CLOSING TIME (remember that song?)

It's me, Michelle, here!  I'm the owner at A Million Memories (if you didn't know that).  I've been dreading this blog post, but it's time.  After much thought and consideration, my family and I have decided to close A Million Memories.  My family life and priorities have changed so much in the past few years that I haven't been able to put my full attention into it anymore.  My kids are getting older and we just don't want to miss any more time with them than we have already.   It's been an amazing ride.  If you don't know our story, here's a little skip down memory lane.

In 2006,  my friend Alison and I were working full-time at a law firm in Irvine, California.  Our daughters were both 3 years old and I also had a 2 year old son. It was driving us crazy having to leave them every day while we went to work.  I remember having long chats with her during our morning breaks and we would talk about what we could do while working at home.  We were basically daydreaming, but when an opportunity arose to purchase an already established online scrapbook store and kit club, I jumped on it!  After discussing it more and more with her, she agreed to be my business partner in this crazy venture.  A month or so later, we were packing up monthly kits, taking in orders and making our first business trip to Memory Trends in Las Vegas. All of this, while working full-time, taking care of our homes and families ~ but we didn't care.  This was our dream and we were going to work hard to make it work.  

In November of 2007, my then 4 year old daughter Chloe was diagnosed with Leukemia.  Our lives were turned upside down and we struggled with staying strong and positive to get her through it.  One of the saving graces for me was not only Alison, but also all of the wonderful friends that I had made in that past year through A Million Memories.  People were constantly praying for her, she would receive sweet little gifts in the mail to help lift her spirits, one friend, Michelle Magana (who lived in Georgia at the time), even came to visit Chloe in the hospital.  Michelle was new to our community at the time, but still had a heart big enough to come and meet Chloe and the rest of our family.  I mean ~ that still chokes me up.  Very good people out there and I have met SO MANY life long friends through this venture.

In 2008, Alison stepped out of the business (I really think she did this for me more than anything because she knew how much it meant to me and how much heart and soul I had invested in it).  My family stepped in after that and we have been working together ever since.  I left my full-time job to take care of Chloe while she went through chemo and started working full-time on AMM until she was done in March of 2010.  It's been a wonderful experience and I will be forever grateful for the faith that my family has in ME and for the strength that having this business gave to me while our family was really struggling (emotionally and financially).  I've made some amazing friends that  I will forever stay in touch with (and hopefully share more vacations with).  :)  I want to say a very special thank you to all of the women that have designed for AMM in the past and a special thank you to my online besties Jennifer Findley and Tonya Dirk. They have been amazingly fun, inspiring and supportive people!!!

About 2 weeks ago, I just decided that it was done.  My heart is not in building this business anymore.  I have a new full-time job that is pretty much my dream job at this point in my life. They give me the flexibility that I need to be with my kids for school events, sports activities, etc., and it is within walking distance from my home.  I would like to have more free time to play catch in the yard with my kids, work on some home remodeling, enjoy some road trips with my husband and do a little crafting ONLY for myself.  So it is with a smile on my face and true sense of freedom that I really haven't felt in a while, that I say I am ok with saying good-bye to AMM at this point in my life.  

OK, with all of that being said, I am going to work diligently to try and clear out our shop in the next few months.  Right now, the entire store is 60% off.  Use code SUMMER at check-out (SUMMER is my goal for having this all done, so that I can actually ENJOY summer again).  

Thanks again for all of the wonderful memories that you have shared with me and I hope that you have made friends through our community as well.  Feel free to leave comments and let me know how AMM might have brought something positive into your life (like it did for me)!



Dear Lizzy Neapolitan with Rachel Hall

Hello! I am THRILLED to be posting here today with some layouts using the gorgeous Dear Lizzy Neapolitan line from American Crafts.

Here are four layouts that I have made so far- and I still have a lot left over to play with so I am sure there will be more!

The title of this layout and part of the journaling comes from the Jim Croce song, Time in a Bottle. One of my very favorites. This layout includes hand stitching, confetti punching and to get the ruffle along the bottom I wet and crumpled up the vellum until it looked like I wanted it to look. I also added a doilie that I dyed. Peeking out from the photos is some of the adorable trim that Michelle sent.

This next layout was inspired by the title and title work of THIS amazing layout that I pinned on Pinterest. The minute I saw it, I knew that I was too inspired to not create a similarly themed layout. I believe the saying comes from a kids shirt.

Again, I hand stitched on this layout and included a lot of layering. The little rosette trim is cut from the rosette fabric that Michelle sent me and watercolored to get the color that I wanted for my layout.

I used Dear Lizzy ruffle paper as a mat for my photo and base for my title. I also included three doilies. One straight from the package, a hand dyed one and a Martha Stewart shimmer die cut doilie. Peeking out is more of that adorable trim.

I made the title from mixed fonts and added glossy accents to "dad's lucky" to emphasize it. I reproduced a similar layered doily look with the cut out sentiment to balance the layout.

This is a layout that I made for St. Patricks Day. I love how the yellow and greens in the line compliment each other so nicely!
On this layout I used more of my hand dyed doilies (again- I know!) and used my slice to cut out the title, stars and shamrocks.

Here is a closeup of the details in the embellishments.  You'll notice that all the photos are plead upon the ruffle paper which gives a subtle, yet eye catching texture.

And lastly- a new favorite layout of mine.  I really loved the greenish/teal and brownish/grey color combination in the papers and the embellishments and knew that I would make a layout devoted to them.  I added a crocheted doily from my stash to mat the photo and embellishments and paper on as the base of my layout.
For this layout I simply layered some patterned papers and clustered my embellishments.  I added a bow of the gorgeous silver ribbon that Michelle sent and also added a mini cupcake wrapper to the embellishment cluster for something eye catching and a little different.

Thanks so much for peeking at my work here on the AMM blog today- I'm thrilled to be here! :)

Dear Lizzy Neopolitan w/ Jennifer Longencker

Hello AMM fans!  Jennifer here to share a few projects with you using the new Neopolitan line from American Crafts.  So far this has been my favorite line to work with in a while now.

For this LO I used the back side of the At First Sight paper, then cut out a few of the blocks from the Sunny Skip paper, punched a few butterflies from the Dreamy Days paper, cut out the rosettes from this lovely White Rag Flower Organza fabric to frame the photo, and backed each of the blocks with the organza from the same fabric.

For this one I used the Hazy Horizon paper for my background and went to the Sunny Skip and Dreamy Days paper for my embellishments.  I overlapped Gray Satin Trim and with the Messy Eyelet Trim,  backed my photo with more organza, and added a 3-D butterfly.

For this LO I used again used elements from the Sunny Skip and Dreamy Days paper.  I backed my photo with a section of the Pretty Please paper, cutting along the circles to create the scallops.

I still have a few more projects in progress, using this fabulous line, but wasn't ready to show them just yet.  Thanks for stopping by.

Dear Lizzy Neopolitan - Marie Ramirez

Today Marie is going to provide us with a ton of inspiration for our scrapbook pages using the Dear Lizzy Neopolitan line from American Crafts.

For this page Marie cut up some of the elements from the Sunny Skip paper to create the block elements.

See the lace beneath the pink Polaroid element?  It reminds me of the KI Lace Paper.  Marie used a small snippet of  AMM White Messy Eyelet Trim and some White AC Vera Thickers to create this fun title and accent.

This one is so simple but so cute.  Marie cut up the Polaroid elements from the Dreamy Days paper, placed a few photos of her own in them, stitched a few lines, added some tape, a few elements, and a title and you've got a really cute scrapbook page in no time flat.

I love the jar on this page.  Simply cut out from the Twinkling Lights paper.

I love the misting job of this LO as well as the cluster of embellies at the bottom corner of the picture.  Marie used some of the elements from the Sunny Skip and Dreamy Days papers for those.

Dear Lizzy Neopolitan w/ Michelle Philippi

This week we are going to put the spot light on the new Dear Lizzy Neopolitan line from American Crafts.  To start us off here are a few projects from Michelle Philippi.

The two projects below are wrappers for a box of bottle caps that she made for the daughters of a friend of hers.

Tip from Michelle: "I've got some vintage trim here topped off with some fun baker’s twine.  I take big chunky trim and finish it off with baker's twine often - it's a favorite look of mine."

For the project below Michelle wrapped a gift in tissue paper and then covered it with White Rag Organza Flower trim, then added a cute tag featuring one of the jars from the Twinkling Lights pattern paper.

For this next project Michelle took a kraft coffee bag, covered it with some Dear Lizzy Neopolitan patterned paper from American Crafts and then embellished it with coordinating stickers and pretty bits and tied it off with some yummy gray satin ribbon.


If you didn't receive our email tonight, here's a quick run-down of the new Lily Bee products that we have in stock now. Here are a few of my personal favorites FIRST! I adore the Chevron stripes, the polka dots and the subtle floral patters. SO SO pretty and versatile!

Here's a run-down of the collections. The thing that I love about Lily Bee is that they are never too "Matchy-matchy" (if that makes any sense), but yet they always work perfectly together. They always have backsides that are a little less busy than the front-side, so I always end up using everything that I get from them. I personally don't get to scrapbook as often as I would like and this is one manufacturer that I always tend to reach for when I do have the chance to scrap.

You can click on each of the photos and it will take you to a link in the AMM store for each line. They are GORGEOUS and just take a look at some of the projects. They are fun, tell a story and just look so design easy!

BUTTERCUP IS SO PRETTY! The papers look pretty detailed, yet solid and easy to work with. You can again, click on the photo and it will take you to them in the AMM store so you can get a closer look.

OH GOSH ~ Isn't Double Dutch just the CUTEST?! I LOVE the red and blue in this (I'm always a sucker for red and blue).

Click on the photo below to get a close-up on these papers in the AMM store.

Working with Crate Paper Paper Heart Collection

Here are a few projects that our design team did using the new Paper Heart collection from Crate Paper.