Thursday, May 23, 2013

Rainie Wears Glasses?!

No, not yet she doesn't anyway! This mom is all about free entertainment, though, so while the two girls and I waited for the optometrist we had a lot of fun playing with the frames. I was almost disappointed she wasn't getting any, because she looked so cute!

In my next CraftWithAnna-dventure, I'm making a single page layout with two, four -by -six portrait photos. Doodlebug Designs makes a beautiful sorbet woodgrain, and the reverse is a fun floral print that paired perfectly with a Bella Blvd yellow cloud print I had on hand.

In the bargain bin at Jo-Anne Fabric's there were these photo overlays; I cut one up and used it as a very thin embellishment. Some three-dimensional butterflys from the same bargain bins added just the right touch of whimsy to the overall look.

Stop back by here again, and keep watching for more video fun to come!

While Everyone Sleeps...

Mom hits the craft room for some late night card making!

And the insides...

Finished with some ombre love!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Spring Has Sprung!

The weather around here has been gorgeous lately! We've had a few rainy days, but they fade from memory with a healthy day of sun shining down :-)
Isn't that a little bit like how life goes? For instance, I was so jazzed to film my first "process video" earlier this week (sun). Then I realized it would take nearly 24 hours to upload (rain)! But today, the video is live and available for you to watch (SUN!)
I hope you enjoy watching me create this layout featuring my daughter's first splash in the outdoor pool this year :-) Please, feel invited to comment or leave any feedback below!

Spring Has Sprung!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

On the Line Long Distance

Remember how much it used to cost to make a long distance phone call? Or how we would daydream of one day being able to see the person we were talking to, even if they weren't in front of us?
Well those days are here and then some! Rainier loves to call and be called online by her "East Coast Grandparents." I love that they can amuse themselves while I do important work like the dishes and laundry lol. Babysitting is just a dial -up away!
The nautical theme of Close To My Heart's Tommy themed papers and canvas embellishments seemed to fit the idea of these three being able to talk anytime, despite the mileage between our homes. For my banner I just used a bunch of scraps that were left over from a card swap I participated in on Monday.
I had no idea until I saw this uploaded image that the swirl of the map print background seems to follow just the right curve around my title. Kind of like a little hug, aww!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Sweet Patricia

How can a niece summarize all that her aunt has meant to her? In the 32 years this beautiful character in our family’s story shared her love with me.. .I learned so many lessons, which became glaringly apparent to me the moment I learned of her passing. A month has passed, and allowed me to reflect on my fondest memories of her. Among the most valuable gifts I received from her are an interest in trying to look on the bright side of every situation. I have so many sentimentally appropriate stories to share about her, and that is another of the real blessings of having known her. When I was about 16, Auntie Trisha and I went to the mall, with Uncle Craig acting as chauffeur to our “Ladies Day Out”. Wandering from store to store, I felt free to show or share with her any sparkly bauble that caught my eye. Testing her at Claires, I mused, “How about a piercing?” To my surprise, Trisha plopped into the chair and smiled, “Let’s do it!”
This was the kind of delighted, enthusiastic response you could expect from her. A writer, Trisha spoke to her loved ones with an artistic flair for wording. You never just looked, “good,” she would shout phrases of, “Mee-row, you look like the cover of a magazine!” The short hair-do she sported for most of my life matched her spunky responses and you-go-girl praising. I gained permission to have a lot of self-confidence through her views. Also gained; a love of telling our families stories. For wanting to capture the everyday moments and make them special, worth preserving. Trisha would've just loved facebook. She could remember all the most interesting family going-ons. Following and creating traditions was important to her; every year when the kids were young we would go to her house and gather all her collected Christmas ornaments to be hung. Each ornament would have a story and each of us cousins could hang it where we thought it looked best. She didn’t care how the tree looked in the end; that we were all there sharing a fun afternoon was what she found pleasurable.
——–> Besides, she’d tell each of us after we’d hung the ornament in hand that we had put it in “just the right spot.” <———
Throughout the years, I received many a written letter or poem thought up to celebrate a special occasion. She was one of the first people I know who printed her gifts on patterned paper, and I have often thought this simple act may have encouraged my own love of papercrafting. Trisha was the ultimate kind of care-giver. She sincerely cared about each and every part of your life that you shared with her. She was everyone’s biggest advocate, recognizing talents and struggles her loved ones may be facing and offering heartfelt praise or advice as needed. If you thought it was the end of the world, she would agree that it might feel that way, but help you to see a brighter side to the situation.
————> And if you thought you were on top of the world, well, she would have already known you’d end up there. <——— <———
What is it about human nature that allows us to overlook opportunities we have to share time with our loved ones, only to realize fully how many moments are lost when those moments are no longer available? I know how much it would have meant to her if I had visited more often. It had been a long, long time since I had reached out to her instead of simply responding.
Although I know what a forgiving person she strove to be, still one of the hardest pieces of my acceptance puzzle to place has been that perhaps she had no idea what an invaluable influence she was and always will be to me.
I’ll never again have the pleasure of commenting in a way that prompted one of her full body chuckles. Or to put on a fashion show for her, to send her a thinking of you card, to pick up the phone and share a cute anecdote about the kids, or to tell her with my arms around her that I love her. I can’t perform any of those tangible actions, but I can hold close to my heart the memories of how much she would have enjoyed each one of them. I can pass on the compassion, understanding, and wisdom that she shared with me, to my own children, and their cousins. I can be that spunky, encouraging, artistic aunt that loves to hear a story, and is willing to write it down. I can hold tight to, and create, new family traditions.
Traditions like, making time to spend time with your loved ones when you have the time to do so.

As our family celebrates her life today, I know her spirit will be there with us, sharing in the laughter and sneaking into every embrace... we love and miss you Patricia!

Friday, May 10, 2013

How I Began Scrapbooking...

Over a decade has passed since I first cut up a picture and glued it to a piece of patterned paper and added themed stickers.
Ten plus years of the glorious "art" that is scrapbooking! So many memories captured and made even more wonderful with embellishments (and just the right title)...
I owe it all to my dear friend Daphne who first inspired me with a scrapbook she helped create for a trip her son took to Costa Rica in the late '90s. Lots of stickers used, more layers than I would normally add, creative title work, and of course the all important journaling tell the story of how it all began and highlights our amazing friendship.
We've come a long way, lady!
I'm so glad Tracy from Mercy Tiara issued this challenge so I could finally create this scrapilicious layout :-)

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Oh My Gosh

I was so excited this morning to make this picture the background on my desktop :-D
It just so happened to fit perfectly with all the icons that were already in place... a wonderful way to extend a scrapilicious holiday and share some of the love Rainier shows Sunday to the rest of my-blog-follower-friends; Shout out to my Close To My Heart Friends! To My Vacationing Friends (this means you D&BF (C'mon, Cochran)! To Mama'Vegas-Mreowww! Love Y'all!
 Mimi- click on "comment!" Then register with a free gmail account through google :-)
Thanks for visiting with us!

Friday, May 3, 2013

In honor of National Scrapbooking Month...

Good Morning, and a very happy National Scrapbooking Day to YOU! I have two bits of fun to share with you; a terrific celebration of savings, and a page that'll sweeten the deal :-)

Get an exclusive Close To My Heart paper packet for only $10 when you spend $35!
In honor of National Scrapbooking Month, you can get the yummy Dream Pop paper packet® papers, that were specifically designed for this promotion only, for only $10 when you spend $35 in May* (valued at $19.95 retail)! This exclusive paper packet includes 12 cardstock sheets as well as 12 B&T Duos—you can’t get these sweet colors and patterns anywhere else! I got my packet late last month, and was able to whip out four, two page layouts in just a few hours. The patterns are so fun and versatile and perfect for Spring and Summer, too! Start National Scrapbooking Month off right with a unique paper packet at a bargain price and get your creative juices flowing! Also, consider hosting this month: Hostesses receive one paper packet free with qualifying May Gathering sales totals of $400 or more.
 *Shipping/handling and tax apply. Not available for purchase at full retail. Offer valid May 1–31, 2013, while supplies last. Qualifying purchases must be current, retail-priced product.

Here's my next bit of fun:
Many of you know, I love a good challenge! Shimelle Laine, one of my greatest scrapbooking influences of the past six months, has a whole lot of awesomeness going on at her website in honor of National Scrapbooking Day. I had to get a jumpstart and celebrate in UK time with Rainier this afternoon. Together, we made this adorable pink layout. I think it's really important to share with her a "holiday" that has come to mean so much to me! and since I'll be working all day tomorrow, I was glad to be able to step up to the challenge plate. I think we hit it out of the park!
My Rainie just loves washi tape, so she was delighted when her suggestion was approved and that she was the one laying down the orange stripes and flowered patterns. Then she chose the pink circles, sorbet glitter flowers, the little frame, and the tag. She's got such great dexterity for her age and even punched through the paper and bent down the brads for the teeny tiny heart brad!

I hope today you'll be able to carve out a bit of memory preserving time- share it with a loved one (or even one who you just tolerate) for double the fun! Thanks for following,-Anna

Thursday, May 2, 2013

1 2 3, She's Clean As Can Be!

One of the nicest joys of having a two year old and a new baby is that my oldest daughter is extremely helpful! She loves to fetch this or that for baby, and when it comes to bath time, she not only gets the tub out of storage, but she's also ready with washcloths and towels! I love the expressions that pass over baby Sunday's face as she watches Rainier sprinkle water over her and splash her little legs around. It's fun to see how much more room baby is taking up in the tub, now that she's growing bigger, too!
I have been wanting to use this piece of woodgrain from Echo Park since I bought it, but of course, it was too cool to use before :-) It mirrors our wood cabinets perfectly for this layout, and lets the bright blue pop off the page. My journaling card is cut from a paper called "Tickets Please," by the same company.  I added a few hearts from an Amy Tangerine day book, a little crown label sticker by My Mind's Eye, and a lot of old stickers too. Sprinkled in the corners are some yellow spray mist droplets. Thank you, Miss Evans for the eyedropper!
Even though there are a lot of individual pieces, the overall effect is quite minimal, and allows my daughters expressions to shine!
I'd love to hear any of your favorite memories of your children tubbin' around- leave a comment below, and have a craftilicious day!