Friday, 31 October 2008

Another scrapping day on Wednesday


My teenage son, Jack, ever-cool, lying on his bed Mxing It, as usual...
My two "Young-uns" on The Promenade in Umhlanga a few weeks ago (note the ship in the background) just as the sun was setting...we enjoyed pizzas for dinner at M & A at Umhlanga Sands. Sadly, we've had no time to get back there despite good intentions...

I cracked the nod for another lovely morning with dear "Cyber Chum" as she's affectionately known..we indulged in delicious lunch, courtesy of My Chef (think that was the day before actually and Wednesday was Woollies...) anyway, time for a little speel on My Chef. Do look up the website, particularly if you are Durban-based, as it is a wonderful concept and I have it on good authority (from several scrapaholics!) that it is also truly a 'Delicious Lifestyle'. Did any of you notice that I managed to do my little thang there with the "Create-a-Link" function that I just learnt today? Not too shabby...

As we all know, Scrapbookers have far more important things on their minds than food. Yes, we like to eat it but, no, we have no time to cook it, so My Chef is the way to go! Delicious meals delivered to your door, all prepped and portioned, with just a few minutes to go. Expensive by grocery store standards, yes, but not by Woollies prepared food or takeaway/takeout comparisons, so I have placed my first order and am giving it a go...

So spent another happy morning scrapping (and chatting!) and was late to pick up my daughter (as usual, poor waif!). She had told me that they were finishing half an hour early as it was orientation day for the 2009 Grade 1's and I forgot! I am a good mother, really... Anyway, it wasn't all bad, she got her homework done like the good morsel that she is and I got all the kids home and fed before heading out with my son Jack, for some project shopping. First stop, Mica (local Hardware chain) for some plywood, hinges and clear epoxy. Looking forward to seeing how his toys turn out for tech...ever hopeful! Dropped him off at tennis and collected Chelsea for some car company and off we went to Mt. Edgecombe for a spot of Scrapping Retail Therapy.

No great shakes here either. I never seem to find a good time to shop at this particular (mini) chain. I arrived at 4, thinking I had an hour, only to wonder why I was being stared out at 4.3o! Upon enquiry I discovered that they closed at 4.30 so had to hurriedly conclude my purchases. Never a great selection of neutral plains anywhere here I find, but I did find something new and beautiful...not sure if they may have proccessed it themselves in store through one of their diecut machines with an embossing function. Some very cool plain cardstock with a tiny raised dot all over, so Fontwerks 2008 Jo'burg Convention. Got a coupla sheets of all my faves, black, white, beige, brown and grey plus a few cool prints. Going for bold, saturated graphic ones at the mo, American Crafts style, but this particular brand is not easy to find here...

Also found some nice local chipboard shapes (seems to be something local manufacturers can produce well) but no nice alphas and not much new in the way of embellishments. Anyway, came home clutching my little Inspiration parcel and my wet son (it had started raining during his tennis lesson and me, being in a store, was oblivious to this fact!) so, yet again, I failed in my mothering duties...On the upside he was cool with it (he's cool with everything at 13)and, in my favour, it had only started raining 10 minutes before I arrived, which is as long as it took me to drive to fetch him, so, even if he had phoned me I couldn't have got there any sooner. That's my story and I'm sticking to it! (lol)

For some peculiar (must be hormonal) reason I spent 3 hours in the kitchen cooking up a storm and we all enjoyed a delicious dinner AND dessert (quite unusual to hit the jackpot twice in my house...) I made the most delicious brownies (inspired by Tracy Julien's obsession!) and let my little girl do the icing and sprinkles so mum was in everybody's good books before bedtime again...

Getting organized for my new Blogging Lifestyle!

At least once a week I give my kids the camera (one of the two) and send them around the house/property scouting for photo opportunities. They love it and my younger son Reilly is particularly artistic about it. This is his "shot of the week" taken while the rest of the family were slaving away, working on the bookshelf...!

This PC in the kid's bedroom thing is so not working out. For example, here I am at 2 o'clock in the morning, still tinkering away on the keyboard, poor son asleep next to me, with the light on, and daughter passed out where I'm meant to be, next to dear hubby! I did try to reorganize things BEFORE I took over but couldn't convince anyone that I really was going to start my own blog and I really was going to be on the computer A LOT from now on. They all laughed...they said "Mum, you've got no idea how to even work a computer let alone a blog, hee, hee, hee!" He said..."there's no point moving the computer for you 'cos you're never on it!" Ever tried to work out the chicken and the egg story? Which comes first?...well, that's how I felt...I WAS never on it BECAUSE I couldn't get to it!!!Grrrr...

Anyway, 3 weeks and little sleep later, they're convinced and we're moving the computer!!!

Before this could happen tho' it needed a new home and we decided that in the passage was a good spot (it is quite wide and there is a perfect place at one end)but...next problem...no plug socket! Why is my life always so complicated??? Before I could call our dear, reliable electrician (NOT!) we HAD to buy a bookshelf as said chosen spot had rows of books propped up against said chosen wall. I have been hankering after a decent bookshelf all my married life but with 4 kids there have always been other priorities! I tootled off to Mistry's on Monday and found the perfect one, jotted down all the details, and passed them onto DH, who ummed and aaahed about the rising cost of living, then sent me a picture of a bookshelf half the price!

I could see it was going to be that or nothing so I settled for a ginormous one suitable for Lever Arch files in a lawyer's office...not exactly what I'd had in mind but purposeful nonetheless! Only problem was it was i.n. k.i.t. f.o.r.m...which meant it was going to take (us!) weeks to assemble.
DH assured me it would take '5 minutes' so he set to work and I set the timer (hee hee!) Several hours later there it stood and we were all amazed when it was still there 5 minutes later and hadn't collapsed! Chelsea and I took a couple of hours to fill it up (it's BIG) then admired our handiwork and decorated it with all the random things around the house that never had a proper 'home', Furby, for example! as the shelves are all so deep that, even when they are full of books, there is still space in front of them.

It looks great and the rest of the house does too as there are no more random items around (they're all on said bookshelf!) so that was a real family affair and now I have my computer space at last! Just need to give Jim a call and have him come and fit the socket...could be waiting weeks!

What happened to Tuesday?

This pic is of the family cat, Coco Blush. Isn't she just beautiful?

Well Tuesday is Scrap and Chat day. I get to spend all morning with my "Cyber Chum" IRL & we do lotsa scrapping and lotsa chatting. I finished a layout and started another one, which I finished on Wednesday. I must hurry up and photograph them to show you all I know! Tuesday afternoons are known as Terrific Tennis Tuesdays to me and Terrible Tennis Tuesdays to my two young ones! It's a mad rush to pick them up from separate schools and get them home, fed and ready then out again, while picking up my other daughter in between, and getting her home again before taking them out! As soon as I have them dropped off I'm off again to fetch my son then we have a teeny bit of time to do some exploring before it's time to fetch them again. This week I went to my local craft shop, one that stocks scrapbooking materials,etc aswell as a lot of other stuff for decoupage,etc.

Well, what a disappointment! For the first time in as long as I can remember I walked out without purchasing a single thing...the staff all just turned their heads after me in disbelief as I left as they know they can always count on me to up their commissions every month!...just nothing worth having and certainly nothing worth paying for...Prices are pretty rapidly on the rise here, as is the way of all countries on this continent!!! and I have discovered that ONLINE SHOPPING is the way to go! I was hoping, with Christmas just around the corner, that I might find some lovely new scrapping goodies to play with, but no such luck. Boring, boring, boring and very much Chinese,Chinese, and more Chinese...not too classy! So no goodies later it was off home again to do some D.I.Y!!

My favourite part of blogging...

Here is a photograph of Chelsea looking very much like her real self! Truly, not all photos can catch that...I love 'beheading' my subjects in this way-I think close-up shots have a great way of intensifying the image.

Is when I just get to ramble on without having to worry about trying to learn yet another technique or trick, or, absolutely worst of all, trying to import some weird and wonderful "gadget" that always seems to have an error at the last minute! I SO know what I WANT my blog to look like. Go to Sophia's or Wilna's and you'll get the idea...I suppose some of these peeps have had their blogs up and running for years but I know I have a long, long way to go yet! I never knew it would be this hard or I may not have ever done it! It is typically me. Any hobby of mine never turns out to be easy, take scrapping for example...my Goodness, when I look at my scrap room I wonder where on earth all the stuff came from and why I need so much of it. The thought of opening a Scrapbooking shop makes me break out into a sweat (just thinking of the stock-taking...)

Well I have been noteably absent this week. Not absent from life, mind, I have been up to A LOT! Monday is usually shopping day and this week I had to do my grocery shop in 3 separate, half hour instalments, as I missed my opportunity in the morning, so had to try and fit it in between kid's extra murals...The morning was taken up with my IT man, Anton, trying to sort out some problems on my computer (we managed!) and on my blog (we failed!). I am desperately trying to import a clustr.map and a hit counter and both of these are refusing to arrive!! I felt better (and worse!) that Anton couldn't do it either, as I have an inferiority complex about the computer and always think it must be my fault for being so illiterate...

Anyway, the good news is...I'm not giving up! I'm taking it one step at a time (and quite a few back at times!) and have e mailed the clustr.map team who have already come back to me with some positive feedback and will be trying again in a coupla days, once my original attempts have been reversed on their system. Hopefully this time I will be successful (I will certainly be very careful!) as I think it was my fault for adding a www. to the beginning of my address. Why I do not know! Will then work on the 'very easy' (ha ha) hit counter that is so not-easy...then I will hopefully, bit-by-bit, import interesting bits and pieces onto my blog until it looks BEAUTIFUL...how long all this will take I don't know! Not too long I hope...

Monday evening was admin time and I successfully sorted and filed all my scrapbook related correspondence (a whole folder for Online Shopping I might add...)and caught up with all my e mailing, etc. Wanted to blog but left it too late and my PC is in my daughter's bedroom and she was asleep, poor thing...

Thursday, 30 October 2008

More about the Tagging challenge!

From the look on Chelsea's face anyone would think she'd given birth to the cat! Talk about 'Proud Mother' pose...!

Well I completed the challenge as soon as I saw it 'cos it was easy and fun. Here are the rules for those of you who I'm tagging. Hope you take up the challenge and share a bit of yourself with the blogging world. It's a great way to move around the blogspots and add to your favourites as you come across more and more interesting blogs!


Link to your Tagger and list these rules on your blog.
Share 7 facts about yourself - some random, some weird.
Tag 7 people at the end of your post and link their blogs.
Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blogs.


Phew! Am I glad that is over! My back is killing me...must invest in a comfy computer chair. The one my bum's in at the moment was R50 from Mr. Price (a shop, not a person, for those of you outside of South Africa!) need I say more...Well thinking of the 7 facts and jotting them down was the easy part. Now I gotta list the 7 people I've tagged. THAT was the hard part. I haven't moved for the last 6 hours (bar 1 loo stop!) in my attempt to locate and invite suitable peeps to take up the challenge. I have located and informed them ALL (thank Goodness!) so let's hope they join the party.



I have absolutely NO CLUE how to link my chosen few to my tagger. In fact, I really don't think I HAVE a tagger...yet again I want to cry...this blog has been a source of great joy and sadness...it is 1am in the morning so I suppose I may be being over emotional. Okay, I've just had a brainwave and gone to Blogger Help and printed out instructions on how to make a link to another webpage. If it works, brilliant, if not, I'm sorry!

Here goes! (Just want to say thanks to Andrea at this point 'cos I reckon I've learnt a lot tonight, even if I do have a sore back now!)

Please check out these blogs to see if the peeps I tagged take up the challenge!

Sophia
Elizabeth
Stacy
Venessa
Robyn
Wilna

Oops, after all that I see that I can't count either! So sorry, had Keisha in mind but can't get hold of her...do check out her blog though under my list of favourites. It's called abiteast.typepad.com and has some stunning photography and some fresh layouts!

Yikes! That may have actually worked! Well I actually don't think that that is the way I was supposed to do it but I have created a weblink which is the same idea. Gee, I am quite proud of myself! I am also pretty exhausted...

CLICK DIRECTLY ONTO THE NAMES OF THE LADIES LISTED ABOVE to feast your eyes on their wonderful blogs. Even if they don't take up the challenge there will be a lot of wonderful information to absorb. Happy blogging!

Postscript: Hate to fail at anything so have enlisted one last happy scrapper to make up the perfect no.7!!!

Kitty

I've been tagged!

Yes I realise this is a strange image, which is why I've chosen to place it on the same post as my 7 Random Facts!! Just goes to show that, even in a technologically challenged household, we all have too many phones!!!

I am soooo excited...'cos I've been tagged! Don't actually know what that means and will have to look into it later but am so excited at the thought that someone has actually read my blog!!that I can't wait to take up the challenge! My boys are waiting at school to be collected and I can see I'm going to be late so have to get on with it!

I have been asked to list 7 facts about myself on my Blog then 'tag' another 7 people to do the same. I follow loads of blogs but don't know most of the people IRL so will try and 'tag' them. Hope they don't mind?!

Fact 1:- I LOVE tall people! I just have this natural affinity for anyone (in fact anything) tall. My husband is 6ft4" and I just love HIM. His height was the first thing that attracted me to him and I love that I fit just under his shoulder! I have had various tall friends in my life and am always on the lookout for new ones. Of course, I have friends of all heights but if you're tall, watch out, I'll be after you!...

Fact 2:- About height, again... I have a few OCDs (Obsessive Compulsive Disorders!) and one of them is that I have to arrange everything in height order (aswell as at right angles, no diagonals for me p.l.e.a.s.e!) so my toiletries on my dressing table need to go from tallest on the left to shortest on the right - the other way would be backwards you see...as we read from left to right!

Fact 3:- I only read FACT. Boring I know, but I reckon my life is exciting enough...I do LOVE reading though and read just about anything with writing on it. I love newspapers and have my favourite magazines that I buy and some I love SO much that I subscribe to them for fear of missing an issue!

Fact 4:- I ALWAYS wanted 4 children but only girls! What was I thinking?! I now have 2 girls and 2 boys and it is just wonderful. My life is full of FIFA (Computer soccer) and real-life football and I am an avid Manchester United supporter and wouldn't have it any other way!

Fact 5:- I like to drink something HOT and something COLD at THE SAME TIME, so usually order a glass of water with my cappucino and am happiest at my computer with an orange and soda and a mug of tea!

Fact 6:- I hate tomatoes. Cannot eat them! Never have, never will! Uuuugh......YUK!

Fact 7:- I love karaoke! I'm even surprised by that one myself...If you haven't tried it you should...

So there you go, I did it! Took up the TAG CHALLENGE! Thanks Andrea, that was fun! Now I am 5 minutes late to get the boys and I haven't even left home! Oh dear...

Sunday, 26 October 2008

State of the Art Scrapbooking discoveries!

Before we get on to those just wanted to share a photo of my daughter, Chelsea, all set for a nite on the tiles at a Gangsta party...

Have you discovered flickr.com yet? Sign up for a FREE account and then upload your photos to your OWN page (a good way to back up your photos!) You can also share your Flickr address with whoever you like so they can also view your images. Flickr is also a WONDERFUL SOURCE OF INSPIRATION as you can use the SEARCH FUNCTION to find photos an ANY SUBJECT . Searching for colour combinations is C.O.O.L. Check it out...

Newly discovered and WONDERFUL SCRAPBOOKING RELATED BLOGS are:-

erinzam.com/blog

colorlovers.com

scrapsthecityandme.typepad.com

evejohnson.blogspot.com

eatbreathesleepscrap.blogspot.com

allscrappedout.blogspot.com

Have just added all these addresses to my blog list so ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS CLICK ON THEM to get straight into my next favourite blog, how's that for tite?!

AMAZING...

"Scrapping by numbers" is a fun column in my new fave mag (Scrapbook Inspirations) to add your vote to their monthly poll go to http://www.scrapbookinspirationsmagazine.co.uk/ Go on, it's fun!

Weekend talk...


Read on and you'll see the relevance of this pic...!

Well today I thought I would let you know a bit about my weekend for a change. I have spent HOURS on all my favourite blogs (and my list of favourite blogs is GROWING!). I am thinking of changing my passion from SCRAPBOOKING to BLOGGING! Lol! Just kidding...

No, really, I am a person who used to hardly spend ANY time on a computer (I have to share it with my two teenagers so you know why!) and now I am driving them demented 'cos they hardly get a look in! While I'm feeling guilty for neglecting my scrapping, I'm also feeling rejuvenated at having found something else that also really appeals to me!

While of course I am inspired by the many gorgeous Scrapbooking blogs around I'm surprised at how much I am enjoying the REAL LIFE ones too! I suppose they make me feel 'connected' to the authors and I can often relate to a lot of what goes on in their every day lives. Normally my life is pretty isolated and I can spend hours and days holed up in my Scrap Room, which I find very rewarding, and the results are tremendous and I get to keep the layouts for life. This new blogging life of mine has nothing tangible to show for it (when I'm reading other people's day-to-day blogs) but truthfully, it's making me happy. Obviously I'm more sociable than I think as I'm enjoying the interaction.

Hopefully I can summon up some self-discipline this week and get back to business...

So that's a little insight into what's going on in my mind at the moment! Practically speaking I have been gardening for a few hours at a friend's apartment, (he lives overseas and we are caretaking his property between tenants), going out for breakfast at one of my fave coffee shops-Circus-at the Musgrave Centre, with my husband. My copy of "Scrapbook Inspirations" arrived on Friday and I have been pouring over it, as I do, for a couple of days now, and marking all the projects that appeal (practically everything) wow, I am LOVING that mag!

I missed the Curry Cup Final yesterday, which is terrible I know, but I developed a splitting headache whilst gardening and it only got worse...12 disprin later it only left the following morning, so that was a bit of a set-back. Thank Goodness it was on the weekend when I could afford to take a break. I really wanted to go to the rugby as it would have been a fantastic photo op and make a great page (Sharks v/s Blue Bulls) but the weather was not the best. It was showery and overcast so the pics may not have been great...

I did my bit in the kitchen this morning and did all the washing up from breakfast and yesterday lunch onwards. I also cooked us all a full English breakfast, so that was a treat for the family. I then had a cold shower (lovely) as all our hot water had gone down the drain with the washing up (oh the joys of renting!) and tootled off to fetch my little girl (now 15!) from her best friend's, where she had spent the night.

We went jolling (pr. 'jauling') - went out to have fun - at Gateway, our local (and rather impressive) shopping mall. First stop was our fave junk jewellery store, Sass Diva, which was full of gorgeous goodies as usual. Chelsea bought some funky lumo alice bands (I resisted...) then lunch at Panarottis (pizza) - yes, I know I shouldn't have...Then Converse for the All Stars I have been promising her for months, which I am never able to afford. Well, on sale at R60 off I still couldn't afford them, but got them anyway, as if I can't buy them on pay day when will I?!

Did a touch of Christmas stocking shopping at Jet (cheap and cheerful) for the kids and bought myself some lumo sneakers at Mr Price (very cheap and cheerful) then met my chum at the (beautiful) new Cafe Nescafe, for cappucino. All in all a treat of a day! Now here I am, still full of energy and with loads of e mails waiting for a response, so off I go to Outlook Express...

Friday, 24 October 2008

How to Create a Legacy - Part 3

Anybody recognize this photo from the Johannesburg Scrapbooking Convention this year? I used it, blown up to A4 size, on a layout that I entered into the Talent Search Competition. It's of my youngest son, Reilly, looking sun-flushed and happy on a weekend away at Bazley Beach, South Coast, KZN.

3. Keep A Journal

This is the ultimate and sometimes I do it and sometimes I don't. I'm not a great journal keeper and don't know many people who are! I'm thinking about creating a private blog just for it actually. I have far too many notebooks and pieces of paper so this is part of my Paper Eradication drive! The idea behind a Journal is that you jot down your thoughts and feelings whilst everything is still fresh in your mind, rather than when you are looking back on the photos you are scrapbooking, sometimes several years later. I have half journals here, there and everywhere and intend to start transferring them to one book (or private blog for now). I love it when I come across them. I am a firm believer in them, just not a firm doer!! Must remember to add this to my list of New Year's Resolutions for 2009!

A journal should serve as an authentic account of daily life and bring faded memories to life once more in years to come. When your children look back on your journal they may learn a thing or two about you that they never knew, and may even understand themselves better...Recording memories in this way is also more than just a practical tool to preserve your heritage. It is also a therapeutic process that allows you time to think, deal with emotions and bring closure. By making the effort you are leaving your mark on this world, never to be forgotten.

One more thing that I think is a very handy tool for scrapbookers is an Inspiration Journal. I have one of these but again, sometimes it is on the go and I am constantly jotting down ideas and sticking in bits and bobs, and at other times it lies dormant when my life gets busy...It's a must tho', really, if you want to remember all those brainwaves you have at odd hours of the early morning, keep it tucked down the side of your bed, where mine is, with a pen slotted into the spiral binding, so you always have it accessible. More importantly, refer to it, use it, put those ideas you found or had into practice and create those inspired layouts! If you don't want to cut things out of magazines do what I do and jot down the magazine name, issue and page so you can find exactly what you are looking for when you finally get down to creating your layout.

How to Create a Legacy - Part 2


2. Make a Scrapbook!
Here is a little pic of Chelsea showing y'all how it's done! For years now (well, all the years I've been scrapbooking anyway) I've MADE the kids journal their daily activities (when we've gone away on holiday) in a mini-book that I've either made or bought for them to customize. I fear I'll have to give it up now with the older 2 as they've been digging their heels in about it lately...(I know they'll appreciate it when they're older) and already LOVE looking back on their books so far...

Scrapbooking is the best way to preserve your memories. Everything is stored in an easy-to-see format and if you standardise your albums they look great together as your collection expands. Most albums are 12" square and expandable so you can fill them as much as possible if you like. Albums come with a few "expanders" that are lengths of chipboard used to put 'in-between' your scrapbook pages in order to level out your album - so that it is not narrow at the spine and wide at the other side. As scrapbook pages can sometimes get quite bulky I find expanders very handy but actually make my own out of foamcore. This is a plastic based cardstock that is about 3mm thick, slightly thicker than the chipboard expanders that come standard with the albums.

Albums also come with "extenders" which are a couple of little screw-type 'thingies' that you attach to the existing "posts" already in the album, so that you can add more pages. I like my albums to be thick. Lovely chunky volumes as I like to work a year at a time per album if possible. Therefore I need 20 - 25 pages per album, and hence A LOT OF expanders and extenders. Ready made extra expanders are available but unneccessary and from a sheet of foam core I can cut 10 expanders so this works for me. I make the holes by marking their positions first and boring through with a screwdriver-simple. Now they can go straight into my albums, between the pages. If I'm feeling bored and uncreative I cut a whole lot ready for the next albums to come. I have a whole drawer full of the things...

I recommend starting with this standard size as it is most practical. But A4 is quite popular overseas as are 'mini' albums, 8" or 6" square. I find these lovely as gift albums, or when used to commemorate special events, but my everyday albums are 30.5cm square-12" and this simplifies the process. There is a vast array of products that make it easy to put together simple pages and as your confidence grows so will your repertoire! Adding journalling (the story behind the photos) adds a wonderful personal touch, especially is you use your own handwriting. Often people embark on their first album as their eldest child approaches 21 and they want to present him/her with a visual record of their 'highlights'. There is no better gift than one that witnesses the bonds of friendship and family and even 'minimalists' rarely toss their photos. I also find that albums or scrapbooks make great gifts for those people who 'have everything' and everyone I have presented with an album has always appeared genuinely touched. Anytime is a good time to start scrapbooking, the sooner you start the better, as that pesky photo pile just grows and grows, especially if you love taking photos like me!

Most Scrapbooking stores hold weekly classes, which can be fun from the social aspect, and a great confidence booster when everything is still new to you. Eventually your own Scrap Space becomes essential and there are a few decent magazines available that provide constant inspiration and trend updates to keep you on track. How much or how little you put into it is up to you and your available time. I find the evenings the best time to concentrate and get creative and I know a lot of other scrappers who do the same. It might not sound appealing but try it and you'll see! Occassionally I have witnessed the sun rising...

How do you create a Legacy? Part 1


1. Take photographs!
Here is a piccie of my darling hubbie! Hoping I can sneak this in without him noticing as he's very shy...

A legacy is defined as something handed down to a successor, ie:- your children or loved ones. Often one's will contains a list of possessions and how you would like these distributed. There is more to life than that. How can you pass down memories and ensure that family traditions live on? Taking photos is one way but pretty pointless if you don't print them. Storing your photos on your PC is a great idea as a back up but don't fall into the trap of not printing them. It's expensive enough here in Africa, so try to keep it up pretty regularly so you can budget for it. Once you have your photos you have them forever. It is so worth it. Photos can become useless if they are not captioned, especially if the photographer has died and you cannot ask them for the story behind the shot.

Scrap your photos regularly or at least display them in a photograph album with a journalling space alongside each of them, where you can record names, places, dates, emotions etc. Start by recording important moments in life (most of us do that anyway), ie:-Birthdays, Christmas, graduations and other meaningful events. Start thinking deeper and getting visual records of everything you want to remember, ie:-your pets, your kids toys, your house, favourite parts of your garden, even your local shopping mall. You may move towns and be grateful for the reminder.

Hand over the camera occasionally and get someone else to take some snaps of you with your loved ones or in your favourite places, otherwise you will be missing from your own albums! Try capturing impromptu moments when your family are unawares, such as when dad is reading kids a bedtime story. I find these the most touching records of all as this is real life. Ali Edwards suggests taking at least one photo a day. This sounds a lot easier than it actually is and is not always practical. What I do do now is caryy around a good quality, small digital camera (Panasonic Lumix) in my handbag, along with a spare battery as it's amazing how quickly the battery runs down. This way I have no excuse to miss a moment and I always have my camera with me!

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Emotional Literacy-A guide to better journalling.

Before we get started just thought I'd add a photograph of my blossoming teenage girl with her very special friend Jo

As scrapbookers, we are continually reading and being told that journalling is all-important. For me, this took a few years to sink in. I was more excited at the thought of getting my photos organised into chronological order! (wouldn't Stacey Julien just LOVE to hear that, lol!) and I was too mesmerised by all the 'sweeties' (embellishments) on offer, to really care!

As the years went by I began to gain a deeper understanding into the idea behind journalling. We think we'll never forget but, alas, we do! Any of you my age will agree, we forget more with each passing year! Sometimes seeing photos alone is not enough to prompt our old memories and having all the details jotted down is S.O. C.O.O.L years later when you read it and it all comes flooding back! Remember too that there will sadly be a time when you are no longer around when your kids are looking through their albums. What would history be without dates? In the same way, a date on a scrapbooking page is practically compulsory if you ask me. I say practically because I'm a great believer in learning all the rules before you break them if you like!

Here are 10 ways to kickstart your Emotional Literacy, adapted from another little article I found hiding in my bedside drawer...

1. Keep a journal and write about your everyday experiences, thoughts, etc, whatever you have time for.
2. Make a time-line of your life, ie your achievements aswell as your state of mind at the time. Try to remember and record the memories and emotions you experienced at those times.
3. Consider what shaped your beliefs and attitudes and how these influence your daily actions now. You may want to do some reprogramming at this point!
4. Reflect on the way you express your emotion and what's behind your style, ie:-if you have angry outbursts ask yourself why and what you can do to change. Acknowledge. Accept. Reprogram.
5. Harness your creativity. Yay! This is what scrapbooking is all about!! Creative energy is a wonderful way to clear away our defence mechanisms. That's why scrapbooking can be so cathartic. So, you see, it's not just about the art. It's a wonderful emotional healer too.
6. Stop the 'poor me' cycle. Whatever has happened to you, there are not many people, if any, out there that are not scarred with some type of emotional baggage. Choose to be a victor, not a victim.
7. Let old wounds heal. If you have unfinished business that is consuming your energy, either try to make peace with those concerned, or make peace with yourself about it.
8. Give thanks for 5 good things EVERY DAY.
9. Practise being a good listener. Look for the human being in those you dislike.
10. If you feel blocked, troubled or depressed, get some professional help and support.

While the little article I have adapted is not specifically about scrapbooking I found it very interesting and certainly feel that putting all these things into practice makes for better journallers, which in turn, makes for more meaningful layouts. I've certainly enjoyed my scrapping even more since I've really soul-searched for the right words to convey my emotions on a layout. Try it out, I'm sure you'll agree.

Resolution Rules

If you're anything like me you start panicking in October. Suddenly the stores are all full of Christmas decorations and all your relatives want to know what you're doing for the holidays! I never really enjoy it as the 'mum' because I'm the one that has to make it all happen! I was tidying out my bedside drawer the other day and came across an interesting little article about GOAL SETTING. This is something that always plays on my mind come end-of-year. I look back at the current year, that seems to fly past faster and faster the older I get, and I'm always slightly disappointed at not having achieved MORE. Truthfully, I KNOW I do achieve a lot but there always seems to be more on that darn To Do list of mine...

To be GOAL SMART here is the recipe:-

S=SPECIFIC:-ie, I want to continually improve on my scrapbooking. I know that means trying out a lot of new stuff but I am willing and able and I have my inspiration sources in place (my 3 magazine subscriptions from different corners of the globe) and am prepared to do what it takes to push that envelope! Next year I want specifically to GET UP TO DATE. No, really...I know a lot of you don't even contemplate it but I really want to try, and the end is in sight! I know I need a separate plan just to achieve this and that it will be hours and hours of work so I need to work out a realistic schedule.

M=MEASURABLE:-find a way to quantify your achievement. For me, this will obviously be the amount of layouts I can achieve per week using my old photos, in order to bring things up to date, and the amount of new layouts I complete that 'push the boundaries' with new and interesting techniques, etc.

A=ACHIEVABLE:-make realistic targets, remember...life happens. Don't set yourself up for a fall. Allow for some adjustments to your program along the way if neccessary.

R=REALISTIC:-become the best you can be, not neccessarily THE BEST.

T=TANGIBLE:-Know what your goal "looks like", ie:- how many albums you want to see completed by the end of the year and what quality you will accept. If you are learning and experimenting allow for this as it is difficult to quantify. What counts is that you know what it has taken for you to get to a certain point and be satisfied.

Layout Idea-Things I know for sure-October 2008


After my forced sabatical from blogging I have just spent a couple of hours on my favourite 'personal' (non-scrapping) blog, Life in Lindfield. Ah, what a lovely escape it is to chill and read through Andrea's blog! She is living my fantasy life and I am SO jealous!! I know it doesn't appeal to everyone but life in a rural village in England is just what I'm after now. I have probably lived over half my lifetime already and 95% of it has been in Africa. I am 'gatvol' (full-to-the-brim) with all the nonsense we have to endure in the so-called THIRD world. I call it the LOST world!!!

Anyway, back to the business of blogging...Andrea has inspired me yet again (I'm starting to really dig this girl!) with one of her latest posts. A GREAT SCRAPBOOKING LAYOUT IDEA. "Things I know for sure at ....(here you put in your age or the year) then you make your journalling list alongside a current photograph of yourself and pop it into your "Book of Me" album-something we should ALL have! Year after year imagine how interesting it will be to look back on your annual layouts and see how you have grown as a person and how your priorities may have changed? I can't wait to get started and plan to do a new layout along the same lines every year. What a gift it will be to my children when I am gone, a real Legacy.
Here goes...

"Things I know for sure in October 2008"

1. I am really unphotogenic but am trying my best to get my husband and kids to take more photos of me as I am conspicuously absent from most of our family layouts (I am always behind the lens).
2. I really do adore my current family (the one I have created, ie:-my husband and kids) and thank God for giving me a second chance.
3. I will never get tired of my husband - 24 years together and our relationship just goes from strength to strength with each passing year.
4. It's a good thing to plan ahead and for the future but your life is in God's hands and sometimes you may end up where you least exected!
5. It's better to accept your situation and make the most of it than waste time complaining.
6. More than half the world's population lives below the poverty line so I am grateful for a roof over my head and food in my stomach (and don't need any more than that to be happy).
7. Friends come and go in life so just enjoy them as much as possible while they are around and don't panic, there are other good people out there and you will eventually find them!
8. Most of my clothes are pink or brown-this is very obvious now that I have arranged my wardrobe by colour!
9. Kids become teenagers literally overnight so hug and kiss them as much as possible before they grow up! (luckily I still have another 2 'little ones' to enjoy!)
10. Road rage is a reality in South Africa and for some reason unbeknown to me South Africans are the most aggressive race I've met-just laugh or you could get shot!
11. I can cook just fine, in fact, I can actually cook quite well (and now that I have more confidence I actually quite enjoy it)!
12. Life is all about choices and there are trade-offs for everything-there is no perfect life.
13. A house is not a home without a cat.
14. I will always be over ambitious, it's my nature.
15. I don't really care if the sun doesn't shine every day. Quite honestly I enjoy the overcast weather we get here in Spring. Why does everyone call the weather 'bad' when it is so fresh and cool?
16. I love plants and gardening but I absolutely hate sitting outside by the pool (strange but true...)
17. My love for scrapbooking will never ever die.
18. Change is Good. (Mr. Price slogan) so true...I have had to reprogram myself on this one but now I genuinely look forward to it.
19. There is nothing wrong with being alone. I have learnt this year how good it can be.
20. Leaving my hometown of Harare at the end of 2005 was the best thing we ever did, and the most difficult.
21. Some relationships are not worth salvaging.
22. Blood is not thicker than water. Sometimes Jesus turns that 'water' into blood.
23. Parenting is a learning curve and I don't always get it right first time but my kids will survive (and hopefully forgive me for it)!
24. I far prefer my 'new' simpler life in South Africa.
25. I'm probably always going to feel tired most of the time!

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

When Negativity hangs over you like a cloud...




There is not much you can do about it at the time. While I was 'away' from my blog I had one of these times & it was quite protracted. If there is no way to change the situation and you know it is only temporary then just 'go with the flow' and accept that it will be practically impossible for you to have any creative thoughts at this time, let alone action anything../

For me, I have to be completely 'well' to perform at my optimum creative level so, if I'm snowed under at times with 'other stuff' I just 'let it go' for a while because I know I'll be up against a brick wall if I try and force it, and it's not supposed to be that way. Just relax, it'll be back, the minute you're mind is 'free' from that negative distraction recovery will begin. It may take a while for you to get back to 'firing on all cylinders' but don't worry, just start small and build up again. For me, I usually begin with the camera. I just love taking photos and capturing moments, there are few things in this world as satisfying.

Developing is even more fun, whether it be on my PC or at my local Photo Processing Store. The Kodak Image Box is very simple to operate. Assistants are not much help, they just want you to select ALL, choose JUMBO and go for GLOSS!!! A.L.L. W.R.O.N.G!!! Take control of that machine yourself, just like you did when you first got your PC or cell phone, or camera for that matter, and work it out, it's not brain surgery. You'll have a few infuriating 'fluffs' along the way, when you press the wrong button and all your hard editing work gets deleted. It's happened to me more than once and it IS disheartening but I'm always back the next day and it seems to take me at least an hour to edit about 50 prints on average, at one time. Just by trial and error and clicking on all your options, you'll be amazed at what you can achieve, WITHOUT Photo Shop!

My photos are always vastly improved this way and collecting them is most heartening indeed. A bulging manilla envelope is usually a sure-fire way to get those creative juices flowing. There you go-you are back in business!

My computer spent a week in hospital!!!


At last I have my beloved computer back! Thank you Anton! Boy, so much for one day...anyway, I am most grateful as it had a 'malicious' virus as Anton so aptly put it, so needed to be completely formatted, which was a mighty big job, considering that everything for all 3 profiles (my son & daughter share my computer....uuugh!), had to be saved & then retrieved & reloaded. The day my poor computer got very ill was my first day with my house-guest so I 'spose it was probably the best time for it to be out of action as there was little opportunity for me to concentrate on my blogging or scrap-booking. As a result I am feeling strangely out-of-touch & feverishly tidying The Zone and my travel tool tote and supplies bag in order to feel 'in control' again. I'm 'on the go' on a new layout at the moment & have a lovely BIG pile of new photos beckoning me from an A4 brown envelope...

Today I spent the morning 'scrapping & chatting' with my good friend. My layout is taking shape and I hope to get it finished tomorrow. I'm so into white Bazzill at the moment. There was a time when I thought I would never use it but I 'spose that's how fashion goes. White, Black, Browns & Creams are definitely my faves at the moment & Bazzill definitely rules FOREVA. I can't imagine using anything else but it just seems to be getting harder and harder to source in South Africa, which is very sad. Apparently the distributer here has very high minimum orders and, as most of the Scrap-booking stores here are tiny by comparison to the ones I see advertised in overseas magazines, it's obviously difficult for them to buy in such a large amount of stock at any one time.

What is a lot more prolific here these days is Colourmates. My first reaction was NO but I have had to resort to it out of desperation at times and these days it seems to have improved in quality. Initially it had NO texture, just flat...blah...now it is coming in with added texture so is very similar to 'the real thing' - BAZZILL BASICS CARDSTOCK - so certain Colourmates are acceptable enough. A newcomer for us here is Colourcore-dinations and this is SPLENDID. Thick, full of texture and with a contrasting core so wonderful for tearing as the other colour magically appears and there is subsequently no need to ink your edges. Amazing! Even more amazing is the fact that it is the same price as Bazzill & Colourmates!! The added colour core make it the best value product, so I'll convert to Colour Core-dinations where possible but Bazzill still wins hands down for it's glorious colour spectrum.

New products for me are my Creative Memories pens. I got the thin and the thick ones and the colours are beautiful and the quality outstanding as usual. They make wonderful tools and I have a couple of their punches and their corner rounder, definitely the best I've found. I recently purchased their Circle Cutting tools which are amazing. The simplest I've found so far & I read in the latest issue of Creating Keepsakes that they are Ali Edwards faves too, so there you go! I was waiting for the kids in the toyshop the other day & browsing when I came across some very interesting POP PENS. These are like glitter-glue, in that you squeeze them out through a thin nozzled end. I bought three sets, the brights, the classic colours & the metallics. They have no glitter in them but they are liquid so take a while to dry, but they come out raised and dry like that, so it is a 3D effect. C.O.O.L!!! Can't wait to do some doodling...

My parcel arrived midweek last week. Online shopping...aaah...not much more fun to be had than browsing your favourite products at home. Slowly but surely I have built up a database, over the course of the year, of Online Scrapbooking Stores in South Africa. I think, behind the scenes, that they are probably all pretty small businesses, and not all of them can be found just by 'googling' so at some stage I plan on posting a list of them right here on my blog, as they are definitely worth a go! I have ordered at least once from all of them, and have had no disasters. Everything is almost always significantly cheaper than actual stores, for obvious reasons, and I find that often they have unusual products not available from my local stores. Often, especially if you are a first-time shopper, you find a little surprise or two added in to your parcel, which I think is a lovely touch. I always opt for normal post, which is the most cost-effective method, and wait about 5 working days for my goodies to arrive. By then my memory is getting a little hazy which aids my anticipation & I just love the sight of my 'pizza box' at the gate!! If you haven't tried online shopping yet I can highly recommend it!!! Seriously tho', it is actually better value so makes good sense too...

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Photo success at last!


Well there you have it!! and, no, of course this was NOT waiting for me in my draft posts this morning! Who knows were those 20 photos ended up!! Anyway, the loading of this photo was just a test to see if I could load a photo using another method. Yay! Now I need to start photographing all my layouts and seeing how they look uploaded on my blog.
This is a very recent photo of me and my 2 youngest taking a walk along the Beach Promenade at Umhlanga Rocks. Gosh, I am excited to have come this far...photos will be rolling in thick and fast from now on! For those of you who need to know, I have spent the last hour in the Blogger Help Centre reading FAQs and viewing Help tutorials. I never found any photo information funnily enough but I did find out how to download a video. Well as this stage I don't even know how to TAKE/MAKE a video with my new (or my old, to be truthful!!) camera but I just applied the same principles and voila!
Go into 'create post'-click the photo icon, select import from computer, click 'browse' go to 'My pictures' where I imported all my photos from my new camera last night, click on chosen photo and WAIT (quite a while I might add...) then when those glorious words YOUR SAVING WAS SUCCESSFUL appear click on view blog and...phew! There it is...-technology...amazing stuff! Laters...

Monday, 13 October 2008

Well here I am again!...

Trying to make some more progress... I have spent the last coupla hours loading the software for my new Panasonic Lumix camera and then trying to find out how I can get all the photos that I managed to upload into the Photofun Studio Package onto my blog. It seems this can only be done via e mail from myself to my blog with an e mail address given to me in my blog's settings page. Well, over an hour later, the photos have not arrived at the blog and are less than 20% through. There must be a quicker way!!

Please, IF ANY BLOGGER CAN HELP, please add a comment to this post to tell me where I am going wrong and/or how I can get my photos onto my blog. I aim to do this a lot, perhaps even daily, as it's obviously a simple procedure WHEN YOU KNOW HOW! So that has been my daily contribution to my blog and I intend to keep my PC running tonight in case I disturb the importing procedure. PLEASE may I wake up tomorrow morning to find all my photos waiting for me in a draft post! If so you will see some of them attached to tomorrow's post.

I have also done a bit of editing as my dear friend pointed out some inaccuracies with dates, etc, today, so I have carefully reread my posts thus far and everything should now be 100% accurate. Thanx Jax, you are now my official proof reader! I have a house guest this week so I may have to put my blogging research on hold for a while in order to be be a good hostess. Wanting to have my home looking spik and span for the arrival of my guest, I spent some time tidying up my scraproom. What a job! I have TOO MUCH STUFF or, rather, not enough storage space! I am always on the lookout for new and innovative ideas to organise one's 'stash', especially as I don't want to custom make any fitted furniture as I am not going to be permanently based in South Africa.

I hope to give my room - "The Zone" as it's affectionately known in my household, a mini make-over this week so will take some photos once a bit of order has been restored. I am also working on my photo files on my PC and doing some organised filing and editing. Digital photography has given us all FAR TOO MANY images to possibly scrap in our lifetimes. I recently watched Annie Liebowitz's autobiography, Life thru' a Lens, and one of her quotes came to mind today while I was wading through folder upon folder of JPEGs. She said that one of the most important lessons she had learnt in her career was to EDIT so I will be doing some serious editing this week.

At a recent convention here STACEY JULIAN was the guest speaker and she was also very vocal on this topic. She has a few books out on organisational skills re: scrapbooking so hopefully I will have some time soon to look online and see which of her books I should start with. She also said, interestingly enough, that if we all read one book a month on the topic of our passion we would become experts! Logical enough really, so one of my goals for 2009 is to do just that. When I have decided on my 12 books for the new year I will post the list on to my blog and any interested scrappers can TAKE UP THE CHALLENGE!

This is giving me a pain...

Just logging in to this blog is proving to be a challenge...the whole thing is mega time-consuming 'cos things are just not going according to plan! Yet again this post has tomorrow's date on it because it is after midnight and I am still sitting here trying to work out how this wretched site works!!!??? I'm not going to be able to post every day or I'll have to put my children up for adoption and find my husband a new companion!!

I've just spent a coupla hours on other blogs and it has been interesting and mind-blowing! I am excited and disappointed all at once. There is just SO MUCH OUT THERE scrapbooking related that I don't really know where to start and it feels a bit like I'm not making headway but rather going around in circles, anyone out there know what I mean?! Well, you wouldn't I 'spose unless you'd been experiencing this whole thing with me!!

I have been trying to get through the 3 mags I currently subscribe to in order to decide on my plan of action for the month and the month is running away with me! I got through SCRAPBOOK INSPIRATIONS last week. What a wonderful issue. FULL of great ideas and can't wait to get started on them all. CREATING KEEPSAKES arrived last week, late as usual, so it has been a bit of a disappointment lately, from that aspect. Scrapbooking Memories is pretty good this month and I am very taken by the clock idea and can't wait to get to the local discount store to rip a clock apart for the mechanism and operating parts. Hope to do that in the morning. Next I'll need a canvas to design the 'clock' on and it should all be very exciting and a good project to teach others via the local scrap store. They are interested in me putting together a morning workshop and I reckon this would appeal to most people and be something different yet useful. An 'off the page' project that wouldn't be a dust collector!

Also spotted some lovely mini album projects that appeal and have found Ali Edwards new book online locally so will do a bit of mini-booking in the Christmas holidays, as we are no longer going away. I have BOXES of offcuts and they are irritating me and adding to the clutter in my scrap room so it is my December challenge to use them up mindfully rather than throwing them away. Mini books are just perfect for that and have that 'cuteness' appeal...

www.scrapbookingmemories.com.au is the web address if you wanna check out the clock idea and be inspired to use up your offcuts on some mini books this holiday season. I picked up some really sweet embellishment boxes today at Home,etc at Gateway. R35 each (US$3.50) - good price for South Africa. They are thick coloured plastic and semi translucent so I got 3 white and 3 turquoise and have arranged the colours alternately in 2 rows of 3, one on top of the other, on my desk. F.U.N.K.Y.!!! All my drawers are FULL and I need more storage space! Found some lovely new sites today. Will list them here tomorrow along with some new additions to Blogs I follow. This blogging is getting addictive......

Sunday, 12 October 2008

To me it's still Saturday...

It's 12.30 and time has run away with me as usual! Have spent the last couple of hours on Andrea Robertson's blog -Life in Linfield- and have added it to my blog list for anyone wanting to look it up. Although not a scrapbooking blog she does scrap, which is how I got to know about her blog. Hers is the first blog I ever viewed and was really the catalyst for my interest in blogging. I subscribe to a monthly 'kit' - a scrapbooking 'package' that is sent through the post and consists of everything needed to complete a few layouts aswell as photos of what your finished layout should look like, and all relevant instructions and templates - and Andrea worked for the kit company. When she left South Africa a few months ago she sent all kit subscriber's her blog address to follow her progress settling into life in England.

By the by...I subscribe for fun and because I want to feel part of the South African scrapbooking community (although I am fast learning that sadly there's no such 'universal' thing and rather many isolated bunches of clicky people). My friend and I both subscribe to the kits and often scrap them together. We enjoy seeing what we've got-nothing beats a surprise package in the post-and we don't follow the instructions or copy the layout-but do our 'own thing' with our surprise supplies- rather like a 'challenge'. For me it's about 'stretching', ie:- having to work with supplies that may not be what I would normally go for, which I think keeps me on the road to better scrapbooking.

Anyway, I just love her blog because it is all about relocating to the English countryside, which is something that has long appealed to me...very interesting and informative for 'Africans' terrified of making that inevitable move across the world.

My blog is making me want to cry...I spent ALL day trying to fix it up and get it finished only to import a corrupt gadget (a free add-on) that froze the whole thing. When I finally...HOURS later...managed to nip in to my 'edits' before it had time to 'hang' on me again, I managed to identify and delete the corrupt gadget and get my blog going again, only to find that my hit counter, hit location map and playlist (that I had imported today from various different sites at great pains...) had not saved on my blog because of the norty gadget. Boo hoo!! So much for setting up a blog WITH EASE as I said in my first post! It's NOT EASY and flippin' frustrating but I still believe it's worth it and I'm determined to soldier on...for all of you who know me personally you'll know this is one of my WORST traits...I never give up! Sometimes I think my life would be a lot easier if I did! On certain things anyway...

Well this is not one of them so here I am, typing in my post, exhausted as usual, having done nothing creative because I don't have time anymore!!! Too busy trying to set up my blog and learn how to manage it...boo hoo...ha ha...I'm tired and confused...I had a lot of creative thoughts today, while all this was going on so will share them with you tomorrow. Another day, another opportunity. I will do my best to reload my blog and hopefully by Monday my blog will be complete, minus the photos, again!!

Saturday, 11 October 2008

What happened to yesterday?

Well...a good part of yesterday was spent TRYING to LEARN MORE about blogging, in order to make my blog more TEMPTING and USER FRIENDLY. I spent time @ playlist.com compiling a basic music playlist to add to my blog, only to find that I couldn't add it even though I should be able to. Transferring playlists to blogs is an option and I have investigated and seen that it HAS BEEN DONE but sadly, not by me...YET!

I did manage to transfer it to FACEBOOK where I now have a (lame!) profile with NO FRIENDS so any of you who are on, please be my friend 'cos my kids are laughing at me :-( Truthfully, 2 peeps did want to be my friend but I don't know them from a bar of soap so thought that would be inappropriate and turned them down! Not much idea of how Facebook works and don't really think it is for me(it may appeal when I learn how to use it!) For now blogging is taking up enough of my time and tearing me away from my creative space, which is rather distressing. To top it all, my Facebook playlist doesn't even play!! Gotta laugh...

Am also working on the photo thing and think I am making progress...will keep you posted. Having to share a computer with 4 kids is also SO not working out! Especially in a teen bedroom with E! TV blaring, etc so I have our IT man booked for Wednesday to quote me for upgrading Shane's (state of the ARK) home PC so the 2 younguns can hopefully use that as I am becoming increasingly unpopular in my household...!

I have found a few (listed to the right) other blogs that are JUST BEAUTIFUL and I am spending time going through them for inspiration and trying to emulate them - not easy with my limited IT skills. I'm hoping to look back on this post in a few weeks and see how far I've come. As long as I am learning something new everyday I'm happy!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

A bit of history...

This is just a little speel to fill you in on how I got here from there...

I have been scrapping since 2003. I came upon it quite by accident via my daughter, who went to a holiday workshop with a friend and came back with something interesting...

I still remember the RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD when I first laid eyes on that layout...it was love at first sight. Instantly I knew this was going to be A BIG AFFAIR. I started lessons almost immediately but other commitments kept me from persuing my passion in full until later...

Roll on 2006 and I was ready to make up for lost time. I found a local workshop close by and immersed myself in photos, memories and PAPER...my favourite! Day after day was spent correlating and compiling, mixing and matching, learning and experimenting with the added bonus of meeting a few good people along the way. By the end of 2007 I was gaining momentum but needing my own space and fate would have it that I found it...

February 2008-my own scraproom at last...no-one else's agenda to take into consideration and a (small!) room to finally organise my supplies in...BLISS. Aircon was one of my first installments-expensive but not optional in the tropics. Cheap plastic drawers, a lot of them side-by-side and a coupla old tables/desks and I was nearly there. While I wish for a custom made studio what I have now is sufficient and such a treat after all these years.

My First Day of Blogging

I created this blog myself so am quite impressed, in fact, flabbergasted, that I managed! I thought I would need an IT specialist to set it up for me, so for your information, it can be done WITH EASE. I have tons of stuff I want to load on to my blog as soon as I learn how to do it so WATCH THIS SPACE. I am wanting to interact with like-minded souls and thought this would be one way to start. Most of my days involve creativity in some form or other but today was particularly uneventful in that area as it was filled with chores and paperwork.

I'm finding this whole computer thing very time-consuming as I 'm still unsure of what I'm doing so I've been here for the last 6 hours. I just got e-mail 2 weeks ago...yes...for the first time ever!! Unreal I know, but I have had ALOT going on in my life for years and no time to sit at a computer. SAD i know!! Anyway, all that is about to change and I want to commit to some time everyday to download my thoughts,etc and get into this blogging lark. Will try and add some more photos tomorrow and need to start photographing my layouts to upload. Till then....