Bookplates as a gift

Yesterday I was watching this video from Papertrey Ink about making a gift of bookplates. It reminded me that the last time I visited my mother-in-law she mentioned that she is forever loaning out books and not getting them back.

Since we are going to see them tonight, I thought I’d whip some up for her. However, I don’t own any of the fun products used in that video. So I created my own bookplates using what I have on hand.

First I typed up my words in Word. Printed them on printer paper and made sure they fit within the stamps I own. Then I printed them on Stampin Up White Cardstock. I pulled out my old giant Xyron and added repositionable adhesive to the back of the entire sheet.

Since my Stampin Up images I was using were not clear, I used my Stamp-a-majig to get my placement right. Then I used my Framelits Labels collection to cut out the big bookplates and the “for you” on the front of the crayon box. Additionally, I used my Decorative Label punch for all of the smaller ones. The stamp sets I used were Apothecary Art and Four Frames.

Eventually, I had to figure out how to package them. So, I used the Crayon Box on my Tags,Bags, Boxes & More Cricut Cartridge at 5 inches with Real Dial size turned on. (I have no idea if that made any difference in the final size.)

I covered the front with paper from a boxed collection from K & Company. It only declares that it is “150 Classic Papers” and gives code 524446.

I hope she likes it!

The gift has 23 bookplates in it. It would have been 24 with six of each style but I messed up royally stamping one of the large Apothecary Art images.

Homeschool Funk

Not only do I think that February is the hardest time to be a stay-at-home mom to little kids, but I can now add hardest time to be a homeschool mom. I have been in the WORST funk for the last month or so! It actually started in January for me. Exactly two years into our homeschool journey. It seems to be a trend among my homeschool mama friends. The two year mark seems to be a hurdle for lots of us. I gave serious consideration to marching right up to the local school and enrolling them virtually every other day.

To be honest, I’m not sure what our homeschool journey holds for us right now. I have been in a lot of prayer on the matter but waffle on the subject from day to day. To make things worse, the funk coincided with the hardest time of year for me to be at home. So, I decided not to make any final decisions until spring has arrived and settled in.

Eventually, I realized that part of what made my funk so particularly ugly is that I haven’t really been doing anything for myself. I’ve been all about the homeschool, our co-ops, or the kids’ activities. I had failed to schedule things that rejuvenate me. One of the things that I enjoy is crafting. Scrapbooking, card making, rubber stamping, paper crafting, anything that I can come up with. Recently, I found myself in my craft room to prepare for a day of much needed crafting with a friend. I really didn’t want to go, but she really did and I knew she wouldn’t go without me. Plus I hadn’t seen enough of her lately. So, I went. No creative juice was flowing – at all.

Just the act of packing things up to go to the crop helped me some. Being among other crafters helped some. Looking at the new Stampin Up and CTMH catalogs helped. After the crop, I found myself making excuses to go spend a little time here or there in my craft space. (I’ve had to set up in the unfinished basement.) Just organizing some of my stash made me feel better. And then I did something crazy. I decided to become a Stampin Up demonstrator! It will only be a hobby for me but it’s an excuse to get together with some of my crafty buddies and make things. Something in my life that is just for ME. I have no idea how long I’ll be able to remain a demonstrator but I have every intention of scheduling craft time for myself from now on!

Just for fun, I made a video of what it was like to open my Stampin Up box when it arrived. Here it is if you think it’d be fun to see.

Stampin Up Demonstrator unboxing