Thursday, December 30, 2010


Well everyone, I have definitely been MIA for the past while and I am desperately trying to catch up! The Christmas season has been more than a little overwhelming, with the busy-ness and some health issues, things just got away from me.

This has been followed by a nasty surprise on Boxing Day - our guests (who were staying in their RV outside), came in to use the facilities at 6:30am and discovered 2 inches of water covering the entire main floor of our two story home. YIKES! Our toilet tank had cracked and water had been pouring into the house at a rate of 30 gallons per minute for about 6 hours!

Apparently Crane has been sued many times for this same type of incident - thankfully we have insurance and by 8am the insurance adjuster and flood restoration team had arrived.

Here are a few shots of the damage - at first we thought the carpets were ok - until we walked on them!!!

This last shot is of our front entry - the bathroom is at the back of the house and their was almost ankle deep water at the front door!

My scrap room got pretty wet - I am out of scrapping commission for at least a month - except for a few basic things I rescued before the restoration team packed everything up! Unfortunately I had some things on the floor and they got pretty damaged:
At least I will get a scrap room reno out of all this!!! YIPPEE!

So, for the past five days we have been listening to the constant hum of dryers trying to dry out the walls.

The carpets are gone, the lino is being scraped and the six of us are learning to appreciate living in a space half the size of what we are used to. Still, in all, we are so blessed - we have a home, we have insurance, we have wonderful, supportive friends and family to help us out over the next 6 - 8 weeks of renovations. Stay tuned for updates as we undergo the reno! And any suggestions for scraproom reno are gratefully accepted!!!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

December Dailies Day 1!

Hey everyone! It is finally here!!! December has begun and with it the opportunity to document all of the wonderful-ness of life in December!!! Here is the intro I have made for my album this year:

I want to give you a few suggestions for taking photos through the month - you really want to have a photo each day to help you document ( or a piece of memorabilia works, too!!) So dust of the camera and have it handy - you want to capture both the special and everyday moments of this festive month!

Here are a few ideas to capture:

Decorating your home ( how about "before and after" shots??)

Your favourite decorations

Christmas baking

Opening the advent calendar

wrapping gifts

Christmas shopping

watching your favourite holiday specials on TV

Holiday concerts and other special events

Your pet all decked out for the holidays

Your kids all decked out for the holidays ;)

Favourite holiday foods

Snow ( if you have it, or how you feel about NOT having it!)

YOU ( get your kids/friend/spouse to take a photo of you at least 3 times!!!)

Writing letters to Santa

Writing or making holiday cards

As you can see, there are lots of ideas of things you can be thinking about to capture your month!

So all that is left is to get out there and take a few photos today - jot down some thoughts to go with your photos and then get busy putting the album together.

Some people do there album a week at time - I do mine everyday because I have a printer at home. I will be posting my pages each day - hopefully to inspire you to play along - and to inspire me to keep going, as well!!

Happy December - I can't wait to hear how you are doing with your album!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Almost ready??

December 1st is fast approaching!!! I have spent some time in the last few days going through my Christmas stash so I can be all ready for my Daily December Album! I went through a lot of my small embellishments, buttons and ribbon scraps and put them together in jars, so they are easily accessible when I am ready to embellish my little pages! This really streamlines the page making process - which is critical if you are actually going to complete the album!

Above is a photo of some of the pages I will be using in my album this year - and I will be adding a few as I go along, or switching them up, depending on the daily page theme.
I am working on my front cover right now, and should have it up and posted very soon. How is your hunting and gathering coming along!??
Stay tuned for more album ideas, as well as suggestions for journaling, photos, and other fun stuff in the upcoming weeks!! I love to have my friends creating right along with me!!
If you have a blog or gallery where you are posting your album pages, please put a link in a comment so we can all see your wonderful work, and get inspired by all of our collective creativity!
Happy Day, everyone!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Daily December Prep Week - Day One!!

This is the countdown week - just 8 days until December begins and we get to begin documenting all of our fantastic December moments ( and the not so fantastic ones, too!).

Hurray for everyday and holiday moments!

Today we are going to look at the "bones" of the album and you can begin to search your stash for what you need! I like to use up what I have on hand - but you may wish to purchase something special for your project, particularly if you prefer a more unified look!

My albums tend to be really eclectic, with pages from a lot of different sources and made from a wide variety of materials. I use a combo of chipboard, acrylic, envelopes, fabric, transparencies, journal pages - you name it - you can use it!!! Others prefer to use a chipboard mini, or a 6 x 6 or 8 x 8 album with page protectors - the choice is up to you! You will need 25 - 31 pages, plus a cover and back - the number depends on whether you are scrapping only until December 25th, or the whole month through.

To bind your album I recommend rings - the largest you can find - because when you begin to add in your various thicknesses of pages and ephemera and photos from your December life, it will get very thick. Two are usually sufficient for an approximately 6 x 6 album.

This is really the "hunter/gatherer" stage - hunt through your stash to see what you can find for these base pages. They can be all one colour, a mish mash of everything, or something in between - it really is up to your imagination and personal scrappy style.

Once we have everything gathered - we can look through the week at numbers, layouts and designing your cover!! So head into your scrappy area (whether it is a bag, a box, a cupboard or a studio) and see what you can find!

Happy Day everyone - keep checking back for more tips, hints and ideas to make your Daily December album YOUR favourite album!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Daily December - Are you Playing???

It is that time of year again everyone - my annual Daily December Album prep time and supply gathering!!! If you didn't play along last year, or if you don't know what I am talking about here is the 411!!!

Daily December albums capture the little moments of each day in December. I think it was Ali Edwards who began the tradition a number of years ago and she still does one each year!! It is a great way to make a mini book that really focuses on and celebrates the holiday moments and other cool stuff that happens in December. I have been doing this now for 3 years, and my Daily December Albums are by far my favourite albums!!!
I prep my album in advance so it is ready to add a photo(s) and some journaling each day in December . Other people prefer to make a page a day - whatever works for you. Last year one fabulous woman did an entire 12 x 12 album!!! ( Dawn you are a rockstar!) Here is a sample of a blank page from last year:

The process is fairly straight forward once you have your book assembled!!! You just add photos AND journaling ( very important!!! ) and a few embellishments and you are done!

Beginning next week on November 22nd, I will be posting each day of my Prep Week - to help you (and me) get ready for Daily December!

Watch for your supply list coming tomorrow!!! I hope you will join me!!

Happy Day everyone!!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

We Remember

Today we remember all those who lost their lives in war, and pray for peace.

Last year I did this layout about my mom's brother, who died in WWII, and was buried in Holland. I had no photo of him- I used a photo and information from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, which keeps records of where soldiers are buried and has photos of the various cemeteries around the world.

Please take time today to remember and to think about how you can work for peace in our world. For me, that is the best tribute we can offer those who gave their lives so that we can be free to work for peace and justice around the globe.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Unfinished projects. . . .

I am teaching a card class at Scrapbook Parade's December retreat (YIPPEE - a retreat!), and I finally got it finished! These are meant to be fairly quick and simple "just because" cards, with a couple of little techniques thrown in for fun! I still have a double layout class and a mini book to design, but I am almost caught up!

Speaking of catching up. . .

I also FINALLY completed some of my projects from when Trisha Ladouceur came for her Weekend to Unwind Event. It was an amazing weekend - however, I was unable to attend any of the classes because mark was in Houston! So I have been playing catch up with her incredible designs and am so happy with the results these are definitely far more labour intensive - but it was a labour of love- Thanks Trisha - you designed some incredible projects!!! Please check out her BLOG for more great inspiration!

First a wall canvas:
And a special mini book - which I am filling with all my favourite inspirational quotes, because I cannot bear to give it away!

Now I just have to get at those Christmas cards. . . . . .

Happy day everyone!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy November!

It is really hard to believe that November is upon us already!!! The fall is flying by and I cannot believe that Christmas is just around the corner!.

I wanted to share a couple of things today - mostly I have been finishing up unfinished projects and trying out Christmas card ideas!

This layout uses an old photo of my mom, with the Restoration collection from Crate Paper - I am absolutely obsessed with vintage these days!

This card is my attempt to actually use my Cuttlebug and many embossing folders in a Christmas card!
I love the look of embossing - just need to do it more often!

Over the next little while I will be sharing some of my Christmas projects, cards and the prep for my annual Daily December Album! I am hoping that you will want to play along this year and document the little bits of your family life in the midst of a busy holiday season!

Happy day everyone!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

More Quick and Easy Pages!

I promised yesterday to post a few more of my quick and easy layouts today. I really enjoyed just getting these completed - simple design and just a bit of embellishment really made them come together quickly! The above layout uses a bunch of fun stuff from Jillibean Soup - the layout below uses last year's Christmas line from My Mind's Eye! ( I am using up the stash , too WOOHOO!)

This one uses the Lush line from Kaisercraft:

What is your scrappy style? Mine tends to be fairly eclectic - I love the look of clean and simple, but I am a sucker for anything vintage, so my style ends up being a big combination of a variety of different styles. I never really think of myself as having a particular style, although when people see my layouts at the store, they always seem to know who created them! ( Maybe they just recognize my kids! ;) )
Do you work on developing a particular style? Are you a technique junkie? Clean lines your thing? Or do you prefer shabby chic? Whatever your style, I hope you are finding time to create!!
Happy Day everyone!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

17 Minute Pages

Last weekend I taught a 24/7 Marathon class at my LSS, Scrapbook Parade. That means we completed 24 layouts in 7 hours! If you do the math, that works out to about 17 minutes per page!
Together with the 14 fabulous participants and my co teacher Lana Day, we worked like maniacs to complete 20 double and 4 single page layouts! I promised at peek at a few of the layoutson Monday - so here they are!

Lately I have been on a clean and simple, get them finished kick - I have a lot of photos to scrap and I was starting to feel pressure to make every page a masterpiece! If you are like that, and happy - I am jealous! I just felt like I wanted to just get some pages completed - and was feeling overwhelmed with fussing over every detail of every page.

I decided to just get some completed, and I am feeling very happy with the results - and as an added bonus I am now more motivated to really try some new techniques and fun stuff on my next pages!!!

Tomorrow I will have a few more quick and easy pages, plus a couple with a little more detail!
Stay tuned!

Monday, October 25, 2010

True Love - 1951

I am really loving scrapping with the vintage photos I stole from my mom when I was home!

This layout is one of my parents before they were married, taken in Olds, Alberta in 1951. They look so young and happy!!

I am teaching a class for this layout at Scrapbook Parade in November! I just love the papers from the So Sophie and Lost and Found collections from My Mind's Eye! Flowers and lace are from Prima.

Yesterday I taught half of a 24/7 marathon class - 24 layouts in 7 hours! Whew! Exhausting, but a great feeling of accomplishments for the participants when we were all done! That is 17 minutes per page - yikes - I will post some photos tomorrow, along with a few other projects I have been working on. . .
Happy Day everyone!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

New paper, old photo

I have been working with the October Kit from Scrapbook Parade , which features some great papers from Kaisercraft's LUSH line. I love the colour combos in this line, but I was having trouble choosing some photos to use it with.

I was searching through one of my old boxes of photos from several years ago ( thank goodness for digital cameras!!! No more boxes!!), and I found one of my favourite photos.

Taken on the day we brought Joshua, our youngest, home from the hospital, it has our eldest daughter Hannah snuggling with her new little brother. I just love it, and it ws great to see their reaction to the layout - Hannah is now 14 and Josh is 8!

Such a gift to find such a great photo - and it means I am going to have to get serious and tackle those boxes soon - who knows what other treasures are hiding in them!!
Happy day everyone!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Definition of Persevere

per·severe (pʉr′sə vir′)
intransitive verb persevered -·vered′, persevering -·ver′·ing
to continue in some effort, course of action, etc. in spite of difficulty, opposition, etc.; be steadfast in purpose; persist

This little guy amazes me. I have always know Josh is persistent ( the tantrums, the "my way or the highway" attitude, the inability to leave a task unfinished), but it always seemed to be a not so fabulous quality, at least in a little person. But he really taught me something (again) about sticking with something even when it is really, really challenging.

Three mornings a week for the past 6 weeks we have gotten up early - in time for an 8am practice for the cross country team at his school. This alone is a triumph - getting to school on time for 8:40am is a challenge most mornings, so the commitment to make the practices was a big one. He did it, though, most mornings easier than I.
And then came the Cross Country meets after school. The big races. Hundreds of kids, lots of schools, and many, many distractions. And the course seemed too far for those little legs. Would he really be able to do this - on his own, without an assistant, without getting lost, or distracted, or following a puppy off the course?
The answer is YES. He did it not once or twice, but three times. Three races in which he came 115 out of 115, 117 out of 121, and finally 118 out of 123. He didn't notice where he placed, and I didn't care. I cried - he laughed.
It wasn't easy - for a kid with an Autism Spectrum Disorder this is a huge challenge, and he was amazing. When he wanted to quit, we called him to the finish lines with cheers and whistles. Mark ran part of the way with him so he could keep going in one race, Emily cheered and ran alongside him in another. I stood amazed and proud and tearful as he crossed the finish line, with a red face and an ear to ear grin.
Perseverance - Joshua has it in spades - and he makes me want to try a little harder each day, too. Way to go, Josh - you are my champion - each and every day.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

(Taken at Bass Pro in Calgary - that store is CRAZY!!!!)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

How many days til Christmas?????


Yes, it is true! Hard to believe how quickly it is coming!

I love the countdown to Christmas, and an Advent Calendar is a tradition in our family. We don't use the chocolate ones - I am a big fan of activities that help us to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas and encourage nice family time together in the midst of a busy season! I have used fabric and paper calendars in the past - this year I am teaching a couple of Advent Calendar classes at Scrapbook Parade, so I got the opportunity to use the great pull out box calendar from Kaisercraft !

Here is the first of two I am designing - using paper from My Mind's Eye:

I can't wait to fill it with some great family activities ( and maybe a chocolate or two !) The second one uses paper from Echo Park - and when I get it done I will be sure to post it!!!

What are YOU doing to get ready for the holiday season???

Happy day everyone!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Crazy for Upsy Daisy!!!

Well, I got the shock of my life today! I went on Facebook this afternoon ( when I should have been working - ssshhh - don't tell!) and found out this:

I cannot believe I will be part of the Upsy Daisy Design Team! I am so excited, and and so honoured! Anyone who follows this blog knows I am a little obsessed with this amazing company - and I am so thrilled I get to work with such a talented group of women!

Martinis, anyone???

Happy day!!!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Welcome fall!

I am really behind in everything it seems - September has come and nearly gone in a whirlwind! It feels so much like fall - the mornings are cool and the nights are almost cold! And of course it has been rainy - welcome to fall and winter on the west coast - but usually we don't get much until November! Paying for our fantastic summer I guess!

I have been busy trying to get caught up on some projects - I am still scrapping photos from last fall and have got to get them done before we hit the pumpkin patch next week and take another 500 photos!!!

Here is is one of Joshua from last year - using my favourite fall line from Upsy Daisy:

I designed it for a class I will be teaching in October at Scrapbook Parade - it is a class all about using ribbons in different ways - this layout plus a card.

And if you need more seasonal inspiration - and you haven't had a chance to see pick up the new Scrapbook and Cards Today magazine at your LSS, have a peek at it online here. It has some great stuff in it - and it also has my first published card - check out page 48!!! I am so excited - my family just roll their eyes - but all the scrappers reading this get my excitement, I am sure!

I am working on some new projects now - and hopefully I will have a little Halloween treat tutorial for you in the near future!!

Happy Day everyone!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Blog Candy Winner!

And the winner of my Halloween blog candy is. . .

Congrats to Cher!!! Cher, please email me your snail mail address at scrapsoflifekits at gmail dot com and I will get your goodies in the mail!!

Thanks for playing everyone!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Falling for You

I am in love with the September Kit - Falling for You - from Scrapbook Parade - it is pretty amazing if I do say so myself!!!! I always have so much fun selecting product and putting the layouts together!!!

Fall is my favourite season - so I always have a TON of photos to scrap - and it was great to get some of last year's photos done so I will be ready for this year!!!!

Here are this month's layouts:

I think there were a few kits left in the store, so call or stop by the store to pick up yours! If you live out of town, we can send it to you!! Remember, step by step pdf instructions for these layouts are available for download on the Scrapbook Parade blog!!!
Happy Day everyone!!!