Monday, October 22, 2018

1st Time at Culver's Scrapbook Page featuring Cheeky Studio

Happy Monday! Today I'm sharing with you another layout using the Cheeky Studio October On the Cover kit. And, as you can see, I haven't scrapped a book photo, but the products in this themed kit are still just perfect!

I used the Wild Whisper patterned paper that looks like a piece of loose leaf paper, the Wild Whisper star paper, and one of the branding strips. I also added in one of the exclusive Cheeky Studio frames for my journaling, the On the Cover floral ephemera pieces, the brown and white twine, and the Project Life yellow circle and heart stickers.

From my stash I added some black and white polka dot tissue paper and some Recollections and Echo Parks papers. My title was created using very old Making Memories mini alphas and American Crafts alphas. They both fit in with the grey, black, and white color scheme.

I decided to do everything at an angle instead of straight lines. I just thought it made the layout a little more fun!

The photo is of my daughter at the chain restaurant Culver's. I love the burgers at Culver's and my husband is able to get a gluten-free bun for his burger, so we were excited to stop their for lunch on our vacation last summer. However, my daughter was not feeling the burger. I don't know what is wrong with her! She'd rather have chicken nuggets.

The October On the Cover ephemera is available to purchase on its own in the Cheeky Studio store, so don't miss out! This is a lovely kit that works great for book photos or traveler's notebooks, as well as your everyday photos! And don't forget to use my discount code, Cookscrap10, to save 10% when ordering!

Friday, October 19, 2018

Last Lunch Scrapbook Page featuring Cheeky Studio

Happy Friday! It's another Cheeky Studio layout share day, and this one uses up some of the Wild Flowers Set 5 and the Wild Flowers sequins mix. That's one of my favorites!

This layout is also for the October challenge at Creative Embellishments. We were supposed to use multiple pictures (I have two) and be inspired by a picture. I really liked the black and white color scheme of the picture and the images of tea cups in it. I had just the perfect papers in my stash and little tea cup (or mug) embellishments!

I love the effect that the black and white gives with all of the colorful ephemera pieces! Those Wild Flowers are so bright.

I also like how I embellished the Creative Embellishments chipboard piece with some of the sequins. I had thought about painting the chipboard, but I do really like the natural chipboard look. The sequins and layering some of the embellishment clusters on top of it gave it a nice look.

The Wild Flowers products are still available to purchase in the Cheeky Studio store, and you can save 10% on your order when you use my discount code, Cookscrap10. Happy scrapping!

Thursday, October 18, 2018

GFAF Expo Recap

Last weekend I attended the Gluten Free and Allergen Friendly Expo in Secaucus, NJ. It was a great show, and I discovered a lot of new gluten-free manufacturers, as well as dairy-free products for myself.

Here are just a few of my favorite new discoveries from the Expo.

Farmwise Veggie Tots: I'm pretty sure I've had this company's veggie fries before, but I'm really liking the Veggie Tots made with broccoli, sweet potato, and white beans. Delicious!

Rule Breaker Snacks: These delicious allergen-free cookies were a hit with the kids at the show. I was also very excited that I could eat them. When I say allergen-free, I mean free of all major allergens!

Partake Foods: I kind of love that you can see right on the package of these cookies that they are "school-safe". That is so important in today's climate of kids and food allergies.

Metaball Energy Bites: Why eat a whole energy bar when you can more easily snack on the go with these mini energy balls? They come in a resealable bag so if you don't finish the whole single serving bag in one sitting (or you want to sneak the bag into a movie theater!), you can keep the rest of the bites fresh until you're ready for more snacking.

Om Sweet Home: When you're dairy-free, you can't have milk, of course. But what about butter? Nope! Not unless it's dairy-free butter like this delicious spread from Om Sweet Home. I got to sample it on gluten-free bread from Bari & Betty's.

Barilla: I was a little disappointed that Barilla wasn't handing out free boxes like Ronzoni does in its booth, but I was still excited about some new gluten-free pasta products that Barilla is rolling out. New pastas made of chickpea and red lentil will be hitting stores soon, as well as new no-boil gluten-free lasagna.

Wanna Date?: This vegan date spread will make your cravings for a Nutella-like spread vanish! Available in four different flavors (cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla, and pumpkin spice), this date-based product can be spread on toast or even mixed into smoothies or oatmeal. You don't need nut butters if you have Wanna Date.

Munk Pack: I've gotta be honest. I've had a Munk Pack before, and I was underwhelmed. But I just hadn't tasted the delicious Raspberry Coconut flavor yet. SO GOOD! Of course, there are several other flavors of this oatmeal fruit squeeze. Plus, they now make protein cookies!

Go Veggie: Another thing you can't have when dairy-free is cheese. But with Go Veggie's vegan parmesan "cheese", you can still enjoy topping your pasta or even creating parmesan popcorn, like what I sampled at the show!

Green Chef: Now a part of Hello Fresh, Green Chef is the meal delivery service for people on keto, paleo, vegan, and gluten-free diets. You're given five meal choices and the ability to choose three of them for the week. All of the ingredients will be made available to you in advance so you can make the best decision about which meals will work for you. But all the ingredients are packed individually to avoid cross-contamination, so you can always not use an ingredient if you don't want to.

Got Meals: In the same vein of a prepared meal kit, Got Meals offers four different meal kits that will feed up to two people and allow you to easily prepare a gluten-free meal.

Saffron Road: Why has it taken me so long to discover Saffron Road? Their Chickbean Crisps are delicious. They also have flavored chickpeas, like the really yummy salted caramel, that would be perfect for snacking.

Yumbutter: These nut butters are so good and certified non-GMO. They come in large and small pouches, perfect for snacking on the go. Because a whole jar of nut butter doesn't really travel well, right?

Soozy's: Dairy-free and gluten-free (and peanut-free) muffins? Yes, please. I want these for breakfast, snacktime, and dessert.

Against the Grain: We love Against the Grain's gluten-free pizza crusts, but now the company is getting into the dessert game with gluten-free, dairy-free, and other allergen-free cake and brownie mixes.

Sogni Dolci: Have you ever had a cauliflower crust pizza that tasted a little too much like cauliflower? I love the taste of Sogni Dolci's cauliflower crust because the company added just right the amount of seasoning to help overpower the cauliflower taste.

Did you attend the GFAF Expo? I would love to hear what some of your favorite products were! Share in the comments!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Toy Gift Guide: Best Activity and Arts & Crafts Toys

This week, I'm sharing some of my favorite activity and arts & crafts toys. Most of these are geared toward girls (sorry!), but there are a few that will get boys and girls using their imaginations to create. And some of them even promote a little STEM!

1. Craft-tastic Artist's Box - Ann Williams Group, 6+
I love this craft kit because it's really about kids creating whatever they want. There are challenge cards to inspire the creating and lots of tools.

2. Electric Motors Catalyst - Tinkering Labs, 8+
Get hands-on with electric motors and build some really cool and working machines with this STEM kit. There are challenge cards to get kids started, but kids can also experiment with building whatever they want.

These building sets are a great way to help girls feel like real architects as they build a hotel or townhouse in a variety of configurations. Each set, sold separately, offers building challenges. Plus, there are dolls to inspire some creative storytelling once the sets are built.

4. JoJo Siwa Cool Maker JoJo Glitter Nails - Spin Master, 8+
You'd kind of have to be a fun of JoJo Siwa or at least just a fan of doing your nails to like this kit. I was really impressed with how the glitter nails turned out, and it was easy to do!

5. Fablossom Paper Starter Kit - Anubias Enterprises, 6+
I'm a scrapbooker, so something like this is pretty much right up my alley. This kit lets you easily create and embellish paper flowers for adding to cards, gift boxes, tabletop decor, or wherever.

6. Sequin Pets Happy the Hedgehog - Creativity for Kids, 5+
I struggled with where to put this toy, but because this offers creative play and tactile play, I put it under activity. It's a super cute stuffed animal with a weighted body and flip sequins on its back. I LOVE FLIP SEQUINS. There are also reusable stick-on accessories to decorate your hedgehog.

7. STMT Signature Scent - Horizon Group USA, 8+
The look of these STMT kits (pronounced "statement") are gorgeous and will really make tween and teens feel like they're getting luxe products. With this kit, you can make your own roll-on perfume. Keep them for yourself or give them to a friend.

8. DIY Pinata Party - ALEX, 6+
Decorate your next party or just your room with this super cute kit. You get the pinata shapes and then just stick everything on them! You can even fill them with small candy, but why would you want to break open these adorable creations?

9. BOSEbuild Headphones - BOSE, 8+
This kit is so cool for music-loving kids. It takes them through the steps of building their own pair of BOSE headphones, but through an interactive app, kids also learn a little bit about the science of sound. This is a pricey one, but well worth it!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

The Clockmaker's Daughter - Book Review

I finally finished one of the books on my October to-read list: Kate Morton's The Clockmaker's Daughter. I had really high hopes for this one because Kate Morton is such a good author. And while I liked the overall story, there were parts of the book that kind of lost my interest.

The story takes place in the present and various times in the past, so there is a lot of going back and forth. It starts off in 2017 with Elodie, a young woman who works as an archivist and comes upon a satchel that had never been properly logged in. It turns out that she has a sort-of family connection to the contents of the satchel, and she soon becomes engrossed in uncovering the satchel's mystery. Everything leads to a house called Birchwood Manor, which was once owned by an artist named Edward Radcliffe.

Meanwhile, the ghostly resident of Birchwood Manor tells us her life story, as well as the comings and goings of the people who have also resided in the house throughout the years: a photographer, a writer, and the original owner's sister who turned the house into a school.

All of these lives may seem separate, but it's kind of neat to see how they actually end up weaving together. I just wish that some parts of the book weren't so long-winded. It took me awhile to get into the book, but as soon as Elodie's story started to pick up, the point of view changed and took me on a journey with a different character. I wouldn't say this is a book that you can read and then put down for a few days because by the time you pick it up back up, you might forget who all the characters are and where you are in the timeline!

But if you enjoy a good mystery and stories that take you back in time, you might enjoy uncovering the mystery of this novel. Like I said, the story is really intriguing, and it is neat to go through and make connections and discoveries. It was just a little long for me.

The Clockmaker's Daughter is published by Atria Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. I received a free autographed copy at BookExpo.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Babies Who Lunch Scrapbook Page featuring Cheeky Studio

I thought I'd do a little something different for today's Cheeky Studio layout. Several months ago I made up a mini kit using some Doodlebug products from my stash and the Cheeky Studio Flamingo Fun products. The kit was running low on paper, so I decide to try and "kill the kit" with this layout.

This page is also for the October Scrap the Girls challenge. Because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, you needed to let that and the mood board image inspire you. So, I've got a lot of pink on this layout and flowers because of the inspiration image.

The layout design is for the Paper Issues October sketch challenge, which you can find in the Paper Issues Facebook group. I really liked the grid design. I used three photos instead of two, as the sketch had shown.

In terms of all the Cheeky products, I've got the Flamingo Fun sequins, the Flamingo Fun ephemera, and the Flamingo Fun flair on here. I just love the bright colors in this collection, perfect for summer photos! I didn't use any flamingos on this layout. I'm actually saving those for a different layout of my daughter checking out real flamingos at the zoo!

All of the Flamingo Fun products are still available in the Cheeky store, so if you've got some summertime photos to scrap, I would highly recommend this collection! And you can save 10% when you use my discount code, Cookscrap10. Happy scrapping!

Friday, October 12, 2018

Today Scrapbook Page featuring Cheeky Studio

Happy fall y'all! I am still scrapbooking my 2017 summer vacation photos, so I feel like I'm living in two seasons at the same time. 

I'm also still using my October Cheeky Studio kit. The kit is book-themed, but I'm showing you how to use it in a non-book way! As you can see on this layout, I've got some of those lovely floral ephemera pieces, one of the kit-exclusive frames, the Project Life circle stickers, and the crumpled paper patterned paper from Wild Whisper. 

This layout is also for the Octoberfest challenge in the Inspired by Memories Facebook Group. This was the day 3 challenge: create a layout in a column. I've been doing a lot of vertical column designs in my scrapbooking lately, so this challenge wasn't too difficult.

I also added in some Cheeky Studio sequins. I think I did the Furry Friends and the Pink & Cream Bouquets sequins because I liked the pinks in Furry Friends, but I also wanted some of the darker shades from Pink & Cream Bouquets.

From my stash, I added in some Heidi Swapp sticker phrases, a few puffy stickers (can't recall the manufacturer), a Jillibean Soup sticker word for the title, and some Lindy's Stamp Gang spray in Green with Envy. The other two patterned papers are Simple Stories and Recollections.

I really like how this layout turned out. I think this month is going to be my month of scrapbook challenges! I'm trying to do as many as I can.

If you want to participate in a challenge but need some supplies, head over to the Cheeky Studio store and use my discount code, Cookscrap10, to save 10%.