Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Gina Miller Giveaway!

Who wants to win something???!!!???

If any of you have yet to discover the world of digital scrapbooking here is your chance! There are many websites out there, but none as cute as Gina Miller Designs. You will fall in love with the endless options AND amazing prices. She really has made my life easier. Gina's Lily Pad store is the next best thing to the look and feel of real crisp paper. And once you have it...you can use it endlessly!

After our most recent trip to the zoo, I was able to capture some fun times with Gina's April BYOC packages of papers, ribbons and these adorable chunkie animals! Now you want to make a page with the little monkey don't you?

Enter to win $20 worth of products from The Lily Pad
All you have to do is "like" us on facebook! The winner will be chosen Monday May 3rd.

But that's not all...
Gina Miller designs have recently made action sets available for purchase for Photoshop CS, CS2, CS3, and CS4. Action sets aren't available in Photoshop Elements just yet, but will be soon!
You can enter to win this amazing action pack for you Photoshop lovers!

This action pack below is called Bitty Baby,
and it could be yours for free!
Enter by leaving a comment on this post and get a second entry for posting to your blog!
Make sure to let us know you posted to your own blog.

Winner will also be chosen Monday May 3rd at random selection.
Good luck!

Photoshop Actions: Bitty Baby

Those itty bitty toes are making me baby hungry, I better go snuggle with baby boy!


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day!

You like that little magnolia blossom, don't you? Look how happy it is, even in today's cold weather.

Pepper and I think the best way to celebrate Earth Day is to plant something. Get down with our earthy selves and all that jazz. But seeing as it's freezing outside and any plants we buy today will be better off if planted this weekend,  we think we'll put it off  and just check out these cool reusable utensils instead:

So smart, right? You'll always have utensils with you and won't have to use plastic ware. If only they had a straw in the set...I'm forever looking for straws when there are none to be found.

Anyway, about a month ago I was driving home and noticed my neighbor was throwing a perfectly good bird bath podium away. The top had somehow broken and she decided to chuck the base. I thought, "Now that has potential!" and proceeded to shove it into the back of my car.

And potential it had:

My strawberries will be so happy up there! I'm just hoping the birds won't try to take revenge by eating all my berries...you know how they love their bird baths. But really,  I'm doing them a favor. This way they won't end up as my cat's dinner.

I also got a great deal on some pots and decided to try my hand at growing cherry tomatoes and some onions. Baby Girl was very helpful with the watering can.

I just love a good green family project. So what are you doing to celebrate Earth Day?

Waiting for the sun,

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

TUTORIAL: Tissue Puff Balls!

With Earth Day coming up in a couple of days, I thought I'd show you a great way to repurpose old tissue paper. Let's make some puff balls!

So dang cute. And what's better: they are crazy easy to make. An awesome friend of mine taught me how to make these a couple of weeks ago and I think they rock!

What you need:
16 sheets of tissue paper, decent scissors and some bendable wire.

Of course, you can use new tissue paper. Just go out and buy some. But if you're like me and you feel bad throwing tissue paper away you probably have a pile of it shoved in a cupboard somewhere. Just iron it out and voila! New tissue paper!

Step 1:
Lay out your tissue paper so it all lines up, more or less. Then accordion-fold the paper lengthwise (hamburger, not hot dog). Make approximately 1 inch folds until the entire stack is folded up.

Step 2:
Fold the accordion stack in half and crease it.

Step 3:
Tie some wire around the center crease of your tissue paper and make a little hook or loop. This will be used to hang the puff. (Although, you'll want the hook/loop to be along the folded edge of the tissue paper, not on the top/bottom. I wasn't paying much attention when I did it and forgot to take another picture after I fixed it.)

Step 4:
Cut the ends of the tissue paper in a V-shape. You can also do a rounded end (or any number of shapes, I'm sure), but for this tutorial I went with the easy V.

Step 5:
Lay the stack on it's side and fan it out. Then start lifting the tissue paper layer by layer to form the upper half of the puff.
Step 6:
Flip the half-puff over and repeat this process on the other side until you have formed a ball!
Step 7:
Hang the puff. Easy, cute decoration for parties or everyday kid-room fun!

Hope you find a reason to make these, because they really are cool. Your friends will be so impressed, and you can say Sassy taught you. And I can say Kelly taught me. And Kelly can say she learned it somewhere else and we can have a big puff ball party!

Puffin Away,

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Special Birthday Thank you! Peek-a-boo Card Tutorial

Baby Boy turned one last week! So...I am busy making thank yous for the people who love him almost as much as me. I thought I would share my easy ideas!

Nothing says thank you better than a cute handmade card. Better yet, one with a memorable photo to go along! I promise your card won't end up in the trash can, but on the fridge for sure!

First, I have to brag a little about this little gadget of mine. My favorite corner rounder punch! It was one of those things that I never would have bought myself. I am not an avid scrap book Queen, but I like to dabble. I never knew I would use it so much!

Mine just simply rounds the corners...see the difference!?! This one is almost 10 years old, but the cool thing now is that they even have corner punches that are decorative.
You can be as simple or fancy as you want.

Now that my pictures are all nice and rounded...I will move onto the simple cards.

First up...the "Peek-a-boo" card

For these cards you will need:
Cute paper
Paper cutter (or scissors)
Paper corner punch (if you want to be fancy)
Your favorite photo
Tape or glue stick

Peek-a-boo card # 1

1. Fold your paper and cut to the size you want your card. Use a paper cutter to get a more precise line. If you don't have a paper cutter, use a ruler to draw a line and cut along it. It seems like more work, but it is less work than cutting a corner sliver by sliver.

2. Draw your "peek-a-boo" shape! Use an exacto knife to cut it out. Get creative! Circles, hearts...you can cater to the reason of the card or your mood.

3. Put tape or glue on the back of your photo and then slide it into position holding it against your "peek-a-boo" space. Careful not to get glue on your fingers. :)

3. Gently place your card and the photo in position onto a flat surface and press firmly down where you taped or glued. You are done!

P.S. - I rounded my corners with the card closed to get the cute effect. Punch your corners for that extra little detail!

Peek-a-boo # 2

1. Follow step 1 above to get your card started. This time, you will tape the photo to the inside front of the card. This keeps the photo flush with the card face. With this card, you will have more room inside to write your message.

2. Voila! Card # 2 done!

Now you have two similar ways to customize a simple card with your favorite photo!
But wait...do you want one more?

Peek-a-boo with a twist!

1. Once you make Peek-a-boo card #2, layer it up! Make another simple card out of coordinating paper. Make sure the two cards are the same width, but that the extra card is noticeably taller/longer.

2. Place your Peek-a-boo card on top of the taller card. You will glue or tape only at the edges. This allows the card to still be easily opened and closed.

Done again! You are on a roll! Pat yourself on the back, or better yet...
grab a piece of chocolate to eat while you write a special note inside.

A few little extras...
Layer your photo on top of coordinating cute papers of different sizes! You can write a note on the back, and I am positive your card will still end up on display.

If you don't have the time or patience for cutting holes in the center of cards, make it easy.
Just fold a piece of paper in half for the card, and place a picture inside from the event you are thanking them for attending. Write your message and you are finished!

If you are making some goodies for your friends and loved ones, why not make your photo's into thank you tags. There are a large variety of tag punches out there waiting to be discovered in all different sizes. Here's a tip...you can position your photo by looking under the punch with the photo facing down to make it just right.

You won't even have to write who the goodies are from!
Just a simple "thanks" or "we love you" on the back! Tie it on and you are done.

I am off to the post office to mail out our special birthday thank yous for my baby boy!
Can't believe he is one year already.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010


When I introduced Sassy, she came in with a big bang. Beautiful do-it-yourself artwork that will make any white wall envious. My white walls were drooling. So I finally came up with a little snack for them using Sassy's tutorial. I tweaked it a bit, because I had one large (36 x 36 inch) canvas just laying around being boring. And I love the end result!

Have any of you used this idea? Send your pictures to thesassypepper@gmail.com,
We would love to have a show and tell!


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Color Splash

I don't know about you, but I LOVE Color Splash! It is one of my favorite shows, after Modern Family and Medium.

Wasn't Medium creepy this week? But Chuck was the best ever, so it evened things out. Now I sound like all I ever do is watch TV.

Anyway, I think David Bromstad is a genius. I love almost everything he does on the show, so after watching it for the past month and learning that my awesome pregnant friend has been busy painting her house (don't worry, it's pregnancy-safe paint) while I've been lazily watching Color Splash and ignoring my poor walls I finally painted my entryway! With the help of my incredibly helpful husband, of course (just in case he reads this and feels like I'm taking all the credit).

Here's a "before" picture, which was actually taken about 8 months ago when we painted the hallway. In other words, I'm super lame and completely forgot to take any "before" pictures and I'm lucky I had a half-decent one hanging around...

The little nook arch has been white since we moved in. Boring. So here is the "after" shot:

We also painted the circular entryway. I love it. Sorry, no "before" picture here, but it's amazing how much difference it makes to have color on the walls!

I wish you could be here to see the amazingly clean paint lines. But don't worry; I'm going to teach you how to do it. Just not today. :)

Splashing Paint,

Monday, April 5, 2010

How to lengthen a skirt (or dress)

Honestly, I did get a little nervous to just start adding frill to my wardrobe so quickly! I decided that I would start on Little Gal and her Little Sis's wardrobe first. After all, I am all for lengthening the amount of time my girls can wear their (or my) favorite dresses. :)

If you are a beginner, this project is for you! All you need to know is how to sew a straight line.

If you attempt this little project, you will need:
a too short skirt or dress
sewing machine
frill or lace for more length

I found all of these fun pre-made spools for blanket edging at Walmart of all places. Joann's had a larger variety but I forgot my coupon, so I left empty handed. I was lucky to find eyelet, and ruffled edging, perfect for a spring-time dress make-over. All were 2 - 3 inches wide.

Start with one too-short dress or skirt...
Then decide how much longer you want it.
Make sure you find your frill, eyelet or lace in the width that you need.

add a little lace, and voila!
Longer, and cuter I might add.

One thing to remember with using the eyelet or pre-made rolls; the edges are unfinished. If you have a serger you can fix this in a jiffy. If not, you can "pink" the edges using some pinking sheers to keep the fabric from fraying when it is washed. It is much easier to "pink" the edge before you sew it onto your garment. This picture below of a Valentine's Day banner I made a few months ago shows a pinked edge.

I folded the fabric over twice at the beginning and end of the frill and just sewed right over it to hide and protect the unfinished edge at the end of this button up dress.

After fixing Little Gal and Little Sis's dresses, I decided that eyelet would be cute for me too!

I even snatched a "denim" color roll for this little casual dress.

A little vague, but mostly I just wanted to share my ideas to get yours flowing! I promise I will go into more detail when I post a more grown-up way to lengthen. On to part II.

Hello spring, here I come!