Saturday, November 17, 2018

Zipper Card and Convention Hilights ...

Happy Saturday!

Well!  It has only been two weeks since I posted but it feels like I've lived 6 months worth of fun and excitement in that time!

If you follow me on Facebook ("Tamara's Paper Trail") you will have seen alllll my Facebook Live videos from last weeks Convention in Orlando.  I really don't have the word to describe the depth of emotions I felt that week.  There were SO many and they were SO intense.  Truly.  In fact, I had been on SUCH a wave of adrenalin, nerves, smiles and lack of sleep that I ended up hugging the toilet in the week hours of the morning Friday morning.  It was all just too much for too long for my system!  I'm happy to say, though, that I was up and at 'em Friday morning for more fun, prizes and laughs (although I DID take a brief nap on the Convention Centre floor mid afternoon! *lol*)

If you would like to see all the swaps I got from other stampers how over to my Facebook Page.  I have some in picture form and some in video form.  They're all lovely - check them out!

Today I wanted to share my video on how to make a "Zipper Card".  I had received a swap using this "technique" last April and vowed I'd make one *one day*.  Thursday was that day.  It's CRAZY quick and easy but packs SUCH a wow for the recipient!  Here's a picture of the project ...
... and here is the YouTube video on how to make it ...
Doesn't it make you want to run right down to your Craft Cave and make one??  SUCH a fun idea and, if you're like me, you give a LOT of gift cards for Christmas and Birthdays.  This is a fun, quick packaging idea that everyone loves (and a FAB way to use up some of the designer paper you're hoarding!!) . Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

Right!  I need to walk my Doodle Bug, design my Advent Calendar for class next week and hit Ikea for accessories for my youngest daughters room (Craig painted her room while I was in Orland so now she apparently *needs* all new EVERYTHING! lol)

Whatever YOU get up to this weekend, I hope you have a stampy time!

(I'll leave you with a few pics from Convention ...


Friday, November 2, 2018

Holy COW!

Happy Friday!


I've been sitting here for 10 minutes trying to figure out how to start this post and all I keep coming up with is "wow".  Yes, it's 3:30 in the morning.  Yes, for the third night in a row I can't sleep.  Too much going on in my head ... so I thought I'd share ...

This has, hands down, been one of the most exciting, emotional, thrilling, happy, sad, AMAZING week of my life ... and I have lived approximately 2,652 weeks.  THIS particular week was a good one.

I don't share this to brag.  Truly I don't.  I share this to try to put into words how blessed, grateful, proud, humbled and thrilled I am ... and how overwhelming it all is.

This week two major things happened.

#1.  Stampin' Up! announced that I was chosen as one of only SEVEN demonstrators in Canada to be a part of the newly formed "Canadian Demonstrator Council".  As SU puts it ...

We’re excited to announce that we’ve chosen the members of our 13 Demonstrator Councils in areas throughout the world! These demonstrators were selected through an application process, and we were strategic in choosing councils so they each include a broad base of demonstrators with a diverse range of backgrounds and skills.
These 2018–2019 Demonstrator Council members will partner with the Demonstrator Development Managers (DDMs) as ambassadors for and champions of Stampin’ Up! to motivate and inspire demonstrators. They will serve in this role for at least a year.
The councils will work with their DDM to focus on issues such as:
  • Finding ways to keep demonstrators connected and engaged with Stampin’ Up!
  • Helping demonstrators get new customers.
  • Helping demonstrators increase their sales.
  • Finding ways to make recruiting easier.

To say I am THRILLED to be part of the CDC is a gross understatement!  What a dream-come-true for me!!  I RELISH the thought of being able to help find ways to make being a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator even better than it already is!  To have the chance to inspire and motivate my Sisters??  Sign me UP! ... and they did!  SO humbling!

#2.  Yesterday the list of Top Achievers was released, both for Canada and Globally.  I was shocked and thrilled to see my name appear a few times.  Ya, I *might* have found out standing in the lobby of the chiropractor.  Ya, I *might* have teared up a *little*!  How did I rank?
  • Recruiting - #5 in Canada
  • Overall - #20 in Canada
  • Globally - #161
There are approximately 5,000 Canadian demonstrators and approximately 60,000 Globally.  Whaaattttt?  For me to even come CLOSE to being on ANY list blows my mind, let alone being ranked where I am!  

Truly gobsmacked.

What thrills me even MORE than my own success this year is the success of some of the best ladies I know.  They are my "sidelines", in Stampin' Up! lingo.  We are all SU demos but we have no formal "ties" to each other (ie we don't have the same leaders above us).  We came together in early 2017, after the Canadian Business Conference I attended in Toronto.  Long story short, we formed a Facebook group to support each other in our businesses as we strove to reach our individual goals.  This team of women knocked every single one of them out of the PARK!  There were 6 of us originally.  Five of us will be on the cruise to Greece.  Five of us are in the top 50 Canadian Demonstrators.  All six of us achieved what we set out to and then some.  You know what is better than succeeding?  Watching those you LOVE succeed - watching them set goals, work towards them and cross that finish line.  We all crossed it together and it is truly one of the most rewarding experiences of my 2,652 weeks on this planet.  

Now, for all the joy that I have experienced this week I have also experienced great sadness.  I don't think an hour has passed this week that I haven't thought of, and missed, my dear friend, and upline, Tamye.  She was my biggest cheerleader. There was never any doubt in HER mind that I could achieve all I set out to.  That belief made ME believe I could ... and I set out on my journey.   Tamye passed away this March, just three months before I earned the Greece Incentive Trip and, now, just seven months before I achieved some to rankings in the company.  I owe SO much of my success to her.  Her guidance, her leadership, her friendship.  It is SO bittersweet achieving these things without her physically by my side.  Oh sure, I do know she is with me, celebrating with me and watching over me.  That makes me smile.  It would just be so great to have her here to celebrate with.

So ya.  This week has been one of the best weeks of my life.  

I am SO overwhelmed.
I am SO humbled.
I am SO grateful.
I am so, so, SO very blessed.

Thank you for YOUR part in my journey.  I appreciate it more than words can say.

Have a stampy day 

xoxox  Tam

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Dashing Deer Simplicity

Happy Saturday!

How is it SATURDAY already??  MAN this week flew by!  I guess that's just the tell-tale sign of buying super busy, right?  I don't know I'm always so surprised at how fast Oct and Nov go ... its the same every year!  School starts in Sept and it's a spring to December!  Oct and Nov are by FAR the busiest months for me and my business.  SO many idea, classes and project, SO little time to plan, make, market and hold classes for them all!  Throw into the mix Alicia's birthday (13 this year), Mom and Dad's Anniversary (55 this year!), my Dad's birthday (80 this year) and the annual Thanksgiving visit from my brother, Halloween and (this year) Stampin' Up! Convention and .. ya ... this week flew by! Having said that, I'm having a BALL!  Oh yes, I had one day of panic stress that it was Tuesday and I still hadn't designed the 5 cards for my Stamp-a-Stack this Sunday ... but the stress kicked me into high gear and in a few hours I had them all designed and I love them all!  Yup. I do love my job!

This little piece of awesomeness is one of the two most popular ones on my Facebook Pages so I thought I'd share it first.  It is RIDICULOUSLY quick and easy to make!  Check it out ...
GAH!  I LOVE it!!  SO clean, so elegant, so SIMPLE!

I used the Dashing Deer image and the "Merry Christmas" sentiment is from the "Timeless Tidings" set. 

I knew I would have LOTS of people asking "how do you attach the vellum without the adhesive showing through?" ... so I made a video showing you.  Take a look ...
What I DID forget to mention in the video (ya, a *few* squirrel moments this week!) regarding the embellishment containers.  Why use it?  After you've used it for the glue you pop the sponge and/or finger dauber into the case, put the lid on and tuck it away for next time!  If the container is tightly sealed the glue won't dry hard and you will know which sponge/dauber you used FOR the next time.  I'm famous for using a sponge in ink but not labelling it so I'm always using a new sponge every time!  .. but I digress ...

I HIGHLY recommend owning this deer set.  To be honest, I wasn't in love with this particular deer when I first saw it.  "A paisley deer?  Who want a paisley deer?".  Now I know.  I WANT a paisley deer!  *lol*

That's it for today. Pop in again soon to check out my other VERY popular Christmas card, using the soon-to-be released "Snowfall" thinlits.  They are only available in November and only while supplies last.  You are going to want these dies!!

Have yourself a stampy day! 

xoxo Tam

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Stylish Christmas 1, 2, 3

Happy Wednesday!

Today I want to share a pretty little card that started off very simple and then I stepped it up a little ... and then I stepped it up a lot.

First up my simple, notecard version ...
I used the "Stylish Christmas" from the 2018 Annual Catalogue, stamped the swirl in Cherry cobbler, the leaves in Old Olive and the sentiment in our retired Basic Black Archival ink.  I used my sponge brayer to ink the poinsettia, cut it out "old school" with our paper snips, added three pearls t the centre and popped it up on dimensionals.  Quick, easy, cute.

I liked the layout so much I wanted to use it for my upcoming class, so I turned it into a full sized card ...
I used a whisper white layer of 4 3/4" x 3 1/2", mounted it on a Cherry Cobbler layer of 4 3/4" plus two ticks by 3 1/2" plus two ticks.  To add a little pizzazz I added a swirl to the card base before popping the layer up on dimensionals.  Love that little touch!

I liked my "stepped up" version a lot but was on a roll and thought I'd step it up one more level ...
BAM!  This one I LOVE with the deep pop of colour with the Cherry Cobbler poinsettia! For THIS version I brought in the Peaceful Poinsettia Framelits.  I cut the large, background poinsettia in Cherry Cobbler and then cut the fine detailed piece using the framelits on the Merry Merlot glimmer paper from the Glimmer Pack in the 2018 Holiday Catalogue.  I added 7 pearls (using our new Take Your Pick tool!) and popped the poinsettia up on dimensionals.

I just LOVE this card! 

So you see?  Stepping up a simple card is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

I'm off to start my day - have a stampy one!


Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Adorable Mini Albums!

Happy Tuesday!

It's taken me a few days longer than planned, but today I want to share with you how I made this adorable little album that I CASEd from Ronda Wade.  Check it out!

Here's another version ..
I love these albums!  They are a great little gift for a new bride or new mom/grandma, as you can pop pictures into the little envelope pockets.  If you like to send pictures with your Christmas cards this is a great way to do it!

I made a video showing you how they are made.  I FINALLY figured out how to add Closed Captioning for my hearing impaired friends, and I will now have that option on all my videos (well, at least my RECORDED videos that I upload to Youtube.  My brain just didn't have the ability to figure out how to convert my LIVE videos, which leads me to think I won't be doing very many of THOSE in the future!). 

Here's how to make it ...
So easy!  You just need a 6" x 12" strip of DSP, four envelopes and whatever you have on hand to decorate.  Simple!

I hope you have a chance to make one yourself.  Have a stampy day!


Saturday, October 13, 2018

Lined Alphabet Dies and Video

Happy Saturday!

MAN am I beat!  I've had a great, albeit EXHAUSTING few days!

I don't normally have my monthly Technique Class one night and then my Team Meetings the next morning.  I did that once and it darn near killed me!  What happens is I have my class Friday night, people leave around 9:30 pm and then I have to clean up the three card stations from the night and set up the projects for the 9:30 AM meeting on Saturday morning.  I'm usually up until 12:00 -1:00 am getting it all set up.  I did it once and vowed I would never do it again.  Ya. Never say never.  Due to a scheduling conflict this month I HAD to have my class and meeting back to back.  I'm thrilled to say I pretty much nailed BOTH sessions in that I was prepped on THURSDAY NIGHT for BOTH events!  Moreover, I even had to redecorate the basement to make room for 13 of my crafty team members, taking apart our couch and stashing the good stools in the storage room (with great difficulty, I might add!).  I was actually done setting up for the Saturday session around 10:30 last night ... but then I figured I was on such a roll I should design and complete 10 complex cards.  Sigh.  I AM my own worst enemy sometimes!  Whilst I wasn't feeling exhausted last NIGHT, I am now sitting on the couch, at 6:23 pm Saturday evening counting down the minutes until it is socially acceptable to go to bed.  Actually, no, wait ... that's a lie.  Who am I kidding??  I'm an adult.  I can go to bed at 6:32 pm if I want to ... I'm not going to bed simply because I know either my back or my bladder will rebel against me at some point between 6:23 PM and 6:23 am ... and when one of them wakes me from my glorious slumber I will be well and truly screwed for sleep for the rest of the night.

So here I am ... blogging ... watching the clock tick on ....

Right!  Enough oversharing about my bladder and clock watching!  *lol* . Let's take a look at the project that got me INTO this exhausted mess, shall we?

Yay! Dont'cha love it??  The colours just make me HAPPY!

Blueberry Bushel, Granny Apple Green Lemon Lime Twist and Daffodil Delight.  So fresh and pretty!

Now ... I have spent WELL over an hour trying to upload a "live" Facebook Video to Youtube so I could then share it here, all professional-like.  Ya.  Without inserting some very colourful words, let's just say I have stepped away from that challenge and given up on the dream.

Do you WANT to see my live video showing you how to make this beauty?  Well I didn't record the whole making of the card but I DID video the making of the "YAY" portion, which is really what you want to see!  SO!  To see it you need to click here.  That will take you to my "closed" facebook group "Tamara's Paper Trail VIPs".  If you don't get access to the video just request to join the group and I will add you.  That's the best I can do, given my limited brain power and tolerance for Facebook programming mental gymnastics!

Trust me - you want to see this video.  I thought it would be nice to record one "live" using those really expensive Lined Alphabet dies and stamp set.  Are they REALLY as easy to use as Stampin' Up! leads us to believe?  Is it possible to use them successfully on the first try or is there a 19-time trial and error requirement before a stamper can use it with confidence?  Check out the video and find out!
** After I made the video I continued to crack off piecesto make a total of 10 "yay" cards.  I got the knack quite quickly.  What worked for me was to cut ALL the coloured pieces at 3" x 3" and then, after I taped them all together (using Fast Fuse) I trimmed them so the final square is/was 3" x3".  It worked really well.

To finish the card off, once I had the "yay" made, I ran a piece of 5" x 3 3/4" piece of Whisper White through the Swirls & Curls embossing folder (make sure you spray it with a mist of water before doing so to avoid the paper cracking!) .

I cut a piece of Mini Ruffled Lemon Lime Twist ribbon 16" long and looped it behind the "yay" piece.  To do THAT I ran some Fast Fuse along the back of the "yay".  I then folded the ribbon at 5.5" and at 11" across the sticky piece.  I then used two pieces of Tear and Tape to secure the ribbon in place.  I used dimensionals to pop the "yay" up for added interest.
The sentiment is from "Amazing Congratulations", stamped in Blueberry Bushel on a 1/2" piece of whisper White.  I just used scrap pieces and free hand snipped the angled edges.  The sentiment is popped up on dimensionals.
I added three silver stars from a pack of metallic enamel shapes I found that had fallen behind my ribbon holder.  I have no idea when these things were on offer but they are now retired *lol* . Who knows how long they were back there!

The final touch was the envelope (and inside).  I used one of the four images in the Birthday Background stamp set.  This is a quiet little set that I'm pretty sure has flown under the radar of most of us ... but it's a must have, in my opinion, for cute little details like this. 

So there you have it.  My exhausted ramblings on a Saturday evening.  I'm now 13 minutes closer to my bed *lol*.

Whatever you got up to today, I hope you had a stampy time.  Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


Thursday, October 11, 2018

3-D Dashing Deer Tree Card

Happy Thursday!

Ya know what?  I don't feel like doing anything I "should" be doing so I'm not gunna!  Ha!  Take THAT "adulting"!

Truth is I have just under an hour before I have to go pick up my baby girl and I don't feel like getting into anything that involved moving (like from the couch to my computer chair hee hee) so here I am, with my bog old 65 pound lap dog snuggled up beside me and I'm uploading videos and blogging.  Yup - sometimes ya just gotta do what you WANNA do and not what you SHOULD do!

I didn't plan to share this project until next week ... but I couldn't wait.  It makes me giddy and I'm in a VERY giddy mood today so here we are!




It's SOOOO cool! ... and SO easy to put together!

Wanna see a video on how to make it?  OK!  (Did you KNOW I have a Youtube Channel?  Ya, my kids don't even know I do! ... then again, they don't know where we keep the cat food so they aren't really a good measure of ANYthing *lol*  Get into your Youtube account and search for Tamara's Paper Trail.  I have a whole 25 subscribers hee hee.  Isn't that adorable?  Maybe you'll be #26!)
Easy, yes?

So, in case you weren't taking notes ... you just need:
Base:  8" x 4"
a square 4" x 4"
Designer paper 4" x 4", cut in half along the diagonal
Whisper White 4" x 4", cut in half along the diagonal
Attach a bit of velcro ... or a thin magnet ... or a piece of ribbon to keep it closed
Decorate as desired!

Love it!!

That's it for now!  If YOU are looking to avoid adulting today pop over to my Facebook Page "Tamara's Paper Trail VIPs" and request to join.  (click here).  I post my videos there first, Youtube second and here third (if I ever make it past the first step, that is!)

Whate er you get up to today, I hope you have a stampy day!


Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Stamparatus Accessories by Stampin' Up!

Happy Tuesday!

I'm THRILLED these are now available!  I have already ordered my grid paper, extra magnets and extra plates.

If you're in Canada and would like to order some too I'd be thrilled to have you order through me here.

Orders under $200 that enter Hostess Code 4VK3P2GZ at the checkout will get a thank you in the mail from me.

Have a stampy night!


Saturday, October 6, 2018

Ferrero Rocher Treat Holder

Happy Saturday!

It's a long weekend up her in Canada for our Thanksgiving ... and that means family, fun and FOOD!

Yes, I'm less than 24 hours into the fun and I'm already in my stretchy leggings and up 2 pounds *lol*

Yesterday was Alicia's 13th birthday and, as tradition holds, we spent the day together.  That's right - my girls get to skip school on their birth day so they can spend it with their Momma.  The days of their births were two of the best days of my life and I want to celebrate that date with them.  Just them and me.  Bonding.  Remembering.  Enjoying. 

This year was a *little* different in that Alicia went to school for the first part of the day.  She wanted to se her friends (knowing they'd be decorating her locker and so on) and she wanted to make lemon cupcakes in food class *lol*. That's my girls - never pass on free food! hee hee.  So I took her to school (after grabbing her the traditional Tim Horton's donut!), picked her up just after 11:00 and headed to our favorite Vietnamese restaurant for lunch.  Next up was a trip to T&T Chinese Supermarket to pick out a new phone case (yes, odd, I know, but thy have a HUGE selection of phone, ipad and computer cases - WAY better selection than the mall kiosks!) and then we headed to Kingsway Garden Mall, where we always go for a wee bit of shopping (and *maybe* a Purdy's chocolate of two!).  Headed home where, a few hours later, the rest of the Alford clan descended upon us (my brother is in town too!) for presents, dinner out and dessert.  Ugh.  I had more sugar yesterday than I've had in over 2 months.  Seriously!  ... but it was worth it, as treats should be.  Not gunna pass up on traditions for the sake of a few thousand calories every now and then, right?

Now speaking of traditions (and calories!) another tradition I have is bringing some sort of decoration to Mom's for the Thanksgiving table.  Years back it was napkin olders, few years ago it was wheat decorations and so on.  THIS year I made these freaking ADORABLE Ferrero Rocher holders.  I was going to write everyone's name on the front but opted to stamp a sentiment instead.  They are CRAZY simple to make and everyone who has seen them loves them.  Here's a pic of the Thanksgiving ones I made (using a retired set) but you can absolutely use current product as well . If you need to make them taller, just use a longer piece of card stock ...
SO key-UTE!

Right - I know y'all want the dimensions .. so ...
2" x 9.5" strip
Score at 3/4", 2 3/4", 3.5" and 5.5"
Punch the top with the Scalloped Topped punch.
Punch the hole with the 1 3/8" circle punch

For mine, I used the retired set "Truly Grateful" but you can certainly use Wishing You Well or any other fall-type set.  Even the Country Home Milk Jug set works well, it just needs to be a bit bigger ... so instead of using a 9.5" strip make it longer!  Try 10.5" ...

Watch the video to see it come together ...
**  I said in the video to use our thick card stock.  I lied!  Don't use that - it is such thick weight (and high quality!) that it cracks when you fold it ... and the punched hole doesn't punch as cleanly ... so just use regular old card stock and you'll be fine!

It seriously took me about 10 minutes to make 8 of these .. and then I just HAD to move on to some Christmas ones! ...

For the Christmas ones I used the FREE hostess set "Hung With Care" and used some snowflakes make with the Blizzard thinlets from the Beautiful Blizzard Bundle ($62 CAD)
Naturally I used some of our Multipurpose Adhesive Sheets on the back of the card stock before running them through the Big Shot so the snowflakes were stickers and I didn't have to mess around with liquid glue!

So that is my share for today.  I'll "leaf" you with some pics from our Bertram family photo shoot last weekend (see what I did there - hee hee).

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  Have a stampy day!