Friday, February 17, 2012

The Things That Matter

Sometimes I get mad at myself for not getting everything done on my to-do list; organize the hall closet, go through the donate/sell bag of clothes, write a blog post...

It's funny how that list and what you can tick off of it each day can make you feel like a champion or a looser.

Not sure why I let it get to me so much, there are plenty of things that I do get to--my day is full, perhaps a bit too full.

 Recently I've had some heavy thoughts on my mind about life and death--an epiphany really, brought about by two recent events.

 One very close and personal the other one effecting my whole community; both tragic.
 Being with the ones you love and making them see and feel how much they are loved by you is all that really matters, the rest is sand running through our fingers.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Trigger Happy

It was such a mild weekend here in central Jersey-- hard to believe but spring was in the air. It would be very surprising if it were to last but all of my bulbs are already pushing through to say hello and if nothing else, it's refreshing to be reminded of better times to come.

I'm just having so much fun with my iPhone. I recently downloaded the Camera + App and now I feel like I have an SLR camera and a photo lab small enough to fit in my pocket. I even used it to take pictures of all of my Valentine's day cards that I listed in my Etsy shop--and it was super convenient too!

 Of course this little luv bug is one of my favorite photo subjects...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Start of a New Year

Oh I have been a naughty blogger and have been very neglectful of my little nook in cyber space. Where do I pick up from after such a long absence? I know the people who visit this blog are looking for something specific-- something vintage and handmade. In honesty I haven't sat down to make a card or other handmade goodies in so long. It's not that I don't think about it every free moment I have--because unfortunately I can't get it out of my head--probably the reason I find myself back here once again trying to make a fresh start.

When I first started blogging I really didn't think about what people wanted to read. I blogged for myself, to keep a sort of journal of what I was doing and what I was crafting--to document my own journey. For my own sake I'm going back to the start and blogging for me--because after all isn't that more authentic and I think that is what people truly want.

It's snowing here today in Central NJ--the first snow of the year. The kids are outside enjoying the weather with their Dad, so I have a moment of solitude--one of the reasons I decided to sit down and write.

 2012 has been off to a good start, I must say simply because I have already been able to make one or two of my goals for the year a reality. I would like to make this year a learning year-- my interest in art and mixed media is growing so that I want to dabble in other things besides paper arts. I am so happy to say that I found out my local library will be holding a two part collage class in February and I plan to be there! When I discovered the class it felt like one of those aha moments when you know you were at the right place at the right time. Also I have been taking an on-line class at and learning all about making art with digital stamps in photoshop. I love it and plan on making more digital art as the year progresses.

My other goal is to become more tech savvy and I have taken steps towards that by finally becoming an I phone user--yes one of those, but I have to say I am totally hooked and plan to use it to be more hooked in to the online world and marketplace.

Family life is forever busy--and although I would love to have a bit more time for myself, I love my life and wouldn't change it for the world. The kids are busy as usual. My son is doing great in kindergarten and will be starting martial arts soon and T-ball, while my little one is getting bigger and bigger everyday. I plan on doing more family scrapbooking this year as well and have already gotten a start on that which I plan to share here as well.

Happy New Year and wishing you the passion and perseverance to follow your own passions throughout the year!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dabling with Digital - My Memories Suite Scrapbooking Software Giveaway

I'll be honest with you I am not much of a scrapbooker-- not because I don't like it or am not good at it but just that I never seem to have enough time for it. If I am going to make time to craft it's usually to do my cards or some sort of holiday decoration. The funny thing is that I aspire to be a scrapbooker-- I'm constantly snapping pics of my two little ones and have about three unfinished scrapbooks floating around my house right now--so when I was asked to review My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbooking Software I was truly intrigued.

The My Memories Suite software is so easy to use that it makes putting fabulous pages together quick and effortless--before you know it you can put that baby book together that you have been meaning to do for the longest time. I put this page together of my baby daughter in about 15 minutes and I love it! It has everything I would incorporate into my paper scrapbooks--the layers, the textures and the soft vintage feel.

One of the biggest elements that appeals to me about digital srapbooking software is the literally hundreds of amazing kits out there to satisfy my paper addiction! And I don't even need to worry about finding space in my little craft room to store the kits, everything fits comfortably on my memory stick. I have a file on my memory stick for digi kits that I can easily open in the My Memories Suite Software to access anything I need. Not only do independent designers make digi kits but I've been noticing that big name paper companies like Cosmo Cricket and Echo Park Papers are now offering their latest releases as digital kits too. So the sky is the limit!

My Memories Suite Software makes it very easy for you to share your pages too. In order to post these pages to my blog I was able to export the pages as JPEG's and save them on my memory stick--now I can take them wherever I want and share them on the web. Also, they have a great wizard for uploading your pages to their server where you can put together and purchase a hard copy of your digital pages.

I'll admit that at first I was a bit skeptical, would I have to sacrifice my beloved vintage style for a quick convenient fix? To my pleasant surprise, not at all! There are a number of wonderful digital kits out there to choose from  to suite any style. My Memories offers a number of them in their on-line store which you can purchase and upload directly to their software, as well there are a bunch of other on-line resources where you can grab great kits which can also be used with the My Memories Suite Software. The best part is that most digital kits are available for a fraction of the cost of a paper kit and if you are resourceful enough you can even find free kits on-line for you to use in your digital pages.
The My Memories Suite Software is not only for scrapbooking. Since I'm crazy about card making I thought I would give that a try using the software. Both of these card images were made with the  software along with various elements from different digital kits I had purchased and a few freebies I came across in the blog sphere. I'm really happy with the way that they turned out!
Boy am I hooked--can't wait to play around with My Memories Digital Scrapbboking Software Suite some more! I haven't even gotten into how the software even offers features that allow you to add video and music to your pages--so many possibilities.

And for the best part My Memories Suite has offered to let me give away a FREE copy of their digital software  for one lucky reader to have their own fun with!

GIVEAWAY GUIDELINES open to everyone:
1 winner will receive My Memory Suite Digital Scrapbooking Software 
This giveaway will remain open until Friday October 7th and the winner will be announced on my blog Vintage Haven Studio.

The winner will be chosen at random, notified by email and will have 48 hours to respond.

IN ORDER TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY, go to My Memories Suite site and leave me a comment telling me which is your  favorite digital paper pack or layout.

BONUS ENTRIES: Please leave a separate comment for each entry

Like  My Memories Suite on Facebook
Follow My Memories Suite on Twitter
Like Vintage Haven Studio

Readers of my blog can also receive a 10% discount of the fabulous digital software using the code STMMMS67262

Best of Luck!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Vintage Candy - Autumn Daydreams

Autumn has to be my most favorite time of the year-- the crispness in the air, the crinkling of amber and brown leaves beneath our feet, pops of orange and red against a slowly fading backdrop of nature. Unfortunately the weather in Jersey has taken a turn back to humid today--not good! Well, here's a selection of vintage candy for everyone dreaming of the crisp Autumn days to come.

Source: via Tina on Pinterest

Source: via Tina on Pinterest

Source: via Tina on Pinterest

Source: via Tina on Pinterest

Friday, September 16, 2011

Lost and Found: Ocean Grove Town Wide Fleamarket

I'm always on the lookout for a great flea market, and I found one last weekend in Ocean Grove, NJ. Ocean Grove is a beautiful Victorian town right on the Atlantic ocean. As soon as I drove in to town I knew I found a place that I was going to fall in love with. On any normal day Ocean Grove is a lively town filled with small eclectic shops, quaint restaurants and adorable coffee houses. Add a giant flea market/garage sale to it that occurs twice a year and you have heaven on earth!

As this was my first time in Ocean Grove for the flea market I wasn't really sure where the best place to start would be. Although lots of home owners have their own tables set up the heart of the market is in the center of town on an open grassy area located right in back of a large structure known as the Great Auditorium. I was planning on taking a bunch of great pics that day but realized way to late that my memory card was left home in my laptop.

I did manage to snap a few pics of my fines later that day when I got home;

I had my eye on this vase for quite a while and kept coming back to it. I wasn't too happy about the price, as I like to find things at basement bargain prices--but after I managed to talk the seller down a few bucks I gave in and splurged. I love the lines of this vase, obviously from the 40's era and the color--a pale coral--everything about it is just so lovely. Possibly it's a McCoy but it only reads USA on the bottom--most likely though, if it read McCoy on the bottom the price would have been substantially higher.

I also fell in love with this little pumpkin--hand cut from sheet metal and hand painted to look like those lovable vintage die cut pumpkins and paper mache treat holders. This is going to make a great addition to my Halloween decor!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vintage Candy: School Days

It seems like everyone is linking pictures from Pinterest to their blogs these days and creating an entire post out of it--so I thought I would give it a try too. Just another reason to come up with a good excuse for spending my time cruzing around Pinterest. In honor of all our kids who have returned to school for another fantastic year hear are a few vintage school finds to feast your eyes on.