Friday, December 20, 2013

Making Project Life Work For Me - Digitally

I have been playing around with a modified version of Project Life for my scrapbooks for a little while now, and thought I would share with you a bit of my experience.
When I first started it, I decided to buy several different page protector layouts and give it a try with prints and journal cards. I love it! It is so easy for me, and you can read about that here.
I had heard of people doing digital scrapbooking, and Digital Project Life, but didn't really think it would be my thing. Honestly, I didn't think I could get the hang of it. 

 photo 6257e919-7ad1-486f-9f23-599270f5c590_zps74ae6099.jpg
{A layout I created using PicMonkey}


{OK, I am working on another PL/Scrapbooking post. I'm not going to leave you hanging. I just haven't scrapbooked in a bit}

Last weekend, my sis-in-law Brittany celebrated her 18th Birthday! WooHoo!
And of course, there was a party to celebrate, complete with family, food, and presents.

And, a cake.
Brittany happens to love all things Hobbit and LOTR. 
So, of course, a Hobbit cake was in order.
And, of course, I massively over-thought this and created quite the idea of a cake in my mind.
A Hobbit hole, chocolate tree forest, and of course The Lonely Mountain! 

Yup! Looks like a cake glacier coming to eat another cake blob.
So after some mangling of it by my husband, and the realization that I am not Buddy from Cake Boss (and that our cake would have to be tripled in size), we went with a Hobbit hole and the country side, with the Happy Birthday message written in Khuzdul, the language of the Dwarves.  

It was also tie-dyed inside :)

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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Hello December

Hello blog readers,
I did not forget about you, or the posts I have been 'working' on ...
I've just been busy. With life and what not.
We celebrated Thanksgiving, did some holiday shopping, just celebrated my husband's birthday, and are celebrating my sis-in-law's birthday this coming weekend. Plus getting ready for Christmas. Yesh!

I leave you with a cute picture to enjoy:
My cute kid, eating 'Kwunchy Unyins' from the can.
He took the can from the food table and sat down with it.
He loves those things!

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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Wreath

I know everyone is busy getting ready for the holidays, us too. I wanted to share an easy little craft for Thanksgiving, the Turkey Day Turkey Wreath.

It's really easy to make: Wreath form, colorful foam or felt, googley eyes, curling ribbon, hot glue ...

Making Project Life Work For Me - What I Do

~Disclaimer : I am not affiliated with, or compensated by, any of the brands mentioned, or links provided. I am just providing my 'review' of the products, and links to help you find them. ~

{One of the traditional 12" scrapbook page layouts I've done}
I was a traditional scrapbooker. {Scrapbook page maker? Layer-outer?}
Anyway, I would spend hours laying out a page of a few photos, shop for stickers and embellishments for my pages, and design a really great page or two. Then my brain would be tired, and I wouldn't know what else to do with the rest of the pictures. So then I would have a stack of photos, some random embellishments, and no patience to keep going. Or I would just feel overwhelmed in the planning stage, and give up there.
I do have a life, scrapbooking should be fun and enjoyable, and not feel like a chore, ya know?  
So, I started looking for ways to make it easier for me.
I actually just started looking for photo sleeves to hold additional 4x6 pictures that I wanted in my album, but didn't really need to do another full page layout for, I could just put them in a sleeve to accompany a nice layout . In my search I discovered Project Life, and other companies with very similar products, and thought that would work really nicely for me, my albums, and my busy life. I could scrapbook as I got the time (and ink or free print offers), and make it as simple or detailed as I wanted. Plus, I could easily use it to enhance my albums, instead of following the actual 'Project Life weekly/monthly plan'.

{If you missed my first post, What Is Project Life, click here.}

All you need is an album (12"), photo sleeves, photos & mommentos, and journal cards/core kit.
If you do digital scrapbooking, you'll need an album & 12" sleeves, photos and digital cards/embellishments, and Photoshop.

{I mainly do the 'traditional' route, but have just started playing around with some of the digital stuff...}

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thursday, November 21, 2013

So Many Silhouette Giveaways!

CAMEO with Portrait

Y'all, there are so many giveaways going on right now for the Silhouette Cameo!
And some other good giveaways going on too, I just entered 2 from We R Memory Keepers this morning.
As I find Cameo giveaways, I will update the list.
(I saw a blog post this morning that there were over 20 going on right now...)

Tatertots and Jello

Ginger Snap Crafts
Follow We R Memory Keepers on facebook for their giveaways!
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Monday, November 18, 2013

Making Project Life Work For Me - What is Project Life??

Good Question.
I had no idea until a few months ago, when I saw a blog mention it, then set out to see what it was all about.
Apparently it's been around for a while, I'm just late to the game, like usual.
It started as a way to make traditional scrapbooking easier for busy moms/people, but now has a digital line as well. This means no matter which way you scrapbook, Project Life could work for you. They even have a partnership with Shutterfly to allow you to design a book and have it printed, with a lot of the work already done for you.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

November Photo Challenge

I'm sure everyone has seen some version of these going around:

This is from one of the blogs I check-out, and it seems like it would be kinda fun.
I actually think it would make for a neat add-in to our family scrapbook for the month.
Some prints to capture the month as a whole, not just us and what we've been doing. 
I'm behind on it, so I'll be trying to catch up a bit (I'd like to have all 30 days...) - but feel free to join in anytime. Don't have instagram, that's ok with me - share a link to your blog or online photo album for this month! I'd love to see what everyone comes up with. I'll be publishing mine over on Instagram, and will follow up with a November collage at the end of the month.
(If you're using Instagram, remember to #captureaday. I'll also be using #aeipc) 

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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Theme Update

I've been updating a few things around the blog (and my other sites), including the color scheme. 
What do you think??? 

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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Easy Apple Turnovers

Let me start by saying there are easily a million different 'recipes' for this.
I, in no way, made this up.
I'm sure I saw it in one of my cookbooks, or on pinterest, and the idea stuck in my mind ... 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Printable Flash Cards - ABC & Shapes

We have been working on our colors and animals over here, and the other evening the little guy started talking about circles and hearts. So ... I decided we needed some new flash cards to work on: shapes, and our ABC's. I'm not sure he's excited to use them, but I am! 

You can find the printable cards {here}
The shapes are sized for 4x6" cards, the alphabet cards are 3x4" - so 2 will print on a 4x6" card. 
There are a few options for each - shapes in black or colors, outlined or full shape; and the alphabet in 3 different color schemes. The editable .ppt files are in the powerpoint folder. 

(I'd share some pictures of the cards in use ...
but our printer is out of ink, and I'm too lazy to replace it right now) 

**For Personal / Classroom use only.**

Friday, October 4, 2013

Recent Coupon Deals (August & September)

I'm way behind on my coupon deals, sorry.
I had hoped to be able to do a post each "trip", but since I usually only go 'couponing' every 2 weeks ...
Maybe I'll just do a monthly catch-up on the deals I've been able to get. 
Look for that in October!
(This post is a bit pic heavy, from me catching up)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Labor Day Staycation - part 2

This year we decided to try something new, a staycation during the week my husband took off work.
{It was Labor Day week. I try not to pre-broadcast our plans too much, you know, burglars and all....}
Now, we've stayed home before, that's nothing new - but we just stayed home.
This time we decided to do some more local day trips, and a little overnight getaway, nothing too big or expensive. And nothing too overwhelming for an 1 and a half year old. 

Here's part 2:
Read part 1 {here}

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Labor Day Staycation - part 1

This year we decided to try something new, a staycation during the week my husband took off work.
{It was Labor Day week. I try not to pre-broadcast our plans too much, you know, burglars and all....}
Now, we've stayed home before, that's nothing new - but we just stayed home.
This time we decided to do some more local day trips, and a little overnight getaway, nothing too big or expensive. And nothing too overwhelming for an 1 and a half year old. 

Here's part 1: 

Friday, August 9, 2013

Tie-Dye Day, round 2.

So you may remember we did a tie-dye day last week.
I didn't forget about the follow-up post ....
Just forgot to get pictures of the shirts after I washed them.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Coupon Deals at Target!

A few days ago I posted a little teaser over on facebook about the savings I had just scored using coupons -
almost $60, and 2 $5 gift cards at Target! 

I like to make a fun game out of couponing, to save us money, but I don't really try to "stock-up" on items we don't need or will never use.
(Ok, unless it's free. And there is a possibility of us using it)
TLC had that extreme couponers show - I am no where near that!
No coupon binder over here, just a little organized "file envelope" I carry. 

Anyway, my husband was quite impressed by my big savings, and additional gift card snags. 
We needed printer ink, diapers and groceries; so a big variety and some big price items. 

Tie dye day, again!

Today we have a fun craft planned at my house, tie-dye! 
So, while I am busy with that today, I wanted to give you a look back at our tie dye day from 2 years ago (almost to the day...weird). Look for a follow-up post from today soon. 

The tie-dye shirts:

And the cupcakes:

(Ps- posting from the iPad = not ideal, so sorry for any formatting issues there may be) 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Bookshelf to Play Kitchen

Many, many months ago I decided to turn an old bookshelf we weren't using into a play kitchen for my little guy. Since he's only 1, I wanted something that was his size to play at, and something I could easily re-purpose in the future as well. 

Friday, June 28, 2013

Southwest Salad

One of my favorite summer dishes is Southwest Salad. 
Heck, I make it year round, we just tend to eat salads more in the warmer months. 
For us, it is inspired by our love of restaurants like Chipotle and Qdoba.
{My husband goes for the ginormous burritos, I opt for a massive salad.}
So, this is a way for us to fill that desire, while staying home, and on budget.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A Weekend Getaway

Back in the beginning of May my husband called me from work with an idea -
Let's go somewhere. 
Tomorrow, and the rest of the weekend.
Or, maybe tonight. 

Rough June

June (and May) has been a rough month here for us.
After our weekend trip (upcoming post) we came home to deal with life, heartache and sadness.

We lost my husband's grandmother, Nanny.

My Great-Uncle George,

and my Great-Grandmother, Grams.

I also celebrated my birthday in that mix (Family nights the evening before, Funerals the day of, and loosing Grams the day after), and my own sadness as well. 

To bring ourselves up, we celebrated life,
my Sis-in-law's Graduation,

And Father's Day.

Daddy, Grand-daddy, Baby J, and Papa.

A good end to a rough month. 
Hopefully it will stay that way.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Anniversary ... to us

So, a month ago (yup) my husband and I celebrated our 4 year anniversary.
(Again, yup)
4 years!
In the last 4 years we've accomplished quite a bit, too:
My husband has had really good jobs,
I was teaching, then able to be a housewife after we married,
We rented a home for 2 years while we saved money -
Then were able to buy our first house,
We also started a family,
And bought a new car.

So, to celebrate our 4 year anniversary we enlisted the help of babysitter Grandma & Auntie B,
had a nice dinner at Outback Steakhouse, and did some shopping.
Hubs ordered himself his gift ahead of time (a personal protection item to add to his collection)
and for me:

iPad mini.
White, 64 GB.

I'm spoiled, I know.
Although, technically it's a 'family' purchase.
It's just mine.
Hubs has a Kindle. And I'm not about to let a toddler play with it.

I debated the Kindle Fire, and the iPad -
iPad won.
I wanted something that could work with my computer, but not replace it, yet still give me some of the same functionality. The Kindle was just a bit too restricted for me. But a good 2nd choice (And very worth the price for its functionality. They both are).

But I love the iPad. I use it for pretty much everything throughout the day.
Since I basically just check my email, facebook and ebay/amazon.
So far I learn something new everyday still.
(I just figured out making folders on it)
I still haven't figured out how do my blog posts on it yet, I can't load pictures into the posts.
And it's nice not using my laptop all the time, since it goes slow, locks up, overheats, and the battery dies after 30 minutes.

I think I like my husband, I'll keep him for a bit longer :-D

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Spring ... Cleaning ...

Spring is hitting us full-force,
and where I live, that means crazy allergies. 

But, it's also time for Spring Cleaning. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

It's Spring!!!

Ok, so technically it became spring almost a month ago, but it's finally getting gorgeous outside, and yesterday I went outside to find this:

My tulips are finally blooming! 
This morning the yellow one had opened, and a few more are starting to open.
And my lilac bushes have leaves! Little green leaves! 
It will still be a few years before they actually bloom, but they are getting there. 
I'm loving it. 
It was 92 outside today, according to my car!!! 
That's summer weather!

And of course we've been playing outside, taking advantage of the nice weather. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

We love freebies!

I have a confession : I have a love for free things! 
Free - the perfect price to pay for things. 
I always sign up for free samples : beauty, household, food & drink, even paint!
Yes, I've received free paint.

I was quite happy over the weekend when my P&G sample pack arrived.
Coupons and samples of shampoo, conditioner, laundry detergent, fabric softener, and more ...
I got giddy when I received the Target Beauty Bags.
The little free things that excite me.

So yesterday I got quite excited when a big white envelope was stuffed in our mailbox.
YAY, finally!
My free lunchbag.

Since we eat a lot of lean cuisine meals (they make great lunches), I joined their rewards program.
Get free stuff for eating, sounds like my kinda rewards.
Anyway, you get codes from the meals, add them to your account online, and receive points to redeem for goodies. And from Jan-March, they have a bonus program to get a free lunch bag. Sweet!
So, I got us a free lunch bag, and I've been banking my points to use for something good (they are adding gift cards...). And it's a pretty roomy bag too. 

Here are a few of my favorite freebie/rewards sites:

Friday, March 8, 2013

We Survived ... the Snowquester!

We got slammed by a snowstorm!
We ended up with about 10" or so of snow, and no power for 2 days.
So we loaded up what we could into our truck, crammed in a car seat and us and some overnight bags, and drove to my in-laws to stay warm (since they have a kerosene heater, and little kids need heat). My in-laws live 1.5 miles away from us, however, due to all the snow and wind there were trees and power lines/poles down all over, which led to us needing to take the 'long way' over to their house - a 16 mile trip took us not quite an hour and a half. We also got to drive under a fallen tree.
Luckily the snow stopped later in the afternoon, and we were able to get back out in the truck to bring some take-out home for dinner, Chinese, Yum!
Chinese food has never tasted so good.
And we got power back Thursday evening, so we were able to come home and relax.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Easy-Peasy {Lemon Squeezy} Tutu tutorial

Finally, a craft project!!
And it's an easy one.
And a fairly cheap one, too. 

No sewing involved. Under $10. Takes about 1 hour each.
My kind of momma craft.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

14 Days of Love Challenge

Crafty Wife is hosting a 14 Days of L-O-V-E Challenge.
February 1st-14th (Valentines Day ...)
14 days of showing your special someone how much you love and care. 
You can view her post here:

And grab a button, too. 

Honestly, at first I thought 'oh, what a sweet idea.' and that was about it.
But now I'm telling myself, I need to do this.
It's too easy for me to take for granted what all my husband does for our family.
Too often I find myself nitpicking things, and being cranky by the time he gets home in the evenings.
I need to take the time to be kinder to him.
Show him some love.

{Need some ideas? : 30 Day Marriage Challenge could have some helpful thoughts }

Check back to this post, I'll be updating as we go. 
{And, Crafty Wife has been planning for weeks. I'm flying by the seat of my pants here people. It will be fun to see what we come up with. }

Day 1:

I made my man some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.

Day 2:

A nice breakfast : Egg bread (his favorite) and bacon, with a cute little note.

Day 3:

{No picture...}
We had a 'guys day'.
 He went to some of his favorite stores, did some of his favorite things, and we had burritos from Qdoba, one of his favorite places.

Day 4:

The Mr. stayed home from work today, not feeling well, so I just let him lay around and rest all day.

Day 5 & 6:

I'm nuts for you, and I'm sticking with you.
2 little treats for his lunch.

Day 7 :

You make my heart melt.
Today I made him some heart shaped chocolate chip muffins, with Hershey kisses in the middle.
Not that chocolate chip is his favorite, but, hey, ya gotta go with what you have.

Day 8:

I made him some mp3 CDs for him to listen to in his car on the way to/from work.
I also took his car to get inspected today - so he didn't get to use them. lol.

Day 9:

Ok, totally fell off the wagon today, sorta.
We did get to just relax and spend time together as a family, which was nice.
{On a side note - I tried to be good and exercise yesterday, which was a bad idea. Because it hurts to use my legs now ... Which is why I'm not doing diddly squat. Or squats for the next, like, ever ...}

I'm going grocery shopping next week, hopefully I'll come up with some better ideas before then. And an idea of something to give him for V-day.

Day 10:

Homemade Vanilla Doughnuts and Bacon.
My husband said they tasted like sponge cake, so he kept calling them spongenuts.

Day 11:

Orange you glad we're together.
I gave him some orange slices.

Day 12:

{My day went about 1% to plan ... next day ...}

Day 13:

Blueberry muffins. John's favorite!
He has been asking for blueberry muffins for a while now,
so I finally remembered to get the mix to make him some.
And they are delicious. And jumbo size.

We also had chicken quesadillas/tacos, one of his favorite foods.
I was trying to make up for my lack of a day 12.

Day 14 Plans -

I'm planning to make a homemade lasagna and some berry cobbler or red velvet cake for dessert (all things John loves). He has to work late this evening, and so I told him we could just stay in, and have a date night some other time.  Showing love shouldn't just happen one day a year, it should happen every day, so we can have a special dinner whenever... or a lunch date. or breakfast. or whatever.
{Although, I wouldn't be too sad if a card or something mysteriously made it's way home with hubs}