Believe (8.5 x 11 Layout)

SZayas_Believe_FullLayout.jpgMy first thought when I saw this month’s believe story kit was, “wow, I can’t wait to frame some of these cards!”  The words, the colors, the vibes . . . I wanted to plaster my office walls with this kit that Ali designed.  Everything is just SO GOOD.
IMG_6564.JPGHowever, it took me a little while to work through what stories I wanted to focus my energy on.  This is the layout that came out of it.  These words that I was writing to myself were the exact words that I needed to hear in that moment and are words that I know I’ll need to read from time to time down the road.  These are the things that I never want to stop believing.


Project Life 2016 (May 23-29)

PL2016 May 23-29.jpgAnother week is in the books, and it feels good!  Nugget is officially taking over my album, but I’ve totally embraced the change since I don’t mind seeing his cute face on every page (who would?!).

This week’s pages are a mashup of cards, stamps, flair, and other embellishments.  It’s a busy layout for sure, but probably one of my favorites that I’ve put together recently.


Here’s how it came together:

IMG_6546.JPG(Left Side)

I kept the top left pocket pretty simple by just inserting a picture with a Kelly Purkey sticky note attached with the date.

IMG_6547.JPGIn the middle left pocket I inserted a photo of what I was currently reading and used the “coffee+books=love” stamp from this Kelly Purkey planner set to stamp directly on the image. I also added a little cork sticker from an old Studio Calico documenter kit.

In the middle right pocket I used a card from an old Studio Calico documenter kit to record a few things that I’m currently enjoying.  Anyone else into Bob’s Burgers?!  I can’t say that I’ve been watching a lot of TV lately (thanks to some really good books :)  but when I do sit down to watch something, that’s totally my show of choice!

IMG_6548.JPGIn the bottom left pocket I used a 4×6 Studio Calico card and adhered part of a different 3×4 into the corner (which I also did to the top pocket on the right side).  I’m definitely not opposed to cutting up cards and mixing them together to make my own!

IMG_6549.JPG(Right Side)

In the top right pocket I used 2 more 3×4 Studio Calico cards.  Whenever I put two cards into a 4×6 pocket I’ll either use my fuse tool to fuse the middle OR if I end up using a 4×6 card on the reverse side then I’ll just adhere my 3×4 cards onto the back of the 4×6 card/photo (hope that makes sense).   The main thing is that I don’t want my cards to slide around when turning the page.

That puppy love flair is from Feed Your Craft.  Ever since placing my first order with Feed Your Craft I’ve become addicted to flair and have started putting it on everything!!

IMG_6550.JPGIn the middle left pocket I kept things simple again by adding a little chipboard flair from Studio Calico, and in the middle right pocket I used a star stamp to embellish around the “Good Eats” sentiment on that card.

IMG_6551.JPGIn the bottom left pocket I stamped “date night” directly onto my photo and used another chipboard sticker from Studio Calico to finish it off.

Whew!  I told you there was a lot going on.  The little details are always my favorite. :)

Life as of Late >> 01


Drinking >> Water.  Lots and lots of water these days, especially with the current heat wave hitting Southern California!

Watching >> Bobs Burgers and New Girl . . . I’m a fan of anything lighthearted that makes me laugh.

Reading >> Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter.  I’m only about 50 pages in, but so far its pretty good!

Making >> My Little Summer Joy traveler’s notebook.  I finished my cover, picked up some basic supplies, and now I can’t wait to add content to the inside!  If you’re interested in joining a fun and FREE class to help you record your summer memories, you can find more information here.

Feeling >> Grateful for the puppy that is currently curled up at my feet.

Hoping >> To take a quick trip up to Portland in August.  If you have any recommendations for places to see/eat, I’d love to hear them!

Trying >> To get back into my workout schedule (story of my life).  So far so good.  I recently discovered the awesomeness of Spotify workout playlists, so my treadmill run just got a lot less boring ;-)

Summer Reading List (Layout)


I’m not quite sure what was more fun- putting this layout together, or selecting which books I wanted to put on my Summer Reading List!


On my list for this Summer:

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

The Nightengale by Kristin Hannah

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

Truly, Madly, Guilty by Liane Moriarty

Looking for Alaska by John Green


Layout Supplies:

Ali Edwards Read Messy Circles

Enamel Dots and Alpha Stickers by Studio Calico

Hello, Bathtime (12×12 Layout)

Hello Bathtime Cover.jpgI’d say I did a pretty fair amount of reading about training and taking care of a dog before we ever brought Nugget home, however, I can honestly say that for the first two weeks we had him I basically had no idea what I was doing (ha!).  I’m still learning every day and things are by no means perfect (are they ever? I think not) but the first week was definitely the toughest when I was getting an average of 2-4 hours of sleep each night and felt like I was going to break if I had to clean up one one puppy pee accident!

IMG_6507.JPGWhat I’ve learned over the past several weeks is that patience is one of the best virtues to have when it comes to raising a dog (and let’s be honest, in life in general!) Things have slowly started to shift both in how Nugget acts around the house and in how I react to the things that he does.  Progress here, always :)

IMG_6500.JPGSo, all of that is to say that even during the toughest of times during those first two weeks, there were still activities that brought (and still bring me) so much joy.  One of those was the simple act of giving Nugget his bath.  Since he’s small enough (for now) and since our backyard hose wasn’t working we started giving Nugget baths in our tub.  He’s just so darn cute sitting in the tub anticipating the great scrub down.  I had always imagined a flailing puppy and muddy water everywhere, but he has been so chill during bath time since day one!  HOORAY! After his bath we wrap him up in a towel and I sit with him on the fireplace while he dries off.  Puppy snuggles are the best!

IMG_6501.JPGSupplies Used on Layout:

Studio Calico “Scout” Documenter Kit

The Great Escape Stamp Set by Feed Your Craft

Puppy Love mini flair badges by Feed Your Craft


What I Read in the Spring

2016-06-11 07.05.55 1.jpgThe first half of this year was definitely slow going in terms of reading for me, but I’m happy to say that things finally started picking up in the Spring when I began taking daily walks to the library on my lunch break (instead of going to the gym- Whoops!).   Here’s what I’ve been reading.

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty: This story centers around a woman who has temporary amnesia after an accident and wakes up to find herself 10 years older and in a life she doesn’t really know.  She has to figure out who she is and repair relationships that have fallen apart.  This was a great and easy read.  I love the way Moriarty writes and how easily her chapters flow together- it always makes me want to keep reading on.

At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen: I haven’t read “Water for Elephants” and I hadn’t heard anything about this book so I honestly didn’t have any expectations going in.  Reading this book was definitely a pleasant surprise.  It was part love story, part self-discovery for the main character, all with a 1940’s setting.  Throw in the eeriness of the loch ness monster along with some other small town tales and suspicions and you have yourself a pretty good story here.

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff:  I had some high hopes for this book and really wanted to like it after hearing so many great reviews.  I got through about half before deciding it  wasn’t my kind of book.  I just couldn’t get into it enough to keep reading on.  I didn’t really like the main characters (or any of the supporting characters) so it was hard for me to get into their stories.  Still, I appreciated the great writing (you know how you sometimes wish you could speak as eloquently as a writer writes?  Well, that was totally me with Lauren Groff).  Maybe I’ll pick it up again in a couple of years and give it another try.

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell: This is the third book by Rainbow Rowell that I’ve read, and while I really enjoyed Landline and Eleanor & Park, this was my favorite of the three.  I love Rowell’s style of writing and I often forget the struggles that the main characters are going through because there are just so many laugh out loud moments.  I loved the main character and felt my old college freshman self relating to some of her introverted and awkward tendencies.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr:  This was on my reading list for what seemed like FOREVER.  When it finally got checked in at my library I was all over it!  This book did not disappoint.  I got so involved in each character’s story that it became a very emotional ride- but one that was well worth going on.

I’m currently reading Pretty Girls and next up is The Nightengale.  What are you reading?  I’m always looking for new books to add to my list!

Have a wonderful weekend :)

Summer Memories Mini Book

Summer Memories Cover.jpg

Hello, friends!  Today I’m super excited to be sharing a mini book that I created using the Summer Messy Circles and Journal Cards from the June digital release by Ali Edwards.  This project is the perfect example of one of the reasons why I’m such a huge fan of working with digital products.  As much as I love playing around with traditional papers, embellishments, and stamping, I always find that if I go the digital/hybrid route I can cut my project work time in half, reduce a lot of the guesswork, and still have just as much fun crafting (its a win all around!)

For the cover of my mini I went with a simple grid layout using three 2×2 inch photos along with the cropped “bring on the sun” part of one of the summer journaling cards. For my title I used the blue Summer Memories card and typed “2013” directly onto my layout before printing.


For the image part of my book (the right pages) I used a format variation of having my two small pictures on the top and the messy circle on the bottom with the opposite on every other page.  When choosing a basic layout like this I think subtle format changes from page to page can make the overall look more interesting while still keeping everything cohesive.

IMG_6522.JPGFor the journaling part of my book (the left pages) I stamped the same messy circle from the corresponding page either directly above or below my journaling.

IMG_6520.JPGOnce I printed all of my photo pages on photo paper and the journaling paper on regular cardstock I cut them down to 4×6 (with a slight white border) and then adhered them onto different colored cardstock just to add another fun element of pattern and color.  Other than that no other embellishments were added.  Super simple!

IMG_6521.JPGI would say that choosing photos for this mini was probably the most time consuming part.  Everything else came together so quickly that I was able to wrap this mini up in just a single afternoon!

IMG_6523.JPGSo happy to have this little mini of special summer memories to flip through :)


Project Life 2016: May 16-22

Project Life May 16-22 Cover.jpgEvery once in awhile I toy with the idea of leaving my weekly spreads behind and jumping into monthly pages for Project Life.  In many ways it seems much simpler, but then I think of how many photos I’d have at the end of the month and I’m instantly overwhelmed (ha!).  For all of my fellow project lifers out there, do you follow a weekly or monthly format?  I’d love to know what has worked for you!

IMG_6535.JPGFor now I’m still putting together weekly spreads, and though I’ve missed a few weeks here and there, overall this project is still coming together nicely.

Today I’m sharing my layout for May 16-22.

Left Side: I dedicated the left side of my spread completely to the Saturday that I ran the Los Angeles Color Run with my friend Samantha.  This day was so fun, and thanks to Sam I ended up with some awesome pictures too :).IMG_6537.JPG

For the top pocket I used this Studio Calico “Yeah!” transparency card that I had been hoarding for awhile.  Since it was transparent I started by layering it on top of a polka dot card (you know I love me some polka dots!) but in the end I just used plain white cardstock for my background so the overall spread wouldn’t look too busy.  IMG_6538.JPG

For these 2 3×4 cards I mixed and matched 3 cards together. I cut the yellow card in half and then layered the top half on top of the blue card and the bottom half on top of the multicolored rain drop card.  The “Photographic Proof” sentiment is a stamp that came in a Studio Calico kit and the “This is How I Roll” and “Click” are from Kelly Purkey’s shop (previous collections).IMG_6539.JPG

I kept my journaling short and sweet :)IMG_6540.JPG

Right Side: I ended up creating my own filler card here.  I used plain white cardstock as my background and stamped Nugget using these alphabet stamps and then filled them in using my Stabilo pens.IMG_6541.JPG

I normally stick to printing all of my photos 3×4 or 4×6, but I had fun mixing up my usual format by printing square photos.  With square photos I was able to bring in more filler cards to use as backgrounds and therefore add some fun colors and graphics to the page- a total win!

This layout feels like summer to me.  Totally digging the bright colors I’m seeing everywhere!

Our Little Golden Nugget

2016-05-12 08.32.08 3.jpg

I can hardly believe that 4 weeks have passed since we brought this pup home.  Yesterday marked this little guy’s 13-week birthday! With that being said I think it’s time to introduce Nugget here on the blog.

I’ve been puppy over-gramming on instagram, but haven’t had a chance to share the news here yet . . . turns out puppies are just a little (okay, a whole lot!) of work!  Totally worth it for those cute puppy eyes and fur baby snuggles though.  We love him.

Thanks for letting me share our sweet news with you today!

Have a wonderful weekend :)