Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Another Birthday Girl

Good Day Everyone!
 
Just wanted to share yet another birthday card.....this one I made for my oldest daughter last month.  She's 6 and I'm wondering how she has grown up so fast already .... and is it my imagination or did another year just pass right in front of my eyes?
Seriously.....this isn't funny....
I had a good friend tell me once when I was like 16 that the days/months/years start to go faster when you get older and by God if that guy wasn't telling me the truth - he was scarily accurate.
So my next question is, being that we really can't fight against time, how to slow it down maybe just a bit.  The solution that I came up with is to 'try' to: manage it better, make the most of it as you possibly can, and then record all the moments that really tell your story, the great ones and even the not so great ones because they all are apart of you.
I have been doing the documenting now for quite sometime...I just happen to call it scrap booking, but the managing part of it...well let's face it I stink at that and making the most of my time (meaning Quality to me) is something else I struggle with on a daily basis....
But ever determined as I am (mostly) I refuse to give up and keep trying everyday to cherish each moment, to live in the moment so that when the time come to document it I have a very real sense of it and can fully recall all the super special things that took place.
Hope all of you will join me in celebrating the everyday, the boring the mundane, the failures & frustrations, all of it because ultimately that is what matters most.

Thanks for peeking and have a great day!
just B

Friday, February 24, 2012

Birthday Girl


Good Morning World!
How is everyone on this fine Friday?  Wonderful I hope!
I thought that today I would share a card I made in November for my youngest daughter's 2nd birthday.  I did a library pocket for the base (the top photo) embossed it before I glued all the edges down and then used one of my Brilliance ink pads here and inked just the embossed image - which gives it a bit of a shimmer.  Next I made the lime green tag to pull out and adorned it with a paper doily and flowers and pearls - this is also where I stamped part of the birthday message.  Absolutely love this - it is so feminine & girly - but the colors are just gorgeous to me.   
On the back of the green tag is the message I wrote to my baby (for when she's older) but I made this green tag a pocket also and so another smaller tag comes out as well and on it has a quote.  Other than saying 'Happy Birthday' there really isn't a whole lot that a 2 yo is going to get out of a super long message so that's why I added a quote instead - granted it's more for me than for my daughter because I liked what it said but also because it so fits her age right now, especially that last line about motherhood.
On the flip side of that same smaller tag, I printed out an 'addition' flash card that I created on my desk top, then added it as well.  I had seen a similar flash card done somewhere before and thought it was a cute idea - in fact I think it was in an October Afternoon collection here but I'm not sure that it's even still available.  That's okay though......because .....we live in the digital age and most any 'office' program will let you re-create anything at will - all you have to do....is....TRY!
 So use your imagination and get busy!  =)
Hope you all have a fantastic weekend planned, be safe & Enjoy!  As always "Thanks" for sharing my passion with me and feel free to peek anytime.
just B

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Thriving on Ten and Still Counting

Good Morning Everyone!
Hope all of you were able to enjoy an extended weekend having the extra day off yesterday.  I was just happy to make it to the gym solo (no kiddos in tow) after work and even more so after my weekend which is sayin' something.  But a good weekend it was...for sure...not only did I get to go out with a couple of girlfriends (which never happens), I also got to go on a date with my husband (which rarely happens).  We went out to celebrate our '1st date' ten years ago.
I know.....how sweet is that......
Amazing....even more so......that I've been able to put up with him for so long......
(heeheehee)
Just kidding...really...he's actually a great guy...if you can overlook his ornery side.
But anyways enough about him.... on with what I wanted to share....this is a mini book that I made for well...him.....(okay okay really that's enough about him).  We celebrated our 7th Wedding Anniversary last August and this was my version of a 7 year re-cap.  It didn't turn out to be quite what I wanted but I did learn a whole lot in the process of making it.   
Now I'm not 100% positive that he cares about this (most likely not) but @ least it's masculine, like rugged grunge and even he'd have to admit that I did give it a good effort.  Being that we have 2 girls, 'guy' stuff isn't high on my scrap booking 'to do' list...as you might well have guessed.
But that was the point essentially,  I didn't like that I had no idea where to start when it came time to make something for him.....so I gave myself the challenge to create a masculine mini and if it turned out even half-arsed then I'd be good with that.
  I think it turned out better than half-arsed don't you?  I did a little bit of everything & anything that I thought would be cool, so there's lot of distressing, embossing (dry & heat), inking, stamping (masculine images) and so this is what it looks like all together.  Now I will admit that it is a mishmash, there isn't a thing in here that is in any way related to anything else in the book, but I'm okay with that. 
Turns out that I think it's a good representation of our life too, we are very different people he & I, and some would venture to say that we are mismatched but it doesn't matter because somehow we make it work and work well it does....for 10 years now & counting.
So I hope you like what I have shared with you and hopefully it inspires you to step outside of your comfort zone as well and try something new.
As always thanks for stoppin' in and takin' a peek.  If you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to leave me a comment and I will get back with you as soon as possible.
Thanks again everyone and have a great 4 day week!
just B

Friday, February 17, 2012

Eye Candy is Always a Good Muse

Good Morning Everyone!
Hope all of you had a wonderful Valentine's, good news from here - my sweetheart liked what I made for him so yeah me.....and soon I will show you what I made for our girls (@ the very last minute) that I think turned out super cute.  As for today I want to share with you just one of the things that had me inspired last week - I posted the link to where I found it here so that you can check it out if you'd like.
I believe I warned all of you that soon enough I was going to have to do something for myself, it didn't have to be anything complex or detailed, just something to have for me and me alone.  So here is my coaster mini album and I love it.  I kept it super simple, very few embellishments...muted color scheme...and obviously small.  My favorite thing though...like jmp.girl....are the edges with all the tags stickin' off the pages.
The left side of the page doesn't have anything...yet, but I'm thinking about maybe adding a few photos of my favorite everyday things: coffee, cell phone, laptop, the complete Twilight Saga in books (actual paper bound books - not that e-book stuff), my scrap book room w/all my supplies & paraphernalia.
On the right side I did a couple of embellishments, nothing extreme just a small cluster to give it some depth & texture.  I do want it to be interesting enough for someone to pick up and take a peek - at least.  =)
So that's it really, just a super simple quick mini for me so that I can get on with all the other projects I need to get done.  I have a Golf album I'm doing, a Wedding Album & Memory Box, a Feis Album, and something else but I can't remember right at the moment so, lots to look forward to.
Hope you liked my version of this coaster mini, if you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to leave me a comment; I would appreciate it greatly and as always thank you for sharing my love of scrap!
just B


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

love is in the air

Happy Hearts Day
(and just a little som 'em som 'em)
Yes I'm just in time for Valentine's Day.....amazing.....I know.
But I had to share what I made for 'you-know-who' and oh I do hope he likes it.  
I always fear that what I end up with is a little too girly for him, 'cuz it never turns out quite the way I envision it in my head, but it's the thought that counts right?  
(front page)
And I suppose after 10 years (our 1st date was February 18th, 2002) he oughta know by now.....what he's gonna get...right?  =)
(hidden love note)
Okay then, so this is what I made for him.  It's a match book style card...least that's what I'll call it.  I grabbed a book of matches and made the card like that, except I re-scaled it to make it quite a bit bigger - I think the finished size is 5 by 4.
(a peek from the top)
I gave his card 2 pages so that it wouldn't be so thick & then not close properly, the whole idea is that the top flap can tuck into the front like a book of matches.
(the second page)
The top page is the one you see in the photo (4 up) with the two little figures leaning in for a moonlight kiss with the phrase, "Au clair de la lune" written on it, to the right of the image is a vellum file folder where I tucked a little love note.  The second page simply says, "Be Mine". 
(the back page)
At the very back of the card I stamped the quote, "Look after my heart, I've left it with you" - Edward Cullen.  Besides being a new stamp, it is totally fitting for Valentine's Day and (in my opinion) The Twilight Saga is one of the best 'love stories' ever written (not that I've read that many but...... I have read the entire 4 book series 3 times I think so...).  In fact the phrase from earlier somewhat relates to Twilight also, because the instrumental piece: Clair de Lune by Debussy (a favorite song for both) was the first thing that Edward realized he & Bella had in common, so of course when I saw that image - I HAD to use it!
Okay so now that I've gotten completely side tracked, there you have it, Mr. Man's <3 card.  Hope you like it and I wish all of you a very H-A-P-P-Y day! 
Thanks for sharing with me...
just B

Saturday, February 11, 2012

everyday

Hey everybody, I just wanted to pop in and share another older project with you.  I did this one early last Spring with photos of my youngest daughter from when she was about 9 months old I think. (she turned 2 in November) 
For this mini my main goal was to use the stuff I already had on hand, to see if I could be 'creative' without always feeling like I have to have something new to be creative with.
It's kinda fun to look @ now seeing some of the things I found & used.  One of the biggest things that jumps out @ me are all the border punches, I have a ton of them and hardly ever use them, gonna have to start because they are cool.  In this photo above I really like how I layered it over another piece so that the pattern didn't get lost on the paper doily.
Another thing that jumps out @ me are the punched scraps that I have collected over the years.  In this photo I used the scrap as an open frame.....it works kinda sorta.
Also in the photo, I like that it's layered as well and then stitched around the top & bottom edge to dress it up some.   I added a couple of word stickers that have been in my stash for quite a long time too.
I suppose that is the next thing that I see lots of is....stitching.  I love to use my sewing machine on anything and everything.  For one, it's sentimental because my mom gave it to me a few years back, but also because I have some odd love affair with fabric, even though I don't ever use it in any of my projects; might have to remedy that in my next similar project.
Another element that I have used lots of are my Cricut die-cuts that my dear friend Angji cut for me oh so long ago.  When she first got her machine she brought it over along with all her cartridges and let me have at it, I think I went through about 12 sheets of 12x12 cardstock before I got done.....bless her heart.  So now several years later I have finally put those pieces to good use.
The next item was found by accident, I was digging through a drawer and ran across the paper doilies; it just so happened that they were a pretty hot ticket item last year and are still fairly popular so...lucky me.
I think that is about it as far as products go, I have lots of little things that I grabbed here & there but nothing else that really stands out.  For the binding I used baker's twine which is another thing that is super popular, I also used a couple of gems that are still fairly popular; on the front cover I used a heart stick pin and a wooden scrabble letter, both which have found their way into the world of scrap booking.
So there you have, I accomplished my goal.  I have a mini album that I didn't spend any money on (technically) because I used what I already had and well.....it's cute to boot....BONUS!!!
Hope you enjoyed, if you have any questions please feel free to leave me a comment.  And as always, thanks for peeking!
just B

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Calendar Days

Hello Strangers.....
I'm back from MIA (wishing I could say CHA) but alas I can not tell a lie, I have just been missing...plain & simple.  Now missing what you ask?  Everything I say: Inspiration, determination, enthusiasm
But I am hoping that maybe for now I have found a little bit of my spark again.  I have been scouring Pinterest like a mad woman (and wasting loads of time here as well) to see if I could get inspired; it helped but not as much as I was hoping.  So then I decided to clean out the bookmarks that I have saved on my laptop and well...that's where I found some creative mojo....some of those minds out there are just 'jaw dropping' ingenious.  
If you haven't already checked out some of the creative projects from CHA this past weekend then all I can say is that you are definitely missing out.  I can't even begin to fathom where some of these ideas grew from but year after year the designers always pull off something above & beyond.  For example this lady here shares day 2 of CHA with us and the baby crib alone is absolutely stunning yet dumbfounding to me.
So where to go from there...?  Er....your answer is as good as mine no doubt.....I have absolutely no idea.
In the meantime, the project that I have been sharing with you is about a year old.  I did this perpetual calendar for my Grandma as a Christmas present, my goal was to make one for myself also but like so many other things that I plan to do two of...well....I haven't gotten around to it yet.
The reason for sharing this in particular is because this is my first post of the new year (how shameful) and the way my mind works, a calendar seemed appropriate.  Besides that - I haven't much of an excuse...I just don't have anything to post really.....the few projects that I do have done I plan on posting later this month or maybe @ least within the next couple of months **wink-wink** and once those are up I'm not sure what I'll do.  I'm hoping to have something 'new' done soon so that I can keep this tenuous creative thread from shredding completely.....so cross your fingers and send some artistic vibes my way pleeeeeease!
As for this year old project....it is still one of my favorites and I love that my Grandma loves it.  As far as I know she has it out again for this year.  I think with this I was finally able to step outside the box and really do what I wanted, it felt more me - maybe that's why it's still in my 'tops' list.
Couple of my favorite elements are showing now so let me take your attention to the photos. The one here above shows the side of the page where I braided a gold sheer ribbon through the holes in the border, and to me adding that little detail gave this page a touch of elegance.
In this photo you see I added a charm that I hung from a small piece of chain....love that.
Like I said this entire piece is probably more me than most of the other pieces I've done; you are forced to dig beneath the surface to find the importance of it, those meaningful details that give it it's character.
I love that about mini albums (ooo - deja vu - I think that I've said this before) that there are so many layers; so many little tidbits to find, facts to uncover, and secrets to be revealed - in essence anyways, which is why they are just so much fun.
Another of my favorite things are miniatures, look at that teeny tiny vintage key, it's just.....cool!  I have loved miniatures since I was a kid, so doll house items are always a win for me, in fact I'm thinking of doing something altered along those lines.
As for current projects...like I said...I'm hoping to get something done soon but as in most cases I rarely make anything for myself so when I say I want to get something 'new' done I am really hoping that I can get something done for me =)
What I would really like is to play around with some ideas that have been simmering on the back burner but being that my time is limited (to say the least) -  well none of those ideas will qualify, in fact quite the opposite, so those will just have to wait.  Luckily though, I have a couple of paid projects that will be coming up soon so I'm okay with keeping my table clear so that I can get those tackled in a timely manner.  Maybe after those I can indulge myself............it's always 'someday' right?
Okay I'm gonna grab your attention again to the photo above: for this page I created a pocket and in the pocket I added bits & pieces about my family (since I made it).  As you can see in the picture I used clothing tags as mini journaling cards, what's cool is that those were the sizes my girls were wearing @ the time that I made this.
How cool will that be to read in a few years...
I even did a mini journaling card for Bill & I - except I used the back of a paint sample
Here I added this cute little Winnie the Pooh tag....it matched....and also because it's important to have something from that particular moment in time....
Here again is another mini journaling card, re purposed from a different paint sample.  Inside I added each of our full names, each of our year of birth, and the age we all were @ the time this was made.  Not only does it give the calendar more character, it documents 'our' time as well as the day-to-day.
Now what were we discussing before?....oh yes CHA.  Well as of lately I have been checking out a lot of You Tube videos from CHA (which is the Craft & Hobby Association winter show-that was held earlier this month in Anaheim) and I am super excited to get my hands on quite a few of the new products coming out.  
Tim Holtz here never disappoints and once again he has pulled a magic rabbit out of his hat.  He has some very cool Ideaology things coming out soon  here and this lady here has certainly captured his magic in the pieces that she was able to create here for the show (this is the same lady who did the baby crib for G45-as she is a designer for both Ranger & Graphic 45).
Someday I would hope that I have the time to create such unique pieces and the vision to foresee it come to life.  Laura is truly an inspiration and someone that I admire greatly within this industry, as many others.
My goals for this year are to continue to push myself and get out of my comfort zone quite a bit more, to see if there is anything buried within that is worth digging out and dragging to the surface.  I feel there is some thing worth while there and I just need to tap into it so that I can create it.
In the meantime, I mentioned that there were several ideas that I wanted to try - some of those include: 
a fabric piece, some home decor pieces, lots of altered things, and a number of miniatures that I would like to attempt, and maybe even a melt art piece as well.  We shall see what becomes of it.
Hope that with this very long post I didn't bore you all too much, in fact I would like to think that maybe I even encouraged you to try your hand @ something new or out of the norm.  I think it is always wise for us as individuals to consciously strive to do something beyond ourselves, to allow ourselves the opportunity to grow into who we are and not always just accept who we've become.
So as I said, that is my goal for this year, to strive to become who I want to be even if the concept eludes me for now; I believe eventually that the essence of that being will make its self known and I will be all the better because of it.
Hope everyone of you enjoyed and survived the holidays and are having a wonderful New Year to date.  I am excited to be back to blogging and will hopefully be able to keep a regular posting schedule, more so than I have in the years past.  
I thank you for your continued support and look forward to this new year with a new sense of dedication.  As always please feel free to leave me a comment or your thoughts-I will welcome them along with any suggestions you may have -thanks for stopping in and sharing with me my love for scrap booking.
just B