100% of my Heart

Just popping in to post another layout I did recently that I never got around to sharing.

100 percent of my heart
Another photo from Easter with all of the kids. I was doing a challenge to use numbers on a page and decided to try one of those pie charts. I see them everywhere but, as usual, I'm late to the trend party!

100 percent of my heart close-up
I miss my kiddos... need to make plans to get back home for another visit.

Your eyes do not deceive you.

Not only two posts in a week, two posts with layouts.

I'm still doing some of the challenges from NSD at Studio Calico and last night I did one to use stencils without mists. So, I pulled out my recently acquired mono / Gelli printing skills (I use the term "skills" very loosely. lol.) and used the Studio Calico Sundrifter stencil with acrylic plates to make some cool background paper. And to go with that paper, I could only use photos from the Muse show last month.

The monoprint is the one with the blue and gold. I added some silver Inka Gold rubon waxy stuff and some red liquid pearls.

I added some brads, sequins, and metallic puffy stickers from the stash, along with a glitter and washi tape border.

This was fun. Maybe I'll actually start doing layouts again. Who knows?

Aside from that, I've been in serious Instagram withdrawl over the last 2 days. I can see my feed, but every time I try and post a photo it crashes. What's up with that? Last 2 app updates = epic fail. Anyway. Off to play a little more and finish the laundry.

December Daily - Finished!

Whew! For a while there I wasn't sure I was going to finish this thing... I had about a week there where I just didn't want to pick it up again. But I just decided to not worry about it and finally I came back around.

So. Here are the pages for the 24th:

December Daily 2012 Day 24a
December Daily 2012 Day 24b
I saw a larger sized diecut like this online - it was by Ormolu, I think. I knew I had a globe shape in my Silhouette library, so with a little ingenuity, I knew I could make something similar. Of course, I had to increase the difficulty level by making it smaller, cutting it from POW glitter paper, and using a super thin font (Raleway.) But it worked!

December Daily 2012 Day 24d
I just used gel medium to adhere... I kind of like the semi-opaque look it gives the transparency, so I deliberatly covered the whole thing. I saved the Silhouette file so I can use it again.

And Christmas day... I went ahead and did 4 pages with 2 inserts.

December Daily 2012 Day 25a

December Daily 2012 Day 25b

I decided to just do 3 pages of photo collages... I got in 18 photos, and they kind of tell the story.

The first was Christmas morning at Nicole and Brian's seeing what Santa had brought.

December Daily 2012 Day 25c
The rest are at my parents' house.

December Daily 2012 Day 25d

December Daily 2012 Day 25e

December Daily 2012 Day 25f

December Daily 2012 Day 25g

December Daily 2012 Day 25h

At the back, I included an envelope with a few bits and pieces from the rest of my stay, but I decided to end on the 25th. At some point I may do a layout or two of some of the other things we did... we'll see.

December Daily 2012 Finished Album
As for the December Daily, I liked the 4x6 size, but I like doing a bigger album much better. I stick too many extra things into my album, so I like having a larger surface area and not having to try and get creative with my inserts. But I do think this one came out pretty cool... full of memories!

Yay! Now I can get back to finishing last year's Project Life and starting this year's. My Studio Calico project life kit (and my other SC kits) came today, and I'm excited to dig into them :)

Check one more off my Christmas list

The number one thing I wanted to do this season was to go over to the town green to see the lights and the tree they planted there. I happened to see the truck with the tree strapped to it driving into the center of town last month and I was so excited! They had a tree lighting ceremony and a parade that went right past my house while I was home for Thanksgiving. Since I missed that, I didn't want to miss going to walk around the center of town and take pictures of the lights.

Fortunately, thanks to my handy dandy nerd list, I remembered to do it! (I'm not kidding. I almost forgot... that's why I need that list!)

Last night after work I went home and dropped of my laptop, changed my shoes, grabbed my camera, and walked two blocks to the town center. (I'm not kidding... it's literally two blocks!) It's just so picturesque that I can't quite get over it!

All the street lights are decorated...

And then the town green with the huge tree (and menorah) with the churches and town hall lined up along the back.

Branford Town Green Christmas Tree 2012(The big glowing blob is the menorah.)

It was quiet, still... so peaceful and beautiful. And I managed to kind of get the bokeh effects I was going for! And a sliver of the moon, hanging just over top of the tree.

Branford Christmas Tree and Moon
Looks like my lens has a slightly funny shape - I almost get hearts instead of circles when I do the bokeh. I think it's pretty cool looking.

Then as I headed back toward my house, the bells of the church rang out the hour behind me... I just love that. Because I'm so close, when it's quiet I can hear them inside the house and I stop to listen every time. I've always loved bells and I'm so thrilled to live where I can hear them regularly.

About a block from my house is a great little cafe that we go to for lunch sometimes... I've never been outside of work, but since I don't want to cook or buy groceries before taking off for the holidays, I stopped to get something off their very excellent salad bar (and maybe a slice of peanut butter pie. Don't judge. It was delicious.) Then walked the last block back home. As I walked I just thought how totally cool it is to be in this location... it's perfect for me. It's not so big and busy that it makes my introverted self want to head for the hills, but I can just walk into town to go to the store or grab food or go to the library... hang out and read a book in the town green... whatever. I'm not quite over the novelty of it yet.

When I got home, I had left on the lights of my tree so I could see them as I came up the steps to go inside. It just made me happy. So I cuddled up on the couch with my dinner and a movie and enjoyed the rest of a lovely evening. And it wasn't even a Hallmark Christmas movie! (it was a Lifetime Christmas movie. lol.)

So anyway... that's the story and photos from last night's December Daily entry.

December Daily 2012 Day 19a
The way the lights are in my house, I have a terrible time avoiding the glare... especially on the right side where I used a transparency to back the frame insert - the photo isn't attached - it's in a sleeve behind the frame page.

December Daily 2012 Day 19b
December Daily 2012 Day 19c
I made the frame just using the rectangle and offset tools in the Silhouette software and then I typed the words (Pacifico font) and welded them to the frame and cut it out of American Crafts POW paper. I love that stuff!

Now I just need to do about a week's worth of work in two days and get everything ready for me to go home for the holidays. Plenty to keep me busy, that's for sure!

Let your heart be light!

That was kind of the theme of my journal entry for yesterday... partly as a reminder and partly because I was feeling pretty good about things. It was another entry all about work... that seems to be happening quite a bit! It's amazing how different this December is as I look back at last year's album. This year is definitely more Project Life than seasonal activities and extremely work focused so far...

Anyway... here are the pages for the 11th:

December Daily 2012 Day 11a
I ended up going out for a working lunch with a co-worker today at a Japanese restaurant near the office - I included a take-out menu and the wrapper from my chopsticks (it had a cool design... lol.)

December Daily 2012 Day 11b
I made the envelope out of patterned vellum with my Cameo, reinforced the edge with washi and added the stamped "lunch" and those fun puffy star stickers.

December Daily 2012 Day 11c
A picture of my lunch on the backside (beef yaki soba), and then I added that card to hold my journaling. Since it's work again, I wanted to keep it hidden and I also had a lot to write so this gave me more space. I used a Papertrey Ink stamp behind the sentiment and added Liquid Pearls and rhinestones.

December Daily 2012 Day 11d
I also took one of the chipboard pages and used some gesso, paint and modeling paste with a Studio Calico star template and added some snowflakes. It's just decorative - and for me to have a little fun playing :)

That's it! I already know what's going to go on the back of that chipboard for 12-12-12 :)

Day 10 already!

I can't believe how fast this month is flying by. It seems like it just started yesterday! Speaking of yesterday, that's another day that was crazy busy and went so fast I almost missed it. lol. Work has been picking up again lately, which is good. I've got a ton on my plate right now - the way I like it :) So there wasn't a whole lot going on yesterday, but I had a fun Christmas card from my grandma when I got home last night, so I had to include that... along with a picture of the delicious treats Kami dropped off (so sweet!)

December Daily 2012 Day 10a
I used one of the transparent pages and another Silhouette diecut from the Studio Calico 25 Days class cut out of American Crafts POW paper (so awesome. I need more of that stuff!)

The back side...

December Daily 2012 Day 10b
And it was hard to figure out a good way to do this, but I managed to get my grandma's Christmas card in here.

December Daily 2012 Day 10
That's all she wrote! Now I've got to finish getting ready and get into the office for my first meeting. Later!

December Daily Day 9

Just playing a little catch-up - I was too tired last night to work on my entry after I got home from Young Women in Excellence - all I wanted to do was lay on the couch in front of my tree and watch my Food Network shows... lol. So that's what I did. It was lovely.

But tonight, I got caught up - here's yesterday's entry.

December Daily 2012 Days 8-9
I included a copy of the music for the song the YW leaders sang last night... I haven't sung or even heard it for years! But it was fun.

December Daily 2012 Day 9
And a few pictures from the day. I couldn't get a picture of this without the glare to save my life, and naturally I had attached the embellishments to the outside of the page protector. Oh well...

December Daily 2012 Day 9bA necklace I worked on with the beads I bought in NYC last weekend... the pumpkin chocolate chip cookies I made to take last night... A cute text message and a picture of Next Iron Chef in front of the Christmas tree.

December Daily 2012 Days 9-10
And finally, I added a journaling card to the right (and you can see the part I've finished for today sticking out... but that's for tomorrow's post!)

And that's it! I've got an early meeting tomorrow morning and I should have been in bed already so I'm off!

Braving the crowds

Yesterday I needed to run some errands down in the Milford area... I knew it was a Saturday in December in a major shopping area, but sometimes you just have to suck it up and deal with the crazy, you know? And it was crazy! There was an accident on 95 on my way there, and then when I got off, the traffic on the Post Road was horrible. I went to Costco first (always a scary prospect!) and actually had no trouble finding parking. I got through pretty fast, the checkout was good, but it was the line of cars trying to get back onto the road through a short light with heavy traffic that sucked. But it was okay. From there, I hit The Loft (coupons! and a sale!) and then went to Trader Joe's on my way back out. I don't think I've ever been in one, but I was tired of missing out on the Candy Cane Jo Jos every year! I definitely picked up plenty of treats to try over the next few weeks. Yummy!

So, today's December Daily entry was about getting out and shopping, and the well earned relaxation when I got home later in the evening.

December Daily 2012 Day 8

I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut the red leaves and then used some Liquid Pearls to add a little more color and dimension. I really like how that came out.

December Daily 2012 Day 8L
I think these were my two favorite finds of the day:

Trader Joes JoJo Assortment
(These suckers are delicous and definitely decadent!)

Trader Joes Greek Yogurt Dip
And this dip... oh yeah. Next time I go I'm picking up several. It's a Greek yogurt dip made with feta and za-atar spice (which is thyme, sumac, and sesame seeds - I have a bottle so I can add more!) and I had it with some fresh bread from Costco. So good! One of my new favorite things.

So that's it for now. I've got to finish preparing my Young Women's lesson for today... about the value of getting an education. Should be a good one!

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Sorry I've been a little MIA lately... I got called on it tonight by my dad. Oops! But things have been a little busy, as usual! I'll come back at some point and post a few photos from Thanksgiving with my family down in Virginia, but in the meantime, it's time to start posting about my favorite time of the year. The Christmas season!

This year again, I'm doing a December Daily. For a while I wasn't sure if I would, even though I'd ordered some kit stuff and signed up for the class at Studio Calico. But the mojo I started to get back working on my Project Life mini album is holding, so here I am!

Starting out, here's my cover. I went a little crazy, and it's a contrast with the inside, which will be much simpler. But I love it, and the mix of styles is totally *me.*

December Daily 2012 Cover
I was really inspired by the style of art journaling by Finnabair and used some of that as I made the cover. And some of it is just typical of me. I used the 4x6 album from the Studio Calico kit, gessoed the cover, and then went to town with a stencil (Crafter's Workshop) and some modeling paste to get the stars. Then I used several layers of mist, copper paint, mod podge, more paint, and liquid pearls. I also plastered some doilies in there and built up a few layers.

December Daily 2012 Cover Close-ups
And some Prima jewels, nestled in amongst the liquid pearls. This project reminded me yet again how much I love doing this type of thing!

Then, the title page. I kept it very plain and simple, using one of the Silhouette cut files (by Ali Edwards) from the Studio Calico 25 Days class.

December Daily 2012 Title Page

And then my entry for yesterday, 12/1:

December Daily 2012 Day 1
(I love the smaller size of the album, but it's a little hard to photograph!)

Yesterday I took an early train down to NYC and met Angela at Grand Central for our Day of Fun! We walked and talked and laughed and caught up. We went first to Bryant Park where we wandered through the stalls set up for the season, then watched the skaters and admired the gorgeous tree while we waited in line for macarons. I got pistachio and Angela got red velvet - we each sampled each others'. They were delicious! Then we walked to the Fashion District to go bead shopping. I've never seen so many bead shops, let alone 3 in a row!

December Daily 2012 Day 1a

I got the stuff to make a few necklaces, which means for the first time in well over a year, I should be posting some new jewelry!

After that, we took the Subway to her house in Queens, picked up the car and then her friend Christy, and headed to Brooklyn for some shopping. We went into some really cute boutiques, and also the Brooklyn Art Library, home of the Sketchbook Project! I signed up for this year months ago and with all the crazy I haven't started. But going in and seeing it made me excited to try getting mine done and submitted by the deadline.

December Daily 2012 Day 1b
Then we went to the real purpose of the trip - the Etsy Holiday Cavalcade. They had a bunch of Etsy sellers and some artisinal food people, and we had a great time wandering and seeing all their fun crafts. We did some Christmas shopping (and some ME shopping - a GORGEOUS necklace from AdornmentsNYC) and sampled a bit of food. There was an artisinal chocolatier who had Moroccan spiced chocolate - dark chocolate with cumin and coriander. It was weird as a dessert, but would make a fabulous sauce!

I collected cards and other fun things throughout the day and put them all in one of the glassine envelopes my kit supplies came in. Just some cardstock and washi to turn it into a page in the book, and held closed with a fun sticker I got from the Etsy table.

December Daily 2012 Day 1c
Stamping and journaling on the back of the bag...

December Daily 2012 Day 1d
I found those awesome puffy star stickers in a little boutique we stopped in. I knew they'd be perfect for this album.

December Daily 2012 Day 1e

On the way out of the craft fair, we stopped into Mast Brothers Chocolate, since it was right next to Angela's car. We walked in the door and about fell over from the awesomeness of the smell in there. They make all their chocolate on site - you can sit and watch them do it, along with the people hand wrapping each bar. I think that was possibly the best thing I've ever smelled in my life. It was divine. We wandered, and then of course got in line at their little counter of goodies for some cookies and bonbons made with their dark chocolate. (I'm not normally a dark chocolate person, but yum.)

Then we dropped off Christy and went back to Angela's house in Queens. Since we'd barely eaten all day (I didn't eat at the chocolate place), we went to a New Orleans style restaurant called Sugar Freak, where we had hushpuppies and I tried my first ever chicken and waffles. It had a bananas foster sauce and was really delicious.

Then that was it... I took the subway back to Grand Central, got some really delicious hot chocolate from Ciao Bella, and then took the train back to New Haven. Quick trip in and out, but so much fun! I can't wait to go back again to do more exploring.

Here are the pictures from yesterday's entry:

Blog - Day in New York
And now that I'm doing my December Daily, I should be popping in to update much more often! That's the plan, anyway!

First birthday mini scrapbook

Yup... Adorable-Nephew-William turned one last month and there were so many cute pictures from his party that I decided to make a little mini album with them.


I've had this album for a year or two... waiting for the perfect project. It's a Doodlebug 4x8 chipboard album and I love that the pages are white. I decided to leave them that way and make it clean and colorful.

I used lots of different papers and tapes - I had a few sheets of an old KI Memories birthday line that I loved. I also thought those Basic Grey Woolies were fun with this - I used one for that big circle along with some Jolee's candle stickers.

William is in a car and truck phase, so Rick and Erin made him this super cute construction cake with lots of trucks on it - it was the theme for his party and it turned out really fun!

So to go with the construction / truck theme, I downloaded a few designs for my Cameo and used them througout the album. I love how they turned out!

I wasn't there in person, but I was Skyped in for the party and it was fun to watch him open all of his gifts... William is such a cutie!

His word lately is "wow!" and there were several during the party - especially for his little car ramp tower thingy that he loved.

More trucks... I had to have a few for when he got his new truck push and ride!


I really like the tall photos that I used in this book - it worked great! It also made the book pretty fast and easy to put together.

I printed out all the photos and then went through and adhered them in the album. Then I went through again and added patterned paper around the photos. Because of the way I did it, I didn't have to lift up photos or anything (and on the few where the photos are on top, I just did the paper first and added the photos).


Then I went through again and added the journaling (mostly taken from Erin's blog) and then added washi tape, stickers, and other little bits.


This was a fun and fast project, and a great momento of William's first birthday. Hopefully someday he'll love looking through this :)

Getting Messy with Celine - Part Deux

I finished! I absolutely LOVED doing this project and the class was so much fun. I always forget how much I love to "get messy" so this was a great reminder.

It ended up being quite a bit bigger and more involved than I anticipated...

Get Messy Goreme Scrapbook - Cover 1
28 total pages, all of them using some kind of technique, even if just a little bit.

Get Messy Goreme Scrapbook - Cover 2
And let's face it. Me? Going overboard? Not really unexpected. lol.

And because I did go so overboard, there are a LOT of photos of the album. So instead of having a humungous post clogging up the front page of my blog, I put it on its own page.

Without further ado, my completed Getting Messy Goreme mini scrapbook.


Sketch #9 - Layout Remix!

The other evening I was flipping through my albums (because I actually have FOUR albums - by theme -  that I now keep in my scrap attic so I can actually put my layouts in an album when I finish them... shocker.) and realized that of all the layouts in my 2011 Travel album, there was only one so far that I just don't like... it was kind of forced when I made it and not really my style. I was trying too hard to do something that just wasn't me so I pulled it out last night and redid it.

The original layout was made from the Studio Calico Daydream Believer kit and a few pictures from Machu Picchu. Observe:

Yeah. I'm cringing just looking at it, even though technically that layout doesn't exist anymore. (Okay, it's not really all that bad, but it really just isn't my style.)

Here's my remixed version :)

Amazing - Sketchbook 4 No9a
So.Much.Better. At least I think so. I just re-used the same supplies from the original layout with a few small additions. I took everything off the page, then flipped the kraft cardstock over and used the back. Waste not, want not!

Amazing - Sketchbook 4 No9b
I cropped the photos a bit - I think the scale was a bit off. Then I used sketch #9 from my sketchbook class as the basis for arranging everything on the page.

Amazing - Sketchbook 4 No9c
I had a pile of kraft letters already cut on my Cameo and leftover from another project where I'd used the negative. I think it was in my 29 Days of Love album? Anyway, I suddenly had the idea to see what words I could spell and if anything fit, to do a really subtle treatment using those words instead of journaling. When I think of Machu Picchu, "Andes," "history," and "drama" all seem very appropriate!

Amazing - Sketchbook 4 No9d
I took out the strips of green Dear Lizzy paper and used a leftover scrap from the March Story Hour kit instead. I think it made a huge difference in getting the right feel.

Amazing - Sketchbook 4 No9e

The only other things I added were a few of those awesome wood veneer stars from Studio Calico. I think I could use about 12 more packages of those babies.

I still have one more layout I did with this kit that I'm thinking about re-doing, but we'll see.

K... I have a few more things to do during my lunch break, so off I go!

P.S. My layout "Jump!" was featured on the Scrapbook Gossip blog today! Go check it out... it's a pretty cool blog with lots of great daily inspiration.

Some sassy scrapping

I caved and signed up for yet another online workshop - this one is Sassy Scrapping with Shannon Tidwell. It just looked so fun and another class that was right up my alley (and it doesn't hurt that I get 15% off everything at 2 Peas, right? So it's a deal. I'm practically obligated to participate!) The first chapter is about inspiration and the class in general is more about going bold and even a little big with your pages. So I decided to dive right in with it. I started with a Studio Calico sketch and my April kit.

Easter 2012 aThe papers were just perfect for these fun pictures of Rick, Erin, and the kids. I decided to be inspired by a layout from Shannon as well as flowers - something that's kind of just *me* and that I always love. So I decided to kick it up a notch and make them huge.

Easter 2012 b
I used a rose diecut on my Cameo to do the flowers in different papers from my kit (although the yellow is from March). I also did some big hexagons on my Cameo for the background and added some sequins and butterfly stickers (also from the kit and addon... love them!)

Easter 2012 cI spritzed the Amy Tangerine Thickers with a little Mister Huey's mist so they'd stand out just a bit on the lighter paper.

Easter 2012 d
This was a lot of fun and I really love how it turned out. Plus, I have a super cute family :)

Piggy Love

Bet you thought this was a post about bacon, huh? Not tonight. (But now I'm craving bacon. Or better yet... candied bacon! But I digress.)

I was working on today's sketch for my Sketchbook 4 class and I just had to go back and use these pictures from Aubrey's first birthday. And not just because as soon as I saw the sketch this morning, I had an idea for how to use it without even looking at the sample layouts (love that!) and sketched it up using hearts and therefore needed pictures that would work with hearts. Okay, so that's mostly the reason, but also because I just love these pictures and the story that goes with them.

Piggy Love - Sketchbook 4 No5aWhen we were in Myrtle Beach in September, Aubrey had this little stuffed pig that she just adored. Exhibit A:

Aubrey and PigSo when I was shopping for her birthday present, I was thinking pigs. Then I found out from my mom that Aubrey kept stealing this pillow pet that Eraleigh had. So I thought hey. Piggy pillow pet! I found one on Amazon and shipped it to her for the party and then skyped in for the celebration.

Piggy Love - Sketchbook 4 No5b
First of all, the thing was huge! I didn't realize how big it was when I ordered it. And watching Aubrey pull it out of the box and realize what it was? Priceless. She squealed with delight and would.not.put.it.down.

It was pretty funny. And awfully darn cute too.

Piggy Love - Sketchbook 4 No5cI used my City of Lights kit and add-on for this, plus a few doilies and some washi tape. I used my Cameo to cut the heart frames around the photos - glued them to the photos and cut off the excess. I also used my Cameo to make the heart strips - I cut hearts and circles out of craft and laid them on white cardstock for the strips, then used some of the leftover pieces as elements on the page.

Piggy Love - Sketchbook 4 No5dThis was a fun sketch and I had a great time putting the layout together. And now I'm kind of thinking maybe I need a piggy pillow pet. Doesn't it look kind of cute and comfy?

Sketch No 2 and a new polenta recipe

First up, it's been a while since I posted a new recipe, so I thought I'd share what I cooked for dinner tonight. A while ago I picked up a new cookbook called Ancient Grains for Modern Meals by Maria Speck. I think it was featured in the cookbook review feature in an issue of Cooking Light. Given that it was described as a book featuring farro, wheat berries, quinoa and polenta (and we know all about my ongoing love affair with polenta), there was no question that I'd get this cookbook. I quite enjoy paging through it, drooling over every photo and recipe. And of course, the first one I picked to cook involved polenta (polenta lasagna anyone? Still one of my all time favorites).

Rosemary and Artichoke Tart with Polenta CrustIt's kind of like a quiche only not. I'm not going to post the whole recipe (sorry Melissa!) because it's just too long... but it's not a quick meal. However, you can prepare the polenta ahead of time and the rest of it is a snap. It does take a while to cook and set, though. But it's DELICOUS. As a main dish it serves 4, and a serving is 10 points plus on Weight Watchers (if you use non-fat Greek yogurt as I did). While it was cooking, I just sat and inhaled... rosemary and goat cheese wafting through the air. Sigh.

The crust is 1 1/4C regular polenta (not instant) cooked in a mix of water (1 1/4C) and chicken broth (1 1/2C) with 1/4 tsp fine sea salt. Then you add 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/2C grated parmesan cheese and an egg (room temp so it doesn't cook when you mix it in).You cook the polenta for 10 minutes, stirring every two. Remove from the heat and let it sit another 10. Add the cheese, pepper and egg and let it sit for 15.

The filling is 1C greek yogurt, 1 tbsp minced fresh rosemary, 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley, scallions (which I left out. yuck.), salt and pepper, 2 eggs and 12oz of quartered artichoke hearts. The recipe calls for frozen, which I would use with great delight if they were available anywhere in the state of Utah. Instead I used jarred - I just drained them really well. Also 2oz of crumbled goat cheese and 1/2C of grated parmesan. You layer the polenta in the oiled pan and make a well - it's a VERY thick crust - about 3/4" around the edges. You let the crust sit about 15 minutes and preheat the oven to 375. Then arrange the artichokes in a circle from the outside to the center in the crust, sprinkle the goat cheese over top, pour the yogurt, herb, and egg mixture on top (carefully so it doesn't overflow) and then sprinkle the parm on top and bake 40 minutes. Then you have to let it rest a minimum of 20 minutes on a rack after it cooks so it all settles. But it's worth it.

Okay, I guess I typed the recipe up after all. lol. But the cookbook is awesome. I'm sure there will be more from there soon...

And on to the layout! I had a super nasty bout of insomnia last night, so I was up at 3:30am today trying to do anything to tire myself out and go back to bed. Nothing worked, so I got up and got ready for work and then started working on sketch #2 from Kelly's Sketchbook 4 class. I finished it tonight after a late dinner while I listened to Colorado get eliminated from the playoffs. Ouch. (Not unexpected, however.)

Grand Mosque - Sketchbook 4 No2
Here's a shocker for you... I didn't use a single thing from a Studio Calico kit on this one. I know! I have tons of other stuff I need to use so I'm trying to do that, even though it's an SC class (although April's kit comes next week, and it's a good one!)

Grand Mosque - Sketchbook 4 No2b
This is from my visit to Abu Dhabi last year. We didn't get to stop and go into the mosque (still bummed about that - it was magnificent!) but we got into the city early enough to stop for a few minutes and take pictures from the side of the freeway before we went on to our business visit at the US Embassy. Such an incredible building! And so striking in the middle of the desert with that bright blue sky behind it.

Grand Mosque - Sketchbook 4 No2cI used the Moroccan background from the Silhouette store and then cut pieces out so it wasn't a solid 12x12 and then glued it down. I used one of the inside pieces as a template and cut a few pieces out of scraps to fill in some of the open spaces.

Grand Mosque - Sketchbook 4 No2d
The papers are all scraps from when I made my Scrapbook on the Road for my FBE last year... Making Memories, Basic Grey, TPC Studios, DCWV... and more of my favorite jeweled fabric brads from Basic Grey. Those never fail to make me happy just looking at them, let alone actually using them!

Grand Mosque - Sketchbook 4 No2e
I decided to also use this to fill a challenge on the SC community - the stash buster challenge series. For this one, we had to use 2 photos, washi tape, 3 round items of some kind (brads), a color item (ink) and a stamped image. So I used my Papertrey Ink Mendhi Medallion set (the original small one) to stamp a few small images. I also added a few bits of gold airmail washi tape. I've had that ribbon forever and I'm so glad I finally used it! The Thickers are Amy Tangerine and they're super cool.

With that, I don't think I'm going to have trouble sleeping tonight, so I'm off to bed. Happy Friday!

Design Your Life

So I think I'm addicted to this online class thing. I'm afraid to count how many I'm currently enrolled in... a lot. But I'm loving it and getting lots of stuff done and learning a few things too. One thing that I've been looking for however, is something that can help me be happy with my layouts on a more consistent basis.

To that end, I had thought about signing up for Cathy Zielske's Design Your Life workshop when she was doing it live on Big Picture Scrapbooking, but it just wasn't a good time since I was still in school. But this last week I found out they had a self-paced version I could sign up for. So I did... right away! I've spent some time in the last few days doing the pre-work and then going through all the information and assignments in week one. And I have lots to share!

First, the title page layout that was part of the pre-work for the course. It's supposed to be "me" on a scrapbook page, using the grid background that Cathy gave us.

I included some pictures of my favorite scrap subjects, then used a few of the techniques that I feel kind of show some of who I am as a scrapbooker (that just sounded totally cheesy, but I can't think of a better way to say it. lol.) But I like it - cheery and fun with plenty going on, but still kind of graphic.

IMG_1310Some fun pics of the kiddos, and a travel picture of me. And I LOVE that stamp - it's from the Stampin' Bella Lulu collection.

IMG_1311Believe it or not, I'm actually doing all of this in an album. It's crazy. But I think I'll have a sweet reference book when I'm done since I'm adding in the stuff she has us print out for chapter headings and stuff, and I'm inserting some of the pages from the handouts so I can refer back to them without opening the pdfs.

So pre-work done, I moved on to the first chapter. The starting point is all about symmetrical balance. For now at least, the layouts are all based on sketches from Cathy. I'm doing a little to make them more "me," but I'm sticking pretty close to it since the balance we're learning is in the foundation of the page - the size and location of the elements.

Here's the first layout I worked on:

IMG_1304I actually printed the photos on textured cardstock and I love the look. Part of me wanted to go crazy with the embellishments, but I exercised a little self-restraint for once. lol.

IMG_1306Obviously from when I was in Greece last year (I can't believe it was almost a year ago! Yikes... time is seriously flying.) The Parthenon was truly amazing and it seemed like a perfect subject to blow up in an enlargement that big.
IMG_1307I've decided that just looking at (and occasionally lovingly pulling them out to examine up close) my awesome collection of fancy brads is probably not a good idea. So I'm trying to start using them... there are quite a few in these layouts.

The second assignment for the chapter was a 2-page 8.5x11 spread.I decided to go back to Spain for this one.

IMG_1299Ah... Valor. Just thinking about the hot chocolate and churros is making me drool. Just a little.

IMG_1301All of us gathered around the table knocking back giant plates of churros... that was a somewhat frequent occurance during our stay in Madrid. Everything there was open really late, so we ended up there at night after whatever we had been doing that day. The first time was after the flamenco show, when I was starving because the paella was way too fishy for me to eat around the seafood. But I digress.

IMG_1302I used the Studio Calico Story Hour kit / add-ons plus a few brads and some Prima Say-it-in-Studs. This layout doubled for a challenge over on the Studio Calico community to make a layout from a kit plus at least two additional supplies from my stash. I'm digging it.

IMG_1303And now I'm suddenly really hungry.

Moving on...

The last layout for tonight was for the Real World Color assignment. Cathy put together a color palette based on a print ad for carpet - the colors were yellow, orange, brown, and blue. There was also a sketch to go with them. I took a bit more liberty with this sketch... it's mostly true to the original, but I nudged things around a bit.

Gabby GirlI'm still trying to figure out how Aubrey has already picked up that holding the phone with your shoulder move. She's not even 2! Cute, though. That first picture cracks me up.

Gabby girl meme(I did say I wouldn't be able to resist making more of those things... I just can't help it!)

IMG_1314This is another layout that doubles for a challenge over on Studio Calico. This time it was to make a layout with the oldest intact kit you have. This one was mostly still together... from the Summer Camp kit a while ago. The colors worked great with the color palette for the DYL assignment.

Oh, and that last picture is what happens when you take the phone away from Aubrey. lol.

IMG_1315Whew. That's a lot! But I'm thrilled with how much I was able to get done, and I feel like I learned a few things too.

And did I mention I have two more new classes starting tomorrow? Kelly Purkey's Sketchbook 4 and a class by Kerri Bradford on using the Silhouette Studio software. I think I'll learn some great stuff in that one to really use my Cameo to the fullest. It's possible that I've bitten off more than I can chew, but we'll see how it goes. My goal now is to not sign up for more classes until I finish a few! I think I can handle that :)

Because I couldn't resist...

I had to make a meme of this picture of Adorable-Niece-Aubrey.

Broken nail memeThere are some hysterical photos in the batch Brian just posted... some of them are just crying out to be captioned (I'm hoping Aubrey has a sense of humor about it when she gets older. Somehow I think she will.) If I can think of anything suitably witty, I'm going to have to do a few more. She cracks me up.

And a layout... I wanted to do something with these pictures of Eraleigh and William and I struggled a bit with getting this to pull together. I also spent about an hour pouring through all my paper - even in my purge bins, looking for a sheet that I could swear I had that was covered with iPods and stuff. (Probably not the best time management effort on my part.) Not that this paper from American Crafts didn't end up working just fine in the end.

IShareI downloaded the mp3 diecut from the Silhouette store to use in my Cameo - I saw something in a magazine that inspired me to use them as frames for the photos and I think I like the effect.

IShare Close-up 1I used my Crafter's Workshop 6x6 Wonky Circles template and some pigment ink to put the circles on the background - it just needed something and that ended up working perfectly. Of course, I thought of doing it after I had put down the journaling and iPod frames / photos. There are a few smudges of red ink here and there as a result of me not being willing to pull it all back up again to ink (I used my ruler to lay those suckers down in the first place... not doing that again!) Oh well!

IShare Close-up 2Then I just started scrounging around in my stash for stuff that would work. A lot of it ended up being older stuff - I always love when I can put all kinds of fun stuff together on my pages.

IShare Close-up 3Kind of a fun layout to pull together even though it fought me for a while. But I like it now... all is well :)

And with that... signing off here. It's been a long and exhausting week, and I'm super ready for Friday!

Cute: Sunday Sketch

I have about 3 other things that I should get to first, but I just felt like doing another random layout... this one with some pictures of Adorable-Niece-Aubrey that Brian sent a while ago that I've been meaning to use on a layout. It just happened to work out that a magazine cover I saw this week that I've been dying to use as an inspiration piece and the Studio Calico Sunday Sketch posted today work perfectly together. I decided it was a sign, so I pulled out the pictures and just started playing.

Here's the inspiration piece - I took a picture with my iPad since it's a work magazine and I wanted to leave it there... it's the cover of the latest issue of Print Mag:

Print mag cover

Seroiusly cool, right? I'm just in love with the way they did the numbers. So here's the layout I did based on this and the Studio Calico sketch:


I used bits of the Studio Calico Daydream Believer kit along with paper bits from my scrap bin, the alphabet stamps from a Story Hour add-on, a phrase stamp (andiamo!) from an old SC stamp set that came with an add-on in 2010, tags, flowers, a ribbon scrap sitting on my table and some Papertrey butterfly stamps. I'm kind of loving it.

Cute Close-up 1

I really had a lot of fun making the letters. I cut the first layer on my Cameo - the font is Bebas. Then I mounted them on paper scraps and handcut each additional layer - there are 4 layers.

Cute Close-up 2

I love that I got to use the check-mark stamp from the SC Epic stamps.

Cute Close-up 3

I put dots of liquid pearls on all the butterflies, and the bigger ones are on pop dots.

Cute Close-up 4

This was just fun... I think I'll have to tuck this title idea away to use again some time.

Now I'll get back to what I was planning to work on today... including a mini album of my girls' day out with Angelina yesterday. We took plenty of pictures and the book is mostly done, so hopefully I'll post it soon. Then, on to this week's project life layout!

Happy Moments, a layout, and BIG mail.

The last two days have been like Christmas! I got my Studio Calico box with my March Story Hour kit and add-ons and I was practically squealing in delight as I opened it all. Not literally, of course. Well... maybe just a little bit on the inside. I LOVE this kit. Love it. I couldn't resist doing a layout right away, so I pulled out my PDF from Kelly Purkey's downloadable Sketchpad class. I've been meaning to do this before Sketchbook 4 starts in April so why not now? I'm going to try and work straight through the sketches, so this is using the first one and some fun pictures from Greece.

How do you like them apples

Pretty much everything here is from the kit or an add-on... I used my Cameo on kraft cardstock for the doilies and chevron shapes, but that's it.

How do you like them apples close-up 1

During our pre-trip research, someone discovered that in Greece, a man proposes to a woman by giving her an apple. I'm not sure how true that actually is, but the other girls wanted to do something fun with this while we were there. Our fake togas drew some funny looks on the roof of our hotel.

How do you like them apples close-up 2

The funny thing was, there was an actual marriage proposal going on over on the other side of the roof. We couldn't get close enough to see if he had an apple, though.

How do you like them apples close-up 3

You can tell I was just along for the ride by the fact that I was the only one that wasn't willing to go to the effort of stripping my bed to get a toga when there were nice, big towels in the bathrooms. lol. It was a lot of fun, though. And how about that view?

For the letters on the layout, I took the white foam Thickers and painted with with Claudine Helmuth Modern Red and then dotted on some turquoise Liquid Pearls.

Kind of a simple layout for me, but I'm really loving it.

And of course, I'm still working on my Happy Little Moments class. I finished two more sections.

Happy Little Moments - Pages 11-12

This page was actually inspired by a previous piece I did, which was inspired by something I saw on Pinterest a while ago. I stamped the Papertrey Ink roses directly on the page and then outlined them in black pen.

(And I'm kind of digging the sequins I sewed into the border on the right side. Sparkly!)

Happy Little Moments - Page 11

I colored in with PanPastels - I like how it's still a little translucent. I sprayed it with Krylon fixative to keep the pastels from rubbing off.

Happy Little Moments - Pages 13-14

The work field trip made it in... how could it not?

Happy Little Moments - Page 13

And on the right, a pocket page! I cut down one of the pages of the three that get glued together to form a section to make the pocket. And while I was at it, I cut a window to see some of the smaller things tucked inside. It's backed with a scrap of a Hambly transparency and then outlined with Liquid Pearls (I love those things lately).

Happy Little Moments - Page 14

I think I'll add another section or two (I know the next one for sure) and then I might leave a few sections blank so I can add more later. We'll see.

The other big thing? Today was my treadmill delivery day. I worked at home since I had to be here to meet the delivery guy, and this was a HUGE box. Way bigger than my last treadmill which was small enough to fit in the back of my mom's old CRV. This one? No way. But I needed it out of my garage so I could pull my car back in, so this is where it's at right now.

New Treadmill Blocking Stairs

I got the old treadmill disassembled and out to my garage without any help, but this is a different story. I wrangled it inside and onto the stairs by myself (no mean feat!) but this is where it's staying until Melody and Vic can come over and help me move it. I was hoping to have it up and running for a Saturday workout, but I might have to go down to the gym instead. I'm stubborn, but not crazy enough to try and get this sucker the rest of the way without help! For now I can still get up and down the stairs and my car is in the garage. It's all good.

After this was delivered I was back to work when the UPS guy rang the doorbell. I wasn't expecting anything else today, but he had another big box for me. Guess what was in it?

New Dyson

I've been in desperate need of a new vacuum, and my mom had been telling me to get a Dyson. Duh. Who wouldn't like a Dyson? But they're $$$! However, earlier this week my mom forwarded me an email - Woot had refurbished Dyson DC25s for a really good price. Since I got such a good deal on my treadmill (and free delivery!) I had enough left over from my tax return to snap one of these up. It was a shock to get it because it just shipped yesterday! So yay! I'm now a proud and happy Dyson owner. And really, how often are you proud and happy about a vacuum? Just sayin'.

Anyway... after all that, I'm ready to crash. Happy weekend!

More from my Happy Little Moments class

I'm still having a blast making my altered book for this class. I'm probably about half-way through at this point although I might not finish it all at once... but then again, maybe I will. Who knows? I'm playing it by ear and just having fun and experimenting a little too.

Lots more pictures of the next 3 sections...

Happy Little Moments Pages 5-6

I used my Cameo on these - the circle shape on the left side and the words on the right (and that one-click welding in the Silhouette Studio software is AWESOME.) I cut part of the circle shape off and pasted it all down and then added the other stuff to it.

Happy Little Moments - Page 5

On the right, I did some stamping in the background and then just layered the rest on top and hand-stitched the border.

Happy Little Moments - Page 6

The next section is a slightly different style, but I just love it. I brought back my stencils and modeling paste again to do this moment from Istanbul when I was there last May. This moment *had* to be in this book since it was probably the best of the entire trip.

Happy Little Moments - Pages 7-8

I don't have pictures of the exact moment, but these are pictures that contributed and helped tell the story.

Happy Little Moments - Page 7

And some close-ups of the modeling paste - I used some different colored Perfect Pearls on top / around it.

Happy Little Moments - Page 7 close-up 1
Happy Little Moments - Page 7 close-up 1

I like the second one - you can really get a feel for the dimension it brings to the page. Love.

On the other side, I tried making a window with a super-extra-jumbo Marvy circle punch. I chain stitched around the opening and then backed it with part of a Hambly transparency for some stability since the circle didn't reach in all that far.

Happy Little Moments - Page 8

The glass nazar and raffia are actually leftover wrapping from some rose scented soap I bought on my first trip to Istanbul a few years ago. I've wanted to use it in a project somewhere and this seemed perfect.

And I'm going to be doing LOTS more of that modeling paste stuff. I just can't get enough of how fun it is and how cool it looks (at least I think so, anyway.)

Last spread for tonight...

Happy Little Moments - Pages 9-10

Pretty basic pages... just some patterned paper layers worked around the transparency.

Happy Little Moments - Page 9

It was inevitable that food and cooking would be in here, because I have so many lovely moments when I get to relax and make something special. These pictures are from when I was making boulognese and homemade rigatoni last year - that sauce was AMAZING. I need to make it again. But it's a vivid memory because of what a wonderful, relaxing and just happy afternoon it was. No pressure, no timelines... I wasn't making it for anyone but me and it was wonderful. I need to do that again.

Happy Little Moments - Page 10

The little chef is a stamped image (stamp by Stamping Bella) that I colored and cut out. The page just cried out for me to add this little guy. How could I refuse? I also hand-stitched the zig-zag border with some red embroidery floss. I'm having lots of fun with the stitching :)

I have more techniques I'm dying to use in this book so I'll be back to share those soon. But for now, bed! I'm exhausted (which is what happens when I miss my Sunday nap. Sigh.)

More Fun with Studio Calico

I'm absolutely loving the Studio Calico Daydream Believer kit... I've made 3 layouts so far. This Dear Lizzy line from American Crafts is pretty awesome and I have lots of pictures that work well with it which I love. I really wanted to play tonight, so I pulled it out again.

Lately I've been feeling less than happy with some of my layouts. I *like* all of them, but I don't love them. So before I started, I went through a huge pile of my layouts and sorted them by how much I liked them. Then I kind of went through the ones I liked the least and noted what it was I didn't like about them. Then for the ones I loved and really liked, I noted the things they had in common. I quickly realized that there are a few things that I do or use on my layouts that kind of define my style and what I love. So tonight, I decided to stick true to that list and see how it worked.

I loved it. LOVED. it.

One - Aubrey

See what I mean about the papers matching so well? It's mostly from the new Dear Lizzy Neapolitan line and I just love it (the pink is a Pebbles paper I added). The flower center are some fun epoxy stickers - I used my Cameo to make the flowers to kind of match the 3D flower embellishments in the line (I didn't buy them... I knew I could probably make something similar.)

One - Aubrey a

I added some old dictionary pages, trims and punched leaves to the flowers. I misted the Pink Paislee mistable trim from the kit with a rose Tattered Angels mist.

The title is some Thickers (Hardcover) surrounding the letter card that came in the kit - the fonts matched great... the size is a bit off, but I like it anyway.

One - Aubrey Close-ups

The My Mind's Eye banner trim came in an add-on that I didn't get... I happened to have it in my stash however, so I added it - I like the effect.

I really love how this turned out, and it feels great to feel like I'm back to my own style. Hopefully more to come :)

P.S. - forgot to mention that I based the layout on a sketch from the Hambly blog that I really loved.

Studio Calico Stamped Tag / Feb. Layout

I was listening to the Avalanche game tonight (a pretty awesome game too!) and wanted to do something fun, but I wasn't quite up for a layout. Lately, I just don't have anything I'm really wanting to scrap. Then I remembered this stamped tag challenge at Studio Calico this week and I thought it sounded like the perfect way to just play and have a little fun.

Studio Calico Stamped Tag

I used 4 different Studio Calico stamps on this one... 3 of them from kits, and the bird I bought on Two Peas a while ago (I think). I masked the stars to stamp the banners and then masked the banners to stamp the background. Fun! Some Stickles, tape, trims, and an American Crafts chipboard frame around the bird. A little crepe paper ruffle just for kicks.

And note the color combo... still on my mind after yesterday's 29 Days of Love album entry :)

Speaking of...

29 Days of Love Blog Header

Today's prompt was "I love happy mail days." And I do... it's so fun to come home from work and find a little box of goodies on my doorstep! I had a few things sitting out from some packages I've gotten in the last little while and used them on the page.

29 Days of Love - Days 21-22
I also used a chevron background that I cut on my Cameo from a piece of heart patterned Sassafras paper, added a shipping tag and some airmail colored twine, and then a little envelope I'd made for something else and then not used with some punched hearts tucked inside. The alpha stamps for the title are Swiss Girl Designs - I love them!

29 Days of Love - Day 22

The ink, however, was spreading weirdly on the tag. It was fine on regular paper. But whatever!

And now I'm all played out. Later!

My Silhouette Cameo is here!

I'm so excited... and relieved! There was a HUGE accident on the way home from work tonight so when I got home at 6pm on the dot and found that UPS had delivered my package to the office instead of the doorstep as usual, I flew to the office and caught the girl before she left. They're usually gone at 6 on the dot, so I was so relieved. She let me in to get the box (it was enormous... no wonder they didn't want to leave it!) and I took it home and happily unpacked after a hurried dinner.

New Cameo

Turns out Amazon double boxed it. This is more what I was expecting! So fun to open a new tool... the only problem is that I can't get my previously purchased images to restore to the new Silhouette Studio so I had to email their customer support. We'll see how that works out. But I had a few new ones I got in anticipation of the delivery, so I still played, of course!

29 Days of Love Blog Header
Yesterday's prompt was "today I love something new" so of course, it's my new Cameo!

29 Days of Love - Days 19-20a
I had an original Silhouette before this. I still had the box in my garage so I brought it in to package it up to sell... it still had the receipt taped to it - crazy that when it first came out, it was $100 MORE than the Cameo is selling for now, and the Cameo is so much better... and that 12" cutting surface is awesome.

29 Days of Love - Days 19-20b

I didn't use my old Silhouette all that often, so I've been debating getting one of these since they were announced. But after reading countless message board posts raving about how much better it is, and seeing what people were doing with it and all the new designs, I decided I'd go for it.

And wow. It's amazing. A lot quieter and the new software makes it much easier to use, and let's admit it. The cleaned up craft attic gives me the room to use it (I have to put it on the floor when I want to use it to have room for the cutting mat to go through.) And it makes killer detailed cuts. As you can see, I didn't start small. lol. (did you check the detail on the white flower cluster on the little center page? So sweet.)

29 Days of Love - Day 20

I used a background design from Karla Dudley and shrunk it down for this page. Also experimenting with the Blackout font, but I need to play more with fonts.

And today's prompt was "I love something I listen to" which I did on the 17th, so I went back to a prompt from Alissa that I hadn't done yet - "I love my favorite color." Or in my case, colors. lol.

29 Days of Love - Day 21

If you look around my house, it's pretty obvious that I love turquoise and red... especially together! Even at Christmas, my tree and all my decorations are primarily done in those colors. So I used a few pictures from around my house that illustrate my love for these colors - especially turqoise and sapphire blue.

And now I have to put away my toys... I have early meetings for the rest of the week so I'm off!

Texting and Cooking

(Is that like drinking and driving? It seems like it could be a bit dangerous. For me, anyway.)

In any case, I wasn't actually doing any texting today, but that was Alissa's prompt for today's entry: I love who I text.

29 Days of Love Blog Header

As I mentioned in my journaling, I'm not a big phone or texting person, but when I read this I immediately thought of Melody because texting has become the easiest way for both of us to reach each other and it helped us keep in touch before they moved back here.

29 Days of Love - Day 2

Today was a pretty quick entry because I cut out the hearts with my Cricut yesterday. The rest of it came together around watching Downton Abbey. Because I'm now totally addicted... I wasn't going to get into it because I only just found out about it recently and am way behind, but than I checked and found out I can stream it for free on Amazon because of my Prime membership. Score! So I've watched the first two episodes and I'm hooked. It's fabulous. (Catching up on Once Upon a Time is pushed back yet again!)

Anyway... working in the Amy Tangerine daybook - I like having different papers and sizes every day. I used the Cricut shape and some scraps of Creative Imaginations paper, a Pink Paislee House of 3 ticket, stamps, AC rubon letters and old KI sticker letters and a felt heart from Making Memories.

In addition to my project and my TV watching, tonight was also a cooking night. I've been dying to try this recipe that I found on feastingathome.com. I had most of the stuff to make it and just bought some kale and ginger. (I saw a bumper sticker a week or so ago that said "eat more kale" and I have to agree with the sentiment. Interesting bumper sticker, though.)

Farro, Kale, Almond and Pomegranate Prep

Any recipe that starts with sauteeing garlic and ginger in olive oil and also includes allspice, cinnamon and cumin already has me drooling. The smell of all of that cooking is just delightful. Although while mincing 6 cloves of garlic, I did think about how maybe I should make some of Aarti's garlic ginger paste and keep it in the fridge. That would have been perfect to speed things up. Either way...

Farro, Kale, Almond and Pomegranate

I had regular raisins instead of golden so I just used those and it was perfectly fine. I could probably have used the currents I have on hand too. Maybe next time. I didn't have parsley so I skipped that, and when I first tasted it after it was almost ready, it felt like it needed a little more sweet so I added some maple syrup because it was handy (and delicious). This was really a wonderful dish - I'm excited for leftovers and the recipe definitely goes in the keep pile.

So glad tomorrow is Friday... it's been a busy week and I'm ready for the weekend! Mostly for sleeping, but I'm sure several episodes of Downton Abbey will also be involved. Just sayin'.

Beach Baby

After more than a week of having no energy to do anything more than come home from work and flop on the couch with a book, tonight I was actually in the mood to do something.  Yay!  I knew I needed time to recover from the end of school and everything I was doing to get ready for vacation so I just enjoyed all the relaxing.  I moved all my photos off my memory cards and onto my external drive and actually printed off a few to do a layout!  I know, it's been a while.  These are from our first full day in Santa Cruz on the beach.

Beach Baby
Most everything on here is from the American Crafts Heat Wave collection.  I also used some Dear Lizzy AC Silhouette designs, some older stickers, brads and alphabet stickers and added Stickles, staples and some Washi tape.  It was really fun to get back to scrapbooking and doing projects for myself... it's been a while!  And seriously - how cute is that crab? (The crab is inadvertently symbolic... Eraleigh had periods where she was SUPER crabby!  hee!)

Here's a little close-up:

Beach Baby Close-up
I have another project in mind for this weekend, plus I still want to finish my safari album and I really need to get back and finish Steph's wedding album!  But for now, I'm out of energy and headed to bed :)

Our little fashionista

It's been a busy day here!  Lots of running and playing with my mom and Rick.  We went to In-n-Out Burger for lunch and then came back to my house to eat.  Mom opened my birthday / Mother's Day presents after lunch and loved them :)  Apparently I managed to get the necklace just right... unique and fun but not too over the top.  Yay!

Of course, their plane was over an hour late so while I waited before going to the airport I decided to start a layout with some new pictures of Adorable-Niece-Eraleigh.  Apparently she's quite the little fashionista (already!) and not only loves to shop, but is opinionated about her clothes and has favorite outfits.  One of those favorites is this fun little sundress that she just adores.

Little Fashionista

I had some fun with this layout (not hard with such an adorable subject, right?)  Almost everything is American Crafts including one of the fun new Dear Lizzy Silhouette designs. The flower die is Sizzix and the embossing folder is Cuttlebug.

Okay... time to hit the sack.  We're off to Rexburg at 5am so it's going to be a super early morning and I'm the only one that's not jet-lagged!

Quick layout...

I wanted to do more this weekend, but just didn't get around to it.  I did get back to Steph's wedding album and did another page (more fun with my Cricut!). 

Steph Wedding pg 10

Some fun pictures that Steph's brother got of her niece.  I couldn't resist adding a little humor.  lol.

Now I'm going to take my raging headache off to find some dinner and some pain medicine.  Maybe I'll get more done tonight... I might just take it easy :)

Alaska Baby

I can't believe the weekend is almost over again!  It always flies by way too fast for me but the good part is that it means I'm that much closer to vacation time!  Just a few more weeks...

In the meantime, I haven't been feeling inspired to do any travel layouts but fortunately, I still have lots of cute pictures I haven't scrapped of Adorable-Niece-Eraleigh.  I thought these were too cute... from a few weeks ago when she was modeling her little coat with the faux fur trim that was just too perfect for our little Alaska baby.

There's a combination of flowers and snowflakes because she's wearing her little coat at the beginning of April... and because I really wanted to use the stamped flower images that I colored yesterday... lol.  I just love the little hand gesture in the big photo that seems to be saying, don't I look adorable in my fur hood?

The flower stamps are Papertrey Ink colored with Copics with a dash of Stickles for sparkle (that you can't really see.  oh well!).  The snowflakes are a QuicKutz Silhouette design and the page design is based on a sketch from Page Maps.

Just over 3 days to go!

Not that I'm counting down until Christmas or anything :D  Actually, I'm leaving to go home the day after tomorrow and that's just as good as Christmas to me.

Still doing my December Daily... here's the one for yesterday:

December Daily 20
Yes, Bowl Week (at least when BYU is playing) is definitely a part of my Christmas season!  Last night was a sad loss, but it was still a good game.  We'll get 'em next year.

I also finished off my gift tags yesterday - here's a quick look (still loving the Silhouette on just about everything!)

Blog - Christmas Tags 2
I got a good portion of my check-list taken care of yesterday... still some more cleaning and last minute laundry to do but I should be good to go by Tuesday morning.

And now, I think I hear hot chocolate calling my name :)

Daily #15 and some Scrappy News

Well, up bright and early this morning for a company meeting at work... I have to be down in Provo before 8:30 (and if you know what a night-owl I am, you know that's torture!!!). 

Yesterday's department holiday celebration was fun and, of course, that's the subject of yesterday's December daily.  I used quite a few pictures on this one so the page is pretty simple - mostly photos and journaling (and my co-workers look like aliens here with their faces blurred... lol... but since it's work, I thought I should protect the innocent ;)

December Daily 15  

And now, remember last week when I mentioned that I was working on something scrapbook related that I should be able to share this week?  Well, I can share!  I was asked to be a guest designer on the Prima Blog this month!  I did three layouts and a mini album that are all up over there if you're interested - here's the post.  It's kind of hard to see the mini album, so later this week I'll post bigger pictures so you can see the detail a bit more.  I'm a huge Prima addict (their flowers are like potato chips - I can't use just one!) so I was completely thrilled to be asked.

Finally, although I should have spent time tonight making gift tags for the packages I need to get in the mail in the next few days, I ended up doing a layout.  I was just browsing through photos and these caught my eye and I really felt like doing a layout with them.  Just a warning... if you're a dog lover and you don't want to get misty-eyed, don't read the journaling :) 

Puppy Love 

(I love how lumpy layouts look when they're scanned :-P)

My goal for tonight:  Christmas gift tags.  Must get started!

P.S.  I love my Avs, but I'm SHOCKED that they beat the Wings last night at the Joe.  Ecstatic! But still... shocked.

P.P.S.  I didn't make it to my meeting this morning.  The weather and traffic were terrible!  I think after lunch I'm taking my computer and going home until it all goes away.  Seriously.  Snow sucks.