Scrapbook Layout – Butterfly Pavilion

Do you ever want to scrapbook but feel uninspired and out of ideas when you actually go to scrap your photos? Yeah, me too. Then I find myself perusing the galleries and the layouts I have pinned to Pinterest, which usually helps tremendously.

Another thing that often helps get me going is to scraplift myself. This is my most recent scraplift. It is from a template I created a few months ago so it was pretty easy to throw together. (I did change a couple of the photo box sizes.) ๐Ÿ™‚

Credits: Kit used was Ellie Lash’s Aiobheals Garden

If you haven’t grabbed the free template yet, it is still available. Just click on the image below to be brought to my Digital Scrapbook Freebies page to download.
Free 2-Page Digital Scrapbook Template

Also, the kit I used for the new layout above is a freebie by Ellie Lash. I just checked and as of today, it is still available for free download on her site.

Source: via Amber on Pinterest

A Time to Download, a Time to Delete

I like to keep a copy of all my scrapbook kit previews in one place so that I can easily see at a glance what I have available. I used to keep a copy of all the previews in a folder on my computer. But more recently, I’ve been importing them into my iPhoto program. Not only are they all in one place, now I can assign tags or key words to each so they are easily searchable by color, theme, designer, store, etc. This has made it so much easier to find the “right” kit to use for my scrapbook pages.

It has also made it easy to do a kit cleanup / purge when I feel one is needed.

I’ll be the first to admit that I have a hard time getting rid of things, especially if it is something I’ve paid for. Over the past few years, I have acquired a lot of kits. A lot. Freebies, kits purchased from stores and also kits received from monthly paid subscriptions.ย  But my hard drive was getting full and I kept running across those kit previews in iPhoto that I finally had to admit to myself that I’d never use.

I am pretty picky about the freebies I download, so most of them were keepers. The kits I purchased directly from stores were also mostly keepers, not because I’d paid money for them but because I’d purchased them individually and with intent. But the kits received from monthly paid subscriptions – not so much. Yes, I did receive many great kits that I love and will use. I was also glad to discover many new-to-me designers. However, I also received MANY kits that I finally had to admit to myself that I would never, ever use. Even many from “top-name” designers. Not that they were bad or poorly designed kits, they simply were not my style.

So I began deleting. It was hard at first. I kept thinking that maybe *someday* I’d want to use that artsy kit for a special artsy page. Or make a fantasy page with the fun fantasy kit. But realistically, I probably won’t do either. So off to my trash bin they went.

Then for the hard part. Actually emptying the trash. No going back now! 100+ kits deleted and my hard drive with 15GB more free space, I feel pretty good about my decision.

Have you cleaned up your scrapbooking supplies lately?

Winter Scrapbook Layouts

We have gotten a couple of nice snowstorms already this winter, much to my 6yo daughter’s delight. My just-turned-two year old isn’t so impressed (yet). What a contrast these cold, snowy pages are to our mild 65 degree weather today though! I even have the windows open – such a delight!

Snow Scrapbook Layout
Credits: Kit used is Sir Scrap-a-lot‘s “Hearts of Winter”, Template is a freebie from Marie at Free Digital Scrapbooking

The day after the girls played in the snow in the above layout, my daughter wrote a little story about it at her homeschool co-op “Fun with Language” class. I will have to include this in our scrapbook, as it is a lot cuter than my own journaling! ๐Ÿ™‚

Homeschool Writing Assignment

It reads:

“I love my mom because she let me play in the snow. It’s my sister’s first day in the snow. My sister did not touch the snow.”

Snow Scrapbook Layout
Credits: Kit used is Sir Scrap-a-lot‘s “Hearts of Winter”, Template is a freebie by Sahlin Studio

Both digital scrapbook layouts were created from FREE digital templates that I found online. The locations of both are linked up for you in the credits of each page so you can download them too.

Facebook Cover Photo – Free Template

Have you seen the new Facebook Timeline yet?

Example from Introducing Timeline:

Facebook Timeline Cover Example

One of the first things that struck me when I upgraded my profile to Timeline in mid-December was how versatile the large cover photo could be for anyone who enjoys using Photoshop. Since it is also the first thing people will see when they visit your profile, why not personalize it?

Here is what I did for Christmas:
Facebook Timeline Cover Example

And then just a few quick changes for the New Year:
Facebook Timeline Cover Example

I have created a free Photoshop template to get you started in customizing your own Facebook Timeline Cover Photo. You can use it in the same way you would use a regular digital scrapbook template. Simply add your photos, background and embellishments and then upload to Facebook.

You can click on the preview below to be brought to my page of free downloads.

Facebook Timeline Cover Template Free Download

Once you have the Facebook Timeline layout, it is really easy to change your cover photo. Simply hover your cursor over your current cover photo and select “Change Cover/Upload Photo” and choose your new design from your computer.

How to change your Facebook Timeline Cover Photo

I hope you are having a Happy New Year!

Science Experiment (Atoms and Molecules)

In our science curriculum, Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry, we are learning about atoms and how they join together in different ways to create molecules. Adrianna particularly enjoyed the science experiment that went along with this chapter. We got to create molecules using marshmallows and toothpicks! And afterward, we got to eat our creations. ๐Ÿ™‚

Science experiment

Science experiment

Science experiment

Free Digital Scrapbook Template #73

I created a template from a recent layout while watching The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring with my husband this evening. I’ve seen this movie many times yet it still hasn’t lost its magic for me. Beautiful story, scenery and soundtrack.

You can click on the layout preview below to be taken to my page full of free downloads.

Free Digital Scrapbook Template

Here is the original layout I used to create the template. This was my daughter’s Kindergarten graduation last spring. I cannot believe I have a first grader already!

Kindergarten Graduation Layout

We are getting our first snowstorm tonight. Hope the weather is good where you are!

Autumn Art

I often peruse through teaching and homeschooling blogs to find ideas to incorporate into our homeschool day. When I find something that I or Adrianna might like to do, I “pin” the idea to my Pinterest account. (Pinterest is a visual bookmarking system. I blogged more about Pinterest here.) One such craft that I recently pinned was an autumn tear-art picture.

At first, my little perfectionist was not too keen on actually tearing the paper to make her picture. So she cut the tree trunk and branches instead and I started ripping some leaves. After awhile, she loosened up and ripped some leaves too.

Autumn Art

Here is her finished picture. I love how she made it her own by making it into a tree-house for Mario and Princess Peach.

Autumn Art

I decided to use it as part of our autumn decor on our fireplace mantle.

Autumn Art

Do you use Pinterest? (Be warned: it can be addicting!)

Follow Me on Pinterest

October DST Blog Train – FREE Templates

I am participating in the DST blog train again. This time, I made a couple of templates instead of a kit.

The first template is a 24×12 (2 page) template that can fit up to 10 photos. It also has plenty of room for journaling.

Free 2-Page Digital Scrapbook Template

The second template is 12×12 and can fit up to 4 photos. It also has plenty of room for journaling.

Free Digital Scrapbook Template

You can click on either preview image above to be taken to my page containing all of my digital scrapbook freebies available for download.

If you found this post from the DST Blog Train, then you may arrived here from The Urban Fairy.

Your next stop on the blog train is Created by Jill Scraps.

If you want to see a list of all participating designers, you can visit the Blog Train blog.

Thank you for stopping by.

Starting our First Grade Year

Things have been really busy around our house now that school has started back up. First grade is off to a good start!

We have a new desk from Ikea. Adrianna and I share the desk, which has been working out great. Although I do look forward to the day when she will be able to do more independent work.

New Desk

New Desk

We switched up some of our curriculum this year. Here is a sample of today’s workboxes:

For Math, we are using Abeka.

For History/Geography/Social Studies, we are using Sonlight again. Their Usborne books are still on my favorites list and Adrianna really enjoys them too. She has really been getting into the Peoples of the World book shown below.

For Reading, we are trying out Bob Jones (BJU).

Spelling, Phonics and Handwriting are also BJU. Here is a sample of the spelling.

For Bible, we are using Sonlight. When I sat down on the floor to read this to Adrianna today, Bree spotted the book in my hand and immediately backed up her little hiney and plopped right down into my lap. She loves colorful books.

For Read-Alouds, we are also using Sonlight. Their read-aloud selections are another reason I chose to use them again this year. This is the poetry book we are reading out of. (Warped after a quick stint in the water table, courtesy of Bree.) We are also currently in the middle of Charlotte’s Web, which we usually read at bedtime rather than placing in a workbox.

I found this next book at the homeschool conference in June and, knowing Adrianna’s keen interest in maps, I thought it would be a great addition to our year. It has really been a hit so far and she likes coloring the maps after we are done.


For science, we are going to try out Real Science 4 Kids’ Chemistry curriculum. Hopefully it will arrive in the mail soon!

Bree is pretty good about entertaining herself during school, at least part of the time. Since our school room also doubles as the playroom, she happily toddles around pulling toys and books off of their shelves and generally creates a big mess. My little tornado.

Free “Fresh” mini-kit – DST Blog Train

Thank you to everyone who took the time to read my post about Anne and also to those who donated toward her adoption grant. I appreciate it so much. I am adding a widget in my sidebar for her. I am still praying that her forever family will find her and adopt her soon. Don’t forget that you can still make donations or pray for Anne or any other sweet orphan at Reece’s Rainbow. If you haven’t checked out the Reece’s Rainbow site, I encourage you to do so. Your heart will be touched by all the sweet little faces that are waiting for families.

Okay, on to business. I joined the DST Blog Train for August because I knew that I needed a little kick in the pants to get some more designing done. It worked. I have a little mini-kit available for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

Fresh - Free Digital Scrapbook Kit

You can click on the preview image above to be taken to my page containing all of my digital scrapbook freebies available for download.

If you found my blog from the DST Blog Train, then you most likely arrived from Outside The Box Design Studio.

Your next stop on the DST Blog Train is Ramona Memories.

For a listing of all participating designers, you can check out the Blog Train Blog.

Thank you for your time in leaving a comment. Each one makes my day!

Zoey’s Closet

My friend, Myndi, has been busy raising awareness for the sweet kids on Reece’s Rainbow and specifically for a little 3 year old girl named Annabell. Myndi has been busy sewing adorable dresses and aprons as a part of a project she is calling Zoey’s Closet, named after her daughter. The winner gets to keep one dress and then has another one to give away to a friend while telling them about the Zoey’s Closet and Reece’s Rainbow. I was the lucky winner for June and I am thrilled with the dresses!!

Here are a couple pictures of my daughter wearing the “AnnaBanana Dress”. Which works out well since we often call Adrianna our Adrianna-banana. Adrianna loves this dress so much that she has worn it for the last 2 days in a row.

And here is Zoey wearing the “Hope Dress”.

Aren’t they adorable? (Both the girls and the dresses!) I am having a hard time deciding which dress to keep and which to give away – I love them both!!

Well, Myndi is hosting another great giveway on her blog for the month of July. This time, it is for some cute art aprons named after two more precious children on Reece’s Rainbow, Thalia and Josie. (Update: it looks like Thalia has found her forever family – hooray!)

Here are a couple pics I lifted from her blog.

It is so easy to enter the drawing to win these.

Each one gives you an entry into the drawing. Make sure to leave a comment on the giveway page so Myndi knows how many times to enter your name in the drawing!

Thanks for looking.

FREE 2-Page Digital Scrapbook Template (16 Photos)

I have a free two page template available for you all to download that can accommodate up to 16 photos. But first, would you take just a few moments to read about a little girl named Anne? That would mean a lot to me – thanks!

Introducing Anne
(from her profile on Reece’s Rainbow)

DOB: February 2008

Anne is a happy, calm and inquisitive girl. She is friendly and smart. She is sociable with people that she knows well, but takes some time to warm up to new people. Anne has good cognitive abilities. She plays well with her peers and the older children. She learns quickly and loves to help in the group.

I’d like to raise awareness regarding the overwhelming need for adoption and special-needs adoption, to help Anne’s forever family find her and to also help fund her adoption grant so that money will not be an issue holding someone back from adopting this sweet little girl. Would you consider donating a little to Anne’s adoption grant on Reece’s Rainbow? It is tax-deductible and would be a very feasible way to help one of “the least of these.” If you are not in a place to donate, I encourage you to visit the Reece’s Rainbow site and learn a little bit more about what they do and how they are helping the word get out about these precious children.

Thanks for reading. I appreciate it. And here is your freebie! You can click on the image to be taken to a page of all my available freebies.
Free Two Page Digital Scrapbook Template for download

Using Pinterest For Scrapbooking (and Other) Inspiration

When I feel like I am in a scrapbooking slump or when I am looking for some motivation to create a new layout, one of my first moves is to check out an online scrapbook gallery. Browsing through so many creative layouts often provides me with some inspiration or ideas to create a layout of my own.

If I run across a layout that I truly love, I find myself wanting to bookmark it so that I can return to it again in the future. I have tried several different methods of bookmarking my favorite layouts. First, I tried just using my browser’s bookmarking capability. That quickly became overwhelming, even after I created individual folders to contain them in. Next, I tried Delicious. I stuck with this one for a year or more and did appreciate that I could add and search on keywords for my bookmarks, but it was still cumbersome since I would have to actually click on each bookmarked link to open it up in my browser to view and see which particular layout it was. Then last year, I stumbled across Tumblr and was excited that each of my bookmarked scrapbook layouts actually appeared as an image. And I could follow other people with similar interests. I was with Tumblr for a year and thought I was happy…until a friend introduced me to Pinterest.

Pinterest has become a new online addiction for me. It does everything (and more) than I had hoped for from Tumblr and Delicious. If you haven’t heard of Pinterest, it is basically all about visual bookmarking. According to their website:

Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.

Best of all, you can browse pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.

I can create and organize my own folders (called boards) of bookmarked images (called pins) in any manner I like. I have boards for scrapbook layouts, craft ideas, homeschool ideas, recipes, home decorating ideas, dachshunds and many more.
My Pinterest Boards

I can also follow people who have similar interests. Or if I choose, I can follow just their individual boards that I am interested in. For instance, Pam Beasley might have two boards on her profile. One of scrapbook layouts and one of sports. I am not a fan of sports but I like her taste in scrapbooking, so I can choose to follow only her scrapbook layouts board instead of everything she pins. All activity from the boards I follow will show up on my main page, where I can easily repin anything I like to one of my own boards.

All pins are automatically linked to the original website/blog where the image was located. For instance, if I pin a recipe I find online, I can click on the pinned image to be brought back to the website/blog where the image was pinned from so that I can read the actual recipe. (Note: be sure your pins are from direct blog post rather than the main blog itself so that you are brought back to the original post rather than only the top level of the blog.)

Pinning a photo from any website is so simple. Pinterest has a little bookmark you can put right on your browser’s bookmarks bar and when you are on the website that has the image you want to pin, simple click the Pin It bookmark and you can select the image and which board you want to add it to. Done and done. In fact, it is SO simple that I think scrapbook freebie finders could use it. Instead of them having to save and recreate freebie previews and links on their blogs, they could simply pin the freebies they find into a folder in just seconds. I’ve even started a freebies folder of my own.

You can assign keywords to your pins so that others can easily find them when searching. I try to always make sure I add the keywords of #scrapbook #layout to the layouts I pin.

As of right now, you do need to request an invite from Pinterest in order to create a profile and start pinning. I am not sure how long they are in getting back to you, so I would recommend having someone you know invite you so that you can get started faster. If you want an invite, just leave me a comment and I will be happy to send you one.

The Daily Digi has a great step-by-step beginner’s post on Pinterest here if you are interested in learning more.

Do you use Pinterest?

Follow Me on Pinterest

Free Two Page Template #69

One of my layouts (shown below) was posted at the Daily Digi. Woohoo! Granted, I did submit it to them, but it is still exciting to see it over at their website. ๐Ÿ™‚

Scrapbook Layout
Credits: Kit is “Reach for the Sky” by Lyndsay Riches

And here is a free two-pager I created from my layout. Hope you enjoy it!

To download the template, please click on the image below. You will be brought to my download page containing all of my available scrapbook freebies.
Free Two Page Digital Scrapbook Template for download

I love to read your comments. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thank you for stopping by!

Free 8.5×11 Scrapbook Template #68

I haven’t forgotten all the 8.5×11 scrappers out there – here is the 8.5×11 version of my latest template. ๐Ÿ™‚

To download the template, please click on the image below. You will be brought to my download page containing all of my available scrapbook freebies.
Free 8.5x11 Digital Scrapbook Template for download

I love to read your comments. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thank you for stopping by!