Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Tips & Techniques for my MCS pages

Hello everyone! Here are my tips and techniques for the July I made with the fabulous My Creative Scrapbook Kit.

I LOVED this kit. I loved all the bright colors with the bold black and white stripes.

You make my heart sing:

I was first inspired by the paper with all the frames.

I liked the way it looked but I couldn't just slap a photo on there and be done, so I cut out all the frames and arranged them like I did above.

It was still kind of boring to me so I said, "Hey, I'll make it look like a 3 dimensional room!"

So, I took the photo and the frame off and started using a pencil and a ruler to make some angles on the kraft cardstock background.

Corner to corner first.

Then, decide how deep you want the "floor" and draw a horizontal pencil line across the page over the angled line.

Draw a vertical line where you want the other wall to be.

Line up the "floor" and draw that angle again using pencil on the patterned paper.

Do the same thing with the trim. Line it up on the angle, use a pencil and cut along the line. Remember that the closer the trim is to the edge of the page, the bigger it should be to help give that 3 dimensional look. 

I made a frame for the extra wall. I followed the angles on the floor and made the ends slightly wider.

I really wanted the shadow of the corner to stand out a bit. At first I used Copics but they just weren't working for me so I used a sketching pencil, sprayed some water on a dauber and rubbed it around until I got the look I wanted.

I added some doodling around the mat of the photo to make it match the other frames. It looks like I'm left handed here, but I'm really not. I have to take the photo with my right hand. ;)

I added a little bit of distress stain to show up behind the photo. I just needed it to stand out a bit more.

The butterflies are 3 dimensional, too. To do that the easy way, I put half of the butterfly stickers on a scrap paper. I cut out the butterfly and used the sticky part to adhere to the page. The butterfly that's on the cardstock won't stick so it will automatically stick up and give some more dimension to the page.

I added 3-D glue dots to each of the frames before sticking them down. I also shaded around each frame with a very light Copic marker.


The story of my daughter and her missing 100 Fruit Loops had to be documented on the page with all the circles! After all, Fruit Loops are circles.

I used 4 "1"s of different colors to make one big "1". I used the wood circles to make the zeros and added stickers inside the circles.

 The "zeros" didn't stand out enough so I painted them using black acrylic paint.

I separated the cloud stencil from the Studio Calico mask and sprayed blue ink over them. I carefully moved the stencil around and kept spraying.  It would have been easier to spray before I stuck down the "100" but I don't seem to work that way. I used a piece of scrap paper to cover up the "100" before I sprayed.

I matted the photo on black cardstock and used a white pen to make dots around the frame. I used the black ribbon, wrapped it around the photo and mat and tied it in a knot.

I wrote up the journaling on the computer (double spaced), printed it up and cut it into strips. I cut it up with a guillotine first and then use my scissors to hand cut it. I don't care if it's a little crooked. I also added green strips to help draw the eye down the page as I found that the strips were kind of washing out in the background.

After I arranged and glued down the strip journaling, I outlined each strip with an ultra fine Sharpie marker.

You can see that I had a tag behind the photo. I decided later I didn't like that and removed it. 

Rainbow Loom:

When I first saw the Studio Calico mask, I knew it had to be sprayed in rainbow colors and then I said, "Oh! Rainbow Loom bracelet page!" And that's how it all came together.

I started with red ink and carefully moved the stencil around to spray orange, yellow and green and blue. I ran out of room for purple.

I layered all the colored paper behind the photo as one big mat. They're all cut in random sizes.  Pssst, you can see the vertical line of the mask on the page. I covered that line up with another mat.

Later I used a ultra fine point Sharpie to outline the colored mats. On the dark polka dot paper, I used a white pen.

The circle stickers and the wooden circles are used to make the visual triangle around the photo. In addition, the two half circles and the oval do the same thing. I also made a third triangle with the title and the label stickers.

Go Chutney Go:

This darn dog is not even my dog and I love her so much. She is a dog that has no home. She lives in a boarding kennel while waiting for her forever home. She's lived in a kennel for four months and the rescue that pays for her boarding is running out of options for her.

For the last month, every morning I pull her out of the kennel and take her to the dog park. I wanted to document her energy and how much fun she has while on the grass (something we don't get a lot of in Tucson).

I used a photo app (Fotor) to make the strip of photos. I printed the photos and matted them on the striped paper.

I wanted to use a lot of ribbons and banners because they're festive, happy and energetic like Chutney. I cut stripes and placed them vertically on the cardstock.

Ooops, you don't see the ribbons here but I added them later. I liked the phrases on that patterned paper so I knew I wanted that on the page. I inked up the edges and placed it (not glued) on the cardstock. I also used the same technique (from Rainbow Loom page) of the layered mats for behind the journaling. Once I had the journaling placed and the pattern paper placed, I knew where I could add my title.

I added banner flags and stickers to the photos.

I stuck down the ribbons, placed the pattern paper over them and added the flowers on top.

Then I crossed my fingers hoping that Chutney at least gets a foster home this month.
Thanks everyone for looking. :)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

A Day with Achilles (pic heavy)

EDITED 8/10/2014 - Achilles has finally found his forever home! They love him so much.

I've known Achilles for a few months now. He was in sickbay for awhile, then adopted and returned for jumping over the fence.

He now sits in a kennel with another dog while waiting for his new home. This dog CAN jump!! He nearly flies.

I felt the poor guy needed a break from kennel life and Erik agreed. I picked him up around 9 am and this is how his day went:

Trying to impress Shannon the dog but she's is more interested in something on the floor.

 Splashing in the pool.

Following Trent around the house.

 Splashing in the pool.

Watching TV with Shannon and Katrina.

Splashing in the pool.

Making friends with Shannon. He'd sometimes sneak in kisses when she'd walk by.

Splashing in the pool.

Helping Erik and Manny look for the perfect snack.

Splashing in the pool.

Resting on our bed.

Splashing in the pool.

Helping Shannon and Erik make dinner.

Splashing in the pool.

Cuddling with me, Shannon and Kat.

Splashing in the pool.

Pretending to me annoyed with me for taking his picture ALL DAY.

Splashing in the pool.

Going back to PACC and sitting on Erik's lap.

He was a great boy!! He didn't once try to jump out of the yard. However, he was NEVER out of my sight. Anytime anyone gets a new dog, they should always keep a leash on them while they're outside and never leave them alone.

 He got along with all the dogs. Even Manny! A small male chihuahua and Jack Russell mix.

The person that adopts him would be very lucky to have such a great dog.

The reason I did this is because he is a bit of a jumpy scary looking dog inside the kennel which turns people away. Outside of the kennel, he is just like a normal, well behaved dog. He does have some rude manners which can be quickly corrected with the right training or maybe even an older dog to gently show him the ways.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

We call her Kick Ass

Or, the title of this was going to be, "I was a teenage mom, too".

In public we call her "Kisses" but behind closed doors, her name is "Kick Ass".


Because she beat the odds and helped her kittens beat the odds.

I was leaving the Help Desk one disgustingly hot afternoon. Now that I think about it, it was July 5. The day after the 4th of July is supposed to be the busiest intake day of the year at the animal shelter.

Like I said, I was leaving. I had clocked out. I had gathered my stuff and I was heading out the back door to my car.

That's when I saw her.

At first I just looked out the window and said, "Oh crap!" I thought I had said it to myself but I was told later by Dustin that he had heard me say it and he knew I was going home with something.

I walked outside and took a closer look.

It was this teeny tiny cat with even tinier kittens. The kittens' eyes were closed and they were nursing. Even though mom cat was nursing, she was still trying her best to get as close to the hand that was reaching in to pet her.

That's what caught my attention. All day I had seen scared cats in boxes and traps and heard them crying and then I walk out and see this.  The cage door was completely open, a hand was petting this mom cat while she was nursing her 4 kittens and mom cat was pressing her head against the hand that was petting her. I had never seen anything like it before.

I asked, "What do we have here?" I was pretending to not really be that interested.

Wet eyes looked up at me and one of the women said, "We were helping the landlord clean out the house next to us and we found them. The people left at least 4 days ago."

4 days?! 4 days!!?? This poor cat hadn't eaten or had any water for 3-4 days and had given birth to these beautiful kittens.

One kitten was kind of limp and they were worried about her. I discovered that I was worried, too and followed them inside when their names were called.

I was back at the intake desk but this time I was a customer and not a volunteer. I knew those kittens could not stay at PACC. They would for sure get sick and die. It was late in the afternoon and finding a foster at this time would be difficult.

I asked the women if they could keep them for a couple days while I looked for a foster.

The woman just shook her head, "No". She was still crying. She was so worried about them. By now, Jessica had given the limp kitten some watered down Nutri-Cal and the kitten was starting to come around.

I weighed my options:

Do I want to stay married? Or do I want to live with my parents?

Mom cat was still getting petted while nursing. She was purring!!

Do I want to stay married? Or do I want to live with my parents?

WHAT? Mom cat only weighs 5.88 pounds? She can't be more than 9 months old herself? I was a young mom, too. I can't turn her away.

Do I want to stay married? Or do I want to live with my parents?

I made the executive decision that I was taking these cats. I had already forewarned my husband that there may be some day when I would have to take some kittens home to bottle feed. Maybe he wouldn't notice that there was a mom cat not much bigger than the kittens.

I texted my husband.

No answer.

I called my husband and left a message.

I called the home phone and left a message.

Well, I tried calling, right? What choice did I have?

Surely, he wouldn't want these kittens and mom cat to die, right?

"I'll take them home and foster them", I said. There was fear in my voice but that was quickly dismissed with cheers from the women that had brought them in. They gave me a hug but they didn't want to know what may happen to her and the kittens. They were terrified something bad would happen.

I gave them my name and phone number anyway and told them if they changed their mind they could call me or look me up on Facebook.

The women left.

Mom cat went back to the vet where she was re-hydrated.

I was alone with the kittens. I closely examined what I had gotten myself into and noticed that they still had umbilical cords attached. These kittens had been born maybe the day before. On July 4th.

I called my mom to see what she thought about it and if she had room for me should things not work out. All she said was, "I'm glad I'm not you! You're crazy!" and stuff like that.

I sighed and called my husband back. This time he answered and he was NOT happy. I couldn't get very many words out because he kept hanging up on me.

Mom cat came back from the vet and I was handed some cat food and some Kitten Milk Replacement.

We walked out to my car and I had an eerie sense of being totally alone. The gravel crunched under my feet and I had a flashback to when I was 17 and pregnant. I remember walking out of my house with as many prized possessions that I could carry. I felt alone, scared and a little excited for a new beginning.

I was having the same feelings now. It was just me and the cats. I felt like this mom had not a soul in the world that could help her except for me. The responsibility weighed on my shoulders and in my hands. The cats were heavy.

I opened the car door and tried very carefully not to knock the cats around.

I got in, put on my seat belt and asked the cats if they were ready to go.

Mom cat looked at me, meowed and rubbed her head against the cage.

Later when I pulled up into the driveway, I had to open the front door by myself. I got the mom cat and kittens set up in my daughter's room. She was the only one excited to see cats!

The next day my husband came in to see the cats and before long he was petting mom cat and could totally see why I had no choice but to bring her home.

I think I was forgiven.

She is such a good mom. The second her kittens cry, she stops whatever she is doing, drops herself to the ground belly up and lets those babies nurse.

I sometimes hand feed her while she's nursing. I worry about her not eating enough and after all, I had to do that for my daughter when she gave birth to my grandson. I hand fed her burritos while she nursed a newborn baby boy. True story.

It's been just a little over 2 weeks now and Kick Ass has settled in nicely. She is still as sweet as pie and loves to be petted and have her tummy rubbed. I am still supplementing the kittens with KMR and a little bit of Nutri-Cal.

I'm not positive, but I think Kick Ass may have a permanent home here. :)

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