Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Birthday Blog Hop, Part Three

Oh my goodness, I am overwhelmed with birthday wishes! Turning 30 really isn't so bad with friends like you! I wanted to pop in today with a little gift I made myself :).

I'm not trying to be artistic with this photo, but it was noon when I took it and boy, was the sun bright! I made myself a brooch to match a new top. I used two felt roses like the ones I sell in the shop, but I added lace to make them just a bit more special.

And speaking of felt roses, here's a peek at one of the "thank you" gifts going out with orders purchased this week :).

If you haven't had a chance to join in on the hop yet, there's still time! You can start here. I will cut off entries for prizes at midnight my time (PDT). I'll announce all the lucky ladies on Friday :).

THANK YOU so much for making my birthday so very special! Tessa

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Birthday Blog Hop, Part Two

Hello! I am having so much fun with this blog hop! If you haven't had a chance to join in yet, or if you have no idea what I'm talking about, please see THIS post. As I mentioned yesterday, I wanted to share something new each day of the hop, and today I am sharing a mini album that I made with a hodgepodge of supplies, a yo-yo flower from the August Sampler and the Summer Twilight Sweet Spots.

To see more of this album, please see my flickr photostream. Speaking of flickr, did you know there is a flickr page for Precocious Paper? If you have made anything with Precocious Paper products, feel free to add it to this group. Also, I've begun a Pinterest board for projects I find around blogland that feature Precocious Paper products. You can find that here. I'll be adding all the blog hop projects soon!

Before I go, I thought I'd answer a couple questions I received about the hop:

♥ When will winners be announced? Friday.

♥ If I have trouble with Blogger and can't leave a comment, what should I do? I want everyone to have a chance to win the Grand Prize, which requires leaving a comment with each designer. If some blogs are being difficult, please leave a comment about that designer's project on the Precocious Paper Facebook page. If you aren't on Facebook, feel free to shoot me an email - precociouspaper (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Thank you all so much for celebrating with me! Have a fabulous day! Tessa

Monday, August 29, 2011

Birthday Blog Hop!

Hello everyone! I am *thrilled* to be kicking off my Birthday Blog Hop today! I even have butterflies in my tummy as I type this :). I am turning the big three-oh on Wednesday, and I thought that it would be fun to celebrate online with some of my scrappy friends and fans of my Etsy shop, Precocious Paper. Nineteen talented designers have created fabulous projects. I hope you will join us!

I am going to share a new project each day of the hop, and today I am sharing a new yarn wreath:

I used the chartreuse yo-yo flower from the August Sampler, Summer Twilight, as well as the Navy, Fuchsia and White Felt Roses.

Presents are a fun part of having a birthday, so I have some for you! Here are the details:

♥ Leave a comment on EVERY designer's post, as well as this post, to be entered to win the Grand Prize - the September, October, November and December Samplers! That's a value of over $50.00, and the upcoming samplers are some of my favorites ever :).
♥ As you are leaving your comments, I will randomly be choosing hoppers to receive surprise gifts.
♥ One lucky blog follower who participates in the hop will win a $20.00 gift certificate.
♥ One lucky Facebook fan will win a $20.00 gift certificate.
♥ All purchases made August 29th - September 5th will receive a free gift.
♥ Find free shipping codes at each designer's blog.

Ready to hop? Here is the AMAZING line-up! If you get lost, just come back here to get back on track. And when you're all done, don't forget to come back and tell me what you thought of the hop!

Tessa Buys  (you're here now)

If you don't have a chance to visit all the blogs today, no worries! The hop runs through Wednesday, August 31st. Thank you to all the designers who so willingly joined in on the hop, and thank you for celebrating with me.  Have fun! Tessa

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Birthday Blog Hop Starts Tomorrow!

I'm so excited!

To see all the designers participating, as well as some of the Precocious Paper product they got to play with, visit the Precocious Paper Facebook Page here.

Have a great day!

Friday, August 26, 2011

What a week!

Monday was wonderful. Josh had the day off and we accomplished quite a bit, including our school shopping. We were looking forward to one more day of summer and then sending Colten and Carson off to 3rd and 2nd grades. However, Tuesday did not go as planned.

About mid-afternoon my mother-in-law, who lives just across the street (no Everybody Loves Raymond issues here!), rushed in and told the boys to get their shoes on. I was getting ready to pack orders and came out from my craft room to hear, "We are being evacuated." A police officer had just driven down our street, calling for people to leave their homes because a tanker, filled with propane and less than a mile away, had caught on fire. I scooped up my purse and kids and off to my parents' house we went.

While we waited for Josh to get home from work, they widened the evacuation zone a little and made it mandatory. Because I had left everything behind, including my crockpot dinner, Josh snuck back in on his way to us and grabbed our bedding, clothes, diapers, etc. - and the crockpot :). The news was getting dire. Not only was the tanker on fire, but it was surrounded by hundreds of gallons of more propane. If the tanker were to explode, much of downtown, the high school, our neighborhood and our house would be destroyed.

They canceled the first day of school, then later canceled school until Monday. The boys were sad about that, but they were enjoying cartoons and treats and Grandma's house. We settled in for the night, along with another family. It was a little crowded and a little tense, but we were glad we all had a place to go to.

The next morning we heard that a team of experts from Texas had flown in and were preparing to do a hot tap. They were going to weld a valve and pipe to the burning tanker and drain the propane into a pond that they were digging. Preparations took all day, and the process didn't really begin until that night. They quickly discovered that the tanker had thousands of gallons of propane less than they had estimated and switched tactics. Firefighters pumped foam into the top of the tanker and were able to put out the fire. They lifted the evacuation at about midnight, but we waited until morning to go home.

Through this experience my belief in the power of prayer was strengthened, I was impressed with the leaders of my church and their concern for every member's welfare, and I learned how poorly prepared I was for an emergency like that. We are currently preparing a more mobile way to have clothes, food, and supplies ready to go at an instant. I strongly encourage everyone to have kits of emergency supplies prepared - now. Don't wait for something to happen. Get them ready now. If that tanker had exploded, all we would have owned would have been what we brought with us, and it would not have been enough. We are all safe and sound in our home and counting our blessings, but we are taking this experience as a warning and getting things in order.

On a happier, scrappier note, I did manage to release the September Sampler, Autumn Afternoon, on time yesterday :). Click on the photos for links.

Don't forget - my Birthday Blog Hop starts on Monday! I can't wait for you to see what all these talented ladies have been making!

Also, Miss Art's Papercrafting School is having a free class weekend! For all the details on that, please see the information here. I LOVE watching these classes and participating in the chats. It's so fun to get to know other scrappers this way, see their process and learn new things. Give it a try - you'll love it too!

Thank you to everyone who emailed, called, posted on Facebook, sent prayers, etc. I really appreciate it. I hope I have a very calm and uneventful weekend :). Enjoy yours too! Tessa

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Studio - Looking Forward

Teaching nine dance classes while you have a cold = losing your voice and sounding like a frog. Other than that, and the occasional cough and sneeze, I am feeling much better than I did last week. I am looking forward to accomplishing a lot this week. Speaking of looking forward, there's a new challenge at The Studiocreate a layout about something you're looking forward to.

I am looking forward to fall :). Summer hasn't been too bad temperature-wise, but I am looking forward to cooler temperatures and a warmer wardrobe. I'm already scoping out new cardigans and scarves.

I used the navy roses from this set in my Etsy shop, as well as the leaves from this set. As you can see, my blossoming love for the color navy blue is growing and growing :).

So what are you looking forward to? I hope you'll join us. You can find the challenge details here. A lucky participant will win a gift certificate to Scrap Rat, and you definitely want that :). I'm off to catch up in the shop, finish getting the boys ready for their first day of school tomorrow, and to wrap up plans for next week's blog hop! Have a great day. Tessa

PS - Outfit image source via Pinterest.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Designer Friday - September Sneak Peek

Hello! I'm so sorry for my absence this week. After taking care of a sick husband all weekend, I caught what he had :(. Despite the sniffles and sore throat, I am excited to be sharing a sneak peek of my September Sampler with you, courtesy of Mandy.

First, Mandy created a birthday display for her daughter. How cute is this? The butterfly and large flower are from the sampler. Mandy used one of the included ribbons to create another flower.

Next, Mandy made this beautiful necklace. Using a chain from GCD Studios and a pendant made with Epiphany Crafts items, Mandy attached four flowers from the sampler: the large ginger-colored satin flower, two silk flowers in rust and mustard, and a woodgrain mustard yo-yo flower.

You will have to wait to see more with the September Sampler. I've asked Mandy to share another project during the Birthday Blog Hop. I hope you are planning on attending :). The designers I have lined up are all fabulous and I just know they are creating amazing things to share.

I'm off to finish orders and hopefully wrap up some projects before heading off to dance. I love my Fridays, but being sick is going to make 5 hours of dance class interesting :). Have a wonderful weekend! Tessa

Saturday, August 13, 2011


Hello! I hope your weekend is going well so far :). I thought I would pop in with a post about some accessories I've been making lately.

A couple of Sundays ago I wanted to wear one of my really long necklaces, the kind you loop around your neck twice for a layered effect. I struggle with this necklace because Jaxon likes to pull on it when he sits on my lap, and I'm constantly adjusting it.  If only I could clip the necklace in place somehow, I thought. Cue lightbulb moment. I went to my scrapbook room and whipped up a little flower clip. It kept my necklace in place perfectly and was a great pop of color to add to my cardi and dress.

I recently had the opportunity to make hair clips for two lovely flower girls in an upcoming wedding. Their dresses are ivory and champagne and the wedding accent colors are lime green and orange - so pretty!

If you are interested, I do take custom orders for hair clips, head bands, brooches, etc. Just send me an email or convo me through Etsy.  Enjoy the rest of your weekend! Tessa

Friday, August 12, 2011

Designer Friday - Heather Leopard

Happy Friday! Today I am excited to introduce Precocious Paper's August guest designer, Heather Leopard! Heather has been playing with the August Sampler, Summer Twilight.

Heather decided to dabble in couponing, and what better to get yourself excited about clipping coupons than a fabulous coupon clutch? This adorable organizer began as a simple $1 find at Target. Embellished with the large polka dot fabric flower, the satin twist flower and one of the felt spiral flowers from the sampler, this coupon clutch would definitely encourage me to save some coin at the grocery store :).

Heather also prettied up a simple pillar candle. She wrapped the candle in ribbons from the sampler and then layered flowers and leaves in a cluster on the front. So pretty! What an easy gift, too :).

Heather still has plenty of goodies to create with, and you'll see more from her during the Birthday Blog Hop August 29th-31st. If you would like to play with the August Sampler, I still have a few left. You can find it in the shop here. And if you'd like to get to know Heather better, you can read about her on the Design Team page and find her blog here. If you haven't received a sampler in the mail before, Heather will show you what it looks like when it arrives :).

Have a great day! Tessa

Thursday, August 11, 2011

A Tour of Tessa in Blogland Today

I've got a few projects out in blogland today that I wanted to share with you. First up, Sketchy Thursdays!

The three small photo spaces in the sketch were perfect for these pictures of my little man going down the slide again and again.

You can find all the details (playing along, the DT's samples, the awesome prize) at the Sketchy Thursdays blog. I also have a layout up on the Scrapbook Circle blog today, featuring the August kit, You Are My Sunshine:

The current challenge is to create a layout that includes circles.  Everyone is welcome to join in on the challenge, subscriber or not. I'd love to see you play along. You can find the details here.

Lastly, I have a project up on the GCD Studios blog today :). Using the Great Outdoors line, I created a sign for my boys' backyard clubhouse:

You can read all about it here. Phew! I think that just about covers it :). Today is my mom's birthday, so I'm off to finish her card and present (to be shared very soon!). Have a fabulous day! Tessa

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Scrap Rat

Hello! I wanted to share another layout and a card that I created with the August Scrap Rat kit.

Jaxon is really good at peddling his tricycle now. It's the first thing he plays with when he goes outside. At least a few times a day, while I'm folding laundry or working in my scrapbook room, I'll hear his little voice say, "Hi Mom!" I'll turn around to find that he has peddled his way through the garage, kitchen, dining room and down the hallway to me. One time the camera was handy, so I had to snap some photos before he put it in reverse and headed back outside.

He also has a thing for the number three right now, which is what this layout is about. Besides his three-wheeler, he thinks the answer to any kind of number question is three, including how old he is. He's really two.

One of my favorite elements in the kit is the package of mini cameos from The Girls Paperie.  I used one here to top off my twine bow. I'm excited to share with you my last project from the August kit, but you'll have to wait until it's my turn for a tutorial on the Scrap Rat blog in a couple of weeks. If you haven't had a chance to check out Scrap Rat, you can find them here.

Have a great day! Tessa

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Studio - Books

There's a new layout challenge at The Studio, with a voucher to Scrap Rat up for grabs.  The challenge is to create a layout inspired by books - titles, covers, stories, anything related to books.  

When I first began designing for Scrap Rat about a year ago, I was sent a beautiful, distressed, vintage book cover. I thought about using it for a mini album cover, but I just never found the right project. Then this challenge came along and I just knew I had to incorporate my book cover.

I love the left edge where you can see it was torn from the spine of the book. I love the worn corners, scuffs and scratches. I thought it would make a great background piece. As I looked for a photo to use, this picture of my boys in their Converse and blue jeans grabbed my attention. The blue was perfect, and then the title and journaling seemed to just fall into place, right on theme.

If you'd like to play along, we would love to have you! You can find all the details on entering here. Have a wonderful day! Tessa

Wedding Wand

Hello! I wanted to start this week off by sharing a project that was on the SRM Stickers blog on Friday:

SRM asked me to play with their new wedding stickers. As soon as I received the assignment I knew exactly what I wanted to make - a bouquet! I started with an SRM wand and filled it with pearl candies.  Next, I took a 5 inch styrofoam ball and bored a hole the same width as the wand through the center.

I glued over 40 handmade paper flowers to the ball and added the wand. I embellished the wand with a strand of vintage pearl trim, felt leaves, ribbon and a tag with one of the new stickers.

I love how it turned out and am already planning other versions - fabric flowers for a birthday bouquet, silk flowers for a get well bouquet, etc. You can see the original post at the SRM blog here.

I hope your weekend was wonderful and that your week is looking bright, too :). Thanks for stopping by - I love all my visitors and appreciate the time you take to see what I've been up to.  Have a great day! Tessa

Friday, August 5, 2011

Precocious Paper - Big Event!

Okay, it really isn't big compared to a lot other events I can think of, but for my little Etsy shop, this is the biggest one I've done yet! Ready? Well, this month marks a milestone in my life - the big three-oh. Yep, I'm turning 30! I am celebrating my birthday with a big group of talented ladies and you! I've sent oodles of packages filled with Precocious Paper goodies to many of my online scrappy friends and fans of Precocious Paper.  Over the next few weeks they will be designing projects to share and we will hop together from blog to blog, admiring their work, leaving sweet comments, and entering to win a big Precocious Paper prize :).  Sound like fun?! I am *so* excited.

Just who are these fabulous ladies? Well, I'm not exactly telling yet.  But, if you happen to see one of those blog hop ads on someone else's blog, you'll know that they are one of my girls :).  I'll do a big fancy shmancy reveal in the week leading up to the hop, so stay tuned.

Save the date! I hope you'll enjoy the hop as much as I am enjoying putting it together :). Have a fabulous weekend! Tessa

Thursday, August 4, 2011


My boys finally got the water bug this summer - a real love of the water, confidence, enthusiasm. I'm not a big water person myself, but I don't want my opinion to rub off on them. I hope this new love, combined with lessons and practice, will lead to lots of fun for them.  Even if I stick to the shore to watch :).

I took this photo on the 4th of July when we were at the lake.  They are just so happy :). Even though I didn't have a smaller companion photo, I still wanted to use it for the latest sketch at Sketchy Thursdays:

I was inspired by the messy paint, so I used three different shades of blue Glimmer Mist to create my background. I'm finding myself dunking a paintbrush into the bottles more and more often.

I layered vintage papers and lots of decorative tape to mimic the transparent colors of the water in the photo.

I recently fell in love with Indie Girl by Sassafras again and was happy to put to use some stickers and borders from the line for this page.

If you'd like to see the other designers' takes on the sketch, check out this week's prize, and play along, stop by the Sketchy Thursdays blog here.  Enjoy your day! Tessa