Monthly Archives: June 2015

Vacation Checklist

Vacation Checklist

Summer is here! Finally!

That last month of school has been a real slog. (And yes, we just got done. June 25th was the kids’ last day of school. Luckily we don’t start back again till after Labor Day.)

You all know what summer means, right? Vacations. Trips. Explorations! Adventures!

Well, this year, the only person who’s going anywhere special is me. (We will do visits with family and friends, but no days exploring new places. We’re going explore at home!)

This morning, I’m on a plane to Arizona to meet up with friends from the ScrapHappy family. You know that is a trip worth documenting! So to help me document this rare and wondrous event, I made a checklist. These are things I want to make sure I photograph while on my mini-vacation.


Hopefully, this list is generic enough for you to use on any trip you take. It is, at any rate, a good list of things to keep in mind while documenting vacations and trips.

Once I get home, and have time to de-compress and print pictures, I’ll put it all together in a mini-album. I’ll try to record the process of putting it together for you. Hopefully the kids and video equipment will cooperate!

What’s on your schedule for the summer?

Mastering School Memorabilia

Mastering School Memorabilia

As I mentioned before, one of the biggest sources of memorabilia in this is house is the mountain of papers that come home from school with the kids, especially in elementary school.

There’s artwork and worksheets, tests and report cards, and it ends up being a huge pile of stuff. There are a few things I try to do to keep it under control.

First of all, when school papers arrive in the house, they get the once over from the relevant kid, who lets me know if they think the paper is worth saving or not. My youngest is very good at choosing papers that are meaningful, versus things that are boring or repetitive. (How many spelling tests do you really need to save?) My oldest has gotten to the point where he’s self censoring all his papers before I even see them, so things that I think show where he’s at developmentally, or that illustrate his unique take on the world are frequently disappearing before I see them. The perils of having a middle schooler I suppose.

Once the kids do their initial sort, the papers are supposed to go into a file folder labelled with their name and grade that’s located in a file cabinet right next to my desk. Luckily that was mostly enforced the past few years, so fixing the mess of papers I had lying around was much easier than I thought it would be. (The kid sort is a new step, and has been a wonderful way to deal with all the school papers!)


At the end of the school year, the file comes out of my file cabinet, and goes into a file box for the relevant kid, and a new file is set up for the following year.

But what about giant, bumpy artwork?


That’s got a place too. Way back when, Pottery Barn had these boxes, that fit most large art papers. I’ve got one for each kid, and one for photographs and large memorabilia that’s not kid art. Additionally, because every kid needs a place for his art to be appreciated, I have a wall dedicated to displaying kid art, that gets changed as new art comes home.


Finally, since I am actually caught up with the kid’s School of Life albums, I’ve added choice bits of memorabilia from each year to their books.


Man, I feel so organized right now!

Except for my photos that I haven’t been maintaining, or the piles of non-school memorabilia that are overflowing their containers. But those are problems for another day. Let’s revel in being caught up in this little piece of everyday life for a little bit before moving on to the next disaster.

Do you have any tips or tricks for organizing school papers? Share them with everyone!

Memorabilia Mountain

Memorabilia Mountain

With school winding down here, a veritable mountain of kid-related memorabilia has made its way home in backpacks and bags.

We’ve got worksheets and tests, essays and artwork. There’s beat up binders and folders, and broken crayons and dried up markers, and random school supplies coming back home after a year of hard use, and we have to decide what to do with all of it.

Luckily, my kids are old enough to help and take responsibility for most of the sorting. Things that are broken get tossed, things that can be reused get stored either in their rooms or my office till next year, and memorabilia they don’t want gets tossed in the recycling.

That still leaves a huge pile though.

And that’s not all!

The piles of memorabilia have been collecting here for a while.

There are receipts and ticket stubs. Story ideas and notes about family history. Cards and letters from friends and family near and far. In short there are piles everywhere.

I do have a system for dealing with it all. But, as with most things, if a system isn’t used, it’s not going to work.

On the other hand, if a system isn’t working, it’s not going to get used. It’s a vicious feedback loop.

Regardless, my memorabilia storage methods have to be addressed. It’s too scattered and unorganized and under utilized.

Then again, maybe I just need to pick up.

memorabilia || noexcusescrapbooking

Just a small pile of memorabilia, neatened up for you.

What are your memorabilia nightmares? How about memorabilia success stories? Share what works for you and what doesn’t with everyone here. You could even post pictures in the No Excuse Scrapbooking Flickr group if you’re so inclined.

If you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some sorting and filing to do before my memorabilia is ready for its close-up.

Solve a Dilemma For Me

Solve a Dilemma For Me

The last True Stamp was months ago. I couldn’t participate because I am using the money for that to go to the ScrapHappy reunion at the end of the month. Now everything is on sale, but I still can’t buy a class.


Want to help me out? You can buy a class or two though, and tell me which one(s) I should buy! (I’ll budget for a few classes over the summer.) And if you’ve taken all the classes already, you can tell me which were your favorites!

***Sale deets: From June 15-22, get each individual class for $9.95 each. Or, get them all for $39 by using the code SUMMER at the check out. After midnight on the 22nd, the classes will go to their regular price of $14.95. You can find them here: TrueStamp2015. (And yes, that is an affiliate link.)***

Should I take the class from Technique Tuesday all about adding gold?unnamed

I’m excited about that one, because I already have quite a few of the supplies shown in the photo, and gold is all hot, hot, hot, right now. By the time I get around to getting the class, it will probably be cold, cold, cold.

Or should I take the class from Lawn Fawn all about adding stamping to your gift wrapping?


I feel pretty confident that I know a lot of their ideas, but I could definitely be wrong. I want to take this, just to be sure I don’t miss any nuggets of inspiration and fun ideas. And that diecut in the background? That could be fun to use!

How about the class from Simon Says Stamp?


This sounds like it would have lots of ideas for creatively using the items in your stash. Plus, once again, I really want to use all the things in the class photo. They look so fun and happy.

And then there’s the class from Paper Smooches.


I love using little stamps, and wonder where they’re going with this. I am definitely intrigued.

I know I really want to get the Mama Elephant class.


I love their stamp sets, and love how they use them on their blog. I’m a fan. This one I’m definitely getting. There’s nothing you can say that will stop me. Except maybe “not in the budget.”

What about the class from Raisin Boat about adding dimension to your projects?


Dude, those flips flops are adorable! How can I not get this class?

Help! How can I choose?

Will you pick for me?

***Repeating the sale details: From June 15-22, get each individual class for $9.95 each. Or, get them all for $39 by using the code SUMMER at the check out. After midnight on the 22nd, the classes will go to their regular price of $14.95. You can find them here: TrueStamp2015. (And yes, that is an affiliate link.)***

Glitter Glitter Everywhere

Glitter Glitter Everywhere

Glitter really can get everywhere. Because it sticks to everything and is so prone to escape, I prefer to use it with lots and lots of glue. Some pre-made glitter items hold onto their glitter well, but most of them do not, so after I’ve made something with them, they go directly into a page protector and work surfaces and hands are washed immediately.

That still doesn’t keep me from finding stray glitter on my face as I’m washing up for bed.

That stuff is tenacious.

Let’s look at some uses for glitter. Shall we start off with some pre-made glitter items?

Fitting photos into a pre-printed design

This paper from DCWV has a layer of glitter around the pre-printed design. For the most part the glitter doesn’t come off. However that’s not the case with all glitter papers, and most glittered alphabet stickers (like the ones below) are horribly prone to shedding glitter.

I (mustache) you a (question)

Stickles has got to be my favorite way to add glitter to a page or card. Look how well it adds just a bit of shine to the blue stamp on this page.


Stickles is a glitter glue, but not just any glitter glue. It generally doesn’t clump up, and the fine glitter is easily added to tiny spaces. Distress Stickles is a little bit less friendly, in that the larger chunks of glitter will cause lumps when you’re applying it. You can see the difference between the types of Stickles below, with the white distress glitter on the cloud, and the regular blue glitter to create raindrops.
when it rains it pours

If I’m going to use loose glitter, I prefer to use it with a dimensional adhesive. I want the glitter to stay where I put it! Dimensional glue will work on just about anything, from Tim Holtz fragments to cardstock.

glittered fragment ornaments ||

Using dimensional glue and glitter on scrapbook pages can be fun, especially if you go a little (or in this case a lot) overboard. Covering the entire bottom of a page to make a beach certainly does use up a lot of glitter, which was the goal.

castle building ||

Sometimes you don’t need glue at all though. This is a shaker card, and the shaker is sealed up enough that there’s no worries of glitter escaping.

sea shaker card ||


What are some of your favorite ways to use glitter? If you have any favorite glitter products, share them below!

These are some of my favorites. (Amazon affiliate links)

American Crafts POW glitter paper