Paper Sweeties Inspiration Challenge #15

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Hey, friends!  Happy New Year!  It's the start of a new month, not to mention a new year, and time for Paper Sweeties January challenge.  You should be coming here via Jeanne Jachna's Blog, but if you didn't and want to start at the beginning or got lost along the way, a complete list of hop participants can be found at the end of this post.  Without further adieu, here's how I was inspired this month.
I started this card by trimming the left edge of a piece of multicolored, circles, patterned paper with a strip of red and white, striped, patterned paper; framing them with Riding Hood Red cardstock; and machine stitching, with white-threaded, zig-zag stitches, around their combined edges and between their connection.  I then stamped the "Happy New Year" sentiment, in Jet Black ink, vertically, in the bottom right corner of the design, before adhering it, with foam tape, to the Kraft, cardstock, card face.
I then stamped the snowman, in Jet Black ink, on a piece of vellum; secured him, with red-threaded, straight, machine stitches, to a pink, postal tag; and stuffed the tag with a bunch of pearl, red, and gold sequins, as well as a trio of snowflake sequins.  The snowman was then dressed up with a trio of black pearls; a hat and scarf, stamped, in Jet Black ink, on White cardstock and colored with pencils and mineral spirits, before being hand cut out; and a vellum snowflake.
The tag itself was then adhered, with foam tape, just to the left of the stamped sentiment; flanked with a kraft typography number "14"; and topped with white, seam binding ribbon, tied in a dressy bow and embellished with a red button, laced with a Baker's Twine bow.
Here's your Inspiration Challenge #15 photo to get you off and running in the right direction.  I think it's pretty obvious that that little lady, dressed as a snowman, along with the yummy palette, formed my inspiration.
Don't forget to stop by the link above to get all this month's challenge details.  Now, off you go to Kerin Sylvester's Blog to continue your hop.  Thanks so much for peeking in, and may your 2014 be extra blessed!

Debbie Marcinkiewicz - Paper Sweeties
Amber Kroening
Annette Allen

Annette Witherspoon
Andrea Ewen
January Guest Designer - Jill Norwood

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Occasions & Snow Friends (Paper Sweeties) Paper: Kraft & White (Wplus9); Riding Hood Red (SU); red/white striped (Echo Park); multicolored circles (JBS); vellum (Paper Studio) Ink: Jet Black (StazOn); Jet Black (Ranger) Other: red & white thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); postal tag (Webster's Pages); black pearls (Want 2 Scrap); kraft typography number "14" (Maya Road); vellum snowflake (Studio Calico); white seam binding ribbon (Zipper Stop); red button (PTI); Baker's Twine (Clean Country Paper Supplies); pearl sequins (The Ribbon Reel); snowflake sequins (JBS); red & gold sequins (Paper Studio); colored pencils (Prismacolor); mineral spirits (Inky Antics)

Holiday Snapshots

Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy Monday, friends!  I just wanted to pop in here real quick to share just a few pics of our holiday season.  My parents and siblings couldn't fit us in around my hubby's work schedule.  So, we were celebrating on our own again, but it still was extra special.  My kiddos weren't interested in attending our church's Christmas Eve service.  It's not really geared towards them, and I wasn't up for balancing it all on my own.  So, we spent it working on a few Christmas projects...
and baking cookies.
And of course, my kiddos still received their new, Christmas Eve pajamas.  It's tradition ;).
Then, Christmas morning, I tried The Idea Room's Candy Cane Pancakes Recipe for breakfast.  They were super yummy and an extra special treat, but I was disappointed with how thin and flimsy they were.  The special ingredients can easily be added to my own basic pancake recipe, though.  So, next time, I'll do just that.
After our fill and before we could continue our celebrations, we had a little something that needed to be addressed.  Our sweet, little Katie passed away late Christmas Eve.
She had been sick for awhile, and we knew it was inevitable, but never did we imagine that we'd be burying her on Christmas day.  She was barely holding on, as I put Adina to bed that night.  So, I wrapped her up and took her into Adina's room for her to say goodbye.  We kissed Katie and held her and cried and prayed over her and thanked the Lord for all the joy she brought into our lives.  A couple of hours later, after some extra cuddling and once I finally got Adina off to sleep, Katie died.  So, a Christmas morning burial was in order...
but then we perked things up by turning on the Christmas music and decorating our Christmas cookies from the day before.
In the midst of that, my hubby arrived home from South Dakota.  My kiddos didn't know what to say, but you should've heard their squealing and seen their excitement :).  You may remember my saying that his new boss said if he wanted to get paid, he'd have to work through the holidays.  Well, with a move in our future and a new baby on the way, he really needed to get paid.  So, he went in super early Christmas morning, as no one else was working anyway, to get his hours in and wrap up a bunch of things before coming home.  He was then able to work the remainder of the week from his computer right here at home.  After eight weeks of not being together, I cannot even begin to tell you how much we needed that time as a family.  It was such a blessing!
You can imagine, after thinking they'd have to wait to open gifts, with Daddy, on Friday night, that my kiddos were anxious to get things rolling.  So, we jumped right in.  One thing, I just love about our Christmases is that we always take the time to open and try things out as we go.  It's so relaxing and makes the gift-giving extra special.
And their last gift was something I've wanted to do forever.  Ezekiel outgrew his bike long ago and has just been using his scooter, and Adina, too, was beginning to outgrow Ezekiel's hand-me-down.  So, it was past time for them both to have a bike of their own, and they couldn't have been any more excited.  LOVE it!
We were so enjoying our time together that I didn't even take a picture of our pot roast dinner or the yummy Snickerdoodle Cheesecake I made for Jesus' Birthday.
We spent the rest of our long weekend out and about, letting our kiddos spend their Christmas gift cards, stocking up on the last of the basic necessities we needed to welcome our anticipated little one, and cuddling in front of the television, watching Christmas movies and munching on goodies.  We even made it to church together on Sunday morning.  It was our last Christmas as just the four of us and one we'll always treasure.
Thanks so much for checking in on us!  Have a blessed week!

Friday Faves

Friday, December 27, 2013

Happy Friday, y'all!  I trust you've all had a wonderful, holiday week.  I'll be back, at a later date, to share pics of ours.  But until then, I've got a short lineup of this month's Friday Faves to share with you all, beginning with Carta Bella's deliciously vintage Homemade with Love 12x12 Collection Kit .  I couldn't love the color palette any more, and the theme and cardstock element stickers, not to mention the built-in recipe cards, are simply too fun!
I'm also loving the rainbow palette amidst Simple Stories' Daily Grind 12x12 Collection Kit.  Simple Stories knows how to do journaling cards, friends, and check out those fabulous fundamentals stickers and trendy patterns!
I've become a pretty big fan of gold elements when it comes to my scrapbooking, and these Christmas Rubons, from Chic Tags' Good Tidings Collection, couldn't be any more perfect.
Speaking of Christmas, these Merry & Bright Wood Veneer bits, from Elle's Studio, may be sold out again by the time this post goes live, but I couldn't possibly not include them.  LOVE!
Oh!  And Freckled Fawn's new Warm Arrow Clip Set is a must-have for sure!
You all know how much I adore a good bag.  Well, I came across this Brown Chenille Messenger Bag from Monday Morning Studios and couldn't love its versatility, durability, or style any more!  Yum!
And finally, Adina and I decided we needed to try out Evolution of Smooth's lip balms one day, while we were waiting in a line, that we thought might never end, not long ago, and they get a big thumbs up from us!  They have so many yummy flavors, but we both really love Strawberry Sorbet.
That rounds things up for this month, folks.  Thanks for looking, and have a fantastic weekend!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

From my family to yours, Merry Christmas!  And may you always remember the true reason for the season.  Blessings!
And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.  This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria.  So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city. 

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child.  So it was, that while they were there the days were completed for her to be delivered.  And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. 

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.  Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.  For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be the sign to you:  You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger." 

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!" 

So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, "Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us."  And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.  Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning the Child.  And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds.  But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.  Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them. - Luke 2:1-20

Family Update

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas Eve, friends!  Just wanted to share a few things that have been keeping us busy during this holiday season before the big day arrives.  Just over a week ago, we made a little time to visit the penguins at our KC Zoo again.  They're so captivating!  It was an extra fun morning, too, because we also ran into some friends.  Needless to say, picture-taking took a backseat to some much-needed, grown-up conversation.
I couldn't help but share this cute stack of fabric scraps from all the projects I've been working on for Christmas.  Can't wait to show you all!
Something pretty momentous took place around our house last week.  My little girl invited Jesus into her heart.  This photograph was actually taken the next day during our Bible time.  Matter of fact, she said the actual prayer, in true Adina style, naked as the day she was born, in the bathtub, right after she asked if I could ask Jesus to come into her heart for her.  I told her that only she could ask Him.  After a long silence, I asked her if she wanted me to help her; and she promptly said, "YES!"  She was so happy and excited after she said her prayer.  It was ever so sweet, absolutely precious, and completely took my breath away.  What a moment to treasure!
We had another showing last Thursday.  So, we took our studies to Panera and treated ourselves to bagels, but they decided our home was too small.  Unfortunately, there's not much we can do about that.  We continue to wait.
I FINALLY got our Christmas cards addressed this weekend.  Yes, they'll be late in their arrival.  No, I'm not going to sweat it.  It's just been one of those years.
On Sunday, my kiddos found a little time to play in the freshly fallen snow...
and we made lots of yummy, Christmas treats...
before my hubby's job whisked him away once again.
Every week that goes by, it gets harder and harder to say goodbye.  It's been especially hard on this little one.  She cries a lot, which makes it extra hard on me.  I had a few, Christmas errands to run on Saturday morning, and she didn't want to let me go.  She just cuddled and cried in her Daddy's arms for the longest time.  Then, when we were all sitting down to dinner together again and after we held hands and prayed, she kept hugging my arm and then her Daddy's arm and back and forth again.  We're all beyond ready to be back together.
I cannot tell you how much all your prayers mean to me, especially during this difficult season of our lives.  We're really struggling through some tough decisions right now and desperately trying to hear what the Lord would have us do.  We're clinging to all we know to be true and praying His promises will guide us through, but I have to admit that it feels like a silence has overtaken us.  We feel forgotten.  We feel abandoned.  We feel alone.

The Studio Christmas Tag Challenge

Sunday, December 22, 2013

It's time for another challenge from The Studio, friends!  This time we're asking y'all to put together a Christmas page, boasting a Christmas tag.  It can be a tag you made, one you were given, or one you're going to use on your gifts.  I created mine with just this page in mind.  Although, I have to admit that I had a completely different idea in mind until my Jenni Bowlin Papercrafting Kit arrived.  It inspired me so much, I scrapped my original plan and went with this.  Enjoy!
I started this page by smudging Candy Apple Red Glimmer Mist across the green, chevron, patterned, paper, base page and stamping it, in Jet Black ink, with the irregular grid.  I've had this Stampin' Up stamp for months and am just now getting to use it.  LOVE it to bits and bits and bits!  I then secured three, color-coordinating bits of patterned paper, down the center of the page, with red-threaded, straight, machine stitches, before matting my photos with Whisper White cardstock; layering them, haphazardly stacked, down the middle of the page; and turning my attention to my tag element...
which I created on a "DEC" Bingo card, laced with red ribbons and topped with a red and white, chenille, candy cane, grounded with a red button, laced with a hemp twine bow and flanked with a couple of felt, holly leaves.
I then stamped the vintage Santa, in Real Red ink, on a White, cardstock die cut; glittered the trim on his hat; and stapled a stamped, in Jet Black ink, with the "Christmas Cheer" sentiment, on vellum, banner into his beard, before adhering him, with foam tape, in the center of the tag itself.  A couple of vellum, die cut bits complete the tag; and a filigreed label not only grounds its right side, but also carries a bit of gold to this side of the page.
My "christmas snackin'" title was created from gold, accent alphas; and a "REMEMBER THIS", die-cut, phrase bit, which was secured with a simple staple, as well as a stamped, in Jet Black ink, "COMFORT AND JOY", striped banner and vellum star round out the left side of the page and turn our attention to the top.
The topmost photo was crowned with a "December 25", dimensional banner...
and had its left side trimmed with another vellum bit, anchored with a red button, laced with hemp twine, as well as a vellum tag, laced with more hemp twine.  My tag reads, Even when you aren't doing anything out of the ordinary, you simply mesmerize me.  2012.
Don't forget that this month’s sponsor, at The Studio, is FabScrapsFabScraps began in 2005 when Brigitte and Janine created one of the first truly local ranges of paper and matching accessories ever produced in South Africa.  FabScraps products are associated with artistic, approachable, and fun designs which have a wide appeal to scrapbookers who love all styles from retro to shabby chic.
Our December winner will receive some scrappy goodies from their Burlesque collection.  Woohoo!  Please be sure to stop by the challenge link above to get all your challenge details, as well as to see what the rest of the team has created.  Thanks so much for peeking in, and have a Merry Christmas!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Heartfelt Holiday (Wplus9); Santa & "Christmas Cheer" (JBS); Off the Grid (SU) Paper: White (Wplus9); Whisper White (SU); green chevron, chalkboard snowflake, & candy cane stripe (Echo Park); pink & red floral (JBS); vellum (Paper Studio) Ink: Real Red (SU); Jet Black (StazOn); Jet Black (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: red thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); Banner Trio & Merry & Bright dies (Wplus9); Big Shot (Sizzix); Dazzling Diamonds (SU); vellum die cuts, gold accent alphas, & dimensional sticker banner (Studio Calico); hemp twine (The Ribbon Reel); red chevron ribbon (May Arts); red fringed ribbon (Hobby Lobby); red buttons (JoAnn Fabrics); felt (Scrapbook Page); red & white chenille candy cane (Paper Sweeties); "DEC" Bingo card, red striped banner, & Santa cut file (JBS); Cameo (Silhouette); "REMEMBER THIS" cut phrase (Crate Paper); staples & stapler (office supply store); gold label (Martha Stewart); Candy Apple Red Glimmer Mist (Tattered Angels)