Thursday, March 31, 2011

Anna's Creations

This past Monday, Anna was out of school. I asked her what she wanted to do. Her response? Make cards! So, we sat at my desk and started crafting. The two of us sat together and just rummaged through the scraps I had laying on my desk and in baggies that I had put aside. She want to make a couple birthday cards. This one is for my niece, Lucy, who will be 4 on April 4th. Lucy is having a "zoo animal" party, so this card is perfect! It was all part of Anna's plan! This one is for *me*... aren't I lucky!? My birthday is on April 6. She wouldn't let me see the inside, but didn't mind that I saw the front. ;)
This is the one I made. It's not as fantastic as Anna's cards, but I am still learning from her. ;)

And, even Elan joined in the card making fun, but I regret to inform you that I forgot to take a picture of his creation. His card is piled up with festive goodies!

So, if you would be kind enough, please leave Miss Anna (she is six) some crafty LOVE! She gets so giddy when people comment on her craftiness!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My holly's not so jolly...

This week the Jingle Belles are rockin' it again with a fantastic prompt... "Holly and Ivy." I'll be honest, I don't have anything that remotely looks like ivy and I only have one holly stamp, and I usually use it for tags, and I couldn't think outside the box for some reason. What to do, what to do... make your own holly... with felt, buttons, and glitter, oh my!

I *like* this card, but I don't love it. Notice the BIG, F A T boo-boo? I stitched one of the leaves wrong... ahhh! I tried to redeem myself by adding red buttons for berries and showering them with glitter. Still, all I can see is non-uniform stitching. It's all good though, I'll send it to someone that won't notice, or at least someone that can't see well.

On a side note: the one thing I keep going back to to make my weekly holiday card is the Basic Grey "Jovial" paper pad. I love it and goes with pretty much any theme you work with. I love the prints and plaids!

And one more thing... It has been very easy for me to crank out these holiday cards each week. Why? Not only because Jingle Belles has great prompts, awesome sketches, and so forth, but I also have ALL of my Christmas stuff in one folder. That's right... paper, stickers, rub-ons, and embellishments are neatly gathered in a plastic folder for scrapbooking. So, when I'm ready to tackle the Jingle Belles challenge, all I need to do is reach for the holiday folder and BAM! A card is born.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Being Awesome

Hello, friends in blogland. Thought I would share this layout I did a while back... I submitted it to a couple design teams and a couple scrap calls and unfortunately, it didn't get picked up or given the "wow" I was hoping for! I think it's pretty great: Nothing really that spectacular, but I thought the spray ink and glittered buttons were a good effort of making mock fireworks! Sometimes, you have to be your own biggest fan... I am so okay with that! Here's a close up of the fireworks: I think I love my scrapbookk layouts because of the photos, not so much the design. Of course, I love the patterned papers and embellishments, but the pictures really tell the story and bring back the memories- that's what's important. Don't you think? And for all of you out there that haven't gotten that super cute card picked up in a call or had that totally awesome layout printed in a magazine or made the design team you wished to get picked for... Don't Give Up! You ROCK! That's right, you are creative and spirited and you enjoy the craft just because. And when you do get picked... Woo-hoo! But until then, I'll be an abnoxious cheerleader for you and me both! And while we are on the subject of being awesome... check me and my sister-in-law, Lara out: The Papa John's 10 Miler was this past Saturday. We did great, never gave up, ran those hills while cussing and belting out some Cake and Michael Jackson tunes. We ran our 10 minute miles and had a ball doing it. At this moment, it's not so fun going up and down steps since my thighs hurt so bad, but hey, what an accomplishment! I feel like a superhero! Until next time, you go, girl! Get out there and be your own biggest fan... we are awesome!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Etsy Inspired

I found the challenge blog from a friend I follow... it's called Etsy Inspired Challenge. I {love} Etsy, so I was sure I would love the challenge! This week, the challenge was to find a photo from the Etsy shop Fresh Metal Jewelry and create something that the photo inspired. I chose this photo: How gorgeous is this rosette necklace? Check out the Fresh Metal shop... you won't be disappointed! :) This is what the shops photo inspired me to create:
I love it! The paper and journaling card is from GCD Studio. The crepe paper is Jeni Bowlin, rhinestone is Recollections from Michael's and the ribbon is from my stash. Simple, but pretty darn effective. I'm just sayin'. ;)

Go visit Fresh Metal and pick out some inspiration!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Papertrey March Blog Hop Challenge

The March Papertrey challenge is to use embroidery floss! I love to stitch on my cards and scrapbook pages, so this was a very fun challenge for me. First, I used my new Martha Stewart score pal and embossed the outer edges of my card. Then, I added the two patterned papers and following the "x" design in the paper on the top half, I decided to do a cross stitch pattern with my floss. I die cut the butterfly in raspberry fizz felt and punched another to layer. Lastly, I stamped my sentiment in chocolate ink.
Can't wait to gawk at everyone else's projects!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Gettin' Sketchy...

Hello again! Here is a quick card I did following the Get Sketchy sketch for this week:

I really like that bicycle sticker from Martha Stewart and it came in a pack of 6- 3 of them have banana seats... :). The sentiment and swirl stamps are American Crafts and the polka dot border is Papertrey Ink. Background paper is K&Co., Sweet Nectar paper pad- which I LOVE.

This was the sketch:
Hope you are "celebrating sunshine" wherever you are... it's storming here.

For the love of card making...

Oh, how I adore this card... the design, the colors, the embellishments. Jingle Belles has definitely become one of my favorite weekly challenges! I love their prompts, sketches, inspiration and the instant gratification of getting a card done in 25% of the time it would take to do a layout. AND, I'm totally getting a huge stash of Christmas cards done! Here's the sketch they used for this weeks prompt:
I am diggin' this sketch. I am saving it for future reference... I can totally see a birthday card in the making very soon!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Saturday Runs

Last Saturday was the Rodes City Run- a 6.2 mile race, the second leg of the Triple Crown of Running. The race was sold out with 9,100 bib numbers. Runners and walkers lined up downtown for as far as the eye could see...
Here I am at about 5.5 miles. I had to cheer for myself since Stephen was the photographer and the kids were talking to Uncle Nate.

I did it! Crossing the finish line felt great! It was the farthest I had ever run and I felt so good that I had accomplished the race with ease!

The best running buddies a girl could ask for... notice that Nate doesn't have a bead of sweat on him. What the?! AND he talked to us the entire run! Of course a six mile run at a comfy pace was like going grocery shopping for him!
After the race, they had a kids Fun Run. All three of the kiddos participated and they had a ball! I can't wait to scrap the pictures of them running!
The family that plays together, stays together. Go Team!
So, after the race last weekend, I needed a couple of days to rest my burning thighs. I ran again on Wednesday and then picked up a long run with my brother, Adam this morning. Seriously, he about killed me. We ran 8 miles of hills and friends, he TALKED THE ENTIRE RUN! All I could do was an out of breath "yea" for most of the conversation. I cursed him for taking me on every hill in the city, and his response? "Train on hills and you'll be prepared for hills." What the? I am no IronWoman competitor, nor do I wish to be. So, dear brother, take it easy on me next time! Hope I can get out of bed in the morning for church!
The last leg of the Triple Crown is coming up a week from today. The Papa John 10 Miler- and it is going to be tough. The course is through Iroquois Park... all H-I-L-L-S. Ugggh...

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Spring has sprung!

I decided to try out for the guest design spot for April at Sketchy Thursdays. I followed the sketch and was also instructed to use spring colors- no problem! So ready for spring...
This layout, I am in love with. It just screams happiness! The patterned paper is from the new line called "Daily Junque" and the frame is fabric, from Little Yellow Bicycle. Then I added velvet ribbon, die cuts, butterflies and buttons.
Happy Spring! It's sunny and 75 degrees here!
Uh, actually, Happy St. Patrick's Day! ;) I am so lucky!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"Cool" Christmas

That's right, two post in one night! I'm on fire! Woo-hoo!
Jingle Belles had this prompt for the week:I looked at the picture and thought: "The colors are nice, but a tad boring. And the picture? Ho-hum and plain." I'll be honest people, it didn't really inspire me- especially for a Christmas card. But, I was not going to skip a card making opportunity to increase the volume of Christmas greetings. So, I went for it.
And you know what? I love it. It's simple, clean, easy and fresh. Just like the picture and just like the colors. Thank you, Jingle Belles, for the challenge. Isn't that really why we all play along? :)
Have a good night!

A Two Pager!

This week, Sketchy Thursdays had a 2 page layout sketch! Usually, I hate doing a 2 pager because it typically takes twice as long. However, this time I was into it because I had some great pictures of Anna at her sixth birthday party. I always save an invitation to include in my layouts. (I also make the invitations myself... which explains the trendy banners!)
Here's the sketch... which was intimidating at first:

And my take:Here are the pages individually:

How cute is that banner paper from My Minds Eye? It matches my invitation perfectly! This is one of my favorite pictures of Anna, she is wearing the pinata as a hat!

So, I'm just making the sketch challenge entry by the hair of my chiney-chin-chin! It's been crazy busy around here! Not to mention that I decided last night to rip down the wallpaper in my giant foyer. What was I thinking?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

A few more rejects...

Moving right along with the head held high, in good spirit of rejection, here are a few more cards from the latest Paper Crafts submission call that weren't picked up. I can't remember which sketch I used to create these cards, but they were rejected! So, I will share them here, with you...

That's all for today... my morning was spent in a meeting and running errands, so I need to get some laundry done! Have a good afternoon!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Paper Smooches Cards!

Hello there! It's a rainy day... perfect for snuggling or crafting! I am working on an awesome project for a friend right now, I'll share more when it's done.

Today, I want to share two more cards I made for the Paper Smooches chance to be the guest design spot for April. Both the shamrock and the sentiment "lucky to have you" are *FREE!* They are digital images, so you can make them however big or small you want. Click here for your free images.

On this card, I used a scrap of printed transparency and I love how it added to the grid look: On this one, I colored the shamrock with Copics first, then added some green Stickles. I stamped "Good luck" in Smokey Shadow ink- both from Papertrey Ink.

If you have a chance to play along with the challenge... do! The images are super cute! And, if you get picked, you get 2 free stamp sets and 2 card templates! I just ordered my first set and I'm so excited!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

New Specs...

Mac just got glasses last week. We didn't know he couldn't see until he started squinting... poor little fella is near sighted. He was awesome getting his eyes checked and he even took his time choosing his glasses. Thankfully, I had my camera at the optical store! With my wicked printer, I cranked out this layout in no time flat!
I used lots of Studio Calico odds and ends and random paper: Pink Paisley, Jenni Bowlin, and Sassafrass. The Sketchy Thursdays sketch is what I used as my template:
Lovin' the way it turned out... it's hanging in my studio!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Home for the Holidays

It's unusual that I post twice in one day, but Anna is home sick with strep throat. So, in between loads of laundry, making chicken noodle soup and fetching juice, popsicles and Motrin, I have been paper crafting! Yay! I even go a couple layouts done (which I will post tomorrow).

Here is a card I did for the Jingle Belles this week: Their prompt was "home for the holidays." I used the 2010 October Afternoon holiday paper and sticker and just so happen to have this scalloped velvet ribbon leftover from one of my Studio Calico kits- it matches perfectly! The text paper is Jenni Bowlin- sitting on my desk from a layout I did earlier today. :)

I played along with Card Patterns this week too. This is their sketch:
So, a good sketch, and darn good holiday prompt, and voile! A fun holiday card is born.
Enjoy your evening!

Rally With Rejects!

One of my goals this year is to get published. So, I decided to submit at least 2 projects per month and see what happens. So far, nothing has been picked up, but that doesn't mean I am going to quit trying! I love what I submit and really, that's all that matters.

Just recently, I submitted several cards to the call for the *now closed* Paper Craft's magazine Go To Sketch's issue. I love working with a sketch, so I had fun making my cards! There were almost 3,000 cards submitted to this call, so there were bound to be loads of rejects... which is why I am participating in Amber's {Damask Love} "reject card blog hop." I love Amber's idea to come together and share the cards that didn't get picked... a "rally" of sorts, if you will!

This is probably my favorite card of the bunch that I submitted, based on sketch #49:

If you have a card you submitted to this call that didn't get picked, join in the fun HERE.
Better luck next time... never give up! :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Paper Smooches!

Paper Smooches is a new stamp company designed by Kim Hughes. You may know Kim from all her great work you see in Paper Crafts magazine. She is having a guest designer call for next month, so I decided to play along! You should to! Visit HERE for all the details!

This is my *first* card... I have two others that I will link up tomorrow.

I love this bird image! And, you know what? It's a FREE digital image from Paper Smooches! I love it paired with this October Afternoon paper and the sentiment stamp is from Hero Arts.

Have a great Sunday!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Fun with Foam!

Good morning, friends. Just a quick, short post today to show a couple cards I made with fun foam. The Papertrey Ink "Make It Monday" challenge was to use fun foam in a creative way. I did some die cutting here:
and here, not only did I do a die cut, but sewed a little heart too:
Fun foam is very easy to cut, sew and craft with. This was a great challenge... I would have never brought out the kids fun foam for one of my projects! :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Mac, my now 8 year old, started loving superheros when he was about 2. He had on a "super suite" or cape on every single day. He played the part too... jumping off steps, using a deep voice, rescuing stuffed animals or poor Wrigley. He has since grown out of dressing up, but still very much likes superhero's.
I had ordered this Amuse Superhero stamp to make his fifth birthday party invitations and thank you notes and I love it. I came across it the other day and a lightbulb came on...
That's right... a PINK Superhero, and the "A" is for "Awesome" or "Amanda." I'm feeling pretty super'ish right now... I just signed up for the *now closed* Chicago Marathon. So excited to have an even bigger goal ahead of me. A closer look...

My pink super boots have glitter on them to make me run faster! My belt has a green rhinestone that I can push to give me energy! Oh yea, I can totally get into the Superhero act...
I stamped "the sky is the limit" on the inside because I really believe that if you set your mind to something, you will accomplish it. Once I jump, it's with both feet.
Have a super day!

Supplies: Paper: My Little Shoebox, American Crafts; Cloud Die, Felt and Sentiment: Papertrey Ink; Superhero Stamp: Amuse; Coarse Glitter: Martha Stewart; Copics

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Text Me!

My husband wouldn't be very happy if all my crafty, blog friends texted me... he got me an iPhone for Christmas and jokingly, he made the "cha-ching" sound every time I got a text that day! It was quite exciting because my phone before (that I had for 7 years) didn't text! Anyway, I LOVE my iPhone and I also love to text! ;)

Anyway, the Jingle Belles prompt this week is "Text Me!" I think paper with text is so cute, trendy and sometimes nostalgic. So fun to use for so many different projects...

Let's have a closer look at that beaded tree, shall we?

I wish I could say I made that sweet, glittery tree, but I'd be lyin'. It's from Meri Meri. BUT... you and I could totally make this tree with a stencil and some DesignaTac sticky paper. Maybe I'll make a bunch and stick 'em in the Etsy shop!

You wanna know why I love making holiday cards in advance? Besides the fact that I get to actually enjoy making each one without a rush, and spend time lovingly making each one, it's the fact that I can use up my scraps. Not all holiday cards and pages have to be made with "holiday" supplies! All the items in the card above (besides the fancy tree) is a leftover scrap from something else. The text paper with "happy holidays" on it is the only Christmas item I used. The rest... scraps! The finished card is 4.5x6.25 inches.

Now, go on and be a Jingle Belle and make a holiday card!