Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Bingham Land layout using Miracles Momma Designs Sketch

Feels good to get back into Peru Land. I worked my way up in my Trip to Peru Book to the first day at Machu Picchu  so it was time to pull out a few photos. A multi photo sketch is one of the best to get some vacation photos onto a page.

Heather's new sketch over at Miracles Momma Designs doesn't disappoint! I opted to go with some flags instead of the bottom photo but added a small cut up photo of Hiram Bingham's plaque at the top. 

My shiny pink letters and new Prima flower make me really happy. I inked my letters up with brown StayzOn ink and then put the dimensional modge podge over them. Was pleased unexpectedly with the shine.

A word about Hiram Bingham III which is what my title is about. He is credited with discovering Machu Picchu. It sounds kind of odd that you'd misplace a city that size in your country, but hey, it was 1908. I am thinking it was more a factor of being in the right place at the right time, listening to local peeps, and then having the ability to get the word out. For his trouble, lots of books have been written about him and he scored a brass plaque with his name on it. ;-)

Anyhow, welcome to Tuesday, the gateway to the midpoint in our week. May Friday get here speedily!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Playful Layout

Goodness gracious I need a bit more weekend. We were busy! Spring hits and we're working on lawns, gardens, and projects!

Thankfully I had this little layout made ages and ages ago, was just waiting to add this photo.

We installed my soft top on my jeep on Sunday as the sun was nice and warm.

So, now I can go topless! ;-)

Per the directions, they suggested using the heat from the sun the first installation. Well, we were waiting QUITE A WHILE for the weather to cooperate!

Just a little close up of my banners and bling.

Today is raining and gloomy, so I am thinking fondly back to the jeep ride yesterday in the sun to get ice cream! Happy Monday?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Bird Resort Double Page Layout

Have really been in love lately with geometric shapes and when I find a sketch like that it makes me happy. Check this out, it's a  new challenge blog to me...Keeping the Best. Had to sneak this in as their deadline is approaching. 

Look a few liberties with the sketch and of course added a second page in keeping with the first. 

It's a great way to use up paper scraps! Here is my first page, not taken from the sketch, but made to look like a continuation. 

And, here is the second page taken from the sketch. 

Loving these blooms I made. Haven't made any in ages!

Here is another shot of them with Luke's house all cut out, a Lizzy Hill trick, at it's finest. 

Just a fun page to celebrate a cool project my son made with Grandpa Bruce. 

They spent quite a bit of time on this including drawing it up on scratch paper. It was a good experience. 

UNFORTUNATELY, they assumed I'd want to put it outside and let the birds hang out in it. Boy were they wrong. I am hoarding it to myself right now in my living room...See how pretty it is?

The birds can look at it through the windows....

Happy Friday!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Birthday Cards and Sleep Overs: Post by Lexi

So both of my friends birthdays are approaching: Megan's, which is May 2nd and Paige's which is May 4th! Lucky me! So Megan and Paige decided to host a big party instead of separate ones on the second and fourth. As it is obvious I'm defiantly going. So i made a card up which took me two nights to complete. There will be a second one for Paige. Hopefully we, meaning my mom and I, will get out to our "mall" Walmart and pick them up some gifts too.

Now to the party! i asked Paige, whom assigned herself directer of this whole thing, if i could make the invitations, i would have done something similar to the fishes, but she told me no, much to my disappointment and perhaps a bit of begging. She wanted to do it herself... of course. She said i could instead make little paper things to put inside the little paper goodybags.... what? Yea, i just thought that for you. I declined, i think, seeing as I have little none of an idea what she was talking about. Paige whom is lacking in the whole department of the exact time, date, and what kind of party this whole thing will be... i assumed it would be the sort of party where you invite lot of people over and then without really mentioning it to the rest choose a few to actually stay and sleep over. So going on the assumption of a sleepover, i feel inclined to describe what kind of sleep overs us people in the North Country host.

Most of it depends on the person as Paige and Megan are the hostess, mostly Paige, the main party will probably take place at a bowling ally or something like that. the after party, aka the sleep overs, will be held at someones house. As Paige and Megan are the hostess the sleep over will be in  either Megans or Paiges house. Though my bets are on Paiges house.

Anyway down to the actual sleep over. When it is just Paige and I we play on our laptops until we are bored of that and then move outside and kick a ball around then do some random running and then when we are bored with that we move back inside watch TV, CakeBoss normally because Paige is a bit of a fan of CakeBoss. But this sleep over will be different I think seeing as how Megan has no laptop and we can't skype the other friend if we are all in the same room. (when its Paige and I we skype Megan and when its Megan and Paige they skype me.) Instead this sleep over will most likely consist of going outside, eating what ever junk foods left from the party we can find, and Messing with Paiges hateful cat Cooper. Though this may not sound like much it sure seems like it at the time. Of course i did forget to mention the pajamas we wear before it even is CLOSE to bedtime.

If, hopefully when, I get Paiges card and both of their gifts then i will set them out all pretty so she can snap a quick picture and post it with her other posts so you guys can see them when they are finished. Also I just thought you guys should know, out of the fish on the front and the fish on the back i like the one on the back best! I did not hand draw the image however I did color both picture in with markers and colored pencils. Don't tell mom but I may or may not have stolen a few of her gems and markers... SHHHHHHH!

Wish everyone a happy-soon-to-be-Friday!      

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

THIS RIGHT HERE layout for ScrapFriends Color Challenge

Yes, still being inspired by the ScrapFriends sketch, but I'm posting this page for their also inspiring color challenge. 

I always find their challenge photos DELICIOUS and it's fun to root round in the stash for some like-minded papers. 

I really enjoy layering up cool paper and then cutting a circle or oval in them and laying the photo underneath it and then adding paper behind the whole thing. I guess, the strips of paper flowing into the photo serve to direct your eye directly to the main element which is the photo perhaps?

The funny part about this page that makes me really happy is the recycled clear hanger I used at the top of my tag. It looked useful so I saved it. Also love that dragon fly I used, they are my favorite!

Thanks Helen for that sweet little corner bling on my tag! 

Incidentally on the subject of tags...there is a tag challenge up over at Get Creative and I decided to add one to my page to play along. Mine is not oober-amazing like some I've seen, but I thought I'd point it out to you peeps since they are a fun bunch of girls to hang with!

And, yes, this is another Vegas page. Me at the Hoover Dam with my friend Sara. Guys are not in the photo. We all know girls are prettier in front of scenery. ;-)

~Happiest of Hump Days to you!~

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

in the...MOMENT Scrapbook Page

Have started playing along with Color Combo Galore because their latest color challenges are right up my alley.

I am still in love with geometric shapes and how you can "make your own paper" with paper so had lots of fun combining several sheets into this pattern.

The purple paper was originally white and I used an ink pad and shimmer paint to help create the color I needed. It's hard to photograph all shimmery, but I assure you it's lovely. 

You can also see my little verdigris butterfly. I took inspiration off the frames in the photo. 

This page I made was a celebration of how much time THE MAN and I put into being "US" together. I never want to be one of those couples where the kids head off to bigger and better things and we look at each other saying, Um...who are YOU? 

Love the Prima stuff I used and the antique rick rack. I was originally going to actually use pieces, but it was far prettier in one piece. 

And my title...I am happy to report that Bird is the Word is back with challenges. So, their challenge this month is MOMENT! Love it! 

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Bubba Canvas for the LESSology Cover Challenge

Kids have interesting relationships with their pets. This pooch passed away when Lexi was four or five. She was old enough to remember riding on his back. She asked nicely for a framed photo of Bubba (aka Jasper) for her room after he died. I used this funny photo of him wearing a Wilson shirt and the heart frame you see above. At the time, it was silver and gold, tacky but pretty enough to make a small person very happy.

She was far happier than poor Bubba in his t-shirt.  He endured a lot humor at his expense stoically. His most amazing talent was the ability to blow double bubbles out the sides of his lips as soon as supper was served.

Fast forward to now when the frame crashed and burned. Short of having a new piece of glass cut, I decided to remake it for her on a canvas. The boxer beaded pin above is also recycled. I have been waiting to use that FOREVER and finally found just the right piece to use it on.

This fits right in with this month's LESSology challenge:  Get Creative with Covers this month!

Loved brushing on some gesso, inking it up, adding some shimmer Modge Podge and then adding my cut out of Bubba, the metal frame, and flowers.

Love how the metal frame turned out so pretty with the green patina paint from Ranger!

Right now we are all enjoying my Bubba canvas which is hanging off some metal hooks I have on the wall that I usually decorate seasonally. It makes me want to make more and hang them at different levels. I am loving the chunky big look and the metal hangers.

Happy Monday!

Friday, April 19, 2013

New York State Dementors & High Stakes Testing

“You can exist without your soul, you know, as long as your brain and heart are still working. But you’ll have no sense of self anymore, no memory, no . . . anything. There’s no chance at all of recovery. You’ll just — exist. As an empty shell. And your soul is gone forever . . . lost.” 
― J.K. RowlingHarry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

                                                                                                                                                                                       So, my kids have gone to three different schools. Of course, it would have been less had we known we were moving. Crystal ball was not working the day we made that decision.

School A failed to teach them spelling so we moved them to School B. School B had approx. 25 kids per grade and failed to teach my son handwriting or my daughter cursive, the months/days, and how to tell time. I know these things because School C has told me.

Hoping when we get to School D as we have to move again that we'll be all up to snuff. ;-)

I wondered for a while how three different schools across New York could have a different curriculum but since I majored in rocks in college that it was for reasons I could not fathom.

Fast forward to last night.

Kids came home melted like ice cream on a hot sidewalk. I took one look at their vacant faces and opted to take them out to eat. Figured the drive would give me a few minutes to find out what exactly happened at school. I mean, I knew standardized testing had started so something was up. During the day yesterday, I got several interesting news paper articles talking about parents boycotting state tests and an e-mail from the Superintendent the night before asking us not to boycott.

For the most part I leave the school alone. I figure they have jobs to do and hopefully are doing them.

I also figured that some of it was drama. There is lots of drama around the industry I work in, 'bout time someone else had some.

I do start paying attention when my kids start bitching. They don't normally so it's a good indication that something is up and it's not good.

Lexi told me that she was pretty sure she would have to take a remedial class as she was sure she screwed up big time on the test for English/Reading. She said this with a slight quiver in her voice. She not one to cry over trivial matters, but it looked like it was bothering her.

Luke said the whole thing was terrible and his brain hurt.

Fed them ice cream and decided to call the school the next day.

In my conversation with Lexi's school, I realized just how screwed up the whole thing was.

My kids are not being tested on curriculum that they have actually learned as the school has not received it as of yet. So, if Lexi has to take classes, it will be on things she has not learned in the first place. There is nine hours of brutal testing this week and nine the next and I heard it's HARD, like adults won't get the answers right hard.

It almost sounds like they are guinea pigs for this new testing and curriculum....

The school is in between a rock and a hard place. They think the whole testing thing is stinky, not to mention the fact they don't even have the right stuff to teach. Plus, they have to grin and bear it when grouchy parents bawl them out over rules they did not make nor agree with.

I  am imagining the fine folks in Albany who came up with the rules are Dementors. I told Lexi's Principal to serve up some hot chocolate Harry Potter style to counteract the trauma. Perhaps they can't as that might not fit in with new Federal School Lunch Standards...which I am also still upset about.

Looks like we are in for a long haul of tweaking a mostly broken testing system. The light at the end of the tunnel may however be a curriculum that is the same across the nation, which IS a good thing.

Hoping common sense will prevail soon or we'll all be drinking plenty of hot chocolate.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Take Note Layout for Color Combo Galore

A color challenge:  I do these every to often and remember all over again how much fun it is to go stash diving. I haven't not played along with the Color Combo Galore stuff in quite a while. Spotted Fi's work a bit ago and though I should give it a whirl again. I also saw you have LONGER to do the page, which totally works for me these days.

My second challenge on this page was from THE MAN. As you can see above, he took a very interesting photo of me in front of this boobie lady. Actually, we were hanging out on the Strip in Vegas at Caesar's Palace and were resting our feet. Yes, I was asked to pose. ;-) 

He also challenged me to use this match book we got in our travels. It cracks me up as it says:  BE SAFE NOT SORRY WRAP THAT RASCAL. Any bets on what they vend?

The funny thing with the matches is the inside also has a sense of humor. 

It really does fit Vegas and in it's inappropriate nature. ;-)

Here is a side view of my page for dimension.

You can also spot the antique music sheet book page I used which is also another challenge that is up at Scrap for Help. Love their little note to have fun! Isn't that always the plan!

Here is another photo of the book page and also the stamps I used. 

Lizzy Hill might spot the stamp she sent me and the plastic table cloth impression I made in it! 

Happy Thursday, Friday is peeping around the corner!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Nate the Great Layout

My inspiration for this layout actually came from this month's ScrapFriends sketch, but is my own version.

I never thought to lay paper across the page like this and now I like it! Even better is cutting a hole in it and putting more paper behind it and a photo.

Are you curious as to what this page is about? I am sure you are!

Well, you see...Friday normally involves fish fry in my neck of the woods. And those are fish fry boxes from Price Chopper, the only place I know of local where you can get it.

Basically you call ahead and for the low low price of $5 you get a fried fish dinner with fries. The kids love it. I get mine steamed and pretend I am being healthy although I eat the fries anyway!

The lady on the phone wanted the name of who was picking them up. In a fit of amusement I told her Nate the Great. There was a pause and I said oh just try it. He will think it's funny. Of course, THE MAN does not like these kinds of nicknames.

The lady behind the counter was DYING when he arrived and yelled to the entire store:  NATE THE GREAT IS HERE and threw her hands wide.

He was mortified. Texted me bad things like wait til I get home you are dead. I wasn't afraid. Fish fry is best warm. No way he was going to ruin dinner!

Here is the side view of my page. I am loving this paper combination. It's my newest kit from Scraptastic called Eight Days A Week. I am ALSO loving those flairs. They are exclusive from Ormolu.

I am also LOVING the fact I am getting my stamps out again. Used two on here from Close to My Heart. The realistic coffee stain one and these fish! Some banners of course to use up some paper scraps. ;-)

So, that it is for me today on this fabulous HUMP DAY!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Flip Flops Page for Miracles Momma Designs

So I went to Las Vegas on vacation over Easter Break with sneakers and a pile of socks FORGETTING that although it's nice to comfortable, it's also nice to get those toes out into the first bit of summer air. Had to buy flip flops. In true Vegas style, these are HIGH HEEL flippy flops. Missed that detail when I was buying them. Noticed instead they were black sparkly flip flops and matched my swim suit. Although I look taller which is lovely, I also amused myself by almost falling a couple of times and that was without alcohol. ;-)

On a side note, what do you guys call them in your country. I am pretty sure you have other names vs. flip flops.

It has been quite the season here in the States. For a bunch of us, Spring has not officially arrived weather wise although the calender might tell you otherwise. It was HEAVENLY to go to Vegas where temps were in the 80s vs. below freezing. Direct super cheap flight, I see more Vegas trips in our future.

Heather has her latest sketch up on her blog Miracles Momma Designs. It's sweet and easy.

I think Helen gave me this awesome chippy that I colored up. I also was inspired to use up this cardboard I had with leaf shapes and put a cool week sheet I got in a recent kit behind it. Love how it's peeking out. Sometimes things like that get me all twisted up because I want to use them but don't know how. Treated it like pattern paper!

And, for a side view.

And now for a touch of the truth. I was sitting outside one the casinos in the sun enjoying some people watching. For some reason I got stuck holding THE MAN'S phone and accidentally took a photo of my foot. I was going to delete it but then I thought, what a nice surprise for him. Every hubby should have a photo of his wife's foot on his phone.

Later, he sent me some photos off his phone and VOILA, my foot photo made me happy! Hence a page!

Hope this Tuesday is finding you happy and perhaps with some sun?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Create Page for Another Freaking Scrappy

So, while we were in Vegas for a quick vacation, our kids were hanging with my parents. Sometimes the grand kids next door are there, but this year our break week did not correspond with theirs. Of course, the weather was also not all that fun, so my parents came up with some cool indoor projects.

Lexi made this awesome funky stained glass cat with my Mom. She designed it herself even. I'm going to show you her cat up against the window so you can see the colors she picked. She chose clear for parts of it, so it's hard to see what is the glass and what part is the stand that she put it on. Her stand needs a light still as this is a night light.

I used Anne's latest sketch over at Another Freaking Scrappy. You have half the month to get this one done and it's super easy so why not have a go at it! 

I think the circle elements are cool. I opted to use my new K & Co. flowers I found on a shopping trip to represent them. Here is a side view so you can see how POOFY they are. 

I happened to have Lexi's sketch so it was fun to use that as part of the background. As it was a sketch, she had some scribbles I covered up strategically with flowers and paper! 

Also linking up to Yvonne's Do More for Less blog as Lizzy Hill has a challenge up over there for fussy cutting photos and some hand journaling. There is quite a lot of fussy cutting around photos and in fact, cut Lexi's cat sketch so the ears would come in front of the photos. Lots of hand journaling around the stained glass cat. 

So there you go, two fun projects on a Monday to get you inspired! Hopefully you had a nice relaxing weekend and you are ready to kick Monday in the butt! 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Finished Cabinet & a Happy Dance

This cabinet is literally RIGHT at the top of my stairs. I smile each time I walk by it. Makes me so happy.

From a piece of falling apart antique cabinet with no doors or legs to something usable. THAT is my kind of transformation.

It is not without it's flaws. The last coat of clear went on hard and drippy. We finally did win after some sanding.

I am sure my Mom would say the same about the doors.

When I called my Dad to tell him to check out the completed project photo I sent him he yelled HEY GRETCH GUESS WHAT THOSE DOORS WORKED.

They were really tight fitting in the glass. Makes you a bit nervous to be shoving stained glass into a door frame. THE MAN won however and it's just plain ole beautiful. Here is the back of the door with some light. Just so pretty.

Of course you want a peek in side, right?

As with anything, if you make your stuff easier to get to, you use more of your stuff! I have had my stamps "put away" in a box and usually avoid using them. Now I can get to them, it's a whole lot easier! Already had some out!

Lots of fun stuff to play with here.

Stamps, Inks, Ribbon, Modge Podge hidden away in a lunch pail and coffee filters.

YES coffee filters. They made rock star flowers and are great for holding little things when you dye them.

Thanks for awesome-sauce doors Mom and Dad and for inspiring me to paint up that old antique cabinet. This piece will grow old with me!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

And This Layout Using ScrapFriends Sketch

I have been scrapbooking funerals for years. It seems somewhat wrong but then it feels right in my brain. The event must be smooshed between the pages of my scrapbook as it's all part of real life. If I am lucky, a little part of me heals as I glue and ink up the paper.

On March 28th we lost our good friend Joe to Leukemia. Blogged about it the day after it happened.

 It seems like just yesterday. A lot of life has happened between then and now and nothing stops moving.

The funeral itself was tough. I haven't been to an open casket funeral since I was little. My kids have never been to one. It was held local to where THE MAN and I grew up. Since Joe was Lexi's Godfather, we felt that we should bring the kids to calling hours. We all made it for about 4 whole seconds in front of the casket before we skipped the rest of the receiving line and headed out into the cold to wipe our eyes.

Part of the service was a meal at a local Italian restaurant, The Franklin. Joe had prearranged it ahead of time, which I guess is the luxury of knowing that you are dying.

I have lots and lots and lots of photos of Joe in various scrapbooks. He was at many events over the years. Opted to use a photo of The Franklin instead when I made my page. The lunch was very nice and a small bright spot at the end of the sad part. It was also very thoughtful of Joe and his wife Marilyn to help us through his funeral.

Used this very cool ScrapFriends sketch. NEVER in a trillion years would I think to make my paper do this! Very happy how it turned out.

Here is a side view so you can see the dimension.

Had to add just a few flowers and leaves as they made me happy. Of course, always love using a white pen on some kraft!

Now, if you have taken a peep at his obituary that I printed out in vellum you will see a couple of interesting things. For one, he has five godchildren. Since that is quite the honorary title, it just goes to show you what kind of dude he was. The second interesting part is that Marilyn listed the dogs and cats. Being a huge pet lover, that made me smile.

Back tomorrow with my cabinet. I've been really excited to share that with you! Saved my excitement for Friday!