Wednesday, December 30, 2009

No Empty Chairs -- Decorative Plate

Hello, all!  I hope you're all starting to recover from the hustle, bustle, and fun of the holiday season, and that you had a wonderful and special time with your families.  We were busy, busy, but we had a wonderful time together.  And now I finally have a few minutes to start posting a few of my projects!  This first one is a decorative plate I made for my wonderful mom for her birthday.  The idea of "no empty chairs" came from a talk from Elder Henry B. Eyring, one of the leaders of our church, and it means that we want to have all our family together in Heaven.  My mom loved it so much she asked to have it engraved on her headstone, but I didn't think she should wait so long to enjoy it... :)  I bought the brown charger from a local home decor store, then I designed the vintage chair and flourishes and used SCAL to cut them out of gold and cream vinyl with my Cricut. 

Fancy Vinyl Chalkboard Giveaway

One of my favorite blogs on my "following" list is Tea Rose Home -- this lady has the most amazingly creative mind.  Right now one of her sponsors is hosting a giveaway of a really pretty vinyl chalkboard shape, so go check it out!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Thanks for all the little things!

This card just makes me happy every time I look at it.  It's one of those creations where I'm so glad I took a picture so I can enjoy it even though it's already at its new home with my wonderful friend who really does do so many little things for me. 

This new Paisley Cricut cartridge may just be my favorite yet.  I admit that I bought it pretty much just for these dolls -- aren't they too yummy?!  This is the kind of cartridge that coordinated stacks are for, though -- lots of layers, but easy if the colors are precoordinated.  I just loaded 4 different colors from the DCWV Citrus stack on my cutting mat, then cut all the layers at the same time.  The pp is from that stack as well.  The "thanks" is a Cuttlebug cut, and the little tag it's on is half a background shape from the Storybook cartridge.  TFL!

Friday, December 11, 2009

God Jul!

I wanted to create a special card for some dear friends in Denmark, and I thought I'd go again with the idea of a card with a removable ornament on the front.  I love the idea that even after they're finished enjoying the card, they have keepsake they can enjoy year after year.  The ornament here is called a julehjerte, which means Christmas heart in Danish.  It's about the most traditional ornament in Denmark and is supposed to have been invented by H. C. Andersen himself.  The tag says "God Jul," which means Merry Christmas!  I added a second chipboard frame to draw more attention to the tag with the sentiment.  The paper and chipboard are from Daisy D's and have been biding their time in my stash for a few years now.  I used this great sketch from 2 Sketches 4 You for the layout.  TFL!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

And the winner is....

Beth!  Last's the best of all the game this time, because picked #39 of 39 comments as the winner!

Blogger Beth said...
Beautiful snowflakes! I think I like the sweet snowflake the best but it's really difficult to pick a fave!
Beth, if you'll contact me with your email address, I'll send you a catalog so you can pick your five ornaments!

Several of you mentioned that you didn't see your favorites listed in my etsy shop anymore, but never fear -- all designs are available because I am always making more.  If you'd like to see a catalog, just contact me via email or via my etsy shop and I'll send you a pdf catalog (just make sure you leave your email address).

Thanks for playing along, everyone!  Happy Thanksgiving and a very Merry Christmas!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Deck the Halls -- 2S4Y

I've been trying to think of a way to incorporate one of the snowflake ornaments I sell in my etsy shop into a card, and Laura's sketch this week at 2 Sketches 4 You was PERFECT! I think this will be a really nice way to give one of my friends an ornament -- the ribbon at the top just loops through two holes I punched in the card, so it can easily be detached and hung on the tree.

I used my Cuttlebug for the embossing and then lightly sanded it (love the DCWV cardstock for that!), and the border punch and rub-on are both from SU. TFL!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Give Thanks Unto the Lord! (BBTB Contest)

I know I'm just sliding under the wire, but I couldn't resist entering the BBTB contest when I saw the theme was giving thanks. I have taken a challenge this month to blog every day about something I'm thankful for (you can see my entries on our family blog), and I am really feeling so grateful for all the big and little blessings in my life! I thought immediately of our new family pictures and that this scripture said perfectly how blessed I feel to have my wonderful family: "O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy endureth forever." (Psalms 136:1)

I used the Storybook Cricut cartridge for all the die-cuts. The felt pieces are from Fancy Pants, and the buttons are from Sassafrass Lass (review on these beauties coming soon!). I also used a Bazzill "In Stitch'z" template for the hand-stitched flourishes. The paper is from Scrapworks. I hope you'll excuse the bad pictures of the layout -- there was not a lot of natural light at 10:30 pm. :) TFL!

Friday, October 30, 2009

"Owl" Surely Miss You!

This card is for a dear friend of mine who is moving way, way too far away. Sniff! I used this week's sketch from 2 Sketches 4 You -- this is a great one! I used Scenic Route paper (another sniff! - I hear they're going out of business) and the cute little owly is from Sassafrass Lass. I used my Heidi Swapp edger to add that worn edge -- that is seriously the best cheap tool out there!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Let It Snow -- Handmade Ornament Giveaway! **GIVEAWAY CLOSED**


I'm so excited to announce that my snowflake ornaments are finally ready and listed in my etsy shop! They are already selling like hotcakes, and I'm so excited to be able to share these everyone. I'd like to announce that I will be giving away a set of 5 snowflakes to one lucky commenter! I'll choose someone at random on November 21st, so you have until then to enter. In fact, I'll even give you a few chances to win (in the style of my favorite giveaway site,

For one chance, leave a comment with your name.

For a second chance, visit my etsy shop, look through the listings, and tell me which one is your favorite. (Like this: Your name -- description of snowflake)

For a third chance, post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, or wherever you connect with the world. (Like this: Your name -- where you posted)

Good luck to all, and thanks for visiting my blog and shop! It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

The Gypsy 24-hour Design Challenge Project by Lori McClellan

If you get a minute today, I would love it if you could go to this link and help my friend win the 24-hour Gypsy Challenge. She received the instructions yesterday and had 24 hours to create this her project and get it posted for the contest. I just love seeing all her ideas for great stuff like this wonderful magnetic calendar. So, please go and vote for her here:

The Gypsy 24-hour Design Challenge Project by Lori McClellan

If you would like to see more of her great craftiness and more pictures of her fabulous project, visit her blog HERE.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Twirly Skirts!

I have never been a seamstress, but something about having a little girl and seeing cute fabrics and patterns makes me go a little crazy! When we made a spur-of-the-moment plan to go to Disneyland for our family trip instead of to Lake Powell, I thought, "Sure I have a thousand things to do to get ready, but surely the top of my priority list should be making matching twirly skirts for Eliza, Amelia and Taya to wear to Disneyland!" Amelia and Taya are my adorable nieces, and Amelia was here all the way from England for our fun family trip! She and Eliza are just 9 days apart. I used the same Pink Fig pattern as I used for Eliza's birthday skirt, and my workmanship definitely improved with this go-round! Sadly, my kids and I all got swine flu the weekend we were supposed to leave, so we didn't get to go to Disneyland after all, but yesterday we got the girlies all dressed up in their skirts so we could at least get some pictures! Nana had bought them the cute little Minnie Mouse ears at Disneyland. I was very gratified that Taya is totally in love with her skirt -- she insisted she wear it both days they went to Disneyland, and she described to me in great detail how pretty it is when she twirls in it!.

Eliza's skirt is still quite big on her -- I think next Halloween she might just have to be Minnie Mouse!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Some digi-scrapping love!

Sometimes I'm not in the mood to do anything but sit in front of the computer and push a few pixels, and that means only one thing: digi-scrapping! I love having this scrapping option available, even though it will never replace "real" scrapping for me. I love how it opens up new possibilities for style, as in this layout here:

Love this pic! I took it last year as a cover for the photo books I was making all the grandparents for Christmas. I tell ya, that 3 yards of black velvet was the best photo investment I ever made -- I just laid it out on the guest room bed (in front of the big window with the best light in the house) and got the kids to snuggle up together.

But it took a LOT of pictures to get a winner, and I couldn't let all those funny pictures go to waste, so I made another layout to go with the first. I created the elements in this layout myself, and the font is Scriptina.

This layout is another one for the extended-family scrapbook, so I'll be making copies for my mom and the parents of the nieces and nephews in the pic. It's such a great way to include my non-scrapping family in the memory-keeping process! This layout and the next use the free kit from Shabby Princess called "Happy Go Lucky."

This last layout is for a new album I'm starting with pictures from my childhood and older family photos. I'm doing these in 8.5x11 size so I can easily print them and put them in a book with all the papers I've saved from those early years.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Cards, cards, cards...

I've been working on lots of cards lately but haven't had much time for the blog. Now, though, I'm stuck at home with the swine flu, so I thought I'd post them in one card-tastic go!

First, I created these cards from Kazan's really unique sketch over at 2 Sketches 4 You. This one really made me think! And once I had all the pieces created, I realized that this one works exceptionally well upside down, too, so I did one of the cards that way. How many of you are like me, and you create two cards at a time? I really like to do that -- it doesn't take a lot of extra time, but it really helps build my card stash.

I also tackled this adorable bonus sketch from 2S4Y Design Team member Cheryl. You should really check out her blog -- not only are her creations beautiful, but she is a really beautiful person. I LOVE how this card turned out. I just recently bought the Lyrical Letters cartridge for my Cricut, and it is an incredible tool for cardmaking -- so many great sentiments, on top of 7 fun, versatile fonts. Can't believe I avoided it for so long!

Materials for all above cards: PP -- Scenic Route, Cardstock -- DCWV, Crate Paper, Die Cuts -- Cricut "Lyrical Letters" cartridge, branch from Sizzix SU die

Before that, my most recent project was a thank you card and package of yummy pumpkin chocolate chip mini-muffins for a dear friend who is always helping me out in a pinch.

My favorite thing about this card is the buttons -- I recently discovered buttons from Sassafrass Lass, which come prestitched in yummy colors with adhesive already attached to the back. PERFECT! Those will be the subject of my next product review, so stay tuned! I also misted the big flower with Glimmer Mist, which I love.

Materials: PP -- Crate Paper, Flowers -- Heidi Swapp (large red), Fancy Pants, Buttons -- Sassafrass Lass, Die Cut -- Storybook Cricut cartridge, Stamps: Stampin Up

Lastly, I have a few of the projects I worked on at our Cricut SWARM in September. We had such an awesome time, and I actually got a ton accomplished -- yippee!

These thank you cards were for the ladies who hooked us up with an awesome venue for the SWARM:

Materials: PP -- "Lullaby of Birdland" collection from Scribble Scrabble, Snap -- We R Memory Keepers, Die Cuts -- Plantin Schoolbook and Lyrical Letters cartridges

Materials: PP, Stamps -- Sassafrass Lass, Die Cuts -- Mini-Monograms cartridge

Thanks for checking out my projects, especially if you made it all the way to the end -- I hope you enjoyed them!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Freeze Frame - Product Review

I'm happy to introduce a new feature of my blog -- the product review! I think we can all agree that fellow-scrapper-enabling is what keeps the scrapbooking industry afloat. I mean, before I got sucked (happily) into the online scrapbooking community, all my supplies fit into one plastic bin. But now, as I hop through tons of forums and blogs, I am constantly finding new goodies that I just can't live without (or discovering older supplies that are too good to let go). As a result, I have a messy, overstuffed room full of fun things just begging to be shared with the world.

The first product I'd like to review is the Freeze Frame. I was introduced to it at the Scrapbook Expo last month, and I almost didn't buy it because I really had shot my budget all to heck, but it was such a great idea I knew I'd be kicking myself if I didn't take it home with me. Here's a video of how I used it for my first project, and I'll sum up with some conclusions below:

-You really can glue each layer in one pass instead of trying to pick up and replace each element and get everything just the way you want it, definitely speeding up the process.
-It also helped me not lose little things like the dot for my exclamation point, which is always aggravating.

-The adhesive mesh was very strong, and did not want to let go of the super-delicate elements on my page.
-It's a very large item, about 18" square, so you need to clear a good chunk of scrapbooking real estate to use it. I got everything mostly in place before I got it out, then carefully moved my layout into the frame, and that worked just fine.
-You do need to replace the mesh after a few months (depending on how much you use it, what kind of embellishments you use, etc.)

Conclusion: For me,the fun part of scrapbooking is creating the elements and arranging everything just so. Getting all the little bits and pieces adhered down can be a pain, and the Freeze Frame made that part a snap. Definitely recommended if you have a big enough desk -- I think I'll get a ton of use out of it.

Rating: 3 out of 4 stars
Price: MSRP $29.99 (I got mine for about $20 at the Scrapbook Expo, and I noticed several online shops had prices in the low-mid $20 range.) Replacement mesh is about $6

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Another way to win a Gypsy!

Wow, the Cricut world is all a-buzz with news of the new Cricut Gypsy. I just found this great site called Cricut Cartridges Helper, and they're also giving away a free Gypsy! Just visit the site to find out how to win a Cricut Gypsy, then look around and see all the great advice and help they have for Cricut users!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Eliza birthday party goodies!

Alright, it's been a couple of weeks now since our sweet little Eliza turned one, but I was holding off posting these projects until I could get her little birthday album finished. I can't believe my baby girl is one already! She is such a little dolly. I really had fun decorating and getting ready for her birthday -- it's just delightful having a girl to papercraft for!

I decided to go with a garden theme for the party, and I found this ultra-adorable "Girl Friday" collection from Cosmo Cricket. I used it to make this invitation for her party:

I even used my Cricut to cut out the little "e" applique for the onesie she's wearing! It was really easy -- if you haven't tried it yet, do a YouTube search for Cricut fabric and there are several good tutorials.

Then I went to town on some fun decorations. I made this banner using the Celebrations, Alphalicious, Home Decor, and Walk in My Garden Cricut cartridges, as well as a cute felt flower from Fancy Pants:

And these very fancy-looking but very quick-and-cheap-and-easy (my favorite combination!) tissue paper flowers using a tutorial from good ol' Martha Stewart:

I loved the banner and flower-poofs so much that they are now hanging in Eliza's room, and I think I may re-do the whole thing based on them! Yes, I know I'm hopeless...

My awesome cake decorator sister Amy came over and helped me make gum paste flowers to top the cupcakes for this cupcake tower. The pics do not do this one justice -- they were so stinkin' adorable.

I started this little album before the party and had everyone who came write a little note to Eliza. Afterwards I put in some pages with the pictures from the party and some with the portraits I took for her birthday. I got the little green album from Target for $1! I used that same Cosmo Cricket paper, and I used my SU scallop edge punch to add a scalloped border to each of the pages. This started out being more functional that decorative, because the pages were 6 1/2" wide and I was being economical with my paper, but I love the effect.

Phew! Thanks for hanging in there through all these pictures! I had a ton of fun with all these projects. So fun to spoil my baby girl!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cricut celebrates its 100th cartridge!

For all my Cricut buddies out there, make sure you get in on the celebration on the MB over at! They just released Winter Woodland, which is their 100th cartridge, and to celebrate they are giving away 100 cartridges. Check out this link for all the info -- you get two chances to win!

Good luck, y'all!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A sweet little birthday card...

Sorry I've been so slow on posting -- I've been spending the last couple of weeks getting ready for baby Eliza's first birthday! (Not to mention Sammy starting kindergarten, Dan turning 30, plus all the other things life throws at us...) I haven't gotten the pictures of all the stuff I did Eliza's party ready for posting yet, so I thought I'd post this little birthday card in the mean time. My sweet little niece Amelia also turned one a couple of weeks ago. She lives all the way in England (sadness!), but I actually had it together enough to send her a card and present in time fore her birthday (gasp!). For someone who loves to make cards, I am really awful about getting them off in time. And there's my confession of the day.

I used an Autumn Leaves pp and ribbon set for this card, and my Cuttlebug for the embossing. Cricut cuts: I cut the number with Alphalicious and the tag with TBBM, then the little ladybug with Walk in My Garden. First time I've used that cart in a long time, but I think now that I have so much little girl stuff to do I'll be digging it out more often. The flowers on the ladybug are a punch. The pin is from Fancy Pants. This card is a great example about how sometimes you just have to go with the flow -- I originally started out with a great sketch from 2 Sketches 4 You, but this darn card would not behave itself, and the finished product bears no resemblance to the original sketch. TFL!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Blog Candy winner!

A big thanks to everyone who entered the drawing for my blog candy! I just used a random number picker to choose a winner, and it was poster #37 -- CJ! Thanks to everyone who made my blogiversary so much fun. I hope you'll all tune in to see more fun projects in the future. Thanks!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

From blah to beautiful -- my entryway, before and after!

This summer I decided it was time to do something about my incredibly boring entry space. It was the same bland, boring, builder-white space we'd had since moving in 5 years ago, and I wanted something with some personality! However, I was on a very tight budget. So in May I started by looking for some furniture pieces that I could alter to fit the vision I had in mind, and bit by bit the design evolved into something I really love. Here's how we started out:

And here's the finished product!

I believe the color is called Midnight Drive from Kilz (yay, Walmart). I drew the branches onto the wall before we started painting, then painted around them (I don't recommend this strategy, by the way -- it was very tedious, but we didn't have any of the original paint color left for me to paint them on afterward). I painted the unfinished cupboards black, distressed them a little, and covered the magnet-board insets with this gorgeous paper from Crate Paper. I created magnets with my Cuttlebug and various dies so I could post a bunch of favorite family pics -- I love this, because they're so easy to change out whenever I'm in the mood for something new.

I used my Cricut (and my friend Carla's Expression) to cut the quote on the wall with vinyl (most of the text is from Jasmine, and the flourish and "home" are from Home Decor). I also created the vinyl phrase "grow" for the plain green plastic vase with the Home Decor cartridge and Design studio. My big experiment was cutting the butterfly applique with my Cricut -- the fabric is quite heavy and I found out later I wasn't using the recommended stabilizer, but it still cut fairly well and I was able to easily trim the parts that didn't cut all the way through. It was my first time attempting something so complicated (the quilt-square style of the front of the pillow with the inset applique, etc.), and I definitely have a lot of learning to do. The inset was SO crooked; it really looked awful. So with some of the scraps I sewed these fabric yo-yos to fix the worst of it. Ah, well, you gotta start somewhere! I learned to make the fabric yo-yos from the amazing Heather Bailey's blog. I also sewed the green pillow, but that was pretty straight forward.

I used more scraps from the pillows to create the big fabric flowers on the left-hand cabinet, and hot-glued them to leftover stems from some of the silk flowers I had used in the green vase. You can find a great tutorial on the big ranunculus here. The birdhouse on that cabinet was unfinished wood that I bought on clearance years ago and have just been waiting for the right time to finish it. I gave it a crackle finish and a little paper trim and fabric flower.

All the other accessories were really just gathered in from the far corners of my house. Those awesome wellies were a gift from my fab sister-in-law -- I never know how to wear them in real life because I'm such a chicken when it comes to fashion, but don't they look great here? The explosion box album on the right-hand cabinet is one I made as a make-and-take at the scrapbook expo a couple of years ago -- that was actually what inspired me to track down more of that paper to use for the rest of the projects because it fit the feel I wanted so perfectly. The wire chicken I bought at a garage sale for 25 cents.

I don't know if I would call this project completely finished -- I'm sure as I go along I'll find new lovely things to put in. I also love it because I can easily change the paper on the cabinet doors, whip up some new cushion covers, and I'll have a whole new room! So much fun.

I'd like to thank my hubby for his indulgence on this project, because I'm pretty sure this is not the style he'd choose if left to his own devices... Thanks for being so supportive, baby!