Monday, December 31, 2012

My first Memorable Seasons reveal: LYB Winterings!

I had a blast working with Little Yellow Bicycle's Winterings collection. I love that the papers are full of browns, tans, creams and grays in addition to the typical blues and white you find in a winter line. It's also awesome that the winter-themed papers have neutral patterns on the B-sides. The stickers have all sorts of fun detail on them - embossing, metallic flocking and tiny buttons! The chipboard embellishments are so much fun too. And the vellum strips and sentiments? LOVE them!

Here's the link to the entire collection in the Memorable Seasons store!

Here is the kit I received (first photo) as well as the backsides of the paper (shown in the second photo)...
And here's the list of exactly what's in my kit and links to it all in the Memorable Seasons store...
And of course I had to order some extras (first photo) and the backsides of those papers (second photo)...
And here's the list of extras I got with links to it all in the store...
And here are my creations working with this amazing collection! In honor of this month's sketchathon, the four projects below are all based on sketches by Becky Fleck of Page Maps. But don't you worry! These aren't my sketch-a-thon challenge sketches - I would never reveal those early. Consider these a sort of bonus that you can put away in your sketch collection for a rainy day!

 (Supplies: Little Yellow Bicycle Winterings papers, chipboard, vellum sentiments and journaling spot; Bazzill cardstock; Jillibean Soup tiny numbers; unknown ribbon; DMC floss; Sakura pen.)

 (Supplies: Little Yellow Bicycle Winterings papers, chipboard, sentiment stickers; accent stickers and vellum strip; Bazzill cardstock; Jillibean Soup tiny alphas; Studio Calico Mr. Huey's mist; StazOn and Close To My Heart ink; Ranger Inkseentials enamel accents; Creative Cafe journaling spot stamp; Sakura pen.)

  (Supplies: Little Yellow Bicycle Winterings papers, stickers and vellum strip; Bazzill cardstock.)

  (Supplies: Little Yellow Bicycle Winterings papers and sentiment sticker; sliver tinsel twine; Jillibean Soup tiny alphas; Kaiser Craft rhinestones.)

And be sure to visit the Memorable Seasons forum to check out what the rest of the Design Team did with their kits! We are not only showcasing Little Yellow Bicycle's Winterings Collection but Crate Paper On Trend, Basic Grey Lucille and a mix-up of various winter-themed products from the Memorable Seasons store. Oh, and we have our Sketch-a-thon going on all month long!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Top 10 Layouts of 2012

So, it's that time of year again. A time to reflect and when it comes to the scrapbooking part of my life, it's the time to look back at all my creations from this year and feel proud of the memories I've preserved for years to come. It was very hard for me to narrow down this year's layouts to a handful a favorites, and most of that difficulty I attribute to many of my layouts being of Liam - and of course I love all of those. But, after much deliberation, here is my final list...

Apple Of My Eye. I love the dark background with the layers of bright colored paper, the stitched circle and the fussy-cut apples surrounded by the colored pearls. If memory serves me right, this one was based on a Creative Scrappers sketch.

Baby Shower Joy. This design is one I have used several times when I've wanted to include lots of photos on a layout. So I pulled it out again for this layout documenting my baby shower. I wanted to have a Winter/Christmas look since it was a December shower but didn't want it to be too themey because it was a shower. This old Pink Paislee Christmas line of papers was perfect because it picked up the colors in the invitation and the patterns weren't overly Christmas or Winter-based. I love how the lollipop flowers turned out too!

Fall At The Farm. This layout is based on a sketch from Scrapbook Generation. I also used a very old Treasured Scrapbooking kit I found in my stash. I love that the 7 Gypsies, Pink Paislee and Bo Bunny papers are fall-colored but not really fall-themed. This allowed me to use some fall accents without making it all too over the top. I added some super old embellishments from my stash as well. I love using up old supplies!

February Snapshots. What I love most about this layout is the colors. I am a big fan of turquoise and cherry red together. And I really love it combined with the chocolate brown and kraft on this layout. I also love the clean grid design and the title treatment here. This is one of the twelve monthly layouts I am doing for Liam's first year album. I wanted to have a system for including all the fun miscellaneous photos I have and this was the solution. This design is based off of an Inspired To Scrap sketch.

Home Is Wherever I'm With You. This layout is based on a scraplift from the fabulous and uber-talented Colette Bate. The color palette is based on one found at Design Seeds. I am totally in love with this layout. First, this is a five-year-old photo of Andrew and I that I never got around to scrapping before. The title is lyrics from the song "Home" by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. I saw Kinsey Wilson use it once on one of her Studio Calico layouts and being a big Edward Sharpe fan, knew I had to use it on a layout as well. I actually have never used bubble wrap and paint to stamp on a layout but love the look achieved with the technique. I again used a super old Treasured Scrapbooking kit from my stash for this layout and also pulled in some oldies from my stash like the Hambly transparency and My Little Shoebox house accent. And the chevrons are actually old chipboard photo corners that I painted and Stickled!

It's A Good Day. This has to be my favorite Liam layout to date. These photos are of the first time Andrew got to hold Liam. This was truly a special moment as we were not able to hold Liam until a week after his birth; we had to wait for his head ultrasound to be completed first. I love all the texture on this layout - the burlap-looking Core'dinations cardstock, the swiss dot embossed rimmed hearts, the stitching and the twine. Also, Note To Self is by far my favorite Echo Park release from this past year and one of the few new collections I purchased. This layout is based on a sketch from Feeling Scrappy.

Liam David. Of course I wanted to treat Liam's birth announcement layout extra special. I found this old scrap of Dream Street paper with the cute reindeer on it and thought it matched the little reindeer on the announcement perfectly. That is where the layout started. I then decided to use the light blue, red and pink colors in that paper to pick out the rest of the papers and all the embellishments. I totally love how it turned out!!

No One Else. I was super lucky this year in winning scrapbooking supplies - winning a total of five different collections and a few gift certificates. And Fancy Pants Childish Things was one of those collections I won. I used it to first create this super special layout of Liam and I. This was the first time I got to hold Liam. As I stated in the layout where Andrew is holding Liam for the first time, this was a truly special layout since we had to wait a week to hold him. I love the vellum pocket filled with confetti, the button heart and the super long title that doubles as the journaling. I got the quote off of Shimelle's website and also used a Becky Fleck sketch for this one.

Our Valentine. This layout was hands-down my favorite I made for Alexis' first year album. I loved this old Pink Paislee valentine line and just had some scraps of it left. So that's how the banners came to be. I really wanted to make the banners fun and dimensional since they were pretty much the only detail on the page. I also love how the misting turned out on this one. Thanks to Creative Scrappers for the awesome sketch that inspired this layout!

Soaring. I don't scrap super large photos often, but this is one of the few I have done. I am first really proud of these particular photos. I am happy that I was able to completely focus this layout on the main focal photo but then also include the smaller detail photos - I actually added the small photos to the large one in Photoshop and then printed it all as one photo. I used an old Dixie Pieces kit for this layout and the papers and colors were just perfect for these photos. I have to admit I hyperventilated a bit cutting into the Hambly transparency but am so glad I used it! I used another Inspired To Scrap sketch for this one.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Sneak peek of my first Memorable Seasons DT Kit!

January is just around the corner! Can you believe it? 

But, even though 2012 is almost finished I am so looking forward to 2013 - especially in scrapbooking because I am so excited to officially start my design team term with Memorable Seasons on January 1st!

And that term starts with not only the Sketch-a-thon happening all month long but also with my fabulous January DT Kit. As you can see from these sneaks, I've been walking in a winter wonderland! Can you guess what manufacturer and collection I've been working with?
 Be sure to check back here on New Year's Day for the answer and my full reveal!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

How Do You Do That? Focus on Double-Page Sketches

Hello all! So today is the day! I am super excited to say that Wendy, the DT coordinator over at Memorable Seasons, asked me to contribute a tutorial on creating double-page layouts using sketches. I was so honored that she asked me to do this and had a ton of fun not only making the two spreads below but also sharing some insight on my creative process when tackling the sometimes daunting two-page layout. I would love for you to come over to the Project Life Forum at Memorable Seasons to check out my tutorial! 
(Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Webster's Pages papers; Making Memories, Fancy Pants and unknown transparencies; Bella Blvd, K and Co, Webster's Pages alpha stickers; unknown ribbon; Pink Paislee fabric; Basic Grey chipboard tags; unknown straight pins; Basic Grey and American Tag Co brads; Jenni Bowlin rubon numbers; DMC floss; Plaid silver paint; StazOn ink; Sakura pen.)
(Supplies: Bazzill and American Crafts cardstock; Jillibean Soup papers; American Crafts, Heidi Swapp and Cricut alphas; KI Memories jelly embellishments; The Paper Co mulberry paper; Doodlebug brads; Die Cuts With A View sticker; Studio Calico wood veneers; Jillibean Soup and Divine twine; Jillibean Soup tiny alphas; StazOn ink; Sharpie marker.)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Everyone!

I hope you all have a very merry and blessed holiday with your loved ones. In honor of the holiday tomorrow, I thought I'd share my top 10 favorite Christmas layouts. Maybe one of them will inspire you when you sit down at your scrap desk with this year's Christmas photos!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Memorable Seasons 2nd Annual Sketch-a-thon!

Has your mojo gone missing with all of the Holiday activities? Has it been awhile since you've had the chance to create? Well, we have a fix for that! Come join us at Memorable Seasons for the whole month of January in our annual Sketch-a-thon! Sketches every day of the week from various places, prizes weekly and a grand prize! What more could you want? We can't wait to see you there to jump start your creating for 2013! And just a little teaser - make sure you keep your eyes open this week over at Memorable Seasons, because Wendy, our fearless DT Coordinator, has a few fun things planned to finish up 2012!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Well folks, we have a winner!!

Thank you everyone who left such sweet comments here about my work and making the Memorable Seasons Design Team. Again, I am so thrilled to have the opportunity to provide you all with some "memorable" inpiration! Thanks to, it decided that of the 48 entries we had for the RAK, that the winner is...

Patricia - Please email me at msmith912ATgmailDOTcom with your mailing address and I will get you priority box full of goodies in the mail to you this week.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Scrappy November With Inspired To Scrap!

I know I was a bad blogger in November. But, I must say I did have a good reason - I was too busy scrapping! You see, I signed up for my first Inspired To Scrap sketch class and I cranked out 18 layouts in November - all based on sketches given during the class. If you are a sketch lover, you definitely need to check out Inspired to Scrap. I am not sure when the next sketch class will be, but I can tell you I am definitely signing up! And, if you need some sketches to tide you over until then, Stacey has some great sketches posted in the Inspired to Scrap gallery.

Here are the 18 layouts I created during the class!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Some exciting news and a RAK!

So, I know I've been kinda MIA lately. It's been a crazy busy past month and of course, with the holidays approaching, this month isn't looking any better. But, I have lots of things I need to share with you all, so despite the insanity of December, I do plan on blogging (at least once a week). 

And I am going to start with some very exciting news! After taking a long break from designing to focus on Liam's first year of life, I am proud and honored to announce I am a member of the Memorable Seasons design team beginning January 1st! I have been a member of Memorable Seasons since 2008, have come and gone from the board through the years, but every time I come back, it's just like I never left! This group of scrappers are so warm, welcoming, inspirational and supportive. And I am beyond thrilled to be able to serve them on the design team.

If you are not familiar with Memorable Seasons, I highly suggest you check it out! There is of course the wonderful forum full of great chatter and awesome challenges, the always inspirational gallery, and the amazing store chock full of the latest and greatest scrapbooking goodies (and with some of the best prices around)!

Finally, in honor of the new Memorable Seasons design team, I am giving away an awesome RAK! My RAK box is chock full of goodies from some of my personal favorites including Pink Paislee, Basic Grey and Prima and I plan to fill a priority box for one lucky scrapper. So here's how you get a chance for the RAK...
  • Become a follower of my blog (or already be a current follower) and leave me a comment on this post letting me know you follow.
  • And for a bonus entry, become a member of Memorable Seasons (or already be a current member)! Be sure to introduce yourself in the Welcome forum when you sign up!
I will draw a winner on Monday!

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012

    I've been spotted!

    ...Soup Spotted that is! Check it out here! Thanks Jillibean Soup for spotlighting my layout...and for making a fabulous collection like Macho Nacho Soup.

    Monday, October 29, 2012

    As local as it gets.

    I created this layout for the most recent Basic Grey sketch challenge. Susan Stringfellow created one amazing sketch and I loved working with it. I was also inspired by Wendy's challenge over at Memorable Seasons to create a layout with a quilt pattern. Well, awhile back Davinie Fiero had posted a tutorial for making a cathedral quilt pattern on a layout and I have been wanting to try it for awhile. Wendy's challenge combined with my June Bug papers seemed the perfect excuse to give the technique a try. The choice of topic was inspired by this month's OLW challenge over at Club CK to scrap about something that has made you the happiest and/or healthiest. So I decided to scrap about our first garden that we planted this past summer. Finally, the little signs were inspired by Ann's challenge over at My Sketch World to use an item found in the kitchen on your layout. So I included some popsicle sticks!
    (Supplies: Basic Grey papers, rub-ons, alpha die-cuts and alpha/numeric stickers; Bazzill cardstock; October Afternoon flashcard; popsicle sticks from around the house; StazOn ink; Sakura pen; Glue Arts, Thermoweb, Tombow, Helmar and 3M adhesives.)

    Friday, October 26, 2012

    Play Hard. (It's Tie-Dye Fabric!)

    This was a fun layout to create! First off, I started with Let's Capture These Sketches #154. The large amount of white space made me think that using a bold, busy background may work well with this sketch, if I kept the rest of the embellishing to a minimum. 

    So then I thought that it was finally time to complete my last and long overdue challenge from Memorable Seasons Members Challenge Us Crop. Susan issued a fabric challenge to us back during the crop in August. The catch was we had to use three different fabrics that weren't made specifically for scrapbooking. Well, since I don't sew and just had made a recent run to Goodwill with old clothes, spare fabric was hard to come by. But, I swore up and down I would finish every challenge from this crop. So I managed to gather up three fabrics. The first is the tie-dye background. It's a fabric gift bag that I cut up and adhered to a piece of 12x12 chipboard. Then there are the yellow and purple flower embellishments. I received a box of hand-me-downs for Liam and found two random, lone socks in it - one was a yellow terrycloth hospital bootie and the other was a scalloped lace trimmed lavender little girl sock. They turned into great fabric flowers once crowned with buttons!
    Finally, there is the My Sketch World odd-sized photo challenge. The requirement was just to use any photo size other than 4x6 but I decided to go even a little more creative going with three 2x4 photos. Love the way they look on this page!
    (Supplies: tie-dye, yellow terrycloth and lavender fabrics from around the house; American Crafts Thickers; Lawn Fawn, Queen & Co and Bella Blvd washi tape; Doodlebug Designs paper trims and multi-colored button; unknown teal button; Cloud9 epoxy circles; Bazzill red cardstock; DMC embroidery floss; Fiskars scallop border punch; date stamp; black StazOn ink; Glue Arts, Thermoweb, Helmar and 3M adhesives.)

    Friday, October 19, 2012

    Loungin' on the grass.

    I love these photos of Liam. Probably my favorite series of photos I've taken of him to date. I just love how curious he is about the grass. And how he seems to just be chilling out, taking it all in, especially in that last shot. This was the very first time he experienced grass and I was surprised at how well he handled it. So, where did I turn for the insiraption for this new favorite layout?

    Several places! First, I used sketch #153 from Let's Capture These Sketches. I was especially inspired by LCTS Designer Jody Rogers take on the sketch. She flipped the sketch and then I flipped it back but used a lot of the same design elements she did. Then, I was also inspired by Carol's challenge at Memorable Seasons to use a sketch. Hence, I went to Let's Capture These Sketches. Then, it was time to decide what supplies to use and Erika's Issue Challenge #6 on the Club CK forum was to use your favorite manufacturer on a layout. Well, lately I've been having a love affair with Fancy Pants, so I decided to pull out the beloved Childish Things collection for this layout. The background stamping originated from Stacy's challenge over at Inspired to Scrap to use a new (or long-neglected) stamp several times on a layout. I had a set of brand new Lawn Fawn background stamps that I had yet to use, so I christened one of them with some embossing ink and sky blue embossing powder. Finally, as I was getting to the embellishing stage of creating, ScrapFit's Warm-up Challenge #32 called for using buttons and/or bows. Well, I had the Childish Things buttons pulled out along with my Jillibean Soup twine, so decided to go ahead and use both buttons and bows on my layout!
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Fancy Pants Designs papers, letter stickers, border stickers, glitter transparencies, buttons and rub-ons; American Crafts Thickers; Lawn Fawn washi tape and background stamp; Jillibean Soup twine; Basic Grey mini-brads; Inkadinkado embossing powder; StazOn ink; date stamp; Glue Arts, Thermoweb, Tombow and 3M adhesives.)

    Sunday, October 14, 2012

    World Card Making Day at Let's Capture These Sketches!

    I didn't get the chance to make any cards on World Card Making Day, so I was super excited to see that Let's Capture These Sketches kept the deadline for their world card making challenges open for a whole week! I got a chance to complete each challenge...

    Challenge #1 was to lift one of two cards by LCTS designer Shirl. I lifted the first card. Instead of using a cute little guy in the center of my card, I used a few butterflies. I also used twine instead of ribbon, but the general design of the card is still there. I also made this card for two other challenges - this week's Two Peas Finally Friday card challenge to use white ink on kraft paper (I used white embossing powder though because my white ink was barely showing on the kraft cardstock) and My Sketch World's World Card Making Day crop challenge #4 to use at least four layers on your card.
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Jillibean Soup papers & twine; Karen Foster sticker sentiment; Hero Arts grid background stamp; Inkadinkado white embossing powder; Ranger embossing ink; Glue Arts, Helmar, Tombow and 3M adhesives).

    Challenge #2 was to use a card sketch and here's what I came up with. I also created this card for My Sketch World's World Card Making Day crop challenge #8 to use a quote on your card.
    (Supplies: Jillibean Soup papers; Chatterbox quote sentiment; unknown ribbon; Glue Arts, Helmar, Thermoweb, 3M adhesives.)

    Challenge #3 was to use mist or paints. I used some of my Bubblegum pink Glimmer Mist on the background of this card. I also made this card for Kimber's 10/13/12 Saturday Card Sketch challenge over at Two Peas.
    (Supplies: Pink Paislee papers; Joann's cardstock & sentiment embellishment; EK Success heart punch; Tattered Angels glimmer mist; Glue Arts and Helmar adhesives.)

    Challenge #4 was to create a card with a handmade flower on it. I created a handmade lollipop flower for this card. I also made this card for My Sketch World's World Card Making Day crop challenge #6 which was to use at least six patterned papers on a card.
     (Supplies: Bo Bunny papers & stickers; unknown sentiment sticker; Basic Grey brad; Creative Memories circle cutting system and punches; Glue Arts and Thermoweb adhesives.)

    Challenge #5 was to create a card with something colored on it. I pulled out these cute printables I got from CK's 2012 Summer Camp that I never used and then colored one of the banners and the flag/pinwheel cluster with my Zig Writers. It was fun! I also made this card for My Sketch World's World Card Making Day crop challenge #7 which was to lift a card made by MSW card designer Lisa M.
     (Supplies: Me And My Big Ideas and Fancy Pants papers; Bazzill cardstock; CK printables; EK Success Zig Writer markers; Karen Foster sentiment stickers; Jillibean Soup twine; Glue Arts, Tombow, Helmar adhesives.)

    Challenge #6 was to create a card with something shiny on it. Not only is there five pieces of bling on this card, but (it's hard to see) there is glitter on the polka dots of the chipboard purse. I also created this card for My Sketch World's World Card Making Day crop challenge #9 which was to create a card using all pink in honor of breast cancer awareness month.
    (Supplies: Joann's and DCWV cardstock; DCWV and Dream Street papers; Crate Paper chipboard embellishment and stickers; Kaiser Craft rhinestones; Glue Arts adhesive.)

    Saturday, October 13, 2012

    Crop Addict's Closing Up Shop - Big Sale!

    I am sad to say that one of my first online scrappy homes, Crop Addict, is closing up shop at the end of October. I have been an active member of Crop Addict for over four years and have served several terms on their design team and was also the design team coordinator for awhile as well. So needless to say, I was shocked and saddened when I read on Crop Addict's blog that they were shutting their doors.

    But, I wanted to let everyone know that Crop Addict is having a huge closeout sale. Everything in the store is 85% off. Yep, you heard right. 85% off! A lot of what is left is older product but it's still good stuff. There's still a bunch of embellishments, cardstock, alphabets and papers for sale! So stop by the Crop Addict shop and stock up. Use the code CLOSEOUT at checkout to apply the 85% discount. Also, Debbie is offering free shipping on any orders over $100 (after the discount). You have until October 31st to place your order!

    I wish you best of luck Debbie in all your future endeavors!

    Monday, October 1, 2012


    So this layout was dually inspired from different challenge sites. First was Creative Scrappers sketch #227 and then there was Scrapfit Workout #76 which challenged you to used navy blue, white and gray on your layout. This series of photos of Liam and my mother-in-law worked perfectly for both of these challenges. I am so happy with how this turned out!
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock and envelope; Bella Blvd, GCD Studios, Me and My Big Ideas papers; K and Company chipboard title sentiment; Heidi Swapp silk flowers and acrylic heart; My Minds Eye crocheted flower; Jenni Bowlin felt bird; Bella Blvd sentiment stickers; SEI tag; Scenic Route die-cut arrow; 7 Gypsies brads; EK Success epoxy squares; unknown sentiment rub-ons; Divine Twine; miscellaneous date stamp; StazOn and Close to my Heart ink; Glue Arts, Thermoweb and 3M adhesives; staples.)

    Thursday, September 27, 2012

    My Top Ten Scrapping Essentials

    So this post is one I put some serious thought into. Occasionally, it will be asked on the message boards "what's the one scrapbooking tool you couldn't live without?" And as I ponder this question, I realize that it is extremely difficult to narrow it down to just one. So I decided to post what I consider to be my "Top Ten" list of essential scrapbooking tools. I am sure that I have given each of these items as the answer to the above question at least once.
    1. Zots by Thermoweb. I have these in small, medium, large and jumbo sizes. I have multiple packages of each size as backup. If I ever ran out of these in the middle of a layout, I'd cry. These little guys appear on about 95% of my layouts. And I know - some of you would say adhesive is a supply, not a tool. But I am calling it a tool because I need it to belong on this list. It is that essential.
    2. My Glue Glider Pro. I love this tape runner. It's easy to use, the refills are well priced (I did research refill prices before purchasing a tape runner), I love that it's smaller than the ATG gun and I love that I can order refills directly from Glue Arts and as long as I purchase over $50 worth of adhesive (that's 6+ refills) then I get free shipping.
    3. My Cutterpede. It's not a fancy, expensive trimmer like the Cutterpillar, the Making Memories one or the Purple Cows one. But I love this little guy. I like the rotary blade. I like how small and compact it is. I like that it has decorative blades that you can switch the straight blade out for to give yourself a decorative edge. Maybe one day, I will upgrade to one of the big, fancy trimmers, but for now, this one serves me well.
    4. Sakura black Micron pens. Yes, this is technically six tools, but I'm lumping them together as one. I actually just got these a few months ago (I was in dire need for some new journaling pens) and they have become a staple on my layouts. I use the 02 the most. Not to thick, not too thin. If you don't have these pens, I highly suggest picking up a set. I got mine at
    5. Paper piercer. Such a simple tool but so versitile. This one came in a set of Making Memories tools that I got when I first started seriously scrapbooking. I still use all the tools in this set but none (well maybe except one) more than this paper piercer. I use it to not only pierce paper, but to add tiny embellishments (like bling) to my layouts.
    6. My iPod Nano. Yeah, I know. It's not technically a scrapbooking tool, but I don't think I could scrap without this little green device playing my mega mix or my favorite NPR podcast.
    7. My 0.9 mm Pentel Quicker Clicker mechanical pencil. I remember when I got this pencil. It was one of the provided supplies when I took an SAT prep class my junior year in high school. Yep. I am that pathetic. I remember when I got a pencil. But this pencil is that good. I love that the lead is thick relative to other mechanical pencils. I press hard when I write so this lead doesn't break on me. It's got a clean eraser. It's so clean that many times I don't need to pull out my gum art eraser. It's very comfortable to hold too. You can buy refills for both the lead and erasers anywhere on the web and here is just one place you can buy your own pencil. It's not cheap but well worth it - trust me. I've had this same one since I was 16. I am 31 now.
    8. StazOn ink in black and brown. I only show the black ink pad in this photo but the brown (Timber Brown to be exact) is just as vital to me. See, I ink the edges of all my photos with either my black or brown StazOn depending on what the color scheme of my layout is. One of these ink pads is used on every layout I make.
    9. Close To My Heart microtip scissors. I love these little things. I have a pair of Cutterbees too, which I like but I like the CTMH ones better. They cut cleaner than the Cutterbees, although they aren't non-stick like the Cutterbees are, so I don't recommend them for cutting adhesive of any sort. But for fussy cutting, the Close To My Heart ones are the way to go.
    10. 6" metal non-skid ruler. This was the other tool I got with my paper piercer in that Making Memories tool set that I use on 99% of my layouts. This little ruler is awesome. And it's non-skid. Even better. This and my Pentel mechanical pencil are usually the first two tools on my desk when I start a layout.

    Thursday, September 20, 2012

    2011 Baby

    So this layout was inspired by the fact that I still had some Bella Blvd Estate Sale to use up, this awesome sketch from Stuck?! sketches, this color challenge from Tami at Memorable Seasons and this Glitter Girl challenge over at Two Peas. The sketch was perfect for showcasing this single photo and allowing for a long, vertical journaling spot backed by several pennants (which helped me use up the Estate Sale scraps). I did move the title up to above the photo to allow for the larger photo while still keeping the top of the pennants, journaling spot and photo in line. Now, Tami's challenge called for the colors blue, yellow and pink. Estate Sale has blues and pinks, but no yellow. So I improvised by finding a scrap of solid yellow Prima paper to use and covering all the lime green in the Estate Sale papers with Stickles and Embellishments. Now, Shimelle's Glitter Girl challenge this past week was to rework a supply in your stash that you wouldn't necessarily use. I didn't complete the challenge before the deadline, but always love her Glitter Girl series so I watched the video anyways. And I am so glad I did because it really has helped me to look at those "iffy" supplies in a different way. So I applied what I learned from her video to this layout. Well, I covered up the lime green elements in the patterned paper with yellow. And I also did this by covering up the title "My prayer for you..." on the journaling spot (it didn't really fit with my journaling) with washi tape and a sentiment sticker. I love how this turned out and can use pink on baby boy pages too!
    (Supplies: Bella Blvd and Prima papers; Bazzill cardstock; American Crafts Thicker alphas and slick writer; Bella Blvd journaling spot and sentiment stickers; Studio Calico wood veneer hearts; Love My Tapes washi tape; Miscellaneous buttons; Divine Twine; EK Success Zig Writer; Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist; Ranger Stickles; StazOn ink; Cuttlebug embosser and folder; Glue Arts and Thermoweb adhesives.)

    Wednesday, September 19, 2012

    A story from my real life.

    To be honest, I really didn't want to create this layout. Nope. I have seriously neglected my "Book of Me" in the current months. As I was looking back at it, I saw the last layout I created for it was back in January 2011. And then their were only four more that were created a year prior to that and everything else is 2009 and earlier. Hmmmm...looks like I need to scrap about me a little more.

    Well, thanks to Cathy Zielske's challenge over at Big Picture Classes' Big Idea Festival, I scrapped a long overdue layout about me. She challenged us to create a layout using her "real life" template about something "real" in our lives. So, I decided to document some of the not so fun parts of being a Stay-At-Home-Mom. It's not a glamorous topic by any means - but honest and true. And I am really happy with the way this turned out and really happy to have documented this. Thank you Cathy!

    I also want to give credit to Creative Scrappers sketch #225 for the amazing design blueprint, to Scrapfit for Workout #75 - challenging us to use twine in a creative way and to Club CK's September issue challenge #2 to use camera embellishments on your page. All of these challenges came together to result in this page. Thanks for the inspiration and thanks for looking!

    (Supplies: Bazzill & DCWV cardstock; AdornIt papers; mt washi tape; Creating Keepsakes camera embellishment; Studio Calico wood veneer arrows; Bazzill brads; Jillibean Soup & Divine twine; Close To My Heart sentiment stamps; Close To My Heart, Studio G & StazOn ink; Inkadinkado chalks; EK Success corner rounder punch; Creative Memories circle cutters & punches; Glue Arts, Thermoweb, Helmar & 3M adhesives.)

    Monday, September 17, 2012

    'Neath the cover of October skies...

    ...And all the leaves on the trees are falling
    To the sound of the breezes that blow
    And I'm trying to please to the calling
    Of your heart-strings that play soft and low
    And all the nights magic seems to whisper and hush
    And all the soft moonlight seems to shine in your blush
    Can I just have one a more moondance with you, my love
    Can I just make some more romance with a-you, my love...

    I love Van Morrison. This was the bridal party dance at our wedding. Seeing as we were married in October (my favorite month of the year), I had to incorporate this song somewhere that day. Anyways, I am off on a tangent because, other than stealing a lyric from this song for my title, this layout has nothing to do with our wedding. This photo was taken four Octobers later!

    The first October we were out here, we decided to spend a beautiful October Saturday with our friends Ashley & Justin taking a scenic drive around Mt. Hood. I have almost scrapped all the photos from that day, but this one was still lingering, begging for special attention. Our last stop on our scenic drive was up at Timberline lodge on Mt. Hood. As we were leaving the lodge, this was the view that greeted us - silhouetted trees against the clear sky, layers of the Cascade Mountains and Mt. Jefferson in the distance. It was absolutely breathtaking. 

    So this photo was finally scrapped, almost four years after being taken, thanks to several inspiration points. First was Stephanie Baxter's challenge at Big Picture Classes Big Idea Festival to use a large photo on a layout. Second, was the awesome September 1st sketch from Stuck?! Sketches which I rotated 90 degrees counterclockwise to accommodate my vertical photo. The color scheme is thanks to Lisa Truesdell's challenge over at Two Peas to scrap a Fall layout with nontraditional colors. Lucky for me, all the pinks and deep purples in Basic Grey's Indian Summer collection made this task fairly easy.
    (Supplies: Basic Grey papers, alpha stickers, felt accents, chipboard accent and cardstock stickers; Bazzill cardstock & paper leaves; Sakura Micron pen; Glue Arts and Thermoweb adhesives.)

    1st Father's Day

    I had so much fun scrapping this layout. I mean, it is of the men in my life after all, right? I finally broke into my Jillibean Soup Macho Nacho collection after staring at it for several weeks. Those papers just seemed to cute to cut into! But based on a challenge from Amy Sorensen at Big Picture Classes Big Idea Festival to use a hoarded supply that you've been saving for that perfect layout, I decided it was time to bust out the Macho Nacho for this super special page. I also used this awesome sketches from Sketches With A Twist and the "twist" this month was to use dry or heat embossing on a layout. So I broke out some new Inkadinkado embossing powders and added the argyle criss-cross background design. The colors were also inspired by Nik's color challenge over at My Sketch World and the topic was inspired by Sherri's manly layout challenge at Inspired to Scrap.
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Jillibean Soup papers, stickers, die-cuts & alphas; Studio Calico wood veneer stars; Hero Arts argyle stamps; Inkadinkado embossing powders; Sakura white gel pen; Glue Arts, Thermoweb & 3M adhesives.)


    Here's a quick card I created to get you all in the mood for Halloween! I used this sketch by Susan Stringfellow for Basic Grey and also used some Basic Grey Eerie. Why did I decide to pull out some Halloween supplies and make a Halloween card for this Basic Grey sketch challenge? Well, because Kandis Smith, Garden Girl at Two Peas, asked us to for this week's Finally Friday card challenge.
    (Supplies: Basic Grey papers, chipboard & stickers; Bazzill cardstock; miscellaneous ribbon; Zig Photo signature & Sakura Micron pens; Glue Arts, Thermoweb & 3M adhesives.)

    Sunday, September 16, 2012

    View from the Top

    Another day, another layout! I am on a roll this week. And I honestly have to attribute that to the Big Idea Festival over at Big Picture Classes. This FREE class has been providing me with so much inspiration! This layout was done for the Day challenge presented by Karen Grunberg. Her big idea is to "savor life." And to do that, you need to live in the moment, enjoy the moment. So her challenge was for us to scrap a moment that brought you joy within the last two weeks.

    These photos were taken a couple weeks ago from my window seat on the plane as I flew from Portland, OR to Columbus, OH for my cousin's wedding. It was my first trip away alone since my son's birth, and although I missed him and my husband terribly on the short weekend trip, I savored the alone time I got. Enjoying the view on my early morning flight - watching the sunrise with Mt Hood in the foreground was one of these solitary moments I savored on the trip.
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Bella Blvd & Jillibean Soup papers; Hambly transparency; American Crafts Thickers; Pink Paislee wood alphas; My Little Shoebox tiny alphas; Creating Keepsakes airplane charm; unknown epoxy sentiment stickers; Heidi Swapp & Close To My Heart stamps; Close To My Heart, Superior, Studio G & StazOn inks; Studio Calico Mister Huey's mist; EK Success Zig Writer pen; Glue Arts, Thermoweb, Helmar & 3M adhesives.)

    I also used Sketch #28 over at Let's Get Sketchy. And, I am still trying to finish all the amazing challenges from Memorable Seasons Members Challenge Us crop last month. Laura had challenged us to use stamps on our page - both on the background and to embellish. I pulled out my old school Heidi Swapp sentiment stamps for the background and then my Close To My Heart set with circles, stars and arrows and stamped a bunch of shapes on cardstock, cut them out and adhered them with foam adhesive for my embellishments.

    Friday, September 14, 2012

    First Smile

    I was really scared to scrap this photo. Why? Because this is a big moment! Your baby's first smile? Absolutely a big moment. Now, out of full disclosure, this was not his first, FIRST smile. I wasn't fast enough with the iPhone to capture that. But, this shot was taken the same day, just a few hours later.
     (Supplies: Fancy Pants Designs paper, ribbon & tag; Bazzill & DCWV cardstock; felt flower embellishment handmade by Michelle McCord; Miscellaneous buttons & date stamp; DMC embroidery floss; Sakura pen; StazOn & Close To My Heart ink; EK Success punches; Cuttlebug embosser & templates; Cricut die-cutting machine; Glue Arts, Thermoweb & Helmar adhesives; font downloaded from the Internet.)

    I am so happy with the way this layout came out. Again, it was born from several different inspiration points. First, Memorable Seasons and Club CK both issued challenges to use a sunburst/sunbeams on a layout - a very hot trend right now! I love this look and did use the technique on a couple layouts years ago, and am happy to see it's all the rage right now. I think it's a great way to use up scraps too and I had been hoarding these scraps of Fancy Pants On A Whimsy Collection. 

    Speaking of hoarding, that leads me to the next inspiration point - Challenge #9 at Big Picture Classes Big Idea Festival. Wendy Smedley challenged us to create a layout showcasing something we have learned from the festival. So this layout encompasses two different things I have learned from other big ideas during the festival. 
    1. Use those hoarded supplies. You know, that one thing you wer holding onto for that perfect layout. Well, on this layout, besides using up my hoarded On A Whimsy collection, I used one of five felt embellishments that was handmade by fellow scrapper, Michelle McCord. (Unfortunately, Michelle's #1 job as a Mom has caused her to have to put scrapbooking on the back burner.) I cannot believe how perfectly these two hoarded supplies went together! 
    2. Happy Crafting. Create a layout for you and do what you love. Don't just do something on a layout because it's trendy and you think you have to. Do what feels right to you and makes you happy. Period. Yes, sunbursts are trendy, but remember I said I've used the technique before? Every moment creating this layout was a happy one.
    Then, there was this awesome sketch from Boys Rule. Great sketch, huh? Well, as I studied it I started seeing it as a sunburst, since I obviously had sunbursts running through my brain. I think my sunburst interpretation if the sketch turned out well. 

    Finally, there was the issue of embellishing. I didn't want to do too much because I already had lots of busy patterned paper and that adorable handmade felt flower to use. Well, there's a member challenge over at Two Peas to use your punches and die-cutting machines. Perfect! I used this prompt to die-cut my title using my Cricut and a cute kiddie font. (Sorry! Can't remember the exact name of the font now.) Then I used my old EK Success funky heart and star punches (and my Cuttlebug embosser) to create simple cardstock embellies. But, I still needed a little more. So I turned to the School House Bingo challenge at My Sketch World and chose a line on the bingo card that required I use buttons, a tag and a number in my title. Great! Done!

    Whew! Okay, I think I'm done rambling. But, I love this layout so much and wanted to let you all know how I went through the creative process to come to the final result and also give credit to the awesome web sites who provided me with fantastic inspiration points.

    Playmat Fun!

    So this layout was born from several inspiration points. First, I wanted to use up some Basic Grey Lime Rickey scraps I had lying around. And then there was this awesome sketch from Boys Rule I wanted to use. Then my wheels started spinning with a challenge on the Club CK to try a new endeavor. I decided to try hexagons for the first time. Yep. The FIRST time. And that was also spurred on by Sherri's hexagon challenge at Inspired to Scrap. Finally, Wendy Sue Anderson at TwoPeas challenged you to journal in list form. So, from all those creative starting points came this layout...
     (Supplies: DCWV & Bazzill cardstock; Basic Grey papers; American Crafts Thickers; Imagination Project journaling spot; unknown insect brads; Darice sequins; DMC embroidery floss; Zig Photo Signature & Sakura pens; StazOn & Close To My Heart ink; EK Success border punch; Glue Arts & Thermoweb adhesives.)

    ...and I love it. It is so bright, fun and happy. Just like Liam is when he's playing on his playmat. Thanks for looking!

    Wednesday, September 12, 2012

    Go, Pack, Go!

    This layout was born out of a combination of inspiration from Let's Capture These Sketches #148 sketch and Scrapfit's Step Class #8 challenge. LCTS sketch allowed for several photos with one focal photo which is exactly the type of design I was looking for with these photos. Then Scrapfit challenged me to use mists and masks to create a masked, misted background. I really need to get my hands on more Mr. Huey's because the Glimmer Mists just weren't dark enough for the look I was going for. The brown dots along the right show up well, but those dots also are each shadowed with a silver dot. I also masked an acrylic star shape in a couple spots with gold, but they are hard to see too. Oh well, no page is perfect and I am definitely not a master mister! But, practice makes perfect and I definitely plan to spend some birthday cash on some Mr. Huey's! But don't get me wrong - I still love my Glimmer Mists!
    (Supplies: Bazzill cardstock; Close To My Heart papers, alpha stickers & star/circle sticker; American Crafts Thicker chipboard alphas; Creative Imaginations epoxy sentiments; Studio Calico Wood veneers; Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist; Heidi Swapp mask; Colorbox chalk ink; StazOn ink; Sakura & Signo pens; Glue Arts, Thermoweb & 3M adhesives)

    Thanks so much for stopping by today!

    Tuesday, September 11, 2012

    'Tis the Election Season.

    So, I will be the first to admit I don't like politics. I hate the divisiveness of them and I hate that if you aren't far left or far right in this country, you kind of get looked over. But, I appreciate living in a democracy and I appreciate living in a country where you are free to express your opinion. There. I've said my peace. Anyways, I have had the photos for this layout saved on my computer now for almost four years. I collected them from various Internet sources with the plan to scrap about the historical significance of the 2008 election of President Obama.

    So, with the 2012 presidential election fast approaching and President Obama running for a second term, a ton of Pink Paislee Declaration that I got from their warehouse sale sitting in my scraproom, motivation from this challenge over at Scrapfit, and lifting this layout from my friend Kathy at Memorable Seasons, I created the following layout...
    (Supplies: Pink Paislee papers, alpha stickers & border sticker; Pebbles pleated embellishment; Bella Blvd flag & washi tape; Divine Twine twine; Studio Calico wood veneer stars; Queen & Co felt stars; Bazzill cardstock; unknown tag & brads; Sakura pen; StazOn ink; EK Success border punch; Glue Arts & Thermoweb adhesives.)

    No matter what your political viewpoint is, I hope you like my layout!