Sunday, January 30, 2011

January Studio J Layouts

Here are some more Studio J layouts.  I think Studio J is so much fun!  I always liked the Sasparilla paper, but didn't ever order it because I couldn't imagine that I would ever need country, cowboy looking paper.  Then I remembered these photos from when I went to a Close to my Heart Leadership conference in Arizona.  The Sasparilla pack seemed the perfect one to use.  I was with my upline, Kelley Phillips, and we really had a great time in Arizona!  And the marshmellows?  Well they were one of those "team building" projects, kind of weird, but fun.

I love this princess paper, I love the little frog tucked into the pattern of the paper and I just really wanted any excuse to use it.  So I took the opportunity with these pictures of Megan's band concert, I just thought it would be cute and jazz up her pictures!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

January Magic Layout

I had so much fun making this layout and it turned out so very cute!  I used the "Juggling Act" pattern from the Magic idea book from Close to my Heart.  This was the project we made in my last scrapbook workshop which everyone reaally enjoyed.  The pictures are from Megan's first day of school.  She had gotten her driver's license the day before and it was so weird to have her just drive off so I had to get pictures of that.
The middle top square on the right hand page is a little interactive piece that opens up to show some more pictures.  What a fun thing to have on a scrapbook page!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

January Card Workshop

These are the cards I created for January's card workshop.  It was really fun to create these cards as I was anxious to try a couple of fun techniques. When I designed the tic-tac-toe card, I wanted to create a really simple look.  I rarely use just a white background, but that is what makes this a great card, the simplicity of the background.  The card on the left is using the CTMH stamp of the month using the new Wings paper pack.  We used sponge daubers to add different colors of ink in different areas on the stamp before stamping it which creates a really neat look.  The thank U card was created using Staz-on ink on the back side of a button which is so cool because you create a whole new look with your buttons!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Backyard Renovation

back left top before

back left top after
Here are a bunch of before and after pictures of the work that we did over the summer in our back yard.

We have been working so hard in the house, getting everything fixed up, but as soon as Adam got home from BYU Hawaii I decided I needed to take advantage of his presence.  We started the beginning of August and every day during that month Adam, Megan and I all worked a minimum of two hours in the backyard. 

back left before

back left after
Because there was so much damage etc. inside the house, we decided to just start over on in.  So I thought, why not do the same with the back yard.  I came up with a plan on the yard and we got started.

First was the demolition, we pulled out the rock walls and the railroad tie walls and started over.  We also pulled out all the raised garden beds so the dirt against the fence wouldn't continue to rot the fence boards.
Right side after

Right side before
Adam got stuck with most of the digging, he had to dig the dirt away from the fence on 2 sides of the yard because the dirt there was up against the fence as well.  We moved a lot of the railroad ties we had pulled out to support the dirt, but keep it off the fence so it would quit rotting those boards too. 

back shed before

back shed after
I changed the shape of the hill coming down from the second level.  Where the railroad tie walls were, I used the rocks from the rock wall and created several garden layers.  We moved the strawberries, blueberries and raspberries to this area.  I gave each berry their own level.  Then we leveled out the area by the cherry and peach trees and then created a small garden area for just vegetables. 
Adam created a fire pit in the middle of the yard that looks awesome.  We had to clear out the area next to the shed that had a sandbox, tons of rocks, burned screws, nails and untold pieces of metal and an old dog house.  It was a lot of work just clearing out the stuff in the back yard and a lot of dump trips.  Especially on the other side of the house, there was a lot of garbage, but once that was cleaned out I put in some tiers of rocks and added a few plants (more to come next summer). 

back deck before

back deck after
The summer before we had the deck redone, the old one just crumbled as our contractor, Shane Norris, took it down.  He rebuilt a beautiful one, based on directions from my husband.  At first I thought he was crazy building such a big deck, but it turned out beautiful (and my niece's wedding on it was beautiful!).

It was crazy how much work it was.  Adam and Megan couldn't wait for the summer to be over and both would prefer to not ever see a shovel again.  I continued to work in the yard everyday through September and into October before it was finished, hard work, but I think it looks amazing! 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Storage Room

Storage room before

Part of my creating for over the past year has been the creating in my home.  It is hard to believe that we have been living here now for 2 years.  So one of my projects was our storage room.  As you can see it was just cement walls and floor and some wood shelves which weren't very stable.  In fact, when we first moved in one of my daughters friends very excitedly told her mother that we "had a dungeon where we kept bad children."  I was mortified!  So I decided it was time to change it.  

Storage room after
We had our trusty contractor, Shane Norris, come over and sheet rock the walls and the ceiling which just doing that alone altered how it looked.  I then got to paint the walls and the ceiling.  I painted it all white to brighten up the "dungeon" I mean room.  I bought some floor squares at Lowe's and after sealing the cement floor, layed them out and trimmed them up until the floor was completely covered.  I then got some shelves from Costco to hold the food storage and other storage items.  But my real find was the Shelf Reliance shelves (the ones that you put the cans on and they roll to the back and pushes the older cans to the front, so awesome!).  I was at "Time Out for Wormen" and Self Reliance representatives were there.  They had the shelves on sale, no shipping and they covered the tax.  I was so excited because I had been wanting these shelves for a long time.  That was my finishing touch and we now had a bright and very usable storage room, not a dungeon!

Tiffany's Baby Shower

I threw a baby shower for my niece Tiffany.  I picked a color scheme (Close to my Heart colors Sweet Leaf and Watermelon) and a theme which was "So Sweet."  Tiffany came over one day and she and Megan helped me put together all of the invitations.  Tiffany knew she was having a girl and they were going to name her Mia.  I found this cute little poem online and changed it a little, then we used the cuttlebug to make the swirl background on the cardstock and used the cricket to make the cute baby face.  I found the cute oven party favor in Splitcoast Stamper and just used the same colors.  I love how it turned out!  I used my Cricut to make the box and then just added all the extra stuff.  Pretty simple and really cute! 

When I was pregnant with my son, Adam, (he's now 20) my mother-in-law sent me a cute diaper cake and I loved it so I knew that I wanted to make one for Tiffany.  I searched online and found tons of cute diaper cakes, but found one with flowers that I just loved and so I created a similar one using the theme colors for the shower.  I think it turned out really cute. 

I had found some really cute flower garland at Pier 1 so we used that to decorate the room too.  We made pink lemonade and put sliced limes in it so it would be in the same color scheme.  Then we had mini brownies, creme puffs and tarts for treats. 
We had the shower at Tiffany's house.  This picture on the left is how the decorations looked before the show.  My daughter, Megan, is on the right and Tiffany, the mom-to-be, is on the left.  I think it turned out really cute and she was really excited, which was the best part!
I had picked a lot of games that included the theme "so sweet," meaning the games included "sweets."  The one that was the funniest, of course, was the guessing of the melted chocolate candy bar in the diaper.  Even the Daddy, David, got into the game sniffing and looking at the candy bars in the diapers trying to figure out which one was which.

Tiffany got some wonderful gifts for baby Mia and we had fun!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Super Wednesday Crafts

Instead of having a "Super Saturday" craft day with the ladies at church, we had a Super Wednesday night instead.  I guess it was due to scheduling, anyway, at the time I guess there wasn't anyone really in charge and so I said I would help, and then, of course, ended up doing the whole thing.  I had recently seen some really fun ideas in a craft magazine so I started making plans.  One of the first projects we made was using cookie sheets to make fun gifts.  Cookie sheets are pretty inexpensive, I even found a 3-pack (3 different sizes) at Walmart for $4.  I used my Cricut to cut the letters and numbers and just trimmed the paper down to fit the size of the cookie sheets.  We used spray adhesive to attach the paper to the cookie sheet.  Then you can put them on an easel, use those cool 3M adhesives to hang on the wall, or drill holes in the cookie sheet and put ribbon through.  The picture on the top right was designed to hang your children's artwork on.  I just covered a clothes pin with matching paper and then put a magnet on the back.  The one on the left is for the kitchen.  You can hang up the recipe you are cooking from and/or menus.  The last one (designed by Stephanie Vogel) is an advent for Christmas.  The wreath is a magnet that you can just move from one number to the next as you count down to Christmas.

This next picture was a super easy craft to make.  These ribbon ornaments are actually grapevine balls that we just added ribbon to and then some hemp to hang them on the tree.  Just gather a bunch of different ribbons and then slip it under part of the grapevine ball, tie it in a knot and then trim.  Just keep going like that until the ball is covered as much as you like.  Aren't they really cute and super easy to make.  I found the grapevine balls at and they are really inexpensive.
My idea for the "super Wednesday" crafts was to make them all simple and using items the ladies could easily bring.  The fee wasn't very much because of this.  I only brought the paper and adhesive for the cookie sheets, everyone brought their own cookie sheets, some even painted them first which was really cute.  For the ribbon ornaments I brought the grapevine balls and hemp and everyone brought their own ribbon. 

For the last project we made treat jars.  I brought the paper and ribbon and the ladies brought their own jars and treats to fill them.  The first tag shown here is a naughty or nice spinner tag.  It's really fun, you can spin the tag to show "nice" or spin it to show "naughty."  I found some really cute "coal" chocolate to fill it with. 

The next treat jar shown on the left has an advent tag.  You just fill the mason jar with 25 candies that can then be eaten one a day until Christmas. 
The last treat jar tag we made was this cute snowman which I totally copied from a stamping magazine (sometimes things are just too cute not to copy!).  It was quick and easy and really adorable.

The craft day was a lot of work for me, but I think everything turned out really cute and everyone seemed to have a good time!