would be greeted by his crowing almost constantly – all day long. We never saw him but trust me, we knew he lived amongst us. Once we even drove around the neighborhood searching for our vociferous neighbor but we couldn’t find anything. Not even a stray feather.

As a lacto-ovo-vegetarian I do eat eggs, just not fertilized ones. I have a deep respect for fish, fowl and beast, but this rooster tested my patience.

And then one day he was gone. Quiet returned to the neighborhood and believe it or not, I missed him. I used to wonder if he was made into Sunday dinner, but I’d like to think he met a chicken and together they flew the coop.

I made this card in honor of our dearly departed neighborhood rooster.

Both the rooster paper and the plaid paper came from Mike's.
Instead of a trademark I now put a bee on every envelope.

I found this stamp on ebay and just had to have it. Paid way too much!
I guess what happens when the rooster crows is up for debate.

I'm not about to start eating chicken, but if  I did, it would have to be oriental orange chicken.What's your favorite chicken recipe? Tempt me!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Altered Art or Just Clothespins?

Saturday morning, lying in bed with coffee and my laptop. Went on Etsy, not to buy, but to look for inspiration. One item led to another and I happened upon altered clothespins and was instantly smitten…then confused…and finally amazed. $12.50 for 4 altered clothespins? Wow, I could do that.

Off to the local Dollar Store and back in 20 minutes with a package of 40 clothespins.

Out came the scraps, glitter, Mod Podge, paint, distress ink and all kinds of assorted cr@p.  Once I started I could not stop.

Glitter filled the air and the sweet smell of Mod Podge made me dizzy with joy. I was in Craft Heaven. My mind wandered as I worked feverishly. As I got down to my last clothespin I was sorry I hadn’t bought more. At least two or three more packages.  Perhaps, I should have bought all the clothespins they had? I knew that now was the time to open up a store on Etsy. I was going to sell my clothespins. It didn’t matter that mine looked similar to the other 4,157 clothespins for sale. I could make a fortune. I could retire. I could…

WT#? 4,157 items listed for sale under clothespins? Okay, so cancel the retirement party. Bum-mer. And then my dear husband Tony rubbed salt into my gaping wound by asking, “What are you going to do with all those clothespins?”

So friends, help me out here. What the heck do I do with my 40 altered clothespins? Anyone want a package? If you do, let me know what the heck you would do with them and some lucky follower can be the proud owner of EllenBee’s First Limited Edition Clothespins. 

There will not be a second edition.

French script in a lovely shade of green.
The camellia flower is made from tissue paper I got in NYC. 

Made with a REAL map of Paris.
I added a bit of sparkle because Paris is the city of Love.

Although you can't see the detail, I used dress pattern paper for this set.
Two more tissue flowers, I love the large daisy with a pearl button center.

I just added another YouTube video. I hope you'll visit!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Music is the melody of life

Legend has it that I am distantly related to the famous pianist and composer Sergei Rachmaninoff. My father’s parents were both from Russia and my grandfather’s last name was Rachman. I have been told (by unreliable sources) that inoff (inov) means son of – hence the connection.

My father was a talented musician and played accordion, piano and organ. No lessons folks – just pure talent. Oh, he had so much hope that my sisters and I would be musical but alas, none of us took after him.

I played piano for three years and in that time had 3 teachers. FINALLY, my father realized it was me and not the teachers and I was allowed to quit. I do however love music and my taste runs from Opera to Broadway musicals to anything and everything, except Rap and Country.

When I love a song I will play it over and over and over again. For example – I haven’t seen The Book of Mormon yet, but after I downloaded the album from Itunes, I played one song 36 times. That was in ONE day! 

My daughter Cassandra will tell you that driving her to and from school she had to listen to the same tune so many times that she compared driving with me to water torture.
I come from an imaginative family and it is said that my mother’s family, who originated from Rumania, had gypsy blood running through their veins. It makes sense to me – I love to dance and I wear large hoop earrings.

I got this stamp for $.66 at Mike’s and I immediately knew that I had to make a card.

I cheated. That isn't a real envelope - just pretend.
I didn't have enough paper so I improvised.

Both the background and the black musical note paper are from Graphic 45.
I wonder if I'll ever put a bow on a card?  

Are you related to anyone famous? Want to be?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Who Am I?

About 15 years ago I opened my first email account and baptized myself Peacenpassion (pronounced peace n passion.)   

Then, when I entered the WWW (wild and wacky world of scrapping) I listed my name as TheEllenB - Ellen Barbara being my first and middle name. Actually, I had been carrying around “The Ellen B” since 1957 when I saw the original Tammy and the Bachelor film starring Debbie Reynolds. The Ellen B was the name of her houseboat. Back then I thought it was pretty cool that they had named the boat after me.

The name stuck until, by mistake, I was listed in a swap as TheEllenBee. I instantly fell in love and from that day forward added the “e” and officially became TheEllenBee. There is a caveat here because I can’t seem to change my name on some of the sites I frequent so unfortunately, I am also still the TheEllenB, without the antenna and wings.

I am not multiple personalities. I repeat. Not multiple personalities BUT with all these monikers I sometimes feel as if I have no idea who I am.

The latest name calling is because of my entrance into the world of YouTube videos. My channel is Peacenpassion (because of the yahoo account) but when the camera starts rolling I introduce myself as Ellen Bee. I’m afraid I might end up confusing my followers. Or that I might be arrested for having too many aliases!

Here is where I start singing that wonderful song from Les MiserablesWho am I? If you haven’t seen the musical it’s where Jean Valjean, who has been know as: Monsier Madeleine, Monsieur Le Mayor, Ultime Fauchelevent, Monsieur Leblanc and Urbain Fabre, comes forward to admit that his real name Jean Valjean.  

I can’t sing but Who Am I? - EllenBee, TheEllenBee, TheEllenB, Peacenpassion, just plain Ellen, Mom (to my daughter) and Hon (to the husband).

I hope you like my second video which is also my first official “show and tell” video. If not, you can complain to one of my personalities -

Do you have a channel? If so, put the name in your comment and I promise to watch one of yours videos.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Do Frogs Ride Bikes?

I once had a relationship with a frog. He would serenade me with wonderful melodies and he always made me smile. I know they say that frogs give you warts, but not this frog.  I never kissed him, but would have if given the opportunity, and I wouldn’t have cared if he didn’t turn into a prince. Because in my eyes, he already was royalty.  

The minute I happened upon this stamp I knew I had to buy it. There is something so whimsical about a frog riding a bicycle. My friendly frog can ride a bike and that is no anthropomorphism. For my friend is an extraordinary frog. He has been Grand Marshal of the Tournament of Roses Parade, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was awarded an honorary doctorate of Amphibious Letters from Southampton College in New York. Ride a bicycle? Piece of cake! 

Wanna take a guess as to who my friend is?

I loved making this card! Froggie on a Bike stamp is from Pictureshow on Etsy
and the bicycle paper is from Graphic 45 Olde Curiosity Shoppe.

I like using escape, rather than Bon Voyage. 

I have now made 2 cards that I am proud of and can officially add card making
to my addiction list. I do NOT own any copics and wonder if that is next. Ya think?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

All this time you, my loyal followers, have probably thought that I was a nice person. Sorry to disappoint you but underneath this kind exterior is a witch – like from the Wizard of Oz. Not Glenda the good one, but the other one, with the striped stockings and funny hat.  

I was in third grade and a good friend of mine Rita B. and I went to see the Wizard of Oz at the Elmora Movie Theater. About half-way through she started crying. She was terrified of the film and told me between sobs that we had to leave – NOW! I wanted to stay and watch the film because I was really enjoying it, but No, we had to leave cause she was a scaredy cat!!

Our friendship changed after that day and a few months later – it was the day after Halloween - she got sick in school. As she puked all over herself, I wickedly laughed inside knowing I had my revenge. See, I am a witch. Do you hate me?

I like the Wizard of Oz but have never loved it. Wicked, on the other hand, is one of my favorite musicals and I have actually seen it twice. I think it is because I identify more with Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West, than I do with the innocent Dorothy.

I made this album last week and I am loving the way it turned out. It is the $1.50 Little Cottage chipboard album from Mike’s bin and of course, Graphic 45 paper. I embossed the yellow brick road using TH dies.

Hold onto your hat cause there's a tornado coming!
I used sunflowers because they are the state flower of Kansas.

Pages 1 & 2 
Follow Dorothy and her friends as they seek brains, courage, heart and home.

Pages 3 & 4
The key hole paper is actually from Graphic 45
Alice in Wonderland line. It's a perfect fit.

Pages 5 & 6
Stamps are from Artistic Outpost.

Pages 7 & 8
My favorite tag is the witch's striped socks.

OMG!The tornado destroyed the house. Where are the sides?

Don't worry, Dorothy and Toto made it home safely.
The End!

Coming soon to YouTube, a spell binding story about
wizards, magical slippers and flying monkeys! 
Starring EllenBee and co-starring her Follow the Yellow Brick Road
chipboard album. Produced by Graphic 45 and directed by Mike's.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

England swings like a pendulum do

As far back as I can remember I've had a love/hate relationship with Sunday evenings. I have wonderful childhood memories of sitting in front of the TV with my sisters and dining on crunchy peanut butter & grape jelly sandwiches. The hate part came from knowing that in the morning I would have to go back to school. After all these years I still have that love/hate relationship going on, but with a few minor changes. Our Sunday night fare is usually Trader Joe's organic pizza and instead of school, it's work that I hate facing on Monday morning.

My TV viewing has also changed with the times. Instead of GE Theater we watch Masterpiece Theatre. Now that the second season of Downton Abbey is over, we take our British television with less melodrama and more laughs. A favorite of ours is Doc Martin. A series about a curmudgeon Doctor who suffers from a phobic fear of blood, which results in frequent and debilitating bouts of nausea and vomiting. I know a bit odd, but we’re great fans of the series.

Which leads me to my sister – who also loves Doc Martin. It’s her birthday next week and I wanted to make her a special card. Since my present to her will be High Tea at a local Tea Cottage, I decided to make her a card that reflected all things British.

Isn't he adorable? The card was so easy to make.
Just strips of cardstock, a little embossing and a couple of stamps!

 I used pop -ups to give him a bit of distinction.

How smashing is that?

This stamp was made by Inkadoo and I found it at Big Lots for $2.00. Happy Birthday Little Sister!

Speaking of birthdays...I just made a mistake at work and sent some folks an
early birthday card - like 5 months early. Ever make a mistake at work? 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Why Alter a Birdhouse?

My Top Ten Reasons
  1. Because it was only $1.00 - and I am cheap.
  2. Because it is an easy project - and I am lazy.
  3. Because it gives me the opportunity to use leftover scraps - and boy do I have a lot.
  4. Because everyone else does them - and I am a follower, not a leader.
  5. Because I have a ton of bird embellishments – and I want to get rid of them so I can buy new ones.
  6. Because I need projects to write about for my blog – and I am clear out of ideas.
  7. Because it’s tiny – and after photographing it for my blog I can stick it in a corner.
  8. Because I have seen them for sale at outrageous prices – and if I decided to sell it, I might be able to make a good profit.
  9. Because I genuinely like birds – as long as they don’t poop on my car.
  10. Because we think caged birds sing, when in fact they are really crying to be free - and birdhouses are man’s way of giving birds their wings to fly.   
 A musical roof tops this little house.

I gave this house an architectural theme with house plans, blue prints and
a tape measure trim.

There are even windows for my feathered friend.

Sign from Lost & Found Collection
Tape measure and house plans by Rebecca Sower
Architectural stickers by TH Crowded Attic
Bird House, golden leaves, and silver stars by Recollections

Have you ever made a birdhouse? Have I perhaps inspired you? I hope so!