Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 Top 10

A few friends are looking back at some of our favorite projects from this past year.

1.This layout that documented our journey to Costa Rica. Loved the trip and the old world feel of the page.

 2. I hand carved this stamp of Bruce. Ended up doing a second one later. I'm quite proud of him!

3. I loved the mosaic look of this layout and the way the waves turned out.


4. I seriously love the watery, soft look of this page. That shade of green is so pretty!


5. My mom got me started on weaving this scarf. Love how soft and delicate it is.


 6. First of all, I love this photo that an instructor took at a Zumbathon. Secondly, I love how bright and fun the page turned out!


7. One of the things we did in Costa Rica was go on a hunt for Quetzal. They are gorgeous birds and we saw 3. I'm sure we looked funny silently running about this farm. Local guides pay farmers for reporting sightings and planting trees that the birds like. I love how the ink dispersed and the buttons.


8. We went to the coast with some friends and he did a bit of surfing. I loved how this photo turned out! I ended up giving him the page for his birthday. I love the waves and textured cloud, not to mention that giant life guard chair.


9. My little sister got married Halloween weekend, so she had a Hallowedding, complete with costume contest and decorations like wrought iron, a coffin, cauldrons, etc. I made this super fun card to give her.

10. This has to my favorite project of them all! It was for an artist collaboration, where we all started with a packet of supplies that was the same. It was so fun to see what people did with them. I had so much fun getting this clock all "rusty" and old looking.



  There you have it, some of my favorite projects from 2016. Can't wait to see what 2017 brings!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Van Gato

Yes, it's still December, the time of Christmas and I am still using the CSI cases for kitty layouts, that's just how I roll.

I recently had a crafter day with my good friend. She brought over a huge painting to work on and Sydney was so very curious, and of course gave her opinion. I love how the case just matched my photos so well, so I had to use them, right?

Evidence used: stripes, stars, flowers, leaves, tags, sprinkle something (the stars and enamel dots)

Testimony is on a tag.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Hello, Sydney

I'm a little behind, but there is still time to join in with the major case at CSI this month. It's December so of course there are Christmas cases and of course I'm going to do a kitty layout for the Christmas theme.

Last year we had my daughter, her husband, and their cat living with us whilst they built their house. It was super fun, we laughed a lot, and I loved having a kitty in the house again! When they moved out, my husband told our daughter, "When we get back from Sydney, I'm getting Mom at cat". True to his word, when we returned from our trip (months after he told her, she was dying with anticipation) they went out and chose a cat for me. They couldn't have picked a better kitty, she is so sweet, hilarious, and loving. To go along with the story, her name settled into Sydney.

The Cut Shoppe has some fantastic kitty cut files; I used a few here. A Flair For Buttons has adorable kitty flair, as well as an Australia set, which is where the Sydney flair came from. One fabulous perk about them is you can mix and match sets by buying custom kits.

Evidence used: stripes, twine, stars

Testimony is something I've wished for for some time.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Room With A View

Another great case to solve at CSI! I really liked the colors and thought they'd be perfect for another of my summer hikes. My boss told me about this hike. It's a beautiful trail that leads to a spectacular view of Mt Jefferson, in Oregon. As a bonus, there is a little side trail down to a cave that frames the mountain perfectly. It was rather a goat trail sort of trail, steep and not well marked; I don't think it's an official trail at all, but it's so worth the effort because framing the mountain in the cave mouth is really very cool.

I found these awesome mountains in the Silhouette store.  I just love how they become a focal point and mimic my photo. I used some of The Cut Shoppe's awesome clouds. I just love her clouds! A camera flair from A Flair For Buttons fit the colors perfectly. I love the metal compass that I found in my stash.

Evidence used: dots, weather elements, metal, and circles

Testimony is documenting the outdoors.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Follow Your Feet

A super fun case this week at CSI. The perfect colors to highlight one of the many hikes we took this summer. We really do live in a beautiful state. My husband had gone mountain bike riding on this trail and wanted to take me back for a hike. You hike along a pretty meadow, take a turn and end up on this spit of land overlooking the valley and surrounding mountains. You just sort of pop out of the trees to this spectacular view! I very much enjoyed it.

The Cut Shoppe had a fun new file with some hiking phrases that I, of course, had to get. I paired it with this cute compass cut, which went perfectly with the compass rose button from A Flair For Buttons. I did one of my favorite things, getting inky and messy, having fun with stencils and splatters.

Evidence used: wood grain, wood, trees, metal, something fuzzy

Testimony is from the prompt, what did you do today?

Birds Of Sierpe

We saw so many animals on our day spent in the Sierpe River Delta. I mean SO many animals, of all different varieties! We had a river boat and 2 guides for the day. They know just where to go to get the best chances of seeing as many different animals as possible. AND they have eyes like eagles. It's amazing that they could spot what they spotted, all from a moving boat. there were tons of birds, in all flavors and colors. We had one participant who doesn't do photography, so she had a bird guidebook and was ticking off the photos of what we saw and I am so thankful because I used her book to help identify what I saw later. It was too much to take in at the time. I never knew there were so many varieties of heron. I mean we have the Great Blue Heron here, where I live, but there are so many other kinds and some are down right strange looking! We saw some very rare birds too and it's a wonder because they look just like the tree branch. We even saw some juvenile Macaw, about ready to leave the nest (more on that at the end of October). It was a truly spectacular day.

Evidence used: stripes, stamping, feathers, vellum, watercolor

Testimony is about the huge variety of birds and their personalities. "Traveling through the Sierpe Delta, we saw so many birds! Thanks to our river viewpoint and the sharp eyes of our guides, we got to experience a wide variety of awesome birds and watch all of their antics. Each one is so different. 12.9.15"


One of my favorite moments in Costa Rica was watching the antics of this guy. There was an all out monkey war taking place, just out of sight in the forest, yet this guy was hopping from tree to tree, sniffing the flowers. Ok, he was probably in search of a grubby snack, but it looks like he's taking time to enjoy life.

Evidence used: dots, stripes, clouds, triangles, gold metal

Testimony is about a gathering, or rather eschewing the gathering to be different. "You'd never know it, but there was an all out monkey war going on in the background. Then there is this lone lil guy just hopping from flower to flower. I'm sure he is looking for grubs, but it looks like he's taking the time to stop and smell the flowers. Sierpe, Costa Rica 12.15"

Buenos Noche

I am still working on my Costa Rica album. Nearing the end, but there is still more to share. I did need a back page and I thought these colors were perfect for the photos we took of an amazing sunset in the cloud forest on our last night. We weren't sure we'd get sunset colors as the day had been quite rainy and dreary, but we went up above the clouds and waited. Then, all of a sudden, there was a gap in the clouds, and the yellow of the evening sun broke through. As the sky went through the sunsetting motions, the colors intensified and made for a stunning view. All of the trees and hills became silhouetted, adding cool layers and framing. A great treat for out last night and very appropriate for my ending page; this is good night, not good bye.

Evidence used: dots, grid pattern, scallops

Testimony is a list of all of my takeaways from our trip

As our time closes, I reflect on my favorite things:
Meeting fun people
Amazing animals
Learning new things
Great food 
The beautiful land


One thing about our household is the humor. You never know what you'll find on something innocent as say....the grocery list. It's a place where you might find the odd item, such as goats; to the philosophical debate, such as what came first, the chicken or the egg; to bizarre admonishments, such as not getting cow's eggs. We just keep a running list so we can add things as we run out, but that lets just anyone add their own flair of humor.

Evidence used: shiny gold, spiral punch, staples, clips, labels

Testimony is about this week's grocery lists.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Artist's Collaboration: Starting From The Same Place

I got to take part in another fun collaboration with art friends from all over the world! We were each sent identical (or nearly) packages to use to create whatever inspires us. We were to try to use at least part of everything in the packet.

Here is where I started out.

I picked up the pewter clock at a thrift store some time ago, intending to make a distressed frame. Life happened and that project got put on the back burner. When I received the packet, I pulled the clock back out and put on my thinking cap. As you can see, there is quite an eclectic assortment there!

I got out my gesso, pastes, patina, paints, and gel and set out to work. I first coated everything that I wanted to distress with black gesso, then set out with my rusting paste set to give it that really corroded, old look. I dab of blue or orange patina adds to the corrosion. I pulled the clock apart, even gutted the innards of the clock movements (so cool inside), setting aside the glass front and most of the innards. I cut down the clock face so it would fit into the back of the casing, then distressed it too. I added a silver past to the clock hands and glued them to the face, on top of one of my kit gears and a metal gear from my stash. I just kept distressing pieces and seeing where they best land and it just sort of fell together, topping it off with a photo of my hubby and I.  It was so much fun and really stretched me!

The finished piece! I seriously love it.

Here is a link to see the other projects and there are so many awesome ones!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Mt Jefferson

One of the things we love to do is to go and hike this beautiful state we live in. My boss recently told me about one hike that offers spectacular views of Mt Jefferson. We've never really explored this part of the state, so we were so pleasantly surprised and hope to return for future hikes. You hike to the top of a ridge, along a most beautiful trail and are rewarded with this stunning view of the mountain. It's so close to you, you can almost feel it. There is a little side trail that leads to a cave where you can frame the mountain from inside (more on that another time). It was so unique, my mom saw my photos and begged for us to take her, so we did this hike twice in 2 weeks. Well worth is. And....come to find out, my boss had only heard of it and hasn't gone! He needs to go.

Evidence used: text print, doily, string, stripes

Testimony is documenting our pastime of going on hikes. "We love to hike this state and see the many gorgeous sites!"

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Berry Picking

The gorgeous colors this week at CSI were perfect for photos I took of a berry picking session I had recently. My brother and sister-in-law have an abundance of berry plants and were begging for pickers to come and take some of the bounty. I was happy to oblige. I netted two big tubs of blueberries, a big tub of raspberries, and a few strawberries. There is nothing like fresh picked berries!

Evidence used: grid, clouds, circles, and rub-ons.

Testimony is sort of about my hometown, which is a berry growing mecca.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Seal Rock

Yay, coast colors! Not that that matters to me, but you know. More from my trip with the surfer. Whilst he surfed, we explored.

Evidence used: nautical elements, wood, vellum, mesh, twine

Testimony is about time spent at the beach

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Take Me To The Lake

This day had been a super rough day. A day that I just wanted to crawl back into bed. My husband works out in his kayak on the lake after work and said to get myself ready, that he would pick me up. I just sat and read, watched the birds, listened to the clink of the sailboats. It was exactly what I needed this day.

Evidence used: map print, clouds, birds, watercolor, boat

Testimony is about my trip to the lake, "On rough days like this, there is nothing like being able to say, 'Take me to the lake!' I listened to the peace."

Saturday, August 13, 2016

I Spy

You all know that I love going to the coast and my favorite thing to do there is to find fun critters in the tide pools. This week's case was perfect for that.

I love the giant anchor, by The Cut Shoppe and love the double meaning of the flair from A Flair For Buttons.

Evidence used: nautical elements, wood, animals, mesh, twine

Testimony is about spending time at the beach.
I spy with my little eye
Critters of the sea
Hiding away until low tide

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Surf's Up

Yes, I took a patriotic theme and used it for a coast photo. Was the perfect use of these colors, in my opinion! We recently went over and spent the day with some friends. One of our friends is a surfer and was in seventh heaven when I said he should just go surfing whilst the rest of us explored the beach. I, of course took some photos of him as well.

I've been waiting to use this giant lifeguard perch from The Cut Shoppe and finally got to do it! I love how the red first aid embellishment just pops too, as well as the camera flair from A Flair For Buttons

Evidence used: stars, something woven, fabric, wood, circles

Testimony is done on strips.

Monday, July 4, 2016


I struggled to think of what to do with these colors before I realized that they'd be perfect for these hummingbird photos from Costa Rica. Shooting hummingbirds is HARD! I have many, many more reject photos than good ones, but the joy of getting these guys in focus, in the frame is amazing!

Evidence used: damask, polka dots, wings/feathers, birds, metal, doilies

Testimony is about something I love, photography.

Sunday, July 3, 2016


I used this week's CSI case to scrap some macro shots we took on a walk along a pretty little lane in the mountains of Costa Rica. It was fun to keep an eye out for interesting things that others might not notice.

Evidence used: chevrons, clouds, stripes

Testimony is on spending time outdoors.