About Me

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I love using paint and paper to create a cozy cottage feel for my home. I am wife to an amazing man and mother to a very creative 7 year old.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Lawn Fawn at CHA

I've had a day home to recover from CHA.  I had such a blast!  It seriously was everything I dreamed it would be!  I am so thankful that Kelly and Mike allowed me to come and help them out at the Lawn Fawn booth.  I was an honor to be called a "Fawnie" for a couple days and to wear the Lawn Fawn cardi!

On Monday morning I got up and took a quick flight to Las Vegas.  My husband snapped this pic of me ready to go:

Mike picked me up and drove me over to the Convention Center.  The booth was all up and all the product was up on display.  They had already put out the card and project samples made by their amazing design team.  Those women are so talented!

They had also taken jars and used Lawn Fawn paper and twine to make them super cute.

Kelly snapped a pick of Nancy, Chari and I holding jars.  I snagged this pic off of Instagram:

Photo: Deb, Chari and Nancy: the booth decorating crew!

I know Nancy well now.  She and I have met several times while helping out Mike and Kelly with shipments and getting ready for trade shows.  I was super blessed to have her as my roomie.  While we were there, she was featured on the Hero Arts blog hop (check out her post here: http://happyheart-nancyljk.blogspot.com)...not only is she super nice, she is super talented!  Hoping some of it rubbed off on me!

Speaking of talented, I got to meet and know Chari.  She is on the Lawn Fawn design team.  I have always loved her cards and she was so fun to hang out with.  She has the amazing ability to take a stamp set and use it in a completely unique way.  Check out her blog here: mossymade.com.  Her husband Matt was also super fun...his humor mixed with his southern drawl had me laughing a ton!

Here is a pic of Nancy and Chari getting the make and take table ready:

Mike and Kelly, along with their business partner Erika, came up with amazing new products.  It was so easy to get excited about everything and share it with people. 

Here's a pic of all the new stamps and dies...so much fun:

And here is all the new paper and embellishments.  I loved both new lines so much!

I got to work on this chalkboard.  One of the hits of the show was the Yeti stamp set (check out a preview here: http://lawnfawn.blogspot.com  ), so I had to include him popping out of the corner!

Here are some other pics I snapped of the booth...tons of eye candy!

This pic gives you a good sense of what the whole booth looked like:

Kelly also had to do video shoots with different companies and she rocked it every time! Here's a pic from my phone:

I am so thankful that Kelly is my friend...love her!

Make sure that you check out the Lawn Fawn website at lawnfawn.com and check out all the new products!  

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Headed to CHA

Tomorrow morning I am grabbing a flight to Las Vegas and heading to CHA (Craft and Hobby Association Trade Show)!  Woo hoo!  I am so excited.  This is truly a dream I never thought would actually ever happen.
As I shared in an earlier post, I had an amazing scrapbook store to go to when I lived in Ohio.  I became friends with the women who worked there and we used to talk about CHA and how fun it would be to go someday...
I would also see tons of pics on my favorite paper crafting blogs from CHA and wished I could go.  The tricky thing about CHA is that you can't just buy a ticket.  You need to be a member or be invited by a company to attend...none of which I ever thought would be possible.  Oh, yeah, the show was usually far away like in California!
In January of 2012 my dream of attending came true.  I was now living in California and my friend Molly was able to get us tickets through her sister's business.  The show was in Anaheim so it was local.  I was so excited...I loved every minute of it!  I was like a kid in a candy store.  There was so much to look at and inspiration was everywhere!
So here is the amazing part.  While walking through the show I saw a booth for Lawn Fawn.  I had heard of Lawn Fawn through a favorite blog (jennifermcguireink.typepad.com) so I had to stop and take a look.  I met Mike one of the owners and soon found out that he and his wife Kelly lived very close to where I live!  Over the next year Kelly and I became good friends.
Kelly is such a sweetheart and I am so thankful to have her as a friend.  She lets me hang out with her and I always have so much fun!
So when Kelly and Mike invited me to help them at this summer's CHA show I was so excited!  I can't believe that I get to go. 
I will be snapping a ton of pics and blogging about my whole trip when I get back.  Now I need to finish getting packed and sneak in extra snuggles with Cole before he goes to bed.

(sorry for lack of pics, I will make up for it in the next couple posts!)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

I Love Making Cards

This is just a quick post.  Here's a card a made for a friend recently...actually, I need to remember to mail it!

I would love to post a card a week...not sure if I really have the time, but I'll give it a try. 

Happy Crafting!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Craft Room (Garage) Reveal

Last week I posted some pics of past craft rooms or spaces I have had.  I left off showing the back wall of our garage being painted a bright and cheery blue.  Here is how the space looks now:

I am really happy with how the space turned out.  One of my favorite things is the map hanging on the wall.  Right before moving to CA, I got a huge map of the whole world for $5 at a garage sale...major score!  The map sells for a hundred bucks online!  I cut and trimmed the piece for North America to fit the space.  (I will soon reveal how I used the piece with the continent of Asia!)

Recently I found this memo/bulletin board (below) at a garage sale for $3.  It had a white erase board that I flipped around and painted with chalkboard paint.  The bulletin board piece had some major chunks of cork missing, so I covered it with some map fabric I already owned.  I painted the frame a mustard yellow and love how it pops of the bright blue. 

This room still has to function as a garage so on the table below we have our Coke bottles (my husband has to have these available at all times!), our swim bag (love the flip flop fabric from 31), a crate for balls, and below the table is our recycling.  I tried to make the recycling more "cute" so I made signs out of Lawn Fawn paper.  To the left is our rug cleaner and behind it is a bag with important items we would need in the case of a major earthquake...yep, we live in Cali!

The table in the middle is made from 2 steel shelves bought at Target during back to school season and topped with a vintage piece of butcher block.  I bought the butcher block in Ohio to install in our kitchen, but we moved before I could get it done (thankfully!).  It was really used in a butcher shop and I love it! The table next to it is also made from vintage butcher block and my dad made this to use in my kitchen in Ohio.  I got both pieces of wood from the same place (actually my dad picked it up for me and then helped me clean them).  I love the warmth of the wood and the imperfections add so much character.

I like to have my most used craft supplies out and ready to use.  I love this metal tiered basket for that reason.  I use it to house ink pads, my trusty tape gun, and of course my favorite Lawn Fawn stamps  and dies (lawnfawn.com).  The piece to the right comes from World Market and is supposed to be used to hold cups.  I think it works great to hold my spools of twine and washi tapes. 

On the other end of the table, I use a white cabinet to house small bottles of paints, glitter, adhesives, embossing powders, etc.  On the bottom shelf I store a couple favorite wood stamps and my acrylic blocks.  Next to the map I hung  a huge frame and I added burlap so I can use it as an inspiration board...still lots of space to fill!

 Remember my entertainment center reno?  I used some of the drawers  that had been used to hold cds and set them upright as shelves.  Gotta work with what you got, right?  I use them to store punches, my cuttlebug and some favorite embellishments.   

On top of the shelves I use a divided wood container that used to have herbs growning in it (didn't survive) and now I use it for my heat gun and random pens and pencils.  Some recycled jars hold paint brushes.  In front I have my alcohol based markers in some metal pails and love my spinning rack that holds random markers and colored pencils.  To the right of this picture I have all my wrapping paper and scraps of wood.

Below the tables I have my sewing machine, a scrapbooking tote, tools I use to make Prayer Journals   for Throne of Grace (http://www.etsy.com/shop/ThroneOfGrace), party supplies and my Xyron machine.  

In the center of the room I have a large table that Cole and I both used together.  It is almost always piled high with projects.  I got Cole's chair at Ikea and I use a directors chair with a slipcover I got from Pier One. 

 I love this cart!  It is the perfect color and you can buy it at Ikea.  We use it to store Cole's most used supplies and he can reach them easily from his chair.  During the school year we use it to store his school books.

Our house came with these cabinets already installed which is a huge blessing!  The far left cabinet is all kid craft items.  Cole uses this to store all his art and craft supplies.  

The next cabinet houses random craft items, scraps of paper arranged by color, ribbon, sticker sheets, yarn, felt...and lots of other stuff.  

The third cabinet contains stamps, paint brushes, inks, blank cards, and Cricut cartridges.  I got these plastic drawer units a long time ago at Big Lots and they have worked well in every craft space I have had...and they were cheap!  I added chalkboard labels to the fronts to help me stay organized.

The last cabinet is my paper cabinet.   I got this paper rack from a scrapbook store in Ohio that was getting new racks and was selling their old ones.  I was so happy it fit perfectly!  It makes organizing my paper so easy!

I have this area designated as my hardware area.  I have all my tools and paints in this area.  I love having access to these along with my craft space because I use both areas a lot when doing projects.

Lest you forget that this is really a garage, here is what the other side looks like:

This might sound weird, but I think my garage may be my favorite room in the house!  I love using the space and get to spend lots of time with my son out there.  I love that we can be creative together!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Like Mother, Like Son

This week I hosted a craft night at my house.  I love hosting craft night.  Lots of good friends hanging out and talking...and getting some projects done too (well, some of us get stuff done!).  Here is Lisa.  She brought her own sewing machine and added fabric flowers made from scraps to a t-shirt.  I wish I had taken a pic of the finished product because it was super cute!

Here are Kelly and Molly.  Kelly worked on finishing a yarn wrapped wreath she had started at the last craft night.  Molly worked on cutting her kid's baby clothes into squares so that she can make a quilt out of them.

Kelly sent me this pic of her wreath hung up on her door.  So fun, right?

I took some other photos, but they didn't turn out so well...the lighting was funky.  I didn't get any crafting done, but I was able to work with my friends Brianne and Kelly to get some planning done for VBS crafts. 

When uploading pics I realized Cole has his own "craft night (day)" with his neighborhood friends recently! 

I've said it many times, but there's something about being creative and bonding with friends.  People open up when they are being creative and there's sharing of thoughts, dreams and ideas.  It's a great way to get to know people.  I am so thankful for the beautiful friendships God has provided me (and my son)!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Amazing What a Little Bit of Paint Can Do

When we bought our current home there were 2 areas that I wanted to change.  The first was in our living room.  Our fireplace and our built in entertainment center were really dated.  I am confused that a home that is just over a decade old would look like something straight out of the 80's.  Really, oak cabinetry (that also clashed with the hardwood floors)?  Really, gold trim on the fireplace screen?  And what was going on with the mantel?  It didn't match anything...kinda had a Santa Fe vibe!

Here are some pics taken before we moved in:

(Oh, yeah, and the second thing I would like to change is our white tile countertops in the kitchen...someday)

My parents came to visit about 3 months after we moved in and I put my woodworking Dad to task.  Yes, he was on vacation, but like me, working on projects is relaxing to him (at least that's what I told myself).

Here's what the living room looked like shortly after moving in (my decorating attempts could not help the situation!):

Another view:

I showed my Dad some pics of mantels that I liked on Pinterest (after explaining to him what Pinterest was) and after some measuring we headed to our local Home Depot.

It took a couple trips to the hardware store and lots of just standing and staring at wood.  My dad thinks for a long time before sharing what he's thinking.  He does a lot of hmmmmms.

He was able to frame around the existing mantel and added molding to beef it up.  He hid some of the marble which was also great.  I was so happy with what he came up with!

Here is what it looked like before being painted:

I painted it all after he left...I didn't sand it down as well as he would have.  Maybe next time he comes he can make it perfect!  I also added black high heat paint to the gold area. 

For the entertainment center I decided to just take most of the doors off and paint it all white. I was nervous to tell my dad my plan.  You see, my dad loves natural wood and basically thinks it is a crime to paint over it.  But this time, he actually agreed!

Here all the doors are removed:

After a coat of primer:

Painting the entertainment center was ridiculous.  It took forever and was really difficult to get in all the different corners.  It was totally worth it though!  I added some pulls to the fake drawers (actually pulls out for cd storage) to finish it off. 

Here's what the fireplace and entertainment area look like now:

I think it's a huge improvement.  I still would like my dad to someday smooth out the wood around the fireplace since I lack the ability or patience to get it right.

I also need help removing the pieces of wood in the top section of the entertainment center (seen in top four corners...they supported the doors' hinges before).

I am so thankful that my dad helped me out so much.  Plus it's nice to have his touch in our home since he and my mom live so far away.

One other piece he did for me before we moved from Ohio was this wood sign with the perfect verse for our dining area:

It is made from a leaf out of an old table.  I love it!  (I change the message on my chalkboard sign frequently...this was from a craft night I hosted recently which I will blog about soon)

Thanks, Dad for making our home extra special!  (Mom, make sure Dad sees this!)

Sunday, July 7, 2013

I Heart Paper Crafting

So, I love crafting with paper.  I love looking at all the designs and patterns in paper...I have even gotten teary eyed when I have seen a paper pattern that I especially love...weird, I know!  But where did this love begin?

Back in the 90's I remember attending an at home scrapbooking show (you probably can think of the name) and wasn't impressed.  The patterns were dated and everything looked country-style to me.  I made a sample page and was unhappy with the results and decided I didn't like scrapbooking.

Fast forward to 2007...I had taken a year's worth of photos of my son and they were just sitting on my hard drive.   I initially thought, why print them out?  We can just look at them on the computer. 

Here are some pics that I love of our first year with Cole:

But then while visiting one of my mom's friends, my attitude changed.

She had scrapbooked her children's lives and they were now at the age of getting married.  She commented how her children loved showing their spouses their albums.  They really treasured the albums she had made them.  Her children were also adopted (like my son) and so that really struck a chord with me.

Here is a pic from that visit:

After going through my photos I realized I had over 500 that I would want to print out.  Yikes!  My thought still wasn't to scrapbook them, just get them all in an album.  I went searching everywhere for albums and couldn't find any I liked, or any that would hold 500.  In fact, even albums from Walmart and Target were going to cost a fortune because I needed at least 5 of them to hold all my pics!

Then one day I walked into my local scrapbooking store.  I thought maybe they would have some album options.  A woman led me to a shelf filled with albums and introduced me to the Xyron Album (http://www.xyron.com/enUS/Products/Everyday_Stories/Albums/12x12_Black_Leather_Album.html).  It was huge and could easily fit my 500 photos in it.  It was $40 (now it sells for $24.99!) which was actually the best price I had found to store so many photos.  Mission accomplished.  End of story...or not.

The album came with different insert options.  You could do all photos, but some inserts could hold a 12 x 12 scrapbook page.  Others had different size pockets so you could combine some scrapbooking with photos.  I remember the woman at the scrapbook store mentioning that I could scrapbook a little here and there in the album, but  I still wasn't thinking anything beyond storing my photos.

As I began to fill my album I started seeing that I  actually might want to scrapbook some of my photos--especially ones from special occasions.  I went to visit my mom and asked if she had some supplies I could use (she makes cards and has tons of craft supplies).  I started with this page (yeah, I had a lot of learning to do...feel free to laugh like I am!):

Soon I headed back into my local scrapbook store and quickly realized that there were some companies that had paper and embellishments that I really loved.  Scrapbooking paper had come a long way!

Less than a year later I applied for the scrapbook store's design team...and I made it!  This was a huge step in my love for papercrafting.  Each month I was given a set of paper and embellishments and had to come up with a 2 page scrapbook spread to be displayed in the store.  It was fun getting familiar with all the different brands and it challenged me to come up with creative designs.  It also allowed me to get to know other creative women who I could talk to and share ideas.

Here is one of my favorite layouts I did while on the design team.  These were vacation pics.  Little did I know that someday we would move to California!

To date I have filled 8 of those albums.  Crazy!  I have slowed my pace and probably do one album for every 2 years now.  I am thankful that my album search led me to a scrapbook store because it has introduced me to the world of paper crafting which I love!

Love this page of poor Cole when he got stitches:

And this is also one of my favorites.  I don't love the paper so much, but I love the story it tells:

Do you have a hobby or craft you enjoy?  How did you get started?  Did you jump right in, or did it take you awhile to realize your love for it?