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Friday, January 31, 2014

Monday, January 27, 2014

Card in A Box

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I belong to an Stampin Up! Facebook group and everyone has been trying to make these cards. At first all I could find was a UK tutorial in the metric system so I did more digging and ran across this Splitcoast Stampers tutorial . You don't know how bad I wanted to make this plus I just love the new DSP paper (I think more has to be ordered because I am using it in everything)

The tutorial and video were easy to follow. I would say I put it together in about ten minutes. I found it harder to accessorize it with the flowers and such. I had some stickers left over from one of the Paper Pumpkin projects and used them on there for simple greetings.

I will be making more of these in the future, This would be such a fun card to have sitting on your desk. I love that it is dimensional and looks like it will actually stay together. My daughter saw it on my desk and just gushed over it and asked if I could teach her how to make one as well.


Friday, January 24, 2014

Scrapbook Fridays- Notes

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I may or may not be totally in love with the new Retro Fresh suite from Stampin Up! It was the first set that caught my eye looking through the new occasions catalog. I loved the papers, colors, stamps , and framelit dies.

I decided that I would make a blocked page out of the awesome Retro Fresh DSP and than taking of course coordinating colors, I added in some fun die cut peices and of course I trimmed down one of those cute chevron bags to stick a little notecard in there (Notes is from Paper Pumpkin).

Now all it needs is some pictures to stick in it.


Becky

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

3 Fat Quarters Bag

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I set some goals for myself this year for each month. I wanted to sew more because I hadn't sewn much in many months. I get busy and I admit to being uninspired. I have so many unfinished projects that I need to start tackling them plus if I got them done, I would have tons of nice presents to give next year.

this project was inspired by a pattern I had. I used just 3 fat quarters one for the bottom, one for the top, and one for the handle. You could get away with just two if you used other stuff for the handles. I have light batting on hand and just sewed away for about an hour making this fun colored bag.

So this is my January sewing project.

Becky

Monday, January 20, 2014

Scrapbook Paper Frame Tray

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As a Stampin Up demonstrator, we get a monthly magazine that details great cards, pages and projects to make using SU products. I have to say when I looked through this month's magazine, I was instantly in love with a tray they had created using a picture frame, DSP, and handles.

I had the PERFECT frame (you might recognize it from my December Paper Pumpkin), so I was recycling the frame and superglues on $2 a piece silver handles and I went through my DSP stash and stuck in the pretty red and cream retired paper. I can switch out paper as the seasons change, so right now it is Valentine's Day inspired!!

I love how it turned out and need to find a place for it.

This project cost about 8 bucks to make if that. I had gotten the frame for like 4 bucks way back in November on the clearance rack. I love those kind of deals!!!



Saturday, January 18, 2014

The Technique Twist #15- Bubble Background Plus An Extra Fun Card

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This week over at The Technique Twist our challenge was to create a card using bubble background  and of course having a twist on it.


Here is my card as well as another fun card that fits the theme I am going for this week- Doctor Who (the beloved 50 year old BBC Sci-fi show). 



Right away I wanted to make a card using the phone box/police box from SU's retired set Feeling Sentimental because the bubble background reminded me a great deal of the opening credits to Doctor Who. My twist on it is that after I did the bubble background, I embossed it with the honeycomb embossing folder because the inside of the TARDIS (the Blue Police Box) has honeycombed walls. 

I punched out the heart for the Police Box an attached and than of course if you know Doctor Who (he has Two Hearts) stamped using a Paper Pumpkin set the hearts and the arrow love this. 

I used basic British Colors in my card as well with Real Red, Whisper White and Pacific Point.

This would make a great Valentine's/Birthday Card for a fan of the show. 

I was doing on Pinterest and did a search for Doctor Who cards and saw a version of the 11th Doctor card and decided what the heck- let's make a companion card to my bubble card.

So I took punched some real red hearts and circle to make my bow tie. I used a dimensional to pop the center of the tie. 

I than used Soft Suede card stock to create the Doctor's coat. I than lined the coat with some Very Vanilla  and added two Real Red Hearts that I punched out as well as some white pearls. 


Both cards are super fun and I would love to try more of the bubble background technique with the kiddos. I think they would get a kick out of blowing the bubbles. 


Supplies used (Bubble Card)

Pacific Point, Real Red, and Whisper White Card stock
SU Feeling Sentimental Set
Heart Punch
Paper Pumpkin Stamp Sets

Supplies Used (Doctor Card)

Very Vanilla, Real Red and Soft Suede Card stock
White Pearls
Large Heart Punch
Tiny Heart Punch
Circle Punch 

Thanks for stopping by!

Becky


Monday, January 13, 2014

Aldi's Grocery Store Week- Day 2

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So last night I made a flank steak with cheesy cauliflower soup.  I had picked up at Aldi's for about 3 bucks. It was a special and I froze it as soon as I get home. If you have the freezer space, always pick up good deals on met. I buy in bulk and good deals with meat because it is more cost affective.

I marinated the flank steak for about 2 hours in some left over marinade I had in the fridge. I than just seared it int he pan until it was medium.

The soup was good but I don't know if I would make it again. I had bender issues and well some it spilled on the flour. It was good but not the best soup I have ever made.

So the steak I will make again but the soup not so much.

For tonight I am making:


BBQ Chicken Wraps with Fries


The kids and hubby should really like this because they love wraps. The only difference is that I couldn't find tortilla wraps but they had flat bread wraps which are just a tad thicker. I am also planning on using the panini maker to grill them more. 

Stay tuned for tomorrow to see how it turns out. 

Becky

Peacock Picture

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So like at the beginning of the year, I so wanted to redo my bathroom in Peacock colors. Flash forward to now and it still isn't done but I hope 2014 is the year for it.

As I was cleaning up my craft closet or as my friends affectionally "My Monica Closet" (total Friends reference there), I found this print I had ordered. It was a beautiful peacock printed on a page from a dictionary. I have always wanted to frame it and thought that the cheap clearance frame I got months ago would work. So I popped it in the frame and love how it looks and wish I would have figured it out sooner.

So than I wondered where the heck I should hang it so I stick it on my dining room wall between the white frame I have ip there. It needs something else there and I am working on it but I wanted to share the great print I finally framed. PS I think I got it from Etsy and when you look at the Peacock, it actually looks 3-D on the page.


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Aldi"s Grocery Store Week- Day 1

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Aldi Grocery Stores have finally opened up in the Houston area and I have to say I love them (and they aren't paying me to say that either).

Aldi started popping up in Wisconsin right about the time we moved down to Houston, so I never got a real feel for them. The few times I ventured into the ones close to my parents, I was so so about them when I would go in to get things. Mainly I didn't like that how you might go in and not find what you were looking for in there. Aldi's isn't a normal grocery store and once you get past that, well it does get better.

I was a big convert last summer when I went there and bought for what they had and fed about 50 people for about 150 bucks for my Mom's birthday. I loved that I was able to get a variety of things to make some good stuff. Something I have seen in every Aldi's stores is pre-made Spatzle which is a pre-made German egg noodle. I made an awesome pasta salad with it that won rave reviews. I also use it with smothered pork chops.

So I started noticing that the Houston area was finally getting them. First they were far away and I wasn't really willing to drive to one. Than one closer opened up and I was in heaven. The first trip there was under a hundred bucks and I got an amazing amount of things for that price.

Finally one opened about five minutes from the house and I was so excited. I admit I stalked it the weeks leading up to it and was there at about 9:10 the morning of the opening. The boy and I grabbed a bunch of stuff and tried tons of samples.

Here is what you need to know about Aldi's:

1. It is not a traditional huge grocery store. It has about 4-5 aisles and it is small. They call themselves markets which remind me of the old corner markets.

2. Aldi's doesn't stock shelves per say but more club store like. It helps to limit overhead costs.

3. Bring your own bags and a quarter. Aldi's doesn't offer free bags (you can buy them for about ten cents) and they don't bag your food- you have to but they have nice counters for it. So bring your own bags. I usually just bag as I put in the minivan. Also bring a quarter because that is how you get a cart by putting a quarter in and when you return it, you get it back. No cart corrals helps to limit overhead as well.

4. Don't expect to find everything on your grocery list. Aldi is great for deals but you need to shop the ads and buy the in store specials. It doesn't mean you can't plan meals, but be aware they might not have a critical ingredient so you might have to jump stores.

5. Prices are great and I have seen amazing prices. A grand opening store can offer deals on milk and eggs which I bought a lot of and it was great to have those when we had family in town. The good thing is the regular price isn't that much more. 12 dozen eggs were 79 cents for about a good month and than went up to 99 cents. Milk was 1.69 and regular price has been about 1.99-2.49 which is more than a dollar cheaper than regular grocery stores.

6. Aldi's has lots of healthy options and gourmet options. The parent company also owns Trader Joe's though the business are separate but you will see similarities like cheap and good wines as well as unique ethic foods. Mainly German and European at Aldi's.


Right before Christmas, I picked up a catalog/recipe book at the local store and was blown away by the recipes for the holidays. So I took a look on their website and saw they had a ton of wonderful recipes using their products. So I thought how hard would it be to use their recipes and shop at the stores for a whole week of meals. I also liked the variety of recipes they had.

There was amble variety of beef, pork, chicken, pasta and vegetarian options for main dishes as well as sides and breakfast. Looking at all of it and taking what I already had in the freezer and pantry, I thought I would build my week of meal planning off of the recipes and shop only at Aldi's.

I am curious to see if there is real savings and can I fit all of the yummy sounding meals with in my budget. We live in a 125 dollar a week grocery budget. Some weeks we are under and others over. I average right around 500 bucks a month on groceries. I also have a stock pile of stuff that I buy when things are on sale.

I plan with what I have and supplement in all week.


Up first for Sunday's meal are:


Dinner:  Flank Steak with Cheesy Cauliflower Soup


So I am going to make them and review them in tomorrow's post. I will also try to take pictures as well of the meals. 

So sit back and see if we can have some successful and good meals for the week!!

Becky

Friday, January 10, 2014

Scrapbook Friday's- Christmas Page

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I saw a version of this age on Pinterest and thought I could totally make that page using MDS so I went ahead and over the course of a day (meaning I worked on it for like five minutes here and there when I had a moment) created this fun page which i stuck a picture of my kids and niece from our day at Galveston Beach. My niece who is two and half wanted to go down and see the ocean. She thought she would be able to go in and was upset it was to cold.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

My Pumpkin Challenge- January

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So I love the journal that came for My Paper Pumpkin and put it all together right away. I loved that there were tons of stickers as well as extra wood people. I decided that a cute Vday card was in order for the project.

I took Pool Party and made the base card. I added in a ayer of Calypso Coral and than topped it with a piece of retired DSP. Adding in the cute little wooden couple and one of the cute stickers from the set.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Saving Money in the New Year

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I so want to save money, pay down debt and learn to live this year. So I set some goals for myself this year that each month I look for ways to save money.

I started off right after Christmas doing our yearly budget for each month so I know what comes in and what goes out. I figure if I can account for it and create a budget for things than I can control the flow of money. I hate the feeling of bleeding money and the holidays are the worst for that.

So I am planning out some things to save money, pay down debt, limit excess spending.

Last June I started doing cash for gas, allowance and groceries and we have stuck to it for the most part.  I plan out meals each week and limit how much we go out to eat. I realized that we go out so infrequent now, that I really don't know where to go eat anymore because I can pretty much make it at home.

I have learned to make the rose pasta sauce my kid adores at the Italian restaurant. I can make better than Olive Garden's Chicken and Gnocchi soup (I need to share that recipe). Pizza night is way more fun making it ourselves but I do admit to ordering it on occasion.  The added benefit, we are eating way healthier and we either lose or maintain our weight when we eat in. Over the holidays, we ate out more because of the family being here, and I felt sluggish.

The other thing I am doing is the 52 week challenge which should be our travel money for next Christmas. I had some already cut chalkboard labels and stuck that on a big mason jar for our savings. Our first buck went in this week. I also heard of people doing it in reverse and starting out with the 52 bucks first. Either way, my goal is stick to it.

I also decided I needed to figure out a way to stress less about the holidays this coming December so, I decided that each month I would put away a set amount for presents so by December I should have it all covered for the people I need to buy for Christmas. I also plan on trying to purchase gifts as I see them for people and tuck them away.

Along with that I have my monthly folder where I put all the stuff for the month in there. I have Birthday cards ready to go for the next six months, as well as my holiday envelopes, and anything else that might need taking care of over the four weeks. I also write myself notes for the next year.

Overall I am trying to stay as organized and on track as possible for 2014. I have goals each month I would like to meet both personally and possibly professionally as well.


Monday, January 6, 2014

Valentine's Wreath (Class)

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My Christmas Wreath party was so much fun that I had been asked to do another one for Valentine's Day which means I am likely doing an Easter one as well. I finally had a moment to do my sample for the group to see who wanted to make it.

The big thing we are doing for this one is stamping on canvas (LOVE Banner) and making rosettes out os burlap and ribbon.

I am looking forward to it and excited to share this craft project with my friends.

It was super easy using red burlap ribbon, a large straw wreath and making some rosettes with burlap and ribbon. The banner is quick and easy too and would be a cute one even off of the wreath.

Thanks for stopping by!!

Becky


Please go check out the other great TipJunkie Tip Me Tuesday Projects!



Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Technique Twist # 14 Blurred Vision Watercoloring and New Year's Blog Hop

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I am so EXCITED to be joining the Design Team for The Technique Twist  for this year. I love to create lots of fun projects and am excited to share my creativity with everyone.




This week's challenge is Blurred Vision Watercoloring which is a fun way to take that stamped image and make it look like it was watercolored  using either a aqua painter or water color brush. So of course I went looking for my aqua painter and realized that I tossed it because it had gotten nasty and never replaced it, so I used a water color brush instead and some water. I have to say I love how the United States turned out with the soft hugh from the Midnight Muse.

My twist on this project this week was to use a stamp imagine that you might not think of at first. Using Stampin Up's new photopolymer Map It Out set, I stamped the USA in Midnight Muse and than took my watercolor brush and went over the lines of the image. I love how it made it more vibrant looking.

I used some retired SU products for the paper and the Sealed with  Kiss stamp from last year's Valentine's Set called Sent with Love. Also of course I had to stamp the little heart in Texas because that is where we live. Finally I wrapped the card with some Real Red bakers's twine.

Here is a close up of the USA:



Supplies Used:
All Stampin Up (unless otherwise noted)

Real Red Card stock
Sent with Love Stamp and Paper set
Map It Out photopolymer set
Real Red Bakers Twine
Cherry Cobbler Ink
Midnight Muse Ink


If you're following along the blog hop then you just came from Julz's Blog- Ribbons and Julz.  The next stop on the hop is Pam's blog- Stamp and Stretch so hop on over and see what she's created to share with you! Remember, if you find a link that doesn't work, you can always hop back to The Technique Twist  for a list of direct links to all the blogs in the hop!  There's a great prize involved so be sure to comment on each blog as you hop & don't forget to play along! :)


Thanks for stopping by!!

Becky

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Technique Twist Design Team

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I am so excited for this new opportunity for 2014 as I become part of the Design Team for Technique Twist.


My first project goes live on Saturday morning and I can't wait to show it off to everyone.

I am also so lucky to have such a great team and if you would like to read more about the team, please visit:




Also make sure to come back on Saturday morning to see my project as well as a fun blog hop of all the DT's projects.