Sunday, 29 November 2015

Documenting December on a time-crunch

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope you are having, or had, an amazing day, or evening as the case may be wherever you are! Today is a bit of a blusetery, dreary day with just a touch of frost cover everywhere.  No real snow yet though.  How about where you are?

I love December, I love Christmas and the Christmas season - always have.  So of course, as a scrapbooker/crafter, I also love to document the season.   If you are like me, you do too but somedays there is just so little time, or so little activity.  There are days where I work 10-11 hour shifts, other days where between the baking, the errands and the chores, there is so little time left.  But I certainly don't want documenting this most festive time of year to be a negotiation with myself, to become a chore - it is fun, my stress relief, my creative me-time.

Furthermore, as an empty nester, with quite a small family (but lots of pets LOL), there isn't always something going on.

Here is my little formula :

Join the December Daily Inspiration Group - Anything Goes over on  You will find a great community (we are growing by leaps and bounds), daily inspiration, fun prompts, challenges, videos and heaps of fun

Set aside 5 to 15 minutes a day to play, even on those days where time is at a premium. 

I have pre-prepared a few journaling cards, and filler cards for just those days.  Go through your pocket page type cards and select a few that match your colour scheme. You can cover up any wording that does not fit with the season.  Here are a few I made :

I decorated the cards minimally to leave lots of room for writing, or making a quick list. Keep them close to hand.

Now I have prepared a little game for us to put those  cards to good use ;) (you will find a .pdf document  in the files section of our facebook group).  It is a series of words that can be used as journaling/photo/list prompts.    Print the page, cut the words into little squares, fold them and put them in a bowl right on your work table.  Then pick one everyday or whenever you need inspiration.  The word can be used in anyway you want - as a journaling prompt, for a photo, to make a foundation page, to make an embellishment.  For instance, if you pick the word "window" .... you could

  • take a photo of one of your decorated window(s) (from the inside or the outside)
  • make a list of what you see looking out of your window that is Christmas related (there are some beautifully decorated houses in my little neighbourhood that I could describe)
  • Find a stamp in your stash that is a window scene and colour it, stamp it on a filler card, or as a background on your daily page or art journal
  • Use it more metaphorically, in the sense of "window on the world" where you journal about a tradition from a different country (your heritage maybe)

I hope you enjoy this little game.  I look forward to seeing your lovely creations over on the group.  Thanks for joining me today and  ....

Let the Christmas season begin.... you know the song "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas".... sing it !!!


Sunday, 1 November 2015

A bloomin' layout, some catch-up and a few ramblings - Happy Sunday!

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope you had a fun-filled, candy-filled and safe Halloween.  I saw the most amazing costumes as I was going though my Instagram feed yesterday.  Wow, scrapbookers are creative, and talented, on so many levels :) ...  I hope the weather cooperated for you.  It was a lovely day here, and the rain arrived only once the festivities were over. Phew!!  Today is dreary and rainy so what better day to get this blog back on track.

You may have noticed that my blog took most of the summer off LOL.  Our summers are so short here that we have to get out an play as much as possible.  I did scrapbook quite a bit though but just didn't get over here to blog about it.  If you are interested in seeing my gallery, head on over to my facebook page where I put all my layouts into albums :

I played with Shimelle's True Stories collection a lot over the summer.  I received quite a bit of it in my Scraptastic June Can't Go Home kit and then prepared my own add-on with the 6X6 paper pad, the sticker book, the wooden buttons (love them, should have bought a gazillion packs LOL).  I added some bright coloured cardstock from my stash and off I went.  I admit to being a little intimidated by the collection to start - it is so bright and the colours are almost primary.  I tend to scrap a more subdued colour scheme usually. But the True Stories collection is so fresh, summery and fun that I just had to give it a go. And I absolutely loved it!  I went through all my photos and decided to work with my photos from the Spanish portion of my backpacking trip - a great match with the collection.  Here is the latest layout made with the collection (which is one of the only ones not from my Spanish trip) :

You will notice that there is one full 6X6 sheet as a layering piece (the navy polka dot one) but the rest of the patterned paper were taken from scraps that were lying on my desk; just bits left from other layouts that needed to either be sorted and put away or used.  Making a layout is so much more fun that tidying don't you think?

i had no real plan for this page at the outset and just placed the larger pieces on the red cardstock and went from there, looking at the shapes I had and punches I could use.  I really wasn't sure about this page to start, but in the end I am happy with the outcome.  They can't all be our favourites, right?

Pretty much everything on the page is from the Shimelle True Stories collections, with few exceptions :

  • The red cardstock is from Stampin' Up 
  • The enamel dots are from Pebbles
  • I used Mini Market, and Daily Flash, alphas in addition to the True Stories thickers
  • I don't have white mist in my stash so I just water down some white acrylic paint and use a round paint brush to splatter it on.  I like the opacity of the paint
There really isn't a story to this layout.  It is a photo of some flowers that were still in full bloom on the 1st of October, after we had had a week of unseasonally cold temperatures.

So there you have it :) !  Before leaving you, let me just show you a few more layouts I made with this collection. 

Thanks for joining me today and I promise I will get back to regular postings, at least until next summer LOL.  Have a wonderful day, or evening, whereever you are.  Hugs xo

Saturday, 18 July 2015

An 8.5X11 challenge layout and a great YouTube channel for you to discover :)

Happy Saturday to all!  I am so glad you could join me for another layout share.  I know I have been MIA for the last couple of weeks; life interfered with my play time LOL. Nothing major, just extra work and finally some lovely summer weather !!!  How have you all been?  I have quite a few things to share so I just might be doing a few posts this weekend and over the next week.  But first, the most important one for today :

I want to share a layout I made for my  friend Kelly's  500 subbie YouTube challenge.  She is froggie251 on YouTube and here is the link to her channel: .  If you don't know Kelly, hop on over to her channel, sit back and enjoy.  She does some great stuff.  Kelly makes 12X12 layouts but also does Project Life.  She is a joy to watch and to listen to.  Lately, Kelly has participated in a couple of collaborations with a two other great YouTubers - one on project life (with Hannah Lemieux), where they challenged each other to use mixed media on some of their PL cards.  The other collaboration, also a mixed media challenge, is with Mari Clarke.  Mari makes an art journal page and Kelly integrates some great mixed media techniques on a 12 X 12 layout.  Such fun!

You still have time to participate in Kelly's challenge as it closes tomorrow, on the 19th so as soon as you finish reading this ;), get cracking!!!  LOL.

Here is the layout I made:

This turned out vastly different than the idea I had when I started to make the page.  Firstly, I wanted to make a 12X12 and secondly I mentioned to Kelly that I was going to try and do a mixed media background, in her honour :).  As you can clearly see, neither happened.

I did make a background on a 12X12 piece of black cardstock.  To reduce the starkness (yup it's a word in my head) of the black, I gesso'd the page.  I did add some water to make it more of a wash but obvously not enough - first booboo.  Then I used a star stencil with some texture paste, which I coloured with Italian Sunset Glimmer Mist.  I wanted to match the pale coral in my photo mat and on one of the layers.  The colour matched perfectly - yay - but in the end it was way too pale on the background.  So when I put my photo block on that background.... I hated it!!!  OK, well,  start over I thought - but hmmm, no more black 12X12 cardstock!!  So 8.5X11 it became.  I used my punches to cut some circles out of that MM piece which you can see in each of the three embellishment clusters. In the end, I do like the outcome.

The supplies:  I used my Scraptastic April Darlene main kit and add-on to make this page with very few exceptions :
  • The black cardstock and the pale coral carstock that I used to mat the photo, are both from Stampin' Up
  • The stencil is from Simon Says Stamp
  • The mint foam thickers are from my stash - they are Dear Lizzy. The black alpha thickers may be from a previous kit - gosh how I love that font :)
There is no story to tell about this photo - it is simply of my boy Chopin sleeping the afternoon away after quite the play session with Sophie !

Thanks so much for stopping by and sticking with me to end end of this post.  Thanks so much Kelly for a fun challenge and congratulations on reaching 500 subbies.  I love your channel and am sure that you will be at 1000 in no time at all.

Have a great weekend everyone.  I will be back soon.  Hugs xox


Sunday, 7 June 2015

BR (Blog response as opposed to a video response LOL) to Kitty Scrapper's TAG video

Happy Sunday my scrappy friends.  This is one of those days when I really wished I was tech savvy enough to make videos.  I have had such fun watching all your lovely responses to Nancy's TAG video!   (aka Kitty Scrapper on You Tube, if for some reason you have been under a rock or on Mars and don't know her, stop reading and head on over to her You Tube channel - you will love it - and her).  Nancy made a wonderful video last Sunday I believe, where she came up with 7 great scrappy questions which she answered for us (with a cocktail of course ... and I watched with a martini of course LOL) and then she tagged everyone to respond.  I have been watching Nancy's videos since she started making them and she is my friend so I really wanted to participate in her TAG.  So, it will be a Blog response.  But, my friends I promise that the next one will be a video... Yes, you read it here (more about that when I answer question 6 below).


So, let's get to it LOL .... before I bore you to tears, or keep you here all day ;)

Why did you start your channel (in my case blog):  It is a two-fold reason really.  I have family and friends that live far away from me (elsewhere in Canada, in Ireland, Spain and France, mainly) and they asked me to start a blog where they could see my scrapbook pages but where I could also tell the story behind the layouts.  After a false start in early 2013 (three lame posts, and then a year hiatus), I finally got it up and running in early 2014 and I would say that the real reason was to participate in this lovely community we have on YouTube and Facebook.  I wanted somewhere where I could give a little more detail about my layouts, from the supplies I used to the stories behind the layouts.  I also wanted somewhere where I could participate in all the lovely challenges that we have. And one of my very first posts was a response to one of Nancy's early challenges!

What is your scrappy style and how has it changed.  I love this question, and it got me looking back through a few albums of the week, which by the way I don't do often enough!!

Like many of you I don't know if I can easily put a word to my style - fairly clean I think, a little eclectic since I like to try new techniques that I see a lot of you doing so beautifully. Someone made me notice lately that I often do "detached embellishment clusters" as opposed to the layered style.  I also cannot make a page without wood veneer, flair and enamel dots.

Probably the best way to show my srappy evolution (LOL), is in photos.  

My first pages, after taking a class at my local LSS in 2007 :

Then I discovered Two Peas and took Shimelle's Hitchhikers class .... and many of her other classes.  Here is my Shimelle phase (see the butterflies Nancy?) : 

I still love Shimelle's style and love taking her classes.  Her style still influences my basic style (one or two photos, rules of thirds ....) but then the YouTube world exploded and so many of you started making absolutely beautiful layouts, using fun techniques and all sorts of media.  My scrappy world opened up !!!  Thank-you to each and everyone of you.  I am a total You Tube addict (I don't own a TV, my TV is process videos, with the occasional foray into the tennis watching world LOL).  Thank-you Nancy, Nicole Jones, Irit, Victoria Calvin, Hannah, Jenny Box, Lisa, Sandra, Jen Stokes, Mari Clarke, Alicia Tillman, Crystal, Jen Schow, Juliet Sherriff, InkieQuill, Suse Fish, Tanya Hubbard, Elisabetta, Gretchen, Sue, Sarah, Iliana, Sheri, Mandy, Missy, Tuesdae, Robin..... and so so many more.  I know I forgot to mention many of you ... I subscribe to about 250 channels and love them all.   

 Here are a couple of my latest layouts : 

What project have you been meaning to start :  In my case, it is more a case of projects I want to finish :

  • My backpacking trip albums 
  • My December Documented 2014 (not even close to being done with this one LOL)
And then there are a couple of projects I want to start :    A book of me, or rather documenting my life before I started scrapbooking.  That is a bit of a daunting project since I am almost 60 years old LOL .... as you can see I will have a long retirement and live to a ripe old age to finish that.  Since I am divorced, at least I won't have to do (rather redo) the wedding album ... that should save a little time ;)

What collection new, and old, would you save from your burning craft room?  Which collection, or paper, do you regret buying :

For the favourite current collection, until this morning, I would have answered Crate Paper Craft Market, but I got a few pieces from Shimelle's latest collection, True Stories, this week and absolutely fell in love.  It is brighter and bolder than my normal style, but it is so cheerful.  I think I will have such fun with it this summer.

As for an older collection, I loved the My Mind's Eye, Lost and found 3 - Oliver collection.  I was one of the first for me that used all shades of blue with a lovely golden yellow and a taupey (yes that is a shade) brown/grey.  I bought at least 2 of the 6X6 pads, and I don't really want to say how many of the enamel dot packages.  

Now, I was "talking" with Crystal, after watching her video response, and we both had the same opinion about Basic Grey's Grand Bazaar.  It is a beautiful collection, great patterns and colours BUT it is so very hard to use.  I had bought it thinking I would use it to document the few months I lived in Andalucia, Spain.  But in the end, I really could not figure out how to use it at all and wound up giving it to my great-niece, who had no qualms about cutting it up and having a grand ol time with it.  I on the other hand, felt I should just frame the paper itself LOL.

Now I am going to switch the order a bit and answer the last question :  Who would you like to collaborate with :

That is easy .... any, and all of you.  I have made such lovely scrappy friendships!  I do so enjoy participating in all of the challenges that I can (in fact, I do need to catch up on some of the fun challenges on the Victoria Marie Facebook group).  But  a few of you have already mentioend me so of course I am on board with you Hannah, you Megan ....  

Also, in the near term, I want to try and do a few tags like Jenny Box is doing on her channel recently - I love them

I would like to try my hand at a 4 X 4 album like Nancy did as well - looks like fun



Climbs off soap box and makes a martini .....

So there you have it !!!  My BR  (because I am a doinker and can't yet do a VR LOL).  Before I leave you for the day, I just want to take a moment to thank-you all so so much.  You Tube and our facebook groups are just such a lovely community, filled with great talent, creativity, respect, fun and games.  I feel blessed to be part of it.  And, even though I don't make videos yet, you have taken me into the fold.  So many lovely comments on my pages, and so many of you have mentioned me in your videos (I always feel like a little girl ... "that's me, that's me she is talking about" LOL)

Hugs to you all xoxo

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Another 12X12, another sketch for Stamping Rooster's YouTube channel

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope you are all having a great day, or had a great day!  The weather here is even crazier than usual - we had 30 deg. C yesterday, followed by severe thunderstorms and torrential rains.  This morning we woke up to 8 deg C.... oh my!  so, we still haven't been able to plant the tomatoes!  

Popping in today to share another layout for Gretchen's challenge.  In case, you missed my last post, here is the link to her awesome YouTube channel: 

I chose her Sketch number 11 this time, one that could either be used for a 12 X 12 layout, or by just moving the main photo block over to the left, it could also easily be adapted to an 8.5 X 11 format.  I made a 12 X 12 : 

and here is the sketch:

See that blue mist all over the yellow banner? ... Yup I made a huge mess!  It was all over the pink patterned paper as well - so I made another layer of that same paper, distressed it all and then inked over the edges to hide most of it.  As for the stain still showing on the yellow banner ... well there you have it LOL :)

The supplies:  All of the supplies for this one also came from my Scraptastic March Rivers and Roads kit, with very few exceptions :
  • The scalloped ribbon is from Stampin' Up in Melon Mambo
  • The "watching you" portion of the title are from my stash - they are Dear Lizzy Thickers and matched this kit so well that I used them on quite a few layouts
  • The enamel dots and shapes were from my stash
  • The mists I used were from Glimmer Mist (Patina) and Mr Huey's (Passport blue and Boss Lady)
The story:  Again, this one just captures a fun everyday moment.  The photo shows our Golden Retriever Oliver watching intently as we work in the garden.  The title comes from the fact that he is actually watching my BIL Ron (his human) a lot more than any of the garden goings on.  Just in case, Ron decided to go somewhere... Oliver is at the ready ... maybe for a  car ride, or a W-A-L-K, or playing fetch, food, or anything fun that Oliver could partake in with Ron... Because, after all, it's all about Oliver :) :) 

Thanks for stopping by and spending some time with me on the blog today.   You still have time to check out Gretchen's challenge - it closed at midnight tonight.  

Hugs, xx

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Another challenge layout (12X12) and a great YouTube channel

Happy Thursday scrappy friends!  I hope this finds you well.  I am starting a little mini vacation of four days today so that makes me very happy LOL.  I have quite a few chores I want to get done (I am in a bit of a spring cleaning frenzy, but never fear I will soon tire of that :) ). I will also spend time watching some French Open tennis matches with my mom and of course, find some quality scrappy time.

I am popping in today to share another layout I made in response to another fun You Tube challenge.  This time the challenge is a sketch challenge and it is by one of my favourite scrapbookers (yes I know, I have a lot of favourite scrapbookers LOL) on You Tube.  Here is the link to her channel : .  Gretchen makes beautiful layouts, sometimes based on sketches that she creates, and her process videos  are lovely and very detailed.  She explains so well the steps and techniques as she goes.  We often get a bonus as well - one, or more, of her kitties will come and visit during the process :) .  If you don't know The Stamping Rooster (Gretchen), pop right on over to her channel, take a break and watch a couple of her videos.  You will be so happy you did.

Gretchen and her husband are on vacation this week - in beautiful Paris; therefore she is making memories as opposed to scrapping them.  She challenged us to use one of her sketches and make a layout while she is away (you can find all of her sketches in the challenge blog post she wrote here : )

Here is my layout and the sketch I based it on (it is her sketch 27) :

This was not the sketch I had originally planned on using but the photos just begged for this one.  And I am happy with the outcome.  I am also happy that I used pink - it is not a colour I use often although I love it !

The supplies :  All of the supplies come from my March Scraptastic Rivers and Roads Kit except for :

  • the Thickers used for my title are from Dear Lizzy and I had them in my stash but since there is quite a bit of Dear Lizzy in this kit, they match beautifully and I have used them on a least two, if not three, layouts using this kit
  • the white splatters are simply watered down acrylic paint
  • the pink flower brads have been in my stash for I don't know how many years and I don't remember anything about them LOL.  It sure felt good to get them on a page though
  • The enamel dots are from my stash
The story:  For Mothers' Day this year, we decided to have a relaxed family game day at the seniors' residence where my mom lives.  It is a very large residence (3 building, 6 stories each) and therefore there are all sorts of amenities for the residents (pool, exercise room, library, cinema, bowling, billiards, darts, card room and so on ...).  Immediate family members are welcome to use all the amenities as well.    We booked a few of the rooms for different times during the day to make sure that all generations would have some fun.  We started with the bowling thinking mom would just watch.  Well, lo and behold when we got the the alleys, there was this lovely contraption (see my mom using it on the RHS picture in the layout) that allowed my mom not only to take part, but to beat the pants off all of us LOL!

So there you have it.  Thanks so much for stopping by today and spending with me on the blog.  Thank-you Gretchen for such a fun challenge.  BTW, there is still time to participate in the challenge, it is open until the end of the month (check out Gretchen's blog post and her challenge video).

See you soon!  Hugs and have a lovely day xo

Thursday, 21 May 2015

A 12 X 12 grid-style layout, a great YouTube channel and a fun challenge :)

Good morning all and happy Thursday!!!  I am so sorry that I have been neglecting you lately - life just sometimes interferes with my scrappy time, or at least my bloggy time.  I have had a lot going on lately.  Nothing dramatic, just everyday stuff with work, an elderly mom, family and so on... But I did manage to put the entire weekend aside for scrapbooking during INSD weekend and made four layouts.  I will get a post up showing them soon (next post, I promise :) ).

In the meantime, I am here today to share a layout I made in response to a fun challenge by one of my Facebook group, and YouTube, friends.  Jen Stokes is a very talented scrapper and a fellow Canadian.  If you don't know Jen, you can find her on You Tube here: 

She started making videos fairly recently - around Christmas time I think, and has already reached over 6oo subbies.  She has an awesome giveaway and challenge going on until June 1st so go on over to her channel and check it out.  Her challenge is a fun one - she asked that we create a layout that is scraplifted, or inspired by, one of her layouts - the first 15 or so that she created on her channel.  So I sat down and watched the challenge video, where she shared each of those layouts again - I made notes on the ones that I thought I would scraplift for this challenge, or the ones that inspired me for colour, or placement, or page design.  I spent a good hour doing my homework.  And then...... I scrapped something totally different LOL.  Jen's first and third layouts were grids, which I don't do very often but always like the end result.  Here is my layout, scraplifted from Jen's third YouTube process video :

The supplies:  The majority of the supplies used on this page come from my March 2015 Scraptastic kit - Rivers and Roads, but there are a few bits from olders kits and from my stash:

  • The background paper is from Dear Lizzy's Serendipity collection (One fine day) and the layering paper with the multi-coloured dots is a Scraptastic exclusive (Hooray)
  • The 4 X 4 cards that I used in two of the quadrants (to rest my title on, and for the journaling) are from the cut-apart sheet in Shimelle's first collection
  • The doilies are from an older kit, as is the bow
  • the alphas are from my stash (Simple Stories and Dear Lizzy) and so are the enamel dots (they are MME)
The story:   Well, I wouldn't really say there is a story per se to this layout.  It is more of a fun everyday moment that I captured.  My cat, Chopin, just loves it when my sister's cat Sophie comes to stay.  She was with us for about 10 days in April while my sister and BIL were away.  This layout is pretty much the story of their days together LOL ... Play, rest and repeat !!!  Oh and there is a little eating, and snuggling with me, in there too LOL.  I will have to make another page documenting those aspects.

So there you have it.  Thanks so much for joining me today.  Please leave me any comments, or questions you may have.  I love hearing from you.

Thanks Jen for such a fun challenge!  And, again, if you don't know Jen, hop on over to her YouTube channel (just follow the link above).  She is also a member of the Victoria Marie Facebook group and of the nicolejones911 group.  If you aren't a member of either of those groups, well ... get with it, LOL (said in a true Victoria voice ;) ;) 

Hugs to all xox

Sunday, 12 April 2015

A couple of layouts, one 8.5X11 and one 12X12 - both some fun everyday moments

Happy Sunday to all and thanks for stopping by my little blogworld :).  Well, it looks like we may have finally turned the corner and Spring may have actually sprung.  It rained, and rained on Friday, it was crazy windy yesterday and today we have the sun and a forecast high of 15 deg C!!!!  Wow!  It looks like we may be in the teens all week - happy dance :) :) ...

How have you been?  What has been going on in your part of the world? Or in your scraproom?.  I started using my Scraptastic February Counting Stars kit and am having lots of fun with it.  In the latter part of March, I had a cardmaking binge.  I dug out my Copics, stamped away, coloured away and then made a few simple cards.  It is so relaxing.  I will get a blogpost up about that soon.  In the meantime, I wanted to pop in a share two layouts with you today :

An 8.5X11 layout about my winter attire LOL : 

I swear I looked like that every single morning, from early January to as late as last week.  I am so done with the look.  But I do love that big wrap around scarf my great-nieces gave me for Christmas.  Our winter did start late but then was brutally cold!!!  In fact, we broke records almost daily, had the dubious honour of being the coldest place on earth a couple of times during January and had the coldest winter in the last 123 years !!!!  So to finally feel a little sunshine and warmth (well it is all relative LOL) is bliss!!

The supplies:  Everything on this page came from the kit.  I am loving the acrylic shapes we are now getting as part of the kit, as well as the exclusive pattern papers.  I made those little arrow "thingies" from a branding strip.  The only thing from my stash is the flair button which is very old!  It was part of a pack from Studio Calico.  The enamel dots may be from my stash as well.

The second layout for today is a throwback to 2006, during my backpacking trip.  I am in Paris this time, relaxing and having a fun afternoon with friends :

Paris turned out to be a little bit of a hub for me during the trip since I have great friends there and had a couple of teaching assignments throughout the year.  This was my last visit, for a week of teaching, in February 2006.  

The supplies:  Most of the product on this page comes from the Counting Stars kit but there are a few bits that were left from the previous kits - the Heidi Swapp glitter heart, the vellum "favourite moments" piece, the "lovely" sticker which comes from Shimelle's first collection.  The heart enamel dots are from my stash and the numbered strip on the side of the photo is from a branding strip.

So there you have it for today!!!  

My friends and family have been asking me create a place where they can see all of my layouts in one spot.  I have created a facebook page just for that.  You can find it here :
I have created several albums  - by Scraptastic kit, by category (cards, PL spreads, 8.5X11 layouts) and also by theme or subject.  I will be adding more subjects as I go - one for each country for instance, one for the furkiddies, the garden ....  I would love for you to stop on by and to "like" if you so feel inclined.

Have a lovely day my friends.  Talk to you soon!  Hugs xox

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Kill a kit, an 8.5 X 11 travel layout and a final moan and groan about winter ;)

Happy Sunday to you all!  I hope you are having a lovely one.  I am staying indoors today - really this winter is just dragging on and it is really time for it to just go away LOL. Yesterday, we were around the freezing mark and had a precipitation cocktail - snow, freezing rain, rain and wind (let's not forget wind!!).  This morning??  it is beautifully sunny (yay) and .... wait for it .... minus a gazillion!  Ok, well that may be a slight exaggeration, but it is minus 16 deg C ... #sodonewithwinter. On the upside, I am staying in my pyjamas, watching tennis and scrapping ALL day :).

I wanted to pop in and share the last layout made with the January mega kit I put together from the Scraptastic October and January kits and add-ons, as well a little bits from my stash.  I got 21 layouts out of that kit and I think I did it justice.  Here is the paper I have left:  

I added that piece of Shimelle pattern paper to my February kit and put the cardstock back into my stash.  As far as the embellishments go, I had just a few bits left and they all coordinate quite will with the February Counting Stars kit so I just added them in there :).

So on to the layout :

I really am enjoying the 8.5 X 11 format lately and, if you recall  my goals for this year, I wanted to make at least one a month.  Well that is one goal I have shattered - I have made 6 so far this year.  This one is not my favourite - it was a lot nicer in my head LOL, but it's done and in the book: 

I almost forgot about this page.  As I was sorting through the bits and bobs left in my kit, I came across a mini page kit I had put together to scrap this photo!!  I tried to channel my inner Tracy (mercytiara) and Jenny (jenny  box) and layered quite heavily behind the photo.  I also popped up some of the layers, in some corners.  It is hard to see on the photo but that is one aspect of this layout that I like.  

The supplies: Every thing on this layout came from the mega kit with very few exceptions.  The yellow letter stickers for the word "buddy" in the title are from Chickaniddy (Scrumptious), and were left over from a previous kit.  The puffy stickers are from my stash (they are "Oh what fun" from Evalicious).  I love puffy stickers, they are my new addiction in the making :),

The story:  The Berlin Buddy Bears are an integral part of Berlin's cityscape and these lovely, colourful and whimsical sculptures can be found all over the City.  They started as an artistic event in 2001.  The goal was to bring art into the streets of Berlin and since the bear is the city's heraldic animal, it was chosen.  In June of that same year, there were over 100 of these sculptures all over the city.  They are quite the tourist attraction.  They now also travel the world on exhibition.

Well, there you have it.  One lovely kit done and another waiting in the wings.  I am so lucky.  Thanks for visiting with me today!! I hope you get some scrappy time today.  Hugs and I will be back soon with the first couple of layouts from the February Counting Stars kit. xo 

Saturday, 7 March 2015

12 X 12 layout - New bed (by Oliver, our Golden Retriever LOL) and a couple of extra photos

Hi all and welcome back to my blog.  Thanks so much for stopping by.  I hope you are having a fabulous weekend.  The weatherman has told us that we might actually reach 0 deg. C tomorrow... finally.  It stayed in the minus teens all week but that is still a lot better than we had had since New Year's day.  I "retired" my ski pants last Wednesday LOL.  We have had the coldest winter in well over 100 years, a dubious honour I could have done without.

Back to a 12 X 12 layout today, and another one about our puppy Oliver: 

Don't you just love that paw hanging out the side of the bed.  LOL ... That is one deep sleeping puppy.  If you follow my instagram account (mooreilly), this was the second of two photos (just the photo, no layout :) ) I posted on Valentine's day weekend.  

The first photo was of Oliver with quite the scowl - he is normally a very smily puppy, but at minus 30 degrees, even he wanted to go back indoors :

The caption read : "OK human, I've done my business - get me the heck back indoors; it's minus a gazillion out here!" He really does look annoyed don't you think LOL. Unfortunately the photo quality is not great.  I will put it in my February pocketed page but did not make a layout with this photo.  

The caption with the photo that I did scrap was :  "Good human!  this is more like it!"  LOL

About the layout:   

  • I have been enjoying pops of black on my layouts lately.  That is quite new to me, as it is not a colour I used at all.  In fact, I did not own any black cardstock but will remedy that fact soon :).  I find it adds depth to my pages and makes the other, brighter colours pop even more.
  • I have been using die-cuts, stickers, or vellum pieces on the last two or three layouts as part of the title, as a sub-title, or in this case, as the journaling.  I am getting along so much better lately with vellum and this pack of Maggie Holmes die-cuts pieces is pretty much done and dusted.  Yay !!
  • Everything on this page comes from my mega-kit, put together from the October and January Scraptastic kits and add-ons.  The exception are few :  the arrow washi tape is from my stash and I also pulled some Studio Calico Wood veneer from my stash.
  • I had a piece of the "crimped" pattern paper left from my previous layout and tucked it in under the photo block.
  • I did not do any misting, or splattering on this layout.  It called for black India Ink but I don't have any LOL.  Simple misting would not do  so I chose to just leave it for now.  As soon as I buy some India Ink, I will go back and add a couple of splatters.
Well, there you have it - another puppy layout.  I could watch Oliver, or one of kitties, sleeping all day.  It is so relaxing!!!

I hope you have some fun this weekend, doing what makes you happy with someone who makes you happy!!  Hugs

Thursday, 19 February 2015

An 8.5 X 11 layout, a great you tube channel and a fun challenge !!

Happy Thursday scrappy friends!  We have a "heatwave" LOL ... the temperature is minus 10 deg C today but that brought a little snow, just enough to mess up the rush hour this morning but I have the day off so woot woot!

I made my second ever 8.5 X 11 layout and I must say I am really starting to like this format.  Once I got the proportions sorted, it became quite easy and I love the result. This size of layout, and this particular page,  are totally inspired by one of my favourite scrapbookers - Rory Vaillancourt.  She is on you tube as "Kateroar" and is also a member of the Scraptastic Design Team.  Rory is immensely talented and makes lovely layouts and great videos. Her voice is so soothing and relaxing as well LOL.  She is also quite active on our various facebook groups.  If you don't know her, head right on over to You Tube.  As a double bonus, she is hosting a challenge right now.  The requirements are super easy - be a subbie, make a layout and link to it in the comments section of her challenge video. The prize is totally awesome as well !!!

This layout is really a scraplift, not of a specific layout of Rory's but rather more generally of her style, design and some of the techniques she uses often.  I used a monochromatic colour scheme.  The banner under the photo was given texture by using my crimper (gosh I don't even know when I last used it!!) and then distressing, and inking the edges.  I used some vellum behind the photo and then some fun foam to pop both the vellum and the photo up.  All "Rory techniques" LOL.

Here it is : 

The story behind this layout is very simple really.  The journaling says it all:  "My day is always brighter when I meet a kitty or puppy along the way!"

The supplies come entirely from the mega kit I put together using my January Scraptastic kit along with the leftovers from the October main and add-on, as well as the TLN kit.

I must say that I am really happy with this layout - it is one of my favourites so far this year.  

Thanks for the inspiration and motivation Rory.  And of course, a big thanks to all of you who take the time to read my blog, like and comment on my layouts whether it be here, on instagram (mooreilly), or on our various facebook groups.  I am so very lucky to be part of this fantastic community. 


Sunday, 15 February 2015

12 X 12 Travel layout (11/150-2015) - Canal Love (Venice)

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope you had, are having or will have a wonderful day depending on where in the world you are - I hope you are warm, or cool, as the case may be LOL.  As for us, here in Quebec, Canada, we are still in the deep freeze.  It is the coldest winter in over 20 years according to the experts.  On Friday, the maximum for the day was minus 23 deg C!!! Hmmmm 'nuff said. 

I wanted to pop in today with my final layout for the portion of my trip that I spent in Venice.  This one is aptly called "Canal Love".  It is also for a challenge over on the Victoria Marie Facebook Group.  If you are not a member of the group yet, head on over there; it is a really fun place to be.  A great group of scrappers, tons of inspiration and motivation,  fun challenges and well Victoria is just a hoot and more - her posts crack me up!! 

I love Canal cities and towns - they are so beautiful and lovely to walk around.  I spent 2 or 3 days just walking around Venice; discovering almost every corner.  I also enjoy going off the beaten track so I deliberately allowed myself to get lost and wind up in residential areas where peoples' boats were tied up outside their door.  I don't have great balance when it comes to standing in moving vehicles (of any kind), or vehicles that are not on a firm footing, or ground LOL.  So I would probably wind up in the water as often as I would go through the entrance if I lived there LOL.   There is something so very calming about strolling around canal streets.  I do hope to get back there one day.  If you have been to Venice, I would love to see any pages you might have made and read about your discoveries, likes and dislikes!

The supplies are entirely from the "mega" kit I prepared from the January Scraptastic kit and add-on (This must be the place), together with the October TLN kit and the October main and add-on (Heart It Races).  

The only items I added from my stash are the enamel dots and black gems (the latter are from BoBunny). 

This was the 11th layout I made with this kit.  I have made two more layouts since and still have enough for about 4 more.  With scraps, I might even it make it to 20 !!

So there you have, a quick visit today, with the ramblings somewhat in check LOL.  Thanks for being here :) Have a great scrappy day and I will be back with another page, and post, on Thursday. 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

12 X 12 Travel layout using Scraptastic kits and a little story :)

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope you are having, or had, an amazing day, or evening!  Hope that cover everyone LOL.  We are still in the deep-freeze in Quebec, Canada.  Our winter started quite late but it has been so so very cold since the first of the year.  We are setting records often and actually had the dubious honour of being the coldest place on earth on Thursday, January 8th!!!  The themometer seems to be stuck in the minus 20's C. I have become a master of layers, but the upside is that it is too cold to snow so we are having a very easy winter from that point of view.

I have gone back to making a few travel pages to try and stay warm LOL, so today we are revisiting Innsbruck, the capital of the Tyrol region in western Austria.  I visited  in the summer mind!  

I originally started this page with the intention of following a sketch for the weekend challenge over on the Victoria Marie Facebook Group.  But in the end, this page took on a life of its own and in no way, shape or form resembles the sketch I had chosen - absolutely nothing except for the double matting of the photo.  So back to the grindstone on that challenge !!!  But I really love how this page turned out; it is one of my favourites this month.

The product:  After finishing all my Christmas presents, I had used bits from the September, October and November Scraptastic kits but still had lots left over.  I made quite an attempt at killing the September one but then the January "This must be the Place" kit arrived and it was love at first sight.  Not wanting to leave October's kit behind (it is so beautiful), I created a mega-kit for this month - it consists of the remainder of the October Heart It races kit and add-on, the October TLN kit and January's kit and add-on)  I hope to get 20 or more layout from this mega kit and am loving it.  Those two months complement each so much that half the time I really don't know  what comes from which. Therefore, I have not really added much from my own stash.  In this case, all the supplies come from my mega kit with the just a couple of exceptions :

  • The background paper is from Stampin' Up in Basic Grey with vanilla polka dots
  • I used a few brads from my stash, as well as enamel dots and shapes.
I am getting a lot more comfortable using vellum and just love the effect on this page.

The story:  I visited Innsbruck and Igles fairly early on in the one-year sabbatical trip - in August of 2005.  It is so beautiful!  When we arrived, there was big convention in town so hardly a room to be found.  The tourist office eventually found us a lovely pensione, at quite an altitude and  at quite an uphill trek LOL.  This particular pensione was actually closed but the landlady (then in her late seventies, early eighties I think) still lived there with her daughter, grand-children, two dogs and three cats.  Every once in a while they would take in tourists, as long as it was for a week or more, and as long as it was not a group!.  Well, what a gem of a find.  The landlady was just so lovely as well.  She did not speak English, nor French and my German is more than atrocious but we still managed to communicate.  I spent a couple of evenings watching her sew and do the most lovely needle work I have every seen - embroidered table cloths, sheets and pillow cases that were stunning.  My room was amazingly comfortable and breakfast each morning a real treat.  There was also a lovely terrasse - the photo in the picture is the view I had sitting on that terrasse while sipping a glass of wine, or drinking coffee.  As the journaling says : "Priceless".  Unfortunately, that lovely lady would not allow her picture to be taken - she felt she was too old and no longer photo worth --- what a shame, as she was quite lovely.  It was obvious from the photos in the dining room that the pensione had once been THE place to be - there were photos of a much younger her and her husband in the pensione, or on the ski slopes,  with many celebrities, Olympic althletes and politicians.  One of the most beautiful two weeks of my trip (and such a getting into shape two weeks too LOL, lots of hiking which I loved).

So there you have, you have made it to the end of another of my long and winding blog posts - thanks so much !!  I will be back soon to report on how I made out with my goals for January.  Until then stay warm, or cool, as the case may be!  Cheers xo

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

A couple of layouts, 2015 scrappy goals and just a little rambling LOL

Well hello there and happy Wednesday!!!  Finally, you say?  Of course, you would be right LOL... so happy happy New Year as well.  May I take a minute to wish you and yours a fantastic 2015 filled with health, happiness, fun, giggles and lots of scrappy time, or reading time, or gardening time ... or whatever floats your boat!!!

As many of you already know, I have a grueling work schedule from mid-December to mid-January - Christmas and New Year's is our busiest time of the year.  So no posting.  But I did quite a bit of scrapbooking anyway - often in 15 or 20 minute increments when I got home, or just before bed.  It is my sanity-saver and I also make a lot of Christmas presents.  I won't go back and post any of those layouts since I pretty much put them up on our various Facebook pages so you have probably seen them.  I was also honoured to be asked to be the Scraptastic member spotlight for December (see their blog on the 31st of December).

The main point to today's blog post is to set out my scrappy goals for 2015, explain them a little, challenge myself (and you if you so choose LOL) to stretch my creative limits a bit, to think outside the box and generally to have lots of fun this year in my scrap room (I know, I know some people are under the impression that it's my dining room - go figure!!!).

But, just before I get to that main point, here are a couple of my most recent layouts :

On to the goals :

The numbers :  I want to make 150 layouts this year, which translates to a little over 12 per month.  But, since I mentioned that I wanted to stretch my creative limits a little this year, they won't all be 12 X 12.  Within that 150, I want to make:

  • At least 12 pocketed page 12 X 12 layouts as inserts into my normal 12 X 12 album.  I am not ready to jump on the "Project Life" bandwagon just yet, and frankly I don't think I have enough going on in my life to warrant it LOL, but I do want to get at least one spread a month done to document some of the everyday, but in particular what I read, the tennis I watch, the netflix movies or series I watch... None of these warrant 12X12 pages but I want them documented.
  • I also want to try my hand at some 8½ X 11 pages, at least one a month.  Rory Vaillancourt, one of the Scraptastic DT members (kateroar on YouTube) scraps mainly in that format; her layouts, and videos, are awesome and inspiring. 
I also want to make 50 cards; my card stash is dwindling.  And, what better way to clean up the scraps after creating a page LOL

The product:  As you know, I joined Scraptastic last May and I love, love, love it!!!  I tried many ways of using the kit for the first few months and bought sometimes only a main, sometimes a main with a few extra bits, sometimes a main plus the add-on.  I sometimes added from my stash, other times not.  In late summer, I found the formula that worked for me (I did blog about it  here : ).  My strategy for this year is :

  • I will buy a main kit plus an add-on every month, with the occasional additional flair, wood veneer, or the new acrylics.  I will also prepare a small add-on from my stash and then I will scrap away.  That brings me to 
My budget:  Yes, I do have to talk about it LOL !!!  My challenge to myself for the entire year is to not buy anything other than what I mentioned above. I have a stash the size of a small store and need to use it.  The exception of course will be basic tools, like adhesives, trimmer blades etc... and I will treat myself to  a birthday haul in October.

The combination Scraptastic kit, add-on and my stash is a winning one for me.  The other thing I love about getting a kit is that I do get my "new product fix"!  I am not as tempted to watch haul videos, new collection videos etc... because I know I will get lots of the great new goodies out there.  I will also get some really fun exclusives.

The kit is nicely coordinated so pulling product is so much easier.  The end result is that I have never scrapped as much as I do with the kit subscriptions.

Another big factor in my increased productivity and fun is:

My inspiration:  I am quite active on a couple of awesome, awesome, awesome (did I say awesome) facebook groups; mainly:
  • nicolejones911
  • victoria marie facebook group
  • scraptastic member forum
These groups are amazing, full of talented, creative and fun scrapbookers sharing their layouts, their inspiration, their techniques, tips & tricks.  We encourage each other, we challenge each other, we have an amazingly fun time!!!

I am also an avid process video watcher and that community is the best as well.  It has grown leaps and bounds this year and there are so many talented scrappers showing us beautiful pages (I really wanted to post a top ten of that for you here, but when I reached top 30 and realised the list was not done; I decided against it LOL).  So hop on over to the FB groups and you will find that most You Tubers let us know on the group when they have posted a video.  There are new ones every day !!!

And finally, I want to increase my participation in challenges this year.  So my goals for that are :
  • Do the nicolejones911 challenge every month
  • Do at least one of the Victora Marie FB group challenges every week (if I can do both, yay me)
  • do as many of the challenges run by my friends Ronisuescrapper, Megan and Jennifer as I can (at least two a month)
  • participate in as many of the challenges as I can  issued by my favourite You Tubers
  • Do the sketch challenge and the Pinterest challenge posted on the Scraptastic blog, as a minimum from their blog.
So there you have it - my 2015 Scrappy plan!!!  I did not make the goal of short blog posts because that, of course, would be a monumental fail.  Like always, thanks so much for sticking with me.  I hope to post every Thursday this year and one day on the weekend about twice a month (so six blog posts per month is the goal!!! :) :)

Have a wonderful scrappy week!!!  Check out the FB groups mentioned above, go have fun on You Tube ... join us!!!