Friday, December 25, 2009

Celebrating my Savior's birth

Tonight is Christmas Eve. The eve of the birth of Jesus, who is my Lord and Savior.  The true meaning and reason behind our Christmas celebrations.  One of my family's Christmas traditions has always included going to church on Christmas eve to celebrate Christ's birth and remember what makes this holiday so very special. We have always gone to a Catholic service because my whole family is Catholic. Even when I decided to change churches, I still always went to Christmas eve mass with my family.  I love the traditional Christmas carols as well as the presentation of the gospel story of Christ's birth.

This year, however, I decided that I wanted to attend Christmas eve services at my church, Pathway. I wanted to be able to celebrate this joyous day with my friends and fellow believers at this wonderful place where I feel loved and accepted.  So I changed my Christmas eve tradition and headed over to Pathway to celebrate this holiday. I am so glad I did because everyone over there did a fabulous job helping to portray the true meaning of Christmas and celebrating Christ's birth and what Emmanuel truly means, which is God with us. I was blown away with the music and it touched my heart in the most profound way. Pastor Ron did a great job relating the birth story and spoke to my heart about not being afraid and trusting in God. It was a amazing to see so many different people all worshipping and thanking uplifted me and helped me refocus on the true meaning of the season.

Now I couldn't not go to church with my family, so after I got home we headed out to Saint Charles, a Cathloic church with my family, Grandma, aunt, uncle, and cousins. I loved seeing the church so beautifully decorated with the nativity scene and singing the traditional Christmas carols.  I also thought the priest did a very good job with the Christmas story. I really liked his point that Jesus came to bring us joy, but that sin robs us of that joy. We must confess our sins to restore the joy within our souls and our relationship with our savior. 

One thing I really loved about going to both services was just how different they both were but yet how I could meet my Savior in both places and my joy was renewed and strengthened through both experiences. I also loved the similarities between the two services, such as the Christmas story and the music that was played. It reminds me just how blessed I am to have both friends and family that believe as I do. :)

"Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you, he is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:10-11  Glory to God in the Highest!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

I know its a little out of season...

...but I never posted the layout I made with my fave pics from my fall photo shoot with Rebekeh.  The layout turned out so cool and I just had to share it with everyone! :)

I completed this for one of the design team challenges a few months ago over at We were challenged to create a layout with a photo cut into pieces.  I knew I wanted to scrap these gorgeous pictures from that glorious autumn day and so I came up with the catch title and decided to truly make a mosaic of my largest photo as well as the photo of the leaf using some of Tim Holtz' Fragments. They were perfect for this project and gave me the exact look I wanted. I also used patterned papers from SEI's Windsor line as well as gold letters and leaf accents from Making Memories to really help this page come together. I totally love it and this layout inspired the mini book that I posted a few weeks ago. :)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Creativity Central

Well it is Wednesday and halfway through the week.  I have been busily working on many different creative projects, including my Christmas cards....I will post later once I have sent them all out, as well as various layouts of both holiday events and some older photos as well.

This layout is made mostly with pieces from the new December Scarlet Lime kit...I just loved the Christmas-y feel of these papers and they perfectly complemented my photos from the Holiday Pops concert we went to this past weekend. I especially loved all the music note touches such as the large paper flower and the green sheet music paper I added to the kit from my own stash. I also incorporated memorabilia onto the page by attaching my ticket as well as a sheet from the program. :) These pieces really help tell the story of this fun and festive event.

These pictures are from a vacation my family took to the lake 2 years ago. One day we decided to head to the flea market in nearby Shipshewana.  I loved these vintage-y papers from Basic Grey and raided my metal stash to give the page a nostalgic look. :)

I hope you are all enjoying your holidays and spending time with your family and friends, celebrating the true meaning of the season...JESUS!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Now layouts to share! :)

Just popping in with a few of my latest layouts that I have been busy creating these past few weeks. Enjoy!

This is one of my absolute favorite photos of my parents.  I surprised them on their 30th wedding anniversary with a photo shoot and dinner out on me. :) This is my favorite shot of the group. For the layout I used some beautiful Autumn Leaves patterned papers and added some distressing with Tim Holtz' Distress Inks. I also played with my Cricut to create the title and flourishes.

This is another layout I created with photos from the photo shoot with my mom and dad. I totally love the one on the bottom left where my dad is being silly and my mom is smiling away for the just captures their personalities so well. :) I lowered the saturation on the photos to give them this washed/vintage look. I used the gorgeous Wisteria line from Basic Grey to complement my photos and I love that I could use purple on this sweet layout.  I also played around with one of my new Hero Arts's called Dots and Flowers...and Perfect Pearls from Ranger to add some texture to the large purple photo mat. I simply stamped on the purple cardstock with Versamark ink and then brushed the Perfect Pearls powder over my stamped image.  The pearls stuck to the ink and then I brushed off the excess powder. This technique adds a bit of shine to any project and is one of my new favorite things to do.

This layout is my first one scrapping my adorable puppy Bailey (who is now 2 years old).  I absolutely love this photo of my sister and Bailey, but it was very bright and had a lot going on in it.  Below is the original.

So to soften the look of the photo up a bit, I changed the photo to a sepia tone to really help focus in on this sweet relationship between these two.

I also had a lot of fun playing with some patterned paper from Crate Paper's Mia collection. The colors and patterns in this line really helped add to the photo and tell my story as well.

Until my next post, happy scrapping and Merry Christmas! :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

A Scrapping Challenge and some timesaving tips

Hello fellow creative friends! I wanted to pass along a challenge to each of you during this crazy busy holiday season. Feel like you don't have time to scrap? Challenge yourself to set a timer for 30 minutes and create a scrapbook page before the timer goes off.  It really helps you to step outside of your comfort zone and really focus on your photos and the story you want to tell instead of the product and new techniques.  Here's my layout.

To make my project easier, I preprinted my photos and had a design all ready to go. I chose a coordinated line of products that included patterned papers, letters, and embellishments. I then was able to lay out my page and get it finished from start to finish in 30 minutes.  I even had time to personalize my layout in a few ways including inking around the letters and adding buttons to the flowers. I saved myself time by leaving my buttons "naked" (I didn't sew them), gluing my letters down flat, and using uncropped 4x6 photos. Why don't you give it a try and share your creations on the If It's Groovy blog (see the information below).


Time for If It's Groovy challenge over at to start for this month! Ready? Your lo is due by December 30th 11pm EST. Don't delay and forget to turn in your layout :) The challenge is to set a clock, or write down the time you are starting and creat a layout in 30 minutes or less! It really can be done. We all need more time this month with the holidays, parties, dinners, etc...but we *have* to scrap. Try it this way and be sure to enter by emailing me at with your layout or point me in the direction to your online gallery. Be sure to check back on the blog to see the winner's name and if your name is selected email mailing info within the month to claim your prize. Good luck!