Saturday, March 31, 2012

5 Year Journal Love

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I don't know how it happened - but I left one big item off my "35 Has Arrived" list.  I had planned on starting a 5 year journal when I saw this great article on the Get it Scrapped site.  I was completely stoked about this idea.  It seemed utterly perfect - start the journal when I'm 35 and end when I'm 40.  So cool.  I had three months to decide what form I wanted the journal to take...
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  • Another great option was the 7 Gypsies library drawer with index cards - really liked this idea.  I thought I could decorate the back of each card with scrapbook paper or mixed media techniques with the goal of getting 366 cards done in five years - completely doable one would think.

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  • I also considered using some type of small card system and using the card catalog library drawer from 7 Gypsies.  It would give me the opportunity to put in little bits and pieces.  I still think this might be a cool way to do my OLW which I'm now centering around my birthday.  More on that to come...

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  • I finally considered taking the artsy piece out of the whole thing and buying a 5 year journal.  There are a lot of great options...

In the end I went with the Q & A option.  Why?  To be completely honest...I flaked and forgot to prep for the artsy version so it really only left me with the journal or starting after my birthday - which really wasn't okay for me.  What I really liked about the original inspiration was the questions.  It wasn't just me writing one sentence a day about whatever I wanted.  I didn't want mood and bad days to get in the way of this project.  I have a regular journal and blog for that...I almost went with the third journal because of the bird - but it just didn't quite fit.  Not to mention I can stamp a bird on the Q & A journal.  I'm happy with my decision and have already written my first entry.  Woot, Woot!  

I hope this gets your mind churning with ideas if you're deciding to do a five year journal or any kind of chronicle of major events.   I think a project like this is a perfect way to document a pregnancy, the first five years of a child's life, a healthy living campaign, etc.  I think almost any major life event could be done in one of the ways seen above.  I must find a project for that card catalog drawer.  Anyhoo.  I have a birthday lunch planned and one quick visit to a small person.  It looks to be another gorgeous day around here.  I hope everyone has a lovely Saturday.  Until then...

BTW: Click on the journals above to be taken to the original source.

Friday, March 30, 2012

35 Has Arrived!!!

So it's that time...I'm officially a 35 year old woman.  Time is a real "B" sometimes.  So - I had these grand intentions of having my must list done by today and my blog plan firm in my mind...and that just hasn't happened yet.  So - I'm doing a list of 35 things I want to do in this upcoming year.

  1. Meet my new niece or nephew for the first time.  
  2. Throw a rocking baby shower for my big sister.
  3. Write on a regular basis.
  4. Do one art journal page per week.
  5. Join Weight Watchers and work the program.
  6. Start to buy small things that turn my house into an extension of me.
  7. Read like the Dickens...52 books as previously planned.
  8. Soak up all the crafty goodness in the form of classes, videos, and books...and make some magic happen.
  9. Organize and finish decorating my bedroom - make it a sanctuary.
  10. Create an art gallery wall above my couch.
  11. Start an exercise routine and workout 2 to 3 times per week.
  12. Make it work - Blogger style.
  13. Have at least three movie days this year (3 to 4 movies in one day).
  14. Lose at least 35 pounds.
  15. Go to at least one musical.
  16. Visit the art museum.
  17. Visit the botanical gardens.
  18. Create a chore list and do it.
  19. See at least one orangutan.
  20. Start carving out a craft that works for me - some kind of hybrid between telling my story, card making, and mixed media.  
  21. Start a Happiness Project.
  22. Read everything I can find on Brene' Brown and her work on shame and embracing imperfection.
  23. Expand my knowledge base on all things play therapy.
  24. Volunteer to be a cuddler.
  25. Save $$$$$$
  26. Spend time with the Henderson clan.
  27. Participate in a photo scavenger hunt.
  28. Buy a new computer.
  29. Use some budget crafting strategies.
  30. Try and organize more diva crafting days.
  31. Visit a new place!!
  32. Take a real-life, in-person art class.
  33. Join a book club.
  34. Learn everything I can...
  35. NOURISH my mind, body, and soul.

Friday, March 16, 2012

My Pinterest General Rules of Thumb

1.  Always go to the original post before pinning.  Do your best to NEVER link to the general blog.  It then becomes a nightmare for the next pinner to find the actual post.  If the title or date does not take you to the original post, scroll to the bottom and click on permalink.  If permalink is not an option, I've adopted the policy that the site is not Pinterest friendly.

2.  Avoiding pinning from sites with All Rights Reserved Copyrights unless they have a "Pin It" or "Share This" button.

3.  When pinning - try to always give credit to the artist.  I have seen some complaints from bloggers, artists, etc. citing pinners falsely claiming other's work as their own.  Be sure to give credit where it's due. If you can't find the person to credit - don't pin.

4.  If pinning is not an option, I have not found any information disclaiming the use of the "like" option.  I have resorted to this when I really love something but can't find the original source.

5.  Remember...Pinterest has given site owners a code to prohibit pinning from their site.  However, if all else fails and you have the time and motivation, email the original source.

I have yet to decide on one major issue - if a person has a Pinterest account or a "Follow Me on Pinterest" button on their blog/site  but no option to share - is it okay to pin from their site?  I'm still working this out in my head but will let you know as soon as I do.

So that's it for now.  Pinterest week is officially over.  At this point I'm calling it Pain in the Ass Pinterest Week.  I hope it's been helpful to those of you wondering about the concerns/controversy. Please remember there is no judgement or shame towards anyone believing the whole controversy is hooey.  I really love Pinterest and am yet unwilling to give it up.  I came up with these rules for myself.  Do what feels right for you.  I hope everyone has a wonderful Friday.  Until then...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

My Favorite Pro-Pinterest Sites

If you are following suit with the crazy thoughts in my head - there are a few things I've learned from my research on the web and this great article from Steph at The Daily Digi.  Using this advice, I've come up with a few sites and ideas of my own.

The following sites have "Pin It" buttons installed as a functioning option to all readers.  I believe members of the site would not post items on this site without being aware of the concern/controversy over copyright issues.  So without further ado, three cheers for...

Two Peas in a Bucket - I love the "Pin It" button option on this site.  It allows me to go straight back to the artist/crafter/manufacturer and it also provides my followers with great content and an opportunity to buy products.  No guilt here.

Etsy - I was a little shocked to see a "Pin It" button on this site but there it was in all it's glory.  Based on my aforementioned policy, pin away.  I also think this will help me remember all those great gift, home, craft must haves I find on their site.

Stephanie Howell - I love her and her site so much.  I was ecstatic to see the "Pin It" button.

These next sites have "share this" buttons with Pinterest as an option.  I was really stumped on how the "share this" button worked - however I was happy to crack the code.  At the end of each post there is the date, time, and a little button with the words "share this" to the right.  Click permalink - this will take you to the original post.  Click "share this" button and choose Pinterest.  Pin away.

Ali Edwards - Ali has a green "share this" button at the end of each of her posts.  Click on the date or read more to go to the direct post and you will find the button.

Studio Calico - This site also has a green "share this" button - it's always best to click permalink to go to the original post and pin from there.

Get it Scrapped - This one's a little more tricky.  This site has a "share this" floating menu - very cool option with just a tad bit of confusion on my part.  Pro-Pinterest site equals double arm pump.

Decor8 - This is a really great blog on decorating and other beautiful things.  This blog also has a share this button in the form of a pink heart with a plus sign.  The words "share or save" are to the right of the heart.  Again Pinterest is an option.  Please note - some of the images on this blog are not original to the owner.  However, the original artist did provide permission to the blog owner with the knowledge that  pinning was available.  I would definitely go with your gut on this one.

Polyvore - This is a fashion, vision board type of site.  I love it.  It's definitely a great place to find style inspiration.  I could never wear these clothes in my current state but let's face it...a girl is allowed to dream.

Other site(s)...

Crate Paper - I had to do a little digging to get this one figured out.  They don't have a share it button.  However, they do have giveaways for readers that pin items from their gallery.  Needless to say - definitely a Pro-Pinterest site.

I think this a pretty good list for now.  I will update it periodically as time goes on for those readers with any interest on the subject.  I hope everyone is having a great Wednesday.  Until then...

Monday, March 12, 2012

Pinterest Week

I made another decision - an important one with repercussions which are frankly biting me in the ass.  I deleted my Pinterest account.  I started an entirely new account connected to my Twitter account instead of my Facebook account and started the processing of "pinning the right way."  Needless to say - I wish I could slap myself silly right now.  I want to be clear about my decision - I am not in any way judging what other people choose to do or how they pin.  I, frankly am a hot mess, and wanted to honor the wishes of a blogger I follow.  I'm starting to think maybe I shouldn't follow her anymore.  Just kidding.  So this week I'm going to link to Pinterest friendly websites and the little I know about doing the "right thing"...

So here's to taking the plunge and following the crazy voice inside my head.  Until then...

BTW: I am in no way advising anyone to delete their Pinterest account -  I just want to show some options for those of us scratching our heads while asking ourselves, "what the eff?".

Saturday, March 10, 2012

10 Things

March is a big month around these parts.  There are three rockin' birthdays - me, my sis, and Tonks (our beastly mascot).  It marks the month of state tests, the beautiful beginnings of the 4th quarter at school, and the hope of spring.  I'm going to be honest - March 2011 blew...hard.  I know this March will be so much better. So this March - I'm so happy to start a new monthly feature (10 things on the 10th).  So without further ado...

1. PinterestGate - I am so confused by the variety of posts and information on responsible pinning, copyright infringement, and don't even get me started on their terms of use.  At this point - I've had a hard time navigating this issue.  Fortunately, I found this great article from Steph at Daily Digi and have some big decisions to make.  I'm seriously considering deleting my boards and starting over or going through the almost 5000 pins individually.  Why?  I want to be absolutely sure that everything has been pinned properly.  While I'm definitely not willing to give up my pinboards and what I find to be a great source of inspiration - I WILL do it in a responsible manner.  I'm just so glad that someone has finally put out something on how to positively use the site!  Woot, Woot!

2. Pan-Pastels - I went out and bought 13 colors and a variety of sponges last week to start using on my art journal.  If only having the products in your stash made you an art journaler, I'd be teaching classes in Italy by now.  Must have confidence and compassion towards my art journal beginnings.
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3. Perfection is for the birds...I have this absolute, terrifying need to do things perfectly in a few areas of my life.  I want to be the best scrapbooker.  I want to be an informed, compassionate employee.  I want to be a wonderful daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, etc.  I want to be able to paint like Flora Bowley and art journal like Dina Wakely.  I'm not that way with my home, style, or body - but I will beat myself up over the other things.  I want to let go - to embrace imperfection.  I've read the works of Brene' Brown.  I've watched the presentations and listened to the podcasts.  I wish I could get it to stick.  I wish I could drink the Kool-aide.  I need to learn to be compassionate with MYSELF.  It's the only thing that matters.

4. Feature blogging has seriously been on my mind lately.  I'm heavily considering starting some feature weeks on the blog.  If you're wondering what that means - I'm actually still trying to get it worked out for myself.  You'll know more as things take shape around here.  I know I'm not an authority on art or crafts - but I can share my own experience as it relates to some interesting topics.  I'm hoping I enjoy this new direction.

5. I've read two fantastic books this month.  I cannot adequately articulate the feeling of contentment and intense joy I get from a wonderful book run.  One great book is a joy - but two, three, four in a row is a blessing.  These two books are going in my top 10 - possibly even five.  I need to clear my head a little and rank my favorites.  Please click on images to go to original source.  


6. Maple Bacon cupcakes.  I have two in my freezer as we speak.  They are from my local cupcake bakery and are utterly divine.  I've been interested in the idea of a bacon cupcake for quite some time and was not disappointed.  My local bakery has specials each month so these babies were no longer offered after the 5th of March thus the necessity of the freezer.  So happy to have two more whenever I want...

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7. Freezing cupcakes.  The girls of Georgetown Cupcake gave me an invaluable lesson in their book, The Cupcake Diaries.  Do not put your cupcakes in the refrigerator - it sucks out the moisture thereby creating a dry cupcake.  Dry cupcakes are not acceptable in this house.  Freezing the cupcakes allows for the moisture to be reincorporated in the defrosting process.  I've already tried it on two cupcakes and I'm afraid to say one was more moist than the day I usually buy it from the bakery.  Three cheers for the girls of Georgetown Cupcake.

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8. The Follow Your Heart Line by Rhonna Farrer for My Mind's Eye is rocking my world.  I can't get enough of it.  It is single-handedly responsible for kickstarting my scrapbooking yet again.  So happy with this line.

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9. I started yet another class - Finding Your Inspiration Station by Amy Kingsford.  So far...I'm pretty much loving it.  I will jump on any opportunity to find and use inspiration in a way that strengthens my own personal style.  So excited.  My first online class was on March 6th.  Lots of really great content in the first week.  

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10. Writing my first ten things post and loving it.  This was definitely a spontaneous post.  No forward planning around here.  Next month will be a little different.  However, there's something to be said for blogging the 10 things that matter to you at 9:00 AM on the 10th of the month.  

So there you have it - 10 things on the tenth at almost 10:00 AM in the morning.  I hope everyone has a wonderful Saturday.  I will be spending mine getting some good coffee, clean laundry, reading, planning, writing, responsibly pinning, and with a little luck...crafting.  Until then... 

BTW: Double arm pump for Shimelle Laine - my inspiration for 10 things on the tenth.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Just One More Thing

When I was watching the Tim Holtz demo from Paperclipping - I was so focused on my love for the markers that I completely neglected the potential yumminess of Ranger's new paper formulated for stampers.  As a stamper that in the past has cussed profusely when the image isn't exactly how I want - the idea of a paper that could not only be easier to stamp on but also give a cleaner, more precise impression is definitely glee worthy.  Frankly, I can't believe it took me FIVE days to talk about it.  I'm so excited at just the thought....

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There are 10 pages in a pack and the price point is a little steep at $7.99.  Frankly - if the paper works the way they say it does here - it'll be worth it's weight in gold.  I waste TONS of paper trying to get a good impression.  Sheesh - I'm getting frustrated just writing about it!

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And just one more other thing.  Tim has a new book out!!!! I have the first volume and it is packed with cool techniques.  I cannot wait to see what techniques and creative goodness he's bringing to the table in this new volume.  Tim is offering signed copies of his newest book on his site here.

So there it is...just one more thing.  Oh yeah, and just one more OTHER thing.  I'm a hot mess.  I think that's it for CHA Week (one month late I might add) - but let's be honest - I could add "one more thing" at anytime.  I hope everyone has a lovely Friday.  Until then...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Honorable Mentions with a Touch of Confusion

I almost called this post six sticks and an eff you but decided against it as it was originally slated to be my honorable mentions CHA post. And we'll get there, I just need to have a slight melt down. I have a chronic illness. I've had it for 15 years and I won't get into specifics. It does require me to take a fist full of meds daily and an infusion every six weeks. No big deal. It is what it is, right? Then the day comes when you get stuck six times for one effing treatment. Four of the sweetest nurses on the planet work for more than an hour to finally get the IV into the mother effing vein they started with - the only one that works. The one I told each and every last one of them - is the only that works.  And it's in these moments, I want to tell the universe to suck it. I know it could be worse, that's what people always say. And trust me - I want to kick them in the face when they say it.  Because let's be honest, it could also be nothing. So I'm sitting here in my doctor's office, finally hooked up to my medicine, blogging to keep from screaming cuz this is for the friggin' birds. Rant officially over. Now on to the festivities...

The following list represents a few more products I'm jonseing over from the CHA show. They didn't make my top ten but I love them just the same.

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The price point on this beauty is a little steep at $349.99. However, that's never stopped this girl before. To say I need this would be both histrionic and a complete understatement. I wish it was my consolation prize for being stuck SIX times.  Alas, there is no such prize.

Christy Tomlinson Stamps by Unity

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After taking both She Art classes and making precisely one piece of subpar art -  it seems somewhat silly to buy these stamps - but my obsession with all things crafty does not have to make sense.  Not to mention - the stamps are gorgeous and everything I wish I could do with what often seems like my own "feeble" art abilities.  Be sure to check out her other stamps here, she definitely has some great variety for those mixed-media lovers out there.  

Melt Art Texture Treads by Ranger Ink

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I can't for the life of me figure out how the heck these things work - but I'm excited just the same. Let's be clear I'm also quite confused - but I'm more than happy to make them a permanent part of my stash.  Can anyone say SGDB (Single Girl Desperately in need of Budget)?   I can assure you no one in this house has the slightest clue.  For a better idea of how these babies work, check out this example on Ranger's blog and their press release.  Don't be fooled - this girl is still stumped.

So believe it or not - that's it for now.  Thanks for letting me vent.  I know it's a small thing in the scheme of things - one IV every six weeks - but it feels good to release a little tension here and there.  And so I leave you with the words of John Green from The Fault in Our Stars, pg. 112, published by Dutton Books - An imprint of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. (2012)...

"What a slut time is.  She screws everybody."

This author single-handedly with the art of prose made my day so much brighter.  I was laughing openly without any sense of shame. It's a great thing to find the funny when you're feeling royally screwed.  By the way - go out and get that book now (after reading the summary pretty please).  I'm not done quite yet - but the first half is more than worth it.  I have a reading post planned for later this week and possibly another CHA related post.  We'll see.  I hope Wednesday finds you well and stick free.  Until then...

Monday, March 5, 2012

My Top 10 CHA Loves

Okay...this is my second go at a very long post.  I'm a little irritated that things didn't go as planned but I'm trying to embrace life's little imperfections and remember sometimes winning is just showing up.  So here I am - with my ass in my chair showing up for the thing I care about a lot - this little blog of mine and CHA product posts.   If you want to see these products in action - hop on over to the Paperclipping channel on YouTube and take a look.  I just love Izzy and Noell and they do outstanding work.  I've added the links to each product for your convenience.  I hope you enjoy.  So without further ado - drumroll please Rooba.....

10.  Sketchbook by Amy Tangerine for American Crafts (link to video)

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I absolutely loved Amy Tangerine's first line for American Crafts.  If it was a man, I would have fell in love with it.  Heck, if it was a woman, I would have fell in love with it.  Although her most recent release frightens me a bit with it's artsy style and bright color palette, I'm so excited to see it.  I fully embrace anything with the name Amy Tangerine connected to it.  I loved the first line that much.  I can't wait to see the new one in person.

9.  Neapolitan by Dear Lizzy for American Crafts (link to video)

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I love Elizabeth Kartchner.  I've loved her style since she was Scrapbooker of the Year for Creating Keepsakes magazine.  She likes to push the limits and create very cool things.  I have a love for mason jars.  There I said it.  I don't know where it came from or why - but I'm enjoying my brush with all things mason.  I actually already have a mason jar stamp - however, it does not have nearly the amount of  whimsy or spunk of the Dear Lizzy version.  I will be buying this version as soon as I can find it.  Love it - love her.  Just a note: here's another line with a color scheme completely out of my comfort zone, but I'm going to embrace this one too.

8.  Follow Your Heart by Rhonna Farrer for My Mind's Eye (link to video)

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I've already brought most of this line home - in paper form - and I love it so much.  Rhonna Farrer is definitely a rock star.  It's completely my color scheme and it's giving me the opportunity to try a new style of scrapping.  I think I'm going to call it artsy minimalism - think Marcy Penner and Lisa Truesdell aka gluestickgirl.  I've done one layout and it isn't quite artsy minimalism but I'm trying to move in that direction.  Definitely check out the video by Paperclipping.  The Marketing Director, KC, is definitely swoon worthy!

7.  D.I.Y. Thickers by American Crafts (link to video)

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These Thickers are something special and have a great amount of potential.  Just add glitter, micro beads, tinsel, etc. and you have your own personal letter stickers.  I'm very excited about this product.  Although I'm not much of a glitter girl, I'm stoked to see how these work.  Not to mention - I love so many of the fonts.  So excited....

6.  Dylusions Ink Spray by Ranger Ink (link to video)

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This is a new product from Ranger by one of their newest signature artists - Dyan Reaveley.  She has a fantastic line of stamps with Stamper's Anonymous and is now adding her own touch to the ink spraying world.  Why a new spray line?  I have no idea - but I love the way her colors look.

5.  Studio Calico - Mists, Masks, & Stamps (link to video)
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Okay so this might be a little bit of a cheat - three different kinds of products counted as one pick - but who really cares when the products are so fabulous.  I'm completely excited about these products and can't wait to get my hands on them.  This will definitely be an online order since Studio Calico is in short supply around here.  Love it so much.  Also - I'm completely smitten with Kelly Purkey's stamp line - so great.

4.  Hambly Honeycomb Paper & Washi Tape (link to video)

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Washi Tape is a hot new trend right now - and frankly I think Hambly has knocked it right out of the park with their line of decorative tapes.  Hambly has a lot of really great products in their newest release - please be sure to check out the video to see their amazing offerings.  I don't often see Hambly products in my neck of the woods so I most likely will be "forced" to order these online.  In regards to the honeycomb, it's divine.  Enough said...

3.  The Crafter's Workshop Layered Stencils by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer (link to video)

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Love the idea of these templates.  I haven't yet embraced the world of stenciling and frankly I can't wait to see how how these work.  I love Julie Fei-Fan Balzer and would buy every one of her templates if my wallet allowed.  I digress.  I have this particular template in my house right now - but can't wait to try out the others as well.  Great job Julie!!!  One last thing - if you'd like to see this template in action - check out this project by Mou Saha.

2.  Ranger Ink Distress Markers by Tim Holtz (link to video)

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I'm not sure I can put into words the level of my glee for these new markers.  I cannot wait to give them a try.  I have every intention of buying the entire set at one time.  They are featured in every single Distress Ink color and I cannot wait to have a set of my own.  The cost on the front end for these little beauties is steep but I'm hoping it'll all be worth it in the end.  Love it.

And last, but definitely not least - I give you...

1.  Memory Files System by Heidi Swapp (link to video)

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I'm so excited about this new product line.  I'm hoping it will fit into my scrapping life seamlessly.  I plan on taking Heidi's Art of Observation class at Big Picture Classes and becoming more acquainted with the loveliness that is her new line.  Double arm pump for Heidi Swapp!!!

So there it CHA loves.  After writing this new post - I can say with almost complete certainty that the first post was far better.  I guess it is what it is. Have a wonderful Monday.  Until then...

BTW: Look for a Honorable Mentions post later this week.

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