Saturday, January 31, 2009

I'm Hands On Creative!

What kind of Creative Are You?

Take this creativity quiz and learn "How creative are you? What gets your juices flowing?" I turned out to be Hands On. It's actually very true. I love making things - all types of things! I would so love to make more things but supply and instruction are in low supply :)

Friday, January 30, 2009

My red felt "I love you" booklet

We're approaching the Valentine season and I thought I'd share what I did last year:
It's a mixed-media booklet.
I got the idea from Ali Edwards. You can see her post about it HERE.

Still working on this years ... I'll post when I'm done :)

Probably not this year, but next year I'll do something FOR the kids. I'll definitely do something WITH them, but I want to start making them something special.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Archiving question

I have a question. A serious question. This isn't one of those questions you ask because you're thinking out loud through your blog. I really want your help! I need your help!!! I've started a project. I'm archiving my old photos (birth until I'm married) and I've come to a big decision.

Here's the history. If you don't feel like reading it, skip down to the big questions below.

I recently realized that my old albums had been water damaged when our basement flooded. The photos held up pretty well (with a few exception), but I need to put them somewhere else. A lot of these photos were of me from my infancy through my teenage years. My mom had made me a large album using those magnetic pages (before we knew about scrapbooking). They were yellowing and becoming less sticky anyway. I was planning to redo them soon, but it's become a priority now.

I need to completely redo over 20 years worth of pictures. They're all film photos (of varying sizes) and not all the best. My first thought was to use a combination of divided page protectors in varying sizes to put the photos in with a bit of patterned paper and journaling. I would mix and match the sizes depending on the photos used and also leave the option open to scrapbook any really important moments or where there's a more detailed story to be told.

I don't want to overdo the scrapbooking. I'm going to go for a simple and elegant look (as well as less time-consuming). I also wanted to include some journaling about my memories ... instead of just photos and dates.

I was all ready to do it. I had got the supplies and then I read that you should never use your original photos when doing a project like this. I see the logic of that. You don't want to work with your only copy.
They suggested scanning them in. I do have one of those printer/scanner/fax machines that is 6 years old and only $100 when we bought it. It's obviously not the best. I've scanned some things in before and been less than impressed with the quality. So, using my scanned images isn't that appealing.
My local Walmart has a photo station where you can scan and copy photos at a kiosk, but I've also been less than impressed with the way that works.
Another problem is that we're talking about hundreds of photos here. I was not happy with the prospect of scanning them all in at home, let alone standing for hours in front of a kiosk.

But, I buckled down and spent hours scanning in photos. I'm missing a few that other family members have. As you can see, they are not ideal:

They're also a pretty lousy resolution - no bigger than 1,000 pixels the longest way.

I've had the suggestion to take pictures of my pictures. I've tried that and there's always a glare from the flash or the overhead light or even the sunlight. It just hasn't worked.

I want to use the originals because they are so much better. But, as you can see from these,
there's some water damage. Even though it's not visible on most of them, they smell and the back of some the photo paper is turning yellow. I am concerned about future degradation.

So ... what do you think? Is there a product (like archival mist) that would stop to the decay of my photos so I can use them? Should I use the lousy scans? How would you go about this?

I really want to know!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Hornung ABCs - 'A'

I'm taking part in a project where you do at least one letter a month (over at Stampin' Scraps). I thought about what word to use for 'a' for a while. I pondered and pondered. If I was seriously going to do 26 layouts, what would I want to do? I thought about the kids ... but all three kids, evenly dividing between the three, one for each kid? I thought about finding all the 'a' words .. but what if I forgot one? I hate doing comprehensive lists because I'll inevitably forget something.

But, as we were eating dinner tonight and I started eating our appetizer of sliced apples and cheese (fancy), I literally thought, "Apples start with A." Deep, right? So, I pondered it over during dinner and decided to do it. Why not do 26 layouts about things that our family likes. Sure, it won't cover everything and it won't be incredibly deep, but it will be fun. I threw this together in a few hours and it gives me practice. And yes, I know the photo of the apples isn't the best. I took it tonight and this is what I got. I could have found a gorgeous, artistic photo of apples online, but this has meaning because those are our apples and I took the picture.


Paper is from Emily Powers at (background - setsoflinespapers4) and Kathryn Wilson at (masked red accents - InkCollectionPolkas_red); green clip, red photo frame, green label holder, and title alphas are from the WaitingToHappen kit by Monica Guerra Leiria at mgl Scraps; Ribbon and Bow is from Michelle Coleman. Fonts are Adler and AnotherTypewriter.
I think that's it. I'm getting better at this :)


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Craft Time!

Hello my friends!

It was great to see my fellow crafters this morning :) You know who you are! I was pleasantly surprised that people actually come and read my blog occasionally, so I want to give you a shout out! Moni, Danielle, Angie, Danae, Andrea and Christina - I love you guys!
I'm already trying to work out the details for February. I'll keep you posted!

I got 1 1/2 layouts done today. Traditional, paper layouts for a project I've been working on for a while. I hope to be done soon and I'll post all about it when I am :) The best thing about today is that I actually pulled my stuff out again and re-acquainted myself with the project and what I was trying to do. Hopefully it won't take so long to get into it again!

Okay, which picture do you like best for my 365 project? The one with me in it or the one I like better (without me in it). I can't decide if I need to be in the picture.


Design Team Member!

Exciting news!

Tanya, from Little Shop of Sketches and Stampin' Scrap, has asked me to be on their design team for the next six months. I will do a layout (mostly digital) every two weeks based on the sketch that she has come up with.
I am very excited about this opportunity. Of course, it's always wonderful to have someone admire your work. However, I'm looking forward to the push it will give me to create more often. No matter what is going on in my life and how busy I may or may not be, I will have a layout done every two weeks!

I first found their wonderful sketches when I participated in a challenge at Journaling Junkie. You may remember, but this is the layout I created:
based on this sketch:I was subsequently invited to apply for the design team spot. As part of that process, I created two more layouts based on sketches. I can finally share them with you:

based on this sketch:
All of the digital elements are from Rhonna Farrer's Magic Rainbows Free Kit for 2ps.

based on this sketch:I created my own digital elements by coloring graphic texture stock photos ( and using the Dingbat font, Flakey. Pretty simple, but I like it :)

I like how I broke out of the box for each of these layouts. They were for submission, so I did things a little bit differently. I used brighter colors than I normally do :) That's another great thing about digital - if you don't like the color, you can just change it. One of my biggest hangups in paper scrapbooking is wanting it to be perfect. Before I cut the paper I want to make sure that it's what I want! Now I can experiment without worrying about ruining supplies or doing something irreversable.

I really like sketches. They help get you going. I often create my own sketches, but sometimes it's nice to just have somebody else do the work for you :) Oh, and I often use one as inspiration and change it around to do what I want to do. You don't always have to do exactly what the sketch says to do ... I always want it to reflect a little bit of me.

I'm already working on the next layout. And of course, since it's a February layout, it'll be about my honey :) It needs to be turned in on February 3rd - so you can see it then!!!


Stampin' Scraps is a scrapbook supply shop and also has a gallery and a forum. Check it out!

Friday, January 23, 2009


Just going to answer some questions quickly ...

How did I do my own custom blog design?
Well ... I got the idea from Rhonna Farrer. Check out this post for her instructions. Some of her following posts answer some related questions. I already understood HTML and have designed websites, but it never really occurred to me to make my own blog design. I really didn't care enough *gasp* and didn't want to spend the time. But, reading that post gave me a quick kick in the pants and I threw something together rather quickly. Maybe I'll do something really fancy when I get some more time :)

Why am I backing up on to CDs instead of DVDs or an external hard drive?

Well, I would if I could!
First of all, I did (and still do) back up on to an external hard drive. We had one, but it died! I was shocked! Plus, because my laptop had a limited amount of disk space, I had deleted things off of my laptop fully expecting to be able to retrieve them from the external hardrive when I wanted them. Well, I was wrong. My husband decided to tell me *after* the problem that you should always back up in two places. Well, I didn't know that. I thought I was doing well by backing up! It makes sense now . . .
So, we bought another external harddrive and I backed up the files I still had and then I set to work backing them up to a second location - CDs. Almost 100 because 98% of my 60 GB of memory on my laptop was used.
Wouldn't it be great to have two external hard drives to back up onto? Well, the next time I have an extra $100 ...
Why not DVDs? Because I don't have DVD burner. My drive reads DVDs, but doesn't write to them. My laptop is 2 years old. I don't know how much it would cost to get a DVD-R drive and what it would take to install it, but my computer tech husband has never acted like it was an option, so I assume it won't be happening anytime soon :)
So, that's why I've spent countless hours and 90 CDs of backup. You have the whole story!

I'm working on a big project right now. I NEED to be done by midnight tonight. Head on over the to find out why ... a photobook with up to 100 pages on sale for $20! Must create 100 pages! I hope to post it for you soon :)


Oh, and I have some really exciting news! I'll let you know when I have more time to write. Big project going on, remember? Hint: It has something to do with the blinkie links in the sidebar.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Another Masterpiece

Yes, I know it's the middle of January ... but I've completed another calendar. It was a late custom request (beginning of January), so it's okay that it's a little late.
It's for my brother-in-law. He provided me with his photos from 2008 and I combined them with some pictures of our family and now it's one big happy family calendar :)

This is a mosaic that I made using I think it's awesome. Kevin didn't like it very much because it's hard to see that it's the Eiffel Tower. I wanted to use one of the pictures that Brett took on his trip to Paris and this was the best landscape one ... I like it anyway even if I like the concept more than the actual result :)

We had a little issue because he didn't get a camera until June, so all of the pictures of his family (except for the one I had in January) are from June-December. It was hard to choose, but I hope I balanced it alright. You'll notice that there are no months on the graphics ... that's because the pictures don't accurately represent that month.


Oh, and notice that I figured out how to upload more than 5 pictures in one post - I can upload only them 5 at one time, but do that multiple times :)


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

New Blog Design

Like my new blog design? I did the background myself ... it's nothing fancy, but I like it.

Swirl border is from Rhonna Farrer.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Hard at work and onesie album

I'm still backing up files. Can you believe it? I'm almost done, though. I've made over 80 CDs on my way to backing up 60 GBs of information. The only folder I have left is Baby Andrew photos.

So, I haven't taken a whole lot of time to create something else. Sure, going through all my photos has created a slurry of ideas and inspiration, but I don't want to be too distracted. It's taken me two weeks to get this far!

Just because I can't post a new digital layout doesn't mean I can't post something else :)

Here's a shaped chipboard album that I made for a baby shower.
I made a template and then cut chipboard myself. Because the chipboard was thin and flexible, I glued two pieces together to make a sturdier page. I also painted the edges a light green.

I used K&Co paper to cover the album and every page has a pocket on the top part and photo mats on the bottom.
I used the K&Co coordinating tags and misc. ribbon to go in the pockets.

Obviously, the baby's name was Jacoby :) I used the K&Co coordinating chipboard alpha set.
I used CTMH brads and spiral clips, MM brads, and MM metal baby charms, MM metal baby words and the K&Co coordinating chipboard words to embellish each page.

The album is held together with binder rings from Staples.


Friday, January 9, 2009

Project 365 Started!

I've decided to discuss my 365 project in a separate blog. Check it out HERE!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Winter time!

So, I'm still in the process of backing up files. I had to slow down a bit because life happened. Have to clean the house, have to take care of the kids, have to sleep ... you know, the usual stuff :)

But, it's a horrid day outside. Cold and icy - so I finally took the time to create something. I love digital and being able to do it on my computer! I can work a little bit, take a break for the kids and come back to it ...

This is what I did today:

My inspiration was from Paisley Press Designs which is available at She had a wonderful design template download, but I can't use it because I don't have Photoshop. However, it was rather simple to recreate the design myself in Macromedia Fireworks. At first, I was going for the simple look - just like all the examples ... but it kind of took off on me. It probably all started when I dropped the frilly frame in the background (not sure if I like the placement, either). I changed the color scheme three times, added all sorts of swirls and extra elements ... I don't know if I like it better or not, but it is what it is.
I created the paper myself by layering boxes of different colors and textures. The black just seemed to work with pictures, but I've second guessed myself a million times during this process so I don't know...
The white frilly frame in the background and the blue swirled frame are both from Rhonna Farrer's Color My World kit.
The bow and pink swirly graphic (behind the two smaller photos) are from the Oscraps - Designers collaboration Love Letter kit. I changed the hue and saturation of the bow to turn it from a salmon pink to the turquoise color you see.
Fonts: Adler, CK_Alis_Writing, Lassus, and SA Inkspot.

Too bad the picture of me isn't that good. It's really the only picture of my belly (out of three pregnancies) that I have. I kept putting it off and then towards the end I didn't feel like it and then the baby was born! Yikes! And to think, I thought I looked good that day. Why can't my 'good days' translate on film?
So, I don't know if I like it. I would love any and all input!


Someone commented that you can't click to view the above graphic in a larger size. So, I've uploaded my digital graphics to my gallery and you can view them (in two sizes) here :)

Monday, January 5, 2009

I WON!!!

I WON!!!
Can you believe it? I won!!! I won the Pagemaps Blog year-end sketch contest!
I'm so excited! I've entered four of their contests before. I just love Becky Fleck's Pagemaps! Kevin even bought me her book!

So, I'm practically jumping up and down and can't think of much else to say :)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Hard Drive Backup

You want to know what I spent all my free time doing yesterday? Backing up files. Fun. And I didn't even finish! Barely put a dent in it!

First of all, I heard the dreaded click of death from our external hard drive while we were up in Maine. Ack! I had *foolishly* deleted a lot of files from my laptop to try and free up disk space because I *foolishly* thought that I had them safe on the external hard drive. I *foolishly* hadn't backed up to a second place in over a year. AAAAHHHH! So, we bought another backup hard drive and after backing up on to that ... I'm working on backing up on to CDs as well. That takes much longer because CDs only hold 700MB. My 60 GB laptop has less than 1GB left, so I need to make room!

So ... I even forgot to take a 365 picture yesterday. *slaps hand* I'll have to take two today :)


Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

I was reading a friend's blog and she had posted her favorite ten pictures from 2008. TEN! How can you narrow it down to just 10? So, I thought I'd give it a try.

Alright, I just spent a lot of time going through pictures and I can't choose. Sure, I chose some, but there are so many more that I love as well! Maybe I'd be able to choose 10 for each kid ...

So, here's to a million favorite pictures (well, at least 365) in 2009!