Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Everyone deserves a little "me" time!

Well, JULY certainly has been a VERY BUSY month for "me!"   I thought things were supposed to calm down a little in the summer months!!  I guess I will have to wait until our beach vacation in August!!

I spent MUCH of my June and July planning and preparing for my youngest son Jake's Graduation Party.  I made the centerpieces and the luminaries that I shared on a previous post, along with a cool Photo Op stand.  ( I'll try to put a post up with pics and ideas of the event in the near future.)

As a TREAT to "me" - the week after the party, I attended a WONDERFUL weekend crop - hosted by Scrap-a-Doodle Doo!   Stephanie and THE DOO CREW always put on a GREAT EVENT - absolutely TOP NOTCH in every way!

The theme was "Down the Shore" - and most of us, being "Jersey Girls," really felt right at home!!  The weather played right along with the theme - as temperatures on Friday and Saturday were in the 90's!!  But we were cool and comfortable in the BEAUTIFUL Crown Plaza Hotel in Suffern, NY.

I had an incredible time laughing and relaxing with friends.  The food was AMAZING - the chef really outdid himself and even gave us a "Clambake" on Saturday night!

And - my good friend Pattie always makes "THEMED" desserts for the event - just look at these ADORABLE flip flop cookies and floating bear mini-cupcakes!!


SO -keeping with the "me" weekend theme - I've had these 2 photos of "me" that were taken in 2011 when we visited San Diego.  There was a "touch pond" in Sea World, and they had these incredibly beautiful and unusual STARFISH. ( Rarely am I in a photograph, as I am usually the one with the camera, but my son took these 2 shots of me with one of the neat starfish.)   I kinda liked how they came out, and used the get-a-way weekend as my opportunity to PLAY with the photos and the HOT NEW Graphic 45 Bohemian Bazzar paper line that I picked up at THE DOO a few weeks ago.  I just LOVE how very FUN the colors and patterns are!

Here is my "me" Layout:

Lots of layers, colors, textures, patterns 
- YUP!  That's "me!"  :-)

The chipboard piece is from THE DUSTY ATTIC - I first painted it with Ranger RUSTY HINGE Distress Paint - then sprayed it with layers of Glimmer Mist, until I achieve the colors I wanted.  I used Chalkboard INCHWORM, along with some Glimmer Glam DIRTY MARTINI for the green, and added some bling.  The red flowers were sprayed with LED RED, and the little dots on the end of the flowers were highlighted with Aqua Ranger Distress Stickles.

Here is a close up:

I used layers of the Bohemian Bazaar Tags and pockets for both the mat on the smaller photo, and behind it as well.  Then, before adding a piece of fishing net under the flower grouping and over the "me" tag on the left side of the page, I placed it in the upper corner right of the yellow and white polka dot base and sprayed it with Glimmer Mist - to act like a mask.  They kind of "mirror" each other and I really think the more solid and darker color behind the Dusty Attic piece helped to "pop" it as well.  I inked the edges of all papers with either Peacock Feathers or Ripe Persimmon Ranger Distress Stains too!

Here you can see some of the fishing net, and the cool large starfish that I stamped on Bazzill swiss dot orange paper -then heat embossed with cranberry embossing powder.  Can you see the starfish I am holding?  I think it came out pretty close don't you?!!   I was so happy with it, that I made 2 of them and used them both.   Then  I added the real little red starfish was from my friend Pattie -who had a jar of Mud Puddles Sea Life collection and kindly shared her little red starfish with me :-)  The flowers are from my "stash" but are mostly PRIMA I'm sure!  ( LOVE PRIMA FLOWERS!) Can you see the little resin Prima Light Bulb that says "ME" hiding amongst the flowers?

I've had the tag that I used in this layout in my stash for some time - I had Glimmer Misted it with yellows and oranges using a mask  when I was just "playing around" and never found a place to put it.  I thought it worked well with this layout, and added some PRIMA Canvas letters that I painted with Glimmer Mist Chalkboard "Inchworm" and then outlined with a fine point Sharpie Marker.  I added this cool Turquoise and Green fringed ribbon that I got from a cute little Esty Shop called Hydrangea  Hippo, and there are also 2 sprigs of green and clear "Bling Spray" that I purchased from there as well.

So there you have it - my "me" weekend and layout.   I hope I've inspired you to play with lots layers, colors, prints and textures and to most importantly - do something for yourself!  Everyone deserves a little "me" time!

((Hugs)) ~ Sherri

Sunday, July 28, 2013

What's for Dinner?

So this post has nothing to do with paper or scrapbooking -but from time to time I've been know to share a recipe or two -as I love to cook (almost ) as much as I love to scrap.  I guess it's just the whole "create" thing!

Tonight I made Tilapia with a fresh tomato, avocado, white bean side dish.  I had a similar version of this as a special at a local restaurant a few months ago, and couldn't wait to make it myself.

Here is a picture .... doesn't it look yummy?!! 

It's sooo easy to make and I just love the "freshness" of it -  here is how I made it - you can add/subtract whatever you would like and I'm sure it would be just as good:
Olive Oil
1-1.5 Vidalia Onions
4 cloves Garlic
1 lg can Canellini Beans - drained
@ 8-10 small tomatoes
Fresh Basil
Fresh Parsley
1-2 ripe Avocados
Season with Red Pepper Flakes, Granulated Garlic Powder & Salt and Pepper
Tilapia Filets
Smoked Paprika
Saute the Vidalia Onion in a little olive oil
When just soft - add 4 cloves of minced garlic, along with 1 large can of white / Cannellini beans (drained and rinsed.) along with salt, pepper, garlic powder and hot pepper flakes.
Add a little more olive oil if the pan seems too dry.
Cook until garlic is just soft - you do not want the beans to get mushy.  Turn off heat.
Meanwhile cut up some small plum or grape tomatoes ( I was lucky enough to be able to go nextdoor to my Dad's garden and pick some right off the vine!)  I probably used @ 8-10 of them that were a little smaller than a golfball.  Next cut up / chop the basil and parsley together, and cut the avocados into cubes. Hold all of this together until fish is almost done.
In another skillet -heat a small amount of olive oil.  Season the Tilapia on each side with Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder and Smoked Paprika.  Add to hot pan and cook on each side until fish is done/flaky.
While fish is cooking - @ 1/2 way through, right before you flip it over - Turn the onion/beans back on, and add the tomato/avocado/herb mixture to the onions and beans and stir lightly until heated and incorporated.  Serve with fish when done.
That's it!  Let me know if you give this a try! Add a comment below if you do - I'd love to hear from you and I hope you ENJOY!
((HUGS)) ~ Sherri

Monday, July 1, 2013

A Double Dare Challenge!

Hi everyone!  July is here and with the start of a new month, comes a new challenge from my friends over at Scrap-a-Doodle Doo!

I had the pleasure of posting the challenge this month - and since we are halfway through 2013 ( can you beleive it??!)  we thought we'd "Kick July Up A Knotch" and give you a FUN 2 PAGE Challenge this month!!  We also decided to use a sketch we found on Pinterest ( yes, we too spend so many hours there!)   We sure hope you will play along with us this month !  

First - here are all the details on how it works:

We post a sketch challenge each month, (both on this BLOG and on THE DOO's Facebook Page.) Qualifying participants will be entered to win a $10 Gift Certificate to Scrap-A-Doodle Doo. In order to qualify, you must interpret the sketch provided (so we can "see" it!) and submit your entry via Mr. Linky below before the end of the month. Because this is a Scrap-A-Doodle Doo sponsored challenge, ONLY layouts, cards, or projects submitted that use products carried/sold by Scrap-A-Doodle Doo will be eligible to win the Gift Certificate. Because Scrap-A-Doodle Doo has literally THOUSANDS of items from over 250+ manufacturers, this should be easy! :)  Winner will be chosen by a random generator on the 15th of the following month (in this case August 15th) Contest is only open to US residents, but EVERYONE is welcome to play along!

So head on over to the store's
website, check out the product listing using the search feature to verify that the products you are using are carried by the store, and then get crafty!! :)
 ** CLICK on the PHOTOS for larger views **

Here is July's Sketch - ( It's a cool one right?! I can hear those wheels turning in your head already!)

Oh all the WONDERFUL things I know you guys are going to be able to do with this sketch!
I can't wait to see them!
So without further "A-DOO," here is my take on the sketch -  (YUP, another "JAKE" Layout - I'm still playing catch-up, and making layouts for his High School Graduation book/present - I've only got 2 more weeks left - YIKES!!)

I LOVE how the design of this sketch "moves" you through the photos on the layout - the large circle shape on the left page attracts your eyes first, and draws you to the Title - so you know what this layout is all about 

The other 2 circles seem to "frame" the photos in, or hold them in place, on the right page.  I think the "blockiness" of the patterned papers behind the photos helps to add color ( even though it is monochromatic in my case) and I like how the strips along the bottom kind of anchor everything to the page.

I also had fun adding some "funky" journaling to this layout too -  be sure to click on it to enlarge the layout so you can find it!

ALL of the products / items I used were purchased at Scrap-a-Doodle Doo, but are no longer in stock (other than the Bazzill Card stock)  I used papers and embellishments from Bo Bunny's ZOOLOGY line.  I think this layout would look great with any paper line - especially with the new Bo Bunny SURPRISE! Collection. Since my layout is of Jake's 8th Birthday Party, I could have easily used the FUN new line from Bo Bunny - it is called: SURPRISE!  Have you seen it?   Check out all the great products  Just Click on this photo :

and a list will appear! -REALLY - It WILL - just TRY IT! :-)  You are going to LOVE the colors! There are 2 pages of STUFF!

Well, I hope I've inspired you to GET CRAFTY!!  Don't worry if you don't have circles or a machine to cut them - how about tracing a plate with a marker? or drawing a line and stitching, maybe a ring of buttons or bling? 

So come on - and get Scrappy With It! Head on over to the Scrap-a-Doodle Doo Blog for MORE INSPIRATION from Stephanie - and be sure to LINK up your photo with the Linky Button! 

GOOD LUCK and HAPPY SCRAPPIN'!   Feel free to SHARE with your friends too!