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Dragged out my Jams


And decided I needed to feel like a mermaid! They have been on for 3 days, and I forgot how much I like them. I love that it is getting cooler so I can pull out the heater and the ziploc bag to get them pressed on well.
Do you Jamberry?

#30Lists Day 3: Favorite Days of the Year…


Just a super simple list—got some Studio Calico stickers, a Shimelle card, a basic gray number and some lovely washi tape from Freckled Fawn. Obviously my favorite day is my birthday, because they can be magical. Christmas and Halloween have a feeling in the air that is super hard to match any other time of the year. Our Anniversary is important, because it constantly reminds me of how lucky we were to find one another. New Year’s Eve is Grandmama’s birthday—which is another form of magic each year (love her so much!) and finally, ANY day there is even a LITTLE Disney is pretty awesome!

What about you, what does your prompt look like today?

Always On: A Review of Denise Swanson’s Murder of an Open Book


I look forward to Denise Swanson’s Scumble River series every year. Truth be told, I wish I could have more of these stories every year, but I understand the writing process. So, since it released yesterday,  I have to admit I devoured it and, luckily, was inspired to write a review of the newest chapter of Skye Denison-Boyd’s life.

Skye is back from her honeymoon, settling into life with Wally when she has a terrible and humiliating run in with one of the teachers at the high school. The next morning, during Skye’s normal swim, she feels something in the water that turns out to be a body—the body of the very teacher/coach whom had been so cruel. Now, Skye will have to use her wits to find the killer—and keep the tight-knit community of Scumble River in the dark about her pregnancy (at least until she tells her family). Will she find the killer BEFORE they strike again?

Denise Swanson continues to write a compelling mystery with this, her eighteenth full-length novel featuring the awesome Skye. A background in school psychology, Swanson uses her unique perspective to write a cast of characters that pull the reader into the pros and cons of life in a small town like Scumble River. Swanson’s style is concrete and relatable, as usual.

I love Skye and her common sense approach to mystery solving. All too often, readers of mysteries can figure out whom the guilty party is too soon. While I had an idea, it was a little harder to figure out the responsible party in Murder of an Open Book. I love that it was a challenge!

My only complaint is that these books have a way of ending and then I have to wait a WHOLE YEAR for the next one—I guess it is a small price to pay for reading a really GOOD series.

Denise Swanson’s Murder of an Open Book hit shelves yesterday, September 1, 2015. It is available in paperback (like I bought), eReader and audiobook formats. Pick up yours THIS week and help us bump this up for first week releases!

#30Lists Day 2: Today Can Be Best Described As…


I had so much fun taking the number from the Ali Edwards Week in the Life kit and my rainbow washi and some spare Studio Calico stickers to today’s prompt. I think I gained a twitter follower today, am back to Downton Abbey season 2 and even scored a tropical iced tea, thanks to my husband.

How was your day best described? Please share below!

Quick and Easy Disney Infinity Organizing


If your house is anything like ours, those Disney infinity sets begin to pile up. But since there are no distinguishing features of the bases for each game (and yes, it DOES matter—you cannot use a 1st generation base with the Marvel or Star Wars characters), I’m sharing the best way I know to keep things relatively organized. And, if you’re crafty like we are, you’re sure to have it in your house, just waiting to be used!

Washi tape.

We add washi tape to the disc’s box, the figures, the themed set pieces AND the base cord.
Super simple.

While you can use any figure in toybox, this lets little ones and big ones alike set up their favorite games. Even better, if your Infinity characters travel, your pieces will be easily discernable. If you plan on trading or getting rid of them, the washi tape just peels off. SUPER SIMPLE

Give us your favorite Infinity tips below.

#30Lists Day 1: What You Might Have Heard About Me…


I used some pieces from the Heidi Swapp Washi book I have been hoarding, along with pieces of the exclusive 30 Days of Lists kit (there are still a few available in rukristin’s shop). I watercolored with an aqua brush, and then added some of the tape from the kit. I love the exclusive stamp and it is functional of a lot of things!

I like to think that most of these things are something people have heard about me, but then again, I could be very far off (I am a bit introverted sometimes).

What about you??? What lovely things have I might have heard about you?

Share in the comments below!

Mailbox Monday for 8/31


I am choosing to spend this Monday going through a few different things that I have received and mailed out lately… Check it out, and share your mailbox monday below.

Postcard from Kristy (LEP)
Letter from Randi (IGGPPC)
Pirate Swap (LEP)


Charmaigne (RAK) LEP
Zara (RAK) LEP
Julie (RAK) LEP
Julie (RAK) LEP
Helen (RAK) LEP
Kirby (RAK) LEP
Dawn & Kylan  FAM
Sarah  FAM
Deborah-Anne (RAK) LEP
Othella (RAK) LEP
Jennifer (RAK) LEP


(resend treasure hunt swap) LEP
Coloring book swap IGGPPC
Millie (family and friends) LEP
Sam (Reply) LEP

What about you? What did you mail out this week?

Catch up

I want to finish these within the next month. I have been a bit touched by reading JUST on my ereader.


These all look so great. Prepping for LSNED and 30Lists on Tuesday.

SSS- August 2015 Stationery Subscription Service Spoiler

As a way to keep stationery new and fresh (and to be part of all the cool kids in the LEP), I have a subscription to the Stationery Subscription Service by La Papierre. I love the different colors and styles I get (and whom doesn’t love surprises in the mail?). Best of all, the paper is pretty high-quality, and stands up to fountain pens, ballpoints and markers alike.

According to the site, there are three options available, and each month contains 6 designs):
A—24 sheets (4 sheets of each new design). It’s $10/monthly
B—48 sheets (8 sheets of each new design). It’s $20/monthly
C—144 sheets (24 sheets of each new design). It’s $40/monthly.

I love that there are options, and since I like shopping for stationery in other places, the B option worked best for my budget AND my letter writing. In a given month, I probably use at least 40 pages of paper—so I definitely have a little left over to trade, or to use around the house for lists (brightly colored lists really CAN make a difference!).

I am continually surprised by the fact that there are so many great designs that pop up in the envelope. I also love the fact that just as I think they cannot possibly make it better, the next month tops my expectations.I’m normally a lined kinda girl. And I like most designs. I have found myself drawn as well to the unlined paper (my heart will still always lie with the lined paper, though!).

Wanna see what I got?


This was this month’s freebie.
Very Stoker meets Austen, perfect for the upcoming Pride and Preudice and Zombies movie, in my opinion.

It’s double-sided, and just a little smaller than the regular sheets, but it is absolutely lovely. This also came with a Madam Bat magnet (which I did not get a picture of, but she is on the etsy site).


The unlined paper on the left is of balloons—HOT AIR BALLOONS! I really enjoy it. I want to write a letter and add some My Little Pony Stickers on that mother with a Stardust Jellyroll pen. Yeah, it would be purple and would change the letter recipient’s life.
The Summertime to the right is nice. I like the stylized cupcakes and, even better, there’s a drink. I picture it purple, fizzy and yet, unsweetened. Strawberry Shortcake totally had that at her fetes.


On the left, mixtape heaven. Okay, to preface this, I have to say I am a bit addicted to mixes (and a few of my friends can tell you that I have never been given a GOOD mixtape)—my credit card is even a mixtape design, as is my camera strap. Nothing wrong with the rainbows, either. Just makes me wish I worked at a record store and ‘knew good music.’
The right-hand paper is all about the zombie apocalypse, which heavily factors into me deciding to meet the man whom I would eventually marry. Zombies have been a big part of life to me, this celebrates it!

I feel badly saying I have a favorite, because this month was AWESOME, but I have to pick a favorite. And this next set is all that AND a bag of potato chips with a side of ranch dip from Primo’s Deli in Akron, Ohio. Yeah.


The left-hand side is all gnomish. It looks like David the Gnome, which was a movie when I was growing up, and a tv show a decade and some change later—I can’t find the proper video I saw, but this looks very similar (there was a song that had lyrics ‘We’re getting ready for our wedding day). The gnome’s daughter was getting married.

And, to the right, perfectness on a piece of paper. I love the borders, I love stars and this whole thing looks insanely magical. I <3 it so hard!

The shipping is free to the US or Canada and, if you tell them Nicole/GothamGal sent you, we each get some freebies!

Where do you buy your paper goodies? Please share in the comments below.

This Reader’s Life: The Way I Organize

Recently, multiple people have been asking me about how I keep track of my penpalling adventures. So, I am sharing this with the world, at least those who read my blog.


I bought this file folder box from Staples. It was just around $10. It has small channels on the sides that fit standard, hanging file folders. It is AWESOME.
I was able to pick up some hanging folders for cheap on Amazon, and I pick up pretty folders from what we had in the office, and if I see any while I’m out and about (Target has 6 pretty ones for $3 on occasion, as well as Staples and Marshalls). I make labels for the people I penpal most on my labelmaker (It’s $22.00 on Amazon right now and if you click on this link, you’ll support this blog) and I usually do this once a month—usually when I’m labeling my newest Ali Edwards Story stamp kit. I will also write label names on the folders in erasable ink (I totally recommend these markers from Pilot Frixion and they’re under $10—this will support my blog, too!).

There is a folder for IGGPC, LEP and Family letters/cards. I also have a few folders for giveaways and promotional materials and my Happy Mail subscription.  So far, this system has worked well. I have an incoming folder, a ‘to write’ folder and a ‘to mail’ folder. It has allowed me to figure out what I have, what I need and really hammer out what I needed to do. I have found pieces of mail here and there since the move that I need to deal with, so that ‘to write’ folder is something I open every time I sit down to write, slowly replying and getting to a point where I can be totally caught up (if such a thing truly exists, LOL!).


This is an example of the information I have on each folder (with washi, I am so in love with gold and teal right now, how weird is that?!?). It has basic information and dates to remember. It also has a list of when I received and when I sent out the items. All of my correspondence is dated with incoming/outgoing. It does require a little work at the front end, but items that are in the ‘to file’ folder are easily added to the log as we file them in the folder. I like keeping the envelopes, just in case the address changes.

_DSC4091I also track via this website, and the Midori Traveler’s insert I have. It’s not a perfect system, but I have yet to find a log that I love. I have decided to start working on a way to get all of this information into my midori, to create my own inserts, but am working through some template issues currently. Sometimes the planner I have works in a pinch, but on the lots-of-mail days, it’s a bit rough.


How do you track your penpal/letter writing efforts? Please share in the comments below!