Around Here

Around here it's chiiiiiilly and brrr cold, but that hasn't stopped us from going and playing outside!  Around here we are bundling up in hats and coats and scarves.  Around here we are drinking lots of hot chocolate with mini marshmallows.  Around here we are thinking everything Christmas (and the kids may have even convinced me to pull out our playroom Christmas tree!!).  Around here there are lots of art projects, watercolor and Christmas gift makings!

Happy Friday, friends!!


Crate Paper: Love This Moment Mini Album

I sure hope you're not tired of my mini albums yet because I have two more to share with you!  First up is the delicate little book that I put together using Crate Paper's new Open Book collection.  This collection is just dreamy, which is what I had in mind when I created this album! 

Here are few pictures, but be sure to hop on over to the Crate blog to see the rest of it!!  And stop on by tomorrow for another mini album (it's totally mini album madness up in here...can't you tell?!).


Inspired By...An Online Workshop

I often get asked what inspires me, and I have a hard time answering that question because it changes all the time.  Sometimes a certain piece of artwork will inspire me; sometimes I'm inspired as I walk the Christmas aisles at Target; sometimes a photo strikes something in me.  Inspiration really is all around.  

With inspiration in mind, I teamed up with some of my favorite scrapbookers to bring you an amazing online workshop, Inspired By.  This workshop focuses on inspiration pieces and how they help formulate, or inspire, a scrapbook page.  There are TEN process videos with corresponding PDFs included as a part of this workshop and I promise you that each video will be unique and awesome. 

Join Shimelle LaineNancy DamianoPaige EvansMarcy PennerJen KinkadeWilna FurstenbergLaura Craigie, Jill Sprott and myself in this exciting INSPIRED BY... workshop! 

The cost of the class is $15 and you can register over at Shimelle's site.  By purchasing the class you'll have access to TEN videos, accompanying reference PDF, bonus printable and cut file downloads, and a private message board to discuss things with the contributors, chat with other participants, and share your own work.  T
here are also some gorgeous bonus downloads: printables and cut files designed by Wilna and Jen.

Here is a sneak of my layout:

I so hope you will join us!!  

From Shimelle about signing up:  After you sign up, you’ll be given access to the materials, generally within 24 hours. If you have made your payment and do not receive a welcome email within that time frame, please double check your message hasn’t gone to your spam folder, then email Shimelle to let her know. If you are paying from a different email address than you would like to use for the workshop access (including giving the class as a gift), leave a note in the comments of your purchase – or send me an email if you miss that step. Any questions, please do not hesitate to email Shimelle and I'm sure she will get you an answer as soon as possible.


San Diego Mini Album

I obviously am suffering from "mini album madness".  I seriously just can't stop making these cute little things!  I think pulling out my December Daily albums really got my creative juices flowing and then I started thinking about all of the other minis that have been on my to-do list.   This mini covers a trip to San Diego my husband and I took back in June.  I've had all of the memorabilia sitting in a box for months, but I had no idea how I wanted to tackle this project.  It was kind of that "too overwhelming to even open" box (both physically and metaphorically).  I was stuck forever on what size of album to use vs. build my own, but then I stumbled across an older Heidi Swapp album that I knew would be absolutely perfect.  Sometimes things all line up, right?  The album was about 6.5 inches tall and about 11 inches wide.....which was just too wide for what I was going for.  So....I pulled out my exact-o knife and cut off about 4.5 inches.  The new size is just PERFECT!  I wish I could find more albums in this size! (Hint hint Heidi!  I will take about 50 of these, please!)

The front had that awesome black & white striped spine (as you see pictured above) and the rest was chipboard.  I used gesso to paint the chipboard section white and then added a die cut of the state of California...which yep, I spray painted gold and then mod podged glitter onto it!  California + Glitter = Awesome.  I'm pretty sure I'm going to live in California one day......

My only goal for the inside of the album was to have lots of layers, lots of photos of different sizes and very minimal plastic page protectors!  To me, there is just something so awesome about actually touching and feeling your photos and memories.  Plastic just doesn't cut it for me sometimes.  I'm sure you all think I'm weird, right? 

This little book of San Diego love ending up being jam packed with goodness!  I've included quite a few of the photos here, but if you want to see a full walk through of the album, be sure to check out the video at the end.  It's nothing more than me turning the pages to music, but sometimes I just love to actually "see" a book in action vs. still photos!

Ok...on to the photos (and video)!

So are you itching to go to San Diego too??  I sure am!  Especially since I know it's 70 degrees and sunny there!  I hope you like my fun little book!!  Thanks so much for stopping by!


Creative Jumpstarts 04

Happy Monday and welcome to another edition of Creative Jumpstarts!  Thank you so much to everyone who played along with the last recipe challenge.  Recipes are always so fun to work with and you all created such amazing pages!  Marcy and I just love having you all play along with us!  

We are switching gears just a little for this next challenge and are focusing on photos this time around.  Both Marcy and myself are avid photographers and we love to capture our everyday though the lens.  We thought it would be fun to include a photo prompt to continue to think outside of the box and challenge ourselves WITH our camera in hand!

The photo prompt for this challenge is GET LOW.  Lowering your perspective can drastically change the outcome of your photo.  I think it's pretty natural to shoot photos from a standing position....we are constantly picking up our camera or smartphones and snapping photos straight on.  By taking your view from a standing position to a squating, or even laying position, you can change the look of your subject and I think the effect is amazing!

I often just set my camera right on the ground and snap away.  I love being on the same level as my children.  So, for this challenge, I pulled my camera out and decided to take several photos throughout our afternoon by "getting low".  All of the following photos were taken with my camera sitting flat on a surface (either the floor or the counter top).  I basically just sat my camera on the floor/counter and snapped away. 

Canon 6D, 50 mm 1.4, ISO 500, f/3.2

This one was taken while my daughter was being silly and rolling around on the floor.  I took quite a few from this level, but this one is my favorite.

Canon 6D, 50 mm 1.4, ISO 800, f/3.2

The above photo was taken while my kids were sitting on our kitchen island.  They like to sit up there (much to my disappointment) while I'm getting their lunch ready.  This perspective enables me to capture those sweet feet and toes. 

Canon 6D, 50 mm 1.4, ISO 800, f/3.2

This is another shot from our lunch.  Again, the camera is resting right on the counter top.  While I love to see my son making his own sandwich, what I really love is how it captures our right now....the plastic cups and plates, messy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and day long pajamas.  

Canon 6D, 50 mm 1.4, ISO 320, f/3.2

Going along with the "get low", I decided to add in a "looking up" perspective from this angle.  It's a different look altogether, but I think it captures fun details that you don't get from a straight on photo. 

Canon 6D, 50 mm 1.4, ISO 800, f/3.2

And this last one is probably my very favorite.  This photo tells a story, and I love that by altering my camera angle, I was able to capture this sweet time.  I'm not sure if you can tell, but my daughter is practicing tying a bow.  She reeeeeeeally wants to be able to tie her shoes, but it's proven quite challenging for her.  She's also the type of person who likes immediate results, so days of practicing are frustrating to her.  From this angle, I'm able to capture her concentration (notice the tongue sticking out), as well as her sweet fingers trying to tie.  What I love most about a lower perspective is that I'm able to capture all the details that I would usually miss out on if I were shooting from above or straight ahead.

And that's your challenge for this week: grab your camera and get low! Play around with your perspective and see what photos you come up with!  If you feel up for making a layout or project with your photo, than ever better!  Both Marcy and I included our photo in an art journal.  Mine was short, sweet and simple, but it still tells so much of our everyday story!

Our next challenge will be a paper challenge and will be going up on December 1st.

Creative Jumpstarts were created by Marcy Penner and Stephanie Bryan to challenge each other with their paper endeavors. Delivered in the form of bimonthly challenges, they encourage us (and hopefully you too) to stretch supplies, think outside of the box and to remain intentional about the memories we capture.  Challenges are posted on the first and third Mondays of every month.  Projects are shared on our blogs and on Instagram using the hashtag #creativejumpstarts. We'd love it if you'd share along with us at either of those places and be sure to tag us (@helloforeverpaperco and @stephaniebryan) if you do!