Wednesday, November 22, 2017

December Daily Tips

I've posted tips for doing December Daily albums in the past, but this year I thought I'd do a YouTube video so you could see all of my December Daily albums and get some visual ideas of how to do them.

I wish I could say that I've found an approach that works best for me, but I haven't. I seem to do something different every year, and sometimes I don't even take my own advice. But ultimately, I think the tips in this video will work for everybody.

Here's to  stress-free holiday season and a stress-free December Daily season! Happy scrapping!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Nothing Is Impossible Scrapbook Page

I recently discovered a new scrapbooking website called Spiegelmom Scraps. It sells really cool sequin mixes, A Lil' Shimmerz mists, and other fun scrapbooking supplies. I was following along with some of the design team members on YouTube and watched a bunch of their process videos for this month's sketch, which is all about circles. It looked like fun, and when I pulled these pictures of Daphne at a birthday party, I just knew that I could make them work with the sketch.

Here is the original sketch:

And here is my interpretation:

I even made my own process video for you to watch!

Here are a few close-ups so you can see more details of the layout. I basically "killed" my International Scrapbook Garden Garden Sunkissed kit on this one.

Those Lemoncraft ephemera cards make the perfect titles for scrapbook layouts! I don't even have to root through my alpha stash searching for the perfect letters that have ALL the right letters.

Those flowers are from Kaisercraft. The stems were poseable, so I was able to make them curve around the circle.

The silver arrows were from my stash. They are Tim Holtz. I can't tell you how long I've had them and never used them, so I'm glad that I finally found a place to put them. I also grabbed some shimmery translucent stickers that I thought fit with the flourishes of the patterned paper, and I placed those stickers here and there for extra accent.

So that's it! Thanks for looking!

Friday, November 17, 2017

When You Love and Laugh You Live a Beautiful Life Card

While cutting all of the paper flowers for this card, I was reminded of the paper garden on the walls of Mrs. Threadgoode's room in the movie Fried Green Tomatoes. There's no real good quote from the movie about it, but I was just reminded of that scene in the movie and the movie itself. I love that movie.

And I also love The International Scrapbook Garden Garden Sunkissed Kit. I don't know how much longer these kits will be in stock. The fall kits are on their way, so if you haven't gotten your summer kit yet, don't miss your chance to get one! Head over to the store and get playing!

I made this card to send to my aunt, so I wrote on the inside of the card BEFORE I adhered everything to the back. It made writing so much easier. Ha ha! I hope my aunt likes it. Of course, the card was too big to fit into a standard envelope. I should have thought about that before designing it, but oh well. It was totally worth it!

I used the Kaisercraft butterfly stamp and the Lemoncraft paper, ribbon, and ephemera cards. From my own stash I used a Stampin' Up stamp pad and some gem embellishments.

I also used my Martha Stewart scoring board to help me fold the paper in straight lines and create the gate-fold card opening.

Thanks for looking and have a beautiful day!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Be Brave and Wild Scrapbook Layout

I used my Lea France Stained Glass stencil and some supplies from my The International Scrapbook Garden Sunkissed Kit to complete another layout. These are pictures of Daphne that the daycare teachers took of her.

The blue flowers came from my mom's scrapbook embellishment stash, and I liked the way they complemented the blue in the dreamcatcher ephemera card that I placed in the center of the layout.

I also fussy cut the pink doily from some Lemoncraft patterned paper and adhered the "Be Brave & Wild" sentiment, which was in my stash, to act as my title. Really glad that I could finally use that! It's been in my stash for so long, and I was having trouble finding letter stickers in my stash that spelled out anything I wanted them to spell.

I also used an American Crafts gold marker to color in some feathers from a Creative Embellishments stencil because I thought they would be a nice touch. And there are green gem stickers on here, too. Those came from my mom's stash.

I like the way this turned out. There are a lot of elements, but it was easy to put together. I actually did it in about 45 minutes while the baby "napped".

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

A Hoppy Adventure Scrapbook Page November 123 Challenge Blog

I am really on a roll! Completed another layout for another scrapbook challenge this month. This one is for the November challenge at 123 Challenge Blog: 1 sketch, two words, three colors. 

This month it's all about a really great sketch with circles, the words "Adventure" and "Awesome", and the colors navy, green, and grey. 

Here's what I came up with:

I got the gray in the background paper, the green in the large circle, and the navy in the smaller circle. (Plus, all three of those colors can be found elsewhere in some of the other patterned papers.)

I used the word "Adventure" in my title, which is sort of a pun because these are pictures of Daphne meeting the Easter bunny for the first time. It'll make more sense once we get to the journaling.

And the journaling is also where you'll find the second word, "Awesome". When Daphne met Santa, it was meltdown city. So I had no idea what to expect with the Easter Bunny. It was truly going to be an adventure. But she did AWESOME!! That is until she touched my scrambled eggs at the breakfast afterward and her face got all splotchy... so an adventure indeed.

I had fun using the American Crafts Jen Hadfield Home + Made Heart of Home collection for this one. You've heard me say it many times, but it really is so versatile. I've used it on wedding layouts, for fall-themed layouts, and now for Easter layouts.

I just love the gold finishing on some of these embellishments. There is quite a good selection of embellishments in this collection! I will be sad when I run out of everything.

You have until the end of the month to enter. The sponsor this month is Scrapbook Fantasies! Good luck!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Simply Beautiful Scrapbook Layout

I am all about trying new things. Perhaps that is something I should have listed on this scrapbook layout as something that is beautifully unique about me! 

This page is all sorts of unique and new for me: the journaling is inspired by the chapter 1 reflection questions in Chrystal Evans Hurst's book She's Still There and I experimented with 13@rts Plastic Microspheres. 

You're probably thinking, "What the heck is happening here?"

Bear with me.

This is SO not my normal scrapbooking style. But it is me trying new things. It is me letting my creative flag fly.

All of the supplies come from The International Scrapbook Garden Garden Sunkissed main and bonus kits: Lemoncraft Fresh Summer 05 paper, May Arts wrinkled ribbon yellow, Kaisercraft self-adhesive pearls, Lemoncraft ephemera card, Lemoncraft Fresh Summer buttons, Scrapberrys Sky Blue Gardenias, Creative Embellishments Feather Stencil, 13@rts Ayeeda Paint Turquoise, 13@rts Ayeeda Plastic Microspheres, and Petaloo DIY Paintables Mixed Flowers.

So yes, there is a lot going on here. But I kind of like it.

The journaling was done with my Zig Writer in pink and blue, and the list is five things that are uniquely beautiful about me. The prompt from the book was to write only three things, but I had actually done a list of five for a separate prompt a few months ago, so I just used those. And then I wrote the Bible verse Ephesians 2:10 at the bottom as a reminder to refer to that whenever I look back at this layout. This one is going into my Book of Me.

I'm even pleased with how my mixed media feathers turned out, especially for my first time scrapping outside the box. I basically watched a YouTube video and then just followed what that girl did. I mixed the turquoise paint with some of the plastic microspheres with some water with some white glitter from my stash, and then used a spatula to "paint" it over the feather stencil. Then I let it dry overnight.

Did it have the consistency of concrete and/or a slushie? Yes. Did it give my layout some dimension and texture? Yes.

Is it uniquely beautiful like me? Yes!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Thankful for You Scrapbook Page Scrap Our Stash November Tic Tac Toe Challenge

I'm back again to share with you yet ANOTHER scrapbook layout I created last weekend. This time it's for the November Tic Tac Toe challenge at Scrap Our Stash. The Tic Tac Toe board column I choose to do was three word title, fall theme (everyone had to do that), and burlap.

I chose to use the very appropriate American Crafts Jen Hadfield Home + Made Heart of Home collection because it has all these patterned papers and embellishments about gratefulness and thankfulness, and I just thought that the dark colors and rich golds really spoke to a fall theme.

So even though my pictures aren't specifically fall, the rest of the elements on this layout created a fall theme.

I created my three word title with the shiny pink foam Thickers word "thankful" and some old Making Memories mini alphas.

And how lucky that I had burlap in my stash? I had bought it a few years ago to create a burlap table runner for our dining room table, but I had leftovers. So I just cut out a piece and hot glued it onto my layout! I love how it creates dimension by raising up everything on top of it. Such nice texture, too.

If you want to play along, you have until November 29 to link up your layout! We're all playing for the cool Carta Bella Hello Fall 12x12 collection and ephemera pack! Good luck!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Life is Beautiful Scrapbook Page - November Guest Designer at Stick It Down

I'm really excited to be sharing today's layout with you because it's a special layout created for the November double page challenge over at Stick It Down where I am a Guest Designer this month! I won the September double page challenge and now get to be the November double page Guest Designer. Pretty cool, huh?

Here is the sketch that everybody is playing with for the double page challenge:

I had just the photos for this one: my daughter's 18-month photos. As you can see, I didn't adhere EXACTLY to the sketch, but that is the beauty of sketches. They inspire you and are open to interpretation.

Let me tell you a little about how I let the sketch inspire me. I really liked what looked like strips of paper or ribbon on the background of the sketch. I had ribbon that I wanted to use, but I felt like it would make the layout too bulky if I used it across the entire two pages, so I did a three-ribbon layer at each end of the page and embellished each layer.

I really like these citrus chipboard pieces from Creative Embellishments, and they fit well with these pictures because my daughter's dress is a watermelon dress. I sprayed them with Lindy's Flat Fabio Spray in Hibiscus Rose to give them a pink tint.

I also moved the pictures over so that they spanned both sides of the two-page layout. And because I was using the ephemera card as my title, I moved it up on the second page because it fit better in that location.

I also anchored both ends with some fussy cut floral patterned paper. I like the symmetry that it gives.

And to get the wavy look at the bottom of the layout, I just created a designed with Kaisercraft Self-Adhesive Pearls.

So that's what I created! What will you create with the sketch? Head on over to the Stick it Down blog for more inspiration and to enter your layout into the challenge!

Also, the photos on this layout were taken by my friend Lauren, so if you're in the New Jersey area and in need of professional photography services, check her out! You can find more information at her website, Poppins Design.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Gluten-Free Strawberry Ricotta Waffle Sandwich from Eating Well

I know strawberries aren't in season right now. But that's the beauty of today's society. You can get strawberries whenever you want!

So when I was looking for a healthier way to use up leftover ricotta cheese (because our Ricotta Breakfast Pizza recipe just didn't seem like a great choice for "healthy") and I came across a recipe from Eating Well magazine in my Good Morning, Breakfast Pinterest board, I just knew that no matter what, we were going to have strawberries for dinner.

The recipe is Strawberry-Ricotta Waffle Sandwich. It's really supposed to be a breakfast recipe, but who says you can't have breakfast for dinner? I mean, we're eating strawberries out of season, so we might as well really throw the rules out the window, right?

This is so easy to pull together on a weeknight because you can just use frozen waffles. And thankfully, there are good gluten-free frozen waffle options. We use the gluten-free Eggo waffles.

And that was the only thing I had to change about this recipe to make it gluten-free.

The original recipe says it's enough to serve one person. I was able to stretch it to two sandwiches, but you might want to double the recipe and give each person two sandwiches to really make it a filling dinner. Just my recommendation! Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Grateful Scrapbook Page - Another Freaking Scrappy Challenge

I'm playing along with the November challenge over at Another Freaking Scrappy Challenge! Can you believe that I got THREE scrapbook layouts completed on Sunday? What a record! But here's the one I'm submitting for the challenge, which was to use words of thanks or gratitude in your title or journaling.

As you can see, I've got the word "grateful" as my title because we are so grateful for our little munchkin, who was 13 months when this picture was taken.

And as you can also see, I've got even more "thankful" and "grateful" words in the embellishments because this American Crafts Jen Hadfield collection is just perfect for those fall-themed layouts or thank you cards!

This one took me awhile to complete, actually. It looks simple but I kept trying to overthink it. In fact, I ended up stamping on it and then not liking the stamps, so I had to pull up stuff and redo it. Ugh. You can hear more about it in this process video I made for the YouTube channel!

And there's another look at the finished layout. If you'd like to play along with this challenge, you have until the end of November. There is a gift certificate up for grabs! What a great prize! Good luck!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Playin' Scrapbook Page - Toy Fair 2017

Look at me! I got this year's Toy Fair pictures scrapped before next year's Toy Fair starts! Woo hoo!

I played around with this two-page layout probably more than I played at Toy Fair. This is way outside of my normal scrapbooking box. But I had a lot of fun, and I'm happy with the finished result.

The patterned papers are Crate Paper and are actually a map of Manhattan, so I figured they would be perfect for these pictures because Toy Fair takes place in New York City.

I broke out some houndstooth-patterned washi tape, too. I also used my Lindy's Magic Shaker in Yodeling Yellow to add some extra color to the black and white paper. It also added a nice shimmer. And then I mixed black acrylic paint with 13@rts Magic Powder to create a paste that I could paint a map marker stencil shape onto the layout in various locations.

I also got the chance to use up some random embellishments from my stash. The yellow taxi was a perfect fit for a layout about New York, and because Toy Fair is all about toys, the little "A Great Toy" embellishment was also a perfect fit.

You can see a better close-up of both the Magic Powder/paint stencil and the Lindy's Magical Shaker in the above picture.

One of these days I am going to film a process video and some tutorials for how to use some of these products on the Cook Scrap Craft YouTube channel. I figure that if these products are new to me, they are probably new to you, too!

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Live Love Laugh Scrapbook Page

I am in SUCH a creative mood lately, so last night I came home, put the baby to bed, and went downstairs to get scrappin'! I managed to get this layout done in about 20 minutes thanks to the wonderful November 1 sketch over at Stuck?! Sketches.

You can even watch a video all about how I made it! This is my first process video that I made for my Cook Scrap Craft YouTube channel, and I thought it turned out pretty decent. I got the video edited and uploaded this morning while the baby took a nap. So that was nice!

And here are a few close-ups of the layout.

This basically used up some extra stuff that I had in my The International Scrapbook Garden Garden Sunkissed Kit. I still have one piece of paper left, one flower embellishment, some ribbon, and some scraps. So I think I can either make one more layout or do some cards. I've gotten A LOT created with that kit and I still haven't shown you EVERYTHING. (Stay tuned.)

So there you have it! This literally took me 20 minutes to put together. I'm so happy with how it turned out. I love using sketches because they just make the whole process of scrapping so much easier.

If you want to play along with the November 1 sketch challenge, you have until November 29. Good luck!

Friday, November 3, 2017

Chicken and Cheese 2017 Edition

Last year I had a blog post about recipes involving chicken, cheese, and bacon. Well, if you substitute bacon with a Crockpot, then you have this year's version of that blog post.

And it's just as delicious.

This year is all about dumping chicken breasts and cream cheese into a Crockpot.

I swear I would make these recipes all the time if I thought I could get away with it.

First up, Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili, courtesy of Rita's Recipes.

I swear I make something like this every year. It reminds me of Slow Cooker Crack Chicken, except it has vegetables in it. So I feel like this version is healthier. Sure.

We served it over rice, but you could do whatever you want with it.

The second recipe is Slow Cooker Cream Cheese Chicken Taquitos from Le Creme de la Crumb. This was a perfect Saturday cook-all-day-while-the-family-went-out-and-did-fall-activities recipe. And we used our BFree gluten-free wraps, which worked perfectly!

Because the BFree wraps were eight-inch wraps and not six-inch wraps, we got eight of the taquitos instead of 12. They really ended up being more like a chicken soft taco, I guess, because traditionally taquitos are smaller. But whatever.

Served up with some salsa and plain Greek yogurt in place of sour cream and they were delectable. Even the baby had some!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Me & You Scrapbook Page

I am so excited about this scrapbook page, you guys! If there has been anything that I've learned while working with The International Scrapbook Garden Garden Sunkissed kit, it's that taking my time with a scrapbook page can yield some really awesome results.

For instance, it took me two days to make this page.

First, I used the Lindy's Flat Fabio Spay in Hibiscus Rose and the Creative Embellishments Feather Stencil to spray feathers on one of the Lemoncraft ephemera cards. That same day, I used the Kaisercraft Treasured Moments butterfly stamp and my own Stampin' Up Coastal Cabana ink pad to stamp butterflies all over the Lemoncraft Daydream 01 paper.

So all of that had to dry before I could really move forward. The next day I started putting everything together. I broke out my hot glue gun to attach the Lemoncraft feathers, Scrapberry's Stemmed Lily White Flowers, and May Arts Fuchsia Ribbon into a bouquet. I also hot glued one of the Lemoncraft Ephemera Buttons onto the front of the bouquet.

And in a moment that makes me very proud, I hot glued some of the 13@rts Ayeeda Powder 3D Plastic Microspheres to some of the flower petals to add some texture. This was total experimentation on my part. I happened to be watching a YouTube video of a scrapbooker, and she did this (or it looked like that was what she was doing) with the 13@arts Glass Microspheres, so I figured why not try it out with the plastic ones?

But wait! But wait! I kept going!

I layered the Lemoncraft Fresh Summer 03 paper on top of the background paper (love the wood grain look), and then I decided to add some of the Lindy's Magical Shaker Yodeling Yellow. I sprinkled some of the powder onto the paper, dipped a paintbrush into a bowl of water, and then painted the powder on the paper.

Sort of ended up looking like wings, I thought. I wish you could see how shimmery it ends up looking!

And if that wasn't enough, I die-cut some butterflies out of the backside of the Fresh Summer paper using a Spellbinders die from my stash and my Spellbinders Grand Caliber. I placed one of the Kaisercraft Self-Adhesive Pearls in the center of each butterfly. And the butterflies I placed on the Lemoncraft Ephemera Card on which I did a bit of fussy cutting.

I cannot stress enough how INSPIRING The International Scrapbook Garden kit has been for me! Not only has it been neat to be a part of an international group of scrapbookers and getting to play with products from companies I've never heard of, but it's really challenged me to step outside of my comfort zone and think a little bit more about what I'm putting on the page.

I love that my fingers are covered in pink ink and that my brain is churning! If you are feeling like you need to be challenged in more ways than one in your scrapbooking, then this is the kit club for you! All of the kits are still available to purchase and they are still on sale, so head on over to the shop and buy yours now!

Monday, October 30, 2017

BFree Foods Gluten-Free

BFree sponsored the blogger breakfast at the Secaucus GFAF Expo earlier this month, and we all got to sample what I think are the BEST gluten-free bagels EVER. No joke.

The company, which is from Ireland, also gave all the bloggers gift bags with a BFree pizza cutter, a BFree selfie stick, two kinds of BFree wraps, and a package of BFree pita bread. I talk about it more in this Facebook video:

Anywho, because I enjoyed the bagel so much, I was really excited to try out the other stuff in the gift bag. So the next week I made our Fit4Mom healthy chicken salad recipe and put that in the toasted gluten-free pita bread, which I was able to slice open to create pita pockets. YUM.

And then last week I made chicken taquitos with the wraps. (More on that recipe later.) Just look at this picture. This was BEFORE they were baked. Have you ever been able to get ANY gluten-free tortilla or wrap to roll up like this without breaking?

They worked perfectly and they were delicious. The sweet potato wraps didn't have too heavy of a sweet potato flavor. In fact, I thought they were very similar to a regular flour tortilla. The quinoa and chia seed wrap was a little different in taste and texture, but I think that would lend itself well to a turkey wrap or a veggie wrap.

BFree also makes gluten-free bread and rolls. You can use the store locator to find a store near you that carries BFree products. BFree is now being carried in Walmart!

Unfortunately, I am not lucky enough to have ANY store near me carry BFree products, but they do sell their products online through the Gluten Free Mall, so that is always an option the next time we want to have gluten-free bagel egg sandwiches for dinner.

I'm so glad that I was able to try out these products from BFree, and I hope they continue to expand their reach in the U.S.