Sunday, November 29, 2009


I've been putting off writing this post for far too long, for far too many reasons.
But, it's time.
Time to say goodbye to BRD.
I've spent months agonizing over this decision and it's now to the point where I don't have a choice left in the matter.
At the end of the day what it comes down to is not enough money and not nearly enough time to do what was necessary to keep my baby going.
I'm heartbroken to say the least.
This industry has been and will always be extremely close to my heart. That, I know, will never change. There are no words to tell you all how hard this has been. Those of you that have known me from this industry for a while now, know how much I have loved and will always love this industry. The places I've been but more importantly, the people I've met through this journey really have made this journey all the more sweeter.
So, as much as I've gone through this kicking and screaming, it's time.
Timing is everything and when I started this - I got funding - literally, 2 weeks before all the financial mess happened around the world and once it did happen, for about 5 minutes I thought, NO, give it back, just don't do it. But, at the time, we really didn't know how bad it was or how bad it was going to get and if nothing else, I didn't want to wonder 'what if...' my entire life... I would have regretted that more than I do shutting down now - so I did it anyway. But, personally and financially, it was just too much.
Failing was never an option, it has never been in my vocabulary but there comes a point when you just don't have a choice but to admit defeat.
Maybe someday BRD will be re-born but for now, it's goodbye to Black River Designs.
I'll still be around. This blog will become something more personal in nature but will still have scrappy related stories once in a while. Once things calm down some, I hope to get back to the industry that I love so dearly.

Thank you all for all the love and support you've shown and relayed to me throughout this journey. I will never ever forget it.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009


It's been one year since Amy Krouse Rosenthal came up with an idea to make a movie about all things lovely.
The website is officially up and running so check it out here:
and stay tuned for all things lovely to come... this is truly a wonderful project to be even a small part of and I can't wait to see what is next.

And in keeping with the lovely theme, here are some lovelies from one of my lovelies, Lynn

"family photo"
8 1/2 x 11 layout

Black River Designs supplies used:
BRD 00008 Midnight Blooms
BRD 00009 Pink Wildflowers
BRD 00010 Ribbon Stripes

Other supplies used:
Cardstock: Core'dinations (red, yellow); Georgia Pacific (white)
Buttons: Sassafras
Chipboard: American Crafts
Stickers: KI Memories
Punches: EK Success; Stampin' Up!
Font: Century Gothic
Other: Pop Dots by All Night Media

"6" card
Finished size: 5 1/2 x 4 1/4

Black River Designs supplies used:
BRD 00008 Midnight Blooms
BRD 00035 Happy Birthday #1

Other supplies used:
Cardstock: Core'dinations (red, yellow); Georgia Pacific (white
Thread: Coats & Clark
Die Cut: Etsy (seller unknown)
Punches: EK Success; Stampin' Up!

I can't tell you how much I think this lovely lady ROCKS!!!!

Thank you Lynn!!!!

Hope you're having a great wednesday!!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009


Well, one thing is for sure, Bill had nothin on Danny - Tropical Storm Danny blew through last night making much more of a direct hit than Bill did last weekend. According to reports, we got 5 1/2 inches of rain last night - serious flooding going on all over the city - for this time of year anyway.
My mother and I were going to go to a particular restaurant for supper tonight but had to turn back and make another choice as the road to get to our destination of choice was blocked off by a barrier and a police car.
Looks like another storm is brewing and could be the next named storm as early as tomorrow. Keeping an eye on it for sure.

I did get drenched last night out shopping for wedding goodies with my best friend Kelly but I didn't melt. :)

I am trying to get the photos I took last weekend of the storm surge at our beaches edited and posted but I put in a ton of overtime this week between the two jobs so editing is my mission this week.

I'll leave you with some gorgeous goodies my dear sweet Stephanie sent to me for her August submission:

Hope you are all dry and safe and are having a wonderful Sunday!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Christmas Bonus Goodies, and Hurricane Bill

So, it seems Hurricane season is here. The current track for Bill is heading for the Maritimes - hitting land on Nova Scotia and Newfoundland but we will no doubt be getting tons of rain and winds as well - ETA is Sunday afternoon. So looks like I'll be heading to the beach if it's not raining too hard to get some pictures of the swells.
The humidity here is stifling and making it hard to breathe but after Bill pays us a visit, the air should clear.

The uber fabulous Jenn Matott sent me these Christmas goodies just before I went on vacation so I'm thrilled to finally share them with you:

My girl really outdid herself on these ones - THANK YOU SO MUCH JENN!!! All of the little beautiful details inspires me so much, I can't even tell you!! Going now to pull out some goodies and get some work done!!

More to come!!!

I hope you all have a safe, great weekend!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Vacation in Toronto was awesome - hot, sunny, good flights up and back even though I left a little late on the way up, and it was fun to see my little sister and attend her college graduation.

I didn't mean to be so neglectful with the blog but as soon as I got home from vacation, I put my back out. Big time!! Apparently, my luggage that was almost 65 pounds was too much for my back. :( so I've been resting, putting heat on it and taking Aleve to help with the pain. Sitting is hard to do and where I have to do so much of it, it's been hard to get on to this computer to do anything. I just uploaded my pictures from my vacation last night.
I was such a bad scrapbooker - didn't take nearly as many pictures as I wanted. I kept leaving my camera in the room thinking - oh, I'll just take it with me the next time I go to such and such a place. Ya, didn't happen.

Here are a select few I took the time to edit quickly:

The week began with a quick visit with my beautiful cousins, Jessica and Carly who were down from Ontario for the week.

Then I met up with Alison the next day at her school and did a mini shoot with her friends in front of her school which is in an old converted chuch:

Friday was a shopping day - took the subway to the Eaton centre all by myself - which, for this small town country girl, was a big deal

(insert photo of Eaton centre and Dundas Square that I neglected to take because my camera bag was in my hotel room here)

Saturday afternoon my younger sister, Laura, and I went to a Toronto Argo's game at the skydome (well, Roger's Centre now but I will always call it the skydome)
I took SO MANY pictures at the game but, really, can you blame me?? :) One of the many things on my list is to see a professional football game in person. Now I can cross it off my list. :)
THE Toronto shot - the CN tower, which, I've never been up, not so sure I'm that brave. Maybe some day.

This is inside the pedway leading to Union Station downtown - such a cool building:

Alison's graduation show was Saturday night - SO AWESOME - I am so so so proud of her - it was called Smile - an eighties beauty pageant musical - they did such a fantastic job on it - SO MUCH FUN!!

Sunday night was her ceremonies, lots of laughs and tears but she is finally a college graduate.

She now has a small bachelor apartment all to herself - had to get a picture of her in her new place (next to her new stove). She's quite excited.

Can't wait to go up again and spend some good girl time with my baby sister in her own place. And definitely take some more pictures.

One of the biggest bonuses of my trip was a quick visit with my good friend Jill, who I met years ago on Two Peas - it's been three years since I've seen her and this was the first time I got to meet her boys and family. Can't wait to go back!!

Ok, my back is protesting so I will end here but I have tons of goodies to share that my girls have sent me over the last few weeks including some bonus Christmas goodies from Jenn.

I promise, I will post more as soon as my back can take it.

Have a great week!!!!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Where did July go???
I can't believe there is only two days left. Weather for July here has been the usual - mostly fog with a few hours of sun thrown in to tease us. August is typically a hotter, drier month, so fingers crossed.

I am headed to the big city tonight at 6:45.

My youngest sister, Alison is graduating from Randolph Academy this week - it's a musical theater college so she is in the cast of SMILE all week - we're going to catch the final performance Saturday night. I'M SO EXCITED!!! I didn't get to see her last month when she came home for a short visit because she had auditioned for THE SOUND OF MUSIC that is currently playing in Toronto and got a call back while she was home, cutting her trip short. It came down between her and the other girl who got chosen and although she didn't get this part, she got great feedback from those doing the auditions and for someone who hadn't even graduated and doesn't have an agent yet, I think getting down to the final two is pretty awesome!! I'm so proud of her!!

Here is a small part of her graduation gift that I made for her:

It's a 12x12 canvas with the edges painted black. Lots of punching going on with this one - you should see the floor of my office LOL, it's peppered with tiny little dots of confetti. The journalling is the lyrics to Paul Brandt's song Risk. Everytime I hear it I think of my baby sister and how brave she is for entering into a field that is so rewarding yet can be very difficult to get into.

Here are some more of my girls' fabulous work for our final Christmas in July post. Enjoy!!!

From the super sweet Aly Dosdall:
"Christmas Thank You Card Set"

(From Black River Designs)
Patterned Papers: Old Green Pincushion Flower and Old Spiral Daisies (from Old Black River Road line)
Rub-ons: Details # 1

(Other products)
Ribbon and ric rac: Jillibean Soup
Border punch: Fiskars
Acrylic stamp: Hero Arts
Stamp ink: Stampcraft

"Snow Fun" 8.5x11 hybrid 2 page layout

(From Black River Designs)
Patterned papers: End of Season, Ocean Creatures, and Ocean Flowers (from Seaview line)

(Other products)
Chipboard letter stickers: American Crafts glitter thickers
Circle punches: Marvy Uchida, EK Success
Snowflake punch: EK Success
Gems: Hero Arts
Digital brushes: Freestyle Flakes by The Queen of Quirk, Circles Make Me Dizzy 2 by Kate Teague (

From the uber talented Liseanne Coté:

Tree card:

Cardstock: coredination poincettia and snowflakes
BRD paper: 00019 + 00022
BRD rubons: 00031 +00038
Misc.: Ribon and pearl from stash, colorbox ink, Zig pen.

Wish list tags:

Cardstock: coredination crab grass, poincettia and snowflakes
BRD paper: 00019 + 00020
BRD rubons: 00031 + 00037 + 00038
Font: lucida handwritting
Misc.: Colorbox ink, Zig pen, brads

Décorer le sapin/decorate the tree:

BRD paper: 00019 + 00020 + 00022
BRD rubons: 00031 + 00032 + 00037 + 00038
Stickers: Rose Moka
Chipboard: Magistical Memories
Misc.: Colorbox ink, Gellyroll and Zig pen, wood letter, glimmer mist, stickels, decorative snow, Dymo label

Mon beau sapin (song)/Ho christmas tree:

Cardstock: coredination nightfall
BRD paper: 00022 + 00023
BRD rubons: 00031 + 00032 + 00033 + 00037 + 00038
Stickers: Storytellers (sweet life)
Bingo card: elle graphik
Misc.: Colorbox ink, Gellyroll, Signo, sharpie poster paint and Zig pen.

From the extraordinary Stephanie Klauck:

From the awesome Virginia Wong:

ETA: HUGE CONGRATS TO VIRGINIA - her 'Angel Face' layout has been picked up by Canadian Scrapbooker Magazine!!!!

And from the amazing Lynn Ghahary:

So many great ideas here and so many non traditional colours that have serisously inspired me to get busy with my holiday projects.

THANK YOU SO MUCH GIRLS!!! I can't tell you all how much I appreciate everything you have done for me - it truly has been like Christmas for me!!!!

Well, I have to finish packing - I'll check in when I get back on monday night - wish me luck that all flights are a go - as it is pretty foggy here today.

Have a great week!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Quick post today as it is sunny and warm (when the fog stays away) and I'm getting out to enjoy in while it lasts. July can be such an iffy month weather wise here so I'm getting out while the getting's good. My car is a filthy disaster and it needs to be cleaned desperately, so off I go.

Now for some seasonal loveliness from the wonderfully sweet Aly Dosdall:

"Christmas Feeling"


BRD paper: Old stripes, Old Spiral Daisies, Old Dots, and Old Green Pincushion Flower from Old Black River Road line; Garden Gate Rainbow from Bayview Road line.

Other: Core'dinations cardstock, brads (The Paper Company), letter stickers and chipboard stickers (American Crafts)

I love the way she used the kraft coloured cardstock to make the layout below look like a gingerbread house. So talented my girl Aly is.

ETA: HUGE CONGRATS to Aly as her "New Tradition" layout got picked up for publication by Scrapbooks ETC.

Much more to come!!

Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend!!!