Christmas Morning

Colors : Clover Meadow, Honey, Holiday Red, Col White

Papers : Hollydays ('06)

Stamps : No Peeking, Make it A Simple Christmas, Floral Delights (photo corners), Giggle Lowercase

Accents : Pop dots

I finally finished that layout I started yesterday. It's not one of my better layouts but I think that's just because I'm not really feeling the title. My favorite part is the paper pieced presents.

Here's the title on the right page. It's alright. I like the tag and I like the morning. I'm just not really liking them together?

Well, whatever. I like the layout as a whole. Maybe the title will grow on me :D


Getting ready for school now

For the past two and a half weeks we've been taking Caitie into the local school district preschool to be tested for developmental delays. While we knew she was behind other kids we didn't realize just how far behind she is. She has 'severe' developmental delays in speech/communication and cognitive development. She also has some signs of autism. I've worried off an on about her development for just over a year now and had hoped as well as assumed that this was just something she'd outgrow and that she'd catch up to the other kids her age soon enough.

Like most mothers I want my child to succeed and I would hope life to be easier for her than it was for me. I would like her to be better and do better than I did and yet here she is already struggling with just saying a complete sentence or relaying a single thought. On average other children her age have 100% understandable speech. Caitlyn's is at less than 30%. It's both easy and hard for me to believe that she's so far behind. She has such a difficult time communicating to me and it's frustrating for everyone, especially her. But she is so sweet and silly. Caitie loves to draw and sing, and she's so affectionate and strives to be good. She's so bright and loves to be funny that many times it's hard for me to think of her as 'behind' or to even believe that she might have something like autism. At the same time I look at it and go 'yeah that makes sense' because of all the difficulties she has communicating with us and sometimes even understanding us.

I can't even descibe the overwhelming feeling of relief I felt when the teachers explained to me that her delays were not because of anything we as parents had or had not done for her. I know that many days I wonder if I'm a good mom, if I'm doing enough for my girls, if I'm teaching them enough or spending enough time with them, reading to them enough or playing with them as much as I need to. My hubby constantly tells me I'm a good mother, but sometimes I wonder if I really am. Especially when Caitie started falling behind. Then I was constantly thinking that it was something that I just wasn't doing. I bought flash cards and preschool books. I drew shapes and showed her letters. I read her more books and none of it seemed to get her to 'catch up' to the other kids. When they told me it wasn't me, I almost cried right there in front of all three special ed teachers.

Then came the part where they told me she's eligible for the free preschooling services which will target her communication and cognitive delays. She'll even meet with a speech therapist at least once a month all at no cost to us which is an absolute Godsend. Preschool is completely unaffordable for us let alone having her see a speech therapist. I was, and still am, so happy that my dear little Caitie is able to get the help she needs from such patient and enthusiastic teachers (they even played with her during different parts of the meeting so that she wouldn't be bored). They relayed to me their goals and had high hopes for her. Caitie doesn't start Kindergarten until fall '09 so she has a little while to catch up. I'm so happy that we were able to get her tested now and have this help available for her before she starts Kindergarten. She loves to learn and I think she'll really like preschool. I pray that this will help her and that she'll be able to reach the goals that are set. In the meanwhile I'll just keep doing what I can and enjoy my silly little Caitie while she's still small.

On a side note I haven't had the chance to finish scrapping from earlier since I've been trying to relay the info to family that was worried about her and fill out the paperwork for her enrollment between regular mom duties. She gets to start school on Monday so it's push push push to get things done and have her prepared with all the stuff she'll need by then. I'm excited for her and I'm so glad we got to this early.

My Chaotic Corner of the World

I've noticed that a lot of ladies post pics of their scrap spaces. I don't have a scrap room or even a real stationary corner since I scrap on my dining table, lol. So all my stuff is pretty much easy to move and is actually stored elsewhere (basically anywhere up high out of my tot's reach or in the closet). All my stamps are in photo boxes (they can hold 25 in a box and are very cheap) and most all of my other scrap stuff gets put into my Crop in Style XXL, which when packed right can actually hold everything I have except the stamps and my cuttle bug machine (yes that includes all my paper, punches, inks, embossing heater and powders, we are talking everything. When I get to scrap then I claim a couple extra baskets, that just hang around to keep whatever in, to hold embellies I've been using a lot so that I have easier access to them while I'm crafting. I also keep my inks out when I'm scrapping instead of in the Crop in Style. Everything is quite tidy when my scrap stuff is put away, but when I get the chance to create WATCH OUT!

The left end of the table while I'm working :P Yeah, I'm a messy scrapper. My creativity thrives on clutter! (this was taken today while I'm in the middle of my next set of scrap pages which will get posted sometime tonight after I finish :D) Just thought I'd take a break and document my little bit of chaos which 'sometimes' gets cleaned up before dinner lol.

The mini table behind where I sit. I keep the inks there and just kind of toss whatever I'm not currently using back there as well lol. The mini Christmas tree is taking up half the table so I have to be a bit more careful with the mess than usual.
The floor behind where I sit. I like to keep most all my stamps where I can see them because if I don't see it, it doesn't get used!! And I'm lazy and don't want to keep getting up to see if such and such stamp set works with what I'm doing. I want it all right there around me lol!

My big XXL Crop in Style sits next to me holding all my papers, adhesive, along with everything else so that I have easy access to it while it does double duty and blocks my tots from getting into what I'm working on (well it actually only stops them when they aren't determined to play with my stuff, lol). So all that is what my hubby sees and probably my girls too, but this is what I see because I'm focused on just the tiny section of this mess that contains the pieces I'm working on.
Anyway, there's my fun little break in the middle of the day. Just thought I'd share :D



Colors : Clover Meadow, Holiday Red, Honey, Col White

Paper : Hollydays ('06)

Stamps : Bethelehem, Homestead Alpha, Sans Small Lowercase

Accents : Liquid Glass, Mini Sparkle, yellow organdy, pop dots,

I'm still debating whether or not I want to color in the town. I'll see in the morning, it's late right now and I'm tired. The stars were fun, I added a sparkle with liquid glass then put liquid glass on the rest of the star to make it a little more shiny.

I'm so glad this scripture fit perfectly in that spot. I needed some sort of embelly there and this went just right with the bottom Bethlehem border.

More fun techniques. I love doing this with words or single letters.

This layout was actually quite a challenge. There wasn't anything in either Cherish or Imagine that really 'fit' with the pictures I had and I didn't want to cut them down very much. Imagine's In the Groove gave a great starting point for me though and enough room to expand the photos I didn't want to cut down. I used the basic layout but then did my own photo mats and placement to fit the photos I had. Bethlehem is also one of my favorite Christmas stamps so it was a treat to finally get to use it in a layout!


Christmas Eve

Colors : Holiday Red, Clover Meadow, Honey, Colonial White

Papers : Hollydays ('06)
Stamps : Homestead Alpha, Make it a Simple Christmas, No Peeking, Charmed Lowercase and Numbers

Accents : Liquid Glass, Yellow organdy, pop dots

This paper is so colorful, vibrant, and fun. I'm usually one for more elegant Christmas palettes and designs but for my girls this fits just so perfectly! A lot of fun stamping for embellishment. The tag has certain parts outlined with my black .05 pen, the same goes for the present. I also traced in the outside line in the alphas with the same black pen to give it some pop. Holly is stamped on col white then cut out and put on pop dots for dimention. I also liquid glassed the berries and the ribbon on the present.

The journalling square was fun to make. I RSed the border on the right then stamped and cut out 3 more holly to pop dot on the border for dimention. The present and holly in the corner are also on pop dots. Ignore my terrible handwriting! The present was colored in with the blending pen since I don't have any of the markers yet. Anyway, a Christmasy layout to put me in the Christmas spirit for the next month!


Lovely Summer

Colors : Baby Pink, Blush, Sweet Leaf, Cocoa, Colonial White

Paper : Cocoa Cafe ('05), Adorable ('07)

Stamps : Boutique Alpha, Free Spirit

Accents : Pink and Green flowers (Prima), White Daisy Just Blooms, Baby Pink nail heads and brads, Baby Pink Grosgrain, White seed beads, Green flower brads (Making Memories),

Close ups of some of the flower detail :

I loved making this layout. The colors are some of my favorites and these flowers are just so fun to use! The hardest part about the whole thing was cutting out my stamped letters, and that was just more time consuming than it was hard. The beads were another new discovery I made today since I had to think a little out of the box. Usually I use white brads, but I'm all out so I had to find something else to use until I can go to the scrap store (probably tomorrow or Tues at the latest!!). I've had these beads for a while, they came in the white daisy accents when they first came out. I just put a glue dot in the center of the flower then pushed the beads into the glue dot and voila! I'm thinking this would be great with darker beads for a sunflower... something to try later!

Laundry Girl

Colors : Amethyst, Breeze, Ocean, White Daisy, Cocoa, Bamboo

Paper : Cocoa Cafe ('05?)

Stamps : Simple Stitches

Accents : Simple Alpha Dimentional Elements, Ribbons and Tags Dimentional Elements, Amethyst Accents, sandpaper, white embossing, white daisy ink

Imagine Layout - Understudy (right)

This was an interesting layout to do. I picked the papers more because I've been wanting to use these cocoa cafe papers than because they matched the pictures. Since the pictures were mostly just white I could pretty much pick any paper I wanted. How the layout was choosen was actually pretty funny. I going to look through my Imagine again for another layout to use and I just happened to flip right to the Understudy page. I took one look at it and decided 'yeah, that will work' and went straight to putting it together. My favorite part of this layout is the dimentional C with its tags hanging off the swirly. Simpler than my last few pages but still very cute in my mind. The paper really takes the show in this page.


Girls will be Girls

Colors : Hollyhock, Cocoa, Sweet Leaf, Heavenly Blue, White Daisy

Paper : Groovy Blossoms ('06), Garden B&T ('07)

Stamps : Charmed Lowercase

Accents : Paper Flowers (Prima), Rhinestones, Silver Brads, Silver Hinges, Dimentional Elements Simple Alphas

This turned out so much better than I thought it would. First off I wasn't too crazy about all the pictures but I'm one of those people who likes include every photo in the scrapbook (some get hidden but most are showing). Second of all, I wasn't really into the layout I picked, Open Forum in Imagine, but the layout was the only one I found that fit with the photos though it's one of those layouts that I'm not too comfortable attempting. I've also been trying to use up my old '06 year paper to make room for the new stuff that will come out in Jan. I loved this square paper but wasn't sure it went with the photos since I usually match colors to clothing. However, despite all my reservations, I set to work and just let my inhibitions go. And it was worth it because I really love this layout. It brought out the good photos and made the not so great photos still look good with such a cute layout. I was going to do the flowers the same way they did in the example but decided at the last minute to just do my own thing. They really complete the layout!

Daddy's Girls

Colors : Sunflower, Kiwi, Heavenly Blue, Baby Pink, White Daisy

Paper : Precious Paisleys ('06), Harmony B&T ('07)

Stamps : Precious Alpha, Boutique Alpha

Accessories : Just Blooms in White Daisy and Autumn Sunflower, Green Paper Flowers (Prima), White brads and buttons, Baby Pink My Accents set pieces, Daddy's Girl Buttons (unknown), Edge Distresser, White Daisy ink

I have had these daddy's girl buttons for 4 years lol. I bought them just before Caitlyn was born and just hadn't found the right layout to use them on until now. They went PERFECTLY with the sunflower blooms! This uses Imagine's Subtitles sketch, the right-hand layout. It's been a while since I've done a really nice daddy/daughter page and I really wanted to make this one special since all three of them were actually smiling at the same time in the pictures! Tons of flowers and accents used in this layout but the turn out is well worth it!

Journalling : We love to sit on Daddy's Lap. It's fun when he chases us. We love Daddy! Daddy's funny when he reads stories. We love to dance with Daddy!

Creative Princess

Colors : Pink Carnation, Sunflower, Heavenly Blue, White Daisy, Baby Pink

Paper : Precious Paisleys ('06)

Stamps : Princess, Delightful Alpha, Homestead Alpha

Accents : Baby Pink Swirls, White Daisy Sassy Strands, Rhinestones, White Daisy Just Blooms, Pink Paper Flowers (Prima), Liquid Glass, Prisma Glitter

I still love this paper! All the CS was sanded on the edges for distressing and to soften the look so that it would blend better with the B&T. Lots of flowers, rhinestones, and glue dots were used. A little glitter for "Princess", "Girly", and the crown. This layout actually took me an hour and a half, mostly because I wasn't quite sure what I wanted to do with it. I kept going back and forth trying to decide whether to stamp out images or just use the flowers. In the end the flowers won out. I also printed my journalling for this layout because there was more that I wanted to say than I could fit in the journalling square with handwriting. That and I don't much like my own handwriting.

The outside line of the homestead alpha was traced with my glue pen, then I applied the prisma glitter. The camera washes out the colors, they are a tad bit more vibrant than this.

I wanted to create a matching accent and at first the script was going to be Cutie, but I didn't want the letters to look so much the same as in the creative script. Tiny rhinestones are adhered with liquid glass.

The crown was pretty fun. I wish I had the markers (my next goal to get) so that I could color the image in then stamp it and then color in the heart. But it turned out cute still, so I'm happy for now.

Journalling : Caitlyn you are such a funny girl! You made so much noise gathering things from around the house that I had to wonder just what it was you were up to. When finally the ruckus quieted down to simple tapping I discovered the reason for all your running around. You had built your very own computer, complete with an ice tray as your keyboard, and were typing away even as I typed on my computer! Ever my little Princess in your favorite yellow dress, I couldn't help but capture this creative moment of yours with the camera. Today you really were my Creative Princess!!


Underwear Girl!!

Colors : Buttercup, Cranberry, Crystal Blue, Garden Green, White Daisy

Paper : Let's Get Together ('07)

Stamps : Rustic Alpha, Charmed Lowercase

Accents : Paper Flowers (Prima), Garden Green Brads, White Brads, Cranberry Grosgrain, Ribbon Slide Dimentional Elements

Wow, it's been a little while since I've made a layout. I went through a lot of different color combos and ideas before picking this paper to use. It's so nice to just use patterned paper instead of trying to RS or create paper for each layout. Don't get me wrong, the ability to customize my paper is nice, but it's very time consuming and sometimes I just want to put stuff together without having to worry so much about all my stamping. This is the first layout for me using this paper packet. I've been hoarding it, afraid to use the papers because they are just so darn cute! But then I realized CTMH is always coming out with new cute papers and my stash is starting to pile up so I'd better start using up the old so I can make room for the new! Newly opened flower embellies as well. They aren't CTMH though they look and feel exactly like our daisies. The colors weren't perfect per se, but they did come awful darn close. I realized while making this layout that I really do need to get some of those bigger brads (they would have looked so good on the bigger flowers) but I also want colors that the bigger brads don't come in.... yet. I'm hoping the new spring catty has a lot of fun new surprises!

The journalling reads : Audrey, cute toddler by day, silly Underwear Girl by night!! For the past week Audrey has been bringing Caitie's panties to me and having me put them on her head like a hat. What a silly girl!! -summer '07 There wasn't room for anymore so I had to make it cute and short. I really do wish I had better handwriting!


Happy Thanksgiving!!

It's been a great Thanksgiving. My girls slept in, which I was very thankful for. My hubby and I had fun being silly and naming off everything we were thankful for as we encountered it, thankful for our abundance in food during breakfast, thankful for technology when we turned on the computer, thankful for family, thankful for running water (hot running water especially), etc. It was fun to count off what we are grateful in our lives as we did stuff throughout the morning, something that I hope we can turn into a tradition with our girls. I'm very grateful that we have extended family to spend Thanksgiving with. As odd as we all are, it is so much fun to get together and have that feeling of belonging. And an added plus was that I only had to make one dish to bring to dinner! I'm so very thankful for my hubby who is always there for me and supports me even with my 'scrap crap'. And speaking of 'scrap crap' I'm grateful for scrapbooking!! With that said, Happy Thanksgiving!!

Autumn Splendor

Colors : Autumn Terracota, Barn Red, Goldrush, Cocoa

Stamps : Autumn Splendor, Simple Stitches

Accents : Vineyard Berry Organdy, Copper Eyelets, Paper Piercer, Marvy Oval Scallop Punch

I started out thinking to make a thankful card but it soon turned to fall leaves. I used only col white cardstock to make this card which was The background is stamped then sponged with barn red and aut ter. The sentiment oval was also sponged for added color. Making the cocoa speckled background was an interesting discovery. I stamped the top part of the acorn stamp with cocoa on the col white. Here's a picture of the card mat and the sentiment mat after stamping.

I thought that was pretty neat :D I think I might have to try this with some other colors and stamps even.


Lolla-lee-lou and Gertrude

Colors : Ocean, Moonstruck, Topiary, White Daisy

Stamps : Doodle Alphabet, Playful Flourishes

Accents : Rhinestones, gold brads, Just Blooms in White Daisy, White Daisy Ink, colored pencils

This is such a silly card to me. Silly mostly because the inspiration comes from the story Gertrude McFuzz by Dr. Suess. At first the inspiration was from Lolla-lee-lou, then it switched to Gertrude after she got that huge tail, lol. In the end it seemed more like a peacock though everytime I look at the card I think of Lolla-lee-lou and Gertrude.

This was a fairly simple card with most of the detail coming from stamping and accessories instead of paper. It turned out nothing like I had in my mind but I'm quite happy with it. The colors were very out of the box for me. I have a hard time using brights as well as palettes that don't contain red or pink. It was a challenge, yet it was fun. The colors were chosen mostly because the colors in Lolla-lee-lou's tail are green and blue. I added the ocean when I realized that the bird looked more like a peacock than either character in the book. The rhinestones were an after thought, but I think they really make the card.


Hearts, hearts, hearts!

Colors : Barn Red, Hollyhock, Chocolate, Blush, Vanilla Cream

Stamps : All My Love, Sweet Love

Accents : Parchment Brads (retired), Chocolate organdy, cuttlebug swirl embossing

This card was inspired by an idea from Pam Klassen about using a heart instead of a flower. I was so in love with the heart idea that I started making another card. At first I was going to use the same design, change the colors, and use a big heart. But I found I didn't want to redo the same card and started putting this one together. I like the simple layout. In real life there is a lot more depth to the card. The middle hearts and the all my love circle are on pop dots and the ribbon is warmer in color than the camera caught. The colors are also a lot richer (my vanilla cream looks like col white in the picture). This was a fun card to make :D I really love how the border came out.


Rustic For You

Colors : Orchard Bouquet, Vineyardberry, Bamboo, Amethyst, Col White
Stamps : Legendary, Rustic Flowers, Simple Stitches, From Me to You, For All Occassions
Accents : Hemp, Amethyst brads and swirl, sponge for distressing, pop dots
I was so inspired by the colors in my DD shirt today that I made this card. It looks nothing like her shirt (cute little fat flowers and her shirt's a bit brighter), but the colors are all there. I also wanted to make the flower pop more and decided to use pop dots. Then Caitie came to sit in my lap and bent up one of the flowers which ended up inspiring the 3D effect that is now there. This card took me nearly 3 hours to make. Not because it was difficult, but because I actually tried to create during the day which just doesn't happen with two toddlers, lol. I spent most of the time dealing with all the mommy this and mommy thats :D But that's okay because the extra time between sparked more ideas for when I did actually get to work on the card.

Let it Snow.... Chocolates!

I finally sat down and made a nugget box. This one holds 12 hershey's nuggets. Templates can be found here : http://www.splitcoaststampers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=190469&highlight=nugget

Colors : Cranberry, Outdoor Denim, Desert Sand

Stamps : Music of Winter, Legendary

Accents : Outdoor Denim Organdy, Pewter square brads (unknown company), round sponge (for distressing)

I made two of these, one for my SIL and one for her hubby for Christmas. They get chocolate and a little surprise :D The ribbon is there more to hold the box closed than for decoration so that it won't slide open in transit since I have to mail them out. I was going to use the Snow Friends stamp set but so many people have been making them with that so I wanted to try something different. Enjoy!


Midnight Muse

So I've decided to jump the band wagon with the daily ATCs and have picked out the theme of My Favorite Things. I know I probably should have started with the title card but I was really in the mood to do something with this stamp set. I figured I could also try out all the techniques I'm afraid to try out on bigger projects on these small ATC cards.

Colors : Outdoor Denim, Vineyard berry, Hollyhock

Stamps : Fairy Dust

Accents : Outdoor denim organdy, rhinestones, white daisy ink, shimmer chalks, cuttlebug and swirl embossing folder, acetate

I wanted to try out a couple of techniques, the embossing acetate which worked fantastic and the versamark on dark CS with chalk which didn't work out the way I wanted. So I tried something different and stamped in white daisy then added the chalk and that seemed to work much better. I added the embossed acetate not only for fun but to help protect the chalk since I don't have any sealant for the card. It's really neat in real life with a lot of dimention.

Journalling on the back : I've always loved fairies. Ever since I was little they have captivated me. From Tinkerbell to the pixie trixters in D&D I've adored them all. Baby fairies, tricky fairies, elegant fairies, whimsical fairies, they all inspire me to believe in magic and see the world like a child, full of amazing fantasy and wonder.

Edit : So it's been over a week and this is the only ATC card I've done lol. But... I have made a few regular cards :D Maybe it's better this way. I wouldn't know what to do with a full deck of ATC cards anyhow lol! Should the interest rise again I might start trying to make more, but for now I think I'll stick to cards and maybe scrapbooking my favorite things!


Halloween Cuties

So I finally got the roll of film back for Halloween :D Here's our girls all dressed up!!

Our Prissy Princess ^_^. Caitlyn was Sleeping Beauty for Halloween, or as she calls her "Sleeping Cutie". Unfortunately Caitlyn was so afraid of many of the costumes that she couldn't go trunk or treating, nor could she even eat in the cultural hall where our ward Halloween party was. Our poor princess was literally petrified and had to stay out in the lobby with Daddy because she was that frightened. She was much happier when we got back home though and had a blast playing with snake and watching a show before bedtime.

Caitlyn playing with snake. This is such a pretty dress. I actually had to mend it today before she got to wear it because she wears it all the time to play dress up in the house.

Our little baker girl :D. Audrey was too cute as a little baker. She even had her own miniature wooden spoon which she soon abandoned in favor of an eyeball, one of the table decorations. She carried the eyeball all night and had a blast looking at everyone's costumes. What she especially liked was the donuts for dessert!! Audrey was quite the handful that night, running around and exploring everything while examining everyone's costumes. She was very taken with a couple of girls that were dressed as witches with bright purple and glitter in their costumes.

Our girl enjoying a donut!

Tag Ornaments

I'm trying to figure out how to make some cute ornaments with minimal cost for our church. So far this is what I've come up with : 1 sheet of cardstock to create 11 of these.

Closeups of the front and back of the ornament/tag:

Colors : Outdoor denim, Honey, Desert Sand, Cocoa

Stamps : Bethlehem

Accents : Outdoor denim bulk organdy and pop dots to give the star dimention

Recipe : I used my coluzzle tag template to cut 11 tags out from Col White cardstock then used the remainder scraps to stamp out 22 stars (2 stars for each ornament: one on the front, one on the back). The city was stamped first on both sides with cocoa, then the scripts. I sponged outdoor denim for the sky, a layer of honey below that for glow, then the city in desert sand. The stars were cut out and pop dotted for dimention on the tag. I used a small hole punch to make a spot to thread the ribbon through then simply tied a good amount so that it could hang like an ornament. It came out very pretty I think for not having anything but one layer of CS and no b&t.