Sunday, February 28, 2010

I am a winner!

Woo Hoo  YES!!!!  {{{ happy dance}}}   P-A-R-T-Y    Oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah

Ummm....  did I ever tell y'all I like to win prizes?

My buddies from VC_Rocks will attest to the truth of this statement.  And today is a good day (see evidence above) because I am a winner!

I won the very first challenge at Scrap the Art

Does my happiness diminish because there were just a few entries - oh no!  These are real artists - the kinda people that make cool stuff out of their very own heads and hands.  COOL STUFF!

Am I a competitive person?  No, not really.  I am a very good (and experienced) loser.

But when I win - I get excited !

Must be a result of the first win I can remember.  Along about second grade, I guessed how many jelly beans were in the jar at our class Valentine's Day party.  And the jar of jelly beans was the prize.  Guess I reenact that sugar high with each subsequent victory.

Anyway - y'all go over and check out the current challenge at Scrap the Art and see what you can do using art as your inspiration!

Basketball Babe

I hope Gale is happy with this little basketball babe.  I like the way she came out...

She is too large for a 4.25 x 5.5 inch card front - so you might need to use "part" of her - or alter her - or make a larger size card.

Here is the how to photo...

Things to do - trim the large oval body by hand to give her some "curves" and nip in with the word window at the neck

The bangs are the 1 3/8 circle cut then snipped in with the small star punch

Pony tail - is curly label punched offset from a curly label HOLE - not sure this is the best solution for a pony tail  bouncing and swinging during her jump - but it works - feel free to improve on it!

Arms are the usual ring - large oval around small oval HOLE

Legs are photo corner punched offset from photo corner HOLE

And I trimmed just a little off the shoe (her left, your right)

I added the hands after the photo - they are the 1/2 circle around the end of a word window HOLE

She is a GREAT player - she stole the ball from yesterday's character.  Way to go girl!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Time for Round Ball

When I was poking around Goggle looking for baseball poses I came upon basketball inspiration. 

You knew the Inspiration Fairy checks into the Google Hotel for rest and relaxation, didn't you? That is where I find her when she isn't hovering over my punch drawer. If you need her, check there. She is often on the clip-art floor or in the cartoon suite.

Anyway, back to basketball...

Obviously a younger player (not a pro) since he is mainly feet (not tattooed muscle). "Mainly feet" is a pretty good description of a lot of young teen boys I think.  Except in real life, he would have much fancier and expensive shoes with some famous logo on them.

I almost did his hair in Apricot Appeal so I could give him a wee moustache and call it apricot fuzz instead of peach fuzz but I figured telling you all that was as good a giggle as actually doing it.

I did have a basketball request from Janice for her grandson so maybe this will get her started.  Janice, if your grandson is younger leave the eyebrows off - those seemed to age him a few years.

Here is a photo I took before assembly (and before eyebrows)

Only part that might not be clear is the shirt - wide oval - cut almost in half - trimmed three times with the word window for neck and both arm holes.  And the hair is just like Stephen Brock - male demo.  And you will notice that some of the word windows were shortened by reinserting them and punching again.

I tried to make a basketball by drawing the lines on a circle but it was much easier to use the "Just Basketball" stamp.  Stamped in pumpkin pie on white - sponged really rust around the edges.

Gale Foster emailed that she needs a girl basketball player so I'll be trying that for tomorrow's post.  I know the pose I want to use.  I guess you will find out tomorrow if I was successful with it or not.

Friday, February 26, 2010

America's Pastime

About a month ago, Ellen (great name!) Williams made some requests... a pizza (which I will probably never do - because I've seen them done already and have nothing new to contribute, sorry!) and baseball anything - player, field, equipment - she isn't picky.

So, while some of you have been waiting even longer for your "punch needs", Ellen (great name!) got Charlie Brown on the mound AND she gets this knock kneed batter too.  I'm not playing favorites just because she has an awesome name - this is just what the I-fairy chose to bless us with.

Obviously this layout is only just begun (humming a Carpenter's song now... "we've only just begun   to live... white lace and promises, a kiss for luck and we're on our way"...)  Ummm.... I mean "take me out to the ball game - take me out with the crowd!"

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Easy Baby Punch Art

Yesterday's baby was pretty easy punching but today I'll show you the easiest baby punch art ever. 

I suspect most of you have these punches
Small Oval
Word Window
Corner Rounder

So when you need a baby item and you have no baby stamps you can make this....

The vellum rectangle is 1.5 inches wide and however long/tall you want your bottle (approx 2 inches).  I scored a couple of lines to add interest and rounded the corners.  The nipple is the small oval and tip of a word window - the bottle rim is the word window - so so easy!

Of course you can do the bottle in white or a color and stamp on that if you like.

This is a part of a gift scrapbook page I'm working on - unfinished now so this is all you get to see - but I wanted to post the idea while I was on a baby theme.

ANOTHER PUNCH BOTTLE - use the new medium jewelry tag, color it with the bump as the nipple - add a colored rim - instant tiny baby bottle!  Fun huh?

I have no clue what I'll be posting tomorrow - Cross your fingers that the Inspiration Fairy gets her act together and shows up today with ideas for some of the requests y'all have sent me. 

I did see a scrapbook challenge I could do....

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Thinking Baby Boy

I think this is an original but it looks awfully familiar to me - maybe because it looks like the New Year Baby?  Well, if it looks like something you have done that has been living in my subconscious, please let me know and I'll be happy to give you credit.

Pretty easy punch art. I remembered to take a "parts picture" before I assembled. (Excuse the colors - I have no clue what happened in this photo)

The 2 large circles are 1.75 inch - the white one repunched to get the waist line
1 inch circle
heart to heart
shortened word window
5 standard hole punches
curl is 1/2 inch circle offset around standard hole punch HOLE
pacifier base is heart to heart punched offset above standard hole punch HOLE
pacifier ring is standard hole punch around smallest Crop-a-dile HOLE

Assembly advice:  Do not put the pacifier too close to the nose - he starts to look like a baby Hitler and that might not be the look you are going for.  Poor baby already has the Steve Urkel thing going - with that diaper up so high on his waist.

Not exactly a traditional colored baby card but remember "Everything goes with Chocolate Chip!"  Clear "tag" is Just Perfect Alphabet stamped on shrink plastic and punched with wide oval punch.  Beads are blue glass mix on good old standard staples.  The blue "thread" in the corduroy button is a thin strip of paper.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My Girls

I really do have a couple more baby ideas in work but I'm still on that Scrappin' Challenge jag and need to make hay while the sun shines (That is a weird phrase to come out of this city girl - must have come from Mom - her dad was a farmer)
This is for the February Sketch challenge at Challenge Masters - it was a darling sketch - the row of circles was suggested as a row of varied sizes all mixed up - but I had so much going on with the pattern paper I simplified the sketch.  Then all the circles I had already punched were in a pile on the corner of the page and  I decided I liked them there so I glued them down.

Confession - I have been hoarding this paper since 2006.  I bought an extra pack just as it was retiring because I loved it and then I couldn't bring myself to cut into it.  Is that the most ridiculous scrappers habit there is?  Well, I'm guilty but trying to reform.

Monday, February 22, 2010


Babies on pause... (don't you wish they did have a pause button?) while I show you another scrapbook challenge (Sorry punch fans).

This is for my BOM (book of me) and the challenge (from Challenge Masters) was to scrap about MEDIA.  (I feel obligated to put something in ( )s here since I seem to have that theme going this post)...

I would be concerned that this layout ages me (who like newspapers anymore?) but I have already confessed that I am old, gray and senile so whats to lose by sharing my passion for more Paper and Ink?

Is that why I like my newspaper? - because it is paper and ink?  Could be...

Here is the journaling for those of you who care to read it:

I just can’t help it.
I know Internet News is up to the minute and easy access, delivered right to my computer screen but I love my NEWSPAPER.
And my newspaper is the Dallas Morning News.
I love doing my personal check of the weather as I go outside first thing in the morning to pick it up off the front sidewalk.
I love the smoothness of the paper that no one else has crinkled.
I love folding the page “just so” to work my Sudoku puzzle.
I love sharing the paper and the kitchen table with Randy on the weekends.
I love that my friend Liz asks “Are services are over at the Church of the DMN?” when she calls on Sunday. She knows I’ve been reading the Dallas Morning News.
I love having the crucial supply if someone has a paper-mache project or needs to wrap dishes to move or needs a current event for a school assignment.
I love being able to “save” a record of what was happening on the day my children were born (or when a world changing event occurs.)
I know that newspapers are a dying breed but I sure hope they hang on for a few more decades. Life will not be the same without my newspaper.

Note: The print on my title lettering is from the first printing of my journaling (I didn't like the shape I chose)  So this layout has "recycled" paper on it.  Another great thing about newspapers... recyclable!

And here is some punch news:

Run, do not walk, but RUN to Lucia's blog each day this week.  She did the entire alphabet in punched animals. (a fundraiser for her kid's pre-school)  You have to see the awesome job she and her mom, Anita, did!!!  And check back everyday - you don't want to miss her whale!

What are you doing still here?  I told you to go check out Lucia's blog!

Thinking Baby Girl

Yesterday I showed you the prequel to a baby - and today I am showing a different path to parenthood...

I don't have a tutorial but a took a photo "in process" and while I changed some stuff  before I was done- it should help you out,

I switched to barely banana on the modern label beak
and the hat went to regal rose and a 3/4 inch circle (not the 1 inch shown in the photo)

I think by looking at close ups you can figure it all out

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Thinking Babies

I'm thinking babies. 

OMG NO! - not ME and babies!

Not even me and grand-babies! 

Just thinking babies in general.  I went to a baby shower Saturday and the little gifts were so cute.  Plus I am working on some first birthday invites for a friend's granddaughter so I have little ones on the brain.

Of course before you get babies you have to do the preggers part. (We won't discuss what you have to do before the preggers part - this blog attempts to remain PG-13) 

I saw a DARLING card by Stephanie Sullivan (using an electronic cutting system) that inspired me to pull out the punches again.  It was on a demo only site so I can't link you but I'm trying to learn if she has it posted anywhere else.  Edit:  Sara (thank you) found Stephanie's card on Facebook and even non-facebookers can see it HEREIn the mean time, Here is my card...

Cute huh?

Kinda has that abstract - partial punch look. (Anybody working on the challenge?)

I'm pretty confident that you all are LOVING this little mama-to-be so let me tell you how to make her.

Hat - part of large oval, part of 1 inch circle
Head - 3/4 inch circle
Hair - part of 3/4 inch circle
Neck and ankles - smallest arrow in My Way Arrows
Arm - ring from large oval punch around small oval hole
Hand - standard hole punch (trimmed)
Legs - modern label punch - trimmed in on both sides
Shoes - 5 petal flower - trimmed like I do on so many shoes
Shirt - part of small oval punch - part of a circle (just a bit larger than 2 inches) trimmed
Bag - round tab punch and ring from large oval around small oval hole

Pattern paper is from the Sweet Pea DSP stack in the new mini catty.  Thanks Stephanie for the inspiration!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

More Paper Flowers

I tried yet another challenge layout from Challenge Masters - this time for the Technique group.  We are supposed to make at least 3 homemade embellishments from vintage paper - and the challenger showed a very cool flower that we could make. 

I found a different flower to make on another blog - click here - then go ahead and poke around on Valita's blog - she also has some cute punch projects AND she just became an SU demonstrator.

My vintage paper isn't very vintage - I had two old hymnals that I will NEVER part with - but I had a current one that I bought several years back when I was taking piano lessons.  Well, it is now missing a few pages. 

I made two flowers, matting, photo corner (inked a bit) and title (stamped on) from hymnal pages.   I stamped Sense of Time and some 'other' clock stamps for a subtle background.

This is a photo of my parents when they had been married about a year.  I wasn't even thought of yet - and I sure don't remember my dad with this much dark hair.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Paper Flowers

Mother-in-law's birthday is next week.  I decided to 'recycle' my red Valentine's flower vase with some flowers that will last a LONG time to brighten her room.  This is a hodgepodge of two dies in the Big Shot - Daisies #2 and Flower Layers.  I matched them up willy nilly and put them on bamboo skewers.  Quick and Easy. 

Colors are Real Red, Tempting Turquoise, Apricot Appeal and Basic Black - these match (hopefully) the colors in the clown pictures she has.  She loves clowns and bright colors. It is definitely cheery!

A "survey" type thing

Carrie (who loves my polls) sent me an email yesterday saying "I thought I'd make a "survey" type thing for YOU! I think your devoted fans wonder all the time about you and what makes you tick. :)"

Ummmm....if anyone is wondering about this old gray haired lady all the time, I can say with some degree of confidence that they need to seek professional help.  I will assume that was an exaggeration to get me to answer the questions so.....all six of my devoted fans keep reading - those of you who just come for the free punch art ideas can stop reading right now and move on to the next blog.

Favorite SU color? 
Easy - Chocolate Chip.  I make a purposeful effort not to reach for it for every project.  Everything goes with Chocolate Chip!  (plus the name is just so....... yummy!)

Favorite SU stamp set?
Hard question.  I assume you mean current sets?   I love the bear from Under the Stars and I love Baroque Motifs (not exactly a matching set are they?)  I use Cheers to You a lot.  And the solid stripe is perfect for punch projects.  There is just too much variety in the stamps to choose a favorite.  Solid stripe sits on my desk and doesn't have another home - so maybe it is my fave?

Favorite SU punch? Only one, Ellen !!! 
That is not a fair question.  Did I ask you to pick a favorite from among your children?  I'll narrow it down to three - Circles, Ovals and Others.  Oh....., that isn't what you wanted to know?
I guess I can say that I favor the Butterfly and the Ornament because they have unique shapes that can be used so many ways.  But gosh, you know I love them ALL!   Wait, that is not true.  I never liked that snowflake blossom that they retired and I can live without the tag corner punch.  I like it but I would not mourn if it was retired.

If you were the Stampin’ Up! version of Oprah, what would you give us, your audience at Christmas, as your Favorite Things?
Confession - I don't watch Oprah's give away shows, but kiddo and I watched a few of that "other" Ellen's give-aways this past Christmas season.  BUT if I was to give my audience my favorite would be a years supply of cardstock, several packs of DSP, a tower of mini glue dots, ALL the SU punches and the confidence to use them creatively, a Big Shot, the texture plates and both sets of alphabet dies (and I'd throw in a bunch of ribbon too - I like ribbon.)

Worst part of being a blogger? 
WORRYING about making a total fool of yourself when you put your work and your blathering out there for anybody with computer access to see

Favorite part of being a blogger?
Comments!!!!!!!! - the ones that say more than "cute project" - the ones that give me a peek into my readers personalities and lives  -  and the ones where I know they are actually using the ideas I'm throwing out.  Email from readers is just as good as comments!

When you’re not punching, you’re_________.
Reading blogs?  Eating out?  Running Errands?  Helping the aging parental folk?  80% of the time it would be one of these four.

A punch you’d like to see introduced in an upcoming catalogue?
I am open to anything - I made disparaging mental comments about the ornament punch when it came out (that's stupid - it is so limited- etc.)  Ha - proved my own self wrong on that.  So I'll take whatever they give and bad mouth it a little so that I can learn to love it like the ornament.  I'd suggest a primitive heart, a crown, a teardrop and a HAND.  I need hands in assorted sizes 'cause that is absolutely the hardest part of my characters.  I don't think I'll get that last request but maybe....

Thursday, February 18, 2010


I did this for the color challenge on Challenge Masters but I also used the new sketch from Sketchy Thursdays (this is Thursday so I went hunting for it - so fun!)  The color challenge was fire, blush, chocolate and vanilla.  My fire is really more pumpkin but hey - you work with what you have.

Journaling reads:

Pensive? I think not…

I know that little mouth. It is just about to burst into a contagious giggle. Haley, in borrowed shades,
age three, April 1997.

Don't ask me why I chose this one old photo - it just reached out and begged to be scrapped.  Heck it was probably tired of being crushed in the two ton pile of other photos sitting on top of it.  That's right - this is the child that is 16 and she was only 3 in this photo.  Taken by hubby's best friend on their back porch (I can see him and his camera reflected in the sunglasses)

Simple page but I like it - No time for all pages to be complex works of art.  It is easy to get a page done when you have a great sketch and your colors chosen for you!

News Flash!

GOOD NEWS!    It is not TOO late.....  YOU can still get an ornament punch! 

Stampin' Up! is offering this AWESOME WONDERFUL AND VERSATILE punch as a write in item at least until the new catalog comes out this summer!!!!!  (edit--->>) AND it WILL be in the NEW catalog for next year.

Item # 116794   Price  $15.95

Need motivation?  See all these posts....

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Family Foolishness

Hi, my name is Ellen and I am a challenge addict. 

This time it is a color challenge with a twist.  Must use Red and Black with 2 other colors AND have the word 'family' in your title.  This challenge came from Scrapbook Challenges.

The colors were no challenge for me - easy peasy to find photos for red and black (and white and pink). 

But finding photos to go with those colors and the title FAMILY was hard and THAT is why they call them 'challenges'!

My fave part of this layout (besides the photo) is the little "funny" hanging on the beaded wire.  I just like it!

And my un-fave part is that I used my own awful printing.  That was challenging.  But someday my girls will appreciate seeing their old mom's sloppy scrawling.  (Ick)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Guest Puncher - Realistic Birds

I'm guessing that you've noticed my punch art has a cartoon feel to it.  That is just how I roll.  Even the things that I draw are "cartoonish".  But some people have the ability to do punch art with a realistic feel.

Lucia Dawe's mother (I am sure she has a name, but all I know her as is Ink Me Baby One More Time!'s Mom) has been a faithful reader and 'caser' of my stuff for a few months but she has moved on past me and done two fabulous birds (quail and pheasant) on her own and you can see them here.

Then I got an email on Friday where Alene Humphrey used the Two Step Bird punch and her Field Guide to make realistic birds.  I'm sharing them here with her permission because she has no blog for me to link to.

Realistic looking punch art is really impressive - so when you are looking for a challenge - give that a try!

You got some 'splainin to do

While many of you glance at my punch art and replicate it with ease, I have heard rumor that it is a little complex for some people. 

So today I want to show you that somethings are so recognizable - you can punch a suggestion of your subject and people will instantly know what it is - I am calling it Partial Punch Art.

Anyone need me to 'splain this? 

I'd love to see some other 'partial' punch art - are you up for the challenge?

Let's try some retro TV...
Oh Rob!
Yes Master.
I know nothing
Your mission, if you choose to accept it...
One ringy dingy...

Can you do some 'partial punch art' to go with these lines?  Try it! You know the email address - send me what you come up with.

You young'uns are exempt from the challenge - you have probably never seen these shows.

Monday, February 15, 2010

5 Heart Challenge

Sorry punch fans - it is another scrappin' day.  I am on a challenge jag. 

This was for Challenge Masters Recipe Challenge - which was to do a layout using 5 different and unique hearts - I have my hearts: punched and embossed, punched and stamped, chipboard, rub-on, stamped, die-cut on pattern paper and just plain punched. 

Hubby doesn't like his photo taken but I occasionally sneak one in - this reminds me of Wilson, the TV neighbor to Tim 'the tool man' Taylor who ALWAYS had his face hidden.  Eventually you all will get to see hubby - but I have lots of this type photo.

Our dog adores my husband - and yes, the dog plays "rebound".  If hubby is outside, TJ is right beside him and his basketball is a favorite toy.

The you&me stamp was one I bought at a clearance store a year or so back and promptly forgot.  Glad I stumbled across it for this layout.
I will try to come up with a new Heart Punch project soon for all you punch fans as your reward for wading through my challenge stuff.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Theresa!

I know I've shown you a couple of M&M characters before but I am repeating that idea today for a reason. 

Theresa, my best neighbor EVER who moved away because her husband is a mean horrible person who took a job out of state and ripped her away from me (actually a nice man but I haven't forgiven him yet), loves M&Ms and Valentines day is her birthday and Purple is her favorite color sooooooooooooooooo........................ 

They haven't invented a purple M&M character yet (that I know of) so I did it for them.  Theresa, this one is for you - sneakers 'cuz you love them - rolling pin to represent your baking skills - eyes peering sideways to reflect your 'scaredy cat tendencies, and a free hand because I know you always have one - ready to reach out and help somebody else (usually me)

Theresa, I hope your birthday is fantastic.  I love you!  And the card is the mail (or it will be tomorrow)


Snowy Snowy Night...

Scrap the Art is a NEW challenge group where they show an art piece and you use it as inspiration.  I am getting in on their first challenge Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh:

And here is my layout...

First, the photo reminded me of Starry Night so that was an easy choice.  It was taken before sunrise the day of our BIG SNOW.

I borrowed the 'moon', the dark strip and the yellow circles from the painting.

Glad I tried this - I would have been messing around with dark blue paper and white snowflakes for this layout and by doing this challenge I went a different direction.  While it is no 'masterpiece', I think attention is drawn to the photo - which is what I want - and the moon and circles still convey nighttime on the light paper. 

I made the year prominent because this will be part of North Texas history now - 2010, the year of the big snow. 

It doesn't look so nice around here now  -the beautiful white has turned to spotty mush and the peaceful quiet has been replaced by the whirl of chainsaws as we clear up broken limbs.  We lost two big ones on our Live Oak but I have a friend that lost her entire tree.  I will have to check her address now - I always just pulled up to the house with the biggest tree.  Sad.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Record Setting Snowfall in North Texas

Another layout from a Sketchy Thursday sketch.

I am LOVING using sketches for my scrapping - I know I would never have come up with these layouts on my own.   I usually start with photos and wing it OR start with photos and find a sketch that fits - BUT for these challenges I am starting with the sketch and finding a story or photos that work with it.  Having a fresh starting point is a lot of fun. Try it!

We had record setting snow in North Texas Thursday  - that deserves to be recorded, right?  Expect to see more pictures of it before I'm done. 

I'm also trying to expand my scrap "style".  After seeing lots of other ladies layouts (where they combine so many odd yet cool elements) I am TRYING to mix things up a tiny bit more myself.  I would not have combined the baroque motif stamp and this pattern paper normally, but I like it.  And I just grabbed some odd buttons from my stash.  Not real daring - but a baby step.... a baby step...

Friday, February 12, 2010

Dah dah dah, dah dah dah, do do - dah dah dah dah ...

That is just me humming a song from a Peanuts special.  I was still thinking Peanuts and since SU doesn't have many options for music lovers/players/teachers/aficionados I had to try this.
Does that ROCK?  Since this is Schroeder it would be CLASSIC(AL) Rock!

I was STRUGGLING with the piano and then....DING DING DING - the light came on and bells were ringing and the angels sang the hallelujah chorus!  (slight exaggeration for effect) 

The ease of making the piano should make you face North Texas and bow to my genius.  You don't have to actually get on the floor - a simple (yet respectful) bend at the waist will suffice.

Take a rectangle of red paper - 3/4 inch by 1.75 inches (approx)

With the punch upside down so you can see... insert one corner of this rectangle into the 'corner' of the Designer Label punch.  This is the PERFECT shape for the upper left corner of the piano!

Next, with your corner rounder, round the other 'top' corner

Trim out the curve on the bottom  left  right with scissors - now that I think about it - why not just punch it out with your word window?  Editing cause I was obviously EXHAUSTED by house cleaning and too tired to proof anything when I posted.

Add the four lines you see on mine (one for the piano top and 3 for the curve of the instrument)

Slot punch legs and you are done!

NEXT - Schroeder:
1 3/8 circle head - trimmed on right side

word window - ears, neck, leg, arm, sock

flower trio - hand (trim to three fingers)

large oval body - stamped with solid stripe and trimmed flat at bottom and neck

small oval pants - shortened with scissors

small oval sleeve - from stamped paper used for shirt/body, snipped to shorten for short sleeve

word window repunched to shorten for shoe

1 3/8 circle TRIMMED as shown below for hair

face drawn on - don't freak out - it is just a backwards 'c' for the nose - two dots for the eyes and a line for the mouth - even YOU can draw that!

Here is the hair trim photo - only hard part of the whole thing...

Butterfly punch - trimmed one 'section' off (put your left ear on your left shoulder and you will see the butterfly)
Arms - smallest my way arrow
Front paws - flower trio trimmed to 3 petals
Hind paws - 3/4 circle punch reinserted and repunched to get the shape you see
Ears - small heart (new) hole - re-punch offset below the hole to get these "almost" heart shapes
nose - part of a standard hole punch
collar - slot punch
mouth and eyes drawn

Are you humming yet?  Dah dah dah, dah dah.dah...