Monday, 14 July 2014

#lovethesesmiles -- Choose Happy


here is my July layout for the Urban Scrapbook Design Team.

i totally love the pastel brights {never thought i would combine those two words to describe something!} of the new Heidi Swapp {Dreamy} papers. we were also given some new coloured burlap, letter stickers, a roll of MME washi tape, a Double Scoop Gelato crayon and a Memory Box Stencil {modern Pop Dots}.

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i cut out several of the diamonds from the pink paper and layered the circle paper underneath.

i got it into my head that i wanted to use some molding paste. looking back i wished i had taken a few of my coordinating gelatos and made more colours to layer. i did a thin layer with the stencil, let it dry slightly, then scraped it off and spread it out further. then i added my final layer with my silver tinted paste.

i loved the tag at the bottom of one of the papers. "choose happy" with the geometric pattern added.

i loved the burlap, but it was a bit too strong for my photo. i could have used the gesso/paste to lighten it...but i didn't think of it at the time! instead i pulled long threads and made them into a few loops.

the last step was to turn the gelato into a spray. scrape off a piece, and mush it into a paste. add it to a mini-mister with water and shake. then spritz.

my layout was a late comer. i knew June would be crazy busy, but i was taken by surprise at how busy it actually was! it will be on the wall this week. phew! i'm already starting the one for August....life is back to a slower pace....but i can't handle being late twice in a row. ha!!


i have enjoyed returning to my first career of being an Elementary Educator. the one fact i had not taken into consideration when i stepped away....would be the work involved in the steps to getting a permanent contract. thankfully i had my Permanent Certificate with the province, so there has been no deadline for attaining a specific number of hours within a time frame and being evaluated by an outside person. {20 years ago i paid $25 for my Interim Certificate and had the equivalent of 3 years to get 18 to 24 months of experience...now it is 10 times the cost....and i think they changed the timeline as well. if you didn't get the experience, you had to pay for an extension....and they only allowed a certain number of them per teacher. soooo happy to avoid that!} within this district i had to start with a temporary contract. then find a position that would allow me to have a probationary contract. hopefully there will still be a spot for me to get my permanent contract next year. i'm thrilled that i have gotten this far. as my one friend joked, it only took me 12 years!

my contract next year will be full-time and there will not be enough hours left in the week to plan a class and then teach it. {i typically spent close to 40 hours to design a layout, pick up the materials, kit the class, then teach it. the design process was usually the longest and slowest! i loved that part, but i was a turtle when it came to it!!}

it was a very difficult decision. i think it was awesome that i had some options and that i was stressed about which direction to go! it is rare when you are happy and passionate about either job. in the meantime, i still have oodles of photos to scrapbook. and lots of design ideas that i have not tried yet. we won't mention the collection of papers and goodies either. wink!

thanks for your support and encouragement. many thanks to the ladies who faithfully took my classes...you gave me some of my favourite memories! i miss our monthly classes and gab sessions in between techniques. it was a blast!


Friday, 13 June 2014

Celebrating Dad


in this digital world it is not an issue to have more photos than we need. the side benefit is being able to have a few amazing photos of a specific moment in time. moments that would have been covered by the dust of our memory. the photo i found is an example of that.



in my memory i still see those little feet, the big grin and his arms stretched out in anticipation of being lifted up by daddy. then the squeal of delight that escapes his lips when his hearts' desire is fulfilled.

the dust covers the difference in their sizes. the specific way Daddy's arms held him securely.

the lack of photos is never a problem for me. even with this advantage, searching for the "right" photo is usually the most difficult step in putting together a layout. every time i am thankful that i took the time for this step. that sounds like a life lesson! those difficult stages are often the ones that are the most appreciated. haha! much deep thinking!!

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my days are still crazy and hectic. i made myself sit and take the time to let myself get wrapped up into this layout. i felt so refreshed after. mentally. emotionally. so grateful for this hobby.

my husband is not your typical sports fanatic. TSN is not on in our house. but talk to him about cycling and you have his attention!

this line of paper from Graphic45 Good Ol'Sport looked at first glance to be the exact opposite of his hobbies. when you looked closer you saw that they also included some more obscure masculine sports. and among them was cycling! the rest was using the variety of colours in the papers.

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i had been envious of the many designs others have made with the hexagon and quatrefoil dies.....so excited to try my own techniques!

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i used a mix of paints to paint this wood. mostly Primary Elements. then some crackle paint. and more Primary Elements.

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i used the Distress Paint on the metal and plastic. the crackle paint was on my desk. so i added it to the stopwatch as well.

the amazing twill was coloured with Distress Stain.

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it looks really narrow in the package. but it is actually fairly easy to shape and get into a wider shape.


pick up the June kit at Urban Scrapbook. make a layout to celebrate the fathers in your life. while you are there you MUST take some time to check out the variety of layouts the designers made with the kit. seriously. amazing.

Monday, 12 May 2014

blessed


so happy to celebrate another mother's day with my kiddos. they were full of secrets this weekend. it is very cute to watch them. with their dad's help, they spoiled me all the entire weekend. monday morning has been tough to have to do everything myself!

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this month the designers at Urban Scrapbook all made layouts that related to "mom".

i was one of those people who did not have being mom as one of my goals in life. in fact i was prepared to not have children and be happy about that! i'm very thankful that i changed my mind. or rather introduced to people who had a great influence on me. without hesitation, my kids are the reason behind many of my life choices these days. i've mentioned before that i never scrapbooked pages like a do now {and love!!} before Aidan joined our family. i also never invested the regular "me time" into scrapbooking and art before Kiara came along. scrapbooking/art has given me an outlet to express myself that i can't do any other way. it has allowed me to handle stress or make decisions as i create various projects. never mind the fabulous opportunity to teach the art!

yes. as i look back in awe over the past 10 years. i am blessed. beyond measure.

i wanted to showcase these young heroes in my life. and be very grateful to God who most definitely is responsible for bringing the right people into my adult life to show me that motherhood was indeed a very good thing for me. blessed.

not much to share about this layout creation. i tried some new 3D flowers from the Silhouette Store. time was short, so i didn't get into the paint or paste or inks like i usually do. that doesn't happen often!

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 hope your mothers' day weekend was blessed as well.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Project Life with a twist!


i was invited to join some amazing ladies from Urban Scrapbook to teach a new class series this year. Pat, Lynette and i are taking turns teaching a class each month. we designed a single page layout and a second page that fits the Project Life format.

my turn was for the month of March. i just taught my class last saturday. it was great to see so many of my students that i've had for the past few years. they are a fabulous group.

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i love this amazing paper by Kaisercraft. it was super inspiring to work with. it was also a lot of fun to add some more details to the background paper. i used the same technique on the tag.

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part of the kit included these lovely detailed die cuts.

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and here is the Project Life portion! i had always meant to try these divided page protectors, but it never reached the top of my list. i was impressed how easy it was to add lots of photos without the page looking cluttered.

after looking at all the green, i am even more anxious for the green we have to look forward to in a few weeks!

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

lovin' seven

another amazing kit from the ladies at the Urban Scrapbook. this month the challenge was to use Faber-Castell Gelatos on our layout. i first used them on this layout for one of my classes. i loved them then and i still love them now.

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this time i wanted to try a watercolour look on the background that i saw on a layout by Anabelle O'Malley. if art has a watercolour technique i almost always fall in love with it. i just love the look of the imperfect and free form it gives the subject matter. i could have made the colours darker by adding more layers, but i preferred to have the lighter colour.

i used a gesso/gelato mix to paint one of the photo frames. the same mix was used to give a wash to the other frames. i am totally loving these trendy photo frames. now you can get a variety of sizes, styles and colours. they are a must-have.

another use for the gelatos is to rub them onto the surface of your embossing folder. mist with water and then wait a few seconds while the water mixes with the colour. add paper and emboss as usual. i used the doily embossing folder that comes with this paper line. {doilies by Crate Paper Styleboard} after it dried i cut out a few of the doilies and added them randomly.

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this is one of my favourite stencils. they need to make more like this design!

i also used the gelatos to add colour to the ribbon. then i darkened a few areas of it with some Distress Ink.

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some paper ripping. then some more gesso.

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you can rub the Gelato on your non-stick mat, then add any multi-medium of your choice. it will always be colourized to a tone of the gelato. for the flowers i mixed mine with gesso. using some of the white gesso allowed me to mix the white and pink to make these flowers more interesting. although they were still very pretty by themselves!

see the ribbon tucked behind the flower and bow? it started out as a length of bright yellow ribbon. i changed mine to a pastel by adding gesso. on another strand i used my pink gelato and gesso mix. the third strand had gesso and a green gelato.

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i added a few words to describe my daughter at this age.

see that little green banner under the photo? they are from Basic Grey. ever have a special document that you want to include in an album, but it didn't fit with the layout or in a page protector? these are designed to fold in half, be attached to the item - use at least 2 of them - and then it has holes to be held in place by your binder rings. they are sold in at least 6 colours. if you are a fan of project life, then these would come in very handy. i'm not a project life fan, so i cut mine in half and used them like an embellishment.

thanks for stopping by. i enjoyed creating this layout and accepting the challenge this month.

i hope you have made plans to stop by Urban Scrapbook and check out the layouts in person. so much inspiration in one little place!

Friday, 7 March 2014

live in the moment


this photo was taken in 2009. my babies seemed so grown up at the time. my oldest was just about to start kindergarten and my youngest would soon start her first year of preschool. their lives were so simple. as their parents, ours was not quite as much! however it definitely reminded us to enjoy each moment despite the quickly passing days.

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this has been a fun year for the design team at Urban Scrapbook. each month has a new challenge. this one was to follow a sketch. i did an entire year of classes creating layouts on a variety of sketches a few years ago. you can check them out here. if you have not yet tried creating layouts or cards using a sketch, you do need to give it a try. sometimes they end up looking exactly like the sketch and other times it looks nothing like it. as you go through the process of putting the papers and photos together, it eliminates the questions: "does this arrangement look ok? would this embellishment look better here....or here....or here...?"

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if you have not tried it yet, you MUST buy the Xyron sticker maker. i pop my letters inside and it puts dry adhesive on the back of them. it's seriously the best thing since sliced bread.
and if you have not tried the "Wink of Stella" glitter brushes....well....get with it! don't even bother to ask me which colour you should get. i'm still in debate over which one would be the best addition...because you definitely need them all.

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i confess that i tried a few techniques on a few other sheets of paper. did. not. work. like. i. wanted. sigh. i think they will work for a different set of papers....but i didn't have much time to mess around and bring them around from the dark side. some days are like that. onwards and upwards!

i hadn't made these pinwheels in awhile. they are just plain fun to put together. after making a big mess of things i needed a little pick me up! haha!

as you can tell blogging and scrapbooking have fallen through the cracks of my life for the past bit. it might look like i'm stepping away from one or both of them...but i'm not! honest. i'm trying to balance my life between work, family and this incredible hobby. i was just thinking that i should create a page comparing my first classroom to my present classroom. the differences are enormous.

stay with me. i may not be posting as frequently as i used to, but i'll still be here. living in the moment.

Thursday, 6 February 2014

so many of my smiles begin with you


another superb kit this month at the Urban Scrapbook!

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the selection of Valentine themed papers this year are amazing. i probably said that last year too. i think this year is even better! choices of soft pinks and perfect reds. you can also pair it with a kraft paper or chalkboard looking paper. definitely some papers and embellishments worth hoarding and using for a few years!! you can't see it here, but i coloured over the "SMILES" and "begin" with a red Wink of Stella glitter pen. if you have not tried these pens, they are a new must have. the way a ray of sunshine captures the sparkle is incredible. they aren't messy, if this is an issue.

these are my 3 most favourite people in the world and my favourite pictures of them from last year.

i layered paper under a few spots of the chevron lace paper.

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one of the papers had a variety of hearts over the entire background. typical me i fell in love with it and waited to use it for a special part of the layout....set it aside so it wouldn't get messed with by accident....then found it again at the end of my design session. how many times must i make this mistake!?! despite my senility, i think it worked out okay in the end.

i absolutely love adding colour to seam binding. this time i used Spun Sugar and Antique Linen. it turned out better than i had hoped. i wanted it to be soft and aged looking, like the kraft/pink combination. and how cute is that Maya Road "love" heart?! someone must know someone who needs to make some wedding invitations.....these would be so perfect for the trendy cards being sent these days.

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the challenge for this month was to use stitching. my sewing machine and i spent a lot of time sewing around various pieces. then it went around the entire background page. since i had never done this technique yet, but always wanted to....i sewed over my title. those letter stickers are STICKY, so there was no need to ensure they stay in place....however it looks cute and homemade, like the rest of the embellishments. i also made a few "x's" with the red twine.

have you checked out the other layouts on the blog yet? they are amazing. as always they look even better in person.

well, i'm thankful for a blue sky and sunshine today. however this ridiculously cold air is not so exciting. the snow is no longer sparkly white and everyone in my house is tired of mittens and snow pants!! i think we are less than 90 days away from camping season... a big number, but we are already counting down.

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