Wednesday, December 30, 2015

*MY* December 12 Kits of Occasions + a Giveaway

Hi!  I am so excited to share this post I can hardly stand it.  I've been working on it for over a year...truly!  When I was officially invited to join The 12 Kits of Occasions n August of 2014 I was given my assignment for the following year: a "Walking in a Winter Wonderland" kit for December 2015.  Almost immediately I started working on my kit.  I rarely do things the easy way, so I picked a color scheme not based on papers I'd scene, but based on colors that made me happy.  Then I thought of my very favorite outdoor view--the view from my parents' front porch.  
I couldn't find a picture of the view in it's wintery goodness, but this is a picture my dad took last spring.  It's beautiful, isn't it?  I built my kit based off things I might see there in the winter: deer, hills, wreaths, cute little houses all in a row, etc.  I honestly love every single thing in this kit and as always, I was wishing for more time to create.  Make sure you head to The 12 Kits of Occasions blog to see all the other designer's amazing creations (they've truly wowed me!), including a very special guest designer (and friend!) who I was beyond thrilled she accepted my invitation.  If you're interested in the supply list, you can find that here on the 12 Kits blog.  Ooo, ooo...I almost forgot: I have a little giveaway over there as well.  I hope everyone enjoys this kit as much as I did! :)
This first card makes me so happy because of how wonderfully four stamp sets from four different companies combined.  Don't you just love when that happens?  I was also quite happy that I could use the leftover polka dot piece as a frame for the next card.
I adore the Home & Hearth dies from Ellen Hutson, and it makes me so happy to see them here on this card.  I've had them over a year, but haven't used them very much because I wanted them to still be special for the kit.
I created the next two cards for two of my sweet nieces.  They truly sparkle and shine, and I love that each of these cards reflects their personalities so well (at least in my opinion). :) I think they are my favorites of the bunch because of who I made them for.
I just love the sparkly fiber ribbon thing on this next card.  Why?  It's something I found in my mom's sewing stash.  It's super old from the looks of the price sticker, but it reminded me of icicles, so I had to include it in the kit.  Every winterland should have icicles.  
I'll end with a card I love that uses the very last thing I bought to use in this kit--Neat & Tangled's Winter Wishes.  It's similar to Ellen Hutson's Cozy Christmas, but I loved them both and I just had to have this set for the very scene below.
I can't believe that's it!  There are so many things I loved that I haven't shown.  I have three cards that just never got glued together, so stay tuned in the next few days.  Make sure to hop along to see all the other designer's creations by starting at the The 12 Kits of Occasions blog.  And I have a little giveaway going on there, too! :) And because it could not have been more perfect timing, I'm linking up my last card to the Simon Says Winter Wonderland Challenge. :) Thanks so much for sharing part of your day with me!  I hope that the holidays have brought much peace and happiness into your life and that it extends throughout the new year!  Sending hugs and warm winter wishes to you all!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Fun Announcement! :)

Hello, friends!  I've missed you.  Our lives have been so crazy lately, and I'm very much looking forward to having a regular routine from here on out.  Not only am I back, but I have super fun news to share today.  Have you heard of the new Stamping Smiles Designs Tic-Tac-Toe Challenge?  If not, please check it out, and I hope you'll become very familiar with it because guess what?!  I've been selected to be one of the Tic-Tac-Toe Challenge Designers...
Eek!  Do you know how hard it has been to keep this secret?  I'm so excited about it and truly feel honored.  I love playing along with challenges, and what's more fun than a challenge that's also a game?  You're going to love it!  Every day until the end of the month a new designer will be announced, and the very first Stamping Smiles Designs Tic-Tac-Toe Challenge will go live on January 1st.  Make sure you go to the Challenge Blog to check out all the details, so you can play along!  I can't wait to see you there!

Merry Christmas!

Hello!  Oh, it has been far too long!!!  And yes, this post is a bit late due to some technical issues (I was bound and determined to share this video), but I didn't want to completely miss the opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas!  I hope your Christmas was full of love and happiness and peace through remembering the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.  Beautiful music has always had a way of speaking to my heart and this is one of my very favorite Christmas songs ever.  I've listened to it countless times....even after Christmas. :) It fills my heart with joy.  I suppose it is extra special, too, because my husband worked with one of the amazing men who wrote and composed this particular arrangement.  I hope you'll take a second to listen.  Since I'm late, consider this my little way of helping you keep Christmas in your heart throughout the whole year. :)

Monday, November 30, 2015

November 12 Kits of Occasions + a Giveaway!!!

I'm so excited to share my "Holly Jolly Christmas + Festive Fall" cards from this month's 12 Kits of Occasions!  I made my cards at the beginning of November and have been dying to share them with you!  And I even have a little giveaway, so make sure you read to the bottom of the post. :) Kim, our fabulous hostess, built her kit largely around polka dot papers and two My Favorite Things stamp sets: BB Cool Day and Harvest Mouse.  I am in love with them!  They are as cute as could be, and I smiled and even giggled while creating all my cards.  Okay, I'll start with autumn, work my way to Christmas, and end with a little wintery goodness. :)
 See this adorable mouse? I had so much fun watercoloring his little plaid sweater.
I hope you'll bear with me on the photos of this next card.  I repurposed some packaging for the card base and it was exactly the look I was going for, but photographing that glossy paper was impossible. Either the colors were off or you could see the reflections of my coral sweater in the photo. Oh, well.  I am pretty excited about this darling mouse!  I adore her little stamped scarf and she reminds me of my sweet little one with that bow.  It's from PTI's Polka Dot Parade #7 halloween set.  I get a lot of use out of that set, particularly because of this perfect-sized bow.
Oh! And I was excited about one other element on this card.  I used the washi tape to add the stripes on the side of the tag.  I know it's silly, but I was pretty proud of my self for using the washi in a little more creative way.
And here is the super cute bear!  I opted to stamp images on his sweater.  For not being one who is really in to fashion, I sure enjoyed decorating the clothing on these little critters. :)  And just now I'm realizing that I'm missing a little mouse card!  I gave you a little peak of the kit with this mitten tag last week, and I guess now you have a little "after party" to look forward to after our group post. :)
I'm super excited about a little discovery I made in the creation of this card.  See that silver snowflake that looks embossed?  It's not! I wanted it to be, but haven't unpacked my embossing powders yet, so I just pressed it a few times in my Delicata Silver Shimmer Ink Pad and wa-la!
I just love this next card.  PTI's Tag Sale #8 die was seriously a match made in heaven for this fabulous chalkboard sentiment Kim included in the kit.  I wanted to keep it simple to really let that beautiful sentiment shine, so I stamped a couple snowflakes from a new-to-me TAWS stamp set and added a few sequins and washi that came in the kit.
My last card is for my two darling nieces who just moved to Seattle.  Oh, how I miss them!  I think one of the reasons I love how this card turned out is because I was thinking of them the whole time I made it.  I trimmed this cute little bear's arm a bit, so he could hold the heart and really selectively stamped the letters in a Christmas sentiment I had to create the "miss you" sign.

That's it for me today, but I'll be back soon to share another card that I somehow forgot to photograph.  I've mailed off almost all of these cards already, but thankfully I still have the one I missed.  Oh, and I have an announcement to make. :) I get to be the hostess for December's kit, and I made an extra kit to give away!  If you'd like to have a chance to win my kit and be a guest designer in December, please head to the 12 Kits of Occasions blog and leave a comment on this post by midnight (EST) on December 3rd.  Because of mailing time constraints, this giveaway is only open to US residents.  However, I will be sharing another giveaway on our December group post that will be open to everyone, so stay tuned.

Please make sure you hop around to see all the wonderful cards the 12 Kits Team and our two special guests have created.  Thanks so much for visiting today!  I hope you have a lovely week!!!

November Guest Designers: 
12 Kits Team:

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Mitten Tag

Hi!  I'm just popping in to share a quick tag I made.  I totally forgot about it!  It was inspired by Beverly Brown's bell tag that she shared on Day 11 of the 25 Days of Christmas Tags.  Aren't you just loving all the amazing tags that have been shared?!  I also have a confession to make...this is a  little sneak peek into my November The 12 Kits of Occasions kit.  I'll share the rest of my creations in our group post on the 30th of this month, but I just couldn't wait to share something. :) I'm also happy to be linking this up to Simon Says Anything Goes Challenge.
Well, I've gotta run.  Thanks so much for stopping by today!  I've got lots to do to prep for Thanksgiving tomorrow.  I'm happy as could be that one of  my assignments this year is pie! :) I hope that your hearts are full with gratitude whether or not you are celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow, but if you are celebrating, have the most wonderful day!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Reindeer Card & Tag

Hi!  I'm back. :) I just realized I shared my posts in the wrong order, so I guess you get double from me tonight.  It is just as well because I made all three projects in the same sitting. :) After I made my cardinal tag (which was inspired by Laurel Beard's tag on Day 10 of 25 Days of Christmas Tags) I liked it so much that I made some more and even turned one into a card.  The card was a combination of inspiration from Laurel's tagMerry Monday #180 to use a reindeer, Simon Says: Christmas, and The Card Concept #44: Festive Glory Challenge.  I loved the colors, feel, and especially the chair in the Festive Glory photo and tried to capture that here in my card that is probably a bit more clean and layered than just clean and simple.
And here is the other tag in the set I made that I'm linking up to the 25 Days of Christmas Tags Linkup.

Cardinal Tag

Hello, friends!  I hope you are well!  It's been a busy week here, but I've snuck in little bits of crafting here and there.  You'll definitely want to stop by at the end of the month because our November kit for The 12 Kits of Occasions is so cute it just about kills me to have to wait 8 more days to share my cards. :) I'm pretty happy that I do get to share this tag today, though!  I made it to participate in the amazing 25 Days of Christmas Tags event going on, and it was inspired by a tag Laurel Beard shared on Day 10.  I'm pretty excited about how it turned out, and it is definitely getting me in the Christmas mood.  I'm also linking this one up for the Simon Says Stamp: Christmas Challenge.  Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Little Critter Christmas Tag

Hello!  Have you all seen Tracey's amazing 25 Days of Christmas Tag event?  It truly gets better each year.  There's an unbelievable amount of talent providing inspiration each day and lots of prizes to be won.  Not wanting to miss out on all the fun, I decided to play along.  I was inspired by a fabulous tag Jenn Shurkus shared on Day 3.

But the inspiration didn't stop there.  My stamps were selected based on the Essentials by Ellen November Mix it Up Challenge with Mama Elephant.  I paired Essentials by Ellen's Cozy Christmas stamps and Home & Hearth dies with Mama Elephant's Up and Away.  And I've always wondered...I know this little guys is adorable, but what exactly is he?  Anyone know?  My colors and idea to use a tree were inspired by Merry Monday #179, and I added the silver ink (yes, it truly is silver...hard to capture that!) because of CAS-ual Fridays: CFC #145: Precious Metals Challenge.  If you look really closely, you can see that the silver stripes really do shimmer.  Oh, and I forgot how fun it is to add glossy accents to embellishments...kind of makes them like the fun puffy enamel shapes you can buy.
This tag ended up being more labor intensive than I intended, so I decided it had to go to an extremely special sweet daughter.  As much as I love card making, my true joy lies in being a mother.  Here's my special little one in all her Halloween glory...
And here's her vibrant big brother whom we adore.  He would definitely not appreciate the colors on this tag, though. :) 
Okay, I got a little side tracked.  I'm hoping you don't mind. :) Here's one last shot of the tag just to get us back on track.  Thanks so much for stopping by today.  I hope your day is full of whatever or whomever brings you joy.  Thanks for sharing in mine. :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Three Challenges, One SUPER Simple Card

This card is about as ultra CAS as it gets, but I actually like it.  It's made from leftover supplies I had out on the table and was inspired by the colors I saw in The Card Concept's Thank-Fall Challenge and CASology's "Give" Challenge.  The sentiment comes from TAWS' Give Thanks set, which I thought was quite fitting for the CASology challenge.  I'm also joining this in the TAWS November Link-up.  The weather was beautiful today--cool but sunny, so we went on a walk/nature scavenger hunt.  Oh, how I love this season!  Thanks so much for stopping by today!

Turkey Thanks

I hadn't put away the supplies I used on yesterday's card, so I decided to make another one.  After all, my son does have two preschool teachers and it wouldn't be very nice to thank one and not the other. ;) I switched up the colors a bit based on this week's ColourQ Challenge and used a slightly simplified version of Retro Sketches #189 for my layout.  Isn't this turkey from TAWS just hilarious?  I could not stop smiling while making this card.  He makes me want to make about a zillion Thanksgiving cards. Hope you are having a wonderful week!
Linking this up to:

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Thankful For You...and Fall! :)

I had a tiny bit of time to craft today.  My husband's schedule is all over the place now, but one good thing about it is that sometimes he comes home for a few hours in the middle of the day.  I have a giant list of people that I want to send a note of gratitude to, and this one will be going to one of my son's teachers.  I've probably said this before, but I absolutely love that Thanksgiving precedes Christmas.  I don't know any other way to prepare your heart for the Christmas season that to focus on having a grateful heart and having a holiday that constantly reminds you to be thankful.
Supplies: Stamps: Give Thanks (TAWS); Ink: Aqua Mist, Canyon Clay, Classic Kraft, Dark Chocolate, Spring Moss (PTI)
Linking this up at:
I just had to sneak this picture in.  I'm am constantly in awe of the beautiful fall colors here.  After having lived away so long, I had forgotten the incredible vibrance of the leaves.  I snapped these (unedited) photos this afternoon of some leaves that were scattered about my parents' lawn.  The beauty of this earth is most certainly something I am so grateful for!