Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Project Life by Stampin' Up - Happiness Is Card Collection

I have been scrap booking for around 15 years, but never faithfully. Finally over a year ago I heard about Project Life by Becky Higgins and started consistently scrap booking. It's not your typical scrap book, but for me it makes sense. I do my pages typically on a monthly basis, sometimes weekly if I'm really caught up.

I do Project Life in steps:
  1. Go through pictures and decide which ones I want 3x4 and which ones I want 4x6 and their orientations. Then organize in a folder if needed to make printing easier
  2. Print my pictures! For my birthday last year I got a Canon Selphy - and that thing is a lifesaver! I don't have to wait for pictures to print somewhere and be shipped to me or go pick them up. I just print myself from the comfort of my own home. Which is great also in that I can do layouts and print pictures in various sizes if needed.
  3. Lay pictures out on pocket pages to figure out placement. Crop any if necessary.
  4. Go through PL cards and pick the best ones for the layout and photos and lay on pocket pages.
  5. Embellish! I basically go through each embellishment individually - stamps, stickers, wood veneer, candy dots, epoxy stickers, washi tape, etc. I try not to over embellish, but if I do it doesn't matter!!
  6. Journal - if I have any pictures that have a story to tell I go ahead and write it down. This is the part I like best about PL - the ease of journaling!
  7. Put everything in the pocket pages.
  8. DONE!
One of the main reasons I signed up to be a Stampin' Up Ind. Demonstrator was because of the Stampin' Up & Project Life collaboration. I wanted to order the products, but didn't know anyone local who sold Stampin' Up. Eventually once we got settled in our new home I signed up and got the Happiness Is Project Life Card Collection and Accessory Pack.

There is no right or wrong way to do project life. You can make it as simple or as complex as you want. I can't wait to order some of the Project Life Stamp Sets, they are just the right size for Project Life cards. If you want to jump into PL, all you need is an album, pocket pages, card collection, accessory pack, journaling pens, corner punch (optional), and pictures! Stamps are optional as well, and you'll need ink.

I sat down and did a couple lay outs with the Happiness Is collection:

Check out all the Card Collections that Stampin' Up offers and pick one, two or all of them! I can't wait to build my collection.

Be on the lookout in the next month for an awesome card collection just for December! You will be able to document your daily activities using Hello December. We will also have some special kits and stamps available at that time as well.

Click HERE to order Stampin' Up Products online anytime!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Holiday Deals on Zulily

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

The holidays are fast approaching this momma! Wow, I cannot believe it will be October in two days. I haven't even begun to think about Halloween decorations - I've barely gotten settled in our new house. We are settled I guess, but I haven't unpacked 3 boxes of home decor or any of my hanging artwork. I better get busy! But instead here I am on the computer shopping on Zulily for Adeline, of course.

Are you still searching for that Halloween costume? What you haven't DIY'd it yet? No worries, Zulily has got you covered! Adeline changes her mind every 10 seconds what she wants to be for Halloween. I think these are pretty cute:

She's been asking for Snow White - and both of those options are CUTE! But you'll have to wait and see what we decide.

Of course Adeline wanted to look with me and when I got to the Christmas Holiday outfits she had to point out a few she wanted. I love the selection of super cute with a bit whimsy holiday clothes.


Of course Zulily offers items for everyone and your home, but if you're like me you love buying cute things for your kids before yourself! Zulily also has one flat shipping rate for everything you buy in one day, so stock up all at once and get those Christmas presents from the comfort of your couch.

Jump on over to Zulily and sign up and start saving today!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Be You Bravely - Adeline's new Shirt

I found an awesome set of leggings at Target for Adeline but they didn't have any cute shirts to go with it! This is when I'm glad I am able to make Adeline super cute things. I bought a long-sleeve shirt in cream to put something on it!

It took me a week or so to finally get down to it but I searched for inspiration online and came across the MOPS saying "Be You Bravely" and used the logo to make a shirt for Adeline. It is so cute!

It is so refreshing to see Adeline live her life without a care in the world. This is her new favorite pose and she LOVES making funny faces!

This makes it all worth it - seeing her in such peace!

Alan has been teaching Adeline how to fit in to Bristol - here she is practicing! I didn't cut it down any so you can get the FULL experience, even of Alan coaching her! Haha.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Work your business!!!

I've always heard that the effort you put into your business you will get the results from in a year. You can't expect to get immediate results all the time. I've had an online Etsy business for awhile (over four years!), but once I was working Full Time I let the business go to the side and didn't market myself or post on my blog! Now that I am a stay at home Mom to Adeline again I am looking at ways to help my family up financially. I signed up to be an Independent Demonstrator with Stampin' Up and I've started working my Crafty Weeks business more.

Tuesday I woke up covered in Hives, which hasn't happened in as far back as I can remember. So I had to get my husband and daughter out of bed early to take me to the hospital. I have allergy induced asthma, so I can't take any chances especially since the day before I was wheezing. Well all they could do is give me a shot of Steroids and send me on my way. I was thankful to have Alan home with me to help with Adeline all day. I spent most of the day zoned out in Steroid limbo, but by the end of the day I was feeling really good with a lot of energy and started working my businesses and searching for ways to market my Stampin' Up business in a new area.

Facebook has lots of group pages set up for locals and they are great to market yourself, however most of the "yard sale" pages do not allow business marketing! It is selling a good, so I don't see how it is different. So since they don't allow us to post I created my own group on Facebook JUST for advertising your Work from Home or Small Business. If you are in the Bristol area I welcome you to join our little group, I'm slowly getting it built up! At this point I am an Admin of 5 separate groups and run 2 pages, and I may start Administrating a group for Moms here in Bristol soon. You have to get yourself out there if you expect to get you and your business noticed!

Next I decided to set up a separate Page for my Stampin' Up side instead of incorporating it into my Crafty Weeks page. The separate businesses don't necessarily attract the same customers, so it made sense. So if you get a chance please check out my new page and like it!

My Results: By the end of the night Tuesday I had one friend offer to host a Stampin' Up Workshop for me next month, one contact on my Crafty Weeks Facebook page with a custom order of two items (long time follower), one contact through Etsy with 3rd relation acquaintance for a customer order of two items. Then by the time I woke the next morning a customer ordered four of my Scrapbook Flairs off my Etsy site! I don't think me working my business Tuesday directly affected each of the above results - but it had me excited! I don't know about you, but it was awesome.

I came across this picture on a Stampin' Up Demo page and it fits perfectly!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Paper Pumpkin - September 2014

This was my first month getting Paper Pumpkin! I got one in my starter kit with Stampin' Up and blogged about that kit here if you want to take a look! I signed up for Paper Pumpkin as soon as I signed up as an Independent Demonostrator with Stampin' Up. How could I not? I love discovering new crafts and ideas and I love that someone else is telling me how to do it! There is no point in re-inventing the wheel people! Stampin' Up even sells Past Kits or refill kits if you want to make more!

For September we received "Boo-tifull Bags Kit" - which is a set of 6 burlap bags decorated with stamped tags and sequins. I took my daughter, Adeline, to the library this morning and took my Paper Pumpkin box. Only other craft supply I needed was a pair of scissors, wet wipes or stamp cleaner, and a stamp block. I brought along more dimensionals and the tape runner, but didn't need them!

Here are all the supplies. The tags came in sheets that you have to punch out, then I stacked them on the coordinating backer papers.

First I worked on the tags - stamped them, then placed stickers, then attached smaller tags to the larger tags using Stampin' Dimensionals provided in the kit to give the tags some dimension of course!

Close up of the dimension the dimensionals give!

Next I put the tags on the bags with the clothes pins and sequins. I didn't have any candy to put in the bags at the library so I just tied the black string around the bags loosely so I'll have room later.

I had plenty of supplies to make the bags, but then I had leftovers! I can't wait to use these on other crafts - cards, boxes, or just use as tags on other Halloween treats!

These craft supplies can be used in lots of different ways. Be sure to check out Paper Pumpkin's Pinterest page to see how others are creating with Paper Pumpkin, find out different ways to use the same products!

If you are interested in signing up with Paper Pumpkin it is only $19.95/month with shipping included. Get your friends to sign up too and have monthly crafting parties putting together your kits.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Birthday Freezer Food Prep

Oh so you spent your birthday at a Spa getting your nails did? Well I spent my birthday fixing a bunch of meals to put in my freezer, after which I needed to get my nails did!!!

Since I'm now a SAHM we need to save money however we can. One of those ways is to eat at home more often and making eating out a rarity. However, I hate cooking. It takes up too much of what little time I have and it's just not something I enjoy doing everyday. SO...I decided to try freezer meals. I looked and looked at blogs seeing what recipes they use, but could never find one that had recipes I'd actually eat (yes, I am a picky eater too!). Finally I stumbled upon Fun with Sharps! and her blog entry from a couple years ago about the way she prepares Freezer meals and I loved the recipes she uses!

The only day I had to work on this was my birthday, when Alan was off work. So as soon as Adeline went down for her nap we got to work. I should have prepped and wrote the recipes on the bags before hand, but oh well. It took a lot longer than it should have, but in the end we were happy. I had Alan on meat duty while I cut up all the veggies and other ingredients then had Alan finish up the bags with the spices. I ended up being short on meat so we had to put 4 bags aside to finish the next day once we got more. Here is the picture of all but the 4 bags in my freezer. Doesn't look exactly like the other bloggers finished products, but hey I'll take what I can get! I'm really NOT loving a side-by-side fridge right now. No freezer space compared to our last fridge.

We did go out later and got me a Birthday Cake! Alan picked it out because he thought Adeline would like it...HELLO! It is my birthday, not hers! However as long as it was an ice cream cake from Dairy Queen, I really did not care!

So it's now been a week and a half, can you guess how many of those meals we've eaten? ONE! Yikes! I have been gone the past couple days and if Alan is working nights I don't fix a big dinner, but I do hope to fix these more often so we can have leftovers too!

Do you fix freezer meals? What are some of your favorites recipes? Do you cook then freeze or freeze raw then cook?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Horsin' Around at Walnut Springs Farm

Adeline and I were able to head to my parents for a couple days. Adeline was excited to show off her new scooter and has some super cute moves to show off! 

Of course while we were there we had to visit the horses. Mom and dad picked some apples from the tree in their yard to give to the horses. Adeline  helped handing the apples to her Paw Paw.

Chow down guys! Adeline's favorite is in the middle, Thunder.

Rusty thought he should have had more apples and kept trying to find some on the tail gate or Adeline's boots! 

We couldn't forget about the other two! Jessie and Chavo got their apples and attention from Adeline too!

Adeline loves these horses so much, Its frustrating that we are now two hours away and she can't see them as often as she asks! She of course misses my parents quite a bit too and always asks to go see them. She doesn't yet understand that they live farther from us now and we can't just meet them for dinner anymore!

Cash loves getting scratched! He was even shaking his back leg because it felt so good! 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Yard Work - Bristol Style

When we bought our house in July we knew we would have to cut down a bunch of trees and brush. We have been doing a little each week so as to not upset the trash collectors too much. But I'm sure they are pretty annoyed anyway! We are so thankful to live somewhere they will pick it up!

One tree I loved it when I first saw it and knew we would keep it since it provided so much shade over the driveway and it was pretty. However once we moved in we realized something was wrong with the tree - it had a fungus and was slowly dying. So we had to go ahead and cut it down. It was so big it was cut down a little bit each time. Also we cut down a spruce tree on the back corner of the house as well that you can see in the below picture. It had grown into the bush in front of it so we cut it down as well as it was way overgrown. It revealed a nice landscape detail that I hope to fill with pretty flowers at some point.

This corner of the house was crazy overgrown with multiple plants all entwined together. I liked the tree, but it was hard to distinguish between tree and weed as the weed was as big or bigger than the tree! Also cut down a bush on the side of the house that you can see through the windows and one on the corner. Alan weed-eated the weed patch and I sprayed with weed killer for good measure.

Alan's dad, Mike, came and helped Alan the 2nd time we cut trees and brush. That was a huge help to Alan since before I was just moving the brush around.

In the back yard we had several trees and a few really big ones. The biggest will have to stay plus they are sturdy and provide a bunch of shade for the yard. But there was a big dead tree in the back that could have fallen so we had to take care of that one and then a spruce tree right beside the house and swing set. When the dead tree was cut down we discovered it was home to a billion ants, so glad to have it gone and will cut the stump later in year when the ants go away. We have a problem with Mosquito's so we are hoping that cutting back the trees from the house it will alleviate some of the problem.

We still have A LOT of yard work left to do but the big part is done! The trash guys probably hate us but hopefully we won't have as much trash anymore!

The house looks so much better now! I wish they had done it when the house was remodeled. Next up are those huge bushes - we are going to try to just cut them back first to see if they are manageable.

Would love some recommendations on what to plant in the flower beds. I definitely want to get some plants that are natural mosquito repellents for around the deck.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Burlap, it's all the RAGE

Awhile back I bought some burlap panels with big plans to make some  wall decor for my ETSY shop. But we've been in a constant upheaval for the past few months due to hubby getting a job out of town and having to move twice in 2 months (moved to temp housing after house sold before buying a new house). We are finally getting settled in the new house and can't wait to show off the house and the decor, but I need a break from "house" stuff so I'm getting into crafting again.

The other day I finally decided to get out the burlap panels and play!! I didn't have a set project in mind so I went through my various files and found the below image. I decided to make a gift for my long time friend and teacher. I plan on adding some ribbon for it to hang from as soon as I can get to Michaels. Michaels is 30 minutes away from our new house! I do not know how I will survive!

Recently I found out one of my cousins is expecting her first baby, a boy! Since we are just on one income right now, any gifts need to be handmade. I plan on making her a basket of some items from my Etsy shop - a couple burp clothes, custom wipes container (not on Etsy Shop yet!, message me if interested), legwarmers, and onesies! Then I noticed from her registry she is doing a Lion King theme. So i searched online for an image to put on a burlap panel. I found this cute graphic online and traced it in my Silhouette Program. I'm pretty pleased with it.

I would love to make a panel for you, let me know if you have a quote or picture you are interested in one. I have 9x12 and 12x16 burlap panels available.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

My First Paper Pumpkin!

If you haven't heard I recently signed up as an Independent Demonstrator with Stampin' Up. As part of the starter kit you get a Paper Pumpkin kit to try from a previous month. I received February 2014 - In the Bag to try out. I'd already signed up to receive Paper Pumpkin monthly since they are running a special right now, but it was nice to get to play with a previous month kit before my first one arrives.

Now through September 10th if you sign up for Paper Pumpkin with the code HALFOFF2 you get your first two months half off! That's basically getting a month free! Go to the Paper Pumpkin website and sign up, and choose me as your Demonstrator if not already selected!

I wasn't planning to blog about this so sorry for the poor picture quality!

Here are the supplies I received in the Paper Pumpkin box:

It included enough materials to make 5 of the bags seen. I only made one as shown then did a second with my own spin on it. I'm saving the others for any special gifts.

Here is the one shown in the Instructions:

I have a baby shower later this month so I decided to decorate one bag for baby gifts and I made a card with a matching envelope. I used Whisper White Card Stock for the card and a matching envelope. The orange color is Pumpkin Pie and the blue twine is miscellaneous leftovers. The orange really made the Teal circles POP!

I am looking forward to getting these surprises each month! The kit comes with everything you need to make the craft in the instructions, which is great if you are just starting out! If you are like me you want to do more than just what the directions tell you and use the supplies in different ways! You can visit Paper Pumpkin on Pinterest to see other people's designs each month!

To sign up: Visit Paper Pumpkin and make sure I'm selected as your demonstrator. If you sign up by Sept 10th make sure you use the code HALFOFF2 for half off 2 your first two months for new subscribers!

Also make sure you visit my Stampin' Up website for any other crafting goodies you are in need of. If you'd like to have me and some friends over to craft together just let me know!