Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sneaky Sneaky and No Sleep

I had some trouble getting to sleep last night...I was completely exhausted and had a killer headache, but sleep eluded me.

First, my brain was full of all the things I did not get accomplished in the last five days. Why do we do that, do you suppose? Think of all the things we don't get done?

After running the list two arms long through my mind twice, I switched gears and prayed. That was amazing and comforting and helped me check something off my two-arms-long-list of things not accomplished...but it left me wide awake, thinking of all my family and friends and the things I pray for each of them.

So, I switched to praising God and focusing on the marvels of all He has crated...universes and butterflies and children and flowers and coffee and...well...you get the idea. I focused on all that I am thankful for and the amazing things on this wide wide earth that affirm that God is an amazing creator and artist...yet...sleep eluded me.

So, I went to my fall-back position...my "happy place." My happy place happens to be a cozy little cottage in the countryside with wide soft chairs for lounging, a soft a squishy sofa for reading, a huge, sturdy bed frame with a deep feather bed, mountains of cushions and a down comforter all wrapped in pale crisp linens. It has a crackling fire in an enormous stone fireplace and rain with lots of thunder outside. This is usually a place I can imagine myself relaxing and thus, relax for real and thus, fall deeply and comfortably asleep. Last night, however, my imaginary rain storm was a bit too thunderous and my imaginary fire a bit too crackly...no sleep.

Finally at 4 am, my little boy called from his own bedroom to be tucked in again. Since I was up anyway, I obliged and gave lots of extra hugs and kisses. Then tiptoed back to my own bed to wrestle with my insomnia some more.

Low and behold, my head hit the pillow and I was off to dreamland...just like that!

I never would have imagined that the sleeping aid I required was tucking a little boy into his own bed and getting sleepy kisses.

Miraculous...

On to the SNEAKY SNEAKY...TOMORROW is reveal day for the new Scrapbooking From the Inside Out kit. Its so beautiful! I almost didn't want to USE anything that was in it.

Here are a few sneak peeks for you:







I can't wait to share my layouts with you!!

Until then, Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Peace!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sunday Inspiration - Get Muddy

As we reach adulthood, we're conditioned out of our childlike approach to life, told not to follow our impulses, but to act appropriately. What possibilities would open up for us if we forgot that advice and got muddy more often? ~ Patti Digh ~

Thursday, November 25, 2010

WHADDYA MEAN NO PIE!?!?!?!?!?!?



Happy Thanksgiving from my turkeys to yours!!!

May your day be graced with the recollection of your many, many blessings!

Peace, ya'll!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It Is What It Is *SFTIO November Acceptance Kit*

It seems funny to be posting my final Scrapbooking From the Inside Out ACCEPTANCE kit layout when there are still 6 days left in this month...but alas its true...

I ahd a boss who used to say "It is what it is" all the time. It became kind of a running joke in our office...but now, a few years down the road, I find myself using this phrase often.


It seems appropriate for the ACCEPTANCE theme, right?



Playing again with the layout and size on this one. If you really want to jump start your art, change up the format a bit. If you paint, try drawing or changing the kind of paint. If you craft, try sewing. The change is really amazing for creativity!

Tomorrow is the BIG FOOD DAY...I have to confess, its probably my most favorite holiday in the year. You get the GREAT food, the GREAT company, the GREAT stillness and NO gift burden, no crazed shopping beforehand, no insanity in the mall...that comes the day AFTER.

HEEHEE!!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

In the theme of turkeys, I had a notion to Google “Turkey Treats” and see what came up…here is but a miniscule selection of what I found…so cute!

A little Reece’s cup and oreo cookie turkey from Lizard and Ladybug:


And here’s a two Oreo, Reese’s cup, and malt ball version from The Crafty Crow:


Peanut butter Rice Crispy Treat turkeys from Gimme Some Oven:


These unbelievably cute Brownie Bite Turkeys at Inside Bru Crew Life:


And finally some Nutter Butter Turkey Pops from The Party Animal:


I’m kinda more interested in the “adult” deserts, to be perfectly honest. This year, I’m thinking that Bobby Flay’s Pumpkin Bread Pudding might do the trick:


What about you?

Peace, ya'll!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Muse - Lets Talk Turkey

For today’s Monday Muse, I thought we might jump start our Thanksgiving week by looking at some adorable crafty Turkey’s. There are about as many ideas for Turkey crafts out there as there are turkey’s themselves, it seems…these are among my favorites this year:

This Turkey Place Card from Elle’s Studio is super cute!


This little Pine Cone number from Amazing Moms is adorable.


Amazing Moms also had this Turkey Memo Clip…how useful!


This Turkey Crayon Holder from Parents.com is one that I know would go over really big at our house


And Paige Evans takes the Hand Print Turkey to a new level on the American Crafts Studio blog.


What do you think? Got any cute turkey crafts?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Inspiration on my radar...

There are a whole lot of artists out there that inspire me…

But in all honesty, the artists who inspire me most are scrapbookers. It’s a story telling, takin’ photos, playing with patterned paper kind of thing…and there are a TON of artists out there that inspire me.

For a long time I was inspired by the Creating Keepsakes artists, the "biggie's, the golden girls – Donna Downey, Ali Edwards, Cathy Zielski, etc. And I still am inspired by them in a way…its just that EVERYONE is inspired by them…and I find that some of what they do is just not my style any more.

So, I thought…ok…who are my go-to inspiration sources these days? Not in any way to say that I have any kind of insight on what makes a great scrapbooker and what does not…Just to say, these are the top five for me lately, in no particular order:

Meghann Andrew:


Megan has an uncanny way with a page. She has an unbelievable eye…no doubt her decorator’s eye at work. But her pages are bliss for me. They have details, but are not complicated. I just LOVE how she makes it all look so good. Her Blog Meghann's Little Corner is a gorgeous mix of cool recipes, life in New Orleans, decorating and scrapbooking.

And you should see her gallery!! Its full of gorgeous sketch interpretations, beautiful takes on color combinations and amazing scrapbook fun.


Nancy Doren:


Nancy is above all else an artist. She paints, she takes photos, and she is BRILLIANT when it comes to using symbolism in scrapbooking. I know Nancy largely from working with her on the Scrapbooking from the Inside Out design team. But this lady will knock your socks off in so many ways. Her blog Paperview is the most juicy and eclectic mix of scrapbooking, art, design, photos, and fun posts from kitty ever assembled.

And her pages and projects are AH MAY ZING! Check out Nancy's Gallery HERE!

Kim Watson:


I don’t know how I ever stumbled upon Kim Watson…I think I was blog hopping. But I’ve noticed she’s popping up in lots and lots of places lately. I think I’ve been following her for about a year or so. One of the things I love about Kim's Blog is how amazing it feels just to land on the page. She as gallery sort of blog that feels like lots of natural light is pouring forth from my computer. Her style is outrageously fun and full of amazing details. Her layouts are like conversations on a page, they totally draw you in. You must go check out Kim's Gallery HERE!

Kinsey Wilson:


Kinsey is one of the amazing Crate Paper designers. She has a seriously amazing style. TONS of details and her stitching is unbelievable. Every time I see one of her pages, I marvel at how she uses the same products I do, but takes them right into the FABULOUS stratosphere with her designing. She REALY inspires me to look at my tools and products in an imaginative way. Take one look at Kinsey's Gallery HERE and you will be thinking to yourself, “Oh WOW! I didn’t think you could do THAT with a scrapbooking page!”

On a side note I have no idea how this girl maintains patience with all that stitching. I would never be able to finish a project like that! It’s a marvel!

Francine Clouden:


This lady seems to be everywhere! I just love when I see something and I know its FRANCINE who did that! Her work seems to breathe…It has a fresh feel, with lots of white space and heartfelt journaling. She really manages to group elements in a way that makes a layout feel both open and completely full. Her blog Callaloo Soup often has delightful life pictures of her, her husband and her adorable little boy. Its another breath of fresh air: simple, peaceful, all about life and wide open.

When you take a look at Francine's Gallery HERE you can see the amazing openness on her pages.

So…now its your turn to share…who are YOU finding inspiring these days!?!?!?

Peace, ya’ll!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

But a Vapor *SFTIO November Acceptance Kit*

One of the things that scrapping with the Scrapbooking From the Inside Out kits has brought front and center for me is how deeply ingrained my faith is with my art. The ACCEPTANCE kit was no exception when it came to my faith playing a huge part in my layouts.

This layout has such deep meaning, but the layout itself is so simple:


Its not a complicated thing, really, to understand that life is fleeting and that our moments here on earth are but a precious few. ACCEPTING the fact that my moments are few and my decisions in view of this brevity are important is really a central theme to life for me. I want to make the most of my time and now and invest myself wisely.


Though its not complicated, its not necessarily easy...there are a lot of distractions in this world, a lot of noise. Sometimes you just have to really shut yourself off from all that noise to hear your own heartbeat, to get back in touch with what matters.

What do you think? Do you accept your fleeting time on earth? What do you do with the time you ahve?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tug, Tug

I've been reading a lot.

I've been thinking a lot.

I've been praying a lot.

There has been a minor upheaval in my world...enough for the tug tug tug of my heart, mind, soul, spirit to get back to reflecting and writing about spiritual and creative matters here.

I'm strapped for time...precisely the time to attempt something new, right?

In my head, there are broad, sweeping stories of faith and clarity and understanding.

My friend Heather says I'm good at connecting the dots...a dot here, a dot there, a dot in one more place and I can see how it all fits, why it matters, what it means...

and I've had that tug tug tug on me to write these things...here...on my blog...like I used to...before I..um...became a working mommy of two...

I never know how much to put myself out there.

But I've been reading and thinking and praying...

And I know that God has something for me to write about that has to do with authenticity and creativity and how I'm a clay pot for sure but not the SAME clay pot as the clay pot next to me..

He's got something for me about my creative voice...what, in the great wide world, would I have a voice about?

Maybe after years of struggling with my self image and finding a muse that just lights me on fire to be my weird and not all that conventional self.

Maybe how when you reconnect with grade school/neighborhood/high school/college/first marriage friends you don't have to be the same person.

Maybe that its ok to wear green socks with your outfit if you like green socks.

Maybe how I've been inspired to wear my big stone jewelry again...

Maybe, just maybe, you are looking for your voice too...and you want to wear green socks too...and you want to be authentic...and you want to be set on fire (not literally...you get the picture)...and you want to hear your OWN voice when you open your mouth...and you want to be the best YOU that YOU can be...

Maybe that is why I'm feeling a tug tug tug...because you feel it too....

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday Muse - the one with the Volcano

Todays muse is this stunning photograph:


This is the Eyjafjallajökull Volcano in Iceland as photographed by Sigurdur Hrafn Stefnisson. (say that 10 times fast)

I found it on National Geographic.

Amazing isn't it!?!?!? Almost fake looking...

But that is the stuff of life, isn't it? Its so breathtaking that we know - you just can't make this stuff up!

This muse is so fantastical...it brings up something in me, an awe for the mystery of our planet, our solar system, our universe...its the sort of moment that affirms for me a God, a Creator, an Almighty. I just cannot fathom something as amazing as this being accidental in any way...it seems purposeful, as though one of those spray-paint artists that find their way to festivals and beach boardwalks has created this image from his imagination.

Larger than life...

Almost not real...

Fantastical...

Magical...

Amazing...

WHat does this muse do for you? What could it inspire you to create!?!?!

Peace, yall!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday Inspiration - Discomfort

Our ability to grow is directly proportional to an ability to entertain the uncomfortable. ~ Twila Tharp ~

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Honor and Thanks to our Veterans

There are a lot of Vets in my family...I'm blessed I'm not among those who have a lot of graves...

My cousin, uncle, and my dad have all served in the armed forces.

I extend honor and sincere thanks to all of the men and women past and preset who have served in our armed forces, for all you sacrifice and for all you have done in service to your country.



Peace, ya'll!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Let It Be *SFTIO November Acceptance Kit* and a WINNER!

As I go through my Design Team layouts for the Scrapbooking From the Inside Out ACCEPTANCE kit, I realize I was REALLY motivated by songs this month!

Here is another one:


Got to say, the Pyrus Collection kind of threw me for a loop...I was staring at all the details in the papers and not really wantin to cover any of them up...so...I cut them out!


The cutting definately let me put the important and gorgeous details in a position of focus for the layout...

It struck me how appropriate that is for the theme of ACCEPTANCE. To accept what I had in the kit, how I felt about it and then do something to make the things that were important to me, important on the layout was very much what this theme is about for me.

Using what I have. Understanding where my heart and mind is on a matter. Trying to make beauty out of what I have and what matters to me. It really works.

What would you do with these papers? With this theme?

What have you accepted and are working with? What are you still struggling to accept?

And now for our WINNER!

Random.org says:


And that means that our lucky winner is DIANA!!!


CONGRATS!!!

Peace, everyone!

Monday, November 08, 2010

Monday Muse and a GIVEAWAY!!!

Todays muse is from a website: MUSEUM OF USEFUL THINGS. It is the most marvelous place!



I love that the website is neat and tidy...

I love that you browse products by how you use them..."AFFIX, CARRY, HOLD..."

I love that the sorts of things they carry are simple and amazingly useful, but that they seem extraordinary when all collected together.

There could seriously not be a better shopping site for somebody like me - hyper-type-A organizational freak (I don't live in a house like this, mind you, because there are three other people in my house with me. When it was just me, everything had a place and everything was in its place.)

What does this conjure up for you? Its very masculine...it would make a great inspiration piece for masculine layouts.

Its also quite clever - what could you do with the play on words?

I could see a layout labeling things by their USE rather than the object...

Well...

It inspired me...to organize my studio a bit.

I got to sorting and found a number of fresh scrapbooking supplies that I just could NOT figure a way to use in my own work.

Would you like to win a grab-box of fresh beautiful scrapbooking supplies?

Here is what is in the box:

This Karen Russell Antique Cream collection pack:


Some things from the Lily Bee Designs Lovely line:





A full Basic Grey Nook and Pantry Collection pack:


Lace Paper from KI in Blushing Gossip:


And Bouquet Cherish:


As well as lace paper from Little yellow Bicycle called Pink Blossom:


a full set of Dear Lizzy Bliss chipboard stickers:


A full set of Cosmo Cricket Material Girl chipboard:


Chipboard mini books in the following shapes:




A set of Prima pearls:


And a full set of these Prima Flowers:


And finally a sheers Key Chain:


I'll close this give-away at midnight on TUESDAY, November 9th. Just leave me a comment about ORGANIZATION. Love it? Hate it? LOATHE it? Can't get your head around it? Do you have a tip? I need a tip...how do you organize cool ideas you find in a magazine when you don't want to keep the magazine? Anybody got some other good organizational advice? With the holidays coming, all the organizing tips would be most interesting!

Whatchagot??!?!?!

Peace, everyone!