Friday, December 31, 2010

Blog Year in Review

I thought it would be fun to take a stroll down memory lane and look back over a year's worth of posts here on the ol' blog. I'm sharing some of my favorites here with you:

January- we learned all about creating cards inside and out, although I can tell you that I still get in a hurry and don't finish the insides most times.

February - ahhh, Make the Cut! I FINALLY took the plunge and bought the software I'd been talking about for over a year. I can honestly say, it has changed the way I scrap AND I use my Cricut much more now than I ever did before. I also decided to become an affiliate for the company, and I've done quite well with that!

March - this was an exciting month to drool over all the new goodies MemoryWorks was getting in the store. I sure bought a lot of new stuff this year - totally worth it!

April - I started to feel guilty about alllllllll my many neglected stamps. I made several projects, but, alas, I never completed the challenge to use each and every stamp. AND I've purchased SO many more this year! Oh well, I can always continue the challenge in 2011.

May - we had a blog hoppin' good time! It was so much fun to create projects for the hop and put together a cute little prize package. I'd definitely like to do more of these in the future.

June - GASC!!! My yearly trek to Arlington, Texas Great American Scrapbook Convention (the closest thing to Mecca for scrapbookers in this part of the country). Had more fun than the law should allow. No, really...they might still be looking for me...

July - BoBunny goodness! There's just something about BoBunny that I've always loved, and I created some of my favorite layouts using it.

August - we got to meet Penny, my little miniature schnauzer. I'm still enjoying the sound of her little feet chasing after me all over the house.

September - sadly, such a busy month that I must not have had time to post. Back to school was an easy transition this year, but again, busy.

October - we raised money for the Susan G. Komen Foundation with our Passionately Pink crop. Never have I been prouder of our sweet group of scrappers!

November - another busy month, apparently. Preparing for the holidays must have had all of my attention, and I did not make time to post.

December - we learned that Santa does, in fact, have a privacy policy and has been enforcing it since there were children. Too funny!

I hope you've enjoyed reminiscing with me. Honestly, 2010 was a challenging year for me on a lot of levels, and I am looking forward to 2011 with hope and excitement for what this new year will hold.

Blessings to you and yours for a happy new year!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

All Is Calm, All Is Bright...

Merry Christmas, from our house to yours!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Santa's Privacy Policy

Found this over on McSweeney's website (I warn you - there is some objectionable content there - that is why I've copied and pasted). I thought this was super-clever and loads of fun:



- - - -

At Santa's Workshop, your privacy is important to us. What follows is an explanation of how we collect and safeguard your personal information; the kind of information we collect; and your choices regarding our use and disclosure of this information.

Why Do We Need This Information?
Santa Claus requires your information in order to compile his annual list of Who is Naughty and Who is Nice, and to ensure accuracy when he checks it twice. Your information is also used in connection with delivering the kinds of goods and services you've come to expect from Santa, including but not limited to toys, games, good cheer, merriment, Christmas spirit, seasonal joy, and holly jollyness.

What Information Do We Collect?
We obtain information from a variety of sources. Much of it comes from unsolicited letters sent to Santa by children all over the world listing specific items they would like to receive for Christmas. Often these letters convey additional information as well, such as the child's hopes and dreams, how much they love Santa, and which of their siblings are doodyheads.

The letters also provide another important piece of information—fingerprints. We run these through databases maintained by the FBI, CIA, NSA, Interpol, MI6, and the Mossad. If we find a match, it goes straight on the Naughty List. We also harvest a saliva sample from the flap of the envelope in which the letter arrives in order to establish a baseline genetic identity for each correspondent. This is used to determine if there might be an inherent predisposition for naughtiness. A detailed handwriting analysis is performed as part of a comprehensive personality workup, and tells us which children are advancing nicely with their cursive and which are still stubbornly forming block letters with crayons long past the age when this is appropriate.

Our network of fully trained, duly deputized mall "Santas" file reports from the field, telling us which children are well-behaved, which are elf-phobic, which are prone to sphincter control issues, and which are squirmy beard-pulling monstrous little brats. Digital copies of photos taken with these "Santas" are automatically sent to our database for further evaluation, with particular attention given to the ones where the children are crying.

Santa also employs a paranormal method of observation known as "remote viewing." This enables him to see you when you're sleeping, know when you're awake, and know if you've been bad or good. He even knows if the cookies you're leaving out are homemade or store-bought.

What Do We Do With the Information We Collect?
Sharing is one of the joys of Christmas. For this reason, we share your personal information with our affiliates, non-affiliated third parties, and anyone else who has a legitimate financial stake in a successful holiday season. Mrs. Claus also likes to have a look-see.

Our affiliates include partners of Santa's Workshop who are actively involved in making Christmas happen. They include toy-making elves, flying reindeer, and Jesus. Non-affiliated third parties might include the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and Hanukkah Harry.

We may also share your information with mental health practitioners—especially if, as a child, you asked for a particular present every Christmas but never got it. This information gives your analyst a better understanding of why you sometimes feel sad at this time of year and why you resent your parents.

Occasionally we share your Christmas wish lists with professional lyricists seeking inspiration for a catchy holiday song. In the past this information has inspired such holiday favorites as "All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth," "All I Want for Christmas is You," "My Grown-Up Christmas List," and "Santa Baby." Should your wish list inspire a hit single, you may be entitled to royalties, payable in the form of sleighfuls of Christmas cheer.

Finally, we make note of the condition of your roof and chimney in the course of our Christmas Eve deliveries. We share this information with appropriate third-party contractors, who may contact you to warn that your aging roof will soon be leaking worse than Julian Assange, or that you will die in your sleep of carbon monoxide poisoning if you don't replace your chimney liner right away.

How Do We Secure This Information?
We secure your information by keeping it at the North Pole, one of the most remote, inhospitable and uninhabitable places on earth. It is stored in a secure gingerbread facility deep in the Candy Cane Forest, behind an impassable barrier conjured by Elven magic. The facility is guarded by a full brigade of life-size wooden toy soldiers armed with Nerf Blasters and Super Soakers. The area is also patrolled by ravenous polar bears.

You Have Choices
You have "opt out" choices regarding certain disclosures we make about you. Please indicate your preferences below:

____ I'll be nice. Please collect, collate, analyze, disseminate and disclose my personal information in any way you see fit. I understand that my cooperative attitude will be taken into consideration when it comes time to compile the Naughty/Nice list next year.

____ I'll be naughty. Please don't share my personal information with anyone. You may use it only to ensure that I get as many of the specific items on my list as possible. I understand that my uncooperative attitude carries the risk that a lump of bituminous coal will be deposited in my stocking annually, either for the duration of my life or until I change my preferences.

You may forward your completed form to: Santa Claus, c/o Santa's Workshop, The North Pole. Or you may retain it for your own records—it doesn't matter. Whether your form is on file with Santa or not, he's gonna find out who's naughty or nice.

Please allow twelve days of Christmas for your choices to take effect.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Santa's Helpers Workshop Projects

I must admit, I believe this is my favorite class to teach each year. I just love making cute little projects for the express purpose of giving them away and blessing someone else's day! I also love the process of searching magazines, books, and the internet for new and different ideas that we haven't used before. I always come away completely inspired and ready to create.

But I digress...on with the projects!

They are, clockwise from top left: a gift card holder, tea light card/holder, sour cream container, tea bag holder, and hot chocolate holder (inside is a goodie bag stuffed with one or two packets of hot chocolate, mini-marshmallows, and candy canes). None of these are my originals, so I've linked you to the tutorials or instructions for each. However, I didn't find specific instructions for the hot chocolate holder, so here is how I improvised it:

Cut a strip of cardstock 6" x 12"

Along the 12" side, score 3/4" all the way across.

Along the 6" side, score at 3", then at 3 3/4". Turn paper around and score at the same lengths from the other end.

Snip the smallest tabs created by the score lines at the bottom, then fold them inward and fold paper into a box shape. Adhere with a strong glue or tape.

The bags we used to pack them were just simple treat bags from the party or craft section at Wal-Mart.

Now...don't you wish you'd come to class? :)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Long time coming - Class layouts + an announcement!

First, the announcement. I think I mentioned to a couple of my peeps that I was considering trying out for a position on MemoryWorks' creative team, TeamWorks. Well, I did, and...well...I made it! I'm officially a member of the 2011 TeamWorks team, and I couldn't be more excited! I can't wait to see what the upcoming year will bring on that front.

Now, for the long-awaited class layouts from Crop Camp (even I can't believe it's been nigh on TWO months since I've posted!)

These were all created using kraft cardstock, Girls Paperie papers (the Paper Girl line, to be exact) and embellies, with a few Jenni Bowlin Vintage Buttons thrown in for good measure. Oh, and of course we used Perfect Pearls in Lime and Berry Blush (you can now purchase these as a mist here).

What I thought I'd do is talk a little bit about the techniques we used on each layout and share the photo mat sizes, for those of you with completed layouts needing to add pictures.

For this first layout, we used a masking and misting technique. We used a plastic mask (no need to buy these if you have a Cricut - just create your own out of stencil blank) and Perfect Pearls to mist the background on the lefthand side of the layout, then flipped the mask over to "stamp" the right hand side. Photo mat sizes: Left-hand side: 6"x8"; Right-hand side: 3) 3.5" x 3.5"

For this next layout, we antiqued the edges of all the pieces with Distress Inks, then pieced together the entire page background out of squares of patterned paper. Photo mat sizes: All are 4" x 6."

For this layout, we used a Q-tip dipped in water and a stamp inked with embossing ink to brush on Perfect Pearls as accents. (See the darker petals of the rose and the stamped image) Photo mat sizes: Left-hand side: 4" x 6" and 5" x 7"; Right-hand side: 2) 4" x 6"

For this last layout, we focused on curling the edges of the patterned paper using water and also clustering embellishments together above and below the photos. Photo mat sizes: All are 6" x 4."

That's all for now. Be back tomorrow to share our Santa's Helpers Workshop projects!


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