Thursday, December 31, 2009

Celebrate New Year;s Day with bargains at DDD

There are very few exceptions to the $2.00/product sale. In a few instances, large bundles have been removed for the day but that's about it. Lots of goodies - both PU and CU, so please stop by.

Happy New Year to all!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Hope you had a Merry Christmas

it was rather quiet at my house. My son and his girlfriend had planned to drive down from Richmond early Christmas Eve, celebrate with us, have dinner, stay late, then return home. He was scheduled to work supervisory shift at Patient First but became very ill with respiratory infection early in the week. He tried everything but only got worse and finally went in for treatment on Tuesday afternoon. Poor baby was totally out of it for Christmas. He had coughed so much his throat was too raw to speak and his chest felt like it was on fire. His girlfriend called to tell us he was on antibiotics and needed to stay home in bed. Got a call from yesterday; he still sounds awful but said he was beginning to feel better and had been able to stay up a couple hours yesterday and finally exchange gifts with his love.

Christmas Day my husband and I commented on how different Christmas is without the excitement of children in the house. We were both tired from all the doings earlier in the week so had a leisurely breakfast and sat around in our pjs for awhile, made a few calls to family and friends out of the area, then played on the computer for a bit. Didn't feel much like opening gifts so didn't.

In the afternoon my father and his companion came by and visited for about an hour before going on to have dinner at her son's house. Dear June, the last few holiday seasons have been tough ones for her. Two years ago, her daughter, who was a couple years younger than me, lost her battle to COPD and related diseases. That was between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Last year she lost the second of her sons to an unexpected cardiac arrest and had to fly to New York during Christmas to settle his estate. This Thanksgiving she had just had a place on her face biopsied. A week before Christmas she was told it was squamous cell carcinoma and she had to go in for surgery. Thankfully, all reports suggest the dermatologist got all the cancer and she is healing up nicely.

At 5:00, our friend, Brenda, who became a widow a couple years ago at Thanksgiving, came by and had dinner with us. After dinner we exchanged gifts and John and I finally decided to open those we'd gotten for each other. No surprises but all very nice. We sat and talked for hours, finally calling it a night sometime after midnight.

Yesterday we went and visited with our grandson and his family. The kids were happy with their gifts and everyone was in good spirits. From there we drove to Suffolk to see hubby's sister and her family. It was a pleasant visit with SIL, BIL, MIL. Our neices, all of whom are teenagers now, were too tied up with each other and their video games to visit with us. Disappointing that they don't have better manners; they had to be reminded by their parents to thank us for their gifts. Have no idea whether they lliked them or not as they seemed indifferent and eager to get back to their games.

All the running around and, I think, the let down of activity from all the recent shopping an d holiday preparations, got to me and by the time we got home, I was ready to crash.

Won't really feel like Christmas to me until Jeremy, my son, is here. I remember so vividly his first Christmas. He was just 10 days old and the lights on the tree fascinated him as did the Christmas music. Whenever I see a Christmas tree since then, I remember sitting in front of the tree with him that first year. Truly, Jeremy is the best Christmas gift I've ever received with the exception of God's gift to us all in the birth of Jesus.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Need gift card holders?

I didn't much care for the holders that came with some gift cards I bought, so made my own. I used my contribution to Digital Designer's Den Vintage Winter Holiday mega kit. Two cards holders will print to one 8.5: x 11" sheet of cardstock. Fold all tabs towards rectangular center and crease well. To assemble, fold bottom tab up and glue side tabs to it (or tape). When you fold top tab down you will notice there is a strip about 1/3" wide that is open; dont worry about this. Using scrap cardstock, cut 2 rectangles of 3.5" x 2.25"; these will become you message cards. Slip this blank card into the envelope you've created and and fold down the top tab to see where the blank space falls on the message card. I used this as a guide to lightly write in the recipient's name so it will show through when you glue top flap down. Remove message card and write your message. Tuck gift card into enelope and top with your message card. Glue top[ flap down. Now you have a pretty gift card holder that has a design on top side and on back shows who it is for. Hope you enjoy these.
You can get the free gift card holders here:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

New Kit: Christmas 4 Kiddies & free qp

Just loaded this new kit to my shop, D'Ambrosio Arts at Digital Designers Den
It contains 18 papers and lots of elements for the kids, including big brother & sister created from templates by Kristi Wrestling and babies by Cheryl Seslar.

Made a quick page for you too:

Which you can get here:

Hope you all have a Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Celebration at DDD & a freebie

Don't forget this week at Digital Designers Den we're celebrating and there are gifts for you:

Come see our lovely new mega:

Here is the coordinating hybrid set:

A close-up of my portion of the kit:

And to thank you for viewing my message, a bookmark made with my portion of the mega kit. Just right click and save.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Re-opening/birthday celebration

As you may know, our store had to be rebuilt due to a problem with another store that shared the same server with us. That problem caused the host to shut everyone on the server down & we had to move to a new host and rebuild. We missed the first anniversary of our opening on October 31st so decided we'd have a combined re-opening/belated birthday celebration.

All shops at DDD have sales of 50% or more. Every shop has at least 2 gifts for you which you will have to hunt for. Look for a birthday logo in the product description along with a link to download your gift.

Below is the preview of our Vintage Winter Holiday mega kit which sells for $9.99. However, during the month of December if you spend $10 or more and send us proof of your payment, we will send you a coupon to download this kit for free. Spend $15 or more and your gift will include not only the kit but also a surprise hybrid add-on.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Friday, November 27, 2009

Some recent Christmasy layouts

The layouts below were made with two new kits by Sweetmade, Christmas Story and Christmas Story 2. These kits are a mix of warm, whimisical, and elegant.

This LO was made with Christmas Story and has a photo of Londyn, the baby I was watching.

Also made with Christmas Story is this LO featuring photos of 3 of my nieces when they were younger. If you like the clustered frame I made here, you can get it for free at Sweetmade Inc.

Link to kit:

I scrapped some cute vintage winter postcards with Christmas Story 2:

and some vintage Christmas postcards too:

Link to kit:

Friday, November 13, 2009

News About Digital Designers Den

AS you know, we had a crash a couple weeks ago due to an issue with out host. We are back on-line but still rebuilding. Each designer is having to re-load their product zips so it's taking some time especially as some designers are in areas where their internet connections are very slow.

We're going to put up another message on our home page because we've decided to postpone our Grand Opening and Belated Birthday to December 1st. This will give us all a chance to get all our zips back in place, finish up the Novemeber/December collaboration kit, Vintage Winter Holiday, and add in the free gifts for you to pick up during the celebration.

The Vintage Winter Holiday is shaping up so nicely! I've seen several designers' contributions and they are lovely. In addition to offering the kit for sale as we usually do, we will be giving it away to anyone who makes a purchase of $10.00 or more during the celebration. More about this soon.

New Moon

I've been reading a lot lately so sharing more reviews with you. I know I'm going to get blasted for my opinion of New Moon by Stephenie Meyer, but I just have to be honest.

When I first heard of Stephanie Meyers' Twilightt series, I wasn't much interested. Teen vampire love story. Uh huh. But everyone talked about it so much that when a copy of Twilight turned up on a shelf at my local thrift store, I thought, "Why not?" What was I losing for $0.45? Interview With A Vampire by Anne Rice spoiled me. What a rich re-visioning of the vampire myth! So well told, beautifully written. And Louis! Ah who can forget Louis? Even Rice's later vampire novels could not compete with the place Interview has in my affections, although I found LeStat entertaining enough. How would Twilight compare?

Teen girl, something of misfit, falls in love with mysterious boy who just happens to be a vampire. As I read, I kept wondering why so many people were raving about the character, Bella. I didn't find her at all appealing. In part that could be due to her low self-confidence and habit of always putting herself down. But for me, the bigger issue was that she didn't seem to be about anything. I couldn't have told you what her values were or what she wanted out of life except for her obvious desire to be liked by the mysterious Edward whose handsome appearance is always foremost in her mind and her descriptions of him. The characters had the potential to be interesting but just weren't developed well enough for me to care about them. And Twilight was less a vampire story than a twist on Romeo and Juliet. As far as action and plot development, let's just say it was like watching a film in slow motion.

Now why, since I obviously wasn't impressed with Twilight, would I pick up the second installment, New Moon? I had no plans of buying it. Then I had a doctor's appointment scheduled and went searching for something to take along to read. Turned out I'd actually managed to get to the bottom of all the various waiting-to-be-read stacks around the house. I found one book I hadn't read but it was non-fiction of the sort requiring concentration; definitely not brain candy and I find brain candy is best for waiting rooms. Since I had to stop at the pharmacy on my way to the doctor, I checked the books on the their shelves. Nothing appealed to me and I was going to walk out but the thought of sitting in that waiting room for what might be a long while caused me to take a last look. I saw New Moon and snatched it up with a sigh. At least it wasn't heavy reading.

I don't know whether I was simply used to Bella or whether she was actually less annoying the second time around but I disliked her less. Except - and this is a big one for me - the girl was beyond hopelessly in love with Edward. Bella had lost all sense of herself as a person without Edward's presence. I hate that the young girls for whom this series is a favorite are reading this love story and perhaps learning how to obliterate themselves, how to vanish into the shadow of some male they choose as all important. Over and over again Bella and, yes, Edward, too was ready to give up everything if s/he couldn't be with the other. Is this really what we want our daughters to be learning? I think of friends who entered relationships that faltered and fell apart. What happens afterward? Those with a healthy sense of self pull their lives back together and go on, often to better things. Those who negated much of their self to mollify their partner usually fall apart when the one they thought of as "everything" no longer has use for them. The one left behind often is in a position of having, in essence, to establish a new self image.

Aside from the unhealthy lesson I see there, what else can I say about New Moon? Although the characters don't develop much more I did feel there was some improvement. There was more of a sense of the Cullens being a family with believable family loyalties based on interest in and concern for one another rather than just a connection as vampires. I liked the way Meyers wove in the legend of the werewolves. However, I found myslef laughing out loud as I envisioned the "exploding" that took place as the Indians lads transformed to werewolves. This made me picture the old Incredible Hulk cartoons. The Volturi were an interesting touch - the veneer of civility over the horror one expects in a vampire story; now there was a vampire story to be told there. And there was, relatively speaking, more action than in Twilight.

All in all, perhaps satisfying brain candy for the pre-teen, teen set. However, my nieces won't be receiving copies from me.

Don't forget

This lovely kit by 13 designers is available at Digital Designers Den. It's a huge kit put together to benefit Margie aka Joyful Moments designs who is suffering from cerebral veneous thrombosis. This disease carries a very high risk of stroke. Margie was unable to receive the care she needed in her home country so was sent to an area where more advanced medical treatment was possible. While her insurance is paying for the treatments, she needs help paying for her travel expenses. All proceeds from the kit will go to Margie to help with these expenses. Please take a look and see if you can help Margie by purchasing this lovely kit to scrap your photos.
Thank you!

Cross about Cross Country

I waited impatiently for Cross Country to go paperback or for a hardcover edition to turn up at my local thrift store. No offence intended, Mr. Patterson, it's just that I'm retired on disability and have a limited income. Finally I saw the paperback at Costco and snagged it as a treat to myself.

Patterson's Alex Cross mysteries are among my favorite popular novels and if things were different I'd have a complete hardcover collection of them to read again and again. I've found an Alex Cross novel to be the ultimate brain candy, a guaranteed good read.

Like all Patterson novels, the Cross series novels are action packed page turners. But it's really the character Patterson has created in Alex Cross that causes me to wait impatiently for the next novel. Cross is a man I'd like to meet and be friends with . Trained as a clinical psychologist, Cross is intelligent, analytical, and gifted in terms of understanding the abnormal behavior of criminals. But more than that, he is warm, a loyal friend, a devoted family man of solid values, but no saint. I enjoy the interaction of Cross with his friends and family, especially Nana Mama who reminds me of my paternal grandmother.

So I was disappointed to discover several elements of Cross Country that made it a poor read. First, Cross has always done his best to guard his family against the dangerous types he comes across in his work. In Cross Country, Alex Cross has an agenda that bumps "family first" off the top of his priorities list. A murder occurs in D.C. and Cross decides to track the killers) back to Africa. A most improbable scenario to begin with. He ignores his family's pleas and disregards their safety as he takes off in pursuit of the killer. Soon the reader is adrift in the nightmare Cross walks into when he arrives in Africa.

Not only have we lost the Alex Cross we thought we knew, but we're plunged into the atrocities Cross finds everywhere he turns. The novel becomes seriously depressing and gruesome as Patterson recreates brutal crimes that have become a part of daily life in numerous areas in Africa. While I'd be the first to agree that novels can inform and educate, can help us understand and develop empathy for others, I've got to say that if that was Patterson's goal here, I think he failed to achieve it. Most readers who pick up Cross Country are looking for a typical Cross novel in the sense of the protagonist being the Cross we've come to know and love. I doubt anyone picked it up for a political lesson. I've heard from a number of Cross fans they they just couldn't finish the book; they found it too disappointing in terms of their expectations and too gruesome. I read through to the end, determined to get my $7.00 worth. While I was sick reading about the horrific crimes in Africa, this novel did not educate me further and did little to gain my empathy for the victims. Rather the bloodbath was just "action" around Cross. If Patterson is interested in gaining sympathy for the victims of such crimes and support for changes then he'd be better off interviewing some victims and telling their story, first making the readers care about the victims as people.

Cross in Cross Country wasn't as intelligent, as analytical, as clever, as caring as the character I longed to read about. I missed the easy banter with the wise and opinionated Nana Mama. And I thought Alex Cross and his girlfriend Bree lost a little of their appeal as they acted more like teenagers on a hormone high. How about giving Alex Cross a good whack up side the head and a good talking to with his therapist to help him get himself back together?

There's a new Alex Cross novel out on he shelves and it's calling my name but now I'm hesitant to heed it's call. I might just wait for that one to turn up in the thrift store rather than waste my money on another disappointment.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hump Day Sale & Freebie

Digital Designers Den started a Wednesday Hump Day Sale last week. Here are just a few things that are on special this week:

And now a small gift for you for reading our ad:

A sample overlay from my Goth Overlay pack. Pick it up here at 4shared:


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Announcement from Digital Designers Den

Please some check out our new project - special offers and sales each Wednesday. See the Hump Day Sale category. Percentage off sales will show the new prices but special offers and sales using a coupon will require you to read the product description for the coupon code.

Lots of great offers so don't miss out.

Paste this link into your browser to be taken to the Hump Day Sale category:

Also see our new Bargain Bin where you will find products priced $1.00 to $3.00. Here is the link:

Art Deco kits

Janette Padley of Dragon's Lair Designs and I (D'Ambrosio Arts) collaborated on an Art Deco kit called Deco Daze. It's available in full size, tagger's size, and ATC size. You can see it at either Digital Designers Den
or Dragons Lair Designs

***These kits will be on sale at 50% off Wednesday August 26th during Digital Designers Den's first Hump Day Sale!

Bad blogger

Hard to believe, but it's been over a month since I last posted. Have been busy with some home repairs and various other things. Last month our store, Digital Designers Den, was one of the stores hit by a virus that targeted ftp accounts. That was a nice little mess to deal with while our web master was traveling and looking for a new home. But she managed to get everything under control some way. August has flown by! Next month will be better, I hope, with temperatures that are easier to live with, fewer illnesses and deaths among friends, and better sales. My September plans are centered around getting the house back in order. Which will be fine intil October when we'll be tearing out the picture window in the living room and replacing it with a sort of bay window and doing other remodeling.

Friday, July 31, 2009

New monthly mega at Digital Designers Den

Above is the preview for the July monthly mega kit called Vintage Scrapbook.
7 designers contributed to this months mega: BabyCakes Designs, D'Ambrosio Arts, DouDou Designs, Echo's Scraps, JoyfulMoments, KarenStimson-WoolSweaterStreet and Sandi's Scraps.

It has 18 zips consisting of 48 papers and 147 elements.
The theme this month is Vintage Scrapbook and you will see an awesome variety of Vintage elements and papers that will delight. The colors are lovely, ranging from soft pale greens and mauves to a more vibrant tone of these colors to set them off, then pale grays and browns going into harder shades of the colors and to top them off we have a rustic red and an off white. This kit surely has something for everyone.

Buy it here:

Karinia Kat special deal

Check out Shelly's new 12 month club membership for only $6.99 which includes a buy-my-store coupon.
This is at Scrap It Sassy.

A really good deal on Shelly's products, most of which are CU and includes wonderful Poser figures. You really can't go wrong.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Catching Up

It's been crazy for the last several weeks so blogging was out of the question. First, my bisniess partner, Echo, was ill and our webmaster was unavailable as she sorted out family matters, so I was left running Digital Designers Den by myself. Not too bad really. No sooner had Echo returned to work then I was getting ready for vacation. My husband and I planned to take our grandson, who is ten, to New York city for the first time. We were supposed to leave July 5th.

In the wee hours of morning, I suddenly developed sever renal colic. Everything was packed, tickets for the Mets game that week had been purchased, other arrangements and appointments set. Had hubby drop me off at the ER and go on with the trip. About 6 hours later, still in lots of pain, I was released and had my father pick me up at the hospital.

The next 2 weeks plus went by with me drinking lots of fluids, taking pain and nausea medication that made me want to do nothing more than sleep, and trying to get int to see the specialist.

As I was beginning to feel a little better, one of our cretive team members noticed something odd happening in the DDD gallery. We were able to contact our webmster who was traveling so she could investigate. That was the beginning of the trouble that resulted in DDD being off-line for a couple days the following week. Seems our store and several others were hacked with a virus that attaches to index files and targets FTP. Took a lot of work by our web guru, but DDD is back up and running.

I'm still trying to catch up on things around the house that were left undone while all this was going on but things should soon be back to what passes for normal here.

Friday, July 3, 2009

New Products and 4th of July Weekend Sale of 55% off
Echo's Scraps, D'Ambrosio Arts and Vintage Vixens

Here are just a few of our products. There are many more.

New products in my store

I just finished 3 new overlays sets (4 overlays+ to a package) and put them in my store here:

These overlays were made with some of Sweetmade's wonderful brushes. No, she doesn't normally allow her CU products to be used to make more CU products but I work for her on her CT and she was so kind as to give me permission to make and sell these. Right now, we're having a huge 55% off sale at Digital Designers Den on my products (D'Ambrosio Arts), Echo's products (Echo's Scraps - most are CU!), and Vintage Vixens our collaborative line. I'm getting ready to head to New York City with my husband and grandson but will try to show you a few papers made with these before I leave, if I can. Some of these overlays are layered to allow you more options. For instance, in the Sweet Victorian Romance package, see that gold one with pansies in the center? I thought it would also look great with rosebud centers so I'm giving you both the gilded grid and a greyscale one, the pansy insert in greyscale so your pansies can be colored as you choose, an insert of pink rosebuds, and one of red rosebuds. You can make lots of pretty papers with these.

Southern Comfort

Here are two pages I made with Southern Comfort kit by my friends Echo (Echo's Scraps) and Janette (Dragon's Lair Designs):

You can find this lovely kit at Digital Designers Den:

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Intoxicated by Movefearlessly Designs

Love this spring kit by my friend, Rox of Movefearlessly Designs.

Find it here:

Here are a couple LOs I made with Intoxicated:
This one is a photo of my son taken in ealry 80's at Birmingham AL zoo:

This is a photo of me circa 1956 or 1957 taken at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens, better known to locals as City Park.