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Melissa Pearson

Melissa Pearson

%AM, %23 %147 %2015 %02:%Aug

Week in the Life: Thursday

I have to admit the mundane things are being neglected this week... not because I am not keeping track of them I am not doing them.  Typically I do several loads of laundry per week, cook at least one or two dinners, and straighten stuff up.  I won't lie my last shower was on Tuesday... it's just that kind of week.  But don't fear I showered this morning, I promise ;) 


The day started as normal... early 730 wake with littles and then napped again until 930am.  I am becoming a morning person.  I NEVER used to be a morning person.  I guess when you have 4 kids you kind of lose that option.  *sigh* 


This time around I have been VERY lazy in pumping and storing milk. I almost dread rolling out of bed and hooking up the insane unit to be milked like a cow.. after nearly 2.5 years of being pregnant and nursing not once but twice the least I can do is the best!  But never the less... this morning I pumped.  This is my life.... 930am:


But all for good reason.. I had a hard appointment.  Woohoo! I love these appointments not because i enjoy small talk and sitting in a chair but because I love the 35 minutes of pampering i get from getting my hair washed and blow dried to the solitude of sitting under that stinky drier. Also I love the pictures of the "fraggle rock" image that resembles me while getting "beautified."



I KNOW taking pics from the bottom up angle is NOT good for women but i had to get the shoppe sign in.. yuck, but it works for this week.  


I met with John and the kids at The Patio for lunch, we met there so he could play afterward and also we work there at the casino so a discount is always nice.  


Kelsey got ahold of my phone and since I was distracted I think she knew I  needed a picture of my lunch.  Haha. 



After lunch we headed out to Target and Michaels to get some locker stuff for the soon to be middle schooler.  While at Target I was surprised to see some of the clothes they had.. a TROLL sweatshirt, say what?  That is just silly these kids don't know who Trolls are. But since i had like eleventy-billion as a kid i had to snap this quality photo!  While Taryn laughed "Mom you fit into my clothes, that's crazy!"  Um, don't get any ideas kid leave my clothes alone! 



 On the way home (at a light of course!) I noticed Taryn reading, not bad for the last 5 days of summer.. better late than never!  #bestmomever #summerisoverwhynow


When we returned home, Kelsey insisted I dress up today...  I decided to be super mom, because you know "if the crown fits."   



After some guilt from John about how messy the nursery was and how he wasn't sure what piles were what I decided to head in and clean it up.  Kelsey was a big "helper" at first throwing clean clothes on the floor.



After little bit of explanation and a demo she quickly helped a little better and "folded" and shoved the clothes into the bins.  



Spent the evening texting and making silly videos with my's great when we can hang out and just be ridiculous without any judgement.  John took a nap because FINALLY Cayden was coming home.  A late night drive to pick him up.  



Finally Alyssa fell asleep, after starring in a few videos and being nicknamed Egbert Crazy Pants for my need to swaddle her up like a crazy person so she doesn't hit herself in the face and wake up. I walked down to pick Taryn was home from a late play date and into bed she went.  I sat down and bypassed my nightly treat, turned on the Hulu and fell asleep on the couch.. but on purpose this time so I could wake easily when Cayden and John arrived home... at 349am!  YAYYYYY





%PM, %22 %757 %2015 %17:%Aug

Week in the life: Tuesday

Today was a little bit easier to document..although I forgot a lot of pictures it was all about survival and getting through the busy moments. 


Being as how I didn't go to bed until Tuesday was already in progress this was a bit of a surprise 352am.  She is lucky she's cute!  I don't know how she figures out I have to be up early in the morning but she sure makes sure that sleep isn't top priority! 


721am Taryn came home from her sleepover.  All night I wondered if it was a test of my parenting or of her growing up by allowing her to spend the night at her friends house when we had to be up and present so early in the morning.... a sigh of relief when I didn't have to figure out who failed me or her. Successfully out the door by 810am to head to middle school orientation where we were given a task sheet... pictures, payments for gym clothes, locks for lockers, text book pickup, emergency card drop off, and finally the brand new Chromebook pick up.  




 This was the most highly anticipated moment I think.  Getting the locker assignments and then of course learning to do a combination lock. 



We stood in line for nearly an hour to retrieve this coveted item I wish I could say it was as exciting as a ride at Disney once we got to the front.  It was not, a lot of questions like "How as a parent do I keep her safe?  How do I monitor what she is doing? Why does the school get to choose when my 11 year old child is thrown into the world wide 'interweb' (family joke) and not me?" 


We came home at 1040am where power was out in the neighborhood.. planned transformer update.  I forgot all about it!  So we grabbed some stuff I needed to mail and went to the post office, filled up the gas tank, grabbed some Wendy's and then zipped off to Pick up the man and kiddo from the airport. (See what I mean about forgetting to take pics.. yeah I got nothing... ugh) 


Highways were empty... phew! I HATE driving so this was acceptable. 



 A quick stop at IKEA and the book store before we picked up John and Kelsey from the airport.  I should have done this last week when we dropped them off because it made me late to pick them up, shame on me! I would have been disappointed if he had been late and I had to wait on the curb and fetch bags with a sleepy toddler.  


 I loved this book at the book store as that is how I am feeling a lot lately.... a to do list of to do stuff... and projects galore just stacking up. *sigh* 


Welcome home Kelsey-kins and dad!  It was a quiet 5 days without you! 


A snack for me while John napped and Kelsey double napped, she STILL has the runny nose and congestion... ugh.  John had to scurry off to work after his short snooze.That was quick "hello, goodbye" Work is NOT going well right now, so I feel bad watching him walk out the door and knowing he is unhappy.  It will get better, it always gets better.  Right?   I woke up Kelsey so she would go to bed not too late outside of normal. 



Taryn tends to important tween business... when did she get so big?  As the littlest of the crew practices her vocals and spends some time "screaming" and talking to me. 



Nothing too exciting for dinner, left overs.. chicken made into quesadillas with more fruit and some green beans.  


More bad TV for me and computer time for the kid.  Pretty basic day no school summer evening. 








%PM, %22 %713 %2015 %16:%Aug

Week In the Life: Monday

So I had this GRAND idea of how this week was supposed to go, the pictures I would take, and how it would all come together. I had originally decided to do it last week because I felt inspired so began the heavy documenting and photo taking.  Then about half way through the week it fizzled.  John left with kelsey and it was just me and Taryn. Then Taryn went to LA with my sister for some auntie time... see where I am going with this.  I ended up giving up *sigh* another project down the tubes.  


Then the official WITL began this Monday, I felt like a sunken battleship because I already tried and failed.  (Lesson #1, too much expectation) But I decided to pep up "Hey!!  Clean slate we can do this...!"  (Lesson #2.. try try again!) So I began to document... again.  Boy if you thought this week was tough to do once, try back to back!  Geesh.... so this time I was super focused on the words and timing of everything NAILED IT, until I went to do the photos... *facepalm* seriously... I had barely taken any.   (Lesson #3... too much focus on one task= *kaboom* I sunk another battleship) But clearly this is important to me.. to my family.  I have followed Ali Edwards' post and albums for years seen other people accomplish this it CAN be done!  I need to do this...!  So I decided to *cheat* since I did so great with photos last week and words this week I am combining what works.  Using the words from now and the pics to fill in; because you know we are all about routine here.. ha!  ;) 


Without further ado here is Monday of Week in the Life: 


Baby girl usually wakes me between 5-7am for a morning milk guzzle.  About 60% of the time I can get her back to sleep which means a bit more shut eye time for me too!  Not today.  633am was when she decided the day was to begin! 


After some breakfast and Doc Mcstuffins I decided it was nap time, I LOVE nap time.  Here is Kelsey's response, I am sure her translation goes along these lines:  I can sleep here Mom, it's ok we don't have to go to the nursery.  9:55am, Mom wins and it's down for a bit of quiet time. Don't worry I nap too! It's my favorite part of the day.  Although I do watch a little of my favorite show before I actually doze off.  Right now I am binge watching "Leverage."  I can't WAIT until fall TV comes back!  I am running out of Hulu shows!  



Before naps are over for the littles I decided to give Taryn a taste of AWESOME and surprise karate attack her.  She didn't know all these years I have been given an honorary Mommy Blackbelt so I decided to let her know today ;)  



Kelsey must have heard the commotion because she woke up not long after  1:50pm I walk in and she hands me her favorite nap time friends and blankets before she reaches up for me to lift her out. 


Taryn is BIG into Minecraft videos right now so we end up watching a few... I am finally getting why they play this game. It is kind of cool.  I would never play it but I am slowly figuring it out and even put a few comments or questions in here and there!  Today: It would be so much better if you could dig UNDER the ground to the other islands and get the other players that way.  I may be in this too deep for being a parent!  During this time Kelsey decides to smack me in the face with her juice cup... not as awesome as it sounds!  Off to time out.. a newish thing around here.  


If looks could pierce your soul right?  OUCH!  After nearly a 6 minute battle to get her to sit for one minute, we succeeded.  Until she decided to "Time out" Raffe... at this point I feel like my near 2 year old is mocking me.... can you see the disgust on her face about how awful Raffe was?  I don't even know what he did... poor guy



Finally nearing the end of the mini people's day so time for the routine part... bath time, food time, bed time!  5-530 it's typical bath time, immediately following is dinner.  I don't why I can't learn my lesson and do dinner first and then a bath... think about it.  Would you feed spaghetti to a 21 month old after a squeaky clean bath?  I will never learn. 


 Of course we cannot forget the obligatory toddler running away from mommy butt naked dragging her towel.  


If you know me at all I am not exactly "type A" parent exhibit A:  While nursing Alyssa I looked down thinking "Oh how sweet she is holding my arm.. she loves me.  Only to be surprised to see the following:  


 (I may not put this in the actual album, but I couldn't keep it to myself either)


A little bit of sister chatter, and then some screen time for Taryn, which ended in a conversation where I got "Hashtagged"  and then off she went to a sleepover down the street. 



#youreawesome #cool #goodnight Oh yes, that just happened!  


After the everyone was asleep I worked on some 7in7 for the group, made a page, and stayed up wayyyy too late cleaning and organizing stuff, a never ending process...Never. Ending! 




Finally I found some stuff to purge... after losing a little dead weight I decide to head to bed 1237am.  

%PM, %06 %696 %2015 %15:%Jun

Week 1: Make Your Own Embellishments

Each week we are going to use bits and pieces to include scraps to make our own embellishments.  No need to spend upwards of $3.99 for all those cutesie embellies on the shelves!  We are perfectly capable of making just as unique items that actually fit the pages we are making rather than buying and hoarding the bits and baubles that are all the rage.  Follow along with me during the month where we will cover using your punches, stamps, and random letters to make 30 different beautiful embellishments!   

All of these embellishments are super fun and easy.  I wanted to keep the embellishment making simple so I limited myself to things that were close by.  Meaning I utilized scraps and the little pile of "things"  I have pulled out for pages and didn't use so I toss into a cup... random buttons or bakers twine. For all of the examples below I used some stamps, word bits, enamel dots, rhinestones, buttons, washi tape.... the possibilities are endless if you just look around and grab bits and pieces to assemble.

1- Paper Clip Banners: ANY paperclips that you have laying around are quickly transformed into these clipable banners for pictures, tags, or any part of your pages.



1) Stamp (flag 1), punch (flag 3), or die cut (flag 2) some shapes.  

2) Scor a small edge about 1/8-1/4" from the top to fold over the paper clip.  Adhere together to keep in place.  

*As you can see on the ticket shape I tiny stapled instead of adding adhesive!* 

3) Grab random pieces from your stash and embellish:  buttons, enamel dots...

 Here are some items I used:  



2- Tassels 

Steps:  Paper clip ribbons

1) Cut 3 pieces of ribbon about 3 inches each.  

2) Make a loop from the ribbon center and feed through paperclip so the loop sticks out one side.  

3) Pull ends through to knot themselves on paperclip. 

Steps for the Tassel: 

1) Cut about 3 feet of bakers twine or embroider floss. 

2) Wrap in loops around fingers about 2" apart. 

3) Using the loose end, wrap between fingers and around the main loops several times.  

4) Tie both loose ends together AFTER feeding through top of loop.

5) Use scissors to cut the loop ends and create the final tassel look. 


3- Buttons and Paper Clips

These are super quick and fun.  Simply find some large rhinestones or buttons and adhere with hot glue or glue dots.  Here I tied some ribbon and bakers twine to the clips just under the buttons.  You can even tie through the button holes as I did for the green clip!  

4- Layered Punches and Paper clips


For these layered clips use your punches and cut out shapes from scraps laying around.  I added things like ribbon, twine, rhinestones, and words previously used and handy to bling them up some!  Give it a whirl!  


5- Cork Sheets


I found these adhesive cork sheets for $1 at JoAnn's on an end cap.  I used my punches to create shapes and then added on some embellishments from the April 2015 embellishment kit... veneers, enamel dots, flowers, and twine.  

6- Tags / Word Strips


 Finally for this week some hand made word strips and tags.  I simply found a roller stamp and grabbed some colored inks.  After I stamped a few phrases on some white cardstock I trimmed them down, dug through my scraps, and added them onto some random papers.  For the blue one I left the word strip free to dangle and show dimension on the page.   For the "I Love you lots" I dig out my eyelets and used a heart one to secure the strip to the pattern paper.  Then I hand cut the flag shape on both.  Lastly for the "Hello Sunshine"  I adhered the phrase with a paper clip, added some ribbon and hand trimmed the ends.  then I added some gold rhinestones and Voila... DONE!  

It took me about 2 hours from start to finish to hand make all 18 of these embellishments and that was with no design in mind.  I used up almost all of my "loose scraps" from pages where I meant to use a button but it didn't work so I tossed it into the cup and now I have a cup of beautiful embellishments that I can add to pages or cards!   

Which is your favorite?  Please share what you make using these ideas!  I can't wait to see what you come up with!  Stay tuned because we have 7 more ideas next week 

~Happy Scrappin'~

%PM, %07 %656 %2015 %14:%Apr

How to Print on Journal Cards

Hello all!   I get this question so many times:  "I have all these journal cards... Now what?"   or  "I hate my handwriting, how can I print my journaling onto my cards?" 


Well I am here to solve all of your problems.  In this tutorial we will be using Photoshop to make a template and then easily print out our stories onto our plethora of hoarded cards!  


Step 1: Create your template (You can use this over and over again!) I have included my template for your use below! 

-Open a "New document"  as a standard 8.5x11 paper. 

Step 2: If you are creating your own you can use the shape tool to draw in the size of the card(s) you are going to use.  Here I created a template that houses BOTH horizontal and vertical 3x4 and 4x6 cards.  **Note** the reason the vertical card is 2 different colors is so that I can see the 3x4 horizontal card if I choose to use that size and orientation of the card.**

If you want this template as is, you can download it HERE.  

Step 3: Choose the journal card you are going to print on and note whether there is any design or words you want to avoid printing on.  Hide the layer that states what the journal card size is by clicking the eyeball next to the layer.  Select the text tool and draw a box where you want the journaling to go on the card, over the template image that you will be using. 

Step 4: Hide all the layers except your journaling.



Step 5: Adhere your journal card to your PRINTED template with washi tape. Place in your printer the correct way (usually face down and top first)


Step 6: Remove card from template and use on your layout or in your pocket page!  


Easy right?  

This tutorial works the same in Word and other programs.  Just simply draw a text box the right size and print out as a template.  Follow all other instructions the same!   





One of the most common questions I get asked in the digital world is "How can I recolor a button or flower from my kit to match my page?"  

You may be asking "Why would anyone do this?"  Well sometimes there is a button from a particular kit you loved the design to but sadly that button is from a different kit.  Or maybe the designer has four different flowers in your kit but for this page you wanted a pink flower because you used the blue background paper and they only made yellow, blue, green, and black flowers for the kit.   

Well I made a quick 2 minute video to show you two completely different techniques to change the color of elements to match your pages.  

**Please note that recoloring items from a digital kit to match for personal use is ok, however recoloring and redistributing elements from a designers kit is breaking copyright rules and can / will get you in a lot of trouble. So please use this information properly!**



I hope these two quick tricks helps you out!  Please let me know if you have any questions or comments!  

Happy Scrappin' 

%AM, %27 %067 %2015 %00:%Feb

Using Fonts to Create Photo Masks

Here is a tutorial on how to make Photomasks out of fonts - Please feel free to ask any questions! This is a GREAT tool and soooo much fun!  Enjoy!


1- For this tutorial I am using a font called "Fat Cat."  You can use any CHUNKY or BOLD font for this project.  You can get it at free.  I posted the direct link for you all ;)



2- Choose the size of the font for your project.  Remember that you will be adding a picture into each letter or group of letters so you want it to be pretty big.  I am using 300 pxl. 



3- Create a separate layer for each letter you are going to add a picture to.  




















4 - Select each layer and move the letters into the pattern you want. 




5- Choose which letters will contain which picture(s) for this tutorial I am going to use 4 pictures for my letters.  Meaning 2 letters for some of the pictures.  Select  which letters will contain one picture and merge them together. 






















6- Select the photo(s) that you are going to use for the letters and drag them in a new layer OVER the letters you plan to form it to. Note: you may need to crop or resize them.  For this tutorial I am cropping all of my photos at 4x4 and 300 DPI.




7 - Control + G will group the two together making the picture into the shape of the letter(s).




8 - You can move the photo around inside the letters to get the desired look. 



9 - Repeat steps 5-8 until all the letters are filled with photos. 






















10- Once you are happy with the results you can merge all layers and use this as a title on any part of your page.  This will keep it all together and easy to move.  Select all layers in the layers pallet and right click "Merge layers" just as you did before with the individual letters we grouped for the pictures. 


NOW, we are going to take this one step further to create a boarder around like the page I made with this title.



11 - Duplicate your layer so you have two on your page to work with. Select your layer and right click select duplicate layer.  Now you have two identical titles.




12- Select one layer and create a border.  




13- Under layer styles check the "Stroke" box and adjust to how thick you want the outline to be.  I used 70.    

Also click on the box on the right of the "size" option and pick what color you would like the outline to be.  You can choose any color or drag your curser off the page to pick a color from your layout. 




14. Now to fill the whole layer in fully with that color go to the "Layers" menu --> New Fill Layer --> Solid Color.  And be sure to check the box that says "Use previous layer as a clipping mask." Select the color you want to use by using the eye dropper.      





 Once this step is complete, select both the masking layer (highlighted in the picture above) and the layer.  Right click and select "Merge Layers"   This will make the image one easy layer to work with. 


15.  Under the "Effects" tab on the right just above the layers pallet, go to "show all" and scroll down until you see one that says "Rain"  (They should be in alphabetical order in the menu, just hover over an item / effect and the name will pop up)




16.  Once this is complete, drag the photo title ("SISTER") over the pink background and add a drop shadow from the "Effects" panel.  Once you select the drop shadow you would like to use.  Double click on the "fx" symbol on the layer and you can change the intensity of the shadow:  depth, distance, color, etc.   


Here is my final result:  


And here is my layout: 



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