Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I am soooo green.

Look familiar?
(I'm all about recycle/reuse!)

This is actually my third version of this super hero boy.  But you know what?  Why do we need to reinvent the wheel?  Tonight I actually thought to save the Silhouette cuts as one, sized right file so that next time I don't reinvent the wheel I can do it even faster.  If I were really smart I'd just sit down and make 5 of these and file them away.  I think it's a really fun thank you card for guys.  

So maybe you're wondering why I needed to make a guy-friendly thank you card?  Yeah, I figured, but I'm going to write about it anyway. :P  

So today I was VERY excited to go to the eye doctor.  My right eye has been wonky and my near vision has been making me nuts.  I guess my excitement made me leave a little earlier than I needed to.  My eye doctor is in the next town over, and just after I got off the highway my car started to drive funny.  I decided to hobble through the intersection and pull into a gas station.  I parked, got out and heading around the back side of the car knowing already what I'd see: a flat tire.  Only it wasn't standard flat it was a FLAT flat.  I'm not going to lie. I did the girl thing: I called the boy.  Who basically said "You're going to have to change the tire."  Which is kinda funny, since up until he said it, it hadn't occurred to me that I would be doing the dirty work.  Prior to that I was thinking tow trucks and magic fairies. So I get off the phone and start digging through my trunk for my doughnut and my jack.  I set to work and made about every mistake possible, not the least of which was not pushing the jack far enough back.  So I'm cranking and cranking and cranking and basically the jack is just smooshing the fiberglass cosmetic underside of my car instead of actually lifting it up.  Eventually - but not before somehow ripping the skin off my ring finger and bleeding all over the place - I realized my error and started the crank it back down.  

A little aside:  Most of you don't know me on a day to day basis.  Here's a ditty for you: I dress like it's imperative that I'm ready for game of frisbee at any given time.  So here I am, short hair, polo shirt, knee shorts, and skater shoes.  And sitting there trying to change that tire my prevailing thought was "I wish I were wearing a dress."

Just as I had the jack cranked back down I hear a man say "Do you need any help?"  Turns out he and his twin brother were having lunch at the Burger King across the street.  He confessed that they had questioned each other about whether I was a man or a woman.  (Fair enough - they were inside and across five lanes of traffic and - well - it's not like I was wearing a dress.)

So the card is for Phillip (who did most of the work) and his brother Patrick.  Because I wanted to say: 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

"Gosh, I just don't have time to scrapbook..."

I don't know about any one else, but that is the one statement that grates my nerves more than any other when it comes to our hobby.  I would respect you more if you said, flat out "Really? Cutting and pasting stuff?  How fifth grade."  I guess because I chalk that statement up to the fact that everyone is allowed their opinion (and maybe, sadly, because I kind of agree.  But screw it.  Fifth grade was FUN.)  But saying that you don't have time for it sort of implies that I must be rolling in free time. I'm not.  We all chose how to "spend" our time, we "budget" it carefully the less we have.  We understand what a commodity time is.  If you wanted to go to the beach for a week and money was tight, you'd start spending less in other areas - if you save $20 a week by clipping coupons, you can put $20 towards your vacation fund.  Time is the same way - you carve out little niches of time from other activities.  Maybe you get up earlier.  Check. I'm doing that.  Maybe you watch less t.v.  Yup, doing that, too.  Maybe you try to use every "free" moment wisely? YES.  Becoming a master at that.

Today I took an hour of time that I probably would have spent dragging out a homework assignment and spent that hour scrapbooking.  Did I skimp on my homework? No.  I just decided to NOT check Facebook or email incessantly.

I hate to be all preachy about the time thing.  While I was doing the page I had this nagging voice in the back of my head saying "You don't have time to doing this!"  But it occurred to me that I did. I earned that time.  I deserved that time. Hell, I needed that time.

And fortunately, a hour working on a mini book goes a long way.

Two things:
1. Holy cow. Still in love with my new lens!
2. Not happy with the way the pictures printed out for this page. (The ones actually on the page) I don't know why, they were all bright and vibrant, but some reason the bottom two kept coming out super dingy.  I don't like it, but I'm moving on.

I dig the multiple layers of butterflies.  I've been using pop dots on previous pages, but it feels kinda flimsy, and on the smaller punches it's hard to get them positioned perfectly.  Not certain, however, about the twine and the banner pieces.  But it's all glued down, so we're moving on.  Nothing to see here, people. Keep it moving.

I have this running joke that there's always at least one typo/dropped word per anything I write.  I privately refer to it as my "Where's Waldo?"  As in, every page has one, see if you can find it. This time is no different. I missed half a word - "even" should read "evening". Whoops. Oh well.  Moving on.

So hey.  Here's a ditty for you.  That notebook paper is from Basic Grey.  If you do your journalling in Word you can go into "paragraph" and change the "Line spacing" to "Exactly" at "17 pt" and the text will be spaced perfectly to sit on the lines.

I'm tempted to assume that you know how to do the rest, but just in case:
Once you type up your journalling, you print it on regular printer paper.  Apply a little repositional   adhesive to the top line of text.  Hold the paper up to a light, position the lined paper so that the words "rest" on the lines and adhere the papers together.  Put the paper back into the printer in the right orientation so that when you hit "print" again (and you will), the text will print in the exact same spot...only this time, it'll go on the patterned paper that's now adhered to your original text.  Voila: you've now printed your journalling on lined paper and the text is nice and lined up.  :)  And of course you already know that you can use this same technique to print on tags, journalling spots, heck, you could even print on ribbon if you were so inclined.

Thanks for stopping by.  I appreciate that you all are humoring me through this very long process.

Now, if you'll do me a favor: Journaling? Or journalling?  I'm thinking two Ls to keep the "a" short.  I wish they'd just give in and make it a word already!  Anyway, please let me know which way you think...I'm starting to go a little nuts on this one!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Manfriend!

I am not really a card maker.  Hell, I'm not really a card giver.  (Sad to say, but it's true.)  However, Kerig seems to think that they're a sign of his specialness.  So I humor him with one every so often.

Without further ado:


And a peek inside:

Sadly, this took me about 2 hours.  No lie.  How is that?  So I'm wondering: Does this happen to anyone else? I'm not saying I'm a speeding scrapbooker, but when I spend 2 hours on a scrapbooker on a page at least I feel like I've done something. This?  If I had know I was going to do this I could have whipped it together in 10 minutes rather than fretting over it for so long.  

But he said it was sweet.  And he actually peeked into the envelope to see if it was handmade or not, and that made me happy.

Happy Birthday, Kerig. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Circle Journal: The final chapter

I did it.  I bought Nikon's brand-spankin'-new 40mm micro-Nikkor lens.

Isn't she beautiful?

So with my index finger itching to play, the question became: What can I shoot?
A: My circle journal page from EONS ago.

Remember the Circle Journal project? We started passing around our books almost exactly two years ago.  I had the presence of mind to take pictures of my book, showing the cover, the sign in page and the welcome page.  But when it came time to make my first page on the theme I forgot to take a picture before passing it on.  So out it went and it didn't come back to me for a solid year and a half.  And I still forgot to take a picture of it.

Today I rectified that.

Yeah.  I guess I kinda got carried away there.  Who cares.  I love the way the colors pop and the way the lens made taking these pictures so much fun instead of so much frustration.  Very pleased with my purchase. :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Squeezing it in.

I joked with Maggie tonight that it was going to take 6 years to finish this minibook.  Lordy, I hope that was just a joke.  I'm not going to whine about life getting in the way, but I am going to whine about my printer getting in the way.  I busted my patootie yesterday thinking that if I got all kinds of stuff done yesterday I could sneak in maybe 2 hours of scrapping during the day and another 3 hours at night.  And that sounds like oodles of time, but it's really nothing when you're as slow a scrapper as I am.  But I figured I could print (actually reprint) some photos, but I really had issues.  My laptop monitor desperately needs to be calibrated.  Everything I print comes out super dark.  I decided to switch to my desktop and try it from there.  What a nightmare.  First of all, I've got PhotoShop Elements 6 on that machine and PSE9 on the laptop.  It's funny how quickly you assimilate to later versions of software.  I really had to think about how to do it the old way.  Then when it came time to actually send it to print I found I had I hadn't installed the print drivers for my new(er) printer on my old(er) computer.  If I weren't so lazy I could find the CD, but that seemed like a lot of work since I have no clue where that CD might be, but I suspect in the printer box...down in the a weird closet that requires moving a sofa to get into.  So I decided to download the driver. THREE. HOURS. LATER. I was able to start printing...except at that point I had to get back to real life.

So yeah.  That's a glimpse into how "scrapping" went today. Bleh.  The unfun, chore-y side of scrapbooking.

I think that tomorrow is the big day.  The day when I plunk down cold hard cash for the 40mm.  Hopefully that'll help me stop bitching about the photo process. :P  Or maybe not.  I have pictures of the whole page, but I don't love them, so I'm just going to share two details:

Old meets new.  New BoBunny metal butterfly.  Very, very old little weird waxy clear balls.  They're not beads, they're not glass, they're not perfectly round.  They're weird, and aside from telling you what they're not, I really can't describe them.  And they could be interpreted as butterfly poo, but I'm thinking more of the trail of motion.  Work with me here.

Hmmm.  I need to master making the messy little roses from the Die-namic die I bought from SimonSaysStamp.  Mine aren't nearly as cute as the samples they show!  That's ok, it's gonna be crushed in 2 weeks anyway.  I love the teal and orange combo.

So yeah.  Got one page of the minibook done today - and by page I mean the left side. Doesn't seem like much, but I'm happy with it.  I'm sneaking it where I can.  And that makes me happy, too.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


So today was a monumental day in these parts.  Turns out things got ironed out which made approaching my scrap table doable.  And after a day of wrestling with school stuff I really needed to have a chance to play.

So here's what I came up with today:

It's funny how things happen in scrapbooking.  I only had the one photo that I wanted to use on this page. Later pages will have tons of photos and collages of photos, but for this one, I just wanted to highlight Maggie.  I also wanted to lay the basic groundwork on the journaling, which meant I needed a bigger space.  Boy, everything felt awkward, and I had already cut and mentally committed to the grunge argyle strip.  ("Mentally committed to"?  I'm keeping that!)  No matter where I placed my journaling block (or the rectangle of paper used to represent my journaling block - does anyone else do that?) it was awkward.  At first my block was horizontal, which meant that it had to be placed high or low on the page, or else it was going to completely cover the argyle strip.  Then I remembered that on my last trip to Hollo's I picked up these glassine envelops. I can't for the life of me remember if I had some purpose in mind for them, so if I can't remember then I think they're fair game.  I loved that adding them and slipping the journalin card into the pocket so seamlessly solved my problems.  The flow works, I'm not covering my argyle strip.  It's functional AND cool.  And I *think* I have enough envelops to get through the book, although at this point I don't feel like I have to use them on every page.

Some detail shots.  I am really frustrated by these.  I pulled out my point and shoot to take these shots only to find my battery was exhausted.  Well poop.  The one really nice thing about a point and shoot camera is built in macro capability.  But that's okay, I can deal - it's not like I don't have a shiny new D7000 to use!  So I pull that out and then kind of make faces at my camera bag.  Do I use my 105mm macro?  It has close focusing capabilities, but it's slow to focus, kinda hard to hand hold, and the working distance is about 5 miles.  At one point in time, I LVED that lens.  But that was on my film camera.  It's just not the same with digital.  Here's a secret: in the very near future, I am going to splurge and buy this 40mm Micro-Nikkor lens.  Hopefully it'll bring the joy back to macro photography.  The detail shots above aren't macro, just tightly cropped parts of much bigger pictures.  I suppose it doesn't really matter to others, but it kinda bugs me.  

What else am I frustrated with? Getting adhesive on those teeny-tiny butterflies!  Trying to figure out what ribbon-y type stuff to put in the metal word tag!  The way the green star looks - I should have stopped before dumping a third later of glitter on it.  

What do I like so far?  That I haven't used plain cardstock at all yet (Oh, except for the layers under the titles - but that doesn't count.) I like the way the page looks with the clear title pages on top (the way it will be when it's all done.)  I like the envelops and the vertical journaling - I think that's going to work out well.  I like that I'm using flowers and butterflies, and that it feels "authentic" - I feel like a poser using that word, but in the past, trying to use them felt forced.  But in this case they feel more natural.  I think the difference is that this time they really mean something to me - beauty and changes that are taking place.

So that's where I am today.  I probably won't have a chance to play again until next week. But it's nice to know it's there where I need it.