Tuesday, October 30, 2012

ScrapRemix 6...

Can you believe that I am still scrapbooking!?!  I have kept up so far!!! I'm so happy! 

I don't have a whole lot to talk about today other than the Scrapbook Remix class taught by Shimelle at Pretty Paper.True Stories.  Today's Prompt dealt with scale as well as using vintage inspired large printed paper.  I liked today's 'lesson' very much, though I had to read it several times before I really understood what I was supposed to do for 'homework' - but that's me these days, a whole lot of "Huh?" going on in my life; it is what it is.

I made a two-page layout; well, actually I made two layouts about the same thing with one title.  Usually if I make a two-page layout, I try to at least use the same background paper on each page.  But today I created two layouts with respect to a couple of the different aspects of the Prompt using the same subject.  Does that make sense?  Well, I suppose the best way to explain it is to just show you!


Patterned Paper: American Crafts, Crate Paper, Echo Park, K&Co, MyMindsEye; Stickers: American Crafts, Daisy Ds, Echo Park, Making Memories, The Paper Studio; Twine: Doodlebug; Bows: WalMart; Ink: Ranger; Pen: Sharpie; Other: Adobe Photoshop Elements

So now you can kind of see what I mean:  Each layout stands on its own except that one has a title only, the other journaling.  There are common elements such as the same patterned paper pieces, twine & bow.   I could have used the same background paper on both pages, but I was trying out a couple of the methods.  And as it is, I quite like this in my album - it still flows well but it's just more interesting than the other two-page layouts I have.  I may very well always do my two-page layouts like this in lieu of the traditional method.

These are what I refer to as the necessary layouts because they go into one of the albums as part of that story... in this case our 2011 family album.  (I usually make an 8x8 album every other year as my brother comes home and those are just 'more'; but, whether there are two or twelve of my favorite pix, I always include them on a two-page layout in our family album.)  Usually, the necessary layouts go straight into the album on the same day that I complete them, as opposed to those layouts that I just do for fun, hang up for an indefinite amount of time to admire, and then end up in one of the  'personal' albums. 

One of the best things about this class is that, in addition to learning more about design and using up my paper stash, I have completed so many necessary layouts... four for the family albums (2 birthdays and Christmas), three for GiGi's real* personal album (homecoming, Kelly Pickler concert, Future Today) and two for my personal album (5 generations and Another Life).  WOW!!!!!  That is amazing!!  I may have to take classes everyday for the rest of my life so that I actually get all my stories told!!  Of course, very little else is getting done (I was so proud that I got the laundry done yesterday!); and I'm certainly not going above and beyond for anyone, so if someone wants something they sure better ask.

Last thing, I am certainly praying for all the Northeastern U.S.  As a Florida Panhandle resident I have gone through four major hurricanes (Ivan in 2004 is the reason my brother now lives in Tampa as it not only did his home suffer severe damage, but both businesses that he and his wife worked at totally washed away... totally).  So I have so much empathy for the victims.  I know you are probably praying for them, but if you have a mind to help, please consider donating to the Red Cross.  They are so wonderful during these times, providing everything from fresh water, food and shelter during the weeks the power is out, to sandwiches during the cleanup phase.  I certainly don't know what we would have done without them after each of our storms. 

Okay, whatever you're doing today - create something wonderful about it.


"You can’t wait for inspiration, you have to go after it with a club." - Jack London

* GiGi has the 'real' albums that tell her life story, and then she has the albums that are a result of my incessant need to scrap just for the sake of scrapping and use any and all of those crazy teenage photos she takes of herself everyday for Instagram and Facebook.

Monday, October 29, 2012

ScrapRemix 5 & Albums...

Okay, it's a given I can't photograph the layouts, but why is it the past few days that all my pink letters look totally different in person than on the photographs??? For instance, check out this layout's PINK letters...

Patterned Paper:  Crate Paper, MyMindsEye, Pink Paislee; Stickers: American Crafts, K&Co; Flower & Gems:  K&Co, The Paper Studio; Twine: Doodlebug; Ink: Ranger, Tsukineko; Pen: Sharpie

See what I'm talking about... those letters look exactly the same pink as those stripes in my kitchen.  I think it may be time to strike out for an OttLite! 

I rather like this page... don't love it but like it fine enough.  I actually put all those papers and photos together then went to bed for a while because I didn't know what else to do (and I really am feeling rather bad lately).  Then Suddenly, it came to me!!!  I knew what I had to do!  I grabbed a white paper rose, dabbed it with a paint brush soaked with chalk ink, grabbed a few of those gem thingys, added the title & journaling, and hey! called it done.  Then I went back to bed feeling a little better about life in general (those are my days lately, bed - up - bed - up, you know what I mean!)

Todays prompt was about using pale colors and, I think, about using those A-sides that we buy paper for... you know the ones like those beautiful MyMindsEye with the birdcages or words in the corners.  But when Shimelle went into detail, she didn't really address using those emblems - unless you cut them out and use them elsewhere.  I was rather disappointed as I love those papers but rarely will even think about using them as I have no clue how to make a decent page out of them.  But I think I will try later for a JC page using one of those MME Lost & Found bird pages - just for the heck of it.  I'll show you how that works out later. 

But then again, I did use a pale background with an emblem in the corner of the A-side paper in this layout that I posted a couple of weeks ago...

I really like this page so maybe I can just use the same principle - but the papers I need to use up are those super vintage looking ones.  I guess we'll see, hmmm.....

While lying here today, I read through some of Shimelle's posts about albums.  You know, because of all these 'events' I have been scrapping for this year (okay, I know there's only been two, but that's two more than I've ever done before!) and just scrapping for the fun of it with GiGi having so many photos available, GiGi will have two albums just about her this year - not including what goes into the annual family album.  But don't feel too sorry for JC, his other grandmother is the one that started all this scrapping business 13 years ago while she was a rep for Creative Memories and did a scrapbook for my daughter's ex-husband.  And she is still very active today so I am sure that JC has plenty of albums of his own for every year at their home.  I have been somewhat lax over the past few years, well always really, because I scrap in spurts.  I have albums going for my family's annual albums, myself, my brother, my mom & dad, my ancestors, JC's sports & baby albums, GiGi's cheer & baby albums, and all the ingredients for my daughter's that I have only actually done one two-page layout for; none of which have more than a few pages completed.  But there are dozens of mini-albums laying around covering everything from genealogical data to every Christmas, love story, etc.  That's just how my scrapping rolls.  Hopefully I'll get something accomplished now that I am feeling my groove and will soon have a scrap room again - I've never had a scrap room and my groove at the same time. Hmmm....

Okay, that's it for today.  I hope everyone is Artistically Endeavored... if not, go find your groove girlfriend!


"Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way." - Edward de Bono

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Scrapbook Remix #4

How fortunate that this prompt came in time for me to work over the weekend.  As I said yesterday, not in the best scrappy mood just now.  In fact, after working today on my Prompt 4 layouts, I am now sitting on my bed with a heating pad as my back screams "YOU WILL NEVER SCRAPBOOK AGAIN!" in it's best Wizard of Oz voice.  Stupid back, stupid legs, stupid middle... I'll show you!

So I did two layouts for this Prompt.  Weirdly, I had to read it over and over to understand exactly what my purpose was... there was so much said about that Scenic Route paper that I just didn't figure out what I was supposed to be aiming at.  (Now, we all know that this is very much about the MS - about the fact that there are times when I am pretty much just an idiot.  Especially when I am having a flair coming on like right now.  Stupid MS!)  But I finally figured it out - it's those pesky little florals.  No, really I kind of like a floral sometimes.  Let's face it, I firmly believe that a layout isn't complete with some flowers and butterflies or birds.  I'm just that scrapbooker.  And that's fine with me.
Now before I get started on those layouts, I just want to say that I had almost forgotten how hard scrapbooking can be for me sometimes.  Lately it has seemed so easy to pick that paper and that paper and cut it and glue it to some cardstock (even though it takes a while - let's face it, it has always taken me hours to complete a "10-Minute Page").  But the past few days pages have taken me forever even though the process of selecting papers has been quite quick.

For instance, when I printed the photos of my birthday, I knew exactly what papers I wanted to use.  So I started out with a 10"x10" square of the large floral on gray cardstock as my starting point.  Then I used my large eyelet border punch on the small floral and placed it on a strip of green pp on top of  on top of the 'teal' dot (also cut with the large eyelet border).  As you can see, that is totally not the way it ended up.  For almost 24 hours, I would change this and change that; getting up from bed and working on it in the middle of the night.  So... no, this is not what my vision started as but this is what I ended up with and yes, it looks very familiar to so many layouts I've done - but hey, that's fine with me, at least I like it. 

A Prepared Birthday - Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Crate Paper, Echo Park, Pebbles Inc; Flowers:  Prima, Recollections;  Stickers:  American Crafts, EK Success; Brads & Pearls: The Paper Studio;Punches: EK Success, Martha Stewart; Ink: Ranger; Pen: Sharpie

Once I finished this layout, I realized there needs to be an accompanying page as I have more photos that I want to use and story to tell.  Hate that my dark pink glitter letters look so purple in this photo - but we all know I can't take a picture worth a darn.  And I have especially found that, even though the lighting is better inside the house here, the photos are not as good as the ones I used to take on the side of my shed.  I have found that here using my cell phone actually seems better than my 'real' camera. Hmmm....

Since hooking up with Pretty Papers.True Stories., Shimelle has totally made me a lover of B-side papers.  I have found that they are the easiest thing in the world to work with as they mix-match so well and work for almost everything.  This has totally changed my life!!! (No wonder she's my scrapping hero!)  I now enjoy scrapbooking so much more and am more productive than ever as this comes together for me so much easier.  Before, I fell in love with A-sides and bought papers based on that love... only to find when I got home that I had no clue how to use them.  However, using all those tiny patterns for backgrounds, mats, bits & pieces - well now, I can do that!  And so, for much of my paper shopping I have strictly bought for those little patterns (in conjunction with the colors of course).  But as I am a paper pack/pad buyer, I have gotten my hands on quite a few A-sides in the process... and a few of them I really like (like that 'Good Life' paper I used on GiGi's layout last week).  So in the vain of trying 'new' things, I tried something a little different than anything spoke of in class (yet?). I used an A-side as a background on my 2nd layout:

Ever So Happy - Patterned Paper:  Echo Park, Pink Paislee; Stickers: American Crafts, Cosmo Cricket, Echo Park; Flowers: Creative Memories, Recollections; Punch:  EK Success; Ink: Ranger; Pen: Sharpie
This is definitely one of those A-sides that I really liked, thought would be so great to use on a layout, then got home and had no clue what to do with.  But once I figured out that I wanted to use that floral and then pulled the Pink Paislee paper, it came together quite quickly.  I used the cameras cut from Echo Park This&That to hide some (not all) of the yellow flowers around the border. And other than the flowers, those are the only embellishments I used!  How easy is that??!!!  And you know what, I really love this layout in person.  Even though the original floral didn't have the yellow in it, it really flows well with the other elements of the page - they actually look as though they could have come from the same paper line.  I inked everything with black this time, and used a gray Sharpie for the journaling.  It just works for me - maybe not everyone - but for me, and that's fine.

I want to put in a product plug here... I love.love.love. Sharpie Ultrafine Pens.  I have so many colors but my favorite are the black, brown and gray that I use for journaling.  I got mine at Office Depot for $1.00 each and they are the one item that not only stays on my craft cart, but in my purse as well.  Also, I love! EK Success border punches.  Not only are they the easiest thing ever to store, but they really cut smoothly for me and the indicator markings are spot on. 

Okay, now I have to go find the charger for my laptop.  I hope everyone is spending every minute of their time creating something wonderful (okay, well at least some of their time)!  Happy Sunday.


P.S.  Have you ever noticed how many words light up when you spell check anything about scrapbooking?  Like the words 'scrapbooking', 'journaling', 'cardstock' & 'florals'... it just cracks me up everytime.

"Every creator painfully experiences the chasm between his inner vision and its ultimate expression." - Isaac Bashevis Singer

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Scrapbook Remix #3?...

My days are all mixed up... about Wednesday it started.  I had to take mom to the Dr and get more adhesive in Pensacola so that took up all day.  Then when we finally got home, I had to take GiGi to the ER (she's been complaining of a backache that has become progressively worse over the past few weeks... just doesn't seem normal for a 13-year old!... but nothing came back critical so they gave her a muscle relaxant and sent her home). 
Anyway, woke up Thursday and worked on the Prompt 3 layouts of which I only got one finished and worked on one other.  These involve a quilting kind of look... and even though I have quilted in the past, I'm just not in love with this type of scrapbooking.  So I'm gonna discuss these two little layouts one at a time:

Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper: Crate Paper, Echo Park, My Minds Eye; Journaling Spots:  Colorbok; Stickers:  American Crafts; Pen: Sharpie; Twine: Doodlebug; Other: Buttons.
So I am totally not in love with this page!  I worked inordinately hard on that 'quilting' piece... cutting triangles, inking triangles, placing triangles on strips of cardstock, re-placing triangles on a block of cardstock; re-placing triangles on a large block of cardstock, moving around triangles on that piece of cardstock; trimming edges of triangles.  Once I got through with those triangles, I definitely did not want to cover them up!  I didn't know what embellishments to use, finally deciding on buttons to go with the homemade look of the 'quilting', but what else?  And where to put them?!  I just don't know.  I keep looking at it and have decided that it definitely just needs put in the book and call it done.  I am finished with looking at those triangles and definitely finished with this page.

As part of the Extended Play on this Prompt, we did a page on quadrants:

Photo:  Sears; Cardstock: The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Crafte Paper, Echo Park, Studio Calico; Journaling Spots: Colorbok; Stickers:  American Crafts, Mrs Grossmans; Flowers:  Prima, The Paper Sudio; Brads:  Making Memories; Rubons:  Autumn Leaves

While this page isn't one of my favorites, I do like it better.  If I had it to do over, I may have used the floral on opposing corners; but I don't know, I kind of like like this as a second focal point.  I really like the papers that I used and am excited to use them again in different ways.  My sewing machine is still in my RV, I had to make do with rubon stitches, and that became a fine choice in the end.  And so happy to use that Mrs Grossman lace sticker that I've had in my stash for 10+ years.  Also, I was glad that I had some crocheted flowers to use to maintain that homemade feel.  And as proven in the past, I do like to use quadrants on my pages in differing amounts, but this may be the first time I've used them as a background - I think I like it, but just not positive.  We'll see.

Okay, so I may have been over ambitious at the start of the week because by Friday I was totally laid up for most of the day.  But I had promised GiGi to take her to the High School football game last night and, if there is anyway I can sit up for more than an hour, I don't break promises.  So we did that last night and today I hurt even more than yesterday.  I hate it when my mind says scrapbook and my body says No... but even worse I hate it when I want to feel like scrapbooking but just can't - body nor mind will get get in the groove.  That's today...   It's 3:15 pm here, and I haven't even gotten out of my pjs (a sign that it probably won't  happen to day if I can get out of going to GiGi's game tonight) so I guess we'll just see what happens from now until I go to bed.

Hope everyone else has a Scrap Happy Day!


"Creativity isn’t about wild talent as much as it’s about productivity. To find new ideas that work, you need to try a lot that don’t. It’s a pure numbers game."  - Robert Sutton

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Scrap Remix Day 2...

Thank you everyone for such lovely comments... I have been very busy trying to keep up with the class and now is the first time since 7:00 am yesterday that I have been on my computer (I still haven't seen the video from yesterday so the following may be totally offbase!).  I will get to look at everyone else's layouts shortly... yay!!!!!!  Am so excited to see what everyone has done!!!

Here are my layouts from yesterday:

Patterned Paper:  American Crafts, Crate Paper, Echo Park, Fancy Pants; Journaling Spot:  K&Co; Stickers:  American Crafts, Anna Griffin, Echo Park; Punch: Martha Stewart; Ink: Ranger; Pen: Sharpie; Other:  Poladroid
I have never made a page with this kind of color scheme so that was something new. That yellow looking paper is actually kind of chartreuse, hmmm. Also want to say that this layout made me work very hard and is actually a justification for me sitting around looking at my pages hanging up for a while: I finished it, photographed it, and hung it behind the table - all the while thinking that something wasn't quite done. Then, as I walked through the room it struck me... the banner paper was upside down!!! (What an idiot!) So I had to completely undo 2/3 of the layout and redo it without tearing anything up! I'm quite loving this layout right now!

Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  American Crafts, Echo Park, Fancy Pants, Studio Calico; Stickers: American Crafts; Flowers: Recollections; Punch: EK Success; Stamp: TPC; Ink: Colorbox

This is almost a duplicate of Shimelle's layout. Well as close as I dared to get anyway with what I had to work with. I originally had little orange flowers on it, but changed them out for yellow and like it so much more. Oh, and yes, I have fixed that dropped N since I took the photo, but didn't notice it until after I had downloaded and cropped it! 

Cardstock: The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper: American Crafts, Echo Park; Stickers: American Crafts, Cosmo Cricket; Brads: Hampton Arts; Pen: Sharpie

 In lieu of 'photo-booth' strip, I just joined two 3x4 photos. And since they didn't have a white border, there were in desperate need of a mat. So here it is. I had oh, so much more to say about these photos than would fit on journaling cards, so grateful for all that empty cardstock!  But I have to admit, even though I love the colors the best and the subject matter the best, this is my least favorite of these 4 layouts - and GiGi's too.  I may try this page again with the same supplies and photos and a different sketch just to see if that's the problem as I'm not sure right now what the deal is.  And I definitely think it's important to know what the deal is when you just don't like something.

Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  American Crafts, Fancy Pants; Flowers:  Recollections, The Paper Studio; Stickers: American Crafts, Echo Park, EK Success; Twine: Doodlebug; Tape: K&Co; Buttons: Hampton Arts; Pen: Sharpie; Other: Felt Flower, Instagram

First let me say that as I am not in the swing of things just yet, I have two (yes, 2) rolls of washi tape to my name and they are both from the SmashBook line (I have a few rolls of deco plastic tape and cellophane tape as well but they are not as universal as most washi tapes are, nor as pretty). Also, at 9:00 last night I just did not feel like stamping anything at all, but then that part of the layout would have actually taken more time than completing the entire rest of it because of all the thought that would have had to gone into picking the right stamps, etc. So this is what it is. But the journaling is from GiGi's mouth to my hand - so it's kinda special.

Oh, and did anyone notice that I managed to get a flower, butterfly or bird (or 2 of the 3) into every. single. layout.; and there is some shade of 'teal' in 3 of the 4 layouts... gotta find my comfort zone somewhere when doing new things!

Must say that I may or may not get anything done today, as am paying dearly for all that work the last two days - I think my body is going on strike!  But I'm gonna do my best, because I am definitely in my happy place.  And this Remix class is working for me!

Find your happy place today!


"Creativity comes from trust.  Trust your instincts." - Rita Mae Brown

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

ScrapRemix Day 1...

Okay... let me just say that I'm not all that sure about this class thing.  I didn't have the papers Shimelle had so I'm certainly feeling like I'm winging it.  Then I had already chosen the photos I wanted to scrap (but didn't have a clue as to what I would do with them), so my follow-along with the prompts was probably not all that it was supposed to be.  For instance, am I supposed to just be using one pack/line of paper to get rid of it?  Or is it that I can just use any old paper to get rid of this enormous stash?  Whatever, I'm just using up all that paper sitting there waiting for a rainy day.  And am I supposed to be copying the layout in order to "get" the concept?  Some I did, some I altered.   And I'm sure that's fine.  But I will say that I appreciate the inspiration.  I actually completed all four parts of the prompt yesterday. Of course, I got nothing else done!!    Here they are: 

Patterned Paper:  Crate Paper, Echo Park; Stickers:  Echo Park; Flowers:  The Paper Studio; Brads:  The Paper Studio, Hampton Arts; Bling The Paper Studio; Flair:  American Crafts; Ink:  Ranger; Other Adobe PSE.

Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Crate Paper, Echo Park, Fancy Pants; Journaling Spots:  K&Co; Stickers:  American Crafts, Echo Park; Twine:  Doodlebug; Ink:  Ranger; Pen:  Sharpie.

Photos:  TSS Studios; Cardstock:  The Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Cosmo Cricket; Flowers:  The Paper Studio; Stickers:  American Crafts;
Ink:  Ranger; Bling:  Recollections

Patterned Paper:  American Crafts, Echo Park, Sassafras; Stickers:  Cosmo Cricket, Echo Park;
Ink:  Ranger; Pen:  Sharpie

Okay, so there they are... not perfect, but done.  Of course, we all know that for some reason, I just cannot photograph layouts - still trying different cameras/places/techniques so it is what it is.  I did use quite a bit of Echo Park today and I'm a little surprised to say that there is not a butterfly or bird on any of these layouts, I just don't know what happened!  Also, I actually used so many stickers, etc. from the paper packs - I hardly ever do that!! 

We've spoken of therapy before, but I will tell you a quick story:  When I picked up GiGi last night from Cheer practice we stopped at McDonalds (of course).  As we were pulling away she turns, looks me dead on, and says "Wow!  You are in such a good mood!  What have you been doing?"  I told here I had been working on my layouts for the class.  "Scrapbooking, I thought so.  You need to make sure to do it more often."  Now, that's a great idea!

So, Keep Calm and Scrap On!  Still not too late to sign up for the Remix class at Pretty Papers.True Stories.!


"Creativity is just connecting things." - Steve Jobs

Sunday, October 21, 2012

What's Up With Teal?

Seafoam, Aqua, Robin Egg, Turquoise, Peacock, Teal... no matter what you call it, it's just differing degrees of that combination of blue and green.  Because GiGi calls any and all forms of this combination Teal, that's what I'm gonna do for this post.  And in all it's forms, it's obviously one of my favorite colors (and GiGi's too)! 

About 5 years ago I started thinking about Teal... not the dark version that I had always considered the real Teal, but that middle ground - turquoise is what I've always called it; somewhere between Aqua and Teal. I started thinking about it as I was considering new furniture.  And I realized that this color was more neutral than even cream.  Think about it, what color doesn't work with "turquoise", that middle bluegreen color?  Red, check.  Pink, check.  Yellow, check.  Orange, check.  Green, check.  Blue, check.  Brown, check.  Black, check.  It works for every season - spring skies, summer water, winter snow.  It's the perfect color.

It suddenly occurred to me that Teal has taken over my scrapbooking.  I know that it's normal for all of us to scrap around our favorite colors; or, at the very least, to sneak in small aspects of that color.  But it seems the scrap world went crazy for Teal!  I mean, obviously - it's available everywhere.  And we scrappers have eaten it up.  No more strictly red and green Christmas pages, teal works well there too.  No more strictly pink and red Valentines - those colors look so well with a dash of teal.  No more pastel blue when we can use that beautiful aqua color.  Summers look great with a dose of teal.  That true teal, the dark side, looks great with the browns and golds of fall.  Baby boys are teal and brown.  Baby girls are pink and teal. 

And do you know why?  Its not just the neutrality of  the color but the fact that it truly makes us feel happy.  When GiGi moved into the spare room of my mom's house, it was a Disney room.  There were lithographs, snow globes and canvases of Disney all over the room - and still are.  The colors were yellow walls, royal blue curtains, and red comforter.  The first thing we brought into the room was a teal bedside lamp.  That looked so pretty, we bought a teal curtain.  Then a teal rug.  Amazingly, I found a throw at WalMart that had flowers of teal, green, red and some striped pillows of the royal blue, red, yellow and one teal stripe through the middle.  Then there's the owl canvas and owl hooks.   This room is lovely.  But mostly, its happy. 

I still receive the only scrapbook magazine left - Creating Keepsakes.  It's a good mag (my fave was Scrapbooking, Etc. which went out of publication this year).  I love mags, they're soooo portable and that's important while sitting in the car waiting for cheer practice to end  and you forgot to charge your phone.  At any rate, I skimmed through my new mag last night and realized that 8 out 10 layouts had at least one itty bitty hint of teal in it.  That's amazing with the variety of creators, subject matters, manufacturers that composed those layouts.  So I went back and looked at the layouts I've created over the past 6 months and yep, theres a whole bunch of teal in there.  Here's the last 4 I did previous to the ones shown in the last 2 posts:

Cardstock:  Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  American Crafts; Stickers:  American Crafts;  Flowers:  Paper Studio; Embellishments: American Crafts; Gems:  Queen&Co; Brads:  Paper Studio, Recollections; Punches:  Martha Stewart, EK Success; Other Buttons, Thread, Tag.

Cardstock:  Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Cosmo Cricket, October Afternoon; Stickers:  American Crafts, My Minds Eye, EK Success, Cosmo Cricket; Journaling Spot:  Colorbok; Brad: Hampton Arts; Stamps: 7 Gypsies, Hampton Arts; Punch:  Ek Success; Other:  Buttons, Thread.

Cardstock:  Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  American Crafts, Studio Calico, Echo Park; Flowers:  Prima, Making Memories, Creative Memories; Brads:  Hampton Arts, Paper Studio, Sassafras; Stickers:  American Crafts, Doodlebug; Punch:  Ek Success.

Cardstock:  Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Pink Paislee, American Crafts, Sassafras; Journaling Spots: K&Co; Stickers:  American Crafts, Echo Park, Colorbok; Flowers: Paper Studio, Prima; Brads: Sassafras, Hampton Arts; Embellishments:  Colorbok, American Crafts; Punches:  Ek Success, Fiskars.
In fact, looking back, only 2 of the last 14 layouts I've made have not had some shade of teal somewhere in them.  And trust me, that's a totally unconscious creative decision.  Well maybe not totally unconscious... Obviously in the case of my brother's layout and my Nonna layouts they are predominately in shades of aqua with a bright partner color - something I remember actually doing on purpose when I had those papers all spread out on my table.  But conscious or subconscious it's all fine with me.  I do not plan to omit any Teal in the future if it happens to come into my layout.  I will never make a conscious decision to just leave it out.  Because honestly, of all the layouts I've made over the past 13 years, these are my favorites.  They just give me a smiley feeling when I look at them.
So what are your feelings about all those shades of bluegreen? 
I have signed up for the Scrap Remix class at pretty paper.true stories that Shimelle starts tomorrow.  Excited as it will be my first ever class!  And only the 3rd time I have ever been involved in any kind of joint scrapbooking (crops, etc.).  So we'll see how it goes and if I can hang with the class.  Luckily I know that if I'm not able to keep up, the class will always be available to me.  Gotta love Shimelle!
Also, hopefully I will get GiGi's computer repaired soon so that I can have my laptop back fulltime and catch up on what's going on over at my favorite blogs... right now I just feel fortunate that she's out of the house so I can jump on my own blog!  But know that I still love them all and so miss being able to check out everyone!
Have a great Monday!
"Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working."  - Pablo Picasso

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Just a Couple of Layouts...

Okay... I am sooo tired.  Took GiGi and a couple of her friends to the movies last night, then Waffle House, then Frozen Yogurt, then WalMart, finally home at about 12:00.  Then I slept on the couch so that the girls could have some privacy even though I was hurting from head to toe.  I'm just not as I used to be - when staying out until 3:00 then work by 8:00 was almost normal!

By the way, I saw 'Argo' while the girls saw Perfect Pitch (?).  It was a really good movie.  Not normally what I would go to the movies to see as I prefer to see big time scenery or action if I'm going to spend money.  But glad I took the plunge albeit alone.  I remember the Iran hostage situation pretty well (believe it or not!), maybe because that's when ABC's 'Nightline' was started in order to give us the daily blow-by-blow.  But honestly, I didn't remember it as well as I'd thought.  The movie interweaves archived news footage into the movie (in which Ben Affleck excels) making it all the more poignant. Surprisingly, even though I knew how the story would end, I bit my nails (and almost walked out) because of how stressed I got worrying about the entire situation.  Okay, I know that's a little psycho on my part, but it is seriously a good movie.  The only thing I had to complain about was that, as a smoker, between the anxiety and the 1970's constant smoking, I desperately wanted a cigarette all through the movie!
It was actually a shock to see the Iranian protests and violence once again - that part I had forgotten.   It has made me think a lot today about the difference in our cultures:  America has a 'live and let live' attitude most of the time, embracing what may be perceived as the underdog, and a right to protests - but only because we don't, for the most part, protest with violence;  Iran was so very much the epitome of the MiddleEast and perhaps if 911 had happened on MiddleEastern soil, there may have been public executions of Americans right away.    I am proud to be an American and live in a country that has a "live and let live" mentality but a "don't mess with me" attitude.   It's just very sad that countries don't realize that it is this pride in our nations/religions that makes us all very much alike.*

Okay, enough about that.  People asks me why I don't do more layouts of JC... well, simply put, there just aren't as many photos.  GiGi takes pictures of herself almost daily (making us a little leery of her ego, but then we realized it's just what kids do nowadays in their constant communication with their peers - ah, cellphone/computer technology at its best!) She also writes alot of stories online and as part of those stories will dress in specific outfits and post those photos within the stories to show how her characters' styles are different from the others, how they look for special occasions, etc.  (I don't necessarily get it, but she'll come in and say, "Nonna, take a couple of pictures of me in this outfit for my story" and off we'll go.)  Also, she's much more social than JC so there are always photos of her friends and herself.  Finally, both kids have taken Graphic Arts classes at school and GiGi has decided her future includes a degree in Graphic Arts with a side job of modeling to help make ends meet (she's been to modeling school as well) - she loves to use Photoshop Elements and other editing programs to play with photos.  So yes, there are thousands of photos "laying" around of GiGi while, although he was the first grandson on both sides of his family and with scrapbookers on both sides has had possibly millions of photos taken in his short life, JC has taken to shying away from the camera unless it's a special deal.  Boys!!!

With that being said, here are the layouts I worked on yesterday and today: 

Cardstock:  Paper Studio; Patterned Paper:  Echo Park & Sassafras; Stickers:  American Crafts, Recollections, Cosmo Cricket, Echo Park; Journaling Spots:  K&Company; Pen: Sharpie; Ink: Ranger; Software: Adobe Photoshop Elements

Patterned Paper: Fancy Pants, American Crafts; Stickers: American Crafts, Doodlebug; Flowers: Recollections, Paper Studio; Punches: EK Success, Martha Stewart; Gems & Button: Hampton Arts; Twine: Doodlebug;  Ink: Ranger; Pen: Sharpie

I'm thinking about removing the small flowers on the left banner and replacing them with her initials: LSBW... I don't know, I'm still looking at it!  That's one thing about me, I will put my layouts in a page protector and pin them to the wall to look at for several days before I put them away into an album.  (Which, believe it or not, makes me miss my RV.  Of course it was, in its own way, easier to scrap at the RV because I could just move all over the place (from table to couch to middle of the bed) with my supplies for any given layout so that I wouldn't become too uncomfortable.  That's been one of the hardest parts of scrapbooking for years - the fact that it only takes very little time before I cannot sit at table or desk no matter the chair & I can't stand but for a few minutes at a time because of my feet and legs.  As a result, when doing the challenges back in the spring with Shimelle (and you guys), I did a few actually laying in bed.  But getting back to hanging my layouts, I had a clothesline in my RV that went right across the 'living space' from end to end so that I could hang photos to scrap and completed layouts - and it was just fine that way because I didn't have anyone that I had to worry about but me.  Sometimes I would change things, but mostly I would just look at them with pride... pride at accomplishing something, pride for getting something done that I felt needed done, and pride if I actually liked the way they turned out.)  I'm just not one of those people who feels that it's all about the process or the preservation of memories.  Don't get me wrong, those things are very important to me.  But moreover, it's the end result that I love the most:  the accomplishment of making something I feel is lovely & cherishable.  I don't think I have ever made a single layout that I immediately just put in the books and started the next without a second thought.  I try to make each one aesthetically pleasing to me; and so I like to look at them as much as the owl and bird paintings in my bedroom, maybe even more so.  Let's face it - we make scrapbook pages because we love the way all that pretty paper and embellishments look after we put them all together (sometimes we even like the photos we put on the page too - but they don't matter half as much really).  I'm not an artist, but I'd be willing to bet that I love to put patterned paper, flowers, butterflies and Thickers on a piece of cardstock as much as Van Gogh liked putting paint to canvas!  And he probably didn't hang those on the wall and stare at them for a week after he finished!

So today's question is:  What do you do with a layout after you've finished it?  Do you stick it in your scrapbook immediately or do you hang it up for a while?

I hope everyone is having a great weekend!  Both of the kids have gone to the "Mullet Festival" we have locally (just like all festivals it has music, food and crafts) with family or friends so our house is pretty quiet as they won't be returning tonight.  So I'm gonna stick a heating pad on my back, take my meds and lay in bed watching "Ancient Aliens" (now there's something to think about!). 


 *  I don't talk politics and especially don't believe they should be a part of this blog.  I do not believe in parties as I have voted on both sides of the spectrum.    I have served my country along with each of my siblings as well as my dad.  I sincerely hope I have not offended anyone in anyway as that was not my intention.

"Happiness is not in the mere possession of money;  it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort."  -Franklin D. Roosevelt

Thursday, October 18, 2012

10 Things - the Makeup Test...

Yes, I missed 10 things on the 10th - for several months.  So I am doing 10 things about the time I've been away (if I can think of 10 things!!!).  Here goes...

1)  We are all still staying at my mom's house.  ALL OF US!!!  I am currently sharing a 10x12 bedroom with GiGi (well, it's really her bedroom and I just visit on some nights).  We ordered bunk beds with a Futon (full size bed) on bottom.  But since GiGi walks and talks and finds things and fixes things in her sleep, the top bunk is used mostly for reading, homework, computering, etc. and she sleeps on the bottom bunk; and, thus, with me if I sleep there to give my aching body a rest from the couch.  In addition to the fear of her falling, there was the fear of her being decapitated by the ceiling fan which must run constantly for my menopausal wellbeing.  Because this is where I go during the day to rest, especially now...

2)  My dad fell... again.  This time he broke his other hip and had to have 2 pins inserted (his right hip was broken in Jan 2011 and the ball was replaced).  Two days after he was dismissed from Home HealthCare, he fell getting out of bed and has since been confined to a wheelchair.  The Doctor said just yesterday that he can start to put weight on that leg again and so, here we go again.  Fortunately, he is staying in the wheelchair for the most part (except during therapy) instead of trying to jump up and use his walker again.  But I know him - it's just a matter of time... a matter of time until he decides that he can walk with the walker without anyone helping and a matter of time until he falls - again.  But then there's the fact that...

3)  GiGi's computer screen is broken and so she has taken over my laptop.  My desktop is still in my RV on the other side of town so I have been on approximately 8 times in the past 4 months, to include signing into Facebook to check on my family and post photos.  Not that I have the mental capacity most days to get anything done, even...

4)  My mother is desparately afraid she is losing her mind - whether due to the diabetes, alzheimers, dementia, stress, or who-knows.  I truly believe it's the stress.  This is absolutely the most stressful situation there has ever been, but we can see no alternative.  GiGi absolutely refuses to go back home to even get her stuff.  My daughter's health is still a day-to-day rollercoaster/house of horror.  Fortunately, Jacob has made good friends here and loves to go to the end of the road to fish in the Sound.  As a result of

5)  My mom won't let me leave.  I think it's a security thing (or she just has toys in the attic because I am NOT easy to live with).  She just can't even consider it and she really doesn't even want to go out of town because she says I can't go with her because I have to stay and take care of the kids.  So here I stay with a total lack of privacy or time to myself.  But she's my mom and...

6)  I have responsibilities.  I don't mean to sound like I have responsibilities and no one else does.  We ALL have responsibilities.  It's just that I didn't really have as many while living in the RV.  I get up at 5:00 am to get the kids ready for school and am up until 10:30-11:30 at night getting them to bed.  GiGi has cheer practice 3 nights a week until 9:00, so by the time she gets home, showered, wound down, making sure homework is finished, everything is ready for the next morning, etc. it's just late.  Then there's the weekend games, tutoring, socializing that 13 year olds must have a ride for - all the time.  You know what I mean.  But at 51, I'm almost too old to do all of it.  Well, with MS I'm almost too old to do it...

7)  The more tired I get, the more sick I get.  So sick and tired of being sick and tired!!!  I'm just worn out most of the time.  And with this many people, there is so much to do.  Right now, I have got to get the energy to clean out my mom's garage (which has been used as a storage unit since the time they have moved into this house) so that my brother can come make an extra room out of it.  I still haven't gotten my RV or my daughters house cleaned up and this house looks like a tornado has hit most of the time.  We have 3 women here, and no one feels like doing anything (teenagers don't count right now with homework, cheer practice, tutoring, etc.).  It's even more depressing...

8)  You know how you say, well this is it, it can't get any worse - but it does!  That's how it feels around here most days.  Yes, I have an income now and that is a true blessing.  But I am surprised at how little that has changed anything.  Of course, it's great to be able to do what little I want to do without having to borrow the money.  But I think worrying about money is now just ingrained in my being (I'm actuallly getting tighter than a hair in a biscuit).  I do it all the time and not just for myself but everyone in my family.  As well as their health - even my little brother in Tampa is in bad shape as well as his wife and I worry about them all the time.  I know I should trust in God to take care of everything in his own way; and I do in a very basic sense.  I just think I'm designed to worry...

9)  But I have found out something about myself that was only hinted at before.  I must scrapbook.  I must craft.  I've been crafting for about 25 years seriously.  Crocheting, cross-stitching, sewing, and then I found scrapbooking/papercrafting and fell madly in love.  But now I realize it's more than just a love affair.  It really is my very own brand of nerve-pill, anti-depressant and happy-pill all rolled up.  A few weeks ago my mom said to me "I don't know if it's because of your illness, your tired, your depressed - but you are just angry and mean.  No one can say a word to you without you just being hateful in return.  You've been like this for a couple of weeks."  Well it was probably because of all 3 reasons, but I was certainly as mad as a hornet about her saying that to me.  I was ready to pack when I went to bed that night.  But the next morning I got up at 5:00, got the kids on the bus, cleaned the kitchen and sat down in my little corner of the kitchen table and started cutting paper.  And glueing paper.  I made a few cards and a couple of layouts.  And do you know what?  Well of course you do!!!  I was a totally different person when I got up from that table.  The next day my mom said she didn't know what had happened but I seemed so much better.  I told her, "I remembered where I'd left my sanity."  And she realized I was right.  There has been no more talk of me cleaning up my little corner of the kitchen or storing my scrap supplies.  I suppose she realized that it was better to look at what she considers an inconsequential mess than for me to live without that "stuff".  Who needs counseling when you have pretty paper and bling??!!

Cardstock: Paper Studio; Patterned Paper: Echo Park, American Crafts (AC); Stickers: American Crafts, Cosmo Cricket; Journaling Spots: American Crafts, K&Co.; Flowers: American Crafts, Recollections; Brad & Bling: Hampton Art; Punch: Martha Stewart; Other:  Adobe Photoshop Elements

Cardstock: Paper Studio; Patterned Paper: Sassafrass; Flowers: Paper Studio, Prima; Stamp & Stickers: American Crafts; Ribbon: Paper Studio; Brads:  Making Memories; Other:  Buttons, Thread, Adobe Photoshop

Cardstock:  Michaels; Patterned Paper:  My Minds Eye; Stickers:  K&Co, Jolees, Glitz; Flowers: Recollections, Paper Studio, Prima; Ribbon: Ofray; Doily:  Wilton; Bling: Hampton Art; Stamp: Stampabilities; Brad: Paper Studio; Paint: Plaid;

And so there's no more talk about...

10) I've been doing some serious shopping.  Well for me.  I did buy GiGi a complete closet full of new clothes for school (I like to say it was a necessity as she's grown 4-inches since April... but truth is I am living vicariously through her 5'7.5", 105 lbs of perfect body for all those too cute clothes!).  But more importantly, I've got new scrap supplies - well new for me as I've been longing for some of them for so long... Echo Park papers (woohoo!), American Craft papers, Martha Stewart scoring board, 2 paper-cutters (AC and Fiskars), some new punches, embossing folders, stamps, some 6x6 MME papers, loads of embellishments and gobs of Thickers.  I'm as happy as a pig in mud!  Now if I just had some place to put them, some energy to get it done, and the guts to stop just saving them and actually use them! 

So tonight I'm gonna do a little something different - I'm gonna pose a question:  What do you do with patterned paper, etc. if you realize you don't love it as much as you thought you would?

Well, that's a little something something to let you know that I am still alive.  I have certainly thought of my blogends many times.  It's good to be back - hope I can stay.


P.S.  I miss you too Cynthia - thank you so much for those notes as they would pop up on my phone and make me feel better about life in general... you'll never know just what I mean, but Thank You isn't quite enough.

P.S.S.  Sorry these are the best pictures - I'm figuring out the best way to take them and, well, I'm just tired tonight.

"Art is a guarantee of sanity.  That is the most important thing I have said." - Louise Bourgeois

10 Things...

I think I made it!!! Yay!!!!! Actually blogging 10 things on the 10th of the month!!!!

This month I have decided that I will do the 10 things that I am most thankful for today, so here goes:
  • God... for giving me this awesome universe and a mind that seeks knowledge and appreciates beauty.
  • GiGi... for bringing unconditional acceptance and profound grace to my life.
  • JC... for showing me that snips and snails and puppydog tails are actually things to enjoy.
  • my bro... for making me so very proud and letting  me know that I didn't do such a bad job for a kid.
  • my daughter... for teaching me so many lessons.
  • my dad... for always encouraging me to try my best and supporting me whenever I'm down & out.
  • my extended family... for giving me some of the best memories a girl could have and wonderful stories to pass on to my grandkids.
  • my blog friends... for making me feel appreciated and cared for.
  • my attorney... for understanding and articulating how my body & mind refuse to function reliably and giving me my life back - well, half of it anyway.
  • and last but certainly most - My Mom... for loving me so very much each and every day of my life; knowing me and loving me anyway; making me laugh when I don't want to; trusting me above all others; taking care of every single person in this family; worrying even when we tell you not to; trying so hard to be the best Christian you can; and having the patience of Job... you are certainly my hero.
Now I need to go scrap these things today - July 10, 2012.  And you should scrap your list too.  I seriously regret that I have been so late in making this list this year.  But I love the idea so much that I plan to just keep on going every year so that I can look back on those days and remember, as well as pass them on to my grandkids as insight into my mind.  Even on months when its the 10 reasons jellyfish suck! 

Ok... you know what to do - make it wonderful!


"Creativity can be described as letting go of certainties." - Gail Sheehy