Wednesday, May 30, 2012

We Have a Winner!

We have a winner for the My Memories Suite scrapbooking software:


Congratulations! I'll be in touch with instructions for downloading your copy. 

And for those of you who did not win, be sure to use my personal code to get your discounts if you purchase the My Memories Suite.  See the code in the right column -------------------------->>>>>>>

Thanks to all.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Eclos Plant-Based Beauty Giveaway #EclosBeauty

This post brought to you by éclos Skin Care. All opinions are 100% mine.
“An apple a day keeps the doctor away”
You’ve heard that quaint saying all your life, haven’t you?  I couldn’t help thinking about that when I started my one-week test with éclos Skin Care.  It uses plant stem cells extracted from a rare Swiss apple (Uttwiler Spätlauber). The stem cells show tremendous ability to stimulate skin stem cells, encouraging aging skin to behave like younger skin.  Well, I have aging skin because I’m aging! So I can use some help to minimize fine lines and wrinkles, and give me a smoother, brighter complexion.
Bonus: The products DO NOT contain parabens, sulfates, synthetic frangrances or dyes, or petro-chemicals.  They DO contain good stuff like ginkgo biloba, turmeric & green tea anti-inflammatories, chamomile and cucumber, horse chestnut and willow bark, and gotu kola – yep, all natural products.
One feature that got my attention is that éclos Skin Care is available nationwide at food, drug and mass retail stores such as Target, Walgreens, Rite-aid, Ulta, etc.  I don’t like to have to go to a large department store’s fancy makeup counters simply to buy my facial cleansing products.  Much better to be able to pick up what I need during my regular runs to the drugstore!
I used the following products for approximately 9 days:
Anti-Aging Facial Cleanser Skin Prep – removes makeup and daily grime (twice daily)
Anti-Aging Cellular Activator Face Serum – nourishes skin cells (twice daily)
Anti-Aging Moisture Therapy Regenerative Cream –helps skin to repair itself (twice daily)
Anti-Aging Restorative Eye Cream – moisturizes, reduced fine lines and wrinkles (twice daily)
I also used:
Anti-Aging Instant Radiance Facial Scrub – exfoliates, evens out skin tone and texture (every other day)
Anti-Aging Skin Renewal Clay Mask – cleanses, unclogs and tightens pores (twice weekly)
I didn’t have the courage to show my full face without makeup, but I am showing parts of my face, comparing the same image before and after (or as close as I could get while trying to take my pictures).  These are not retouched, except to lighten them a little because the light in my bathroom is not the best.
You can tell just from these pictures that my skin is brighter, smoother, and it looks like my pores have shrunk. There was no dryness from the products and my skin felt very soft.  Even my makeup seems to go on more smoothly.  I didn’t expect that the huge crease in my forehead which I have had since I was a teenager would magically go away, but it does seem diminished.  I can see the difference in person even more than you can see in the photos.
Downside: eclos - None. Me: the discipline to remember to use the cleansing system TWICE a day!
Quite simply, I’m impressed!
Do you want to try it??  Great! I have a duplicate set of éclos Anti-Aging Skin Care Starter Kit containing sample sizes of the complete product line. The kit is valued at $19.99.
Just comment on this post and tell me which Eclos product you would be most excited to try.  That’s all there is to it!  I will pick a winner in one week via random number generator:
 Monday, June 4 

Try it - you'll like it!

Visit Sponsor's Site

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Things To Do on Memorial Day

Friday, May 25, 2012

Gettin' Ready - Traveling Artists Roadshow

I'll be introducing a new line of 8.5x11 posters entitled "Just Sayin'."  What do you think? Do you have a favorite?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Gettin' Ready - Traveling Artists Roadshow

I have been insanely busy the last few weeks getting ready for the inaugural Traveling Artists Roadshow, a newly formed group of local artists here in southeastern Michigan.  Rather than participating in the larger (and expensive) art shows, we decided to put together our own group shows for a more intimate and personal experience for both the buyers and the artists.  We'll be using different venues in the metro area - private homes, church lots, whoever will have us!  Our first show - and MY first show in a long time - is scheduled for Saturday, June 9, in Royal Oak, MI.

I'll be showing a lot of my digital photographs, cards and digital collages as seen on Etsy, but I'm also creating some new work.  I'll be featuring my new work over the next few weeks, as well as work from the other artists who will be exhibiting on June 9.

As you probably know if you've been here before, I like to recycle and upcycle whenever I can.  I still had some square wood pieces left over from other projects so I cut, painted and distressed these wood strips, then added vinyl cut "affirmations" on both sides.  The blocks can be put together in endless combinations for daily inspirations.  Here's a few examples:

Aren't they fun??  I've been coming up with so many different combinations and if I hadn't run out of time I would have made more. I have a long list of more word affirmations that I haven't used yet!

Stay tuned and stop by again - I'll be featuring more work and more artists. And if you're in the metro Detroit area, put the date on your calendar! 

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Saturday, May 19, 2012

My Memories Suite Quick Page

Yes, yes, I know - it's May, not December.  But while exploring everything that My Memories Scrapbooking Software offers, I came across this holiday Quick Page. (I love Christmas!)  And it's just what it is - a quick page.  Just insert a photo and you're done!

The photo is from one of our family Christmas parties when my nieces and nephews put on a Christmas concert for us.  I love that they take the time to prepare for this, and I love each and every one of them. It's so special to watch them growing and maturing into caring, thoughtful and talented adults!

Have you entered yet to win the My Memories Suite? Not too many comments yet; that gives you a better chance to win.  And if you don't win, all is not lost.  See that My Memories link in the right side bar? Use that code and you can get $10 off the software (it's only $39.97 to begin with - an incredible bargain!) AND $10 off anything in their online shop. You can enter up to five comments.  Go here to enter:

Friday, May 18, 2012

Ombre Lamp Tutorial

While helping my sister with her downsizing project I brought home two Ginger Jar lamps.  They were in great condition but I thought they needed a little dressing up.

I have also been wanting to try the Martha Stewart Paint Spray System for a while now.  So I bought the kit and a few containers of Satin Acrylic Paint and got to work.  I had my heart set on an Ombre finish, which I had not tried before.


Two Ginger Jar lamps with shades
Martha Stewart Paint Spray System
MS craft satin paints: Summer Linen, Artichoke, Pesto
Rice paper
Ball fringe
Glue gun

I started by taping off the fixtures and cords, gave the lamps a light sanding, and washed them thoroughly with alcohol. I then mixed my colors with equal parts of the Satin Medium from the paint kit.

It's barely visible in this photo but I sprayed the first coat (Summer Linen) at the top of the lamps.
I sprayed the second color (Artichoke) starting at the top of the largest part of the lamps and down to the bottom.  Then I added some of the Pesto to the leftover Artichoke mix and sprayed the last layer from the middle of lamps and continued down to the bottom.  I gave that last color a second coat after the first coat dried.

The Ombre color shift is very subtle, but gorgeous!

Next I attacked the shades. They were also in good shape but I didn't quite know what I wanted to do.  I have a couple of my own shades that are covered with handmade paper and I liked the effect. So I tore rice paper I had into uneven pieces and used spray glue to cover over the paper shades, overlapping as I went along.

I used the straight edge of the paper at the tops and bottoms, leaving enough extra to fold over and glue to the inside of the shades.

Almost finished.

The final step was to attach a matching green ball fringe to the lamps with a glue gun.

And here's the finished product.

All in all, I like the Martha Stewart Paint System.  Being able to use almost any color as a spray paint is a real plus.  The downside is that the system is useful for small projects only.  I ended up using about one and a half spray containers, but I admit I had some starts and stops and wasted some of the aerosol spray while I was getting used to the product.  I also wiped off the first layer I tried and started over again because I sprayed too heavily and ended up with drips. Without all those "oops" I probably could have completed the project with only one spray canister.  But a much larger project could turn out to be very expensive.

Have you tried Martha's paint kit yet? What did you think? 


Have you entered yet to win the My Memories Suite? Not too many comments yet; that gives you a better chance to win.  And if you don't win, all is not lost.  See that My Memories link in the right side bar? Use that code and you can get $10 off the software (it's only $39.97 to begin with - an incredible bargain!) AND $10 off anything in their online shop. You can enter up to five comments.  Go here to enter:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

21 Day Photo Challenge - Favorite Place, Words

Here's my submission for Elle Moss 21-Day Photo Challenge: Favorite Place.  When I thought about it, I decided that the place where I feel most at peace is sitting on my patio bench on a beautiful sunny spring day while the lovely, nostalgic scent from my Lilac tree washes over me.  Ahhhhh .....

And here's my submission for the prompt: Words. 

My Memories Suite Calendar Page

 The other day I wrote about My Memories Suite Scrapbooking Software Giveaway.  I promised to show you other pages I'm working on with the software.  Here's a calendar page for June that I created "from scratch" - another option the software gives you. You can choose your page backgrounds, your photo sizes, embellishments, etc., and play to your heart's content!

I really like this calendar page.  What do you think?

Monday, May 14, 2012

My Memories Suite Giveaway!

I have one project that sits on my book shelf just staring at me, always filling me with guilt because I haven’t started on it yet.  It’s a collection of tons of photos, documents, letters, legal papers, and memorabilia, most of which my mother saved, waiting for me to put into some sort of order and into an album. About two years ago my older sister and I filled out our family tree with whatever information we had or gathered from our relatives.  And now it’s up to me to somehow pull all of this together in some coherent order for the family.
So when Liz Gardner contacted me recently to ask if I were interested in doing a review and giveaway of My Memories Suite scrapbooking software - I was all ears!  I quickly agreed and I have been working with the program and getting familiar with what it has to offer.  

To call it scrapbooking software just doesn’t do it justice.  I’m blown away not only with what you can do with the software, but also with all the extras My Memories Suite provides.  But let’s start with scrapbooking. The software comes with a number of design templates to work with.  Each template comes with several page designs, embellishments, ribbons, words, word art – all of which are completely customizable to your taste.  You can add, subtract, change color, change backgrounds – there’s no limit to what you can do.   The software even has some basic photo editing tools such as resize, crop, reduce red eye, or adding some imaging effects.   

If you don’t find what you’re looking for in the design templates provided with the software, the My Memories website contains more FREE templates, quick pages, page packs, extra embellishments – there’s 181 freebies listed.  Still not satisfied?  There’s over 2000 kits available for purchase at very reasonable prices.  They have a number of designers creating beautiful designs for them, each with their own distinct style.  I could see where I could get “hooked” on a few designers because their styles appeal to me. 

Once you have created your masterpiece you can of course print your pages, but you can also create photo books, cards, calendars, CDs, DVDS, slide shows.  You can add music and narration if you like.  Yikes – I want to do it all!  

I thought I would start, though, with some of the photos I have from my parents.  Mom and Dad have been gone for a long time now; they both would have been 100 years old this year.  My Mom saved a lot of photos from when they were in their twenties and thirties, during the time when they met, dated, became engaged and married.  I’m totally fascinated with their photos from that time.   Here’s what I created with My Memories.  The template I used was “Smells Like Spring Flowers.” It has six different page elements and you can use whichever ones you like and you can repeat pages, changing colors or embellishments if you like.  I thought it would be interesting to show you the pages as they appear in the program, then as I changed them for my album.  

Here's the pages provided (I used just four of the six):

And here's what I did with those pages:

Mom and Dad's nicknames for each other: Brown Eyes and Hon.

Red Sails in the Sunset was their song.

This page was a little bit of an "oops" - I lost some parts of the image by accident, but then decided I liked this simple look with one of my favorite photos. 

Love Mom's dress and bouquet!

All in all, even with my "oops" I really enjoyed working with the program. 

So what’s my verdict? Two thumbs up. Here’s why:

·         Fun to work with. Compatible with either PC or Mac.
·         Allows for your own creativity.  Use the templates as is, or modify them as much as you like.
·         Choose your final output – print, CD, DVD, photobook, etc. (I’m still checking out all the options.)  You can also export your images as JPEGS.  That’s what I did to include the images here.
·         An almost unlimited number of design options are available.
·         Their web site is full of information, freebies, and the shop where you can purchase additional designs. 
·         I was very happy to see that the web site also has video tutorials (I viewed one to answer a question I had) and a forum where you can ask questions and share information. 
·         The My Memories software comes with a very complete user guide PDF.

The one piece of advice I would offer is allow yourself some time to get familiar with the program, the user guide, and the web site before you start in on a large project.  If you have worked before with other photo or design programs much of this will be familiar to you.  If you have not, the learning curve may be a little steeper.  

Best of all, can you believe that this software costs only $39.97?  

And I can make it even better.  I will be conducting a giveaway for one My Memories digital scrapbooking software package!  To qualify, see the instructions below.

If you don’t want to wait to see if you win, you can use my personal coupon code to get a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite Scrapbook Software AND a $10 coupon to the My Memories store.  That’s a $20 value, people!

Here’s the code for you to use when you order (please enter the code carefully and correctly): 


I’m working on a few other projects with My Memories designs and I’ll be posting as I finish them over the next few weeks.  Stay tuned!

Here's a calendar page I created from scratch with the software.

How to Enter

You have several chances to be entered into the random drawing. PLEASE read carefully; the entry requirements have been changed.  I’m going to allow two weeks for you to enter for the drawing.

First entry: Visit My Memories website, come back here, and enter a comment about your favorite digital paper pack or layout.

Second entry: Enter a comment if you have signed up to follow My Memories blog.

Third entry: Enter a comment if you have signed up to follow My Memories on Facebook.

Fourth entry: Enter a comment that you signed up to follow My Memories on Twitter.

Fifth entry: Enter a comment that you signed up to follow my blog, my Facebook page AND/OR my Pinterest page (or comment that you already follow).

That's five chances to enter for the random drawing!  Please be sure that your correct email address is in your profile; if it is not, include your email address in your comment.  I will use random number generator to pick a winner after 12 noon EDT on

Tuesday, May 29

Good luck!!
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