Finally Friday and it’s Funtastic!

FuntasticFriday

This week seems like it has been a little longer for some reason so I (Katie) sure am glad to get to Friday. Of course we all love Fridays around here because there are sooooo many funtastic things to share with you!

.

TWEET TWEET!

Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Did you know that you can get these types of notices from us almost each and every day? If you follow The Daily Digi on Twitter you can find funtastic stuff all week long!

.

PAPERCLIPPING DIGI SHOW

PaperclippingDigiShowCropped

The Paperclipping Digi Show this week is called “The Digichick Talks Shop” with Nicole Seitler as a guest. The topic is about how do you choose a  digital scrapbook shop? What is it like behind-the-scenes for a shop owner? I thought this was a fascinating episode and I bet you will too!

If you listen in iTunes (and subscribe), it helps us keep track of the size of our audience (and helps us get sponsors).  Izzy has a video on his site explaining how to do that OR you can see our tutorial with screenshots:

Tutorial for Listening in iTunes

You can join in the discussion about the show after listening if you want.  You can listen below, subscribe in iTunes, or subscribe through our RSS feed.

[audio: http://traffic.libsyn.com/digishow/pds021_vvu.mp3]

.

clip_image001

FUNTASTIC FINDS IN DIGILAND! (all images are linked)

This FREE brag book from Traci Reed and the Hawt Mamas is just the perfect little fall project. How fun!

.

Danielle Thompson of Kitschy Digitals has a great deal for us! Here’s an exclusive coupon for TDD readers! : ) It’s 20% off and expires Friday the 29th. Here’s the code: 20KDDAD2010 This coupon would be great to use on her darling new clothesline frame collection.

Clothesline_preview

.

Have you seen this great idea? Valorie Wibbens posted this ADORABLE tutorial for creating a hybrid silhouette project. It’s a guest post on Pamela Donnis’ blog. So creative!

witchie

.

I really look forward to the new Idea Notebook each month from Digital Design Essentials!You may ask, “What is a DDE Idea Notebook?” It’s a grab bag full of digi surprises at a great price. You will find a full kit, alpha set, paper pack, and three embellishment collections. It’s only available for a limited time, so hurry!

.

I’m a big fan of Yin’s templates and I love that she is so generous with her freebies and low prices. 🙂 She has these new FREE templates on her blog right now!

Yin Templates 227

Yin Templates 226

Yin Templates 225

.

How adorable is this “Kooky Faces” collab by Gina Miller and Jacque Larsen?! Puts me right in the mood for Halloween. They have included an additional 15% off
coupon JUST for TDD readers! The code is monsterface good for THIS weekend only.
(October 22-24) It will take AN ADDITIONAL 15% off the ALREADY 20% off marked down price.

kookyfaces

.

Speaking of collabs… this one from Suzy Q and Faith True is sure fun! I love that it can be used for a variety of themes like exercise, weight loss, and cancer awareness.

There’s also an add-on

image

.

I just love making digi decorated candy bars – such a quick and easy project! Suzy Q has these templates to make it even easier. 🙂

image

.

Chelle’s Creations has some really unique and clever templates on sale this week for 20% off.

and she has a freebie on her blog for you to try out!

.

Kelleigh Ratzlaff is re-releasing her Perfect Pumpkin Template Set to include cutting files for digital die-cut machines.

KelleighR-PerfectPumpkin-cf_LRG

PumpkinOpenPropped_web

This would also be the perfect time to try out her fun masquerade mask set!

KelleighR-Masquerade-tp_LRG

.

Cinzia Designs has a gift for TDD readers! Today only you can download this awesome design your own wrapping paper. What a creative idea! I can’t wait to use it. The link is right on the product page, so hurry! 🙂

image

.

Finally, it’s not like we need any convincing around here, 😉 but Pamela Donnis has a great article about 9 reasons to digital scrapbook. Pass the link on to your friends! If you leave a comment (why you love digital) there is an opportunity to win a $10 gift card to her shop. She’ll post on Monday (10-25) to pick her favorite 10th reason!

9 ReasonsW

.

Hope you have a fabulous and FUNTASTIC Friday!

katie

P.S.  grannymike is the random winner chosen from the comments in yesterday’s post about Jenn!  She won $10 in product from Jennifer Labre!  THANKS!!  Check your inbox!

IN THE DESIGNER’S STUDIO WITH JENNIFER LABRE

DesignersStudioJenniferLabrecopy

I am very excited to welcome Jennifer Labre to THE DIGI FILES this month!!  I love the rich colors Jennifer uses in her kits and the super fun elements (like the tree with leaves in her contribution this month).  Here’s a closer look at what you can find in THE DIGI FILES by Jennifer:

jlabre-touchofspice-kit_LRG

This is one of the SEVEN collections you receive when you purchase THE DIGI FILES in the store or subscribe.  Here are some layouts created by our team using “Touch of Spice”:

image

Layout by Amy Wolff, additional supplies: template by Kim Wresh included in this months digi files
image
Layout by Jenn, additional supplies: Haphazard font by Fontologie, Pea Colton font
image
Layout by Katie, additional supplies: font, CK Script
image
Layout by Jacki
image
Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Emily Merritt template

You can see several more inspirational layouts using this collection on the Team Inspiration page.clip_image001_thumb312

InTheStudioWithJENNLCap

Hi everyone! My name is Jennifer Labre, known online as jenn7. I live in Wisconsin (brrr…) with my husband Jeff and two daughters
Jordan (9) and Jenna (almost 2). I’m currently a SAHM where I love spending time with my family, reading, watching reality TV, and of course,
scrapping and designing!

STORE
STORE
BLOG
TWITTER
FACEBOOK

designerscanvas3 0610_One-Cool-Chick

tips7tricks3

I’ve used ACDSee Photo Manager for years to organize all of my scrapbooking supplies. When I started designing, it was only natural for me to use it
to organize all of my tools and products also. That way, when I’m looking for a particular texture or brush, it’s so easy to find. I
simply navigate through the categories I created to find just what I need.

howitallstarted3

I started paper scrapping back in 2001 when I was pregnant with my daughter Jordan. In 2005 I discovered digital scrapping and haven’t
looked back! (Although I will admit, I still have all of my paper supplies!) For most of my professional career, I worked in
marketing and graphic design. A few years ago I got interested in learning to create my own digital scrapbooking products. After a lot
of practice and some encouragement from others, I finally opened my digital shop at The Digichick in April of this year. I couldn’t
be more thrilled! I love to design and scrap pages about my family.

inspirestocreate3

Everything inspires me! From patterns to textures to things my girls do, I really find my inspiration all over. A great color combo can
really dictate an entire kit to me, too.

toolbox3

Last year, I bought a new Dell laptop. (I miss my Sony Vaio.) I couldn’t live without it. I love being able to design
or scrap right in the living room in the midst of my family. It runs Windows 7 64 bit and has 4 GB of RAM. I design with Adobe Photoshop CS4
and Illustrator CS5 and use ACDSee Photo Manager 12 for organizing. My camera is a Canon Digital Rebel Xti and I have
two lenses: 50 mm and 28-135 mm. I also have an Epson scanner and a Bamboo Fun tablet which I need to make use of more often.

favoriteproduct3 5a588a71-f44b-4aec-b0b3-a5fc8be0e7a3

popularproduct3

fba64df9-60ee-4726-8c2e-ace9ef42b79e

clip_image001_thumb1512

Here are some of my favorite products by Jennifer

aacf11f1-66c2-4186-8e93-a4b371e79e8c

855223f6-40c7-44d0-96e3-94de4ff592fb

032164a8-f382-4439-90a2-e271e00faf30

e579326e-4075-47aa-a89e-002fd8ed1217

3484b06d-5e48-44d0-90e1-be01c6933da4

clip_image001_thumb1112

Here’s some inspirational layouts using Jennifer’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

2009_11_Cute_600

070410_Bubbles

One-Cool-Chick1

You-_-Me4

Be_Happy_JL_Layout

clip_image001_thumb712

Go have a look in Jennifer’s Store! We will randomly select a winner from those comments to win $10 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify)!

Jennifer has this coupon for us to use:

30% off, expires 11/1/10
code: TDD-30off

Jennifer also has a CT call going on:

image

Inspired by Touch of Spice

The following layouts were created using “Touch of Spice” by Jennifer Labre and included in THE DIGI FILES during October and can be purchased in the store or by subscription.

image
Layout by Misty
image
Layout by motterdo
image
Layout by Christy
image
Layout by Patty, additional supplies: Busy Bee – Easy Breezy 12, Font: Century Gothic
image
Layout by Jennifer Labre
image
Layout by Carrie
image
Layout by Bobbie, additional supplies: photo action by Pioneer Woman; worn edges overlay by Lynn Grieveson; edge overlay by Jan Hicks; font: Pea Beth
image
Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Template: Jen Markakis, Font : DJB Pippy
image
Layout by Lynne
image
Layout by Amy Wolff, additional supplies: template by Kim Wresh included in this months digi files
image
Layout by Jenn, additional supplies: Haphazard font by Fontologie, Pea Colton font
image
Layout by Katie, additional supplies: font, CK Script
image
Layout by Jacki
image
Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Emily Merritt template

A Holiday Planner Project + a gift for you!

preview

This is going to be the year that I (Katie) finally take the holiday season by the reins nice and early! After working on the travel journal project a few months ago, I knew I wanted to use a similar idea to help prepare me and my family for a happy holiday season. I’m so excited to share some templates and “ingredients” with our readers! Just click on the image above or this link for your free download. 🙂

.

ABOUT THE PLANNER:

I learned a great lesson when I put together a travel journal BEFORE our Alaskan cruise – a little preparation goes a long way! Our travel binder became a map and guide to our vacation, and it reminded me to collect memorabilia and information throughout our journey. A standard size 3 ring binder was the perfect choice for this project because it is portable, yet fits nicely on a shelf when not in use. It also holds standard size papers which is nice for collecting menus, newsletters, flyers, etc. I also loaded mine with several extra page protectors for collecting smaller loose pieces like postcards. The same format should work nicely with a holiday planner so all the templates and paper in this download are sized at 8.5 x11 inches.

With the holiday season quickly approaching, I knew that this would be the perfect time to put together a planner. I’ve always wanted to do this and I’m really excited to use this as a tool for both planning and celebrating a festive season. For me and my family, it will be used for the Christmas season. For others it might be helpful for Hanukkah, or another important holiday. However you choose to use it, there are plenty of ways to customize and complete your own planner. The best way for me to explain how to do this is to show you how my own project turned out.

CONTENTS OF MY PLANNER:

Included in the download are several pieces of wordart (made with the Fontologie Haphazard Font), a piece of digital Kraft paper, a dotted border, and four layered templates. I also used the Haphazard font to create additional titles, and chose SF Rachel (a free font from Sugar Frog Fonts) for the journaling font. I decided that I wanted to use felt pieces for my page accents so I chose the Merry and Bright collaborative kit by Kaye Winiecki and Kate Hadfield and a special delivery kit by Kaye.

merry and bright by Kate Hadfield & Kaye Winiecki special delivery

.

Then I went to my local office supply store and picked up a binder, some standard size page protectors, and some stick on index tabs to divide my planner into sections. I was hoping to find a cute patterned binder or maybe even a Kraft colored one, but no such luck. So I went with a basic view front binder in light blue.

2010 008

.

I put together a cover page to slip down in the viewing plastic on the front. I even used some adhesive to mount it on some larger cardstock. Does that count as a hybrid project? lol! 😀

image

.

My goal right now was to put together the structure of the planner so I can simply add things to it throughout the next several weeks and during the actual holiday season. I decided to make a page for each section and then insert blank page protectors behind each category.

.

I started off with our “Holiday Favorites” so that I could be sure to plan for the important things that help each person in our family feel like it’s a great holiday season.

TDD_holiday_template_favorites

I interviewed my kids and my husband at dinner the other night and asked them to each name 5 things that they love to do, eat, watch, or experience during the holidays. I had to do a lot of prodding to get the information out of my son and husband. My daughter could have listed 100 things. That’s one of the challenges I have when it comes to planning for the holidays. She wants to celebrate each and every day possible, where my son and husband don’t really like all the hustle and bustle. By considering each of their personalities and desires, I feel like I have a better idea of what to put on our calendar. That is why I started my planner with the favorites page.

.

Here’s my “title page” for the calendar section.

ornament2 copy

In my binder, I put a copy of our personal calendar for the month of December right after this title page. I printed out our own calendar from the scheduling program I use (Microsoft Outlook). I didn’t do a lot to decorate the calendar page because I want to be able to print out new copies if there are changes (and there will be) to our schedule. Even though I carry a smart phone where I can access my calendar at any time, I still want a hard copy in my planner so I can consider our schedule when making plans for meals, activities, and other festivities.

.

Next comes the wishlist section.

TDD_holiday_template_wishlist copy

I thought it would be fun for each of us to pick at least one thing we would like to put on our holiday list of wishes. I also included a small list of other ideas for each person. I always tell my kids that I like to have several suggestions from them so that they will be surprised at what we get for them. They do not expect everything on their list. I like having all the ideas right in my planner because then I can have that information for birthdays or if they want to later save up their own money for a purchase.

.

A big message I try to emphasize for the holidays is that giving is what it’s all about. Having a section about what gifts we want to give, and the cards we want to send is an important part of this planner.

tree copy

.

I also like to keep a log of “gifts received” because it helps me keep track of who I want to give gifts to, and it’s a great planning record for years to come.

presents copy

.

Food is one of my favorite things about the holidays (and any day for that matter!). I love to collect recipes to try out and of course there are the tried and true favorites that we must have each year.

TDD_holiday_template_recipe copy

.

One of the best practices we have in our family, is taking the time to review and reflect upon major events. Scrapbookers are very good at this! When we finish a big project, we like to make a list of what went “right” and what could “be improved”. I’m going to include a “DO and DON’T” page right in my planner to keep track of these tidbits of advice pertaining to the holiday season. I already have quite a few filled in from previous years.

basic copy

.

CUSTOMIZING YOUR OWN PLANNER:

There are plenty of other pages you could include in your own planner. I like the idea of setting out a sheet of paper (decorated digi style of course!) for guests to sign when they come to visit. Then this could later be added to the planner. You could do the same with visits you make, just take your planner along with you and have your friends and family write small notes to you in it.

The planning binder is a great place to store memorabilia that you collect throughout the season. Programs from musical performances, recipes from magazines, party invitations, and even colored pictures from your kids can all be kept safe and wrinkle-free in your holiday planner.

Feel free to make this project work for you by customizing the templates, ideas, and ingredients to your own needs. I’d love to see what you do with your own planner so please share yours in our flickr group, or leave a comment (and link if possible) here on the blog. I will share mine again in a “Funtastic Friday” post in December so you can see how I’m using my own system. It would be fun to also include links to some planners made by our readers as well.

P.S. If you need some holiday ideas to get you in the festive mood, be sure to check out last Wednesday’s post on Christmas in October!

katie

Reader Challenge: From The Files

image

File Names:
Jennifer Labre: jlabre-touchofspice-PP1.jpg
Allison Pennington: APennington_Follow_Patterns (6).jpg
Lynne Marie: lynnemarie_woodstock_paper21.jpg
Kate Hadfield: khadfield_scrapping9to5_todolist.png
Misty Cato: mcato-skipwithme-ribbon1.png
Designs by Anita: ad_aperfectday_element_01.png
Kim Wresh (optional): kwresh-tdd-02.psd

Each month we do a special challenge called “From the Files” where we pick one specific item from each of the kits featured in the current month’s DIGI FILES. This month, I (Jenn Lindsey) took on the task of choosing the products from each of the contributors (man, that was hard!). The purpose of this challenge is to really stretch your creativity by finding new and fun ways to use a limited list of supplies. I didn’t want to make it too easy, but tried to choose items with a variety of textures and that could be used in many different ways either graphically or to build depth into your layout. This challenge always inspires me to look at my supplies in different ways and try to find new uses for my supplies instead of always using them as their implied use.

To play along, all you have to do is create a layout using each one of these items listed above (the template is optional) at least once in your layout. You’re invited to recolor, resize, and otherwise alter any of these items, but your finished page (or project) should only contain these specific files. Feel free to add any fonts that you’d like. Sound like a challenge? Well, it is. But it’s a fun one! Here are a few of the layouts the team came up with:

image

Layout by Amy. cb wispy, ar christy, pea mee mee, pea anna banana, mtf toast, traveling typewriter, snf universal & rosewood std fonts

Amy used the hue/sat to change the color on everything to match her new basement colors. She cut a straight piece of the frame to create the chair rail molding, and cut strips of the paper and shadowed them to create the planks on the wall. (Such creative uses for these items!) She also created her own photo mats by cutting a rectangle of paper and then cutting out a smaller rectangle from the center of it. Her fun title was created by using multiple fonts

image Layout by Katie. Fontologie Printing Primer font.

Katie recolored the ribbon using the hue adjustment slider in PSE 8. She also added the cream paper on top of the patterned paper and adjusted the opacity to tone down the print a bit.

image

Layout by Trina

Trina let the gorgeous patterned paper be the star of her layout, and created a nice visual anchor to her page with the horizontal arrangement of pictures and elements.

image

Layout by Heddy. Fonts are CK Mapped Out and CK Journalling

Heddy created a classic blocked design, which works perfectly with the notebook and frame elements.

image

Layout by Jenn. FO Giggles Small font

I started with the template, deleted a few things, then rearranged the rest. For the background paper, I changed the hue of the paper so it would better coordinate with the pictures I wanted to use. For the ribbon, I applied a blue photo filter (in PS) to bump up the intensity of the colors in the ribbon to better match as well.

For the patterned paper I used the Color Replacer option in PS to select and change only a couple of the colors so the paper coordinated better with my new color scheme.

I prefer big photos to open space on the layout, so added the photo blend to add more visual interest as well as giving me the option of using more of the pictures in this series.

Now it’s your turn to play! Be sure to leave a link to your layout or project in the comments section of THIS post to be eligible for the drawing for $10 in product from one of our contributors. Don’t forget that you can also link to our flickr group if you want to upload your page there. Deadline for entries is this Saturday at midnight ET.

P.S. Michelle is the random winner chosen from the comments in yesterday’s post about Misty! She won $10 in product from Misty! THANKS!! Check your inbox!

IN THE DESIGNER’S STUDIO WITH MISTY CATO

DesignersStudiomistycatocopy

I am thrilled to be welcoming back Misty Cato to THE DIGI FILES again this month!  I love Misty’s style and great use of colors (see my favorites below).  She can truly rock both boy and girl kits!!  Let’s take a closer look at her contribution this month:

folder (2)

This is just ONE of the SEVEN collections (6 kits and 1 template set) you get as part of THE DIGI FILES this month.  You can purchase them in the store or subscribe to the DIGI GAME (both the Digi Files and the Playbook, an interactive ebook that gives you a behind the scenes look at how we achieve our techniques and looks!  It really is the BEST deal in digital scrapbooking!

Here are some layouts created by our team using “Skip With Me”:

image

Layout by Trina, additional supplies: Half Pack 2010 Quarterly Assortment Vol. 3 – Cindy Schneider; Font – Arial
image
Layout by Jenn, additional supplies: template by Jenn Lindsey, Reisling font
image
Layout by Jacki, additional supplies: Font – Giggles by Fontologies; Glitter – Angela & Emily Powers
image
Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Cathy Zielske word art; Font is Museo Slab
image
Layout by Heddy, additional supplies: Fonts are CK True Type, CK Blessed, CK Black Out, CK Carter

You can see more inspirational layouts using this collection on the Team Inspiration page.clip_image001_thumb312

InTheStudioWithMISTYCATOCap

I live in Everett, Washington (just north of Seattle) with my husband of 11 years and our two children; Jamin(6) and Mya(2). I fill most of my days exploring the world (or at least the Pacific Northwest) with the kids. Anyone interested in seeing a bit of our life here or viewing more photos than anyone could ever want to see of someone else’s kids is welcome to drop by our family blog; Jamin and Mya.

STORE

BLOG

NEWSLETTER

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

designerscanvas3

I’ve struggled to find a scrapping style that features large prominent photos and story-telling style journaling that still looks contemporary and stylish. Recently I’ve been inspired by Candice Greenway’s gallery. I love her use of bold titlework, multiple journal spots and fun details to accent her amazing photos.

The two pages I’ve included and several others in my gallery are inspired by her style. The page titled, Hop Skip and Jump was created using Skip with Me, my contribution to the Digi Files.

mcato-hopskipandjump

mcato-aberrysweetday

tips7tricks3

Is it cheating to just link you up to the tutorials section of my blog?

Answer from Steph: No!  I love Misty’s tutorials!! 🙂

howitallstarted3

Tell us how (and when) you got started scrapbooking (paper first or digital?) and then how/when you went digital.  Also tell us how and when you got started designing and why (were you a scrapper then designer or the other way around?)

I started digital scrapping in 2005 as a way to document my (then newborn) son. Scissors, glue and I make a scary combination, so digital seemed the clear choice for me. I started designing right from the start as I didn’t even know there were digital supplies available for purchase. I began selling my designs 6 months later.

inspirestocreate3

My inspiration nearly always comes from a photo; usually one of my children. Quite often I’ll sit down to scrap photos and end up making a kit to scrap them with. Sometimes the final kit ends up going in a different direction completely but a photo is always the starting point. Strawberry Fields is a good example.

clip_image001

toolbox3

I use a custom built PC with an Intel Core 2 Quad CPU, 3.25GB RAM. I use Photoshop and Illustrator CS3; I also have Photoshop Elements so I can answer questions and write tutorials for PSE. My camera is a Canon Rebel XSi

I couldn’t live without my tablet. It has completely replaced my mouse. My husband has to go hunting for a mouse on the rare occasion that he needs to use my computer.

favoriteproduct3

Gosh, that’s hard. Why don’t you just ask me to pick which child I love the most? (ok, perhaps I’m being a little dramatic). I’ll go with You Can Be My Cowgirl because it was inspired by my daughter’s newfound love for ponies. I was really pleased with how it came out; a little sassy and a little rough-n-tumble and yet still feminine.

If you asked me this question on a different day, you’d probably get a different answer.

f832aff8-0da6-4856-a7b1-829e7a26a895

popularproduct3

Blue Skies Smiling has probably been the most popular recent release.

f9071362-f07d-4452-8927-ef8281af2de3

clip_image001_thumb1512

Here are some of my favorite products by Misty

3a53f8e8-69f4-4a72-8ee7-e81caf2d9e69

30155b30-802f-4686-9782-7cb238cc5155

fe90c944-549f-4cce-9d58-2a37065abf01

e55b2c8a-eb7c-4a6b-b382-cceefcf6aef2

e81519f2-c207-49c7-a10e-5b09fa4126ca

clip_image001_thumb1112

Here’s some inspirational layouts using Misty’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

2010_09_06-ggquinn-and-jake

gcf_ctmc_dim_120910-fw

aug2010_availoveyou

08_31_rain-copy

adayaway_web

clip_image001_thumb712

Go have a look in Misty’s Store! We will randomly select a winner from those comments to win $10 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify)!

As a thank you to our readers, Misty has created this coupon to share with all of us!mcato-salecoupon

Inspired by Skip With Me

The following layouts were created using “Skip With Me” which is included in THE DIGI FILES from the store or via subscription during October only.

image
Layout by Jennifer Labre
image
Layout by Giseli
image
Layout by Kara
image
Layout by Nettie B
image
Layout by Angie
image
Layout by Diane
image
Layout by HeatherKS
image
Layout by Tara Kelley
image
Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Scallops: Crystal Wilkerson, Font: CK Fashion, Shadows: One Little Bird
image
Layout by Trina, additional supplies: Half Pack 2010 Quarterly Assortment Vol. 3 – Cindy Schneider; Font – Arial
image
Layout by Jenn, additional supplies: template by Jenn Lindsey, Reisling font
image
Layout by Jacki, additional supplies: Font – Giggles by Fontologies; Glitter – Angela & Emily Powers
image
Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Cathy Zielske word art; Font is Museo Slab
image
Layout by Heddy, additional supplies: Fonts are CK True Type, CK Blessed, CK Black Out, CK Carter

UnDigi: Comfort Foods

BakedPotatoSoup

There are many things I love about Fall, but one of my favorites is the comfort foods that come with the change to the colder weather!  I thought I would share a few of my favorites today:

Chances are, as you are reading this, I have Beef Bourguignon cooking in my slow cooker and filling my house with a wonderful aroma!  I tried this recipe for the first time about a year ago and my family loves it!  Even the kids have 2-3 servings!  We haven’t had it since last winter, so I decided I would cook it again this weekend.  I bought enough to make 4 recipes and will cook one recipe and freeze the other 3.  I LOVE having dinner in my freezer!

clip_image001[6]

A couple of years ago, I was able to travel with my husband to Boston in the Fall.  What a wonderful time to be Boston!  We happened upon Stephanie’s On Newbury and of course had to eat there!  The food was so GOOD!  We ended up eating there twice on that trip.  I loved the “Shepherd’s Pie In a Half Roasted Squash” so much, that I googled to see if by chance I might find a similar recipe.  To my surprise, I found THE recipe!!

clip_image001[4]

If you haven’t ever had Baked Potato Soup, you NEED to!!  This is a recipe that EVERYONE eats!!  I have made it for in-laws, cousins, friends, and usually take it into friends when they are sick or just had surgery.  I always hear the same thing, “That soup really hit the spot!  Can I get the recipe?”  I took a big pot into a friend after she had surgery and she said it was the only thing she ate for 5 days straight (and still talks about it 10 years later)  Here it is:

Baked Potato Soup

4 large potatoes, baked
After cooling, scoop out pulp

2/3 c. butter or margarine
2/3 c. flour
6 c. milk
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
4 green onions chopped
12 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1-1/4 cup shredded cheese, divided
1  – 8 oz. carton sour cream

Melt butter, add flour to create a roux, add milk.  Stir constantly until thickens. Add salt, pepper, half of the cheese, and the sour cream, stir until cheese and sour cream are melted and mixed in.  Add potato pulp, cook until heated.

Serve with bacon,  green onions, and remainder of cheese.

clip_image001

I would LOVE to hear if you try any of these recipes!  Go on and enjoy some comfort foods!

Quick and Easy Collages

word

banner made with Shape Collage

Want to know a secret? When you have a lot of photos, nothing is easier than using a software program with a built in collage feature. Both Steph and I (Katie) have written about a few of our favorite collage tools before, but we thought it would be fun to round them all up into one post so you can see some examples and comparisons.

PICASA:

Picasa is by far one of my favorite tools just because of the collage feature. I love that I can make digital piles of photos look great with the click of a few buttons. Even better, Picasa is a FREE program!

To create this collage with hundreds of Disney World pictures, I selected the folder of photos I wanted to use, and then chose“Create” and “Picture Collage” from the top bar menu.

Florida Oct

I’ve used collages like this on layouts. They export as jpeg images, so you can remove the white background using a magic wand tool, or just use the white on your layout like I did in the sample below:

6a00d834528d5569e200e553896fa68834-500pi

Some resources to help you use Picasa:

.

FOTO FUSION:

This is the program that Steph has called her “Secret Scrapping Weapon” and after purchasing my own copy, I now know why! This is the most customizable of all the collage software programs that I have used.

Both of these collages were made with a folder of photos from a 2008 vacation to Oregon. Each one of them took only minutes to create! Just use the auto collage wizard tool in the top menu under “TOOLS” and play around with the different adjustment settings.

Oregon 2008_2

ffmixed

I think each one of them would be a great digital scrapbook page!

Some resources to help you use Foto Fusion:

.

PHOTOSHOP ELEMENTS:

Photoshop Elements has a basic collage creating tool to help you combine several photos together. Use the “Create” tab and follow the step-by-step instructions in this post to put together easy collages in PSE.

image

I chose a white background for this collage and turned it into this simple layout by adding a fun font. (Fontologie Empty Wrapper font)

Untitled-2

Some resources to help you with Photoshop Elements collages:

.

Shape Collage is another great program that some of our readers have mentioned to us. It automatically collages your selected photos. The free version is not as customizable, but if you upgrade to a paid version you can save as a PSD/TIF file so that you can move around photos.

To create a collage just drag your photos into the work space and click a selection. Incredibly easy!

collage

I especially love the shaped collages! I think they would be so fun to use on blog posts or digital layouts.

heart

My very favorite part of Shape Collage IS available in the free version: you can create a collage in any shape you wish (letter of the alphabet; symbol; number; shape, etc.).

2007

Those are all pictures I took in 2007 formed into a collage of the numbers 2007. Cool! 🙂

Some resources to help you use Shape Collage:

.

I hope you are ready to have some collage fun with your photos. You can make fun images for blogs and scrapbook pages, or even create some frame-worthy collages.

katie

.

Happy Funtastic Friday to you!

FuntasticFriday.gif

Who doesn’t love Friday!?  Such a GREAT day of the week!  I’m looking forward to time with family and a visit from my mom.  I’m also looking forward to some GREAT digi deals!

imageJust a reminder that we are sending out FREE goodies from some past contributors to THE DIGI FILES every couple of weeks or so.  Make sure you are subscribed to the newsletters.  The sooner you sign up, the sooner you will start collecting the goods!

PaperclippingDigiShowCropped

The Paperclipping Digi Show this week is called, “Purple Is a Death Sentence” and Melissa Bennett and Amy Edwards join Izzy and I for the discussion.   Listen to the show and then join us in the comments of the show post for even more discussion and share your thoughts (lots of people have already left comments)!

If you listen in iTunes (and subscribe), it helps us keep track of the size of our audience (and helps us get sponsors).  Izzy has a video on his site explaining how to do that OR you can see our tutorial with screenshots:

Tutorial for Listening in iTunes

You can join in the discussion about the show after listening if you want.  You can listen below, subscribe in iTunes, or subscribe through our RSS feed.

[audio: http://traffic.libsyn.com/digishow/pds020_rrj.mp3]

clip_image001

Look what’s going on around digiland this week:

Jacque Larsen and Aja Abney have this collab and an EXCLUSIVE coupon for 20% off for TDD readers, use code:   20_DD
image

Danielle Young has a fun contest going on right now:
Purchase the new Bloom & Grow Layered Album Templates at Oscraps.com by midnight on Friday (10/15) to be entered to win a 26-page 12″ x 12″ printed album from AdoramaPix! One random winner will be selected this weekend! More details on my blog!

image

image

Allison has a GREAT deal going on in honor of her birthday (that started on the day of her feature and reveal here last week:
image

Tracie Stroud has this freebie on her blog:

image

If you have admired our very own Jenn Lindsey’s unique blended but layered style layouts, you can now easily create a similar look using her templates! Today is the last day for this sale:
image

Chelle’s Creations has 30% off through Sunday this weekend:

image You get this word art for free with the purchase of the kit:
image

image
You get this word art for free with the purchase of the kit: image
image

I can’t believe that suzyQ is GIVING this paper pack away:

image

Suzy also has a new series called “Stash-Builders:

image

image

image

Here’s a couple of big things going on at ScrapOrchard:

image

image

Traci Reed has a couple new kits coming out this weekend and they will be on sale Saturday:

image

image

Flergs and Nicole have this gorgeous new kit on sale:

image

Paislee Press and Crystal Livesay have some collaboration templates on sale 30% off through today:

image

image

image

Sir Scrapalot Designs has a huge bundle on sale for a great low price:

image

Catscrap will have a Designers’ Choice Sale where designers will select items to be on sale 50% for 24 hours

P.S. Rebecca is the random winner chosen from yesterday’s post.  She wom $10 in product from Designs By Anita…check your email!