Friday, December 14, 2012

I have been under cover for a few months. :) I'm currently posing as a college student! The classes have been intense and very interesting, however, I am finally nearing the end of my first semester back in school (after a VERY long break) and looking forward to some free time! E (my 5 year old) and I made the advent calendar last weekend...yeah, yeah, yeah, I know it was mid month...the kids have been rushing downstairs each morning to see what is in the treat box for them! (Hint: it's always chocolate.) Speaking of chocolates :) When I ordered the Advent Calendar Workshop on the go kit...which was really easy and fun (you also need the Artiste Cricut Cartridge to cut the boxes out)... I also ordered the Whooo's your Valentine Kit. Sneak peek of new goodies for spring!!! Cute owls, glitter paper, oh my! Get your hands on one I am sure that they will sell out before the end of January. Here's a video with the kit it is even better in person. Well I'm back into deep cover for a week or so...last final is Monday! Statistics?! Why, at nearly 40, am I learning inferential statistics?! Seriously though, I am so happy to be finishing what I started so long ago. :) Life is definitely a winding road. Happy Crafting, Amy

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Technique Blog Hop: Alcohol Markers

This is the technique blog hop Welcome to Amy Kaminski's Blog: Creative Agents!
There are 7 lucky bloggers participating this month.  We are using our Alcohol Markers to color.  This technique is highlighted on page 55 of the Fall/Winter 2012 Idea Book.  This blog hop is a big circle so begin wherever you wish and keep clicking to see all the fabulous art work and inspiration; eventually you will end where you started. :)  If you are coming from Shirley Ross' blog then you are on the right track.

Here is a cute little gift tag I made using the Light and Cotton candy pink marker set.  I colored the cupcake pink and the bling too!
How neat that you can use alcohol inks to match bling to every project.

On this bookmark I wanted the trendy blended color look.  I love the bright oranges but enjoyed playing with the blending marker to see what effect it would have on the colors.  Don't you love the look of the oranges and reds blended? (Goldrush and Ruby)  I have been reading for HOURS and HOURS and this little bookmark makes me feel happy. 

Thank you for stopping by, now head on over to Wendy Kessler's blog for even more ideas using this technique.
Be sure to leave a kind comment and happy hopping!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Studio J using Heritage Photos

My mom and I went to Chicago a few weeks ago and spent some time scrapbooking and shopping. While we were there she gave me some digital copies of old photographs she recovered from her aunt. The pictures bring back so many fond memories for her and help me to feel more connected to people that are no longer living. I also love seeing pictures of my mom, aunts and uncles as children! I hope you enjoy looking at the layouts as much I enjoyed creating them. (Thanks to Studio J I only needed the digital copy and the photos will be preserved in my Album and as a digital copy in case I need to replace them or make copies...hmmm can we say Christmas anyone?!)
These are the first and last pages in the album.

The text is hard to read but these are different pictures of my grandmother 
and her siblings when she was young.

Great-great grandma, great grandma, grandma and mom! 

These are such cool pictures of my grandma with my aunt and is just a few months along. :)

The women in our family didn't have much luck in love but they kept trying and I admire the passion!

The picture in the middle is so adorable!

I love my momma! :)

Hope you enjoyed a peek :)  If you have some old pictures lying in a box try to get them scanned as soon as possible.  You don't need to do anything with the file right away but you will have frozen the image as it is and won't lose any more clarity, color, etc.  The larger the file size when you scan the better.  These pictures will be a bit blurry when they print but they are still precious to me. :)

Sunday, August 26, 2012


Check it out...the new markers really do rock. More to come soon. :) Your mission: Order some of these bad boys and give it a try. My earlier post shows how you can change the color of the sparkles to match your project with these markers. Go try it. Amy

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

La Belle Vie...Ooh La La

I finally made time to sit down and get creative with the new products!  Here are a few items I made using this new kit: La Belle Vie and Stamp Set: Jardin (Just click on the names to order.)
 A one page layout that I can't decide what photos to put on...perhaps some wedding or tea party pics?
the smudges around the black paper are Smoky Plum Pigment Ink.  It is impossible to tell in the photo but I added some shine with the metallic silver marker around the frame after stamping in Staz On.  There are also a couple of dots of Pink Glitter Gel for shimmer on the "So Adorable" and "Cherished" Tags

A sweet little gift tag:

For this cutie I just used left over paper (the exclusive La Belle Vie Purple and a sheet of extra pattern paper)  some white rosette ribbon and the pink alcohol marker set...when I get the blending pen I will rework this cupcake a bit!  I colored the bling (from the Boutique Assortment) with the alcohol marker to make it pink and it worked like a charm. :)  You can color the sparkles with these new markers as well.  I wonder how it will look on silver or white brads? Hmmmm.  Oh, I also used a strip of the burlap to make the tag hanger.  Man that stuff is versatile.

A long card: 3 1/2 by 8
On this one I decided an everyday, any reason card would be good.  Pattern paper base with the lightest side inside the card (or you can add a piece of plain cardstock to the inside for a good writing surface).  A strip of black C/S, Burlap ribbon (yep again) and shimmer tape (my new favorite item in the latest idea book).  I added a couple dots of pink glitter gel and stamped some La belle Vie Pink paper with Cotton Candy Ink.  Not sure I would use the shimmer tape again with this one but I do love me some shimmer! :)

A standard-size card: 4 1/4 by 5 1/2
I like the look of the burlap and torn paper edges with this paper pack.  (side note I did NOT think I would like the burlap but I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!)  The phrases are from the "zip strip" at the top edge of the paper sheets.
All the products used  to create these projects are:
La Belle Vie Paper Pack
Jardin Stamp Set
Burlap Ribbon
White Rosette Ribbon
Shimmer Tape
Boutique Assortment
Pink Glitz Glitter Gel
Metallic Marker
Coming Soon: Alcohol markers
Smoky Plum Pigment Mini Ink Pad
Chocolate Ink Pad
Cotton Candy Ink Pad
Staz On Black
Black Cardstock and Bamboo Cardstock (these come in the kit but I think I also used some from my stash)

If you would like to order just click on the names of the products and the link takes you to my website.  Also, you can join the New idea Book Online Celebration and possibly earn some free products.  I am going to run it like a "mystery hostess" event, meaning, everyone who places an order is entered into a drawing to choose free product.  Just be sure to set up an account or send me an email so I can contact you to get your choice of free items.

Thanks for looking and you are welcome to "scraplift"!

your mission: Try something new today!

Monday, August 6, 2012

While Supplies Last= Clearance!

On my website you can shop the new catalog right now.  If you would like to join in the New Idea Book virtual Celebration Click here and then click the "Join" button on the bottom right.

You can then shop as part of the PARTY!  Even the clearance items are available online now.  You shop, CTMH ships and if you place a minimum $30 order you will be entered to win free product credit!  The more shoppers we have the more credits available.  I am guaranteeing that at least one lucky shopper will receive a Workshop on the Go kit of their choice ($29.95 value).

With all the cool new items available from Alcohol Markers to Home Decor and clearance too; there will be something you LOVE!!!

Your mission: Join the celebration!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Want more from your Workshop stamp sets?

Workshops on the go give you more than a couple of layouts. Here are some ways to use the stamp sets that come in the kit: Love these ideas? Find more on my CTMH website: Project Inspiration Your mission: learn something new and try it out!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Studio J: HOORAY!

New and exciting changes to Studio J
Interested in trying Studio J?  Click here and create your FREE Freida FREE account to create to your heart's content.  You pay only $6.95 a layout (Yep, that's two pages!) For the layouts you want printed and shipped to you.

New in Studio J:
Express Kits and Layouts!  These are DECKED out in huge amounts of embellishments and savvy tricks of the Studio J elite users. :)  These layouts are beautiful and all you need to do is drag and drop your photos and add journaling.  So pretty.

New exclusive to Studio J paper kit!  (IF you find it and use it: post here and let me know, I will send you a special treat).

Here are some of the layouts created for convention that use many elements in the new EXPRESS kits:

Cool stitching tool adds stitches in shapes to go around elements or photos OR adds stitched lines like the bottom layout.  Gotta love sewing online. :)
You can still get a Studio J 5 pack but now it is only $39.95
Go to my website now, click the Join button at the bottom right and order it now.  You will receive an email with the log in link to use your 5 Pack.  (bonus: ordering in the online gathering enters your name to earn a free Workshop on the Go kit of your choice: $29.95 value)

Your Mission: Play with Studio J!

Friday, August 3, 2012

FREE tote bag for joining in August...while supplies last.

Join CTMH as a consultant before August 31 (or while supplies last whichever comes first.) And receive the tote ($49 value) for free! It costs only $49 to join and in addition to the tote you receive:
The essentials kit will get you started. You will receive an automatic discount on all your orders and can earn additional free products and cash the more you buy or sell. Everyone is welcome to join. If you find that you are spending an average of $100 a month it makes sense to join. I will keep you posted when fun specials crop up and let you know about changes and updates before non-consultants get the scoop! I am here to help you reach your goals wether you would like to save money on your hobby supplies, build a business starting with a $50 investment or make new friends. Have more questions? call me: 414-377-8five26 or leave a comment and I will contact you! Ready to start saving and earning? Click here to join the CIA (Creative Intelligence Agents) Your mission? Scrapbook!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Fun with Mini Banners

These are so simple and fun.  My Cricut is so lonely upstairs in a box...waiting to be unpacked!  There are many fun new ideas and cool project inspired products to show you.  I just returned from Dallas and Close to My Heart's annual convention.  Stay tuned.

Your mission: STAY COOL

Thursday, June 21, 2012


This special is a very RARE treat for Close to My Heart Customers.  From the current idea book and the previous idea book you can order ANY size stamp sets.  When you buy 2 you get 1 free.  Of course, the least expensive is the free one.  You can get THREE alphabet sets for the price of 2!!!!  
Go to my website or contact me to place your order.  This special ends June 30th.  The winter 2011 Idea Book expires July 30th so this is nearly a last chance opportunity with these stamps.  Get your wishlist out and cross those stamps off today!  
Read all the specifics about the Stampaganza special here.

Happy stamping!

Friday, May 25, 2012

I have a great card project that I just completed and have not yet photographed.  In the meantime here is a video for Studio J...the BEST online scrapbooking program I have ever tried.  It perfectly blends with my classic pages and I highly recommend it to anyone that either loves to scrapbook, wants to get a photo book together but doesn't want the "stuff" lying around, wants a super-fast way to preserve some memories, or is a bit OCD and needs everything on the page to be "perfect".  
Please go check it out and then leave a comment below; I will send a goodie to one lucky commenter that either already has a free account or goes to this link and creates one and plays with Studio J.
Name will be chosen on June 15th.
Here is the basics video: (More how-to videos can be found here)

Have a blast and Happy Scrapin'

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sleepless Scrapbookers Retreat in Wisconsin

This weekend will definitely be Mission Possible!!!!  I have been invited to join the Sleepless Scrapbookers Retreat and can't wait to meet more scrapaholics like myself. :)  I have prepped some layouts for the weekend and MAY do cards on Sunday...depending on interest.

The right page has a little pocket for hidden journaling or extra pictures. :)

We will be making these same pages at the Imagination Station (that's what i have nicknamed the Brooklyn, MI Depot) next weekend March 10th so if you are in the area and would like to join in just email me or leave a comment to reserve your space.  There are a couple spots left.

Looking forward to meeting all these new Michigan and Wisconsin Scrapbookers!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Time for the Calendar?!

I made this with my dear sweet Mom in January (and promptly forgot to take pics and post).  It was a bit more work than I realized and I plan to use Studio J layouts for next was still A LOT of fun to make with momma!

She has the same pics on different pages...can you believe I had so many layouts with no pictures!!! I sure was surprised (and delighted).

Here are the results:

This is a great project that you can make any month...just begin on the month you are in and git r done!
Keep an eye out for my next posts...upcomming workshops and fun extras.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

FREE Cricut Art Philosophy Cartridge in March

Want to join the CIA? (Creative Intelligence Agents)
When you sign up to be a Close to My Heart Independent Consultant in March for $99 you will receive all the typical "bennies" AND a free Cricut Art Philosophy Collection. (If you already have it or just don't want that you can choose $100 in Select Product Credit.)

Watch this quick video to learn the details and see EVERYTHING you get.

This is an unbelievable value...but wait THERE'S MORE! ;)
You will also be a part of the CIA (Creative Intelligence Agents) team.  We have monthly team meetings in Delafield, WI with fun ideas and projects that you can share with your customers.  I am at the ready to get you and your business off and running!  I will help you with your launch gathering and offer 1:1 coaching for up to 3 months.  Convention in in July and there is still time for you to join us in Dallas, TX for 3 days and nights of fun and crafting.  I would love to speak with you about what I do and can't wait to help you reach your goals.  Even if you are just curious about what it means to be a consultant take a  moment to call or email me so I can answer any questions you have.  Don't delay...Let's get you started March 1st!
Call or TeXt five2zero-77seven-five521 (I know it looks weird but it also plays into the whole spy theme. :) )

Just to recap: you join the CIA team, have fun with like-minded crafters whenever you want, pay $99 for over $450 in CTMH products, learn more fun projects at monthly meetings (or get them in your email inbox if you can't make it) hmmm...Better contact me soon so we can get you started Thursday!  If you are reading this between March 1st and March 31st you can use this link to my website and get started now.  I will contact you within 24hrs to help you make the most of your kit!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

From Sharon Michaels' Blog: Controlling my CATTS!

family picture
I’ve decided this coming year I will be more in control of my CATTS – yes, my CATTS. Sometimes I get so caught up in what I can’t control that I lose track of what I have the power to control. I’m making a resolution to myself that during the coming year I will stay focused on what I have the power to control and not stress about those things over which I have no, or very little, control.
I invite you to come join me in controlling the CATTS in your life too.
This year I resolve to control my:
1. C -choices and decisions – I’m resolving to make wiser decisions and choices. I will stop, take a deep breath and think before “I leap.” This coming year I will make the time to weigh the pros and cons of major decisions and make choices that will be of benefit to me personally, professionally and financially. I’ll remember this quotation from Charlotte Bronte, “Look twice before you leap.”
2. A -actions and reactions – I resolve that I will think before I act and/or speak – I will neither act nor speak out of haste or anger. I will act and react from a place of emotional empowerment and will not allow my emotions to control my good sense.
3. T -thoughts – I realize that thoughts become “things” and that I attract to me what I think about most. I resolve to think in terms of solutions and results. I resolve to focus my thoughts and mental energy on what I want to achieve, believing that I can and will make my goals a reality.
4. T -time – I resolve to control my time so my time does not control me. I will say “No” more often to those things that will waste time or are not in my best interest. I resolve also to carve out more quality time to rejuvenate myself in mind, body and spirit because I deserve it!
5. S -self-talk – I resolve to talk to myself with respect and dignity. Berating myself verbally or emotionally is injurious to my self-esteem and weakens my self-confidence. I will be kind and considerate to myself at all times.
How about it – are you going to join me during the coming year and together we will focus on those things over which we have the power to control – our CATTS?

Copyright © 2011 Sharon Michaels – All Rights Reserved
Want to reprint this post “as is” on your blog or in your newsletter?
You may do so as long as this entire resource box is also included:
I’m Sharon and my business is dedicated to empowering and coaching women in business.
I invite you to subscribe to my free weekly Ezine, because in just minutes a week I can show you how to successfully grow yourself and your business, make more money and have more time to enjoy your life!

Friday, January 20, 2012

12 pages in less than 4 hours...My Stickease are My Friend :)

WOW!  I LOVE LOVE LOVE My Stickease!!!!!!!

I know that many people think layouts take forever long to create and only hold a few pictures; I am here to remind you that it doesn't have to be that way.  I am not a patient crafter!  (Just ask my friend Nicole.) I love using these stickers because you not only have fast embellishments but pictures of suggested layouts on the reverse side of the backing.  (You can also find the pictures of the layouts online at and use the how to books that are suggested on the stickease.)  I just followed the layouts exactly and put the photos on that I liked. (I did change the photo sizes because I only had 4 X 6 photos printed.)

I have Darby to thank for really turning me on to the My Stickease.  I had used them for other projects before but never used them to make the layouts.  One month Darby came to club with the previous month's pages done and 8 additional pages!  I was impressed and she said...I just used the stickers.  Well, that was one big ah ha moment for me.  WHY was I not using those stickers!!! Anyway, I did 4 wedding pages (circa 2003), 4 Oliver baby pages (circa 2004) and 4 winter pages (ARIZONA winter pages circa 2010).  Feeling proud and a little misty after looking at my sweet baby boy.  Here are the finished pages:

After I put the pages together I decided to go ahead and add extra embellishments.  I used some paper flowers, the bliss level 2 assortment, pearls and mocha opaques.  Bliss is no longer available but Wonderland and Dreamin' are available for purchase at my shopping site.  (Sweet home, mistletoe, hooligans and sweetheart stickease are available for $1-$3 in the clearance section for retired product; just click the while supplies tab while shopping at my site.) If you haven't tried my Stickease today is the day!  How can you say no to those clearance prices and speedy yet gorgeous and detailed pages.
happy scrappin'
Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to post your layouts using MyStickease here!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

A bag of chips and all that?!

My sweet little girl had a birthday last week and received this clever package in the mail (along with a beautiful tutu bag embroidered with her name).

Well, it's just a shiny envelope you say?!  Oh, don't be fooled by my crafty Aunt Judy...this is no ordinary envelope!

It's a bag of chips!!!!  How cool is that?  Who needs all those expensive Tyvek envelopes now?  Just use the food saver (or shipping tape) to seal the end of that bag of chips after you have turned it inside out.  The perfect way to save money and room in the landfill.

By the way, baby girl LOVES the gift!  Thank you Aunt Jude! I was the nerd that took pictures of the bag it came in!
Happy creating.