January 2009 – Miriam Thomas

Month: January 2009

It is quite a warm Australia Day today- Right now it is even too hot to go swimming- is that even possible? I will definitely take the kids for a swim in the pool later before we have our Aussie BBQ!

In the meantime, while Luke is having a nap- I thought I would hang out in my little room (which has been dubbed “the tardis”) and get creative.  Today I thought I would work on a page for the Online Journalling 101 Course which officially starts today.   I chuckled to myself as I pulled out the photos as they are photos of our holiday to New Zealand in 2007.  One would think it would be more apt to create an Aussie scrapbook page on Australia Day.  Don’t forget- It is not too late to join in- although the 12 week course starts today you can work at your own pace.  Unfortunately I can’t share what I’m doing on my blog- You’ll need to be a part of the course to see the pages!

I can however, share a card I made using 3 of the “in-colours” Purely Pomegranate, Wild Wasabi and Soft Sky- plus the very versatile and my current favourite- “Kraft” cardstock.  The beautiful ribbon pictured in this card is from the Spring Mini- which means it is no longer available.  I wish I had bought more while I still had the opportunity.  Speaking of while there is still the opportunity don’t forget that Sale-a-bration ends in just over 4 weeks.  After that time those stamp set won’t be available.   I have made use of TWO of the SALE-A-BRATION sets available until the end of February.  One is “Botanical Blooms” which is a 2 step stamping set and also “Congrats”  I thought the sentiment would be perfect for a friend who was married in New Zealand quite recently- must drop it in her letterbox soon!

Happy Australia Day Everyone!

Here’s card I made that features some heat embossing.  It is a versatile technique used by scrapbookers and cardmakers alike!

and a little closer


For those unfamiliar with the technique you will need an ink like Versamark or Stampin’ Up! s whisper white craft ink, some embossing powder and a heat tool.  The reason why you need versamark or the craft ink is because they are slow-to-dry and give a surface that the embossing powder will stick to.   

The following card has had Heat embossing used in FOUR places. 

1. For the background I have used the POLKA DOT background stamp, Versamark and CLEAR embossing powder.

2. For the word ‘friend’ (from the “Friendly Flowers” stamp set) I have used white craft ink and white embossing powder 

3. For the chipboard accent I have covered the entire piece of chipboard in patterned paper (sanded off the edges) and covered the entire surface with versamark and a coat of clear embossing powder and

4.  I even managed to change the colour of the brads in the centre of the flowers by heat embossing!

If you would like to try out some embossing for yourself- I can help you to order some products that will allow you to include some heat embossing on your scrapbook pages, cards and other projects.  If you live locally I am more than happy to demonstrate heat embossing at a workshop in your home.   Please just get in touch with me (My contact details are available on the “contact details” page)

Those who know me well- know that I love to include the stories behind my photos on my scrapbook pages!  That is why I was so excited to be invited to be a design team member for the Journalling 101 Course!   If this sounds like you too, I’m sure you would thoroughly enjoy this 12 week ONLINE course that is due to commence in only a few days time on Monday 26th January.  I find that when I scrapbook with friends it is not unusual to hear people say that sometimes it is the journalling that they struggle with the most.   If this describes you- I’m sure that the course will be suited perfectly to you too!  

It is not too late to register! Please head on over to Erika Martin’s blog and be sure to let her know that you read about the course on my blog.     Course payment includes access to a forum for course particpants only so not only do you get a chance to complete some scrapbook pages with journalling, it is the perfect opportunity to meet people from various parts of the world- to be inspired and to form friendships.   It’s not just a course…….. it is a journey!    For more details about the course please visit Erika’ Martin’s site- by clicking on the picture below!

and………….. “that’s what it’s all about!”  No I’m not referring to words in the “Hokey Pokey”……  I am referring to a really lovely E-mail I received from a Hostess on the weekend.

I really love sharing “Stampin’ Up” with people whether that be through my blog, online forums but best of all- through face-to-face contact with people.  I conducted a workshop on Friday and the following day I received a really lovely message from my hostess and it really made my day.  Several days later it is still making me smile!  It is wonderful just having the opportunity to share what I love with other people- and I don’t expect any special thanks.  Then you have moments like this and it makes you think “Yep- that’s what it’s all about!”  

 I just wanted to share it with you (and I have also added it the customer testimonial section of my blog)


Hi Miriam

I wanted to thank you so much for the effort you made for my recent Stampin Up workshop. I was overwhelmed watching you dazzle the crowd with techniques and wonderful products! We enjoyed making the bag-a-lope, and taking advantage of using the punches, stamps and very beautiful range of new release papers.

You made our evening enjoyable, relaxing and much fun – thanks so much

The added bonus of getting everyone together on Friday night for the workshop now means I can take advantage of the sale and shop for free using the credits from the guest sales…lovely!

Keep up the great work, thanks for sharing your creativity with us



 Here is the little “Hostess Gift” I made for her….. featuring the scallop edge punch from the Summer Mini along the edge of the flap!


Live your dream


“Live your dream”- what a nice sentiment and it sums up how I see my life.  4 beautiful children, a loving, supportive husband, living in our own home in the area we love (even if it is too small for us ;-)) , wonderful friends oh….and not forgetting a room full of Stampin’ Up goodies. What more could a gal want?!  I get to have my children around me, we can get busy creating together or I can find some “me” time and it is wonderful to head out in the evenings and on weekends to run workshops with people who share my passion!  What a life! 

I used the stamp set “Live your dream” to create the following card.  It features the “Afternoon Tea” Designer series paper.  The general layout was inspired by a Christmas card created by my gorgeous upline, Claire.  I used a totally different stamp set, patterned papers,etc.  Of course, my card doesn’t look anywhere near as lovely as her card but I wanted to have a play with the general layout/ design.


Today I got to “Live my Dream” getting messy with the three biggest kids.  They each received a little woodwork kit from Santa. We made them in stages this afternoon.  First assembling them with glue and then waiting for the glue to dry, painting and then waiting for the paint to dry and then popping on the stickers and waiting for Daddy to come home!  Of course, the waiting in between wasn’t much fun and they were bursting with pride when Daddy came home to admire their creations (Thank goodness we got rid of the traces of paint on the outdoor setting before he got home!)

Here are their little creations!

Thank you to those who have signed up to my newsletter.  I have sent my first little newsletter with a special promotion.  If you have signed up but are yet to receive your copy- please check folders other than your main inbox (just in case it went into your spam folder) and if it you still haven’t received it then please let me know.  It is not too late to receive details of this special in the newsletter- All people who sign up prior to the end of January will receive this newsletter! 

In other exciting news I received three FREE stamp sets in the mail yesterday.  One was “Life Defintions” which is normally $90.95 but I didn’t have to pay a cent!  I can’t wait to have a play!  I received these sets as part of my “Stampin Start” reward and it is one of the reasons I am so excited to be a Stampin’ Up Demonstrator!  It is just one of those special perks of being a Demonstrator and Stampin’ Up! are such a generous company.  

It really is so much fun that I am really keen to share this opportunity with other people……….For those who are not already aware- anyone who signs up to Stampin’ Up during Sale-a-bration- (before the end of February) is able to select an ADDITIONAL Stamp Set up to the value of $79.95 for FREE.   

The perks for you signing up during this time……

– You will receive a kit that is valued up to $643.95 and you pay a mere $324.   

– You have some choice about what you receive in your starter kit.  Stampin’ Up! provide a starter kit with suggested items- but is great is that you are able to select alternatives to suit your personal taste.    

– You don’t have to hold a certain number of workshop bookings within a limited time or anything like that.    In fact, you could sign up just to receive items at a discount for yourself

– This is a low risk opportunity- If you decide Stampin Up is not for you- You get to keep your kit and there are no exit fees or penalties.

– You are required to place a minimum order of $500 each QUARTER to remain active- but this is based on FULL quarters so if you sign up now you have until the end of June to meet your first minimum order.

– The NEW 2009-2010 Catalogue will be released prior to the end of your first FULL quarter- so it would be the perfect time to add some supplies to your personal stash if you were to become a discount demonstrator and if you were keen to become a Hobby or Career demonstrator, the release of this catalogue would be an exciting time to build your business! 

– Being a part of the team means that you will have access to “demonstrator only forums” where you can ask questions, share experiences and be inspired.  My upline and many demonstrators in the same team as me are based in Melbourne yet I am able to have regular contact with them through the supportive online forum.   You could be in the same town as me or on the other side of the country and we would still be able to support each other! 

I’d love to share more information about becoming a Demonstrator with you! If you would like to learn more, I’d love to honestly answer any questions you may have  (with no pressure whatsoever)  You can find out more information by clicking on the picture below!  

A Single and a double


For various reasons I haven’t had an opportunity to update my blog….but instead of providing excuses- I’m just going to do some sharing

The first layout I completed early last week.  I just didn’t find the opportunity to take a photo to post it here on my blog. This single scrapbook page uses mainly Stampin’ Up products and was actually inspired by the card on the third page of the Sale-a-bration catalogue.  I’m sure you will agree that end product bears little resemblance to the card- but it is where the main inspiration come from.  The Idea Book and catalogue and mini catalogues are jam packed with lots of great ideas for cards and scrapbook layouts- so don’t forget to use them as a source of inpiration.   

The background cardstock is River Rock and the edges are inked using River Rock.  The patterned paper on this page is the very Christmassy “Dashing” Designer Series Paper.  The title was cut using Real Red cardstock in my 4 year old daughter’s Cuttlekids Machine (that she received for Christmas but shh don’t tell her I borrowed it! )  The large scalloped circle comes from the “On Board Ginormous pieces” on page 141 of the catalogue.  I simply covered the raw chipboard using Old Olive Ink  and dressed it up with some bling.  The Old Olive buttons are from the Earth Elements Coloured pack on page 147 of the catalogue.    Last but by no means least the subject in this layout is the youngest of my 4 cherubs,  Luke (a few days shy of 9 months in the photo taken on Christmas Day) 

The second layout I have to share is actually two pages of a double-page layout.  I don’t often create double page layout but I simply couldn’t decide which photo to use- so spread the 4 photos over 2 pages.  The photos have been sitting printed for a couple of years- so I wanted to use what I already had on hand- rather than resizing and reprinting- and besides….. I wanted to tell the story behind the photos (which I will share with you)
















Journalling reads:

Oh dear- She’s done it again! She has you fooled too, doesn’t she!?  As you look at the photos I can hear you exclaiming “What a cutie!”  “What a sweet, innocent little face!” “Surely she couldn’t get up to any mischief?” Quite the contrary actually! This little girl is definitely “Disaster in Disguise” 


She’s not naughty- Oh No! Far from it! She is actually very well-behaved and always eager to help.  She is quite a lovely little doll and wouldn’t hurt anyone ……except herself!


At two years of age- I swear this sweet-faced little angel has had more accidents than I have fingers and toes!   She has fallen off things- onto things and frequently trips over thin air…..and she doesn’t just fall onto her hands.  If she trips she normally falls straight on her head The sweet fluffy hat she is wearing is actually disguising a little mishap. 


Sit back and let me tell the story……


The kids had been playing happily outside in the back garden.  Our main living area looks out into the backyard and I was inside getting

some chores done in the kitchen and keeping an eye on them from inside.  One minute the three kids were playing happily…. The next minute there was a blood curdling scream.    I ran outside to see Erin’s face covered in blood. There was blood pouring from the top of her head right down the length of her face.  I couldn’t tell whether the blood was coming from her forehead, from her nose- or her eye sockets.   I swooped her up, took her inside and placed her in the shower to try and wash off some of the blood and determine where the blood was actually coming from.  It turned out that she had a split right in the middle of her forehead that was so deep I could see her skull.  


I’m not 100% sure what happened, but it would appear that as she was approaching the sand pit she tripped and bumped her head right on the ridge of the sandpit.


I was feeling a bit queasy at the sight of blood and out of concern.    Although we were only a few streets away from the hospital, I was a bit shaken and thought it best not to drive with the three kids- so I called Jason.


I sat with Erin between my legs and a clean towel pressed to her  head to stop the bleeding.  She wasn’t crying or anything and just wanted me to take the towel off her head- To be honest I just couldn’t bear the thought of looking at the gaping hole in her forehead.   Jason arrived quickly and they both went of to the Emergency Department to have the wound stitched.  I stayed home with the two boys and we waited for their return.  


Apparently Erin didn’t shed another tear.  As they sat in the waiting area- Jason took photos of Erin using his mobile phone and Erin was fascinated by the photos.  When it came time to have the wound stitched she just laid there- perfectly still.   


She coped fine with the stitches in place and when it come time to remove the stitches it looked as though it had healed quite well. 


Then….a few days later ……….yep you guessed it…..she bumped her head AGAIN!  I was Teaching in a Relief position for the day and Mum was looking after the kids at home.  Apparently, she was trying to get her toy stroller out of her bedroom and walked into the door frame and split her head open in exactly the same spot!     


This girl is definitely “Disaster in Disguise”


I found the opportunity to create a card this afternoon and figured that while the house was quiet (very unusual) I would upload it for you.  A friend is sick in hospital and I wanted to send something to brighten her day a little.  This card has been created using the “Embrace Life” Stamp set from the Summer Mini and the matching Designer Series paper “Ginger Blossom”  The colours are

• Cameo Coral
• Groovy Guava
• River Rock and 
• Ruby Red

The sentiment is from the “Take Three” Set which from one of the cardmaking kits.

I used my paper snips to cut out the flower.  (Just as a sidenote- the paper snips would have to be my favourite pair of scissors!  A “must-have” item in any scrapbooking or cardmaking tool kit!)  I finished the flower off with a ruby red button from the Earth Elements pack.  I simply glued it in place using the Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue which is a new item to Stampin’Up! in the Summer Mini. I love this glue and find it is perfect for gluing items such as buttons, little embellishments, glitter and is acid free so safe to use on your scrapbook pages.   I don’t think I have mentioned yet that there is an error in the Summer Mini- the price of this glue is actually $7.95!  I can’t be sure that this glue will be available in the regular catalogue- so it is best to stock up while the Summer Mini is still current.

I’m hoping to complete a scrapbook page or two tonight! Fingers crossed I will be back tomorrow with some pages to show you.  In the meantime- don’t forget to sign up to my newsletter!

I know I haven’t had much to show on my blog lately.  I have been enjoying some “family time” and also doing some ‘behind the scenes” stuff. 

Firstly I have been asked to be a Design Team Member for the Journalling 101 Course. It is unrelated to Stampin’ Up! It is just on opportunity for me to complete some pages and work with the other design team members to help people with journalling on their own pages.   I am really looking forward to it as including Journalling on my scrapbook pages is something I am very passionate about.    Yesterday I completed my first scrapbook page for this course but…… I am unable to show it to you here.  If you think that the Online Journalling 101 Course is for you please follow the links in my sidebar for more information.  If you would like to sign up- please don’t forget to mention my name

This morning I have added a “Newsletter Sign Up” option to my Blog.  This will be a great way for me to keep my customers and readers up-to-date with Stampin’ Up! happenings, specials, offers and inspirational ideas.  I know that my blog serves that purpose to some degree but I would like to utilise a newsletter to supplement that.  Most importantly I would like to make special offers available to my SUBSCRIBERS ONLY.  To kick start for this month I am making a special offer available to subscribers to my newsletter.  If you want to find out more about this offer- then please “sign up” by entering your E-mail address in the newsletter sign ups section on the right hand side.  

I have lots of things I would like to create with the new Summer mini items AND the sale-a-bration stamp sets.  When time is on my side I am hoping to get creative.  Hopefully I will have some stuff to show you within the next couple of days- so please check back here soon!


Sale-a-bration time officially starts today and I’m really excited about all the specials available to hostesses and customers.    For your convenience I have added a link to the “Sale-a-bration Catalogue” (on the sidebar on the right hand side at the bottom) Enjoy browsing through the catalogue!  I can’t wait to help you place your orders and earn FREE stamps sets!

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