Spring Flowers!

Our front yard rhododendron and our very first blackberry bloom!!

Photo to Pencil Drawing with Photoshop

I saw a really cute scrapbook page, with just the outline of a child’s face blended with a scrapbook paper. It was too cute, I just had to try it! I’ve never had much luck with the technique of turning a photo into a drawing, so looked on you tube for a few different ways, the best one I found was here: Turn a Photograph Into A Drawing | Photoshop CS5 Tutorial
Using Photoshop CS:
Duplicate Background
Ctrl & Shift + U
Duplicate Layer
Press: Ctrl + I (to invert it)
Change blend mode to: Color Dodge
(will look all white)
Go to Layer, Smart Objects
Click on Convert to Smart Object
Go to Filter, Blur, Motion Blur
Set to: Angle 34 and Distance 387
Duplicate the middle Layer, put layer on top
Go to Filter, Stylize, Glowing Edges
Set to: Edge Width 1,
Edge Bright 16, Smoothness 15
Press: Ctrl + I (to invert it)
Change blend mode to: Multiply
Go to Layer, New Adjustment Layer,
Level, and set:
Black input to 12, Midpoint to .8

When I was finished turning the photo into a pencil drawing I flattened it and dragged it my scrapbook page. I changed the blending mode of it until I found the perfect one to match my papers (which are also blended), and added the rest of the elements of the page. I don’t think it looks much like my usual scrapbooking, but then it’s really fun to do something so different, and I LOVE how it turned out!


Spring is finally really here!! This weekend the huge cherry tree finished blooming and we did a little pre-gardening, and some weeding around the blackberries!

The Spring View

I took a couple days off for spring break last week, and finally had time for a little sewing. Not much, some hemming and mending, and a new reusable bag, but oh I enjoyed the new view out my window, now that it’s SPRING!

The Winter View

This summer I posted a pic of the view from my sewing machine overlooking the children’s garden. And while I was sewing this weekend I took this picture of my winter view…

Digital Scrapbooking Supplies

When I buy digital scrapbooking supplies, they are usually on sale, because my favorite supplies are free ones…


-free supplies links-

Designer Digitals
New Free Item Each Week!
And you can download past weeks as far as a few months back!

Digital Freebies
They have a “Friday freebie” and many archived past freebies

Shabby Princess
They rarely have a new free kit, but when they do it’s beautiful!
And in the meantime, you can download all their past free kits!

Scrap Girls
Occasional new free items, and also archived past freebies

Occasional new free items, and a few archived past freebies

Scrapbook Bytes
Requires a login, free to join. Occasional new free items, and many archived past freebies

Studio Fergs
A free kit for joining, other free items through a newsletter

Traci Reed Designs
A bunch of free downloads for joining, and other ‘free gifts’ through a newsletter

Free Fonts


-cheap supplies links-

Once a month they offer $1 items at an online event they call the Pickle Barrel.
Sign up for their newsletter and you’ll always know when it’s Pickle Barrel time!!

Digital Scrapbook Place
They have a 99 cent item of the week, and good specials or freebies sometimes.

Designer Digitals
They have a few 99 cent items, and good specials sometimes.

The Daily Digi
And finally, the best in cheap scrapbooking kit supplier is The Daily Digi! For only $7.50 a month you get many high quality kits from designers that you may never have seen otherwise!
Even when money got tight I would not give up my Daily Digi membership.

My very last tip is to be signed up for the emailed newsletter of your favorite designers or websites in time for Digital Scrapbook Day in November!

I hope my guide helps bulk up your personal scrapbooking supplies, and the beauty of digital supplies is that you can use them over and over again in endless combinations!


Each year I have a different theme for Christmas Cards:

2006 – Little Reindeer


2007 – Candy Canes, that resulted in this awesome shot as my daughter nearly poked out an eye! Lol

and this christmas card:


2008 – Snowflakes, I loved seeing the girls in their matching jackets.


2009 – This was a rough year for me, no cards, barely a Christmas, I was going to school full time, work full time, and saving every penny to move to Oregon. I do love this photo of my little Kay in the Christmas dress her grandma gave her!


2010 – Our Christmas Reindeer, we traditionally have these little stuffed animals under the tree, and this year they featured in our cards


2011 – Matching Sweaters in front of evergreen trees


2012 – Christmas Lights, wrapped around the girls :)


2013 – This year I was unsure of what to do, kind of running out of Christmasy ideas, I saw an elf hat, and thought elves! But my almost eight year old said no way, in no uncertain terms. I was still casting around for ideas when… it snowed!! Perfect!



Fun with Photoshop Blending

Yesterday I was touching up a group of photos, when one stood out from the others and I just had to do something special with it. It was taken in Arizona, so I googled “Arizona Sunset” till I found one that I liked, then blended it with the photo to create this masterpiece!

This is the plain original picture…

And here is how it’s done, you can do this in Photoshop PS3 or Elements…
Save the photo as copy (always do this first with any project)
“Duplicate layer” of the photo, on duplicate:
“Gaussian Blur” to “10.0”
Blending Mode: “Screen”
Blending Mode: “Soft Light”
Change Master Opacity to “75%”
Choose the “Burn Tool” brush size around 400, at 11% exposure:
brush over any landscape like trees/grass to bring out detail
Drag a textured ‘paper’, or anther photo, over the photo
(in this case I used the sunset over the sky)
Blending Mode: “Darken”
Change Master Opacity to “75%”
Get a light colored sample of the paper with “Eyedropper Tool”, then:
Use the “Brush Tool”, with 13% opacity, on the ‘texture’ layer:
brush over the people to keep the color, but lose the texture
If it’s not blended well, go over trouble spots with the “Eraser Tool” at 13% opacity
Choose the “Burn Tool” again, brush size around 200, at 70% exposure:
brush around the corners of the photo to darken them

I’m Already Missing October…

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”
― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Quotes in Nature

Just wanted to quickly share one of my few paid projects, I have several repeat customers who I do digital scrapbooking for, and in this case a nurse asked me combine quotes that she liked, with nature photos, and jewel tone backgrounds with swirls. I designed 50 cards to be printed at 4×6 size and placed into little plastic books for medical patients to flip through. Below are my favorites from the project…favorites in both the nature photo and quote that I it matched with.

My Summer Flowers at Sunset

“Write it on your heart
that every day is the
best day in the year.”

On a sad note: Thousands Of Dead Bees

I love catching a glimpse of the bumblebees here in Oregon, I grew up around honey bees, and while I still find them magnificent, I love gazing at bumblebees, their fuzzy little bodies are just too adorable to resist. I finally finally FINALLY got one to sit still long enough for me to take this photo of her. Watching her pollinate my lovely blackberry vines I’m both delighted and saddened. Delighted that she is alive – and saddened by the deaths of her sisters.

“As the estimate of dead bees rose to 50,000, the Oregon Department of Agriculture confirmed the insecticide Safari caused the deaths in a Wilsonville earlier this week. A landscaping company sprayed 55 linden trees in a Target parking lot to control for aphids, said Dan Hilburn, the plants division director at the department of agriculture. The bees have been dropping from trees since the spraying on Saturday.
Aphids produce honeydew, a sticky liquid that can drip off onto cars or pedestrians. A Target representative said by email that the Wilsonville store had received no customer complaints about it. The Portland-based Xerces Society said aphids can be controlled without insecticides, including by spraying infested plants with soapy water. On Friday the Agriculture Department, the City of Wilsonville, neighboring towns and some local landscape contractors covered the sprayed trees with netting in an attempt to prevent further insect deaths.”
The Oregonian June 21, 2013

“The City of Hillsboro and the Oregon Department of Agriculture are investigating the deaths of what could be hundreds of bees in downown Hillsboro over the past few days… Preston confirmed that the trees in downtown Hillsboro were treated with the same pesticide, Safari spray, as 55 trees that were sprayed in Wilsonville. Although bees have been found dead elsewhere along the street, he said most of them have been found dead below one tree. It’s between Fourth and Fifth avenues. Workers were planning to cast a large net over that tree Saturday afternoon, to prevent more bees from landing on it and falling victim.”
The Oregonian June 28, 2013

On top of that:
“IT’S NOT JUST BEES ANY MORE. Researchers conducted an in-depth review of existing literature and found that neonicotinoid pesticides are causing plummeting wildlife populations in areas where the chemicals are heavily used… including death to millions of bats and non-target insects (which deprive wildlife of a food source), and outbreaks of infectious diseases in fish, amphibians, and birds–all of which directly coincide with the emerging use of the pesticides.”
www.realfarmacy.com July 26, 2013

Wilsonville is in my county, Hillsboro is my home. I’ve walked by that tree, I even wondered why it had a net over it. This is scary, more so since it’s so close to home. I can’t pollinate my blackberries. And if we kill the bees, the obvious next question is what will happen to the food supply? Even the processed junk food came from food that was pollinated. Somehow we must stop the Big Agra companies from amassing money by selling pesticides, it feels hopeless sometimes, but we just have to keep spreading the word.

Only when the last tree has died, and the last river has been poisoned,
and the last fish has been caught, will we realize we can’t eat money.
-Cree Proverb