Wednesday, November 30, 2016

December Daily® 2016 │ The Beginning

Are you ready? I'm ready and I'm excited! This year I'm surprisingly less anxious as I was last year. Perhaps its because we had a good solid week between Thanksgiving and December 1st. I have come to realize I need that week. I need the calm and I need the time to decompress Thanksgiving and get my mind ready for Christmas. I'm also doing very little prep this year. I have gathered my supplies as you will see below and I have made a cover page for my album but that's the extent of my prep. I'm winging it again this year and that's just fine by me. I've really come to enjoy a less hectic and free flow approach the past several years so if it isn't broken, why change it.

One major change this year is that we did not get our tree Thanksgiving weekend like we normally do. For some reason I just wasn't ready, I needed time. We have pulled all the Christmas bins down and we put out most of the house decorations yesterday. I'm so excited to really dive in tomorrow and jump into all things holiday. Our elf Twinkle will return tomorrow so that's exciting and my daughter will receive her advent calendar for the season. I'm looking forward to all of that fun and what I hope to be a pretty relaxed and chill holiday season.

I do want to share what my album and supplies look like this year. I'm using the Jasmine Jones grey 6x8 album this year. It's a complete departure from what I normally do and I'm excited about that. The grey merry's across the front are so pretty. I may do something small to the lower right side of the cover but I haven't decided yet.

For the cover page I used a digital paper from Paislee Press that I modified a bit in Photoshop elements to thicken up the line so I could add some gold foil with my Minc. Because I only have the 6" Minc I needed to mount it to a larger piece of paper that I layered an older piece of Studio Calico gold star vellum to add in some more gold. The twenty sixteen banner is from Studio Calico.

This base page is sized so that it will completely cover the pages underneath which is a style that I like to use in my albums. I don't like the page protectors showing when you open the album which is just a quirk of mine.

The only other decision that I have made for this years album is to use a wide variety of numbers to mark my days versus a consistent style of numbers like I have done in the past years. The main reason I decided to do this is because I have amassed such a large collection over the years I felt it was time to finally use them all up. I've listed the sources below but please note that many of these are pretty old. I'm sure I'll add in some other items as I go along but this is what I have pulled so far to use in my album.

one // an old flip calendar from Target - two // Kelly Purkey 2015 mini kit - three // Jasmine Jones 2016 mini kit - four // Kelly Purkey 2016 December kit - five // Ali Edwards 2016 main kit - six // Ikea - seven // Ali Edwards very first December Daily kit - eight // Studio Calico - nine // Studio Calico - ten // Studio Calico - eleven // Ali Edwards 2015 December Daily kit - twelve // Pink Paislee 2015 - thirteen // Becky Higgins

As far as the rest of my supplies goes, I have pulled out my collection and pulled out only the items that I'm currently loving. I've placed most of the larger items in this bin that sits on my desk. Its a mix of the current kits and older kits and other seasonal items from other companies. I'm super excited to really mix it up this year.

I also have this divided container for some of the smaller bits that I didn't want to get lost in the bottom of the other bin. Again this is a mixture of old and new items.

The last thing I have done is make sure my calendar is updated with key dates and things that we already have planned for the month. I usually keep a running list of what I have done and what needs to be done so I can plug in some generic stories as needed. In this blog post I listed out some of my favorite things to include in my album so I thought I would list that again for you.
  1. Documenting cooking and baking seasonal treats
  2. Our Christmas card and the stuffing and mailing of them
  3. Buying our Christmas Tree
  4. Decorating our Christmas Tree
  5. Hanging outdoor lights
  6. Around the house shots
  7. Shopping for gifts and the receipts
  8. Simone's gifts and the wrapping paper (I pick one just for her each year)
  9. A visit with Santa
  10. Simone's birthday
  11. Favorite Shows/Movies/TV Specials
  12. Starbucks and their yearly cup design
  13. Making a Gingerbread house
  14. Holiday lights
  15. A letter from me to Simone
  16. Simone's letter to Santa
  17. A self portrait
  18. a play list of favorite Christmas songs
  19. Simone's wish list
  20. My wish list
  21. Photos of new items we added to Simone's stocking
You can also peruse my blog posts from the past five years of albums by going to the list over on the right side bar and clicking on each category label.

Thank you Ali Edwards for creating this project, it just wouldn't be the holidays without it and I cannot wait to document another year!

Here we go Christmas!

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Monday, November 7, 2016

Featuring Kelly Purkey │ October release

I think its pretty funny that the two projects I made this month featuring Kelly Purkey's October releases are TV show related. I think its funny because I wouldn't consider myself an avid TV watcher. I watch a handful of quality TV shows and live sporting events but that's it. Lucky for me I get to share some of my favorites with you today.

This first project is very near and dear to my heart. You could categorize me in the OBSESSED category as far as my fandom for this show goes. It's really bad people, like really bad. I was pregnant with my daughter when this show ended and the ugly cry, OMG it was BAD! So when they announced that this show was coming back for a reboot on Netflix, oh my gosh....I was giddy. If you have no idea what I'm talking about by looking at the pictures, I'm talking about GILMORE GIRLS!!

When Netflix decided to host Luke's Diner Pop Up Coffee shops all over the US on October 5th to coincide with the official Gilmore Girl's birthday my friend and I decided we couldn't miss it. Luckily for us there were two coffee shops in Sacramento that were doing events so we had a 50/50 chance of getting a cup and some cute pics. We got there fairly early and waited about an hour in line before it was our turn. The excitement was overflowing from all of the folks in line. I was so glad we went. It really got us both excited for the reboot in November.

Luckily Kelly had sent me an advance heads up that this But I'm a Gilmore stamp set was coming so I made sure my photos were on point.

I used all of the stamps to create the background for my travelers notebook spread and then created a replica of the coffee cups they gave us at the event. I wanted to keep mine so I just scanned the sleeve and created a cut file for my Silhouette Cameo. I made sure to add the same text that was on the cup before I cut it out. One the right side I added in a few pictures and added in some more stamps. I know I will use this stamp set when the reboot airs so I'm so glad I have it in my collection. If you're a true Gilmore Girls fan you need one too. #teamlogan

My next project is a pocket page spread that pays homage to all of the currently airing TV shows that I love. I much prefer quality over quantity so these three shows are the ones I will not miss. They are all historical dramas which says something about me. Living in the past much! Ha! These shows are just so beautifully done, I blame Downton Abbey and of course my other love Outlander for spoiling me with such quality television.

This was a pretty simple and quick insert to make for my album, I found all of the images online except the one of me lounging on the couch. I used stamps from the It's Show Time stamp set and the stamps from the October Kit: My Favorite Things. The sentiments worked really well when talking about my love of these shows.

If you are looking for some good quality TV shows to binge watch, I can personally vouch for all four of these shows. They are pretty exceptional.

I hope you enjoyed the release this month. I can't wait to use the Sweater Weather stamp set. That was my other favorite this month and I have some fall pics waiting to be documented.

Have a great week everyone!
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Friday, October 21, 2016

Featuring Color Cast Designs │ September and October projects

Yesterday was launch day at Color Cast Designs and it was a BIG one! October is typically a really large launch because Jessica does fall and all of her December kits too. I was super excited about this launch when I saw all the products in advance and I really hope you check them out.

But before I get to October's release I wanted to share really quickly the two projects I made for September.

This first one is all about snap chat selfies and a fun way to document all of the super crazy and fun filters that the app has. Playing with all the filters is definitely our favorite thing to do when we are bored.

I used bits from the Strike a Pose set and the Oh Snap set. I love any set that is themed around taking photos so these really spoke to me. I used a simple offset grid to lay this page out and it came together really quickly. I think the part that took the longest was deciding what photos to use and print.

My next project was a pocket page spread. The photos are from last year but thankfully they hadn't been done yet so I had some great fall images to work with.

For this spread I used pieces from the Sweater Weather kit, Leaves by the tablespoon, and of course Pumpkin Spice Everything! I also mixed in a a few older items like the gold glitter star, the gold mirror currently, and the candy, candy, candy veneer from last years Halloween set.

I love how the wood veneer pieces really pair nicely to fall photos.

Not to mention all of the amazing dimension it adds.

Moving on to October projects, and even more dimension. I have officially exhausted my supply of pop dots, read on to see why.

My husband and I don't dress up a lot, in fact this was only the second time we had done it so it deserved a special layout of its own. I absolutely love the Wicked Awesome set and made sure to find a spot for the Wicked Awesome piece and the pumpkins and ghosts. I may or may not be hoarding the cute little tags that Jessica put in this kit, hello CUTE!

I knew I wanted the title to pop for this layout so I decided to cut it out with my Cameo. I layered a contrasting paper behind and added pop dots behind each letter. I made sure to offset the placement back down on the page ever so slightly off from the original cut so that the burgundy paper had a chance to pop out. It took some time but it was so worth it.

My next layout had even more pop dots than the other but the photos just looked so much better lifted off the page than they did flat. The dimension really does add so much to it, especially since Jessica's pieces are so dimensional.

When I saw the Hello Elf set I knew I wanted to make a layout of some of the fun Elf pictures from last year. I cover this pretty extensively in my December Daily but having a layout to slip in my daughters album sounded like a great idea.

I used my cameo and the sketch pens to draw the circle dividing lines. I had intended to fill them in after but I liked them without it so I opted to leave it. I think it adds a cool design element instead of having it just be a plain grid design. I also added in the Believe in the Magic piece from the Oh What Fun set because that is my favorite sentiment of the season as well as a few of the October Confetti Stars, because they are always the perfect little accent.

There are several other sets that I haven't had a chance to work with yet, but I do hope you'll head over to Jessica's shop to see everything. Its really quite magical and she did such a great job on this release.

See you soon,
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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Hero Arts 2016 Planner Release Blog Hop

I'm so happy to be participating today in the 2016 Hero Arts Planner Release Blog Hop! This hop is all about celebrating the launch of the 2016 Planner Product Catalog items arriving in the Hero Arts Store. If you are new here, I welcome you. If you don't know me I am part of Kelly Perkey's Design Team so I already love working with her products and stamps. I love all of her collaborations with Hero Arts and her planner stamps always have just what I need to help plan my days, weeks and even months.

I don't always decorate my planner each week but when I have some down time I love to spice things up a bit. For extra special months I even like to decorate my wall calendar that hangs above my desk. Its always there and it really helps get me in the seasonal mood. As you can see below I did just that for the month of October.

When planning out my month, the first and foremost thing that I need to make sure I'm on the ball about is all of my daughters soccer games. She plays at the competitive level so its a lot of games for sure. I don't bother putting all of the practice days on the calendar because lets be real, I wouldn't have any room for anything else. Her life is definitely way busier than mine. Luckily for me, Kelly's Sports Planner set is perfect for all the sports moms out there.

Once those key dates are listed I love adding in little touches from all of her stamp sets to help draw attention and have some fun with some of my appointments and tasks for the month. For this calendar page I added in little bits from the Doing my Best, Adventure, Shopping, Appointment, Occasions, Food, School and especially the Fall Planner set because its so perfect for October. The Holiday Wood Icons also helped add some extra Halloween touches to my calendar.

I also used a few of Kelly's sticky notes from the Everyday Sticky note set to help dress up my flags and cover a stamping boo boo. It happens to everyone, thankfully a good sticky note can help save the day!

One of my favorite things to add to my calendar are all the fun National Days. I added three to my calendar page this month, of course I picked the ones that really speak to me. The Doing my Best, Food and Fall planner sets really helped with that because lets be real, its all about the food and pumpkins!

I'm also a huge fan of the stamp and cut sets and I love using them whenever I can. I cut two banners from the Flags Stamp & Cut set as well as pieces from the Tape Stamp & Cut set and the Labels Stamp & Cut set.

The inks I used to stamp with were all Kelly's stamp cubes. I used colors from the new Palm Springs, Miami and Charleston sets as well as the Outdoor set. These inks give the best color payoff and are so easy to work with. I love the new additions to the color range for these ink cubes, Kelly really gave me just the colors I needed.

I hope that this project has inspired you to dress up your family's wall calendar like you would your planner. It definitely makes the month feel way more festive this way.

I hope that you also continue on the blog hop so you can see all of the other amazing projects. I've listed all of the blog contributors with links below.

Barbara Picinich -- This is me

And don't forget to leave a comment here on my blog as well as the other contributors because Hero Arts will be giving away three $25 shopping sprees, drawn from comments left across all blogs in the hop. Please comment by Wednesday, October 19 at 11:59pm PT and Hero Arts will be announcing the winners next week. Keep an eye on their blog for the announcement.

Thanks for stopping by!
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