Monday, December 17, 2007

JOY

This cute card was made by Lisa Falduto using our Wonderland 8" stack. I love the old fashioned feel it has!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Cosmo Picasso: Lisa-Kate Guidry

I have been watching Lisa-Kate's work for a little bit now. I really like her torn paper style.

What makes you tick?
Scrapbook wise: Pretty music, pretty colors, pretty fabric, pretty pictures, my children’s pretty faces and a great thrift find.

Why are you so wonderful?
Oh please, I wouldn’t say I was wonderful, maybe fantastic, smashing, even great, but not wonderful, lol.

How did you become a scrapbooker?
I have been a scrapbooker since I was a teen and I still have my first scrapbook. It’s filled with all sorts of pictures, cards and clippings. I didn’t start again until about 2003 when a group of friends from my daughter’s playgroup turned me onto “modern day scrapping”.

When you hit a slump creatively, how do you get out of it?
I simply stop and focus on other things. Sometimes you just have to walk away.

What’s your favorite thing to do besides scrapbooking?
Two things fall under this category:
I’m a huge UFC fan. It’s a sport that my husband and I can enjoy together and so much better than football.
I am an obsessive thrift shopper.



What tried and true technique can you always rely on?
I don’t think I can do a layout without using my paper tearing/distressing technique and sewing (yes, there is technique to this madness, lol)

What music do you listen to when you scrapbook?
I listen to anything and everything, it just depends on the mood I’m in at the time. My iTunes list is a pretty good hodge-podge of music with anything from new artists, indie/folk to rock, jazz, disco and even some country.

What’s your most embarrassing memory (that you are willing to share) and did you scrap it?
I don’t embarrass easily so I don’t have an embarrassing memory to share, however I do have a ton of air head moments. One that comes to mind is when my husband and I were meeting with a business associate and her niece. The niece told us that she was in college to get her degree in accounting and I (for some goofy reason) immediately turned to her and asked “Oh, are you getting your Masters”? There was dead silence and she looked so confused when she answered me with a “no”. My husband now jokes me that I have very high expectations for people.
I have not scraped it but I think if I do, it will have to include a picture of me with my foot in my mouth, lol.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Sweet Stuff



Here is my dear daughter and me when we were both a bit younger. I had a lot of fun using the Buck Naked Buttons and I really like how they give a sort of "chocolate box" feeling to the layout. These photos were taken by a friend of Eric's that I met at a Christmas party who just happens to be a photographer, Ed Rosenberger. He wanted me to hold my little girl out away from myself, but as you can see, she was a bit chunky and I couldn't hold her that way long enough....... this is what caused the funny look on her face in the lower photo. It's like she was thinking, "what are you people trying to do to me?"

For a free instruction sheet and product guide, click here.

Friday, December 07, 2007

The Cosmo Christmas Party

This year to make our Christmas party a little more memorable, Lindsay (feeling encouraged by my post yesterday) set out to write a Cosmo Cricket Christmas Party Poem. It is really so much better "performed" by him, but pretty good even when read.

We’re Glad you’re all here,
We care about you
This rhyme I have written
So without further ado………..

This year at the Cosmo,
We hired Lynette,
We feel very lucky
This hire to get

She worked on some lines,
They did very well,
She got married to Arthur,
Which we think is swell!

Let’s move on to Kathy,
Our Kit-maker plus,
In the office and warehouse,
She works without fuss!

There’s Kiley
Who also got married this year,
She hope’s all the credit cards,
And checks they will clear

Then there’s Kristen, who
Starts work at eight,
She got engaged to Mike
Who we think is great

So what’s in the water
At Cosmo these days,
Everyone’s getting married,
We hope they all stay

Nepotism at Cosmo?,
Oh no! That can’t be!
In the warehouse there’s Jon,
And in the office Beck-y
Related to Julie,
by marriage and blood,
Becky is awesome,
And Jon he’s a stud

Adam and Chris,
Brother’s okay,
there young and hard workers,
but sometimes will play

Guitar Hero,
I’ve heard,
And it’s not only them,
It’s Joey and Jon,
And the UPS Driver Jim

We had Joey for awhile,
On a mission he went
To Brussells, Belgium
For his church he was sent

And Blaire this past year,
A new job she did take,
She works next to a place
That serves seafood and steak

We went to some shows
And did dandy indeed
We sold Biography albums,
In Black Leather and Tweed

I haven’t forgot about Carrie
The bills she must pay,
“Bring me the money”,
and “Bring it today”
Aspens been calling,
And the guy who brings toner
I wish she could find
a rich guy to loan her

Tehawna, you thought
That there’s no rhyme for you?
Oh darling, at times,
When the warehouse is a zoo,
You would bring in the troops,
Organize and get ready,
Let’s see, there was your mom and dad,
And our neighbor named Debbie.

Me, you might ask
A rhyme about me,
I crash into walls,
With a forklift you see,
Some say I’m like Michael,
From The Office, the show
I’m charming, delightful,
with places to go
If this is true,
Who’d be Dwight, Pam, or Jim?
I work at a Paper Company,
But I am not him

You see he is goofy,
At times funny things he does say,
I think he’s like me,
and money should pay

Last but not least,
Eric and Julie,
Our fearless leaders
The design of new product,
Our success, there it teeters.

With the kids at there side,
They set the plan of attack
While fixing lunch,
For Abby and Jack.

The products they make,
Are the best in the land,
The Original _________ is new product planned

Eric he say’s,
“J-UUUUU-L-I-E come here,
I have a new paper,
Which completion is near”

“Can you help for a minute?”
And finish the rest,
We must beat everyone else,
I want it the best.”

And Julie say’s “Eric
What are those veins in your head?,
If you keep stressing like this,
You’ll surely be dead.”

So together they work,
And work very hard,
To design products that you can
Make into a page or a card

These artist you know,
Think different indeed
I’m glad we have them,
For Cosmo to lead.

I hope you enjoyed, this rhyme I did make
Now place you’re order,
and don’t order a steak!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Limerick Wars

Those of you who have read our blog since it's inception know about the Cosmo Sign Off and our wacky sense of humor. But, what you probably don't know is that "Limerick Wars" are a frequent happening at Cosmo Cricket. It all started when Lindsay had a bad day. To try and make him laugh I sent all email correspondences to him in limerick.

Since then, I have been challenged to a couple of limerick wars. This means that the challenger and the challengee must put all emails in limerick form or concede victory to their opponent. I can imagine some of you asking if we ever actually work at Cosmo and I would respond, "Can you call it work when it's this much fun?"

Most of our limericks contain information that cannot be shared in this setting, but Lindsay wrote the best limerick of the last challenge and I thought it deserved being published.

Well, this has been quite fun indeed
My pants at times I almost peed
Your poems were so funny
You could make money
Selling poems instead of Biography Albums in tweed.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Quick and Easy Advent














Here's a simple little idea done by Tami Comstock. She made an advent calender by stringing together a chain of things to do printed on our Be Good papers. I had her send me the phrases she used, but you could easily use your own family traditions. I plan to make a "family service" chain to inspire random acts of kindness between my kids.

Tami's Phrases:
Day 1 - Read a favorite Christmas story aloud together.
Day 2 - Sing (and maybe dance) to a Christmas song.
Day 3 - Make some Holiday cookies (and take a plate to a neighbor).
Day 4 - Cut out paper snowflakes to decorate your house.
Day 5 - Dress up and pose for Christmas pictures.
Day 6 - Cuddle up and watch a Classic Christmas movie together.
Day 7 - Serve up some warm hot chocolate with marshmallows and candy canes.
Day 8 - Get out the Christmas decorations and put them up.
Day 9 - Take a walk outside and enjoy the beauty of the Season.
Day 10 - Go Shopping !!!!
Day 11 - Do a secret good deed for someone. Shhh! Don’t tell!
Day 12 - Gather your Christmas cards and sign and mail them together.
Day 13 - Put money in the Salvation Army bucket at your nearest store.
Day 14 - Leave a secret treat on someone’s pillow for them to find tonight.
Day 15 - Talk about the Christmas symbols and where they came from at dinner.
Day 16 - Bake more cookies and treats.
Day 17 - String popcorn to decorate with.
Day 18 - Visit a Nursing home/Hospital and cheer up someone for the Holidays.
Day 19 - Any snow out there? Build a snowman, have a snowball fight, or sled!
Day 20 - Read the Christmas story in the Scriptures ( Luke 2).
Day 21 - Go Christmas Caroling to friends, family, and loved ones.
Day 22 - Wrap presents.
Day 23 - Take a drive around and look at all the Christmas Lights.
Day 24 - Celebrate Jesus' birthday.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Cosmo Late Night Blogging


So yesterday was my "rookie" debut as a Cosmo Cricket Blogger. I had discovered a couple of things about myself :
#1- Sometimes I can be a little long winded, okay a lot of the time. Did anyone else fall asleep?
#2- Never blog late at night. What sounds funny late at night, isn't that funny in the morning. Our office manager who is very sweet, read the blog and almost cried. She felt bad for me. It sounded funny as I laid in bed half asleep when I wrote it. I guess the truth does hurt.
#3- That being a better speller would be good. Julie woke up this morning and hurried and changed all of my misspelled words. Thanks Julie! would you mine fixing this one for me also?
And Last- Make sure that my blog doesn't come up as Julie's Blog ,which could confuse people even more when discussing my gender.
We appreciate our Blog readers- I'll make sure that we take good care of you when we release our new lines in the coming months!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Name Game

The following is a post by Lindsay Moore our salesGUY. He is posting under Julie's cosmogirl name which could only add to your confusion:

I always thought Lindsay was a pretty name for a girl and for the life of me, I could never understand why my mother would give such a great name to me, a boy. I have three sisters, and I think that they were jealous that I got the best girls name.

Guys named Lindsay get no respect. As children we run for our lives, to avoid getting beat up. I can still hear the other 8 year old boys saying, " Hey, there's that kid with the girl's name! "Let's get him." I wasn't very fast, but I became very good at hiding and remember offering candy in exchange for my safety. My heart still pounds just thinking of it.

As a teen, I tried to act masculine when introducing myself by developing a strong handshake, talking deeply, and making the name Lindsay sound cool. " Hi, I'm Lindsay, oh, you can call me Lindz". Lindz? What kind of name is Lindz?


I decided in High School to start using my middle name. That didn't last long. It was a challenge when in every class ,everyday they called role and said "Lindsay Moore?" "Lindsay"?. After a few seconds I would reluctently say "here". I knew with a surety that every student in the class was thinking "Hey, he told me his name was Dean, whats that all about."

I can see why John Wayne changed his name from Marion to John. I can also sympathize with the song "A Boy name Sue' made famous by Johhny Cash."

It's kind of funny that a guy name Lindsay would end up in the Scrapbooking industry. It's almost like destiny! I started in this industry when another manufacturer had advertised for a National Sales Manager. I was living in Wyoming and faxed
over my resume. I recieved word that I had an interview and that I would need to be at thier offices on a certain day and a certain time. I arrived at the assigned time and waited in the lobby as several people would walk by. I sat for over a half hour until, the Vice President, who had walked by previously, asked if he could help me. I explained that I was asked to come to an interview. He asked my name and I told him. I could see the wheels in his mind turning. I then said, "you thought I was a girl."He apologized and said that he did. Needless to say, I got the job!

Two weeks ago. Eric and I ran a 5K. My daughter and her husband ran also. Eric and I didn't stay for the results but I recieved a call about an hour after the race from my daughter, She said "Dad, Steven finished second in his division and Eric, he finished 6th in his division. Dad, Dad you finished fourth..............................................................In the womans division!"

I love what I do and am very comfortable being a boy Lindsay!

Monday, November 19, 2007

I Am Thankful...

Before Christmas gets here, I wanted to take a minute and remember Thanksgiving. I have made two lists of things that I am thankful for. One is things that I am genuinely thankful for that are personal and important to me. I will not be sharing that list. Instead I will share my list of things that I am truly grateful for, but that aren't personal or important.......... at least on the same level as the other list.

Here goes:
Chocolate: Can you imagine a world without it? Those little squares of heaven have gotten me through a lot of tough times........ I have the pant size to prove it.

Sparkly Lotion: This wonderful little creation is the answer to a prayer. I just didn't know how I would make it through the cold, bleak Cache Valley winter at my new home before I discovered this sunshine in a bottle. I tried it at Bath and Body one night and maybe went a little overboard. Ok, I came home shining like a disco ball. Eric got a good laugh and told me he loved it. He got me some for a surprise a couple weeks later and I have been sparkling ever since.......... a nice, reasonable sparkle.

My email chime: That beautiful little sound makes my heart jump as a smile creeps onto my face and I think, "Ah, ha.......... somebody wants to be friends."

Music: It can change a mood, bring back a memory and make me fall in love all over again. And, if that isn't enough, Eric and I can dance to it thoroughly embarrassing our older children.

Downey in the Purple Bottle: Have you smelled this. It's just like baby powder mixed with vanilla. Wash your sheets in it and you will love going to bed even more....... if that's possible. But, be forewarned I gave a bottle to Lindsay's family (when I love something, I like to share) and they loved it until they found out they are allergic to it. Apparently it doesn't smell good enough to make up for the hives.

Life: You know, I have a pretty good one. In fact, sometimes I worry that disaster must be lurking right around the corner. But, it hasn't found me............. yet.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

It's Been Too Long

Sorry for the lack of posting. So, to make up for it....... at least a little bit.......... here are two items of interest for you. First, there is a Cosmo Contest going on at Create My Keepsake. Even if you're not up for playing, you can get some great ideas there. Second, look at these super cute Buck Naked Ornaments. One of our sales reps used the ornaments with our coordinating diecuts and a bunch of glitter as a Make and Take. Who new that Buck Naked was so cute with glitter? (You really need to click on the photo to see the full glittery effect.)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Cosmo Projects

Eric and Lindsay had this great idea of putting a project up on our website every two weeks. We have already posted the first one (shown here), but I thought some of you might not go to the main site that often. The project is complete with photo, instructions and supply list. Use it to recreate our project or use it to inspire something of your own. To download this project, click here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Love is in the air....

Yes, this should be a scary Halloween post, but instead let's fast forward to Valentines.

Maybe it's the release of Hey Sugar, maybe it's the blissful Cosmo Cricket work environment or maybe it's something in the water, but it seems that it's not possible to work at Cosmo and not get married. It all started one sunny day last May when Kiley married Stephen. We didn't make much of it. Surely marriages happen to single women and this was just one of those cases. But, then Lynette announced that she is getting married the end of this month and the very next week, Kristen came into the office with............... a wedding dress!!! She said, "it's not really official" as she explained that this dress was just perfect and the date is set for February. The "official" will happen when she gets the ring they have been shopping for. So, in February there will be no single women working for us.......... unless we happen to have an unexpected job opening and a lucky single girl finds it......... but should that happen, I'd guess she won't be single for long!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

First I would like to thank.....


I just received notification from Creating Keepsakes that Cosmo Cricket is a finalist in two categories of the Reader's Choice Awards. We are super excited!! I never thought I would have the chance to do this:

First let me say that just being nominated is such an honor. I want to thank all the fans that voted for Cosmo Cricket (if it weren't for you, none of this would be possible), Eric for all his support (I couldn't have done it without you Eric), Lindsay for his amazing sales skills (you know you are awesome), our printer for their expertise with color, our wonderful clients that have supported us with this important work, my mother for making me eat my broccoli, the mailman for bringing us our mail, the accountant for finding us money, the guy at the make-up counter for picking out good lipstick colors, Aretha Franklin for saying a little prayer for me. This is the part where my eyes glisten just a little, a tear trickles down my cheek and hopefully I am called up to the stage instead of the other nominees.

Back to reality, we are truly honored and hope to keep up the good work. Thanks so much!!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Cosmo Picasso: Debbie Olson

Debbie Olson is more of a card maker and paper artist than scrapbooker and so we are introducing our first ever Card Maker Cosmo Picasso. We just love her work! Here's a little bit more about Debbie.

What makes you tick?
I need to create something that is visually satisfying--something that I can look at when I’m finished and be pleased with. (If that doesn’t work, there’s always caffeine.)
Why are you so wonderful?
Hmmm. I’m not sure that I am! I have my moments when something lovely happens easily for me, but the majority of the time I spend plodding along and tweaking things to eventually make them work. It’s that old 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration principle of success!
How did you become a scrapbooker?
First, I’m not sure that most people would consider me a scrapbooker. I most often scrap in small doses—little thematic books that are gift books or memory books. The thought of filling an indeterminate number of huge pages paralyzes me with indecision, but smaller books with a specific purpose work better for me.

When you hit a slump creatively, how do you get out of it?
I peruse the online galleries and a few creative blogs or magazines. I also go find a stamp set and papers that I have loved and succeeded with before, and play with them again. If those things don’t help, a good night’s sleep is usually in order.
What’s your favorite thing to do besides scrapbooking?
I enjoy papercrafting in general, but I also like working with stained glass when I have time. Apart from crafting, I love taking walks through the woods with my seven-year-old and listening to his stories.
What tried and true technique can you always rely on?
I pull out my “big girl crayons” (i.e. Copic markers, Prismacolor pencils, or watercolor crayons) and color something! I also enjoy layering, sewing, and distressing paper.
What music do you listen to when you scrapbook?
I rarely listen to music as I scrap. Quietness is bliss after a day of answering questions! (I teach my son at home.)
What’s your most embarrassing memory (that you are willing to share) and did you scrap it?
I generally choose to repress rather than share embarrassing memories! But if you need one: I was shopping with my husband in a large home improvement chain store in an unfamiliar city. The store was set up almost the same as the one that I was accustomed too, except that its floor plan was a mirror image. I needed to go to the bathroom. It wasn’t until I was washing my hands that I looked in the mirror and noticed those odd sinks hanging on the wall behind me. . . No, I don’t think I’ll scrap this one.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Love This!!



Ok, so my sister in laws are really great at coming up with fabulous, little ideas! This is the work of Amy Comstock-Combs. What I really love is that because these albums were made as gifts, she created a display for the shadow box that can be removed so the recipient can replace it with memorabilia if they want. I thought it would be really cute to do an album with different displays that you could change out for the seasons.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Before and After



So, Lindsay's been working out a lot lately. He's very committed to his program. And it's really working, just look at these before and afters. He is amazing, isn't he?

PS: This is why you should never become friends with people who play with Photoshop.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Little Gifts

This project was just sent to me by our Design Team Coordinator, Tami Comstock. Yes, you might recognize the name, she is my sister-in-law also. Anyway, I thought these were such a cute idea. She made the tag cards out of the "Be Good" paper folding up the lower edge to make a pocket. Then she used the "Buck Naked Ornaments" with their matching die-cuts to make a little gift for the recipient of the card. Such a clever and easy way to let someone know you are thinking about them!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Happy Birthday Eric!

Eric works downstairs and I work upstairs, so I emailed this poem to him for his birthday.

There was a man downstairs
That suddenly became aware
That he was getting older.

His metabolism was slowing down.
Hair was thinning on his crown.
Dandruff was on his shoulder.

He started to panic a little
When he got a roll round his middle
And he didn't know what to do.

He put the gym on his planner.
Started using sunless tanner
And wearing clothes from J Crew.

His wife at him would smile
He thought it was his new style
Causing those sparks to fly.

In truth it was that he
Though as silly as could be
Would always be her guy!

Happy Birthday Eric

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

How To Be Funny

People often ask me how I come up with all my funny writing on our packaging and advertising. Well, for me it really is just the way I am, but for others being funny is hard work. If you fall into the humor-impaired category, don't worry. If you're not sure whether you are funny or not.......... think fast -- you're at the local scrapbook store and the lady in line in front of you asks if they have any Buck Naked chipboard -- what do you say? Give up? Read on, humor impaired person, and learn the secrets of being funny.

Secret #1: Pain is the basis for all humor. It's a simple fact that if nobody gets hurt, it isn't funny. The only exception to this rule is when the pain happens to you. When you get hurt, it's not funny. It just hurts. However, other people will find your pain amusing, so be consoled in the knowledge that even though it hurts, people are still laughing at you.

Secret #2: When something happens that you do not expect to happen, that's funny. When you tell a joke and no one laughs, that's funny because you didn't expect that to happen. Unless you have had a lifetime of failed jokes, in which case it would be expected and not funny. But, the fact that you haven't given up yet could be unexpected, which would be funny. (See What Can Brown Do For You)

Secret #3: The truth is funny. It can also be painful making it even funnier. (See Album Envy)

Secret #4: Saying words in funny ways is funny. I'm not talking about puns because puns are not funny. Here's an example: If a guy is with his girlfriend, and he calls her "Cathy" when he meant to say "Tina," that's funny. But beware, this type of humor is often followed by humor involving pain. (See above.) (For more examples, see The Cosmo Sign Off)

Secret #5: Pick something funny to make fun of. For me, I don't have to look very far. I can always make fun of myself which everyone finds very funny. If I'm tired of Julie jokes, I always have Eric and Lindsay supplying me with more material than a funny person could ever use in a lifetime.

PS: Some of this writing was borrowed from David J. Parker and Samuel Stoddard because I might not be as funny as I think I am.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Cosmo Picasso: Charity Hassel


We found Charity on twopeas and loved her style (just look at these layouts). She has done so many Cosmo layouts, that it was hard to pick which ones to post and she told me she has two being published in MM 601 idea book. Now, I would say there's a girl who has earned her title! We love you, Charity, congratulations!

About Char
ity: I am 32 years old. I have been married to my honey, Brian, for five years. We have a 3 year old named Alexander and Audrey Marie who is 10 months old. I work one shift a week as a RN in the Surgical ICU at Mayo. Other than that, I'm a stay at home mom!
What makes you tick? Family, chocolate, bubble baths, diet coke, helping others.
Why are you so wonderful? I try to follow the golden rule, try to have balance in my life, stay thankful and laugh each day!

How did you become a scrapbooker? I have kept little scrapbooks since high-school, but really got into it after getting married five years ago. I started by scrapping a trip I had taken to India. After that, I was hooked! I kind-of taught myself by reading books, looking at online galleries and experimenting.
When you hit a slump creatively, how do you get out of it? I check out my favorite online galleries. Sometimes doing a challenge helps. I've also been known to check out the covers in bookstores, look at home decorating stores, etc. for ideas.
What’s your favorite thing to do besides scrapbooking? Spending time with my family and my girlfriends. My life right now is mostly about taking care of my family, especially my little ones. So, the time I get to spend just goofing off with the girls, having a date night with hubby or shopping with my mom is a fun change!
What tried and true technique can you always rely on? I love cutting patterns out of paper with my exacto knife.

What music do you listen to when you scrapbook? Well, I scrapbook at my dining room table which is part of an open floorplan at my house. So, I scrap to my husband's classic movies or sci-fi shows playing in the background.
What’s your most embarrassing memory (that you are willing to share) and did you scrap it? The one that sticks out in my mind right now was during a high school pageant. It was the first time I had ever entered something like that and I was so nervous. I walked out on stage in my evening gown, on the arm of a handsome young guy. My humoungous puffed sleeve got caught on the tensil curtain we had to walk through to the stage. I was REALLY stuck, but the guy with me didn't notice and kept walking. I almost fell and the tensil curtain about came down with me! So much for poise and grace! After barely averting disaster, I had to stop, stand there and pull myself free of the monstrous tensil beast! I haven't scrapped that lovely memory yet!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Shack Chic




When you are driving between destinations in South Africa, it is not uncommon to see what they refer to as "squatter villages." From a distance these look like kind of like a town you would make from playing cards. These people have taken anything they could find, mostly cardboard and corrugated metal to build their "homes." What you would never guess is how beautiful these shacks are on the inside.

On our trip, Donna Downey bought this book. She had seen it when she was in South Africa 2 years earlier and had passed it up. She was so excited about getting it finally, that she showed us and Eric and I decided we had to have it too. It's eye candy for anyone interested in design.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mmmmmmmmm

Is it just me, or is hot chocolate the most wonderful thing ever? In fact, if I had to choose between living with Eric or my warm chocolatey goodness I would probably choose Eric, but I'm sure there would be times when I would wonder if I made the right choice.
I promised my new South African friends I would give them some recipes. Here is one that is perfect for children since it is very sweet, doesn't require any milk (mine was all used up this morning on bowls of cereal) and makes enough for a family. If you have milk, it does make it richer, but you will probably want to use more than 6 1/2 cups. Because this recipe is a little too sweet for me, I often add one or two cans of evaporated milk--- it also makes it creamier. If you like your chocolate a little darker, just add more cocoa.

Cosmo Cocoa
1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/2 Cup Cocoa
1 1/2 t vanilla
6 1/2 Cups Hot water

Stirring constantly, mix everything but hot water together in large pan over warm heat. Gradually add hot water, stirring to make smooth. Heat to desired temperature~ do not boil.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

South Africa

video

We had so many amazing experiences in South Africa: the lions, the elephants, the coast, the fact that competing manufacturers took a trip together as friends. Who said the scrapbooking world was cutthroat anyway?

A Special thanks to South Africa Scrapbook Convention and all our new friends!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Back from South Africa

After 38 hours of conescutive travel time (flights, layovers, car rides) I am back from S Africa. It was a long trip, so I will try to give you the Reader's Digest version:

Day one and most of two: The first flight
From Salt Lake to Denver to Washington DC, than a 15 hour direct flight to S Africa. The plane was arranged with 2 seats together on either side and 4 together in the middle. Eric and I had the 2 together, but because Eric is 6'5" tall he left me for an exit row seat. It is completely amazing, but I managed to fold my 5'10" self up onto those two seats and was able to sleep horizontally most of the flight.

We had a wonderful dinner after our arrival at what had to be the loveliest home in all of Johannesburg.

Day three:
Shopping, sleeping, eating.

Day four:
First day of conference. I am presenting a class with two projects designed by Retha van der Walt who has a store in Johannesburg named Scraptifity. Let's just say that the first class was a bit rocky as the computer wouldn't work at first, everything is done in centimeters instead of inches, I am still jet lagged and not quite into my groove. But, as the day goes on each class gets better. South African scrapbookers are very daring, talented and not easily intimidated. By the end of the day I was feeling like we were all friends.

Day five:
Second day of conference. Classes are rockin' at this point. We are having a lot of fun. I have learned a little about the culture and the language. Although we both speak English, at times you would never guess it. Here is my American to S African English dictionary:
Traffic light = Robot
Ketchup = Tomato Sauce
Chips = Crisps
French Fries = Chips
Swimsuit = Costume
Emergency Room = Theatre
Give me a call = Give me a tinkle
Go night night = Go doo doo
Flashlight = Torch

Day six and seven: Madikwe game reserve
When we get there we see four elephants 30 feet from our room cooling off in a mud bath. While on the drives, we see two lions eating an antelope, lots of elephant, two rhinos, zebra, giraffe, a lion pride with 6 lions, buffalo, hyenas, kudu, impala and more. We decide we need to broaden our vocabulary when it comes to words like amazing and awesome.

Day eight:
Travel to Capetown

Day nine and ten:
Capetown! We collected sea glass on Clifton beach, did some shopping, took a boat ride, went up to the top of table mountain and saw dolphins, whales, and penguins.

Day eleven:
The thirty eight hour journey home. I actually washed my hair in the Dulles airport bathroom with pink hand soap for shampoo.

I will update this blog with photos a little later!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Cosmo Picasso: Emilie Ahern


I met Emilie Ahern at CHA in Chicago and we had an instant bond as two women who know how to use sunless tanner (this is a long story). While at the show I exchanged a Dutch Girl paper crafting kit for more beauty tips (did you know that you can have your eyelashes permed?) and a promise that she would promote Cosmo Cricket as much as she could. Well, a couple weeks later I was on scrapbook.com and there were three awesome Dutch Girl layouts that Emilie had done (one has since been removed for publication........ way to go Emilie).

Here's a little bit more about Emilie Ahern:
What makes you tick? The color orange, anything crafty, classic literature, loyal girlfriends, pedicures, the smell of books.

Why are you so wonderful? I am genuinely happy for others’ successes.

How did you become a scrapbooker? I made my own small album of my first trip to Europe when I was 19. It was pathetically made and is falling apart, but is still a treasured keepsake.

When you hit a slump creatively, how do you get out of it? I look to scrapping magazines, online galleries and my own art inspiration journal for ideas.

What’s your favorite thing to do besides scrapbooking? Cooking (and consequently eating), reading and shameless reality television about fashion (Project Runway, America’s Next Top Model, etc).

What tried and true technique can you always rely on? True journaling. Whether it’s funny, sad, or quirky. I feel that the more genuine the journaling, the better the layout…no matter how you chose to embellish.

What music do you listen to when you scrapbook? I keep a rotating music list on my computer of songs that get my creative juices flowing….this mostly consists of Indie music like “Belle & Sebastian” and more recently “Nouvelle Vague”. You can check out the song list on my blog for the tunes that get my creative juices flowing these days. http://aherncentral.blogspot.com

What’s your most embarrassing memory (that you are willing to share) and did you scrap it? When I was a teenager I got stopped during rush hour in the LAX airport by the airport metal detector. The officer made me step aside and made the line wait while they put the metal wand over me. It went off like a siren when it was held in front of my chest. My underwire bra had set it off. Being a “Busty LaRue” I was already self conscious of that area and to have it pointed out was very embarrassing, especially when the line began to clap and cheer when security finally let me through. I have not yet scrapped this moment, but maybe it’s time. Hmmmmmm……

Monday, August 20, 2007

What Can Brown Do For You?


Okay- So a customer calls with a problem. She received her order which consisted of two boxes. One of the boxes, contained her Biography albums, the other should have contained the rest of her order............. paper and things. Instead she opened the box and there was a small lunch cooler inside with a lock on it. One of the employee’s at the store, could swear that the cooler was ticking. Tick…..Tick……Tick…..Tick. So………..They called the Police. The Police didn't hear any ticking and unlocked the cooler. They opened it up to find a vial of Horse Urine. The sample came from Thermo-Campbell Scientific, our neighbors, who specialize in shipping animal urine all over the country. Apparently the UPS people mixed up our packages. We're just happy it happened to us instead of our other neighbor, Swire Coca Cola Bottling Company.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Cosmo Cricket Studio



For those of you that don't know, next time you get a Cosmo Cricket Paper Crafting Kit, before you throw away the front cover (or cut it up for scraps) check out the back side. It is filled with little sketches for layouts and cards. I used the below sketch to make this super-quick card. Can you say easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

And Our First Cosmo Picasso Is......

Allison Schubert! We found Allison on twopeas with the "Beautiful Soul" Wanted Layout shown below. We just loved it! Isn't she amazing?

Congratulations Allison, you are now and forever a Cosmo Picasso!


All About Allison

What makes you tick?

Life.
A clean house, which never happens.
Routine, if my daily routine is messed up my whole day is completely off coffee, has to be Folger’s.
Why are you so wonderful?
I am a very open scrapbooker, I can scrap about anything and everything I am also not set in one particular style so my style can change from day to day.
How did you become a scrapbooker?
My high school days were split between regular high school and an art school where I took photography and other art classes. But, it wasn’t until the birth of my daughter that I took those classes and intertwined them with the documentation aspect.
When you hit a slump creatively, how do you get out of it?
Go to the internet or listen to songs. I can usually here a line in a song that can give me a spark.
What’s your favorite thing to do besides scrapbooking?
Other than scrapbooking I have to go to the gym at least six times a week. But, I have also been known to go twice a day as well..
What tried and true technique can you always rely on?
Paint
What music do you listen to when you scrapbook?
I don’t…I turn the tv on just for the noise. I pay too much attention to lyrics in music to be able to get anything accomplished.
What’s your most embarrassing memory & did you scrap it?
Too embarrassing to mention.

More layouts by Allison:


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Creating Keepsake's Reader's Choice Awards



The voting is now open for the Creating Keepsake's Reader's Choice Awards. All you have to do is to click this link, give them your name and address and vote away. We won't bribe you, but we would love it if you placed votes for us! We have considered making up lots of names and addresses so that we can vote multiple times, but have decided against it. Not because it is beneath us...... oh no....... but because we are way to busy to do something like that.

In other words, if you wanted to........ just joking!

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Tell Us About Yourself

One great thing about my job is that I get to meet a lot of people. On a trip to Canada I met Samantha from Karen Fosters. She is one of the funnest people you could ever meet because she has this little obsession with questions. That's right, questions. Sam has 14 pages of written questions that she keeps with her most of the time (they have the honey mustard stains to prove it). These aren't questions like where we came from or why we're here or any of those other deep things. These are fun questions to ask people so that you have more to talk about than the weather. I asked her to send me some of her favorites to post on our blog and she was kind enough to oblige.

We'd love to see your answers, so be sure to post.

What two bands/singers (one still playing together/alive and one not together/dead) would you like to come play at your b-day party (e.g. Aerosmith/Abba)?

If you could have dinner with one living famous man and one living famous woman who would they be (you all three have dinner together)?

If you could have dinner with one dead famous man and one dead famous women who would they be (they would not show up like something out of a horror movie...they would look normal!).

If you had the perfect mate and the rest of the world was either all male or all female, which would you choose (this is tougher than it seems...).

If you could have one superhero talent, what would it be (e.g. being invisible)?

If you could be one famous person for a day who would you be and what would you do?

If you could be one of our friends or family members for a day, who would you be and what would you do?

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Cosmo Picasso™

You know you’re an artist if you want fame, glory and free product all at the same time. On that note, we would like to introduce the Cosmo Cricket featured artist program that we are calling Cosmo Picasso.

What does it mean to become a Cosmo Picasso? Just having your photo and work displayed on our site with a little write up about what makes you tick and why you’re so wonderful. Oh yeah, and getting free Cosmo Cricket products.

Now, you may be wondering, how do I become a Cosmo Picasso. Well, don’t worry, you won’t have to cut your ear off or anything (that’s why it’s not Cosmo Van Gogh). Simply make amazing Cosmo projects and post or publish them where we can find them. This means using Cosmo Cricket in the title when you publish on boards like twopeas, scrapbooks.com, lifetimemoments, etc.

We are keeping our eyes out, so get busy! A new artist will be featured each month.


PS: The above message was inspired by all the many talented designers that send us photos of their work. We would love to have a spot for each and everyone of you on our team, but since we can't, we hope the Cosmo Picasso program will give us a way to feature you and your work.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Celebration's Showcase

New this year at CHA (at least I think it was new) was the Celebration's Showcase. Before the show, I got an email from the CHA organization asking me to submit a project. If it was chosen, I would have 30 minutes of demonstration time plus have my project displayed in a high traffic area. Well, I thought, who couldn't use some free advertising........ right?

So, this is the project I made. It was chosen and I got to demo it. Here is where things got interesting. The audience had people in it that I did not recognize and so I asked if they had all heard of Cosmo Cricket. Some hadn't. Now just imagine their reaction when I told them I would be demo-ing our Buck Naked Ornaments. I really thought some people were going to fall off their chairs. I pretended not to notice, but I did explain how it came to be named Buck Naked.

For those of you who don't know, read on. You never know when you'll be in a class and this will be the prize winning answer.

Anyway, when Eric and I first did raw chipboard it was our Plain Jane cigar box. Then we found out that there were other chipboard products on the market named Plain Jane. We didn't want to have any problems with this and so we decided to come up with another name (this is a repeating pattern for us). Unfortunately, Plain Jane didn't scramble into anything good. So, Eric was saying, "What is another name for naked chipboard." And, that's where my childhood memories kicked in.

When I was a very little girl, my mother would get me out of the tub, dry me off and send me running down the hall to my bedroom to get dressed. I had to run "like the wind" because if my dad caught me he would say, in a very loud voice, "Julie, you're buck naked." In fact, it was several years before I realized that buck naked was not a compound word and you could indeed use naked all by itself.

By the way, when I was leaving the demonstration area a man at a neighboring booth stopped me and said, "I just want you to know that I heard you telling the story about your Buck Naked products while I was talking to a buyer and I couldn't help but ask him if the girl behind me teaching the demo had clothes on."

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Things I learned at CHA

It's amazing what you can learn in 3 days amongst throngs of people, most being women. Here's some of the quirky, funny and even useful bits of info I gathered.

Glue dots can be used to hold your clothing in place.
McDonald's hot chocolate machine doesn't work in July.
Vitamin E will moisturize your skin and lessen your wrinkles.
If you leave a camcorder out it will be stolen.
People love watching naked chipboard get dressed to music.
Sunless tanner can be totally realistic, but the application process involves several steps and tarter control toothpaste.
People even remember the shoes you wore at the last show.
Union workers can be bribed.
Don't rent a car without GPS.
You cannot buy a slip at Target.
Cricket Cola doesn't taste very good, despite it's name.

PS: We already have five winners. In fact, they already have their prizes, but thanks for playing and spelling better than us!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

How to get ready for CHA

1. Buy a completely new wardrobe.
You only see most of these people 3 times a year so you don't want to show up in the same outfit as your last meeting.

2. Color your hair.
You've maintained the myth of your hair color this long, you wouldn't want to ruin it now.

3. Stock the house with food that can be microwaved.
This will insure that your children will be fed while you are gone.

4. Ship your product samples early.
This prevents your two year old from opening the packages and taking them apart. (Learned this one the hard way just yesterday.)

5. Make sure the person you think is taking you to the airport knows that you think they are taking you to the airport.
This will make you less likely to miss your flight. (Eric learned this one the hard way and was taught by Lindsay)

6. Make a calendar of all your kid's appointments for the sitter.
That way you will know what they missed and need to reschedule.

7. Put emergency numbers by the phone.
If you don't they will end up needing them.

8. Buy your kids souvenirs and hide them in your closet.
You will be too busy once you get there.

9. Pick up the shirt that Lindsay forgot.
Otherwise, he will be Buck Naked for his presentation.

10. Kiss your children goodbye, tell them that you love them, and cross your fingers for a really great show.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

You know you're an artist if you can't spell.

Besides our sense of humor, Eric and I are notorious for typos, spelling errors and other misuses of the English language. It wouldn't be so bad if it only happened once or even once in a while. But that is not the case. It happens all the time. You would think that the people at Adobe, knowing artists will be using their software, would have the misspelled-word-underline-feature in their programs. Unfortunately they don't, and we're not always good at remembering to spell check.

There are TWO spelling errors in our current ad in the August issue of Creating Keepsakes. One was brought to our attention by a friendly scrapbooker who probably teaches English (I hope it wasn't Mrs. Storey, she would be so disappointed in me.) If you can find BOTH spelling errors and be one of the first five to send your answer, name and address to kristen@cosmocricket.com I will reward your knowledge of the English language and your loyalty to this blog with a free Gretel paper crafting kit. Be sure to put, "I can spell" as the subject of your email so that we know what you're talking about. Good luck!

PS: I just asked Eric to read this before I posted it and he said, "Did you put that typo in there as a joke." I said, "What typo?" Then he pointed to it and I fixed it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Insatiable Raspberry Cosmo



My friend saw this and had to get if for me. Besides having Cosmo in the name the girl on the label looks just like me. Except that she has brown hair and mine is blonde, hers is long and mine is short, she is super skinny and I am........... well let's just say I really love chocolate! But other than that I look just like her.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Buck Naked Covered Up


Here's just the beginning of things you can do when you get Buck Naked!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Ready-Set-Chipboard






Peel, Stick, Love Love Looooooooooove!