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Entries in new year (3)

Thursday
Jan052012

DIY New Year's Good Luck Card

Hi everyone and happy Thursday! It's five days into the new year. Are we feeling good? Is 2012 treating us all nicely? So far I'm pretty pumped about it but it might have to do with all the nice weather we're having in Southern California lately. It has been in the mid-80s the last few days, no joke. I feel bad for my friend in New York who has had highs of 26. If I could I would send over some of our heat to the East Coast, we could spare a few degrees.

Today I'm excited to share the first DIY project of 2012! Yipee! I wanted the project to revolve around the new year and since I had good luck symbols on my brain because of my recent Houzz ideabook, I decided to make a little good luck card that you could send out to friends and family. This card is pretty simple and not too labor intensive. Pigs are known as lucky symbols so I incorporated a little gold pig into this card as a fun surprise for the recipients.

Sidenote + update on my Nikon d40x camera (you probably don't care but I'm including it anyway): I mentioned a few days ago that my dSLR was experiencing some technical difficulties and it is now packaged up (wrapped in layer upon layer of bubble wrap) ready to go back to Nikon for servicing. Without it I feel a bit lost but obviously this is a step that needs to be taken if I ever want to use it again. These pictures were taken with my Mom's Canon point and shoot, a nice camera but clearly not quite the quality I'm used to. Thanks Mom for letting me borrow it. So please bare with me while my baby gets fixed.

Alright so back to the DIY. Here are the materials that I used:

* white cardstock * glassine bag (4.5 x 7.25) * gold paper clip * label maker (I found mine on Etsy) + black dymo tape * plastic pig * letter stamp (mine is this one) + stamp pad * scissors * glitter tape (it's this stuff but I got it at Michaels, called Recollections Glitter Tape) * confetti if desired * paper edge rounder punch * small manila tag * jute twine * gold acrylic paint + brush

1. Cut a piece of white cardstock down to size so it fits into the glassine bag.

2. Round the corners with a punch if so desired.

3. Cut a piece of the glitter tape and then notch the ends to get a banner effect.

4. Use the label maker to spell out 'happy new year' on black dymo tape.

5. Notch the ends of the dymo tape as well and then stick to the cardstock, layering over the glitter tape.

6. Spell out 'for good luck' with the custom letter stamp and stamp the message onto the small manila tag.

7. On the back side of the cardstock, fill out your New Year's message to loved ones.

8. Paint the plastic pig with gold acrylic paint. I recommend two coats. Allow dry time between each coat.

9 & 10. Use jute twine to tie the manila tag to the gold pig. Place the pig into the glassine bag along with the cardstock and confetti (if desired).

All packaged up, your good luck card should look something like this:

The confetti makes the package fun and more like a surprise treat for the recipients although I understand the annoyances of cleaning it up. But how can you resist it?!

So what do you think? Would you send out New Year's cards? With the hustle and bustle of the holidays it can be hard to get cards out during those busy months. I like the idea of New Year's cards because they're sort of different and unexpected but also easier on you because you can put them together once the craziness ends. 

I hope you all enjoyed my first DIY of 2012. It felt good to get crafty again and back into the routine. My DIYs got pretty sparse towards the end of the year. I am definitely looking forward to making up some crafty creations to share here and out in the rest of the blogosphere. 

Have a great day!

Wednesday
Jan042012

Twelve by 2012 Recap & Some New Goals

Some of you may remember that in October I participated in Oh, Hello Friend's project of goals called Twelve by 2012. It was a great project and I'm glad I did it. By making my goals public and posting them here I held myself more accountable for completing them. I couldn't totally embarrass myself and not complete any of them. I wouldn't be able to show my face here again. So I kept the goals in mind and got to work.

Side note: It's so good to set deadlines sometimes isn't it? When you don't, things can just drag on forever (for no real reason). Why do we let ourselves do this? Then you feel guilty because it's taken you so long to complete something that should have taken you 4 seconds. And then the guilt forces you to push it back even more. Does anyone else fall victim to this? I occasionally do it, not proud to admit. 

But back to my twelve goals, I did alright completing them. I definitely didn't finish all twelve but I'm proud of the ones that I did accomplish. Here's my finished checklist (complete with some fudging and cheating):

My List of Twelve before 2012: 

1} Make a business proposal/strategy for my new Lauren Elise Crafted ideas  still finishing up a bit but definitely started so I'm going to consider it completed for the sake of this list

2} Take someone special on a picnic

3} Make a Blurb book...finally!  completed on November 28th

4} Make ribollita soup from scratch

5} Visit with my friend Edward  completed on December 24th - actually I saw him and my two other good friends Pat (both are named Pat)

6} Take a weekend trip to Sacramento to see a friend

7} Throw a holiday party for crafty, local friends

8} Perfect my stuffed animal idea & get better at stitching

9} Go vintage shopping in LA with David (my brother)  ok, we didn't go vintage shopping in LA, just locally but the whole point is to spend time with David and I did that

10} Make apple pie from scratch  completed on November 24th

11} Crochet something even if it's small  I didn't crochet anything but I used my weave & loom kit and made a few small squares - not quite the same thing but kind of so we're going to count it

12} Go to the Rose Bowl Flea Market  completed on December 11th

So I completed 7 out of my 12, more than 50%! Hopefully I can complete a few more of these in the next few months because I still want to do them. Did anyone else participate in Twelve by 2012? How did you do on your list?

Since I enjoyed this project so much, I decided to continue it into the new year. I didn't want to post goals for the full year, it's just too far ahead in the future to map out and hold myself accountable so I decided to set a deadline three months from now, which is about the same amount of time I had for the last list. So I am now announcing my Thirteen in 3 list which I will be striving to complete in January, February, and March. Here is what I hope to accomplish:

So there is my list of 13. As you'll notice, the crochet thing is still on there (my aunt promised to show me some techniques) and I also included the party with local friends. These were just too important not to include in this second list. Hopefully I can accomplish them this second time around. I'll be updating the list periodically and letting you guys know how I'm doing (remember, hold me accountable). I'd love to get a better completion percentage than last time.

If you'd like to play along and create your own list of 13, go right ahead! If you do, let me know and comment below with a link to your post. I'd love to see what other people are planning in the new year. Here is a little badge if you want to include it on your blog. I'll have mine up in the right-hand column.

 

 

How ever many goals you have for 2012, good luck completing them!  

Update: If you're thinking of starting your own 13 in 3 or similar goal list but don't have a blog, here's what I recommend: make yourself accountable by sharing your list with others. When I set a goal in my mind but just leave it there and don't share it, I usually tend to forget about it or it gets pushed aside by other more pressing matters. I do so much better when others know what I am working towards. It actually becomes real when you tell someone. So share your hopes with your family, your spouse, your kids, your best friends, your coworkers...anyone. Make a list and post it on your refrigerator or in another highly visible part of your home. Not only will you see the list and be reminded of what you're working towards but so will your loved ones and hopefully they will provide encouragement along the way. 

Tuesday
Jan032012

Houzz December Ideabook

Last month began my new collaboration with Houzz and I shared my November ideabook which was all about stitched and embroidered details. Another month has gone by so I am excited to reveal my next ideabook. I completed it last week, right before the new year. Like everyone else, I was thinking about the past year and what my hopes and dreams were for the upcoming 2012. Everyone hopes to have a year filled with luck and good fortune. That got me thinking about good luck symbols in our culture and then I did some research on lucky symbols throughout the world, things like elephants, pigs, acorns, ladybugs, and bamboo (to name a few). I found 20 items that are all a fresh take on lucky charms. I don't necessarily believe in luck myself but each of these items would make a fun gift to ring in a positive new year.

 

Do you believe in luck and if you do, what items are special to you? Pigs, clover leafs, and wishbones aside, I think 2012 is going to be a great year. In the last handful of years, the ones that ended in positive numbers have been better for me overall (2008, 2010) compared to the odd ones (2009, 2011). So if this method holds true, 2012 is looking good. But I realize this is a dumb way to predict the outcome of the new year. All I can say is, three days in, things are looking alright. Happy Tuesday folks!