Monday, April 29, 2013

Paper Wishes

Now, this post is going to cover some of my favorite tools and storage solutions I've found while working at Hot Off the Press. These are all non-HOTP items that are carried in their online/mailer catalog, Paper Wishes. In the future, from time to time, I'll share some of the new/cool goodies I've found in our catalog.

First up, a craft knife. Now, I know everyone has one and quite a few of you have retractable ones, but this one is the best one I've found. It's one of the first things I bought for my personal crafting after I started at HOTP. This craft knife looks almost like a pen and works that way too. You push the end to reveal the blade and push a small button on the side to retract it. The blade is really small and that makes it a lot easier to work with. I use this every day!

Now, some of you may have already seen this, but I sure hadn't. Check it out, NINE HUNDRED Zots in one box. NINE HUNDRED!!! Seriously, just awesome and I love the container/dispenser. It keeps my Zots from getting all over everything when I take it somewhere yet it's easy to quickly reveal some to work with. I used to be a Glue Dot gal all the way, but this big box of awesomeness has totally won me over. I'm a Zot gir!!!

Next up, some really awesome storage solutions. I once found some of these 12x12 trays at a garage sale and snagged them up so quickly I gave the lady next to me, whip-lash! (Not really, but I seriously pounced on them!) I was so excited to see that we carry them and I bought 10 right off the bat. For those of you that have IKEA's Expedit, six of these trays will fit in one opening. 

They also fit in the Jet-Max cubes. I've got one of them upside down in the top section of this cube(mine actually has a shelf in the top section and my DVD player is in the top slot). It acts like a little shelf and it helps me utilize all the space in that cube. I also used two that way in my kids' homework Expedit. I have a basket of their projects on top and I put important info on the bottom. It's really helped me not to lose those important papers.
This Vertical File is one that I was super excited about! It's like the Cropper Hopper vertical paper holders but it fits in the Expedit and it's white!!!

It also comes in pink, orange, green and blue.

 I got green and pink for the kids' new craft station and work really well! I'm planning on getting more of these in white for my craft room once my redo is done.

Well, that's all for now. I've got a few other storage items I'm looking into and I'll post about them once I get my room redo completed. (There's a ton of purging and perhaps some furniture moving in my future!)

Oh, and if you've ever wondered what my voice sounds like (or what my hands look like) you can check out some of the newer product videos at Paper Wishes. For example, this one I did about Glitz's Love You Madly line. And yes, I am a goof ball.  :)

Friday, April 26, 2013

My HOTP Favs!

Since my new job at Hot Off the Press (and their catalog, Paper Wishes) has been taking up all my time lately, I though I'd share some of my favorites from HOTP and the Paper Wishes catalog. 

I'll start with some of my HOTP favs and then on Monday, I'll post my favorite goodies from the Paper Wishes catalog. (And a few of my layouts that I swiped from the website as well!)

First up, my very favorite paper line, Happy Days! It's double-sided (which all HOTP papers are on their way to being) and it has an amazing color palette. It's got a fabulous zig-zag pattern and my very favorite piece is that quilt pattern on a white background. It's a great line for it's versatility. I can focus on it's brights or it's lighter colors and make it as busy or as calm as I need. I really adore this line!

Next up, Grapefruit! It's my favorite from the lines that we just released in our summer catalog. I love the pinks and oranges and pops of black! It's got a couple of awesome tone on tone papers that I just love to use!

Oh, and here's one of the layouts I mentioned. This one not only features my lovely little girl, Audrey, it's also on the cover of the catalog! (And, if you sign up for the e-mails, you'll see her smiling face again in a National Scrapbooking Day e-mail!)

And, here's a layout of Mickey from that same catalog. It uses the new Geometrics line. I was afraid he'd be mad that Aud made the cover and he didn't but he was fine with it. :)

This next line, Penelope, is another favorite from last release. This one has the aquas and pinks that I just love. I adore it so much, I used it to decorate my tool containers at work! (Love that scalloped paper!)

And finally, a favorite from before I started, Home Grown. This is a great vintage line and one I need to buy for my mom as I'm pretty sure it's her favorite, too!

Oooh, and they just started carrying 6x6 paper pads!  I'm completely smitten with Rosemary & Thyme! There are some completely awesome papers in this pad. It's hard to see from the cover but trust me, it's amazing!

The HOTP papers are great for all of you who like to alter items. They are a lighter weight, more like Jenni Bowlin's papers before they became two sided, and lend themselves to covering items nicely. Even their double sided papers are this same weight so you aren't limited in what lines you can use.

Next up, stamps! I really have got to say one thing. HOTP has great quality stamps. They aren't mushy at all and even their most delicate designs stamp cleanly. I was really impressed with them from the get go!

My favorite large set is the Happy Patterns set. It coordinates with the Happy Days papers and is just so cool and trendy! Love the borders and the hexagons and the awesome chevrons!

Finally, here are a couple of small stamp sets that I love, too! This Cute as a Button set is just that, cute! These will get lots of use with the cards I make for my mom and grandma.

I love this Ticket set, too! It's just cute and I can see using it on cards and as a great little accent on my layouts as well. 

So, there are some of my favorites from Hot Off the Press. What do you guys think? Does this put HOTP back on your radar?

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Sorry I've been a bit MIA lately. This time of year, after Aud's birthday and before Mickey's anniversary, is rough on me. I don't have party planning and Easter to distract me and I get pretty nervous. This year is better than last year though. Last year, it was an entire month of depression and stress and not knowing why until a few days before the 4th. This year, it only took me a week and a half to realize why I was so down and so upset. I'm calling that some serious progress! :) 

 Another reason for my absence is my lack of time. This dream job is still a job and still requires 40 hours a week from me. And, I've added exercise back into my life. Which is a good thing but also takes away blogging time. I can't stay up blogging until all hours if I'm getting up at five the next morning. The exercise is sooooo worth it though. I'm down six pounds since April 1st and I just realized this morning that I'm getting more done these days. My house doesn't look like a huge hot mess all the time! (Just a small mess most of the time.) 

 Finally, I just don't have as much craftiness to share. So, I'll be working on adding personal crafty time into my schedule next. And, blogging about more stuff that's craft related but not necessarily projects of mine. Like tomorrow, I've got a blog post on some of my favorite goodies that are available in the catalog that my company puts out, Paper Wishes. And, some of my favorite Hot Off the Press products as well. 

(My homage to Si Robertson from Duck Dynasty)

 Thanks for stopping by and thanks for sticking with me! :)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Swimming Lessons!

Audrey and Mickey had their first swimming lessons last night.

We would have signed Mickey up sooner but he got a little scared when he went in our pool for the first time when he was three. This year was the first year he was actually interested!
It started out pretty well for him. He was really excited!
Aud was a little quiet at first.
Mickey loved sitting on the side and splashing.  :)
Audie like that part, too.
Once he got in, he got a little spooked.
And, he's climbing out. I finally went over there and talked him back into the water. I let his teachers know that even though he's six, it's his very first lesson and that I was okay with him just getting comfortable in the water. I used to teach lessons (at that very pool) and I remember hating when a kid got nervous because I never knew if the parents wanted them pushed or coddled or what. They were really cool and very understanding. One of them even got him to cruise around the shallow end with her.
Aud was fine. She loved every second and waited for her turn with her teacher and loved it!
She also loved her classmates! She was giggling and playing with two of the girls in her class.
And, here she is practicing floating on her back with the teacher. I'm so proud of her! Little girl is pretty darn fearless!
Mickey finally got more comfortable with the water and by the end he was splashing and putting his face in the water more and walking around away from the wall. I'm really proud of him.
And, here's a shot of the two of them cheering each other on.
They had a really, really good time and the DQ trip afterwards made it even better. Mickey was really interested in how you move up in the classes and after I told him what he'd have to master to move up, I heard him mutter, "I should have done everything.". Hee! I think I've found his swimming motivation!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Working on Four!

My little girl turns four years old in a few days and now the rush to get all her birthday stuff ready has begun! I'm hoping to get all her invites mailed/delivered tomorrow and here's a sneak at the front of the invite.

Here's a little look at the back which is currently in progress. We had fun making an Audrey/Barbie silhouette. Seriously, I could not get that little girl to stand still and stop giggling!  Crazy girl!

If you couldn't tell, she requested a purple Barbie party. Not a pink one, a purple one. All the Barbie stuff is pink! The cups, plates, invites, etc. All pink!  Even the Barbies all wear pink!  The few purple Barbies out there have brown hair so it's been a challenge to find her a blue eyed, blond Barbie wearing purple.
Next, I have to figure out the food. I did pick up cupcake fixings, white cake mix and plain frosting with a white chocolate raspberry mix in that's a light lavender color. And, I found blueberry flavored white chocolate covered pretzels. I'm thinking I'll be picking up some blueberries and other fruits and maybe making a lavender colored yogurt dip.
I was hoping to hold off on all the Barbie hoopla for another year but she has a few friends that are a couple years older who have Barbies and my little girl has fallen hard! She's very girly in some aspects and this is one of them.
Funny little story from Easter...My mom asked Aud what she wanted for her birthday. Aud's first answer? Jewels! Her second? Clothes! Yeah, we're in trouble with this one! She's growing up way too fast!