Wishful thinking

As much as I would like to think that Fall is just around the corner, I'm having kind of a hard time believing it. It's still in the 90's here in Dallas and we've had so much rain this summer that everything is still nice and green. Maybe in another month, I'll start to feel a little chill in the air. Well, okay. Realistically, it won't be a chill. Probably just a morning in the 60's. But I'll take it.

In the meantime, I will find Fall in other ways. I'd been meaning to scrap these pumpkin patch photos forever, but I could never find the right paper I wanted to use. A few days ago, I was thumbing through my BasicGrey stack and landed on some Lime Rickey papers in oranges and a purpley-blue. All of a sudden, it clicked. These were the papers I'd been looking for. The layout came together quickly once I started putting all the photos and papers together.

Easily distracted

Betcha thought I'd be back with layouts of the two photos I posted yesterday...didn't ya? Well, you just don't know me at all! Nope, I never even got those two photos printed out before my mind was swept away by the latest hand-drawn sketch on Paper Popsicles. Here's a look:
Well, sure I could've used one of yesterday's photos for this sketch, but it just wasn't speakin' to me that way. In fact, this sketch didn't do much for me at first, and it took me a while to figure out exactly what I was going to do. But after I started playing around with it, it all came together. I finally did my first layout about my dog, Zoey. We've had her for just over a year and the poor thing has never made it into the scrapbook yet. She does have a lot to compete with, but in all fairness, she's very cute and has plenty of personality. So it was time.

I hope I did her justice.

My first attempt at this paper pleating technique. I like the way it turned out.

In case you want to read the journaling...

And a close-up of the cute puppy from the Basic Grey Junebug line. Love this guy!

Off to find the next distraction...right after I give Zoey a little scratch and a hug. Thanks for visiting!

Where Have I Been?

Traveling the country...sending my daughter to her first day of Kindergarten...trying desperately to catch up at work. Yeah, that pretty much covers it. But the great thing is: I now have SO many photos I want to scrap! Like this one...

Oh, and this one, too!

Plus a few from Washington D.C. that I haven't even downloaded to the computer yet. So I guess it's time to get busy, huh?

Lazy Sunday

For all the productivity I had yesterday, I suppose I was bound to follow that up with a pretty non-productive day. I took my older daughter to the pool and we lazed around in the water (well, she swam...I lazed) for a good three hours. Then we hit the Sonic Happy Hour on the way home and took a nice, long nap. I love days like this, but I can't help but feel a little guilty that I didn't accomplish a little bit more.

So no layouts finished today, but I do have one that I submitted for a Guest Design spot a few weeks ago. It wasn't picked (wahnt-wahnt-wahhhh), but that's life and I still love this layout. It's from a birthday party my daughter went to last fall. The pics were fabulous and it look me a long time to figure out exactly how I could do them justice on a layout.

Branching out

Saturday mornings are probably my most productive scrapping time of the week. Maybe it's that I'm freshly rested (assuming I didn't stay out too late on Friday night) or that my kids are happily watching cartoons. Either way, I tend to get a lot done on Saturdays...and today was no exception!

I started off with a card, based on this sketch at Coordinates Collections:

And here's my version, using Imaginisce papers, some Bazzill cardstock, Making Memories ribbon and Diamond Stickles:

Here's a better shot of the Stickles (on the polka dots and the cupcake icing):

So after I finished that, I was kind of on a roll. I decided to tackle the cardboard recipe box I found at Michael's in the clearance isle. The thing was less than $1 and it was pretty ugly, but I figured I'd find some cute papers to cover it with and turn it into something fun. After sifting through piles and piles of paper that seemed very "kitchen-y," I just wasn't quite feelin' it with any of them. Then my eyes landed on the Basic Grey Lime Rickey kit, and the wheels started turning.

I'm so happy with how it came out. It's totally ME, and I've been wanting to use that bird for months now. I finally found him a home!

The best part is that I'm actually motivated to put some recipes in this thing. The question is: will it actually motivate me to cook? Probably not...but it was worth a try.

I love it when things accidentally work out!

Once in a great while, all the planets align and I create a layout that I absolutely adore. And that happened to me this week...though it wasn't the way I expected.

Some background. I entered a two-step challenge on the Paper Popsicles board. The first step was to upload at least one recent summer photo that hadn't been scrapped yet. So I posted this photo of my girls playing in the sprinklers in our backyard.

Not my favorite photo of all time, but I thought it had potential, and it was a great summer memory. Then the second step of the challenge was revealed. It was to create a layout using the selected photo that also included:
  • yellow, blue and brown cardstock
  • 3 buttons
  • 4 different patterned papers
  • Journaling
  • The word blast in the title (using die cut, sticker or rub-on letters)
  • 3 stickers
The thing that freaked me out the most in that list of requirements was the colors of cardstock. When I looked at the photo, I never would've chosen those colors to put with it. But I didn't give up. I sat down at my scrap table and started pulling out papers. And lo and behold, I found a combination that not only didn't look horrid, but actually worked really well!

So, without further ado...here's the finished layout:

I made this flower by cutting a circle of paper into a spiral and rolling it back up.

I'm loving how bright a fun it turned out. And to think...had I not had all those challenge requirements, I would've taken this a completely different direction!

Cards...They're not so hard

I've mentioned before that I've never really gotten into cards all that much. But after I did those two a few weeks ago, I discovered that I actually kind of like doing them. And they're a great way to use scraps, which makes me feel all environmentally conscious and thrifty.

So here's another card I put together using the Scarlet Lime kit from July. When I first got the kit, I was kind of lukewarm about the color combo -- yellow, aqua, brown, lime. But that's what I love about kits. They challenge me to try things I wouldn't normally do and to branch out from my norm. I found that I actually LOVE the combination of yellow and brown with lime. Who knew?

I'm positively addicted to the lime green pom-pom trim and am hoarding bits and pieces of it which you'll be sure to see in future layouts.

And here's the inside...

Is it Friday yet?

Ever have one of those weeks where you feel like you're in some sort of time warp? Like every minute is actually an hour and the day seems as if it will go on forever? Well, that's how this week feels to me. And usually, when I have a week like this, it's because there is something amazingly wonderful happening at the end of the week -- like a vacation, or the last day of work before a holiday or, best of all, a night when we have a babysitter! But at the end of this week, there's nothing I'm all that excited about. So why is time dragging so slowly?

I'm sure I'll never know. And even worse, the same phenomenon that's stretching time beyond its natural bounds is also affecting my scrapbooking. I just can't seem to complete the layout I've been messing with for three days now. It's close, but I'm just not satisfied with it yet. Maybe tomorrow will be the day when I emerge from this self-induced funk and get moving again.

In the meantime (and in the spirit of the whole "time warp" idea), here's an oldie, but a goodie. It's a birthday invitation I did for my daughter's 4th birthday party. We had it at a ranch-themed petting zoo where there were pony rides, so I used a photo I had of Avery sitting on a pony and some yummy papers from Basic Grey to assemble this invitation, which I then scanned and had printed as 5x7 photos to send out as invites. I'm not loving the sticker stuff, but this was a few years ago and my style continues to evolve, hopefully for the better.

Procrastination...it's a good thing

If I'm not the world's worst procrastinator, I have to be right up there in the top five. It's just so much more fun to scrapbook and read blogs than it is to do laundry, clean the kitchen and organize my closet. So that's what I'm doing. And it feels good!

Here's one of the many products of my expert procrastination ability. I snapped this photo with my iPhone (oh, how I love that little gadget...but that's a separate post for another day), and I couldn't wait to scrap it. I combined it with yet another one of my obsessions (gee, I seem to have a lot of those) -- ribbon. Thanks to my brief stint as a hairbow crafter extraordinaire, I have hundreds of spools of ribbon just lying around begging to be incorporated into a layout.

I found this cute little magnetic paper clip in the clearance section at Michael's. I added the paper to match my layout and...voila! Perfect for attaching the date.

Love these chipboard buttons/flowers I created from the background paper. I pop-dotted the darker one to add some dimension and make it overlap with the other.

Papers: Sassafras Lass. Ribbons: Making Memories and Offray. Chipboard: Bo Bunny, K&Company; Paper clip: Creative Imaginations; Stickers: American Crafts Thickers and Making Memories Tiny Alpha.

It's a little sketchy

Confession: I've never been much of a sketcher. Normally, I just pull all of my elements that I want to use and start playing around with them until I think they look right together. However, layout sketches seem to have become all the rage lately (probably due to the success of Page Maps). Sketches are everywhere...blogs, discussion forums, magazines and idea books. And once in a while, one catches my eye and I can't resist trying it out.

I recently joined the Paper Popsicles message boards, and found this sketch in one of their Weekly Challenge threads.

And here's my take on it...a layout that just makes me smile every time I look at it. It was a fun day and I think the layout captures that sense of fun and adventure.

I used Lime Rickey papers from Basic Grey, Thickers from American Crafts and ribbon from Making Memories.

And now for something a little different...

Yes, it's been a while since I've blogged. I've been out of town (we went to Vegas for hubby's class reunion) and, since I've been home, I've been working on PTA stuff in my spare time. It's my first year on the PTA (and coincidentally, my older daughter's first year of elementary school -- she starts Kindergarten in three weeks!), and not surprisingly, I've underestimated the amount of time that will be required of my PTA commitment. Oh well...it's for the best, right?

But back to the important stuff -- scrapbooking. Well, sort of. My project this week was a set of gift tags for a swap on 2Peas. I haven't done too many swaps, but I find they push me to be more creative, so I want to do more. These gift tags were also my first foray into heat embossing and, I must say, I think I'm hooked! It's much easier than I thought, and the effect is really cool.

So here are the tags. I used Piggy Tales papers, and the stamps (both the butterfly and the "thinking of you") are Hero Arts.

I was having so much fun with the gift tags that I decided to do something totally crazy (for me, at least) and make some matching cards. See, I'm mostly a scrapbook layout girl. I don't really do cards. But I had leftover paper and an extra embossed butterfly, so I figured "what the heck?"

I'm a bit biased, of course, but I think these are pretty darn cute. I might actually be brave enough to give them to someone!