Thursday, December 30, 2010

Today marks the first day of Lisa Cohen's Wellness Journey over at BPC. It's not too late to sign up if you are looking at the New Year coming right around the corner and wanting to establish some of those wellness resolutions you are going to make in a few days! Last night I worked on some digital pages that are offered in the pre-class. It's exciting working digitally for a change and documenting my definition of wellness, my role models and my intents for the class! Because of all my fun winter break activities with family, I'm not going to be able to get my pages posted right off, but I'll be back when things settle down and share them with you. I also have some other exciting things to share, but alas, it all must wait until life resumes into normal mode next week. This time with family has been wonderful and very rejuvenating for my soul!

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Winter break!!

I'm taking a break from blogging. If I post, I do, if I don't I don't! I do have a planned post for tomorrow, but that's as far out as I got the other day!
Lots of fun days planned with my family, so I think I'll just post this for my own sake and relieve myself of feeling bad that I'm not keeping up with my blog.
So, Happy Holidays to you!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Family Room Winter Frames

I wanted to share a collage with you this weekend. It shows all the beautiful winter scenes I took in January 2010. One is taken while I was snowshoeing one morning right after the girls went to school. The other 3 were taken on my way in to see my Dad one morning. A beautiful hoar frost had left it's mark and everything was so white against such a blue, blue sky.

Have a wonderful, cozy weekend!

Project Life

I've been having fun putting my Project Life basket together! I found this wonderful video that helped me make sense of all the goodies that came in the package, so I thought I would share it with you in case you too have been intimidated by all the beautiful things and wondering just how to set about getting ready for January 1st (or whenever your start date is going to be).

I have all my journaling and weekly cards sorted. Now I just need to to through and put the weekly cards and month dividers in like Tammy did on her video. Fun!

Here are a few peeks of what I'm up to!

I wanted a special basket to keep all my Project Life goodies in. This way I can keep it up in the dining room and in sight, with easy access. The goal behind this kit it to not have to fuss with embellishments and cutting and pasting. Just pop your picture in, journal on a card and pop that in too! So I don't need to haul anything up from my stamping corner downstairs. Everything I need is right in this basket!! The planner you see holds my "Log Your Memory" journal so I can jot down extra things for my other scrapbooks! I'm unsure if I want to cover it with this fun project or simply leave it in the pretty Franklin Covey binder I bought at Target for it.

Journaling cards:

Title page:

Last page:

I just put these together now just to start playing, but I may change them around as I get as my creativity starts flowing with this project.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Black and White challenge

Lee issued us a very fun black and white challenge! I've been dying to make a monogram card again. Black and white is so elegant for monograms. We received a bonus entry for a prize if we could use a stamp(s) we hadn't used or had not inked up in over 6 months. My poor JustRite stamps qualified for the second reason. They have their own box that they are stored in, "safely" tucked away in my craft corner cupboard. How sad is that? What are they being held safe from??? Sigh.

Stamps: JustRite Damask Borders Monogram Stamper Kit (border around "R") & Special Occasion Monogram Stamper Kit ("R")
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black
Paper: SU Basic black, PTI White,
Accessories: Nesties Eyelet Circles. EK Success photo tabs punch, gems, PTI ribbon, SU corner rounder

Friday FIVE

Let's see, what FIVE fabulous things can I think of today....

1.) Smart Wool socks, so warm and cozy! I can't stand wool against my skin, but these socks don't bother me at all. Just found these fun striped ones this fall.

2.) Inspiration to be better...Brave Girl's Seeing Past what it Seems. I also rec'd this email last evening, The Cab Ride I'll Never Forget. These two posts seem to run hand-in-hand with my thoughts lately. Just today I got upset because the clerk at Aldi was very rushed and "unfriendly" with me. Now, they are usually quick and efficient, but lately this one girl has been extremely so. And I get all huffy myself because as a customer, I don't "deserve" that kind of treatment. But I've really been caused to think more about this lately. There are folks out there that are going through some very painful experiences in life. I want to be careful and show love and compassion. The bible is, above all, my most inspiring book to read and study, and the one I read the most, but I'm thankful for little articles like these that come across my "desktop" and serve as a little seed thought for deeper spiritual lessons.

3.) Puzzle mats. I know, pretty simple, but I just bought one today so we can enjoy working on a puzzle over Christmas break. If they start to drag on, I can easily roll them up and tuck them away until we're ready to tackle them again.

4.) Blogging. I just opened up two new blogs (they are private, sorry!) and one is off to a great start. Having this outlet has unloaded a lot of mental stress to know I can quickly edit and upload a picture and type up some journaling. Then when I do sit down to scrapbook, I can just open my blog and find all the wonderful things I journaled about and may have forgotten the significance of! The 2nd one I started is going to help me with Project Life. I'll post my pictures/journaling and then when the photos finally get developed, I'll have the record in my blog and again, not loose any significant detail I wanted to journal about. Her new kits should be on sale soon. I have last year's kit, totally unused, so I'm ALL set for once. I can't wait to watch this video clip tomorrow on how to set up my book. The reason for the delay in developing is because I use Shutterfly and want to be able to order larger batches of pictures at a time to save on shipping. Their quality can't be matched locally. The clerks at Walmart are very intimidating. Walgreen's will only do glossy at the store. There is a new Hartig. I should look into their photo developing.

5.) YOU!! Thank you for reading my blog! Thank you for leaving comments if/when you can, I appreciate them very much. I'm enjoying the experience. ♥

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Artisan bread, cookies and nature's beauty

I successfully made artisan bread last evening to go with our Minestrone Soup. It was wonderful and super easy to do. I've had this book for quite awhile now. I made the basic bread recipe once before, but broke my stoneware baking sheet so that took the excitement out of it for me. But now I've discovered I can use my cast iron dutch oven. The thought was that it might make a very dark crust on my bread, but it didn't. I took it out of the oven at 20 min instead of the 30 it called for. It was done perfectly.

From this:

To this:

To this: :) One slice was all that was left!

I also baked up some of these delicious treats. Wow, super good if you like chocolate and peanut butter together!!

Then, this morning I was rushing off to check on something and passed our deck door. I slowed down quick and back tracked to enjoy this beautiful site. So vibrant against the white snow! I have put out bird food and suet and have been enjoying all the little birds that come, but this is the first sighting of this beauty. (this winter that is) I love that nature can cause you to slow down!

Now I promise that my next post with have something stampy.
There is a fabulous challenge I want to participate in!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

BPC does it again..

Notice it has changed from BPS (in my previous posts) to BPC...they are now Big Picture Classes. Classy! :) But they have posted yet another fun freebie and it has inspired me to make a quick album of our Christmas break. Now, granted, we don't celebrate Christmas, but we certainly do enjoy our time off together.

**We do an o/n fun something or other
**DH and the girls bake gingerbread cookies, Golden Cups and other yummy treats
**We have company over
**do something fun for a day, like shopping and eating out
**etc, etc...we just simply enjoy being in each other's company if nothing else!

Big Picture Classes

Perfect quote for a picture...

The other night, I stopped in to visit with an elderly friend of ours. She had a Shutterfly book that her granddaughter had put together, and knowing I love pictures, she wanted me to see this beautiful book. Well, I've been freshly inspired. The book was full of beautiful quotes that went perfectly with the pictures. Then last night, I started reading a book and one of the first pages where they put the acknowledgemnts, etc was a page with the quote below.
What a perfect quote for a picture of DD2 and her
beloved stuffed animal, Kitty Cow.
Talk about perfect timing. I can't wait go to get scrappy!!

Here is the quote...

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse.
"It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves
you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but
REALLY loves you, then you become Real."
"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.
"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful.

-The Velveteen Rabbit
Margery Williams

Meet Kitty Cow...

This morning as I was jotting some journalling notes down for a picture I took last evening, I realized I could just open another blog. There I will upload my pictures and journalling. Then when I actually sit down with the developed picture (finally!!), I will have the journalling right beside the picture. Basically, I'm finding a way around all the long-hand writing!! I will do it for the actual scrapbook, but I think that's what keeps me from documenting a lot of life...I don't like scribbling away. By typing, I can keep up with my thoughts much better. Unfortunately, it will be a private blog, because I am not comfortable posting pictures of my family and friends on an open blog. But if I have pictures like "Kitty Cow" above, I will certainly share with you!

I've also started a blog for my Project Life, but that is also private. Again, if there are non-people pictures, I'll be sure and share over here too!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fabulous soup...

I want to share a delicious Minestrone soup recipe. I made this yesterday! It's wonderful and so full of good stuff (beans and veggies that I'm trying to eat more of...)! I used gluten-free noodles and 1/2 chicken broth and 1/2 veggie broth. Enjoy.

Soon, I will be trying this soup. I want to eat more lentils, what a power food. I'll let you know what I thing, I won't be pureeing it. Some reviewers didn't, and I think I would like it better chunky too!

Stay warm!

Out to the coop, Winter 2010

Just having some photo fun today. I've been wanting to work on some collages! This is why I didn't stamp yesterday. I was out shoveling through some huge drifts, so we can get to the chicken coop. I surprised my husband and had it all done for him when he came home last evening. The middle picture on the side shows the huge drifts out by my clothesline...just about reaching the line! Glad I didn't have to shovel through those. I use my shower curtain rods and drying rack for winter-time clothes drying thankyouverymuch!!

Love this...

Monday, December 13, 2010

A few pictures to share of our wintery weekend! My husband and I headed out to help the girls build a fort and some snowmen!
We all LOVE winter so it was great fun!

I got started cutting out squares for the girl's rag quilt totes. DD2 helped me make the "sandwiches", fabric+batting+fabric. The batting is simply stuck on using a glue stick. This is just to keep the squares from moving too much when you sew them.

And some more exciting news over at BPC, Ali Edwards is doing a class on her "one little word" yearly project. This is the first year I am going to participate in this, so I was thrilled to see a class to follow along with. I love Ali's style, so I'm looking forward to everything she shares with us each month.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Free digi image

Stamps: Cup of Cocoa free digi image from Clear Dollar Stamps
Inks: SU Cherry Cobbler
Paper: SU Cherry Cobbler, Creamy Caramel, PTI White
Accessories: Little pearls, stash ribbon, Nesties labels 7, sponge, Cuttlebug embossing folder

Last night, this super cute free digi image (for some reason, I can't find the freebie images now...but here is the link for the same image in a set for $2.50) finally found it's way on to a card. I set out to use this image yesterday afternoon and it just wasn't working for me. Even last evening, it took a few tries to get it just right. Don't know why I had such a creative block with it. I've never used a colored image, but my, it sure makes it easy.

Today I hope to start (and hopefully finish) die cutting the squares for 2 more rag quilt totes for my daughters. Christmas break is coming up all too quick, and the sewing machine will be used by others in this household for their fun projects. My goal is to get my sewing projects done so I can scrapbook over the long break. Cozy!

Friday, December 10, 2010

I HEART snow!

Stamps: GKD Let it Snow (inside sentiment and snowflakes
Paper: SU Cherry Cobbler (again!!), Core'dinations
Ink: Staz On Timber Brown, SU White
Accessories: Snowflake brad (stash item!), Sizzix primitive heart die, stash ribbon, sanding block, SU snowflake embossing folder, corner rounder, sponge

Have you ever started out on a card with an idea in mind and ended up with something else entirely? That happened to me this afternoon. I had a super cute digi image to use and was putting the card together, and all of the sudden I took the image off and immediately saw a CAS opportunity.
And I love how this card simply states my love for winter!

and the inside:
I'm off to enjoy the great white outdoors with DD2. The driveway needs to be cleared of the little snow that is there so we are ready for the next batch coming this weekend!

Friday FIVE

1.) Fun gift ideas. My daughters would love these for their rooms! Photoworks Wall Clings

2.) Humor...
3) Creativity at it's finest, WOW! Christmas Family Greetings Video . And here's a post about "Behind the Scenes". What talent to behold! Check out his other video's one of which just totally put me in awe, what an awesome family keepsake, Family Portrait. I would love try this with our extended family; don't know if I could pull it off or not (and when are we all going to be together next??)

4.) Pomegranates. My daughter and I love them. Just took apart two of them, so we're ready for a weekend of healthy munching!

5.) Dimension. I have seen so many gorgeous cards lately, and the one thing I love the most is all the dimension to them. Yesterday I finally made one of my own. It was a new feeling to me to think "up and off" the paper.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Stamps: PTI Friendship Jar Holiday Fillers, GKD Got Snow?
Inks: SU Poppy Parade, Staz On Black
Paper: SU Baja Breeze, River Rock, PTI Rustic Snowflakes, Vellum
Accessories: Corner rounder punch, scallop border punch, Nesties Labels 14, PTI buttons, Cuttlebug Embossing folder, SU Poppy Parade ribbon, hand-held rectangle punch, sponge, Flower Soft, Stickles, Copics

Wow! This card took ALL afternoon to make! As you've noticed, I have not been keeping up with my creative therapy every day, and so, the mojo really does slow down. Plus it's that TOM when concentration is at it's l-o-w-e-s-t. But it's finally done, and I'm pleased with the outcome. I participated in SCS's Way to Use It challenge, Something old, Something new. The current hostess Julia S. is stepping down and another hostess, Kim Hughes going to be our hostess! Today's challenge was a collection of all the WT challenges that have been hosted! You could pick one or many. In making this card, I didn't have any in mind, but after it was completed, I realized I used many of them! Glitter (WT02), Vellum (WT03), Tags (WT07), Ribbon (WT09), Buttons (WT11), Pop dots/dimensionals (WT15), Sponges (WT17), Printed Paper (WT39), Sentiments (WT42), Cutting Corners (WT66), & Product Parade (new new PTI set I hadn't really played with yet!) (WT90).
AND, I also participated in the weekly sketch challenge too, SC310.
No wonder it took me all afternoon, LOL!
It was fun to dig out my vellum again. Haven't used that on a card in a long time. And I played with my Flower Soft some more, putting it around the edge of my snowman nestie layer.

and the inside:

And isn't this pretty? A DF gave me this lighted branch. I was wandering around my corner with it and discovered it would fit right down inside my card display holder. What a beautiful display it makes.

And that's it for your Thursday fix!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

OH you like free things?? Big Picture Classes has a great free class coming up. "Embrace Imperfection" with Karen Grunberg. This sounds like something I definitely would benefit from!!

Crazy day here today. I was gone most of the morning and now my girls are home with an early release. Off to bake some chocolate chip cookies...with no nuts. DD1 has a friend over and that is her request. Along with some hot cocoa of course; they've been out sledding.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Nutcracker Inspired

OK, enough of no blogging. I must admit I fell off my balanced schedule. Time to get back on the creative band wagon. I've got projects galore, plus I discovered something new I would love to try my little hands at and it has to do with this beautiful site, Living Felt. YIKES!! But I won't let myself until I can get my already HUGE project list down to something more manageable.

I'm working on setting up my Project Life bin so I'm ready for January 1st.

Also thought up my "one little word" for 2011...I'll share it at the beginning of the new year just in case I change my mind between now and then!

And I'm working on my photos, 15 min at a time.

Also, I bought a few more pieces of fabric so I can get started on the girls rag quilt totes. I needed two more designs for DD1's. Now I'm ready to start the assembly-line style work of getting two totes done at once.

So see, I don't need another hobby quite yet.

I made this card Saturday for SCS's Free for All challenge, The Nutcracker Suite. I have this glorious pad of Thomas Kinkade papers (from Cornish Heritage Farms who are not in business anymore....boohoo), and this little scene seems to have the music playing in the background on the streets. Our Main St. does that during the holiday shopping season, music playing all down the street. Quite festive!

Stamps: A Year of Flowers (GKD) for inside background image, SU Holidays & Wishes (sentiment inside)
Paper: SU Cherry Cobbler, Garden Green, Thomas Kinkade Christmas Series DP
Supplies: MM Poinsettia, SU ribbon, naildheads (from GKD), Cuttlebug Holly embossing folder, ticket corner punch, corner rounder & sponge (inside)

and the inside:

And just for a smile, I'll share these cute lil' mugs my SIL sent us recently. They are similar to the ones she and my husband drank out of kids (and still do when are visiting home. Except our girls use them.) Aren't they just a hoot? I guess they are vintage Kool Aid cups. She found them at a garage sale and let out quite a scream of glee upon her discovery!!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Paper: Kraft, GKD Ivory
Stamps: GKD Winter Wings and Lovely Labels 2 (sentiment),
Winter Foliage (pine boughs at top)
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, SU Cherry Cobbler
Accessories: Copics, Crystal Effects, Flower Soft, Nesties Labels 16, misc ribbon from stash, Stickles, hand held rectangle punch, sponge

This cardinal tag was made for Carolina's tag challenge during Gina K's release party. It took me longer to make this than it does to make a card LOL!! Smaller scale things always do that to me! But it was a very fun, creative process, I would like to make some more soon.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Sympathy cards

Well, I'm no longer anticipating needing them, I just plain need them. This card I made last evening to play along with GKD's Release Party. The challenge was to use 12 embellishments! At first, I said "WHAT?????", but then I got to working on it and wah-la, look what happened...exactly 12 embellishments (4 pearls, 6 rhinetones, sizzix swirls, ribbon)
on a soft and caring card.

Paper: PTI Kraft & Ivory, SU Perfect Plum
Inks: SU Perfect Plum, Always Artichoke
Stamps: SU Close as a Memory
Accessories: Gems, SU Ivory ribbon, Nesties ovals, Sizzlit Swirls die, pearls, ticket corner punch, Cuttlebug emboss folder

and the inside...

Friday FIVE

1.) GLUE DOTS. I really, really don't think I could live without them. I use them on everything. They are especially nice for layers of paper that have been embossed with my Cuttlebug. I put one in each corner to help keep the layer down. I love Stampin' Up's, but sometimes I run out before I'm ready to place another order, so I was thrilled to find them at Hobby Lobby.
My daughters love using them too! :)

2.) DECORATING FOR A NEW SEASON. Oh how I LOVE to pull out all my snowmen and pine boughs. I always save it for the Friday after Thanksgiving! I could easily do it before, long before, but each season must be savored!! My favorite scent for winter is Yankee Candle Sparkling Pine or Balsam and Cedar.

3.) Huge square paint "chips". These are not the ones I'm using, but you'll get the idea of what they are. Our local Farm & Fleet store has something simliar for their line of Benjamin Moore paints. They are super for putting up on the walls and studying from a distance!

4.) This new app I found. I love being "coached". It's made a huge difference already in my running energy. The day before yesterday I couldn't believe it when he announced "This is your final 60 sec run."

5.) And this app is helping me on my off run days to get my push-ups in.
It's so nice to have the timer built right in!

I'm gearing up for my Wellness Journey and these pictures
will come in handy when I get ready to scrapbook my journey!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Gina K Designs Release party TONIGHT!

Woohoo, there's a release party tonight with Gina K and her team! I had totally forgotten and now I'm totally excited, and am going to whiz through the rest of the day getting things done so I can PLAY tonight!

Inspiration rules

I love finding beautiful cards through my various blog hops and wanting to just jump right up and CASE them! This was one of those cards! I love Lisa's style. And I've been neglecting my PTI stamps lately! This card was made for a thank you card challenge.

Paper: PTI Kraft, SU So Saffron, PTI Ivory
Stamps: SU Wonderful You, PTI 209 Autumn Tags, SU All Scallops (inside)
Ink: SU Soft Suede, So Saffron, PTI Chamomile
Accessories: misc ribbon from stash, small pearls, Nesties circles, sponge, Score Pal (inside)

And here's the inside:

Then I needed to make some Sympathy cards to have on hand. I hate to think that I'm anticipating needing them, but I am. I'm so thankful that I can think of our dear friends in need and remember the peace and comfort I felt because of the prayer's of others when my own mom was dying. It's a wonderful reassurance.

This card was also a result of some more awesome inspiration on Lisa's blog!

Paper: SU Rose Red, Always Artichoke, PTI Ivory
Stamps: SU Garden Silhouettes & All Scallops, PTI Background Basics Text Style,
PTI Everyday Classics

Ink: SU Rose Red, Soft Suede
Accessories: Linen thread, hole punch, SU border punch, tearing edge, sponge, Nesties Labels 14

And here is how I made the second one my own. The stem didn't quite reach to the bottom and looked like it was I grounded it under another layer! Take that! :)

And here's the inside of both cards

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Random fun while I'm sewing!

I finished my Kindle Clutch last evening. It had been a busy day, so I didn't get my creative oasis until after supper. But it felt just as good! One sewing project done. And DD1 asked me right away when I was going to get their rag quilt tote bags done. Up next! I put the material in the washer just before I went to bed.

I also made another card on Saturday that I didn't upload. I made it for the Inspirational challenge over at GKD and then didn't like the end result for that particular challenge!

Paper: SU Marina Mist, Cherry Cobbler, Kraft, DP: Bella Road "Wintertime" Snowfun kit
Inks: Chocolate Chip (!), Cherry Cobbler (sponging)
Stamps: GKD Have a Cookie! (Melanie Muenchinger), Hero Arts Stitched Ribbon
Supplies: SU Photo corners extra lg punch, SU scallop border punch

And the inside:

Here are some fun goodies I found online recently:

Free fun printables Cute little gingerbread people with greetings "Baked with Love". DH and my daughters love baking gingerbread people. I don't enjoy it at all; I just don't enjoy decorating cakes, cookies, etc. So this is their fun time together over Christmas break! But these little tags will be perfect for the girls to sign and stick inside their baggies of goodies for DFs.

Bakarella book fun would this be (deadline is TODAY)! And while you're over there, check these out, the random sweet of the day, Mini Maple Pancake Muffins.
YUM! That should taste good for breakfast tomorrow! :) has a fun video clip to watch, "Always Sunny in Here".
Guaranteed to make you smile!

Also, remember I talked about Big Picture Classes? Well, during the holiday season they will be giving back the proceeds from every class we sign up for! Wow!
Such a cool site, chock full of fun classes!
They also have a gift certificate special going on.

And don't forget to blop hop through Gina K's team! They are giving away 4 new release stamp sets to randomly selected comments from all the blogs!! The new Mugs and Kisses set is looking like a must-have on my list.
What's your favorite so far?