Monday, May 28, 2007

Alaska! Here we come...



In just a few days, we will be getting on a plane bound for Alaska! We have had this trip booked since last August. We are soooooooooooooooooo ready to get out of here for a few weeks. Bright and early on Sunday, we're off to Fairbanks, Alaska to meet up with Tim's parents for 12 days of relaxation, adventure and lots of good food! We have a land tour booked for the first five days & then we board a cruise ship for the next 7 days. Here's what we have planned:

  1. June 3- 5: Fairbanks, AL - Riverboat Cruise and "Panting" for Gold (as Matt calls it).

  2. June 5 - Take the glass domed train from Fairbanks to Danali National Park. We are hoping to see Danali's "big four" - grizzlies, moose, caribou and Dall Sheep.

  3. June 6 - Once again we'll take the train from Danali to Talkeetna where we will enjoy the wonderful views of Mt. McKinley.

  4. June 7 - We will travel to Anchorage where we'll take a tour of the city and the Heritage Center.

  5. June 8 - We board the Royal Caribbean cruise ship Radiance of the Seas in Seward & set sail that evening.

  6. June 9 - We will stay on the ship this day and cruise around the Hubbard Glacier.

  7. June 10 - Matt's Birthday - We arrive in Juneau where we plan to visit a Mushers Camp, ride a dog sled and play with the puppies. That evening we will celebrate Matt's 8th Birthday.

  8. June 11 - Skagway is our destination today where we are going to take a tour of the Eagle Preserve Wildlife River Adventure & Cruise.

  9. June 12 - We hit Icy Strait Point. We are planning to race down a zip line at 60 mph through the Alaskan forest -- Woohooo! I can't wait for that!

  10. June 13 - We arrive in Ketchikan where we are planning to take a float plane to view the grandeur Misty Fjords National Monument by sea and air.

  11. June 14 - After a very busy week, we will stay on the ship and cruise the Inside Passage.

  12. June 15 - We arrive in Vancouver, British Columbia which is where we will leave the ship and head to the airport for home.

So that is our wonderful itinerary & I know it will be the trip of a lifetime! You know lots and lots of pictures will follow in the weeks ahead!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Happy Father's Day! Well almost...


I know Father's Day is still 3 weeks away; however, we are leaving for vacation on June 3rd and will be gone for two weeks. Therefore, I not only need to get the cards made, but I need to send my Dad's card before we even leave. I was inspired by a card layout and a frame in the most recent Papercrafts magazine. I used the KI Memories paper line called Pet Shop for this trio of cards.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Happy Anniversary to the love of my life...


Next Sunday, June 3rd, Tim and I will celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary. We'll spend most of the day in airplanes and airports traveling to Alaska for what I'm sure will be an amazing trip! Tim & I were high school sweethearts and started dating when we were 15 years old ~ so we've pretty much known each other all our lives. I saw this fun card in the latest issue of Papercrafts Magazine & knew I had to try the layout. After several attempts, here's what I came up with.

If you take a look at the picture on the top of the card, you may notice our names on the wedding invitation. I took one of our wedding photos and scanned it, switched it to black and white, and then printed it on my photo printer. I'm pretty happy with the results.

Hey Tim ~ if you happen to read my blog before June 3rd, pretend to be surprised! I know you'll love this card. After all, you should never underestimate the power of a handmade card ~ LOL! {That's a little joke we have}

Supplies: Cardstock: Bazzill; Pattern Paper: Crate Paper Cowgirl Collection; Ribbon: Stampin' Up!

Friday, May 25, 2007

It's the end of another school year...

Next week will mark the end of school year for my kids. WOW ~ it went so fast! Both Megan and Matt had wonderful teachers this year. For Megan's teacher, it was his very 1st year in the classroom. He did an amazing job with his kids and they all enjoyed him very much. According to Megan, "He ROCKED!". It was also Megan's first year in the GT program (Gifted & Talented). Matt's teacher had her last 1st grade class this year. Next year she will be in Reading Recovery ~ that makes me kind of sad since she is an amazing 1st grade teacher.

About a month ago, the school had a family fun night where each class auctioned off a plate to raise money for the PTO. Each child put their thumb print on the ceramic plate and then their name was written above it. They also made with a little face (or heart in Matt's class) out of each thumb print. VERY CUTE! We thought they would be fabulous year-end teacher gifts, so we decided to bid on them. Much to our surprise, we ended up winning all three plates and now we are giving them back to the teachers so they can remember the very special year. I made a few cards to go along with the plates & we will give them to their teachers next week. What a blessing it was to have such wonderful teachers in my kids lives this year!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Lovin' My Little Lady...


On Friday afternoon, I opened my mailbox to discover my new Little Lady stamp set from Papertrey Ink arrived. I didn't have time to play with the it right then, but I knew I was getting together with my sweet friend Michelle on Saturday so I would be pulling it out. On Saturday, before we stamped, we decided to hit the LSS (local scrapbook store). OH MY GOODNESS! Look at this paper we found! Isn't it perfect? It's from Nana's Kids Print by Die Cuts With a View. It's even got bling & embossing right on the paper. I was totally excited about our find and couldn't wait to play.

Yes, I'm using acrylic stamps ~ I can't believe it either! Now I love wood and rubber for stamping, but I've got to say that Nichole Heady from Papertrey Ink has created the PERFECT stamps. They are high quality acrylic and they clean up very well. Her images are two-step stamping and I love that she includes several different sizes of the same image in one set. Everything about this company is top of the line ~ from the design of the stamp sets, to the packaging, shipping and product line.

Tip for using acrylic stamps: I've noticed with the acrylic stamps that you get much better results with pigment ink (Stampin' Up! Craft Ink) or chalk inks. Dye based inks tend to get to splotchy (yes, that is the technical term).

~~~~~~
Supplies Used: Stamps: Little Lady & Green Thumb (Papertrey Ink); White Cardstock: Papertrey Ink & Pixie Pink Cardstock: Stampin' Up!; Pattern Papers: Nana's Kids Print (DCWV); Ink: Craft Ink Stampin' Up!; Scalloped Edge: Paper Frills by Doodle Bug Designs; Ribbon: May Arts; Buttons: Doodle Bug Designs; Embossing Powder: Iridescent Ice Stampin' Up!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

A Birthday Surprise for MY Friend...


A very dear friend of mine (whose initials are MY), had a birthday this week. This friend has been an amazing support system for me over the last 3 years. She "gets" me ~ if you know what I mean. Thank you MY, for your sweet friendship ~ I love ya!

~~~~~~

I'll bet ya want to know what's in the bucket! Another friend of mine (Mish) hooked me into these wonderful new little Doodlebug Designs acrylic stamps and matching paper. Mish also totally inspired my card ~ thank you sweetie! But Oh My Word are these stamps fun! So I just had to get MY a few sets because she will go nuts over them too. Also, inside the little box I've included some yummy treats to satisfy the need for chocolate (cause you gotta have chocolate when you stamp). HAPPY BIRTHDAY MY!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mother's Day Continued...

Paperclip Bookmarks: Inspired by Pam Hooten (aka ~ Iris)

Well I finished all my Mother's Day gifts and cards and decided to add a little gift for the pockets. These clips were a brilliant idea from my sweet friend Pam Hooten. What an incredible crafter and friend. You will want to check out her blog ~ WOW! I hope all you Mom's out there have a wonderful day tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

I Do Remember How to Stamp!


I had to get the stamps and ink out to get some May birthday cards and Mother's Day cards finished. Last summer Stampin' Up! came out with this fun double sided paper so I decided to pull it out and have some fun with it. I ended up making about 10 cards with slight variations.
Tip: When you need a stack of cards for several different occasions: pick an easy design, select just a few coordinating supplies, and make them in an assembly line. Oh, and don't forget to make a few extra for your stash!

Supplies Used: Stamps: Polka-Dot Posies (Stampin' Up!); Cardstock & Pattern Paper: Bashful Blue, Certainly Celery, Chocolate Chip (Stampin' Up!); Buttons: Stampin' Up!; Ribbon: Stampin' Up! and May Arts; Flower Die: Cuttlebug; Tab Punch: Stampin' Up!

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Happy National Scrapbooking Day!


I am super excited about this page for many different reasons! First of all, I do like how it turned out. I always enjoy working with KI Memories products and almost everything on this page was KI or Bazzill KI. I just love the little oval accents around the page and the title! It's also National Scrapbooking Day! The fact that I'm scrapping again thrills me beyond belief. I was dancin' all over my scrap room yesterday just enjoying myself as I was creating this page. So other reasons I'm all excited about this page are the little tricks I used to create the faux chipboard letters in the word BAD for my title and the perfect oval journaling block. So here's what you do:

  • Faux Chipboard Letters - First of all, I have to give credit to Debbie Fisher (Debbiedee) for this brilliant idea. As you may know, the Cricut Machine is a wonderful scrapbooking tool. Unfortunately, it won't cut chipboard. So if you want super thick letters (or any diecut shape for that matter), you can still get them from your Cricut or any other die cutting machine. Just cut three (3) of the exact same images out with your Cricut Machine. Use the same size and settings and the same paper. You will want to use a very good quality, heavy cardstock like any of the Bazzill lines or Stampin' Up! Thinner paper doesn't give the same sturdy look. Then take 2 of the 3 images and put them through a Xyron machine. Carefully layer them on top of each other making sure they are lined up perfectly. On my title, I used the shadow setting on my Cricut so they were thicker and then added the thinner letter of the patterned paper. Voila! You have a nice thick letter that will add some dimention to your page or project. Do you want it to look the color of chipboard? Then try and use Kraft cardstock & you'll get that look!

  • The Perfect Oval Journaling Block - I've been frustrated in the past when I've wanted to journal on an image that I've cut out with my Cricut. It's very difficult to line up your journaling on your Cricut cutting mat & you can't feed your cut image into your printer ~ or can you? The answer is YES! First find the shape you want to use on your page. Figure out the right size and cut it out with your machine. Then, go to your computer and open your software program. I used Photoshop Elements 5.0 for this. I made an oval using the shapes button and made it about the same size of my pre-cut image. Outlined the oval in the file and then type in journaling on a new layer inside the oval. Then print your file to make sure it's looks the way you want it to. If it's all good, remove the oval outline so it doesn't print on the final copy (unless you want it there). Print it again and save that piece of printer paper. Take your pre-cut Cricut image & put some repositionable adhesive on the back - I like to use my Xyron because it covers completely. Attach the Cricut image in the exact spot of the journaling you already printed ~ make sure it is secure. Feed it through your printer once more, and now your journaling will print in the exact spot you want it. You can also use this trick with pre-printed journaling cards or other pre-made items (as long as there are no 3D items on them). Have fun!

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Supplies: Cardstock ~ KI Bazzill & KI Memories paper; Acrylic Letters ~ Heidi Swapp; Cricut Cartridge ~ George, Basic Shapes, Alphalicious; Embellishments ~ KI Memories

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Pockets Full of Posies...

All Supplies are Stampin' Up!
{except the ric rac ~ that was from my Mom's old sewing box}
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Just thought I would share the Mother's Day pockets I made last year. No, I don't have 4 mothers. However, I do have several very special ladies in my life who are mothers. So this year, as you are planning your cards & gifts, don't forget to include those other special Mom's in your life ~ sisters, sisters-in-law, friends, grandma's, etc. Stay tuned to see what I have planned for my cards this year...

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

{Simply Mom}

Supplies: Cardstock ~ Bazzill; Pattern Paper ~ Chatterbox;
Acrylic Flowers ~ Heidi Swapp;
Paint & Acrylic Frame ~ Making Memories;
Ribbon ~ Michael's; Buttons ~ Stampin' Up!;
Title ~ Cricut {Base Camp & George Cartridges}
~~~~~
Well it's true... I am simply their Mom. I don't say that in a way that would make light of the importance of motherhood. I say it in the amazing way my children have looked at me over the past 18 months of our lives. After last year's Mother's Day, I decided to make a special page about how I felt that day. Here is my journaling ...
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When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2005, I knew I would go through several physical changes and I worried that Megan and Matthew would look at me funny or not even recognize me when I lost my hair. In January after my second treatment of chemotherapy, my hair started coming out by the handfuls so I asked the kids to cut it off for me. I told them this would be their one and only chance to cut my hair. They jumped on the chance and actually made a sad situation something light and laughable. In the past 5 months, they have never once looked at me like I was from another planet and most days it is not even mentioned that I’ve been in treatment. When they look at me, I still see a sparkle in those gorgeous eyes. This Mother’s Day was very special because it helped me realize what a special bond I have with my kids & how much I’m looking forward to seeing them grow up.
They are simply amazing & I am . . . Simply Mom.
~~~~~
As another Mother's Day approaches, I reflect on how much has happened since last year at this same time. Chemotherapy and radiation are now finished, my port has been removed and I have about 3 inches of hair {yes, I measured it}. I hope that years down the road I can read these words and remember all the love I felt that day from my children. Because there are some days, {like today}, when they are driving me totally crazy & I really need to remember those moments.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Equal time for my boy...


Since I just posted a page with Megan a few days ago, I had to post one with Matthew too. Oh, excuse me, I mean Matt. He hates when I call him Matthew, probably because it means he's in trouble! All the supplies are from DaisyD & tons of fun to play with. I'm not really good at shabby (my friend Lisa Z is the BEST)! You should see her blog ~ OMW!!! She does amazing work.

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