Monday, July 28, 2014

Let's be real.

I'm a horrible blogger and if anyone is still here, your the da' best!
Life has been more than a little crazy (we survived Graduation and Shelby turning 18) and when it gets like that for me, this little place always ends up being on the bottom of the list and neglected. Even though this place suffers, I'm still creating layouts, putting together kits for and making sure all of the product for the store is available as soon as possible. I will always be passionate about supplies, reading blogs, posting to Pinterest, all the little things I'm sure everyone else is doing too, in the little spare time they have. Life is sometimes more than a juggling act.

Here are some layouts I created a little while ago using the Family Favorites Kit. You can find it here and sign up to be notified when it comes back into stock. Sorry, I'm just sharing these now and not when the kit is still available. I'll do better, with sharing a little sooner.

In the off season of dove hunting Jon and I like to go to Usary Pass to do some clay shooting. When we are there I'm in a zone and never remember to take any kind of photos but this time I didn't forget and set a reminder on my phone. This was a snippet of our relationship I have been wanting to record for years now, but for some reason every time we are there I just forget until we are in the truck and the opportunity has come and gone.

This Easter is a bittersweet one. I wanted my journaling to reflect my feelings of this Easter in particular and as I sat at the end of the table watching (a participating, a little bit) I found myself reflecting on past Easter festivities. The traditions that Shelby has known growing up and what pieces she would take with her as she starts her own journey as an adult.

This layout turned out to be extremely dimensional. After cutting the kraft paper strips I stitched each one to the background paper and then bent each one up. I thought it would give a little more "western" or "rugged" feel.

Thanks so much for stopping by and spending a little of your time!

Thursday, April 24, 2014


less than a month from Graduation. I feel like reality is hitting me like a Mac truck. Going through all of her College acceptance letters, FASFA, tests, talking about where she wants to start her college career, her dreams, her being excited, yet not really ready to leave her childhood behind. Me, well I have been thinking how she has the whole world in the palm of her hands, a clean slate to become anything she wants to be. Excited as well for her but scared as a mom. She has college acceptance letters from Oregon to California to Colorado and more. The good thing is all her the colleges are in state universities or the others are all on the west coast.

Then comes the thought of missing her, her voice, her smile, her room that looks like a tornado went through it and all of the little things in between. I tell you when Summer is over our house will be completely different without her presence. I know there are also positives that will help me through not seeing her everyday, but in the end she is my baby and I will still miss her. So, in that vain I came across a quote that I love. A quote that is valid for every member of our family. "Your voice is my favorite sound"
I recently gave the chalkboard niche a makeover I think it turned out ok. Still love the old book page wreath and being able to display the minibooks I have created over the years.

I always love putting the kits together. It's one of the highlights of my job and April's kit - April Showers is jammed packed with goodness. You can check it out here. There is also a challenge gallery, where you can upload your layouts/projects, then you are entered to win one of two 30 dollar prize packs. Here is what I put together using the kit and my trusty Silhouette Cameo.

This was a recent date night for Jon and I at an old flour mill in downtown Tempe. The old building and silos were an amazing place to see our friends band play.

Shelby being asked to her Senior Prom with a message in a bottle from her great guy! I love that he thought about her love of the ocean and beach and tied that into his plan. He really is such a good guy.

Another Heidi Swapp shadowbox frame. For this one I wrote the months of all of our birthdays and then put a black and white photo on top with some monochromatic embellishments. I didn't want to take the focus away from the family photo.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

the learning curve....

realizing that something will always be apart of your very being, something your passionate about, interested in and think about all the time....but you don't know where to start to begin to pursue it. Your scared and want to leap but don't know how to. That's kind of where I'm at right now. Things are changing, changing quick! Life is screaming by, there are dreams, but fulfilling them means reaching out for help in the unknown. So, I'm struggling to figure it out.
The learning curve recently was figuring how to make cut files of my handwriting for the Silhouette Cameo. This was my first attempt and let me tell you....I'm hooked.

This is the first layout using a cut file I created as well as designing with the Teresa Collins Hello My Name is collection for a newsletter.

Here are some of the other cut files I created and looking forward to using in upcoming projects.

Been busy creating all of the months in the year and every day in the week and started to create a list of other phrases, song lyrics etc. It's just as addicting as Pinterest and that's saying alot seriously. Next up will be the make over of our family chalkboard wall with a favorite quote: "Your voice is my favorite sound".

Thanks for stopping by love!

Thursday, February 06, 2014

life, love

and everything in between. Since the last post I returned from a very productive CHA, put the Kit together, had our Anniversary weekend and then everything in between when you have two daughters, especially when one is a teenager and headed to college shortly.

Ahhh, here we are already in February, the month of love. My DIY craft list keeps getting longer and time seems to disappear. I did, however, make time to work with the Kit, Heart of Gold and you can take a look at it here. Jammed pack full of beautiful papers and amazing embellishments from Teresa Collins to My Mind's Eye and Prima.

This first layout had a lot of journaling and photos that I wanted to include and I didn't want the layout to be overwhelming, so my approach was mini album (minibook) meets layout.

For the closure I stamped a mini clothespin with one of the Prima stamps that is included in the kit. The title was created with my beloved Silhouette Cameo. I really do love, love, love the cameo and I know that I'm just scratching the surface of what it can do.

I took a 12x12 piece of cardstock, cut the equal strips, scored the strips (to make the pages), then adhered each strip together and bent at the score line. Voila! a little minibook ready to be filled!
I used the red cardstock that is in the kit and cut out little words, banners and titles to embellish the pages. Usually, to attach delicate titles and embellishments I use the Martha Stewart Glue Pen (I have three of them and I can't live without them). The words were so small and delicate that I decided to use the Tim Holtz tiny attacher (stapler) and it worked like a charm.

This was the perfect solution for adding bigger photos, a lot of journaling without a page that is super overwhelming and without having to create a double page spread.

This next layout was all about Ellie's love of horses, all animals in general really and how that love began. Her horseback riding and how she is excited to not only ride English but also Western. 
That's our girl!

I cut the big horse with the Cameo and I had the leftover negatives of the banners I used in the first layout, so I decided to re-purpose it instead of putting it in my scrap pile. I used Ali Edwards new Technique Tuesday stamp set and I also used it in the minibook on the first layout, I just don't have a shot of it in use. The "enjoy life" die cut was small, so I used the Tim Holtz tiny attacher once again.

The last layout, documents a special anniversary gift from our parents. Jon and I were able to mark this off of our bucket list. A rememberable experience that we had on the same day and time we were married 12 years ago.

The arizona sunset from a hot air balloon was breathtaking. The title was cut using the Cameo and I was happy with my first attempt at welding the letters together. Getting ten photos on a layout along with journaling the whole story was also a plus. I have found that my journaling has once again become a staple to each layout I put together, whether it's hidden, front and center or part of the design. I say long live journaling and telling your story! Your family will thank you.

Wishing you a fabulous rest of your week. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Fresh New Year

We are already moving into the second week of the new year and I'm feeling accomplished with the three layouts I have managed to get done right before leaving for CHA, using the January Kit Club.
After I packed away all of the Christmas decorations, lights and everything in between I got a little gloomy but this kit includes the bright, fresh new colors that I look for every new year.

It has a little hint of Winter but when using it I thought about babies and how my girls are no longer that, but this would also be perfect for those baby memories. Makes me want to run over to a couple of my best girlfriends houses and steal their babies. Give'em a kiss on the cheek!

Zipper flowers, Heidi Swapp glitter words, wood veneer phrase from Fancy Pants, let's be real you had me at Heidi Swapp!
There is also a confession I have. For anyone who has been reading here for awhile (probably not that many, lol) or listened to Noell and I on Paperclipping live, I have never owned a die cutting machine. Swore those suckers off awhile ago, right before Christmas I could no longer fend off the burning desire to own a Silhouette Cameo. I was just making sure that everyone really loved theirs before I invested in one (at least that's what I kept telling myself in order not to purchase it)!

As I was using it on the layouts below, I was kicking myself for waiting so long but thankful I was loving it and finding that I couldn't live without it now. It's one of those thoughts you have, once you have a die cutting machine like this you can't go back!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

waving a creative goodbye

to 2013 and welcoming a year that I'm hoping continues to be even more creative than the last. Here are the last layouts I created in 2013. Most of them were for the Kit Club, which you can find here.

These were created using the Heidi Swapp Mixed Company Collection along with some We R memory Keepers tools and techniques.

A little Heidi Swapp Mixed Company Mini Album using the We R Memory Keepers Cinch and the Sew Easy Stitching Tool!

Then, these were created for a Chalkboard Newsletter.

Wishing you every crafty project you can dream up in 2014!
<3 br="">

Friday, December 20, 2013

This holiday season....

has been kicking me in the booty, seriously. Football games, card games with football players after the football games. I don't have boys, but I know now how stinky they can be even when they change clothes after a football game. Jon and I thought it was pretty cool that this year after each game Shelby's best friends (girls and boys), would go to In and Out and then head over to our house to play golf (the card game).
We thought it was pretty nice that Seniors in High School liked our home as the hang out. Bring out the Rootbeer, Orange Soda and snacks and they were good to go.
With Ellie's birthday, Homecoming, more house decorations going up, family festivities and everything in between I have been quiet here on the blog but very busy playing with kits, paper and glue. I'm not sure what to post first!

I guess I could start with Christmas since we are less than one week away. I'll start with some home decor and a little project Jon and I worked on together. I love that I can tell him my vision and together we can make it reality. So grateful for that and I won't lie, I tease him and tell him one of the reasons I married him is because he is SO handy.

Here is a little behind the scenes action. This is where we started.

I really need to work on my hand lettering, Jon has always been able to rock his lettering. If you ask him to write on a sheet of paper like a normal person not so much. BUT when it comes to big lettering he is awesome. 

Having a wet rag, some Q-Tips and water came in handy. 

After Jon was done with the lettering I moved onto creating the wreath and leaves around it. Doing this on a large scale, I made some mistakes and I believe what they say "you will get better each time you do something like this."

This is how it looked in the end. This being out first big chalkboard sign, we were happy with how it turned out. Here are some other holiday decorations from around the house.

My mother and father in law gave me these massive pine cones from Sugar Pine trees in Lake Tahoe. They saved them up and gave them to me when they were here over the Thanksgiving holiday. To say I was ecstatic would be an understatement. It doesn't take much to make this girl happy! I had BIG plans to make these into decorations.

The only thing was we were worried about the back of the pine cones swinging around when we opened the cabinets and on top of that the back side of them scratching the doors. I thought felt might work but that was a disappointment so Jon came up with a better plan that included command hooks and the hot glue gun.

In the end we figured it out and the kitchen looks just as festive as the rest of the house. Thanks mom and pop for the amazing, massive pine cones! 

I'll end with a recent layout I created for Teresa Collins using her Santa's List Collection and then new toy I have been wanting for over a year now, the Silhouette Cameo. 

Wishing you the best Christmas holiday surrounded by family and friends!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Project Life....

Ahhhh. Life! We all know that is not always roses and sunshine. There are speed bumps and the occasional road block. The one thing about Project Life, if you're staying true to it, is that sometimes you are documenting the not so happy and quite frankly some scary times in your life or in your family's life. The upside is you will remember who was there helping you through it all and in my case my girls have witnessed how important pulling together as a family can be. Bringing their awareness to another level, so to speak.

This was the week leading up to and including Father's Day. Shelby was in Poland, Ellie was in California and we had just found out of few days earlier that I would surgery as soon as possible. I was still cycling and we continued eating healthy spinach salads. The doctor asked if I I did any type of exercising and felt so proud to say "yes, yes I do". He informed me that I would heal faster with the shape I was in, which was super encouraging. We found out recovery would be hard and with my history of stage III cancer that would have a pathologist in the room with me during surgery in case cancer was found. It was a lot to take in. We scheduled the surgery for a few days later.

With the girls being out of town Jon was surprised to have cards waiting for him on Father's Day. He also received a video message from Shelby all the way from Poland. The morning of surgery Jon and I were trying to keep the mood light, being silly to keep my nerves under control, so we took this "selfie." Underneath it all I was very nervous and anxious. I kept the wrist bands that I wore during my hospital stay. The "in the moment" card opens up to reveal more journaling.

I tucked Jon's Father's Day cards into a binder pocket and attached the banner flag for added interest.

A photo of our hospital room. Jon slept on a cot next to me the entire time. After being released we had many monsoon warnings and the pilot of Ellie's plane home let her sit in the cockpit. She loved it. The first morning being home I was able to move around a little bit and snapped this photo of all my caretakers plating monopoly. They made sure I was taking my medications when needed, eating right and everything in between.

With a lot of extra journaling I used a few folded cards to fit everything in. To keep this one closed I used a velcro closure.

Hope your having a great week. Happy "hump day!"