Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

Oh how I love this time of year! Everything is so festive and decked out in holiday beauty. I so hope you are all taking some time here and there to be creative and let the season inspire you. I am trying to do that too. My studio is covered in Christmas scrapbook paper, glitter, snowflakes and all sorts of holiday pretties just waiting to be tinkered with. So much to do and never, ever enough crafty time...

I mentioned my excitement about the Teresa Collins design team in my last post. Unfortunately, I did not make the DT, but I sure had fun playing with her products and submitting. It has been a long time since I submitted for a design team and I love the challenge it brings - always an inspiration for me. If you have not already, please visit Teresa's Blog and take a peek at her new DT - they are fabulous. Congratulations ladies! I thought I would post my entries for all of you since they are perfect for the season. My first project is a little wall hanging featuring Cole in a Santa hat. This picture was taken last year by my photographer friend Dawn and I actually used it on our Christmas cards. I wanted an airy light look to the picture, so I edited in photoshop and then printed it on some resume paper instead of photo paper. For all of my projects I used the NOEL line. I had mentioned in a previous post how pretty and classy this line is - love it!

The holly paper was so pretty in its most simple state. I hand cut some of the holly leaves and edged them with silver glitter. This paper is so pretty and has such a heavy weight to it that it stands up to all sorts of distressing, crinkling, twisting and rolling. For the small rosette-type paper flower, I simply took a thin strip of paper and twisted it around a pencil. A small dab of hot glue secures the ends.

Some time ago, fellow blogger Cristal aka Pinky posted a tutorial on the Helmar blog on how to make these adorable paper bows. Remembering just how cute these were, I took her lead and fashioned my own paper bow for the top of this piece. So fun to hang this up in Colson's room and bring a little bit of Christmas cheer into his sweet little life.

I also submitted this little round box topped with some paper trees, fluff, and the "Naughty or Nice" sentiment. The vintage image is from Lisa's Altered Art. Please pay her site a visit - she has the cutest collage sheets for every occassion. I loved how this little girl is trying to be so sneaky...

And a close up of my simple paper flower with wound ribbon in the center:

I used the ribbon from the NOEL line and cut it into two inch pieces. Then I looped it and secured it with hot glue to form a "fringe" around the box lid. All in all, it turned out so cute and made the perfect gift for my friend Jen. Hope you liked it, sweets! Remember, Santa is making a list and checkin' it twice...

My final entry was the card I had posted a few weeks ago. Thank you to Teresa Collins for the awesome opportunity to submit! I for one am looking forward to seeing what the new team has in store for all of us. I will leave you with a few Christmas cards I whipped up after digging into my holiday stash. Amazing how many Christmas papers I have. Some of these are a few years old and it was fun to revisit them again and use up some scraps.
Kids are gettin' antzy and ready for dinner. That's all for tonight!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Welcome Winter

Yep, it's here. The snow started in the wee morning hours on Saturday and it kept on until Sunday. Just like that winter makes its way to us and the entire ground is covered in a serene, fresh blanket of white. There is just something about the first snowfall of the season that makes my heart skip a beat - it truly is breathtaking. 

 Of course the kids were so excited to get out in play in the fluffy white stuff, I had trouble getting all their snow gear on. Desi almost had hers together but ran outside without her mittens. Here she is with her cheesiest of grins and her hair all bundled up inside her hat.

 And my little man; love his chilly cheeks and big bright blue eyes. Last year at one year old, he wasn't quite sure he even liked snow. This time around, he was full speed ahead.

Eventually they let me come in and once Cole was all warmed up and taking his nap, Desi and I had some craft time. She colored in her Hello Kitty coloring book and I busied myself with some snowy themed cards. I have never thought of myself as much of an artist when it comes to painting. Most of my painting look like a child's, but I guess that is the beauty of them. A couple weeks ago I was playing around and had snowflakes on my mind and below was the result. I thought it might make a cute piece of wintery art for Desi's room. Then I got the idea to scan it into my computer and use it as patterned paper.

I figured I would start small with a couple cards and a matching tag. I love this color combo of white, lavendar, aqua and silver. So....well....snowy!

Two of my favorite words for the upcoming holiday season: JOY and REJOICE. That pretty much sums it up. Joy because it is my mom's name and it is the most utterly wonderful feeling a person could have. Rejoice because we are victorious in that a Savior was born to us. Perfect.

I was more than filled with joy this morning as I read Teresa Collins blog and to my delight saw my name listed as one of the finalists for her design team! How exciting! Wish me luck friends, as a decision will be made this week as to who the selected designers are. How awesome to have the chance to submit and create some fantastic projects that I fell in love with as I created them.  I'll share those with you all later this week. That's all for tonight...

nite, nite -

Friday, November 12, 2010

Have you started....

...your Christmas cards yet? Do you make them or buy them? Photo cards or no? The possibilities are endless and oh so creative! I recently picked up the Holiday Cards publication by Paper Crafts. Wow - what inspiration! I think I must have marked up the whole magazine with circles and folded corners. So many ideas by such wonderful designers. I had a little card making party with my sister-in-law LeeAnn a few weekends ago and we had tons of fun using up our stash and cranking out some cute little card creations. But first, I'll show you a little idea I came up with using the new Noel line from Teresa Collins. It just screams Christmas glamour and sophistocation. The classic styling is a true winner in my book - love it! Teresa has a knack for adding the perfect little companions to her lines. I love the cardstock die cuts and the library pockets - so pretty and functional.
For this fun card, I took the larger library pocket and and adhered it to the card to have a place for the tags to be inserted. I like the idea of having the tags pull out and used for display somewhere; maybe tie on the Christmas tree?
A little pom pom fringe, tinsel and pearls compliment these festive papers. I cut the word "believe" from the ribbon in the Noel collection; such a great font and not one stamp involved! Ahhh, too cute. Might have to leave it sitting out to bring some early holiday cheer...
This next project has been long in coming and I have been working on it here and there. It's a little book, about 7x7, of Ellie and her kindergarten pictures. This one is tough for me to create since the memories flood back with each paper that I lay down, but it is also very therapeutic in a sense. I have collected school themed papers ever since Ellie started preschool in 2006. I have a ridiculous stash of all the adorable school things that hit the scrapbook store shelves every August. And I still love each one even though some are 4 years old. So, they are making their way into this book, all mixed and melded together along with my precious few kindergarten pictures of my angel girl. Here's a few peeks at a couple of the pages:

Remember this fun line by Foof-A-La/Autumn Leaves? So cute and still a fave of mine. The little mini banner stamp is from American Crafts' Dear Lizzy line. Love banners...

Missing you always Ellie Belle; thank you for giving me the chance to be your Mama and truly understand what it means to love, hope and walk by faith. Thank you for the strength that you showed me each and every day. You taught me so much, little girl....

Hug those kiddos extra tight before they head out your door this morning. Have a blessed Friday all.
Love to you, Nik

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Sweet November

Here we are into November already. Time goes so fast and it seems that life never slows down. I hope you are all enjoying all the beauty that autumn brings. I think it must be my favorite season; so much to breathe in and savor. We have had glorius weather in Minnesota. Lots of sun and temps in the 50s. So not normal for us here in the north. This could all change by Friday since they are forecasting snow for us. Not sure I am ready for it just yet, but I will welcome it as a different kind of freshness.

 One thing I love about this time of year is the creative side of me that jumps at the change to make something earthy, bursting with colors of cinnamon, pumpkin and deep olive green. I am not much into Halloween, but I sure do love the other fun things that fall brings. A couple years ago I began this little "box" for whatever reason never finished it. The paper is an oldie but goodie from Daisy Ds -oh boy do I ever miss seeing their pretty products on the shelves. I got busy and finished and the result is the little container above; a pretty setting to dress up our home a little this November.

The kids had a great time trick or treating and below is a sweet little picture of Cole and Desi just waiting to be scrapped. Desi was a pink cheetah and since Cole is only 2, I simply picked through his closet and turned him into a little mechanic. Nothing like being thrifty, right? If you look closely, you can see that Desirae dug into her candy stash early and has a big ol' wad of bubblegum in her mouth. That's my girl....

As November continues on, I am reminded to keep moving forward. Keep creating, keep the focus on God, and keep creating joy. I think "Give Thanks" is going to be my little motto this season; maybe make it your too if you so desire. We are all so blessed in so many ways.

Love to all, sweet blog friends! May your November days be filled with laughter, big blessings, good friends, and much, much JOY.