July 30, 2010

July 29, 2010

THURSDAY THOUGHTS - Grateful Me

HAPPINESS:  An unexpected call from my Hubby yesterday asking if I wanted to play hooky from work and see Despicable Me with my niece and kids.  Didn't have to think long on that one.  Despicable Me is a great movie...highly recommend!  So funny I laughed out loud several times.  My favorite part?  When Mr. Gru read the kitten puppet book...so cute!


Feeling very thankful for all of the blessings in my life.  Although money is pretty tight right now, we've never wanted for anything.  It is an eye opener when one of your loved ones is literally trying to work to make ends meet, not being able to eat or even buy gas for their car.  I have never, ever had to deal with that in my life.  I haven't even had to fear bouncing a check or figuring out what bills I should pay each month.  I am so grateful and blessed for all of the comforts I have in my life.

Also, just started watching Netflix streaming videos through a wireless blue ray player.  LOVE it.  Although there aren't a ton of instant watch movies available yet, I do feel this is the smartest path for Netflix to take in the future and now we're ready for it! 

SADNESS (sort of): It is almost August already which means summer is almost over.  It has been a very pleasant summer in Wisconsin this year but so little of my time can be spent enjoying it.  I've been heading outside after work the past few evenings just to read in the sun for awhile.  Heavenly!!

THOUGHTS:  Wishing I could eat better.  I've been getting daily emails from Eat This, Not That and they are always very enlightening.  Today they linked to the Food Additive Glossary.  One look through that and I no longer want to eat anything unless it's fresh & unprocessed.  If only I read this every day I might have a fighting chance at cutting out the crap.  It's worth a read. 

CONFESSION:  I've watched way too much TV this week - America's Got Talent, Losing It with Jillian Michaels, Intervention, Obsessed, Billy the Exterminator and, starting tonight, Project Runway.  Woohoo!  Considering I normally watch just an hour or two of TV a week this is A LOT.  

Wanting:  Lancome Genifique Eye, Essie Nail Polish in Splash of Grenadine, a new wardrobe, and a vacation.  (Had a dream I went to Fiji the other night...no clue why Fiji but I'm taking it as a sign...looking to head there in 5 years for our 25th wedding anniversary.)



July 27, 2010

July 26, 2010

USE YOUR STASH - Tags and Lace Cardstock

I used three very different tags on this layout, but combining the cream with the colors of the layout makes it work.  I also found a sheet of red apple lace cardstock (KI Memories).  I have several sheets that mostly go unused so I thought this would be a perfect time to get it out.  Besides cutting it to use as a border here, it also makes an awesome mask for misting or painting.  But school = apples so I kept this one simple.  Lots and lots of scraps here...yay!

I have the original cash register receipt from this school supply shopping trip but I have yet to type it up or scan it.  I hope to do that and add it to this layout, probably on the back.

Title:  First Day of School


July 23, 2010

FRIDAY FAVES - Teabag Coasters

Yep, you guessed it....another craft idea found on a non-scrapbooking website.  This is from The Dieline blog which is all about package design.  

Today's inspiration comes from embossed tea bag packaging which they call "coasters" because you use the package to set your wet tea bag on and the embossed image soaks up the tea-tinted water.  Cool concept that could work with embossed scrapbooking paper perhaps?  I'm planning on giving it a try!
There are more embossed images and photos on the original blog post here.

July 22, 2010

THURSDAY THOUGHTS - Another Year, Another Chapter

HAPPINESS:  My babies are getting older....

My son turned 9 on July 2nd.  We took him to see Toy Story 3 in 3D and enjoyed a pizza, giant slushie and a big tub of popcorn.  The movie is fantastic!  Seriously one of my fave animated movies of all time!  And, yes, I cried.  Big surprise, right??

My daughter turned 12 on July 5th.  We took her and a friend to a movie on the 4th - she chose to see Eclipse.  Afterward we went to see the fireworks which were AMAZING!  Hubby found the best spot so it looked like the fireworks were right above us...really special!  And my daughter had her friend sleep over.

We celebrated their birthdays with a party at our house on Sunday, July 11th.  We had an Eclipse theme (of the Twilight saga).  I made several black and red heart decorations to go along with the Eclipse decorations.  We made sandwiches, along with broccoli salad, Texas caviar and Fritos and fruit salad.  Also made a S'mores snack mix with Cinnamon Toast Crunch, mini marshmallows and a bag of chocolate chips.  Mom brought her world famous potato salad and a fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil salad and Ben made the cake - marble with chocolate frosting - per the kids' request.  His cakes are phenomenal and, after lots of prodding from us and other friends, he is starting to look into selling his to-die-for cheesecakes from his home. 

This was a hard birthday for me, partly because the kids are getting so big and I am constantly reminded of that, especially by my daughter who likes to think she's no longer a kid, and the fact that she can wear my shoes and some of my outgrown clothing doesn't help.  We have also had them stay home alone for certain days this summer when my niece isn't available to watch them.  We have also made grocery runs without them which is really, really nice, but also another symptom of time and change.  But even harder for me to deal with was the lack of money I was able to spend on their birthday gifts.  Now, we've never been extravagant with gifts and they have never complained but *I* know that what we were able to give this year was very little, I spent $20 or less on each kid. 

What is even more touching is the fact that a recent trip to Goodwill for clothes shopping was exciting for all of us.  We got a huge bag full of clothes for $45.  After that trip we went to Wal-Mart to buy each kid a fan for their room...something that they've been without all of these years.  Each got to pick out their own (my daughter chose pink and my son chose red) and got to carry them up to the cash registers.  On the way to the register I told them, "there's the rest of your birthday presents." and they were EXCITED and THANKFUL.  I felt so proud of them.  I know we've raised some great kids who deserve to be spoiled once in awhile.

This past weekend Hubby had a rare Saturday off.  We didn't do a lot during the day but watched Karate Kid (original) and then played some Badmitton in the backyard.  After the kids were in bed Hubby and I watched Book of Eli.  

Sunday we went to church and I spent part of the afternoon scrapping.  Then we took the kids to fly kites.  It was super windy so it was a fun day to fly them. 
Afterward we called our friend, Ben, to stop by for dinner.  Hubby was planning to make a crepe/mushroom/spinach dish from Julia Child's cookbook.  (I don't know the name of the recipe but I can get it for you if you want to know.)  Everything we have made from there is absolutely scrumptious and this was no exception!  We made the meal side-by-side and Ben brought a French silk pie for dessert.  It was decadent!  

Another share:  I made the BEST molasses cookies ever!  I adore them and the rest of the family is really chocolate chip cookie fans so I get to enjoy these several times before they are gone!  I halved the recipe and had enough to last me for a week.

SADNESS:  I felt like crying when I went to bed last night and again when I woke up this morning.  I don't know why...and I hate feeling this way.  Feeling headache-y most of the week too.

THOUGHTS:   Why can't I be the person I want to be?  I want to be more giving of myself, more carefree, more engaged, more outgoing, and happy.  My husband deserves a better wife, my kids deserve a better mother, and my job deserves more of my attention, yet I always feel like I neglect myself as well.  It is a no win feeling. 

CONFESSION:   I've been neglecting my Wii Fit and I miss it.  I've been eating a lot of Butterfinger and Nestle Crunch bars this week and not drinking enough water. 


July 19, 2010

USE YOUR STASH - Thickers and Border Stickers

CONFESSION:  Nearly all of the supplies on this layout are new, however, the concept for using them remains the same.  Read on to learn more.

The title on this layout is a focal point.  I used up many Thickers, all in the same color and type.  I adhered them on a piece of scratch paper to give the journaling and title a place to be anchored and provide a little less distraction than the background map paper.  Besides edging this paper with blue ink, I also added a blue border sticker inbetween the title and date elements to give a sense of separation.  It really adds to the continuity of the colors in the layout.

Title:  Baltimore, Maryland


July 16, 2010

FRIDAY FAVES - Amy's Puppets Rock!

My friend, Amy, is not only is a frequent commenter on my blog, she may be my only reader.  Hi Amy!  *waves*

No, seriously, she's incredibly talented and always inspires me!  One of her many talents includes making puppets!  (That's a unique skill I'd say!)  Here's one of her latest creations. 
Isn't he adorable?   I wish I could see him in action!  He's like a cute lil' Jack Sparrow daredevil pirate.  Cute, cute, cute!!  

You can stop by Amy's blog for more inspiration by clicking here.

July 13, 2010

FOUR EYES DESIGNS - Shop Update

I listed a bunch of new buttons in the shop last week.  The previous batch sold quickly so let's see how these go.  I am getting happier and happier with each batch that I create and am getting pretty proud of my creations.  I finally have the sealing down to a preferred method and have discovered a better way to do the button holes without distorting the clay.  Yay!!

So...here are two of the newest sets:

Sunset Mix (click for more info. or to purchase)

Lavender With Blue Loops (click for more info. or to purchase)

July 12, 2010

USE YOUR STASH - Rub Ons and Advertisements

The top of this page was created from an old advertisement for some scrapbook supplies.  I loved the color and pattern so I kept it to use someday.  Even though the ad was for a Christmas collection the colors fit perfectly here!  I added several rub ons from Tinkering Ink throughout this page.  I also used up several old Lil Davis(?) chipboard circle alphas and glitter Thickers.  In fact, the only thing new on this layout are the paper flowers from American Crafts.
I encourage you to use advertisements in your scrapbook pages.  Not only does it conserve money but it often serves as an excellent way to inspire my creativity.

Title:  Pinata Time


July 9, 2010

FRIDAY FAVES - Colorful Organization Tool as Artwork

Art project idea!
This project was posted on the Design*Sponge blog back in March.  Although these pieces were geared toward an organizational method for buttons and fabrics, I see it as pure artwork and I fell in love with it immediately.  I would like to recreate the bottom piece using my handmade buttons.  If I ever get the project completed I'll be sure to share!  It might even make an awesome advertising technique on my Etsy shop.  :o)

The full blog post with more photos and instructions can be found here.


July 6, 2010

FOUR EYES DESIGNS - Shop Update

I recently listed a new product in my shop...delicate vintage looking die cut butterflies.  They were hand stamped and punched and come tucked inside of a handmade envelope.  Aren't they cute?

Here's my favorite - a yellow/gray argyle pattern.
You can see more photos including a sample card I made with them here

Or how about this set in aqua blue?
Pictures of this one are at this link.

July 5, 2010

USE YOUR STASH - Sequins and hole punches

I had a bunch of red sequins sitting in my stash waiting to be used.  I thought the color would work well with this so I sprinkled them around and then topped each with a small yellow hole punch from the excess cardstock. 

A fun technique I used on this layout - I stamped the words down the left side using Studio Calico's Storytime Alphabet stamp and then scribbled them in with a white gel pen.  Love the effect. 

Title:  Easter Morn Gifts


July 2, 2010

FRIDAY FAVES - Vintage Book Page Decorations

I've come across so many unique and clever paper crafting projects over the years.  It is amazing what can inspire you when you venture out beyond the scrapbooking-specific arena.  This project was featured on Chronicle Books Blog back in April and I saved it for future project ideas. 
Window dresser and future Chronicle author, Cathy of California created these amazing hanging decorations out of thrifted paperbacks for Market in Brentwood California.  Stunning aren't they??  I can see so many uses for this idea...


July 1, 2010

THURSDAY THOUGHTS - I'm a winner!!!

HAPPINESS - I won this gorgeous Sampler Kit from Scrap That, a lovely Canadian kit club!!  I have been wanting the Pink Paislee Queen Bee Collection for awhile now.  That mixed with BasicGrey??  Pure loveliness!!  I also got the new Distress Stickles in Old Paper in the kit - my first of the Distressed kind.

I'm very impressed with the kit contents, high quality and even like the smaller assortment of goodies (flowers and pebbles in this kit) versus a full pack, because sometimes a girl just wants to try something out.  The Sampler Kit price is $24.99 which is very reasonable but add on the $9.99 for U.S. shipping and it gets a bit pricey.

Can't wait to play...now I just need the TIME!  Thank you Scrap That!!
(bottom image from Scrap That)

SADNESS - This week I learned that I suck at mini golf.  I feel like a total dolt, but I take it in good stride because I know my vision affects many things that are even remotely athletic.  Yes, I did just use "athletic" and "mini golf" in the same paragraph--you got a problem with that?

THOUGHTS - Thinking about the ways in which we self-sabotage and are then unhappy with the results we get.  I could list many things that I do that would fall under this category.  One of the most frustrating is not getting enough exercise even though I know I should.  Why is it so hard to make it a habit in my life?  That is a mystery to me.  Mind over matter, right??  Well, I did get my Wii Fit Plus a couple weeks ago and I have been using it.  I've even been looking forward to using it!  I've also gotten a lot of comments over the last couple weeks about looking good.  Nice motivator!

CONFESSION - Trying very hard to accept what life hands me, relying on my faith and the knowledge that I can work though anything that comes my way.  Trying to be self-confident and strong.  Weaknesses this week - pretzel M&M's and McDonald's. 


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