May 25, 2011

what?!? really?!? why yes, it IS another SB page!

In fact, it is the second in the series of pages from my ArtFest trip. (yeah, I know, I need to blog about two of my classes yet... and now that I think about it, I never did blog about the Three Day for the Cure yet, either... bad blogger!! but, I have to go with the inspiration when it hits, you know??)

I think I've finally got over my expectation that I need to scrap chronologically... finally!! That's how I worked when I started scrapbooking, and it really felt "forced" after a while, you know? Somehow, it made the page layouts feel really boring: day 1 of a trip, day 2 of a trip, etc. Day one of my trip to ArtFest would have been: traveling to Seattle, driving to Fort Worden, and walking around the fort. It makes for a good story, but I just didn't think all those photos would "go together visually" on the same page. For instance, this page is titled "snippets" and is photos of different things I wanted to include in the SB layouts, but they were taken at different times during the trip. The finished page is below:

22222222222222 < <---------- Ariel the cat says hi!!

There are photos from the ferry trip on the first day (me, the skyline, and waiting for the ferry), the video game was from the ferry ride as well, the Tsunami evacuation route sign was from later that day, and the photo of my dorm space was from the last evening, when I had to pack everything up. Pics of different things, which is why I titled it snippets. The snippets theme is how I came up with the page border idea, too-- bits and pieces of the different paper patterns in the set that I'm using for all these photos. Again, sort of blending the styles of "art journaling" and scrapbooking / hiliting the photos. ( you think it's working?? I think it is, at least for these photos!)

(as an aside: $1 a play!?! when did video games get so expensive? I was going to play a game of PacMan for nostalgia's sake, but not for that price!)

A closeup of some of the border details; some of the things are popped up with 3D foam tape, the strips were all cut by hand, so they don't all fit together perfectly, and I've doodled on some of it with my sparkle and glaze gel pens. I like it-- and that's what matters, right?? 2 pages down, and 4 or 5 more to go. (from this trip, that is... lol!!)

May 24, 2011

scrapping again--

well, just a little scrapping, anyway! I'm finally working on scrapping the photos I took this spring when I went to ArtFest. (okay, not all of them: I think I took about 200 total, and most of them are never going make it off my computer due to "quality" issues with my photo taking skills.)

(and Tom, if you read this: I promise, the scrapbooking supplies WILL be picked up off the kitchen table by the time you get back from your business trip-- lol!!)

I had wanted to start working on these pages at the National Scrapbook Day crop, but didn't get around to it. I can never put a page together without some sort of sketch or idea to work off of, so I start out slow-- plus, I end up doing other projects in the middle of things, like deciding to totally re-do the way I store my cardstock and patterned paper, which led to this layout being incomplete for, oh, maybe about 2 weeks?? I think it's the Gemini in my personality coming thru; I can't do just one thing at a time, and am very easily distracted. (seriously: I can easily fall asleep if I watch TV without doing something else at the same time, like reading a book, playing a computer game, or surfing the internet.) Anyway, back to the layout-- see what I mean about being easily distracted? haha!

This page will be sort of a "title page" to all the ArtFest layouts:

I want these pages to feel sort of messy and chaotic, to go with the creative energy and excitement that was part of ArtFest-- hopefully I've captured it with the colors and patterns of the papers I chose to use. (but still have the photos, not all the other "stuff" be the focus-- it's a fine line!) I also added in some hand-done elements, like the "scribbled" circles (a new sparkly pink gel pen) on the background, and the dotted line on the border (pink acrylic paint pen). This is a way I can start to "blend" my art journaling artistic sense with my scrapbooking pages, too, hopefully. I'm not totally "in love" with this layout, but at least it's done and I'm on my way. I'm trying to work on letting go of my perfectionist tendencies, but it is hard: I especially don't love the title stickers (I think they're too small for the page design) but I don't want to go out and buy new ones just because these aren't "totally perfect" for it... (baby steps, right?? lol!!)

Below are a couple detail shots of the layout:

the flower is felt, for a bit of texture, and the edge on the purple paper was made with my new favorite border punch- lol; I only have two border punches total, but I really do like this one! The pattern it makes is like notebook paper ripped out of the spiral binding. It is this punch, which you can get at most local craft stores. (and they're not priced too bad, with a 40% off coupon, either!)

this is a detail shot of the focal point photo, which isn't a "great" photo or anything, but it's one I wanted on my page because it shows where I went. It's a photo of a map of the Olympic Penninsula; I used two circle punches to make the ring around Fort Worden, which is where the ArtFest retreat is held every year. The chipboard arrow (by the way, the shade of red doesn't quite "match" either, but I'm okay with that... lol-- I told you my perfectionism was bad!) is from a set of chipboard shapes I got at the local scrapbook store off the clearance table. Look for more arrows and circles coming soon, so I can use them up- lol! But, I do like a bit of chipboard, etc. to add a small amount of dimension to my pages. (I still want to be able to put my pages in page protectors when they're finished.)

So, stay tuned for more scrapbook pages coming soon, because I am spending Saturday the 28th at the Phoenix Scrapbook Cottage... yay!!

May 22, 2011

beauty shop for dogs (warning; lots of cute pet pictures ahead!)

this first picture was from last weekend; I was laying down watching TV, and Ariel decided she wanted to lay down too... now if I could only get her to walk on it when my back hurts!
Prescott, being cute: he loves chewing; he demolishes rawhide chews very quickly which can upset his stomach, so most of the time he has to content himself with rope toys.
Bisbee, just being her happy self!
those were the before photos, by the way-- today, both of them went to the doggy beauty parlor for a day of beauty! well, three hours of beauty, anyway. We give them baths, but we don't have the skills (or the patience- lol!!) to do a good grooming, since their hair is sooo long. This is one of those things that's worth paying for, at least in our opinion, with long-haired dogs. The place we go to is here in town, so it's very convenient-- the Puppy Pet Stylist. Melissa (the owner) loves them (apparently they're very well-behaved; too bad they aren't always like that at home!!), and when I got there to pick them up, she said, "do I have to give them back??" Prescott was ready to come home-- they were pretty excited after not seeing me for a couple hours; maybe he thought I left them?? never!!
this is an after beauty shot. Their hair is so soft and silky after having a bath and blow-dry at he groomers; too bad it won't last! Butters approves, apparently (or maybe she just thinks they smell funny?!?)
Prescott didn't like the bandana, so I thought I'd see what Bisbee thought of it-- whaddya think: is there a future for her as Little Polka Dot Riding Hood?? (she is sooo patient, in letting us to do things like this to her!)
Ariel, on the other hand, wasn't too impressed with their new hairdos: well, I can't put it off any longer- I'm off to finish the laundry, now that I've given you an extra-large dose of cuteness!

May 15, 2011

I found her!

Butters was upstairs in the office, enjoying the scenery thru the front window.
she loves bird watching-- it's like kitty TV.

random weekend pics

busy as a...
(well, I haven't been, really-- the bees have been very busy in the prickly pear, though.)
Ariel, sunbathing ... I'm sure Butters was curled up somewhere napping, too, but I don't know where.
Prescott: what did I do? (I'm not sure, but probably something!!) Bisbee, relaxing on the tile till dinnertime.
these last two pics are of a card I made for a co-worker whose last day at work was Friday. It was sad to see her go, but we'll keep in touch.
closeup of the butterfly punches-- this card was very simply made with two different Martha Stewart punches: one makes the bigger butterfly, and the other makes the medium and the small ones.
(I love butterflies-- can you tell??)
I hope everyone had a good weekend, whether you spent it sunbathing, working, or relaxing!

May 13, 2011


remember this?? well, if you don't, this is what the backyard of our house looked like when we first saw it back in April, 2009. Kinda scary, isn't it?? The house was a foreclosure, and had been empty for almost a year-- from the inside, it looked like the previous owners weren't much for cleaning even when they lived there, either! (it wasn't as bad as some stories I've heard, but it did need a lot of cleaning.)
The backyard needed a lot of help, too... but over time, we decided what we wanted to do with it, planted cacti, and after the last few days of landscape work, it now looks like this:
pretty cool, huh?? grass, concrete curbing, a screened-in patio (no more flies or mosquitoes!), and a fire pit.
we have to keep the dogs off the grass for a couple weeks, till the sod roots, but I'm looking forward to them being able to lay out there, and not get covered with dirt!!
oh my gosh: what a difference a few tons of gravel, some sod, and concrete can make!! anyway, enjoy your weekend! We are going to the AZ Science Museum tomorow, to see the Body Worlds and the Brain exhibit- I'm sort of excited about it! Tom isn't exactly excited (like, not at all) but he said he'd go with me, so he'll do it. then again, it may be creepy to me, too-- but, at least we have a nice backyard to come home to!

May 08, 2011

Scrapping Saturday!!

I spent all day yesterday, National Scrapbooking Day, in Phoenix at this lovely place: the newly opened Phoenix Scrapbook Cottage!! I was lucky enough to be one of the winners of a free 12-hour crop at this cute, cute, cute bungalow cottage yesterday, for their grand opening weekend. This was a great opportunity to get some pages scrapped, since I haven't scrapped for quite a while (sad to say it's been well over a year, since the last post I wrote about scrapping!) so I packed up my paper, printed out some photos, and headed into Phoenix. The proprieters are a very nice duo of women who had gone to scrapping retreats in San Diego, and decided to bring a similar weekend getaway idea to the Phoenix area. The house is available for weekend getaways, Friday afternoon till Sunday afternoon, or for 12-hour day crops. (You can even tack on a Thursday or Monday, to extend your weekend even more!)
This is the dining room with its beautiful built-in china hutch; it's now the tool center, containing a huge selection of stamps, ink pads, idea books, and tools, including a Cricut cutter and a computer with a wide-format printer. (That's Kathy there, one of the very nice owners.)
I took a little photo tour of some of the rest of the house, too, while I was taking a break to stretch my back. This is one of the super-cute bedrooms: pillow-top mattresses with 300-thread count sheets! So, if you get exhausted from all that scrapping and working, you can actually sleep, in comfort.
These two pictures are the upstairs bathroom-- it is gorgeous!! There's a second full bath on the first floor, which is just as gorgeous.
( I had a claw-foot tub like this in my very first apartment, but it didn't have a shower. ) This renovation is a great way to update a bathroom and still respect the architecture of the room; you can still enjoy the window in the room, and the shower head is beautiful.
These are a couple of my fellow scrappers-- we each got our very own 6-foot table with our very own Ott light! I've been to a number of all-day crops back in Illinois and Wisconsin, and lots of times we had to share one of these tables with someone-- that makes for some cramped quarters, for sure. (imagine sharing one of those tables in the middle of the room, so you couldn't even back the chair away from the table, either! not fun, especially since I tend to spread out when I work, as you can see below.)
Here's my workspace-- pretty messy, and the inspiration was coming rather slowly-- It actually took me a couple hours to get into a groove; this picture still shows the first page I was working on, and it was about 1:30 in the afternoon. In my defense, though, I did have to unpack and get set up, along with having to cut and crop my photos before getting to work. (The first finished page is below; it just needs the journaling printed out, which will be folded and tucked into the library pocket.)
This is the picture of us that was taken at our 7th anniversary brunch; I think it's one of the nicest pics of us, and wanted to showcase it.
This page was a fun one to do-- this pic of Tom was taken a few years ago when we were in Seattle for a long weekend. I bought the paper specifically with the idea of using it for this page; I loved the hearts and fun colors. (scrapbooking paper is somewhat addicting, but shopping for it can sometimes lead to pattern and color overload.)
The pics above and below are from a trip we took a few years ago at Christmastime-- we stopped at the Rooster Cogburn Ostrich Ranch , which was certainly a memorable experience! The ostriches were kind of scary to me, actually, and the lorikeets (pic below) really did feel a bit like a scene from the Alfred Hitchcock movie The Birds. I knew I wanted to play up the colors of those birds, which are really vibrant. (these pages took a couple hours to do, actually, because I kept thinking of more little details I wanted to add: I really need to work on my speed; plus, I am a bit picky-- it took me at least 1/2 hour to get the ribbon tied the way I wanted it on that first page.)
The pics below are from the same trip, taken when we took a day trip to Tombstone, but they're not quite finished yet. I finally got into my scrapping groove about 8 pm, but then had to start thinking about picking up, since the crop only went till 10 pm. I did already make a reservation for a weekend getaway, though; that way, I can work as long as my inspiration (and my caffeine supply) holds out!
Well, hopefully it won't be another year (or longer) before I show you a new scrapbooking layout, although I can't promise anything! And if you want to plan your own crafty getaway, for scrapping or other crafts, I highly recommend the Phoenix Scrapbook Cottage... maybe I'll even see you there! (I'll be the one with the paper scattered all over, looking for something I just set down and misplaced-- lol!!)

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to my mom, who was always happy with whatever I brought home for her, whether it was a boquet of dandelions, a pocket full of rocks, or an interesting looking plant, leaf, or bug. She let me keep an aquarium full of tadpoles on the dining room buffet or a mason jar of caterpillars on the kitchen counter, and even encouraged me to do these things as long as it led to me learning something new-- thanks for everything you've done for me ver the years, Mom!

May 04, 2011

(somewhat) random photos

yes, I know this one is difficult to look at, but that's what I've been working on tonight-- cropping, editing, and printing pictures. Because, this Saturday (May 7th) is National Scrapbooking Day!! What does that have to do with the price of beans, you might ask? Well, it's because I won a drawing to attend a free all-day (10 am to 10 pm) crop at a brand new scrapbooking retreat in a renovated bungalow in downtown Phoenix (Phoenix Scrapbook Cottage)-- it looks really cute, from their website, by the way. Anyway, I need some photos to work on! (yes, you can laugh here, if you want: I have made a few pages here and there, like these pages from our trip to San Xavier Mission, but since using the digital camera regularly, I get them from the printer to the computer, and mostly they just stay there. ) I am looking forward to this event, though-- the place looks really nice, and it should be a lot of fun-- if I can just get the photos printed, that is!! (and, sad to say now that I looked up that post, those pages were made at the end of 2009-- what is really pathetic about that is I thought that I made those pages recently!! Time flies, I guess...)

by the way, the pics above are from ArtFest-- the dog on the left was a model in Carla Sonheim's class "The Art of Silliness" (I think he's cute!!) and the pic on the right was of our dinner guests, who made an appearance outside the dining hall every night. They seemed really tame; they didn't care about us snapping away with our cameras, at all!

this was a fun journal page I made in the last week or two-- the page itself is a brown paper lunch bag, and the figures came from some "child life insurance policy" junk mail we received. I snagged the envelope quick, before it hit the recycle bin. (see?!? anything can be art fodder!!)

I think I stamped the bag with some handmade stamps (one of my favorites, wine cork!!) and then went to town with the gel pens and some glitter, too, for good measure!

May 02, 2011

even more journal pages!

a few more journal pages, both finished and not:

Yes, I can do a simple page! This one is done.

Another page full of random images that just seemed to "go together" somehow, even though they're really not related at all.

This page was scraped paint leftover from some other painting project; I attached a glassine envelope with decorative tape, and used it to store some of my ArtFest trades. The flag bunting strung across the top is also an ArtFest trade; I need to make some of those-- they are seriously cute!
This page isn't anything special in terms of its design or the elements I used. What did turn out kind of cool, though, is the texture I got when I painted the background. I painted the page with gesso and paint, then scraped across it with a piece of corugated cardboard, which gave it kind of a combed look. (totally by accident, but those are the kind of accidents I like!)