Friday, September 12, 2014


Last month, Morgan and I had a girl day, complete with pedicures, shopping, lunch and some pottery painting. She even tolerated coming into a local stationery shop with me while I checked out the 2015 planners in the window. What a girl!
I walked out with the planner I've been coveting, an Emily Ley Navy Dot Simplified Planner, and I'm trying so hard not to wish the next four months away. It's big, beautiful and sturdy - and I'm guilty of flipping through the pages and pretending it's time to fill it up. While I'm waiting, I'm practicing how I want to use my planner using Emily's free daily planning pages - which you can find here.

In October, Marcy Penner is teaching the newest Studio Calico class, Agenda, and I'm so excited! I love planners, to-do lists, and of course, Marcy. She is one of the most organized ladies I know and I'm really looking forward to hear what she has to share in regards to making the most of your paper planner. Here's a bit about the class :
Life can be full of the unexpected. In Agenda, Marcy Penner will teach you how to master your planner and provide you with the necessary tools to structure your day, all while making it cute. The Filo-craze is sweeping the nation and you won't want to miss out! why live another day with the stress of prioritization and figuring out what to do next?


  • PDF lessons covering everything from setting up your planner to making it functional for you, all while adding your own style and flair to its pages.
  • Three videos from Marcy Penner
  • A peek into each of the contributor's planners, as well as insight into how they organize and decorate them.
  • Digital files from Hello Forever designed for your planner (coming soon)


  • Planner Set Up
  • Inserts - Pockets, Bookmarks and Dividers
  • Dashboards
  • Bullet Journaling
  • Ideas for using your planner to stay organized
  • Decorating
I'm not using a Filofax or a binder-type planner, but I'm certain I'll be able to incorporate the ideas Marcy and her contributors will share with my own wire-bound planner. I love seeing how other people set up their planners and organize their days, so this class should be fabulous.

While supplies last, students will receive an exclusive stamp set and it's adorable! All of those little icons make me smile. There's a peek of it in the top left corner of the image above, plus you can see it in full on the classroom page here.

Agenda is enrolling now through September 30th at 11:59pm EST. Class will start on October 1st. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Summer Handbook 2014 | 06 Chicago

I was honored to be invited to be a guest designer over on Kerri Bradford's blog this week! When she asked if I'd be interested in playing with some of her designs, I said YES and knew that tackling our short Chicago trip in August would be perfect with her travel themed product. I want to share my Project Life Summer Handbook pages today, but you can also read Kerri's post here.
I chose Kerri's Beautiful Somewhere and Tiny Details cards as a starting point for my spreads. Being in downtown Chicago, there was a lot of gray in my photos so the colors were a fun complement. The 6x8 script artwork on the right side above is from Matthew Taylor Wilson and was a gift included in a Studio Calico scrapbook kit a few months ago.
I love Kerri's script and cut a few of them on black cardstock with the Silhouette to create a bold title card for each spread. On the first page, I used August from this set, and layered it over a Studio Calico grid card + a patterned card from the Beautiful Somewhere set and stitched along the diagonal.
On the second spread, I printed an enlargement of a photo I took while we were at the top of the Hancock Building in the middle of a thunderstorm. It was super cloudy when we first got up there and we couldn't see a thing, but as it started to clear up, we could see the nighttime skyline below. It's still kind of foggy, but I love it nonetheless.
I enlarged Kerri's Here We Go freebie to 6x8 and then used the Silhouette to cut it out of vellum. Then I stitched it in place along the horizontal lines between the words. I love how it turned out!
The title card on this page includes a piece of patterned paper, a Tiny Details : Calendar card and Monday cut from this set. I enlarged the calendar card to about 2" wide, then trimmed off the bottom half so I could just use the large number for the date. Add the day of the week, stitch it on, and I still had a little room below to add a short list of the places we visited that day.
The third spread was for Tuesday, the one and only full day in the city. We did a lot that day, so this page is a major summary of our favorite spots. I cut down most of my memorabilia I had saved from our trip and used this page protector to create an insert. Above, the 'enjoy summer' card is from this set from Ali Edwards. The 'his' and 'hers' stamps are from Elise Blaha Cripe and are no longer available. I used the Color Theory Mint Hint ink for those.
Another date title card. I used a clean pencil eraser and Sunny Day ink to stamp on and highlight the A for August on the calendar card.
I trimmed down a Tiny Details card, folded it in half and stitched it to the side of the insert as a tab.
And the backside of the insert.
I made the Tiny Details cards even tinier and reduced them to 1" wide before printing them all on white cardstock. I just stitched them on a few of my photos as a simple embellishment.

Thank you so much for having me Kerri! You can see all of my Summer Handbook blog updates here.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Catching Up

I've been feeling pretty meh about this space for the past few weeks and meh in general until just a couple days ago. It happens to the best of us, right? While I'm trying to get back in the swing of things, here's a super random share about what's going on :

I love the start of a new month, especially September. It's like the beginning of a new year and it's been a time I like to tackle big projects. This month I'm doing another round of 30 bags / 30 days. Never heard of it? Basically you list 30 areas in and around your house that you want to declutter. Each day, choose one space to purge and fill one bag (or more - big or small) of unwanted stuff to get rid of. I did this two January's ago and love how it breaks down this big and potentially overwhelming project into small bites. It's so manageable and I don't spend more than 30-45 minutes per day on it (often less). Some days I work on more than one space if I'm feeling extra motivated/moody/anxious. I plan to have our house clutter-free again at the end of September.

While going through my clothes, I think I'm going to incorporate this capsule wardrobe concept. I love this planner freebie.

Occasional summer boredom and procrastination turned into frequent screen activity, so I changed up the way I spend time on social media. I took the Facebook app off my iPhone and iPad (wow was this a welcome change). I only read blogs from Feedly on my computer or my iPad (so I enjoy reading them more now and hope it will encourage me to take the time to comment on my favorites). I turned off all notifications on my phone so I'm not getting alerts anytime someone interacts with me, or 'likes' an Instagram photo (I've noticed a big difference in the battery life on my phone too). Want to try the same? Andrea wrote a great post about how she is making a habit to spend less time online this month.

School is back in session and we are getting back into our groove. Our routine is a little different this year as Parker is in all-day preschool two days a week. Two whole days that I'm not sure what I'm going to do with myself. My goal right now is to fill those days with things I tend to save until late at night when the kids are in bed. I'm looking forward to lots of daytime scrapping, some self-care and having my nights back for chill time.

I finished my mini album from Marcy's Mini Book Workshop at Studio Calico last month - woohoo! I love how it turned out and it's a thick one so I'm trying to figure out the best way to share it. Photos, video, or both...

I've got a plan to finish my summer Project Life Handbook in the next two weeks thanks to Caylee's Project Life Catch Up Guide. If you are behind, at all, even a little bit, it's so so helpful. You can break every little thing down into lists to help you get it done. Seriously - go get it here. I'll be sharing our quickie trip to Chicago later this week.

I'm expecting this book tomorrow and reading this one for the second time (and taking lots of notes).

Here's to some more regular, less random posts.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Summer Handbook 2014 | 05 with Poet Society

Poet Society is now available to Studio Calico subscribers and today I want to share the fifth update to my Project Life Summer Handbook. Clicking on the photos will take you to my gallery where you can see the layouts + closeups a bit larger than here on the blog. I've included inserts in a few of my spreads + you'll be able to "flip through" them easily there as well.
mid-July / Farmington Founders Festival
end of July / aka "when it finally warmed up!"
end of July / crafts, friends + introspection
end of July / my Dad's birthday + new-to-us hiking trails
end of July / currently
early August / family time
mid-August / Reading + Rhythm on the Riverfront
Seven more spreads complete and I'd say I have 5-7 more I want to cram in before I call this Summer Handbook done. I need to work on our trip to Chicago from earlier this month, and these last couple weeks of August, and the odds are high that I'm going to keep going with the Handbook size for this fall. That will be a post all it's own. You can see all of my Summer Handbook blog updates here.

My Summer Project Life Essentials : Studio Calico Handbook / assorted page protectors / Studio Calico Project Life kits / corner rounder / tiny attacher / journaling pens / Alte Haas Grotesk font 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Poet Society sneaks

It's sneak time once again at Studio Calico and I'm so pleased with how my summer handbook is shaping up.
I got 7 new spreads, with several inserts, completed with the September Poet Society kits and my album is nearly full! I have a few more pages I'd like to fit in before I call it done, but first, here are a few peeks into what I made this month :
This first one is a Project Life main only spread. Lots of cutting, trimming and stitching new combinations together. That's been a fun way to mix it up and use more product since I've condensed the amount of space I have to fill for each layout.
The second one focuses on a messy grid I made - mostly from the Crate Paper Notes + Things Ephemera Pack in the Yeats add-on. If I had to choose just one extra kit, Yeats would be it.
I also got to play around with the Alex + Ben alpha stamp set this month - super fun! It's a 4x6 set, so the letters themselves are small, but you get the solid background and the line detail for each letter, number and symbol. Here I stamped the solid image in Galaxy Gold Brilliance ink and the lined stamp with Versafine Black Onyx ink.

Want to see more sneaks? Go here. I'll be back on Wednesday to show my spreads in full. Until then, have a great week!