Monday, May 9, 2011

I Crafted and I’m Telling. Elmer’s Craft and Tell Party With No Biggie

Kami over at No Biggie was lucky enough to be selected by Elmer’s to host a “Craft and Tell” party where she got to give away craft kits to some of her followers. I was lucky enough to win one of these! Thanks Kami and Elmer’s!

It was like Christmas. This is what arrived!
Elmer's Craft and Tell
And Kami is so on top of things because look at her cute notecards! She also had the cutest matchbook cover mint holder.
Elmer's No Biggie
I mentioned in the post where I shared my Mother’s Day printable that I was woefully behind on Mother’s Day and hadn’t made any cards. Printable+Elmers Craft and Tell to the rescue!
Craft and Tell 1
Reduced the printable down to 2x2.5 and printed several on white cardstock. Took one pair of the decorative scissors and trimmed the panels, then mounted on coordinating cardstock. Layered that using a floral print paper from KandCo and another striped paper and embellished with paper flowers, ribbon,  and self adhesive rhinestones.
Craft and Tell Closeup
This is my new best friend:
Elmer's Dot Runner
I love my big ATG tape gun but sometimes you need a little guy for the details. I’ve used other dot runners but this one worked the smoothest! I used it to apply the ribbons and paper flower in the lower right corner of my focal piece. Love it.
These were fast cards to make and the XActo Decorative Edge scissors and the Elmer’s Dot Runner were lifesavers! So thanks again Kami for hosting the giveaway and Elmer’s for sponsoring it!

Speaking of Mother's Day:
Thank you Mr. Chocolate and Chocolate Chip! This is my new camera that I barely know how to use. It's perfect for me...DSLR function and quality without having to know all the whatchamathingy terminology, and the ease of a point and shoot. Squee!!!!

BFF Wrap Up and Blogiversary Giveaway Winner!!

Thanks everyone for your well wishes and linking up such fantastic projects to my first weekly "BFF" link party! The hardest part of hosting a link party is choosing features because I love looking at every link but here goes!

You will not believe the cost of this  fantastic chair makeover by Maggie at Midwestern Sewing Girl:
I just love this family heirloom wreath by Holly over at 504 Main!
And I never, ever find anything on the curbside that could be transformed into something like this great table. You need to see the before and after over at jandjhome:
Those are just a few of the great projects that were linked up but all are worth a visit so I hope you'll check them out!

This week, I was celebrating my one year anniversary of blogging and included a giveaway! The lucky winner is:  Stephanie from the blog Still Waters!

Congrats Stephanie! For those featured, please feel free to grab a button from my sidebar:
And thanks again to everyone for making this such a fun party and celebration. I hope to see you all back this friday for another BFF Link Party! 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Wishing You All A


Wishing you a day filled with doing what makes you happy with those who make you happiest! I'm sure we all feel this way, but I have to say I couldn't have gotten a better mom if I designed her myself! 
Happy Mom's Day Mumster! 

The "BFF" link party and giveaway is still going strong through tonight! 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Blog Feature Friday Link Party #1

I’m so excited! It's time to launch my WEEKLY link party combined with one of my favorite parts of blogging: Blog Feature Friday. If you’re a newer chocoholic here at TAIC, I’ve been doing a monthly Open House link party and a weekly series featuring a “BFF” …Blog Feature Friday. As I celebrated my one year anniversary of blogging, I decided to combine them.

First up, this week’s BFF: Amy from Ameroonie Designs.

In addition to being just a total sweetheart, Amy is a talented creator of so many things, not the least of which are her amazing bags and accessories…something yours truly was so lucky to recently win! YAY!
Channeling my inner 2 year old: MINE MINE MINE
Gorgeous! And she makes these! But that’s not all she makes. Too many treasures to feature but look at these adorable Teacher Appreciation gifts:
“Bloom Pencil Bouquets”.

Practical, thoughtful and pretty. My kind of project. But in addition to being a talented creator and a busy wife, and mom of four, she’s also an inspiring writer. She wrote a post on her recent “Creative Estates” experience that just resonated with me SO much  I had to include it as a feature. I would encourage you to read it:
Lessons I learned from Creative Estates
Definitely go visit Amy and show her some bloggy love! Now, on to the party details! Link up…everything! Provided you made it…no selling or Etsy shops please. Cards, Scrapbooking, Mixed Media…link it. DIY, Re-purposed, upcycled, thrifty score…link it. Jewelry, clothing, accessories…link it. Recipes, ESPECIALLY chocolate…link it! Please make sure you link to your specific post and not your main blog page.

Oh yeah…GIVEAWAY!!!! To celebrate my one year blogi-bloga-however you spell it versary….I’m giving away a few of my favorite things! Me and Oprah. No cars though. 

I’ve gotten lots of comments on altered candle projects I’ve done , so the winner will get:
Altered Key Candle
Altered candle with Bronze key 

But I also wanted to share some of my fave fave things  I’ve used in other projects. In addition to the candle, the winner will get:
Blogiversary Giveaway
An assortment of some of the things I almost always incorporate into my projects! KandCo Paper, dimensional stickers, die cuts, self adhesive scrapbook borders. Assorted rub-ons, self adhesive pearls and rhinestones, typography packing tape and Mod Podge! A creative kit in a box!

To be eligible for the giveaway, you must leave a comment ( MANDATORY). Additional entries (leave a comment for each thing you do) for:

  • Being / becoming a follower of The Answer Is Chocolate
  • “Like” The Answer Is Chocolate on Facebook
  • Link something up to the party
  • Follow The Answer Is Chocolate on Twitter
  • Spread the word about the BFF Link Party
That's 6 ways to win!

    OK whew! Now…ready, set, LINK UP!!! Party will run through Sunday night midnight. The winner of the giveaway will be selected on Monday 5/9!

    Wednesday, May 4, 2011

    I Can’t Believe I’m A Year Old Today!

    It seems at once that time has flown by, and like it was just yesterday that I put on my big girl panties and hit the publish button. I had lurked for months on different blogs, agonizing over starting my own. Who would be interested in my ramblings? Would anyone be interested in my ramblings? One year, 627 GFC followers, 304 posts, 72,781 pageviews, later... it seems the answer ( in addition to being chocolate) is yes! And for that I THANK YOU!!!

    There was no special significance about May 4, 2010. I just decided to take the plunge that day. I remember my husband came home and I said: “Guess what I did today?” and his response of “What exactly does that mean” when I told him I’d started a blog. We're both still trying to figure that out.

    Blogging has been one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had. I’ve met so many amazing bloggers and made so many friends. I’ve never encountered one blogger who hasn’t been helpful if I’ve asked them a how to question and so many have freely given supportive advice. I read every comment left on my blog and try to respond to each and every one as well. If you’re a “No Reply Comment” blogger, I can’t encourage you enough to change that!

    A year ago, I had no clue what a blog hop or link party was (or how to link to them) , how to create a button, and a long long long list of things. I had no idea what if any expectations  I should have about how fast or big my blog “should” grow. I learned this is unanswerable, at least for me. I’d never sent a tweet, stumbling was something that previously involved gravity and stairs, and pinning was a sewing term.

    I learned that you should try a bunch of different things but there is no one right way to blog. It’s easy to see other blogs that start out around the same time as yours grow faster than yours , have more followers, pick up sponsors, do giveaways etc and it’s human nature to be a little competitive. Be honest! It is. And I admit to getting caught up in those feelings but realizing that ultimately, you should be yourself. Be authentic. I know I feel it when I’m not.

    I started blogging because I’ve always loved creating, and the more I do, the more ideas I get and the more projects I see, the more I want to do! This is where the hubs gets scared. "What else is she going to get into?" I found a community of people who “get it”…the thrill of a new material, or technique, or lesson learned from a fail!

    I had no idea what to expect from blogging, and now I can’t imagine what I’d do without it.
    Thanks to everyone who’s made it through this post and who’s decided to be part of this chocolate fueled journey with me. You all are the best!

    This coming Friday, I'll start my weekly link party and celebrate my blogiversary with a giveaway. I hope you'll come and link up and celebrate with me!

    And one year later, still can't get that darned button centered!

    Monday, May 2, 2011

    Mother’s Day Printable

    featured button

    Being in and out the past couple of weeks, I am more than way behind for Mother’s Day. Usually I make cards for all my mom girlfriends but not sure that’s gonna happen this year. I did make a printable which those  friends might just get as an email attachment! I found a frame in a cupboard that I didn’t even bother to re-paint. Just layered and hot glued some paper and silk flowers to brighten it up a bit.

    Cant Scare Me 1
    This just sums up Motherhood and life for me !
    Can't Scare Me GrayCan't Scare Me Gold
    Can't Scare Me TurqCan't Scare Me Lav
    Four colors for you to choose from. Click on a color to bring to full res, right click to Save As. If you use, would love to see what you do w/ it!
    Linking Up At: 
    Anything Related
     Beyond The Picket Fence

    Catch a Glimpse Button

    Sunday, May 1, 2011

    Travel Finds! LA Fashion District

    I’ve been in and out the last couple of weeks as we’ve been finalizing college plans for our son. Last minute visits and decisions. But I managed to squeeze in some creative fun too! One trip was to Southern California and I was determined to get to the LA Fashion district after reading Jamielyn from I Heart Naptime w/ Chocolate Sundae’s post about her trip not long ago. Her trip sounded like so much fun and let me tell you it was A-MAZE-ING! I put that MAZE pun in there because this place is WILD and it is a maze. Multiple blocks of store after store after store filled with anything and everything you could ever need or imagine. Fabric, crafting items, notions, buttons, ribbons, beads. They have a whole website just for the fashion district:


    I also used that word because if you watch the TV show “The Amazing Race” ( which we love) it was like our own version. We were dropped into this wild place without a clue box  and away we went.

    I had to be good because 1.) we flew, and I was NOT about to hear about it if my suitcase was overweight and 2.) this was not exactly Mr. Chocolate’s cup of cocoa and he was a major trooper getting us there through some crazy traffic. But he knew  how badly I wanted to visit so thank you again sweetie! I was so overwhelmed, I didn’t take too many pics while we were there . Two places I LOVED were Michael Levine with two locations one opposite the other on the same street…one has general craft items ( TONS) and the other has fabrics and notions ( TONS).

    LA Fashion Collage

    There were so many fabric and notion stores it was overwhelming. There were also a bunch of bead / jewelry stores but I wandered into one called Beadshines that you might say I took a shine to. Here’s some of the yummy goodness that made its way into the suitcase:


    Chocolatey rosette ribbon from Michael Levine. No clue what I’m going to do with it yet but couldn’t resist it.


    Also got these neutral velvet ribbons…I am planning on making bookmarks with beaded ends from these. Also from ML.


    I bought several yards of these different colored velvet ribbons at another store for $.50 a yard! At this great store called Maple Craft, I found these gorgeous paper flowers:




    There are hundreds in each and they were $3, $4 a package. I also found this beautiful metallic tulle for $1 a roll:


    At Beadshines, I had to restrain myself because I have a bit of a stash problem as it is but I couldn’t resist these:


    Strands of metallic crystals and faux pearls and these fun inexpensive packages:


    of goodies that will be fun to incorporate into jewelry or mixed media projects. Restraint was HARD! I could have spent a lot more time and money there so it was probably good that Mr. Chocolate and his brother were with me because had I gone by myself, I’d probably still be there!

    If you ever get the chance to make a visit here, do it! Be prepared to be overwhelmed!