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Friday, December 15, 2017

Twas the Night Before Christmas

This layout is a work of heart. My dear and much loved grandfather made one Christmas special for me. To find out about this cherished memory of mine, you will need to see the journaling at the end of this post. This piece is for the Color Stories Inspiration Design Team.

Here is how I solved Case File 244: 

Scheme: All five colors used
Evidence: Stencils, bricks, trees, ribbons
     1. Document a Christmas memory.
     2. Write a description using all the senses.

One of my favorite techniques is to use multi- dimensional elements in my layouts. The beautifully framed cabin, all tied up with a bow is perfect for my story. Also seen here is evidence of paper tearing and use of stencil and modeling paste. 

Here, can be seen the stamping, paint splatters,  and heat embossing in the background. I love the little "seedlings" seen coming out from under various elements, as if they were icicles. 

In the picture below, you can see Dandad standing in front of his fireplace. 


Blue Fern Studios

     Homespun, Homegrown,
     Wanderlust, Ocean Voyage
     Vintage Christmas, Greeting Cards
     Tranquility, Contentment
     Amber and Apricot, Tweet Melody, Flora

     Twas the Night
     Royal Heart Frame

     Embossing Powder: 
     Santa's Suit

     Seedlings: Sterling Silver, 
     Stamp: Essential Textures
Prima flowers
Ranger Embossit Dabber 
The Crafter's Workshop template

A Story for My Grandchildren 
Their Grandchildren

The fire in the hearth made all my clothes smell somewhat like a Virginia cured ham. This happened every time I spent the weekend in the small rock cabin where Dandad lived on his farm since my grandmother died. After spending the weekend with him, I would open my suitcase to unpack and the scent would serve to remind me of all the fun I had during the previous few days. I remembered how the orange and gold flames had licked the dried logs, and how they always crackled and popped as if to celebrate being alive.

There was one weekend that became an exceptionally happy memory for me. I don't remember why my parents left me at the farm on Christmas Eve. Perhaps they got together with other family or friends. Or, maybe they still had some wrapping to do before the big day. Back then, I didn't always understand why parents did things, but that was OK because I knew I would be well taken care of and I enjoyed each and every visit to "The Farm". I wondered if Santa would find me here in this cozy little cabin that Dandad called "The Camp", far away from the city lights. He assured me that Santa would be able to find me there. And walked over to his chest of drawers and pulled out one of his socks. We went over to the fireplace together and carefully hung the stocking up on a peg that he had poked into the mortar between the rocks and the mantle. He promised that it would be full in the morning. Later that evening, as I laid in bed, hardly able to keep my eyes open, I kept thinking about Santa and still worried about him being able to find me. 

The next thing I saw was the bright sunlight coming through the windows. I must have dozed off to sleep and not seen the man with the sleigh or heard the stomping of hooves of his eight reindeer! As I rubbed my eyes and looked over at my stocking, I could clearly see that it was full! Standing on my toes, I reached up to take the stocking down. I know I must have had a big smile on my face because Santa found me! There may not have been any toys or candy in my stocking, but HE had found me! I reached into the big sock and felt a smooth, firm apple, almonds with their woody, bumpy shells still on them and and a big fat, juicy orange or two, with their dimpled skin! It was an old fashioned Christmas just like it had been many years before when my "Dandad" was a little boy on Christmas Day!

To this very day, I never have discovered how Santa could find me .....but he did!!!

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. 
See you next time!

Friday, December 1, 2017


Hello my scrappy friends! I think that winter is upon us! And what better way to celebrate this fun and meaningful season of the year than to scrapbook it and write down my thoughts about it.

Here is the CSI prompt:

How I solved the case...

Scheme: All five colors used
Evidence: Christmas/winter elements, silver and  glitter
Testimony: Document a winter celebration

Layering, fussy cutting, playing with stencils and modeling paste......it doesn't get any better than this for spending a cold winter's evening in my happy scrappy place! 

Three dimension is a must for me! 


Blue Fern Studios
     Paper:Vintage Christmas, Vintage Christmas2,
          Heartland, Deja Vu
     Chipboard: Santa's Sleigh, Winter Titles
     Embossing Powder: Celestial, Silver Bells
     Lace #1
     Stamps: Jingle Bells
     Seedlings: Sterling Silver, Glass
 Prima flowers
 Ranger Embossit Dabber   

The journaling reads, "The wonder of winter means snowflakes, hot chocolate, cold weather, snuggling by the fire, a new year, sccarves, gloves and hats, sweethearts and valentines. Most of all the coming of winter means the celebration of Jesus Christ, the light of the world. 

Thanks for stopping by....see you next time! 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Nature's Playground

Hello to my bloging and scrapbooking friends! This layout is a bit late due to a family emergency, but I wanted to post it regardless of tardiness. Do I sound like a 2nd grade teacher? There is a reason I sound that way.....because I am a retired teacher. Old habits die hard. 

This challenge at CSI seemed to be perfect for a photo taken of me during an October trip to Boston and the surrounding area after my retirement a few years ago. I love history and we enjoyed going to so many places I have heard of during my entire life.  

One of the places we went to in the Boston area was Lexington and Concord, where we visited Walden Pond. Remember Henry David Thoreau? He described Walden Pond in the fall as "lovelier than diamonds", and I would tend to agree with him. 

How I solved this case....

Scheme: All five colors used
Evidence: Leaves, stamps, fussy cut something
Testimony: Journaling on a tag

Image result for Walden Pond Photos

Walden Pond in all it's fall glory. 


Blue Fern Studios
     Paper: Sanctuary, Birdsong Melody and                      Wanderlust, Lakeside
     Chipboard: Nature's Playground, Frills Panel     Embossing Powder:Verdant
     Flowers: Wanderlust Vine
     Seedlings: Twig
     Stamps: Honey Bits
     Colorbloom Spray
     Emboss It Dabber

My journaling reads, "I am happiest while enjoying nature. 'Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads'."....Henry David Thoreau

The photo is of me sitting on a retaining wall overlooking Walden Pond. 

Thanks for stopping by! 

Friday, November 10, 2017


Hello fellow scrappers! Today, I'm sharing a layout that I created for the CSI Design Team, honoring my son and daughter. Lee is moving away for a few years and my daughter threw a party for him. I love that my two grown up children are as close as they are. What a blessing to have children that get along with each other! I digress....the LO is about a wish. 

Here is how I solved the case: 

Scheme: all five colors
Evidence: stripes, watercolor, leaves
Journaling: inspiration word "wish"

Paint splatters usually are a must for my work, as are 3-D work and paper tearing. 

Two of my favorite techniques can be seen here:
layering and use of modeling paste and a stencil for a rich background effect.

Blue Fern Studios Products
     Amber and Apricot, Sunny Disposition
     Amber and Apricot, Tweet Melody
     Textured Wildflowers
     Wish, Wonder, Dream
Embossing Powder
     Tranquil Roses and Lilies
     Chesterville Florals
     Happy Blooms
     Fresh Florals

Other Products

Prima stencil, Colorbloom Mist
Ranger Embossit Dabber

My journaling reads, "My wish is that you will do what you need to do for the next few years. We want you to be safe and do a great job, then come home."

Thanks for stopping by.....see you next time! 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

You Shine

Hello friends! I have designed another layout for Color Stories Inspiration to share with you. The ladies in the photo are some of my high school friends and acquaintances. I will tell you more, later. 

Here is how I solved Case File 240: 

Scheme: All five colors used
Evidence: Flowers, butterflies, hearts, texture paste, pleating
Testimony: I used the inspiration word, you.

One of my favorite techniques to use when scrapbooking is to layer. 

Another favorite technique is to make the background interesting by using modeling paste and a stencil. I also used Honey Bits stamp and Seafoam embossing powder by Blue Fern Studios. 

Those of you who know my work know that  I love to include 3-D work on my layouts! 

I love the brand new "Seedlings" by Blue Fern Studios. You can see them on the flower petals. They are also used on the background paper. 

Blue Fern Studios Products
Happy Accident, Layering Cards
Montage, Wisdom
Vintage Christmas, Deck the Halls
Serendipity, Merriment
Serendipity, Reminisce

Cuckoo Clock
Optimist Word Set

Embossing Powder

Honey Bits

Dark Tropic Lillies
Harvest Lilies


Liquitex Products
Modeling Paste

Prima Products

Ranger Products 
Emboss It Dabber

The journaling reads, "You shine because you cared enough to get a group of high school friends together to share and enjoy each other's company once a month for dinner. "

Thanks for stopping by! 

Sunday, September 17, 2017


Hello, my sweet blog friends! Today, I'm sharing with you, a layout about a favorite read that caused me to contemplate the history of the Native Americans in the United States. The author is  S. C. Gwynne, Pulitzer Prize Finalist and New York Times best-selling author. This particular novel is about the most powerful tribe in American history, the Comanche Nation, and it's last great chief, Quanah Parker.  I have to tell you that I absolutely fell in love with this book to the point of doing a page for my scrapbook about it! 

Over at CSI, we have a new challenge and I thought the colors would work beautifully with the subject of the layout. Here is how I solved the case:

Scheme: All five colors used
Evidence: Animals, flowers, leaves
Testimony: I journaled about my favorite recent book. 

Before I do anything else, when scrapbooking, I have to add texture and dimension to the background. Here, I used sprays, ink and stamp, and art stones for this purpose. 

You can see where I sprayed the paper with a little bit of water and let it partially dry before using water color sprays and tapping the bottom edge of the paper to allow the blue streams run down the page for a little significance in the story of the Comanche People. 

Here, you can see the honeycomb shaped imprint on the background, which was done in a mustard color and embossed. 


Blue Fern Studios:

     Wanderlust Memento paper
     Twilight Garden Frame, Basic Stems
     Apricot Blooms, Wanderlust Lilies
     Honey, Lime and Seven Seas Embossing
     Basic Stems, Apricot Blooms flowers
     Honey Bits Stamp

Imagine Crafts: 
     Irresistible spray
     3-D Matte Gel
     Colorbloom, Colorbloom 2
     Art Stones
     Mini Art Stones
     Emboss It Dabber
From my Stash:

My journaling reads, " Have you ever started reading a book knowing full well you are completely on the side of the protagonist? Then, by the time you're two thirds of the way through the blook, you realize that you have miraculously managed to do a 180 degree turn-around and now are on the side of the antagonist! This is exactly what I experienced as I read this amazingly well written novel by S. C. Gwynne.

Empire of the Summer Moon tells the tale of what man is capable of, in order to survive and retain his culture. It also speaks to man's ability to adapt. The setting is in east Texas, during the mid to late 1800's. Nine year old Cynthia Ann Parker came with her family to settle in Texas. The Parkers quickly erected a fort, but they were not able to hold it and a Comanche war party raided it. Cynthia was one of five children and women kidnapped by the Native American warriors. She later became the bride of Chief Peta Nocona, and their eldest child was Quanah Parker, "the last great Comanche Chief".

Empire of the Summer Moon gives great insight into the Comanche way of life and how Quanah was able to ultimately live with one foot in the Comanche world and the other foot in the white settler's world. This true American tale will leave the reader incapable of putting the book down."

Until next time.....

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Thank You

Hi everyone! I'm finally back after having some pretty serious surgery. Then, after the surgery, my mother in law passed away, which gave me the perfect timing to do a layout about something learned from her. I couldn't have asked for a better mother in law, and learned a lot throughout the forty-three years that we had this wonderful relationship. In the journaling portion of this post, I will explain. 

Here is how I solved the case: 

Scheme: All five colors used 
Evidence: Grid pattern, stripes, book pages,     
       animals, people, airplane, frame
Testimony: School or something learned

It wouldn't be my work if there weren't multiple layers in the layout, and that holds true here, as it does with all of my layouts. First, I used a Crafter's Workshop stencil to get a grid pattern, as called for in the prompt. Just a few strokes of an old credit card and modeling paste gave me the look I wanted. When doing my layering, I create scaffolding to hold up the various layers. I use pieces of cardboard and pop dots to create the scaffolding. 

Here you can see that there are various layers: the little cut out vintage advertising pieces were inked, adhered to the paper first, then came the beautiful gold heart with crown and wings. Next, came the scaffolding that I used to raise up the doily, the two pictures, the jute frame and the oval resin frame. I love to be able to tuck pretty little bits and pieces here and there, such as leaves, chipboard pieces and flowers. 

After I was satisfied with the placement of all the embellishments, I got out some gesso, poured less than a teaspoon into a little paper cup, then thinned it with a few sprays of water. Using my fan brush, I sprinkled small splatters of white gesso to give a rather etheral feel to the layout. 

Next, came the chipboard pieces that were heat embossed, cut up and also tucked into spaces that needed just a little more interest. 

Last, I spray painted the mini art stones using Color Bloom Spray. I used a paper cup here, too, and gave the stones a day to dry, so I started early here. Using a medium small paintbrush and 3-D Matte Gell, I "painted" the Art Stones onto the paper in strategic places. The Matte Gell dries clear, and with no trace, as you can see here:


Blue Fern Studios
          Wanderlust, Pacific Coast Paper
          Wanderlust, Seascape Paper
           Memories, Tale of Treasures
           Chesterville Collage
           Snow and Poinsettia Embossing Powders
Frantic Stamper Dies: 
            leaves and "Thank You"
Prima: 3-D Matte Gel
           Art Stones, standard and mini 
           Color Bloom Spray
Petaloo: Flowers
Spellbinders: A Gilded Life (Heart with Wings

The journaling reads, "Thank you, Lavoys, for having been my friend, mother in law and teacher. Some things you have taught me are: Be kind to everyone. Dedicate yourself to your family. A smile is the most beautiful thing a woman can wear. Live life to the fullest. Thank you for teaching by example."