Friday, August 26, 2016

Today Is National Dog Day!

Since today is National Dog Day, I'm celebrating my dog with a post all about him.

This little guy stole my heart.....

In the 30+ years that my husband and I have been married we've had 4 different dogs - a black Lab mix name Belle, a full blooded Shih tzu named Susha, a full blooded Yellow lab named Max. The hardest to loose was Max. He was old and didn't survive a heat stroke after playing on a farm. I didn't think we would get another dog for a very long time... but a long time turned out to be about 6 months I think. This time my husband chose a breed that he had wanted all his life - a Chesapeake Bay Retriever.   We named him Remington - Remi for short.  At the time, my husband owned his own business so for the first 4 years of Remi's life he was an office dog.  He was so used to going to the office that if my husband was out of town, I would still take him to the office and drop him off in the morning and pick him up in the afternoon.  His main office tasks were guarding the door and sleeping all day.  At lunch time, he would take a break and change big sticks.

Remi shows his emotions... in the picture above he is actually smiling.  His loves his sisters and when they come to visit, he is just beside himself.   When Remi was a puppy, Kirsti would take him to work with her occasionally when he needed a break from the office so I think they have an extra special bond.  When Jeff sold the business and went to work somewhere else, Remi had to adjust to becoming a Stay At Home Dog.  We installed doggie door so he could come and go as he pleases out back.  I get to work from home 2 days a week and on the mornings that I get up to go into the office, Remi lays in the bathroom floor and pouts.  

At Christmas, Remi dresses up in his best bow tie collar.   He knows what presents are his and usually can sniff them out.  Last year, Jeff went Christmas shopping and brought some things home he had bought for Remi.  He put the bag in the closet to wrap the toys later.  Well, that night Remi comes walking into the family room with one of his brand new toys!  He had gone into the closet and sniffed it out and pulled it out of the bag!

And finally, this is the look we get if we are not paying enough attention to him. This is a face that is hard to resist.   He is a dog of routine habit.  He goes to get the paper every morning - I do not read it - it goes straight to the trash but Jeff won't let me discontinue it because it is IMPORTANT to Remi to get the paper every morning.   At 8:30 EVERY night Remi thinks it is time to go out and chase the 'red light'.  Not 7:30, not 8:00, but you can count on the clock saying 8:30 if he is staring at you.  He will sit and stare at Jeff until he finally gets up to go out with him.  He will NOT stop staring.  He would most certainly win any stare down contest.  He must think he has mind control.... well I guess he does somewhat.  We always give in.  

So today, I salute Remi!  He has a made a huge difference in our lives. It's his day and we'll do something he wants to do, But wait, isn't that EVERY day?

Happy National Dog Day everyone!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

True Love - A NEW Special Operation Smile Stamp Set!

Each year, Close To My Heart introduces an exclusive new stamp set that benefits Operation Smile! When you purchase this year's stamp set - True Love (D1711), Close To My Heart will donate $7 of your purchase to Operation Smile!   This is one of the cutest stamp sets that I have seen so far!

True Love - D1711
I especially love the sentiment -"This Card Is a Paper Hug".  I couldn't wait to create a card with it!
I used the new Enchantment Fundamental paper for my card.  I stamped the little boy and the balloons on White Daisy Cardstock, colored them with ShinHan Touch Twin Markers and then I cut them out.

I stamped the oval of hearts and the sentiment onto my White Daisy base.  I used the masking technique when I stamped the sentiment so that I could stamp the hearts in Cranberry Ink and the sentiment in Sapphire ink.  I used the masking technique again for the boy and the balloons, stamping only the balloons and string onto the base.  Then I adhered my cut out balloon on top of the stamped ones.  I tied off the card with twine from the Enchantment Ribbon Pack.

Isn't this stamp just adorable?  
Add this one to your collection and at the same time you will be helping a child get a smile!

Order your stamp HERE

Friday, August 19, 2016

Happy Place Crop Day Layout

We had a wonderful time during the Crop Day last weekend.  I hope everyone accomplished MOST of what they brought with them to work on.  I know I saw several people that seemed to be making progress! 

I provided a special layout for my croppers to create that day.  This was a one page layout that featured new papers from Adventure Fundamentals and cuts from the new Flower Market Cricut Collection.   They got to choose the color combination they wanted.  Either Lemon/Lagoon or Raspberry/Pacifica combination.

The title of the layout - Happy Place is one of the many title images from the Flower Market cartridge.  It is a layered image but I only used the top layer for this layout.  "Laughter is the best medicine" is one of the many sentiments from the sentiment stampset that is included in the collection. Also, the flowers and leaves are all cut from Flower Market.  We used one of the background stamps that is included with the collection to stamp on the leaves.  See a closer shot of the leaves below.

Another new product that they got to use was the new Happy Thoughts Embossing Folder.
I'm not sure how well it shows up in the picture.  The 4x4 Lemon / Pacific cardstock are the pieces that we embossed with this folder.

Happy Thoughts Embossing Folder - Z3249

Flower Market Cricut Collection - Z3285
Adventure Paper Fundamentals Z3253

You can find these and MORE great products on my website at:

Monday, August 15, 2016

Bingo Night 2016!

My 2nd Annual Bingo Night to introduce our 2016-2017 Annual Inspirations took place last Saturday night.   We had projects, prizes and a lot fun!  Today, I wanted to share the projects that we created that night.   Tomorrow I will share our prizes that were won and also later this week, a project that my Day Croppers got to complete!  

First up - a quick treat holder using the August Stamp of the Month , Purr-fect Halloween.  This was quick and easy!  We used Tangerine cardstock to create a simple folded holder. The cat was stamped with White Pigment ink onto black cardstock.  Next we stamped a hat and the banner onto Pansy paper from the Adventure Fundamentals  and cut it out.  The Black base was adhered to the holder and we used the mini stapler to staple the side.  Now just add a treat or two! 
Purr-fect Halloween Treat Holder

Next up is a card that uses some of our new Thin Cuts along with the bold striped paper from the Adventure Fundamentals.  Some people had "thanks" and some had "hello".  Since the paper is double sided, they had a choice of which color they wanted to use.  Also we had star thin cuts or heart thin cuts.   

Card featuring the new Thin Cuts

By now, I think everyone knows that the color of the year is Seaglass so I certainly had to show it off with the next card we created!   The Seaglass cardstock was run through the Confetti Stars Embossing Folder (Z3119).  We used paper and Ribbon from the Rustic Home Fundamentals, Seaglass Glitter Paper and a stamp from Birthday Sparkles.  We brushed over the stars with the new Shimmer Brush to give it a shimmer.  (You can't really see it in this picture!)

Our last project of the night was a 2 page layout using the Adventure Fundamentals and the Good Life Compliments.   For this project I chose 4 patterns from ONE paper pack per four people.   Since the paper is two sided, they chose which colors they wanted to showcase on their layout.  Next, I spread out one set of Good Life Compliments on their table and they got to choose their title and other stickers, die-cuts and vellum pieces they wanted to add.  There were PLENTY to choose from among the 4 people.  This was to demonstrate the versatility and abundance of paper AND compliments!   Here are three layouts that I had as examples.  (The 4th layout was completed by my downline helper and didn't get a picture of hers!)  We also added a bit of Adventure Ribbon to the layouts too.  There were plenty of compliments left even after these four layouts were completed!

On this layout, I sponged the title with Pacific Ink

ALL of these products can be found on my website at

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Back to School We Go!! Create a School Album!

I have really enjoyed seeing everyone's 1st day of school pictures! Before we know it, in May/June we will start seeing the Last Day of School pictures!  It is so fun to see how their children are growing. (Faster than I want though - WHEW! where do the years go?)

So where do all these pictures end up? On a computer, permanently posted on Facebook and social media?  Will your kids have these to go back and look at when they get older?  What about their kids?  Oh I would have LOVED to see pictures of my mom and dad as they went through school, growing up and changing. What did they participate in?  Art? Sports? Band?  Were they on the honor roll?  What kind of grades did they make?  

Don't let them get 'dusty' on a hard drive.....Let's put all these events in an album!  You may think... ugh.... I would NOT know how or where to began. This is where I come in and you will be surprised at how easy this can be!  PLUS I guarantee you will have fun doing it!

I'm so very pleased to offer this THROUGH THE YEARS - SCHOOL WORKSHOP designed by fellow consultant Dana Kessler!  You will create a 2 page layout for Kindergarten through 12th Grade!   After this workshop, you will have completed pages to add pictures as your child finishes each grade!  No more trying to 'catch up'!

Here is an example of one of the layouts - This is my daughter's 2nd grade layout.  Each layout features a Pocket Plus page to add even more pictures!  For these pocket pages I took pictures of a book that Kirsti wrote and printed them onto 4x6 photo paper.

This second picture shows the Pocket Page in the center turned to the left to show the entire right page layout.

This workshop will require 2 separate class times - once in September and then again in October. We will meet the first time to cut our papers and do a little bit of prep work.  The 2nd class we will put our layouts together.  Each class will be about 3 hours in length.

I will be splitting the workshop into two payments  - $55.00 each payment.  The 1st payment is required when you sign up.  The second payment will be required at the date of the 2nd workshop.

Here is what you will get for the TOTAL Workshop:
Enchantment Fundamental Paper Pack (24 sheets)
White Daisy Cardstock (28 sheets)
Whisper Cardstock (4 sheets)
Pocket Plus Memory Protectors (2 sets)
K-6 School Compliments
7-12 School Compliments
1 Enchantment Ribbon Pack
Pre-cut Cricut pieces from various cardstock colors for your layouts (For example - the star and ruler borders, the 'torn' notebook page and the globe shown on the layout above)

I will be providing stamps, block and inks during the workshop.

What you will need to bring:
Page Protectors (if you don't have any, you can purchase some from me!)
Paper Trimmer

There are optional Add-on items that you can purchase to add to your layouts:
3x4 Flip Flaps  
5x7 Flip Flaps  
Red Enamel Gems 
Grey Enamel Gems 
PML Tabbed Journaling Cards
PML Overlays – White Frames 
Black Glitter Paper
White Glitter Paper 
Stars Thin Cuts

I will have additional cardstock that you may purchase by the piece if you want to add mats to your photos.

So what are you waiting for? Contact me today to sign up!   

This workshop will take place in September and October.  

Weeknight Dates 6:00 pm:  Thursday, September 15 & Thursday, October 13

Weekend Dates 9:00 am:  Saturday, September 10 & Saturday, October 8

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Annual Inspirations New Product Blog Hop

I am SO excited about our new Annual Inspirations catalog!  Just looking at the front cover makes me want to be creative!  In fact, this hop will probably make me AND you want to RUN to our craft rooms and create the day away!  Today our SOTM Blog Hoppers is hosting a New Product Blog Hop. This blog hop will showcase some of the new products that have just been released! If you came from Michelle Loncar's blog you are on the right track! Look for the next blog link at the bottom of my post. Keep hopping and when you get back to me you will know you completed the hop!

For this hop I decided to feature our new Rustic Home Fundamental paper with some flowers from our new Flower Market Cricut Collection

I created this one page layout to put in a frame as a special gift to my niece.  She is getting married in September and when I saw this picture I knew that it had to go on the Rustic Home paper.  I added a hint of our Color of the Year - Seaglass. You can see it behind my photo as a photo mat.  I also used Sea Glass Glitter paper for some fun hearts and "love" that I cut with our brand new thin cuts!   I was surprised at how easy it was to cut the Glitter paper with my thin cuts.  Oh and I added a piece of paper from the Fundamental Whimsy Paper Pack! See the crystal blue cross-stitch paper peeking from behind the photo mat?

I've been doing a lot of watercolor splatter on some layouts lately so I decided to splatter some white watercolor paint in the corner of this page.   Look closely and you can see it.

I wanted a lot of dimension to this page so I used our new Flower Market cricut cartridge to cut out some chrysanthemums and daises.  I believe the chrysanthemums have about 9 layers of petals but no rolling here - just stick a glue dot on and layer! I cut them in Glacier and Crystal Blue cardstock and I sponge daubed them with Crystal Blue ink before putting them together.  The daisies are cut from Pomegranate and Canary Cardstock. I inked these in the same colors as well.  Adding ink to your petals makes gives them a softer look.

You can find these all of these products on my website at:  

Now it is time to hop over to Kathy Burrow's blog and see which new products she has been creating with!  I can't wait to see what everyone is sharing!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

A New Exclusive Cricut Cartridge - Flower Market!

I am so excited today to discuss Close To My Heart's newest addition to our exclusive Cricut Collection  -----

Flower Market

The Flower Market cartridge has:
- TWO Fun Fonts

- 17 3-D flowers:   
including rose, rhododendren, ranunculus, poppy, hibiscus, poinsettia, daisy, dafodil, chrysanthumum, and amarylis to name a few!
Many of these are featured on the cover our Annual Inspirations!

- 132 multi-layered flowers and other icons

- 74 wreaths, leaves and branches

- 54 containers for the the flowers

- 54 layered word art images

In addition to all of these images, this collection includes THREE D-size stamp sets - One set of 28 sentiments and TWO sets of background images which are great for adding texture to your flowers and leaves.

PLUS you will get one full package of Adventure Cardstock (20 sheets - 2 each of 10 colors) to get your started on your cricuit creations!

This collection can be purchased with the digital cartridge for $79 or you can get the collection with the physical cartridge for $99.  It's an awesome deal!

Be the first among your crafty friends to own this collection!
Buy it now at:

Monday, August 1, 2016

August Stamp of the Month - Purr-fect Halloween

Welcome to the August Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! This month we are featuring Purr-fect Halloween. This fun set of 17 stamps gives you many options for dressing your cat for Halloween! If you have come here from Nancy Womersley's Blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way around. If you get lost along the way, you'll find the complete list of participating consultant's HERE.

Since I had a hard time choosing WHICH eyes and hat to use for my cat, I decided to create a fun slide card!  Two new colors are featured on this card - Tangerine and Pansy!   The printed paper is from our brand new Adventure Fundamentals paper pack.   I added purple glitter gems which are from the Enamel & Glitter Duos - Blue Dots pack.  I also used the Thumb Notch Punch to create a pull for my slide.

See my card in action:

I hope you enjoyed my card!   Remember, you can get this cute stamp set for just $5 when you purchase $50 in Close to My Heart Products!  

Start shopping today:

Now it is time to hop over to Tracey Pierce's blog and see what she has created!

It's Here!!! 2016-2017 Annual Inspirations has ARRIVED!

Isn't is GORGEOUS?!!!   
I just love our new Annual Inspirations!  

Here is a sampling at just some of our new products that I'm most excited about! 

Available in Whimsy, Adventure, Enchantment and a variety of Basics!
All have coordinating Compliments!

Available in Cardstock, ink (pigment and dye-based), re-inker and Glitter Paper!

New Re-designed Ink Pads!
Easy to open with magnetic lids!
(Available to order in September)

Organize your stash!  Six different pieces to design a space that works best for you!
(will be available to order by late August)


Includes a package of Whimsy Cardstock, THREE D-size stamps and over 700 images!

These are JUST a sampling of our new products!!  
We've got lots of new stamps, plus so much more!
You can see the new Annual Inspirations on-line on my website at:

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