Monday, May 28, 2012

Camping with my Sweetheart

Just as I used to be a little OCD with my cardmaking, I was naturally the same with my scrapbooking.  EVERYTHING had to be done in chronological order.  This made it pretty difficult to get past, well, junior high school.

The best thing I could have done with my time was to just scrapbook as I could and do the pages in no particular order.  I do still have all of my pictures boxed up according to year, but I randomly pick one box to work on (2002) and I just finished the whole thing!

I didn't chronologically scrapbook the year, either.  I just randomly picked pictures and would finish those and move on to some new ones.

This layout, titled Camping with my Sweetheart,  is about our camping trip we took with my family just before we got married.

It's fun (and wierd) to see a younger version of ourselves.  It's also interesting that, 10 years later, we still go to this exact same spot to camp each year.  The fishing is just as good now as it was back then.

I don't normally scrapbook on really busy patterned paper, such as I used on the right.  But in this case, I think the continuity of pictures on the bottom, along with the solid background on the left helped make it less distracting. 

It's also fun to use newer products on older pictures.  I remember going to the scrapbook store with my friends and everything was so limited (and generic.)  Things have definately changed!

Also, I should specify that I am done scrapbooking 2002 except for our wedding.  That is going to be a project all on its own!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Have you tried...

I love making cards (in case you can't tell) but there is no way that I can come up with thousands (okay-- dozens) of new ideas on my own so I've made a folder with hundreds (okay--that is not an exaggeration) of card recipes. 

At first when I started cardmaking several years ago, I would find a design that I really liked I would try to find the same materials used so I could replicate it exactly.  This often left me frustrated.  Then I realized that it probably wasn't what the designer had in mind in the first place.  Like, "Oh maybe this is just to inspire me to do my own!"  Sometimes I admit I'm not very bright.

Anyway, now I will pull a pattern that I like, such as this one:


I'll look at the supplies they used (i.e., 2 kinds of cardstock, 3 patterned papers, 2 accents, etc.) and just rummage through my stuff until I find something I like.  In this example my card isn't identical, but it is fairly similar.  Sometimes there is no resemblance whatsoever.  I guess it just depends on my mood and what I have on hand.

This has honestly cut the time it takes for me to make a card in half.  If you are a cardmaker, try a recipe every now and then!  My favorite sources are Cardmaker and Paper Crafts Magazines, as well as scrapbook page designs.  I've heard some people even use advertisements or catalogs, but I've tried niether. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Tip of the Week

I have a fantastic shortcut when it comes to shredding chicken.  Here's a secret--it involves this:

(I have another secret--I don't really peruse Pinterest.  I have friends that do that.  Then they pass on awesome tips like this to me and I get credit when I blog about it.)

All you do is take a cooked chicken breast (I boiled mine.  When cooked this wayI think they stay juicier and shred easier.) attach the paddle attachment and hit go.

Seriously.  Within a minute two cooked chicken breasts looked like this. 

Painless and easy to clean up.  Try it!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Birth Announcement for a Sweet Little Girl

First of all, I find it sort of ironic that my last post was about my 30th birthday and today is, in fact, my half-birthday.

If you read my personal blog then you know I'm expecting our second little kiddo (a boy!) in just a few weeks now.  If you remember my pregnancy with my first then you know that I developed an aversion to crafting.  This time around I wouldn't necessarily say that I developed an aversion to crafting, but I certainly didn't have any extra energy to spare in those first few months!  So that along with a general lack of motivation and...well, happy half-birthday to me!

I thought I would start off by showing a little cross-stitch project for my great-niece (Yes, I'm a great-aunt and a Great Aunt!)  I have loved making these for my nieces and nephews through the years and now I get to start on the great-variety as well.  The kit is from Bucilla and I think it is absolutely adorable. 

(By the way, if you are an avid cross-sticher like I am, then check out 1-2-3 Stitch.  This is a web-based company but is local to where I live.  They offer locals the ability to just go pick up there orders from the outlet so you don't have to pay shipping and handling.  I opted to do this for another project I ordered, but when I found that my time was more valuable than cost, I sent them an email asking if they could just change my order to a delivery and charge me shipping/handling.  They not only changed my order per my request but said, "Don't worry about paying extra, will just send it at no cost."  Awesome!)

Here is my version of the project.  Out of respect to the mommy I am blurring out Baby M's name:

I love all of the little details!

I hope she enjoys it as much as I enjoyed making it.  I am currently working on one for my oldest daughter.  I have another one for my great-nephew born in December.  And of course there is my second little kiddo.  That gives me 8 weeks to get them all done.