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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fab Finds: Cricut, Cutting Vinyl and Fabric, and new Print and Cut Tutorials

Here are the instructions for cutting with vinyl.
I always forget the blade depth and pressure settings, so here they are. :)

Cutting Vinyl using Cricut & Cricut Expression Die Cutting SystemVinyl Instructions using Transfer Tape

1) Place vinyl sheet on Cricut cutting mat. Load mat into machine and confirmthat machine is set to the correct cutting mat size.2) Make cutting selection and set size as if you where cutting paper,and then press cut.Peel images off cutting mat.PREPARATION1) Place vinyl sheet on Cricut cutting mat. Load mat into machine and confirmthat machine is set to the correct cutting mat size.2) Make cutting selection and set size. For best results, set blade depth to 6 and pressure to 2.These settings will result in a "KISS CUT" or a cut that only goes throughthe vinyl leaving the backing liner uncut.3) Take ends of transfer tape in each hand with adhesive side facing down.Gently lay transfer tape over vinyl (be sure to lay it straight)image starting in the center and moving out toward the ends.4) Once tape is in place,use applicator stick to burnish*the tape on to the vinyl.Start in the center and use overlapping strokes.

1)Completely clean and dry wall (or other surface) area where vinyl image is to be placed.For best results do not use a cleaner that will leave a residue.2) Lightly place image on wall using level to ensure correct placement.3) Once image is in place, use applicator stick to burnish* vinyl on to wall.For best results use overlapping strokes when burnishing*4) Gently peel back transfer tape at 45-degree angle.If vinyl starts to come off with transfer tape,lay area back down and burnish* again.

Cricut Vinyl Instructions Without Transfer Tape

1) Place vinyl sheet on Cricut cutting mat. Load mat into machine and confirmthat machine is set to the correct cutting mat size.2) Make cutting selection and set size. For best results, set blade depth to 6 and preasure to 2.These settings will result in a "KISS CUT" or a cut that only goes through the vinyl leaving the backing liner uncut.

1) Completely clean and dry wall (or other surface) area where vinyl image is to be placed.For best results do not use a cleaner that will leave a residue.2) Use level and pencil to draw a faint line on wall to aid in placement.3) Carefully remove the vinyl images one at a time form the backing liner and applyto the wall using the pencil line as a guide. Gently smooth down the vinyl using your fingers.4) Once all image are placed on the wall, place backing liner overthe vinyl and gently burnish* with application stick provided.5) When complete,carefully wash off or erase pencil lines.

Cutting Fabric:
I have a great video I found  that I put on my db's Crafty Corner blog along with some other links. Here's the link:   http://dbcrafty.blogspot.com/2009/05/great-tutorial-on-cutting-fabric-wthe.html

I have some other cricut info (free font links, svg files) over there too. You can find them all here:

And, since I'm posting Cricut stuff, I just found some great info and tips on how to cut out images that you've printed on your printer, or cut shapes for your stamps! SO AWESOME! I'm so excited! :)
(No need to spend beau coup bucks on the new Cricut Imagine!)
Print and Cut

Ok, here's a video for the easiest way (I love Make The Cut!):

Here's a link that has the video instructions written out.

And here's some more links:
and here's a link with a list of other options that I haven't checked out all the way yet.

and here's another site (this link is specifically to how to use center point to cut stuff) but I bet the site has a lot of other great resources too! :) 

One More Note:
If you go to this link:

you can see a lot of the awesome new features of Make the Cut! 3.0, it's a beta version still, so if you buy MTC you will get the older version, but you can upgrade to this. I am seriously so excited! (and the best thing is upgrades are FREE, unlike SCAL. But that's ok. It's just one more thing that makes MTC so great.) :)

So honestly, if you own a cricut, or a gazelle, or black cat cougar, you really need to check out these videos! :) It's pretty awesome! :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Fab Finds: Some things that happen when you become a mama:

The following is copied from this post at this address:
I don't really want to steal it, but I loved it so much that I had to keep it, and I knew if I only bookmarked it, I'd probably never find it again. There are a lot of other great memories and lessons in the comments that people left, so go read those too! :) I sure do love being a mama! Thanks Sis for the link! :)

"(For my sister who is due with her first baby in three weeks…)
Oh yes. This is the way things happen.
You get pregnant, have a baby, survive a year or so of sleep deprivation, memory loss, heavenly smiles, and diapers, and then one afternoon while you’re making a sandwich your baby is sitting on the counter, nonchalant, happy as a clam.
This is what having a baby will teach you:
That you are not in control.
That you were never really in control.
That there is grace in losing the battle, just as there is grace in quietly, patiently persisting with boundaries, bedtimes, and broccoli.
You will never be able to hear a story about a child suffering again without tears wetting the corners of your eyes, entirely unbidden, always unexpected, smudging your mascara as you consider what if.
It’s okay to start over or give up a million times. No one knows any better than you do–and when it comes to your own kid, you do, actually, know best, no matter what anyone else tells you.
It’s all about giggling.
Getting dirty is inevitable and essential. Make your peace with the effing laundry heap. It will never go away. (Although–one thing that most certainly will go away, inexplicably, and often, are single baby socks. One by one they disappear until you’ll have an entire drawer full of singletons.Think I’m kidding? Just wait.)
It’s about stopping and getting down on the floor. Especially with boys. It’s all about the floor and what can be accomplished there: block towers and tickling matches, and moments of physical affection, rough and tumble that they crave. Moms who wrestle are awesome. It’s not just a guy thing. Please don’t believe it’s just guy thing.
It’s about the fact that the floor will always have crumbs, paper clips, pencils, crayons, snippets, legos, blocks, matchbox cars, marbles, rocks, crumpled leaves, gravel, sand, bits of grass, sticks. Don’t let it get to you. It’s just not that important.
Don’t let the crying get to you either. Whatever feels like the worst day in the world, the worst hour, the worst minute, will surely pass. And you’ll blink, and they’ll be 20 months old and sitting on the counter, as if that’s okay, as if it’s not precarious and against the rules. And they’ll be grinning and giggling and drooling, and saying “No! No! No!” when you remove them, or suggest an alternative.
It’s all about alternatives. About distractions. “Oh look!” That’s a magic phrase, right there. Oh yes it is.
It’s about not getting it right the first time or the second time or even the third time. It’s knowing that any mom who looks like super mom, who is always prepared–with snacks and wipes and changes of clothes and perfect birthday party invitations–also has her off days (or else a whole lot of hired help.)
It’s about knowing that there is a learning curve and that you can’t get it right the first time, or the second, or the third. Knowing what to bring takes practice. Knowing what to expect takes a 18 years or more. Go easy on yourself.
Know that if you have ziplocs, wipes, and diapers in your car you have half a chance of avoiding disaster. A change of clothes for everyone, also in the car, is never a bad idea. When they are older swimsuits and towels and sunscreen should live in the car too, just in case. And a picnic blanket. Bandaids. Books. Juice boxes. Get over the fact that your car will look like a bomb just went off in it, always and forever more. Immaculate cars are for wimps without kids.
Carry pacifiers in your purse. Later, matchbox cars, notebook paper, animal crackers, pencils. Know that the day will come when you will sacrifice your phone (even your iPhone) or your sunglasses (even if they’re Gucci) to that little sticky pair of hands to buy ten minutes of peace, and resign yourself to this fate.
Know that you will survive on less sleep.
Forgive yourself for forgetting the little things. They’re little for a reason. Little things can be repaired, replaced, forgotten or forgiven.
Forgive yourself for the big things too. Hormones are messy. Love is messy. Learning to be a mama is messy.
But it’s glorious too. So glorious.
It will crack your world wide open. Oh yes it will."

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Our Story: Fall Family Photos

We still have family pictures hanging on our wall of when Hike was about 8 months old. I always feel bad looking at them because Baby is not in them. So... I've been planning on getting family photos for a while now. I asked a friend of mine, because she is simply awesome!, but she just had a baby, so that was out. Well, today was such a beautiful day that after we put the boys to bed I decided that when they woke up we'd go up the canyon and get family photos. Of course we were very unprepared! :) We didn't even get any socks for Baby. AND, once we got there I took a few photos to get the metering right, and the battery died. Luckily there was an outlet in one of the pavilions and we could charge it enough to get the pictures we wanted. Unfortunately by then the sun had gone behind the mountain so we didn't get any awesome sun rays coming through the trees or nice highlights. But I think they still turned out cute! And it sure was fun!

Is that totally lame that our family pictures are taken using a 'tripod' strapped to the stroller and using 'timer' mode?! haha! I guess it means you can't expect too much, but at least there were some that are wall worthy.
p.s. I do not claim in any way to be a professional photographer. ;)

It's so hard to get them all to look at the same time. ;)

I love Baby's face in this shot! 
He thought Hike swinging the branch was the best thing ever!

Brothers :)

 They did NOT want to take pictures with me. At least Hike smiled for the first shot. ;)

 Funny face. :)

 Hike did NOT want his picture taken any more. So, Neil distracted him by throwing things into the trees and making the 'helicopter seeds' fall. The only shots I got of him at this point were of him looking up. Oh well. :)

Oh, but of course he had to come running into the shot that was supposed to be just Neil and I. 
Sneaky boy. ;)