It's the Little Things

There are so many project ideas in my head for the November stamp of the month. I know I will be doing some layering of flower parts.  Here are a few of the project examples from Close to My Heart designers. 

The best part is this stamp set is just $5 with any $50 purchase during the month of November. Don't delay because this stamp set will go away at the end of November.  I will have a video up soon showing how I'm using this versatile stamp set. 

What would you do with this set?  Cards, scrapbook layouts, or home decor items? 


A festive end to October

I hope that everyone has something fun planned for this evening. I still need to purchase candy! It seems that every year there are fewer and fewer trick or treaters. The night is certainly not the same as it was for me, or even my children. 

My grandchildren dress up and get excited about trick or treating, but they will not ever know this as a carefree night. They know they need to be within sight of their parents at all times, and their candy must be checked before they can dig in. 

A lot of children go to parties and festivals, and do not trick or treat at all. I suspect that going from house to house in the dark will soon become a thing of the past. 

Will many children knock on you door tonight? Do you have other plans for the evening?


Celebrate 5 years of Studio J

 Studio J is a quick and easy way to create fancy scrapbook pages digitally. You simply create an account, load your pictures to your account, select the layout of your choice, and add your pictures. Studio J will automatically resize your pictures to fit the layout. Your layouts will be mailed to you, and you will also have a jpeg to save. Since Studio J is 5 years old, there are prizes and discounts to celebrate.

1. First, for the month of November, all Studio J two page layouts will be $5 each. This is a savings of 25%.

2. Every 5th customer to place a Studio J order will receive a surprise free gift in their box.

3. Five lucky Studio J customers will be randomly selected to receive a "golden ticket" in with their order. The ticket can be redeemed for one of Close to My Hearts new D-ring photo albums, loaded with ten top load page protectors.

4. You can post one of your beautiful new layouts to the Close to My Heart Facebook page, using the hashtag #ctmhlucky5. Five winners will be chosen to receive a D-ring album with 10 top load page protectors. 

5. Five brand new kits will be added to Studio J starting November 3. You can now use your favorite new collections from the Annual Inspiration book for your digital layouts.

Here is the direct link to Studio J

I had never done any digital scrapbooking, but found it to be fast and easy. I loved the fact that I didn't have go to the expense of having my pictures printed.
I put this layout together in 10 minutes.

Have you done any digital scrapbooking? What are the benefits? Did it totally replace traditional scrapbooking for you?



Pumpkins, scarecrows, and grandchildren

We had a great time, as usual, selecting the perfect pumpkins. Last year my granddaughter was all about the cute "bitsy" pumpkins. This year she tried to select one that her dad could carve for her. What a difference a year makes.
 Another difference this year was that my grandson did not want to pose for pictures. This pout was in every photo. He did, however, try to get the largest pumpkin just like last year. 

I need to get these photos in a scrapbook, but I'm having trouble selecting the right paper collection. I am debating between two.
Scaredy Cat
 Which one do you think I should use? I'm leaning towards Pathfinding, because there is a stamp in the Workshop on the Go that says "Smile it's the best day ever." I think I should stamp that next to my grandsons frowning face. 

You can see all of the paper collections on my website . Be sure to leave a comment and let me know which paper collection you prefer. 



Make a Beautiful Holiday Keepsake

Holiday Happenings Extras

Holiday Happening Crush Book
I am in love with my new Crush book. I can't wait to start using it to plan and document this year's Christmas. The video below will show you the plans I have for my crush book.

If you would like a Holiday Happenings Crush book or assortment package you can find them here and here.

There are four other Crush Books so that you can have a photo journal of any event or time period in your life. Each of the Crush Books has a different theme. The In the Pink, Wildwood, Modville, and Bluebird  Crush Books can be viewed here.

Thanks for visiting my blog. Do you have a Crush or Smash book that you enjoy using? Please comment below.



It's Almost Time to Select the October Winner!

Home for the Holidays Stamp Set
Each month I randomly select one of my newsletter subscribers to receive a free gift. Next week someone will win this adorable stamp set. This set is perfect for Christmas Cards and gift tags. If you have already purchased this stamp set, you can simply choose a different set.

My email subscribers receive weekly updates about current specials, and upcoming events. If you want to stay in the loop, and have a chance to win free products, simply fill in the newsletter subscription box at the upper right of this page.

I hope to have a video or two posted next week showcasing this great stamp set, so keep an eye on this blog, or my YouTube Channel. 

 I hope everyone is enjoying some cooler weather, and looking forward to all of the upcoming holidays. 




A Simple Holiday Layout and Matching Cards

There were a few projects that I didn't complete during the Close to My Heart Waco, TX incentive trip. Actually, I didn't even start most of them. I'm finally getting around to making a few things, so I thought I would share. I hope you enjoy the video below. It is the first of my Christmas videos. The videos are getting a little easier to make, so hopefully I can post a few each week. I need the incentive to get my Christmas Cards finished. After the video I will have links to all of the products used.

Products Used

Yuletide Carol Paper Pack
My Crush Holiday Happenings Assortment
Gold Sequins Assortment

Thank you for your support. I hope the rest of you have gotten a start on your holiday planning. I am behind as usual. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. I would love to hear all about your holiday plans.



The Damon Divas Walked to Raise Funds and Awareness for Blood Cancers

We have been working hard to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Last night was the culmination of all that hard work. The evening began with a Remembrance Ceremony that left everyone in tears, but was a great reminder of why we had all gathered there.

 Thousands of people met at NRG stadium, for a celebration of life, and a remembrance of those we have lost. The total raised by all of these people was nearly $850,000. Our team raised $1899!

 Everyone was given a lantern; yellow for remembrance of a loved one, white for cancer survivors, and red for supporters. It was awesome to see all of those lanterns raised as we began our walk. 

 The two mile walk was a breeze in years past. The fact that it was difficult this year means I have a lot of work to do. Chemo and other medications can really take a toll on your body. I was proud, and thankful, to see so many other white lanterns raised in the air. 

We made it! It was a wonderful evening, but I was happy to see I had made it to the finish line. Now fundraising begins for next year. A percentage of my Close to My Heart profits go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, so I will be raising funds all year. 

Thank you to everyone who helped us donate to a cause that is so important to me. If you would like to form your own team, or get more information about Light the Night events, check out their website.

Please take a moment to comment below with a cause that you feel passionate about.  




Hopefully You Won't Make These Mistakes

I had not done any scrapbooking since the 90's, and had never attempted to make a card, or any other paper crafts, until 2 years ago. I needed a hobby, and a friend who is an avid scrapbooker, got me hooked on  papercrafting by sending me a Cricut.

I made a lot of bad purchases in the beginning, simply because I did not know what I was doing. I hope this list will help you avoid making the same mistakes.

1. All paper is not created equal. 

    When I first started, I went to Wal-Mart and purchased packs of paper in different themes. What I didn't realize is the quality of paper varies wildly. Now that I know better, I only buy a few different brands that I trust, and always purchase printed paper that is double sided. Cardstock is thicker and comes in solid colors, making it great for card and scrapbook bases. My favorite brands of paper are Bo Bunny, Graphic 45,  Close to My Heart, and Core'dinations. I prefer to buy paper collections now. I don't want to have to find embellishments to match my great paper.

Find the Yuletide kit here.

2. There is a reason there are lots of different types of ink.

     I wrote a post explaining all of the different types of ink, and when to use each. If you are like I was in the beginning of my crafty journey, staring at an array of inks, with no clue, check out this post.
This is the Whimsy pigment ink collection.

3. You should not randomly purchase cute stickers, stamps, ribbon, etc.

     You walk into the craft store and it all looks so pretty, and it's on sale! Your eyes glaze over, and you think you need it all.  I know the feeling. I randomly purchased items that were on sale, and a year later had not managed to use any of them. Now I purchase with a project in mind. I know I will be making scrapbook pages, and cards in certain themes, and I'm sure you do also. Why in the world do I have a ton of flowers in such odd colors? Twenty rolls of washi tape? I have no idea.

4. You do not need a large collection of Cricut cartridges. 

     If you own a Cricut you know what I mean when I say that collecting cartridges can become addicting. I have many, but seem to always turn to the same few for my projects. Once I purchased my first Close to My Heart cartridge with 700 images, I realized that these cartridges could take care of most of my scrapbooking, and card making, needs. 

Artbooking Close to My Heart Cartridge

5. Organization is important!

     There is nothing worse than knowing you have pink ribbon that will go perfectly with the card you are making, but you can't find it. Suddenly a card that should have taken you 30 minutes to make, has you spending an hour just finding your supplies. Figure out the type of organizers that work best for you, and get your stuff in order. I need to be able to see my supplies, so very little of it is out of sight in drawers. The drawers I do have are labeled. If you have a system, not only will you be able to find that pink ribbon, but clean up will be much easier. 

My new favorite clear organizers.

Are there some things you wish you had known when you started crafting? Comment below and let us know. Maybe I'm still making mistakes, and you can help me.





Artfully Sent Cricut Cartridge
I made three cards from the Artfully Sent Cricut Cartridge as my final cards in the Halloween Cards Series. It feels good to check them off my list, because I really should start on Christmas cards. 

Are you one of those people who works on their cards all year long, so that you do not have any holiday stress? I don't personally know anyone who can answer "yes" to that question. I certainly can't, and I send out a lot more Christmas cards than I do Halloween cards. Do I sound a little nervous about finishing on time? Well, that's because I am.

 There are many cute Holiday cards on the new Artfully Sent Cartridge, so I am hoping each card won't take me hours to finish. I will, of course, share the cards as I finish them.

If you would like more details on the Artfully Sent Cartridge, follow this link. After the video I will list the supplies I used for each card, and the links in case you would like to order any of the products for yourself. 

Card #1 ~ Haunted House

This is a scene card that can be found on page 44 of the Artfully Sent instruction booklet. It is the envelope 8 button if you are using Cricut Craft Room, or looking at the overlay. This card was the easiest to put together because it really didn't need much in the way of embellishment. Of course I used my usual amount of glitter, I can't seem to help myself. 

Black and Canary exclusive dye inks can be found here 
Creepy Creatures stamp set can be ordered  here.
Canary Cardstock is from the Whimsy Collection, and you can find it here.

Whimsy Cardstock Collection

Tim Holtz distress ink in Black Soot can be found at any craft store, or on Amazon. 
Wink of Stella glitter pen, and Sakura gelly roll pen can both be found on Amazon.

Card #2 Spider Web Sleeve Card

This sleeve card can be found on page 43, and envelope 7, in the instruction book. It cuts out as one piece and I cut the inside Canary piece to fit with my trimmer. 

Black, Canary, and Thistle cardstock - both Thistle and Canary are part of the Whimsy Collection.
 The Scaredy Cat Paper Pack can be viewed here.

Scaredy Cat Paper Collection

Card #3 - Trick or Treat

I used all of the same supplies for this card, and it is also on page 43 of the instruction booklet. I cut out both Sentiment cards, and used the second card inside the first. I cut the first card at the recommended 7 inch, but cut the second card at 3.5 inches, so that it would fit properly inside. Hopefully that was clear when you watch the video. I used a cut from the basic shapes on the Art Philosophy Cricut Cartridge. If you want details on the Art Philosophy collection, follow this link.
You can use any of the basic shapes, I cut my chosen shape at 4.5 inches.

As always, thank you for your support. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section below. I would love to know if you are making your own holiday cards this year. 



We Had a Great Time in Waco

Dinner with the gals

This was the first time I had the privilege of going to a Close to My Heart event. Even though it was only one day long, we learned a lot about our business, made some unique paper crafts, and won lots of prizes. This event was made possible because I am  part of a team that had tremendous growth. 

My mother is a CTMH consultant also, so it was nice to share this trip with her. We started the fun off with dinner on Friday with a wonderful group of  CTMH ladies. It was great to get to know them, and we feel like we made some fantastic new friends. 

Saturday was an all day event that alternated between business building ideas, craft projects, prize drawings, a silent auction to benefit Project Smile, and awards. I will be making some new crafts, so watch for posts, and YouTube videos. 

We took a short break for a photo op

The days events kicked off Saturday at 9 am with pastries, and check-in. We started at 10 am with drawings for prizes, and business building ideas. We were given supplies and instructions for several projects. I'm afraid we chatted a little too much at our table to get everything done. I can't wait to unpack it all, and finish my projects. I came home with four new stamp sets, paper galore, washi tape, sequins, instructions for numerous paper craft projects,  lots of inspiration, and many new friends.

This is just an example of the projects on display.
Some very talented ladies brought projects to share. All of  the projects offered great inspiration, but some blew me away!

If Close to My Heart sounds like a career that you would be interested in, or you simply want the discount and friendships, check out Join the Fun , or email me at dedraclutz@hotmail.com with any questions.

I have not regretted taking the leap to become a Close to My Heart Consultant, and neither will you. 

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