Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Method Playground: Rock Star

This week's challenge at the Playground is to *Make It Messy*. You don't have to tell me twice to get messy (it goes back to my mud-pie-making-days!) For this one, I started of with a piece of raw canvas (from Dixie Pieces' October kit).
Squirted on a few blobs of paint in teal, turquoise, gold, and lime.

With a large bristle brush, I swirled the paint all over, adding more paint as needed.

Once dry (I stink at the waiting part), I used a Sharpie to add in some text. I used big, bold bubble letters to add to the graffiti look I was going for here.

A few doodles and words (rock on! and kick it) and a bit of paint in the bubble lettersOriginally I was going to use a smaller photo, but changed my mind to a 4x6, so the star got covered up.

I forgot to take pictures of this part, but I squirted some spray paint in white, blue and orange, some from a distance and some super close (I lifted the canvas to let the splotches drip).

A machine stitched border and some stitching around the photo finishes the page. My son wants to frame it and hang it in his new *Rock Star* bedroom.

Get out your paints, mists, coffee, spray paint, food coloring--whatever, get messy and link up on the Playground. Have fun!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Presents in a Pinch

Every year I vow to be more prepared for the holiday season, to plan ahead, and don't save things until the last minute. And every year I find myself in the same part-frantic, part-glazed over state of last minute gift buying/making. If I had given myself more time, I would have made these absolutely adorable coffee tins. But, I was looking for the easiest way out, and when the cutting line at JoAnn's was about 8 miles long (those tins just wouldn't be complete without the pom-pom fringe), I had my out. Of course it was easy to bail on the crafty project when I found these fabulous just-a-tad-too-big-for-coffee mugs. Throw in some flavored coffee a sprinkling of Lindt chocolates, and some dipped spoons, and voila a gift in a jif!

The chocolate covered spoons are just about the easiest thing ever:
  1. Melt some chocolate in the microwave. I used a mix of chocolate chips and hershey kisses.
  2. Dip plastic spoons into the chocolate letting excess pool in the hollow of the spoon (my four year old perfected this technique).
  3. Lay spoon onto sheet of wax or parchment paper and immediately sprinkle with crushed candy cane bits. You could also place a mini marshmallow or two on there, or some coffee beans.
  4. Let cool completely. I got impatient and put the tray into the fridge.
I slipped the spoons into thin baggies made for the chocolate covered pretzel rods that are so hot right now (we'll be making some of those this week, too), taped them closed, and tied with a knot of ribbon.
The buckets of spoons are going to school with the boys for the administration offices. Wish I had the time to make a whole slew of them for the teacher's break room. . . ahh, there's always next year when I will plan ahead better!

December Daily {Days 15-17}

I am absolutely loving this project! I have wanted to record some of our holday traditions for a while now, but wasn't quite sure how I wanted to do it (an album, a layout, several layouts). This album has become the perfect home for our holiday traditions.
Here are a few of deets, and a look at some more of the pages:
The album: a three ring binder I had kicking around. I'm thinking I must have picked it up on clearance at Target a few years back. It had filler pages for a travel log. I spray painted it red and covered the inside with patterned papers. The album itself measures 9 1/2" across by 8 3/4" tall by 1 3/4" wide. The pages inside are various sizes, the largest of which measures 9 1/4" by 8 1/2".
The timeline: I plan to record in this album for the entire month of December. This way I can record my favorite day of the season (12/26!), and the festivities of New Year's Eve. The children are on vacation from school, so I can capture our time together. And I'll probably include some reflections on 2009, and some goals for 2010.
Day 15:
Originally, I thought I would enlarge this photo to an 8x8 and
cut some of the doors so that they would open to reveal words.
Instead, I opted for a smaller 4" square print that opens to reveal
a word block I created in PSE . The words are some of the goodies that the
boys have opened in this year's advent calendar.
Day 16:
This handmade envelope (using templates from Paper Source) holds scanned and shrunk copies of notes the boys wrote to Wilfred (their elf) and Santa.
The facing page is cut from a Trader Joe's holiday shoping bag.

Day 17:
A photo of some holiday greetings we've received this year.

Friday, December 18, 2009

More December Daily {Days 9 to 14}

I finally feel like my December Daily is coming together. Here's a peek at a few more pages:

Day 9
A visit with Santa: a trimmed down trading card page protector makes
the perfect home for little photos documenting this year's visit
with Santa, and on the flip side: the boys writing their
letters to Santa.

Day 10
An envelope holds this year's Christmas card and recipient list.
I journaled about the annual card-making process on the front of the envelope.

Day 11
This is perhaps my favorite page so far. An impromptu morning photo enlarged to 5x7, a stamped title, and a few words (Nothing like a little brotherly love in December--just in case Santa's watching!)

Day 12
December 12th was our annual holiday family party. I was really
lacking photos documenting the day (too busy stuffing my face with
delicious food!) , so the circles on this painted transparency were
great spots to put the few photos I took. I may put some journaling
on the backside of Day 11.

Day 13 Circles punched from a variety of patterned papers cover up the adhesive
showing through the transparency. Day 13 is mounted on some printed vellum.

Day 14
This simple pocket holds the boys Christmas Wish Lists
(tabs on top with each of their initials). The left-side
tells a little story of the picks for their lists.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Catch Up & Mustard {Days 5 thru 8}

Ok, there's not really any mustard, but there is a whole lot of catch up going on (well, heck when December 15th creeps up behind you, taps you on the shoulder and says, "December Daily, where are you?" you kind of have to get crack-a-lackin'). I will spare you any more of my crazy talk (I think I had WAY too much Nutcracker Sweet tea today) and get right to the pages:
Day 5:
A simple photo collage of the boys making jam and the recipe adhered to the backside of day 4's page protector. I am limited to printing in 4x6 or smaller until new ink arrives--makes for a bit of a challenge!

Day 6:
A grid layout documenting the annual family Christmas party. Photos are 2" square.

Day 7:
The story of our Elf on the Shelf. I reduced the opacity of the close-up of the elf's head to type my journaling directly on the photo. Had to play up the text on the clock in the photo by dating Wilfred's establishment in the family.

Day 8:

This photo is adhered directly to a transparency. The red mat is created on the flip side of the page, where a photo for day 9 is adhered. I journaled directly onto the transparency with a Sharpie.

More to come. . .

Monday, December 7, 2009

December Daily day 3 & 4

I knew I would not be able to keep up with posting my December Daily's on a daily basis, but I didn't think I would get this far behind! December has a way of whipping right by us. But I am happy to say that we are busy making the memories and cherishing the moments (so far, anyway!) Here are the LO's for the 3rd and 4th:
The left side is a card front I had saved, and my journaling is recorded at the bottom for day 3.

I realized that the front of my album is a bit page-protector-heavy, but I love the way the little pockets help to organize the LO. For the left of day 4, I simply adhered a piece of patterned paper (ripped right from a paper pack--little shreddy things and all--directly to the back side of the page protector from day 3. I am loving how the pages are various sizes so that you get glimpses of the rest of the album as you go. Working with a color scheme helps to unify the *busy-ness* of this.

I have content for the 5th and 6th, but just haven't quite gotten the pages put together yet {sigh}.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

December Daily Cover and Day 2

I finally got around to embellishing the cover for my December Daily, so I can share the binding for my album. I lucked out when I discovered an old three-ring binder I had purchased a few years back fit the pages I had already created. I know, I worked a little backwards here, but it worked out better than I could have planned. I spray painted the outside covers and the edges of the inside with a glossy red. It took a few coats to cover the bright yellow and turquoise of the original binder (sorry I didn't take before pics). I then covered the inside covers with patterned paper. After frequent opening and closing of the book, I noticed that the paint was starting to chip off from the edges of the binding. I covered those with a red and cream snowflake twill tape which I ran through the Xyron sticker maker. A title (reads: December's Magic: capturing the memories, recording the stories, celebrating the season) and a couple of embellies, and the look is complete.

Here's a peek at the inside front cover with page one. After I wrapped the twill tape around to the inside, I had to cover up the unsightly ends--a bit of stamped kraft cardstock did the trick.

And here's day two. Can you get any simpler than this?!? A matted photo, a date label, and a phrase Photo Shop'd onto the picture all slipped into a page protector. Finito! I may journal on the back side, but I'll have to see what tomorrow's page ends up being about to see if I want a side-by-side two page spread.

Thanks for following along on this journey with me!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

December Daily No. 1

I can't tell you how excited I am with this little project. I love that I am recording the important bits and pieces of our holiday. I love that it's enabling me to slow down this month, to take time each night (and often throughout the day) to appreciate the little things that make this month so amazing. I love that it is QUICK scrapbooking. I love that there are no rules, no right or wrong, no need to pretty it up and add tons of embellies. It's just us, living through this joyous, though at times hectic, month of December, recording our stories, capturing the memories, creating our life, and celebrating His. I love everything about it!

So here is my first page:



It's all about traditions. Journaling reads:

Traditions. I love traditions--little rituals that are repeated year after year. Growing up, our holidays were filled with traditions: opening the little paper doors on the advent calendar to get the chocolate treat hidden behind; attending church on Christmas Eve; listening to John Denver's Christmas album while waiting for Christmas Eve guests to arrive; Grandpa greeting us at the bottom of the stairs on Christmas morning to see our faces light up at the sight of our gifts under the tree; Christmas dinner at Grandma & Grandpa's house and bringing a favorite toy along with which to play; going to Auntie Carol's and Uncle Don's Christmas night and opening yet one last gift left there by Santa; filling up on homemade Christmas cookies (esp. Ethel's Sugar Cookies). Since starting our own family, I have worked to establish some traditions that will help create warm memories for the boys: pictures with Santa, baking holiday cookies, decorating a gingerbread house, exchanging holiday ornaments symbolic of the year, creating and sending holiday cards, counting down the days to Christmas with daily toys and treats, lots of Christmas music playing all month long. This year the boys took it upon themselves to write notes and cards to each other (and us) and tuck them into the stockings hanging on the fireplace. I hope they keep this up all month. And I have started yet another tradition of reading a Christmas story each night until Christmas. Tonight we read Merry Christmas Big Hungry Bear and Silent Night, Holy Night.

If you are creating a December Daily project this month, I would love to see it. Please add your link in the comments. You can check out my friend Alexandra's here. And of course Ali Edwards' here.

Monday, November 30, 2009

I did it! {Cards 28, 29, 30}

Day 28:

New theme, same design as this card
Day 29:

Color scheme inspired by adorable decos at Target.

Day 30:

Whew! Well, there they are. 30 Cards in 30 Days. When I began this project, it was just a fun little way to pass the time of November (to get to December, of course!), and because I like to fall flat on my face with these kind of commitment-laden, daily obligation type of challenges. It was also with the hope that I would find the perfect card to duplicate as my own Holiday Card for '09. Well, I didn't fall on my face (though I had to play catch up. a lot.), and our perfect holiday card is not in this mix. I will be sending each one of these cards out this year, along with a few others I have come up with (I'll share those later this week).
Now for December: I'll be sharing the progress of my December Daily (though it probably won't be daily). Happy December!

Holiday Cards {almost there} days 25, 26, 27

Coming into the final stretch, and I really want to be done with these before the stroke of midnight tonight. But in case I don't make it, I'm posting what I have so far:

Day 25:

Day 26:

Day 27:

A visit with the Easter Bunny

I know this LO is a bit seasonally inappropriate, but the photos fit the design of the page. This week's challenge on the Playground is using negative space (the space around and between an image). This can be the backing to chipboard pieces, sticker sheets, stencils, the leftover from a diecut. Originally, I was thinking of using the negative space as a mask, but let's just say that pairing a way too sticky sticker sheet (even after I rubbed it onto my denim jeans repeatedly) with homemade glimmer mist (which gobbed up my mini-mister and turned it into a mini-dripper) just did not go well.
Onto plan B: a sheet of chipboard left from SU! On Board Lots of Letters. I trimmed it down to 8x8, painted it with two shades of green paint, and filled the 1 3/4" circles with photos, papers, and embellies.

What can you create with the negative space you've got laying around? Whip something up and post it at Method Playground by Monday, Dec. 14 for a chance at a RAK from Amanda.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Holiday Cards {22, 23, 24}

I am still here, I am still making cards, I am still catching up, and I am still behind. Wish I could offer some excuses: too much turkey, busy watching the Macy's Parade, taking photos for our holiday card, recovering from too much turkey, shopping, going to pilates in an attempt to undue the effects of too much turkey, surfing the net for the best shopping deals, researching mini video cameras {settled on one and it's on its way as an early Christmas gift--yippee!}, decorating the house for the holidays, catching up on sleep, reading this book, trying to eat all the boys' Halloween candy before Christmas. Yeah I wish I had a better excuse for you, but there really isn't one to explain how I got so darn behind in this project. Well, here's what I can share so far:

Day 22

Day 23:

Day 24:

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Logan Speak

The sketch for this layout comes from Page Maps. Becky does an amazing job of not only creating a great sketch but also adding in so many details that the only thing you have to think about is what to plug in where (note her staples, strips of PP, and stitching drawn on the sketch; yeah, I pretty much copied the exact placement of all those!).
Luckily, I had tucked a scrap of paper with a photo of Logan on which I had written a few of his pronounciations. As much as I thought I would remember every moment of their babyhood, I'm glad my realistic side knew to write things down so that it could be turned into scrapbook pages.