Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wild West Scrap Divas are having a giveaway

Just wanted to post a little news on what's happenening over at WWSD!

We have a Huge Prize up for grabs! It is a prize filled with just over $130.00 in scrapbooking goodies! Just follow the steps below and this awesome prize could be yours!

Check it out at


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Another Fab Blog Candy Giveaway!!

Steff at is have a Thanksgiving Holiday Blog Candy Giveaway. This is why, in her words: Thanksgiving is almost here and I feel so blessed to have received RAKs & goodies, to have learned so much from everyone across the world and MOST importantly to have met so many wonderfully talented scrapbooking friends!! I would like to show my thankfulness and appreciation to all you super sweet and talented scrappers out there!! So, I will be doing a GIVEAWAY of a "Thankful" Mini Album kit !!! I put together a really super cute & fun kit that will be a blast to put together!! I will post picts soon :) The winner will be drawn and announced the day before Thanksgiving!!

Blog Giveaway!!! is 120 sales shy from 1000 sales and to celebrate she is hosting a give away with The giveaway ends Dec. 5th it will include; Jenni Bowlin perpetual calendar, Tim Holtz holiday stamp, Jenni Bowlin large christmas bingo cards, and a surprise gift from 7 Gypsies.
Go to Tiffanys blog and follow her directions to win.
In addition itsalwaysfabulous is offering a 10% discount off of your order if you mention this giveaway during your order.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Donna's Halloween swap

Donna's Halloween album for TradeWind Scrappers swap

I used a lot of vintage product on Donna's mini swap for Kathryn's Trade Wind Scrappers group. Donna is married and has 3 "children" who wag tails, walk on four legs and bark.

For her album, I used an old medicine bottle and poison label that I found at (Russel and Stan are so sweet & they find the COOLEST vintage things). I put a message to Donna in the bottle; paper for the pages is from Making Memories; Bill found a ton of cool Halloween trinkets for me including the spiders, skeleton, witch hat picks and pumpkin picks at Party Warehouse; and the "Best Witches" collage came with an order of goodies I purchased from Lisa at -- a great source for vintage ephemera and German scrap.

I heard from Donna last night and this is what she sent me (I think she likes the mini album):


I got your mini album today and holy bloody hell (sry) it turned out so beauitful i love especially the skelton on the second page it put mine to shame :( love all the colors and those tags are really beauitful

and thank you thank you thank you so much for the xtra goodies.. and that lil bottle with a message that was a nice touch

your a very talented lady and ur album has gaven me wonderful idea's for next months album

I will try and post some pic's of it in a lil bit

thank you so much once again

have a scrappy night

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Camping Mini Album

Sam, my Georgia peach

So last month I signed up for a mini album swap for the group, Craft Craving Chicas. Who knew my swap partner would become such a good friend? I sure didn't. Sam, from Palmetto, GA ( is a kindred spirit. We have so many interests in common, it's weird.

Beyond cooking and baking, we love reading old recipes and cookbooks, we both collect primitive furniture, we both enjoy canning and preserving -- not only vegetables and fruit but also memories. We both drive our husband's crazy with our list-making habits, (we both keep track of our canning results, among other things), our favorite holidays are Christmas and Halloween, and we have the same tastes in paper: Cosmo Cricket, Graphics 45, are both our favorites.

Oh, and her youngest son is named Dakota and guess where I live? Dakota County. A coincidence? I think not. We were meant to be friends.

All of this commonality and getting to know each other — we e-mail back and forth day and night, about 6-7 times — added to the enjoyment of making our albums for each other. Sam mentioned that she enjoyed camping with her dad and brothers growing up, and knowing she likes vintage and Cosmo Cricket, I chose the Cosmo Cricket "Mr. Campy" paper line for her album. I included fishing and camping pictures that I had in my stash that I either bought at antique stores, acquired from friends, or found at local flea markets -- they were all from Minnesota, land of 10,000 lakes and a lot of loons.

Though we are miles and miles apart and I can't be with her when she opens my gift, I am lucky that in this digital age that, not only have we been able to forge a bond but Sam is going to videotape her first look at my album. How cool is that?

I hope she finds it "stinkin' cute."

P.S. She posted her video and her natural reaction was more than I could have asked for. You can find it here:

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Blog Candy at Follow the Paper Trail

Check out the awesome butterfly mini album blog candy kit at Laura shows her mini on YouTube, under the same name. It is a beautiful book and reminds me of the 70s, all the colors, designs and styles that were the best of those days. Check it out, and keep your fingers crossed that I win!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Halloween Chills ’N’ Thrills Album

Halloween Chills ’N’ Thrills

I just finished writing an article called "Which Craft" for a national lifestyle magazine. My article focused on how those with limited hand or body movement can continue to craft by adapting or using certain tools. While researching for this story, I called several companies in the scrapbooking arena to find out what tools are available for this craft. Making Memories graciously sent me a Slice machine plus oodles and oodles and oodles of goodies so I could make this Halloween album. Fiskars sent spring-action scissors and punches that take less strength to operate; and Scott and Lisa at sent me a 7 Gypsies Binderie.

Can I tell you how much I love the Slice??!? I've purchased several more design cards, the embossing tools and lay away at night planning my mini-albums and ATC cards around what die-cuts I can make.

The Binderie literally takes a push of the button to operate but I've got to practice getting the holes where I want them. I've started making mini notebooks with cardboard covers — they're so cute! And I'm lovin my Fiskars scissors and punches — they are my new favorite hand tools.

I learned something new about ordering online. After I placed an order through 7 Gypsies website I got a call from "Mike" at BlueMoon Scrapbooking. He explained that suppliers such as BlueMoon bid on the orders placed on manufacturer's sites. I was a little hesitant at first but super-nice Mike explained that it's completely safe, and in the future I can just order from Blue Moon. That's when I asked if he knew of any products that would fit my story. He put Scott on the phone and we talked for about an hour. Scott is the real deal and also a super nice guy. If you haven't watched BlueMoon's technique and new product videos, you must! His wife, Lisa shows techniques now and then and they have a designer named Kristin that shows really cool painting techniques. But when Scott and Lisa show new product it's a hoot — they are so adorable. Check them out at YouTube or at

For info on the Slice (LoVe IT!!) go to or check out their vids on YouTube by searching for makingmemories123


Friday, August 14, 2009

Dad's Dinner Bucket

For as long as he worked, six days a week, my dad used one of these lunch pails; he called it his "dinner bucket." When I was little, I'd pass on my afternoon snack just so I could eat half a jelly sandwich that he saved for me in his dinner bucket. They were warm and sweet and it didn't matter that it sat in his locker, in his dinner bucket, all day long.

Dad worked for the Northern Pacific railroad and during his summer vacation he'd bring me and my sisters to the shops so we could visit with his buddies, run around the trains, and sit inside cars, pretending to be on a long journey in the Orient. He worked for 30 years for the railroad and near as many years part-time at Montgomery Wards in the car service area. He worked long and hard hours until he was 60! I can't imagine how he did it day after day, taking only two weeks off all year.

I wanted to honor my dad's memory and keep all of his momentos in a safe place. When I came across a lunch pail on Ebay, I knew I found exactly the way to hold my memories. I decorated the pail with a picture of my dad sitting on a woodpile at the house where he and I grew up. He's wearing his favorite uniform of "dungarees" and achambray work short. My dad was never without his ubiquitous blue (or red) cowboy handkerchief. Unfortunately, we didn't think to keep any of his, so for this project Bill donated one of his, which I tied to the handle.

My dad died when I was 22 and when the song by Mike and the Mechanics, "In the Living Years" came out a few years later, I felt the pain of the words in my heart. I still choke up every time I hear it. It's about missed opportunities with our fathers while they are alive, about generational differences, and about how easy life can be if we just listen. On my dad's scrapbox, I've included a couple of my favorite lines from the song; the ones that give me hope that he now knows how much I truly loved him.

While my father's adulthood wasn't easy, nor was his childhood. My grandfather passed away when my dad was 13, so it was up to this little boy to help support his mother, brother and little sister. He did this with a paper route covering miles of our old neighborhood. As an 18-year-old, he met my mother at Phalen Lake, near where he and I grew up, they married and at 27, went into the Navy. My mom had their first baby, my brother, while dad was based in Guadalcanal during WWII. His letters home to mom, only reassured her that he'd be home soon so they could be a happy family -- but he reminded her to ration and not spend money.

Inside Dad's Dinner Bucket I've placed his notebook of addresses from his paper route, his dog tag from WWII; letters to my mother from Guadalcanal; a Northern Pacific matchbook and train schedule; his tie-tack from Montgomery Ward; his President certificate from my grade school's PTA; and of course pictures of my loving, calm, sweet, funny, and smart dad.

Dad's Dinner Bucket

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Truth and Beauty

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a neighborly day in this beauty wood!

I joined Marion Smith's Girls Gone Scrappy mini album group last month, received my first kit and made a mini-file-folder album for my swap gal, Yvonne Hernandez. I'm sending it her way with loads of good feelings, thoughts and hope that she likes it!

I'm so far enjoying all the blogs and videos that other GGS group members post and make. It's so inspirational and I'm lovin' all the great ideas everybody shares. Papercrafting is my life-long love, even though I've sidetracked now and then into beading, basket weaving, pottery, flower arranging and my "always a passion" sewing. I drew my very first picture when I was 3 and still have it. It's a caricature of myself, an idea I copied from a sketch that my sister did of me. She is 8 years older and her sketch is much more discernable than mine. She so nailed my messy hair, trap-door jammies and sleepy eyes, standing in fuzzy slippers hanging on to the hand of my teddy bear. My version was a stick figure with a prickly blob in my hand and huge circles for eyes. I remember the day we drew our pictures like it was yesterday. Funny how some memories never waiver.

Yesterday, my husband and I watched the Michael Jackson memorial. I never realized how much he sang about love, hope and healing. It was beautiful to hear his words and music sung and played with such heart and depth of feeling, yet heart-wrenching to realize what a profoundly sad life he must have lived. Rest in Peace, Michael and thank you for your truth and beauty.

Yvonne's Dream Vacation - GGS swap album

Monday, June 8, 2009

Rainy day art

It's October, no late September, er I mean it's June 8 in Minnesota. But it feels like a mid-October day: 55°, overcast all day and a steady wind whipping around the bend. I've been in my studio, actually it's a lair, some people call it a "store," all day, and have finished a couple ATC trades and one mini album for sale. One ATC is for a Itty Bitty book trade with my favorite group, which is affiliated with my favorite art supply store, Red Lead (in Old Webster, just outside of St. Louis, MO). I'm trying to talk my husband into driving down to St. Louis for a short vacation this summer JUST TO SEE THE NEW RED LEAD STORE!! He just laughs when I bring it up, I don't think he realizes that I'm dead serious. Since Friday, I've been having YouTube withdrawals. For some reason, my Mac is not buffering videos; I'll have to drag my computer to the Apple store in the Mall of America (my home away from home) to see what is wrong. It's literally a drag to have to do this because it's always a wait and my computer is heavy. Whine. 

Well, this has been a fun test to set up my blog, we'll see if it sticks ;)