MDS Monday - A fond farewell...

A couple of Sundays ago we came up against the moment in time that occurs in the lives of most pet owners at one time or another.

Our beautiful Ridgeback X, Luke, had been declining in mobility and general health for some time and as much as I didn't want to say it out loud, I knew that there would come a time when we would have a difficult decision to make.

As prepared as I thought I was, it still took me by surprise that it happened so suddenly that Sunday afternoon and evening.

In all of the sadness that surrounded that and the following days, I am grateful that my girls were able to say their goodbyes to him with love and calm, the vet that came to our house was kind and lovely in the face of what must be a horrible part of his job and I was able to be with Luke every second, knowing that he was able to feel the love we had for him.

We have some wonderful memories of Luke's time as part of our family, and I created a 12x12 layout in MDS with two of my favourites...

MDS downloads:   Paw Parade Designer Kit, Flower Pot Designer Series Paper, Happiness Is Project Life Designer Kit, Essential Wooden Elements

MDS downloads: Paw Parade Designer Kit, Flower Pot Designer Series Paper, Happiness Is Project Life Designer Kit, Essential Wooden Elements

The smaller of the two photos is Luke as the strong and robust fellow that came to us from the dog shelter and quickly made his way into our hearts.

The larger photo is one of a series of family photos that we had taken by a photographer a few years ago. I just love how he inserted himself among us all and how his smile is most definitely the biggest!

The combination of the Paw Parade and Flower Pot downloads were perfect to capture the bright and happy photos and memories of sweet times.

Rest in peace, my beautiful boy xo

Stampin' Supplies

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Beautiful Memories, in Mini...!

Just a couple of weeks ago I sent the gift of memories to a beautiful friend who lives far too far away for my liking...

My small girl's Godmother, Deena, and her beautiful family left Perth three and a half years ago to live in Brisbane.  Although social networks allow us to be closer than ever to our far flung peeps, it's not the same as sitting in her kitchen two streets away with bottomless cups of tea, so their leaving was a wrench, for sure.

Last year, with the annual Stampin' Up! convention being in Brisbane, I took my handsome man and my girls with me and after convention was over, we stayed an extra week and had a fabulous catch up with our very special friends.

The gift of memories that I sent over to Brisbane consisted of photos from the trip, all put together in the Mini Memories Simply Created Album, currently available in the Occasions Catalogue until the end of the month.

The album kit comes with everything you need to put together a sweet gift, or to gift on its own so that the recipient can enjoy the creativity that goes along with putting it together...

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Putting it together is as simple as threading the included gold rings through the pre-punched pages in an order that sings to you, then loading it up with your pictures, embellished as little or as much as you like with the included bits and pieces of delight!

Here is a small selection of some of the pages that I included in my album...

I stuck the included bookplate die cut on the inside cover and popped a birthday card inside the sweet, printed kraft bag that comes in the kit

I stuck the included bookplate die cut on the inside cover and popped a birthday card inside the sweet, printed kraft bag that comes in the kit

Lovely Ollie - a sweet new friend for my small girl, embellished with some sequins and a gorgeous Designer Series Paper print

Lovely Ollie - a sweet new friend for my small girl, embellished with some sequins and a gorgeous Designer Series Paper print

One of several kraft pages, prettied up with a doily and some die cuts

One of several kraft pages, prettied up with a doily and some die cuts

I added some co-ordinating colours of cardstock to border the photos on this page...

I added some co-ordinating colours of cardstock to border the photos on this page...

This square die-cut was the perfect sentiment to go with my very dramatic small girl's actions - the ride hadn't even taken off at this point, I just asked them them to put their hands up like they were taking off...

This square die-cut was the perfect sentiment to go with my very dramatic small girl's actions - the ride hadn't even taken off at this point, I just asked them them to put their hands up like they were taking off...

Another doily, more sequins and some simple journalling around another sweet co-ordinating die-cut

Another doily, more sequins and some simple journalling around another sweet co-ordinating die-cut

Another perfect sentiment - if my girls grow up anything like this gorgeous, sweet-hearted girl, I will be one happy mumma...

Another perfect sentiment - if my girls grow up anything like this gorgeous, sweet-hearted girl, I will be one happy mumma...

The last page is another envelope - I stuck one of my favourite photos on it and popped a hand written note inside...

The last page is another envelope - I stuck one of my favourite photos on it and popped a hand written note inside...

The kit has everything you need to put together a beautifully co-ordinated album, or you have the option of adding in matching cardstock, using punches etc to give it some extra pizzazz.

The album was received last week and I was so happy to hear that it was the lovely and love-filled surprise that I had hoped! 

Deena posted some pictures of the album on Facebook, along with this message:

Just received the most special gift in the mail from my beloved Sair. The card, the album, the thoughtful note mean the world my friend. I just wanted to show FB some of your gift so they can know how lucky I am to have your family in our life. Funny that I've also sent something to you too & it should arrive some time next week. 
Can't wait for you to see it. 
Love you, Klass Family

I was intrigued about the "I've also sent something to you" part of the message and have spent the past week stalking the postie and cursing Australia Post for their tardiness when my letterbox has been empty each time I checked.

Yesterday, my delivery finally arrived, in the form of Deena herself and her two gorgeous kids, standing in living colour on my front porch! If only there had been a hidden camera to record the look of utter surprise, delight, shock and amazement that crossed my face in a large combination when I opened the door.

The fun continued when they surprised my handsome man later in the afternoon, and also my girls by showing up to collect them from school.

Such fun!

So now I get to hang out with these lovelies on the weekend before they head back to Brisbane on Monday.

At least with convention being on the Gold Coast next year, I know that it's only until April next year that I need to wait to squeeze them all again!

Get your Mini Memories Simply Created Album Kit before it rides off into the sunset with other loveliness from the Occasions Catalogue and send some memories to a loved one today!

Stampin' Up! + Project Life!

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If you're a scrapbooker of any variety, there's a good chance you will have heard of Project Life - the scrapbooking system created by Becky Higgins.

You may also have heard that Stampin' Up! is partnering with Becky herself to bring us a line of exclusive Project Life products in Stampin' Up! colours and designs.

As a scrapbooker who is determined to collate memories in a simple and quick but also effective and stylish way, I couldn't be more excited about this announcement.

Coming up on June 10th - just 4 days away - is the opportunity to get your hands on the first of the available Project Life products by Stampin' Up!, with the entire range becoming available with the release of the upcoming Annual Catalogue on July 1st.

Mine is already ordered and on the way - one of the many perks of being a demonstrator - and I can already foresee some washing piling up fun times ahead as I anticipate its arrival.

If you're a scrapbooker who loves to keep it simple and get it done, or you're not a scrapbooker because it always looked too much like hard work, then there's a good chance Project Life will be for you.

Stay tuned for the release and for some sharing as I get busy recording life, pocket style, in the next little while...

Digital Scrapbooking Days - jump in where you are!

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If you've popped into my Facebook page in recent times, you'd have seen reference to Digital Scrapbooking days, which are upon us as we speak!  Guest bloggers, half price downloads and loads of digi scrappin' inspiration and many of you also picked up the FREE download that was available on November 2nd!

Make sure to check in at the dedicated My Digital Studio blog each day until November 8th to see the new half price downloads each day and don't forget to like my Facebook page so you don't miss out on up to the minute information!

Today's half price deal is the Be Brave Pocket Cards, which will set you back a mere $3.25 and set you up with:

  • 7-page designer template (8-1/2" x 11") 
  • 53-piece SVG stamp brush set
  • 9 embellishments
  • 1 punch

Check out the sweet samples using this fabulous download by guest blogger Jen highnite and MDS Design Team member Heather Summers over at mydigitalstudio.net.


There's a whole lot going on with Stampin' Up! at the moment, and it can be pretty tricky to keep up with at times, even for those of us who live and breathe the stuff, so for those of you who don't start each day with stampin' on the brain, be sure to check in at my What's on @ SU! page frequently so that you can keep updated with all the stampin' happenin's...

Thanks for popping in!

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MDS tutorial, design team complete + 30% off selected seasonal downloads

I promised in my previous post that I had a tutorial video coming to show how I achieved one of the fun techniques on the layout I made for my MDS Design Team introduction, and here it is now!

For your viewing and digital learning pleasure, I bring you my guide to creating your own cute digital washi tape! 

Enjoy... 


The MDS design team that I am so ridiculously excited to be included on is now complete with the introduction of the final two members, Cori and Teneale just a couple of days ago.

Transient

Make sure to visit the dedicated My Digital Studio website to keep updated with all of the digital goings on and design team work! 


By no means least, the final thing I want to share with you today is that you can score an incredible collection of Holiday and Christmas themed downloads at 30% off until 30 November. 

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I have already taken myself on a bit of a shopping expedition and have plans for some cute Christmas themed decor for our home and Christmas celebrations.  The Season of Style Pocket Cards pictured above were high on my agenda and for $6.27, I really couldn't leave them there.  

Or any of the other ones that made it into my basket...

What I love about so many of the available downloads is the amount of content you get inside, this one being a great example. 

As well as all of the complete, pre-designed pocket cards that allow you to simply print and go, you also get masses of components that make up the designs, including a 24 piece digital stamp set and 46 embellishments, which can be used in any other projects that you you might be undertaking.

Bargain! 

Check out all of the downloads included in the offer and get your Christmas digi on today... 

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Love today MDS layout + Digital Tour reminder

With the new annual catalogue arriving at the beginning of the month, I have felt a little bereft of "digi time" recently, and decided that an impromptu MDS session on the couch last night was in order.

Isn't spontaneous creating the very best kind?!

Click the layout for a larger image

Although I would ordinarily begin with a sketch or at least a slight preconceived idea of where I might be headed, this time around all I started off with was two rounded-corner photo boxes.

I would also usually stick to one pre-coordinated kit for ease of, well, co-ordination but this time around, I pretty much flew by the seat of my pants, knowing that I wanted to bring in some red and yellow to tie in with the colours of the girls' clothes and some green to bring in the photo backgrounds.

How'd I do?!

I love the end result and am inspired to "play" some more to see what other boundaries of my own creativity I might be able to poke ;-)


I have been remiss in not providing you with links to the new digital content of late, so unless you have taken it upon yourself to visit the new downloads section of my online store, you might have missed some gems.

I may or may not have had a little catch up digital shopping session of my own just now...

Find all of the latest and greatest downloads HERE.  


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Since today's post has been brought to you by the delights of My Digital Studio, I thought I would continue in that vein and remind you of the upcoming My Digital Studio Make a Statement Tour.

Throughout next month, Stampin' Up! is taking MDS on the road to educate as many folk as possible on the creative possibilities made available to you with this fabulous, intuitive software.

For the bargain price of $35, your registration will score you a half day training in the use of the software plus a copy of the software itself, available as soon as your register and pre-loaded with a huge stash of digital content (normally valued at $24.95)

I am registered and ready to roll and would love to see a load of fellow digi fans there!

Register HERE to join me at the Perth event, or choose from Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane if those options are more local to you :-)

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An MDS sketch challenge + sweet new downloads

I'm a bit ridiculously excited to share an MDS project with you today - a 12x12 layout that I completed using Instagram photos that I took during the recent school holidays in conjunction with a sketch challenge from a Facebook MDS Challenge group that I belong to...

I had so much fun with it and I absolutely LOVE the sketch itself - I can see myself using it for a traditional scrapbooking layout too.  If I can ever drag myself away from this digital caper that is... ;-)

If you headed to my What's on @ SU! page that I mentioned at the tail end of my previous post (what do you MEAN you didn't read all the way to the bottom?!), you'll have seen that there are a number of My Digital Studio kits, ensembles and templates on sale at 25% off until June 15th.

Check out all the discounted digital goodness....


Speaking of digital downloads, have you seen the latest ones released this week...?

I can see a need for the Wonderland Party Ensemble in my very near future. Loving those bright and spunky colours and that wonky cake is an absolute delight!

To take part in all this digital wonderment, you will need the MDS software, which you can trial FREE for 30 days, or purchase outright for the very reasonable price of $24.95.  Either way, they come with a pre-loaded selection of elements to use (the full version has a larger selection that the trial version) and with a vast variety of downloads available to you from my online store at any time of the day or night :-)

Be sure to pop back tomorrow for a little video treat along MDS lines... ;-)

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Introducing This and That™

An exciting new line of products making their debut in the upcoming Annual Catalogue is the delightful This and That™ range - a selection of sweet and perfectly co-ordinated products that allow you to capture life as it happens.

Considering that our catalogue is not due for release until July, you might be wondering why I would be telling you about it (and showing you the cute video!) in May, but the exciting news is that you can order these products right now, and if you want them all, you can get them in a bundle for 15% off!

I am not so patiently awaiting the arrival of my very own bundle and can pretty much predict that my big girl will be hankering after one to record all the details of our upcoming trip to Brisbane (she might indeed be lucky since the trip also coincides with her 10th birthday - double figures - yikes!)

Click on the above image to download the This and That flyer and see all of the associated products in detail.  (Is anybody else ridiculously excited about the little rotary stamp thingamy...?!  *swoon*)

Some things to note about this new product range...

  • Available right through until July when they will appear in the Annual Catalogue but the product bundle is only available until May 31st, after which time all products will only be available individually
  • More This and That products will be added to the range as time goes on. (YAY!)

Visit my online store or contact me to order your bundle(s) or any of the individual products from the range.


In case you're feeling overwhelmed by everything going on at Stampin' Up! in recent times (I certainly am, so I can't promise that what I'm about to tell you isn't for my own personal well-being with a happy side benefit for you....!), I have created a page that you can find by clicking on the What's on @ SU! tab in the navigation bar at the top of my blog.

It lists all of the current promotions and goings on in the one place so that you don't have to scroll through recent posts to try and find that thing that you saw here one time that was interesting and that you wanted to come back to later but now you can't find for the life of you...

You're welcome ;-)

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We are family - get up everybody and sing! (or purchase retiring alphabets - your choice...)

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Some of the things that I am saddest to see on the Retiring List are the alphabets - both stamps and Bigshot dies.  I love my alphabets and out of all the stamps that have ever retired, my alpha sets are the ones that I hold onto the longest!

Three of my go-to alphabets are heading into the wild blue yonder with the outgoing catalogue -the Just Perfect Alphabet stamp set, the Simple Letters Alphabet Bigz Dies and the Timeless Type Junior Alphabet Sizzlits.

Two of them got a guernsey on this scrapbook page that I completed some time ago and have had stashed ever since...

we-are-family-layout

Also featuring both on this layout and the Retiring Accessories List are the little chipboard house from On Board Merry Medley, which I have renovated with the help of some little Scallop Edge Punch shingles, some Neutrals Patterns DSP weatherboards, a Riding Hood Red Word Window Punch front door and a Basic Pearls door knob.  The little cloud - also from the On Board Merry Medley set - has been provided with additional fluffiness by way of some White Embossing Powder.

we-are-family-layout-close-1

The scene itself sits on a Baja Breeze circle of cardstock, which was cut with the retiring Circle Scissors Plus, and grass made out of some of the Pear Pizzazz striped DSP from the retiring 2010-2012 In-color Patterns DSP.  I will be quite sad to see the end of Pear Pizzazz, as it has been my go to pale green for the past two years (my apologies to Certainly Celery...)

SARAH'S SCRAPPIN' TIPS

  • Keep it simple and allow your photo's to be the stars of the show
  • Use sketches from magazines or online sources as inspiration.  It is a rare (albeit very exciting!) occasion that I start a layout without having been inspired by one I have seen somewhere.  There is nothing more disheartening than staring at a large, blank sheet of 12x12 and wondering where on earth to start
  • If you're like me, you scrapbook much less frequently than you would like.  One of my reasons is that I build it up to be a much bigger project in my head than it ever turns out to be.  My advice? (and I'm learning to take this myself..)  - just do it!

I have uploaded an updated copy of the Retiring Accessories List, as - believe it if you will - some items have completely sold out in the two days since its release.  If there's anything that you have been putting off ordering, my best advice would be to delay no longer and contact me today with your retiring list order while your favourites are still available!

Stamps: Just Perfect Alphabet Paper: Crumb Cake, Baja Breeze, Early Espresso, Very Vanilla, Soft Suede, Riding Hood Red, Neutrals Patterns DSP, 2012-2012 In-color Patterns DSP Ink: Early Espresso, Versamark Accessories: Simple Letters Bigz Die, On Board Merry Medley, Scallop Edge Punch, Word Window Punch, Circle Scissors Plus, Basic Pearls, White Embossing Powder, Stampin' Sponges *Items in red denote retiring products

Come scrap with me (or better still, stay RIGHT where you are...!)

I was SO chuffed with the progress I was making with more frequent blog posts last month - right up until a week long holiday in Bali at the beginning of July, followed by a week long stint in bed with the mother of all sinus infections, followed by the final week of school holidays with my girls making up for the time that I was unable to do much of anything other than swallow giraffe sized antibiotics and sleep.

The Bali holiday was all kinds of awesome - the following part, not so much - but I'm back with all stamps blazing and so very excited to share with you all a little venture that has been in the works for several months now, and that I alluded to briefly on my Facebook page a little while ago...

I have joined forces with my lovely and oh-so-talented sis-in-law Janny to bring you a scrapbooking kit that, depending on how it goes, may become a regular feature here!  The best part is that it doesn't matter which part of this wide brown land of ours you live in - the kit is fully transportable and contains all of the pre-designed elements and some pre-cut ones so that you can create three single page layouts and one double page layout in the comfort of your own home and in whatever time frame suits you!

Above you can see one of the layouts you will complete, along with some sneaky peeks of two more - one vintage inspired and one blokey (yes, Twitterpated does blokey!!) - plus there's the gorgeous double page layout that will come as a delightful surprise when you receive it in the mail!

Here's what you get when you order the kit:

  • half a pack of Twitterpated Designer Series Paper
  • 12x12 cardstock to complete three single and one double scrapbooking layouts
  • additional cardstock as required to complete all layouts
  • pre-cut elements that you simply need to assemble and add to your layouts
  • pre-cut titles (as designed) or cardstock to add titles of your choice using your own stamps/dies etc
  • all embellishments and ribbon*
  • complete instructions and pictures to guide you through the process of completing your layouts

* embellishments may differ in colour/size pictured owing to the assortments that are available, but all will co-ordinate perfectly with the layouts provided

In order to complete the layouts exactly as designed, there are some elements that you will need to already own or I will be happy to take an order for them:

  • Paper trimmer
  • Corner rounder punch (optional)
  • Snail adhesive (or adhesive of your choice)
  • Tombow Multipurpose Liquid Glue (or liquid glue of your choice suitable for adhering titles)
  • Stampin' Dimensionals (or dimensional adhesive of your choice)
  • Soft Suede Ink Pad (or medium brown ink pad of your choice)
  • Stampin' Sponges (or sponges of your choice)
  • Distressing Tool (or scissors)
  • Stamp set suitable for vintage look (we used French Foliage)
  • Descriptive phrase stamp set (we used Fabulous Phrases) - alternatively words can be printed in your choice of font to be added to the double page layout

We are so excited to be offering this kit, laden with layouts that we both LOVE and are looking forward to sharing with you!  The cost of the kit (including shipping to anywhere in Australia) is just $70 for all of the pre-designed layouts and inclusive of everything you need to complete the layouts at home. BUT, this offer is time limited, as the Twitterpated Designer Series Paper is due to go when the Autumn/Winter Mini Catalogue finishes up at the end of this month!

If you'd like to see a sample of my previous scrapbooking work, head on over to my Scrapbooking Gallery, where you will find some of my previous layouts.  To see what my gorgeous sis-in-law Janny has to offer in the way of stampin' and scrappin' talent, you can head on over to her blog (no longer updated, but still online to share some of her beautiful work :-))

To join the scrappin' fun, there is an order form at the end of this post that you can complete to order your kit.  To ensure that we are able to complete the orders in time, they must be submitted no later than 5pm AEST on July 31st.  Following receipt of all of the kit elements, we will assemble the kits and have them out to you by the end of August.

Because this is the first time that I've ventured into offering something like this, I'm nervous that I've left some vital piece of information out, so if you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to contact me!

Looking forward to sharing our fun scrappin' kit with you!

[gravityform id="7" name="July 2012 Scrapbooking Kit Order Form"]

Inlaid embossing - the new black...

I can't remember when or where I first saw the inlaid embossing technique, aside from it being some time in the past couple of months and on any one of several blogs and forums that I may have visited during that time.

It seems to be the "it" technique of the moment and it's no wonder as far as I'm concerned as it doesn't happen very often that I see a technique that I haven't seen at any point prior and that literally makes my jaw drop.

I made it the focus of my workshops last month, so that all my February hostesses and workshop guests got to see this fabulous technique in action and the hostesses got to keep the cards that I made.

Want to see what has me in such a spin?!

This...!

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See the image panel there with the Little Leaves die and the Itty Bitty Bits flowers that's also embossed?  That there is the inlaid embossing technique - sticking some punched or die cut shapes onto a background the whacking the whole lot through the Bigshot inside an embossing folder with a nice and closely repeated pattern (the Square Lattice folder from the Summer Mini is perfect).

That is quite literally, all there is to it and of course I was immediately bustling about my craft room, excitedly trying out all combinations of shapes and colours and giving my Square Lattice embossing folder the workout of its life!

Here is my second workshop sample...

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I loved this one the most as the number background - easily replaced with alphabet letters from the same Timeless Type Sizzlits set for a fabulous teacher card or in pastels for a baby card or just some gorgeous brights for a school aged birthday party (somebody stop me!!) - is as simple as cutting out a bunch of numbers in your choice of colours and sticking them randomly to make a background.

I started in the bottom left corner and stuck alternating numbers and colours to fill in the space before popping it all through the Bigshot.  Easy peasy!

Here's the third one...

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For this one, I stuck to the same colour scheme as before and this time cut out an assortment of flowers using my Blossom Party Originals Die and some different sized circles using my punches.

I also wanted to play with this technique from a scrapbooking perspective, so I got out every circle punch I own (also known as every circle punch in the catalogue...) and made myself a range of different sized and coloured circles and rings, which I stuck in no particular order onto Whisper White before embossing it and coming up with this...

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...which may lead you to ask how I embossed such long pieces of cardstock when the embossing folder is only around the size of a card front, the answer to which is that I embossed one end first, then put the other end of the cardstock in the folder, being careful to line up the pattern on the folder with the previously embossed part and Robert's your mother's brother ;-)

As you can see, when I get excited about a particular new technique or idea, I do it to the extreme, but you can see how amazingly versatile and impressive but incredibly simple this technique is, and how the sky is the limit as far as what you can do with it.

Pivotal to the whole idea though is the Square Lattice embossing folder - the one that I think gives it the best outcome, and being that this folder is in the Summer Mini catalogue (page 17 for those of you playing along at home) you have only until tomorrow evening to secure yourself this fabulous little tool and have yourself hours of fun coming up with your own combinations of shape and colour!

Although you may want to wait until later to contact me for yours, as I'm going to show you what else I've been doing with Itty Bitty Bits and the co-ordinating Punch Pack and Bitty Buttons at this month's workshops, and you might want to grab them at the same time.

Just a thought... ;-)

Inlaid embossing technique" Stamps: Occasional Greetings, Perfect Punches, A to Z, Itty Bitty Bits Paper: Pear Pizzazz, Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight, Pumpkin Pie, Chocolate Chip, Brights DSP stack, Play Date DSP, Whisper White Ink: Pear Pizzazz, Melon Mambo Accessories: Square Lattice embossing folder, Scallop Edge, Eyelet and Scallop Trim border punches, Itty Bitty Punch Pack, Wide Oval PunchTimeless Type Junior Alphabet Sizzlits, Blossom Party originals die, Top Note die,  Little Leaves Sizzlit, Daffodil Delight 1/4" grosgrain, Pear Pizzazz Stitched Poly, Brights brads

Scrappin' - an overdue layout and an upcoming class!

I have a couple of layouts that I did way back in September last year, around the time of my new catalogue launch, and I thought it was about time I shared them here...

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This one was based on a layout I found in a magazine and loved, but do you think I can - for the life of me - find it now?!  It's very likely to have been from the pages of a Scrapbook Trends mag (rather a fave!) and if I can track down the actual issue, I will be sure to edit this post with the info.

The oldy-worldy map paper from the Newsprint DSP was perfect for this layout about the little girl from Ethiopia that we started sponsoring last year.  The story of how it came about is written in the background of the layout and reads like this...

"For the past few months, every time the World Vision commercial came onto the TV, you would stop everything you were doing to watch.  And every time the commercial was over, you would ask "Mummy can we sponsor a child..?"  We would talk about all the things we have - simple things that we don't even think about, like clothes, food, clean water - and how some people in the world don't have those things. Last week the ad came on TV again, and this time, as I waited for the question to come, I thought to myself that this time when you asked, the answer would be YES.  I love the way you are so thoughtful and sensitive to the needs of others and I love that you are always looking for ways to help.  We went onto the World Vision website and found Biftu - a seven year old girl in Ethiopia, who is born on the exact same day as you.  We completed all the sponsorship details and read how the little bit of money that it costs can help Biftu with her education and her family with food and water.  When the information came in the mail, you opened it up to read all about Biftu and you put her picture by your bed.  Thank you, my angel, for having such a big, beautiful heart..."

Next week I'll show you the other layout that is also very close to my heart :-)

Speaking of scrapbooking, with the poppets now happily back at school, or off to school for the first time, as is the case with my small girl, I'm dipping my toes back into the waters of the stamping class!

If you get my newsletter, you will have seen in last month's edition that I am offering two classes this month, one of which is a scrapbooking class next Monday night.

I have three places left in this class and am SO excited about the layout, so would love you to join me if you can!

Here's a peek at the layout we'll be doing...

I used a pic of my scrumptious baby nephew for my layout, but it's not specifically designed as a baby layout - any pic that will fit with the delicious colours of the Elegant Soiree DSP will do the job!

The class is $15, with all materials provided and will be held at my house in Perth next Monday, 21 February at 7.30pm.  Be sure to let me know if you'd like to nab one of the remaining places!

And don't forget to pop back here tomorrow for the latest installment of Challenge Chewsday...!

"One World 12x12 Layout" Stamps: Circle Circus Paper: Garden Green, Melon Mambo, Basic Black, Old Olive, Newsprint DSP Ink: Garden Green Accessories: 1-3/8" Circle Punch, Scallop Edge Border Punch, Timeless Type Junior Alphabet Sizzlits, Cropadile

Just Add Designer Series Paper

We're up to week 23 at Just Add Ink and the girls have come up with yet another fabbo challenge to get your creative juices flowing...  Just Add DSP!

After a false start that I just couldn't bring myself to make public, I used the opportunity to make a 12x12 scrapbook page using a photo from our recent trip to Sydney...

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The great thing about Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper is that all the hard work is done as far as co-ordination.  No longer can I be found wandering the aisles of my local scrapbooking stores hunting down papers that will work with the one that have in my hand, that invariably doesn't have a solid cardstock colour that matches either.

The papers in this layout are all taken from the Sweet Always pack, and I have only used seven of the 12 different designs that make up the pack, so the options for mixing and matching are pretty much endless!

Here's a closer look at the detail...

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The ribbon rose is a gorgeous idea that was detailed in our demonstrator publication, 'Impressions'  that we demonstrators get each month.  It's such a sweet and simple idea and a whole other way to use ribbon (and it uses ribbon, I will tell you!).

The idea of using it as a flower centre was one that I gleaned from one of the most talented scrapbookers I know, who also happens to be a Perth girl - Tanya Tahir.

I have never seen a layout of hers that I haven't gazed open-mouthed at.  Such a talent and a lovely girl too :)

So there you have it - Just Add Ink Challenge #23 - a fabulous reason to hide away with some pretty papers and turn them into something prettier.

"Just Add Ink #23 - Designer Series Paper" Stamps: None Paper:Kraft, Chocolate Chip, Regal Rose, Sweet Always DSP Ink: Chocolate Chip for sponging Accessories: Top Note die, Little Leaves die, Timeless Type Alphabet Dies, Die Cut Blooms, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, Regal Rose 5/8" Grosgrain Ribbon, Button Latte, Linen Thread, Chocolate Chip Marker, Stampin' Sponge, Glue Dots

Just Add Vintage

It's a couple of weeks since we returned from our Easter holiday down south  and in something other than my usual form of scrapbooking an event a good many years after it actually occurred, I have completed a page using one of the photo's I took on the trip.

Go me!

My almost seven year old doesn't have a scrapbook page of her second birthday yet, but at least she has a beach layout featuring herself from a fortnight ago, right?!

Here it is, the Just Add Ink theme for the week being vintage.....

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The journalling reads:

She's a few years younger than I was when I went to Dillon Bay for the first time but Hannah was just as captivated by this beautiful stretch of beach as I remember being.  Miles of baby-powder white sand and the bluest blue water you ever did see

I grunged up the picture a bit using some Pioneer Woman actions in Photoshop and also some post-printing sponged on ink around the edges, so the baby-powder-esque sand isn't done a great deal of justice in this photo but it really is a sight to behold.

As for the layout itself, it was rather a collaborative effort, as I used elements of things that I loved from all over to put it together.

The custom made Designer Series Paper to the left of the layout was inspired by the amazing artist that is Teneale Williams.

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I started out with a 12 x 5 inch piece of Baja Breeze cardstock and stamped all over it with the Sanded background stamp - first in Soft Suede, then in Versamark.

After that, I inked up my brand new Medallion stamp - also in Versamark - and stamped it in a fairly tight fitting pattern all over as well.

The whole sheet was then covered in Clear Embossing Powder and blasted with my Heat Gun.

Once it was embossed, I loaded up my Brayer with Soft Suede ink and rolled it several times all over the sheet, giving the exposed, un-embossed cardstock a gorgeous rich brown colour and leaving the embossed parts the original Baja Breeze.

This technique is called emboss resist, because the embossed part "resists" the ink that is applied.  It's a wonderful technique :)

As you would very likely be aware, the process of embossing leaves quite a shiny finish and being a vintage theme, I wanted a flatter, less shiny finish, so this is where my second collaborator comes in...

I was at the workshop of a gorgeous customer and friend on the weekend and she's one of those super clever types who tries her hand - and succeeds amazingly - at everything arty and crafty.

*waving Mandy*

During the make and takes, as I sipped on the Nespresso coffee that was whipped up for me (have I mentioned recently how much I love my job?!) I was browsing her collection of ATCs and cards and 3D projects and checking out her funky workspace and came across a card that looked very much like emboss resist, but with no embossing.

Mandy kindly let me know that the way to get rid of the embossing after the resisting had been done was to iron it!

I was keen to use this technique immediately, hence its appearance in this very challenge entry, and I was even more pleased to have a use for my iron, since it doesn't see the light of day very often in a more standard role....

Basically, you just lay some sheets of copy paper over the embossed area and using your iron on high, go right over the top, thereby melting off the embossed area, which is lifted away when the copy paper is removed.

How cool is that?!

The third collaborator was another gorgeous workshop guest and a good friend of Mandy's who is also one of those super clever crafty types.

*hi Lisa*

Lisa sent me the link to a tutorial for some particularly funky (and I thought, vintage-y) paper flowers using the Scallop Circle Punch and Crimper.

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You can find the tutorial -->HERE<--

To make mine, I first stamped the Medallion onto Naturals Ivory cardstock using Baja Breeze ink, then punched out three Scallop Circles.  After following the tutorial linked above, I sponged some Soft Suede ink on the edges of the flower and added a Button Latte button and Linen Thread to the centre.

I was really happy with the way it came together, as vintage style is not something I would usually try my hand at.

If you'd like to challenge yourself to create something with a vintage twist, head on over to Just Add Ink to check out some DT inspiration!

And if you'd like any further information on my layout or the products that went into creating it, please don't hesitate to contact me!

"Just Add Vintage - History Repeating 12x12 Layout" Stamps: Medallion, Vintage Vogue, Sanded Paper: Kraft, Baja Breeze, Naturals Ivory, Soft Suede, Very Vanilla textured Ink: Soft Suede, Versamark, Baja Breeze, Sahara Sand Accessories: Big Shot, Top Note die, Timeless Type Junior Alphabet dies, Eyelet Border Punch, Scallop Circle Punch, Clear Embossing Powder, Button Latte, Linen Thread, Stamping Sponges, Stampin' Dimensionals, Chocolate Chip Stampin' Write Marker

Just Add....this sketch!

My word these weeks are passing quickly and it's time once again for a new Just Add Ink challenge.

This time it's another sketch challenge - love these - and here it is for your inspiration...

This one shouted "scrapbook layout" to me, so after I had asked it to please use its inside voice  (we don't shout in our house... ;-)) I set about creating a layout according to the guidelines of the sketch.

And here it is....

jai-5-sketch

You will notice that I flipped the sketch around as there was more empty space to overlap the smaller pictures on the left hand side of the large one, but other than that, I stuck pretty faithfully to the original layout.

To the left of the small pictures, you will notice some little tabs...

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These were created using the "left-over"  part of the Round Tab Punch as you can see in the following "how-to":

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These tabs have function as well as a decorative purpose, as they actually indicate that the photo's can be lifted up to reveal the journalling underneath...

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The journalling is divided between all three of the lift-up photo's and following on from the first bit that you can see above, says:

A couple of days after Christmas, we got to work on creating a fabulous 'do' for her.  One hour and a very patient 6 year old later, she had a head full of bouncing barrel curls.

Then it was time for the photo shoot...  Sophie hadn't been too keen on the hairstyling thing, but definitely wanted in on the modeling action...

27 December 2009

To balance the page, I added a little embellishment in the top right, using the Eyelet Border Punch to create a pretty photo corner, then layered on some stamped images and small embellishments to fancy it up a bit more.

jai-5-sketch-corner

Truthfully, the main photo is just a tad pageant-ish for my liking, but since we were just messing about and playing hairdressers, I figured she could get away with being a bit of a diva for the camera just this once :)

So now it's your turn!  Head on over to the challenge at Just Add Ink and see what you can turn the fabbo sketch into!

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"Just Add Ink Challenge #6 - Stylin' Layout" Stamps: Framed with Love, Always Paper: Close to Cocoa textured, Rose Red, Whisper White, Bella Bleu DSP Ink: Close to Cocoa, Pink Pirouette, Whisper White craft Accessories: On Board Lots of Letters, Eyelet Border Punch, Round Tab Punch, Flower Fusion and Flower Fusion Too, Button Bouquet, Pretties Kit, White Embossing Powder, Stampin' Sponges

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The last days of Spring series!

Despite the fact that I absolutely LOVED so very many of the products in the soon to be defunct Spring Mini catalogue,  I don't seem to have managed to blog about  them much.

I will be attempting to rectify that in the coming days as we wave a - possibly final - goodbye to the products that have graced us this Spring.

One of the things that screamed 'Springtime' most deafeningly to me has been the Walk in the Park Designer Series Paper.  The colours are so very fresh and pretty and Spring-y!

I thought it was about time I shared some more scrapbooking with you, so here is a layout I completed a little while ago featuring some of this gorgeous DSP and my equally gorgeous small girl.

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I took the photos on a warm-ish Winter's day in the park across the street from our house while Soph was intent on checking out the little pink flowers that were dotted throughout the grass.

The journalling reads:

Never happier than when you are communing with nature...  Sweet Sophie, my little garden girl

I used this sketch as a starting point for my layout and used a t-shirt of Sophie's as the colour inspiration.

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I've always loved the vintage-y look of this shirt and I think the colours are gorgeous together.

I zoomed in so you could see the beautiful detail in the image on the front of the shirt.

This happily also spares you from the assorted wrinkles and creases that are in abundance due to the fact that I don't iron.  It takes away too much time from more enjoyable endeavours, so I have struck it from my list of 'things that require my attention'.

I highly recommend it.

Stay tuned for some more projects involving Spring Mini stuff in the next little while, and to ensure that YOU get your hands on your must-have Spring Mini products, contact me today to get it while you still can...

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"Garden Girl Layout" Stamps: Jumbo Outline Alphabet Paper: Baja Breeze, Kiwi Kiss, Pink Pirouette, Walk in the Park DSP, Bella Rose DSP Ink: Kiwi Kiss, Regal Rose and Riding Hood Red re-inkers (to colour the Pretties) Accessories: Pretties Kit, Button Bouquet, Scallop Edge Punch, Old Olive Marker (for journalling)

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What TO wear - Nanny style....!

So I promised a story about the What Not to Wear chicks, Trinny and Susannah and here it is, with a cameo role...in fact a LEADING PERFORMANCE by none other than my very own stylin' mum, aka Nanny.

You might want to grab a cuppa, this is likely to be a long one, but  I promise there is stamping in here too.

Somewhere.

So it starts with the news that Trinny and Susannah are doing a bit of a tour of Westfield shopping centres, and being rather long time fans, Mum and I decide that we simply MUST go along to one of their appearances.

We arrive at Whitfords shopping centre with not much time to spare and hardly any space either, since apparently there are a BUNCH of long time fans in Perth and evidently none of them have jobs, allowing them to be hanging out at a shopping centre at 10am on a Wednesday morning.

So right on time, cue those gorgeous women all their apparently flawed but well-camouflaged glory, and more than a single utterance of the word 'tits'.

After a bit of a natter, they head out into the audience on the hunt for stage-fodder of the variety that have not a single clue of how to dress themselves appropriately.  Susannah was over on the other side of the audience and Trinny was on our side, but being well back in the crowd we figured they'd grab their victims in the first few steps and that would be that.

Wrong!

I was so busy taking random pictures above my head in case I managed to get Trinny in the corner of one of them, that I didn't realise that it was no longer necessary as I could take this one instead.....

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She was suddenly right in front of us and looking right at mum!

Next thing I knew, I was an extra handbag heavier and this was happening...

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Mum was disappearing through the crowd with my style idol en-route to the stage!

Which, considering that these girls are in the business of telling people that they a bereft of any clue about fashion and personal styling, SHOULD have been a concern, but I was too excited that I had stood face to face with Trinny and mum was HOLDING her HAND!

Soon it was mum's turn to be centre stage....

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All worries about public humiliation of the style variety were laid to rest when they announced that mum was a fabulous example of how a 60-something woman should look!  Her hair is the perfect cut and colour, her glasses the perfect shape and her t-shirt just the right shade of 'mink'

GO NANNY!

The only shame about the whole event was that the clueless lot that were given a bit of a makeover were also given a shopping voucher and a new Nikon camera!

Westfield shopping voucher..... $250

New Nikon camera....$300

Walking around Whitfords shopping centre to the stares and whispers of those who wished that THEY had as much style as you....  PRICELESS!

Now I did promise that there would be some stamping in amongst all of this fashion and frivolity, so here it is...

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This is the 12x12 layout that  I set for everyone at our team stamping day, and I made mine up with the pictures of mum's close encounter with Trinny.

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At the end of the show there were elbows and sharpie pens flying as the entire crowd descended upon the girls for autographs and photo's.  I managed to grab Trinny on her way past and asked if she would mind having a photo taken with 'the one who got it right', to which she promptly and graciously agreed!

So now it's your turn!  Do you have any close encounter stories of the celebrity kind?  Let me know all about it, or better yet, scrapbook it and leave a link in the comments!  I'd love to check them out!

Now if only I'd had my camera handy when I was chatting with Keanu Reeves 13 years ago....

"Mum meets Trinny 12x12 layout" Stamps: Fifth Avenue floral Paper: Whisper White, Chocolate Chip, Baja Breeze, Kraft, Urban Oasis DSP Ink: Chocolate Chip, Baja Breeze, Sahara Sand Accessories: Eyelet Border Punch, Baja Breeze Double Stitched Grosgrain, Kraft Taffeta Ribbon, Photo Corner Punch, Stampin' Dimensionals

Grab yourself the last spot in my embellishment share!

Recently I offered my newsletter subscribers the opportunity to participate in a number of product shares, which are a fabulous way to get yourself a great variety of different stampin' things to play with, without having to shell out for entire packs of everything up front! It also gives you the chance to see things up close and personal in small amounts so that you can decide that you really can't go a day longer without owning the whole lot of product x, y or z.

Which brings me to my embellishment share!

I have just ONE place left to fill and by taking that one place, you will be scoring yourself the following.....

  • Flower Fusion and Flower Fusion Too (Felt Flowers in Pumpkin Pie, Rose Red & Old Olive and Pink Pirouette, Baja Breeze & Chocolate Chip) - approximately 26 Flowers from each set in assorted colours and sizes for a total of approximately 52 felt flowers
  • Pretties Kit - 10 White Flowers (2 each in 5 sizes), 12 each White and Cream Halfback Pearls (6 Small, 4 Medium and 2 Large), 9 each White and Cream Round Pearls with Holes (6 small and 3 large), 2 Clear Round Beads with Centre Hole, 2 Clear Round Beads with Side Hole, 4 Clear Teardrop Beads, Clear Round Rhinestone Brads (4 Small, 3 Medium and 3 Large), 2 Hat Pins with Clutches and 6 Spacer Beads for a total of 78 assorted pieces

The cost to you for this array of loveliness is a mere $37 (plus postage if you are unable to collect it from me in Perth and require it to be sent to you).

As I mentioned, I have just ONE place remaining in this share, notwithstanding being inundated with requests for this spot, in which case I shall open up another share!  So contact me this very second to boost your embellishment collection!

OR......  Should you have a group of embellishment-crazed mates, get your own group of 5 together and contact me to form your own share!

But most importantly, if you haven't already, head over there ------> and sign up for my customer newsletter to ensure that you're among the first to know about such opportunities in the future!!

Get some DSP for FREE!

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At Stampin' Up!, May is the month to celebrate the art that is scrapbooking!

You may be a seasoned scrapbooker, always on the lookout for inspiration for your pages.

Perhaps you have just started out and are building your scrapbooking confidence.

Or maybe you're a wannabe scrapper with no idea where to start, in which case you should book a workshop with me and I'll come along and show you how simple it can be!

But back to the promotion....

This month, whatever kind of scrapbooker you are, you can take advantage of an awesome special on the beautiful range of Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper!

Not forgetting all you card makers of course - the Designer Series Papers co-ordinate with Stampin' Up!'s colour families and in-colors making them a perfect addition to your hand made cards!

From May 1st to 31st, with every 3 packs of Designer Series Paper that you purchase in a single transaction, you can choose a fourth pack for FREE!

Here is the list of papers that are included in the promotion - basically all of the Designer Series Papers, aside from the Patterns packs and the Specialty Textured pack:

Item Page Description
112042 132 Urban Garden Designer Series paper
112470 132 Haiku Designer Series paper
113976 132 Pink Flamingo Designer Series paper
112468 132 Sweet Always Designer Series paper
113992 133 Tea Party Designer Series paper
113975 133 Raspberry Tart Designer Series paper
113966 134 Good Morning Sunshine Designer Series paper
112469 134 Holiday Treasures Designer Series paper
112041 134 Bella Rose Designer Series paper
113974 134 Bella Bleu Designer Series paper
113978 135 Urban Oasis Designer Series paper
112461 135 Washington Apple Designer Series paper
112039 135 Windsor Knot Designer Series paper
113980 135 Candy Lane Designer Series paper.

Contact me today to take advantage of this fabulous special on Stampin' Up!'s delectable range of Designer Series Paper

Happy Retirement!

There are LOTS of things to be happy about now that the Retiring List is out..... 1. The new arrival of the new catalogue is closer than ever!

2. The retirement list is our LARGEST EVER, meaning that LOTS of room has been made for exciting new stuff!  The story goes that we are being brought more into line with the US catalogue - bring it ON!

3. Did I mention that the new catalogue will be here shortly...?

4.  A HUGE number of things on the list are discounted by 25%!  Designer Series Paper from $8.96 per pack.  Need I say more?!

5.  Well there IS more!  Background stamps from $25.46!  Simply Sent card kits from $59.96!  Gingham Ribbon $9.71 per roll!

6. I am beginning to feel like the shouting man on the carpet commercial.  Perhaps it is only us Perth folk that are lucky enough to have him grace our TV screens....

7. ...but I digress - did you hear that the new catalogue and all its wondrous contents will be available on April 1...?

Seriously though people, now that the retiring list is out, and PARTICULARLY because so many things on it are discounted so heavily, you will need to ACT NOW to ensure that you get the things that you so dearly desire before they're gone forever.  Items on the list are only available while supplies last.  Anybody remember the in-colour re-inker fiasco of March 2008?  That's what I'm talkin' about.

To see the list in all its alphabetical glory, click here.  If you'd rather sit with your catalogue and check it out by page number, here is your version.

And another little heads up for you while I'm here - seems like ink pads are going up in price to $11.95 once the new catalogue hits.  Looks like it might be a good time to stock up on your favourite colours of those in the next month too.  I'm just sayin'....

Contact me today to order your retiring gear and avoid disappointment!

And since I'm here, how about another little somethin' with a Carousel Note.   These are another thing that will only be around until the end of the month, being that they are in the Summer Mini and made up entirely of in-colours....

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And see this stamp....?

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....  it's also from the Summer Mini, AND it's on the list for the Bushfire Appeal, meaning that you can get it from me for 20% off and you will also be supporting the victims of the recent fire tragedy in Victoria.  Speaking of which, in the two weeks since Stampin' Up! announced the Bushfire Appeal, I'm sure you will be amazed and delighted to know that there has been almost $35,000 donated to the Red Cross.  I certainly was.

Now see the paper that I used for the title....?

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It's  on the retiring list too and it is 50% off!  That's right - $5.98 for a pack of 12 sheets of double sided Designer Series Paper.  It was the one that was accidentally left out of the current catalogue, so if you can't remember what it looks like, dust off your 2007/08 catalogue and check it out on page 133.  Either that or contact me and I'll email you the image :)

Right, now I'm going to bed as it's 1.30am and given that tomorrow is Sunday, I'm pretty much guaranteed to be woken by my munchkins appearing at my bedside some time shortly after 6am.  They save their sleep ins for school days, bless their little hearts.

"Sophie Carousel Note 6x6" Stamps: Live Your Dream, Jumbo Outline Alphabet Paper: Kraft, Whisper White, Spring Flowers DSP Ink: Chocolate Chip, Ruby Red, Wild Wasabi, Versamark Accessories: Carousel Notes, Pretties Kit, Stampin' Sponges, Stampin' Dimensionals