Saturday, December 17, 2011

Sweet Sunday Sketch #148

Hi there! Well, it's the last Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge of 2011! Unreal, right? I can't believe there are only 2 more weeks left in this year!! I seriously think 2011 has been the fastest year of my life so far. So anyway, We'll be taking next weekend off to spend the holidays with our families, but be sure to join us this week!! And then tune in on New Year's Day for the first sketch of 2012!! Here's a look at this week's sketch:

I created what is likely to be my final Christmas card of the year, which is funny since I STILL haven't mailed any out! I'm terrible, I know. I'm the world's worst card-mailer, but the BEST card collector!! You should see my stash! ;-)

I tried to get fancy with one of the fun new Christmas Verve sets, Bright Spirits, but it didn't turn out quite like I intended. Most of you know I'm not much of a technique girl - well, this is why! I tried to mix some glitter with some Crystal Effects and then "paint" it onto the ornament. It definitely looks glittery, but you lose the pretty pattern that's on the ornament stamp. I was hoping you'd still be able to see it through there, but I think I used too much glitter. And it took so long for the Crystal Effects to dry that I just said to heck with it and cut it out and used it anyway! The sentiment is from my go-to Christmas sentiment set, Holiday Phrases. (Are you tired of seeing that one yet?). All of the papers are from the fun Holiday Style paper pad from October Afternoon, which I'm loving. I also added one of my all-time favorite embellishments - a glittered chipboard star from the MemrieMare etsy shop. And that's it!

Be sure to stop by all the Sweet Sunday Stampers' blogs and see what they've done with this week's sketch.
Then play along with us and post your own creation using InLinkz over on today's post on Karen's Blog!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Sweet Sunday Sketch #147

Hi there! Well, after taking last week off, I'm back this week with another fun Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge sample card for ya! It's a fun sketch this week - one I'll definitely be saving in my "to use again" folder!

I used some of my fave Verve holiday stamps on my sample:

Fun and simple, right? Just the way I like them!! I just love those ornaments from the Holly Jolly set paired with a sentiment from my go-to Christmas sentiment set, Holiday Phrases. The patterned paper is printed digi paper from Fa-La-La by Dani Mogstad (Sweet Shoppe). I added some orange grosgrain and was done!

Be sure to stop by all the Sweet Sunday Stampers' blogs and see what they've done with this week's sketch.
Then play along with us and post your own creation using InLinkz over on today's post on Karen's Blog!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

December SFYTT

It's the first Saturday of the month!! You know what that means - time for another fabulous Sketch For You to Try! And it's December, the last month of the year, which means if you've been playing along with us each month this year and continue this month, you could be eligible for some FANTASTIC prizes!! (details over on Jen's Blog). For now, let's get on to this month's fun sketch.

As you know, we've had some amazing and extremely generous sponsors this year! One of those was my beloved Verve Stamps and I decided to play with Verve again this month (you can never have too much Verve-y eye candy, in my opinion!!). My son Dean's 5th birthday is next week so I was in need of a fun boyish birthday card. The sketch and Verve did the trick!

My regular blog readers know that Dean has a little keepsake tin that I have been slowly filling with cards I've made him over the years. About once a month I make him a card and fill the inside with a "letter" - my thoughts and feelings, funny things he's said or done, or just little things I want him to know about how it feels to be his Mom at this time in his life. He doesn't really care too much about these cards right now, but I'm hoping that some day this will be a treasured keepsake for him. Anyway, the thing is that it's really a lot easier for all of the cards to be the same size. So, I changed the sketch a bit for that reason - that's why my sample's not square. I also put the card together away from home and couldn't remember how big that circle was supposed to be, so I kinda messed that up. Oh well. I think it'd look better if the circle was a bit bigger like in the sketch, but I don't hate it enough to re-do it. It'll work. So anyway, the card deets...All of the papers are printed digi paper from the Masked Marvels kit by Julie Billingsley (Sweet Shoppe). And the stamps? I used one of my favorite birthday stamp sets - Birthday Bash from Verve. I just love paper piecing those fun balloons!!

Be sure to stop by the rest of the SFYTT Sisters' blogs to see what they've done with this month's sketch!

Jen del Muro
Amber Hight
Amy Sheffer
Becky Carafa
Carole Burrage
Iwona Palamountain (Chupa)
Jodi Collins
Kerry Johnson
Megan Lock
Sony Christoph
Susan Liles
Terri Moore

Have a fun weekend! We headed out yesterday morning (just after I typed up this blog post) on a fun family stay-cation on the south side of the island to celebrate a handful of milestones. We're staying at the Grand Wailea resort this weekend to celebrate Dean's birthday, my Mom's 60th birthday, and mine and Joel's 6th wedding anniversary which is on Dec 9th. I'm SOOOO looking forward to 3 full days of relaxing by the pool, playing in the sand a bit at the beach (although, to be honest, we probably won't do much of that since we can do that any old day), and just doing a whole lot of nothing while soaking up some warm Maui sun! I'll be back early next week with my first December Daily post!! Can't wait to share that project

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Holiday Joy SFYTT

Hi there! Now, don't keel over, but I'm back with another post - 2 days in a row!! I couldn't resist Linkmaking one more card using the fabulous November SFYTT! (You can see my original November SFYTT post HERE).

I pulled out several goodies from this month's SFYTT sponsor, Verve Stamps, and got to work on another hybrid holiday card.

I used a total of 5 Verve Products on this card - 3 stamp sets and 2 Die Sets!! (Product Links are at the end of the post. I'm trying out the Link Manager thing. Let me know if you like this or if you prefer links in the write-up). I just couldn't seem to stop digging into my extensive stash for more stuff!! I'm still not too sure about those Mica Flakes. They didn't turn out exactly as I'd envisioned, but I don't hate them. (The Mica Flakes are from Stampin' Up, btw. No link for that).

So there are only a few more days to play along with us in the November SFYTT - better get busy!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Sweet Sunday Sketch #145

Hi there! Well, you might have noticed that I never did make it around to posting my sample for last week's sketch. I ended up feeling under the weather and then the week just got away from me and now here we are - it's already Sunday again! So that means it's time for another Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge! Here's a look at this week's fun sketch:

I added another simple hybrid card to my holiday stash, we'll see if I actually get around to mailing any out this year (I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you):

I used printed digi papers from the new A Merry Little Christmas digi kit by Zoe Pearn (Sweet Shoppe) and finally inked up my Tremendous Treats Christmas stamp set (PTI). I didn't cut my image very straight / centered with my circle nesties, but since I loathe coloring, I decided to just pretend it was fine and be done with it. No biggie. I'm learning to overlook these things, as much as it pains me.

Be sure to stop by all the Sweet Sunday Stampers' blogs and see what they've done with this week's sketch.
Then play along with us and post your own creation using InLinkz over on today's post on Karen's Blog!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sweet Sunday Sketch Sample Delay

Well, I really did have every intention of getting my Sweet Sunday Sketch sample card done on time this weekend, but it just didn't happen. We had a big Garage Sale this morning and every spare minute this week was spent sorting and organizing and pricing. I'm SOOO glad that's over with! And now, after 4 years in this house, I think we might finally be able to park a car in our garage!! :-) I honestly don't know where all this crap came from. We moved into this house from a 750 square foot condo!! Seriously, how have accumulated this much STUFF!? Anyway, I'm just way too tired to get my card made today so I'm going to do it first thing tomorrow morning. My boys are going to the beach and giving me some much needed "Jen Time"! For now, I'm going to bed! (It's still Saturday night here on Maui!!). But here's a look at the sketch in case you want to go ahead and get started. All of the details are over on Karen's blog. I hope you'll play along with us!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

December Daily 2011 - Cover and Foundation Pages

Get ready...this is gonna be a super long, photo-heavy post!! I'm SO excited that I finally have time to create this fun album project this year! I've watched as Ali Edwards created amazing keepsake December Daily albums the last several years, but with all of my Design Team commitments I was just never able to find the time to get things together and get an album assembled and ready to go in time. Earlier this year I significantly cut back on my Design Teams, stepping down from a few much-loved teams to have more time to devote to my family as well as to crafting and creating projects with no requirements or restrictions - projects that are just for the love of creating - projects exactly like this! I have been working on the foundation of my December Daily album the last few weeks and just about have it all ready to go. Hopefully when December 1st arrives, I can focus on making memories and spending time with family and the documentation will go fairly quickly and easily. We'll see.

So anyway, I thought I'd share my cover and foundation pages with you all today, as well as some product links. For the most part, the inside of my album will be looking very Ali-ish. I like her style and I didn't want to have to think too much. I also want the photos and stories to be the focus, so I'll be using a lot of her digital products in the album. Product links for new products are at the end of this post. I also used a lot of stuff from my stash.

So here's a look at the cover of my album. I used the American Crafts chipboard album designed exclusively for the Ali Edwards Studio Calico December Daily kit. It took me forever to decide what to do with this cover. I wanted so badly to embellish the crap out of it, but it just didn't seem practical since I knew a pair of grubby little boy hands would be all over it year after year. So instead, I painted it red, added a lightly embellished "25" to the front and then heat embossed a small "December 2011" at the bottom. I'm pretty happy with it. I like the sloppy white paint, despite the fact that I painted it in too big of an area. It still works. I may add some paint splatters later. We'll see.

When you open the cover, I have a fun little clear pocket thing that I made. I got the idea for this from something I saw on Etsy, it was a confetti pocket (I made some confetti to use in a smaller pocket later in the album), and I decided to make something similar. I cut down some small page protectors to a square and filled it with red and silver confetti that I purchased in the floral dept from my local Ben Franklin, then I sewed the top closed. I added a striped twill tab, button and jingle bell embellishment along with a sentiment strip and the first of many glass glittered stars (purchased from one of my favorite Etsy shops - MemrieMare).

Next is a calendar page that I'll use as a sort of table of contents with the basic activities of the month. The Studio Calico kit came with several of these, I cut it down and slid it into a trimmed down page protector.

After the calendar, I used one of Ali's digital Long Journalers to jot down a "December Bucket List". I recolored the journaler in Photoshop and changed the title, then printed it out (I actually printed out LOTS of these long journalers to be used throughout the album, each with a different holiday-themed title) and slid it into a custom page protector I made by trimming down and sewing closed a regular 8.5x11 page protector. My son Dean and my husband Joel helped me come up with a list of all the things we want to do before Christmas. I got the idea for this when searching for ideas for my December Daily on Pinterest and knew I wanted to do something similar!

Finally, we come to the "guts" of the album. Each day has it's own numbered cover sheet / divider of sorts. I alternated between vellum and Kraft for these. Don't worry, I won't show you all 25 of them, just a few so you get the idea. I kept things pretty simple and repetitious for these.

Another thing found throughout the album are these little pocket pages. I got this idea straight from Ali herself. I saw her use these last year and noticed she's doing it again this year too. I absolutely LOVE the way these look! They're 8.5x11 baseball card sleeve page protectors (I actually purchased mine at Office Max, but the link at the bottom of the post is to the higher quality We R Memory Keepers brand), trimmed down so that there are 4 pockets. Some of the pockets are already filled with little holiday-themed trinkets and do-dads and then sewn closed. The other pockets have been left empty for now. I'll fill those with photos, journaling, and little pieces of memories I collect throughout the month (receipts, ticket stubs, etc). You'll notice that some of my pockets are a direct copy of some of Ali's. If it ain't broke...

For now, these pocket pages are just randomly placed throughout the album for the purposes of taking photos (only a few are shown, but I have about 10 of them total). In actuality, before the first of December, I will remove them and just use them as I need them. The same is true for the Long Journalers. They are not numbered and are embellished generically enough that I can use them on any day that I have either more photos / memorabilia and/or lengthy stories to tell. Here's a look at all of my Long Journalers (except for the one already used for the December Bucket List). I'm still waiting on a special order of Red Glass Glittered stars from the MemrieMare Etsy Shop to arrive so I can finish embellishing a few of them, then I'll be done!

Every single day of the month has a printed December Daily Overlay that is already slid into a full-page page protector (the pages in this album are 6x8.5 inches). I will paste either one large photo for the day or several smaller photos or a combination of photos and journaling on these pages. Some days I may spill over onto the back and use Ali's digital Templates if I have lots of photos.

So that's it. I'm pretty much ready to go and I think you all get the idea of what my album looks like. It's pretty unfinished now and will likely have a lot more embellishment added to it as I complete the daily pages in December. I'll probably do a post or 2 each week of December to share with you how it looks as it all comes together! Thanks for humoring me with this long post.

So are any of you doing December Daily this year? What are you plans? Have you started your album? I'd LOVE to see it - leave a link in the comments so I can check it out!!