Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Giveaway | Handmade Holiday Crafting Kit

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Over the last few weeks I’ve been busy crafting away in my craft studio.  I made a VERY limited number of handmade holiday papercrafting kit.  I thought I would give one of these holiday papercrafting kits away for my 1,000 blog posts celebration!  Well, the 1,000th blog post actually happened a few weeks ago, but that’s okay, we can still celebrate now!  :D

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This handmade holiday papercrafting kit can certainly be used to make a December/Holiday/Christmas mini album, or you can use it to make other holiday cards and crafts.  The kit contains 6x6 papers, but they are not hole-punched, so you could use them for whatever you want, not just for making a mini-album.

CONTENTS:
- 6x6 sheets of double-sided pattern papers from My Mind’s Eye’s 12 Days of Christmas collection.
- Clear heavy acrylic cover (peel off protective covering before use)
- Hambly woodgrain overlay
- Paper doily
- various envelopes
- hand-sewn and hand-stamped decorated kraft and white cardstock
- My Mind’s Eye 12 Days of Christmas die cut sheets
- My Mind's Eye 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS rhinestones
- My Mind's Eye 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS Trims
- 5 yards of Divine Twine Holiday twine (red, green, and white twisted together)
- 6 handmade holiday embellishments (doodads)
- 1 4x4 Jenni Bowlin Studio Die-Cuts Classic Label
- 2 blank manila shipping tags
- 1 red chevron bitty bag
- 1 polka dot kraft bitty bag
- 1 glassine bag hand-stamped with santas
- 2 red avery tags
- 5 white mini avery tags (3 hand-stamped with holiday sentiments)
- 5 colorful striped paper clips
- 7 vintage buttons tied with twine
- 2 Basic Grey journaling tags
- 1 strip hand-stamped holiday tickets
- 2 binder rings (in case you want to make a mini-album)

Close up of the papers.
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Close-up of the handmade embellishments.
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Close up of the hand-stamped little tags.
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Close up of the red chevron bitty bag, the 5 yards of holiday Divine Twine, and the trims.
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Close ups of the sewn, hand-stamped, and hand-painted pages.
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So what do you think?  Pretty cool eh? 

This holiday paper-crafting kit is valued at $32.  For a chance to win it, please leave a comment telling what your favorite holiday tradition is.  This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.  Only one comment per person please!  Contest will close on Sunday night 9pm Pacific time, and winner will be announced Monday 12/5.  As soon as I hear back from the winner with his/her mailing address, it will be mailed out to you the next day.  Good luck and happy holidays! :D

*Giveaway now closed and winner has been announced here!*

New 52 | Week 48: New Pollywog

Some of you may be saying to yourself… what the heck is a Pollywog?  Well, technically, it’s a tadpole.  But this week’s “new” thing is that I am a new Pollywog at The Lilypad

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I got a message during Thanksgiving weekend from Kelly, one of the owners at The Lilypad.  She asked if I would want to help out with the blog at The Lilypad and join the Pollywog team there.  I thought about it and said yes!  The Lilypad has always been a favorite store of mine since I started digi-scrapping in 2006.  Not only that, but a lot of my digi-friends hang out there or are designers/pollywogs there, so it was a natural fit.  :)

So starting soon, I will be blogging 3-4 times per month over at the Lilypad blog.  Watch for it!

Oh and also, I scrapped a digital page last week!  It had been a while. 
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I used the AWESOME new collaboration kit “Star On Top” by One Little Bird (my friend Peppermint) and Amy Martin.  I also used “Star On Top” Journaling Cards in my layout.  You can find the kit and journaling cards at both Oscraps and The Lilypad

Some other little bits of “new” last week… for the first time ever, Todd and I made dinner reservations for a nice dinner out for Thanksgiving, since it was just the two of us this year.   We ate our Thanksgiving meal at Pacifica Del Mar. The food was really good and the views were great!
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Todd and I were both groggy from cold medicine…
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Turkey with gravy, garlic mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberries, and green beans.
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A little pumpkin pie…
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and burnt crème for dessert.  Yum!
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Unfortunately, we both got sick with a cold last Wednesday so our whole Thanksgiving break was spent at home nursing our colds on the couch.  That was “new” too! 

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About This Project

New52 is a project started by Peppermint and I to encourage each other and others around us to try something new every week in 2011. The "new" each week doesn't have to be something big. It could be something as simple as ordering a new dish instead of old standbys at your favorite restaurant. It's simply opening your heart up to NEW possibilities.
Don't worry if you're late getting started on joining in. It's totally OK if you miss a week here or there. We encourage everyone to keep an open mind about trying something new. This is a life project, and a photography/blog and even scrap challenge if you wish. If you participate this week, please leave a link to your blog post in the comments of this post.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

New 52 | Week 47: Thanksgiving Edition

I got to spend four days last week celebrating an early Thanksgiving at my sister’s NEW house in Texas.  (That’s the *new* part of the New 52 this week.:) 
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My sister and brother-in-law and my nephews moved into the house in May.  So a few months ago my dad suggested that we celebrate Thanksgiving at my sister’s new house.  So we basically invited ourselves there, ha ha!  But I don’t like to fly on the week of actual holidays because of the cost and the crowds, so we decided to go the week before Thanksgiving.

Our outgoing flight got delayed 4 hours, which is more time than the actual flight time.  We were already at the airport, so we called the American Airlines customer service and were able to get on an earlier flight.  It was still three hours after our original flight was supposed to take off.  I love taking pictures of the clouds when we’re high enough.  It was raining when we left, but as soon as the plane got above the clouds it was sunny!
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During our trip there was a lot of jumping.
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There were stuffed animals.
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There was an adults only lunch at Chili’s on Friday while the kids were in school.
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There was a TON of Wii playing.  Uncle Todd might be all Wii’ed out!
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There was a Tai Kwon Do class.
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There was Texas BBQ-eating.
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There was gingerbread house-making.  This has become a tradition now between Aunt Christine, Uncle Todd, and Andrew.
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Tada!  Our gingerbread wonderland!
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Of course, not two minutes after it was done, Andrew broke it apart and started eating it.

Todd and Alex got to play Madden Football video game.  This is their tradition dating back to the mid-1990’s when Alex and Joyce were dating. 
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So every time Alex comes to visit, or Todd goes to visit in TX, they have to play Madden Football.
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We really enjoyed our visit to my sister’s new house to celebrate an early Thanksgiving!  So happy to see her because last time I saw them was back in August 2010 when they came to visit us.  Time sure flies!

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About This Project

New52 is a project started by Peppermint and I to encourage each other and others around us to try something new every week in 2011. The "new" each week doesn't have to be something big. It could be something as simple as ordering a new dish instead of old standbys at your favorite restaurant. It's simply opening your heart up to NEW possibilities.
Don't worry if you're late getting started on joining in. It's totally OK if you miss a week here or there. We encourage everyone to keep an open mind about trying something new. This is a life project, and a photography/blog and even scrap challenge if you wish. If you participate this week, please leave a link to your blog post in the comments of this post.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New 52 | Week 46: Operation Christmas Child

A few weeks ago I saw this video at church and it touched me deeply.

Operation Christmas Child is a program started by Samaritan’s Purse, a non-profit organization headed by Franklin Graham, Billy Graham’s son, to bring Christmas gifts and the good news of the Gospel to kids in 130 countries.  When I saw this video, it brought tears to my eyes.  I wanted to bring joy and Good News to under-privileged kids anywhere around the world.  What cost me so little can make such a difference to a child’s heart.  I couldn’t NOT do it.

So I packed up my box last week with some new items from my stash, plus went to Target and picked up some more items.
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And I put them into the box.
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I bought things for a 5-9 year old girl.  I hope that she will enjoy the items that I put in there for her.  I prayed for my box and dropped it off at church on Sunday.
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I’m so thankful for all that I have.  It’s just a small way that I can contribute and give to a little girl somewhere in the world who might not otherwise receive a Christmas gift.  I’m blessed and I’m excited!  I hope this will be a new tradition that I can do every year to make a difference.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
About This Project

New52 is a project started by Peppermint and I to encourage each other and others around us to try something new every week in 2011. The "new" each week doesn't have to be something big. It could be something as simple as ordering a new dish instead of old standbys at your favorite restaurant. It's simply opening your heart up to NEW possibilities.
Don't worry if you're late getting started on joining in. It's totally OK if you miss a week here or there. We encourage everyone to keep an open mind about trying something new. This is a life project, and a photography/blog and even scrap challenge if you wish. If you participate this week, please leave a link to your blog post in the comments of this post.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Famous Feline, Gilbert’s Birthday, and Sneak Preview

How’s that for a blog post title?  :D

A few days ago I received the long-awaited 2012 Calendars from the San Diego Humane Society and SPCA.  Why were they long-awaited?  Because…
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a certain feline in our household named Noodle won a spot in the calendar based on the Humane Society photo contest!  They notified me a couple of months ago and told me that Noodle is Mr. September pet pinup!  I was so excited at the news. :)  Famous Feline Noodle wanted to thank Christi and Carolee for voting for him by autographing his page and sending them a copy of the calendar. He says sorry about the messy paw prints but he wasn’t used to having weird ink on his paw.  If you would like a calendar for yourself, which helps out the Humane Society as well, you can order one here for $12.93, which includes shipping and taxes! 

On Sunday afternoon, we got to go on an outing with our good friends Anne & Gilbert.  It was to celebrate Gilbert’s birthday and Anne surprised him by taking him to the Mysterious Galaxy bookstore.  We had never been there before, but had heard of it.  It is an independent bookstore in San Diego specializing in mystery, sci-fi, and fantasy books.  This is right up Todd’s alley, as well as Gilbert’s, obviously.  Todd actually recently blogged about the NPR Top 100 Science Fiction/Fantasy books List, and how many of those books he’s read. 
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Todd introduced Gilbert to a new author, while Gilbert enabled Todd into buying two new books.  It was really fun to hang out at an independent bookstore!

After the bookstore, we headed to North Park, because Gilbert loves pizza and we decided that he had to try Café Calabria’s awesome Neopolitan pizzas in their authentic Italian wood-fire oven.  First time we went, we didn’t get a very good photo of the oven.  This time, much better!
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This time I got a prosciutto mushroom pizza and it was fantastic as well.  Haven’t had a bad pizza there yet! 
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Gilbert liked his pizza so much that he said he could eat another one if they put it in front of him, hee hee!  So happy to introduce friends to awesome pizza.

Last but not least, I have a sneak preview to show you of something I’ve been working on.  It may have something to do with a new Etsy shop.  It may have something to do with my long-overdue 1,000th blog post celebration giveaway.  It is handmade by me.  It is very limited edition (because I just can’t work full time and make that many of these in my spare time).  And this sneak preview is a small snippet of what’s included in the full deal.  What do you think?  And if you’re my Facebook friend, you may have seen a bigger peek at this something new.  :)
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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Crafting | Anatomy of a Holiday Card

I had mentioned on Facebook this past week that I was working on some handmade holiday cards.  A couple of my friends wanted to see what I was making, so I thought I would blog about my holiday card process.

For the past few years we’ve made our own photo cards using digital scrapbooking supplies.  I would create the card in Photoshop and then I would send it to some place like Shutterfly to get them printed.  This year, I decided to hand-make the cards.  This turned out to be a huge undertaking that I was not prepared for!  These handmade cards are taking a lot longer to make than I had thought they would take.  I think it didn’t help that I decided to make trifold cards, which had many more sides to decorate than the standard card.

The front of the 3.5 x 5 trifold card is decorated with a strip of patterned paper.  I die-cut the red scallop mat with Pure Poppy cardstock from Papertrey Ink and Limitless Layers dies, using my Sizzix Big Shot.  Then I stamped the reindeer in Pure Black ink onto Stamper’s Select White cardstock.  The reindeer stamp is part of Papertrey Ink’s Tremendous Treats: Christmas stamp set. 
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I punched out the stamped reindeer using my 1.75” circle punch.  I colored the reindeer’s nose with red coloring pencil.  Then I used my dot roller adhesive to adhere everything onto the card.  The “Happy Holidays” stamp is also from the Tremendous Treats: Christmas stamp set.

The inside left of the trifold cards is stamped with different sentiments using the Stylish Sentiments: Holiday stamp set from Papertrey Ink.
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The inside middle of the card is a photo I printed out 3.5x5 on our home printer.  Photo is from last December 25th at the beach.  I added “Joy to the world, the Lord is come!” in Photoshop first, then printed the photo.
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I glued the photo to the inside middle of the card.  Then I cut out a strip of white cardstock and stamped a sentiment in the middle, using the Holiday Photo Finisher stamp set.  Then I adhered the sentiment strip over the bottom of the photo.
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The inside right of the card is a custom designed shape I made in my Silhouette Digital Cutter software.  It’s an ornament with our name and year on it.
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I cut out a whole sheet of the ornament in green cardstock.
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After removing the die cut from the mat, I tied some Divine Twine in Holiday (red, green, and white) to the top of the ornament. 
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Then I glued the ornament onto the inside right of the trifold card.  Here’s what the inside of the card looks like unfolded.
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I plan to write a short personalized greeting on the other side of the ornament.

I’m making these trifold holiday cards in assembly line style.  I’m doing one step at a time to all the cards.  So for instance, I made the outside of the card first.
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Then I stamped all the inside lefts with sentiments.
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Then I glued all the photos to the inside middle of the cards and the strip of sentiment over it.  Then I glue all the ornament die cuts on the inside right, etc.  Like I said, these trifold cards turned out to be a lot more work than I had imagined.  But I’m almost halfway done with them and they do look really nice!

Here’s my list of supplies:

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