Friday, May 31, 2013

Let's Get Patriotic!

I can hardly wait to purchase my set of patriotic stamp sets! These sets will be ones I use for years to come. 

Show your support of troops and country with new patriotic stamp sets—available only from June 1 to July 31, 2013! As a show of our support, Close To My Heart will donate $3 from each B-size My Acrylix® Courage stamp set and $5 from each D-size My Acrylix® Home of the Brave stamp set to the USO, the leading, most recognized military-support and services organization in the country. Show your support today—stamp style!

* Offer valid June 1–July 31, 2013. No qualifying purchase required. No limit per order.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Art Attack: Dauber Dynamite

Discover the beauty of sponge daubing. When you ink your stamps with sponge daubers, you can create a soft, shaded look that is perfect for a page or card!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Help the Oklahoma Tornado Victims - A True Thank You

My heart broke over the devastation in Oklahoma after the tornadoes. Like so many others, I wanted to do something to help. 

Close To My Heart is making it easy to offer some assistance to those in need. From May 23 - June 30, the stamp set pictured here is available for early purchase from the Autumn/Winter Idea Book. One hundred percent of profits from the sales will be donated to the American Red Cross to aid victims from the Oklahoma tornado. The stamp set is $2.95 and is available on my website

Will you join me in helping those in Oklahoma?

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Dream Pop Birthday Card

My oldest son celebrated his 22nd birthday earlier this month, and of course he had to have a special, hand-made card from Mom! I knew our gorgeous Dream Pop papers would be perfect. I wanted to try inking the resist cardstock to see what it would look like, and I L-O-V-E the results! I inked Outdoor Denim over the green resist paper and created an entirely new look.

The Dream Pop papers are only available for another week - $10 with a $35 order. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Art Attack: Coordinate with Cricut Cut-outs

Learn how to use your stamps to bring Cricut® cut-outs to life! Many Cricut® shapes from the Artiste and Art Philosophy collections coordinate with stamp sets so you have more potential for creating, decorating, and accessorizing!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Art Attack: Cricut Craft Room

If you love your Cricut® machine, then you are going to adore all of the fabulous things you can do with Close To My Heart Cricut®cartridges in the Cricut® Craft Room. Create layers, cut negative space in the shape of your choice, make borders, and link elements together for a connected look. It’s easy! We’ll show you how.
Here is how to get started with Cricut® Craft Room:
  1. Create a FREE account in a few easy steps.
  2. Download and run the application for PC or MAC, depending on the type of computer you use.
  3. Connect your Cricut® machine to your computer using a Type B USB cable. (Note: For more info on this type of cable, see your Cricut® user’s guide or your local electronics store.) Once you have connected your computer to your Cricut® machine, the “Load Mat” button is the only button you will ever need to push on your machine in the entire process. Cricut® Craft Room will do everything else for you.
  4. Once inside the application, choose the type of Cricut® machine you own.
  5. Insert your Close To My Heart Art Philosophy or Artiste cartridge into your Cricut® machine.
  6. In the lower left portion of the application there is a tab that is labeled “Images/Cartridges.” Select “All Cartridges” from the dropdown menu. (Note: You must choose a cartridge that you own. You can also purchase individual images from the Cricut®store.)
  7. Scroll to find the Close To My Heart Art Philosophy or Close To My Heart Artiste cartridges you own.
  8. The virtual mat in Cricut® Craft Room is just like the mat you’ll load into your machine. And, it is oriented the same way that you will load your mat into the machine, with the arrow at the top.
  9. To drag an image to the mat, simply click on the image in the image selection tool box and move it to the mat.
  10. Once the image is on the virtual mat, you can adjust the placement by clicking on the image and moving it to any location on the mat.
  11. Now that you know the basics, you can start creating and exploring the possibilities!

Follow these steps to create the negative space on a card base, like you see on this Cheer Up card, featuring images from the Art Philosophy cartridge:
  1. Select the “Card” tab in the Art Philosophy images. Find the card base you prefer and drag it onto the mat. (We used Square 1 for the Cheer Up card.) The image will be cut in the exact direction and location that you place it on the virtual mat. At the top of the screen, or at the left under the “Shape Properties” tab, you’ll see size boxes. Enter the width and height for your shape. This is the size it will be cut on the machine, regardless of what size your machine indicates on the flip screen.

  1. Choose an image to cut out of your card front. We have chosen a butterfly by going to the Basics tab, clicking the “Show Shift/Lock Images” at the bottom, and then selecting the butterfly. Drag the image to the right side of the card base, position it, and alter the size, as desired. Once the image is in place, you will see a cut-out image in its place. This Weld feature is automatically on unless you disable it, and allows you to see how the card base will look with your images cut out.

  1. Select another image, drag it to the card base, and position it how you’d like it. Continue adding images to the card base, if desired.

  1. To cut your finished artwork, load the mat into your Cricut®machine and insert the corresponding cartridge. Next, press the green Cut button at the top of the computer screen and follow the prompts. The machine will cut the shapes as you have prepared them in Craft Room. If more than one cartridge shape has been added to the project, the machine and screen will prompt you with instructions.

Here are so more artwork examples that have been made using Cricut® Craft Room software. Follow the instructions below to learn some more fun tricks we used in creating this artwork.

Birthday Greetings card

Here’s how to create the bracket frame as shown in this Birthday Greetings card:
  1. Drag a card base from Art Philosophy cartridge and size it to be 9" wide and 4½" high.
  2. Add a 1½" bracket frame (from the Basic tab) to the center of the right side of the card. So far, all of the shapes have been placed in Layer 1. You can add additional layers using the Layer feature located toward the top of the screen, directly above the mat. Each Layer will be cut from a separate sheet of paper and is indicated by a different color on the screen. Using the Layer feature allows you to fully design your Cricut® shapes before cutting any pieces.
  3. Add a second Layer by clicking the plus sign. Click and hold the Layer 2 tab and drag the tab to the left so it is first in the row. This allows you to see the second Layer on top of the first so you can visualize your finished project. Drag a 3" bracket frame to the card base and position it over the 1½" frame. Then, still using Layer 2, add a 1½" bracket frame in the center of the 3" frame.
  4. Maneuver the Layer 2 frames so that they perfectly line up with the Layer 1 frame. Use your keyboard arrows for exactness.
  5. Cut the pieces following the prompts on the computer screen and Cricut® machine. Layer 2 will be cut first, so be sure to load that paper first. Then load a new sheet of paper for the Layer 1 pieces.
  6. Embellish the card as desired.

All Boy page

Want to create a border that spans the entire length of your 12" page? It’s easy!
  1. In Craft Room, change the mat size to 12" x 24" under Machine & Mat tab on the left of the screen.
  2. Drag your selected border to the mat and rotate it so it is vertical.
  3. Change the height of the border to 12". It will automatically change the width proportionally unless you click the aspect ratio button between the width and height measurements.
  4. Whether you have a 12" × 24" mat or a 12" × 12" mat, you can use this function with a 12" × 12" piece of paper. Simply place the border as close to the top of the Craft Room mat as possible, but not exactly flush with the top.

  1. Cut the piece following the prompts on the computer screen and Cricut® machine.
To create the title with the letters joined together to form one piece instead of individually cut letters…
  1. Drag your letters to the mat
  2. Overlap portions of each letter to connect them
  3. Use the Weld feature to join the letters together seamlessly.
  4. Cut the piece following the prompts on the computer screen and Cricut® machine.
There are so many possibilities to explore in the Cricut® Craft Room using the versatile Art Philosophy and Artiste cartridges from Close To My Heart! If you have any questions about using Cricut® Craft Room, visit where a Cricut® employee will be glad to help you. Be sure to get your Art Philosophy and Artiste Cricut®cartridges today in order to create with them in this new and exciting environment!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

Twenty-four years ago, I was celebrating my first Mother's Day. The day was especially sweet because I had wanted to be a mother for several years and had been through some pregnancy losses before I enjoyed the huge blessing of becoming Kristin's momma. 

I love this picture of Kristin with my little grandma on Mother's Day that year (1989). Look at her sweet little feet! I have video of this, too, with my grandma kissing her and saying, "Sweet innocence!" I love those memories - it's why I scrapbook.

The day she was born (Dec. 17, 1988), three weeks late and 7 pounds, 14 ounces --

A little more than two years later, we were blessed to add Michael to our family, 2 weeks early and 8 pounds, 3 ounces --

then a little more than two years after that, we were blessed by our "bonus" baby, Jared, who entered the world 2.5 weeks early at 8 pounds, 6 ounces --

They have brought immeasurable blessings to my life and have made it more interesting, fulfilled, and a little exhausting at times! They're not perfect, but they have grown to be wonderful, interesting adults with distinctive personalities. I wouldn't trade one of 'em! 

I love you, Kristin, Michael, and Jared! 

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Studio J Saturday: Express Collection - Travels

Here's another super-quick layout using the Studio J Express Collections (Travels). The Express Collections come in several themes with multiple layouts within the theme. They're great for creating a quick album and even include one layout designed to be the first and last page of your book. This layout took me about 15 minutes to create with beautiful results!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Later Sk8r: Prince Charming

Because I don't have a lot of time to scrapbook, I really like to use the Workshops on the Go. All the thinking is done for me - all I have to do is add the photos and end up with a lovely layout. These photos are so precious to me because they are photos of my grandparents with Michael. They loved the little ones so much!

The colors in the Later Sk8r papers work perfectly with so many of the pictures I have of my boys when they were little. The Workshop on the Go made it easy because it includes the papers, embellishments, an exclusive stamp set, and instructions! The only things I added were photos, inks, and the Pennant Alphabet set

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Art Attack: Alcohol Marker Madness

Learn how to color stamps with your pair of coordinating alcohol-based markers that are sure to brighten a page, spruce up a card, and add pizazz to any project!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Wedding Hinged Display Tray

I made a hinged display tray using my daughter's wedding pictures for me to take to work. She liked it so much that I decided to make one for HER to take to work. I'm so happy with the way it turned out! These display trays come together so quickly. The smaller openings are sized exactly for wallet-sized photos - quick and easy!

The medallion is made using the Perfect Fit - Frames stamp set and the Monogram S stamp set from CTMH. All patterned papers are by Teresa Collins (Carolina Breeze). We used the scrapbook paper under the cupcake stands for centerpieces at the reception. Amazingly, only one page got damaged, so I'm using it for the wedding scrapbook and other projects. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Later Sk8r - Trouble Layout

He was as ornery as he was cute. In fact, many times I told him it was a good thing he WAS so cute! My life would not be the same without him, though - who else would whack his own bangs off at the roots? Oh, wait - his brother did the same thing! 

I used the Later Sk8r Workshop on the Go for this layout. It makes it so quick and easy, and everything but the ink is included! 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Studio J Saturday: Express Collection Travels

The Studio J Express Collections made this project much easier. The beautifully designed layouts have all the embellishments already on the layouts - you just add photos, journaling, and a title. You can still make some changes such as paper color, but it is a very quick and easy way to get a beautiful result! 

I had such a great time making these pages. Check out those awesome tube socks on my husband and his brothers! Weren't the 70's great!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

My Super Boys

My boys LOVED their Superman pj's. Seriously. Loved. Them. It was a great tragedy when it was bedtime and the cape was AWOL. When they weren't wearing the jammies, they were using the security blankets for capes. Of course, I had to take tons of pictures because they were so cute! When CTMH came out with the Superheroes paper (now retired), I stocked up for all the cute little Superman pictures. 

I need to explain about the stocking cap pictures. My brother, who loves to tease, told my older son that Superman wears his underwear outside his clothes. Of course, Michael had to go home and try it out. Great blackmail pictures, right! That is one of the pictures that makes me laugh every time I see it, even 18 years later. And just how sweet is the picture of Jared (my younger son) looking up at his big brother? I miss those days!

Win a card kit!

Give a shout out on the YouTube video or Jeanette Lynton's blog for a chance to win this gorgeous card kit!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Dream Pop - National Scrapbooking Month

In honor of National Scrapbooking Month, you can get the yummy Dream Pop paper packet for only $10 when you spend $35 in May (valued at $19.95 retail)! This exclusive paper packet includes 12 cardstock sheets as well as 12 B&T Duos® papers that were specifically designed for this promotion only—you can’t get these sweet colors and patterns anywhere else! Start National Scrapbooking Month off right with a unique paper packet at a bargain price and get your creative juices flowing! Also, consider hosting this month: Hostesses receive one paper packet free with qualifying May Gathering sales totals of $400 or more. Shop on my website to get your paper packet today! 
*Shipping/handling and tax apply. Not available for purchase at full retail. Offer valid May 1–31, 2013, while supplies last. Qualifying purchases must be current, retail-priced product.

Dates: Offer valid May 1–31, 2013.

Art Attack: Ink It Up!

Discover the versatility of the Exclusive Inks® alcohol-based marker sets and pigment pad sets to bring your artwork to life!