Author Archives: Elizabeth Kartchner

Road Trip + Beach Travel Tips

newport beach vacation
The reality of spring break being over has set in with the craziness of mornings and my dang to-do list staring at me! Oh, but it was a wonderful week! Seriously, one of the best. Which is funny because we did nothing flashy or extravagant. We didn’t even go to Disneyland. (gasp!) I know, I know I was sad about that too but I just wanted to pull up to our place for the week and not have to leave it until it was time to say goodbye. And that’s what we did.
Our days filled with beach, bike rides, eating, exploring along the pier, playing in the sand, gathering shells, more bike rides and more eating. I’d never stayed at a beach house steps from the sand before and it was perfect for the ages of my kids. Because we would go back and forth all day.
Our family needed this. Life was flying by and we needed this time to connect. You definitely don’t have to go to the beach to accomplish that, though it didn’t hurt. I think it’s hard when I work from home because I constantly have that pull to work on something. I felt more detached from stuff I needed to do and could focus on them.
I did have some down time when Myles was napping or the kids were getting ready for bike rides that I could use my art journal. It worked out great! Going to finish parts of it and share this week.

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

Summer is coming up and I wanted to share some tips. I could go on and on but here’s some things that stood out in my mind that hopefully will help some of you. Please leave a comment with any of your tips!

roadtrip

  • Bring your bikes. Renting bikes at the beach is $8 an hour per bike and up to $35 a day that adds up like crazy. We only brought three and had to rent one for Collin when we all rode together. It actually wasn’t that much added work to bring them for the money that we saved. And we rode our bikes everyday we were there. I also love my WeeRide bike seat for Myles. I woke up cruised along the beach before bike rental places were even open so I am glad we brought ours.  Bike racks for a hitch are anywhere from 100-150 depending on how nice and how many bikes you have. There are also bike rack options for car trunks. (PS If you make a stop at a hotel bring your bikes into the hotel room. Better safe than sorry. Plus, you can ride them through the casino like me did. ; ) We also brought a bike lock and brought our bikes into the beach house every night.)
  • Start A Tradition. Ours is to get Hippo Cookies on Balboa Island at Dad’s Original Frozen Banana. We ride the ferry across the island in our car (You can get out and sit on the ferry too.) Then we drive to Dad’s and buy these colorful sprinkled hippo cookies. I am sure you’ve heard me talk about them before. We went our last night we were there and the girls reminded me of it everyday until we finally went there. Vacations are about memories and traditions stand out in children’s minds.
  • Research online for activities before you go. That way you have options ready, addresses, costs and information so you don’t waste time doing that while you are on vacation. It might not be needed but it’s nice to have ready if there’s bad weather, kids are tired or sunburned or you feel like exploring.
  • Pack lunches and snacks. Since we stayed at a beach house we made one trip to the grocery store upon arrival and bought enough for breakfast, lunch and snacks for the week. As well as a couple dinner ideas too. This helps with younger kids because they have the food they like and my kids are active running around the beach so they got hungry lots. Most hotels have small refrigerators too so you can at least have options for sandwiches, milk for breakfast and fruit etc. Even Disneyland let’s you bring in food. Which is great if you have picky eaters and people who get irritable when hungry, like me. ; )
    We walked to dinner a couple nights. Our favorite was ordering take out and delivery the other nights to eat on the beach during the sunset. That was a lot more fun than a restaurant with small kids anyway.
  •  Organize clothes into outfits before you go. This saves you the headache from digging around the luggage. Even just wrap each outfit with a rubber band.
  • Road Trip bags for each. Each kid had a small backpack at their feet in the car with coloring book, crayons and snacks. (Not drinks unless you want to stop every 30 mins.) Since we have DVDs that helps them to stay seated and happy for long hours but they even get tired of that. They loved coloring, reading and having a small prize in their bag.
  • Road Trip prizes: Have a prize ready for small kids to open while they are driving to keep them happy. This works awesome for toddlers. One trip I had a small present for them to open every hour or if they were getting fussy.
  • Offer fruit first instead of drinks. When one of my kids needed to go potty literally 5 minutes after we left our house I knew this would be a long trip…Instead of handing over a water bottle I gave them an apple slice or an orange. I still gave them drinks but just not every single time they said they were thirsty.
  • Plan on incidentals in your budget. Don’t be a Debbie Downer and expect the worst but there usually are a few things that get lost, stolen or forgotten. We lost one flipflop, one scooter, sand toys and forgot one pillow.
  • Don’t put all your pictures on one memory card. Bring two memory cards. After one of our vacations a DSLR card said that the files were corrupted. It was only a few pictures so it wasn’t tragic but if you plan on taking lots of digital picture maybe switch out your card mid-trip and put it somewhere safe so you don’t lose all your images if happens to go wrong.
  • Day Bag: If you have to make a one night stop somewhere along your journey pack one bag with everyone’s change of clothes in it. We stay in Vegas on the way there and I always pack the kids pjs and change of clothes for the morning so I can just grab that one bag and keep it simple.
  • Here are some fun places to visit in New Port Beach we found out before we arrived:
    Crystal Cove State Park
     is a great place to explore tide pools and they even have cottages you can stay in. It’s a nice beach to spend a day at.
    NewPort Dunes is a fun RV Resort. We were thinking of bringing our camper there sometime because there’s lots to do. In the summer months anyone can go there and watch a movie on the beach.
    Balboa Island Fun Zone Boat Tours: We took a sunset boat trip Friday night. It was fun! The tour starts on the Newport Harbor where we saw newborn sea lions resting on rocks, celebrity homes like Shirley Temple & then we traveled out to the ocean. There we saw more sea lions and dolphins. The sunset was beautiful and it was a great evening activity. They’ve done this tour since 1948. It was about $34 for our whole family to go. Online you can use the code FRIDAY for 10/off adult tickets on Friday Night. They also have other fun cruises available. While you are at the Fun Zone on Balboa Island there is a ferris wheel and other activities.

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

newport beach vacation

Lola + Small Fry

bunny tote diy
Last week I got to work with my sis in law, Emily, at Small Fry Blog and photograph a darling bunny bag she crafted. Lola gave it a trial run and approves. See the simple DIY here. Perfect for Easter egg hunting and just being adorable.

How in the world Lola was scared of these tiny checks when she has a dog the size of a horse is beyond me.

bunny tote diy
bunny tote diy

xo, Lizzy

Travel Art Kit & Journal

travel art kit
A week ago I decided it was time for a warm getaway for our family. It’s fun to be spontaneous & liven up the monotonous-ity of our routine.  It’s taken me days to get all the clothes packed for our village of children ; ) but it will be worth it! They deserve some undivided attention while Collin and I deserve some sunshine. Collin has been really busy working lately and usually the time we spend together is at the end of the day when we are exhausted. One of the kids lost our comcast remote so we usually just sit on the couch and talk about our days. He plays the ukulele and I fold some clothes or just find a late night snack. SO excited to have some time to play and have fun with our little family.
I loved the travel journals I put together for our Disney adventure & Lake Powell trip that I was excited to gather some supplies for this one. The Disney trip was really busy so I didn’t scrap much but Lake Powell had lots of down time and so will this next one.

travel art kit

Everything fits perfect in the bag that I painted polka dots on. I actually am surprised when it all fits! The roller stamp, stamp pad and book are the only things. I carry everything in a tote bag so it’s fine that there’s a couple loose items. travel art kit

1 bag: wood pieces and small chipboard, cork, plastic accents
2 bag: flair and badges
3 bag: stickers, labels and small alpa stickers
4 bag: stitch able tags and wood accents
5 bag: large stickers, wood pieces
Project life size cards 3×4 and 4×6 cards mostly from my Dear Lizzy polka dot party kit. And some Kelly Purkey cards in there too.
Washi tape
Heart Roller Stamp I designed for AC (similar one)
Dear Lizzy roller date stamp

For the mini album I am using the canvas 6×6 Chipboard album

3054708_200x2003054737_200x2003054722_600x6003054718_600x6003054747_600x60021gKTziaMZLBrayer_Smists_1

wifi photo printer & polaroid camera

 

Selphy printer CP900: The printer is WIFI and I can send photos straight from my phone. Did a video about it here where I list the pros and cons at the end of the quick tutorial. It was a gift from Santa… too bad he didn’t know it came in white too!
Instax: perfect for quick polaroids to add to my pages.

 

favorite-camera-gear-620x492

I share my favorite camera gear: click HERE

Pretty Pinwheels

pinwheel diy

Out of all the April Fools Jokes this week my favorite was waking up to snow on the ground and snowflakes dancing from the sky. Each one laughing in my face… You actually thought it was spring!  You win mother nature. I would’ve rather seen another millionth “I’m pregnant” joke.
Love these pinwheels the darling Amanda Rydell made using Dear Lizzy papers and the flower epoxy center for the right pinwheel. For the containers she painted egg cartons a cheerful coral and gold. Who would have thought of that. So clever!
(The right color is Valspar Coral Reef & left is gold spray paint.)

These are such a cute gift idea to a crafty friend because inside the egg cartons are plastic eggs full of darling supplies: gold glitter clothes pins, mini rolls of washi tape, lace and stickers. Now that’s an easter egg hunt I can get excited about!

pinwheels diy

Adore these painted and embellished eggs. Spray paint plastic eggs and decorate with paper and add a flag with a stamped sentiment.
Projects and Photos by Amanda Rydell
easter egg diy


essential scrapbooking supplies
dear lizzy papers
Dear Lizzydear lizzy papersbuttons dear lizzy

Number Album for the big uno!

Dear Lizzy mini album

Put together a mini album to celebrate Myles’s first year of life because he turns 1 this month. One.<<<Serious crazy talk.

When I create I am drawn to diecut pages, pockets, bags, hidden journaling and textured products. I realized it’s because my hope someday is that my kids don’t just look at photos and journaling but that it’s more of an experience as they search for the details and hidden treasures. I hope that they will feel a piece of my love for them with each page and our fleeting time together when they were babies and kiddos. And while just typing that last sentence I hope I never stop documenting my kids’ lives even when they are older… and parents themselves. Why would I? I’m their mother forever. Besides I am going to be carrying Myles around on my hip well into his teen years anyway. ; ) lol
(“I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be!!” sniff sniff)

Started by printing 12 photos. Not sure if I got each month in there but I did my best and chose my favorites.
Next diecut numbers 1-12 and a few journaling pages. Added some watercolor strokes and minimal embellishments.
For the cover I used cork paper and adhered it to chipboard so it would be sturdy. Punched a circle and added an M. Download the cut files for 1-12 numbered pages to make something similar of your own.
**started kitting my online class so I will keep you posted friends! xo, Lizzy

 

dear lizzy instagram

 

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

Included notes about our first hours together in the pocket and other surprises.

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

dear lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

IMG_9721

Dear Lizzy mini album

Dear Lizzy mini album

dear lizzy mini

free silhouette cut files

Dear Lizzy mini album

supplies

cork papersihouette3042135_600x6003042235_600x600

dear lizzy mini album

 

see more number pages by clicking below:

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Around Here

dear lizzy products

Sneak Peek of project for this month’s Studio Calico kit. Love my Dear Lizzy thickers that are in one of the add-ons. Definitely one of my favorite months to work with this year.

supplies
dear lizzy productsdear lizzy products Dear Lizzy productsdear lizzy products

A scene from this morning, where I realized that nothing surprises me anymore. Like her prettiest dress, piggy tails and a teal mohawk unicorn helmet. Sure. Why not?
dear lizzy instagram

dear lizzy instagram

Made my favorite sugar cookies!
best sugar cookie recipe

Grateful for my healthy babies especially this bubba!
(Bow tie diy here)

baby bow tie die

dear lizzy blog

baby bow tie diy

I’ve been working on making my laundry room cute. Ya know, to help me enjoy doing the laundry. I doubt that will happen… but at least it will be a happy, bright place to be. Hoping to finish it up this week.

kitchen remodel

PS Thanks for your comments about the flashing light in my eye. After that I had a killer migraine that knocked me out for the rest of the day. I am thinking, after reading your comments, that it might be caused by fluctuating hormones (since Myles isn’t nursing as much and weaning himself) or tired/exhaustion. Since I haven’t slept in 8 years. haha Thanks again so much for all your insight! xoxo

 

Barcelona and an online class

dear lizzy products dear lizzy blog

Here’s some sneak peeks for the class I am teaching in Barcelona!! yippee! Don’t worry I am already waking up in a hot sweat in the middle of the night because I am leaving my kids but it’s a quick trip and I am SO SO beyond thrilled to be traveling to Spain!! Definitely a place I have always wanted to explore. Plus, when my kids are with my family they have more than with me. It’s like a non stop party. You can still sign up for the event over at kits de somni.

For those of you who would like to take this class I will be offering it online as well including a kit. I will keep you posted on that! But look for sign ups next week. It’s using my Dear Lizzy mini album and new collection Daydreamer.  Since the book has a mix of canvas, chipboard and transparencies  we are going to be doing a mix of techniques for layering, painting, misting, masking and lots of my other favorite scrappy fun. Including videos and good times! I miss teaching online so I am excited about this.

While I am trying to write this post my eye has a weird flashing light in it and I can hardly see. I texted my husband and he said it’s a good idea to go lay down and rest. I concur. Has that every happened to anyone? Anyways I can’t end on that Debbie Downer note… so uh…  the sun is out and it’s friday!  YAY! heehee

Dear Lizzy HSN

Also, look for Dear Lizzy products on HSN with Lisa Bearnson this coming Monday, March 24th at 9:00 am ET there will be a Dear Lizzy Project Life kit and a mix of other must have goodies like the picture above. How fun is that?!!!

shop

These Days

dear lizzy instagram

dear lizzy instagramdear lizzy instagram

Lately I’ve been so engrossed with quotes seen on Instagram and Pinterest… “Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.”
Dang it Abe Lincoln… you magnificent, wise wizard…! He’s so right. But sometimes I just want to sulk in my own self-pity and blame it on something else. That’s when I look around and list the tiny moments these days that save my life. For instance, try having a bad attitude while wearing a super hero cape and racing on a scooter down the hill with the warm spring sun fighting to reach our faces. It’s impossible. Sometimes I act like a stuffy, old person… and I hate it. It’s way more fun to be hysterically dorky.
I’m trying to remember that there is nothing more refreshing and freeing than looking at life amid the chaos and imperfections and thinking– Wow, I love today.

dear lizzy instagram

Overlays from Paislee Press//Actions Totally Rad//Iphone5 photos

 

 

Lucky Me: mini album

lucky me mini album

I know I know… St. Patricks Day is over but I want to share this really simple mini album I put together yesterday inspired by the luck of the Irish. It’s a 4×6 album and photos are printed about 3″ wide.
Download the shamrock template and stitch your own clover for the cover. Poke holes and use needle and thread to stitch all the way around. The download also includes the quote I made in Photoshop and printed on vellum– “Some call it luck. I call it blessed.” I added a piece of acrylic on top to keep the vellum nice over time.
The title “Lucky me” it stamped with the mother of all roller stamps. Found here. A TIP FOR THE STAMP: I spell out my word. Then use washi tape to protect around the word. Next, press onto ink and remove washi tape then stamp project. Sometimes it’s fun to have the sides of the stamp show up but in this case I didn’t want that.
Dear Lizzy mini album

The size is 4×6 and the photos are about 3″ wide. Like I said I didn’t have much time so I kept the supplies, embellishments and ink splatters seamless throughout. It was fun to have all the pages laid out and add the pieces to each one. Including a strip of my Dear Lizzy polka dot patterned paper, Dear Lizzy gold dot vellum and some AC glitter POW paper. Then either a SC badge or gold heart.

lucky mini album

mini album

I ended up adding ink splatters after I’d taken photos of the album so you can see below. Just a quick flick of my Mister Huey Mint Julep.

dear lizzy mini album

Included one of the treat bags embossed with the Dear Lizzy embossing folder and added it to the last page with notes from the girls about what makes them blessed.
And don’t forget the free download for the shamrock to make the embroidered clover on the cover and the quote. xo, Lizzy

mini album

mini album

essential scrapbooking supplies

gold heartsAudrey_aquadear lizzy embossing folderembroidery set amy tanhuge roller stamp

 

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Don’t Get Pinched: Girl Hair Clips

diy hair clips

It’s a tragic day in second grade if you forget to wear green on March 17th. Quincey has been hounding me since last week to get her all green outfit laid out and ready to go. She definitely did not inherit my procrastination gene. But today we finally put together some fun, green accessories. I shared the green bow tie diy for Myles, now here’s some super quick girls’ ideas to put together.

diy hair clips

The first are some modern style barrettes.
I used some fabric scraps and glitter POW cardstock from American Crafts. Love that stuff.
-First, I cut some acrylic 2.5″ x .5″. You can use thick chipboard or foam board anything really.
-Next, cut the fabric slightly larger and wrap the acrylic like a present. Hot glueing each side as you go.
-Last, slide a bobbi pin on a 2.25″ piece of ribbon. Add hot glue to the back of the barrette and then attach the bobbi pin and ribbon. That’s it!
If you are making the glitter cardstock  ones it’s the same steps just cut the glitter cardstock slightly larger than the acrylic and then add the ribbon and bobbi pin the same. Use Modge Podge or Tackly Glue and glitter and it will work just as great. Just make sure the last step is modge podge to keep glitter in place. Should be quick since it’s such a small piece.

diy hair clips

diy hair clips

Next is a clover flower that Quincey helped me make. Great for a beginner sewer.
-Cut 3 clover leaf shapes.
-Then sew a running stitch along the bottoms.
-Last, pull thread to bunch together and tie a knot. Would be cute in other colors and more petals. Love Amy Tan’s embroidery threads and needles for this.
diy hair clips

diy hair clips

diy hair clips
Happy St Patty’s Day! xoxo, Lizzy

essential scrapbooking supplies
embroidery set amy tan
glitter cardstockembroidery set amy tanbobbi pins