Friday, September 14, 2007

We are Mouse-bound!!

Heading out in the weeeeee early morning hours tomorrow. We need to be up at 5:15am to catch our flight to Orlando...Yipppeeee!!

So what am I NOT doing? ....packing

So what am I doing instead? ....making these super-cute autograph books for my girls, of course!!

Now, as much as I LOVE Disney, I just CANNOT tolerate all of their licensed character papers that are on the market--Good God, they make me want to hurl! I find them quite gaudy and gauche, and try as I might, I just couldn't bring myself to make that purchase--even for my kids.
What I did find as a perfect substitute was these Cherry Arte Cosmic Energy papers. They had all the right colors, and I was even able to accentuate some of the miscellaneous circles with some Heidi Swapp bling to represent a Mickey Mouse head...Not bad, eh? I didn't go overboard with lots of embellies, as these books will put through some rigorous handling, hence the need to mod podge the cover too. I'm not too crazy about the look of the mod podge on the cover, but wanted to give it a bit of protection...It's ok, I can live with it...It is far better than one of the cookie cutter books found in the parks, and I didn't have to subject myself to the purchase of f-ugly papers you find in the stores.

Now that I can check these books off my to-do list, it is on to packing!


See you in a week!


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Here's what's happening in my neck of the woods...

This past week I have been super busy doing store displays for my lss, Lasting Memories. I also actually worked a day in the store, and rang customers--all by myself--YIKES!...LOL, there were a few people who got some REALLY good deals on items as a result of my ineptitude with the register. But it was a good day. I'd definitely do it again, and I'll give y'all a heads-up so you know when to come in while i'm working ***wink, wink***

This first layout for store display is using K&Co's Hopscotch papers...When I first saw the papers, I was like, "ick!!", but now I kinda like the way this page turned out. :)

This 2-pager is done using Rusty Pickle's Pirate Princess papers. I did gobs of machine stitching on this, along with my very first experience with the uber-cool Stickles. Oh yeah, I've gotta get me some o'dat!

Check out the close-up picks of the scrolls and winged heart--the Stickles make them jump off the page!

Here's another store display I did using the BG Periphery papers. I have been really big into transparencies lately--especially making my own. I used the HS "cherish" stamp on my tranparency. Then I used my Crafter's Workshop doodling templet to trace and cut the scalloped/pierced edge. I dry brushed the scallops to give the detail some definition. I also grabbed some mesh (I know!! a blast from the past) to go along with this page. I thought it worked really well with the distressy look of this paper. Then I did a couple of my trademark embellishing (you can almost always see this somewhere on my lo's), the machine stitching and cut out flowers... You really have to click on these photos to enlarge--you just don't get the detail from the regular sized pics on the blog.

I also worked on one other lo for store display, but did it while I was working at the store...I don't have a pic, but will try to snap one tomorrow when I go to teach my class...

P.S. Did i mention we're going to Disney in 4 days?! I gotta get going and get organized for that!! I've got costumes to pack (MNSSHP), travel documents to retrieve from our safe deposit box, get some cash, pack our everyday clothes, confirm our grocery delivery, confirm our flights, etc....and the list goes on and on!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

As promised... are my pictures from Cape Cod

The beach bums (my girls, and my friend's girls) hammin' for the camera on the beach at low tide in Eastham (which, by the way was voted one of the U.S.'s top 10 places to view a sunset!)

my oh so pretty girl #2...

my oh so pretty girl #1...


yep, the water's a little cold!!

Marina in Provincetown

Rock Harbor at sunset

my friend's house in Eastham

 friend's son Matt skimboarding on the beach in Eastham

a live starfish found in the surf at Nauset Beach...we always catch and release!

This is one of the views from Marconi Station in Wellfleet

A horseshoe crab

Matt surfcasting at dusk at Nauset Beach

This is Cap'n Cass. A cute little restaurant in Rock Harbor Marina

a whale's tail...

...the end!

hope you liked them! :)

Monday, August 27, 2007

I love a quickie!!

Here is a quickie lo I made at the beginning of the month...This one I created for the monthly Scraplift Challenge I host at 2SS. For this month's challenge, I asked participants to scraplift a card, layout or altered art project from any print publication (ie: Simple Scrapbooks, Creating Keepsakes, Paper Crafts, etc...)

Here is my inspiration piece:
the original artwork is entitled "ernesto" by Yolanda Williams from Charlotte NC, and was featured on pg.127 of the July/August 2007 issue of Simple Scrapbooks

I just loved the clean lines of this layout and the awesome use of "white space". I am so attracted to these types of layouts... The simplicity of the design draws focus to the photos--perfection!! So why do I have such trouble with this concept? I don't be the judge!

And here is my interpretation entitled, "Center of my Universe"

***just a note: my original photograph of my girls was a little out of focus, but I just loved the picture, and wanted to use it anyway...So I edited it in Photoshop using a blur tool.

Here's how i did it:

Open your photo in Photoshop
Select "Filter" from the toolbar
Select "Blur" from the drop down menu
Select "Radial Blur"
Select "Zoom" as your blur method
Adjust amount of blur to your liking
Adjust focal point in the grid box on the left hand portion of the drop down menu
Click ok

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Getting warmed up...

After being gone on our vacation for two weeks, I am still attempting to get back into the swing of things here in my "real life". I was without internet access, and believe it or not, I enjoyed the reprieve from being connected. So upon my return, i was welcomed back with gobs of email. Just wading through that took the majority of one day!

This was the first year in many where I did not bring any scrap-related projects to work on...Two whole weeks without any paper, glue or scissors--oh, the horror!!

I took the morning yesterday to get re-acquainted with my neglected tools and supplies. You would think I would be brimming with creative ideas, but that was not the case. My lss asked me to make a store display with these cute Rusty Pickle Cap'n Jack first thought was of my talented friend Rachael's AHOY! layout...Hers is so much cuter than mine, but here's what I came up with based on Rachael's layout:

This picture was taken last summer on Cape Cod when we were at the Pirate Adventures in Orleans. They gave the kids pirate names, One-Eyed Olivia, and Half-Mast Hayden, then took them out on a treasure-seeking boating excursion aboard the Sea Gypsy in the bay. They fought Pirate Pete with the ship's water cannons, found the treasure chest, and celebrated their take of the booty with a nice drink of grog!! LOL It is so darn cute!

The title is made with Thickers, and the little name plaques are made with a 7Gypsies stamp.

Hopefully after this little warm-up exercise, I will have gotten my mojo back and flowing...check back for more goodies in the coming week!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I've been tagged!!

I've been tagged by the lovely Karen (Scrapbooking Princess), an sb buddy from IL2C...

So here are the rules:
1. Post these rules
2. Each person must post 8 random facts about themselves
3. 8 more people need to be tagged and you have to leave a comment on their blog saying so :)

Here are my random (and rather uninteresting) facts:

1. I had fresh strawberries and blueberries over my breakfast cereal this morning. They were sooo delicious!! The days are numbered are for those little beauties, as their peak season is slowly diminishing...

2. My favorite season is Fall. I can't wait for sweater weather! I love the cool crisp days, apple picking, and the spectacular fall foliage.

3. I think I got a good deal on this year's heating oil prices...I am paying a lock-in rate of $2.30/gallon--that is a dramatic decrease from what a paid last year, a whopping $2.68/gallon!! So I am happy to save that 38 cents per gallon--Yipppeeee Skipppeee!!

4. I have been slacking when it comes to keeping on top of the kids' reading and math skills this summer. So I have implemented a "summer school" program at our house for the last two weeks before the start of school...We have an hour and a half of lessons and reading each morning, and surprisingly the kids are really liking it...What's wrong with these children?! LOL

6. I am not a happy camper if I have to function without my morning coffee!

7. I am such a slacker, that I have yet to fully understand and use my camera (Nikon D50) to it's full potential. I have owned it for well over a year now--how pathetic.

8. I LOVE rollercoasters! I love the huge drops, and twists and turns, the loops and corkscrews, being turned upside down and thrown from side to side, it is all so thrilling!

1. Amy B
2. Amy (saltzworks)
3. Rachael
4. Penny B
5. Diane
6. Deborrah
7. Tracy P.
8. Shannon

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Happy Birthday, Matt

Happy Birthday to my dh!! I made this birthday card for him using the Cosmo Cricket Dutch Girl papers, and following my fellow DT member over at 2SS, Cindy's July Card Challenge.

We promised each other we would keep our birthdays low-key this year, as we are planning another trip to WDW for Sept.

I made him a cake for tonight, and have to go and wrap his presents...Any ideas on what to make for dinner tonight in 94 degree weather?! I'm thinkin' reservations!! LOL

Monday, July 09, 2007

Time to get crack-a-lackin'!

My friend Rachael over at IL2C has issued a challenge for all the girls to update their blogs...Yes, I am guilty as charged!! It's been a while since I've logged into my blogger account...

I am just back from a weekend trip to see my sister Jeanne's new beach house in Rhode Island...It is so fabulous (and I am SO jealous!). While her house isn't beach front property, she is literally a walk down the street to the beach...See the picture? Her house is HUGE!!!

We were blessed with a beautiful day on Friday, and spent the afternoon basking in the sun, and doing a little beachcombing...The waves were so friggin' fabulous, and I was stunned as I thought the water would be much calmer!! I LOVE those rockin' rollin' waves!!! There were tons of surfer-dudes out there riding the waves, was a perfect day :)

On a crafty note, I am hosting the scraplift challenge at 2SS, and this month I challenged our members to lift from a manufacturer's website (ie: Cherry Arte, Cosmo Cricket, Crate Paper, etc...). There are tons of talented ladies (and gents) who display their creativity for all of us to see, I thought maybe we could recognize their genius, give them kudos!!!, and lift their work....

Here is the layout I lifted from Sheri Reguly whose a member of the DT at CherryArte.

Thanks so much to Sheri for her wonderfully inspiring work!!

And here is my lift, "99.44% Pure":

If you'd like to play along with this challenge, email me a picture (or link) of the lifted mfg's lo, and your lo, and I will put your name in a hat for a RAK at the end of the month...

send your pics to by July 28th...

I will post your pics on my blog :)

Friday, June 29, 2007

My roommate and I once: went shopping for wedding gowns at Kleinfeld's in NYC...yeah, like we could EVER afford that!

Never in my life have I: bungee jumped--nor do I want to!

High school was : a chemical induced blur

When I'm nervous : I have to pee every 5 minutes

My hair : is too short after this last haircut--I look like a boy!

When I was 5 : I was cute!! Then my mom gave my hair a "bowl cut", and it was all down hill after that!

When I turn my head left : I look out into my hallway, and see my dusty hall table

I should be : scrapping!! I have deadlines looming...

By this time next year : I hope to be published in print

My favorite aunt is : Aunt Sue--know to me as SJ

I have a hard time understanding : Geometry--I SO cannot wrap my brain around that shit!

You know I like you if : tease you, and make fun of you...If I am polite, I hate your guts :)

My ideal breakfast is : made by someone else!

If you visit my home town : you will see it is over-run with illegal immigrants who sap our government and public services for things they don't pay into--GRRRRRR!!

If you spend the night at my house : I won't stay up late with you...I am early to bed,and early to rise

My favorite blonde is : Reese Witherspoon

My favorite brunette is : Oh, I don't know...these blonde/ brunette questions are dumb!!

The animal I would like to see flying besides birds : What the heck kind of question is this?! This is something to ponder after dropping some acid, maybe...

I shouldn't have been : so disrespectful to my grandma...I was such an adolescent brat, and she died before I could show her otherwise.

Last night I: watched Pirate Master with my kids

A better name for me would be : just about anything other than what I was given..

I've been told I look like : Princess Diana--HUH?! It must have been the beer goggles!! LOL

If I could have any car, it would be : a 1967 Ford Shelby Cobra GT350 Mustang Convertible I could be a Charlie's Angel in this :D

I am tagging (who will hopefully participate):






Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Here's tonight's class

Here are the pictures of tonight's class I'm teaching at Lasting Memories. A few of the girls there saw my last CD mini-book that I had made for my mom, and requested that we do a class. I am so happy to oblige as this is a quick and satisfying project!

I wanted this little book to feature our families, and the fun times that we spend together. Here are some photos of my family through the years. I used Creative Imaginations' Art Warehouse Danelle Johnson collection...I just love the brown and blue and orange combination, as it works for just about anybody and any situation (well ok, maybe not bridal...)! I also used some of the Art Warehouse Limited Edition stamps--I LOVE THOSE THINGS!! I used them in conjunction with some white STAZ-ON and stamped on my transparencies. I was so pleased to locate some of those MM Word-fetti stickers in my craftroom (that's another story)!! ...I refer to them as "the lazy man's journaling"...they are the best thing since sliced bread, as now I don't really have to do any of my own journaling--I just let the Word-fetti stickers take care of that.

On another note, I have to say that my kids' school really was the impetus for this whole CD mini-book project. They had an Earth day celebration (i think it was in April), where they were promoting awareness on conservation and recycling at the school. Now, "recycling" being the key word here, I had all these junk CD's laying around my craftroom...They were either non-functioning discs, or those promotional ones you get in the mail, don't ask me why I didn't just throw them out--It's the packrat mentality that prevents me from doing it...I had an "A-ha!" moment, and put them to use!

Beauty begat from junk...

Think GREEN!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

YaY!! I scrapped!!

This is the first time I scrapped since I fell (June 12th). I was too sore until now to sit for any length of time...this has even put a damper on my surfing the net!! 12 whole days later, and I couldn't resist the urge to create anymore!! I did end-up doing a lot of standing while i did this project, but alas, it is a step in the right direction...I made this cute little card for my dear sister who gave me the stamp set... She picked-up these stamps at Michael's, from the $1 section, they are a set of clear acrylic stamps that have more flowers in the set and another saying in addition to the one I used --a lovely little surprise!!

I stamped the images, and then heat embossed them. I used my Twinkling H20's to add color to the images. I used some new scalloped scissors to trim the edges of my flowers, and also along the top and bottom edges of the card, then dotted the scallops with my Zig pen. I crumpled and sanded the green dot paper and added the ribbon to coordinate with the orange Twinkling H20's.

Not bad for an injured artist, eh?

p.s. The sucky thing about photographing Twinkling H20's is it's extremely difficult to capture the shimmer!! Just pretend you can see the shimmer in the flowers, K?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


Since the beginning of May, I have vowed to get back on track with some daily exercising...I have been going great, and keeping a log of my daily accomplishments, and even set a goal for myself for the month of June. My goal is to walk 60 miles...which, if you break it down, is not that impressive...a mere 2 miles per day. But, coming off of a non-exercising slump, any exercise at all is an improvement!! :)

So as the month of June is motoring right along, so am I. I am on target to reach my goal, with hopes of surpassing it--until this morning. I got a late start, as I had overslept. I was late to meet my walking buddy (my dear sister, Mary--bless her soul for allowing herself to get dragged along with me in my quest for a healthier self!), and needed to take the shortcut to catch-up with her. This means cutting through my backyard and my neighbors backyard, instead of walking the long way around. Well, it had rained last night, and my sneakers were squeaking as I tip-toed over the wet grass, and through the rickety gate that separates our backyard from our neighbors. Heading down the hill and making an effort to be quick and quiet (as it is 5:45am) as I pass the neighbor's house, I head down their stairs. In one step, I slip and fall down their slick stone stairs. YOWCH!! I can only imagine how it must have looked from a spectator's point of view....My foot went right straight out from underneath me, and went down full force, PLUNK!!--right on my tailbone on the edge of the stone step...then bounced on my butt down a couple more steps. It all happened so fast, in the blink of an eye, I am immediately flush with pain and embarrassment.

So I am nursing my pain in the butt--literally. I have an ice pack that I am sitting on, and I am downing the motrin in an effort to stave off the swelling and pain. What's a girl to do? I am utterly mortified to take this ailment to the doctor...I'd have to drop my drawers and show my cottage cheese butt, and maybe even get an x-ray of it--I don't think so!! What could they possibly do with a broken tailbone?

I am due to teach a class at LM tomorrow--hopefully I won't be out of commission for that...I just won't be able to sit down. Not sure how I am going to make the 30 minute drive over to the store, and the 30 minutes back home. I have considered making a "donut" out of a towel to sit on for the drive...I'll let you know how it all turns out.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

"Tag"--I'm it?!

Hooooo---whhhheeeeee!! That's what I get for slackin' on my bloggin'--I was tagged, and didnt' even know it!! I was tagged by the very talented Shannon, also a DT member at 2SS's. You can find Shannon at her blog, "designs of a paddymack"---I just LOVE her work, so go and check it out!!

These are the rules.... each player starts with 7 random fact about themselves on their Blog. People who are tagged need to blog 7 facts about themselves and post the rules as well. At the end of their blog list 7 people you are tagging. Let them know that they are tagged by leaving them a comment.

1. My musical preferences are stuck in a time warp...I would much rather listen to music from the 60's, 70's and 80's than the music that is on the radio now.

2. I am a cookie fiend! I cannot resist the cookie! It doesn't matter what kind of cookie it is, I am an equal-opportunity cookie eater! Cookies are my dessert of choice...I can pass by a pie, a cake, and even ice cream, and then head directly to the cookie platter! :D

3. I am a trekkie! I love all the Star Trek shows and movies, but my favorites are "The Next Generation", and Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (oh, he's dreamy!) LOL--welcome to my bizzare-o world

4. I don't balance my checkbook...I know that is totally bad!! But according to the bank, I have waaay more money in the checking account than is listed in my register, so I figure I am ahead of the game with this money management method :)

5. I am sad to say, I am one of those old ladies with a 'stache... I was horrified by the sudden growth of hair on my upper lip---E-Gad!! I've got a mustache! Thankfully my hair is blonde, but unfortunately it is just so damn thick you need a weed wacker to keep it in check. Well, I am too damn cheap to keep having it waxed off, and too self-concious of it to leave it alone, so I am rippin' those suckers out by the root with an epilator!! Yowza, that hurts! But it is the price one pays for beauty!

6. I can't stand to have weeds growing up between the cracks in our sidewalk. It absolutely drives me crazy! I think it looks so ghetto! I am always out there either pulling them up, or zapping them with some herbicide... My next door neighbor doesn't seem to care about their weeds, and that drives me even crazier!!

7. I hate it when people refer to my kids as "the twins". Hellooooo!! They are two separate people!! It so annoys me and really makes my skin prickly. Yes, they are biologically twins, but they are so different, they are on opposite ends of the spectrum!!!! They are two totally different people who don't look the same or act the same, and when they are referred to as "the twins", it makes me think they are being lumped together as one unit. Grrrr!

And here's who I'm tagging:

1. Diane

2. Tineke

3. Amy Birch

4. Amy White

5. Rachael

6. Jen

7. Penny

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Feelin' the love!

I was so psyched to be able to work with the Dutch Girl papers from Cosmo Cricket for the June kit at 2ss!! I am such a lucky girl :)

Here's a little card I made for my DD, cuz she says I never make anything for her! Little does she know that she will end-up with all of this stuff after I die!! She'll probably be cursing me then! LOL Anyway, this one is for you, Hayd!!

I also used my divine little doodling template from Crafter's Workshop (love that thing!), and those yummy little Prima flowers....

Here's another project with the Dutch Girl papers...This is my sweet little Olivia, whom I affectionately refer to as my "Lil' Bit". I don't know what is going on with my little point and shoot camera, but it seems to make the layouts look all warped and wonky looking even though they are being photographed on a flat surface...Could it be user error? Yah!! That's a definite possibility! LOL ...but for now, i'll just blame it on the camera!

So for whatever reason, my dh was really impressed by this little mini-book. He was diggin' the color combination of the papers (he's a web designer, so color palettes get him jazzed!), but not only that, he really liked the idea behind the title, "Inspire Dreams". My belief in achieving greatness, is to inspire dreams... Hopefully, someday I can!

So is there anyone out there who can help me withthe placement of my photos in my posts? It is driving me bonkers!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Oh yeah, baby!!

Ya know that feeling when you've "nailed" a layout? You feel like you've captured the essence of the moment, and all the planets are in alignment? Well, this one is it for me!!

I totally rocked these Cherry Arte Cosmic Energy papers. They were the perfect compliment for this picture of Hayden at her softball game. Of course, I was there with my camera, snapping away as usual...Well, she totally dished me some attitude--like I was annoying or something!! LOL Who, me?! SNAP!!! I got that one, baby!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Am I the only one....?

Am I the only one who thinks this layout is super-cute?! This little baby has been sitting in the gallery over at since April 26th, and not ONE FRIGGIN' COMMENT!!

Who doesn't love The MaryTylerMoore Show? Am I really that old, that people don't even get the reference to her theme song from this lo's title? It totally makes me want to sing it from the rooftops!! "She can turn the world on with her smile....She can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile..Well it's you girl, and you should know it...Each glance and every little movement you show it... "

Well people, it makes ME happy...I guess that's what matters the most.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

If you who haven't heard...

I have officially resigned my Design Team position at It is a sad decision on my part, sort of like breaking-up with your first know you are no longer good for each other, but will always have a fond place in your heart. :)

I had been contemplating this decision for quite some time, but came to the realization that it was no longer working for me when my kids thought i liked crafting better than them. Those words stung. I was spending too much time trying to make deadlines for newsletters and monthly gallery projects, praising in the gallery, keeping up my presence on the message board, creating a monthly challenge, participating in other DT's challenges, not to mention all the other "little" events that are a continuous stream of occurences: Member's Only projects, 12 days of Christmas, Cybercrops. Although being on a DT is a tremendous honor, it is LOADS of work, and 18 months of a breakneck pace was just too much for me. I want to start focusing on my photography skills some more too, so I want to fill my extra time learning the ropes of my camera!

I cannot remember the last time I actually made something because I felt like it. All of my projects over the past year have been created with an agenda in mind. How stifling!

I still have my DT at 2SS, and my classes at Lasting Memories to keep me busy...Pat at Express Yourself! wants me to be their "spotlight artist" for the store in a couple of weeks, so I still have plenty of stuff goin' on, and won't be dropping off the planet any time soon!

Just so you know I am alive and well, here is a little project I made for my mom for Mother's Day. I've gotten a really great response from this project, and will make-up another one with different papers to teach at LM :)