Friday, February 21, 2020

2020 Project Life: Week 4

First of all, let me apologize for the tardiness of this post. I had every intention of posting this when the video went live, but life sometimes gets away from me and things fall through the cracks. This is one of those things.

Since I'm being honest, my blog has become a pretty low priority item on my to-do list. I mean, does anyone even read blogs anymore? I know I shouldn't be saying this, and it shouldn't really matter. But when there are a million different things vying for my time and attention, it's hard to justify spending time writing blog posts that no one will read. Okay...enough ranting for now. Back to the subject at hand.

Earlier this week I shared Week Four in my 2020 Project Life album on my YouTube channel and Instagram account. If you don't follow me there, you really should. Both venues get much more of my attention than this blog does...sorry not sorry.

For this spread, I used the digital "Around the House" kit from Feed Your Craft. It's not new, but it was something from my stash that I hadn't used yet, so it was like new to me. The kit was designed by Geralyn Sy of In a Creative Bubble, which generally makes it awesome. I'm a big fan.

Since I purchased the digital kit, I didn't have any stamps or die cuts to use with it, so I decided to grab another little-used item from my stash to make my own embellishments with. I chose the stamp set from Heidi Swapp's Color Fresh collection and chose an assortment of inks that coordinated with the kit. 

I stamped a bunch of the images and phrases from the stamp set onto a sheet of smooth white cardstock, then fussy cut them out and used them like die cuts. Perfect. I added in a few labels from my stash of (mostly) Citrus Twist Kit cut-aparts, and that was pretty much it!

I'm actually really happy with how this page turned out. It was fun to use some out-of-the-ordinary supplies (for me) and to create something minimal, but still beautiful.

You can see all of the details in the process video below.

Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope to see you back here soon!

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

2020 Project Life, Week 3

Hi there! I'm back today with Week 3 in my 2020 Project Life album. When I sat down to create this page, I had no idea what products I was going to use. I didn't have a current kit to work with, and there weren't any other products that I had in mind. Then I remembered something that I had completely forgotten about until that moment.

Last fall I spent some time organizing my craft area. It's an ongoing process, always, but at that point I had put some serious effort into getting things organized. As I was doing so I realized how much product I had that was just collecting dust. Products that I had spent hard-earned money on because I loved them weren't being used because of the shear volume of supplies I had in my stash. That is not okay.

So I decided then and there to take the time to put those products into stash kits to be used in the coming year. This is something I've done in the past, and I always find it to be a great way to get things out of boxes and onto my pages. I made several kits, even labeled some of them with the months I intended to use them, then stored them in a file drawer...and quickly forgot about them.

It wasn't until it came time to do this spread that I remembered I had them. So even though January is nearly over at this point, I decided to pull out my kit and try to use as much as I can of it before the month ends, starting with this spread. 

The kit was full of lots of colorful bits from all kinds of manufacturers. For this spread, I ended up using a lot of Pinkfresh Studio, some Elle's Studio, and some cards from hold Hip Kit Club kits. They all went together amazingly well, and I ended up with a colorful, coordinated page. 

The kit itself was pretty big, much bigger than the kits I used to make and much bigger than I would recommend any stash kit you make to be. The more a kit contains, the more overwhelmed with choices I tend to feel, which makes it harder to be creative and accomplish anything. But I know that I was thinking "add it all and use it all" when I made the kit, so I'm cutting myself some slack.

Still it made for a bit of a longer process than usual, as you can see in the video below.

Overall, I'm happy that I was able to get some of these products used. And even though this spread is not my most favorite, I'm happy that it's done and documented. 

Thanks for stopping by and happy crafting!

Saturday, January 25, 2020

It's Release Day at Color Cast Designs!

I am so excited to share this page with you! If you know me, then you know that books play a big part in my life. I'm a librarian by degree, and I do my best to read as often as possible. That's why I was so excited about this month's release at Color Cast Designs. Just look at that title! And this is just one of the many book-themed pieces releasing this month. Yay!

Of course, there are tons of other things releasing in the shop as well (and you can see all of them here), but I knew that the first project I made had to use this title, and I had to use it in the Life Crafted album I use to document my reading. 

Last year, I didn't read nearly as many books as I had hoped. I blame the class I was taking for monopolizing all of my time and brain power. But it meant that I had lots of room left in my album. So I decided to just continue documenting my 2020 reading in the same album. 

I created this title page to delineate the two years and to document my reading goal for the year. 20 books in 2020. It's just too perfect!

I also used one of the wood veneer pieces below my title. Have you used these yet? Cuz they are amazing! They're thin enough to use in a pocket page AND self-adhesive. I LOVE them!

Okay, enough gushing. If you want to see the entire page come together, you can view the video below. And you can find links to all of the products I used below that. ;)


*Pinkfresh Studio Office Hours collection:
*Six Hole Punch:
Feed Your Craft Page Turner digital kit:
Life Crafted album:
WRMK Hole Reinforcer Punch:
American Crafts DIY Gold Scissors
*Thickers - Indigo & Ivy:
*Fiskars Surecut Portable Trimmer:
Fiskars Bypass Trimmer
*Kokuyo Dot Adhesive:
Glossy Accents

(The links marked with an asterisk (*) are affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, a small percentage of that purchase comes back to me. Thank you for helping to support this channel!)

Thanks so much for stopping by. Happy crafting!

Friday, January 24, 2020

2019 Project Life: December Stories

I have to be honest with all of you. Every year I have intention of finishing my Christmas documenting in January, and every year when January rolls around, it's the absolute LAST thing I want to do. Once Christmas is over and all of the decorations are put away, I'm done. I don't want to think about the holidays for another ten to eleven months at least.

So it takes a lot of discipline and will power to make myself work on December projects in January...or July...or whenever I manage to get them done. Which is why so many of my December pages go unfinished year after year. But I'm trying.

Another confession: I am 100% product-driven when it comes to creativity. If I don't have product that I find inspiring, it's not going to happen. Or I will struggle until it's so not fun that I quit. So if I'm working on something out of season AND I don't have inspiring product to work with, I'm just setting myself up for failure.

That's why I knew I had to give myself something good to play with if I wanted to get any of my December Project Life pages done. The Hello Holiday collection from Push Print Studio was at the top of my list. 

Since it's a digital collection, I went through my extensive holiday stash to find things that would coordinate with it. I found a ton of things that worked, including some super old stickers from Cosmo Cricket. I LOVE that I was able to use some old stash!

Once I had the cards printed and the embellishments chosen, these three pages came together really quickly. I kept them super simple, which is the key to getting them done. And I'm still very happy with the way that they look. Simple doesn't have to be boring. 

These three pages aren't chronological in my album. I have all of my December photos printed and put into my album, so I just went through and picked out a few pages I was excited to work on...another trick for getting things done.  

Of course, I chose pictures that I knew would work with the cards from this collection, like the "cheers" card above and the "falala" card on the first page. That also makes the whole process a bit easier. 

If you want to see my process in more detail, you can view the video below. 

Thanks for stopping by! 

Thursday, January 16, 2020

My 2020 Creativity Journal

Last year around March, I decided to start documenting my creative journey using a *Happy Memory Keeping Planner. I wanted it to be a place I could turn to when I was feeling uninspired or when I started to feel like I hadn't accomplished enough in my creative life. Essentially, I wanted it to be a celebration of everything I had done throughout the year, all recorded in one place that I could easily reference when I was feeling low.

I often struggle with comparison and the feeling that I don't measure up to those I see on social media, or those who are accomplishing (what feels like) so much more than I am able to. And I don't think I'm alone in this feeling. We all have a tendency to compare ourselves with others, and when all we see of others is what they choose to show us on social media, it can seem like our own lives are pretty miserable in comparison. But of course, we all know this isn't true. 

So I wanted to create a place for me to celebrate my wins, both big and small. It was just for me, which is why I chose not to share it online. I created most of the pages in my free time, usually in front of the TV at night while Jesse was traveling. I had no intention of showing it to anyone else. 

But as I started making plans to do the same thing in 2020, it occurred to me that others might benefit from the idea. Memory planning has become a bit of a trend lately, so I thought perhaps others would like to see my own version of this form of scrapbooking. So I decided to talk about it a bit in my 2020 Plans and Goals video to gauge if there was any interest.

Still I was worried that others might see this as vain, or as a sleazy form of self-promotion. I don't want to seem like I'm shoving my own wins in others' faces or bragging. I'm not. I honestly don't think I have enough wins to be enviable. Remember this started as a way for me to pull myself out of the depression of comparison. 

Ultimately, I (obviously) decided to share my pages and deal with whatever fallout I may receive. There may be times when I feel the need to blur certain parts out, but overall, I want to be as transparent as possible, and REVEALING this part of myself is part of that. 

But I've blathered on enough for one post, so here are the details of this week's spread and my 2020 Creativity Journal in general. I'm using the Memory Planner Templates from Retro Hip Co. as the base of my album. There are lots of different ways you can bind these pages, but I've decided to hole punch each sheet and store them in a *Heidi Swapp Storyline album. I think this will give me the most flexibility as the year goes on.

For Week One, I chose a few supplies from my Feed Your Craft stash. I used the Makers Make digital cards and resized them to fit into my planner. Actually, I had resized them to fit into my Happy Memory Planner, which is a slightly different size from this template, but I made them work. I also used the stamp set from the Makers Make kit, as well as the Aster alpha and number sets and the What Day is It stamp set (no longer available) designed by Brandi Kincaid

I also had a little bin of random Dear Lizzy cut-aparts sitting in my cabinet, so I decided to use a few of those as well. Then I grabbed some coordinating washi from my stash and an old texture stamp from Studio Calico, and called it good. 

I hope you've enjoyed seeing this little peak into my Creativity Journal, and I hope it inspired you to celebrate your own wins, whatever they may be. 

Happy Crafting!

*The links above marked with an asterisk (*) are affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, a small percentage of that purchase comes back to me. Thank you for helping to support this blog!

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

2020 Project Life Title Page

Hi all! I'm back today to share my title page for 2020. If you haven't been following along on Instagram and YouTube, then you may not know that I've decided to switch back to 12x12 pockets for 2020. The 6x8 size was fun and gave me lots of room to play, but for a project of this scale, it was overwhelming. My hope is that by going back to 12x12 single-page weekly spreads, I'll be better able to stay on top of this project and keep up to date. (You can hear more of my reasons and the rest of my plans for 2020 in this video.)

I've already completed weeks one and two in my album, so I figured it was time to get the title page done as well. I knew I wanted to use these gorgeous, sparkly acrylic bits from the Color Cast Designs December release, so that was my jumping off point. I made sure all of the other supplies I used coordinated with them. 

I started by going through my stash of digital Studio Calico cards. During their holiday sales, I picked up all of the monthly digital card sets from 2019. Generally, I'm a big fan of Studio Calico journal cards, but their kits just don't work for me. So by purchasing the digital cards, I'm able to use my favorite part of their kits without shelling out the money for a bunch of stuff I probably won't use. So I found the rainbow card first and used it to coordinate the other cards on this spread. I even recolored one of them to make it match the others...another benefit of using digital cards.

I chose recent pictures of all everyone in our household and printed them in black and white, since the colors in the original photos were all over the place and wouldn't have coordinated well with the supplies I had chosen. I added them to the page, making sure that they were spread out evenly. 

In addition to the Color Cast Designs title piece, I knew I wanted to create a shaker pocket using the star confetti. I don't have a lot of sequins in my stash, so I was surprised to find that I actually had perfectly coordinating sequins. I created my own little mix with what I had on hand and added some diamond dust for a little extra sparkle. Then I added all of it to a 3x4 pocket cut from a page protector and fused around all four sides with my *fuse tool, making sure it was small enough to slide into the pocket of my 12x12 page.

Since I already had a card on the reverse side, the shaker pocket couldn't be totally see-through. So I added a piece of patterned paper from the Crate Paper Snowflake collection. The colors in this collection worked perfectly with my page. I also used another patterned paper from the *Snowflake 12x12 paper pad to fill in the last empty pocket on my page. I added a star fussy cut from the *Snowflake specialty paper and backed it with vellum to add a bit of softness and to make it stand out a bit better from the patterned paper behind it. 

Finally, I typed our names and ages on the bottom journal card and added a foiled sticker from the *Heidi Swapp Honey and Spice Cardstock Sticker sheet in the blank space below. And that was it! I love the colors of this spread and all of the sparkly bits. It just makes me happy to look at it! :)

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed seeing my page and are inspired to create something today. Happy Crafting!!

[The links above marked with an asterisk (*) are affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, a small percentage of that purchase comes back to me. Thank you for helping to support this blog!]

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Check Out Week Two on the Citrus Twist Kits Blog!

Hey guys, I'm over on the Citrus Twist Kits blog today with my Week Two Project Life page. There's  also a process video on my channel, so be sure to stop by and check it out!

Friday, November 29, 2019

2019 Wish List

One of my favorite holiday traditions when I was younger was sitting down with a stack of catalogs to make my Christmas wish list. It was so much fun to imagine all the amazing things that might show up under the tree on Christmas morning! So to harken back to those days, I decided to make my own, more grown-up version of a wish list this year. I scoured the web for a few fun things I would love to see wrapped under the tree come Christmas Day. And while my younger self would certainly turn her nose up at the appalling lack of Barbie paraphernalia on this list, I think she would also see a bit of herself in some of the items listed.

*Disclaimer* I have no expectations of actually receiving any of these items. I made this list strictly for fun...and maybe to give you a few gift ideas if you happen to know someone who would enjoy them. Also, some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that if you purchase that item, a small percentage of the price you pay comes back to me, at no additional cost to you. Now let's get started!

One, Two, Three, & Four  I love a good holiday PJ, and this year I'm dying to get my hands on these adorable, hilarious tees from Saturday Morning Pancakes. Pairing them with some cute lounge pants from Old Navy makes for the perfect comfy combo. 

Five I have been drooling over the bandanas from Hemlock Goods ever since I first saw them. Such gorgeous patterns! They've just released a new set, and I'm pretty sure I need them all. 

Six I had the pleasure of meeting Jennifer Wilson of Simple Scrapper when I was interviewed for her podcast, so when she announced that she had designed a tee celebrating books and crafts, I knew it had to be on my list!

Seven & Eight If there is anything in this world I love more than coffee, it's pups. So when I first learned about Grounds & Hounds, I was immediately smitten. They donate 20% off all their profits to organizations that help give sheltered animals a chance to be rescued, and that is a cause I can get behind. 

I have to admit that I haven't done nearly as much reading this year as I usually do, and I'm feeling a bit guilty about it. So I'm determined to do better next year, and these five books are the top on my list.

One Elise released this amazing book earlier this year, and I have yet to get my hands on a copy. It looks absolutely gorgeous, and it's full of inspirational and motivational nuggets, making it the perfect way to start the new year. 

Two I was so excited when I heard that Michelle Obama was releasing a book! I heard her speak at ALA in 2018, and I was so inspired to get a copy when it came out...and then I didn't. Like I said, I've been abysmally bad at reading lately. The good news is that there is now a guided journal to go along with Becoming, so a part of me is kinda glad I was a reading slacker, so that now I can get the two together. 

Three I read Felicia Day's first book a few year's back and loved it. I can't wait to read her newest book, Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity. It promises to be both entertaining and informational, and what more can you ask for in a book?

Four I've been purposefully staying away from Atwood's new Handmaid's Tale sequel, because I honestly wasn't sure I was ready for what is sure to be an upsetting read. But I can't handle the suspense anymore. I need to know what happens!

Five I've loved everything I've ever read by Elizabeth Gilbert, and based on the reviews, this book isn't likely to ruin that streak. 

This would not be a wish list of mine if it didn't contain at least a few crafty items. These are the ones at the top of my "gotta have" list at the moment.

One It's not secret that I struggle with stamping, which is why so many of my wish list items are related to that art. I've been thinking of investing in a stamp platform for a while, and I think it might be time. There are lots of options out there, but this is the one I've heard to most positive praise of.

Two I've seen so many people play with the new Foil Quill Freestyle Pens, and the results are amazing! I can't wait to try them out for myself!

Three I think I have seriously underestimated the value of a good set of acrylic blocks when it comes to stamping success. This bundle from has all the sizes I need.

Four The next year's new releases are just around the corner, so I've added a gift certificate to my list in preparation.

Five There's been a lot of buzz about this book lately. It's very similar to the Flow Book for Paper Lovers, but is much easier to get stateside. I'm a big fan of Flow, but I'd be willing to give this competitor a try.

Six Pinkfresh Studio recently released a line of dye inks, and I'm pretty sure I'd be willing to throw out every other ink I own in exchange for a full set of these gorgeous, colorful cubes.

Is it weird to ask for food on your holiday wish list? No, not at all. 

One If you've been around here for any amount of time at all, then you know I love coffee. And in my book, there's nothing better than a sipping a seasonal blend on Christmas morning. I haven't tried this one yet, but it's bound to be amazing! Grounds and Hounds also has some pretty awesome gift bundles that would be perfect for the coffee drinking, puppy loving people on your list. 

Two Yes, you know I love coffee, but a lesser-known fact about myself is that I enjoy a good cup of tea regularly throughout the cold months. My favorite at the moment is this peppermint/green tea blend from Celestial Seasonings. I toured their factory several years ago, and I can still easily recall the sensation of standing in the peppermint room. If you're ever near Boulder, Colorado, I would highly recommend stopping by. 

Three If I'm not sipping coffee or tea, I likely have a cup of hot chocolate in my hand. Though I generally try to stay away from sweet drinks, hot chocolate is an indulgence I allow myself a few times throughout the winter. I'm partial to dark chocolate, personally, and nobody does dark chocolate better than Godiva

Four The Alternative Baking Company makes some of the most delicious gluten-free cookies I've ever tasted in my life. They're soft and chewy and full of flavor, which may seem obvious, but is actually really hard to find in a gluten-free snack. 

Five and Six Both of these snacks remind me of my time growing up in Nebraska, and since you can't get either of them here in Indiana, I can't think of a better, nostalgic gift to make my Christmas morning extra special. 

And there you have it! Everything I've been dreaming about lately all in one nice little list. Now to remain super good so Santa doesn't put me on the naughty list. ;)

What are you wishing for this year?

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Merry & Bright

**This post contains sponsored products and affiliate links.**

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and I don't know about you, but I am starting to feel the holiday spirit. :) I'm one of those people who tries not to start any holiday festivities before Thanksgiving, but when I saw the new Borders Cut File Bundle from, I knew I had to break out my Christmas crafting supplies a little early.

This cut file is super versatile! For each of the 7 border designs included in the bundle, you get three length options (5.5, 8, and 12 inches) which makes them perfect for cards, layouts, and pretty much any other crafting you may feel like doing.

I used the short fringe file to cut 8" strips from two green papers from my stash. Then I layered these strips on a triangle background to create a gorgeous, dimensional tree for my page!

I also used the heart file to cut a border for the top of my page from a candy cane stripe paper, then paired it with a strip of the same green paper from my tree. I added strips of both to the bottom as well to balance the page.

Once those elements were in place, all that was left to do was embellish. I used the Home for the Holidays collection from Pinkfresh Studio to add tons of adorable elements to fill in all the spaces on my page.

You can see the whole thing come together in the video below.

Now, how about you? Have you started you holiday crafting yet?