March 4, 2014

Heart to Heart

Congratulations Casandra won the "LOL" stamp set! Please e-mail me privately so I can get it to you!

Since I last posted, there have been some big changes that have taken place in my life, which includes finding myself after 23 years being back in the real world with a "j-o-b". My home situation dictated right before the holidays that I needed to do what I needed to do to help support my family.  Initially, I made the decision to go incognito for a bit so I could process these changes, sort them out and embrace what needed to be done. Now that a little time has passed, I feel ready to share what these changes are and what it means for me going forward. I have to admit that posting this has me a bit nervous, but my heart is telling me that it's the right thing to do. 

For the past sixteen and a half years, I have dedicated myself exclusively to my Close To My Heart business.  It has been a true blessing in my life, allowing me to do all the things that I love to do, all while calling it my job!  I have met and worked with hundreds, if not thousands, of some of the most amazing women, many of which will continue to be lifelong friends of mine. I've earned several all expense paid cruises where my husband and I got to see some of the most beautiful places we had ever seen. I've had the honor of representing Close To My Heart multiple times in ways that I would never have imagined.  I was asked to be a part of things that made me grow as a leader and asked to do things that put me way out of my comfort zone, which in turn has made me the confident person I am today.  And for all of these reason and many more not mentioned, I have to say that I've been truly blessed and am grateful for it all. 

It's because of all of these wonderful things that I just mentioned that my new circumstances were initially difficult for me to embrace.  I knew that there were going to be major ripple effects on my business, including my personal availability and my creative time.  This has given me the opportunity to dig deep and to give myself permission to define what my "new normal" will be and what you will be able to expect from me. 

Anyone who has followed my blog knows that I have a passion for creating.  I can promise you this...that is one thing that will not change.  Creating is not only what I love to's my therapy. I will continue to use and offer Close To My Heart products through my posts and my creativity, just in a different way than before.  I have always had visions of what I've wanted to do with my blog, I just found that I often ran out of time because there were always things that I had to do that often took me away from what I wanted to do.  Now that has changed, and I feel I'll be able to offer a greater variety to what I post.  For that, I am excited.  I hope that you will continue to join me along this new journey.

Leave me a message and have your name put in for a drawing for this adorable "LOL" My Acrylix stamp set! I will draw the name of the lucky winner on March 15 It could be YOU!

Thanks for "listening" !

November 20, 2013

Huntington Layout & Cards

This Huntington kit is one of my absolute favorites from the Fall/Winter Idea Book! I love the warm color tones in the papers and I also really, really like the fact that the stamps that come in this kit are generic enough that any pictures taken this time of year would work beautifully on this layout!

In addition to the items found in the Huntington kit, I also used the D1550 Happy Autumn stamp set (pictured below), not only because it was designed to coordinate with the theme and designs found in the patterned papers, but I also personally loved it! My favorite image in the whole set is the little stemmed flower cluster in which I stamped across the bottom of the layout. I was able to get three different colors on each image by first inking it the whole stamp with Olive ink, then used a craft sponge to swiped off the ink that was just on the four flower heads. Afterwards I hovered the stamp over a corner of the Autumn Terracotta ink pad so I was only getting that color on the flower heads and not the stems. The last step was to "stamp roll" the flower heads onto the Barn Red ink so all three colors were on the image prior to stamping it each time. It sounds more complicated than it actually is and is totally worth it when it's done! What do you think?


The final thing that I want to point out is the Cocoa colored lattice at the top of both pages. This overlay came from the New Cricut Artbooking Cartridge. I sized the shape to "fit the page" before cutting it which allowed for the perfect size for this layout. 

I also created these fun cards using the same kit. As you can see, I used similar techniques and ideas from the above layout and incorporated them into their designs. 

I hope that you enjoyed what I have had to share today. If so...feel free to leave me a comment! I'd love to "hear" your feedback!

Thank you for stopping by!

October 28, 2013

And the winner is...

Back in March of 2013 I showed my local Club Members this double sided foam tape roll (or should I call it a wheel?) and presented them with a fun little contest. I asked each of them to write an exact date of when they thought I would be finished using the entire roll up on my projects, then put their predictions in an sealed envelope. Once I finished using the roll...I would open all of the envelopes and the person who's date was closest to the date I used it up by...would win a Workshop On The Go kit of their choice! Just one more way of me saying "Thank YOU!" for all of the on-going support that I get from this awesome group of women!

March 13, 2013

October 27, 2013
Well, it took me eight months to go through that giant roll, and during one of my classes yesterday I had a couple of ladies from my "Stamping Divas Club" (thank you Melinda & Rosie!) be witnesses as I opened all of the envelopes to see who the winner was.

And the winner is...drum roll please......

         Peggy Johnson!!!

Congrats Peggy...the date that you guessed was November 16, 2013!

And a special thanks to all the other special ladies for joining in on the fun!