Sunday, July 27, 2014

Summer Reading Picks

Happy weekend! Wanted to share a few books I've read recently that I felt were worthy of recommending! Our lab, Lainey, was my "first born" baby and I have a serious affection for animals, especially dogs, so when I come across any good book with a dog in the story I tend to enjoy the read. I recently found this one and loved it...
An easy read with a dancing dog who has human like qualities when it comes to personality, what's not to love? I found it at Barnes and Noble but here is the link from Amazon .Speaking of dogs, if you haven't read 
The Art of Racing in the Rain, YOU NEED TO! This has a tender story and although there is a bit of sadness involved, it made me feel like I could speak dog after reading...
And finally, the book everyone's been talking about and the movie linked to it, The Fault in Our Stars. This one is so honest and a compelling read, making me think of my faith and all the people I love and that love me on any given day. I haven't seen the movie yet for fear that I will dehydrate from all the tears shed but hope to check it out sometime soon...
What are you reading this summer? Anything worth sharing? Happy weekend!


Friday, July 25, 2014

Papertrey Ink July Blog Hop

Time for Papertrey Ink's monthly blog hop. This month their piece to be inspired by was a vintage type picture with some of my favorite color combos! Here is the Pinterest inspiration...

 

I loved the button cards and doily as well as the checkered background of the stitched envelope so I started with that as my background by inking the square stamp from Irresistably Ikat and building my background with Primrose Petals from SU as the darkest square, stamped off again for the lighter and left the white box for some variety. I used Boutique Buttons to make the button card out of aqua mist card stock and die cut the label from Friendship Jar set and stamped a sentiment from Lovely Layers. I created my own paper with a brayer and Primrose Petals ink and heat embossed with clear to add the circle and heart edge on the bottom. It was fun to be inspired by so many different parts of this picture! Thanks for stopping by!


Friday, July 18, 2014

Little Tangles Challenge #41 Stencils


Just stopping by quick to share a few cards I made for the Little Tangles Challenge to use stencils in a fun way on a card. I had fun with a few techniques and figured I'd try some things out and pick one to use for my card but ended up with three completely unique backgrounds and each deserved a card to itself!

First up, a chevron background stencil from Studio Calico that I taped down and used Tim Holtz Distress inks in Broken China, Tumbled Glass, Peeled Paint, Worn Lipstick, and Picked Raspberry with a blending tool to layer colors from bottom up. I finished the background off with a spritz of Shine from Studio Calico before lifting up the stencil and LOVED the result! I stamped my bicycle from CTMH and colored it in with watercolor pencils and touched up with water. Finished it off with a sweet sentiment from Papertrey Ink that I layered in rainbow colors similar to my chevron. Inks were from SU, Strawberry Slush, Pear Pizazz, and Coastal Cabana, which is also the color of the twine.
Next up is a background I made using an old circle stencil from Studio Calico and Hero Arts Daubers in Neon Yellow and Pale Tomato. It was so fun to paint with the daubers around the circle, first with yellow and the outside with red. I was worried it would bleed under too much but I love how it ended up once I lifted the stencil! I finished it off with a few black stars die cut from Papertrey Ink dies,  and another sentiment from that same stamp set above. Washi tape on the bottom and mounted on a black card base.
Finally, I dug out some Mother of Pearl paste from Viva and added a few drops of SU Coastal Cabana thinker to create my own color and used a Heidi Swapp stencil to add to my card front. After it dried I spritzed some Primrose mist from Heidi Swapp and added a few punched hexagons with a SU punch and used the matching stamp set to emboss a sentiment and design in white on one that I popped up with dimensional adhesives.  
It was fun to create such unique cards with the same general idea and dig out some old tools in my stash! I hope you're off to a relaxing weekend! Now excuse me as I peruse Little Tangles site. I have no products from them and they obviously have some fun stuff! :)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Dedicated Album

I remember one of my favorite gifts Eric got me for my first Mother's Day was an 8x8 album to record a layout for each year. I decided to do the left page of each layout with a picture of Graci and I while the right page would be for Eric and her on Father's Day. The third layout, or year, of celebrating, Addison had arrived before Father's Day but didn't appear in the left page, she arrived three days after Mother's Day that year! What I love most looking back through this dedicated album is seeing how our lives have changed over the years, sometimes dramatically with the birth of a child or a new home, and sometimes just the passing of time. But no matter what happened or where we were, I can genuinely relive the happiness in those pictures. I love that!

I finally got around to completing my layout for 2014 using an older kit from Studio Calico and this is the Mother's Day side...
and the Father's Day side with a picture from home where we gave Eric his gifts early because we traveled and arrived at Togwotee Lodge in Wyoming on the official day...
A few stamped or spritzed veneers, stamped and punched circles, and touches of sequins all added to the theme with a few stars sprinkled here and there.
I love how it turned out but to be honest, I am feeling a wee bit more heartache with each passing year as the album is filling up! 2004 was the first layout and I recall thinking it will take forever to fill this up! It's already got 10 years in it and I still remember the absolute joy I felt taking that first picture as a mom with Graci and our puppy Lainey on my official day. I thought my heart was full back then...who knew how full it would feel ten years later? Incredibly thankful!


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Semantics

brit·tle
╦łbritl/
adjective
  1. 1.
    hard but liable to break or shatter easily.
    "her bones became fragile and brittle"
    synonyms:breakablefragiledelicate;

    Someone who knows me quite well, knows how much effort I put into each day to be healthy, asked me recently, "Do you consider yourself a brittle diabetic?" I think he could tell by my expression that a follow up would be good so he quickly responded to my empty face with, "You put so much into everything you do and still notice ups and downs with your blood sugar...would you consider that being brittle?"

    Without even thinking about the definition of the word, I responded, "Yes." I guess if you are considering the old school word, I do have ups and downs against my will. I give it everything I've got every moment of every day, day after day, knowing there will never be an end to this routine unless a cure comes our way, which is a hope but not a fact. This friend is also a doctor, extremely intelligent but doesn't treat diabetes. I know he meant absolutely no disrespect to me or my disease and he didn't hurt my feelings, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit that word really struck a cord with me!  This happened almost a week ago and I'm still deliberating about it!

    Is it because it's a description versus an official diagnosis? Like "brittle" vs. "Stage 3" kidney disease? I took it upon myself to do a brief survey, reaching out to friends who are type 1, friends who are medical providers and treat type 1 and type 2, friends who love someone with
    diabetes, and people that have no connection at all to this disease (other than knowing me). Every person whether connected to diabetes or not, who had no medical background, thought the word is horrible, hurtful, no way to describe any person with diabetes. All with medical background thought nothing of it, even my friend who is type 1 and sees patients with her career, agreed that it's not a nice word but sure enough she sees some that just coast through this damned disease with no issues and consistent great Blood sugars while others, like myself, consider this beyond a full time job, in addition to working a real job and everything else I typically do in a day! Who knew? I almost wish I didn't!

    I suppose it really is just semantics but I had to ask my husband the other night, "Do you consider me brittle? As in hard but liable to break or shatter easily?" He immediately went to the noun definition of peanut brittle and looked at me with immense confusion. After I explained what had been going on in my head for several days about the word and he feared saying the wrong thing in my sensitive state, he responded with this: "You bend over
    backwards every day to be in control and I see it more than anyone but you...only you can answer that but to me, if you can bend that much and be in tight control, I'm pretty sure you are anything but breakable." Thanks, Eric....that is exactly the response I was hoping for, and I must admit...I think you're right!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Wood Veneers and Using Up Scraps


I've developed a love-hate relationship with purging when it comes to my workspace. In all other areas of my home, I have no issue when it comes to getting rid of things and it is freeing to have that space back. Don't get me wrong, I feel the same freedom when my workspace is clean but it seems almost impossible to keep things organized when I am always working on something. I love all the wood veneers that have been so popular over the last few years and therefore, have way too many in my stock and played around with some ways to use some up.

I gathered similar shapes in various sizes and thought it would be cute to have them peek out from a circle that was popped up to add some dimension. On the first one I had a few scraps of Stampin' Up papers that I started with and decided to add a splash of orange from Heidi Swapp Georgia Peach spritz to the word wish to make it special. I used some die cut pieces from one of the new Lawn Fawn sets, Chit Chat and added a bit of glimmer with the wink of Stella pen to the birds...
The next one was super simple as I die cut a few butterflies, one from felt and one from paper, using a Papertrey Ink die and stamped the sentiment from a Stampin' Up set. Added a button and a few enamel dots from my stash and that was it...
This last one was so fun to do with a piece of leftover chevron paper (I usually toss scraps but anything chevron, I cling to :), a car die cut and stamped from Papertrey Ink, leftover Heidi Swapp sticker letters that I colored with Distress Inks, Raspberry Fizz and a hint of Barndoor Red, and a bit of glitz with some Stickles on the window and a few bilngy dots for headlights and the apostrophe make this card complete!
I hope all of my American friends had a fun filled and safe 4th of July weekend and everyone anywhere outside the US had a great weekend as well. We spent ours at the lake with family and great friends and as always, the weekend went by too fast! :)