Monday, July 29, 2013

Popping in to Share Two Things

1. This card...
is on the Crafting Ireland magazine blog right now with some other fabulous cards by the design team using sketches provided by Timi and Nicole in Issue 18 of the magazine.

And here is the sketch.

You can see the entire blog post *Here* with two other sketches to choose from.

2. Paper Issues has a new sponsor and issue up on the blog today!

Here are a few of the projects created by design team members for the blog hop. (I am not participating in this one). UmWowStudio is the current sponsor and has some very cool chipboard and flair in the shop.
I received these stars in a Paper Bakery kit and have already used them on two layouts! You can see all the details including the chance to win prizes from UmWowStudios *Here*

Ok, back to my blog break! :)

Thursday, July 25, 2013


I feel like scrapbooking and sometimes I don't. Or just can't for whatever reason.
Sometimes I feel like blogging, but right now I really don't.

We have so much going on this summer and I am finding it hard to fit blogging and scrapbooking in.
And that is ok!

I am actually going to scrapbook with a friend of mine at Archiver's on Sunday where I am going to work on my assignments for Crafting Ireland magazine. So I am really looking forward to that!
But otherwise, I am just taking it day by day with the kids.

So far this summer we have been to the pool a lot, Six Flags amusement and water park several times, the Zoo, the Botanical Gardens, a chocolate factory tour, the Train Museum, the movies, Incredible Pizza, the newly renovated public library downtown and the new Lego store.
We have had numerous play dates with friends and cousins, gymnastics, a camp for Evan, schoolwork for summer and OT appointments.
We have seen fireworks and focused a lot of time on exercising together with bike rides, runs and sports.
We have made home made play dough and engaged in lots of art.
We are just going, going, going!

Coming up we have hiking and the pool with friends, uniform and back to school shopping, Erin's sixth birthday celebrations (yes that is plural!) and more!

So all of that is a roundabout way of saying except for maybe once next week and once when the new issue of Crafting Ireland comes out,  I just don't have time for blogging until the kids are back in school. I think the break will be good for me! And hopefully I will come back inspired and ready with some fresh blog posts including my summer project life. Maybe a good blog plan, too, will help. Most posts I just kind of go with the flow. I want to figure out what direction my blog will take.

And because I feel all blog posts need a photo or two...
Evan and his dad taking a tour of a new bridge that Mike's company is building over the Mississippi river. Evan was thrilled to be given this opportunity! And to have some special time with his dad. :)
My girl working hard at her gymnastics! It isn't easy that is for sure. And I think she really wants to go back to dance class this fall instead. But it was so good for her this summer to try it out again!

Hope you enjoy the rest of your summer and that you will check back in with me when I do post again!

Monday, July 22, 2013

CHA Summer 2013

It's that time of year again! The Craft and Hobby Association's Summer show is happening and most of the major manufacturers are sharing new lines of scrapbook product. :)

When the peeks started popping up all over the internet, I told myself I wasn't seeing anything too exciting. But as more and more companies shared their new product, I decided that there are quite a few items I wouldn't mind adding to my collection.

Here are my top ten must haves from Summer CHA in no particular order:

1. American Crafts: Amy Tangerine's Cut & Paste
I pretty much love this entire line. But I have loved every line she has done so far, so it doesn't surprise me that I can see myself using this collection a lot!

2. Carta Bella: Hello Again

Another line that I pretty much love the whole thing! I think I am seeing a trend where I am loving the soft muted colors. Especially ones that have a watercolor feel to them.

3. Echo Park: Photo Freedom Volume II

This line only has a few papers and this sticker sheet, but I really like it. I think what drew me to it was the colors. And I love those letter stickers! They remind me of a starry night :)

4. Heidi Swapp: Color Shine mists
I am not traditionally a "messy" "artsy" scrapper, but I do occasionally like to use mists, paints, gelatos and stamping on my projects. And I think some of Heidi's new colors are so pretty. I will probably get the white, sea foam, coral and navy. 

I am typically not a huge Pebbles fan. I don't think I have ever purchased anything from this particular company except maybe some alphabet stickers. But there is something about this line I really like. It's so homey. I won't get all of it, but I see some pieces that I think will work well for me. :)

6. Simple Stories: Say Cheese

Holy, Adorbs! Love that this is Disney without being Disney :) It is too, too, cute!

7. Teresa Collins: Family Story
I am not typically a Teresa Collins fan either, but I love pieces of this collection.
Like this paper.

8. Crate Paper: Maggie Holmes Flea Market

There is some prettiness here for sure. This will be another bits and pieces line for me.

9. Crate Paper: Bundled Up
 Wow, I actually like two line by Crate Paper this time :) I think this is absolutely adorable!

10. My Mind's Eye: Cut & Paste (Presh by Jen Allyson)

Not to be confused with the American Crafts "Cut & Paste" line by Amy Tangerine which was up top at number one. Apparently there are four lines within the MME Cut & Paste collection. This one, Presh (whatever that means) is my favorite color and design wise. But I can see myself picking up bits and pieces from the other three designs. You can see them here:
My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste Adorbs
My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste Charm
My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste Flair

Oh and I forgot to mention, the title next to each number is a link to the full collections if you would like to see more! :)

What is on your list for this season?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

You Make My Heart Sing!

One of my projects for Crafting Ireland magazine is currently being featured on their blog Here.
I have a small tutorial on the blog as well on how I created the sentiment and watercolor effect if you are interested :)

And now for a few photos:
Last post I mentioned how much Evan ended up liking his camp. I snapped a few photos with my camera phone from the open house presentation for parents on the last day.
Here he is sharing his final project. For not wanting to speak in front of the parents, he did a great job explaining his process and why he used his materials.
And an Instagram shot of Evan giving a little mini presentation to Erin :)

This week so far we have been busy. On Monday, I took Erin to her occupational therapy appointment. While waiting I snapped this photo of myself...
I usually don't like photos of myself. I always notice what is "wrong". But with my sunglasses on you can't see the bags under my eyes :) And I felt pretty peaceful in the swinging chair there. It feels good to relax and let things go sometimes. Because most of the time I feel like this...

I mean seriously, there are a zillion projects I would love to work on. But it can be so overwhelming sometimes to the point that I just want to shut down and not do any of it. I will say that today, in between doing things with the kids and making meals, I finally got my bedroom closet cleaned out and organized. That is one project that has been hanging over me! One closet down, two to go :)

And yesterday, I pulled out my old home made play dough recipe from my teaching days to make with the kids. I had four here instead of just my two, so we needed something fun to do after gymnastics and lunch.
Not quite fully done in this photo, but it turned out perfect! I haven't made a batch in ages, so I am glad it worked. And it was a really pretty blue. Even the older kids enjoyed playing for awhile. Plus, it smells so much better than the store bought kind, and is really super fast and easy to make.
You just need:
1 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 tbs oil
1 c. water
food coloring

1. I combine the first three ingredients in a bowl and make a little well in the center.
Then I mix the water and oil in a small bowl before adding it to the dry ingredients stirring well.

2. You can add food coloring, jello powder or spices (such as ginger, pumpkin, etc...) I like to make "gingerbread" or "pumpkin pie" play dough in the fall and winter. Watermelon jello powder or any flavor adds a nice smell in the summer. If you add spices or the powder. I recommend doing that when you are mixing the dry ingredients.

3. After all the ingredients are mixed, put it in a saucepan and cook over medium heat stirring frequently until it holds together and is no longer sticky.

It's a great recipe!
And I hope you have a great weekend!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Sweet Tooth!

 Just want to start out by saying that the camp Evan was hating, well he ended up loving it!!! It's one of those cases of give him a day or two and he is ok. It was just so hard when he was saying to me, "please don't make me go back." And I have always taken the path with the kids that you finish it out. Whether it's a week, a season, or a session. Just to make sure. And if you really don't like it, then you don't have to do it again. I almost caved this time because he was so unhappy, but then decided to email the director and she was so fabulous and helpful. All of the teachers there were, and I am so glad I stuck to my guns. He is saying he wants to go back next year and learn more.

Moving on to scrapbooking! Today I am sharing the layout I made using Sketch #7 over at The Paper Bakery.
I used quite a few pieces from the June kit on the page. Plus a few older items I have had for a while. Like the lollipop and candy embellishments up at the top right corner. Love when I can do that!
My daughter has such an incredible sweet tooth to the point that she is limited to one "treat" a day now. It is hard for her, but she is handling it pretty well considering how much she loves to eat sweets.

Also want to share that the new "issue" sponsored by Pretty Little Studio is up and running today.
It all starts with a blog hop you can find HERE. 
Plus all the details on how to participate for a chance to win a gift certificate to the Pretty Little Studio shop.
These are the projects created by the design team members participating in this blog hop. Since I was part of the Doodlebug hop, I am not doing it this time around. But I do plan to link up a few projects using the Nature theme.

And on a final sad shocked to hear that Cory Monteith who plays Finn on Glee passed away this past Saturday at the age of 31!
I have watched every season and episode of Glee. Some I like, some not so much. It is a hit or miss show for me, with more hits than misses. And Finn was a favorite character of mine. This is such tragic news and I feel so sad for his friends and family. :(

Do you watch Glee?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Just a Few Fun Shares Today...

I thought I would have a scrapbook project to share today, but I still need to get a photo of it.
It is a sketch layout, and am actually getting ready to start another layout.
But here are some random things I wanted to share with you...
1. Super excited about the new store for Cassie is no longer on Etsy, but has her own site. It is looking fabulous! And right now she is offering 20% off the entire store. So make sure you check it out!

2. The Paper Bakery is where I sub for kits these days. I am getting the regular scrapbook kit and her new Project Life kit. They have a new site also with forums and a gallery now! So you will probably see me hanging there quite a bit. In fact, the layout I just finished was using this sketch by Juliana Michaels on the design team...

And I hopefully will be sharing that layout with you on my next post. :)

3. I also want to share a few more pieces I added to my son's "art album" on Facebook. I am so darn proud of him. He is eleven years old and draws circles around me!

This is a cathedral he whipped up (literally) in a half hour while waiting with me during one of Erin's gymnastics classes in June.
A house he designed :)
And an attempt he made using watercolors in addition to his regular drawing. I came home from Erin's gymnastics class and that is what he was working on!

He is at a camp this week that I thought would be perfect for him. The focus is on "green" building and architecture and it's sponsored by the local Botanical Garden. Unfortunately he is not liking it. I guess you just never know.

Well, that's it for today.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend! See you on Monday! :)

Monday, July 8, 2013

Happy Days!

That was a tiny little holiday break there! :)
Mike was home an extra day for the 4th of July, so we have been busy with lots of fun activities.
I want to share a layout I did first though.
I had so much fun with this one because I finally opened up my new set of gelatos

and experimented a bit.

Ok, true story. This started out as a 12x12 layout. I used this photo because a lot of the colors matched the gelato set. And it's also a photo I have been wanting to scrapbook for a while. So I just started coloring and thought I would make a base for my photo after blending the colors with some water and a paintbrush. On my computer screen, the blue on the right is not showing up, but it is that pretty blue you see in the pack above.
Anyway, after I finished the page, it looked a little off to me. I showed it to my eleven year old son (the artist) and he said it looked too big. I thought about it a moment, took  a deep breath and cut it down! That took a lot of courage, because chances are, it could have completely ruined the page. But I think it actually looks better. Thanks to Evan! :)
Really like my new gelatos!
The journaling:
They have known each other since they were babies, and it is wonderful watching them all grow up together. Neighbors who are friends can't be beat! We are lucky to have such great neighbors and friends. We have celebrated so much together including birthday, and it is great that the kids get along so well. Looking forward to more happy days together!

And now for a few photos of our "happy days" the past week.
Evan loves to feed the koi fish at the Botanical Gardens. He even pets them!
Chalk drawings on the patio. My girl is looking so grown up!
Erin sparkling on the Fourth of July. We had a tiny celebration with neighbors :)
Erin and Mike make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies together.
Love the newly remodeled children's library downtown. It is so cool! Erin and I spent an hour and a half down there on Saturday.

Me and my girl waiting for fireworks to start on Saturday night. We found a new venue thanks to friends that isn't highly publicized. So we all went down there to check it out. It was worth the wait!

I will have a post on Wednesday over at Craft Your Nest, and then will be back here on Thursday.
See you then! :)

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Over At Craft Your Nest Today!

I have a layout there using this kit...
from The Paper Bakery.
This sketch...
by Dawn from Craft Your Nest.
And this photo...
of Erin playing mini golf.
Would love if you could come over and take a peek. The link is HERE.:)
And hope you have a great 4th of July celebration tomorrow if you are here in the states!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Crafting Ireland Magazine, Issue 18!

I am a cover girl again! :)
My "This is Heaven" layout is on the cover. And I have a small "how I put it together" tutorial on page nine of the magazine. You can read the magazine for free HERE. :)
I used the Maggie Holmes line by Crate Paper for most of the layout. I also included flair button by Scrapfellow and chipboard letters by American Crafts.

Journaling - Could there be anything more perfect than laying on a lounge chair on a beach in Mexico. Watching my family at the edge of the water. Listening to the sound of the ocean. Then laying back with a book to relax. It was a pretty quiet beach at the first resort we stayed in this Spring in Hualtuco, Mexico. You can see the second resort we stayed in for the rest of the trip over on the right in this photo perched above the bay. This was my first time seeing the Pacific ocean in person. So peaceful and beautiful.

This was the first time in awhile that a layout came together exactly as I pictured it in my head design wise. :)

Also, just a quick note that you still have time to enter my giveaway over at Craft Your Nest. I will be picking the winner tomorrow. You can see all the details HERE!

See you tomorrow for a super quick post! :)

Monday, July 1, 2013

A Few Reasons to Celebrate!

First off, I was able to create three layouts and a card this past weekend!
After a brief dry spell, I have multiple projects to share with you over the next few days. So I will most likely be blogging a little more frequently in the next week or so.
Today I thought I would share the layout I made using this sketch...
and the June kit from The Paper Bakery to create this layout...

All product is in the kit except the gray Thickers by American Crafts that I used for the title.
I love this photo of Erin from our boat ride in Mexico. She took not one, but two naps in the five or six hours we were on out on the ocean. The girl who never naps anymore unless she is sick! But I have a feeling all that fresh air and the rocking of the boat were responsible. :)

And the reason I was able to get some scrapbooking done this weekend is my second reason to celebrate!
It was my birthday on Saturday! And it was just how I wanted it to be :) When Mike asked what I wanted to do for my birthday, I said "absolutely nothing. I don't want to have to do a thing!" And I meant it. No dishes, no meals, no laundry...well, you get the picture. And I didn't. I relaxed, hung out with my family at times, scrapbooked at times, watched tv for a bit, read a book. Mike made dinner, baked me a cake and did the dishes. It was heaven!

And on top of that he got me an iphone!
My android is over three years old and a complete piece of junk. The volume button is broken, it's slow as molasses, and the camera only really works outdoors.
I mean I love this photo of Evan and I with my cake because he is so darn cute. But the quality is just not great.
Here is a photo I took tonight of Evan in the same chair while he was using his ipad.
Much better in my opinion. And I wasn't even trying to take a good picture. Just snapped quickly to see how the cameras would compare. I have already added the Instagram app and am being told by several people to try the "beautiful mess" app. :)

So let's just say it was a really great weekend!

And last but not least, there is a new "issue" up on the Paper Issues blog. You can see it HERE.
The sponsor is Ruby Rock-It, and the theme is "Hey Good Lookin', What's Cooking?" And of course there is a prize pack. It is the very same package sent to the design team who worked on this blog hop. I am not a part of the hop this time, but I still plan on linking up a few layouts using the theme.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!
I will actually be back tomorrow to share the newest issue of Crafting Ireland magazine and my first of two projects I created for them.
See you then! :)