Friday, November 30, 2007

The Countdown to Christmas has begun...

I have had zero time to be creative since Thanksgiving. I am hoping to have time tonight to get crafty. I need to get caught up on some birthday cards and start my Christmas ones. I did manage to start my Christmas shopping finally.
Our trip home from Indiana was a nightmare. What should have been an 8-9 hour trip took 12 hours thanks to a lovely flat tire in Kentucky about 100 miles from Knoxville, TN (the halfway point between Indy and here). We changed the tire in about 20 minutes, but then had to drive the remaining distance home on the doughnut spare tire because the tires for my car are a rare size and have to be special ordered. UGH. So instead of getting home late Tuesday, we didn't arrive home until 6:30 Wednesday morning. Just in time for Cait to get on the bus and since she slept the whole way home, I went ahead and sent her to school. Will and I both had to work on Wednesday on very little sleep for me and none at all for him, so it's been a very long week. Hopefully we'll be all caught up on sleep by Monday! I'm sure it still won't keep me from staying up late to get some scrapping/card making done! :-) Check back tomorrow and hopefully I'll have some fun stuff to share!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Turkey Day!

This was my first ever Thanksgiving away from home. I have to admit that I was a little homesick this morning because I didn't wake up to the usual smells of Thanksgiving. My mom wakes up at about 5 am to get started on the holiday cooking and preparations. Instead, I woke up and had to come down and get it started! I was nervous about cooking everything myself. I've helped in the past, but always under the careful direction of my Mom.

I can happily report that our meal was AMAZING! We had all of the usual things--turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, pumpkin pie, and crescent rolls. And I also baked some chocolate chip cookies that my girls were eating ALL DAY LONG. And some rice krispy treats also. We were all stuffed and I fell asleep for two hours on the couch and woke up to the dishes all being done already by my sweet and thoughtful boyfriend, Will.

Here are a few pics of our day...

Then after this part was all said and done and the girls were in bed, Will and I watched some football and I was able to complete this scrapbook layout for my sister. She is a scrapper/stamper as well, but she is 7 months pregnant with her second child, a baby boy to be named Logan Michael, and doesn't seem to have much energy for scrapping lately. She asked me to do a LO for her with one of her senior pictures from high school.
It is a 12x12 layout. I used patterned papers by Chatterbox. Cardstock by Paperbilities. Stickers by Provo craft. Felt Flowers are from American Crafts, brads are by fun expressions and the ribbons are both offray.

I did my fun ribbon trick again--I can't help it, I am just so excited that I figured out a way to make decent looking bows!!
Hopefully my sister likes how this turned out.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Eve

Hi All,
I do not have a project ready to post. I have been super busy around the house. Will and I decided it was finally time to paint the living room since we have the time off this week. Well, it turns out that it's taking THREE coats of paint to get it done, which was a little more than we bargained for! :-) But it's looking really beautiful...I can't wait to see what it's like when we finish it! I'll post pics as soon as the room is photo ready! Off to bake some cookies and make rice krispy treats! Happy Turkey Day!!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Merry Christmas Decorations!!

Thanks to all of the inspiration that I've been finding on other blogs, I've been trying to make some Christmas Decorations. This is the latest creation. I made it last night while Will was flying and I plan on making a couple more.
I used a styrofoam cone that I purchased at Michael's, though I got a couple more tonight at Walmart. The patterned papers are all from the Provo Craft Christmas slab. I used plain silver straight pins with a small head on them, but other people were using the colorful pearl looking ones. And then the stars on the top were ornaments that came in a package of 16 for like $2 and I thought they would be the perfect topper. They had them in gold also. They came with thread strung through the tops, but I snipped it off, since I don't intend for the tree to hang anywhere :-).
I attended a swap with some of the Carolina girls today and had a GREAT time! Thanks Ronee for being such a great hostess! We made two really great cards and the swaps from the other fantastic! I'm so lucky to belong to such a wonderful group of talented creative women!! I have so much more to share, so more coming tomorrow.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Super Scrapbook Saturday #2

Sorry I've been quiet on the blogging. I've been a bit busy, so I haven't posted even though I have been very productive. I made a different set of swap cards that I like even better than the ones I already posted. I also made a Christmas tree decoration that I will post later in the week because I have to get a "topper" for it. And of course I did the scrapbook page that I'm going to share here.

This is another 12x12 layout. I do create some in an 8.5x11 format, but I haven't shared any of those yet! This is a picture taken of my little family unit during our last visit to Indiana at the pumpkin patch. The large floral patterned paper that I used is by Bo-Bunny Press. When I saw it, it made me think of Fall which is my favorite time of year so of course I just HAD to have it ;-). All of the other papers are from the DCWV Fall scrap slab that I got as a door prize from the Carolina girls swap last month. The photo corners are also DCWV and coordinate with the papers. The stickers are by American Crafts and then the smaller text is Georgia font. I inked all over the papers and stickers with a chocolate brown stamp pad by ink it up. I almost added some brads and ribbon, but I couldn't find a placement i was happy with that didn't make the page look too cluttered. I kind of want to frame this page...I love this picture of my family. If only Caitlynn had been sitting up so you could see her whole face...but hey, she's in there and looking in the general direction of the camera just like the rest of us, so I'll take it!! Who needs perfection?? :-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

CPS Sketch #39

During nap time today, I quickly whipped up this card for Card Positioning Systems Sketch #39 . Of course, this is the first time I've done a sketch from that site. I've been on a roll this week doing sketches from different blog sites. They are helping me immensely to play with the stamps and supplies I have now and also helping me to use up some of my scrap paper which is REALLY building up. I used the swirls from the SU Priceless set and the flower image is one of the dollar stamps from Michaels. The patterned paper is a scrap left over from the scrapbook LO that I did on Saturday. And the large purple twill is actually from the packaging of a quilt that I got at Target. Cardstock is paperbilities. Inks are from Colorbox.
I've only been stamping/cardmaking for about a month now and I feel like I'm starting to get the hang of things. But practice makes perfect and I'm really enjoying all of this practicing I've been doing!! And it's definitely a great way to spend the kid's naptime!

Swaps DONE!

I have another swap coming up on the 18th. I'm excited. Only my second one ever, but I had so much fun at the first one that I just can't wait for this one to come up! The theme for it was something brown. I absolutely love brown. I used the pale blue/chocolate brown color combo and came up with this card. The patterned paper is from that Rob and Bob for Provo Craft Slab again (didn't I say I'd use it up in no time at all?!) I apologize for the somewhat blurry photography this morning. I used my creative memories cutting tool to create the ovals. The sentiment stamp is by Technique Tuesday. Ribbon is by Offray. And the brads are making memories. The Chocolate brown cardstock is Paper Reflections and the White is paperbilities. At first I had it where the ovals were alone without the ribbon behind it and the patterned paper lined up with the bottom with only one strip of brown across the top of the patterned paper, but I thought it just looked too blah. So I added the ribbon and repositioned it and then added the second strip with the brads and voila. Finished product. It's pretty simple overall, but I think the color combo calls for something more elegant and simple. It actually took me about 3 hours to get 8 cards done because I was watching Dancing With The Stars. (I really think that Marie needs to go next.) Then we had Monday Night Football on, so I was pretty distracted throughout the whole cardmaking process. But I'm glad I got them finished and I am pleased with the end result, even though it is nothing like my original vision! :-) But I must say that I am EXHAUSTED today after staying up past midnight last night and getting up at 6 am today. I WILL get to sleep at a decent time tonight. Probably right after the results show for Dancing...Happy Tuesday everyone!

Monday, November 12, 2007

An early morning card to start the day!

I had to get up early this morning in order to get Caitlynn dressed and ready for school. Will is off today, so getting out of bed when he was getting to sleep in was very tough! However, I'm up, so I though that I might as well get a card made this morning before the other kids get here for the day. I have FIVE birthday cards that I need to send out over the next week or so. This is the first card that I'll be sending out.

I absolutely LOVE this little bird from the Stampin Up! Fun and Fast Notes set. I don't use it very often, but I think he's just too cute. I also used the Doodle This stamp set for the doodle in the corner. And the Happy Birthday sentiment stamped inside the card is from the fun and fast notes set as well. I did my little ribbon trick again for the bow. Cute, right? :-) I was the mastermind behind having to do all these birthday cards. I just joined the Carolina Girls group on SCS and thought it would be nice to send out cards to each of the other women in the group as a way to send them birthday greetings and for all of us to practice our card making. And of course the first month that we begin, there are 5 women with birthdays all within days of each other! So happy birthday to all the Carolina girls!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Scrapbooking Saturday!

So much for not posting today! I managed to get two scrapbooking layouts finished in the wee hours of the morning :-). Will and I stayed up late and he practiced his guitar playing while I did some scrappin'.

This layout is 12x12 and I used the patterned papers from the Rob and Bob Studios for Provo Craft Super Slab. I love these papers. Usually, people give me these super slabs as gifts and I dislike three quarters of them--these, I love them ALL. So I am sure I'll use this slab up in no time at all, especially since I used 4 sheets on this layout alone. The alpha stickers came with them. All colors of cardstock are by paperbilities. I just love this picture of Hayley. She is constantly following me around. On this particular day, I went upstairs to grab something and came right back down...she of course was on her way up after me as I was coming down. Lucky for me, I had my camera in hand to snap a quick photo of her coming up after me. Most days this drives me crazy having her under my feet the entire day, especially when I'm cooking or actually trying to get some work done, but I know that i will miss having her as my little shadow when she finds other people/things much more exciting than her mommy! :-)

This layout is also 12x12. I used ribbon by Michael's, Page Pebbles by Fun Expressions, Stamp by Autumn Leaves; Die Cut Title using Sizzix Slim Jim Alpha; Cardstock Paperbilities; Patterned Papers are Carolee's Creations (the words behind the photo), and Two Busy Moms (the circles on the background were cut from this paper). I tried out a new bow idea on this and I love the result. I always have such a hard time making the bows come out right, so this time I kind of created a bow without having to tie anything :-) The ribbon is just folded and wrapped to make the bow's actually 4 pieces of ribbon that I manhandled into a bow and glued together, lol. But I like it! :-)
Now on to do laundry...who knows, maybe I'll get more scrapping done tonight--so far it's been my kind of weekend!

Friday, November 9, 2007

My first attempt at a Beate's Sketch

Another day of firsts for me in card-making. First I did the tutorial for the purse card and now this is my first attempt at a Beate Johns sketch challenge.

This is the card that I made for Beate's sketch. The sketch can be found at her blog here.
All of the stamps used were by Studio G. The patterned paper was from a scrapbook stack of papers from JoAnn's. The yellow cardstock was from DCWV and the other colors from paperbilities. All of the inks are by Stamp Craft. The photo corners and scalloped circle were hand drawn and hand cut (I can't wait to get the nestibilities scalloped die sets!).
I am pleased with how this turned out, though I think it would look better if I could've sponged the coffee ink on the circle instead of having to do the direct to paper method. Must buy sponges!! That's on the agenda for the weekend! :-) I'm not used to doing two posts in one day, but I just had to share! This may take the place of tomorrow's post so that I don't neglect my family any more this weekend! Hope you all have a great one!

My first purse card

This morning while I was waiting for Hayden to arrive, I decided to make a purse card based on Keri Lee Sereika's tutorial.
The patterned paper I used was from a large slab of patterned papers purchased at JoAnns, though I cannot remember who the manufacturer was. The cardstock is paperbilities. Button is Fun Expressions. The two flowers on the front are hand-drawn. The ribbon is American Crafts ;the brads are Making Memories; Stamps: Priceless Set by Stampin' Up; Ink by Stamp Craft (Coffee); and I created the scalloped edge using a template by The Crafters Workshop.
Making this card was so much fun. I plan on playing with this kind of card a lot more for sending fun notes to my girl friends back home in Indiana. Thanks, Keri for the great tutorial!!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I haven't been a very good blogger this week. It's been a bit crazy around here. I've been helping out another childcare provider in our neighborhood the last few days because she had some appointments. AND I had a new child start this week also. She's three, so I thought she'd be a little lower maintenance...not so much the case. She hasn't been around other kids before, so she doesn't like to share and such. It's been a treat, let me tell ya. I'm hoping she adjusts quickly. But with the other extra kids here, it's been a little stressful getting her settled. At least she's only here 3 days/week.
I haven't gotten any stamping done at all, but I have been doing a lot of wishlist making on stamping sites when I have spare time. I LOVE the new Cornish Heritage Farms stamps and I went through the Stampin Up Catalogs again and made a new list of those as well. I will have some extra money this week from the extra kids being here, so I may treat myself to a little something's been a stressful week, I deserve it right??
Hopefully I'll get some stamping/scrapping done tonight and I'll post some pictures later!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Where does the time go??

It's already November. It's time to do the Christmas shopping...the weather is getting cooler. My children are growing like crazy...AND Will's 4-month deployment is creeping closer and closer every day. Six months ago, it seemed like we had all kinds of time before he leaves. But then I blinked and here we are, already preparing for when he leaves. So crazy. Where does the time go? This time of year always puts me in a bit of a nostalgic mood. I have been strolling down memory lane back to when Caitlynn was born and spending all that time in the NICU. And to look at her now, you'd never know that she ever had any problems. She's such a beautiful girl. And then my little Hayley...feels like yesterday that we were bringing her home from the hospital wrapped up in the same green blanket that she drags everywhere now. Ahh...the memories. I wish I could freeze time and just squeeze out some extra moments with them while they are little. There just don't seem to be enough hours in the day.

I sent out Christmas lists to the grandparents over the weekend, and am expecting to get their wishlists back from them this week so I can start shopping hopefully next weekend. Will is on a ten day EAS starting on Thursday, so it'll be just me and the kiddos for the weekend. I had all sorts of scrapbooking/stamping stuff on my list. I'm very excited! I have such a hard time spending money on myself, so I always look forward to Christmas and my birthday. I would much rather spend money on other people...just the way I am. But I could use some fun new stuff to play with!

Speaking of playing, I did get a couple cards done this weekend. Here is one of them...

Let me know what you think...all feedback is much appreciated. I actually cased the general idea for this one from the SCS gallery. just trying to get a handle on what looks good before I design my own--though I did do several tweaks to the original design. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

I figured it out!!

I'm just a little excited. I figured out how to make my own watermark. I know this isn't any large important feat or anything, but I still figured it out! It's always a challenge for me because everyone shows tutorials using Adobe Photoshop software, which I want, but don't have. Instead, I have PhotoImpact Pro that I received as a gift. And because I have it, I can't seem to justify buying the Adobe software just because I'm too lazy to read the info on how to use what I have. Make sense? Haha, probably not. Anyway...I played with the software this morning and figured out how to do it. I've attached it to this page that I did last night. How does it look?? Does someone have any hints on how to better photograph my pages and cards?? My pictures always look poor quality. Maybe I should start using my Nikon D50 more often...I tend to rely on my Kodak Easyshare because it's lighter to carry around. Another thing I need to really learn how to use! I LOVE my's just a little intimidating sometimes...maybe I need to befriend someone with the same camera so they can teach me how to use it properly. I got frustrated with it trying to take pictures when the lighting isn't ideal...they turned out so badly I just gave up with it. Bad, I know. I suppose I could do that today...go get it from it's high place of honor and actually figure that out too...a day of learning how to use my equipment! :-)

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Halloween Pics--Finally

So it took me a few days, but here are some photos from Halloween. We had so much fun trick or treating. Hayley was just the cutest baby ever. She's usually such a scaredy-cat, I was so surprised that she actually participated in the trick or treating, but she LOVED it. It was definitely the highlight of my week. And Will didn't end up having to leave on a trip, so he was home for it too. We ended up meeting up with Caitlynn's bus stop friend, Tori and her Mom (who is VERY chatty). She talked Will's ear off the entire time we walked with the kids. He's so quiet and shy and then there's this woman who did not stop talking. I was very amused by it...he wasn't so much :-). But he was a good sport.

Now on to a weekend full of football...and house cleaning. UGH.
Root for the Colts on Sunday!