Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Reveal and a Possible Theft

I love to take photos and scrapbook about the big events in life such as holidays, birthdays, weddings, etc. But, what I most enjoy doing is capturing everyday moments - because I believe those little moments are the ones that really define who we are and our relationships with each other. And when I am old and senile, it is much more important to me that I remember not what Christmas gift was given to whom but what event occurred that touched my heart. And those events are almost always associated with the smallest things - the things that really aren't so small after all!

I used my Birds of a Feather October Kit to create the layout of my youngest daughter, who was singing and be-bopping around the kitchen while helping me to put the groceries away. Of course, after I made a mad dash for the camera, she decided to become slightly self-conscious and STOPPED what she was doing. But when I look at this layout and these pictures, I am immediately transported back to that exact moment in time and the feeling that all was right with my world.

I love the rich fall colors included in this month's kit and the abundance of coordinated embellies Amy always includes. And the chipboard images (from the Crate Paper Farmhouse Collection) are PERFECT for layouts about those everyday moments that I prefer to record. See?

Speaking of everyday moments, I was compelled to do a layout about this little restaurant I had breakfast at every stinking day during my recent California trip.

I figured if the 800 - 2000 calorie breakfasts (yes, they had the nerve to print the calorie count in the if that would stop me from eating them)were good enough to make me go off my somewhat sensible diet and risk food coma before 10 a.m., then it was scrapworthy. So I did.

I used Sketch 173 from Creative Scrappers.

I dipped my empty bottle of Glossy Accents into a tiny puddle of Acrylic Paint to make the distressed circles on my layout. Yes, that Glossy Accents is even handy when it is completely empty! I have been seeing this technique used on layouts for quite awhile but just got up the nerve to try it. I like the way it turned out, so it is definitely a keeper for me.

Something that didn't turn so well, however, was my flower I tried to make with the wonderful zipper that was included in the kit. I watched a great tutorial a couple of times and it LOOKED easy enough. Sadly, though, what I ended up with was a sticky, warped piece of zipper that refused to stay together and that could not be called a flower by ANY stretch of the imagination. Even my cats didn't want to play with it, and they love ALL THINGS scrapbooky. Luckily, I had two halves of the zipper so I decided to take the safe route and use the other half as a border.

Now, ummmm....if you don't hear from me in the next few days you may need to come bail me out of jail. Please? Pretty Please??? But I figure if I do go to jail, at least I may make new law by establishing the Pinterest Defense. You see, one of the things I found on that holiest-of-holies SITE was a couple of links to make a pallet table, which I thought would look PERFECT on my back porch. See?

Totally cute, right? Well, the other day as I was driving through a neighorhood adjacent to mine that has lots of new houses under construction, what did I see but a HUGE stack of empty pallets just sitting in the front yard of one of the unfinished homes. It was like manna, or in this case pallets, from Heaven!!! So, being a good law-abiding citizen, I waited until dark and then completely innocently drove over there while coincidentally clothed completely in black and loaded three of them into the back of my SUV. And to make sure I wouldn't go to jail alone strain my back, I had the Hubster help me. No seriously, I am ALMOST certain the pallets were left stacked out front for trash least that is what I will tell myself every time I set a cold beverage down on my pallet table while relaxing in my back yard planning my next crime project.

Hope you have a crime-free Pinteresting day!

Monday, September 26, 2011

A Pinterest Do or Don't? You Answer...

After drinking a pot of coffee, I have decided that it really is Monday and I am not just having a bad dream. I had plans, big plans, of getting at least two or three layouts done this weekend. Guess how many I finished?! Can you guess? Drum roll, please....I finished zippity-doo-dah! That's right, I got done a big old goose egg's worth - nada - zilch - nothing - not one thing! And I am pouting a little about it, believe me.

In all fairness, I am working on a mini-album that is due for a reveal on Friday, and I have a few more projects that are - well - at least in the planning stage. Which is better than nothing, I suppose, right? Right?! (please feel free to lie to me here and tell me I'm right)

Okay, enough of my whining and on to the reason for this post. This weekend, I was on PINTEREST, which is pretty much the coolest idea of a site in the world. The ONLY thing that would make it cooler would be if I had thought of it and created it! Seriously. So, like I said, there I was on Pinterest, and I did a search for sketches because I was trying my darnedest to find some inspiration. There were a lot of great sketches posted, or "pinned" to use the correct Pinterest-ese. But, I recognized several sketches that I know were from sites which request that their work not be reposted without express permission (and other legal don't-even-think-about-doing-it jargon) by the sketch creator.

Now, for those of you who are not familiar with Pinterest, you can click on the link to the picture, and you are taken to the website on which it's located; however, you don't really have to do that to see the picture or "pin" of the sketch and, more often than not, no credit is listed in the pin description as to where the sketch originated. Of course, again, you CAN click on the link which will direct you to the original website.

So here's my question - quite simply, is that cool or not? Is it a bad thing or something no one will ever care about? What do you think? I would really like to know.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fabulous Finds Friday

Happy Friday everybody! Whew! We've made it through another week and have just a few more hours (here in Texas) until the weekend officially commences! I don't know about you, but my plans this weekend are pretty simple: to do a little bit of cleaning, a little bit of cooking and a whole lotta scrapping.

My first layout stars my brand new nephew that my wonderful brother and his wife recently gifted me with - well, not really GIFTED since they won't actually give me the baby (although I've asked, trust me)! This picture was taken by my brother just a few minutes after birth and sent to me. Needless to say, after seeing it,I quickly hopped on a plane and headed out to Cali-for-NI-a so that I could hold and coo over him (my nephew, not my brother)!

I used Creative Scrappers SKETCH 172 (that's right; I'm only two behind) and some delicious Pink Paislee papers that my BESTIE helped me find during a little shopping frenzy that she and I engaged in last month. it's my turn to reveal what I've been making using my wonderful scrappy products from the Let's Capture Our Memories STORE. Here is the layout, using Kaisercraft papers from the Class of '87 Collection (and once again starring my brand new nephew along with his super-sweet big sis)

Close-ups you say? You want to see close-ups? Well, okay, here you go:

(yes, I made those accordian flowers all by myself)
(got that particular banner idea from Pinterest)
(loving those little resin flowers)

For a list of products used and more details, head on over to the LCOM BLOG.

And now, to celebrate the beginning of Fall (and in a desperate attempt to justify all the hours I have been spending on Pinterest lately), I have included a few links to sites I found with some pretty nifty fall-related crafts and ideas that I think you will like, too!

You can learn how to make a pretty fall pillow HERE
You can get the recipe for pumpkin chocolate chip brownies HERE
You can make an orange cinnamon clove simmer to get your house smelling yummy HERE
You can learn how to carve a pumpkin using Cookie Cutters HERE
You can make layouts like these by Kathy Skou, including her SUH-WEET Halloween layout found HERE

Do you have any favorite Pinterest (or other links you would like to share featuring a fall craft or layout that is a favorite for you? Well then hook a sister up and leave a comment with the link!!!

That's it for me. Hope your Friday is Fabulous and Full of Fun Plans for the Weekend!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mid-Week Mojo

Okay, I am combining another two posts from yesterday and today because I am still playing catch-up from last week's last-minute vacay to California and then getting back home with my little souvenir of the WORST. SINUS. INFECTION. EVER. that laid me out flat until a couple of days ago. My house is still one giant sputum infestation and I sound like I've been smoking a couple of packs of unfiltered cigarettes a day for the past twenty years, but I feel human again. And by human, I mean I can scrapbook again. Because - let's face it - scrapbooking is the very raison d'etre of human existance, right? Right??? So, ummm...yeah.

Anywho, I figure the middle of the week is generally one big blur to everyone anyway, so who am I to shake things up and define each day. So - consider this my mid-week blur.

Yesterday was the Wednesday reveal over at Let's Scrap and we got to play with a card design again. I think those very nice Let's Scrap ladies are trying to give me subtle reminders that I really need to get cranking on my Christmas cards so I don't end up stressed out in a very UN-Christmaslike Spirit when I am making 50+ cards on December 23rd and wondering if I can take out a second mortgage on my home to pay for enough express postage to get them to friends and family in time. And so, being the responsible adult that I am, I made a card that is not Christmasy in the slightest. But at least I did use their design as instructed, so I am going to say that's a step in the right direction - ha! Here is the design:

And here is the link to their wonderful SITE so you can check out what our other fabulous DT ladies created as well as join in on other great challenges and the chance to win some pretty cool prizes for your stash!

Over at Birds of a Feather, it was my turn to blog with my first two reveals using the October Kit. Let me tell you, that kit was packed full of so many favorites for me, including Crate Paper's Farmhouse Collection papers and chipboard stickers, Jillibean Soup corrugated alphas (in luscious, yes I said luscious, bright red), Kaisercraft mini-folders, ribbon, and Maya Road wooden buttons. As soon as I opened up the kit, The Archies started singing in my head:

Yummy, Yummy, Yummy, I got love in my tummy
And I feel like a-lovin' you
Love, you're such a sweet thing
Good enough to eat thing
And that's just a-what I'm gonna do Ooh

Thankfully, I didn't actually eat my kit; but I'm pretty sure I did drool over it and laugh a little maniacally a couple of times as I was making my layouts. And here they are, drool stains and all:

First, I made this one of my older daughter, going with a kind of back-to-school theme since Fall IS about back-to-school (even in grad school.

I absolutely L.O.V.E.D. those corrugated alphas that I could sew through.

and all the cute chipboard stickers (cause I'm all about the 3D)

Next up was this layout, still using up pics from my trip to visit my brother and his family last Thanksgiving. I guess that's what happens when you come back with a couple hundred photos from a one week visit.

Oh, yeah, I had to had to HAD TO use those red alphas again!

I added a little Smooch Spritz to my wooden buttons and then wiped the buttons off before the Spritz completely dried to give them an older, worn look. And, of course, I misted and distressed and tore things to my sinus-infected little heart's content.

So there you have it. Stay tuned Friday when I return with more of my LCOM goodies and a few other fabulous finds that I just happened to stumble upon while lurking around the world wide web.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I'm Feeling a Little Sassy Today...

...and it's just in time for the Sassy Lil Sketches Week 3 reveal! I fell in love with this sketch when I saw it and had to work on it immediately:

Everything about this sketch is perfect - the clouds, the banner, the strips of paper below the pictures. And if you think my layout turned out pretty nicely, you should check out the layouts by the rest of the DT ladies HERE.

For those of you who may have been wondering where I have been hiding, the answer is - California! Hubby had a business trip in the L.A. area which just so happened to coincide with the birth of my brand new nephew so I tagged along. While he was in godawful boring geeky meetings all day, I spent my mornings leisurely enjoying coffee and breakfast here...

...a place that's like IHOP only better because, well, their food tastes fantastic! In fact, the only thing I didn't like about Coco's was the listing at the end of each menu item advising me exactly how many calories I was going to be stuffing into my body!

After I waddled out of Coco's each morning, I headed over to my brother and sister-in-law's home where I got to visit with my sweet niece and my BRAND NEW nephew (and my brother and sister-in-law, too). Isn't my newest family member adorable?

Can you see the sly gleam in my eyes that says, "I wonder if they will notice if I quietly put him in my purse and take him back on the plane with me?"

I kept trying to convince my sis-in-law to let me take my new sweet nephew back to Texas with me and simply "borrow him" for a year or two, but I guess she was feeling a little entitled due to all the heartburn and stretchmarks and silly stuff like that she had to put up with. She completely ignored my logic that if I kept him she wouldn't have to worry about getting up several times through the night or messy diapers or any of that - some people just can't be reasoned with, I guess. *smile*

She did promise to send me lots of pictures so I guess I will have to console myself with that (and lots of fun baby boy layouts).

So, tell me, what exciting things have been going on in your part of the world? Any scrappy news or links or blogs I should be catching up on?

Friday, September 9, 2011

It's Friday, Friday!

It's Friday, and I have been so busy scrapping this week that I haven't had time to blog! So, let's do a little recap of this past week, shall we?

Wednesday was reveal day over at Let's Scrap. Here is the sketch:

And here is what I came up with:

Do you ever have one of those pages that just won't come together no matter what you do? This was one of THOSE pages for me! It inspired me quite a bit - to cuss like a sailor (under my breath) that is. I didn't like any of my ideas, not even one, and kept putting this project to the side so that my thoughts could "simmer" a little bit. I was sure my brain would keep working on this and come up with a brilliant idea even when I was working on something else, but instead I think it was off drinking margaritas on a tropical island because I got NADA from the inspiration department (except a few new phrases that I am pretty sure are anatomically impossible). So, finally, desperation kicked in and I finished my layout with maybe 30 minutes to spare before the deadline! Do I like it? Yes. Is it my best work? No. But it's done and the (mental) constipation is gone, so I feel much better, thank you!

Next, I headed over to Paper Secrets, a site I discovered back in May that has great challenges posted each month. Somehow, it gotted dropped from my favorites bar so I have missed it since the first part of July it looks like. September includes a sketch challenge, and the sketch, which is by Page Maps, takes a more minimalist approach, something I have been loving more and more lately.

Yep, I am going to make you go to the challenge to see the sketch, but here is my take:

I felt completely and totally vindicated for not cleaning all the little bits of paper and odds and ends of my scrap table when I made this layout, because almost every single thing on it came from that pile. Okay, the twine, the button, the mist and the background paper weren't laying around on my table, but everything else was. I just randomly slapped stuff down on my layout and it was done almost before I started it - a first for me! And I LOVE the result - love it!

Last, but not least, is this fun layout I created for Let's Capture Our Memories. Normally, I can take or leave KaiserCraft's papers. But when I saw the Class of '87 Collection, I HAD TO HAVE IT! Maybe because I remember being in school in the 80's or maybe it was all the bright, totally fun graphics on the pages. Either way, I couldn't resist them and made this layout with pics taken of my youngest daughter right after her re-enactment of the no-lockers-tragedy.

You can see that she is cracking up so obviously the lack of lockers has not permanently scarred her! For close-ups, head on over to the LCOM BLOG, and if you remember the 80's and want your own set of school-themed papers from that collection head on over to the LCOM STORE!

Whew! And, that wraps up the week in review! Hope you have a great weekend!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Challenge Yourself!

Yesterday, I enjoyed stretching my creative skills at two of my favorite websites. First, I created my Sunshine layout over at Let's Scrap . Challenge 111 is a Recipe Challenge in which I had to use an 8x10 photo, a sketch from Let's Scrap, ribbon or twine and at least five pieces of paper cut into one or more shapes. I have been wanting to use a large photo on a layout for quite awhile, so I was very excited to play along! And, I was actually quite challenged to balance the large photo with papers and embellishments - much more so than I thought I would be!

This is my second layout, which I created for the color challenge going on this month at Birds of a Feather.

Now I used papers from my September Kit, but you really don't have to. This month's color challenge only requires you to use the colors orange, blue, yellow and white in whatever way you want!

I'm a big believer in scrapbooking the everyday moments - and that includes the good moments as well as the bad. My youngest daughter was heartbroken to find out they wouldn't be using the lockers at her junior high this year so when we were walking by them during her orientation a couple of days later, I KNEW I had to take a picture of her standing in front of the source of her misery!

So, what are you doing to challenge yourself this month? Any recommendations on places to play and scrapbooking to do this month?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

More September Birds of a Feather Layouts

My September Birds of a Feather Kit was packed full of scrap-happy loveliness, including papers from Echo Park's Victoria Gardens collection which I love, love, love! All the brightly colored papers in the collection make my heart happy, especially after I am able to add a little distressing (my favorite thing to do).

This month's kit also contained a mini-mister. At first, I wasn't quite sure what to do with it. I mean, I already have my regular bottles of Glimmer Mist, and it isn't as if they are so large and bulky that I need to use a smaller bottle. However, when I decided I wanted something white to spray on my background paper and realized I had no white glimmer mist, the answer became readily apparent! I filled the mini-mister up about halfway with white acrylic paint and filled the other half with regular tap water. And voila! I had a little water gun which sprayed white paint all over my background paper - it was EXACTLY what I needed!

I used SKETCH 54 found over at Sketchabilities to create my layout. In looking at my recent work, I realized that I haven't used circles in quite awhile so this sketch, which is full of circles, was perfect for me!

And, of course, I love the contrast provided by pairing distressed papers with lovely little items such as feathered flowers, jeweled stick pins and a little bling.

My second layout for my BOAF reveal is called Not Gonna Smile. I think the title is pretty obvious once you see the pictures:

These photos of my niece were all outtakes that weren't initially going to be used. But when I looked at them, I couldn't help but laughing. She can be such a stubborn little thing (a trait that runs quite strongly in my family), and she didn't care how perfect the lighting was or how pretty the scenery was - she was NOT in the mood to pose for pictures!

I really liked the kraft envelopes with journaling tags that were part of this month's kit, especially after I decided to use them to mat each of the smaller photographs. And with three journaling tags, I had even more room to tell my story!

Speaking of telling my story, Birds of a Feather has the September Challenges posted. Challenges this month include a journaling challenge so you can tell your story, too. They also include a photography challenge, a use your stash challenge, a sketch challenge and a color challenge - pretty much something for everyone. So what are you waiting for??? Go sign up and start challenging YOURSELF!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Let's Scrap August 31st Sketch

I am a couple of days behind on my sketch reveal for this week's wonderful sketch over at Let's Scrap, but to make up for it I have a story behind the layout to share with you. First, though, here's the sketch:

The papers used for my "Formal Dinner" layout come from one of the very first paper packs I ever purchased when I began scrapbooking back in 2009. BUT - I didn't get those nifty papers for myself - oh no. Don't ask me why, but I had this crazy (although perfectly logical-sounding in my head at the time) idea that my 100% red-blooded Texas husband would want to create a scrapbook, too, for all the exciting pictures I was sure he was going to want to take and souvenirs he was going to collect while working in Africa. Ummmm,, that was never going to happen. And so, those papers got shoved into an organizer and completely forgotten about until I was trying to find some appropriately-themed travel papers for this layout. I pulled the pack back out, over two years later, with the tape still sealed around the edges!

As for the pictures in the layout - they are of my oldest daughter and her boyfriend taken last fall on a family cruise. It was formal dinner night, and I wanted to get nice pictures of everyone around the table since we were all dressed up. K and J had different ideas, however, and their mugging for the camera progressed from silly to sillier to silliest in each successive picture - thinking, I suppose, that they were somehow preventing me from getting good pictures. Well, look who made the layout using those pictures anyway. And guess who will be getting the last laugh when I post my layout on Facebook??? (insert evil laugh here)

So.....back to Let's Scrap. It's a new month and a new challenge. This month, Julie Bonner has provided a fantastic sketch for the September contest, and there is not one, but two, prizes to be given away! The first person will receive the Teresa Collins Haunted Hallows Collection, and the second winner will receive the Teresa Collins Christmas Home Collection. For more details, simply click HERE.