One Little Word 2015

Now that Scrapbooking Memories Vol 17 No 8 is off the shelves I can finally reveal my One Little Word for 2015 (and my cover, which you may have seen a sneaky peek of in my previous post about getting published for the first time. Love saying that! Whoot, yep still excited). I was all set to go with the word ABUNDANCE for 2015 and put together the little art journal/mini I made for my Masters Entry. But after taking a bit more time to pray and ponder on my word, it turns out the word PRAY is one I really need give attention to in 2015. So I am going to do something I have never done before and have two words for the year. 20150227_1OneLittleWord2015

Because ABUNDANCE has been with me since creating my Masters entry way back in August, I’ve had a long time to think about it and settle into this word. For me it is all about changing mindsets. Over many years I’ve found myself falling into a default pattern of focusing on what I lack and the negative aspect of things. Noticing who I am not, and what I cannot do, more than my strengths and abilities and what can propel me forward. For sure there is a part of all of us that sees what others are doing and compares it to people we admire, but I think my comparison of late has been a little more of the kind that makes me feel deficient rather than being encouraged to rise to the challenge and use my unique characteristics and voice. For me this word epitomizes the fact that there plenty to go around, an ABUNDANCE in fact. I want to look at things from a place of having enough, and being enough, a perspective of being positive and joyous, and that there is an ABUNDANCE of joy and blessing and positivity and enough to go around.   20150227_2OneLittleWord2015

I have a feeling PRAY is going to be a bit more of an internal journey for me and I’m not sure what kind of lessons are waiting for me behind this one. I guess Prayer has become a little routine, a little bit of an after-thought sometimes. I can see the need for PRAY to be more a part of my life than it currently is and to be honest I’m not really feeling this one as much as ABUNDANCE, but I just have a real sense of it being necessary. Does that make any sense at all. I don’t doubt that Prayer is a powerful and life changing thing and I know that if I give in to this one whole-heartedly I’m going to see lasting change.20150227_3OneLittleWord2015ABUNDANCE is more of a mindset thing while PRAY is about going deeper, I’m sure they will take me on very different journey’s so with that in mind I want to take different approaches to how I document them. I’m going to embrace the art-journaling aspect of the Master’s Entry prompt and hopefully add a bit more of an artistic flair to the way I document ABUNDANCE. For PRAY on the other hand I’m going to take a more down the line approach and simply follow the prompts from Ali’s One Little Word class for 2015 as they are put to me.20150227_OneLittleWord2015My idea is to share a little from each album through out the year and just see what I come up with. As far as artistry goes this cover was one that stretched me massively to use artsy mediums and techniques I rarely dabble with. There’s my typical stickers and die-cuts which are go-to products for me but I chose to begin with a little bit of gesso and damask stencil work to start and then layer with stamping, rub-ons and embossing various stamped letters. I wanted to play on the opulent theme of the word ABUNDANCE and use script & chandelier motifs and gold & silver tones, anything that conjours a bit of old world glamour. As far as projects go I’d say this is the most reflective of me with the choice of damask and script and colour selection but also the furthest from my usual paper based structure and I am so pleased with how it turned out.

Sidenote: Hubby says he’s adopting SUCCESS and SLEEP as his words for 2015 it would seem that this One Little Word thing is catching on around here.

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Jot Magazine February Mood Board

Oh Jot Magazine how do I love thee, let me count the ways… I love thee to the depth and breadth and height of inspiration you provide. I love thee for the way yee work for celebrations and every-days. I love thee for the trendy and the stash shrinking thee supply. Oh Jot Mag how I love thee. In case you haven’t clued in, Jot Mags February Mood Board is all about L.O.V.E. Glorious bold shades of Red and Gold with a touch of beautiful florals and Black and White for impact – talk about fantastic.20150224_1JotMagFebMoodBoardThis was the perfect colour combo to get some layouts done for the wedding album, and I knew exactly which one I was going to start with. Seriously this kiss was epic and definitely deserves it’s own layout. Even after five years my heart still skips a beat when I see the photo of ‘that kiss’. My hubby is not really given to generous displays of affection but that kiss just about had me seeing stars. 20150224_2JotMagFebMoodBoardI took my cue for the bold title straight from that lovely mixed media print. I just loved the visual impact it created and initially thought I’d go for a similar feel with Mulberry Paper until I realized I’d used it all (whoops), no matter, the DIY Shop floral and chevron papers from Crate Paper were a perfect substitute and set the tone for the rest of the pieces I chose. 20150224_3JotMagFebMoodBoardHeidi is still having a lot of influence around here and this layout was no different. I took elements from her Gold Foil and Glitter Project Life Kits to layer around the photo and embellish with making sure to add a little bling with some gold sequins. The floral background paper is a piece from a 12×12 Typo paper pad but I just adore the black and white hits from that text print tissue paper and Heidi Swapp glittered card.

20150224_4JotMagFebMoodBoardI really don’t know how they do it but the Jot Mag Mood Boards never seem to fail in the inspiration department. If you’ve not made your way over there yet I’d advise you run, don’t walk, and get lost in all the lovely offerings Jot has on hand.

Another One Bites The Dust

I must admit I’m a little behind the eight-ball on this one, but I went into the local Newsagency today to grab what I thought would be a couple of copies of the fantastic Scrap 365 magazine from the UK, that I get put aside for me. I’d saved them up – or so I thought – for after the rush of Christmas, New Year and the start of school to savour in the blissful quiet of nap time, only to find that they are no longer publishing. Another sad loss for scrapbooking. 20150220_1AnotherOneBitesTheDustThe only reason I’ve found for the loss of such another great mag, is that the powers that be have decided they don’t want to keep publishing. I am and forever will be a die hard, print publication lover. There is nothing like sitting down with a cuppa and a great mag to read. Home decorating mags will keep me entertained for a bit but my goodness I devour scrapbooking mags, and not just once but again and again over time and in my personal opinion the ones with great articles are pure gold. Scrap 365 was definitely one of those, the articles were always well written and the layouts were so fantastic. I’ve bought every single issue, even sending off to the UK to fill in the ones I missed in the beginning – this was a great magazine. 20150220_2AnotherOneBitesTheDustScrap 365 had such an uber talented group of scrappers that made up their core group of submissions and I am totally going to miss the wonderfully modern and creative talents of those lovely ladies. While I have no idea what constitutes good sales and what will keep a mag from hitting the dog-pile (or what will actually convince magazine publishers to stop getting rid of great content). I do know that there are still those of us out there who love and appreciate all the work that goes into creating wonderful magazines and there are a lot of dissapointed and sad readers such as myself who are going to miss another great publication. I do wish they would stop pulling the pin on great publications like this and others that are no longer with us like Creating Keepsakes and Simple Scrapbooks. Any suggestions on where to go for inspiration now? R.I.P. Scrap 365 you will be missed.

Meant to Be a Scrapbooker

What’s the one thing that you wake up in the morning and just can’t wait to get to? I’m guessing you already know my answer cos it’s pretty obvious – Scrapbooking, yeah I know you’re like ‘Duh Jen’. But I had a bunch of random ideas and random things that I wanted to do something with and decided to pull them together to create this layout.

20150216_1MeantToBeAScrapbookerYou may have picked up on the initial spark behind the layout if you’ve ever watched the movie Sister Act 2. Part of me still wishes I could be a Vocalist or a Dancer when I grow up so I’m a big fan of any singing, dancing, going-after-your-dreams-against-the-odds kind of movies and this one has been on regular replay for me since my childhood. There’s a scene between Delores Van Catier aka Sister Mary Clarence (Whoopi Goldberg) and Rita (Lauryn Hill) in which Delores is trying to convince Rita to follow her heart and gives her a book to read as a means of imparting some wisdom. While I didn’t use the exact quote from the movie (or quote the book Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Marie Rilke which inspired the scene) this right here is my paraphrased/personalized version of it.

20150216_3MeantToBeAScrapbookerGosh I love that. I almost let those words be the entirety of my journaling on this one because I think they say so much in such a succinct fashion. But for someone as wordy as I am, the layout seems somewhat bereft of text and I couldn’t resist adding a small journaling piece to the left hand side as a matter of balance and brief explanation. I guess this is about as close to brevity as I get.20150216_2MeantToBeAScrapbookerThe right side of the layout consists of a collage type art piece that I used for a uni assignment back in the day made from magazine cuttings and advertising material. I allowed this to also inform my product choices and got to use some older scrap-stash on the rest of the page. It’s so indicative of my style at that time. The background is made from a black and white magazine spread of a European city and some fussy-cut flourishes as a nod to my desire to someday visit Europe. The Polaroid pieces were I think advertising for some kind of sporting equipment and the scrapbooking product images come from the advertising section of an Scrapbooking Memories magazine. I just love that they show the kinds of things I was into back then – K & Company and Making Memories – be still my scrappy heart.20150216_5MeantToBeAScrapbookerThe other side of the layout is a throwback to early 2007 and some pics of my favorite place to spend a Saturday Night – attending a Crop at my local scrap store – Scrap & Stamp Attack. Don’t you miss those days…(sighs wistfully), unfortunately, like a lot of places it is no more but gosh I loved spending my time there with those lovely ladies.20150216_4MeantToBeAScrapbookerIndividually the ephemera, photos and that quote just make so happy, but the combination of them all together on one layout is a beautiful thing. I will never get tired of this hobby and all the wonderful things it adds to my life.

PS Thanks for your patience over the past couple of weeks while I’ve been MIA. I took an unscheduled break from all things Scrappy and Blog related due to being unwell. Here’s hoping I’m over the worst of it and can get back into the swing of things. I really do appreciate you having a look around even while I wasn’t posting.

December Daily Recap

I love seeing a collection of layouts together for completed projects so I thought someone else might like to see my completed December Daily Album, but if for nothing else than my own personal amusement and sense of accomplishment having all my December Daily layouts in one place, is just plain fun. I really love this project and I hope you do too. Enjoy!01122014_1DD2014Cover08122014_1DD2014Day1 10122014_1DD2014Day2 10122014_4DD2014Day3 12122014_1DD2014Day4 12122014_3DD2014Day5 12122014_6DD2014Day515122014_1DD2014Day615122014_3DD2014Day717122014_1DD2014Day819122014_1DD2014Day920150121_1DecemberDaily10to1520150121_3DecemberDaily10to1520150121_7DecemberDaily10to1520150121_9DecemberDaily10to1520150121_11DecemberDaily10to1520150127_1DecemberDaily16to2020150127_3DecemberDaily16to2020150127_5DecemberDaily16to2020150127_7DecemberDaily16to2020150127_9DecemberDaily16to2020150202_1DecemberDaily21to2520150202_3DecemberDaily21to2520150202_5DecemberDaily21to2520150202_7DecemberDaily21to2520150202_9DecemberDaily21to2520150202_11DecemberDaily21to25

December Daily: Days 21-25

So here it is, the final installment of my December Daily 2014. This project just seemed to get more fun and more inspired as it went on and these were the most enjoyable layouts to put together of the whole process. Least of which because they include some of my favourite elements and probably fulled by the fact that I was ‘this close’ to being done.

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Day 21 was all about the fun tee-pee I made for my boys. I have wanted one of these for my kids since David was in utero and this seemed like the perfect year to actually make it happen. You know how you get those ideas that take hold and won’t let go until you do something about them, this was one that really need to come to life. I bought an entire bolt of that lovely teal fabric during a Spotlight Stocktake Sale, dare I say maybe 9 or more years ago with the mind to make curtains and it has been wonderfully used for many a crafty project ever since (but never curtains as a matter of fact). It’s powers of inspiration don’t seem to be loosing their potency either as it was again the inspiration behind the aqua/teal colour combo of this layout. I love how the colours just pop against the cream background paper and the fact that it pulled together bits and pieces from my stash that I have been dying to get on a layout since forever. Especially those large shaped stickers that house my journaling, they are so fun. 20150202_3DecemberDaily21to25 20150202_4DecemberDaily21to25I had a similar issue with my first layout for Day 22 as I did when I used the same Christmas tree paper on Day 1 – what to do with that silly Christmas tree? Lets face it large immovable objects on my background papers are just not my cup of tea. Add in a bunch of photos from our Christmas tree hunt and things got even more complicated. I started layering my washi in a visual triangle to get your eye to move around the page and inspired by the sequins craze of the moment concocted my own ‘paper sequins if you will to be placed next to the washi. The photo problem was solved with a cascade style photo element allowing them to take up a smaller area on the page and yet still allow the complete story to be told. The other issue was suddenly eliminated when I started layering vintage ephemera style elements from a fantabulous Typo paper pad, Travel the World, the has me swooning every time I use it. The postcard element was especially helpful in providing me with something to span just the right amount of space over both halves of the page and conveniently provide me with a wonderful spot to journal. Christmas tree problem, what Christmas tree?20150202_5DecemberDaily21to25 20150202_6DecemberDaily21to25

I couldn’t let my 2014 December Daily or my Day 22 story go without a full layout of the decorated tree. The fact that my mum was here for the hunting, gathering and decorating makes this my favourite tree day layout of all my albums. I always make sure I include a whole tree image in each years album, but since the story was covered on the previous layout all this one needed was my photos and a little light embellishing. This time the inspiration was found via the Studio Calico member gallery. I’ve noticed a trend there, that a lot of people like to edge their layouts with strips of patterned paper along the top and bottom and either stitch or glue them down in an interesting fashion. I kept mine super simple as is my own take on things but will be trying the technique on a 12×12 layout with stitching when I don’t have already adhered papers to contend with.20150202_7DecemberDaily21to25 20150202_8DecemberDaily21to25

While we’re on the subject of Studio Calico, I had ordered a wood burning tool way back in November with the mind to make some Christmas decorations like these and a Christmas present or two but it didn’t arrive til the 22nd so the 23rd was all about last-minute gift making and getting my parents decorative tray made. Day 23 also saw the return of some Christmas ephemera in the use of wrapping paper as background paper. While I don’t think it was as successful as the gold paper used for the 19th, it is certainly not the garish red of the 17th and therefore a better result as far as I’m concerned. It was also a good day for adding in some more of the lovely black and white stickers that adorned my 2014 album cover. I especially liked the idea of adding the phone sticker in due to the fact that this particular gift required calling in a favour to get it complete. Thank God for helpful neighbors who have expertise in carpentry.20150202_9DecemberDaily21to25 20150202_10DecemberDaily21to25

While mum arrived ahead of time to help a gal out with Christmas preparations (again thank you God), Christmas Eve was the day for the rest of tribe to arrive. So when she was gathering people I was gathering together the last-minute elements of our Christmas Day celebrations and just making sure everything was good to go. The main event on Christmas Eve is always our Christmas Eve service and for me it was especially wonderful to have both sides of my family together in the one place. I am so blessed to have such wonderful people in my life that having most of them in the one place just makes me giddy with happiness. But as always I still stayed up way past my bedtime getting gifts wrapped and things squared away in order to just chill come Christmas day. The late hour was not helped at all by the fact that we arrived home after a somewhat of a longer detour than normal, taking not just the back-roads but the back-back roads home. No thanks to my son who is always up for a drive on the ‘bumpy road’, my sister-in-law (aka the city girl) who was enthusiastic about the prospect of some four-wheel driving, my husband who was happy to oblige them both and a closed road that meant our usual route took somewhat of an interesting turn along bush tracks and over fallen trees. I’m sure none of them will forget that little adventure in a hurry, I know I certainly won’t.20150202_11DecemberDaily21to2520150202_12DecemberDaily21to25Instead of writing in great detail what the festivities of Christmas Day were like I went with a photo heavy grid style layout to hit all the regular points of the day and show some of the details unique to this day. The pattern of our day is generally the same, so I figured it would be easy enough to follow along with the photos. If I really wanted to I could always add an extra page on the back and just write some thoughts on the day out as my end page for the album but in all honesty I’m really quite happy to just leave it at the photos. As far as embellishing I took a look back through the rest of my album and pulled in bits and pieces of elements used on the previous pages to make the 25th the day that it all comes together.

Oh how I have enjoyed this process and oh how fabulous it feels to be DONE! Believe it or not this is the very first time that I have finished my album this soon after Christmas. It is an amazing feeling to be heading into the rest of the year with this project over with and not still hanging over my head as yet another unfinished project. And might I say it didn’t hurt as far as my Scrap 365 count goes either, as of last count I am at a whopping 38 layouts for the month of January. Way to start of the year off with a bang, that is unheard of in my scrappy world. Most of those layouts were part of December Daily and it has certainly been eye-opening in helping discover what works to get layouts produced quickly. The news isn’t new but it is a great reminder – limit your supplies, use whats on your desk, repeat and reinvent with what you have and plan well. A great way to move forward to less structured scrapping for the rest of the year. I’d love to see how your December Daily went. Leave a link in the comments below and I’d love to go check out your stuff too.