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Project Life: Week Forty-Eight

Good afternoon! Today I'm sharing Week 48. Is anyone else obsessed with taking pictures of the snow and the frosty trees? Seriously, I'm going through my photos for Week 49, and I'm realizing how many photos I actually take when the trees are covered in frost. They're just so pretty! I love winter (most of the time).

This week I used the We R Memory Keepers (WRMK) Blackboard cards. I really wanted to use the "sweater weather is better weather" card from Studio Calico, and they were the closest match I had. Plus with all the snow, I wanted to have some white journaling.

Here's the left side. I probably should have used a plain black title card (I may still change it), but I added the title with white foam alphas, and then wrote the dates below it and added some snowflakes with my white gel pen. I included a couple photos of the snow, and photos of our new sign we made for work (it's been smudged in a few places since we made it).

Here's the right side. We had a bit of a blizzard, which meant more snow. I decided to display one of the three sets of string trees I made. I bought a beautiful tiered star thing from the local yardsale page. I haven't decided on a use for it yet, but I want to find a way to possibly display it year round (and a place to display it of course). I included a photo of the craftroom, and a close up of a layout I recently made, that Jon and I think is funny. I included a few details from the story his dad told me about this particular photo.

I feel that it's definitely important to include things that made you laugh, or smile. It may not seem very important, but when you look back on it, you'll probably still think it's funny. There's a few things we thought were so funny earlier this year and when we look back at them, I'm kinda like "We said things like that? What in the world were we thinking?" and then we just laugh about the fact that we talked like that.

Sorry this post is a little later, I worked on it the other night and thought I'd finished, until I came to work on another post (clearly I'm losing my mind!).
Have a great day!


Project Life: Week Forty-Six & Forty-Seven

Today I'm sharing week 46 & 47. Both weeks had very few photos so I combined them into a two page spread. I've had weeks where I had one page and half of an insert, but never one single page for two weeks in a row.

This week I used 5th & Frolic, and one card from Studio Calico. My 5th & Frolic was just sitting there, calling to me and saying "Hey, you haven't included me in too many of your spreads lately. How about you do these two weeks with just me!". It doesn't match my photos very well, but I'm pleased with how it turned out.

Here's the left side. This is week 46. This week wasn't very eventful, mostly just work, and  the bottom left card is journaling about how Socks was lost, then found.
We have a girl from work staying in our basement, and when she left for work at 7:30am he got out. She didn't tell anyone until she got to work at 8:00am, and they told her she needed to call us ASAP. So she called Jon, and he woke me up and we did a couple laps of the block, checked the yard, under the cars, etc. There was some fresh snow so we followed some kitty tracks into the neighbors yard, and then they mixed with a dozen other kitty tracks. We eventually got too cold to keep looking, and Jon had to run to work, so we went for breakfast. I posted on the local yardsale page, and a few other local pages, asking people to keep an eye out for him. Later that afternoon my mom walked over and told me she heard a weird noise in my garage. We went out to investigate and found Socks hiding in the rafters. Apparently my cat hates Jon (he sprays him with water when he's bad) which would explain why he didn't make a sound when Jon was calling for him. He wasn't too cold, but he was exceptionally dirty. His little white feet were brown, and he was so excited to see my mom (of course). I was just glad he wasn't frozen somewhere.

Here's the right side. This is week 47. I baked with my niece, but didn't take any photos of us baking, so I included photos of the mess I had to clean up when I got home from work that night, and journaled about baking with her.

I print my photos on Matte photo paper. I think its from Kodak, it very much resembles cardstock, and I just use my white gel pen to write on my photos. Others add text in photoshop and simply print them off with their journaling on the photo.

Thanks for coming by! When you don't have enough photos for a two page spread do you combine weeks, or add other things to fill up the space?

Have a great day!


Creative & Personal Goals for 2015

I have a very strong dislike of  "resolutions". You know the ones that last for the first few days of the new year, at most a week or two, and then you're back to your old habits, and at the end of the year you make the same resolution again, and this happens year after year. This post, is not a resolution. It's just some goals I'd like to achieve, both personally, and creatively.

Throughout the second half of this year, I've been following Kellie over at Give a Girl a Blog, and seeing her monthly goals, inspired me to make a short list of things I want to achieve throughout next year. When I did my 30 Days of Me mini album (here) in September, at the end I included some goals, and I still have them, but a few I wanted to share here so I could be accountable for them.

Writing them down helps, so here goes:

Creative Goals:
  • Create more 
    • I want to branch out of just doing cards and Project Life and learn to crochet, do more traditional pages, make mini albums just because I have a bunch of photos I love.
  • Share my creations 
    • I share pretty well everything that I make on here, but I need to get better at posting them to my Facebook page, and other social media. On Instagram when I share little supply hauls, sneak peeks, or even finished projects, I use the the hashtag #operationcreatemore for the simple reason of keeping track of my projects, and my desire to create more things.
  • Open an Etsy shop 
    • Something I've wanted to do since I first began making cards, was to open an Etsy shop. I continuously debate it back and forth in my head, and I've finally decided that as long as I start small and don't stretch myself too thin, I think this is something I could do. I don't want to limit myself, but I also don't want to overwhelm myself and give up after a short time.
  • Step outside my comfort zone
    • Up until the beginning of this month, I'd never made invitations for anything. I'd been asked to make Wedding invites by a couple people waiting to get engaged, but other than that, I'd never made invitations. I don't know why, but it was something that scared me a little. I know how indecisive and picky people can be, and I didn't want to make something they hated and have to do it over and over again only to have them decide they didn't want it at all. Lucky for me, my first experience with invitations went extremely well. I made a sample and she loved it immediately
  • Learn something new
    • This is different than stepping outside my comfort zone. I want to learn to crochet. I bought this little Woodland crochet pattern book, and I want to learn to make all the little creatures inside of it. Crocheting isn't scary to me, it's just something that I didn't have an interest in because I know so many people that know how to crochet, so it seemed like something that would be a waste to learn. Being able to make these things myself and not have to pay someone to make them for me, makes a lot more sense to me. There are certain things I don't think I'll be making anytime soon (hats, scarves, blankets, etc.) because everyone I know that crochets can make them, but I'd like to learn to make a few other things for myself. 
  • Make more mini albums
    • I love mini albums. I love looking at mini albums. I've only made and completed on or two mini albums. I love the small size, and that you're only including a few photos from an event, or you're including all the photos from the event that didn't make it into your other album. I just have so much fun doing them, that I feel like I need to make more of them next year. Given that one of my Project Life Goals was to be more selective with my photos, more mini albums are a great idea.
  • Finish at least 1 unfinished project per month
    •  I have a closet full of projects I started, or supplies I bought with a project in mind that I just never finished. I have a canvas on the shelf in my closet, that I drew a picture on, but for the last year and a half, it's just sat there waiting for me to paint it. I have project life albums from 2011-2013 that I've been trying to get through. When I first started working on them, they went really quickly, but I'm down to the last few unfinished pages in each, and I keep getting stuck on them.
  • Create a more organized space and reduce the clutter
    • This year I took Marcy Penner's Workshop class from Studio Calico. I took it in an attempt to go through my STUFF and get myself more organized so I can be more productive. I constantly find myself with a desk overflowing with supplies, and given that its 8 feet long, having only 1 foot of work space is an issue I'd like to solve.
  • Stop hoarding
    • You know when you find something you really like, to the point where you don't want to use it because you just like it so much. Or you like it so much that you buy more than one of it, but you really only needed one. I do this all the time. In my head I'm going "but what if I want to use it more than once?" The truth is that if I buy one, I simply don't use it, so it just sits there collecting dust, but if I buy multiples, I use one and the rest sit there collecting dust. I'm so afraid of buying something, using it, and wanting to use it again later on, that I let it sit there until I either forget I have it, or something new makes me feel that way and I forget I ever felt that way about that particular product.
Personal Goals: 
  • Eat healthier and excercise
    • I know this sounds like one of those resolutions I hate so much. But this is something that I really do want. I want to meal plan, and make healthy dinners that I can freeze and take to work, or pull out and cook at home. When work was closed, we missed the food, and now I miss being in college and eating healthy. It's a little sad that while I was eating healthy food my mom usually bought me, all my college friends were eating frozen dinners their moms made them, or Kraft Dinner. 
  • Get my license
    • This is a big one for me. I've had my learner's since I was 14, and I had to renew it when I was in college. I really don't want to have to renew it again, but unless a miracle happens in the next two years, I'm probably going to have to. Driving is something that has always scared me a little bit. Every time I got behind the wheel (except once) was forced upon me against my will, and then I was criticized profusely for being terrible at it. Not exactly the kind of encouragement one needs when learning something they've never done, in a vehicle that could potentially kill them and everyone else in it. After that, I simply refused to drive. I opted for walking everywhere instead, and walked the 30 minutes to the college every day I lived in the city, bought groceries only when my mom came up, and either had her come up to get me when I was going home for the weekend, or caught a ride with a friend from my hometown who also lived in the city
  • Operation be happy
    • This year, on September 22/23 I started the 100 Happy Days project. Next year, my goal is to simply keep a list of things that make me happy. I want to keep it simple, and therefore it will probably just be a collection of scrap papers in a box in my closet, but lately I feel that I've been so busy focusing on the negative, that next year I want to focus on more positive things.


Baby Shower Invitations - Ahoy! It's a Boy!

I can't believe it's already the second week of December! Christmas is only 13 days away, and I'm so excited to spend some quality time with my family, and eat my fill of Turkey and other foods I only get around Christmas time. Unfortunately I haven't been working on too many Christmas-y things lately. I'm slowly getting into the later weeks of my Project Life, last week I finished up some baby shower invitations (which I'm sharing below), and I've been working a bunch, trying to get the house slowly decorated for Christmas. Last week we put up the tree and a few decorations, I'm still trying to decide what I want to put up and where I want everything. I'm so indecisive, but since we don't have anyone coming over for Christmas, it doesn't really matter.

Here's the adorable baby shower invite. They went for a whale/nautical theme. I'm so pleased with how it turned out, and not to toot my own horn, but it turned out amazing! Considering I don't have photoshop, or any other editing type program, I made the text portion in Word using a bunch of text boxes so I could position the text exactly where I wanted it. It was time consuming, but totally worth it!

A close up of the little whales. I cut them using my cricut (which I haven't used in what feels like forever). I was originally going to do one, but it was too empty, so I put two.

A close up of the anchor, and wheel strung on twine across the top half. Originally I wasn't going to use the eyelets, but I felt they were important to help the twine from pulling too much on the hole.

A close up of the paper texture mostly. I love the dots embossed on the blue paper. It adds to the nautical/whale theme!Thanks for coming by to check out these invites! I imagine there will be more of them coming in the future!

Have a great day!


Project Life: Week Forty-Five

Good afternoon. I'm a little bit late with this post. Yesterday was a busy day, and I had meant to photograph this spread yesterday morning before my niece came over, and then work on the post after she left. Long story short, I didn't do either of those things. Instead I slept in, showered and played the new Captain Toad game for Wii U. It's so much fun, but also a huge time suck. So this morning I skipped Captain Toad and photographed this spread. But then I played a bit of Captain Toad while the photos were uploading, and let's just say I forgot to work on the post. But I'm doing it now, so that's what counts right?

This week I used Studio Calico, Midnight, and Dear Lizzy. I'm not sure yellow was the right choice for this week, given that it snowed, but I wanted to use that november card, and it tied in the yellow from the popcorn, and the antlers.

Here's the left side. My weeks start on Sunday, so this was the trip home after the funeral. It rained until about half way home, then it turned immediately into winter. We came over a hill, and suddenly snow, and lots of it!

Here's the right side. This was mostly about the middle of the week and our trip to Edmonton for my birthday. We shopped at Ikea, saw a movie (I included the tickets and giftcard we used), got stuck in typical city traffic, and stayed at a hotel (kept the room key). We came home early-ish the next day and I assembled my new craftroom furniture. It's much prettier than what I had in there before.

Thanks for coming by to see this spread. Sorry it's later than usual, the holidays are a busy time of year! Hope you all have a great day!



Where Did All The Good Online Craft Stores Go?

Good morning! Today I want to rant a little bit about buying supplies, mostly online, because I live in a small town, but also a little about Michael's. Don't get me wrong, I love that Michael's exists, and it's possibly my favorite store in the entire world, but I always feel like I can never find what I want. They don't always have the latest lines, or when they do, I never make it to the store (3 hours away) before they sell out of it. I can't "wait for a sale" to get things cheaper, or even wait for a good coupon. It's not worth it for me to plan a trip around their sales and coupons, so I usually overpay for a lot of things. I wish they had more variety of products in their online store, but since they don't, I settle for shopping elsewhere, or in store when I make it to the city.

With the help of Jon's credit card, I do plenty of online shopping. That doesn't mean that I use his card and he buys me all the supplies I want with his money. What I mean is that I give him cash, and he puts it on the card for me to buy things online. I know it'd be simpler to just get my own credit card, however I'm terrible with money, and I know that if I had a card, it would always be full, and I'd never get it paid off. At least this way, I give him cash for the amount I want to spend, and he pays it off immediately. His credit score is probably amazing thanks to me.

I never used to do much online shopping, but since I started buying online last year, I've found very few sites that I would buy from again. And yet, I feel like every time I find a website that I want to order from again, they close shortly after I find them. This happened with Two Peas in a Bucket, and now Scrapbooker's Inner Circle. I'm really hoping this doesn't happen with a couple of sites I recently started ordering from! I'll be so sad if I keep making sites close down. (I know it's not my fault, but still).

Some sites I've been ordering from lately:
Here's a few that some crafty friends have recommended:
I'd love to know of any online shops you recommend. I'm trying to find some Canadian stores, but they're nearly impossible to find. A lot of them have a nearly impossible time getting any product in, and end up closing down. It's such a shame, but most scrapbooking companies are based in the US and don't want to pay a little extra to ship their product to slightly smaller Canadian stores.

When it comes to online shopping, I wish I lived a little closer to the border so we could have a box number there, and get things shipped to it and save a little money once in a while. I've also considered opening a scrapbook store, but given how many have been closing throughout the province lately, I'm afraid to. It also doesn't help that I live in a small town, and I don't actually know that many crafty ladies in the area. A lot of them buy from Stampin Up because it's almost the only thing available to them.

I'll end this rant about buying supplies. Where do you go to shop, both online and in-store?

Have a great day!


Project Life: Week Forty-Four

Good morning! Today I'm sharing my spread for Week 45. I'm slowly getting caught up to where we're at week wise. So excited to be getting closer to December and being able to start making some pretty Christmas pages. I've been watching Nicole Jones' December Daily videos on Youtube (here), and it's making me excited, and inspired to do some December pages in my regular album. She usually does traditional pages, so I'm pretty excited to see her using Project Life!

Here's the first half of the spread. I'm trying to use cards from my stash a little more, and I didn't have any blue/green cards in my collection of Studio Calico cards, so instead I've used Strawberry for this week.

Here's the left side. We started the week with some terrible news about one of Jon's Warhammer friends. I journaled a little about it on the card next to "The Happiness Pursuit" (which was really good), but I didn't do too much detail about it since I didn't know him well. On the next half of this week I have a spot that I want Jon to journal a bit about his friend, and I'll hide it for him to look at later on. I'm well over half done my reading challenge, so I included that because I didn't think there was any way that I'd get past 20 books, but I made it past 20, and I'm so proud of myself. The bottom right photo is Gracie sleeping on Jon's back. It was so cute, and they both looked so comfortable.

Here's the right side. My messy desk, quiet time with Tori because she asked me "Auntie, can we go have quiet time in your room?" of course I said yes, and so we watched half of an episode of Mia & Me, and downloaded a couple of games for her.

Here's the second half of this spread. This half of the week was some happy mail, sympathy cards, and a trip to the city for the funeral. We caught a pretty sunset on the way up, got our hotel room upgraded for free, had amazing room service, and saw some friends we haven't seen in a while.

Here's the left side. I used more strawberry because I wanted it to be cohesive from one week into the next. I included a photo of the sympathy cards I made, my happy mail from Freckled Fawn. That beautiful sunset, and the wonderful hotel bed! This week we got some complimentary chocolates from a local business that did a lot of work for us, they made two signs, and a 5 piece mural for the restaurant. Not to mention all the other work we asked them to do, and to thank us for our business, they had custom chocolates made for us. It was wonderful, and they were delicious!

A couple more photos of the hotel, one of the Warhammer portion of the memorial, our room service, and the little book from the funeral. Behind it is where I want to put a journaling card for Jon to write some things down.

Thanks for coming by to see this weeks spread.
Have a great day!


DIY Cinnamon Apple Sauce Ornaments

I made these after making some sugar cookies with my niece. Now I wish I'd done these with her. It's something that she could stir (which she loves to do). They're also super simple to make, and although they say that it may stain your hands, mine didn't. I smelt like I rolled around in cinnamon for the rest of the day, but my pasty white hands remained pasty and white.

I love these so much. They made my house smell delicious for a couple days after I made them. I put them in a bag once they'd cooled to keep my house from smelling too strongly of cinnamon.
The recipe for these comes from Completely Delicious. I added double the cinnamon because my apple sauce was really wet, and so my dough came out being pretty wet after the recommended amount was added and mixed. It was still a little sticky when I rolled them out, but if you roll them out on some extra cinnamon, they're usually okay. Don't use flour because it moulds over time, even after it's baked.

  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1-1 1/4 cup (130 grams) ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground cloves (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the applesauce, cinnamon, and cloves (if using). It may take a few minutes for the mixture to come together. You want the dough to be able to form a ball without being too sticky. Add additional applesauce or cinnamon if needed. You can mix the dough by hand, it may just take longer.
  3. Sprinkle a clean surface with cinnamon (like you would with flour while rolling out pie dough). Place the dough on the surface and sprinkle with more cinnamon. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough to 1/4 inch thick, sprinkling with more cinnamon to keep from sticking.
  4. Cut out into desired shapes and place on the prepared sheet pan so that they aren't touching. Use a skewer to poke a hole into each ornament (to attach string). Bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 - 2 hours or until rock hard.
  5. Loop a decorative string through the ornament and hang on your tree.
Notes: Ornaments may also be dried at room temperature over several days.
Ornaments are not extremely fragile, but they can break. Handle with care.
DO NOT EAT they're made with edible ingredients, but are not edible.

Thanks for coming by to check out this recipe. I give full credit for the recipe to Completely Delicious. This is not my recipe, but the comments above it, are mine. All photos in this post are mine, and I am not being endorsed to share this recipe.

Have a great day!


Project Life: Week Forty-Three

Good morning! Today I'm sharing my spread for Week 43. I wanted to do a more pastel colored layout since it feels like forever since I did one, wo I went with pink and aqua. I wanted pink to match the sunset, and aqua so I could use that "let your heart sing" card from Studio Calico.

This week I used cards from Dear Lizzy, Studio Calico, and 5th & Frolic. I had very few photos this week, but that was okay because there were a couple of 4x6 cards that I really wanted to use, but hardly ever get a chance to use because I generally want to include so many photos.

Here's the left side. I included a screen shot of some Facebook comments because they made me happy, and my niece was in on it. Who couldn't be happy after seeing that smile! The bottom left photo cracks me up every time I look at it. I feel like I should have blurred out the potion the one pumpkin was drinking because it looks mildly inappropriate.

Here's the right side. I couldn't get the page protector to sit right on the top right photo, and I didn't think about pulling the photo out and just putting it on top, until now, of course. It's a photo of Gracie sleeping, and she has her eyes open, looking at me all "can I help you? I'm clearly sleeping here." The card to the left of it says "this is completely normal" and under it I wrote about gracie sleeping. The bottom right card says "let your heart sing" and under I wrote "even if it's terrible". On the card to the left of it, I journaled about Jon singing "Jessica's tips in Kristal's cup" it was hilarious, and I used another Ali Edwards stamp from the October Story Stamp. I love that her stamps encourage me to write about things in a way that I might not have thought of on my own.

Thanks for coming by to see this spread!
Have a great day!


Project Life: Week Forty-Two

Good morning! Today I'm sharing week 42. Back in October before the snow fell. It's hard to believe that there was ever a time when we didn't have snow. It seems like forever ago that I could see the ground, now everything is buried in 2 feet of snow, and it's still snowing. This past week we had snowfall warnings for the entire province. Some places were forecasting up to 70 cm. It's crazy that this is a real thing. The roads weren't the greatest, but they're still travel-able if you have somewhere you absolutely need to be. Luckily we live in town, and the street we live on, is only two houses away from a street that was recently plowed (I believe they did it early last week) so we have no reason not to make it to work. Alright, enough about the weather.

This week I used some cards from Midnight, as well as Studio Calico. I also used my Ali Edwards story stamp from September. The "Fall in Love" card is a wallpaper for my phone that I downloaded from The Wonderforest (here). It fits right into this spread, and I love all the wallpapers I downloaded (which of course was all of them).

Here's the left side. I wanted to use the 10 card from studio calico, and the "a quintessential autumn moment" so I decided on a black and orange-ish yellow for this week. Which of course was perfect because most of my photos are he beautiful orange-ish yellow trees!

Here's the right side. I used a couple of stamps from the Ali Edwards "Story Stamp" you can learn more about the Story Stamp here.

Usually when I print two 3x4 photos side by side, I cut them apart, but in the bottom right pocket I wanted a before/after shot of one corner of the craftroom. I bought a small Kallax from ikea and sold the large bulky drawer unit I had there before, and wanted to document my excitement over pretty craftroom furniture! I spent so much time in there, that little things like that make me very excited.


Simple Stamped Greeting Cards

Today I'm sharing some simple cards I made using some stamps I have from Studio Calico. I keep buying stamps, putting them in a pile and then never using them. I made it a point to try and use some of them in different ways, and make a few simple cards with just stamps. I'm pretty pleased with how they turned out.

This card was made using this stamp set from Studio Calico. Unfortunately it's sold out, but It's so cute! I wanted it to just be simple, so I stuck to two sentiments and the tomato stamp. I love that it comes with the little face stamp, and a die so you could cut it out after you stamp it.

Pears don't really have one color, but it was nearly impossible for me to get the yellow-y/green color of the pear without it looking like a pile of poop. I added a simple "perfect pair" sentiment, but the addition of a "congratulations" would also have been a nice addition.

This card was made using the stamp set from this add-on, also from Studio Calico. I stamped the hello circle, and then took the "one thousand good night kisses" stamp and a scrap of cardstock that I cut to fit over the sentiment, and stamped the circles around the hello. I added some Heidi Swapp mist to finish off the card.

I used the triangle stamp from the stamp set above, and a thank you stamp from my stash to create this card. I love that the thank you stands out against the simple background.

Thanks for coming by to see these cards. I hope you liked them.
I'd love to see what you do with just stamps. Feel free to leave links to your projects in the comments!

Have a great day!


Christmas Cards - For My In-Laws

I can't believe that it's already December. It's my niece's birthday in a few days, and we have 3-4 Christmas's to try and attend this year. Luckily most of my family lives close enough to make day trips to see them, instead of taking two weeks off to make sure we see everyone. I'd love to go a little further and visit my Aunt & Uncle in Manitoba for Christmas (I have yet to see the house they've been living in for the last 4 years). We'll see how things go.

Every year I make Christmas cards for my in-laws. I usually choose an animal that's somehow associated with them. This is the third year, and the last two years we did a horse, and a panda. This year, we decided on a deer, and after flipping through a dozen card making magazines, I found a simple on that had a deer head on it. I love that they include any cutfile details in the fine print at the bottom, so I downloaded the one they used and started planning.

I chose this cutfile but I hated the head of the deer. So while browsing Pinterest, I came across this photo, and so I used the trace feature in Silhouette, and traced the deer head. The image was small, so I traced it while it was small and after removing the image, I changed the size of the cut design to be the size I needed it for the card.

I used the "mount" from the original cutfile so the deerhead didn't look like it was just floating on the card. I typed out the Merry Christmas sentiment in word, and made a table with boxes the size I needed so I didn't have to think about it, I could just cut them out, cut the ends to make a banner and glue it down.

I love this paper. It's from the DCVW glitter pack. We decided on a stripe because it was more visually appealing than just the solid colors. I love that the glitter doesn't come off on your hands, and get everywhere, but I hated how thin it was. I had issues with it sticking to the cutting mat too well, and ripped a bit of the leftovers trying to get them off, luckily no deer were harmed in the making of these cards!

I also love that the deer don't all look the same. There's a few that are similar, but they're not exactly the same. I apologize for the terrible photos. I meant to do this post last night, but when I got home it was dark, and I couldn't find the lamp, so I took the photos this morning, in a rush before work.

Thanks for coming by to see these Christmas cards! I'm hoping to get mine and Jon's done fairly soon, but with my luck they won't be going out until next year, again.

Have a great weekend!


Project Life: Week Forty-One

Good morning! Today I'm sharing my spreads from week 41. This week was the week that work re-opened, so we had a lot to do, and tried to squeeze in some downtime early in the week so we weren't crazy stressed at the end of the week.

This week I used Studio Calico cards (again, I know). My title card is from the Dear Lizzy Polka Dot Party mini kit.

Here's the left side. Look at my nephew! Isn't he just the cutest little boy ever! We started the week by babysitting my niece for the whole day, and my nephew came over after supper so they could have date night. My niece fell asleep on the couch after getting really upset because she accidentally kicked her brother in the head. He cried a bit and she had a tired meltdown. Everyone was fine, and we enjoyed the rest of our day together.

Here's the right side. My sister and I were enlisted to work on some chalkboard signs for work. I did all the lettering, and she drew the little wheat details on the bottom of the please wait to be seated sign. I also had to make a giant "we are open" poster for the front window. It was so bright I thought I was going to be blind by the time I finished.
That photo in the 3x4 pocket (of the person) is Jon when he was really young. Someone found it when they were bringing up some stuff from the kitchen, so I snapped a picture of it. It used to hang in the kitchen, and it's the one thing I'll always remember about working back there. Plus it's a picture of little Jon, how could I not include it?
I was going to keep the original newspaper clipping, but it was from 1996, and it was really fragile and yellow from hanging in a restaurant kitchen for almost 18 years, so I snapped a close up of Jon singing, and used the photo instead of the paper clipping.

Thanks for coming by!
Have a great day!


Project Life: Goals for 2015

I know that every single blogger out there who shares their Project Life spreads does a post like this near the end of the year, I figured I might as well jump on that bandwagon too. I've been browsing a few blogs to see their plans, and I've picked up a few ideas that I'd like to use next year. One of my fave creative people shared her goals recently, and inspired me to share some of my own! Kellie over at Give a Girl a Blog makes some amazing layouts, and stamps. She's such an inspiration, and I'm so excited to receive some of her stamps soon!

1. Stay in one 12x12 album (if possible). Our lives aren't "exciting" and I don't want to add in all the fluff that we had this year. I also want to try and keep the amount of albums I'll need to store in the future, as small as possible, but I'm in love with mini albums, so that might be a little tough.

2. Use my stash more. I have way more core kits than I'll ever use in this lifetime, and I'm considering separating out 1/3 of each of them to sell/share with family & friends who want to start Project Life, without getting overwhelmed by a whole kit. That being said, even after I separate out 1/3 of what I can, I'll still have so many cards leftover to get me through more than a year.

3. Jon's perspective. I want to include more of his memories, feelings, photos, etc. no matter how bad I may look in some of them. He hardly ever takes pictures of things, but I want him to start because this is OUR life, and I want more of him to be included in it. If he says no, I'll respect that, but I'd like him to say yes.

4. Selective photos. I want to be more selective when choosing photos to include. This year I included basically all the photos I took, which led to us having 2 albums for the year. If a particular spread is only one page long, and another is several pages long, I want to be okay with that. This is our life and some things will have a ton of photos, while other things may not have a ton of photos.

5. Design A pages. I want to continue to use Design A pocket pages. I love the consistency in using the same style throughout, and adding in a few inserts here and there when needed, regardless of the style.

6. Stress less. This year I mostly kept up with my weekly spreads, however sometimes I fell behind, and because I generally tried to keep a few short notes about each day/week, I was able to quickly catch up. I used a set of planner pages from a site that exists no longer, but these ones from A Vegas Girl at Heart are perfect for any Project Lifer, regardless of the design you use. I love that at the bottom it has space for you to draw the design of your pages and plan where things will go.

7. Go with the flow. Previously, I would have stressed a bit if I didn't take a photo from a particular event, and I'd try and find one that someone else took and I could use. In 2015, I would rather just enjoy the moment, and journal about it later, than worry if I didn't get a photo from it.

8. Start & end date. This year I started on the 1st of January. Next year, my plan is to also start on the 1st of January. I know that this means I have a half week ending this year, and a half week starting next year, but it's important to me, to keep the month of December together, as well as the month of January. Though this might change when it reaches the end of the year.

9. Weeks. If I do next year on a weekly spread basis, like I did this year, I'm changing my weeks from Sunday-Saturday, to Monday-Sunday. There were a few times that we went somewhere for the weekend and the trip was split in two because of my week set up. I was fine with it, but I think I'll make the switch to Monday-Sunday for the ease of documenting it. It'll also make it easier to find calendar cards, and I can stop altering my planning pages.

10. Mini Albums. This year I did the 30 Days of Me album, I plan to do it next year as well, around the same time. I'm undecided on whether or not I want to do a separate December Daily album, however this year I'm doing some fancy December pages in my regular album, thanks to some inspiration from Andrea over at Retrohipmama.

I'm sure as I get closer to next year, I'll think of a few more things that I want to add to this list, or change on this list. But I figured that a short list of Project Life goals would help some of you with your spreads, and inspire some of you to consider things you do and don't like about your current way of documenting your memories.

Have a great day!!


Project Life: Week Forty

If you saw my previous post today, Week 39, thanks for coming back to see this one. If not, just scroll down to the next post, and enjoy! In this post, I'm sharing Week 40. This week we had an early Thanksgiving dinner with my family, because Thanksgiving weekend work was having their "Grand Re-opening" and we knew we wouldn't be able to make it to Thanksgiving with my family (but somehow made it for dinner anyways).

Here's my spread for Week 40. The temperature started to drop this week, it was the start of October, and we were doing a lot of prep to get work ready to open at the end of the week. I hosted Thanksgiving, started my 100 Happy Days album, made waffles, and fall themed papercrafts. It was a busy week.

Here's the left side of my layout. I really wanted to use the "take a hike" card from Studio Calico, so I made it work. I added a phrase sticker from one of the kits, "bright mornings, sunny days & warm nights". Essentially my goal was to make it say "take a hike bright mornings, sunny days & warm nights" and beside the phrase sticker I wrote "sweater weather is better weather".

Here's the front of the insert. The top photo, was a hilarious coincidence. I was sitting in the car while Jon got the mail, and since we were out and about, I snapped a photo for the Instagram photo challenge I was doing, and after I took the photo I realized how many minivans were in the photo. There's an entire row of them, and in front of us was another minivan. It was funny to me, so I included it. I love the pumpkin card from Studio Calico. I am glad I live in a world with Octobers, cooler temperatures, beautiful changing leaves, and pumpkins!

Here's the second half of the layout. Lots of pumpkins, and crafty goodness.

Here's the back of my insert. I was working on some last minute scrapbook pages for work (all those hunting layouts I made can be found here). I also made waffles, which were amazing as always! The card on the bottom is from Studio Calico. I thought it was fitting since we were celebrating Thanksgiving this week. I might go back and add a few things we're grateful for.

Here's the right side. Those little paper pumpkins before and after they became a garland. My very first attempts at pumpkin pie (it was so simple, even though I don't eat pumpkin pie), and of course my little fall display. Isn't it just beautiful?

Thanks for coming to check out my spread for week 40!
Have a great day!

Project Life: Week Thirty-Nine

My intention had been to post this last week, on Thursday, but I was so busy Wednesday while the sun was up, that I didn't get a chance to photograph it, so today I'm sharing two weeks. Right now I'm sharing Week 39, and a little later (around noon MST) I'm also sharing Week 40. I understand I could have put them into the same post, but as a reader of blogs, I actually prefer to see each different week in different posts. I have no idea why, I just do.

This week I used up some more Studio Calico cards. I start to make a dent in them, and then another kit comes and I have a ton more cards. Luckily though, I think I'm making my way through some of my core kits as well.

Here's the left side. Jon made brownies this week, which was kind of monumental because before we started dating, Jon knew how to cook the few foods college kids would eat (macaroni & cheese, instant noodles, etc.), and now he's making brownies unprompted.

Here's the right side. I caught Gracie sleeping in her diving position again, and got a photo of it this time, I took a candid photo of Jon making dinner. I was working on this spread and he saw the picture and went "when did you take that one?" He was making dinner and pudding for dessert (isn't he just the greatest?). I was hanging out with socks one morning and eating a granola bar, and he decided that the wrapper looked like something he could chew on, and then he got tired of that and stretched out across my legs.
That's all for this spread, make sure you come back later today to see Week 40 as well. 
Have a great day!


DIY Christmas Ideas

Good morning! Today I'm sharing a few Christmas related projects that I want to try out this year. As a creative person, I prefer to make things if I can, as opposed to buying them pre-made. Things don't always work out when I do them myself, but the point is that I at least try and do them myself, so that has to count for something right?

First up, is this first home ornament from Dollar Store Crafts. Last year my mom gave us an ornament for our first home, but after I saw this one with the imprint of the key to the first house, I knew it was something I wanted to try. Even if it doesn't end up on the tree, but instead goes into our Project Life album, I'd be totally okay with that. I think it'll be fun to look back at the imprint of the key to our first home.

I don't have a photo for this next one, but how about a this paper tree from Love Taza. She uses old music paper, but I think I'd use old book paper. I saw another one on Pinterest that had the same idea but they used leftover scrapbook paper.

I tried to make a couple of these last year, unsuccessfully. A few things I learned in the process include: use regular paper, no cardstock. It's too thick to curl nicely, it just bends. Perhaps measure and draw lines to cut because I can't cut straight to save my life. And of course, take your time.

I love this simple snowflake from The Ballard Bunch. It's so simple, and so pretty that I could easily whip one (or several) up in an afternoon.

Last year I found these Cinnamon Ornaments from McCormick and I had planned to make some, but never got around to it. Perhaps this year, I'll get my niece to help me, and send a few home with her.

I first came across this tree on Pinterest, and knew I was going to make some for our little Christmas display. I found a tutorial on Trocas De Linhas. It's not in English, but the photo instructions make it pretty easy to follow, or you could use Google Translate to make it English. I have all the supplies for his one, I just need a bit of time to get it done!

I found  this beautiful Star Garland by Mollie Makes. It would be an adorable addition to a simply wrapped gift, or strung in a window. It's so simple! Now to find myself a small star cookie cutter so I can make it!

Of course, not everything I want to make is for decoration. Some of it can be for eating!

Baked by Rachel has a recipe for Pepermint Bark. It looks delicious! I usually buy Almond Bark from a family friend who sells it at the local Farmer's Markets. It's delicious and I can never seem to get enough of it! Now I can mix it up and make some Peppermint Bark, or use this recipe to make my own almond bark!

Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate from Seated at the Table. I love hot chocolate and salted caramel, so the two of them together is possibly the best thing ever made!

I doubt I'll make it through all of these things, but I'm sure going to try and get through most of them. If I make anything from this list, it will at least be the string tees, and I will cross my fingers that they turn out how they look in my head.

Have a great day!