Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Don't you love it when a plan comes together!

I have emailed, messaged, and chatted galore in the past few days.  And it has all been worth it ... my family are all getting in on the 'Family Recipe Album' idea that I had for my cousins wedding present.  I am so excited that I am going to make two, one for me and one for her.

My family has been fractured many times over for generations and we are spread all over the world.  Some of us try to keep in touch and others have lost their family roots.  This is my way of passing some form of family heritage onto my cousin at the time of her marriage.  I know she will appreciate it.  I love her dearly and I miss that we have grown apart as she got older because I moved away for a while.

Family I very rarely speak to are emailing me back saying that they know just which recipe and story they will forward to me.  I am so excited and even the thought of how much work it is going to be to compile it all is not dulling my enthusiasm.  I have asked each to send me a favourite recipe along with the story that goes with it and where possible a photo.

I am enjoying writing this blog even though it is a learning curve for me.  I still can't seem to post comments (although that is probably due to the age of my computer!) but Shimelle's 'Blogging for Scrappers' class (see the right of the screen) has been full of inspiration and valuable information.  It was due to one of her prompts that I came up with this idea.

Stay tuned for updates on this album.  I have six months to finish it :-)


Tuesday, 28 June 2011

I Believe In Fairies

Scrapping the boys with Tinker Bell the other day made me want to go all blingy and scrap the corresponding photo of The Princess and I.  To keep the two similar I used the same green Bazzill Dotted Swiss on both layouts.  It is one glittery layout!

I used backing paper purchased at the park.

I wanted to add as much sparkle to the purple backing paper as possible so I traced over the main pattern with Ranger Stickles "Star Dust'.  The photo doesn't do the sparkle justice as there was a big storm today and natural light was not an option for taking the photo!  I recently purchased a WRMK Sew Easy and have been wanting to use it for two weeks.  I was very disappointed and it is NOT so easy to use.  At first I was going to use the pendant and have it hanging on the page like a banner ... but it wouldn't even make the holes in Bazzill!  I managed to get the large loop to work, but I still had to go over it with a piercing tool to actually make the holes as all I got were marks.  I am not a huge fan of hand sewing so although I pierced a 12in border, I only stitched 3 loops!  But after all that effort I was going to use it on this page somewhere, or else! LOL It became part of the title along with a sticker from the park pack.

I love to make my own embellishments and although the green flower is from Prima, I made the purple ribbon flower myself.  It is easy to do using the Clover Bow Maker.  I used the middle size in the small pack and this is the first time I used a wire edged ribbon (It was the only one in my stash that matched).  I do love the effect of ribbon on a page.

The flower border is a Martha Stewart punch and the 'believe' is a chipboard word from Dusty Attic.  The other bits came from my stash and the 'Fairies' was cut on my Cricut and then stickled with 'Star Dust'.

I am very happy with the way this one turned out and it still co-ordinates with the one of the boys.  It is rare for me not to journal, but as all of these photos are from the same holiday, I don't feel I need to repeat myself just so that jounaling appears on each page.

Those are the Tinker Bell photos done, now I think I might start tackling the 50's Prime Time cafe shots.  Now there is a story worth telling :-)


Monday, 27 June 2011

Know your limits ...

I came across this video via my step-dad a few years ago.  I laughed so hard I cried, and I normally miss the point of English humour entirely!  Ok, the humour won't suit everyone and some of you will probably miss the whole point and get offended.  But I loved it and still do.


Sunday, 26 June 2011

Faith, Hope & Pixie Dust

It isn't very often that you get the chance to combine boys and Tinker Bell in a layout.  So when the opportunity presents itself, you can't pass it up, even if the boys in question will later cringe!

When in Florida at Disney World, one of their photographers asked the boys to pose with their hands outstretched and to "look surprised".  This photo was the result.  The Thinker got his look perfect and for once out-acted The Extrovert.  When we picked up this photo I loved it immediately.  There are times when I wish they would stay that small for ever.

The layout is based on this weeks sketch by Shimelle, but I tried to keep it somewhat simple.  Although I blinged it up a bit, I really couldn't take it tooooooo far, or my boys might become a little offended!
Used papers from a Disney kit

I used papers from a Tinker Bell kit we picked up at the park but they weren't true 12x12.  So I trimmed some extra off and mounted it on Dotted Swiss Bazzill.  The journaling block is made from a Banana Frog stamp embossed with Ranger 'glitter lavender' embossing powder.  I struggled with the title as I tried and tried to cut one on my Cricut from the Tinker Bell cartridge, but it was just too intricate and it drove me nuts!

I used Smooch 'Illuminate' to add sparkle to the word "hope" and also in the centers of each of the larger white stars in the backing paper.  The title is from the movie theme song and now everyone is singing it!!! (Faith, hope and pixie dust ... are you singing it now too?)

But the most important part is that the boys love it even though it is purple and sparkly!  So I guess it is ok to scrap boys and Tinker Bell on the same page, but only once :-)


A new project ...

I missed a day.  I really wanted to post yesterday, but try as I might, it wasn't working.  Yesterday's prompt (if you have read back you will know that I am doing a class with Shimelle called 'Blogging for Scrapbookers') really bugged me.  It shouldn't have, as it was an easy topic really, but the more I thought about it, the harder it was to come up with something to write.  I could have taken the easy option and just posted something else, but I decided to sleep on it.

And what was this most difficult of topics?  Blogging about goals ... I told you it wasn't scary, but I was stumped.  I have always been a goal setter (or so I thought).  I set goals in education.  I set goals at work.  I set goals for vacations.  And I set goals ... well, no where else really ... I have set personal goals but I can't recall ever keeping them, or making myself accountable for them!  And that was kind of the point of today's prompt.  If we set a goal in a public forum like a blog, we can drop back in every now and again and update our readers about our progress.  Intriguing idea, but what goal should I set? If I even decide to take up this challenge?

So I woke up this morning and was blog hopping.  Last week I wanted to make Swedish Meatballs and The Princess and I found this site with a great recipe.  Today they featured a recipe for Zucchini Cake and it was the writers Grandmother's recipe.  I loved how at the end they included a picture of the original recipe in her Grandmother's hand.  It made me think of my Grandma's recipies.  I then ended up at this blog post and suddenly inspiration hit!  My cousin is getting married in 6 months and I want to make her a Family Recipe album!!!

We come from a slightly unconventional family and we are spread around the world.  What a better surprise for her than if I get everyone involved and fill an album with the recipies and stories.  I am excited just thinking about it!  So, I now have another project, but this one MUST be competed in 6 months and it gives me something else to play with other than holiday photos :-)

So stay posted and I will update you as I go!  I am off to start emailing family and begin my collection.


Friday, 24 June 2011

I LOVE Nights Like Tonight!

Lightning by -Qualsiasi
Lightning, a photo by -Qualsiasi on Flickr.
I hear thunder!
I see lightning!
I hear rain pounding on a tin roof!
I see the garage flooding! (not so good!!)

I LOVE stormy nights!


Thursday, 23 June 2011

The Value Of A Kind Word

Today began like many other days.  I slept in, which in turn lead to us running late, which made for one slightly cranky mother.  After dropping the kids at school,  The LOML stopped to grab us a quick breakfast while I pulled out my phone to check my emails. I was surprised to find that someone had commented on one of my blog posts, and her kind words made my heart sing.  It may have only taken moments to type that comment, but the result was a smile plastered on my face for the next few hours.  Isn't it strange that a complete stranger can make such a difference in someone's day.  My mother always said that words were extremely powerful, and I guess she was right.
"Don't use foul or abusive language.  Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them."  Ephesians 4v29 (NLT)
There have been many times recently when words have been hurtful.  We own our own shop and there are days when it feels like every customer through the door has something awful to say.  It is constant and relentless and I think that many of us have forgotten the words of our parents when they told us watch what we say.  The old adage about sticks and stones is NOT true, words hurt just as much.

Today I was reminded just how important my words could be.  A very kind person brightened my day and I promise to try and pass it on each day whenever I can.  Lets all spread some sunshine!


It's the Little Blessings

When the rapids of life are getting rough, sometimes the best thing you can do is look for the Little Blessings each day.  When you make a conscience decision to actually look for them, you might just find yourself amazed at how many little blessings make up each day.  Although the rest of your life may be a little turbulent, these blessings might just be enough to help you make it through.

Today I tried to find my Little Blessings ...
  1. A friend unexpectedly stopping in to see me at work for a cuppa.
  2. The gift of a perforating cutting blade so that I can finish the wedding invites I am working on.
  3. A single fragrant red rose on my Grandmother's rose bush.
  4. Sitting in the warm winter sun enjoying a conversation with my Grandfather even if he didn't remember who I was.
  5. Coming home to find that the LOML really enjoyed his day off.
  6. The Princess's excitement over picking a lemon from a tree only moments after being disappointed that there weren't any mushrooms under the tree.
  7. The Thinker going to fill up his water bottle at the drink fountain so I could have a drink without missing The Extroverts brief stint on the pitch.
  8. Trying to show The Extrovert how to make baking powder biscuits and watching him get flour everywhere. (He even cleaned it all up afterwards!)
 I really am blessed to have these people in my life.  I fell asleep last night before getting a chance to post this for day three of my class but I found joy in writing this list, so I had to share it anyway.  Maybe you should try it too.


Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Shimelle's Sketch of the Week

Earlier this week I completed a page based on this weeks sketch by Shimelle.  It was wonderful to work with a large photo and The Princess and I enjoyed making the embellishments along the side.  The good old Cricut and Cuttlebug came in very handy for this one.

Black, red and gold are not colours I normally work with, but I like the final effect.  I used gold paint and Creative Imaginations 'Radiant Rain Egyptian Gold' spray.  I have been dieing to use the Ki Memories 'Pop Culture Red Disco Ball' paper and it has never seemed to work with anything.  I love it on here!  It has been lightly inked with 'Distress Ink Black Soot' and sprayed with the gold spray.

I cut the cogs on the Cricut using 'Indie Art' and embossed them using the Tim Holtz 'Retro Circles' folder.  The black at the back we cut from a scrap of black ribbing left over from a sewing project.

Thank you Shimelle for a sketch using a large feature photo.  This is going to make a great title page for our album.


Blogging for Scrapbookers Day 2

I am amazed ... day two and I am posting again :-)  It feels like writing in a diary that everyone can read and not  one hidden under the mattress.  I tried writing a diary many times as a kid, but I was easily bored because there wasn't any interaction.  A successful blog on the other hand has lots of interaction, so it is really like a diary for the world to read.

After moving around the world in the past two years I am very behind with my family's scrapbooking.  I have promised the kids that I will complete our Florida album from 2008!  Most of these photos will feature prominently here over the next few months at least.  I am very happy that I wrote about the photos at the time or all of the feelings and excitement of the trip might have been partially lost.  Shimelle makes an interesting point in today's class prompt with the idea that a blog is really like the journaling that we write on our pages.  Even if it is months (or years!) later that we actually scrap the photos, we will still have our feelings from the day already written down for posterity on our blogs.  What an amazing thought!

As today is my day off I actually had the time to 'play' and I made a page to go with my journaling.  I feel inspired already!

While in Florida in 2008 we had the opportunity to feed stingrays at Discovery Cove.  They are amazing creatures with soft, slightly slimey skin and the coolest vacuum mouths.  The Extrovert was facinated by them and kept going back for more bait to feed to them.  While The Princess may be smiling in the photos, that is just an illusion.  She was terrified!

Used Crate Paper 'Blue Hill Collection'

I am trying to use papers from my stash as often as possible and mix them with my newer purchases.  I purchased these papers just before packing up my stash to move around the world.  They then went into storage for almost a year, so it is time to brush the dust off them and start cutting them up!  I sprayed a white Prima flower with Creative Imaginations 'Radiant Rain Teal Zircon' and spilled it all over my hands in the process.  If anyone ever said crafters were neat, they hadn't met ME!

 I could not find a Bazzill colour in my stash that worked for the photo mount so I was originally going with a pale orange.  But when it wasn't working I spied my Tim Holtz 'Distress Crackle Paints'.  It was perfect!  I used Old Paper and then painted on more of the Radiant Rain spray and it was perfect.

The rest of my story is nicely tucked away under the photo for another day, once The Princess has grown up. (It may make an appearance at her 21st birthday!)

This was the first layout that I have completed all on my own in quite a while.  I didn't work from a sketch or find inspiration on anyone's blog.  It took almost all day but I enjoyed every moment of the journey.  It may be a little rough around the edges, but the kids absolutely loved it and that was enough to warm my heart.

I wonder what tomorrow's prompt will bring?


Monday, 20 June 2011

And so the journey begins ...

Today I begin my blogging journey with help from Shimelle's 'Blogging for Scrapbookers' online class.  I am ME; a wife, a mom, a business owner, a crafter, a chatter, and many other things rolled into one.  But somewhere along the way the 'fun' side of me got pushed aside for later, while other things took over.  My goal over the next three weeks of this class is to take the first steps back to the joy of playing with paper, inks, glue and my imagination.  I have no idea how that is going to transpire, as I have been meaning to join this class for the last few months, but I am looking forward to the ride.

Life is like a mighty river.  There are times when the river is calm and you drift along enjoying the moment and marvel at the beauty God created all around you.  But then the water starts to churn and life takes unexpected twists and turns.  Every decision you make alters your course, for better or worse.  Eventually a waterfall drops before you and you only notice it moments before you tumble over the edge.  But after the shock wears off, you look back at the beauty created by that same wall of water, and marvel at the changes that journey has made in you.

The rapids of my life have in recent times seemed never ending and I thought there was calmer water ahead.  This morning we rounded a bend and ran smack bang into some unexpected white water.  My prayer is that God holds us all in a tight embrace through this one.

And so my journey begins.  There will be scrapbooking, cardmaking, cooking and other bits of ME along the way.  So grab a life-jacket (and maybe a helmet!) and join me for the ride.  There is some beautiful water out there just waiting to be explored.