Thursday, April 28, 2016

Thoughtful Thursday April 28, 2016

Our recreational softball league has two more games.  We played Tuesday night, and play tonight for seeding purposes.  There are only three teams in our age division, so the first place team will automatically play in the championship game.

Our team is made up of new players and lots of girls without much experience.  Some of the girls want to learn and get better; some who don't care that much.  It's hard for me to understand the girls who don't care.  Why not try your best?  Why not play to help your team and teammates?  Why not care, and make a correction when a mistake is made?  You would think all the girls are there to have fun.

I chose this quote because of it all.
From the coaches perspective:  Does this mean the better players should play the majority of the game in an attempt to win (our team has won two games out of 13)?  If that's the case, then surely the coach can say he couldn't have done better.

But what about those players sitting more? How do they define success?  Will the players come back next year because the team won with them on the bench?

Personally I think that scenario is for All-Stars.  This is recreational softball.  All the girls should have a chance to play, even if that means we will probably lose.  It's the larger picture that's important.  After all, after this weekend the season will be over.  Some players still won't care.  Some players may have made the play of her life, and talk about it for years to come (or maybe think about the play).  Most of all, though, I hope each girl plays her best.

Good luck, girls.  Have some fun!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Color me Dare #190 Meets Happy Times Stamp Set

Double bonus post today!  I'll get the timing down someday.  : )

I want to share my Color Dare from this week.

The month of May is National Scrapbooking Month!  At Close to my Heart, we have a special paper packet and stamp set to celebrate.  My color dare capitalizes on the stamp set.  : )

I'm not going to lie, I struggled with this color combination.  Having to use all and only was the tough part for me.  The Ruby and Colonial White threw me off...

This card is a modified Three is the Charm from Originals how-to program.  In Originals, the card measures 7" x 5".  I shrunk the measurements for this 5.5" x 4.25" card.  : )

Adventure Fundamentals paper ((Z3125 - Gypsy) and Penelope Paper packet (X7207B - available until April 30th!) frame the three focal flowers.  Pear unifies the three colored flowers.  And the saying, stamped in Ruby, brings a little more balance for that color.  "just because" (from the hostess reward stamp set Say it All) is flanked by the Red Enamel Gems (Z3090).  The picture doesn't show it well, but the white is actually colonial white!

Zoe Artiste Birthday Card

Playing around with Cricut Balloons from the Artiste Collection, I put together this card in about 10 minutes.  Seriously, ten minutes. Okay, I guess that time doesn't include the cutting time.  It came pretty close to ten minutes, even with the cutting.
I had wanted to use the balloons on a card.  The colors of the balloons are Canary, Sweet Leaf, and Glacier -- all Zoe colors.  Originally I wasn't sure what I else I was going to add.  Then I looked at the stamp sets that come with the Artiste Collection.  Bam!  This banner was the solution!!  Cut with Cricut, stamped in black ink, and mounted with 3D foam.

A fun a quick card! : )

Monday, April 25, 2016

April 2016 Stamp of the Month Sample

Before the end of the month happens, let me share my Stamp of the Month card.  I made this card when I was working on the Color Dare #187 (greens and white).

This stamp is another good one to have.  As you can see, it's got lots of different types of cameras.  Buying this stamp set now is a good thing.  A purchase like this one reminds me of Costco.  You have to buy the item while you are there because it probably won't be there the next time you go.

This stamp set will only be available until the end of April (as will all stamp sets in the Seasonal Expressions 1 booklet), so don't wait too long to shop!

And now for the card...

I made this card when I was working with the greens for a Color Dare challenge.  The card base is Topiary cardstock.  The background swirls are from Love Life (D1482 - available through July 31) stamped in Sweet Leaf ink (Z2153).

The frame for "Smile!" is from the set Crafted with Love (B1399 - available through July 31) in Topiary ink (Z2155), while the word is stamped in Black ink.

The black glitter underneath is Black Shimmer Trim (Z1809).  I took my Scallop Punch (Z1851) to the trim (that's because I didn't have Glitter Paper when I made this).

The other neat thing about this card are the sequins.  I took our Black ShinHam Marker (Z2446) to the Silver Sequin Assortment (Z2013) and colored the sequins!  Don't be afraid to try that.  : )

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Thoughtful Thursday April 21, 2016

I was in a mischievous mood for this quote...

Is there anything else to say than this?!  Everyone has had a moment in the past... now you have an excuse.  : )

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Studio J Year in Review Layout

Even though Studio J is retiring at the end of the month, I plan on continuing making a year in review layout.  As an example of last year, this layout highlights what happened.
It's probably hard to read, but I highlighted the activities in the journaling on the far right.  Simple, and yet it will be nice to go back and look at the 2015 a few years from now.

And that's how simple your scrapbooking can be.  This is a snapshot of a year in the life of the Simone Kurtz household - and doesn't include EVERYTHING.  And that's okay!  It doesn't have to be everyday.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Regatta Father's Day Card

While I was playing with my hexagons the other day, I thought of another way to highlight the Regatta paper, rather than just the colors of it.
Using Cricut Artbooking Collection, I cut out the hexagon layer.  I then cut pieces of Regatta to go behind some of the hexagons.  I didn't include the sale boats or anchors from the paper packet because my dad isn't into the nautical scene that much. The hexagon layer was wider and taller than the card.  I trimmed it after the rest was adhered to the card.

The large hexagons are from Hexagonal Patterns (C1626).  Looking at the picture now, the Glacier and Pomegranate hexagons weren't supposed to be orientated the same (darn it!).  And if I were to do this card again, I think I'd raise the large hexagons with 3D Foam tape.

Happy Father's Day has been heat embossed with White Embossing Powder.  The saying is from Say it All (Hostess Rewards set C1632).

The Flaxen cardstock has been direct to paper rubbed with Flaxen ink to give it the mottled look.

My husband liked this card.  : )

So I guess I played along twice with Color my Heart Color Dare this week again, and participated in the Between the Folds (BFT) challenge!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Oops! Thoughtful Thursday 4/14/2016 on 4/15/2016

I don't know why I was thinking Thursday was Wednesday, and that I had "today" to put my thoughtful Thursday up.  Well, it's probably because my girls have been with my parents since Monday (we're out this week for Spring break).  That coupled with the fact that I think Lucy and Tigger have been missing them and driving me crazy, needing attention every few hours.  I mean, come on!  That's why we got two dogs so they would keep each other entertained!  Lucy especially has been naughty... stealing pillows, shoes, socks, plastic Barbie pieces... anything to distract me and my "work".

And since I posted my Color my Heart Color Dare card so late in the day yesterday, I decided I'd wait until today to post my thought.  Fact is, I had made a second Color Dare card that I was going to post today (again thinking today was Wednesday) for the "competition".  You'll get to see it this weekend though!


Since I'm all messed up, this is a good one to share.  A friend sent this to me in an email probably 8 years ago.  It's been in my inbox since then.

I love the woman's expression.  She looks quite sarcastic and one who hides the fact that she swears.  I bet she swears like a sailor!!

What are you proficient in?!

The girls will be back at school next week, so I should be sane again by then.  Have a good one in the meantime!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Color My Heart Color Dare #188

I didn't think I'd do the challenge this week, but I was inspired by a pinterest card and ran with it.
The challenge this week was to use ALL and ONLY colors from the Regatta paper packet.

I'd been eyeing a hexagon pattern from pinterest that I thought I'd try the challenge with.  As it turns out, the card I pinned was a CAS(E) card -  sketch #37.  I was pleased with how my card turned out. : )  Anyway, here's my card...
I bought Hexagonal Patterns (C1626) when the Annual Inspirations first came out last August.  I love the patterns and the size differences within the stamp set (these are all the same size hexagon).  The stamp set is even compatible with the Cricut Artisty Collection.

I used the Say it All (C1632) stamp set for "celebrate" because it is an AWESOMELY versatile stamp set (that you can purchase if you host a gathering and reach the minimum purchase point).

The Glacier hexagon is raised with 3D Foam Tape, and the Sapphire Dots and Pomegranate Tooth-hound hexagons are raised with Thin 3D Foam Tape.

The frayed Flaxen Extra Thick Twine (Z3036) is adhered with Liquid Glass completes the look of this card.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Seasonal Expressions 1 Product Retiring on April 30, 2016

The stamp sets, paper, and accessories in the Seasonal Expressions 1 booklet will be going away on April 30, 2016.  Please don't be kicking yourself for not purchasing something from here.

Here have been some of my favorites and why:

Paper: Charlotte (X7205B) - the soft tones and colors can be used for masculine as well as feminine items.

Stamps - this is a lot harder because there are more that I like:

Springtime Wishes (C1641) 
- even though the coordinating Thin Cuts have sold out, the stamp set is really versatile.

Your Beautiful Self (B1516)- if you like butterflies, this is a sweet set to get.  Colored pencils or watercolor paints will bring these to life!

Stamp of the Month - Life in Pictures (S1604) - so many applications for this stamp set!


Picture My Life (tm) Love Your Selfie Scrapbooking Program (Z3194).  I made a card workshop of 25 cards using these cards!  I could have made more too.  If you purchase this, I will send you the Design Space or Craft Room cut file, as well as the cutting and assembly instructions to make the 25 cards I did.

I have an open gathering on my website.  Please take a look at the Seasonal Expressions and see what your favorite is.  Just order your items before they are gone!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Color my Heart Color Dare #187

I didn't think I would enjoy this challenge, but, boy, did I!!  I started with one card that quickly morphed into two cards.  But it didn't stop there!  I stopped myself after the fourth card.  I'll show you the other ones in the coming week(s) - I may have other priorities to show you.  : )

So, the card I'm sharing with you today is this one...

The card base is White Daisy with Topiary cardstock (4" x 5.25") on top.  The White Daisy (4" x 3") was stamped in Sweet Leaf (Z2153) using Love Life (D1482).  That was centered on the Topiary cardstock.

On a scratch piece of White Daisy, stamp the solid frame from Crafted with Love (B1399) in Topiary (Z2155).  Cut the frame out, and adhere to the lower right of the stamped white daisy.  Stamp the frame again on a scratch piece of Sweet Leaf cardstock.  Using VersaMark ink (Z891), stamp "thanks" (from Friendly Wishes (A1185)) and emboss White Embossing Powder (Z2068).  Cut the inner oval out and then sponge the outside of the oval with Topiary ink.  Mount that oval with 3D Foam Tape (Z1151).

The final touch is adding the Green Triangles (Z3123) to the upper left seam.

All three stamp sets I used will be retiring some time this year.  "Thanks" retires with the Seasonal Expressions 1 on April 30th.  That set has several sayings and can be found with the Base and Bling section of the booklet (page 33 to be exact).  It's supposed to coordinate with the necklace cards, but the sayings are a great size for cards too (case in point).  The swirls and the frame are both from stamp sets that have Art Philosophy Cricut Collection cuts.  Those two stamp sets will be retiring on July 31st.  Love Life (where the swirls come from) is one of my overall favorite stamp sets.  It'll be a shame to see it go (even though I don't highlight it too often).  I mentioned cutting the frame out, but you could have cut it out using your Cricut machine.  Of course I found some cut out frames in my envelope (I usually cut a bunch out at once for times like these ... too bad I forgot).  It didn't take to long to cut though.

The color dare changes each week, so if you want to play along, check out the site.  The new color combination is given on Friday, and we have until the following Thursday to post our creation.  If nothing else, it will give us some inspiration!  There are some talented people out there. : )

Thoughtful Thursday 4/7/2016

I like this quote, but when I researched the image it came from, I liked the technique!
Life is always better when you're laughing!  Emily painted this canvas with the saying.  Check out how she did it (and another one with a similar method).  I may have to try this method too!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Masculine Birthday Card

Today's pinterest inspired card is from Rachel (there is no link to her blog/website).  But my version, of course, uses Close to my Heart Products!

The paper is Urban (X7204B) background and texture paper, with Peacock, Sapphire, and Colonial White cardstock.  Inks are Peacock, Sapphire, Saffron, and Black.  Two stamp sets were used.  Ink Blot (D1660) and Happy Birthday (M1033 - retired).  The card is finished off with Artison Studs (Z1816).

I had such a good time doing this card, I made another one with Georgie Paper (X7203B).  Take a look...

My paper proportions are a little different for this card.  But you can see by using the yellows of Georgie, the card is brighter.  It looks lighter too, because I didn't add any stamping to the saying piece.  I added a third banner for this card and didn't add any embellishments (shame on me!).

For both cards, the "birthday" is colored with our watercolor pencils (3505) - Ocean.  The top one looks much darker for two reasons - Colonial White paper and a heavier hand.  I then went over the pencil with the Blending Pen (3174) to thin it out and bring some of the color to the other part of the word.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Ever Thought About Becoming a Consultant?

I'm not a big pusher for signing up to be a consultant, but April would be the time to do it!

A new consultant kit is only $75 but you'll receive way more than that in product and support. And, in April, if you reach a sales goal of $350 in your first 30 days as a consultant, you get your pick of ANY Cricut Collection! And that doesn't count the Straight to the Top bonus you'll hit along the way.

I've been doing this for more than 19.5 years. I think it's worth it. : ) There are so many tools to help you succeed. And I'm here too!
Think about it!

Friday, April 1, 2016