The Perfect Card Sketch For a Single Image

With the coming of the holidays, if you make cards you will begin to look for the perfect card to send.Card Sketches for beginners Thursdays are when I post a card sketch for you to try.  Today’s sketch is perfect for when you have a single stamp you want to focus on.  It also works great for every occasion.  In this sketch I have some double matting going on, both on the base of the card and again on the focal image.  What do you think about this card sketch? Will you try it?  I look forward to seeing your cards. And don’t forget… every month I hold a contest for all those who take part in the sketches of the month. For every card or scrapbook page you make from the sketches, your receive an entry in the contest. I will put all the names in the computer and use the randomizer  to choose the winner of the stamp set.

What single stamp set will you use for this card? Leave a comment below and let me know.

Creatively,  Carol


Handmade Cards Made Easy

Handmade cards made easyDo you make handmade cards or wish you knew how? If you said “yes” to either of these questions then you will want the Originals How-To book in your crafting library.

Close to my Heart’s Originals Card Confidence Program­­ is a must-have how-to book! It features 99 card patterns complete with blueprints, paper dimensions, step-step instructions, art tips by Jeanette Lynton, the founder of Close to my Heart and breathtaking artwork. You will love the new look and refreshed patterns from the old binder version for creating inspiring, professional looking cards in no time.

I love this book because it gives you all the directions for your basic card, then you can let your imagination run free with the embellishments to fit your occasion. It just makes the card project so much easier to do.

Did you know when you sign up for my mailing list you will receive a pattern from this book to try? Actually you will get a pattern from all 5 of the how-to books. What do you have to lose? Sign up here and get your patterns today.

Creatively, Carol

Crock Pot Rice Pudding

ThiCrock Pot Rice Puddings recipe will remind you of great grandma’s rice pudding and leave you with that cozy memory. I really like how  clean looking this recipe card is and how it  makes the recipe itself stand out, which is what you want when making a cookbook. The two round clips add interest and the bow is layered . The double matte works perfectly.

This recipe cooks on high for 30 minutes, but then you can move it to low and start dinner as it will cook 2-3 hours when you put in on low.

While you can see this recipe clearly I have typed it below so you can just copy and paste onto your neutral paper. Please don’t think because it is all typed up and you will print it out on your printer that you can use copy paper, you can’t.  well, you could but it won’t look the way you would like it to. Use a piece of cardstock and just cut it down to 8½ x 11 to fit in your printer.

Crockpot Rice Pudding

Makes 8 cups

  • 1½ c cooked rice
  • 16 oz. half & half or light cream
  • ¾ c raisins
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ²⁄³ c sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  1. Grease stoneware of crock pot with butter
  2. Beat half & half, eggs, sugar & vanilla with electric mixer
  3. Stir in rice and raisins
  4. Pour in crockpot.  Sprinkle with nutmeg
  5. Cover, cook on high for 30 minutes, stir well
  6. Reduce to low and cook 2-3 hours

I hope you enjoy this recipe. Leave a comment below and let me know what you think of the recipe card and the recipe.

Creatively, Carol




Pictures are Blooming

Welcome to Sketch Saturday!  Are you ready for today’s new scrapbook sketch?Sketch Saturday with Creatively Carol  I found this one and thought you would find it fun as we don’t often take the time to do the round pages. This is a single page sketch featuring two photos tucked into a piece of ribbon. As you can see, the journaling is done under a flourish of flower vines. You can get a stamp similar with Capture the Day A1165 to use on your page.

You could totally flip this to use for a boy, just use bold colors like in the Pathfinding My Reflections Paper Pack.  Just substitute feathers where the flowers are and it would be perfect.

Do you like this sketch? If you complete the sketch, send me a picture at 801-597-4896 or to my e-mail and you will be entered into the monthly free stamp contest.

Share this post with your friends and see what they come up with too!

Creatively, Carol

Creatively Carol Card Sketches

Today’s sketchSimple cards to make I put together is for a 4¼ x 5½ card you can use for any occasion.  In this card you can choose either a pattern as the wood represents here or a colored piece of cardstock to make the card base. If you are making just a single card, check out your scrap box before you begin. There are enough small pieces you may have them in your supply. On the equivalent of the black paper, tear the bottom of the paper so there is some texture. You decide whether you want the white core showing or want to turn it over so it doesn’t show. Next you want to cut a neutral colored cardstock, I used white here, where you will stamp your sentiment perhaps, or an image pertaining to your occasion.

Attach a piece of ribbon and tie it in a bow or a knot, whichever you prefer.  Use the area where the circle is to pop up some color or something else that relates to your occasion,  there are lots of stamps in the circle shape so that shouldn’t be a problem.

I hope you enjoyed this sketch, I will use it today and post when it is done. For a sneak peak at my cards make sure to follow me on Instagram and Facebook too!

If you have any questions, please leave them below. If you need to purchase product to make this card visit my website by clicking here.

Have a great Friday,

Creatively, Carol



3 Reasons I Love Being my own Boss

Be your own bossWe have all had one at one time or another, a boss who wants it done now, or maybe yours was always in a lousy mood but most people at one time or another have to deal with bosses that are not pleasant to work for and that is why I wanted to share with you why I love being my own boss. Personally I have had a boss who became a very dear friend, and I have had a boss that insisted on giving me a hug whenever he saw me, which was creepy, and to make matters worse… he was my NEIGHBOR too!   I won’t have to deal with that scenario again and let me tell you why…


                    AND YOU COULD BE TOO.

Let’s take a little test to see if this would work for you:

  1. Do you like to work around all your kid’s activities?
  2. Do you like making the money you are worth?
  3. Do you like to meet a variety of people when you work?
  4. Do you like to share your knowledge with others who will listen?

All of this and so much more can be yours if you are your own boss. Just imagine working half your day in whatever you wanted to wear, no make-up required and learning and trying new things every day. Imagine you just saw a darling pair of shoes, but your hubby just wouldn’t understand the price… you can work for yourself and earn the cost of the shoes yourself because you can give yourself a raise any time you want!  I know it sounds too good to be true, but this and so much more can be yours as a Close to my Heart Consultant. Don’t shut me out just yet… because you, too can do this. Close to my Heart has an awesome training program on top of the training I would share with you as your Upline and coach.  If you already love papercrafting, cards and scrapbooks, just think of how much more you can learn, and share with others.  Even if you don’t papercraft in any way, shape or form, you can build a great business with a company paid for website and great training.  Maybe you have thought “what is all the fuss about scrapbooking and papercrafting” When you sign up as a Close to my Heart Consultant you receive products as well as business supplies so you can play with the supplies.

If you would like more information about becoming your own boss and what Close to my Heart has to offer you, please click here. If you would like, I would love to chat with you. If you send me an e-mail or call me at 801-597-4896  so we can set up an appointment to either talk by phone, Skype  or get together.  I would love to add you to my team.

If you have any questions or comments about how you can become your own boss and celebrate National Bosses Day everyday, please leave a comment below.

Creatively,  Carol

Ways to Flying Free

Hot Air BalloonsIn 1783,  Francois Pilatre de Rozier makes the first manned flight in a hot air balloon. The first flight was let out to 82 feet, but over the next few days the altitude increased up to 6,500 feet. Sounds exciting doesn’t it.

Hot air balloons have always represented a freedom, floating through the sky while still having your feet planted on the ground.   My kids actually were invited to go up in a hot air balloon at the Reno Balloon Races when they were small, and still remember the experience.  It seems with all the bright colors, it really is hard to resist a hot air balloon, and today is no exception. The card to the left was made using the new Artfully Sent Cricut® Cartridge where you can make a pop-up card of a hot air balloon, but I wanted to share with you this awesome stamp set. Hot Air Balloon StampsThere are two different hot air balloons featured in this stamp set called Give a Lift  along with some great sentiments. The solid background can even be cut with the Cricut® Artbooking cartridge if you like. The blocks recommended for this stamp set are 1″ × 3½” (Y1002) for alot of the sentiments , 2″ × 3½” (Y1009), 4″ × 5″ (Y1012) for the balloons themselves.

I think I will work with this stamp set and see what I can come up with in the cards category.  If you would like to get this stamp set for your own, just click on the image.

Keep an eye out as this has given me an idea for a card contest… come back on Friday and find all the details.  If this sounds like fun, leave a comment below and tell me, if you had to pick your favorite Close to my Heart stamp set you own to make a card, which one would it be?

Creatively, Carol

Do NOT use Peggybank


I screw up!


Boy do I ever have egg on my face.  I previously told you about a company I thought was pretty cool for getting full resolution pictures of your scrapbook pages. I have to retract my praise and advise you NEVER use PeggyBank.

I had gotten a groupon, and the customer service in the beginning was awesome. That was last April.  I sent them 134 of my precious scrapbook pages and to date, I have not gotten them or the photos promised.  The company stopped communicating in September. I called yesterday only to have a different company answer the phone and tell me that Peggy Bank has closed it’s doors. She explained that this company (which shall remain nameless until my stuff shows up) had received all the orders from Peggy Bank and were in the process of “logging them in” and I would receive an e-mail when this process was completed. She has stated this should take a week… we shall see.

I do not want anyone else to fall into this hole as I suggested in April, so please don’t use them. I rescind my endorsement of this company.  As of yesterday, there is still a groupon showing for both PeggyBank and the company that took over and that disturbs me as well.

Have you had bad service from a company that we should be warned against using? Leave a comment below and tell us all about it.

Sketch Saturday with 5 photos on Chalk-it Up Paper

Here is some Saturday Sketch inspiration for Saturday Scrapbook Sketch with Chalk-it Upyou. This layout is on Chalk-it Up by Close to my Heart and  uses strips to add something to the back of the large focal picture for interest. The same patterns are used on the bottom left side to bring the pages together with plenty of room to add the Chalk-it Up Compliments and the Chalk-it Up Assortment of signs.

Another option is you can use some solid cardstock under the right side and use the crumple distressing technique to add dimension. Change things around and use a solid color for the base and your patterns and pictures will stand out.

Remember, if you give this sketch a try, send me a picture either to 801-597-4896 or to be entered into the drawing for a FREE STAMP SET.

Have a creative Saturday,


Free Ribbon with Your Purchase in October

Free Ribbon with your PurchaseRibbon Revelry

You know that Close to my Heart likes to give away products and this month is no exception.

During the month of October, with each qualifying purchase of $50 USD you are eligible to receive—as a special bonus—one of two chevron ribbons FREE! Each chevron ribbon—Ruby or Outdoor Denim—has an original retail value of $6.95 USD / $7.75 CAD. So which ribbon will you get? It’s a surprise! Quantities are limited, so place your orders as early in the month as possible. Be sure to take advantage of this fantastic offer so you can enjoy embellishing your creations with your own surprise roll of bonus ribbon!

Dates: Offer valid October 1, 2014–October 31, 2014.

Ask Carol: How to Use Metal Embellishments

Beginning scrapbooking

Dear Carol,

 I have a bunch of older metal embellishments I would really like to use up. What is the best way to include them in my scrapbooking and still have the page look current?
Thanks, ABJ

Strong background colors like blacks, deep reds and deep blues compliment heavier embellishments. If you have words or letters, use them to convey a message. Metals can add a bit of sophistication and dimension to your layouts. If you have different fonts, mix them up for a fun look. Depending on how heavy your metal is, Memory Book Glue Dots are a great way to make them adhere to the page.  These are super thin so they don’t add extra bulk beyond what the metal already does. These are also super strong so your metals will stay on the page and have less likely chance of falling off. Adhesive for heavy objects


If you have a question you would like seen answered here, please e-mail them to

Please leave a comment below if you have other ways to use older metal embellishments.

Creatively,  Carol

A Cut Above The Rest

A Cut Above kits make everyday gift giving a bit easier while saving you time and money in the long run. There are treat bags and cards you can make in bulk and have ready whenever you need them.  I am thinking of using these treat bags for the neighborhood kids we know for Halloween. While regular candy is fine for the masses, I like to do something a bit more special for the kids we actually know.  Let’s watch this video to learn more about these great new products.  When finished watching, leave a comment below and tell me other ways these new Cut Above kits can be used.

Rhett Bird – A Little Boy and His Cards

Rhett Bird 999 Birthday CardsWe have all seen them, those pleas for cards to be sent to a child who is ill and needs a card shower, but rarely do we get a glimpse into the life and the effect the cards may have on those children. Today when I opened the paper there was an article about a Springville boy’s wish coming true. I wanted to share this with you. For me, I may not be as quick to just pass up those requests in the future. If just 50¢ and a card that I probably already have in my inventory (though it is a good reason to create a specific one) I am more likely to send one after reading this article. Here is a link to the original article. I am also posting his name and address in case. like me, you want to drop a card his way. His health challenges sound like anytime is a good time for a card. Here is the link for the Daily Herald article I read this morning

This article was on the Fox News site:

SPRINGVILLE, Utah– A local family has a big birthday celebration coming up. On Tuesday, October 7th, Rhett Bird is turning nine. According to the family’s Facebook page, Rhett has been through a lot recently. His birthday wish? To have 999 cards by the time he turns 9-years-old. After they met that goal, Rhett didn’t want to give up. The family has collected 105 cards (as of Wednesday night). If you’d like to help make his dream of 999 cards come true, you can send cards to:

Rhett Bird
PO BOX 731
Springville, Utah 84663

Anyone who takes the time to send Rhett Bird a card and sends me an e-mail letting me know will receive a 5% discount on your next Close to my Heart order during the month of October.

I am also hosting a Make Cards for Rhett Day on October 18th from 10 – 5 pm.  All supplies will be provided. For more information on this event, please call or text 801-597-4896.  Please click here to reserve your spot today.

Creatively, Carol

Journaling Special Relationships

Scrapbooking Relationships

Remembering special relationships is what scrapbooking is all. Journaling those relationships is a must. but what if you see a person differently than everyone else sees them?  This is a great time to journal that perspective as you see it and not what everyone else sees. You might see actions a young man does that you recognise as flirting but he only sees taunting a girl. At some point, the young man will intentionally do the flirting, but as he looks at your scrapbook he will see how things were much earlier.

Or maybe you are scrapbooking a picture of your child and their best friend, what is your relationship to that friend? Some kids we see as just “Gary’s friend” but there are others that may have a special place in your heart. My son Gary’s best friend is Steven. He met him in the 3rd grade and have remained friends into their adult years. Steven was like having another son so when I scrap pictures of the two of them together I record some of those feelings.

The boys are in their late 20’s and live  and while their styles of handling life are widening, my son will always have the pictures and journaling to bring Steve-o back to his side.

Picture Piecing Technique Give Unique Look

Have you ever taken a picture of a building you liked while on vacationcombining several pictures on a page but couldn’t get far enough away to take it all in one shot so you took 3 different pictures to capture the entire building? Try this technique the next time you want to scrapbook the memory of three part buildings. The technique is called “Picture Piecing” and as you can see by the picture to the right, the technique can make 3 sections look interesting to the eye. Here are the steps to achieve this effect.

  1. Select all the pictures of the building you want to use to capture the image.
  2. Lightly sand all the edges of the pictures so the white shows all the way around*
  3. piece your building together, overlapping as necessary. You may notice a bit of color difference between your pictures that can occur with varying light and can only make your page more compelling.

* you can also just sand around the edges that will not touch so your building is not separated by the white lines.

I look forward to seeing how you incorporate this technique into your own scrapbook page.  Please give this a try and send me a picture at 801-597-4896 or

12 weeks of Complete Christmas Projects for FREE

I know it is hard to thinFree Christmas Craft Projectsk about when we only begin October tomorrow but if you are going to hand make any of your Christmas gifts you don’t want to wait too long! Here is something that is sure to make the planning and executing of those gift a bit easier!  The 12 weeks of Christmas series starts tomorrow at 1:00pm. There is only one catch… You HAVE to be on my mailing list to receive these projects. That’s right, the 12 weeks of Christmas series is a special benefit only available to subscribers of my newsletter.

You will receive in your inbox a project a week with a supply list, cutting guide and instructions. I am not advertising anything in this series, it is simply a free gift. The only thing I ask is for you not to share it with anyone. If you have friends and family that would benefit from these projects please send them this link so they can sign up for themselves. You can copy and paste this message but don’t forward them your copy of the newsletter. If they didn’t realize you sent this to them, they could hit the unsubscribe button and YOU would be unsubscribed to my newsletter, and we sure don’t want that to happen to anyone.

I will also host a special contest for anyone who sends me pictures I can post here on the website. This contest will run from October 1 – December 31st. The winner will receive $100 in Close to my Heart Papercrafting supplies.   Have a great day and keep an eye on those mailboxes tomorrow for your first card project!

Creatively, Carol


How about an Address Tree?

Keep track of where you liveAs I was staring at the cover of an older magazine today I had a thought,  Wouldn’t it be kind of cool to have a scrapbook page devoted to where you have lived?  I am not talking about your regular scrapbook page mind you, I am thinking a giant tree not unlike a family tree large enough to cover the entire page, and instead of pictures of family, this would be a “Bloom where you are planted tree”.

You have things come to your house with labels on them like the magazine I was staring at, so why not take all the magazine labels that show different addresses and place them on the tree. On the label I am looking at, and I believe most labels on magazines show the zip code, the date your subscription ends and your name and address.  You could write the move in and out date on the label as well.

As you look back on your life, you will have a record of everywhere you have lived. This is best  to start right away, and preferably while you are young enough to remember all the places you have lived.  Personally, we have moved so much I am lucky if I can remember all the towns, much less the addresses.   I would love to hear your thoughts on the project – since it really will be an ongoing project unless you are one that is fortunate enough to choose a house big enough for your planned family and stay in it your entire life, you will have lots of addresses, and be adding one at each move.

If you are a person who likes to have everything match on your scrapbook page, and you decide to mat your magazine labels, I suggest you keep all the scraps that are big enough for mats behind the scrapbook page in your page protector so you will have the same paper 10 years from now to mount them with.

Please leave a comment below and tell me  what you think? Good idea? Bad Idea?  Let us all know.

Creatively, Carol


Slow Cooked Taco Casserole

Easy Slow cooked recipesHere is a good recipe for tossing in the crock potwhile you watch the game, or even before the game to serve during the game or any busy day.  Protien abounds in this recipe with ground beef, and two cans of beans. I like to do both black and pinto beans for a variety of taste.

I like the recipe card as it is plain and simple. The photo corners are a nice accent and the brads make sure the recipe stays where it belongs. Forgive me if this photo gets blurry half way down, I can’t tell if it my eyes or the brads kept it from being flush to the glass.

Here is your recipe:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 pkg taco seasoning mix
  • t tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 9 small flour or corn tortillas
  • 1/2 c chicken broth
  • 1/2 c tomato sauce
  • 1 – 10 ounce enchilada sauce
  • 6 oz finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 – 15 ounce cans pinto, black or kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 – 11 ounce Green Giant Mexi-corn
  • 1 – 4.5 ounce can green chiles
  • 1 – 2.5 ounce can chopped ripe olives
  • Sour cream & Guacamole to taste

Spray inside of 3 ½ or 4 quart slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray. In a large skillet, brown ground beef with onion and garlic over med-high heat for 8 – 10 minutes or until thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently. Drain.  Stir in taco seasoning mix, salt, and pepper. Place 3 tortillas in bottom of greased slow cooker. Top with beef mixture, broth, tomato sauce, and enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with 1/2 c of cheese. Layer with 3 more tortillas. Top with beans, corn, green chiles, half of olives and 1/2 cheese. Top with remaining 3 tortillas, remaining cheese and olives.

Cook on high for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or on low for 6-7 hours. Uncover for the last 30 minutes of cooking time.  Top individual servings with sour cream and guacamole to taste

Have a great Sunday. If you have any questions about making a handmade cookbook or recipe cards, leave your question below.

Creatively, Carol

Sketch Saturday – A Four Picture Two Page Scrapbook Layout

Scrapbook Sketches by Creatively CarolThe sketch for Sketch Saturday is a two page layout using lots of purple and pink. You can use the sunbursts to bring in other colors to your layout. Perhaps you will want to turn them upside down so the rays fall toward the pictures.

Using 4 – 4″ x 6″ pictures if you would like to feature four photographs,  but you have enough room to put 8 4″ x 4″ photographs instead. On the left side the 4″ x 4″ squares will touch. On the right, you will have room to leave space between them.

Add your journaling on the right side, while the main title is on the left. If you need room for a sub-title, you have room on the right side.

Remember, if you complete the sketch before the end of the month, send me a picture either by e-mail to or by text to 801-597-4896.

Enjoy your weekend.

Creatively, Carol