June 29, 2010


I just got all of this new Oliver line from Basic Grey last week and I couldn't wait to play with it! I love this boy line with it's bright colors and signature shabby look. My favorite thing from the entire line is that big pop-up arrow. I love the shape and bold colors. This page came together in a little over an hour, which is pretty quick for me. I *heart* Basic Grey quite a bit lately!

This page is all about playtime around here. Nico just waits for Patrick to come home and immediately pounces on him begging to play. Mind you, most days he has played all afternoon at preschool, we've spent the day with friends or I've played with him for several hours - but it seems like nothing compares to playtime with his Dad. It's a memory I've wanted to get down for a long time and I'm so glad that I did!

June 26, 2010

Oh Heck Yeah

So two weeks ago DH came home and said, "I need a break. Book something now. Anywhere." He didn't need to ask me twice. I hopped on Expedia and had us booked on a vacation in a New York minute. I didn't have the usual time to plan our trip or get any hotel recommendations so I went with this...

I will be sleeping on this bed very soon. Oh heck yeah.

And I will be taking an outdoor shower in this. Yup, I basically picked a hotel because of it's beach beds and a bathroom. Let's hope that I've made a good decision. How bad could it be?

  1. Passports have been found.
  2. Grandparents are in place. We've decided that the boy wouldn't like the beach bed or the shower.
  3. Very stressed out husband is happy.

I can't say exactly when we're going, internet security and all that stuff...but it's getting close and I'm excited. I've got blog posts and layouts lined up on auto-post, so you won't miss a beat with my absence.

Keeping my fingers crossed that beach beds and outdoor showers, a vacation make!

I'll be back tomorrow with a new layout I've been working on...

June 23, 2010

Circle of Flowers

I've been playing around with some of the Summertime line by Echo Park Paper Co. and I decided to make some flowers. I think the happy colors and patterns of this paper are perfect for this type of project. First, I started out with a series of circle punches ranging from 2" to 1/2" in diameter.

Next, I used my handy distresser tool from Making Memories to rough up the edges a bit.

I stacked the distressed circles and glued them together with some temporary dot adhesive. Then I drew random circles and made sure I liked the spacing before piercing holes through the center.

I filled the holes with green jewel and plain top brads. Next, I punched out a 3" flower and sewed two circles around the edges. I glued it all together and then stuck it on a stick!

Here is a sneak peek at the finished product. And yes, I did a girlie page - complete with flowers and butterflies and PINK! This was very outside of my comfort zone, but I liked the challenge. I'm still tweaking it and adding pictures. I'll finish this page soon and post it next week!

June 21, 2010

A Good Story

I love a good story and I've come to realize that Nico does too. I've been reading to him regularly since he was a tiny baby and he has always had an amazing attention span for books. Every once in a while, I'll catch him reading at his little desk. On this particular morning, he was so engrossed in the story that he didn't even hear me taking pictures. And when he did notice me, he said "hi mom" and just kept right on reading.

I love these alphabet flash cards from October Afternoon and I think they went perfectly with the reading theme. I added a list of his favorite books at the time (2009) since they change all of the time and journaled the story inside of the pocket. The quote ("There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island") is by Walt Disney and is one of my favorites.

There is a mish mosh of manufacturers on this page and yet somehow, it all went together and matched. Supply list: Pattern paper: Basic Grey (kraft grid), Girls Paperie (stripe), Pink Paislee (navy brocade). Fabric pleats: Pink Paislee. White title: Basic Grey. Chipboard title: Pink Paislee. Pocket: 7Gypsies. Stickers: October Afternoon.

I'm busy working away on projects for a guest designer spot at WIP Kits. I'm knee deep in beautiful products and hopefully I can come up with some great pages. Wish me luck!

June 14, 2010

Aliens,Trains & Dinner

Isn't it funny how kids do the same exact thing every single day for months & months and then one day, they just stop? That's what happened with our dinner alien stories recently, so I wanted to make a page before the memory completely fades. I can't tell you how happy I am that I took these pictures last year.
Getting Nico to eat dinner was a challenge. He was slow and distracted and antsy. Sometimes dinner was/is a torturous process for him and US! One day, Patrick started telling him a story about how these aliens sat down next to him on the train and Nico was just mesmerized. We made a rule that Papa would continue with the story only if Nico continued eating. This is what we call creative parenting and it worked like a charm!
This went on for about 9 months and then slowly Nico developed more patience at the dinner table. Today, we talk about our day, what we're doing tomorrow and who Nico played with. The alien stories only come up once every few weeks. I miss the stories and Nico's funny reactions. But I also love that he is growing up and we can actually have dinner conversation now. One day when he's a teenage boy and eating me out of house and home, it will be funny to look back at a time when we had to cajole Nico into eating (even pizza).
Supply list: Scallop paper, alien, grey & yellow papers: Orbit Collection by Crate Paper. Aqua and text paper: October Afternoon. Title: Thickers (black), October Afternoon. Journaling Card: October Afternoon. Stick pin: Making Memories. Aliens: American Crafts. Metal Studs: Recollections.

June 11, 2010

At the Zoo

This is my little guy at the Philadelphia Zoo this week and that is his new "smile." I don't know where he got it from, but I swear that grin looks like the monkey on his shirt. They look like twins.

My brave boy insisted on riding this camel alone. He said that he wanted his very own camel and that was fine by me. He hung on for dear life with his skinny little legs.

See that look up there. That the universal naughty little boy look. I should have recognized it and anticipated. The minute I put the camera down and looked away, he attempted to mount that poor animal and ride it like a horse. A scuffle ensued. Neither animal or boy was hurt, but Mama was embarassed and MAD and scared! Nico claimed that he didn't know that he couldn't ride this animal but this picture proves him wrong.

And lastly, the reason we don't eat our young - sometimes they are just too cute for words.

Have a great weekend! I'll be back Monday with layouts. Promise!

June 8, 2010

Summer Routines

One of the things that I have enjoyed most about being a SAHM for the past couple of years is - SUMMER! One day when I go back to work full-time, I know that I'm going to miss these long lazy days of summer.

We spend most of our time outdoors with friends enjoying the beach, pool and waterpark. Every single day is planned out - Monday (stay home/chores), Tuesday (waterpark with the Coffmans), Wednesday (Mama works/Nico goes to camp), Thursday (pool dates with the Medina's), Friday (cousins' playdate). I know that this time in Nico's childhood won't last forever, so I want to savor every last bit. Although I have to admit, by the time September rolls around we're exhausted and ready for the indoors!

I wanted to emphasize our weekly routine and this patterned paper with the days of the week was perfect. The cute thermometer was the best 50 cents I ever spent on a die cut. I love the rainbow colors and shape. I think one of the things that makes this layout "work" is the repetition of the rainbow color pattern. It's in the strip at the top, the thermometer in the center, and in the Itinerary card on the lower left hand side .

I think that this is my favorite recent layout! (Supply list: Pattern paper, cardstock, die cut: We'R Memory Keepers, Brown title: Bella Blvd, Aqua Title: Thickers, Aqua tiny letters: My Little Shoebox. Ribbon: Bo Bunny. Transparency arrow: Little Yellow Bicycle. Itinerary card: October Afternoon. Flag: Making Memories. Orange studs: Me & My Big Ideas.)

Thanks so much for taking a peek!

June 7, 2010

Getting Titles Right

I had a great question from a blogger recently about how I get my layout titles straight since I tend to use a mixture of fonts and sizes. I thought the rest of my blog readers might be interested in the answer as well.

These are the clear acetate sheets that most pre-glued embellishments and stickers come on. Instead of trashing them, I collect them! I have a small box of different sizes and lengths. One of the sides is always coated so that stickers come off easily and that makes them really easy to work with. I test out all of my titles on these sheets before putting them down on a layout.

I don't always want a straight title, so I'll just use the clear acetate to see how the title fits in the space. Other times (like above), I want a perfectly straight title so I place the acetate on top of a piece of grid pattern paper and then line up my letters. This makes getting the right spacing and straight lines a snap!

Here is the finished product and a sneak peek at the layout that I'm currently working on. Hopefully, I'll finish it tonight and have it up tomorrow.

And thanks to Callie for the great question!

June 3, 2010


I picked these papers up from Basic Grey's Kioshi line a few weeks ago at the Expo. I thought the colors would work really well for Easter and I was right! I'm not sure about this design though. After I took a pic and posted it, there seems to be something missing. Can't quite put my finger on it though. I know the pictures aren't the greatest, but it's all I have to work with.
This layout is d-o-n-e, but that doesn't mean I won't go back and add later..because I am totally OCD like that. Any suggestions out there?

I'm loving this new trend of sewing right over a title. It was tough on my sewing machine since the letters are chipboard. I might try this again with flat letter stickers.

I left portions of this picture blank intentionally because I knew I wanted to add a little note. I used Doodlebug rubons for the message on the stairs and October Afternoon stickers for the date. I think this added a nice little detail to the layout.
Supply list: Pattern paper: Little Yellow Bicycle (green dot), Basic Grey (all others). Chipboard letters, heart, kraft paper and border: Basic Grey. File tab: Creative Imaginations. Chicks & Eggs: Meri-Meri (from 2005!).
Have a great weekend!

June 2, 2010

Repurpose & Use

I'm working on an Easter page and pulled out a bunch of pattern papers that I wanted to use. I've had these chipboard borders from My Mind's Eye since forever and really wanted to use them. I love the shapes, but the colors and patterns are hard to match up sometimes. This time, the coral color matched, but I really wanted a kraft colored accent on my page.

I traced the scallop border on a sheet of basic kraft paper from Basic Grey and cut it out. Then I peeled the adhesive off of the chipboard border and lined up the shape. So now on one side I have the original color and on the "sticky" side I have the kraft color I wanted. I can even change my mind now (because I do that all the time).

Next, sponge on a little chocolate ink around the edges to give it a finished look.

And so there you have it - one repurposed chipboard border! You can see a little sneak peek of the color and patterns that I've chosen. I'll be back soon with the completed page.

June 1, 2010

The Oasis

A collection of my favorite October Afternoon papers and a simple grid. That was the thinking behind this page. I sketched these boxes out on grid paper and then plugged in some of my favorite photos and embellishments. It's a very simple page and it took me just under an hour to put together. I love it when that happens!

This page tells the story of my Dad's backyard and how he has turned it into an oasis for the kids. When Nico was a year old, he had this huge play structure put up. He always has a shed full of waterguns, floats and motorized toys. And lastly, he installed a big slide to his pool this year for the kids to enjoy. The kids love it there and spend many Sunday afternoons swimming, sliding, eating and most importantly - gathering family.

(Supply list: Paper and Stickers: October Afternoon; House: American Crafts; Title: Doodlebug (aqua), Making Memories (cork); Metal Studs: Recollections).
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