Mid Summer Fiesta CTMH Online Crop

Summer is a busy time for a lot of people. It usually is for us, too, but it seems we have a lot of down time on our hands this year. We don’t have any real camping trips planned, and I couldn’t get the kids into swimming until late in August, so we’re scratching our heads on a (nearly) daily basis trying to think of things to do. Its also been hot, so we’ve been spending a lot of time in the basement, where its cool.

Even with all this downtime, I don’t seem to be able to get in my craft room for long- or at all. If I do, the words I hear most is ‘mom, mom, mom…’ and ‘I’m bored’. Tell me that again. I have LOTS to get done around here! I can easily put you to work! Can any mama’s relate? It wears a person down, especially when its on a constant basis.

I finally told my kids that I needed some ‘me time’ yesterday, and I played in my craft room for a couple of hours. While I was playing, an idea struck me. (Which also seems to account for the lack of playing in my craft room these days. The brain never stops working!) Sort of like the computer with 2785 tabs open meme that’s floating around these days. I know you can relate to that!

I have a couple card club workshops planned for September. Did you know that? I have one planned for my hometown, Whitecourt, and another for my home city, Edmonton. If you live in or around either of these areas, I’d love for you to join us! We’ll be creating 9 cards using three different designs. The club fee is $30 and covers all the materials you’ll need to create all those wonderful cards. It may also be less than $30. There will be times we’ll need less materials, so it won’t cost as much. It’ll also be a great time to meet new people and relax for a bit with out kids underfoot saying ‘mom, mom, mom…’. I’ll even provide the wine! How about that! Ha!

But, then another idea struck me. Why not host an online crop for those that are dying to get into their craft rooms, but aren’t able to, just like me? It’ll be a wonderful afternoon- gather whatever snacks and bevvies you want, skip on over to your craft area, turn on the computer, and join in the fun! I have a couple simple challenges planned (nothing more difficult than creating a card, layout- with a twist, of course- and an off the page project.) Anyone and everyone is welcome. If you don’t scrapbook or make cards, there’ll be something for you, too. And, the best part: there’ll be some prizes, too! Make sure to invite your friends and spread the word- there may be a prize for that, too. (The catch is they need to attend!) Your projects won’t need to be completed by the time the online crop is over. I’ll allow some time once the event is over for projects to be completed. Then I’ll draw prizes for the best project in each of those three categories. Doesn’t that sound enticing?! (I hope so!!)

The event is posted to my Facebook page– have you ever been there? Now is the time to check it out if you haven’t. If you scroll down a bit, you’ll find the event posting. If you can’t find it, comment on this post if you’re interested in joining! You’ll also find a bit of everything on my Facebook page, too- my projects, news, and blog posts. Get it all in one spot.

Even better, here’s the event posting. How’s that for efficiency!

Mark August 20 @ 1 pm (MST) on your calendars. That’s when all the fun begins.

*Just a note- there is NO fee to join the online crop. This is all just in the name of fun. The prizes will all be CTMH, as well. Depending on the popularity of this event, I may offer it every summer to kick off the pending years events’ following it. Join me and have some fun!

 

CTMH Cut Above Scrapbook Kits

Long time no see! My world turned upside down a few months back, and I’m just beginning to resurface. I’m still hurting deeply, but I’m taking the good days along with the bad. I know what needs to be done to weather this storm, and so far, it’s been working. #fitnessforlife, amirite? And, of course, using my me-time to create is also in my plan to rebound. 

In April, Close to My Heart is sharing a wonderful way to scrapbook using the Cut Above line. It makes your crafting a breeze because everything is done for you. That means there’s no measuring or cutting, or playing around with placement. It has already been done for you! Find all the stickers and die cuts you need to decorate your layouts, and assemble it easily using the included instructions. 

Set aside 15 minutes in your day to create. That’s doable, isn’t it? The best part of this deal is that it’s just $9.50- half price! Talk about time saving and affordable! Whether you’ve got babies in your life, or a special someone, creating with these kits will be a pleasure. 
I’m collecting orders for these kits right now. Message me to reserve yours. This deal expires on April 30, 2017.

DIY Envelope Tutorial

Hello, friends! 

As promised, I will share a quick and simple tutorial today for making your own envelopes!

To start, you’ll need one sheet of 12×12 cardstock or patterned paper and glue. I like using CTMH Liquid Glass for a strong bond, but you can use whichever glue you have on hand or like to use.

Decide which side of the patterned paper you would like to face outwards (in this case it’s the floral pattern), then make two folds approximately 1- 1.5inches from each side (fold inwards, towards the centre of the paper). 
A trick I like to use is placing my letter in the bottom centre of the patterned paper, and fold each side around it. I use this trick to also roughly guesstimate the bottom fold (next step).

Apply glue to the bottom portions of each 1-inch fold, then fold paper upwards (pictured below). The bottom fold should be approximately 2 inches from the bottom of the paper. This will become the bottom of your envelope. (Place your letter inside, for reference). 

This is how your envelope should look now. Next, you’ll want to fold the top edge of the patterned paper envelope approximately 0.5- 1 inch inwards, and again nearer the top of your letter (approximately 2-3 inches from the top edge fold).
*Note: I say approximately, because I haven’t measured exactly each of my folds. I’ve created my envelopes strictly by feel and by my naked eye.

Measurements will be different, dependent on what size paper your letter is written on. I currently use standard loose-leaf paper, which I assume measures 8.5×11 inches. My envelopes were created around this standard size, folded in three). 

*Another Note: before gluing any corners, mock up your envelope to avoid making any mistakes. I always make all my folds first, and then go back and glue where appropriate.  

(Top edge folded down, 0.5-1 inch from top edge); glue the thicker, corner portions. Here’s how it should look completed (below):

(I flipped the envelope over, so the front is facing outwards.) The backside of your envelope will have a clean edge where you’ll adhere it closed with glue. This is unlike a standard card envelope that has the V-shaped flap. 

Lastly, decorate to your hearts desire! I’ll sometimes add washi tape to the back fold after I’ve glued it closed for a little more pizzazz. That’s not necessary.  Do whatever feels right!

I hope today’s tutorial made sense and was clearer than a load of mud to you! If not, please let me know, and I’ll do my best to clarify it!

Scrapbook Labels Idea

Good morning, friends!

I came across this idea a few weeks ago on Pinterest, and I’m so excited about it, I had to share it with the rest of you!

I’ve been looking for a way to mark the dates on my scrapbooks albums that correspond to the dates on the pages inside the album. Nothing really jumped out at me until I saw these adorable little tags hanging over the spine of the albums on Pinterest.  

Hello! Why have I not thought of this before?! It’s so simple! I used my Dymo label maker to create the dates, then adhered it to the centre of the tag. I hung the tag over the top rung in my d-ring scrapbook albums, ensuring the tag was visible along the spine of my albums. 

There’s my duh moment of the month, lol. I bought the labels at Walmart. 

How do you label your scrapbook albums? Do you include dates on your layouts?  

Make it Monday 

Hi everyone!

One of my favorite places to turn to when I’m looking for inspiration in the kitchen is Kraft Canada. Their recipes are quick to make, easy to throw together and taste delicious. 

Another favorite tool for finding inspiration is most everyone’s favorite online tool as well- Pinterest. I have sooo many recipes pinned, I may as well try them out. 

Today’s recipe comes from Pinterest. Sorry, I’m not real glamorous and I won’t wow you with recipes I created myself. This will just be a real simple post with real simple recipes I’ve found, tried and want to share with you. I hope you understand- and enjoy!

Late last week, I felt inspired to do some baking, but I didn’t want to bake cookies. Boring. I wanted to bake something else, but didn’t have the ingredients for any of the recipes I thought looked great- until I came across Cinnamon Sour Cream Loaf (link at the end of this post). The original recipe was saved from Inspired by Charm by Michael Wurm Jr. 

Oh yum. And sour cream? I just happened to have a lot of it!

Before throwing it in the oven.

After baking for an hour. 

Is your mouth watering yet? Mine is!

The only thing I’d do different the next time I bake this is bake it at a slightly lower temperature for a little longer (or just slightly less at the recommended temperature). It came out quite well done, though the centre was somewhat moist. Overall, it was very tasty, and it got the seal of approval from both my kids and my dear friends’ eldest daughter. (Hubs and I thoroughly enjoyed it, too!)

Now for the best part- the recipe! (Clicking the link will take you directly to the recipe).

Cinnamon Sour Cream Loaf
If you try this recipe, let me know! I’d love to hear your thoughts on it!

Snail Mail Saturday 

I wanted to share my latest outgoing smail letters with you. I wrapped the envelopes with pretty, brightly colored washi tape, and in the bottom photo, I threw in some sequins for a loose, sparkly surprise when the recipient opens her letter. I think I’ll do this again. I really like this idea!

Next, I also wanted to show you my most current of intro letters. I’ve slightly changed creating sections throughout, by using cute printed post it notes and handmade pennants as tabs.

I found these post it notes at my local Walmart, but I’ve also heard they are available to purchase at Amazon. Spoiler alert: I want more!!!

Lastly, here’s snippets of my recent incoming mail.

How cute is the washi tape that borders the bottom of the envelope in the foreground?! The lollipop and dinosaur stencil are there purely to protect identities 😁

I won a happy mail giveaway! A member in one of the Facebook smail groups I’m in held a giveaway to name her new pet bird. I suggested the name Bindi (among others), and my name suggestion was chosen! My prize was 4 handmade bookmarks and 4 handmade magnets made from photos I had chosen. You’ll see both my daughters, myself and my sister, and our little pooch in each of the magnets. (I am the dark haired girl with glasses…hi!!) Now you can put the face behind the name! 😁

(I also have a Peacock and rooster fetish, which is why you see those in the bookmarks in the background.)

Did anything about your day inspire you today? I hope so! 

Snail Mail Saturday

It’s smail time again! Thanks for joining me. 

Last week, I’d shared what a typical letter looks like. Find that post here. This week, I thought I’d share how I wrap my letter up. In short, it’s very simple. I either make my own mail folder or use a standard 4.25×5.5 (A5) handmade card to house my letters. Lastly, everything is sent in either a handmade envelope or standard A5 greeting card envelope. (More on that next week- watch for a simple tutorial, too!

Here’s a handmade mail folder I created. I’m thinking I could make a tutorial to create one of these pretties, too, if there’s enough interest! If you’re not creative, no sweat. If you are and want to start mailing these, let me know. I’m happy to indulge!

(The inside.)

If I don’t send a mail folder, I’ll send along a card that I’ve made. (You’ll know this well if you’re a regular reader. I’ve mentioned this fact a lot). I have a large stash of them; why not use them? I don’t see the point in hoarding them. (See all that yummy washi tape?)

(The inside, including a little inspirational quote card I made).

(I covered the address for privacy reasons)

My last/most recent outgoing snail mail. 

Unfortunately, it appears as though Canada Post is going/has already gone on strike, so after today’s post, I won’t have my own personal outgoing/incoming smail to share with you. I likely won’t have any until the postal strike is over. 

In the mean time, I’ll do my best to share what inspires me from around the Internet until things turn around. (I’m pretty disappointed about this inconvenient and absolutely unfortunate turn of events). I only learned of it last week. Fingers, toes and eyes crossed it doesn’t last long!

 But, don’t forget- next week I’ll share a tutorial for creating your own envelopes! (You can see them in the last two pictures above).

Recipe Sharing

I’ve been tossing this idea over in my brain for a few weeks, and now I’m looking for some input!

As you are aware, I am a fairly creative person. I share scrapbook layouts, handmade cards, the occasional project life layout and off the page project, and more recently planners and snail mail. All different creative methods, but still creative nonetheless. 

Is sharing the occasional recipe (my favorite ones, for that matter), something that would interest you, my friends and readers? If so, please comment below! 

I’m asking, because cooking and baking is another item that falls under art- creative being the umbrella term. I have a ton of recipes saved to my Pinterest; I don’t want them to sit, pinned but untouched, so plan to try a new recipe every so often  (once monthly, maybe), and if it’s a hit with my family, re-home it on my fave tried and true recipes board. If we like it- even if we don’t- I’ll share our thoughts and the outcome of our baking and cooking endeavors.

These recipes will all be kid and family friendly. Simple is also key! (I have a smoothie recipe I’m dying to share that’s just 3 measly ingredients- and super delicious!) 

So please, let me know your thoughts!

CTMH Monday

Welcome to another edition of CTMH Monday! Here are my latest projects made using CTMH; I hope you enjoy! This post is relatively picture heavy, so without further adieu, here they are!

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These last two pictures are one of the twins’ teachers’ thank you gifts. She is having a baby in October, and I thought this would be a nice way to thank her and congratulate her. (I shared the second photo to show what’s sealed inside the jar.) Everything to create this was bought from the Dollarama (yay!)- including the jar- and cost less than $10. (I had the kleenex on hand, as well as the clothes pins.)

I made the tag on my computer, and used some CTMH stamps to decorate it. I also tied the tag on with Lagoon twine. The white mesh ribbon came from the dollarama.

Snail Mail Saturday

Today, I thought I’d share how I typically write a smail letter. I’m sure there is room for growth and adjustment, but I’ve fallen into the groove of creating my letters this way, and I really like it! Maybe you’ll find inspiration through it, too!

There are literally tons of papers and stationery out there a person could use. It would make deciding which one (or multiples!!) you want difficult. That might even be an understatement. I’d want it alll. Who’s with me?! Lol

Since times are trying, and since I’ve had loose-leaf hiding in my cabinet for eons (probably since I graduated from college, which is a good 10 years, if not longer), I decided I would use it up before searching for anything else. Using something thicker would be nice, if I want to continue stamping, but this works for now. (I’ll share what I mean below). If you’re thinking of smailing, choose anything that suits your fancy and don’t feel guilty for it! I felt guilty for using plain old lined paper, but that lasted maybe three or four letters. Adding some “bling”- making it pretty, my own version of stationery, helped immensely. Lined paper can be functional and pretty, too! Now I don’t feel bad; I’ve found what works for me and that’s sufficient enough. Find what works for you and be happy with it!

As I mentioned above, I stamp in my letters. I have fallen into the habit of stamping the greeting to my recipient, then hand write the rest of my letter. Usually, the greeting is stamped with a brightly colored ink. (In this case, I used CTMH Whisper ink).

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I also choose a color scheme before I start that I try and adhere to throughout my creative process. For this particular letter, I used mostly CTMH Hollyhock, Outdoor Denim and Whisper. The gel pen I use typically coordinates with the remainder of the package I’m sending, as well.

Next, I always use my roller stamp to mark the date in the upper right hand corner. The date is important to note so that the recipient can see when the letter was written, and they can look back on it (or their descendants!!) and enjoy the past. Sometimes I’ll include a stamped image along with it, other times I don’t.  It depends on the mood I’m in! Lol

Oh, and by the way, all my stamping, in every smail letter, is done with CTMH! Just a friendly FYI.

Beginning with this letter, I stamped the bottom of the page with a flamingo image, making my own stationery, in a sense. I love the look! Now that I’ve stumbled upon this sweet little trick, I’ll keep doing it in future letters!

Lastly, I like stamping about me when I reach the portion of the letter where sharing more about myself happens. I like that it draws attention to the fact that I’m about to share something important, and that the direction of the letter is about to change. I’ll likely stamp other “tabs” in the same manner in the future. I’ve only ever written intro letters, so far, in my smail journey, so I’ll have to share an update again in the future!

So, now you know what my letters typically look like. I like making my letters pretty since I’m using such blah paper, and I love creating “sections” throughout the letter to break it up a little and draw attention to certain aspects within it.

How do you make your letters memorable and stand out? Share your ideas in the comments below!