Gina: 12x12 Layout: Me and My Loves

Wow, guys, it's been forever and a day, hasn't it?  To make a really long story short, the reason for my absence is Life:  Work, illness, family issues, you know the drill.  Add to that the need to completely re-organize my scrap area...AGAIN, and I've been out of commission for quite some time.  Hoping to change that.

After time away with family in Georgia this past week, I came home with the burning need to create and also a massive cold.  Thank you, nephew, it's so nice of you to share.  That did not deter me, however.  I needed to create.  Had to.  I haven't felt that in awhile and who am I to argue.

I went to my stack of printed photos and just happened upon this one.  I didn't know this was the picture I was going to scrap when I started, but this is the one I used all the same.  This photo fills me with such warm memories...look how little my kids were then.  That little girl on the right is now 11..ELEVEN.  I wish every day that I could just keep them little forever, but I am quite proud of all of my kids for the people that they are becoming.  I look forward to the days ahead with them watching them continuing to grow, but I also like looking back...back on times when they were happy to sit and snuggle.

I used the Scrap of Darkness January kit for this layout.  Everything you see on the layout with the exception of the paint and the mist was included in the kit.  I figured I better start using this kit up because my February kit is sitting under my desk and my April one is on the way (the club skipped March due to Melinda's move).

If you'd like to see this layout come together, I invite you to take a peek at the video.

Thank you for your patience and I'm going to try my best to return to a more routine posting schedule.

Until next time, Gina

Gina: Talk It Through Tuesday 1, Stew and Tacos

Hey Guys,

I know, I's not Tuesday, but I'm behind on posting and I don't want to delay getting these things up longer than I already have, so look for quite a few posts from me over the next few days.

Talk it Through Tuesday is a new series that is starting on my You Tube channel.  I tried to do this in the past, but it didn't quite work out, but I'm re-commiting myself to it and we'll see how it goes.  On upcoming Tuesdays, I hope to have for you a video of a scrapbook page where I create it in real time.  

If you just want to look at the finished product, then you're in the right place, because the photos will be posted here on the blog.  I know that an hour is a long time to dedicate to watching someone work, but you would not believe the number of comments I've had of people stating that they really like this.  I guess they do what I do, and scrap right along with the youtube video their watching.  I love to do that.

For this first project, I kept it pretty simple.  I used the traditional cut apart page that comes in most collections and I softened its colors with a bit of gesso.  I picked up this tip in a class by Celine Navarro.  Now I've used this before on busy background papers, but not once did I think of using the cut apart sheet in this way.  Thank you, Celine.  This was great.  Elle's Studio line about food was the perfect backdrop for this layout about Stew and his love of tacos.  The only thing was, when I put the photos on top of the washed out background paper, they seemed to fade away, so I knew I needed some frames.

Enter in my Silhouette machine.  I'm on a mission to learn everything this beauty can do so I sat down and made my own frames - and bonus, it's even a print and cut file because I wanted words on the bottom of these Polaroid frames.  This sounds as though I just breezed through this process, well, I didn't.  I struggled with it more than I would like to admit, but in the end (after figuring out that one of my problems was that I wasn't loading my cutting mat in correction...sigh), I was able to produce what I wanted.  Go me.  

With my frames and my background paper I was ready to put this one together.  Since the background was still a bit busy, I kept the embellishments to a minimum and used the neutral cork and since I had two pieces of this cut apart paper and I really liked some of the phrases, I cut out pieces from my second sheet and adhered them in their original spots on the background paper.

I hope you enjoyed this layout.  If you're interested in seeing the video, you can watch that here, or over on my youtube channel.

One last thing, we will be offering these print and cut files I created in the near future as soon as we work out our plans for that - so look for that coming up.

Be Well and Stay Warm.  Gina

Gina: Maxim on Monday 1, Quote Love

Ahh, the new year…

It’s filled with such hope and promise and plans – so many plans.  So many plans, that I, in fact, overwhelmed myself to the point that I could not accomplish one darn thing.  That’s not totally true.  I did check a few things off of the ole to do list, but let me tell you, the line crossing didn’t go over as many of those tasks as I would have liked. 

So, after spending weeks in the miasma that was my own self-induced nothingness – I have emerged and am ready to put these plans into action, starting right here with this post.

This is the post that should have been.  I had very clear plans that I would start off January 4th with a new blog/video posting schedule and nothing would deter me from it.  Well, my friends that time tested enemy known as “me” stymied that right quick.   So, the posting schedule is getting started a bit later than I wanted.  In fact, I started writing this post on January 11th – it’s now the 18th – do you see how my year is going so far?

There’s so many different kinds of projects I want to work on this year and I’ve decided to start with this one.  This is what I will call “Maxim on Monday.”  Now, I can’ promise that one of these posts will be up every Monday – but I’m going to aim for that. 

(Side note: Maxim is being used strictly for alliteration purposes, they may not be short and they may only pertain to my truth.  I was going to go with Motivation on Monday, but really, there’s nothing motivating about Twain stating, “Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but, I repeat myself,” other than it is darn funny to me and I may wish to capture it.)

What is Maxim on Monday?  You see, I collect quotes.  I have them everywhere.  Literally.  And though the word literally is often used as a statement of exaggeration, in this case, literally is literally.  Unless, of course, you think of everywhere in the broad spectrum of the entire world and then, in that case, yes, literally, even in this case, is a bit of hyperbole, but I digress. 

The point being, I collect quotes.  Have collected them since as long as I can remember.  And that collection, my friends, looks rather dubious.  Like to the point of “Don’t approach without a guide, a map, and GPS” lest you find yourself buried underneath the plethora of journals, post it notes, napkins, packaging, old envelopes and anything else that may pass for a writing surface. 

It’s time to get this stuff in order (an ongoing theme throughout my goals this year)!  And so, Maxim on Monday is born.  This project is taking the form of an Art Journal – in which I will in some way document some of my favorite quotes in a hopefully artistic way.  This week starts with the intro page I made for my altered book. 

I bought this very thick book at a yard sale for $1.  It's been sitting in my stash for quite some time, but I thought what better place to have a quote collection than in a book.  The first thing I wanted to do in this book was to make an intro page.  I started this page several times and this is the final result. 

I purchased this art paper from AC Moore - I just loved the bright blues and purples with the iridescent gold running throughout the paper.  I added some washi tape down the spine and added some gold embossing paste to the top of the page using a script stencil.  I had these quote chipboard pieces left over from my initial attempt at this page.  As I don't use very many speech bubbles on my layouts, I thought a page introducing my book about quotes would be a great place to use some of those up.  I used that same gold embossing paste through two different heart stencils to further solidify the theme of this page - my love of quotes.  I finished up the page with some Thickers spelling out the title of the book and this page was finished!

Here's a few detail pictures of the intro page:


And if you'd like to see me put this page together, you can watch that below.

I hope you guys are having a great start to your new year and I'll be back very soon with my next project.

Until then, take care and be well, Gina

Gina: 12x12 Layout, Caught Red Handed


Well, folks, the end of the year is almost upon us and I must say that it’s been quite a challenging year on multiple fronts, but we’re putting this year behind us, we’re not even glancing in that rear view mirror, we’re on the open road and we’re moving forward.  That’s what this month around here has been all about:  deciding our goals for not only this site but for ourselves.  I think that the month of December is always one of reflection about what has been and I have to be honest, there’s been some of that, but for the most part, it’s all future planning and I have to say, I’m excited about it. 

In the vein of wrapping up things, I’ve done a lot more crafting than I have done blogging.  Sometimes, the words just don’t come – neither here in written form or on my youtube channel in spoken form.  If you’ve followed me for any amount of time, you know of my struggles this year with my crafting.  I’m happy to say that I think that I’ve moved past them, but there are some layouts that remain that you may be interested in seeing and as such, I’m interested in showing them to you.

First up is a layout that had been percolating around in my head since these photos first appeared on Christina’s facebook page in November of 2014.  I stole the pictures right away and even printed them that day, but for whatever reason, I couldn’t figure out how to get the pictures on to a scrapbook page.  Then, I saw this cut file in the Silhouette store.  It reads, “Caught Red Handed,” add that one to the cut file that says “Busted”, and at that moment, I knew that the idea for the layout had finally arrived.  

You see, the then two year old decided she wanted a snack and so, she helped herself into the pantry to find one.  Her mother turned around to see just these two little feet (with her shoes on backwards, no less) poking out from underneath the door way.  I’m so thankful that Christina captured not just my niece’s reaction to being caught, but those little feet that she first noticed.

It didn’t take very long to make this layout – even with the fighting I did with my sewing machine.  That washi tape you see at the top and bottom, yeah, that wasn’t supposed to be there, but I had to rescue the mangled mess that was my sewing along the bottom.  Just need more practice with that.

I used the red camera inthe bottom left of the layout to pull some of that red color that is so predominant in the rest of the layout down into that section.  Used some black triangles and that plastic phrase “I Want to Remember” that I received in a Scraptastic Kit many moons ago and rounded out the embellishments with some cork.  The cork stars to continue the theme of stars from the vellum background, the “hi” to indicate her mother finding her.  The phrase “a little birdie told me” to reflect Christina posting the picture on Facebook and I just had to point to those two little feet.

If you’d like to travel back in time and watch me create this layout, please visit my youtube channel at the link below.

Otherwise, I’ll see you next time – with GASP! a before and after video of my scrapping space.   

Gina - October Cut Challenge "Always By My Side"

The cut file I used for this month’s challenge, I bought a long, long time ago, but I always intended to use it with a picture of Stew’s mom and dad.  They’re bird watchers and mom loves owls, so this silhouette file was just perfect for them.  When their 46th wedding anniversary came around this year, dad posted this picture of them from their wedding on Facebook, as he does every year.  I just knew that this was the perfect opportunity to meld that photo and this die cut together.

I always print my die cuts on American Crafts white cardstock.  It’s the best I’ve found for cutting and it accepts colors pretty well.  I thought at first that I’d color the die cuts with gelatos, but decided spraying them with mist would be easier – or so I thought.  Most of the mists I pulled out to use on this layout are clogged.  I’m going to have to do something about that – what that is, I haven’t a clue, other than I think this is a sign that I need to use my supplies more.

I wanted the layout to be black, white and red – a combination that is one of my favorites and I think is perfect for wedding layouts.  I decided to spray the tree with silver from Mr. Hueys, the hearts with a red from Heidi Swapp and the owls black, also from Heidi Swapp.

Then the struggle began.  I wasn’t sure where to place anything on this layout.  But after moving things around and fiddling with it some more and leaving it to go watch some tv – I came back to it and realized that the major problem I was having was the longest branch on the tree was going the wrong way.  Flipped that over, sprayed the other side, and finally, I settled on a layout that I was happy with.  The thing I think I love the most about this layout, other than the cute as heck picture, is the hearts I put on the owls.  I just think with the way they are looking at each other and the way Mom and Dad are looking at each other in the photo, the love is so evident – it’s perfect.

I’m super happy that this photo is now a permanent part of my scrapbook, since really, this moment truly captures the very, very beginning of Stew and my story. 

If you’d like to watch me put this layout together, as always, you can follow the link below to my YouTube channel…

Until next time, Gina

Gina: October Challenge #1 TV Show - "Surprise Favorite"

Shellie picking television as the theme for this month’s second challenge was a bit overwhelming.  You see, I watch entirely too much tv, so deciding what I was going to scrap for this was certainly a challenge.  I surely didn’t want to make a list of all of the television shows I watch, because I just can’t even admit that to myself (by the way: Code Black – new favorite!).

So I decided to talk about a show that we recently stumbled upon and once we did, we binge watched until we had caught up – just in time for them to end the series.  I’m like the kiss of death to new tv shows – if I like it, it’ll for sure be cancelled.  Maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned Code Black up there in case the tv Gods are listening.

Stew and I were bored one night, I mean, come on, summer tv…blah, so we were searching through Amazon trying to find something to watch because goodness forbid we actually do something.  HA!  We decided to start watching this show called Strike Back.  I’d never heard of it, but after reading the description, watching the preview, and knowing how much I loved The Unit, this seemed right up my alley.  It was awesome!  So, that’s what I’ve scrapped for this month’s challenge.

Have you ever had an idea for a layout so clear in your head, but when you sit down to actually scrap it, you don’t know what happens?  That’s what occurred with this layout.  In the end, I have to be honest, it’s not one of my favorites.  I wanted gritty and messy, but I think what came to life on paper is tortured and overdone – but you know, it’s in the book and it captures like a week and a half of our life, so it’s important.  I’m serious, except for work, all we did was watch this show!

I’m glad this challenge is over and I’m looking forward to next month’s challenges.  Hopefully, one day soon, scrapping won’t be as frustrating as it has been recently.  I think I just need to do it more, ya know….

If you’d like to watch me put this layout together, as always, you can follow the link below to my YouTube channel…

Until next time, Gina

Gina: RED September Challenge, Sew

If you read my post about our other September challenge, you know that there is a machine in my room that doesn't get the love it deserves.  What you may not know is that the Silhouette isn't the only machine in my room that gets neglected.  Ahhh, that wonderful sewing machine that I just had to have.  You do know how wonderful stitching looks on layouts, don't you?  I certainly do - yet, every time I look at the sewing machine, I shudder, turn around and try to pretend that it doesn't exist.  So, around here, we're giving ourselves challenges that inspire us to create and/or force us out of our comfort zone.  The sew on a layout challenge was born.

To be honest, I was in full on procrastination mode.  I'd look at that sewing machine, turn back to my craft table and say to myself, how about another day, until I was discussing this problem with Shellie and she kindly pointed out that nowhere in the challenge did it say that we had to use the sewing machine.  The challenge was simply to sew on a layout.  Well, that certainly changed things.

Off to the drawer with the Amy Tan stitching templates I went and the rest as they say....well, you get the idea.

The layout captures a picture of Stew and me.  We were in Baltimore for a show at the Hippodrome and decided instead of driving home that night (we live about 45 minutes away) we'd just get a room and go home in the morning.  It was spontaneous and lovely and this picture I think captures those emotions.  The background paper I used gave me almost all of the embellishment the page needed, but I added some die cuts and vellum pieces along with the hand stitching and used a die cut as my title and that my friends, wrapped up this layout.

I recorded the video for this layout in real time, so if you'd like to see it come together from start to finish, please head on over to my youtube channel and take a look.

Until next time, Gina 

Gina: RED September Challenge, Use Your Silhouette, Grade 3

Hey guys, 

So, I'm finally getting around to actually writing the post for my challenge layouts on September 30th - not quite what I had envisioned when the month started, but as you know, real life gets in the way and soon you turn around and a whole month has passed you by.  Even so, I did complete our challenges and I'm super happy about that.

The challenges were posted on September 3rd and each month, we have two of them.  The first challenge is unchanging.  We both own these wonderful little machines called the Silhouette.  They look gorgeous sitting on our desks, but I'm sad to say, that neither of us use them as much as we should.  So, the challenge was born.  Use this very powerful (and ahem, too expensive to be a dust collector) tool.

September around here means that ten of my eleven nieces and nephews return to school.  I have a senior this year and also a pre-schooler and the youngest, well, her mother wishes she was headed off to school, but since she, and I quote, "won't be potty trained until she's twelve", we have a bit of a ways to go for that one.  She's three and to say she's stubborn, well, I really don't know where she gets that from.

The youngster I'm scrapping in this layout is heading into third grade and tells me his favorite subjects are lunch, gym and dismissal.  Typical kid.  

I'm working on all ten of my back to school layouts using this same style of die cut indicating the grade the child is entering.  Later this month, I will post the other nine as part of my back to school series.  This one is a preview of that.

I did something on this layout that I don't do very often.  I gave myself permission to not look at the clock and consider how long it was taking.  Sometimes I get overwhelmed by all of the projects I want to do - that I don't spend enough time enjoying the one I'm working on, so on this day, I pulled out the gesso, the gelatos, the alcohol inks, the stencils, and the modeling paste and played.  What you see is the final result.  

If you want to watch me put this layout together - at four times the speed it actually took and without waiting around for drying times or for me to find what embellishments I wanted to use, you can head on over to my youtube channel and check that out.

Otherwise, I'll see you next time with the next challenge that we gave ourselves for September.

Gina: Van Gogh at The Met - Scrapbook Layout and Process Video

12 x 12 Scrapbook Layout by Gina Beth - Van Gogh at The Met

12 x 12 Scrapbook Layout by Gina Beth - Van Gogh at The Met

 (This post and video are from June 2015 - just now getting around to uploading it.  That's real life, folks!)

Now, I’m just like anyone else who thinks New York at Christmas time is just wonderful, but there’s something to be said about New York in the Spring (ha – spring, right, it was hot as hades!), when the fountains are going, the trees are in full bloom and the overpowering aroma of the city invades your olfactory senses leaving you…happy that you’re visiting and not living here.

I am kidding, but only half way.  I have a love/hate relationship with New York City.  I love it.  I love all that it offers and yet, I hate that it is so, so dirty.  I really just want to shut the whole city down for about a week and power wash the whole thing.

But all of that is beside the point and really has nothing whatsoever to do with this layout other than the fact that I was in New York.  Stew and I decided to take a long weekend trip up there and I had two major activities on my agenda – go to The Met and see the Van Gogh exhibit and take a horse drawn carriage ride in Central Park before they do away with the horses.  I’m happy to say, we accomplished both (regardless of the oppressive heat) and that leads us to this layout.

Van Gogh has always been one of my favorite artists and the chance to see these four paintings of his in one place when they hadn’t been together since shortly after he painted them was one I could not pass up.  They were arranged on the wall in the order that he had painted them.  No pictures could be taken of the paintings themselves so I made sure to stop at the gift shop and obtain photos of them.  The first thing you notice is how faded the colors are – and that’s pretty typical of Van Gogh paintings.  It had something to do with the type of red pigment he used.  The colors of these were once very contrasting and vibrant – the roses pink and green and the irises violet and yellow.  Now the violets look blue and the roses look white, but that is the consequences of time.  As Van Gogh himself said, “Paintings fade like flowers.”

Detail Shot - Van Gogh at The Met by Gina Beth

Detail Shot - Van Gogh at The Met by Gina Beth

In making this layout, I kept with his pink and green color scheme and was careful not to overpower the pictures.  I used a quote card that came from The Clique Kit and a 3x4 journaling card from Heidi Swapp.  One flair, some Thickers and some My Mind’s Eye alphabet stickers and some Tim Holtz Adornments.  All in all, I think the layout does what I wanted it to do – displays the paintings as the main focal point, brings out a color combination that Van Gogh intended but which is now faded, and preserved my memories of standing before these works.

Here is the video I made showing my process.

I hope you enjoyed and if you get a chance – go see these paintings.  They’re pretty incredible.


Gina: RED Yearbook (Pocketed Memory Keeping), 2015, Week 3

RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

I just recently started working on my RED Yearbook again, and you know, I'm only about 7 months or so behind.  Hey, I figure I'll finish it one day...but I want to make sure that all of my Yearbook pages for 2015 are shared here on the blog, so here it is week 3.

The supplies I used for this layout included a Teresa Collins collection (Hello, My Name Is) that I purchased on sale before Christmas 2014.  Most of the paper I used is from that collection, as well as some of the labels, brads, and epoxy stickers.  I love the kraft, red, black and white color scheme.  Other supplies I used:  stamp sents from L2E, Scraptastic and The Paper Studio; stickers from Becky Higgens Project Life; and, word stickers from Pink Paislee.

Left Side Details - RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

Left Side Details - RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

(1) My title card.  I struggle with what to do with the title card for each one of my layouts.  Sometimes, I feel like it's a complete waste to take up a full insert to document just the week and the days covered, then I think that I've been doing it this way since the beginning - it feels like the thing to do.  I don't know, one day, I'll sort it out, for now, on this layout, I just stamped the week with a large stamp set from Close to my Heart using Stampin Up Cherry Cobbler Ink, added some cut aparts from that Teresa Collins collection, used my date stamp to document the days included in this layout and then my favorite a large enamel heart and dots to complete the space.

(2) Documents our Sunday.  Kind of a lazy day around the house.  Stew changed the headlights in my car; we watched The Rock's show where he set this guy up to go speed dating and the whole time the guy was on the date he was talking about his cat which led The Rock to exclaim, "You have got to be shittin' me."  Pure comedy.  Stew made me French toast and I played in the craft room.  Pretty much an awesome Sunday.

(3) Laundry, laundry, laundry

(4) My favorite card I think from the whole week.  Just a little peek into my lovable Stewbert.  He sent me a text message that said, "I love you, too, my sweet little papoose."  I had to screen capture that - and my response of "Oh God, go to bed."

(5) Dinner at Nantucket Reef, all by my lonesome.  They're dish "Crab, no cake" makes eating alone worth it.  And, and!  bread pudding.  Delish.

(6)  Combind I saw at work - must say, I will own one of these!!

(7,8) When I created this layout, I was really in a let's just get it done mood, so instead of doing what I normally do and journal individually for each picture, I decided to just include all of the journaling (well, most of the journaling - I'm a rambler!!) on two of the 6x4 spaces and separate the days using day of the week stamps from The Paper Studio.

Right Side Details - RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

Right Side Details - RED Yearbook Pocket Scrapbooking - Week 3 by Gina Beth

(1) Not my photo.  I had a site visit at the Navy Medical Research Center and security was so crazy that I didn't feel comfortable taking a photo, so I searched the web and found one.  I just love the campus and the etched glass, so wanted to preserve this in my memories.  So glad someone had more gumption that I did to take the photo.

(2) Night out in Rockville.  Dinner at Copper Canyon.  The service was better than the food, but, of course, I must take pictures of the food!  And also the super color mosaic stairs they have there.

(3) So, there's a long story here.  I don't know what it is but my niece and nephew are obsessed with this emoji.  I mean, they're 9 and 7, so you know, poop is funny.  Well, anytime they text message me, they send me this emoji - over and over and over again.  One day, I was just looking at sales sites when I came upon a pillow shaped like this emoji.  I had the fleeting thought of buying it for the kids, but didn't want to see their mother's reactions, so I didn't, but I definitely wanted to add the memory to my book.

(4) Last week, I started with a new To Do app - HabitRPG.  I was very excited about it at the time.  Until, I died.  Yeah, probably have to go back to the drawing board on that one.

(5) Yay!  New sneakers!

(6) Used some Scraptastic stamps to document that I was actually able to keep Stew's vacation trip a surprise.  To say I'm really bad at keeping surprises is an understatement, so the fact that I did...well, I deserve an award and at least a square in my Yearbook.

(7) Spent the day in Harrisonburg.  Interesting architecture and okay food.

(8) The surprise is revealed.  We're headed to Massanutten.  The green and blue picture is actually the patch that I bought from the resort.  I love buying these from all of the places that I visit.  These and post cards and I add them right into my memory keeping.

No inserts for this week...don't know how that happened.

For a more detailed look at these layouts, you can watch me walk through it on the YouTube channel:

Until next time...Gina