Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Couple More Holiday Projects :)

Here are a few more holiday projects I was working on and gave away for Christmas. They are magnets made from clothespins, with paint and modpodge. They are so fun and easy to they turn out REALLY cute!:)
Amidst all the holiday merriment and shipping, we have also been doing some brewing! We bottled our blueberry lambic and made a barley wine. It is currently fermenting, awaiting transfer and bottling in a couple weeks. So much fun! Our summer wine is also doing well. We finally got to taste it a couple of weeks ago as the malolactic fermentation is dying down. Busy-busy! :) Hope all is well with you and that you have a wonderful week...and of course, a Happy New Year! We are headed out of town to spend time with family, then will be back to start the new year fresh. Hope yours is a great one! :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Just A Few Random Thoughts...

So, no pictures today...just some words. :) I am sitting here, looking around my desk at all the scrap shrapnel, thinking how amazing it is that I could make such a gigantic mess making one single card! Granted, it is not a simple card, but one with many components and layers, so the mess may be warranted, but how do I manage to get just about everything out and not notice? This MUST be a good thing, afterall, I spend my day surrounded by people, moving quickly, and constantly aware-often overstimulated and ready to hide. Could it be that this crafting is a form of meditation? Absolutely! I love that I can be peaceful, focused, and so in the moment without any interruptions...not even the urge to clean up...which says a lot since I usually clean up after myself, as I go, with any other daily task. So, sigh, I am content to look around, reflectively, and realize that the "mess" is actually a good, productive thing for me in the oourse of any given day. Secondly, I am wondering if anyone else ever looks at their well-loved supplies and thinks about the sheer extravagance of the items...yes, they are made of simple components-paper, glitter, ink, fabric, etc...but that is my point. Can you think of a simpler time when one would have thought, "How wasteful! I could make a dress from all those bits of fabric that she is so (carelessly) gluing onto paper!" At times like that I feel guilty as I am reminded that we take so much for granted, including the amount of resources we are so fortunate to have, and, perhaps, waste. So, as I glue each piece and choose the project, be it memorabilia or gift, I remind myself to be grateful-mindful of the many ways in which I am fortunate and spoiled-and, thus, my meditation continues...

More Holiday Festivities...

The holidays have been wonderful with family and crafting, as well as many memories recalled. :) Here are some of the other projects I have been working on this holiday season:
A card I made for a customer that I care for...
Table mats I made for my parents...(the words reminded me of my Dad and how special he has always made Christmas for us)...
Cookies I made for the fall season....
Hot cocoa, which is always a great idea, especially when it is cold and snowy outside and we are warm and cozy inside...
And bread I cooked for our Christmas was a magnificent feast! Just the two of us, cooking as if there was a ton of people...turkey, gravy, stuffing, red potatoes, green beans, challah with sesame seeds, and cheesecake with a vanilla bean cinnamon cherry topping. Yum! We are so fortunate!
And here is a picture of the beautiful dinner my Mom made for Thanksgiving. There is no cooking like Mom's! After dinner we decorated the tree as a family and laughed together. It was exactly what I needed. Sometimes it is hard to be so far away from family. Other times it is absolutely a blessing! :) In any case, I miss them each every day and think of them all the time. They're the best.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! Again I am not sure how the time has gotten away from me since my last post, but then I look back at the photos I have taken and realize that there are many projects I have been working on...(including getting these adorable glasses)....
From random embellishments for cardmaking and scrapbooking....
to finishing my niece's dress....
to making pajama pants for Christmas presents (there are twice as many as this-I just loaded one set)...
and selling my very first cards, EVER! :) Of course I am on to more projects, including starting to make clothing for myself, mittens for my niece, and looking forward to purchasing and learning to use a snap tool! :) I will post more soon....I am thinking I am most successful when I spend some time uploading pics and scheduling them than posting every few days. Cheating, I know, but so convenient and then I can share with you! I hope that your holiday has been a merry one and that you got everything you wanted. I know I did! Snow, a day off with my Honey, and a big beautiful dinner in the works. Plus, my family is happy and healthy. I am so grateful and blessed!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Holidays to everyone! Here is the card that I previewed on October 21st...(you can see it here ) And you are finally seeing it! I wanted to save it to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone. I hope your holidays are full of warmth and love, and that everyone knows how special they are. My best wishes for a wonderful new year to you all, Crystal P.S. Thanks for visiting! See you in the new year! Can't wait to share all of your creations and mine! :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

There's Something About Fall...

There is something about fall that always makes me if I am looking back over the years and remembering all the great parts and people of my life before the cold of winter and the fresh start of the coming spring. It makes me homesick, too...I think of my parents and my siblings. Of the people that have come and gone in my life, and in this world. I think of many wonderful memories and smells, and just all of the things I am grateful for as they have made me who I am. And, I do my very best to express that gratitude and love by sending messages to those I hold near and dear to my heart. Here is a card I made for my parents and sent off today...with a special recipe my Mom has been looking forward to. :)
Speaking of Mom and recipes, it reminds me that I am homesick for the kind of homestyle cooking my parents make! I love eating at their house when we go home! Swiss steaks, mashed potatoes, carrots, Mom's homemade gravy. Yum! And don't even get me started on Dad's hamburgers or stuffing....Christmas and Thanksgiving meals are always the best!!
But, then, it is also the time of year when everything looks and tastes so good, but EVERYTHING seems to have dairy in it. Sometimes I am convinced when I look at a cheesecake or a piece of pie with icecream (or fruit salad with whipped cream, or cake, or macaroni and cheese-the list goes on and on) that god hates me. I do not know why I am forced to have such a love-hate relationship with cows! They are so tasty, and yet I am allergic to the milk they produce. So sad. But, I have found some good alternative recipes. If you have any I would love to hear about it! (Especially the yummy ones!)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


What is it about butterflies that I am absolutely enamored with? I must confess that I love them! I love the shape of their wings, the fun little antennas, and everything that they represent...freedom, strenght, beauty. It reminds me of a song by Martina McBride where she sings, "God bless the butterly. Give her the strength to fly. Never let her wings touch the ground..." Just a short thought today (with a tag I made years ago with my Grandmother's passing, which I hold close to my heart)...but I will have more butterflies for you later this week! :)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Giveaway By Bellaidea

Today I am posting a special giveaway from Bellaideascrapology. She is a wonderful artist and I am very inspired by her layouts. They are colorful, layered, and complex, with beautiful photos and journaling, yet do not leave my eyes feeling overwhelmed. I am simply stunned everytime I see a new page she has made. Thank you for your inspiration, Bella! And, for those of you who would like to see more, or to sign up for her giveaway, you will find a link to her page on my side bar under "Inspiration." Or, you can also go to her giveaway link at Hope you are having a great Sunday and enjoyed an extra hour of sleep...or crafting! :)

Saturday, November 3, 2012 order update! :)

So, as you know, I have anxiously been awaiting my second package from And...drumroll, please, here it is!!
I must say that I was just as impressed with this shipment as the last! It was packed well and on time, just like the previous. And, well, it was free shipping (again) for any order over $20. I LOVE it! I am so excited to get working on some layouts to share with you now! :) Hope your weekend is going well and that you are finding some great deals, too. Where do you like to shop? Please do share!! :)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Another Favorite Storage Item: Cropper Hopper Paper Files

Good morning! I am writing my second confession of the week in honor of my craft room reorganization this past weekend! I have been a longtime user of the Cropper Hopper Paper Files, but wanted to share this product with you. It is fantastic!
I have all of my papers sorted and organized by color-patterned and solid-plus categories, such as boders, vellum, tags, nature, stickers, and so forth. It is the best. All of my paper files live in a Home Depot box that I modified to fit the files. Now I can "shop" for whatever papers or products I need with ease. What is your system? I would love to hear about it!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Hello! Happy Halloween! I hope you are all having a great day and that the festivities have put a smile on your face. I know they have put one on mine! Here is a picture of the card I made for my sister with the Martha Stewart spider web punch that I promised you last week:
And here is a close up. It was not at all what I had in mind, but I did include the spider web punch...with rainbow stripes. I know she will love that part. :)
These last ones are of the costume I made:
It was much cuter when I first put it on, however, the $3 Walmart t-shirt was unable to hold up to the safety pins, so here it is slouching and with holes in my shirt! Still turned out cute, though. I made the costume from a table cloth and black t-shirt. It cost a total of $3 plus tax at the Goodwill. I am definitely proud of it! :)
And here is that smile I told you about!
(Oh! And of course I had to do my nails lady bug style, too!!)
Hope your day was a wonderfully festive one! Thank you for visiting! Crystal

Monday, October 29, 2012

A Favorite Storage Item: Iris 12x12" Storage Cases

So, I must confess that I LOVE the Iris storage cases! They are fantastic!! I use them to store all sorts of things...stickers, embellishments, stamps, ink pads, punches, tools, paper...they are perfect! And, they are wonderful for traveling!! I even love their little 4x6" photo storage containers. The best part? They are safe for photos and very durable. Looking for the 12x12" containers? Costco is selling them 5 for $19. Awesome deal! If only I needed more! ;)
One of the fun things is that they come in so many different colors now. I like the glittery ones the best! Check them out!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Cloud Atlas

From IMDb: "An exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution. " So if you know me, you know that I watch movies as a background to other tasks-mostly crafting. :) But, this weekend I saw a movie that was so profound that it reminded me of the hopeful child that lives inside of me. Saturday night we saw the movie Cloud Atlas. With the exception of two other movies in the past couple years (Inception and The Hunger Games), I have not seen any movies I would consider exceptional. This, of course, is a measure of how much emotion and thought the movie illicits within me, as well as the acting and filming. Cloud Atlas was far and beyond any movie I have ever seen. It is based upon a novel that it has been said is unfilmable, but the producers did an amazing job. I am looking forward to reading the book. And, I am looking forward to living each day with the hope I recall from my childhood, because hope should not be merely nostalgia, but something we nurture within ourselves and spread to others. Hope is what keeps the human race is what reminds us that we are not merely part of the machine, but truly alive. Live each day as if it will be your last. Love without reserve. Jump head first. Enjoy the ride. We are not here very long.

Happy Haul!

So, as I mentioned earlier in the week, I have been so excited to get my package from! I waited not very patiently all week, and it arrived on Friday, just as they said it would. The package was very nicely organized and the two customer service inquiries/interactions I had were both friendly and professional (as I cancelled my first order to add to it...) :) I was so impressed! I will definitely shop there again, and, well, already sent in a second order last night. :D Can't wait to get the package.... Anywho, here are the items I received. I apologize that they are not all close ups, but that would mean a lot of pictures. Just to give you an idea of the value, I received 57 items and only paid $74. Shipping was free and there were no taxes. Given that the items are all top of the line companies and the price I would have normally paid, this was a steal!! And, now I will be able to do a ton of scrapbooking titles and card greeting using all the letter stickers I got. I am sooooo excited! Enough of my rambling, however, as I know the suspense is building...
(It does not look like there are 57 items, but I ordered two each of all the letter stickers to ensure I would not run out of necessary letters in the middle of a project...) And now you know why I am so excited and had such a hard time being patient! :) I would highly recommend this company for all of your scrapbooking needs. There are a ton of products available, including other basic items, such as brads, albums, scissors, tools, and adhesives, too! Hope your weekend was a great one! I'll be visiting again with you soon to show you some of the projects I am working on! Happy Crafting, Crystal