Thursday, April 30, 2015

Artwork Spotlight: Seaside Cards

   Happy last day of April! Today is the last day to take advantage of April's steals and deals!! Including the awesome and popular grab bags! I loved all of mine that I received, and hope that you got a chance to get your hands on one as well!

   Today, though, I wanted to share some recent cards that I made! These were all made using the Seaside paper pack and current stamp sets! You can order the Seaside paper pack for yourself if you would like to scraplift any of these projects to play along with me! Here's some of my creations from this month:

This card was a make-n-take at the recent retreat weekend I attended! My downline, Ellie Lundstrom, created this card to share with us, and I was so excited to be able to re-create it with her! The stamped images all come from the April SOTM, though, which is only available until midnight tonight!
This is one of the cards we made at my workshop at the beginning of the month! We used the Seaside paper, the "Have a Happy Day" stamp set (D1616), the "Distressed Backgrounds" stamp set (D1544), and the newest Operation Smile stamp set from the SE 2 Idea Book, "Happy Everything" (D1653).
This is another one of the cards we made at my workshop this month. We used the same paper and "Have a Happy Day" stamp set from the Annual Inspirations Idea Book.
This was the last card we made at my workshop this month! We used the same papers and stamp set as before, but I also added some Slate Diagonal ribbon to the card, too! These were so fun to make with my ladies this month!

   Let me know if you have any questions about these projects! Otherwise, I hope you're having a great week, and enjoying this weather! Don't forget today is the last day to take advantage of April's deals! So make sure and get your order in for all your favorite goodies!

   I will see you back here tomorrow for the announcement of May's specials! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Tuesday Tidbit: Spring Cleaning Part V

    Welcome to another Tuesday Tidbit!! The last couple weeks I have been crazy busy working on other Spring projects around our house! So I apologize that I didn't get to post any Tidbits for you these last two weeks!

   I'm back, though, and ready to share another part of the Spring Cleaning series that I started last month! Today I want to talk about organizing stamp sets! There are two things that I own a lot of: paper and stamps. However, I haven't tried to organize my stamp images and sets into something more user friendly. I have read and heard of a few different ways that other designers and crafters organize their stamps, but I haven't had a chance to tackle my stash yet!

   This was one of my main goals this Spring, actually! I wanted to go through my stamp sets, organize the images by category and theme, and keep those images in a binder or Rolodex that makes for easy reference! I just haven't found enough time this last month to get started! Hopefully soon, though! Instead I have been working on the baby nursery, re-decorating our guest room upstairs, and getting the house ready for our big basement finishing project (which started yesterday)!

    So today I want to share how I have my stamps organized now, and then share a few of my favorite tips and tricks that I have seen from some of my favorite designers and fellow crafters!

   First I want to tell you how I have my stamps organized currently! I use the CTMH large organizers for my CTMH stamp sets. I have 4 of these, and right now they are semi-categorized.

   One large organizer holds retired stamp sets (including retired SOTM sets and retired campaign specials). The other three organizers contain current stamp sets. I use washi tape to label the top of each organizer with which stamp sets it contains. I have them labeled as SOTM, WOTG, Christmas, Fall/Halloween, Background, Travel, Cricut collection sets, Hostess Rewards, and "Available Online". This last category are any stamps sets that coordinate with the Cricut cartridges (these sets never retire), and any stamp sets from the old Idea Book that are still available to order. Stamp sets are available for an entire year after they are released, but these are not always shown in the current Idea Books. So that's why I keep a separate organizer for just these sets!

    This system works for me when looking for current stamp sets to use on my projects, but it doesn't work for finding images that coordinate or specific phrases that I would like to use on my projects. That's why I want to reorganize. I would love to have a Rolodex type system where I can look at all the images I own that say "Happy Birthday" for instance. This way I can find the size, font, and style that works best for the project I am currently working on.

   Then I want to organize my stamp sets by letter and number for easier reference, too (A sized will all be together and in numerical order, B sized....etc)!! I am going to use CTMH's tabbed dividers to help me keep my stamps in order. These are super cute, match the organizers, and are easy to label! Plus they fit in the large organizer without any problems!

   I have a lot of stamps, and not all of them are CTMH. So I don't know if a Rolodex system will work the best, but I am playing around with a couple ideas yet before I dive in and start filing my images into a system! As soon as I find one that works for me, I will let you know!

   Here are a couple more ideas on ways to get organized with your stamp sets:

   Jennifer McGuire does it again with another amazing storage system for stamps! I love all of her ideas, and I encourage you to check out her YouTube page if you haven't already! Here's her video on storing the different sized stamps that are on the market currently:

   A fellow consultant, Angela Doescher, had another awesome idea to organize her hundreds of stamps as well! She uses the Evernote application and some storage binders to sort and file her stamps and images. Check out her video tutorial using this technique:

   Well that's it, friends! The last Spring Cleaning post for this series! I hope that I was able to inspire you to get organized this year with all these ideas! If you have any questions or would like to know about other ways I organize my supplies, please let me know! I would love to help you out as best I can! Enjoy the rest of your week, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Artwork Spotlight: Seaside Layouts

   Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you all are enjoying the last Monday of April so far! I can't believe May is around the corner! Where does the time go??

   Today I would like to share some recent projects that I have been working on! I was able to get away to a scrappers retreat last weekend, and I worked on a lot of layouts! I am a slow crafter, but was pleased with myself for getting 12 pages done in 3 days! I started a couple other layouts before packing up, and made a couple cards, too! So pretty productive weekend for me!

   Because this month I am featuring the Seaside paper pack and embellishments in my workshops and classes, I decided to use up the rest of my Seaside kit and make some more layouts! I was able to make 5 two-page spreads with my WOTG, complements, and assortment! Here's what I completed:

I scraplifted this layout directly from Dana Kessler of "Scraptabulous Designs"! She inspires me in so many ways, and I love her creative and eye catching layouts!
I created this layout using a couple of the Seaside PML cards and some of my scrap pieces of Seaside paper and complements! I scraplifted the idea from Pinterest, but do not know the original designer.
I got the idea for this layout using the How-to Book "Reflections" by CTMH. I used pattern 2d and 10c in the book to help me plan my project! I also used a couple pieces from the Wildwood Assortment pack to embellish this page!
This is the Alternate layout that you can get instructions for when you purchase the Seaside WOTG kit! I wanted to include more pictures and embellishments on mine, so I spruced it up a bit to my liking!
Lastly, this is the layout I taught at my Cricut classes this month! I used Artbooking for all the Cricut cuts, and distressed in Desert Sand ink! When I took this picture, though, not everything was glued down yet. Oh get the idea! I even came up with a "new" stamping technique for this layout! Check out the instructions below:

   To get the same look on the title as I did on the Cricut layout this is what you'll need to do:

1.) Pick out a light or medium tone color for the title. I used Sorbet for this stamp image.
2.) Now pick out a neutral complement to "weather" the main ink down. I used Desert Sand for this title.
3.) Ink your stamp in your base or main color completely.
4.) Now dust or sparingly add your neutral over top of your main color.
5.) Stamp on your scrap piece of paper or project, fussy cut (if desired), and adhere.

   I call this technique weathering an image. Sorbet was too bright and light of a color for the theme of this page. So I distressed it or "weathered" it to make it fit the rest of the motif! It tones it down more than the "rock n roll" technique, but yet you see both colors when it's stamped! It reminds me of weathered wood, so that's where I came up with the name! Not sure if it's a new technique or not, but I'm going to say it is! ;)

   I love this paper! It's so summery and beachy! Definitely gets me in the mood for some summer fun! You still have time to order your Seaside paper pack this month to play along with me and get inspired, too! Just let me know if you need help placing your order! Have a great rest of your week, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

$150 CTMH Grab Bag Reveal

   Happy Saturday! I didn't get a chance to post my $150 grab bag reveal video on here, so I thought I would put that up for you today!

   I loved everything I got in this video, and once I get a chance I'm going to total up each of my bags and let you know my savings! If you want to see my extremely packed $150 grab bag here's the reveal:

   Ahhhh I love it! I can't believe all the goodies I received! Definitely worth the discounted price! If you are ready to get your hands on one of these gems for yourself, chec out my Online Shopping site! Once there, add any regular priced item to your cart, and the deal of the day will show up for you!

   Each day is different and all the grab bags have been different! So check back often to get the bag price that you want! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Friday, April 17, 2015

$50 CTMH Grab Bag Reveal

   Happy Friday, everyone! I am away at a scrapbooking retreat this weekend, and am really looking foward to getting some major crafting done! Make sure and like my Instagram and/or Facebook business page to get sneak peeks on all the projects I'll be working on this weekend!

   Yesterday I received my last grab bag box! This was the $50 grab bag which has approximately $90 worth of goodies in it! I have been really pleased with all my grab bags this month, and am excited to take some of my new goodies with me this weekend!

   A new grab bag means a new reveal video for you to check out, though! So here's what I received in my $50 box:

   What do you think? I got some pretty amazing items for only $50! A couple repeats, but really it's all things I will use often! So I'm pretty excited about it!

   Have you ordered a grab bag yet? You can order the $35 bag today until 4pm CST if you want to try one out! I ordered two $35 bags and they were both different! You can check out both reveal videos on my YouTube channel if you want to see!

   When you're ready you can order yours on my Online Site once you placed any regular priced item in your online cart! It's such an amazing deal!

    I hope you have enjoyed these videos, and I look forward to bringing more fun videos to you soon! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

$75 CTMH Grab Bag Reveal

   Welcome back to another grab bag reveal post! I'm so excited to share another video with you showing off the amazing CTMH products I have received in my boxes!

   Today's video is a $75 grab bag that has approximately $140 worth of retail priced products in it! There is a great mix of new and retired products, and again.....I was super excited with everything I received! Check out my $75 grab bag reveal video: excited for all the amazing stuff I received! I still have a couple more grab bags to share with you when they arrive, so keep checking back!

   If you see what you like, though, get your hands on your own grab bag on my Online Shopping Site! Simply add any regular priced item in your cart, and the "Deal of the Day" promotion will pop up automatically for you! Each day the price changes, so make sure and get the one you want when it shows up because once they're all while supplies last!!

   Have a great rest of your week, friends, and make sure and get crafty this week! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Monday, April 13, 2015

$115 CTMH Grab Bag Reveal

   Happy Monday!! How was everyone's weekend? I had a wonderful time with my mom up visiting for the weekend! She came up to help us get the nursery painted, set up, and ready, and she also helped me paint our guest bedroom, too! It was awesome to have the extra set of hands around here to get projects done!

   Over the weekend, though, I received another grab bag box!!! So I made another video to show you all the great items that came in my $115 grab bag this month! This grab bag had approximately $240 worth of retail priced items in it, and let me tell didn't disappoint! :) I am so happy with my grab bags so far, and cannot wait to share the other priced boxes with you when they arrive!

   Each box has a mix of retired and new CTMH products, but each one is a little different! Check out all the great items I received in my surprise package this past weekend:

   Isn't that a ton of CTMH products?? I was so excited with all the great things I got, and am even more excited that it was so different from my first box (extra embellishments are always welcome)!

   Would you like to score your own grab bag full of awesome product?? Shop my Online Shopping site today to get your grab bag deal! All of you have to do is add any regular priced item to your cart first, then the deal will pop up for you to add! Easy peasy, friends!

   Don't forget to share what you're receiving on my Facebook or Instagram pages! I would love to see! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

$35 CTMH Grab Bag Reveal

   Happy Sunday, everyone! I have a very special video to share with you today! I finally had a chance to open my first grab bag package! I wanted to share with all of you all of the awesome CTMH products I received in my package, so I decided to make a video of my grab bag reveal!

   Just to recap: The $35 grab bags have approximately $70 worth of retail priced product in them, and are a mix of retired and new products! Check out my video to see what I received in my surprise package:

   Are you ready to get your hands on your own grab bag full of goodies?? You can order yours by simply shopping my Online Shopping site, add one retail priced item in your cart (can be any price...I chose an embellishment pack for $2.95), add the "Deal of the Day" grab bag, and check out! It's that simple!

   I want to see what you all received, too, so make sure and share your photos! Have fun shopping, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tuesday Tidbit: Spring Cleaning Part IV

   Happy Tuesday, everyone! I hope you all had a great Easter weekend, and was able to enjoy some relaxation and family time!

   How's everyone doing on their big organization project for 2015??? This last week has been another crazy one in our house. So that means I didn't get to tackle more of my craft cleaning project, but I was able to finish up some projects and kit up some future workshops! I'll take that as partial organization!

   Moving along with our theme this month, though, I wanted to talk about organizing photos! Without photos we really don't have a story to tell or pages to scrapbook. The hardest part, though, is these days we have photos of EVERYTHING! So how do you organize everyday photos, event photos, printed photos, digital gets to be exhausting!

   It doesn't have to be, though. Once you have a system in place, organizing photos becomes easier and easier, and you'll be able to find that perfect photo that you want to scrap or display in your home!

   I don't have the perfect photo organization system, but what I do use works well for me! The biggest thing with organizing all our photos is making sure you have a reliable back-up system!

   Not all back up systems are going to stick around in the next 5-10 years either! So making sure that you keep on top of your photo storage is important. I'm "old school" and use an external hard drive to store all my photos, documents, etc. It's always attached to my laptop, too, so I can access anything I need whenever I need it! I use Seagate's Backup Plus Portable Drive, and still have a ton of room left on there for more storage (and believe's got a lot on there already).

    My digital photos are organized in a pictures folder on my hard drive. When I open my pictures folder I have multiple other folders that are all labeled and dated (if need be). Especially if I have multiple folders that are similar; like Christmas. My folders are labeled "McMullin Christmas 2014....2015....etc" for example. I also sub-organize my folders. Again sounds like a lot, but it really doesn't take that long! I don't have every photo named or labeled, just placed in the right folder. For example, I have a folder named "Ian and Karina" in that folder I have multiple other folders of trips, events, everyday photos, etc. that are just my husband and I together!

Here you can see some of my folders when I open "My Pictures". Each Folder is labeled, and some folders have sub-folders.

   This system works for me, and I am able to find what I need quickly and efficiently, too! If you have questions or want more examples of my digital organization, please let me know! I would love to help you with this!

   I also print photos pretty regularly. Printed photos are important to me because the idea is to get my favorites in scrapbooks and albums! I want to show them off not store them on my computer or in a box on my shelf (although that's where a lot of them are right now because I have so many printed). I usually print photos on a monthly basis, so I need a good storage system to keep all these prints organized until I am ready to scrap them or put them in pocket protectors!

   I have a couple things that I use to organize printed photos! My absolute favorite storage container that I use is from any local crafting store (JoAnn Fabrics, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, etc.). They are called Iris Photo Boxes, and they come with 16 individual photo carriers that fit 4x6 photos perfectly! I have 3 of these boxes full of printed photos! I love that they are see through, portable, and easy to organize. Each individual photo carrier is labeled with a notecard to tell me what photos are in it, the dates, and main points to remember about those particular photos (funny details, quotes, etc). I also keep my photos organized in chronological order so I can find events and trip photos more easily.

   I also love this system because if I'm going away to a crop weekend or scrapping with the friend, I can pull just the individual photo carriers of pictures that I want to work with for that particular project! It's very handy, and I have a lot of people ask me about them when I take them with me to crops.

Iris Box with 16 photo carriers full of photos (roughly 100 photos can fit in 1 carrier)
Iris photo carrier with notecard labeling photos inside, details to remember, etc.

   These boxes can be a little pricey, though, and I would wait until I could use a coupon or get them on sale to purchase them. However, CTMH has a very similar system that you could modify to make your own organized photo box! The medium organizer will fit 4x6 photos easily, and you can fit the individual photo carriers from Isis in the organizer as well! The individual photo carriers can be purchased separately, and are very reasonable! I have a few extras that I put into my medium organizer when I am traveling to events and weekend crops!

Medium Organizer by CTMH with PML journaling boxes on the left, extra 3x4 PML cards on the front right, and 3 Isis photo carriers on the back right! These photo carriers also will store 4x6 PML cards perfectly, too!

   The medium organizer is a fraction of the cost, and you can get as many or as little photo carriers are you want! Plus the organizer will fit other products as well (like PML cards, embellishments, ink pads, adhesives, etc.). It's perfect for being organized on the go!! I love system as well, and have used it a lot more when traveling than taking all my Isis boxes!

   Well I hope this has you thinking about organizing and tackling those photos! If you have any questions or need to get your hands on one of the medium organizers to help you get started, please let me know!

   Also, if you need to print photos, there are a couple great deals going on right now!! Shutterfly has 101 FREE 4x6 photos that you can take advantage of when you use the code CARROT at checkout! Act quickly for this deal, though, because you only have until midnight to get your FREE print order in!

   Snapfish is also still running their FREE prints for a year campaign when you download and order prints using their mobile app! I did it this last year, and it was awesome! 1200 free prints is nothing to frown upon at all!

   So get those photos ordered, and start organizing them today! I hope you're having a great start to your week, and make sure to spend time on your organizing project! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

P.S. Sneak over to the CTMH blog for an exclusive giveaway today! Make sure and comment to enter so you can try and win awesome prizes!!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Quick Updates from CTMH

    Happy Friday to you! I hope you're enjoying the start to your month! Today I wanted to give you some quick updates from CTMH about new products available, the daily deal promotion, and more!! Here's the low down on all things CTMH this weekend:

April Constant Campaign: Deal of the Day

Spontaneity and surprise are the two key elements fueling the fun of April’s Deal of the Day campaign. Part of the fun of buying a grab bag is that you never know just what you are going to get! All you know is that you will be getting a great deal on a mix of new and retired Close To My Heart products—and everyone loves getting a good deal! The value of each grab bag varies with its price point, with some grab bags containing product valued at more than DOUBLE the price you pay! You can see the different price tiers that will be made available during the month and their average value under the "Steals & Deals" tab above!

Check my Online Shopping Page or my Facebook Business page each day at 4:00 pm (CST) to see the new deal price, which will be available for 24 hours or while supplies last. Keep in mind that while each day’s deal will feature grab bags at the same price tier, there will be a variety of grab bags available at that price. This means that you may purchase multiple grab bags on a single day and get different products in each one.

To trigger each day’s deal, simply place any retail-priced item in your shopping cart. You will then be able to add your desired number of grab bags to your online order. Although the grab bag purchases don’t contribute toward Hostess Rewards totals, they will count toward earning the Stamp of the Month, which just adds even more value to the order! April is the month for great deals, so be sure you make the most of this dynamic, daily promotion!

Slate Circles and Cocoa Damask My Legacy™ Albums

The My Legacy Slate Circles and Cocoa Damask post-bound albums are now available to order, and the D-ring varieties will be available beginning next week. As CTMH corporate reviewed the albums, they noticed that the manufacturer placed an old label with the incorrect item number on them. The correct item numbers are those listed on page 34 of Seasonal Expressions 2 and on my Online Shopping Page. These are the item numbers you should use when placing orders for these albums, even though the item number will appear differently on the packaging of the album you receive.

Jackson and Blossom Collections in Studio J

CTMH experienced some technical difficulties adding the new Jackson and Blossom kits to Studio J, but the issue has been resolved and the kits are now available! Enjoy creating with the newest paper designs in Studio J!

Seasonal Expressions 1 Product Availability

It has been determined that there is enough inventory left of some of the products that were retired from the Seasonal Expressions I Idea Book! These items will continue to be orderable through the "While Supplies Last" section of my Online Shopping Site at their regular retail price.

This means that you can score some of your favorite embellishments from the SE I book, and be eligible for the daily deal grab bag all in one order! Make sure and score these awesome goodies today while they're still available!

Current Items on Back Order

The following two items are currently on back order until the middle of April:

Z3014   Seaside Assortment
Z334     12 x 12 Paper Organizer

Let me know if you are needing either of these items, and I will contact you when they become available!

   Well I think that's all the updates that I have before the weekend! Have a great rest of your Friday, everyone, and I hope you get a chance to get crafty this weekend! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Creative Challenge

   Did you see this week's Creative Challenge by Close to My Heart?? Well in case you missed it you still have time to participate! So here it is:

This week’s challenge went to Senior Executive Director, Joanne Walton. Joanne is constantly creating and I knew she’d have a perfect project idea for the upcoming Easter holiday. I love the adorable banner she created. 

   This week, show us your Spring or Easter projects. We’d love to see how you celebrate! Be sure to tag your post on CTMH's Facebook and/or Instagram accounts using the hashtag ‪#‎jrlcreativechallenge‬ by midnight on Sunday, April 5th, to be entered to win a fabulous prize!

   The prizes have been amazing that CTMH gives away each week! So don't miss out! It's a great reason to get creative this week! Have fun, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Introducing Daily Deals in April!!

   Happy Wednesday everyone! It's no April Fools joke that today is the first day of April's Daily Deals! You can get all the information and more steals and deals for the month in my newsletter! You can check it out here:

Candid Correspondence: April Newsletter
   Have fun scoring amazing deals on CTMH products this month! If you have any questions or need help placing your grab bag orders, please let me know! I would love to help! Happy Shopping, and until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!