things I love about you | the perfect gift for the love of your life

It gets more challenging every year to find the perfect birthday, anniversary and Christmas gifts for the love of your life, doesn't it? It might just be that we all have more than we could ever need or use. But, after eighteen years of marriage and a few years of dating, a handmade gift always seems to be just the perfect idea...at least that's been my experience.

My guy loves them and I love making them for him.


I've always dabbled in homemade gifts and cards and much prefer gifting something handmade than anything at all. And as has happened many times in the past {here, this one, and this one, too}, gifts that have begun as gifts to my Sweetie, have ended up as some of my most popular shop products. Yeah, Mr. wRight gets some pleasure of reminding me of that. 


When I was designing some new inserts for the shop, I had some extra space on the page. Since Gordon's birthday was just around the corner, and I had no idea what to get him, I decided to make something for him. And he loved it.


Mr. wRight gave me the okay to share the journal I gifted him, so here we go.
Well, actually, he said, "I guess you're going to want to take photos and put this on your blog." So, yeah, I think that means he's totally okay with me letting you see how I showed him some of the things I love about him.

THINGS I LOVE ABOUT HIM

When beginning on a mini book project, it can seem a little daunting. All those blank pages and will I ever come up with enough things I love about him that I haven't already shared in other mini books I've given him.


Another fun thing I like to do, is to highlight a word in my journaling with letter stickers. The added bonus is that it takes up room when my journaling doesn't really take up the whole card.


USING STAMPS 
The left side of the page has the folded over journaling card from the page before {the tree card} and a "W" sticker, as our last name begins with the letter W. Now is a good time to grab some stamps to embellish your page. You can see what a terrible stamper I am, the word "is" was double stamped. But, oh well, it's handmade, not perfect.


And a few more pages where I stamped:


And if you're part of a couple, a team, you know that there are tough days. But they only make us stronger.

To cover up the staples in the middle page spread here, I adhered a paper doily {find more here} on top of the spritz splatter pattern and a stamp of one of my mantras.



Another example of my terrible stamping skills.



Who doesn't love a mason jar? I think back to my younger days when we ran after lightening bugs on late Summer nights. All my hand drawn hearts remind me of those lightening bugs and the brightness my sweetie brings to my life.


One of my favorite pages comes up next. The first time Gordon read through his gift, he didn't even realize that he should have lifted up the King playing card...


...for the secret message underneath. Well, not really so super secret, he does know that he is the King of my heart. And has been for a very long time.


And it all came together with this awesome gold heart washi tape. I'm hoarding this one, for sure!


JOURNALING CARDS
One of my favorite ways to jump start a journal page is to use a journaling card, which seems to spark my creativity and help me to begin to tell my story.

Gordon just happens to be 7 years younger than me, so how could I not use this card?


The sticker I used for the word "or" is actually covering up a handwriting boo boo.


The Story of Today...a perfect jump off point.


Inside jokes...he's always up for a birthday cake and it doesn't matter if it has someone else's name on it, either.


We lost Papa, Gordon's Dad, nearly three years ago in March. He was a larger than life character, loved by his family and his community. We still miss him. And I know that Papa would continue to be proud of the way his eldest son is shouldering the responsibilities , taking care of Nana, the property and the family.


And another round sticker to cover up a handwriting boo boo. Hey, whatever works!


Commitment. That's what it's all about, it goes back to the promise we made to each other.


Another flip card, hiding a chipboard element.


Yes! Again and again and again. Best decision I ever made!


I used some wood chip shapes, the same ones I used here, because they are not too fancy and are a little bit rustic. And cute.

USING YOUR STASH

I often tell Gordon that I'm the lucky one...so the clover washi tape just seemed to be right.


No words. Just and arrow pointing to the ampersand. Like you & me.


You may or may not know that Gordon sings. He sings wonderfully, with a deep, rich voice that makes everyone who hears him sing wonder why he doesn't do it professionally. Yep, he's that good.


glassine bags | shipping tags


This heart shaped page tab seen below is included with the notebook kit.


FLAIR BUTTONS 
I first journaled a list of things I love about him. Then I saw that there was room at the top of the page and decided to add the word you with letter stickers to fill it up. The letter stickers are green, like the darker green stripe in the pennant sticker shape on the left page.


WATERCOLORS
I've recently been playing around with the watercolor set my girls use. Gosh, they're so much fun. I grabbed a few stencils I've had in my stash but never used and played around to create these page backgrounds.

The arrow outline is the negative shape from a yardstick sticker sheet that I just trimmed around and stuck to the page.



He CAN fix anything. It's amazing, I don't know how he does it.


SOURCES
Looking for fun embellishments to decorate your mini album and travelers notebook pages? I have a whole collection of kits charming bits and bobbles curated by color.

Want to buy the same notebook I used for this post? Find the pocket sized Love journal here, it even has an optional embellishment kit to help you decorate your pages.

using scrapbooking supplies in my gratitude journal

Late last year, I took some time to embellish a few pages in different sized notebooks I was going to use for Gratitude Journals in 2017.

BEFORE


This Gratitude Journal is a Field Notes sized notebook, a really perfect size for me. I love that I can toss it into my purse for on-the-go journaling, but is big enough to allow me to journal as much, or as little, as my heart or time allows.


I added a vintage book page scrap and stamped shipping tag along with some washi tape...just enough of a starting off point to document my thankful thoughts.



AFTER

While the girls were taking their turns at piano practice, I took that time to journal. On the left side of the page, I just bullet listed some highlights from the past couple of weeks, kind of a roundup of good moments and feelings. The right side the page is also a roundup of sorts, in more detail though, of Isabella's growing interest in cooking and recipes.



Find more Gratitude Journal  inspiration for your own journals.

chalk paint canvas + hand lettering


Isabella and I had the most lovely time together browsing the aisles of Hobby Lobby a few days ago.  Gordon and Victoria headed home after her basketball game, where she scored two points, and we hightailed it to crafty-town! During our hour {or more} there, we stocked up on canvases, paint and a few other goodies.


SUPPLIES

  • chalk paint | I used Folk Art Home Decor Chalk, 36303 Imperial
  • 16 x 20 canvas 
  • sponge brush
  • chalk


HOW I DID IT
  • paint a sloppy coat of chalk paint, leaving the edges jagged
  • paint a second sloppy coat once the first has dried to the touch
  • cover the entire canvas with chalk, I used yellow because I didn't have any white
  • wipe off chalk, I used a barely damp paper towel leaving some chalk behind for texture

PLEASANT SURPRISES

As I was rummaging through our collection of chalk, I was bummed to have found out that we did  not have any white. How did we not have anymore white? Oh yeah, must have been in the last purge when I trashed all the nubs of white chalk and then forgot to buy replacements. So, I used the pink we had plenty of and ended up being pleasantly surprised. 

Actually, I loved it!


I'm tickled how the pink on the red chalk paint gives this canvas a tone-on-tone look and actually invites you to walk up to the art and read it. It definitely is harder to read from far away at this size. My next go around, I want to get a bigger canvas and a longer quote. 

Gordon wondered why I took down the art that was hanging there, which I took as a non-subtle hint that he wanted this DIY to find a different home. So I did, but that doesn't mean I won't try it all again. Wink, wink.


Here's what I shared on Instagram: the art projects the girls created with the supplies we bought the same day. More on their finished projects later this week.

friday the thirteenth

It's Friday the thirteenth today!
#project life #scrapbooking #travelers notebook #Midori #printable #Friday the 13th #TGIF
Just drag this image to your desktop and print on a 4x6 card or photo paper, trim to 3x4 to pop into your Project Life albums, pocket letters or travelers notebooks. Enjoy!

embellished daily devotional journal

CREATE is my One Little Word {the brainchild of Ali Edwards} for 2017 and I'm looking forward to so many ways it will touch my heart and my life. 

#journal #mini album #lists #notebook #devotional #iloveitall #papercraft
clip + doily from this kit  |  set of 10 mini manila shipping tags

My first creative project for 2017 was a super quickie overhaul of a spiral notebook.  I'll be using it to take notes and ponder the daily readings from my new devotional. A sweet church friend gifted me this as a thank you and I'm looking forward to the quiet time I'll be spending with it and my bible. If I'm going to take notes, it might as well be in a cute journal, right? 


Want to make one for yourself? All it took was two sheets from a MME 6x6 pad, some crafting goodies from the shop and 10 minutes.

After decorating the front cover, I punched a tag shape to add to the pocket {which you can see peeking out when the cover is closed} and used a second 6x6 sheet to make a pocket liner.

#journal #mini album #lists #notebook #devotional #iloveitall #papercraft

This is just the pennant banner shape folded over the top of the front cover.

#journal #mini album #lists #notebook #devotional #iloveitall #papercraft

And from the remaining paper scraps, I embellished the back inside cover.

#journal #mini album #lists #notebook #devotional #iloveitall #papercraft

What do you think, should I make these for the shop? What would you use your journal for?

#journal #mini album #lists #notebook #devotional #iloveitall #papercraft

When I posted this photo on Instagram, {I'm @iloveitalshop} 
Daily Guideposts shared my photo on their IG feed!

BONUS

As part of the Top Ten Blog Hop I hosted a giveaway for an Alphabet of our Love journal, have you entered?

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