Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I don't have a lot. Money and economy are issues in my house like many others. The only big change I'm implementing for 2009 is I'm going to switch to smaller formats for my scrapbook layouts - 8x8 and 8.5x11. one reason is my 12x12 printer finally gave out after giving me 6 really good years of workhorse service. My replacement printer I love, but it is regular sized (b/c it was really cheap....) - to print directly on layouts, i'll need smaller formats. Also, I can print regular sized photos and they will not look overwhelmed on the page. And this is also going to help my supplies stretch farther, and hopefully allow me to get more variety with the limited budget that I will have in this new year. It leaves me extra for my cards too. I may still hit in the 12x12 format for bigger multi layouts, but for the most part, I'm scaling it down.... luckily, I use the American Crafts 3 d-ring albums - you can put ANY size page protector in them.
How about you?
Friday, December 26, 2008
for my mom, a tool kit for her jewelry making tools - this is something I made up inspired by my friend Lisa's crayon holder..... the actual gift was filled with actual new pliers and stuff...
and some painted canvasas, inspired by Kelly Rae Roberts. Sorry for the slight blur on them. I was rushing to make it to the post office for one of them, and just snapped the pix very quickly - so quickly that I missed one completely ..... I didn't make too many....
Thursday, December 25, 2008
This week at lifetimemoments was a mini feature highlighting all of the frosts and shimmers in the holiday releases...
I am using SEI Alpine. TFL!!
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Thursday, December 18, 2008
If you haven't joined me from Maren's blog start at Angela's blog. Follow the blog links and do the hop!! Be inspired by all the beautiful Unity projects along the way, and enter for a chance to win some blog candy at the end.
Since I'm under the gun, my examples this week revolve around the tags I needed for gifts.
My first project uses the Trinity Trio single to jazz up the cookie basket I sent in with my husband to his work.
My second project is a gift tag. I recycled some shipping boxes, and made corrugated tags with them. The Do Not Open single was perfect.
Here's another one... (I have to confess - for someone who loves paper as much as I do, I am TERRIBLE at giftwrapping. So please focus only on the tag - not the mess underneath it...)
I have candy today!! Some gorgeous singles, directly from me to you. Post a comment and I will pick a winner tonight after I get home from work.
Thank you for stopping by!!!
As always, Angela has some fabulous Hip Hop specials for today only, pls some new releases!! Check out Angela's blog for the specials.
Your next stop is Jimmi's blog. Enjoy the rest of your hop! Hip Hop!
ETA - LuvLee won the blog candy!!! Pls PM me your addy via SCS???
Thanks for playing everyone.
Monday, December 15, 2008
When I send small things in the regular mail, like a RAK, I always have a dilemma because I want to send a note with it, but don’t want to increase the cost of the postage with a bulky card or something like that. In a business setting, I always write a small note on a business card and enclose that. For a holiday gift this year, I decided to make a set of something similar, but for use in a personal setting.
The ATC Patchwork overlays from Hambly are absolutely perfect. They are about the same size and weight as a business card, but oh so much more stylish!!! Cut the overlay apart to each component ATC sized design, then lightly embellish with stickers from the Sassafras Lass Hog Heaven and Happy Place lines, taking care to keep the overall card somewhat flat for ease of mailing. Cut some strips of plain white paper and adhere, just to give the recipient some additional writing space. Tie up, and embellish the top with a Maya Road flower, and another Hambly overlay tag in contrasting color identifying your gift. Place in a holder (mine is a blank muslin bag), and you’re good to go. Easy, quick and yet so stylish and hip.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
This is the final installment in my series on writing. For Session 1 (first drafts) click here; for session 2 (editing) click here.
Words are so powerful. Anyone who has ever had an argument knows this. How you choose to convey your thought has a huge impact on the effect it generates. Use loving words that are not directed at a person to convey a criticism, and it will go over fundamentally differently then if you choose accusatory words that directly attack another.
Honey, when you don’t look at me when I’m talking to you, it makes me feel like you’re not listening to me and that makes me feel rejected.
You selfish self-centered jerk. You’re always so caught up in yourself and you never have time for me. Did you even bother listening to what I was saying? You never do!!
OK. So. Words matter. Words and tone matters. That’s a given. But how do you translate that innate human understanding into something you can convey on paper? Its not hard. Your mind already does this in your every day communications. Its just a matter of slowing yourself down, breaking down your steps, and then capturing them on paper.
I’m going to use this picture by way of example. We were outside the church during my cousin’s wedding last year.
1) Just the Facts Ma’Am
If you want a “just the facts, Ma’am” layout - then do just that. Time, date, etc. Something to simply “tag” your memory next time you look at your layout.
Outside the Church, J & V’s wedding, City, State, November __, 2007.
2) Take it Up a Notch
If that’s a little too dry, I can try to add a little bit of what we were doing. Notice that I’ve applied the rules from workshops 1 and 2 here to shorten my sentences, using active tense, etc…:
In the hour before the ceremony, we goofed off outside the church. We had fun.
3) A little more please
Still a little dry? OK. You want to convey more than that. Now, dig deeper. Pretend you are ESPN and have instant replay - slow it down - play by play. What happened? Do you roughly remember a minute by minute break down? What were you feeling? What triggered the event? Do you remember smells? Sounds? Dialogue? Quickly - jot down answers to these questions. Go back through the play by play again. Now, look at your keywords. Jot down any more keywords that have come to mind. Next, apply session 2 and refine. Build your story - remember - start, build, end. Next - pull up your thesaurus. I promise you. Its your friend!! Look at main words, and see if a better word more accurately conveys the emotions of that day. Look at any duplicative words you have, and see if you can find another for one of them.
When I look at this picture, the word that comes to mind is Happy. At thesaurus.com, happy yields:
* blessed, blest, blissful, blithe, can’t complain, captivated, cheerful, chipper, chirpy, content, contented, convivial, delighted, ecstatic, elated, exultant, flying high, gay, glad, gleeful, gratified, intoxicated, jolly, joyful, joyous, jubilant, laughing, light, lively, looking good, merry, mirthful, on cloud nine*, overjoyed, peaceful, peppy, perky, playful, pleasant, pleased, sparkling, sunny, thrilled, tickled, tickled pink*, up, upbeat, walking on air
Oh… those words triggered more memories about how I felt and little details of that moment. I refine my first draft, then apply the tips from session 2:
“We had an hour to go before the ceremony started. C and A were in the wedding, and a little nervous. We headed outside into the crisp autumn air to run off some excess energy. C and A are so used to Daddy being able to lift them anywhere, they have a tendency to think everyone can manage that. Leaning down to pick up something, I suddenly felt a BOOM as C launched himself on my back like a little monkey. 3 seconds later, I felt A climb on too. As I worked to keep my balance, the sounds of their joyful giggles surround me, filling me with contented bliss at how lucky I was at that very minute. It almost didn’t matter that I was about to fall flat on my face.”
4) Go emo….
Sometimes, our layouts aren’t about the event, but rather about something much deeper. Feelings that go to the core of where we are at that particular moment in time - hopes, aspirations, goals, challenges. I have been going through one of those times in my life in recent weeks, and as I often do, I turn to my scrapping to help me sort it all out. This kind of journaling comes straight from the heart. What are you thinking about? What is your hope? aspiration? goal? challenge? Write it down. Its not easy. But give it a try. Look at what you wrote. Ask yourself? Is there more? Go back through it all again. Can you give it some more specificity? My goal: find some balance. OK. What does that mean to me? Details. Details. Details. I went back over and over and over til I got what felt like an exhaustive list of where I was at that moment. OK. You try it (this is Session 1’s exercise in the throw-up method of first drafts).
Now go through the exercises from session 2 for editing your draft - shorten, delete unnecessary words, match your verb tenses, add active verbs, pull your thesaurus and grab better words.
So, I was sitting next to L the other day, and we were talking about how we somehow kind of lost ourselves when we had children. Who-ever we were before kind of got subsumed into “mom” - that place where no one ever asks how you are any more, where you never again receive an independent gift - its all about the kids and we’re trained to think that it HAS to be that way. But there comes that day you look up into the mirror and think - who are you? can I possibly be me and the mom I want to be? When we were at the pre-union a few months ago, J later asked - what happened to you? and I thought at the time… hmmm. yeah? what? and that nagging sense of ?? has stayed with me since.
My work buddy gave me “I was a great mom til I had kids” and I finally got a chance to read it on the plane to Seattle. And then came the convo with L just a few days later. And I’m coming full circle to say - you know ? I love my life, I love my children, I love B, I love my family. I love my job, my friends, my colleagues. And you know, its ok to find my way back. I won’t ever be the same girl I was. But I’m done feeling fractured in who I am now, feeling insecure, accepting behavior from people towards me that makes me feel bad. I know I often write to others - why give someone else that kind of power over you? Its time to look in the mirror. No more dithering…. its time to get my groove back.
Here’s my layout (NOTE: I posted this layout a few weeks back... this is just a breakdown of the journaling part of it):
Friday, December 12, 2008
Mine were easy to choose.
1) Magic Weekend
The Creative Imaginations Narratives Bloom is always equally colorful and sophisticated, with innovative paper cuts and shapes that are always trend setting. I love the subtle depth they instantly add to any layout. This line cured me of my color phobia.
This is my memorabilia layout from our last Disneyland trip. I used the CI paper to create a pocket for the maps we used that weekend, and for the receipts. The ticket stubs are adhered with fabric tabs only on one end, so they flip over to see the information on the back.
Hambly's Transparencies are always such an industry leader. Gorgeous and sophisticated, they can instantly add that "oomph" to masculine papers. Sometimes I like to just hang them as is they are so graphically stunning. Also, of beautiful thickness and quality, they stand up and can be manipulated easily, without having to add a backing that ruins the clear effect.
This also uses the beautiful Rose Moka paper (wood grain) and my favorite right now, Webster's Pages. SOOO pretty.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
If you haven't joined me from Jennifer's blog, start at Angela's blog. Follow the blog links and do the hop!! Be inspired by all the beautiful Unity projects along the way, and enter for a chance to win some blog candy at the end.
My first project is a card using the December kit of the month and the Simply Said kit.
My second project I just LOVE!! I've been trying very hard to read more, and always find myself looking for bookmarks. I used my November Kit of the Month - Enjoy Your Story, Laugh - to create a corner sleeve as a bookmark. How FUN it was.
Thank you for stopping by!!!
As always, Angela has some fabulous Hip Hop specials for today only, pls some new releases!! Check out Angela's blog for the specials.
Your next stop is Jimmi's blog. Enjoy the rest of your hop! Hip Hop!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
Thursday, December 4, 2008
This week, I'm using the beautiful December Kit of the Month Little Reminders. They were so fun to play with.
Your next stop is Jennifer B's blog. Thanks for stopping by! Enjoy the hop!
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Now that you've finished your first rough draft, its time for the first refinement.
1) Every paragraph and your story as a whole needs to begin, to be built, and then ended. This holds true for both your overarching story - and each component paragraph. The reader should be able to sense where you are going from the very beginning.
2) Rewrite as many sentences as you can, changing from the passive voice to the active voice. (NOTE: sometimes this is impossible to do). The passive voice is anything that uses a version of the "be" verb - am, was, is, etc.
3) Revise all non-specific identifying words - words like "he", "she", "they", etc... If a stranger reading the sentence doesn't know who "he", "she" or "they" are, you have a problem. Never assume your reader knows. Change it to the right name.
4) Make sure all of your verbs are in the same tense.
5) Use normal everyday words. Big high falutin words can be appropriate in certain settings, but rarely unless you are writing an academic treatise to a specialized audience. Its also a little too precious and can make the author seem a little full of herself. We lawyers can be guilty of this. I once read a brief where the entire first paragraph was in LATIN. With no translation. I still wonder what it said.
"Wrap article in 200lb weight box and place in authorized recepticle at a designated facility for the transmission of postage item"
"Put in a study box and drop off at the post office."
6) Follow the KISS principle. KEEP IT SIMPLE SILLY (ok. The original uses the word stupid, but I don't like that word). Have you ever been listening to talk radio when someone calls in and takes 20 minutes to set up their question and they never get to the actual question because they've run out of time? Ask yourself - what's your point? And then relay that point in as short a sentence as you can without losing the meaning.
It is absolutely startling how much more powerful a short concise statement is. Play a game. How many words can you remove from a sentence and still keep it's original meaning? Too much detail might be unnecessary to the purpose of your sentence. If it is unnecessary, get it out of there. It obscures your real intent. But take care not to fall into the trap of the 80%. I know many 80%-ers. I.e. These are the people who tell you/write only 80% of what you need to know. You must figure the rest out. And if you don't know how to do it, somehow, its YOUR problem. In my mind, though, the root of this kind of approach is sheer arrogance. READ MY MIND and YOU BETTER BE RIGHT or YOU'RE STUPID. Ummm. No thank you. Sometimes this might work. Most of the time? It doesn't. Say what you need to say - not one word more, and not one word less.
7) Next, shorten your sentences. Try to put a period in everywhere you have a comma, to see if it works. If it does CHOP your sentence in half and rewrite it so you have two independent sentences. Where you have a new subject, start a new paragraph.
Now. Lets apply these rules to an example. I went back and read my original paragraph from session 1 and realized it would not work. My habitual writing style had already unconscioiusly applied a-lot of these rules.
Let me try draft 1 on a new story:
About a month ago, a friend sent me an email inviting us to join him and a bunch of his friends on Friday morning, to play flag football. I had been concerned to raise it to him. I knew my son, who I knew he would not want to go. C was so anxious - he had never been a football player before, and besides, there were so many video games to play and he had a long 4 day weekend with no homework to play in. It was friday morning, and he was angry that he had to put his game down and go outside, where it was cold and there were no one he knew and it was foggy and the house was warm. The dogs were playing with him and he wanted to stay warm. B was insistent and C was whiney and they went on and on and on and on and on and on. It seemed to go on forever and was so frustrating to listen to. Until finally they finished, and then they got dressed, and then they opened the door, and then they got in the car and then they drove to the school yard that was up the windy road and about 10 miles away in the middle school in the next city over. But when they got there, they were already playing on a muddy field, where it had rained recently and there was mud everywhere. Everyone stood around wondering what to do. They saw the other people and then everyone broke into teams. They played foot ball for a little while until they got tired, and then they went to the monkey bars to play some more while they finished up the game without them. Afterwards, C was so happy that he got to play football and to see them after all.
Here's the rewrite with the rules in play:
About a month ago, a friend sent me an email inviting the boys to join him and a bunch of his friends on Friday morning after Thanksgiving, to play flag football. C hesitated when I told him about it. He had never played football before, and he wanted to play videos instead.
But Friday came, and sure enough, an angry C refused to put his video game down to go into the cold outdoors. There would be no one he knew, and he wanted to stay warm at home. B insisted and C fought, until finally they got ready and left.
When C and B got there, they found the group already playing on a rain-soaked muddy field. The group re-did the teams and played. The boys, however, got tired after just a little while. One by one, they went to play on the monkey bars, while the adults finished the game.
Afterwards, C proudly relayed his success in playing, and his joy in seeing some old friends afterall.
Monday, December 1, 2008
Cyber Monday specials at LM! 24 hours ONLY. 12:01 AM ET through 11:59PM ET Monday, December 1, 2008.
These 15 categories are ON SALE for 24 hours only! Sale price will show up once item is in your shopping cart.
* October Afternoon Hometown Collection – 30% off
* Heidi Swapp Dream Dining Room Collection – 30% off
* Sassafras Lass Fawnd of You, Too – 30% off
* Pink Paislee Pop Fashion – 30% off
* Creative Imaginations Antique Cream Narratives – 30% off
* My Mind's Eye Just Dreamy 2 – 40% off
* Jenni Bowlin Victoria Collection – 40% off
* KI Ladidah Collection – 60% off
* Scenic Route Grafton – 50% off
* Daisy D's Mistletoe Memories – 60% off
* Maya Road Clear Stamps – 30% off
* Luxe Designs Jotters – 70% off
* Magistical Memories Chipboard – 50% off
* Fancy Pants Biggest Board Chipboard – 40% off
* Fancy Pants Transparent Die Cuts – 50% off
PLUS Cyber Monday Special Promotions TODAY ONLY! Choose YOUR promo! Only One promo allowed per order.
LM Thankful Kit
MSRP Value $26+
Sale price - $19.99 OR FREE with $50 purchase while supplies last. After your cart reaches a minimum of $50, add the kit to your shopping cart. You must enter discount code DEC1-624 at checkout and click redeem and the price of the kit will be removed from your total.
LM Winter Kit
MSRP Value $28+
Sale price - $19.99 OR FREE with $50 purchase while supplies last. After your cart reaches a minimum of $50, add the kit to your shopping cart. You must enter discount code DEC2-056 at checkout and click redeem and the price of the kit will be removed from your total.
Take $5 off your $25+ order!
Use discount code DEC3-135 at checkout and click redeem.
Note: Purchases of Gift Certificates are not eligible for these special promotions.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
OMG. I am so honored to have been nominated for an award by the totally amazing AnneMarie. annemarie is one of my favorite scrappers of all time and I am a huge fan of her work - I am so honored to have received this from her! :)
1. The winner may put the logo on their blog.
2. Put a link to the person who sent you the award.
3. Nominate 5 blogs.
4. Provide links to their blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees.
5 blogs... That's hard. I'm an avid reader, esp. on lunch hours while I'm eating at my desk at work. Here are some that i just read this morning... :)
Lisa Spiegel - Lisa's a wonderful friend and an uber talented designer for Little Red Scrapbook club and Jewish Scrapbooking dot com. Her blog is so real, and never fails to inspire me, both artistically and on a human level.
Kiyomi crafts - Jenn Muraoka is so magical with the copics and her cards are always just full of such fun and verve.
Unity stamp co's design team - I started the link here at Angela's site. Angela owns Unity - once a week on Thursdays, we start here and blog hop with links through all of the teamie blogs that are full of inspiration. each and every one of my teamies inspired me with their talent, but also, their love and support. Its a wonderful group of people, and I am very grateful to be a part of it.
Eva - i met eva at a crop many years ago and have been blessed to know her ever since. She does some amazing things with paper and glue. such gorgeous work!!
Nora Griffin - i've been a huge fan of Nora's work for a long time. She shares herself completely on her blog, equally intelligent, compassionate, real and talented. Very awesome. Always.
Have a wonderful rest of your weekend everyone!
Saturday, November 29, 2008
1) Ring Bearer
Using the Growing In Unity kit from Unity Stamp Company, Basic Grey Granola, Magistical Memories and KI Memories chipboard. The picture got a little damaged, but I elected to use it as is...
2) Flower Kids
Using the August Kit of the Month from Unity Stamp Company Remember Happiness, Making memories PP, flowers from Prima, and letters from American Crafts.
3) All Mixed Up
Using the "grow" kit, and the November Kit of the Month from Unity Stamp Co Enjoy Your Story Laugh remnants from a Bad Girls Kit, October Afternoon, American Crafts, Prima, Maya Road
Friday, November 28, 2008
Using Unity product is encouraged, but not required.
Please email Angela a link to your blog and also TWO of your stellar layouts that best represent your style.
Your name, address, and a small paragraph about yourself would be appreciated.
Submissions should be directed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Due Date: December 20th, 2008
Mandatory Blog updated TWICE USING UNITY, of course, on a weekly basis.
8 projects per month loaded to your blog AND Scrapbook.com or TWO PEAS AND Splitcoast Stampers
Weekly participation in the SCS Scrapbook Challenge.
PARTICIPATION in HIP HOP THURSDAY BLOG HOP and at SOME POINT DURING THE EVENT a bit of conversation.
On your blog, I would like a clear link to Unity Stamp Co. Blog and Website. I would like you to include the list of Unity Stamp DT Members from you blog. Keeping it all full circle.
Is is mandatory that any EXCITING UNITY NEWS (ie: Kit of the Month, New Releases, Hip Hop Thursday, NEW DT Members, Guest Designers are announced on each DT Members blog on the date of occurence.
Extra project requests from Unity will be made of the ROCK STARS. I may need projects done on a timely matter. ( ie: idea tag samples, or other special projects for expos, CHA, Special BOARDS for Stores, etc.) .
REQUIRED Monthly Submission into magazines
6 month term renewable upon request/review.
Benefits: To be given per request.
Looking forward to seeing your submission!
BUT WAIT!! There's more! a SALE!!!
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
If you haven't joined me from Linsey's blog, start at Angela's blog. Follow the blog links and do the hop with us!! You'll see beautiful Unity projects along the way, with some candy at the end. This week we're featuring gifts, so hopefully you'll get lots of ideas for sending your holiday love with the fruits of your hands... :)
My first project is a gift card holder. Very easy to do - I normally cut my cards 6"x9.5" and score in the middle. this time, I cut it 9"x9.5", scored the 9" side at 6", then proceeded with the card like normal. I even broke out my handy dandy Basic Grey Notch Tool for the corners for the gift card.... This project uses the Do Not Open single
My next project was an inspirational bookmark, using the Growing in Unity kit and a cool quote from Tony Robbins. I had to keep it somewhat flat since its a bookmark, so elected to try and create some contrast with word strips.
Both projects use the new Christmas release from Fancy Pants.
Check out Angela's blog for some fabulous specials for hip hop, and our 3 new releases today!
Your next stop is Christi's blog. Enjoy the rest of your hop! Hip Hop! And Happy Thanksgiving everyone!