Sunday, January 20, 2013

a bit about 2012... and 2013

While I haven't had much time since the beginning of November to scrapbook, I have had time to reflect.  And I am stubbornly trying to achieve a blog post while it is still January, so I am going to combine the thoughts. 

The year 2011 was a year of change.  Massive change.  But the year of 2012 proved to be even more difficult in battling my way through the changes that had occured.  I was happiest when I finally got back my scrapping and paper mojo.   So I thought I would post some of my favorite layouts from 2012 as a recap. 

I just loved these photos of this very happy little guy and how the simplicity of this layout let his happy little face just shine.  I especially love all the cut out stars, all 27 of 'em. 

While not a happy face on our boy, I still love this layout for the story it tells and all the details of the various layers and the title made with two different alphas. 

I'd always loved this photo of Jacob, but had never found the right combo of papers, didn't have any others photos for a second page (I am working on letting go of the whole "must have a two page layout" thing).  And this was a first attempt at a heavily paper layered, paint splattered single photo layout---which I thought turned out pretty well! 


This again, was a single photo I had of Miss Isabella--so I applied the same basic design as above.  Loved thebright happy colors and the little punched hearts mingled in with the paint splatters. 

Again this was a single photo I had for years...and even though it was a Halloween costume, it didn't go with Halloween-ie papers... so why fight it?  I really like the super hero kind of look to the page and I am getting more comfortable with a single page layout! 

I have other favorites, but these are my tip top page favorites from this past year. 

Which brings me to 2013, which I think is going to be the year of acceptance.  I finally have to confront acceptance.  Head on.  I don't mean turning a blind eye or giving up things like scrapping because of time.  I mean accepting what I have to work with, dealing with it and moving on. 

Number one is accepting my time limitations and dealing with it directly.  It hurts tremendously not to be able to scrapbook and I have to fix this. 

In the past, I would hit the grocery store on my way home from work, do dishes while cooking up supper, do more dishes, feed dogs and take them out and patiently (or impatiently) wait for my days off to spend scrapping.  Now, with two jobs and the time broken up in weird little snippets instead of bigger blocks of time, I have to let go of some things.  Including my guilt if I choose not to make a meal or do the dishes (or my resentment if I choose to make the meal and do the cleaning up right away).  I have been married to this man for over 20 years and I have tried everything from reasonable discussion, out and out fights, leading by example, pleas for help, praise for tiny little things.... nothing works.  He considers this a battle of wills I guess and he is always looking for a competition to win.  I have to let go of trying to "train" him.  He is what he is.  And he is not going to cook even the simplest of meals or even reheat a meal.  That's it.  So, if I get home too tired and sore to cook, or wanting to go scrapbook instead of cooking, then I'm not going to cook.  No guilt, no resentment.  Neither of us is going to starve if we have tea and toast for supper!

There are other things to "accept" and deal with and I may be scrapping about these in the future! 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Hello, poor neglected blog.  I may have slightly under estimated the wear and tear of working two jobs.  Ahem, I've had one day off (today) in the last eleven and some days have been twelve hours of being on my feet.  Eat, sleep, work, repeat.   I'll revisit cutting hours after the first of the year.  But for the time being... I'll just plan on being tired, v.e.r.y., v.e.r.y. tired.   

Then, I hope everyone is having a Happy Thanksgiving!  We're having a bit of a mixed up Thanksgiving.  A breakfast feast at my daughter's, then home tonight to have a turkey breast, dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy and such.  They are going to dinner at the in-laws tonight.  All good, as long as there were the grandbabes to play with today! 

I did finish up a page or two, but haven't gotten them photographed. I am halfway done with Christmas cards, and because that is non brain taxing, (since it's production mode and not design mode), I'll probably work on finishing those up tonight.

The following layout has been "done" for awhile.  I think.  I say that, because I keep looking at it and thinking I will add a couple of horizontal strips.  Then I look at it again and think, nah, it looks done.  This may go on until it is actually in the album. 

Photos were from the state wrestling competition.  The real story though was one of personal courage, which I am not sure Jacob would want me to share publicly, so I won't.  Suffice to say, this boy made me the proudest Nana there could ever be.  I shared my thoughts on this on an index card which tucks behind the photos on the second page. 

Papers are from Authentique, the Loyal collection which I got in pad form at Hobby Lobby several months ago and have made great use of!  Stars are punched and edges inked.  Stamped the mesh look images in opposite corners and drew in a border line.  The stickers are from an old 7 Gypsies sticker sheet (still a lot of stickers on those sheets to use up!).  I stapled across the paper strips and tucked in a ticket stub from a Tim Holtz pack.    

Alphabet stickers are Thickers, Tiny Type from Cosmo Cricket and Little Yellow Bicycle. 

So there it is; the "maybe" done layout!  Happy turkey day! 

Friday, November 2, 2012

It's been a real mish mash of activity at my house the past week or so.  My car decided to make some unusual noises (of course this occurred the very day I went out to sign all the papers and take that 2nd job).  I parked her and had to scramble for rides for a couple of days till I could get her into the shop.  And husband had his 2nd knee replacement surgery yesterday.  In between car repair (which wasn't  anything overly unusual---just a couple of different things) there were some other appointments that had to be squeezed in between that and yesterday's surgery.  Whew.  I hope life settles down now and I can get into some kind of schedule so I can work in some scrap time.  I really have wanted to sneak up there and do some work, but I've been completely wiped out. 

In light of the tragedies on the east coast, my issues are nominal.  I am trying to keep that in mind as I work through the demands being placed on my time.  My issues are nothing compared to the lost lives and homes out there. 

I did take my Christmas card workings with me to the hospital yesterday morning.  I had precut and done my stamping and embossing and went into assembly mode while sitting in the waiting room.  Got about half of them done.  That feels good. 

OK, long lead in to actually posting a page here.    It's a two-pager that I dug about in my files to find something that was not previously posted.  There for the longest time it seemed like every photo I took of Miss Isabella, she had a runny nose!  See that little glimmer to the left of her nose? Hence the "Snotty Girl" title! 

I used some older Sassafrass Lass paper, cut the border off and placed it along the bottom of the layout and layered it on some peachy orange cardstock.  A strip of yellow checked paper (leftover pieces pulled from my scrap pile), a punched border strip from a pale yellow scrap, a punched orange strip and a piece of striped yellow ribbon all got layered up together with the cut off border from the Sassafrass Lass print to go across the bottom of the page(s).   I do love me a stack of layered and punched borders! 

I had a couple of packages of dimensional daisy stickers and interspersed a few plain white flowers that I added buttons or gemstones to the centers.   Photo on the first page got a tiny strip of orange cardstock tucked in on one side and a punched piece of white, plus a punched piece of yellow down the other side.  Photos on the second page got just the white punched border piece. 

Journaling was added straight across the bottom, which was about of course the runny nose factor!  The title alphas were originally a limey green (old Heidi Swapp chipboard alphas).  There is a bit of the limey green in the patterned paper, but it looked a but disconnected that way.  So I painted the letters using Tim Holtz Picket Fence Distress paint.  That's it for now! 

I have to go get ready for a full day at job #2, then to the hospital to visit husband, then collapsing on the couch.  I work Sat and Sun morning(s), so am kind of hoping to get some scrap time in there.  And Monday I have off from both jobs--to get husband home from the hospital.  Not really a day off, but we'll see how it goes, maybe he will nap a bunch and I can scrap! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A quick page.... Kind-a quick, it sat in my pile of half started pages for a couple of years.  Yes, y.e.a.r.s!  The photos were not the best, taken in a community meeting room with little light and using some themed papers, well let's just say those results were sad.  Colors too bright and overpowered the photos, papers way too busy.  But, just using the colors in the photos led to a dark and dreary looking layout.  I just kept putting it all aside.  Once I pulled the stickers and the embellishments together, it went together really fast, though. 

I used the color appropriate papers  on a kraft base and added tabs and word stickers that kept with the theme of scouting, plus the air balloon sticker and it went zip, zip, zip.   

I used some K&Co. tone on tone star paper, layered some color coordinating pieces under the photos, cut the words and a border strip from a scouting paper (gosh it's old--I think from It Takes Two) and used several pieces of brown vellum to tuck under the border and the photos.  I still felt it needed a little more depth, so I stamped the mesh background (stamp is from Magenta) so that the mesh imagery would be peeking out from around the photo.  Last was to add the buttons and the folded yellow embellishment (that's from American Crafts).  This brought in the "gold" from the Blue and Gold dinner theme. 

Title was cut using my trusty old Cricut. And I dug around and found a fluer di lis brad to add to one of the tabs.  The balloon sticker adds a welcome bit of bright white and helps tie in all  word stickers on the following page.

The tabs and word stickers are from various Echo Park  and older 7 Gypsies sticker sheets, as well as the ones cut from the scouting paper. 

So, while this is certainly not the most exciting layout I've done, the photos deserved documenting and I am finally satisfied with the pages now!  These photos encompassed two years of Blue & Gold dinners---so very few of the photos turned out--my goodness these rooms were dark--so I picky chose the better and broke them up across two pages. 

I am off to get ready for work and after that to run to job #2 to turn in I-9 stuff and do scheduling (yes, I did get that 2nd part time job thanks for all your kind words and thoughts on that).  Let the juggling act begin! 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Another card posting!   Warning!  Oak leaf heavy images to follow.... 

I must be having a thing for oak leaves lately.   No explanation...I have none. 

The first card is again one that I designed originally for a card class and am just now getting around to assembling one for myself.  I didn't change too, too much from the original, other than sanding off the edges of the stamped image and adding a drawn in border around the edge of the background panel. 

The background panel is stamped with Versamark for a tone on tone effect, then adhered to an ivory card.  I stamped the text background of the smaller rectangle using brown ink and overstamped the oak leaf on top of that, then sanded off the edges to expose the white core.  This was layered onto a slightly larger dark brown rectangle and tied with a piece of tan scrapper's floss (Remember that from Karen Foster?  Still loving that stuff!).   Just adhered that to the front of the card using pop dots.  My new favorite pop dot is from Stampin' Up cuz they are much lower in profile, but still give some dimension. Stamps are all from Hero Arts 

That was it. Easy, peasey. 

The next card is a departure from autumn colors, but still using an oak leaf!  The stamp is an older Hero Arts stamp I've had for ages.  Stamped in Chipped Sapphire  Distress ink on a scrap of ivory cardstock, then cut it out.  I layered upsome navy cardstock panels with coordinating scraps of olive green prints (scraps left from a My Mind's Eye 6x6 pad).  Adhered the leaf, a greeting stamped on a punched tag to peek out from one of the panels and tied some navy and white baker's twine on the remaining panel.

The last card in this bunch started with a stamped background of kraft cardstock and the same oak leaf stamp used above.  This time it was stamped randomly on the kraft using several colors of Distress inks, Scattered Straw, Old Paper, and Rusty Hinge.  Added a border at the bottom using some handmade or designer paper scraps, then adhered the bundle onto an ivory panel.  I cut the oak leaf using a Tim Holtzx die and a scrap of some sort and applied it with pop dots down the center of the leaf, curling the edges down a bit.  Tied the whole bundle up with an ivory and orange polka dot ribbon and placed it on an orange card.  Added a few beige-y toned pearls  and called it done. 

I think I should move on from the oak leaf thing now though.... 

Friday, October 19, 2012

How is it that I seem to make an even bigger mess out of my desk (and surrounding areas) when I am making 4-1/4 x 5-1/2 greeting cards as opposed to 12 x 12 scrapbook pages?  I had to spend some time last night reclaiming my space and started a page after the last couple of daysof  making cards.  While I was puttering about putting punches and scraps of ribbon and papers away, I was thinking about the mess I made, then later as I was working on a page, it occurred to me that there was a lot less out and about me on the desk...  Sorry, I digress.  Just one of the rambling thoughts that sometimes sneaks up on me and makes me go h-mmmmm. 

So anyway, I have some cards to post today (big surprise, huh?). 

This first one was originally created for a card class.  I re-worked it slightly for myself, changing the border, adding a ribbon and little butterfly punches and drawing in a border.  The daisy stamp is from Inkadinkado and it was stamped twice.  Once on the card panel and again on another piece of kraft cardstock, colored with white pen, cut out and layered on top of the card panel using pop dots.  Added some little white pearls and a bit of black sparkly Stickles. 

The next card has an embossed background (Tim Holtz embossing folder) which I brushed with a metallic copper ink pad all around the perimeter and layered onto a lighter brown cardstock panel that is a bit more red in tone than the dark brown cardstock used for the card itself.   The oak leaves were cut with the Tim Holtz leaves die from a metallic cardstock.  After arranging the leaves on the card and securing with pop dots, I tied on a small piece of twine and added the button and several copper colored pearls. 

The last card in this batch also has an embossed background (kind of distressed stripes).  The tree is from Hero Arts stamped in brown ink on a scrap of grid printed paper.   Used my trusty old Tombow markers to color the tree, added a little sparkle with several gemstones and some Stickles.  Then layered the stamped image on a small piece of red tone on tone printed paper before adhering to the embossed panel, which I also layered on the red paper.  Tied the whole bundle up with a piece of twine and placed it on a kraft colored card. 

You'll probably notice that there are no greetings on the outside of these cards.  I often make cards without wording on the outside so that I can add the appropriate greeting when I am ready to send the card.  I am always on the look out for tiny greetings that I can stamp on little tags and tie into place. 

Have a great day today! 

Monday, October 15, 2012

OK, Monday is here again.  It was kind of a gray and rainy weekend here.  Saturday was a good day to spend making Louisiana Red Beans and Rice since it takes almost all day to cook.  And to make chocolate chip cookies.    I have to say, I still miss my old stove.  Still guessing on baking times with this new one.  Well it's new as of last year Christmas when the oven went in the middle of making a batch of cookies.  I set it at 7 minutes and the cookies were underdone---stuck them back in for 1 minute more--perfect!  Next batch, set it at 8 minutes and they were not burnt--but well overdone.  argh#!  It's a process I guess.  I had the old stove for 20 years, so I suppose a learning curve is to be expected.  After 20 years, I just knew what to expect and what to set the thing at with the old one. 

Learning curves... they are everywhere.  Tried and true things may need to be shaken up a bit in order to make things work sometimes.  I think that can hold true for scrapbooking too.  

I tend to scrapbook from a color standpoint, matching and coordinating colors with those that are worn by the primary subject matter in the photo.  And I learned something, sometimes that just doesn't work.  And this was kind of a surprise to me.  I had the perfect colors for this layout on its first go round, the paper picked up both the pink that my little Izzie was wearing, the coral that her mommy had on and brown... and it just didn't work.  It was too busy, it was way too much pattern (and that's saying something for me, cuz I like pattern).  So a tore it all apart and went with softer, more pastel colors and my tried and true border stripping.  Much better. 

Papers and alpha are Prima.  I cut the scallopped piece to peek out from under the polka dot piece and then added the strip of smaller print on top of that.  Another scallopped piece and another floral strip went across the top to act as kind of a header. 

I did save the floral stickers and the flourish sticker from the original layout and used them again on this one.  Those are from Echo Park (I think it was from A Good Day--was that the name? ee-uh I don't know--got it in a collection pack from Hobby Lobby quite a while ago). 

Anyway, I used the backside of the Prima papers and roughed up the edges under the lead photo.  Then added a piece of lace as a little extra horizantal grounding.  I also wanted to use the alphas as kind of both journaling and title.  She has changed so much since these photos were taken, but she is still seldom quiet and a little bossy! 

Well, that's about it---I have some paperwork to wade through, phone calls to make, and the ever present dishes to do before I can get up to my little room to play with paper.