Books · Craft · Disney Layouts · Scrapbooking · Vacations

Autograph Books for Disney Trip

2015-06-05 10.35.08For our trip to Disney World (we’re doing 3 character meals), I made autograph books for the little ones. I usually buy them at the parks, but I wanted them to have one that was a little unique. I chose some chipboard covers that were similar in size to the autograph books sold at Disney. I had originally planned on using a larger size but figured they’d be bulky to carry, and maybe the characters had a harder time holding square shaped books as the ones I’ve seen were always rectangle.

After I settled on the size, I went to planning the design. I saw a lot of examples that I loved on Pinterest and pinned a few. I loved the designs where multiple colors and patterns of paper were used to decorate the front. I gave it a try at this and for some reason couldn’t get my papers…even though they were from the same line…to coordinate in the Disney style I wanted. I was starting to get frustrated then thought I’d use my collection of Disney washi tape.2015-06-05 11.24.33 I love Disney. I love washi tape. Why not used the beloved tape on the covers of the books? I love washi tape so much I even gave the product a starring roll in my novel Designed to Death.

The first book I made was going to be for a little boy and have his favorite character, Sully, on the front. I chose to use different tapes for the strips with the Disney word tape in the middle and at both ends. I wanted to make sure the inside of the back and front of the covers were decorated so added a die cut Boo and Mike to those pages. 2015-06-05 10.40.05The step that took the longest was cutting out the autograph pages as I wanted them to match the shape of the book.

I traced the cover on a heavy weight cardstock, folded it in half, then cut the pages out. Each book has 20 pages…enough pages for 40 signatures if each character uses a separate page. I used rings to hold the pages together because it would be easy to add more pages if needed. The pages looked a little2015-06-05 10.35.34 plain (and I couldn’t erase all the pencil marks off), so I inked the edges.


For the two girl books, I decided to go with alternating the tape designs and using the Disney word tape as the starting point by putting it in the middle of the book. For these books, I used Elsa and Anna as the cover character and then a word phrase and Olaf on the ‘inside’ back cover.2015-06-05 10.36.15 2015-06-05 10.40.10


Earlier I mentioned making the pages took the longest amount of time with this project and that’s because I have a box of die cuts. I find using the Cameo and Cricut relaxing so the days where I want to craft but not make scrapbook pages (and I’ll even do this at retreats), I cut out characters and phrases and put them in my box for later.2015-06-05 11.25.44 Sometimes, I’ll use them on pages or another project, and there have even been a few times I’ve let the little ones play with the ‘paper people’. Like me, they love Disney so prefer the Disney characters over the other ones in the box. It’s probably why my box is mainly filled with Disney themed die cuts…and the fact that last few times we’ve taken large family vacations they’ve been Disney related.

I can’t wait to get to Disney and our first character meal and give the little ones they’re autograph books. I kind of wish I made one for me.

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Everyday Life · Vacations

Planning is Part of the Fun

2015-06-01 15.52.26In a little less than a week, we’ll be on our way to Disney World. Okay, Orlando actually as we’re not staying at a resort hotel and won’t be at Disney each day but to me we’re going to Disney. For me, it is one of the happiest places on Earth and where I find I can let go of all worries and anxieties and just be in the moment. This time will be even more magical as we’re bringing the little people…aka the Princess and Pirate Boy…aka the grandones…aka the grandchildren…with us. Now, my children never picked up the Disney fever and love from their mother, but my oldest daughter’s little ones sure have. I have got the 2-year-old saying “Going to Disney World” and the 5-year-old is beside herself with anticipation. We giggle about our trip and the plans every time she comes over. I don’t know who’s more excited about the Princess breakfast and meeting Anna and Elsa. Actually, I do. I am more excited about watching my Princess meet the Princesses she loves more than anything else. The anticipation and excitement are so great, I find it a hard time concentration when I find my mind wandering to those events and envisioning the smile on her face. Oh my…is it time yet?

Every vacation we go on, I like to learn about the area and plan out a few things we can do. Fortunately with Disney, there are tons of books, videos, and other sources available for me to get into the Disney and vacation mood. And sometimes a little bit too much because I have to ‘bargain/bribe’ myself into how much work I have to do before I click over to a Disney site or see if we can change the time on the FP+ experience or even switch the experience. My son decided he’d rather trade his Fastpass option from the Under the Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid to Space Mountain, and from Meet the Disney Pals to go on Mission:SPACE along with his dad. Go figure.

I’m really looking forward to this trip that will be a mix of family time and also our group branching out at times to go and experience their favorite parts of the Disney World parks. The Passporter’s Disney World guide is my favorite (if I have to pick one) and I also really like the Hidden Magic of Walt Disney. The Hidden Magic gives tips of things to see and explore when you’re not in the mood for rides or just want to know some of the special ‘treats’ Disney built-in to the park which gives it the magical Disney touch.

Craft · Scrapbooking · Vacations

Celebrating at Disney and on the Disney Cruise

Our Disney CruiseI’m loving crops again. I’ve been wanting to get this album done for two years now but never could “find the time”. I’d get a page done then put the project to the side while I got work and house related items done. I just couldn’t concentrate at home. My to-do list just kept calling to me. Life gets so busy. My days seem to fill up as soon as I start jotting down my to-do list and events we have planned. I noticed I was waiting to find a time … rather than making time … to enjoy my hobby. I’m fortunate that I have a large space to craft in so I have a ready-made space to spread out and that’s why I hadn’t really tried finding crops to attend.

Over the last few month, I’ve rediscovered how inspiring cropping with a group or even just one friend, can be. I’m glad I decided to allow cropping to once again also be a “group” activity rather than just a “solo” pursuit.


IMG_1935My Disney album (one of 3 more I have planned) is finished! It’s nice to have everything in a book that we can look at. What I loved most was reliving some of the experiences as I placed the pictures and then added some journaling. I also loved (and lost track of time) reading our Navigators (the newsletter Disney places on your bed of the activities for the next day). I wanted to keep the color scheme simple so I used black, white and red with a little blue and yellow added on occasion. I do like the “uniformed” look of the album but for our next cruise album, I’m going to mix it up a bit.

Scrapbook Pics for Blog 052That mouse

Everyday Life · Holiday

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2010

A little over a year ago, my husband and I celebrated our 20th anniversary by embarking on a two-week trip. We were both in the Army when we got married and with Desert Shield/Desert Storm going on at that time, no honeymoon for us. As a belated honeymoon, and to celebrate 20 years together, we decided to go on a magical vacation to Orlando then take a week cruise. Okay, the whole Disney portion of the trip (included the week-long Disney cruise) was my idea. Fortunately, my husband was willing to fulfill my desire of witnessing Disney Holiday Magic and added it to our trip.

I love Disney and Christmas decorations so going to Disney to see all the holiday splendor was a match made just for me. That required delaying our trip a few weeks so the Christmas decorations would be up at Disney World. I figured we might as well wait two weeks so we could see the Christmas decorations and attend the parade. What could be better than Christmas-time at Disney World! Well, besides having the family with us, but I’m not keen on taking teens out of school. And, my teens weren’t too interested in holiday magic Disney style so they were okay (happy) to skip a trip to watch a Mickey Mouse parade and stay at home with Grandma.

For me, there is something magical about Disney and Christmas time.  Disney World is the one place where I find that my concerns and anxieties about everyday life melt away and I feel like a child. And it might be said I act like I am a child, as I get so excited and giddy when I see the big overhead sign letting everyone know they have arrived to the happiest place on Earth. I clap and even bounce in the seat a little. There’s just something about Disney that warms my heart and makes me feel younger, carefree, and … I guess in way … protected from being judged. It’s a time and place where it’s ‘right’ for adults to allow some of their child-like spirit out and to not have to focus solely on being the grown-up. It’s okay to be excited and overjoyed at being in a fairy tale setting, seeing characters, going on rides and having fun just having fun.

We had went to Disney World in mid-December when our children were younger and the one thing I regretted not doing was Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas parade. The first time we went, our youngest was 2 1/2 years old and staying out that late didn’t seem like a wise choice but I always wished we had gone. So, this time around we attended the party. Yup, just the husband and I … well, and hundreds of other guests. I had an awesome time and my husband had fun too. I don’t know if he’d say it was awesome, but I know he had a great time and enjoyed it. It was a perfect night, not too hot or cold, ate a wonderful dinner at Tony’s, and found a great spot to watch the parade.

My husband took the photographs as he’s a foot taller than I am and it’s easier for him to get better shots. I’ve added a few of our favorite pictures. When we saw this picture with Santa, my husband and were I little baffled. We were very well-behaved that night, so I don’t know why Santa thought a little ‘call  out’ in our direction was in order. It must have been the people besides us.