Tuesday, November 30, 2010

top 2 tuesday

This week's Top 2 Tuesday is your 2 favorite organizing tips & tricks. I am all over this one. I love being organized. I am one of those people that alphabetizes her spice rack and color coordinates her closet. I used to organize other people's houses when I was babysitting. Yep. I'm one of those. However... this has all faded over the past 6 1/2 years after I married one of the more unorganized men I have ever met... But I still love me a good organizing tip...

1) Baskets. Baskets, baskets, baskets. Right now I am obsessed with vintage wire baskets. I recently bought one at an antique fair that I am using to hold some of my stamp supplies. I love that you can see what is in them... but everything is still "put away." I use regular baskets for everything... and I mean everything. Cleaning supplies, shoes, ribbon, photo albums, books, hats, DVDs, games... told you... everything. (photo via French Garden House)

2) Go vertical. Just think how much table space you could have... I love the idea of floating shelves (hmmm, need to get some of those). And of course any type of basket/container that attaches directly to the wall, I'm a big fan of. How great would it be to have everything you need within reach... but still have a clean desk to work off of. This is something I'm definitely trying to do in my own tiny, little space right now... think up. (photo via Good Housekeeping)

Visit Taylor's blog at The Undomestic Momma to link up and share your own top 2 favorite organizing tips!

Monday, November 29, 2010

december daily {days 1-10}

I am hoping to inspire you to create your own December Daily album this year:) It really is sooo much fun... swear. Here's a quick glimpse into the first few pages of my 2009 December Daily album. I will try to site as many materials as I can, but seeing as most of this was put together almost a year ago... no promises.

{album} At first I was using a 1" red Kolo linen 8.5x11 album... and I loved it. But as I kept adding page after page, I noticed my book looked like it was bursting at the seams. So, I decided to upgrade to this fun 2" green album that I found among the photo books at Target (man, I love that store). I still want to add some type of embellishment to the front... any ideas?

{day 1} I started with a fun transparency page (Hambly) for the beginning of my album. It was a 12x12 that I trimmed down to the size of my album (8.5x11).

{day 1} Behind the transparency, I cut out the days from a December 2009 calendar that I found in a magazine. I used a "countdown to Christmas" cut-out that I adhered directly on top of the 25th of my calendar.

{day 2} I used a simple layout with some plaid scrapbooking paper, a little bit of ribbon, and some rub-on sayings to describe a fun night out with old friends. I also had a chipboard cut-out that worked perfectly for a small square photo. I love the snowflake transparency that fits over the cut-out.

{day 3} The left side is a photo of a gift that I cut out of a magazine (loved the red & white color combo), and on the right side I included half a page of journaling (my thoughts on a "simple Christmas"). This was all adhered to the back of a fun green file folder (Target). I still want to add a little something to the back side of that chipboard cut-out.

{day 4} I used the inside of the green file folder for day 4. On the left, I adhered a number cut-out scrapbooking page (was 12x12, but I trimmed down to size) and used some Stickles glitter glue to dot all the 4's on the page.

{day 4} I used a strip of the leftover transparency from day 1 in the middle of the file folder. Then I used the right side to journal about some of my handmade Christmas projects.

{day 5} I love the scrapbook paper on this page... with the little houses (so cute), this paper came in an 8x8 Christmas pad of paper that I bought at Hobby Lobby last year. Day 5 included one simple picture and a little bit of journaling describing my day at the Duluth Holiday Festival.

{day 6} The graph paper with the ornaments came from the same 8x8 pad of paper as the page I used on day 5. For day 6 I just included a simple list of some of my Christmas favorites. The cardboard part at the top is just a seasonal Starbucks' sleeve, with my #6 sticker place inside the Starbucks logo.

{day 7} I wanted to include a few pictures of our decorations around the house. (I so wish I did something like this last year when we were in our old house... maybe I can make one up for 2008... hmmm...) I just printed a few photos on my printer at home, and used my circle punches to make the little thing in the middle. I had a fun circular snowflake transparency that I overlayed in the center.

{day 8} This was a super simple layout that just included some journaling that I typed out about the meaning of Christmas. I rounded the corners (of course) and added some letter stickers to spell out the number 8.

{day 9} I just printed out my flight itinerary for my New Year's trip with the girls, since I booked my flight reservations that day. I used the same letter stickers that I used on day 8, to spell out "What are you doing new years eve?"

{day 10} Since we finished wrapping all of our presents on the 10th, I included a simple photo of the gifts, with just a little bit of journaling. Some sparkly embellishments never hurt:)

Days 11-20 coming soon...

Sunday, November 28, 2010

december daily {my way}

So for a while now, you guys have heard me go on and on about this mysterious "December Daily" book...

"What is a December Daily book??" you might ask... Only one of the best craft ideas ever invented. Compliments go out to the scrapbooking genius Ali Edwards. Seriously... if you ever want to feel truly terrible about your scrapbooking abilities... just go check out her blog. She is amazing. You can read more about the December Daily process and even see some of Ali's albums from years past right here.

The general idea of a December Daily book is to capture your family's holiday memories and traditions by recording and photographing what makes your December truly special. And because Ali truly is a scrapbooking genius (and has the ability to whip up a beautiful album within minutes) she creates the base layer of her album all before December even starts. Maybe, just maybe, one year I will be able to accomplish this... but I didn't do it last year, and seeing how it's November 27th, it's probably not going to happen this year either.

But that is exactly what I love about this project... and what I love about Ali. She really encourages you to make this project your own. Do what works for you.... what fits your family schedule... what makes the process enjoyable for you.

So, that is exactly what I do... make it work for me. This means putting my December Daily book together in January and February... after the Christmas hustle and bustle. I spend most of December jotting down little notes and storing away mementos... just a little something day by day.

This could be just about anything... family traditions... daily events... favorite Christmas songs... Christmas cookie recipes... decorations around the house... receipts from your Christmas shopping... pictures with Santa... your Christmas wish list... favorite holiday drink from Starbucks... a copy of your child's letter to Santa... plane tickets from your family vacation... pictures from your company holiday party... your Christmas tree... the ideas are endless. The point is that no memory is too small. 10 years from now you will be amazed at how much your favorite Starbucks' drink cost and will love to see your child's handwriting change with each letter to Santa.

The point is... this is supposed to be ENJOYABLE. The December Daily should not be another dreaded thing to add to your already hectic holiday schedule... it should enhance your schedule... and magically make it less hectic... it is designed to help you pause and take note of the little things... which is exactly why I love it.

Over the next week, I will show you glimpses of my 2009 December Daily album. (which yes, still includes a few pages waiting to be completed... and that's okay... I'm no Ali Edwards) Let me know if you have any questions in the comments and I will do my best to answer.

Friday, November 26, 2010

goin' to the chapel...

Well, my sister is anyways... That's right, last Friday, my little sister was asked a very important question from a very special guy... and she said YES!!! We are all beyond excited... as Chris will make a fabulous addition to the family... and he is so, so, so sweet to my Jenna.

Congrats you two!!! We love you!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

thankful {THANKFUL} thursday

For this special edition of Thanksgiving Thankful Thursday I am thankful for:

1) Home-cooked food. We are beyond excited about some eating good southern food. And this year will be southern indeed. My sister-in-law's family is visiting from South Africa this year, so along with the turkey, we will also enjoy rack of lamb, and a special South African dessert, which I've heard includes loads of sugar (right up my alley).

2) Family. This year, Lance and I are spending Thanksgiving with his family in Habersham. Since we have recently moved to Kentucky (far, far away from any relatives) I am realizing the importance of good time with family.

3) Deep-fried turkey. Seriously... once you go deep fried, you won't ever go back. Promise. My side of the family has been doing this for years and years... but this Thanksgiving, Lance is bringing the deep fried goodness to his side of the family. And they will not be disappointed.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

a true turkey day

So, occasionally I will look out my office window and see a few deer, and maybe a squirrel or two, and I have even seen a giant mole. But nothing tops what I saw the other day...

Turkeys. Yes, turkeys. Lots of them. Not 3, not 5, not even 10... BUT 15 FLIPPIN' TURKEYS.
I have seen a few wandering in the backyard before, but 5 has been the max. Apparently they like to travel in herds. You know, turkey herds.

Don't worry... we're not using any of these turkeys for our Thanksgiving meal... but it's good to know there are plenty around... an abundance inhabiting our neighborhood.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

john marshall turns one! {louisville children's photographer}

Do you remember this little guy? Little John Marshall... you all oooed and ahhhed over him in this post. Well, he just turned 1 on November 6th... such a big boy now! I was thrilled when his mama asked if I would take some photos of the birthday boy... we made sure to get a few with mom & dad too:) I absolutely adore this family, they have become some of our dearest friends here in Louisville.

{Be sure to wish little John Marshall a happy birthday and tell the fam how great they look... for every 10 comments they will receive a complimentary 5x7 print.}

Friday, November 19, 2010

right now...

Right now, I am...

...breaking out the Christmas stationary stash...

...working on some photography print orders...

...using your brilliant ideas from yesterday's Thankful Thursday comments to inspire a few handmade Christmas gifts...

...sending autumn wishes via postal mail to a friend far, far away...

...finally finishing last year's (yes, as in 2009) December Daily album...

What are you up to, right now??

Thursday, November 18, 2010

thankful thursday

This Thursday I am thankful for:

1) Upcoming holidays. Specifically some days off work. This time of year I always seem to get so frazzled... with the shopping... traveling... gift wrapping... But I am so thankful that I am able to take a few days off work to slow down and enjoy my time with family and friends. I am looking forward to sleeping in a few days, eating, maybe catching a holiday movie, and then eating some more.

2) Community. As in, our Community Group. At the new church we have recently joined they strongly encourage community groups... which is basically a group from the church that you meet with once a week that live near one another. It is a beautiful time of fellowship where we can encourage and challenge one another. I am so thankful for the new friends we have made in this group.

3) Christmas shopping. I absolutely love giving gifts. Anyone that knows me can attest to this. I love everything about gift giving... selecting the gift, the entire wrapping process, and seeing the receiver's expression as they open the gift. So you can imagine that I get pretty excited about the Christmas shopping season. We are on a super tight budget this year, so I have been challenged to think outside the box a little... thinking more handmade... more personal. Any ideas?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

russell family {louisville family photographer}

I mean... beautiful family, right? Last weekend I was lucky enough to spend some quality time with the Russell family... aka "we-belong-in-a-magazine" family. Little Parker was too cute for words, and I just about melted when mom pulled out the most precious little red hat for her to wear.... sigh, so sweet. I mean, even their dogs were adorable.

{Be sure to tell them how beautiful they are (and how much you love that red hat:), because for every 10 comments the family will receive a complimentary 5x7 print.}