Sunday, August 31, 2008

My latest

I am still absolutely giddy over my Sure Cuts A Lot program. I think my Cricut is going to go into shock for so much use after so many months of neglect! Both of these layouts were done for challenges at Feeling Scrappy this month (I'm already ready and raring for the next round of challenges set to start tomorrow!), and both incorporated elements I cut with my Cricut using my SCAL software. There is such freedom in being able to get online and find just the right font for a particular project!

For this first page, I researched the font used in that "Got Milk?" campaign and downloaded it (free!) off the web. It is called CGPhenixAmerican. (Not sure why they left the "o" out of Phoenix, but oh well. ;)

The photo in this second page is one of my absolute favorites, and it is hysterical how wonderful it looks here considering how much I had to put my Photoshop Elements software to good use to make it presentable! In the original, Jack's feet are in the foreground, the color is off, and there are some very distracting things going on in the background. With the magic of Photoshop, all of that is remedied! I have really been focusing lately on trying to get the most for my money when it comes to the range of possibility with Elements, and I am discovering there are some incredible options available on the web in the way of tutorials and how-to's. If ever I have a question about how to do something with the program, Google is my new best friend. And I am finding the more I work with it, the more that comes back from my time using the full version of Photoshop while I was getting my degree.

(The letter C here I actually cute from Grungeboard using my SCAL setup. The font is called Pharmacy. The rest of the word "cheery" is from the same font. I absolutely love this one!)

And the original photo. I told you the difference was something! (This, incidentally, is the very smile Miss Charlotte saves for her daddy when he gets home from work every evening. He's a goner. ;)

Thanks for stopping by to take a peek at my creations!

Bring on fall!

I have been such a bad blogger lately. I am starting to feel my motivation coming back in full effect, though, so watch out for some new things to take place around here in the coming weeks! It might seem counter intuitive, since fall effectively brings so many things to a close, but for me it is such a time of rejuvenation and renewed enthusiasm. Maybe it is the fact that the upcoming months from now until Christmas are such a festive time, with a new celebration or holiday always just around the corner. Or maybe it's just because there is a light at the end of the heat and humidity tunnel here in Central Arkansas! Regardless, I love it. The first morning of going out for the paper to be greeted by a crispness only fall can bring is glorious. I can't wait!

A couple of tidbits for you...

Thanks so much to everyone who took the time to vote for each of my pages in the contest over at Scrapbooks, Etc. Even though I didn't make it through to the final round, it was a blast to be in the running. I am already looking forward to next year!

Feeling Scrappy is gearing up for a terrific class starting September 2 (who can believe that is just two days away!). Sew Scrappy will be a course focusing on the latest trend of incorporating sewing techniques and various notions into your pages. It promises to be a time, and I know Jayne and the gang would love to see ALL of you there!

As I mentioned earlier, be looking out for some new regular features on my blog, including new recipes, sketches here and there, and maybe even a chance to win some goodies - scrappy and otherwise!

Live deliciously,

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A huge thank you...and ready for round deux!

I can't thank everyone enough for venturing over to the Scrapbooks, Etc. site to vote for my page this last week. Even though I didn't come out on top, it was so cool to see that so many took the time to help me out. Thank you!

After a very scary, long and bizarre day yesterday (see The Bell Family for the full rundown on that), I was greeted at home with some very exciting news, though: It's time for round two! My page this week, Hands, was chosen to be in the top 10. I am so excited for another shot! So, at the risk of becoming even MORE of a pest, would you mind doing the whole thing over again for me? :) It would mean the world to me!!

Here is the link to the voting.

And here is my page. The challenge here was the lift the cover page of this month's issue of the magazine. I love the feel of this one, since it's such a departure from my typical bold colors and strong embellishments. I made the handprints here by coloring Charlotte's hands with a Color Wonder marker and then stamping them onto the special paper. Much tidier than the paint alternative! (Or than the icing in the photo, for that matter!)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Voting link

Here you go! Thanks in advance for your support!!

Go me!!! (I need your help!!)

I have been playing along for the last couple of weeks with the Ultimate Summer Challenge over at Scrapbooks, Etc. The way everything works is there is a challenge every week, and the top ten submissions are picked by a panel of judges and then opened up to the public for voting. The highest scoring layout each week wins a prize package of over $200, and the winners of each weekly challenge (there are ten) are then given one final challenge for a public vote, the prize for which is $2500!!!!

The topic this week was "A Day in Your Life." I was so happy with how this page turned out. I went with a résumé format for the journaling, which helped me present the play-by-play of my day in a playful way. Everything just came together here almost as I had pictured it in my mind (which hardly ever happens!). And apparently the judges liked it, too, because I just got an email telling me that I made the top ten!! Wahooooo!

SOOOO, here's my unabashed call for votes. :D I don't know if the voting is even up yet, but once it is, I'll post a link. You can vote once/day (probably more if you sign up with multiple e-mail addresses - ha!) until the voting period for this challenge ends August 20. I really, really, REALLY would appreciate y'all voting for me! I don't know if I have a snowball's chance here, but it would be so fun to make it through.

I'll be back with the link in a bit. For now, though, here's a link to my gallery on the SEM site.

THANKS so much! :)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Charlotte's Birthday

I thought I'd share photos of the invites (which have actually turned into announcements since the party all but fizzled at the last minute - darn birthday falling at the tail end of summer when everyone has headed for the hills for a final hurrah!) and the cake from Charlotte's birthday. I designed the invites myself, which is truly one of my favorite things in the world to do, and the cake was an absolute blast to make. And so easy!!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Sure Cuts A Lot

Ok, here's the link for those interested in the SCAL software. This site actually gives you the option to have your serial number emailed to you even before you receive the physical copy, so if you order now, you could get started using it this weekend. :)

Happy scrapping!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Feelin' Groovy

There are some pages that I finish and I think, "Eh, that'll do." I will be honest. I finished this page today, and it is not in that category. I luuuuuu-ove it. :) These photos were taken of Jack and my nephew Blake during our recent trip to my parents' house in NM. Scrapbooks, Etc. magazine is holding a little summer scrapping tournament of sorts, and I entered this page for this week's challenge based on the sketch they provided. Fingers crossed!

The highlight of this page, which I absolutely must share. IF YOU OWN A CRICUT, YOU MUST BUY THE SURE CUTS A LOT SOFTWARE!!! Like, right now! I did the title work here with my bug, and dear ME. I cannot believe how much flexibility there is in being able to get on the internet, choose a font I like and cut it out. No new cartridges (or $60 tabs!) required. My Cricut had been relegated to the back of my scrapping closet for the last few months, just because I had grown so tired of the projects I used it for being so immediately recognizable in their Cricut-ness, but no more! I really think this will be a huge money saver in the long run. And with shipping I only paid $50 for the program! Let me know, and I'll link anyone interested to the place I found it online.

The paper here is Chatterbox, which is quickly moving to the top of my list of favorite manufacturers. The feel of the paper is fabulous! So fun to work with. I had lots of fun hand cutting some groovy embellies here. Recognize the little bird on the left from the Woodstock posters? :) I pulled out my chalks to give a sort of variegated tie-dye look to some of the elements on the page, although the soft colors don't show up very well here.

Thanks so much for popping on and sharing in my scrappiness. :)

Monday, August 4, 2008

FS paper class

I completed these pages using techniques from the FS paper class that just wrapped up. The CT outdid themselves with tons of great ideas that haved helped me punch up my pages!

In the first page here, I used a sanding technique to create the white flourishes in the background. I made the dark flourishes with chipboard and then heat embossed to give them some shine. I love this photo of Jack, and how he looks so peaceful. At 2 1/2, those quiet moments are sure fleeting!!

Journaling: Jack, even now as you run and play, talk and pretend, you are so helpless in the face of this enormous world of ours, so small in the shadow of the road that lies before you. And yet, you are content. You are so happy to place your little hand in mine, ever eager to repeat back to me the promise I have always whispered in your ear when the world becomes so dauntingly immense: "Mama, you will always keep me safe." And I will, sweet boy. I will always do all that I can to keep you safe, no matter where you venture in this astonishing journey of life.

The second page was actually inspired by July's FS word challenge (the word was "new"), although I didn't complete it till August. LOL! I decided it was time to use some of the professional wallets of Jack that I've accumulated over the last 2 1/2 years. :) The heat embossed stars are actually done using a stamp I made with hot glue. I handmade the metal star embellies with craft wire and glass beads. (Both ideas from recent issues of Scrapbooks, Etc.) Around the perimeter of the photo mat, I wrote the succession of all of Jack's milestones, all the way from smiling and rolling to running and jumping. The punched flourishes and star embellies (I mounted strips of scrap paper on hand-cut chipboard stars and then sanded the edges) were both ideas from the FS paper class.
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