May 25, 2007

THURSDAY THOUGHTS - Busy scrappin'!

This past week I got my new wide-format printer all hooked up. After months of reading reviews and talking with my brother, I decided to go with the Epson R1800. The pictures it prints are phenomenal! They look even better than some local developers I've used and the pictures I've had printed through

I've been enjoying printing custom sized photos and just messing around in Photoshop to achieve some fun and funky pictures. My next step is to learn more about hybrid scrapping, digital filters and the like. I'm excited about learning new things, but I know it will take quite a bit of time, too.

I also started working with the Spellbinders watch faces die this week. It is my favorite die so far! LOVE the variety and embossed look of these. I played around with Craf-T's metallic rub ons to bring the embossing out - LOVE the look! I have finished one page and just have to assemble another and then I can share.

I've been working on CK's SOY submissions. I am excited about entering and have come up with some great ideas. I'm not stressing or pressuring myself, I'm just having fun scrapping.

Hoping to get some more difficult projects underway this weekend. I'm going to work on a layout that has a 3D element using tiny mica flakes. It will require a tweezers and a steady hand and probably about an hour's worth of patience. Have had this page percolating in my brain for weeks now, but have been putting it off because of the time involved.

I also came up with a very unique way to present my pages for SOY. I may need to purchase some more pp to finish it, but if it turns out the way I'm imagining it I think it will be fabulous and I may have to make a duplicate to keep and submit elsewhere.

I've started taking my camera with me everywhere. It's certainly made me look at life and everyday things in a different way. I'm hoping to get some more photos this weekend. Have a few images I'd like to photograph but I need to find them.

Have a great Memorial Day weekend!!

May 21, 2007

Chapter 4

He moved his mouth across my neck and softly licked my skin. I had a momentary relapse as his hands clasped at my long brown hair making my breath quicken as he pulled me back under him. Then the relapse faded as my brain kicked back into gear. I quickly pushed him off of me and grabbed for my robe, as a subtle sneer played across my face. I turned back to see him wince at the sudden turn of events. I stood watching him as he pulled his clothes back on.

I withdrew $60 from my purse and pressed the cash into his hand. I grabbed for my clothes and handed them over. "Here, these are the clothes I need to have dry cleaned and I need them back by morning. Can you take care of that?" I asked before heading to the shower, not bothering to hear his response.

The shower here was lukewarm at best and the water pressure gulped and belched with annoying frequency. My time in the shower is the only place I can be the real me, but this one wasn’t worth staying long enough to enjoy it. I cranked the lever to its off position and stepped out. The robes were decent here so I slid into one and went back to the bed. The big, fluffy pillows made an inviting place to rest. Or think.

I had a few hours to prepare for tomorrow. Even though the multiple profiles I assume are familiar and well developed, I must carefully plot every move in order to remain undetected. An error in judgment could bring my world to a quick and painful end. I won’t let that happen.

I pull a bottle of vodka from the mini bar and slide back onto the pillows. The sun was setting now and the view from my window was made up of spectacular teal and rose colors. I opened the bottle and swallowed hard. The warmth spread through my chest as I planned my day ahead. Satisfied that everything was set, I burrowed deeper into the pillows. A soft smile played across my lips as I fell asleep.

I Almost Caved

I was in JC Penney's over the weekend and most everything was 50% off. They have a great petite section so I shop there often. I found a beautiful spring blouse and was looking for a skirt to match and I would have tried them on. Only I couldn't find that skirt in my size. I started hunting for other possibilities but started to feel weak for attempting to break a resolution I made only days ago. But everything was on sale and how could I pass up such great prices?! Surely this time could be an exception, couldn't it? I was still in shopping mode, but I grabbed my cell and had hubby come and pick me up. I was very close to breaking my resolution, but I stayed strong.

Now, I've discovered another side effect to this resolution. When I walked into my closet to pick out my clothes this morning I literally hated what I was looking at. Not because they aren't nice, suitable outfits, but because I had to choose something that hasn't been worn in a long time. I have a very small selection of "spring" outfits but working in air conditioning all day long in the summer there's just never been a great need for it. I have plenty to get me by, I just need to stop being spoiled and greedy and be happy for what I do have.

May 18, 2007

212 Degrees

This is a very powerful and inspiring movie. You don't want to miss it.


My theme lately seems to be all about renewal--shedding what I no longer need or use and making the most of what I have left.

I've spent a few hours each week preparing for a garage sale. I don't have a set date for the sale, but I plan to get rid of everything. Stuff that doesn't sell will go to Goodwill or Easter Seals or the like. I am looking forward to cleaning out the "stuff" that we no longer use.

I've also been purging my scrap supplies. I already have so much stuff that I need to use. I am challenging myself to get creative with the older supplies and stop buying new supplies.

I've made two resolutions recently:
  1. I will not buy any more scrap supplies for the rest of the year! Yes I said YEAR, but let me clarify. Right now I belong to two monthly kit clubs. Between them and my review team supplies I have more than enough to get me through each month. In the meantime, I'm creating a list of things I want. The only way I will receive these things would be by winning a contest and receiving a gift certificate to that store.
  2. I will not buy any more clothes for the rest of the year! This is going to be a toughie because some of my favorite pants are starting to need replacing. I have enough clothes to get me though the rest of the year comfortably.
I will update you on my progress sticking to these resolutions.

But the biggest renewal I've felt lately has come from within. I wake up in the morning wanting to create, to be artistic, to write, to dream, to feel. If I could do this full-time I'd be one very happy woman! Instead of seeing these things as my hobby I now see them as my life. Amazing feeling! My day job is awesome but it's not what keeps me going every day.

I am embracing every aspect of my creativity--pushing myself to new levels with my scrapbooking, beginning to learn hybrid scrapping, printing my own pictures and being able to print a full scrapbook page with my new wide-format printer, a commitment to write every day, a commitment to become best friends with my camera. This is the new me. I am an artist.

May 10, 2007


Believe it or not I read this in Glamour magazine the other day.

Women are obsessed with making themselves look beautiful, and it goes to extremes.

Think about it. Botox, collagen injections, liposuction, hair coloring, highlights, manicures and pedicures, eyebrow waxing and tweezing, zit popping, extensive and expensive beauty regimens. I could go on and on.

I partake in a few of those beauty boosts myself.

But, the article said something very enlightening. Put yourself in a magnifying mirror and you are going to see imperfection. Even with all that we do to make ourselves look "beautiful" we still see flaws.

But, if you picked the prettiest woman in the whole wide world and gave her a magnifying mirror, she, too, will see imperfections in herself. really can't be said any better than that.

Looking at the way women fuss over themselves and still remain unsatisfied with their appearance, it truly is an epidemic of misguided values.

After thinking about this for awhile and (I'll be honest) comparing myself to some of the women they cited as being "obsessed" with their appearance, I started looking at this in an entirely different way. I realized that the times I feel most beautiful are not because of my appearance. It is because of the happiness I am feeling by just being me. What a great feeling.

Today I am thankful for being able to express my creative side and a big part of who I am in so many ways.

Today I am going to be happy with everything there is about me. Good and bad.

Today I am beautiful.

Today you are beautiful.

Just the way you are.

May 7, 2007


We've been talking about camping for awhile now. It's not my favorite thing to do - I much prefer warm, clean washroom facilities! - but this weekend we finally did it . . . in our backyard!

DH put up our tent in our backyard and the kids went nuts. We had decided to cook out that night. We grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, sweet corn and potatoes. I gathered up our camping supplies and headed out to "camp" shortly before dinner time. DH started a fire in our fire pit and set up the chairs around it. We sat and enjoyed the day, the fire and each other.

We ate dinner on our picnic table with paper plates and plastic utensils. Delicious! Afterward I took a few of the things back in the house and when I came out we sat around the fire and toasted marshmallows and made s'mores. It was so much fun!!

We headed into our tent as the sun went down and snuggled up in a giant sleeping bag (3 sleeping bags zipped together) big enough for the four of us to sleep in. DH and I stayed in the middle and had the kids on the outside. I slept well. It was so warm and toasty in there! I think we'll have to camp again this year!

May 4, 2007

Being Creative

I don't know if you ever feel this way but many of my days are so busy I can barely think straight. It leaves little down time and even less time to clear my thoughts and focus on creativity. I've been making an effort to focus on creativity every morning on the bus ride into work. I have a spiral bound book I carry with me. I've been surprised and amazed by the number of creative thoughts that come to mind when I just give myself time to let all of my other stuff go for awhile.

And it's also interesting that most of my ideas just pop into my thoughts. It's like "Where did that come from?" Problem is I'm on my way to work and now all I want to be doing is SCRAPPING!

May 3, 2007

THURSDAY THOUGHTS - Your Life Is Important

It has been quite awhile since I've shared my Thursday Thoughts with you and I've really missed it. I am excited to begin again.

First of all, here's my horoscope for today:
Being forgetful can sometimes be a blessing -- remember that the next time you're in a rush and you can't find your house keys or sunglasses. The same brain that makes you forget where you put something also lets you forget about hurtful episodes from your life -- eventually. The pain or sorrow you've felt recently is fading slowly, but it's fading surely. Have faith that the worst is behind you, because it is. Keep moving forward, and leave the past behind.
I felt like these words were written just for me. They couldn't explain my life and my recent feelings any better. It was quite shocking to read this today because just yesterday I mentioned to a coworker how frustrating it is to have such poor short term memory. It is a trade off for the medications I need to take to be well, but it is still frustrating.

Yesterday afternoon I was so proud of Katie as we watched her music class give a performance singing and playing on many different instruments. I was inspired by how easily they were able to play so many instruments and do them so well. Their passion and focus left an impression on my heart as I began to think about my initial choice to skip this performance because it was in the middle of my work day. But her dad and I both chose to take time away from work in order to be there. I am so glad I did. Tears were close to come as I thought about all of the other kids who didn't have a parent there to watch them. It was a giant wake up call on how I set my priorities.

Sorry about the fuzzy photo!

On my way into work this morning I thought about the things I'd like to write about and share with you. The idea of setting goals is sticking to me heavily this month, but you already know how important I believe it is to set goals for yourself, but right now my feelings are different. I am remembering how fragile life is, and how much I take for granted. When my kids kiss me goodbye in the morning I expect to see them again that afternoon. But what if I didn't? What if that was my last time to ever see them again?

These thoughts are even stronger when I read about Jen Gallacher's ( son passing away yesterday. No parent should ever go through that. I can't think of anything worse than losing a child.

My message today is YOUR LIFE IS IMPORTANT! Live each day as if it's your last. Thinking about that statement, I mean really thinking about it, brings me back to what is important in my life. What I never want to do without. What I take for granted. Today is a great day to begin.

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