It feels like home

FeelsLikeHome_Daquila-Pardo

We bought our first home as a married couple in 1998 and lived there for 3 years.

The 17th sketch challenge has been posted at the SCRAP & MUSIC challenge blog! Head over to the site to grab the sketch and play along. This 17th sketch came with the song “Like a Prayer” by Madonna.

Scrap & Music sketch #17

My layout

The line “And it feels like home” from Madonna’s song made me think of some photos I took of the home Matt and I bought when we were first married. We lived in North Carolina then, and when I was visiting there last summer my mom, brother and I went over to our old house to get some photos. We lived on a corner with a little hill for a front yard. And very close to our house was a pond where we’d go for walks almost every day. It was a sweet first home.

* I think my brother took most of these photos.

Product/technique notes

Everything on this page came from the American Crafts Dear Lizzy “5th & Frolic” collection except the little nest/eggs flair badge, which is from an older AC collection. I designed the title in the Silhouette software, and the bows are from the Silhouette store.

The challenge

The challenges on this blog involve following the sketch and using a title on your layout with a line from the provided music. Below I’ve included the video as well as the lyrics for this song:

“Like a Prayer” by Madonna

Life is a mystery
Everyone must stand alone
I hear you call my name
And it feels like home

When you call my name
It’s like a little prayer
I’m down on my knees
I want to take you there
In the midnight hour
I can feel your power
Just like a prayer
You know I’ll take you there

I hear your voice
It’s like an angel sighing
I have no choice
I hear your voice
Feels like flying
I close my eyes
Oh God, I think I’m falling
Out of the sky
I close my eyes
Heaven, help me

When you call my name
It’s like a little prayer
I’m down on my knees
I want to take you there
In the midnight hour
I can feel your power
Just like a prayer
You know I’ll take you there

Like a child
You whisper softly to me
You’re in control
Just like a child
Now I’m dancing
It’s like a dream
No end and no beginning
You’re here with me
It’s like a dream
Let the choir sing

When you call my name
It’s like a little prayer
I’m down on my knees
I want to take you there
In the midnight hour
I can feel your power
Just like a prayer
You know I’ll take you there

When you call my name
It’s like a little prayer
I’m down on my knees
I want to take you there
In the midnight hour
I can feel your power
Just like a prayer
You know I’ll take you there

Life is a mystery
Everyone must stand alone
I hear you call my name
And it feels like home

Just like a prayer
Your voice can take me there
Just like a muse to me
You are a mystery
Just like a dream
You are not what you seem
Just like a prayer, no choice
Your voice can take me there

Just like a prayer, I’ll take you there
It’s like a dream to me

Just like a prayer
Your voice can take me there
Just like a muse to me
You are a mystery
Just like a dream
You are not what you seem
Just like a prayer, no choice
Your voice can take me there

Just like a prayer, I’ll take you there
It’s like a dream to me

Oasis

Oasis_Daquila-Pardo

I swear I heard a rattlesnake while we were on this walk into hell.

To be fair, it was my idea for us to go for a hike on July 4th. There’s a trail running along Brushy Creek Road that I see lots of walkers, runners and cyclists using, but we had not tried it yet. So we agreed to go first thing in the morning to check it out. Then, first thing in the morning turned into noon, and I suggested we wait for another morning. But Matt insisted we’d be fine. So we slathered ourselves with sunscreen, filled our water bottles and headed out.

That path. Went on. Forever. And I swear that ninety percent of it was in full sun. Did I mention that it got to nearly 100 degrees? And there were vultures circling overhead? Yeah.

My repeated requests to turn back fell on deaf ears; Matt really wanted to see where that path led.

Just as I started feeling sick from all that heat, and we were about to run out of the water we had been rationing, it appeared. I actually asked Matt if it was a mirage or an oasis!

He said, “It must be an OASIS because I can see it, too!”

It was a lovely little community water park…with families picnicking, kids playing and squealing and wonderful, cold, restorative water spraying everywhere. We looked at each other in amazement. And then ran in.

Matt is enjoying the splash park.

What could have been better than to find this?

I think it's awesome that this free splash area is offered by the park system.

Product/technique notes: I saw this distress ink watercolor technique over at Kristina Werner’s card blog and decided I wanted to use it on this layout because of my water theme. I pulled out this piece of patterned paper from Little Yellow Bicycle (I’m using both sides of just one piece of paper on this page) and thought it would be a great way to represent both the searing sun and then the bright colors and fresh feeling of the splash park. So I chose colors of distress ink to match the stripes in the paper (wow, did they match well!) and created swatches of splotchy watercolored paper. Then I cut out each letter of my title from a different swatch.

WatercolorSwatches

Just look at how my swatches match the paper!

Tangerine tango

The first-ever Sketches with a Twist sketch and design team sample layouts are now live on their site! This is a brand-new sketch blog that you must check out. It’s a sketch challenge site, where each sketch comes with a twist (for instance, the twist this month is to use at least two fonts in your title). A new sketch will be loaded on the first of each month, and entries will close on the last day. Then the winner will be announced on the 5th of the month.

I didn’t just design the sketch (which I hope you’ll go download and use), but I also made this layout:

Tangerine_Daquila-Pardo

My brother and I went on a scavenger hunt for orange items to photograph for this layout.

The story behind this layout began with a desire to celebrate the transition to a new calendar year, but without resorting to a resolutions page. I love color, as I imagine most scrappers do. And I know that The Pantone Instititute names a new color to watch each year. Their top color for 2012 is Tangerine Tango, an energetic reddish-orange. We should expect to see this color in everything from fashion to home decor to our beloved scrapbook products.

My baby brother, Phil, is in town celebrating the old and new years with us, and he and I are always looking for a good creative project. When I mentioned going out on a photo shoot specifically for a layout about color, Phil was already attaching his fish-eye lens to his camera! We spent a few hours out in the beautiful afternoon sun searching for the orange of the world, a hunt that sharpened our vision for the traffic cones, signs, clothing and flowers that surround us.

And so, my layout is an ode to all color, to optimism, to energy, to new beginnings and to 2012.

Swab the deck, you scurvy dogs!

Back in 1995 two friends developed the idea for International Talk Like a Pirate Day (you can read the whole history of this quirky holiday on their Web site). Celebration of this day has really taken off since 2002, when syndicated columnist Dave Barry covered the idea in an article. It has now become quite well known, and on September 19th each year you can hear conversations being held in pirate slang.

Our friends, Keith and Katie, have hosted Talk Like a Pirate Day parties for the last few years, and this year we were able to attend! There was good grub and grog, a bawdy limerick contest, great costumes, a sea shanty sing-along and good conversation. We had a great time! And me thinks Matt was born to be a pirate! Arr!

SwabTheDeck_Daquila-Pardo

These are fun photos from our friends' Talk Like a Pirate Day party.

I created this layout with papers from the My Mind’s Eye “Mischievous” line and based it on sketch #21 from Sketch Support.

Blogtoberfest Day 16

Celebrate Blogtoberfest with me all month!

National Feral Cat Day

National Feral Cat Day 2011 poster

Today is National Feral Cat Day! This annual event is coordinated by Alley Cat Allies as a way to raise awareness about feral cats, promote Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), and recognize the millions of compassionate Americans who care for feral cats. Each year cat welfare groups and cat lovers across the country plan events to help educate people in their communities about feral cats and TNR. This year there are over 300 events planned in all 50 states.

Matt and I are involved in feral cat rescue efforts in our local area. We take great pride and pleasure in helping improve/save the lives of cats without homes. In fact, layouts of cats that you may have seen or will see on my blog are of those we have trapped and fostered.

Our favorite local cat rescue organization is Shadow Cats, a group “dedicated to improving the lives of community cats through humane advocacy.” The reason we like them so much is that they are dedicated to the care of the current resident population of ill, immune compromised, injured and senior cats. In other words, they take the cats who would not otherwise have any hope.

So, when Shadow Cats recently held an art market fundraiser, I decided to use my craft supplies and creativity to make a scrapbook album for them to auction. I made the album in all one color palette, using a subtle cat theme (mostly through my titles and a few images) and with spaces for only 4×6 photos (so there would be no cropping needed by the person who ends up with it).

I had a great time creating this project and hope that someone who has a beloved cat or cats will enjoy it forever. Have you ever used your crafting habit to help an organization in whose work you believe? I can highly recommend it. It made me feel warm and fuzzy—like a cat! :-)

Royalty_Daquila-Pardo

Royalty in residence

Purrsonality_Daquila-Pardo

Purrsonality

OneCat_Daquila-Pardo

"One cat just leads to another." Ernest Hemingway

SittingCat_Daquila-Pardo

"The ideal of calm exists in a sitting cat." Jules Renard

Meow_Daquila-Pardo

Meow, purr, yawn

GreaterGift_Daquila-Pardo

"What greater gift than the love of a cat?" Charles Dickens

Connoisseurs_Daquila-Pardo

"Cats are the connoisseurs of comfort." James Herriot

Purr_Daquila-Pardo

I love you, purr & simple

Cattitude_Daquila-Pardo

Showing cattitude

TimeSpent_Daquila-Pardo

"Time spent with cats is never wasted." Sigmund Freud

Naptime_Daquila-Pardo

Naptime