Thursday, March 31, 2011

This should keep me busy for a while...

A few days ago I FINALLY put a whole bunch of photos in my cart and hit print. Over 600 photos that needed to be printed. 6-0-0 PLUS!!

In these stacks are the remainder of my Project 365 photos from last year, plus photos from our trips to Arizona and the beach. I need to go through and do a good sort so that I can hopefully complete my 2010 album with photos. The journaling is a whole nuther beast! I'm also thinking about doing mini-albums for the trips or I'll go back and do photobooks. I can use the prints for a few layouts.

The remaining prints will get sorted as I start to plan for May's layout a day challenge with Lain Ehmann. I attempted this last May and completed it. Did not fare as well in October or February, but I'm going to try again.

I've also got a few classes still in my queue over at Big Picture Classes. What are you working on?

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Boys live here

As I walked to the car this morning to go to work, these scenes in our front yard and driveway caught my attention. It's obvious that boys live here. Wild, crazy, fun-loving, sports-playing, imagination-filled boys.

 You don't even want to know what the play area inside the house looks like. A quick glance would show puzzles, trains, small aliens, baseball equipment, stuffed toys, wrestling action figures, and dinosaur books. Sounds great, except that it's strewn throughout the room. Ah, well, they are just signs of the blessings we call our boys.

What evidence of your blessings are spread all over your home?


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

To be or not to be...private

But before I get into the discussion I want to share a photo I took this morning of the bluebonnets that are starting to bloom around here:

Taken with my Canon Rebel, ISO 100, 50mm 1.8 lens in aperture mode
(yay me! no auto on this. LOL)

I posted this comment on someone's blog earlier as I think about whether or not I would want to make my blog private or to censor what I share online.

"I've been blogging for about 2 years or so now and I have worried about the privacy issue. At the same time, it wouldn't really be all that hard to find out anything about me with just a few morsels of info. I believe there are more good people than bad people reading my blog. If someone wanted to do me harm, they wouldn't do it because of what I wrote on my blog, Facebook, or Twitter. If I was someone's target, my online presence would be irrelevant. So I choose to just go about my business, posting as if my readers were 100% friends. You can also see that big name scrappers share a lot of their personal info and family's info on their blog and it hasn't been harmful that we've heard of or they would have stopped. Ali & Stacy use their family's real names."

I decided a long time ago that I like having a public blog. I like putting myself out there to share my scrapbooking and to get feedback and make new friends. I've yet to have a negative experience and even still would not let someone else determine whether I post or not. I have nowhere in my life to have a private thought, I don't worry about my blog.

Whatever decision you make for you blog, I hope that it gives you peace of mind.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Beauty is no substitute for substance

So I made this Italian Cream Cake yesterday, after putting it off for several months. When I made it for Thanksgiving it was sooooo gooooood. Really rich and moist. We finished the whole darn thing. I spent the afternoon slaving in the kitchen making this baby from scratch: shaving the coconut, toasting the coconut shavings and pecans, separating the eggs and mixing in all the various dry and wet ingredients. Phew! Baking is hard work. (Not really, I enjoy it!!)

And when all was done, I realized --- I didn't use the right amount of butter in the recipe. I assumed each stick of butter was a cup, instead of only 1/2 a cup. When I ate a slice today I could tell the difference. Not as moist or rich. But still very edible.

On another note, today was the first day of Shimelle's Blogging for Scrapbookers online course. I didn't get to take the class the first time around in 2009. By the time I found it in 2010, it was a self-paced class that I downloaded and tried to incorporate into what I already knew about blogging. I'm excited to take this class "live" so that I can do a better job of blogging but also in preparation of the next phase of this class - Beyond Blogging for Scrapbookers. My goal at this point is to blog at least 3 times a week, with those posts being scrap-related. I'd like to post pages, but also share tutorials or links to other inspiring blogs and resource material. I will probably discuss upcoming or currently-running scrapbook classes that I'm taking online to share my progress in the class or to give my review of the class.

I hope you'll join me, either as a blogger or a scrapbooker, or both!! Please share your plans for your blog/scrappy projects.

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

Travel Scrapbook in the works

I've been wanting to take a look inside Ali's Scrapbook on the Road self-paced class that she recently posted on her blog. (You know Ali Edwards, right? If not, check her out. She's amazing!) I made sure to collect lots of ephemera during our trips to Arizona/Grand Canyon last May and Missouri/Silver Dollar City last Christmas break. I've put them in a craft keeper because I've been debating how I want to handle documenting those trips.

For the Arizona trip I took lots of photos. LOTS. I think it would make a great photobook and will consider that option. But I like making pages. I like having either scrapbook pages or a mini-book to really relive the experience for myself. The hands-on of making a scrapbook is awesome. LOL

So when Ali introduced this class a few weeks ago, I knew I was going to get it. I've tried her other mini-book offerings before, like Week in the Life and December Daily. So much fun! I'm sure this will be just as rewarding.

Here's just a little bit of the ephemera, as well as travel-related scrapbooking embellishments to make the albums.

How do you document your travel adventures?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Photo from

With a name like "McDaniel", you'd think we might somehow be able to find some Irish roots. Last time I tried looking for the McDaniel family history, I think it revealed some Scottish heritage. The family has been here for a long time and doesn't/didn't celebrate any heritage-type holidays that I know of. Yet, this would probably be a really fun holiday to celebrate if I weren't trying to get over the birthday we just had for Oscar a few days ago. I need to plan these things better.


Monday, March 14, 2011

i.Scrap and I love it!

Halfway through February, I came down with a cold (or the flu) and missed a couple days of the LOAD layout a day challenge. So while I didn't complete all 28 layouts, I did complete about 16 or 17. Obviously, that's way better than nothing. I'm happy with that progress but realized I still have plenty of scrapping to keep me busy.

I really enjoy taking online scrapbook classes from Big Picture Classes. I have several that are still going and several that have ended, but I haven't "completed" any of them. They are works in progress and I like that I can access them forever so that I can go back and do the lessons as I have time or as I feel inspired.

A recent class is Stacy Julian's i.Scrap class. It's only two weeks long, but in it I will complete a 20-page 8x8 album. I like that Stacy had an outline for each of the pages we were to make and how it would all come together. I followed along and pulled out my photos, papers, and embellishments for my pages the first week and began putting all the pages together. Over the last couple of nights I have been able to complete the layouts, including painting the edges. I've already put them in the album as I wait for the journaling pages to dry.

I've been mulling over in my mind how the journaling will come together so that I can get it on my pages and finish this album in the next few days.

Here's the title page. Just needs a little journaling about what the album will be about.

And here's the last page. It was supposed to be a full 8x8 photo, but somewhere along the way I ended up printing the photos as a 4x6 and used it similar to the inside pages. Rather than take it apart, I just used it as-is. That works for me.

So in the next few days I should have a completed album. Yay me!!

But it doesn't end there. I am also taking a class with Karen Grunberg called Finding Your Way. It's similar to LOAD in that we are trying to find out true scrapping selves. Since I've tried LOAD a few times now, and was actually successful in May 2010, I've been able to narrow down some of my habits. I'll soon be re-organized enough to start my layout a day challenge again for this class and really hone in on my scrapping style. What I need to do in the meantime is upload all my photos to Snapfish and get them printed! It's such a chore, but it feels so good when I get that big box of printed photos back in the mail.

After that class ends, it will just about be time to jump into the May 2011 LOAD challenge. I have some things coming up in May that might derail me if I'm not prepared so I need to get ready. And for those days when I won't be home to paper scrap, I can always make digi pages. I've always got a computer around!

And then? Well, there's a new class at BPC that I want to sign up for: 28 Days of Sketches with Lisa Day. I like to use sketches when I need layout ideas. This class will have a daily sketch during May which will help with LOAD.

I hope that you'll join me in any of these classes. And if you think that you're too busy to scrapbook on a regular basis, know that you have the same 24 hours in a day as the rest of us. You just have to make scrapbooking a priority. A few minutes a day can turn into layout in a short matter of time. If you don't tell your story, or your family's story, who will?

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