Monday, August 29, 2016

AHSC Sketch #175

The Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge blog has a fun new sketch for you!

AHSC Sketch #175
created by
 Michelle Stewart
 (digitized by Chris Lothian)
The rest of the Design Team's reveal will be up on the blog this Wednesday. It's already Monday, and time for me to share... so here's my contribution to the  AHSC Design Team's work this week, for Sketch #175!!

I knew that I would be needing a card for my Mom-in- law's birthday... well, I'm actually getting ahead a little, which hardly ever happens, even though I'm organized... but yep, I admit I'm a little impressed with myself: her upcoming birthday is in October! LOL... Anyway, here is my creation!

  Birthday Card
 created by 'Yours Truly'
using AHSC Sketch #175

For this card, I used some cardstock I bought at a big clearance sale YEARS ago, some older papers from my (beloved!) collections of BasicGrey and  a few of the MANY Prima-like flowers I had on hand.
I'm really trying to use up some of my scraps and supplies by combining them with newer items to make the whole creation "work."

Royalty-free image of girl w/ tea set: Graphics Fairy 
Bazzill CS (Burlap-textured): purchased at clearance sale- colour unknown
Mat behind image- Twilight CS: CTMH (retired) 
BasicGrey collections: 1) card background- Two Scoops: (2007 collection) 
                                     2) banner- Lemonade: (2009 collection) 
Base for stamped image- Colonial White CS: CTMH
Flowers: CTMH and Prima (from my stash) 
Veneer hearts: CTMH (retired, but a collection of these "Trinkets", which includes the hearts ,is still available at a discount while supplies last!)
Grey epoxy bubbles: CTMH (retired) 
Happy Birthday stamp: "Framed" S1508 (August 2015 stamp of the month- retired)
Water-based dye inks:  Pixie, Eggplant, Twilight (retired), Indian Corn Blue (retired) and Outdoor Denim (retired)- all CTMH  

I loved this sketch so much, I decided to use it as a road-map for some more cards. I still needed ten more TY cards for the Autism Centre. I'd made four of them last week, so used this sketch to make two more, LOL. I absolutely LOVE doing this. I can use my skill and love of crafting to help in some way- it's a win-win!! 

Here are two more cards. As you can see, I changed the greeting this time, from "Happy Birthday" to "Thanks".  Love that CTMH stamps have their design so well thought-out.

TY card #1
(donated to our local Autism Centre)

TY card
(donated to our local Autism Centre)
So there you have it~ my creations using AHSC Sketch #175!! Enjoy! 

Why not try the sketch and see what you can come up with?
We'd love to see your work, so link it up over at AHSC. The AHSC Design Team will pop by your blog to leave some love! Guidelines for entering the challenge are really simple and can be found HERE

This is a great sketch... you will love it too, so give it a go! 
Play along with us, it's fun and well worth a visit to the AHSC blog.  

Thanks for coming by today~I'd love to hear what you think of these.
See you soon!  

Monday, August 15, 2016

AHSC Sketch #173!!

There is a brand new sketch over at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge and I had such a ball with it!

I just love the "look" of pennants, and this sketch had pennants on it... **sigh**- I was so excited when I saw this one! LOL 

 SO.... here's the lovely new sketch from AHSC:

Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge
 Sketch  #173
by Michelle Stewart
(digitized by Chris Lothian) 

I decided that this sketch would be perfect to use as the jumping off point for creating a card. 

I have been making a concerted effort  to use some of my scraps and oooh, there are so many pretty ones! I even went through some of the 5x7" scrapbooking calendar sheets I had saved from 2005 (LOL!!) and chose one to use. I had them stashed in the "Rainbow" section of my Scraprack... I was flipping through, and there they were. That started my brain a-whirlin', LOL...  The background of this card is made with it. I think has a very oriental flair! 

After rummaging through my scrap bin, I found a few other pieces that would be great with that very OLD scrap! Here's what I came up with. 
 Thank You card
created with Sketch #173
I used some  of the new "Peacock" cardstock from CTMH as the base of this card. I love this colour so much... 

Additionally, I was able to add some of the brand new "Florence" sequins as embellishment. 

Along with the older paper scrap, I was happy to use some of my stash of gold Stickles as a sparkling gold touch around the greeting. The "Thank You'" made use of a very old "unknown" stamp. (I always worry that folks will think that I mis-stamped this, but I didn't-- the greeting has some texture in the form of wee spots and tiny dashes beside it when stamped.)  

I like the way this card turned out! Recently, I promised the Annapolis Valley Chapter of Autism NS, right here in our little village, that I would make them a batch of new Thank You cards. The cards will be helpful, 'cause our community partners/businesses and donors have been SO awesome in supporting our cause. So, this card will mark the start of a stash of cards for use by our Autism Centre. (Makes me happy  to be able to help. My legs may not work, but my hands and brain do, and so I am doing as much as I can --where I can-- which means HERE, from my home-base. My skill-set is useful that way... LOL!!  Helps me feel handy and a part of our Valley community.) Pete will take the cards down to the Center. :)  It's literally 4 minutes away from our home. :)   How blessed are we, the family of a child who has ASD, to have such an amazing autism resource so close by?

You know, I was thinking that this sketch could be used as part of a page layout... or even to create an embellishment for a page. 

Please come over to visit the Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge blog and  add a link to your creation. Whatever the sketch inspires is awesome to see: so what you make doesn't "have" to be a card!

We'd love to see what you dream up, so be sure to link up your creation on the AHSC page so we can all enjoy it. The AHSC Design Team will pop by your Blog to say hello and admire your work! 

I seriously LOVE AHSC sketches, so I highly recommend you check them out! See you soon! 

New Christmas Cards!

Over at Christmas Cards All Year 'Round (CCAYR), we're getting our Christmas cards all made ahead of time and sharing the results! For August, the CCAYR Challenge was to use bright summery colours in the creation of a Christmas card.  Fun idea, no?? 
Why not pop over and see what the Design Team has created this month? Some DT members have used beautiful digital stamps from the August sponsor, The Stamping Boutique... 

... while others have created cards without digital stamps. ;) 

Join in the August CCAYR Challenge with your card creation, link it up over at CCAYR and have fun-- 'cause there are two great prizes up for grabs, too- one digital and one traditional! There's still time to play along-- you have til the end of the month. 

For the August CCAYR Challenge, I had so much fun using bright summery colours for a Christmas card that I just kept going and ended up making TWO cards! LOL 

I have been trying to work through a lot of my older patterned papers, and I was sooo happy to find the pretty yellow paper from BasicGrey's 2009 Nook and Pantry collection-- it was perfect for the challenge and looked kind of "Christmas-y" at the same time with all those little dots on it. The pretty white dots reminded me of snowballs! Lord knows we know what SNOW looks like, here in Nova Scotia! LOL...OH MY, do we ever!  Also, I was thrilled to be able to use up some of my "old stash"- YAY! I'm really trying. ;)

                                                                  ~Card #1~
-CCAYR August 2016 Challenge-
Bright summery coloured Christmas card 
                                                               ~Card #2~
-CCAYR August 2016 Challenge-
Bright summery coloured Christmas card 

Lagoon cardstock: Close To My Heart (CTMH)
Cardstock used for pink snowflake embossed panel- unknown scrap
Yellow patterned paper: "Nook and Pantry" collection- BasicGrey (2009-old stash)
Embossing folder- "Snowflake Curtain": Couture Creations (2014)
Pink enamel dots: "Pink flamingo dots"- CTMH
Subway art print (Christmas words)- Simple Scrapper freebie
Lagoon water-based dye ink: CTMH
Pixie water-based dye ink: CTMH
B1361 "Tannenbaum" My Acrylix stamp set (Christmas Wishes greeting)- CTMH 
Silver snowflakes: Maritime Craft Wholesale (old stash) 
Adhesives: Tape runners by Adtech and Liquid Glass by CTMH

Please note- The round white snowflake embellie accented by the purple jewel came from a Christmas card that my sister Alexandra sent our family ages ago. I thought it was so cute that I saved it in my Scraprack's 'winter' section and have used one of the elements from it on this new handmade card.  I love to recycle and reuse!

Hope you enjoyed seeing the cards I made for the CCAYR August Challenge!
I sure had fun making them. 
Be sure to join in the Challenge- you'll find it HERE!!

Thursday, August 11, 2016


Seeing as how scrapbooking is allll about the  stories for me, I thought maybe I ought to share this Journaling Tips and Tricks article I wrote awhile back while doing some work at an online scrapbooking kit club.
Enjoy! ~ Ali

Tips and Tricks~
Gathering and Safeguarding your Journaling ideas

I’m a Mom to 4 kiddos, sometimes guilty of the “That’s so cute, I’ll NEVER forget what he said about such and such” train of thought… only to forget it a few hours later when I go to tell my husband! When I go to scrapbook that fun kiddo page, the story remains… LOST. Does this scenario sound familiar?

Never get caught this way again.

My Strategy:
Here’s the easy strategy I use to maintain a “Journaling Box” chock full of tidbits and snippets of our life as a family of six.

First, I bought a small plastic recipe box that included a set of alphabetized cardboard dividers. The box is made to hold 3x5” index cards. These can be found at office supply stores, but are far less costly at dept. stores.

Mine is super-basic and came from the Dollar Store. It has a flip-up lid that snaps shut. And—you guessed it, I also picked up a couple of packages of the lined 3x5” cards.

* Once home, I printed and added a label to the front of my box. It said “Journaling.” (Yep, seems simple, but that little label made it official!)

* I then used a white adhesive label snipped in half to cover each divider tab’s ABC lettering.

*Next, I thought about the people and things I scrapped about and jotted a list.

*Using my list, I wrote one category on the new label of each divider.

*I left 3 of my labeled dividers blank for later category additions.

A few notes about my system:
*Keeping my categories broad made filing the ideas and retrieving them easier for me. Here’s an example: Rather that filing a pet story under a dog’s name, I simply filed it under the “Pet” category. With 4 pets plus a HORSE this makes sense.  [YES.. we have a HORSE... OHMY...]

Here are are the actual categories I have listed on the dividers in my Journaling Box:

Daniel (Yes, this is our "Dan-Dan Houdini-Man" so many of you have come to KNOW and LOVE... LOL)
Reflections (ie: ‘Welcome to Holland’ essay re: parenting a child who has special needs)
Major Holidays
Everyday moments
Places Visited
Title ideas
Flowers and Garden
Kids’ jokes
Songs (titles/lyrics)
Graphics (ie: clipart, small sketched ideas)
Dairy Queen Cakes (Because the process each kid goes thru to choose their b’day cake design is a sign of their age & current trends)
3 spare/blank dividers

How to use your Journaling Box:

As funny things happen or you have a thought or tidbit to save for later use, jot it down quickly on an index card.

Use abbreviations you’re used to: this makes it faster. I’m a nurse so I use tons of abbreviations that make sense to me!

Also note any ideas for certain photos you think would be appropriate to accompany this journaling.

ALWAYS (always!!!) add a DATE to what you have written.

Then, file the card under the most representative category.

If it definitely does NOT fit into any existing category, you can make a new one using the 3 blank dividers you have at the ready.

If I am in a real hurry, I sometimes slip the new journaling idea card into the FRONT of my recipe box and file it later. (I try not to make a habit of this.)

Do what makes sense to YOU. Your categories and the way you file things will be TOTALLY different from mine. That’s OK. Be sure your Journaling Box categories fit YOUR life and the people/things YOU scrap about.

Once I use an idea from my journaling cards on a layout, I place a red checkmark next to the idea and slip the card into the “Done!” category found at the back of my recipe box. This step is necessary for me because it provides a satisfying visual recognition of the ideas I have journal-ed.

If your recipe box becomes very full, you may want to start a new one. I have done this by dividing the topics and placing half in one box and half in another. It’s much easier to leaf through the journaling idea cards this way!

I keep a few lined index cards in my purse and on my desk in the kitchen, & a small stack of them right next to my journaling box in my office/scrap room. I have also been known to use bits of scrap paper, the backs of envelopes and yes, those old faithful sticky notes to write my little journaling tidbits on. I file them that way, too, because there’s no time for recopying. Not everything is on an index card, by any means: it doesn’t have to be beautiful to be filed!

The "wrap-up!"

The main goal here is to safeguard the moments that mean something to you or to those you care about. If you find a funny tidbit written on a gum wrapper in your Journaling Box, and it contributes to a page that sparks memories for those you love, then the system worked. Bravo!!

Keep it up!
~ Ali MacDonald~

Monday, August 8, 2016

Baby pics and old stash!

Baby Lilia is just shy of 5 months old now, and this Gran'Mama has many many cute pix of her. I am trying to keep up on them all, and have organized them in "Baby Lilia" folders on my 'puter to help keep them all straight. 

Anyway, Pete and I try to order pix from Shutterfly whenever they have a print special on... and recently had an order arrive from that awesome company. 

There were CUTE pix like these in the order...

48 hrs old
 (Born March 18, 2016)
Gran'Mama and baby Lilia
 (6 days old) 

Lilia Grace Irene
6 days old
(Photo Credit: Tammy Pyette) 

Little honey badger
(May 2016)
The pics were great. I decided to send some baby pictures to my parents in NB, and to Lilia's other Grammie, who lives in a town down the road a-ways. :)  Figured these folks could all  use some happy mail! And... who doesn't like cute baby pics?
 I decided to enclose the baby pix in a card. That meant that I needed two cards, 'cause although I seemed to have many cards on hand, none "fit the bill", so to speak. LOL 

I went thru my stash and whipped up a couple of FAST cards. Here's what I came up with: 

 Card for Lilia's Grammie

Lagoon cardstock- CTMH
Poppy water-based dye ink- CTMH
Lagoon water-based dye ink- CTMH 
Scraps of patterned  paper from:
1) Hopscotch Collection (retired)- CTMH
2) Blossom Collection (retired)-  CTMH 
Chipboard lettering: Dollarama, Purchased in 2009 or 2010-- OLD STASH, YAY!
Chevron used for dotting "i"- wood veneers- CTMH (retired but still avail in my store HERE
Floral bloom from Crate Paper scrap-- OLD STASH, YAY!!
Fussy cutting done with CTMH micro-tip scissors

Then I made a card for MY parents, who are Lilia's great-grandparents. 
I took 2 photos of this card so that you could see the dimension added by the embellies. 

Pic #1: front of card for Lilia's Great Grandparents

Pic #2: side view of card showing detail/texture 
Oval doodled "family"  die cut- unknown source- OLD STASH: YAY!! 
Puffy pink hearts- from a card kit purchased @ Dollarama- OLD STASH: YAY!! 
Pink patterned paper: scrap, unknown source- OLD STASH: YAY!!
Clear sparkles- CTMH
Smoothie water-based dye ink
Smoothie cardstock- CTMH 

I was happy with these  cards, especially since they both looked eye-catching and really used up some older supplies, while combining them with a few current ones. :)  Gotta love that!! 

Oh-- and I heard from my parents-- they really loved the card and the pictures. Getting their email kinda made my day!! 

Have a GREAT Monday everyone, and thanks for popping in! 

Monday, August 1, 2016

Sketch #171 Atlantic Hearts

Over at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge, there is a great new sketch. I think it's such a useful and classic look for a card!
Have a look! 
AHSC Sketch #171
 By Michelle Stewart
(Digitized by Brandi Robinson)

I needed a card for my father-in-law's upcoming August birthday, so I thought it would be a good idea to use the sketch as inspiration. 
The only problem is that I'm not really"fond" of ovals and didn't have anything oval in my tool or template arsenal in that precise shape.
So, needless to say, I had to think a little bit about this dilemma! I went to my Scraprack searching for something I could use in place of the oval shape that would mimic the general silhouette of an oval. 
 As I finished leafing thru the sections in my Scraprack system, I  wasn't having a whole lot of luck. I started  back at the beginning again, vowing to "think outside the box" this time. It worked! Lo and behold, in the "animals" section, I found a large owl whose shape mimicked an oval!! 
Would it work? YES! It was going to be a creative solution, but yes, it definitely would work. Here's the card I created for the above sketch, using the owl rub-on I'd found.

Happy Birthday card
 based on
AHSC Sketch #171

And, here's a closeup of my "take" on the portion of the sketch that looks like a banner! I decided to cover my owl's feet with a grouping of feathers! I had the perfect stamp for it from CTMH. I fussy cut the feathers and then inked their edges to accent the details. It was a little bit hard to do, so I used a cotton swab and that made it easier. :) 

Red patt. paper- Paper Fundamentals: "Enchantment" collection from Close To My Heart (CTMH) [retired]
Kraft cardstock: CTMH
Owl image- Hambly Screen Prints rub-on (very old stash) 
Chocolate water-based dye ink- CTMH
Cocoa water-based dye ink- CTMH
"Happy Birthday" Greeting: M1144 "Bitty Birthday" My Acrylix stamp set- CTMH 
Feathers: C1584  My Acrylix stamp set- CTMH 

I'm so happy with this take on the AHSC sketch! I know an owl is very different from a classic oval, but I feel that this guy 'works'. 
Sure hope my Dad-in-law enjoys his card on Aug 11th!

Thanks for coming by to check this out. Hope to see you over at AHSC every week- they have such awesome sketches!
Chat soon!