Thursday, December 30, 2010

Like Butter!!

Say hello to my new paper trimmer!!  She just arrived on my doorstep this afternoon and I have already put her to work!  She slices paper like butter!! Yes, I've decided that she's a girl and I've even named her - Delilah.  I don't know why I call her that, it just seems to fit.  I guess because the brand is Dahle and it is printed at the top :0)

Anyway, I've been searching for a new paper trimmer for a while now, and after many days of researching on the internet I decided to go with this one - a Dahle 550.  I read review after review and I think the thing that finally sold me on this one is the self-sharpening blade.  With every cut the blade sharpens itself!! Wow!  And if you've ever been to one of my workshops, you know how much paper I cut - a lot!!  I figure it will help reduce some of my chiropractor visits because it slices so effortlessly. My previous trimmer took a fair amount of muscle, since you had to push down & forward.  This one slices with no effort, in both directions.

Now I'm questioning why I waited so long to make this purchase.  The right tool makes the job so much easier :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Camp and Scrap!

Aren't these 2 little kiddies cute?  I know I'm totally biased, but i think they are the most adorable kids ever! ;)  That being said, my dream for the past few years is to have a couple of hours - all by myself - alone in my own house!!  With kids and a husband who works from home, it is very rare that I ever get to be in the house, all by my lonesome.

Well. today my dream was realized, even though it was just a few short hours.  With both kids off at preschool camp, I sat down at my scrap table and did this....

Yes - a 2 page layout - done! :)  It was a cute kit that I picked up last month at the Creating Keepsakes Convention.  On such a cold, rainy day, it was a nice change of pace to scrap summer swim photos on cute, colorful paper!

This paper is made by Fancy Pants Designs and the collection is called Rusted Sun.  The cutest paper in this pack is a sheet of cute little swim suits!  I think I'll have to do a few more swim pages so I can use some more of this adorable paper.  Fun stuff!

Now, what should I work on tomorrow? :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back!

 A few weeks ago my family room was a complete disaster and I couldn't take it anymore!  So I banished the kids to the living room and told them in no uncertain terms, "DO NOT come into the family room or bother Mommy while I clean!"  I gave clear instructions that they could play in the living room and if there were any problems they would have to go play in their bedrooms. (I seriously had to get the family room clean - it's basically where we live and it had reached critical status!).  So I cleaned & vacuumed and dusted and got everything put away and, ahhhh.....doesn't it look nice above?

So feeling a wonderful sense of accomplishment, I walked into the living room to check on the kids.  And here is what I found......

Another room completely destroyed!!!  Well, I have to admit that they didn't bother me or have any problems playing the living I guess they obeyed really well.  Oh sigh, another room to clean.  At least it's not a room we live in very much! :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

December Blog Hop & Plenty for Twenty!

Welcome to December! I LOVE fall & winter because the cool temperatures outside give me more inspiration to cook & bake. I LOVE cuddling up under a cozy blanket, sipping tea or cocoa and spending time with my LOVELY family. Express your LOVE of crafting with the December Stamp of the Month AMORE, pictured above! Follow the Blog Hop to see the many different ways other crafters have used this stamp set by clicking HERE.
Above are a few creative projects that were made with the Amore stamp set - very cute! But wait, there's more.....
How about a free stamp set? Spend $20 or more in December and receive a FREE D-size stamp set! Place an order of $20 or more on my website from December 1–31, 2010, and you'll be rewarded with a popular, retired D-size stamp set for FREE! Talk about getting more for your money—the free stamp set is valued at $22.95 US! You'll also get FREE shipping/handling and tax on your free stamp set. That’s a lot of Plenty for your Twenty! Visit my website today to place your order!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Same Pattern - Totally Different Looks!

Notice anything similar about these layouts? While the colors are vastly different from each other, the pattern is exactly the same! This pattern is called "Backstage" and it is featured in the new idea book from Close to My Heart called Magic. I recently got this book and I have to say I am very inspired by the cool new patterns in it! It also has a lot of ideas for making your layouts interactive. In the back of the book is a disc that contains all the patterns you need for cutting things like the scallop you see on these layouts or the little attachments you can make & place on your pages (like pull tabs, little booklets, photos that flip, etc.).

Sunday, November 14, 2010

November Workshop!!

Here is a picture of the card we'll be making at this Friday's workshop! I really like these little owls and think they look so cute on this card! The textured background is made using a Cuttlebug embossing folder. The little owls are colored in using CTMH markers, which is a fun technique! I just think they might be missing a little something....googlie eyes perhaps?
Who doesn't need a little pack of post-it notes? I use them all the time! This little pack is great for your purse, desk, by the phone, or even to give away!
The third project we'll be working on is to cover a 2011 pocket calendar. Each year I customize my own calendar that I keep in my purse. It's where I record everything throughout the year! As I was needing to make my own for 2011, I thought you might be needing one as well! Since we all have our own personal style, please feel free to bring your own paper, ribbon, & embellishments for this project. Two coordinating papers would work great, but even a single pattern would work. I'll supply the calendar and any needed cardstock. It will be a fun project and is also a great little gift to give away!

I hope to see you this Friday - we'll be having a fun paper crafting night!

Stamp sets used are: Love You Forever; A Little Thanks; Notice the Details; Moments in Time; Checklist (retiring 12/31/10).

Saturday, November 6, 2010

November Workshop Projects

Just thought I'd announce what we will be making at my upcoming workshop! We'll be making 3 cute projects:

1) A really cute card using 2 different embossing techniques. Dry embossing and heat embossing.

2) A pocket calendar, customized by you! You pick your paper & stamps and then customize the cover of your calendar. You'll be all set for 2011! Also makes a cute gift to give away.

3) A little post-it note & pencil set perfect for your purse!

I'm finishing up all the details and will post the actual projects as soon as possible. The workshop date is Friday, November 19th starting at 7 pm. Hope you can make it!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

November Stamp of the Month Blog Hop!

I don't know about you, but I've seriously been missing a good blog hop! With that in mind, take a look at this thoughtful stamp set called "A Little Thanks". It's the Stamp of the Month for November and the stamp set we'll be using at my next workshop on November 19th. It's only available this month. Ask me how you can get it for a discount or even FREE! See what creative things have been made with this stamp set by following the blog hop by clicking HERE

Friday, October 29, 2010

Crock Pot Coq Au Vin

I don't know if this picture turned out as well I hoped, but the recipe did turn out pretty good. Now keep in mind, this is NOT like Julia Child's Coq Au Vin! No big labor of love recipe like that! (By the way, I really do want to try to make her version this winter, just need to set aside a day for it). I used frozen skinless chicken thighs from Costco (didn't brown them) & a Lipton Onion Soup mix - need I say more about being easy? I thought it tasted good & my husband did to, so here's the recipe:

Crock Pot Coq Au Vin
Nonstick cooking spray
3 lbs chicken thighs, skinned
1 envelope beefy onion soup mix
2 cups quartered mushrooms
1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions
3 medium carrots cut into 3 1/2" sticks
1/2 cup dry red wine (isn't Burgundy what the French use?)
Hot cooked mashed potatoes (optional)

1) Lightly coat an large skillet with cooking spray. Heat the skillet over medium heat & cook the chicken thighs until brown. Drain fat.

2) Place chicken thighs in a 3 1/2 or 4 quart slow cooker. Sprinkle with dry soup mix. Add mushrooms, onions and carrots. Pour wine over mixture in cooker.

3)Cover & cook on low heat setting for 5 to 6 hours; or on high heat setting for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Serve with mashed potatoes if desired.

Has it really been more than a month?

I can't believe my last post was over a month ago! Bad blogger!!! I could come up with a load of excuses why...mostly illness...both of my kids & myself have been sick for weeks! Then I was in Maui for a week (and the week before that was CRAZY!) SO! Hopefully I can get back on track! I'll be posting something for real in the next day or so, so please forgive me for my neglect!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Is this a cute card or what?

Well it FINALLY happened! My son is potty trained! I have been changing diapers for almost 5 years! No, my son isn't almost 5, but he came along before Ella was potty trained. I am very proud of my little boy, and so is his Nana. She made the adorable card above and sent it to him. I just think it is sooo cute!! She always makes the cutest & most clever cards & books for my kids. You can tell they are made with a lot of love too! Thank you Nana!! (And thank you Ryan for ending my diaper changing days!)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Clear Card Workshop Tomorrow!

Above are the cards we'll making tomorrow night starting at 7:00 pm. The clear card bases are really unique & fun to work with! The supply fee is $12 and that includes a new Fall/Winter catalog for you to take home! Hope to see you there!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Crock Pot Beef Short Ribs

So I tried my first recipe from my new Slow Cooker cookbook, and it turned out pretty good! Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture for you!! It was very easy and even the kids liked it. I love braised short ribs, so I was eager to try making them in the crock pot to see how they came out. The meat was tender & the sauce had deep, dark color (from my favorite beer - Guinness!) and a hint of sweetness from the molasses. It needed salt, so if you try it for yourself, up the salt measurement! Also, try to find short ribs on sale. The recipe calls for 5 pounds of short ribs and they were $4.99 per pound the day I was shopping! You could get a few pounds of short ribs and add some big hunks of whatever kind of beef is on sale & it would still be good. Here's the recipe:

Beer-braised Beef Short Ribs

5 lbs beef short ribs
14 oz can beef broth
12 oz can dark beer
1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges
1/4 cup molasses
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp tabasco
1/2 tsp salt

Add everything except short ribs to crock pot & stir together. Then add in short ribs. Cover & cook on low-heat setting for 11 - 12 hours or on high-heat setting fr 5 1/2 to 6 hours. Skim fat off sauce & serve meat & sauce with mashed potatoes. (I didn't skim - too lazy) Enjoy! :)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

September Already?!

I can't believe it's September - time is sure flying fast! So fast I can barely keep up! My crafty projects have certainly been on the back burner, so I have got to get busy so that I can post some new projects for you to see!

In the meantime, here's the latest from my Perky Paper corner of the world :)

-The new Fall/Winter catalog went live on September 1st. If you haven't seen it yet, go to the CTMH website HERE to see it online or contact me for a paper copy to hold in your hands!

-Mark your calendar for Friday, September 17th at 7 pm when I'll be teaching a Clear Card workshop. We'll use some new products and stamps to layer clear card bases for some really unique cards!

-My October workshop will be on Friday, October 22nd. I think we will probably be making the 3 mini albums from the September Triple Play promotional kit. This kit must be purchased by September 30th. I'll have samples to look at the September workshop, but you can see a picture on my website HERE.

-I bought a new Crock Pot cookbook and I'm going to try to make a new recipe each week from it. I'll do my best to post the results of the recipe here on my blog so that you can try them for yourself. I love cooking with my Crock Pot because it's not only easy, but the house smells yummy and you can get a lot done during the day while dinner is cooking away at the same time. Perfect for paper crafting don't you think?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Journaling Spots

Just thought I'd share some pictures of a product I just got - Journaling Spots! I've looked at these in the catalog before, but wasn't sure how I would use them. I have to say, they are really cute! These have a travel theme, so some look like luggage tags, train tickets, and even post cards! They are perfect embellishments for travel layouts or a travel album. Or they would look really cute on a card too! This item will be retiring, so it's only available until December 31st. And at $3.95 for 34 tags, it's a pretty good deal too!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Paper Paper Paper!!!

Just thought I'd share a picture of a HUGE paper order I received the other day! It was the combination of 3 customer orders during the recent $2, $4, $6 sale. Such fun looking through all the paper packs & stickease :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Triple Play Mini Album Kit

One's good, two's great, and three's best of all! An adorable kit with everything you need to make 3 mini albums: inks, stamps, albums, and pre-cut accents for stamping. Each album has its own color scheme, ready for all kinds of photos! In honor of National Stamping Month, you can get this great kit for a great deal too. If you purchase $25 in stamps, you can get the Triple Play kit for just $15. Or spend $40 on stamps and get the kit for only $5! The Triple Play kit is available starting August 15th and while supplies last until September 30th.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

$2 $4 $6 Paper Palooza!!

CTMH is having an appreciation sale for you!! Amazing deals can be had for 8 days only starting Wednesday, August 4th through August 11th (while supplies last). You can purchase select My Stickease Assortments for only $2, My Reflections Level 1 kits for only $4 and My Reflections Level 2 paper packs for only $6!! These amazing prices can only be found online, so visit my website HERE today before they are gone!

These stickease and papers are retiring forever, so this is your last chance to purchase them! Some will sell out super fast, so get your order in as soon as possible!!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Attention Paper Lovers!

What do you think of this beachy, hawaiian-ish paper called Moon Doggie that I used to make the card above?
Or this adorable Twitterpated paper used on the card above & layout below?

And this Emporium paper I used in the layout of my son is one of my all-time favorite paper packs!
"Okay, what's all this about?" you may be asking. Well, all the papers pictured are RETIRING!! Soon they will no longer be available to order! While I think that is so sad, there is a positive side - you can get them at a steal-of-a-deal starting next week! CTMH is clearing out paper packs & stickease starting Wednesday, August 4th for one week only AND only while supplies last. $2 stickease packs; $4 Level 1 paper packs; and $6 Level 2 paper packs. That works out to 27 cents per sheet for a Level 2 pack - where else can you find paper at that price?
These deals are only available online, so mark your calendar and visit my website at to get 'em before they're gone!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Layout Using Robotz Cricut Cartridge

Yes, my son is 3 years old and his first year album is not quite finished! This was one of those layouts that has sat uncompleted for awhile. I was so happy to finish it last month! I got the new Robotz cartridge for my Cricut and thought I'd just crank out a few robots in no time. WRONG! I love the adorable little robots, but they are not quick to make! There are several layers to each one, so you have to kind of plan it out before you start cutting. Also, the bigger you make them the easier they will be to assemble. Mine had tiny little pieces that needed placing and glueing with tweezers! I added "rivets" with a silver pen and used googlie eyes to finish them off. By the third one I timed myself to see how fast I could cut him & put him together - would you believe 45 minutes! That means the other 2 took at least an hour each (probably more). I don't know how soon I'll be making little robots with my Cricut! :)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

My New Paella Pan!

I know this is kind of off topic, but just thought I'd share a picture of my new & exciting Paella pan! I've been wanting a new pan for months & months, but didn't know exactly what kind to get. I ordered & sent one back from Amazon and then decided to get the one I really wanted - the 17" large Paella pan from All Clad. I shopped around for the best price & found it for $35 less than Sur La Table's price :) This picture is of my first Paella using my cool new pan - very exciting for this perky Paella preparer!!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Fall Workshop Announcement

Today I was planning out my fall workshops, and so I thought I'd let you in on the news! Since summer is just too busy (and I just found out Ella starts kindergarten on August 18th!!), I won't be holding workshops in July or August (but you probably already knew that!)

In September the workshop will be "Clear Cards". We'll use clear acetate cards and embellish them with paper so that you can see different patterns from various angles - really quite cool! If you have a current summer catalog, you can see examples of clear cards on pages 64, 79, 88 & the item description on page 96. If you don't have a current catalog, you can view it online HERE, and let me know if want one to hold in your hands!

October will find me & my husband in Maui for our 20th wedding anniversary - yes, jaw dropping I know! So I probably won't be hosting a workshop in October, although I will definitely have pictures to scrap using my Moon Doggie paper pack!

For the month of November we will be making 3 mini albums. Examples of the albums will be available to see at the September workshop.

So that's all I know at the moment. More details will follow, including workshop dates.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Please forgive my tardiness in posting the July Stamp of the Month Blog Hop. The first of July found me crazy-busy packing for the weekend and then when we were home and things calmed down for almost a day - I GOT SICK!! I do blame my hubby, since he had it first, but I know he didn't do it on purpose. The kids both have it too, which makes for such a mess. I just watch them destroy the house while I lay on the couch with a tissue box on my lap, knowing full well that the mess will still be there - and more - when I finally recover. Mom's don't get to call in sick!!

ANYWAY, on to the blog hop! Click HERE to get started and enjoy the fun with this cute hedgehog stamp set!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Thanks for coming!

I hope everyone that came over this past Saturday had a "cherry" good time! It was a fun thing to do inside with air conditioning on such a hot day! Afterward I felt like it was the last day of school before summer vacation since I'm taking the next 2 months off from workshops ;)

So for those of you who purchased the Cherry-O kit/paper, I thought I'd post these cute pages to give you a bit of inspiration! These were winning entries from a contest put on by CTMH. I like the 2 page layout because it has 6 photos and uses the Cherry-O My Stickease that I recently purchased for myself! It was made using the "Ensemble Piece" pattern from the Imagine book. The single page is just plain adorable! The way the paper is pleated to look kind of like an apron is oh-so-clever! This layout used the Main Frame - Charmed pattern in the Reflections book.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

"Imagine" what a book can do for your layouts!

On our scrapbook retreat weekend, Rebecca put together this adorable layout about her family's trip to the zoo. Isn't it too cute! She used the Imagine book and followed the pattern on pages 90 & 91 to put her layout together. I love the way she did "zoo" in her title, using the negative space from her Cricut cut instead of the individual letters. My photos don't do it justice! (Being vertically challenged as I am, I should have put it on a lower table to get a better angle). I think if you double click on the photo it will enlarge it for better viewing ;)

The Imagine, Cherish, and Reflections books are really great resources for helping you to get more pages done in less time. The patterns in the books tell you what type & how many papers you need (ie: cardstock, patterned papers, photo sizes) and then give you all the measurements for cutting those papers & photos. Then you just sit down and put it together, adding your own embellishments to finish. Easy right? "Imagine" what they could do for your scrapbooks!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Cropped 'til I dropped!

This past weekend was my yearly retreat, my "getaway from the house, kids, hubby, etc." weekend. I packed up scrapbooking supplies & lots of paper & photos and scrapped my brains out! I did 20 pages (well, some still need a bit of journaling) so it was quite a productive weekend! The warm weather & lack of air conditioning didn't slow us down much either. Although, the lack of sleep definitely made my return to the "real world" a bit of a challenge!

Here are some pictures. I'll be adding more over the next few days, so check back to see my completed layouts! :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

June Stamp of the Month Blog Hop!

Is it June already? I can't believe it! And if your summer calendar looks anything like mine - this month will be a whirlwind and over before we know it!

That being said, take a moment & hop through the blogs to see the great ways that so many creative ladies have used the more masculine June Stamp of the Month called, "Wonderful Friend". I don't have a lot of stamp sets that would lend themselves to making a card for my hubby or my Dad, etc. So I may have to pick this one up for myself!

Enjoy the hop by clicking HERE!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Cheery Cherry-O Cards & Kit!!

I love these cute cards made using the new Cherry-O kit! I made these the other night in preparation for my June "Double" workshop on the 26th. My favorite is the one in front using tulip red brads as cherries in the bowl! It just makes me smile :)
Life is know the rest! Here is the adorable stamp set that comes in the Cherry-O kit. You can only get this stamp set in the kit and the kit is only available until August 31st!!
The kit is such a great deal because it includes a full Level 2 Paper Packet (which is 12 sheets of patterned paper and 10 sheets of cardstock). My photo above shows some of the paper you get. In addition to the paper and the stamp set, you also get a pack of Tulip red embellishments: buttons, ribbon, brads and metal tags. I think these kits make great gifts too because everything coordinates and there is also an instruction booklet that walks you through step-by-step to complete cards and scrapbook layouts! It's like an all-inclusive scrapbook workshop in a bag!

Get yours today by contacting me or visiting my website: