30 before 30: #17 Send a card for each family birthday

I used to love getting the mail around my birthday as a kid. I loved opening that box and pulling out envelopes with my name on them. My great-grandmother, Grammy Bula as she was known to my family, was the queen of sending cards and it was something I loved about her. She made it so that we were aware that she was thinking about us and to this day, it stands out in my childhood memories. So for my 30 before 30, I wanted to create a small amount of that foresight and consideration in my family as a way to preserve Grammy Bula’s memory and to give me a consistent creative outlet. I have found that carving out space for a creative outlet is imperative for my mental and emotional health. Here are a few of the birthday cards I’ve sent so far!

Darin's Birthday card exterior

Darin’s Birthday card exterior

Darin's birthday card interior

Darin’s birthday card interior

Grandma's exterior

Grandma’s exterior

Grandma's interior

Grandma’s interior

Auntie Shelly's exterior

Auntie Shelly’s exterior

Auntie Shelly's interior

Auntie Shelly’s interior

Jayelle's Exterior

Jayelle’s Exterior

Jayelle's interior

Jayelle’s interior

Ellie's exterior

Ellie’s exterior & envelope

Ellie's Interior

Ellie’s Interior


Peter’s card

Exterior of the card

Exterior of the card

Wanted to throw up a quick post about one of my recent cards! Here is the card I made for my boss Peter who is very into film/photography etc. 

Initial opening of the card

Initial opening of the card

I really wanted to do somewhat of a theater type curtain for the front but couldn’t manage to get the valance part of the curtain to work so ended up just doing the red curtain on the front. For the first opening I was hoping to mimic the Hollywood sign, you’ll have to tell me how I did. Finally the hollywood sign lifts up and revels the inside and my favorite part of the card!


That little buddy, the projector, took me a while, as did the projection of “happy birthday” but I think it really makes the card! 

Tami’s deluxe 45th

So I haven’t posted for a while but I wanted to put up a post about one of the things I’ve been busy on! My boss and good friend Tami turned 45 last monday and since I have set the bar VERY high in terms of cards that I give her, I had to up the ante once again. This card is part inspiration from my pinterest page and part paper engineering which I think I might create a separate blog with my cards, you’ll have to let me know. Regardless, for my boss’ birthday I wanted to create something special so I created the following card.

ImageThis is the front exterior of the card and it measures about 8.5 inches square.ImageThis is the rear of the card and where you open it.
ImageWhat you see when you open the card.
ImageThe note on the card says “Before untying bow, prop up card with stand” which meant that the tan piece got propped up with a piece of matte board.
ImageThis is the engineering piece where you prop the card up with the two paper hinges I created.
ImageThe exclamation point is actually a pocket and that piece pulls out and has a brad that allows for the pieces to swivel for the sentiment in the card. Finally, here is the opened piece and the part I stole from pinterest.
ImageSo that’s the card I created! I hope you enjoy!

30 before 30: #s 11 and 14 in progress


I wanted to give an update on the 30 before 30 list! Numbers 11 and 14 are: Knit a scarf and memorize the sermon on the mount. I wanted to put these two items on the list to for a couple of reasons, first and foremost, knitting requires you to be consistent in order to complete the task. You have to do the same stitch and the same number of stitches repeatedly over a period of time. I am a fairly task oriented person and typically finish things I start that have a short completion period. I have a harder time doing the same thing over and over in order to complete a task. I love crossing things off short-term lists, it’s the longer term picking something up day after day or week after week. So in the hopes of building some long-term task completion abilities and giving me something to do while I watch my favorite shows.


Here is the scarf as of about 3 weeks ago!

The Sermon on the Mount #11 has similar reasons behind my desire to cross it off my list. I spent many years doing AWANA growing up and I missed the scripture memory in my life. I had always memorized verses and only memorized one chapter in college so I wanted to up the ante and memorize multiple chapters. I have to say it’s been fulfilling to attempt this and the Lord has used the quest to bring me comfort and encouragement in times when I’ve needed it most recently. On November 4, I lost someone who has been very dear to my life, Grandma Faye Wright went home to organize things in heaven for our Savior. She has been a consistent figure in my life since I was 3 years old and a pillar of faith in my life. She  told it like it is and never forgot anything even as a ninety year old woman. I got the news when I was at women’s conference with a friend and found myself in the bathroom crying. If there is one place to grieve, it is at a women’s conference. Before I finally composed myself again, I had at least 6 women stop and offer a hug, prayer or encouragement. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” Matthew 5:4. As I sat there, I thanked God for the truth in His word and how He showed me that He is in control.

Stayed tuned for more 30 before 30…..

Great Expectations

Once again I must begin my blog post with a giant :


Well, I think I will make up for those 3 months right now with 1 MONSTER blog. So buckle up, use the restroom and get yourself a beverage because here we go!!

Since I haven’t been writing on my blog obviously, what have I been up to this summer? Well I will tell you! I went to several concerts: Matisyahu, Steely Dan and Adele. My amazing friend Ally completed an Olympic distance triathlon while I did a 1/2 marathon in Sunriver in June. My beautiful friend Christy married the man of her dreams on my dad’s birthday July 23!

Myself, Stephanie (MOH), Christy, Ash (BM), Jess

I got to go to Hawaii in August with my boss and two of her kids and had a ball. Here’s a beautiful shot on the grounds of the hotel!

Grand Wailea Maui

Our lovely accomodations

My family had a brief reunion in the end of August and we went to Silverwood Amusement park in northern Idaho and had a BALL! Here is a picture from the ride tremors:


Can you tell I love Rollercoasters?!

That young man in the yellow doing his best to not look terrified is my future brother-in-law Tim, who prior to this photo, had never ridden roller-coasters in his life! CRAZY! He ended up doing 4 in one day! Congrats to Lisa and Tim who’ll be getting married next summer.

So that is a brief highlight reel from this summer! I titled this entry “Great Expectations” because what I originally set out to do was blog about one of the things I’ve been “craftin'” lately and talk about Morgan’s birthday card. This is the 3rd birthday I celebrated with Morgan, my boss’ youngest son, and I have for each of his birthdays made him a card. His first card was a simple pop up card with his face photo-shopped on Captain America’s body and thus the bar was set. Well last year for his birthday I picked him up from school and I kid you not, one of the first things he said to me on the drive home was, “Can I have my birthday card? You make the BEST birthday cards!” So needless to say, I can’t just hit Target on my way to work to get him a birthday card. This year being his 13th birthday I had to up the ante again and make him an extra special card since it was such a BIG birthday. Here is the final product:

Exterior of the card folded up

Exterior of the card folded up

First opening of the card

First opening of the card

2nd opening, the back of the right flap as the "orga" of Morgan on it

2nd opening, the back of the right flap as the "orga" of Morgan on it

The big birthday fold out of all the pages

The big birthday fold out of all the pages

The pop up page underneath the big birthday fold out

The pop up page underneath the big birthday fold out

I don’t think I disappointed him for his big 13th birthday!

In closing I will leave you with a teaser for my upcoming blog series. If you are fortunate enough to have been around for my last birthday you are certain to have experienced my ranting on the slow decline to 30. I will be 28 this November and am having a certain degree of anxiety about turning the big 3-0 in just 2 years. So, like many wise friends and women before me, I have created a 30 before 30 list. It is a list of things both tangible and non, experiences big and small that I hope to accomplish before my 30th birthday. One of the first things I managed to cross off was actually one I didn’t expect to accomplish: #2. Meet a Portland Trailblazer!

To be continued……….

Add another candle!

Yesterday was my boss’ daughter’s birthday. She is now 17. I met her when she was 14.5 and she is turning into an amazing human being. I am lucky to know her!

SO! Had to make a birthday card! I LOVE making birthday, christmas, wedding or gift cards! I LOVE MAKING CARDS! It is so cathartic to me and helps me utilize some of the creativity that doesn’t always get used at work. I also like to make cards that are fun to open and unfold and this one was no different. It took me a long time and I got stuck in the middle but it came out pretty good. I started with a 12×12 piece of paper and folded it in half twice into a 6×6 square and then made it so each portion opened into the next. I also utilized the cricut BIG TIME as you can see! Here is the cover:

The first set of two pages you open

This is the 12×12 all open

Message space opened up "Happy Birthday!"Here is the opened up spot where I wrote the message!

Maybe if you’re lucky, I’ll make you a card someday!