Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Age 4

Good Wednesday Morning! I know, two posts in two days! Don't worry, I won't always spoil you like this. In fact, I'd be surprised if I go anywhere near a computer on Thursday and Friday; and I'll spare you the details there.

I created another page recently that is related to my son's upcoming fourth birthday. Yet again, I saw a fun sketch at Creative Scrappers and just had to do something with it.

And my take:

I know, technically, he's not four yet, but he's close enough. I had a moment of Mama Pride, watching him assemble some legos into vehicles all on his own. That set was age-ranged for kids 7 & up, I think. He's not even four and he took the initiative to actually LEARN how to assemble them into an armored car and semi truck. It was a blast to watch his brain compartmentalize the car sections, build them backwards, learn what happens when you skip a step.... *sigh* *beam*

Okay, onto the materials? Excellent!

The patterned paper and chipboard pieces are part of Crate Paper's new line, Toy Box. I swore it would be mine. I batted my eyelashes all pretty like....then learned that wasn't necessary and it was mine!

I inked the edges of the paper pieces with Distress ink. I splattered Glimmer Mist Chalk all over the place. Happily, I painted the photo frame with Distress Crackle paint, after layering the "age" chipboard sticker above the number 4.

I'd love to ramble on more. No, really, I would. The sugar from my Lucky Charms and caffiene in my coffee (first dose of caffiene in over a week) are kicking in. I've got babble power. I also can't focus and sit at the same time. In case I really don't get back online for a few days, I hope your weekend is warm enough to be lovely!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Little Boy

Good Tuesday Morning! I'm claiming some "Me Time" right now, and the biggest thing I wanted to do was create a new post. In a few weeks, my son will turn four years old. He's so big, so strong, so smart, and so funny. Last night, he tried to make me Daffy Duck to his Bugs Bunny, ala Duck Season/Rabbit Season. Only, it was the great debate on whether or not he'd get a shower that night. Yes, he actually tried to trip me up:

Him: No shower.
Me: Yes, shower.
Him: No shower.
Me: Yes, shower.
Him: No shower.
Me: Yes, shower.
Him: (with a big grin on his face) Yes shower.
Me: Agreed. Yes, shower.

He thought sure it would work!

I digress. With his birthday fast approaching, I'm taking little walks down memory lane and occasionally bawling my eyes out because he's going to be heading off to college before I know it. Of course, then he reminds me that he'll always come back to play with his toys; so I shouldn't worry.

One of my moments of memory focused around his first haircut. That's probably because I was looking for fun photos to use in the most recent sketch from Creative Scrappers:

And here is my take:

*sigh* He had his first haircut about a week before his first birthday party. He was born with soooo much of it and it only got longer and blonder with time. So much of his first year of life was spent correcting strangers that HE wasn't SHE. Finally, we got sick of it all and took him to one of those cutesy kiddie shops where he sat in a large toy car while the nice woman snipped about three inches off the top. I'm telling you, the boy had hair to spare!

The paper and most of the embellishments are Echo Park. I applied the plane, cloud and sentiment to pieces of Grunge Paper to give them more oomph.

The ribbon is a random spool from well over a year ago that I just happened to spy while my son was rooting through my stuff for "rope" that his toy alien could use to save a Transformer's arm from certain doom.

The photo frame is a Technique Tuesday tile, covered in Glimmer Mist.

Aaannnnnddd, since I just got a good look at the state of my coffee table, I think I'll bring this post to a close. Thanks for taking the time to look and read. I can gurantee that the next few posts will have something to do with Memory Lane or the upcoming birthday. You're forewarned.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Quite an Honor!

This is quite an honor for me! Yesterday, I was so touched to see that I had been chosen as a Bella du Jour (Bella of the Day) at Bella Creations. I was feeling more confident that my poor head was taking a break from migraines and seeing this award gave me great reason to smile.

What is a Bella du Jour? Essentially, this is one of the many ways Lacee and the Bella Design Team show their appreciation for the OVER 200 members of Bella Creations. It's a Caught-Being-Good Award. It's something very pretty to share among friends.

This is also an award very specific to members of Bella Creations. It's not a simple copy/paste onto your own blog. Want it? It's simple, really!

1) Have a love of paper crafting and/or learing new things to create and share with loved ones.

If scrapbooking isn't your thing, check out The Impressionists group. OR Transformed Art (because I can't type all Frenchified at this exact second).

Like working small? Check out 2AMScrapper's ATC (Artist Trading Cards) group, Ohlala.

Feel like creating projects and swapping them out? Join the Sisterhood Swap group.

Want to get a head start on Christmas? Hey, there's snow on the ground in Michigan, so it's not that big of a stretch! Head over to Sandi's Jingle Bella's group.

Feel shoppy? Check out the Market Place.

Like ink? Micupoftea's Voila, Ink! Group has loads of great tutorials and ideas.

There are five more tabs that I'm working on creating links for right now. I'm certainly NOT going to snub a single one of the groups; but you can get the idea already that there are so many avenues to explore, if you're in the mood to create. Bella Creations has some inspiration for you.

Head on over and check out Bella Creations. Join. Become a Member. Dip in your toes, say "Hello." Tell them that cooky crazy Mama woman sent you over; told you how awesome they are.

Because they are.

Oh! And if you like participating in fun challenges, they've got loads of those, too.

It's all so much fun.

They are all so friendly.... and supportive.... and creative.... and inspiring.... and amazing.

Yes, I mean it.

I really really do; as much as I mean that I want a bar of spicy chocolate, a glass of syrah and a nap right about now. On that note, with that many clues, I bid you adieu.

So go. Clicky! Clicky!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tiny Bummer, Great Big Life

Just a maintenance note.


I'm certainly not the first to get a migraine. From what I've heard from friends recently, I'm blessed that mine are so low on the Richter Scale. All that said, I had three mini migraines hit in the span of two days. It has slowed me down.

I'll get back up, but just wanted to keep in touch for a sec.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Make My Way

Good Friday Afternoon! While I might not have my Friday Finds polished off and ready to post YET, I do have something to share. It's a cathartic part of why I haven't been combing the blogosphere for cool new things:

See, I'm *this* close to meeting my weight loss goals for a healthier life. Just after Christmas, 2009, I decided it was time to take off the 80 pounds I had gained over the few years before that. Now, I've lost 70 of those 80 and I feel purty durn cool about myself. I can tell that the last ten pounds is going to be a struggle. In part because I've decided they are going to be a struggle. In part because I'm just plain old comfortable and content saying that I weigh 170 lbs (at 5'9" tall). I've lost that bit of drive....but I haven't lost ALL my drive. I've still seen my mirror image. I still want to work on lifting things up, toning things down and looking like some version of whatever "hot mama" means to me. I also want to fit into the remaining size 12 clothing that I didn't give away to a friend of mine many years ago. My goals have shifted from the simple to the complex. As long as I understand that; and that I'm still looking to progress, I'm okay with the shift. I'm even okay that it seems to have taken me a few weeks to realize what it is that I now want and outline how to get it. Now to... get it!

It helped quite a bit to create this page and solidify my thoughts. A lot of details went into it; like this sketch from Creative Scrappers:

Also, I was inspired by the March Tres Chic challenge at Bella Creations. To quote the criteria, "...create something/anything in a vintage style....use the colors Navy blue, khaki, white You must use theses elements: a vintage inspired image, metal embellie, ticket." When I first started working on the page I could have sworn the color combination was navy, BROWN, khaki and black. I wud wrong; but I think I had covered up my lack of reading skill.... sorta. The vintage-inspired image is the circle of sheet music; which I found on (I believe) the Graphics Fairy. The metal pieces are all from Tim Holtz:

The ticket is an image that was shared by Micupoftea in her Violia Ink group (also at Bella Creations). I FINALLY had a moment of clarity and incorporated it into the page. The original sketch only had a couple circles, but obviously I added more and turned one of the intended circles into my journal spot -- to keep my goals clear and understood.

The scrabble tile images were shared by Scrapperlicious on her blog many moons ago. After printing off the paper images, I decided to attach them to small squares of Grunge Paper to give them a little something more. Also, I'm starting to finally dwindle down on my stash of Technique Tuesday Technique Tiles -- the bracket frame. I layered the white chipboard with a good coating of Distress Ink, then Glimmer Mist. Back when I was sure I needed to add brown, the three brown gems made more sense. And, of course, the paper is Bo Bunny's Mamarazzi line. I loved the quote strip and figured I needed to keep that as a reminder as well.

And I DARE NOT forget! The title itself is the title of a song by the band, Blues Traveler. I've had an intense love of their music since I was 16. It's always plucked at the right strings of my soul to help me figure out what's bothering me and how to fix it. Just like this song suggests, I'm trying to make my way. I found the song on You Tube and thought I'd share it with my readers as well (assuming my limited techie ways are correct):

Now, I'm curious to know if the video link worked, so I'm going to thank you now for taking the time to read.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Mobigone To The World

Good Saturday Morning! Anyone else have sunshine on a cloudy day? Anyone else love My Girl? Anyone else feel like apologizing for not creating a Friday Finds post yesterday? Okay, so I started making the post last Monday, but then the strangest thing happened. I had more of a desire to actually create than just talk about creating. I've been a scrapping, crafty fiend this week -- 6 LO's and a couple Easter projects. In the past few months, getting one to four pages done was a major accomplishment. I feel good about this. Case in point, one of the pages that I'm going to share right now:

Apparently, a little dose of Echo Park (A Boy's World) is exactly what I needed! As a bonus, it was fun to finally crack into my Jenni Bowlin bingo cards and Cosmo Cricket Boyfriend chipboard. It's based on this sketch from lCreative Scrappers:

I've also used this sketch for two other pages that aren't quite finished yet. I was pithy for a day because my foam dots are missing and I REALLY want to add that dimension to a couple pages. This morning, I shrugged it off and decided to use up some of my grunge paper. After I applied the stickers to the grunge paper, I used an Exacto to cut them away. Now, they have a sturdy feeling, like chip board, but more flexible AND they stand off the page just a little bit. For as thick as his current album is, this is probably a good thing.

Both the "stitched" circle and the car toots were doodled. It's something I'm usually afraid to do, but just kinda happened. It dawned on me later, that my little car toots are probably a bit eco-unfriendly in this day and age. I'd be sure to get the sticker checked out by a qualified mechanic soon.

I'm a little too giddy about the Prima pebble. I don't think the photo turned out great, but just in case you wanted to see the image more closely:

And that's all I have for today! If you happen to look forward to the Friday Finds each week, I have made a promise to myself that I am going to post next week.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Bella Muse Meets 30 Days of Lists

Good Sunday Evening! I wanted to make a quick post about two projects that collided earlier today. I'm quite pleased with the result.... as far as first attempts at a new project go.

.... Okay, I feel like one of those adorable little Kindergarteners that proudly shows off their artwork to Mom and Dad saying, "I made this!" Humor me and my silly nervous ways!

It's a couple things in one. The image is this month's Bella Muse inspiration. I wanted to add it to my last Friday Finds, but evidently I went spacey for a day and could not, for the life of me, figure out how to correctly save the image onto my computer. A day later, I was smart enough to figure out how to print it. I distressed the edges and inked them with Distress Ink. I also (initially) decided that I would add Stickles to her lips and the cherries that were hanging from them....... It wound up looking so disturbing that I cringed every time I looked at it. I thought it was doomed.

Since the image (and the first idea of making a card) could potentially be sacked, I thought I might try to salvage it all by adding the image to a book cover. In this case, it's the stripped corrugated packaging that snuggled one of my Slice dies. I painted the cardboard blue and ran the same Distress ink along the bumps that I had used on the image. But then what would the book be about? *insert crickets chirping here*

It seemed like all might be lost again until, I went hopping around the blogosphere this morning and discovered 30 Days of Lists. I find calm and focus in making lists and creating organization on paper....even if it doesn't always manifest beyond the paper. It could also be a great spot to come back to in later projects. And my book finally had a purpose! From there I was able to add a grunge element label piece that had been used for mist masking months ago, a couple Fancy Pants brads and part of the brad packaging from a Making Memories set to create the title spot, "List This." The Prima flowers at the top have been in my stash for over a year now. It's time they came out to play.

....And my book is having a hard time staying together! * insert lone horn playing waa waa waaaaaaaaa* I need to go shopping for fasteners, but don't know when that will ever happen. For now, it's jerry-rigged and I'm not showing that off. I'm in the middle of a "learning experience" that shall remain invisible until I figure it all out.

But, I still dig my book cover and tonight, that's what matters.

Now, to try my hand at some ATC's.....

Friday, March 4, 2011

Friday Finds 7: Mostly, the Challenge Issue

Good Friday Morning! As promised, I have some fun finds today. A few of them are from sites that I've never really highlighted on my blog before. Yay for something new! I realized as I was lining up the sites for linkage that there were a lot of challenges that I was sharing today. Most run for the entire month so there's plenty of time to fit them into a purty packed schedule.

Ready? Great! Now, let's start with one that is so not a challenge because I live for contradiction.

* Mandy, who runs an amazing blog by the name of For Scrapping Out Loud is hosting a Dusty Attic giveaway. Check these out:

I'm digging them because there appears to be more space on these to have even more fun. The buttons were what drew me in. I've used up pretty much all of my circular chipboard stash and like to design my own buttons.

And for the challenges:

ARTastic Challenge Blog is a site I've visited long ago. It looked fun, but made my newbie head swim. I stumbled upon it again this past week and really like their colorful prompt for March. Check out their blog for all the details:

Scrapbookers Anonymous is suggesting the use of at least 7 flowers on your layout this month. The stipulation is that they are pre-packaged. Considering I'm still trying to use up my flowers from last Mother's Day, this appeals to me.

ScrapFIT is another site I found very early in my blogdom, but felt overwhelmed by. In March, however, it's an easy challenge -- bling it up, baby!

Now, you had to know that I'd share at least a little of Bella's Creations! It's a new month and they've got new challenges. I've already shared their color challenge -- yesterday's post -- but there's more!

They have introduced a new monthly challenge in March; Bella Unique. In the unique challenge, they plan to introduce a new technique for their members to try. Currently, they've introduced "Selective Colorization." Because I want you to go read and enjoy, I'll leave it at that. But I will say it looks so flippin' cool that I'm just waiting and plotting for a moment to capture on camera so I can do this.

They are also bringing back the Tres Chic challenge with a focus on Vintage projects. This month, they are sponsored by the kit club Scraps of Darkness as well. Go check it out!

Drat! It sounds like my time is up. Guess I'd better get my coloring and painting game together! Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Tormented Artist as Inspired by Bella Creations Nuances de Couleur

Good Thursday Afternoon! I hope this afternoon finds you as well and happy as I am. I have my usual beginning-of-the-month pep and my health is returning so I thought it was time to feed my passions... and evidently stir some long-lost loves in my son's own heart, to boot!

This is what I've spent the last 24 hours obsessing about:

It's my submission for the March Nuances de Couleur at Bella Creations. The challenge is to use the colors brown, orange, green and yellow. It's also required to include a stamped image and pop-dot something on the project. Considering the fact that I'm in a very Crayola-8-pack frame of mind, this should have been easy peasy! Once I got going, it was, but I also wanted to at least try and create something that would fit in the Bella Gallery at the same time. If you want a serious case of the wow's, go check out the gallery. Amazing, yes? They know how to set a bar!

At any rate, I wanted to show off a few of the details that I'm pleased with; like the skull and crossbones. It's the last of my Tim Holtz Grungeboard skull elements. I haven't been able to find them lately; and I don't really want to buy a package with everything to have extras of other stuff. I need a die cut of some sort because this is my favorite element to add. *sigh* I painted this one orange and then used Basic Grey Archaic stamps. I added a couple pieces of Prima E-Line bling to the eyes and used my last brown flourish from Steffanie.

Here's a close-up of the pop-dotting on the skull. I know it can be tricky to detect sometimes.

I was just proud of myself for deciding on a few Prima flowers to add. Mainly, they satisfy some odd need to add flowers to Tim Holtz tickets. It's just one of my "things" lately.

If you're still wondering what drove me to create this page, I'll dish. Two nights ago, we were present for my mom's unboxing of some Polish stoneware she had ordered (her current obsession). Two of the boxes looked so nice and clean and white and unlike the normal brown taped-up boxes. She planned on tossing them, but I couldn't bear to let such great potential go to waste. I painted one red for my son to house his growing marker collection (you know, The Rainbow Master).

He so enjoyed decorating that box that he wanted to paint the other all on his own; and I let him. Somehow, I also ignited his love of painting things. He made up and sang songs about being an artist; painting the box green; you name it! When it was all done, he wanted to paint another. I had no other. He moped and whined for about an hour; so very heartbroken that his painting was now done.

....Until this afternoon; when we discovered another box from another Polish stoneware shipment.

And that's all I have for now. I've already started the Friday Finds post for tomorrow and looking forward to posting it. Thanks for looking and have a good day!