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Friday, July 22, 2011

Altered Notebook and a Mini-Gush!

Happy Friday, my sweet friends! I hope your week has been lovely. I have lots to share with you today! :o)

First up is my first venture into altering items. Though I liked the cover of my very special notebook, I didn't love that fact that a million identical ones were manufactured. Hehe. This notebook contains ideas for writing, photography, and dance... very special, indeed! I kept it pretty simple, but absolutely love the result and I hope you do, too! :o) I need to include a few pictures to show you some of the details. I'm not sure why these are uncharacteristically blurry, but it was 100ยบ outside so I wasn't about to have an hour long photo session. ;)

"Creativity sparkles within a dancer's heart."

Isn't it pretty? I just love how vibrant and cheerful these pinks are... perfect for holding my dreams. The ribbon tied to the top spiral with a sparkly flower on the bottom functions as a bookmark. :o) The sparkly flower on the bottom right was cut out of a coordinating patterned paper. You all know me well enough to realize there's a story playing out on this cover, right? It begins here:

The biggest butterfly (embossed, but hard to tell) has just taken flight, which is why she's closest to the sentiment. She's just beginning a new journey, still a bit unsure where her place is. But her dreams drive her so she keeps trying, discovering, and growing... and that's why her gifts are beginning to develop, portrayed by the sparkling pink trim on her shadow. The two above are further along in the journey now, which is why they've turned completely sparkly. No longer just the trim... but 100% sparkle because she's letting her light shine through every creative endeavor. It's impossible *not* to sparkle when you let your heart shine. I covered them in Glossy Accents to make them shiny and durable.

However, you probably noticed the smallest of the three glittery butterflies has gone adrift:

Sometimes on your journey, whatever it may be, you go off course. In my personal scenarios, self-doubt and frustrations can cause a hiccup in my path. I drift away a bit, caught inside a mental battle that can sometimes rear its ugly head. But the good news is that I'm just like this tiny butterfly. If you look closely at the picture just above, you can see that she's returned to the sparkly path that guides her back to the heart of it all, written on the notebook between the spirals: Artistry and passion. Back on track, the possibilities are endless.

The bottom left has a tiny garden of three tulle flowers, dotted with pearly centers. These wispy beauties are among my favorites because they remind of me ballet tutus. How could I not include these on the cover somewhere? :o)

Lastly, the interior! I made a cute, sparkly pocket to hold some papers, pictures, etc. I love this design because it makes me think of the Waltz of the Flowers from The Nutcracker! :o) I attached two clippies to the ribbon to hold small tidbits of inspiration.

And now, a mini-gush. Some of my super fabulous crafty friends wanted to hear a bit about my Josh Groban concert on Saturday! I'll spare you the two hour novel I could easily write about it... and will simply tell you that it was one of the best nights of my entire life. I first heard him sing in May of 2001, and proof of his impact on me since can be found within this special project, which I made a couple of months ago. The final tag I posted in that entry, containing three songs that will play a key role upon my eventual return to dance, are all his. Ten years and two months after discovering him, I finally got to hear him sing live... and it was indescribable. His voice is unlike any other, as is his music, so it made for an absolutely perfect night. One I have waited a crazy long time for. And, I confess... it didn't hurt that HE HELD MY HAND FOR TWO OR THREE SECONDS. Forgive the caps (and bold and italics), but it was a pretty special moment. ;) (I love you, aisle seat. Floor Level, Row Six, Seat One... I love you like I love sparkles.)

He sounded spectacular (naturally), the music selection was incredible, and it was two hours of pure bliss. Endless thanks to my sweet boyfriend for surprising me with that golden ticket. :o) And a special shout-out to my dear friend Ellen, who so skillfully deciphered my text messages just before the concert began, a couple during, and of course after. Especially during... it takes talent to become proficient in Karen-speak when emotions are running high like that. (You do realize you're the only one who got a hand-holding text shortly after it happened, right? You needed to know pronto... as soon as my hand would function.) ;) She is amazing and I'm so thankful we were able to somewhat share in the gorgeous experience together, despite the distance. :o)

And guess what? Josh has another concert in Michigan on August 6th. Yep, I'm SO there! Row Six, Seat One. Sound familiar? Let's hope it's golden once again... as the cherry on top of what will surely be another night of brilliance.

Thank you so much for stopping by today and persevering through this lengthy post. You are all angels! :o) I'll be doing a Blog Award catch-up with my next post... I'm so honored. I don't take them lightly and I'm thrilled to finally be sharing the love this weekend. I hope your day is filled with love, hugs, and all things beautiful. :o)

Key Recipe Components:
 * Cricut cartridges: Elegant Edges, Florals Embellished
 * Cuttlebug embossing folder: Polka Dots
 * Paper: Core'dinations, DCWV
 * Stamps: Martha Stewart (three glittery butterflies on the cover)
 * Ribbon: Essentials, Papertrey Ink
 * Twine: Sew Easy (lollipop)
 * Flower: Prima Fabric Fancies
 * Miscellaneous: Fiskars butterfly punch (teeny tiny ones on the pocket), Glossy Accents, iRock, Liquid Pearls, Martha Stewart glitter



  1. Wow! Karen thanks for sharing that is truly a journal of a journey and I love pretty and so creative :) I too love butterflies and flowers

  2. Your written words are poetry. It's not uncommon for me to tear up a little when I read one of your posts. Honestly, Karen, your prose, like your crafting, is magical. :)

    Your journal is fantastic. I love the colours, the sparkles, and, of course, the story behind it. The detail is amazing, right down to the tiny letters spelling out "artistry" & "passion" within the coils. Just lovely, my friend. Just lovely. :)

  3. Karen, your project is super cute. Great work! ~Shen

  4. P.S. Josh Groban is a lucky man - he held your hand for two or three seconds. ;)

  5. I love this! The idea and story behind this journal are both beautiful. The sentiment is perfect. Is it a stamp? Of course I adore the sparkle. All of the little touches (like the writing on the side) make this amazing! So glad you had a great time at the concert :) Sounds like it was a moment you'll remember forever! Great job on this fabulous project!!!

  6. Know what?


    *hugglers you more sparklie than every single sparkle on your most sparkling flutter-bys* SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!

    Sis...I need to squisher you so much right now it isn't even funny. *cries tons* I HAD NO IDEA YOU WERE MAKING THIS!!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHH!!!

    I don't think I've ever been in love more. I honestly think this book means more to mean than even to you, sis. Knowing that it holds all the dreams and wishes of my sweetest Sunshine makes it the most special book EVER. I can't stop crying. The love and meaning behind every single bit of it is just surreal. God loves you so much sis. And your most heartfelt touches on this project reveal just how special you are in His eyes. He blessed you with so many gifts. I can't wait to watch as God helps you fill your book from cover to cover with endless dreams come true.

    *wishes these words that you said above were the words that I could find to say to you this week my precious Sunshine*
    "It is impossible not to sparkle when you let your heart shine".

    Believe in those words always Sunshine and you will never, ever flutter astray. I love you more than more, Sunshine.

    *squishers you in the most monsterous sparklie hugglers*

    P.S. You did remember to hand Josh my number when he squishered you, right sis? What do you mean you forgot?!?! ARRGGG!!! TEE HEE HEE!!!

  7. Oh, Karen, you are so amazing! This journal is the work of a genius mind! The sentiment behind the butterflies is so touching and poignant and absolutely beautiful!! Sometimes we do veer off the path but with faith and perseverance, we can right ourselves, let our sparkly heart shine through! You captured this beautifully and I bow to your creativeness!

    I am SO happy for you getting to attend the concert AND touch Josh Groban's hand! Have you even washed it yet? I don't know that I would have ;)

    Have a fabulous weekend my fabulous friend :D

    Lisa :D

  8. Karen, your notebook looks so nice and pretty and colorful. I so love it. I'm so glad that you an unforgettable time at the concert and you you are going again to another concert... Can't wait to hear all about it. :0)

    Have a great weekend


  9. My sweet friend Karen, I love your altered journal! I love the butterflies and how each one represents part of your own personal journey in this wonderful life. I love how each detail you add is something true to your heart! And I am so happy to hear how the concert was just perfect! I can't believe you got to hold his hand, wow! Have a wonderful weekend! Hugs!

  10. Karen your journal is a wonderful extension of you and your heart. You always put so much of you in every thing you do, it makes everything so special. I am so happy you had a blessed time at your concert. I am sure Josh was happy you were there too :)) Hugs, Pam at

  11. Karen your notebook looks amazing! I'm so glad to hear that you had a wonderful time at the Josh Groban concert! I can't believe he held your hand for a few seconds!!! :)

  12. Karen your notebook is sooo AWESOME!BEAUTIFUL job with it,I LOVE the colors and the sweet little butterflies!!:)

  13. Thank you for the shout-out, Sweets! It was my pleasure to translate your excited texts into actual English ;) I think we'll be switching roles tomorrow. Squee!

    Naturally I love your journal! So smart to make it your own and add personal touches. And what's not to love about pink?!

  14. This is beautiful! You used my favorite..butterflies. I have a journal that I keep a ton of different stuff in. I bought it with a plain brown cover so I can decorate it. I think that will be my next project after seeing yours. :)

  15. I had to come back and check your book out. I have not stopped thinking about since I saw it. I just love everything about it. The sentiment is perfect, and I love how you wrote down the spirals. How did you do that. I got so excited I forgot to congrats you on your Josh night. It really does sound like a night of pure happiness and sunshine. Don't laugh but I feel that way about Janet Jackson. I just love everything about her. She is a beautiful person full of talent. Every time I go see her in concert I am on cloud nine for days and days following it. I can't stop smiling or thinking about it. So I can totally relate to how you felt and are feeling. ! Can't wait to hear about your next Josh concert:)


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