Saturday, February 13, 2016

papertrey ink :: new moments inked

Hello!  Papertrey Ink is celebrating their 9th anniversary this month with contests, new releases, and a few special announcements.  Be sure to stop by Nichole's blog to get all the details!

Last week, a box of new Moments Inked products arrived at my door from PTI and I know you'll want to see what was in it!  So let's get right to it...

There were a couple of new stamp sets, the first one being a set of tiny icons called Everyday Symbols.  They are so cute and, of course, perfectly sized to fit in the boxes and columns of the MI planners.  In keeping with my efforts to streamline my organization process, I actually haven't used them in my planners yet.  That's not to say these cuties won't ever make an appearance in them, but I had something else in mind when I saw them.

My 5-year-old started school in September and there is a ridiculous amount of things to remember!  Most, if not all, of those responsibilities fall on me--I'm sure many of you can relate ;)  In an effort to keep it all straight--and in the event of a Momergency and Dad has to take over for a day or two--these little stamps and a simple calendar are the solution.

I found the calendar in the Target dollar spot a month or two ago ($3 for 12 monthly pages and a sturdy wooden clipboard).  It's easy enough to make your own version with some printables; a browse through Pinterest can probably help with that.  With a little creative thinking, I found a symbol for each item we need to remember on a routine basis.  Some just worked out perfectly (the envelope, the book, the car) while others were adapted to fit.  I chose a different PTI ink color--nothing girly, of course--for each icon and the result is a hit with Gus.  It's colorful, he can recognize most of the symbols and learn the ones that aren't so obvious, and he is also learning to have some responsibility for his school things.  All of that in a little stamp set!

And in case anyone needs a reminder, I stamped each picture on a long white Post-it with an explanation and stuck it directly to the clipboard.

This was not time-consuming at all and I even went ahead and filled out March & April.  It's easy enough to add other appointments or reminders as they arise, too. 

Speaking of the Post-it notes, the other stamp set was Posted II, which is the longer version of the original, released last year to customize sticky notes.

The new stamp set contains an unlined numbered list, a lined list with a label title, and a few phrases that fit in the title box.  To be honest, my first thought was that this was going to entail an awful lot of work just to make a list on a Post-it that I'd end up throwing out soon after.  But as I thought about it, I decided that if the list I made could be something I would refer to for, say, an entire month, then it might be worth it.

So I made a monthly task list of items I want to address and I put it on the back page of the previous month.  Turns out, I actually really like this idea!  I tried a couple different ways, both numbered and lined, and I'll go back and forth.

**It is worth mentioning that you will need a long acrylic block to use this stamp, since it is approximately 3x6 inches.  If you're an avid stamper, you probably have one, but if you only moonlight, then you may not.**

The next item on the list is the Perpetual Daily Pages.  I bet there are some super-happy people out there!  These are really cool, too, and come in both the spiral and binder editions, just as the planners do.  The binder pages are loose leaf; the spiral pages are bound on a sturdy coil, like the planner.

I mentioned in my last Moments Inked post (before I knew these were going to be released), that while I did end up using the daily pages quite a bit in 2015, I had found other means of recording the same information for 2016--a dedicated Gratitude journal, using my MI spiral planner as a health and wellness tracker, etc.  So, hmmm, what to do with these new pages?

Well, I'm still using them as daily notes.  I take a stack at a time of the loose leaf sheets (maybe 30), bind them to a small clipboard (again, from Target), and keep it by my side as I work.  I LOVE this set up!  I fill out my top 3 family tasks and the day of the week in the box under the perpetual calendar, then use the "Focus" box as the same thing, only for business.

I love that the colors are gray and white because I can use pretty markers and even find myself coloring or doodling on them when I'm trying to think; it's kind of relaxing.  I also like that these are undated.  I've decided I will not keep the pages when I'm finished with them.  These are daily notes, used to quickly keep track of certain aspects of my schedule, and when I have the chance, I'll fill in the appropriate designated journal or planner (MI binder, gratitude, health, etc) and then recycle these pages.  Doing it this way the last few days has actually been a benefit, as I feel like there's less of a panic to fill in every book every night before I forget things.

The last item for the day is the Binder Listed die.  It's exactly like the Tabbed List die, but for the binder (obviously).  It has the same proportions so the Listed stamp set is compatible.

Instead of making a list for this post, though, I made a page marker, which I felt was sorely needed in my binder.  It wasn't an issue last year with the spiral edition, as I generally kept it open and folded back to the current day.  Since you can't fold the binder back, I keep it closed when it's not in use.  There are paper and binder clips that will mark pages, I know, but I think this is a fun idea, too.

I made my bookmark from a Pink Paislee specialty acetate so it won't rip or tear like regular paper.  It'll get banged around and moved weekly so I wanted to use something stronger than cardstock.  If you want to use paper or cardstock, I'd suggest laminating it.

I die cut a tab and stamped TODAY on it from the Listed set.  Even though the hues of the triangles are not PTI, they are similar shades and this marker will complement each month's PTI color scheme.  It also helps that it's transparent so that with a quick glance, I can still see what's happening on the page underneath.

So there you have it--these fun new products will be released on the 15th!  Today is a group post so be sure to check out how the rest of the MI team has put their products to use.  Stop by Nichole's blog to see photo teasers and links from the other girls.  And don't forget all the fun anniversary happenings over there, too.  Thanks for stopping by! 

Supplies used:
All supplies Papertrey Ink, unless otherwise noted.

Moments Inked:
2016 Binder & Planner Pages
Binder Perpetual Daily Pages
Everyday Symbols stamp set
Posted II stamp set
Binder Listed Dies
Listed stamp set
Posted stamp set (original)
Large Post-its

True Black, Raspberry Fizz, Aqua Mist, Limeade Ice, Orange Zest, Tropical Teal, New Leaf, Summer Sunrise, Hawaiian Shores, Ripe Avocado, Enchanted Evening, Canyon Clay

Cedar Lane Acetate (Pink Paislee)

Sunday, February 7, 2016

pinkfresh studio - hello, felicity!

Even though it's a bit late, I'm thrilled to bring you my first post as a member of the Pinkfresh Studio Design Team!  The announcement was made at the end of 2015 and this post debuted on the PS blog early in January, so you may have already seen it.  But just in case you missed it, I'm sharing it here now, as well.  I fell in love with Pinkfresh the minute they debuted and I happily accepted a guest post last September.  I was over the moon when Kinnari asked me to be on the 2016 DT and it is because of her that I made it to CHA this year.  So, a month in, it's already been an amazing experience on this team and I'm looking forward to a year filled with beautiful colors, graphic patterns, and being surrounded by a team of talented women and an owner who is unbelievably supportive of that team.  As I get ready to share my 2nd post on Monday, I'll sneak you a little peek of the good stuff here...

I made all of my projects with the new Felicity collection and I'm loving all the bright colors and the sweet, fresh feeling of the entire line.

For my first project, I made gift tags to accompany some simply wrapped kraft boxes.  I wanted to highlight the bold colors of some of the elements so I used lots of white in my tags, which is a trend you'll see throughout the whole collection.

Taking a hint from the white and yellow triangle die cut tag, I minimally embellished a couple of other white tags; one with a wood heart, the other with the 'Happy little moments' washi tape.

I used another strip of the washi to cover a mini clothespin which clips the tag to the package.  I adhered the tape to the clothespin and trimmed off the excess with an X-acto knife.  It's one of my favorite finishing touches!

There is something I love about a bright green and yellow combination; maybe it signifies something new and cheerful--grass and sunshine?  I'm not sure, but I felt the ampersand needed a sunny yellow tassel (and a little pink wood heart, too).  The heart paper is one of my favorites and I love that the pattern is replicated in washi tape (on the clothespin) and another die cut tag (peeking out from behind the ampersand).

Nothing but good vibes here!  Definitely trying to keep them going all year!

{The wrap is made from my own stash of fabric, crepe paper, and twine.  I made the tag tassels with embroidery floss and a jump ring.  **And for anyone who has inquired or is curious, I'm hoping to do a tutorial on how I make those very soon!}

I couldn't resist yellow again here; I personally love that Felicity boasts quite a bit of this color.  I paired it with peach again for a set of simple mini cards and envelopes.

Wherever possible, I love to add texture.  This small set has 7 kinds of it--washi, wood, thread, tulle, doily, glitter tape, and paper.  I adhered the yellow triangle washi tape to a 4 x 3 card base, then piled on my doily, tulle, and metallic gold thread.  The 'Enjoy the little things' sentiment from the die cut pack is the perfect little message, adorned with a wood heart.  And it nestles sweetly inside a matching handmade envelope.

Since leaves and birds are symbolic of springtime, those two washi strips seemed appropriate here.  And the matching envelope?  Made with the bird on the wire paper, of course!

Thanks for stopping by today!  You'll definitely want to get your hands on the Felicity collection when you see it; as the name suggests, it's going to make you nothing but happy!

Monday, February 1, 2016

gossamer blue :: february reveal :: yay, tags!

Are we seriously in February already?!  I thought 2015 flew by, but at this rate, 2016 is looking like a blink-and-you'll-miss-it kind of situation.  No matter, it's the first of the month which means there are new Gossamer Blue kits up for grabs!  I took January off from the club to catch my breath after the holidays, but I was ready to craft up a storm this month!

There were a lot of really cute Life Pages cards in the kits this month--and bows.  LOTS of Heidi Swapp bows and I may have used both of those things on every project!  I made a whole lot of tags, which you know I love to make if you've been coming here often.  For me, depending on the kit contents, I suppose I tend to make similar projects each month.  This month it was tags, November was gift's just my thought process, I guess.  These are what I love to make and when I play around with an idea for a tag, it often leads to an idea for another tag.  The same happens with gift wrap and cards.  So that's why you'll see me make similar types of projects--in case you were wondering :)

I did borrow from some past kits this month; I pilfered mostly from January's since I didn't really get to dig into them, and there were so many pretty things that kept grabbing my attention.  There's a lot of Heidi Swapp goodness in both months' offerings so I think that was another reason--they naturally went well together.  {At the time of this writing, the January kits I borrowed from are still available in the GB store.}

I went crazy for textures on my first set of tags--lace, tulle, fine glitter frames, chunky glitter, fabric bow, foil stickers.
**The items I borrowed here are actually found in the May 2015 LP Themed Add-on  (black 'love you more' sticker - Maggie Holmes) and (floral puffy sticker - Crate Paper) September 2015 LP Main kit.  Unfortunately, both of these kits are sold out.

I love the serious-looking Basic Grey 'say hello' badge mixed with the sweeter elements like the white glitter bow and aqua LP card.

Whereas the above tags are covered in embellishments and detail, the next two tags are contrasting in their minimalism.  I kept them very sparse and I like them just as much as I do the other tag set.

I started by choosing LP cards that had mostly white space.  My most favorite detail about this tag is the little burst of black lines peeking out from behind the doily.  It's the sketched flash of a camera.  I feel a tad proud that I let it show so subtly since I'm not sure I tend to be very good with details like that.  The 'awesomeness' puffy sticker can be found in the January Add-On Kit #2.  The metal clips are in February Bits & Pieces.

Each month, there are a few LP cards I set aside for something special (aka hoarding).  This dotted card was one of them for February, but instead of keeping it forever, I used it here; I think that was a good decision.  (**The gold 'wonder' is from the same pack as 'awesomeness.')

There is a wealth of goodness in both the February kits and the DT Gallery, so be sure to check out both when you can.  And all month long on the GB blog, you can find a new post and project every day, just in case you didn't know that ;)  I've got another project I'll share here this week, and I'm saving one for the Blog Hop, which is on the 15th of every month.  There is inspiration everywhere--and lots of it!  Happy February!

Monday, January 25, 2016

papertrey ink moments inked :: a new plan

Officially, this is my first blog post of 2016, as well as my first Papertrey Ink Moments Inked post.  I've spent the majority of January trying to get myself organized and in a new frame of mind.  I went into 2015 blazing!  I was gonna do this, I was gonna do that, I signed up for all kinds of classes, accepted positions on several design teams, took on every opportunity that came my way, and I was feeling awesome for about 4 months.  Then I got burned out and I honestly don't think I ever fully recovered.  December was a whirlwind and I had another mini-burnout over Christmas break which led to a not-so-nice lead-in for the new year.  So it caused me to stop and put a lot of thought in how I want to approach 2016.  It's going to be a whole lot different. 

I've turned to my PTI Moments Inked Planner System to help with this.  I'm using both the binder and the spiral editions and I've thought long and hard about how I will utilize them to keep me organized, present, and sane.  This is not a fancy post and I don't have a bunch of super-awesome tips and tricks for you today.  What I'm presenting you with is an honest, bare-naked look at my planners and my stress-free approach to avoid burning out.

The first thing I did was try to envision the year I wanted to have in comparison with the year I just lived.  I do not want to re-live 2015 and be a hurricane of disorganization, stress, "I'm too busy" and listening to myself tell my children I can't play with them because I have work to do.  It's true that sometimes I am too busy and sometimes I do have work to do, but believe me when I tell you that I uttered those phrases way too often last year and the stress and the guilt that ensued is just not worth the reward.  I thought it through and brainstormed a few ways to stream-line work--both house and creative--in order to make more time for my family and for myself.

  I put the 'new year resolutions' stamp from the Happy New Year set to use on the first page of my binder planner.  I did not set big, specific resolutions or goals this year, like 'write a book' or 'travel to Australia' or 'complete a marathon'.  I chose more mantra-like resolutions that will, I'm hoping, create a mindset shift and a calmer pace of life.  Slow down.  Be kind.  Be brave.  Stop procrastinating.  Keep in touch.  Breathe.  I'd like to live that way all year and if need be, I'll write down these same 6 mantras on the tab page of each month.  I'm not sure which will be harder to do, though--be brave or stop procrastinating!

Next to my resolutions, I filled out the goals page.  I filled it out mostly with my business/creative career in mind, but again, I tried to concentrate on areas that would improve my outlook on life and the way I want to enjoy it.  For instance, "GO... & mingle whenever possible" is less about having a tremendous social life and more about trying connect with good, like-minded people.  Being social is extremely difficult for me but as my kids get older and start making friends and get involved in extra-curricular activities, I, in turn, have to meet new people to ensure they get the most out of each new experience.  As a result, I'm spending more time with the kids while we participate in these activities, they're having more fun than they would be sitting at home, and I've even made a few new friends in the process.  And if I want my business to grow, I have to step outside my comfort zone and do things I never thought I could do.  I attended CHA (Craft & Hobby Association convention) earlier this month and while I had sort of wanted to go in years past, it always petrified me to do it.  But an opportunity arose that I couldn't turn down, so I went.  The experience was nothing but positive and uplifting!  I met so many sweet and genuinely nice women and it ended up being an amazing time.  Not to mention, I actually felt proud of myself for doing it instead of the disappointment and shame I would have endured for backing out (because honestly, I almost flaked at the last minute).

I'm looking for a better quality of life in 2016.  I don't expect that, by making a few notes and putting a few decorations in my planner, I'll get it.  But I do intend to use the planners as tools for reminding me of what I'd like to achieve.  That's why I've turned my MI spiral planner into a Health & Wellness tracker.  In the 2015 edition, there were daily pages with sections to encourage us to be thankful, stay hydrated, and track our fitness and meals.  They've taken them out of the 2016 versions and I honestly don't mind as it makes a slimmer, more manageable book.  Especially if I'm on the go, the binder version as it is is the perfect size to carry around in my bag and I don't need to have all the extra bulk of my gratitude and water intake when I'm doing errands anyhow.  So I like doing it this way.  I can still keep track of those things in my spiral and leave it behind when I leave the house.

For the time being, I'm using the weekly pages to loosely jot down what I ate for the day, water consumption, and fitness.  Okay, I'm not one for frequenting a gym or running 5 miles a day, but I try for some kind of activity everyday.  If it's a vigorous 30 minute walk or extreme vacuuming, I'll take it! 

On the goals page for this planner, I'm focusing on self-care and a healthier, happier lifestyle for my family.  Eating better, moving more, thinking positively, and getting rid of the clutter that has been piling up everywhere for the last year because I'm "too busy" to take care of it.  (I think I'll start by purging that phrase from my vocabulary.)  Organization is a big key here.  You have no idea how much time I've wasted looking for something that is buried under a tall stack of junk.  So I started small here, making a pocket with the MI Pocket Page Die to hold coupons, grocery lists, new recipes, and any small papers having to do with the health and wellness areas of our lives. 

So again, I know this wasn't a post filled with awesome ways to use the Moments Inked dies and stamps, but on one hand, this is a post for anyone who's thinking of getting a planner but stops themselves because they aren't into decorating it.  Let me tell you that you don't have to!  This is a gorgeous, colorful planner and if you do nothing except write in it with a pen, that is all you NEED to do!  Also, if you're missing the daily pages from the 2015 version, because I've heard that a few of you are, I've just shown you a way to create them, or at least something like them.  Why not dedicate one whole planner to your health & wellness?  It's just a thought...

2016 is about getting rid of the, baggage, negative thoughts, clutter.  Will it be a success?  I'll let you know in 2017...

Thanks for stopping by today!  You can find all of these supplies at

Papertrey Ink Supplies used:

Sign up for the Moments Inked Newsletter here and fresh ideas for using the MI Planner System will magically appear in your inbox every Monday!

Other Supplies used:
Sharpie Pen
Live Color Pen by Monami in Pink 05

**In addition to my 2 Moments Inked planners, I've incorporated a specific gratitude journal, a business workbook, and a slew of notebooks (May Designs, seen here today) into my daily routine.  More on those another time ;)