Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Good morning everyone. I am sitting here trying to get this post done before our day really starts up here because I won't be able to get anything done then. Well today LeiLani turns 4 yrs old and I am so excited for my little one. She has been talking about her birthday since mine lol and can't wait to actually celebrate it...we have plans on throwing her a very very small party at home.

But I wanted to get on here and show off my latest cards that I have made. There are several family and friends that are having babies and I have decided that this would the perfect time to get cards made since I sold off my entire stock of them before leaving MN.

The first batch of cards will be baby boy and I originally had planned on just stamping images and going with that but then I thought this would be a great time to start using the cricut for cards. I have always loved making cards and using diecuts so why should I start using only stamps since it means that I actually have to test out a bunch of things to get the machine to do what I want. I will admit that I don't love all the cricut images but there are a lot of them that I can make work once you remove some of the tick/cut lines that they put on them for you to follow as details. I don't know why but I consider myself a plain diecut kinda girl although my diecuts don't look plain to me once they are finished. But I love this finished card. I made one to send and one to keep for myself.

What do you think for my first cricut expression card...of course, I still found a way to use my old Big Shot on the card can't just put it into early retirement...after all its been my loyal tool for over 5yrs now. Also the mouth on the turtle was Ani's idea totally, its from the center of the border that I created. There was all these little curved pieces and she picked them up and said, Mom can you glue the mouth of the turtle on for me...and voila I have a mouth for the turtle! I know that there is a little crafter in the making for sure now! LOL...

Cricut carts Paisley (turtle), Stand and Salute (border), Lacy labels (label)
Spellbinders-circle nesting dies

Joann Fabric- heart felt trim ribbon (iron on kind, just glued down with glue dots)
Walmart-buttons, white twine
Dollar Tree- google eyes
Target-twill ribbon (was on a set of kitchen towels)

American Crafts and Bazzill

Patterned papers
My Minds Eye-Abbey and So Sophie

Colorbox chalk ink-blackbird, olive pastel, lime pastel, sour apple, robin's egg

Fiskars baby set (cut greeting apart to use it without the image)

And since today is Ani's actual birthday here is a photo of her owl that she helped make to go on a letter that we have to get in the mail this morning for Great Grandma Jessie. She has been learning to write her letters (actually just her name and then we will work on the rest of the letters in alphabetical order) and the inside of the letter just has Ls on it. We haven't done anything else for the whole week but learn to write capital L and spot itin books and listen for things that have the L sound. She has been loving it!!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Hi everyone. Just wanted to stop in and update my blog with a little of what's been going on. Let's see...I have been playing with my Cricut Gypsy and trying to learn so much about it. And I have started to work on a list of a bunch of things that I want to learn. My hubby got my Gypsy for my birthday and when he brought it home it was already open and it didn't have any instructions in it. And at first that kinda freaked me out but after checking the site and also youtube I realized that this is the way that they come from Michaels.

So that means that there are no instructions on it in there and you basically have to do the research to know what you can and can't do. And since I have only had it since the week of my birthday (which was on the 9th) I haven't learned all there is to know but I am learning a lot.

I have to say that there are a lot of videos on youtube if you are wanting information on this machine or even your cricut. I have watched tons of videos and although I know that I am not an expert at all I feel comfortable enough to use it with my expression everything I have done a project so far.

I have also found some amazing videos on youtube that have helped me and I wanted to share a few of those on here in case someone is really new (like myself) and is looking for specific information on what they can and can't do. I haven't found all the videos that there are and I haven't watched all of them but the ones that I have watched have truly been inspiring.

For welding and creating your own frames just using shapes and fonts this video was awesome this one is really all about frames but you can really get a lot of different ideas once you see this. She didn't go through each individual frame but she explained a lot of the details that you will be able to use if you a little about your gypsy.

And then there was another one that talked about these ideas!
I can't wait to do my Valentines day cards...I am planning on doing hearts across the bottom of a card, maybe combining the welding technique from the first video to create a nice heart border on a card.

There are a lot of videos other there and there are some that aren't free either and although as a previous small business owner I try to support other businesses I have to say that times are calling for me to be a little frugal. I mean I am trying to purchase a relocate to another home that we are building so I can't even think of purchasing a lot of the things that I want to. My wishlist has grown really long since getting this machine for Christmas and I am not complaining at all.

But one of the things that I said that I wouldn't spend money on is instructions, at least not as long as I can take the time and do the research and watch videos that are free. So if you are putting your self on a budget or are saving or whatever the reason may be, you can always check out youtube and search the web.

We (my oldest son and myself) used the cricut this past week to finish his science fair display board. It was sooooo much easier than pulling out the Big Shot (sorry hun, I still love you!)
I was able to put each title on one sheet of 12x12 cardstock and print to my hearts desire. And because it was his project I had him create and cut several of the titles himself too.

Oh while typing this up...I remembered another video that was awesome too...this one she created a background with several border shapes from a cart and then welded them. This is also the video that taught me how and where the rotate button was on the gypsy... this one is really easy to follow. I didn't have the cart that she used but instead I used my stand and salute cart that I got and did the exact same thing...and when it cut I had an entire 12x12 sheet of cut out negative space stars! I love it!!! (no more diecut paper lace pages to buy, I can create them myself in any color cardstock or patterned paper!)

I am hoping to add helpful tips like this on my blog because I believe that it is just what someone else might need to know. And if you need to get a video that you can purchase and watch you can get one from From what I have read and have heard from the experts (and peas who I consider experts) is that there are some really great tutorials on offered there.

I haven't been doing a lot of crafty things this week except purchasing carts, watching videos, and using my machines to help my son with his school work. I am almost done with my inspiration binder. I am creating a new one because the one that I had in MN is gone.

Well I am off to try to get some alone time this am with hubby. I think that he should be coming home soon...I hate that he works on Saturdays. But it is usually only for a couple of hours in the early early I am going to make him some breakfast (and everyone else) and hopefully he will be coming in when it is done!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

New 2011 Framed Calendar

The project is done! And I am finally able to edit and upload the photos this morning (early morning lol). I had completed the actual project on my birthday but having fun with the family all day and never got around to getting on the computer.

But this is the original frame. It's 16inches wide by 14 inches tall.

I switched it to a horizontal view and then everything began to fall in place. I ended up priming it over and then starting from scratch. I painted it black first and then once that coat was dry I put red paint over it (which I mixed black into it) and then rubbed some of the paint off with a damp cloth. And repeated that step two more times, letting it dry a little more before I wiped off the red. And after that I hung it and dated it and got it all ready for our family info center in our kitchen. I think that project turned out a lot better than I expected. But I am a little disappointed in my dry erase markers. I am thinking that I am going to have to most likely find those ones that write looking like chalk colors because these lighter colors don't show up at all on the glass. So if you find a really nice frame and just love the way that it looks...consider making it another color and use it for something you really can use.

Dies used are MFT snowflake metal dies and Cricut Cherry Limeade font, Lovely floral bracket. The patterned papers are Basic Grey (the stripe), Bo Bunny, Fancy Pants and MME (all solid colored cardstock from the backs of several patterned papers). Calendar grid is one from an old Target 12x12 scrapbook calendar in their hotspot section.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Just stopping in really quick to update on whats going on. I am in the middle of a project (the framed wall calendar), the only thing is that I can get the frame to look how I want to exactly. It the same as before with the Christmas wall hanging, and I should have know to lightly sand the frame and then prime it, but I just wanted to get it started asap. And now I am going backwards a little. The calendar is pretty much done, I am still editing the photos that I am adding down the side of the border but it is coming together....and since I can't have blog post without a photo of are my girls painting tinkerbell boards. I swear I love the $ store for things like this for them because I can get so many different little girlie things that they would like for a little money.
I also wanted to share that I got an early birthday present last night from hubby. He drove over an hour after working 18hrs to get my Gypsy. I didn't expect to get one but I was telling him about what it does and the other night when I started planning out and cutting my current project he asked me why do you keep switching out those things (the keypads and carts) and I explained to him, and he went on to tell me how that didn't make sense or save time. I thought and that is exactly why I wanted a silhoutte but I told him that I liked the machine and I am starting to like it much more now that I got the Gypsy. And I think that I will like it even when I get MTC. But this is perfect until then.

Monday, January 3, 2011

A new year means lots of New projects

The theme for scrap our stash this month is new and I am so excited because I have a lot of new projects that I can't wait to do. I have been trying to make a list of the projects that I want to complete around the house for the kids and also for my space and it is so nice to have them written down and even some details about them noted.

One of the projects that I have been wanting to get done for my oldest son was a bulletin board for his room. He has been wanting one but every time we try to find one he never likes it. I told him that we could get one and change it ourselves and he still didn't like the ones that we found. And so I decided that I would make a sketch for him and if he liked the sketch then we could find a board that would work with it. And so I drew it up colored it with coloring pencils and let him see it...he liked it! He asked that I changed a few things (I am a scrapbooker so I added embellishments) and so after removing a few embellishments (it was too young looking for him) he liked it even more. And so I was off to find a board that I could embellish the way that I had showed him. My first thought was to head to Staples or Target and then I thought the thrift store. I usually go there for things to redo because they usually are nice enough to be redone without me feeling guilty about "damaging" something new. I ended up getting a ton of books instead of board and then I headed over to Target. They had some in their office supply spot but not anything that I could paint the frame green. And so as I was heading out I went to look in the hot spot area...and there it was. The perfect dry erase board. It was perfect for him. I grabbed it and a couple of green storage bins, magazine holders and some other items. And came home to show him some of the things to help him organize his bedroom more. He liked them all.

I think went to work on the board. I pulled out patterned papers that were mutli-colored and let him choose which one he liked for the main color and then I used patterned that were on the other side or whatever I could find that coordinated with the main patterned paper.

I used my cricut to cut the triangles (in thick chipboard as well)and then his name in black felt. I sanded that edges of the frame and added black stazon ink and then glued the papers to the chipboard and then hot glued them to the frame. And his dry erase board was complete. And finally I put a magnet on the back of the eraser and then decorated the circle magnets with paper and added an American crafts foam asterisks to them. And he loves it.