Haven Overhaul 

I’m interrupting my usual Monday programming for a little glimpse into my life today. 

I just needed to share- I’m so freaking proud of myself for getting down and dirty and  really organizing and purging my craft room. I’ve made enough room it’ll now be known as our craft room- my husband can move in and take up model airplanes, etc. too!

I’m not done yet, but I got a good chunk done today. It only took roughly 4.5 hours, lol.

Here’s a progress shot:

The filing cabinet in the corner has two totally empty drawers; I have one large sterilite container, and one small one that are completely empty and out of the office; I feel like my stuff is better organized- two bags of recycling have made it to the curb, and I have two separate piles of miscellaneous stuff, one to donate to a school or kids club, and one to be brought to the second hand store. 

There’s still a green sterilite drawer to go through that’s full of woodblock Stampin’ Up stamps, my own personal CTMH stamps that I don’t use, and a few other random CTMH products- all to be sold (or brought to the second hand store if that doesn’t happen). 

There’s lots to do still, but I got a lot done too!

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Shoestring Planner

Hello, my friends!

The day has finally come to let the cat out of the bag. Spill the beans, if you will.

I’ve mentioned recently, that I’ve jumped on the snail mail bandwagon, as well as the Pocket letter bandwagon.  I’m considering snail mail and pocket letters to be one and the same when it comes to hot new trends. That means the other big trend I’m trying my hand at is life planners!

Yes, I’m giving it a go. The only thing is funds are tight, and there are sooo many goodies a person could buy. I Googled and searched on Pinterest for ideas, and the big names I came across were Filofax, Erin Condren, CTMH (yes, CTMH has joined the fun, too!), and many of the big scrapbook manufacturers (Simple Stories, for example).

Everything I saw online- including Amazon- started at $20- $30. Not including the accessories that are available to purchase along with your planner.

Ouch.

They’re beautiful. I love that Erin Condren provides interchangeable covers with her planners. I love the new Simple Stories Carpe diem planner collection. I just found- and love- Filo eye candy. There’s so much pretty stuff out there!

But funds are tight. And its expensive. And, I want to play along, but I don’t want to spend any- or very little- moolah. Anyone in the same boat? If you are, stay with me…I’m about to share what I plan to do, which will hopefully keep my wallet- and in turn yours- happy!

Here’s what I resolved to do, and what my plan looks like. I hope this inspires you, like it’s inspired me!

Shop around for the most budget friendly- aka cheapest– monthly calendar you can. Find one that’ll fit in your bag or purse. I chose one from Walmart (BlueLine brand, with one week view per two pages) for between $5 and $7 CAD. If the cover is plain or not very pretty, don’t sweat it. Alter it! (I plan on using my stash to alter the cover of mine, though I really like the color it is).

My plan is to skip purchasing stickers and other pretties to decorate my planner and instead use the art and crafts supplies I already have on hand to pretty it up. Use stamps, washi tape, stickers, whatever you have on hand that’s cluttering up your stash.

When things turn around, and when I am satisfied that I’m disciplined enough to keep up with this (the jury is still out in that department), I may bite the bullet and purchase a proper planner and coordinating accessories. Until then, this is how I’ll roll!

I hope to turn my budget friendly planner journey into a weekly spotlight. I’ll share tips and tricks I’ve come across, my own planner pages, and inspiration from around the Internet. Hopefully creating a planner on a tight budget appeals to you, and you’ll be inspired to start your own shoestring planner, too!

Join me on Tuesdays for more planner fun!

Hello, I am a mom of busy twin daughters and I’m a planner addict.

Life as a mom is hectic and busy, and I like the idea of carrying my calendar with me. I like the idea of making it pretty even more. There is enough things in our daily schedule to keep my planner interesting, so I’m diving in head first. I hope you’ll join me in this new, fun and colorful journey!

Card Storage Ideas

Happy Saturday!

I’m switching gears today and want to show you how I organize and store my greeting cards. 

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This box was once home to store- bought Christmas cards I’d bought from Wally before I began making my own greeting cards. I’m not quite sure why I hung on to the box, other than liking how sturdy the box is.

Over the years, it’s housed a number of various scrappy goodies, including chipboard and ribbon. After I took on the challenge of purging and reorganizing my haven, it once again sat empty.

Then I went on my regular scrapbooking retreat (back in March).

I decided that I would make an all- new batch of cards that weekend- I was tired of having a mishmash of cards I wasn’t sure I’d ever use. Up until that point, I was finding that for every occasion that came up, I’d make a new card.

Do you do that?

I was annoyed, so I fixed it!

I’m sure you noticed the dividers separating each card theme.

I didn’t have my cricut with me at my retreat, so after coming home and unpacking, I sat down and cut a bunch of tabbed dividers from heavy duty cardstock. After they were cut, I raided my stamp stash and stamped what occasion each divider was for.

I would eventually like to find a slightly larger card box, or I may upgrade to CTMH’s My Acrylix storage boxes (sturdy plastic boxes with a lid and snap lock to secure it) to store my cards.

Something like this:

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These are available for purchase on my website. Just click the link to go there! Once on my website, click Shop then Organization to find all the organizational storage boxes CTMH carries! Purchase these directly from my website or contact me to purchase your order for you. It’ll be shipped directly to you!

Thanks for stopping by today! I’ll drop in again with more crafting inspiration real soon!

Monthly Promo Mondays

Happy August 1st, everyone!
There’s lots of fabulous CTMH goodies to share with you today- I can’t wait to share it all with you!
To start, as you all know, a new month begins today. Why not celebrate with a new stamp set?! CTMH’s SOTM is perfect for adding tags to cards or gifts AND adding journaling spots to your layouts! Layer them up, color them in or leave them one dimensional- there’s lots of options with this set!  It’s just $5 when you place a qualifying order during the month of August. My website is a great place to start your order!

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In addition to our SOTM, there’s also a really great promotion happening this month- Get Organized! CTMH carries wonderful and durable storage devices- from containers to corral your stamps to devices to organize your sponge daubers and stamping blocks, to folders for storing your miscellaneous papers- there’s lots to choose from!
This month, you get to choose between an accessory roll up case (when you pay full retail price- $22.75 CAD)…

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And receive two Base & Bling style sheets FREE! The best part of this deal- it’s available to you one month early!
OR purchase (at full retail price, $21.25), the marker roll up case. When you do, you’ll receive Balloon Wishes FREE with your purchase! The marker roll up case holds up to 25 Shin Han alcohol markers, and how much fun would the Balloon Wishes stamp set be to color in?!

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So, what are you waiting for? There’s a lot of fabulous goodies to choose from this month, not to mention all the rest of the great products CTMH carries. While you’re picking up your August goodies, have a look through our retiring products list- this month is your last chance to snap up these goodies for good. I’d hate for you to miss out!
Want to know a little secret? A new WOTG has also been released this month, along with the coordinating paper packet and accessories. It’s called ZOE and your first sneak peek is here!

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Again, you can visit my website (link above) to start your order, or add to my monthly group order. You’ll save on shipping to order with your friends!
Stay tuned, in the next few weeks for a few minor changes to my blogging dynamics. I’m hoping you’ll enjoy the changes! You’ve already witnessed the first change- sharing more news and tidbits related to CTMH. It’ll become a weekly installment, where I share a bit more about our promotions this month and the beautiful artwork that’s created with it. Just a note- the artwork I share may not necessarily be mine. It will be solely CTMH and CTMH products. I’m calling this installment Monthly Promotions Monday. (Yes, today isn’t Monday, but I had to start somewhere). A new month doesn’t always fall on Mondays! 😉
And, now that I’ve written a thorough novel, thanks for kindly hanging in there until the end! I’ll refresh your memories on Monday, so stay tuned!

Pinterest Hacks

If you’re anything like me, even just looking at Pinterest makes me fat. I don’t have to just eat food to achieve that. There are so many great recipes for food, home renos, DIY, art,  photography, clothing, crafting, and the list goes on and on. I thought I’d share a few craft storage ideas with you- that were either free or inexpensive– that I’ve implemented into my own haven and crafting space. We all like things to be easy and cheap or free, right? It’s ok,  your secret is safe with me. I know I like looking for bargains too. We’re all the same, really, except for a few subtle differences here and there. ..
All the ideas I’m about to share with you, I found on Pinterest first. You can find me on Pinterest Here.

Note: in each picture I’m about to share, what inspired me is in the left photo of the collage, and my hack is on the right. This does not include the Close to My Heart options at the end of this post.

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I have way too many stamps to store in an adorable fruit stand like this (and I’ve also got another way to store my stamps!!), so instead, I use my fruit stand for storing all of my washi tape. Right now, it only fills the top basket, but one day it might fill the whole thing. In the mean time, I’m trying to figure out what to store in the other two baskets. Any suggestions? Currently, the little bit of twine that I own occupies the second basket. The bottom one is empty. (I know. An empty anything in a crafters’ room?! Traitor!) The fruit stand cost me zippo. It was a Christmas gift from my MIL back in 2011. There’s no place to put it in my kitchen, so after it lived in the inlaws suite for a while, doing nothing other than wasting space and collecting dust, I moved it into my haven to be useful. And, it hasn’t let me down. Except when my rolls of washi fall through the cracks. I really need to remedy that!

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Can anyone make me an adorable little fabric box like this?! (The left picture). I love my current system, but it isn’t pretty enough. This current system (hanging file folder system from Walmart. It cost me $10) works great, but is slightly flawed. The small pieces of scrap paper (any sort of irregularly shaped scraps and anything that’s smaller than 8×8 gets lost. Very easily. I’d love to find a system that groups like sizes together and doesn’t take up too much room. It also must be easy to see what’s inside. And, of course, it needs to be affordable. 
I have my scraps sorted by color, and it follows the rainbow spectrum of colors (starting with pink and ending with grey/black). I have a second hanging file system paired with this one for my most favorite manufacturers (it includes embellishments and papers). Once I thin out (read use up) the stuff I’m not really crazy about, I’ll move my favorite stuff to where the rest of my paper is located.
(Truth be told, I just want my scraps to look as neat and pretty as the picture on the left!!)

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Ok, so seriously,  this is my most favorite Pinterest hack yet. Find tackle boxes at Walmart (for a minimal price), and throw all your miscellaneous alphas in it! It takes up only one drawer in my sterilite storage towers (I have two- both in one drawer; they fit like a glove. Like it was meant to be!) and it can hold a lot of alphas in it!! It’s really a huge bang for your buck.

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I forgot to take a picture of it, but I do have a blister pack (which can be found at any pharmacy) that’s filled with brads. I forgot to take a picture of it because I rarely use brads in my projects. I also don’t have my blister pack labelled all pretty like the one in the picture. It does work really well to corral those small items, though! You’re looking at about $5-$10 (or more) depending on the size of blister pack you purchase.
Instead, I’m sharing a storage option for all those buttons you may have kicking around. For the longest time, I had my buttons stored in jam jars, but I didn’t like the varying sizes they were all in (my OCD is kicking in here). I wasn’t about to shell out the money for anything to store them in, so I left them as is. And then, my husband asked me if I’d have any use for the glass jars that you see in the right photo above. His buddy got these jars for his body shop business, but they weren’t the right size. I sure could find a use for them! Now, all my buttons are in the same size jars and they’re color coded, like my papers! (Cost to me: free!!)

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Lastly, did you know that Close to My Heart has some fabulous storage items, too? They do! You’ll find storage boxes in varying sizes for paper, stamps, sponge daubers, or whatever else you can think of! They’re made from durable plastic and have a simple flip tab to keep the contents safely secured inside. Also, their stamps are strictly acrylic,  and always come in those handy sleeves, keeping your stamps altogether. They fit beautifully inside the storage boxes. (This one is one of the smallest and can store up to 15 stamps inside. Depending on size, they’ll cost you $16.50 to $27.50).

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Looking for a practical and economical way to store your ink? Try CTMH’s Exclusive Inks Organizer (pictured above $76.95), or Exclusive Inks Stamp Tower (not pictured; $13.25). It’s perfect for storing my CTMH Exclusive Inks and journalling pens. It’s worthwhile to note that Stampin’ Up inks do not fit inside the organizer (and likely the tower. I have some SU inks, and they are too thick. This item is made specifically to store your CTMH inks).
There’s more {great!} storage items at Close to My Heart than just this! Visit me here, then click home > shop online > organization to see more!
What are some of your favorite Pinterest hacks? Please share-I’d love to see! Here’s one that was shared to my business page on Facebook:

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I think this is fabulous! Ribbon scraps would work beautifully in these, as would beads, glitter, flocking or other powders. What else could you use in here?
Share your hacks in the comments! We could always use some inspiration!