Archive of ‘scrapbook books’ category

Scrapbook Haul: Tuesday Morning, Michaels, Beverly’s

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Well, I haven’t written a good “scrapbook haul” post in a while so here you go :) These are treasures I’ve collected over the last month or so.

These are from TUESDAY MORNING:

2-packs of Thickers for $3.99 each

These were the last 3 sets and I actually liked them all. Yes, the teal ones have come unstuck and are falling off the sheet but that’s okay. I run most of my Thickers through my Xyron “X” anyway. The chipboard and vinyl ones are notoriously un-sticky in the long-term.

On the left are “Paper Crush” by COLORBOK journaling stickers. You get 6 stax with 12 sheets per stack. I thought these would be really cute on school pages.

On the right are 2 sets of Sticky Alphas by Colorbok. These 3 things sold together for $3.99 … great price!

Here’s a Scrapbook Paper Kit by HEIDI SWAPP. The line is called “Street Smarts” and has some really cool-looking papers … think skater dude, sports dude, cool dude … that kind of thing :) The papers are cardstock-thick, double-sided, and you get 20 of them. The retail price was $19.99; got it for $3.99.

The 2 sets of chipboard letters were only $2.99. I was so glad to find these again. I’ve used the black and white set a couple of times and need more! They look really striking on a page. The stack of notepads are going to great use on my desk. The 3-pack of American Crafts Flair was a great deal at $3.99. The Dear Lizzy one is my favorite.

Do you see anything wrong with this picture? Specifically, the price tag? Yes, there is just one epoxy embellishment there, and while the price of $1.99 could seem reasonable, I still thought it was mis-priced. The retail price shows as $8.99. Um, yeah. I showed it to the cashier when I checked out. It took me a few times explaining it before she would believe me, but 1 pack of epoxy stickers, no matter how stinkin’ cute, would not sell for $8.99 retail. Unless they were made of crushed diamonds or something. I think they were meant to be bundled in packs of 2 or 3. I don’t know if they really fixed them but, hey, I did my civic duty, right?

In case anyone is in the market for a Cub Scouts 12×12 album, Tuesday Morning has ‘em!

They also had a lot of paper packs by the likes of AMERICAN CRAFTS. However, they were the 25 sheets of the same paper kind so I didn’t get any. But for those of you who do classes, kits, etc., this is a great deal.

Tuesday Morning also had the Making Memories “Hulabulu” packs, and lots of 12×12 postbound albums … I just didn’t get photos.

I got some books at BARNES and NOBLE. The one you might be interested in is on the top … “Tragic Magic” by LAURA CHILDS. She writes a series of scrapbooking murder mysteries set in the Big Easy that I really enjoy. Been waiting to see this one in paperback since I don’t usually “do” hardcovers.

I got these three older issues (April, May, and June 2010) of Scrapbook Trends magazines online recently. They were having a clearance sale for $5 an issue. I think these sell new for $15 each so I was happy to find the sale. It’s true what they say … these are more like idea books that magazines so well worth the dough.

These were from a message board “for sale” section. I love it when people clean out their scrap rooms and sell stuff I want for dirt cheap, LOL! I got collection packs of Basic Grey “Black Tie” for $5, Scenic Route “Background” for $6, and she only charged me $4 shipping. AND threw in some Anna Griffin border stickers for free. Awesome blossom!

These are the bling stickers from Michaels I mentioned in a PAST POST. Purdy, huh? You get 2 layers worth.

The rest of these things are from BEVERLY’S CRAFTS

I had a 40% off coupon and was going to use it on the Making Memories storage jars (I’m re-doing my ribbon organization), but when I got the check-out, she told me they were on sale for 40% off. So the coupon went to one of the Basic Grey “Jovial” items. Then some Tiny Type alpha stickers that I can’t seem to get enough of. I guess you know what I’m using to scrap Christmas in this year, eh? Love these colors …

Come to find out, I should’ve gotten another set of the jars. After getting my ribbon sorted, I realized I need 3 more and I can’t find them at Michaels anymore. Shukes.

Have you heard of Studio 112? It’s a new line of scrappy stuff I’ve been seeing around. Here are the pretty lasercut papers they had.

Yep, every single thing was only 99 cents.

Bling, flowers, all kinds of embellishments …

Even some borders …

I dunno’, it wasn’t really my style. Some of the lasercut papers were pretty but nothing really blew my dress up. To each their own … maybe you’ll love it. At that price, you should at least check it out! M’kay?

Have you had any great shopping finds lately?

TV Star Nancy O’Dell Collaborates with Creative Memories

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Check out this video clip of “SCRAPBOOKING WITH NANCY O’DELL” from the CBS Early Show yesterday. She was talking about her new book, FULL OF LOVE, about the importance of family albums and scrapbooks, including the role they’ve played in her own life. There are also scrapbooking tips and photos of her layouts.

Oh, btw, if you’re not familiar with Nancy O’Dell, here is her WEBSITE where you can read her bio and see other things she’s done :) HERE is her Twitter page if yawanna follow her. Did you know she’s going to have HER OWN SHOW on the new Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) next year? No, you didn’t. That’s what you have me for.

Anyway, she wrote “Full of Love” in conjunction with CREATIVE MEMORIES and has also collaborated with them on a scrapbooking line called “The Hummingird Series.” HERE is the CM press release with all of the information. You can get her scrapbooking line only through a CM Consultant, of course.

Although her last book can be found on AMAZON.COM, this one appears to be available for purchase only through Creative Memories. I’m kinda’ bummed about that. I was going to jump right over to Amazon and buy it but now I have to go through the rigamarole (yes, that IS an actual word!) of finding a CMC and starting a new account or whatever to order just this book. I really hate “exclusive” deals like that. I hope I’m wrong and there are other places to get it. {If you hear of any, please let me know!} Plus the fact that I can’t get to the damn CM site right now … none of their links are working for me. Grrr …

Nancy seems like a sweet person and a good representative of this hobby we hold so dear. I wish her all the success in the world on her new book and Creative Memories scrapbooking line.

Do you plan to read the book or buy the line?

Scrapbook Mystery Novel Giveaway!

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Hey, mah favorite scrapbook peeps, I have some exciting news … I have FIVE copies of a new scrapbooking mystery novel to give away!!! It’s a hardcover version of “Cut, Paste, Kill” by Marshall Karp (retails for $26.99).

Here’s a description of the book from the publisher:

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In CUT, PASTE, KILL, Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs are two hip LAPD detectives who discover socialite Eleanor Bellingham-Crump dead on the floor of a hotel bathroom. Next to Eleanor’s lifeless body, the killer has left an intricate scrapbook documenting a motive of vengeance in lurid detail. As more bodies are found, each one connected to a scrapbook left at the scene, Lomax and Biggs must decode the meaning behind the scrapbooks before the avenger has time to cut and paste the story for another kill.

CUT, PASTE, KILL is laugh-out-loud funny, with perfect dialogue and zinging last lines. Joseph Finder, bestselling thriller writer, describes Marshall Karp as the “Woody Allen of the murder mystery—smart, fast-paced, clever, and really, really funny.”

***********

For some early reviews (three 5-star customer reviews as of when I posted this!), you can check out AMAZON.COM. By the by, you can purchase the book from Amazon if you don’t win a copy … hint, hint. Right now, the hardcover is selling for $17.15 new and a Kindle edition for $12.99.

I think this portion of a review posted to Amazon sums it up perfectly:

The bottom line is that this is perfect summer reading — ideal for a lazy Sunday afternoon or a holiday beach read. If you want a great “entertain me!” murder mystery, I don’t think you can do better than Cut, Paste, Kill. Highly recommended… at least for people who like to giggle.

This book was just released June 8, 2010 so you’ll be the first on your block to own it, LOL! I’ve been reading my copy and absolutely enjoying it. It’s laugh-out-loud funny, full of one-liners and fun relationships between the main characters. Yeah, it’s a murder mystery, but a lighthearted one :)

I’ve read scrapbooking mystery novels in the past (those by LAURA CHILDS and JOANNA CAMPBELL SLAN) and this one is a bit different. Instead of it reading as a mystery written by a scrapbooker, it’s more like a “regular” mystery novel that has scrapbooking as a plot device. It’s told through the eyes of two LAPD detectives, not through the lens of a scrapbooker. So, even if you’re not big into scrapbooking but just like reading mystery novels, you’ll enjoy this.

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment on this post telling me why you want the book. I’m paying for the postage out of my own pocket, so PLEASE only enter if you’ll really read the book or know someone who will. If you have any friends who would be interested, please have them come enter!

Deadline is Friday, June 25, 2010* at midnight PST. Open to US residents only. One entry per person. FIVE winners will be chosen via Random.org.

* Deadline changed as of 6/22/10

Good luck and happy reading!

FTC Disclosure. ST MARTINS PRESS provided me with 6 free books. I received no monetary compensation. They are providing the books to the winners of this giveaway.

Creating Keepsakes Special Issue: Fast and Fresh Scrapbooks

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Available May 11, 2010, there’s a new special issue by Creating Keepsakes called “Fast and Fresh Scrapbooks”.

HERE is where you can buy it online, and get a sneak peek inside. HERE is a free shipping code offer that ends MAY 16, 2010. You can also go to Lisa Bearnson’s BLOG and enter a comment to win a free copy (do this by THURSDAY, May 13, 2010). She also has a shipping code to get 20% OFF (must use by May 31, 2010)!

I took the peek inside and I spy some work by one of my favorite scrappers, ELIZABETH KARTCHNER. Did you know she’s pregnant with BEBE #3? And in other happy news, so is EMILIE! She told her family in the most FUN WAY. Congrats to both of these beautiful moms. It would be totally typical of me to say something like, “Yeah! More scrapbooking material!” so I totally won’t say that. I don’t like to be typical :)

Anyway … back to my original topic: The new CK special issue. If you get it, you MUST come back and give us a review. I’m sure I’ll be buying it as soon as I see it in the store. Yeah, I can’t seem to resist even though I have every scrapbooking magazine and idea book known to man. “Wait, you say that like it’s a BAD thing?” {I could have worse vices …}

Allison Davis Sketch Books and DVD

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ALLISON DAVIS has always been one of my favorite scrapbookers. Ali was a member of the 2008 and 2009 Dream Teams for CREATING KEEPSAKES magazine. I always enjoy her layouts in CK and my eye immediately goes to them because she scraps like I scrap. In fact, when she was a guest BLOGGER for CK in July 2009 and described the way she scraps, I could have written the exact same thing about myself:

“I am a two-page, multiphoto kinda gal. Mostly because I take too many pictures and have way too much to say for any other format. I try to fit lots of pictures on my layouts. This can be blamed on my complete lack of control over the photo selection process. It’s just so hard to narrow it down to only a few!”

Her books are called “Sketches for Scrapbooking” and here is more about them, from Alison’s website:

“Each volume of “Sketches for Scrapbooking” contains 30 exclusive sketches designed by Scrapbook Generation’s Debbie Sanders and Allison Davis. All sketches have a key that indicates which areas are stripes, small patterns, large patterns, contrasting cardstock, etc to make paper selection super easy. Photo sizes and paper measurements are included on each sketch.”

You can purchase them HERE. As of now, there are Scrapbooking sketch books, volumes 1 through 5 ($12.99 each) and even a sketchbook for cardmaking ($12.99). The sketchbooks are by Allison Davis and Debbie Sanders, and the cardmaking book is by Stacey Atchley, all from the SCRAPBOOK GENERATION store.

What finally reminded/convinced me to purchase some of these books was THIS thread at 2peas. I love the idea several Peas have posted about how they tear the books apart and sort them in binders by the number of photos per sketch. And here are a couple reviews that really sold me:

“Not only does she give photo dimensions, but also the dimensions for the various paper pieces that are used on the layout along with positioning information.”

“I so love these sketch books! I think I have almost every sketch book made these are the easiest to use and the layouts are so good when completed. They are also the quickest to finish, I have probably finished about 40 pages in the last 6 weeks which is alot for me.”

Holy scrapbooking, Batman! Forty pages in 6 weeks!?!?! That totally rocks. These books remind me of my beloved EASY PATTERNS for SCRAPBOOKING by BRENDA ARNALL that I’ve mentioned MANY TIMES. Of course, I admire and adore the work of those scrappers who can spend hours on one layout and create an artistic masterpiece, but that’s just not how I scrap. I might look at their layout and take one element to use on mine, like a paper flower, a photo arrangement, or a color scheme. But I take so many photos and have so many events, vacations, and other projects I want to scrap, I need to keep it moving. It sounds like these sketch books will be perfect for me.

You can see a preview of her upcoming DVD “Scrapbooking with Allison Davis” HERE and PRE-purchase it HERE ($19.99).

The shipping is ONLY $2.99 no matter how many books you order, so why not order several at once? I just purchased all 5 of the sketchbooks, and plan to get the cardmaking book and DVD in the future. How about you? Do you have these books already or plan to get them?

ETA 4/5/10: I noticed that Melissa/Scrappy Jedi, who left a comment on this entry, has also written a review of these books. Go check it out HERE.

ETAA 4/5/10: I started a THREAD on 2peas to let the girls know they totally enabled me to buy these 5 sketchbooks, and one of the Scrapbook Generation girls posted this: “Is this a good time to tell you that we’ll have volume 6 ready for sale on July 1?” So there’s a heads up for you Allison David sketchbook fans!

ETAA 7/12/12: The plans for the DVD were “scrapped” {bwahahaha … scrapped!} but they have added lotsa’ more sketch books. There are now:
Sketches for Scrapbooking (all two-page layouts): Volumes 1 through 8
Sketches for Scrapbooking: One Page Sketches: Volumes 1 and 2
Sketches for Scrapbook: Travel Sketches
Sketches for Cardmaking: Volumes 1 and 2

Now instead of $12.99, each sketch book is $15.99. They’re still very popular and very much a part of my own scrapbooking. Here is an update from one of the Scrapbook Generation team, who posted it at 2 Peas on 06/17/12:

Several of you are right!

– Of the “regular” Sketches for Scrapbooking double-page books, volume eight is the most current.

– The most recent books are volume one of travel and volume two of Allison’s one-page series, both of which came out in January of 2012.

Our schedule in the past has been to do at least one book every six months, coming out with new books in January and July. We will not be publishing new books this July because we are working on a huge project involving sketches that requires every bit of our time and energy right now. That’s why we’re cutting back on some other time-consuming activities like retreats.

I’m actually dying to tell what the newest project is, but we have to pass a few more hurdles before we do a big announcement. (We learned our lesson with the DVD disaster a couple of years ago!)

When we do finally get to let you in on the secret, I think it will have been worth the wait!

Sounds exciting!

Scrapbook Novel Review: “Prints Charming”

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*** Warning: If you don’t want spoilers to this book, please don’t read my review! ***

As you know, I love SCRAPBOOK NOVELS and recently read “Prints Charming” by Rebeca Seitz (yes, Rebeca with one “c”). I got the book in the mail a few weeks ago, but held onto it so I could read the whole thing on a family trip we just took.

I suck at synopsizing, which reminds me of my school days when I’d much rather write a story than a stinkin’ book report. Anyway, I found a good synopsis at LIBRARYJOURNAL.COM:

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Jane Sandburg’s best friend, Lydia, had begged her not to marry Bill, and their friendship ended when Lydia walked out at the wedding. Now, two years later, Jane discovers Bill is cheating on her, and because “a woman couldn’t be a woman without her girlfriends,” she reconciles with Lydia. A year later, Jane, Lydia, and new girlfriend Mac decide to start Sisters, Ink, a business that networks scrapbooking women. When a new man enters Jane’s life, and Bill tries to win her back, Jane has to rely on her “sisters” to help her avoid making another huge mistake. This first novel is a pleasure to read, with likable characters who are bound to return in the next installment of the new “Sisters, Ink” series.
—-

I guess a novel about scrapbooking would have to be really poorly written for me NOT to like it. That said, I really, really enjoyed this book, LOL! It was well-written, entertaining, and interesting. I very much grew to care about the main character, Jane, and all of her scrapbooking friends. I thought the characters were well-drawn and likeable (well, Bill the cad ex-husband was not so likeable, but hey, every story needs a villian, right?).

Scrapbooking was definitely a part of the story. Not only do the women get together and scrapbook regularly (while sharing triumphs and crises), but they’re in the process of starting a scrapbooking website together and we get glimpses of them having ideas and adding them to the site. Jane’s wedding scrapbook also makes several appearances, although at one point she considers destroying it, and I literally said out loud, “NO!” I’m like, “I don’t care if the guy turned out the be a real ass hat. Don’t take it out on the scrapbook!” I just cringed at the thought of all that hard work, creativity, and (gasp!) scrapbook supplies going in the trash. Crikey, Jane, don’t SCARE me like that!

I really enjoyed the love story part of it, too. There’s enough conflict to keep you guessing and, though you figure they’re probably going to end up together at the end, it’s not easy going for the happy couple. They meet as the novel begins (as she rushes to a scrapbook store, natch!) and Rebeca does such a good job of capturing that “I get goosebumps and a funny stomach every time I see you” feeling of new infatuation.

The side stories of the other “Sisters” were also compelling, including an older mother dealing with a troubled daughter, a wife trying desperately to get her husband’s attention away from TV sports (you gotta read just to find out the interesting kind of lingerie she resorts to!), and a young mom trying to adopt a 2nd child. These ladies are multicultural and spiritual. As a Christian, I enjoyed the easy religious tone to the book but if over-religiosity bothers you, this book won’t. It’s done with a pretty light touch and I don’t think anyone would find it annoying.

I think the only thing I’m bummed about is that there isn’t (yet) a “part two” to Prints Charming. The Sisters Ink books begin with a new set of characters, but I wanted to find out what happens with Mac and the preacher. I want to know if the happy couple stayed happy and if their dog and cat are still getting along okay. How are Mari’s daughters doing, and surprise child #3? How does the website take off, and what scrappers do they connect with? See, Rebeca? You gotta write another installment, girl!

Anyway, if this novel sounds interesting to you, I got my copy at AMAZON.COM and more retailers are listed below. You can read more reviews of the book at Amazon also.

If you’d like to read more about Rebeca and her scrapbooking novels: HERE is an excellent article on a Christian media website, which tells a lot about her literary and writing career, and the role spirituality plays in her life.

As I mentioned, the scrapbooker girlfriends in the novel form a website and community dedicated to scrapbookers and bringing them together. The ideas for this fictional website were so good that, as I was reading, I kept thinking they had better really have this place so I could join up when I got home from my trip, LOL. Sure enough, they do! Here is the actual SISTERS INK website. There is a $12 annual sign-up fee, which seems totally reasonable ($1 a month? why not?). I plan to join soon and check out the benefits of the site.

At the Sisters Ink website, I found lots of information about Rebeca and her books, including a list of the FOUR NOVELS which make up the Sisters Ink series. The four novels are:

Sisters Ink
Coming Unglued
Scrapping Plans
Perfect Piece

Apparently, Rebeca first wrote Prints Charming, then was contracted for the four Sisters Ink books which are a series and interrelated, dealing with four adopted sisters from one family. I plan to buy all of them and can’t wait to get started. Ah, my summer reading list!

Copied from the Sisters Ink site, here’s where you can purchase Rebeca’s scrapbooking novels:


The Sisters, Ink novels are available for purchase in thousands of bookstores across the country, including Barnes & Noble, Borders, Books-a-Million, LifeWay, Family Christian Stores, Parable-member stores, independent bookstores, Amazon, Christianbook.com, DeeperShopping.com, and some Wal-mart stores. If you cannot find the Sisters, Ink novels in your area or would like to purchase signed copies, feel free to email Rebeca directly at rebeca@sistersink.net .

Read Rebeca’s tweets HERE.

Hope you enjoyed my review of “Prints Charming” by Rebeca Seitz!

The Popularity of Scrapbook Novels

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Check out this REVIEW of a new crafty novel; not scrapbooking per se, but still sounds very interesting, yeah? At the bottom of the article are 2 links that will tell you about scrapbooking novels. HERE is a link to another scrapbook novel and if you scroll down to the “Customers who bought this item also bought” section, you’ll see tons more.

I’m so happy to see the addition of all these scrapbooking novels and mysteries over the years. They combine my 2 favorite hobbies: reading and scrapbooking. In fact, I didn’t realize until I did that search on AMAZON that there were quite so many!

I’ve read all the LAURA CHILDS mysteries, with the exception of Tragic Magic …

… and I’ve read A PAGE OUT OF LIFE

but I think that’s it. Crikey! I have some major reading to do!

Do you ever read scrapbook-related novels? Why or why not? Which ones have you read, or would like to read?

I wonder if there’s an online book club or group for scrapbook novels. Hmmm … if there isn’t, someone should start one. I would love to have one place to purchase these books to read, then have a message board or chat room to discuss them. ‘Cuz I don’t know anyone in my ‘real life’ that would be caught dead reading a scrapbook novel, LOL! Anyway, just another one of my brilliant ideas (hardy har har …)

Scrapbookers, Studios, and Stashes: We Are NOT Alone

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I was in Michaels last weekend, looking for something coupon-worthy, and also looking for the April issue of SCRAPBOOK ETC. magazine, which the Peas had told me HERE is now available (bummer … most of the reviews are not favorable).

Darn if I couldn’t find SBE, but I did come across the gorgeous publication WHERE WOMEN CREATE. It’s a nice, thick, beautifully done magazine … well, more like a scrapbook idea book except that you get studio ideas instead of layout ideas.

At $14.95, it’s a bit rich for my blood considering it would be total eye candy for me, unlike a $15 idea book that I would actually use over and over. Anyhow, it comes out quarterly and I like to flip through it when I see it at Mike’s or BARNES AND NOBLE (they have the hardcover book of WWC, too!).

I’m always hoping to see a scrapbooker or at least a cardmaker and their studio featured, but so far I’ve come up empty. Hmmm … I wonder if they really haven’t chosen to profile a paper crafter, or if I’ve just missed it somehow. It’s entirely possible that I’ve missed it, which would be my fault since I’m too cheap to buy the magazine/book and “cheat” by flipping through it at the store. This issue did feature THE PAPER SOURCE, which is at least on the right track :)

Another thing I wish they would do is designate what type of artist each woman is, both in the Table of Contents and on the intro or title page to each artist. Again, if they DO do that and I’ve missed it, I apologize. But if I’m missing it every time, it can’t be that obvious, LOL! The cover gives the names of the artists inside and sometimes even the company they’re associated with, but just by a listing of names, I don’t know if any of them are scrapbookers/papercrafters. I mean, I’m pretty up on all the popular scrappers but I don’t know EVERYONE, sheesh.

One studio I flipped past was that of a knitter. I was stopped cold by a photo of her “Wall of Yarn.” It was all stacked by color in a large wall shelf, an Ikea EXPEDIT or similar. My first thought was, “But this magazine is about personal studios. Why do they have a photo of a store in here?” Then a second later, I realized, “Ah, that probably IS a personal studio!” But that lady had a shite-load of yarn!

Then I laughed so hard at myself (Bwahahaha! The other Mike’s customers were probably fittin’ to dial Mental Health for me … ), because I realized that that’s what people ~ non-scrappers, especially ~ must automatically think when they see MY scrap space. “Why does she have a scrapbook store in her house?” LOL Who could blame them? Instead of a Wall O’ Yarn, I have a Half Wall O’ Paper, a Bookcase O’ Idea Books, and Jars O’ Flowers, Ribbon, and Letters.

First, I was embarrassed. Oh. My Gosh. How embarrassing to realize that people who visit my home and peek into my office wonder why I have a scrapbook store. But then after I stopped internally blushing, I felt better. You know why? Because after flipping through Where Women Create all these times, I’ve seen some crazy, huge, awesome, expensive, fully-stocked, storelike studios of women who do all kinds of crafty and creative things … photography, art dolls, sewing, graphic arts, quilting, etc. And I realized something very comforting and very important.

We are not alone.

Scrapbookers aren’t the only ones so obsessed with supplies that it takes entire rooms to hold and organize them. We aren’t the only who live for Ikea and it’s plethora of crafty-friendly storage items. We aren’t the only women who find solace and comfort in our craft, who consider our creative spaces to be a haven, a place where we can go and truly be ourselves.

We are not alone. And that’s pretty great, isn’t it?

Aren’t we all so very blessed?

Grab Bag Scrapbook Pack at Walmart

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I didn’t get one, but took some pics for ya’ when I was at Walmart the other day …

At my WM, they were on an endcap as you entered the crafting area. Each one looked like it had different contents, and it was hard to see exactly what was in there. They were shrink wrapped but I saw some Best Occasions and Autumn Leaves stuff. It was too much a leap of faith for me to buy one, but maybe you’ll be willing to take a chance?

THIS Pea bought one and was so happy with it, she went back for another. She posted this photo:

She’s right, that idea book alone sold for $20, so there’s your value. As it happens, I already have that book and tons of AUTUMN LEAVES stamps (including the ones pictured), so it’s probably good I didn’t get one of these scrapbook packs at Walmart. But wanted to share in case you “need” one …

I think it’s a brilliant idea: Package up a bunch of the scrapbooking supplies they’ve had forever, sell them at a great price, and get them outta the store … hopefully to make room for some new things … because it’s been a really long time since new stuff, at least at my Walmart.

Stay tuned: I have lots more scrap-shopping pictures to post from my weekend, but I had to work tonight so this is all I got to. But there will be more … oh yes, there will be more …

Diary of a Scrapbook Room Makeover: Part Three

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If you need to get caught up on my diary, here are the entries so far:

PROLOGUE
PART ONE
PART TWO
QUESTIONS ANSWERED
PHOTOS HELD HOSTAGE, DAY 3

And now it’s time for Part Three! Yeah, like, FINALLY! Most of these photos were taken on October 5, which is 10 days ago. This is pretty much what my room still looks like today (10/15/09), other than a few little changes. As always, I apologize for the quality of my photos. My nice digi camera is out of commission because the charger doesn’t work and until the Money Fairy makes a drop at our house, I can’t afford to buy a new one, or a new camera. Thus…I have for you iPhone pictures!

So this is as you look into the room from the dining room doorway. Kids’ homework/crafting table in front, my scrap desk behind that, coffee table and couch back by the window, and the junk corner in the very back left.

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Here is my “cube wall,” which are Store in Style cubes with mostly Cropper Hopper vertical storage of paper/embellishments, and jars with ribbons, chipboard letters, etc. In other words, if there is a fire, this is the stuff I’m grabbing. Yep, one by one, cube by cube. Not. Kidding. What’s that? Oh, of COURSE I’d grab my kids and hubby first! Sheesh.

On the left, the white bin has office supplies I need to find a new home for; they came out of a cupboard in the L-shaped desk. The bag and cardboard box are things I brought home from my office when I was allowed to start working from home. That was in April 2009. Nope. Not unpacked yet. This is one example of things that were dumped in my scrap area and I was too busy to do anything with them at the time, so they just cluttered the place up. Don’t judge. It won’t take long to put the stuff away, I would just rather sort and put away scrappy supplies than work manuals, paperclips, baby wipes, and boxes of tea, wouldn’t you? Procrastinators Unite!….Tomorrow.

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Here’s the oak cabinet that used to hold a TV, VCR, old school Atari games, and kids’ DVDs/games; now it’s a resting place for my grossly overpacked SCRAPRACK. I have always had a big crush on my Scrap Rack, and it’s insane ability to sort my scrapbook supplies by theme. But I have abused Scrap Rack. I have overfilled Scrap Rack. Now I hardly ever touch Scrap Rack and we miss each other. I flipped through it a bit tonight and it was embarisken. I have some reeeeeeaaaally old things in there that need to be purged in a big way. Like Creative Memories stickers circa 2001, some Mrs. Grossman’s border stickers, and various shape die cuts from Paper Pizzazz.

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Note to scrappers who began after 2007: You are lucky. By the time you started scrapping, most of the products being put out there have been pretty designer-ish and awesome. But prior to that, especially late 1990s/early 2000s? There was some pretty rough stuff out there. You would cringe. So if you don’t know what “Mrs. Grossman’s” or “Paper Pizzazz” means, no worries. You didn’t miss a thing. Trust me.

Here is the new and improved bookshelf #4! It used to be toys from top to bottom. Now the toys have been moved into the new playroom, freeing up space for kids’ crafts. There is coloring, drawing, painting, scratch art, activity books, puzzle books, foam stamps, crayons, acrylic paints, markers, and brushes. Wait, what? That all sounds fun! Do I REALLY have to share with my kids? Hee.

It was fun but sad to purge the coloring and activity books, seeing things my kids had drawn and colored when they were much younger (yeah, it had been awhile since this stuff had been gone through). But I gave the old color books to a friend who’s going to use them in her Sunday school classes so that made me happy and they were easier to let go. I have tons of art and schoolwork from my kids, so in the scheme of things, they had to go. In return, clear and organized shelves – yahoo!

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Here is the homework/craft table. See the clear mat in the middle? I got 2 of those at a craft store years ago and they were a smart purchase; the other one is on my scrap desk under my BG mats. They’re great for protecting your table from permanent damage, portable for moving to other tables or counters, and easy to clean. The clear mat was about 1.5 inches too long when I laid it horizontally across the table like this, so I cut the excess off. Guess what I used? My Basic Grey Magnetic Mat. How many times have I said I love that thing?!?! I lined the clear mat up on the BG mat grid, put the metal ruler over it, and sliced down the clear mat with a craft knife. It didn’t go all the way through so I flipped it over and cut in the same place and Voila! Then I used my Creative Memories Corner Rounder to make the 2 new corners match with the existing rounded ones. I was pretty darn proud of myself because that’s about as handyman as I get, LOL! Ideally, I would like this same kind of mat but large enough to cover the entire table. Then again, it’s an old banged up table so I’m not gonna stress on it.

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Here’s a top view of the newly cleaned up, cleaned out, organized, and labeled craft carousel. As you scrappers know, this is actually a Making Memories DESKTOP CAROUSEL, intended for scrapbook supplies. I tried to use it as such when I first got it, but it never worked for me. The main problem is that I need to keep my most-used tools in something portable for taking to crops. Even if I used it for least-used tools, the footprint is so big, that it takes up a lot of desk room once you leave it a wide berth to spin around. It really needs to be in the middle of a table or desk, and while my scrap area doesn’t allow for that, it does work perfectly on the homework/craft table, doesn’t it?

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The carousel had been on our dining room table for about the last year or so which has been Homework Central. It had crayon marks, broken erasers, pencil shavings, you name it. It was looking pretty beat up and fugly, and was not organized whatsoever. So I took everything out of it, turned it upside down over the trash to get the gookies out, and Windexed it within an inch of its life. Then I lovingly organized and labeled each section. Oh, and I spent about 30 minutes one night hand sharpening all of those regular and colored pencils. Now that was good fun.

See, lookie! Look at my labels! They totally rock, huh? Pencil sharpeners, little tapes, mini gel pens….

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Staplers and big tape, scissors, and all that other fun stuff…

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The husband and children have been instructed in the proper care of my baby. My baby has been labeled so there are no excuses. If they eff it up, there will be hell to pay. And I mean it! Don’t mess with me, I’m the mommy! And you know our family motto: (Say it with me now!) “If Mommy ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy….” See? Simple.

Okay, here are the 3 measly shelves I have restricted my books to. I know, it’s riDONKulous but something had to give. Scrap supplies or books? Scrap supplies or books? Hmmmm….SCRAP SUPPLIES! But clearly, my bookies need to be organized, alphabetized, and color coded. By Dewey Decimal System. Yet another project in the wings.

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Here in the Corner of Shame #1 are 3 boxes that need to go in the attic (“oh, dear??? honeybuns??? love of my life??? would you please do me an itsy bitsy little favor wavor?? thanks, hun!”). Cuz I don’t do attics. Did you know there are, like, SPIDERS up there?!? And it’s hot. Very hot. In other words, not happening. {Please revert to the family motto listed above…}.

The wire cube and panels sitting on top used to be under my desk; I used them to hide…erm, I mean….STORE a multitude of things. Like Christmas and birthday gifts, a family quilt, my sugar-free cookie stash…you know, that kind of thing. I don’t know if I’ll use them in my scrap room again. If not, they would make great toy storage for the new play room. If you want some of these cubes, you can get them at Target or Costco. Not the most sturdy storage, but they do work and the price warms the cockles of my ever-lovin’, bargain-huntin’ heart.

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Here is the front side of my big L-shaped desk. I had 3 of these 12×12 Sterlite containers before; they were on my bookshelves. When I moved the couch away from the front of my desk, I realized *gasp* people would be able to see all the crap I keep under there and also my fat heifer thighs. I decided, “No, this just will not do.” When I realized how perfectly these Sterlite drawers fit, I bought 3 more sets and killed 2 birds with 1 stone: lots more storage room and Fat Heifer Thigh View Blockage. A good purchase, don’t you think? {And I got them on sale for $9 instead of $12 each, hehe}.

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That big blue navy thing is my Crop In Style XXL aka Old Faithful. That thing has been jammed full of supplies, crammed into my Honda trunk, and rolled over bumpy hotel entranceways to more crops than I can count. She will be retired this Christmas when I get a new set of crop bags from DH and mi madre.

This clear container is under the homework/craft table. It’s all organized and has scrappy hand-me-downs for the kids to scrapbook with. We make handmade cards a lot, too. My entire extended family and friends could totally be lying to me, but they all say they love our personally designed cards with custom artwork and handwritten messages. And if they ARE lying? Screw ‘em.

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Here’s the couch, so exciting. Ugly, old throw pillow. Oh, remind me to talk about pillows later. And now you can see the reason my scrap room looks a might bit better than it did last time you were here (see PART TWO, link at top of post). It’s because I stuck a bunch of ugly junk behind the couch. I’m calling it the “I’ll Deal With You Later” pile. It’s mostly old family memorabilia and photos that need to be sorted. It’s such a huge project, I can’t even fathom it right now. So I’m (partially) hiding it. It’s out of the way so I can continue making progress with my room….but it’s like the great white shark under the water while you blissfully swim in the ocean. You might be having fun up top, but you now it’s down there stalking you. Damn shark.

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It’s actually been really nice having that coffee table there. Just in the last month or so since I put it there, it’s been used for: Jetmax cube assembly, homework, hubby doing paperwork, a foot stool for kids reading on the couch, a game of table hockey, and a nice big area for me to sort and organize scrap supplies. Unfortunately, it’s also been used to lie on, stand on, and hide under. Hey, nothing’s perfect.

Here is Corner of Shame #2 aka Big Daddy Shame. I think I’ve told you already what most of it is. The two blue bins are monthly kits I used to get from MEMORY WORKS EXPRESS. I’ve always kept them together as a kit but I think I’m going to separate them out. I’m not sure…what do you do with kits? Keep them together or mix the items in with the rest of your stash?

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There’s also a wide format Epson printer that I spent boo coo bucks on a few years ago, and never used. I’m a horrible person. I won’t bore you with all the details. I have my reasons. But, yeah, now I need to get rid of it. Sell it? E-waste it? Goodwilll? I dunno. Of course, I would prefer to sell it, even for just $100 or something (I paid over $300 and used it maybe 20 times). But to prove to a buyer that it works, I’d need to spend about $100 on printer cartridges and I just don’t know if it’s worth it. Would it even sell? Bah.

Above the Corner of Shame #2 is my MM Embellishment Shelf. It’s pretty well organized but I now have THIS to install somewhere once it’s painted and cleaned up, so I’m still figuring out what goes where and whether to move this shelf.

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This photo is probably hard to figure out, because I was focusing on the scene outside the window. It’s the view into my backyard, the view I see when I sit at my scrap desk. Our backyard has a pretty pool and a gorgeous view, but this dog pen thingee is ruining everything! Must go. Will go soon. We borrowed it from our neighbors when we got LANDRY, who didn’t care to stay in the big dog pen on the side of the house. This kennel is a pain in the arse to return to our neighbors, as all four adults need to take a corner and walk it through a gate and across an acre of their property. But I need to make that happen, don’t I? And those atrociously dirty windows! Disgraceful. When is that window cleaner girl going to do her friggin’ job?!! Oh, wait. That would be ME, wouldn’t it? There is only a little overhang over all three of my scrapbook room windows/slider (no patio cover) and also no grass out there, just dirt, concrete, and gravel. So especially when it rains like it just did, the windows get very dirty, the screens very dusty, and it’s hard to keep up on them. But I must. What a waste of a wonderful view.

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Here is the Epicenter of Erika’s Craftivity. Chair, Basic Grey mats, Cutterpede trimmer, flat pack with most-used tools, Ott lite, little tote with scissors and pens, and the main requirement for scrapping, Diet Coke. There’s a single Cropper Hopper vertical file that I was thinking of keeping on my desk as a place to keep projects in progress and/or new purchases until I put them away. Now I have another idea for where to put recent purchases, but I like the projects in progress holder idea. I tend to be a “stacker,” with various piles on my desk. 12×12 piles take up a lot of desk space; at least getting them vertical would save some room.

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Also, I put my little bookshelf stereo here. I didn’t think I would, but I really miss having the television in here, just for the white noise if nothing else. So I was compelled to hook up my stereo and play some K-Life and the college radio station also has awesome music. I don’t do well with total silence. It makes me spun up. Eeeeeee!!!!

Here’s the left side of my desk. Blue flat packs full of acrylic stamps and inks, shopping bag with some RAK stuff in it, Ziploc with a scrappy project, white holder for Prima flower jars and skittles, black tote for punches and Xyron “X”, and Amy Butler tote for cards and RAKs to and from scrappy friends. I’ve been slowly cleaning that out, putting stamps and other gifts away. I need a good storage system for or project to make with all those handmade cards that I cherish…maybe bind them into a mini book or something.

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Here is the view if I’m standing in front of the couch. Standing ON the coffee table??? Who, ME??? Nah, I would never do that. As you can see, I haven’t sorted through those idea books and magazines yet. In fact, I think the pile has grown larger as I come across more of them. Yes, it’s a sickness. And I don’t care.

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Just don’t look under the desk. Move along. There’s nothing to see here….

So that’s a tour of my scrapbook room and how the makeover has been coming along. I’m so happy you’re on this journey with me. Yes, it’s embarrassing to share my major clutter issues and extreme scrapbook supply hoarding. But, oh well, you still seem to like me.

I’m learning so much as I go along; basic scrappy storage things and even things about myself that are deeper and more telling than one would expect from a mere room makeover. Like I’ve learned that I’m happy with how much I cherish my memories and all the “things” that go with it. Yet I don’t have to keep it all. And just because I spent money on something doesn’t mean I have to be guilted into keeping it forever. Selling it or giving it away can bring happiness to someone else, like Sunday school kids, so that’s a good thing.

Please keep checking in with me and cheer on my progress so I follow through and don’t give up. And don’t forget about my 500,000 hits blog candy because we’re coming up on the end….at 499,413 as I post this entry. Good luck!

Diary of a Scrapbook Room Makeover: Part Two

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I’m slowly making progress on the big overhaul of my scrapbook room. If you’re not caught up, you can read the PROLOGUE and PART ONE, if you like :) But the Prologue is important reading; it’s where I tell you what happens if you make a smart ass comment about how much crap….erm, STUFF I have. Yes, I have a lot of paper. No, you can’t shop here. Yes, I have a life. Blah blah blah….

So, I’ve done lots of furniture moving. This is going to take awhile, so get comfy…

1. Unloaded everything from the desk – underneath, off the top, and in the drawers – and moved it about 2 feet closer to the sliding glass door. I didn’t repack the office supply and computer-related stuff I had in the desk cupboards; need to find a new home for all that. It’s in a pile here somewhere…

2. Unloaded all the DVDs, videos, and board games from the oak cabinet and moved them into a cabinet in the guest room/new play room. Moved a bunch of toys that were along the wall into the new play room. Moved the oak cabinet to the wall where the toys had been. Moved the Scrap Rack to the oak cabinet (temporarily, I think…). Moved office supplies, and office machines (fax machine, transcription machine, etc.) from guest room to bottom of oak cabinet (where movies and games had been). This cabinet is going to be Office Stuff Central…unless I change my mind.

3. Emptied out the legal filing cabinet, moved it from a back wall to align with one edge of the L-shaped desk, and refilled it with the same stuff I had in there before, which are greeting cards, school supplies, and more home office stuff. I gathered scrap magazines and idea books from various places around the house and piled ‘em up.

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As you can see, it’s time to purge these again. I usually do this about once a year but, yeah, it’s been awhile. A friend that I scrap with recently finished her project of pulling pages and ideas from her magazines and organizing them into page protectors in a binder. I’m so jealous….it was great! So I’m deciding now if I have the time, patience, and devotion to do the same thing. Purge or make “the perfect idea binder,” THAT is the question.

As for all those idea books….I don’t think I’ve EVER gotten rid of an idea book. Something about throwing away a book that I paid $15 to $40 for is much harder than a $5 magazine. But I should look through all my idea books and maybe toss some older ones. I’ll bet I don’t even “scrap like that anymore” for some of them, huh?

4. Moved the table that I’d been using for scrappy stuff (okay, to dump things on…) over to the area by the storage cubes. This will be the famous Homework Table.

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5. Moved the couch and coffee table from in front of the desk to behind the desk by the back window. The original plan was to put it flush against the wall and lined up directly under the window (I’m all about symmetry, baby!). But once I got it there, the couch seemed kind of squished over into the corner and the coffee table was somewhat blocking the walkway to the back part of the room. So I tried the couch at an angle, and I liked it. Bonus: It creates a hidey space behind it for ugly stuff, lol. And I felt so “HGTV” about it, too.

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6. Unloaded just about everything from 10 Store in Style cubes (see couch pic above), moved the cubes to the opposite end of the room, and reloaded them pretty much the same way. The SIS cubes are now on the wall that the oak TV cabinet used to be on. This is the area I talked about where I have to keep a walkway to get to the slider, so the cubes are a good thing to put here. They fit nicely and I can stack more on top someday if need be (God forbid!).

I first thought about configuring them like this, with a kind of “turn the corner” at one end….

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…but decided not to. The positives were that it would be a little different-looking, and it would create a handy little empty space back there in the corner to store crop totes or something. But the negatives were that it made the walking path a bit too slim, and put the cubes right next to the cord for the blinds. And when I put embellishment jars on top of the one by the door, they would block the light switch. No super big deal, but I just decided to go with putting them all flush against the wall, like this…

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All this furniture moving happened way back on 9/10 (it’s now 9/27!), so when I say “making slow progress,” I’m not exaggerating. It took me awhile to remember and write all this down, the order I did things in. It was quite the feat of engineering to move things AROUND the room while still having everything IN the room. I apologize for any dark photos but most of my madness occurs late at night after everyone has gone to bed. Man, you should’ve seen the wide eyes of my husband and kids when they came out the morning after all this! They were like, “You moved ALL that by yourself!?!? The couch???” and I’m all, like, “Desperate organizers take desperate measures.” (Like, totally…I did all that “like” stuff just to annoy you). Then the daytime photos are overly bright because of the sun coming in all the windows, so I can’t win, lol.

Once the furniture was in place, I’ve just been slowly putting things away, whether within this room or the other parts of the house where they belong, and below is what the room looks like as of today.

Down there is the new back half of the room, with my cool slanty couch, and my corner of chaos. The couch was my dad’s before he passed away so it’s sentimental. Luckily, it’s also functional so I have an excuse to keep it always and forever. That big tub is all the paperwork from my two scrapbook businesses, MEMORY WORKS and Calla Memories. I can get rid of most of it. I just need to go through it and save some paperwork for tax records and such.

The white shelving unit has all my mini album stuff – supplies and some completed albums – but I want to get rid of that shelf and find another way to store my mini album kingdom. That’s actually a shoe shelf so I’m hoping to then move it into my closet and use for, oh, I don’t know…..SHOES???

The basket on top of the white shelves contains letter stickers, which were all nicely sorted by color at one time, and easy to thumb through when I scrapped. Then….I discovered THICKERS. Dun dun dun dunnnnnnnn! I use Thickers lots and I buy Thickers lots. I have a Thicker addiction and I hope there ain’t no cure! But, yeah, I need to go through that basket and purge some old alphas I’ll never use. Like the first major set I bought oh so many years ago, of punch out alphas (I think they were by COLORBOK) in every color and pattern known to man (including plaid and leopard!), in a bubble font, a lollipop font, etc. Eek. Perfect for the kids to use on school projects but NOT for my scrapbooks).

The black boxes are POWER SORT BOXES from CREATIVE MEMORIES and that’s where most of my printed photos are. But photo and memorabilia organization is an ever-changing and never-ending project/battle for me. I’m not even gonna’ GO there right now. The white cubes they’re in are ITSO brand from TARGET. As you can see, I had more photo boxes than Itso cubes, so I bought another Itso from Target when they were on sale recently. (If I remember right, I paid $12 instead of $20). You can see it on my desk in the next photo.

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Below is my mess of a desk, and my flooded floor (flooded with scrap crap, that is). There’s the new Itso cube, and one of my new 3-drawer JET MAX cubes. Actually, “new” is relative since I’ve collected 3 of these units over time from MICHAELS using 50% off coupons. I’ve just never put them together, knowing I had this big re-org project coming up. Recently I assembled one and, man, are they a pain in the asset! Don’t get me started. If you’ve put these together, you know what I mean. (I feel sorry for THIS poor scrapper!) I’m dreading the assembly of the remaining 2 but I shall do it, I shall.

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I’ve done a little more work on the Wall of Cubes and this is how they look as of now…

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The cubes themselves were already pretty organized before I started this crazy project, as they contain the staples of my scrapbook world: Bazzill cardstock sorted by color, die cut/shaped papers, extra page protectors, scrapbook projects, etc. Most of the vertical files by CROPPER HOPPER are sorted by manufacturer and include patterned paper and all embellishments from that company. They could use some tidying but for the most part, the vertical files are good as they are. The gingerbread jars on top, however, are another story. When I first got them way back when on Craigslist (read about it HERE), I had them organized pretty well, but over time I lost control and just started throwing new things in with no rhyme or reason. I’m going to do a post soon about using 2 of the jars for my chipboard letters. There’s one full of flowers, and the rest I plan to use for random embellishments by color. I also put my ribbon jars back on my cubes…ribbons are sorted by color. I love my cubes and jars…they’re my favorite part of my scrapbook room. Can’t wait til I get this part totally done! My pretties, LOL…

So, that’s where I’m at for now. Thanks for sticking with me. I promise I’ll get done eventually, but real life has to come first, so it’ll continue to be slow progress. But progress is progress, right?

Crop Report and Michaels Coupon News

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Just wanted to tell you about the crop I went to on Saturday. It was a lot of fun and I got 9 pages done in about 11 hours. That might be a record, LOL. Granted, I need to add the journaling on most of the layouts so they’re not complete quite yet. The crop was from 9 to 9 and I said I was going to get there right at 9, to take full advantage of my crop fee….cuz I’m stingy like that. However, I didn’t end up leaving the house until 9, then went to Michaels and Starbucks on the way (which were both right down the street from the crop).

At Michaels, I learned two things from the employees while I was there. 1. The beading area (at least at our store) is expanding, and 2. No more Michaels coupons via Sunday paper flyers. Yes, I’m bolding that…it’s big news!

So I was cruising the scrapbooking area, looking for something worthy of my 40% coupon, and coming up dry at that point. I went to look in the center aisle sections, desperately trying to find the load of new Sassafrass product “mah people” told me was at Mike’s these days (no luck). The next aisle from scrapbooking is beading and there were two employees resetting the aisle. I said, “Hi” and one of them asked if they could help me find anything. I meant to ask about the Sassafrass but my eyes were blinded by the dizzying array of new beads they were hanging. Like, row upon row upon row of beads! My jaw dropped and she goes, “Yeah, we’re expanding to three aisles.” I said, “I used to make beaded jewelry but stopped for scrapbooking. Maybe I’ll have to get into it again!” and we laughed. Then I said, “You know, I’d better just not look,” and she said, “Yeah, bead shopping is pretty addicting.” She paused and said, “And I hear scrapbook shopping can be pretty addicting, too. Is that right?” I said, “Oh, you don’t know the half of it!!” And we all laughed. I complimented them on all the new scrapbook stuff they’ve been getting and told them to keep it coming. {I realize they’re employees, not buyers, but it never hurts to put in a good word, right?}.

I ended up grabbing a paper pad from We R Memory Keepers with sport stuff, called “MVP,” for $12 instead of $20. I would link you the whole line on the WRMK site, but I couldn’t find it there. Gotta’ say, I’m not a big fan of their website, the way it’s organized and the lack of information. But I copied this from an online retailer.

When I was checking out, the cashier told me that Michaels would no longer have ads in the Sunday paper, and that coupons would be strictly from the mailing list/website. She gave me a cute flyer explaining how to get on the mailing list, and I told her I was already on it, so I’m good to go. I asked her why did she think they were doing that, and she assumed it was due to cost, but had not been told that. So, more things changing due to the economy, I guess. I enjoy looking through the Michaels ad on Sunday mornings, along with Target and a few others, while I drink my coffee. Then I go right to the cupboard for my scissors, cut the coupon out, and stick it in my purse. So now my routine will change and I’ll have to remember to print the coupon out from the computer, but whatevs. I’m cool with it. Can’t blame them for having to stop the ads; they must be really expensive when you imagine ALL the newspapers they’re in. Some Canadian Peas said they’re doing the same thing up there. I do wonder if it’s a good business move though, don’t you? Do you think having the ad right there in your paper entices crafters and non-crafters alike to buy when they normally wouldn’t? I mean, you and I who are computer savvy (and on this dang thing all the time) have no problem just getting on their e-mail list and checking the ad online. But what about Nancy Sue in Kalamazoo who browses her Sunday ads, sees silk trees or Christmas decor on sale at Michaels, and thinks, “Oh, that’s a good price. I should go check that place out.” KWIM? Without the ad, I could see Michaels losing a lot of business. Anyway, us Mike’s freaks can view the weekly ad and sign up to receive printable coupons via e-mail HERE.

So, I left Mike’s, grabbed my sugar-free latte from StarCrack’s….erm, I mean…Starbucks, and got to the crop by about 10. There ended up being nine of us there. The hostess gave me a goodie bag with 3 sheets of Scenic Route 12×12 paper, all of which I ended up using on a “Back to Skool” 2-pager. The hostess had some things for sale (I bought 2 packs of Thickers….finally found one pack I’d been looking for….some Daisy D rub-ons, and a few other things).

There was a Creative Memories rep there taking catalog orders and I spoke to her about getting the new crop bags that are coming out….have you seen them? OMG! So so so cute! The whole set is black and white with a subtle daisy design and the interior of all the bags are pink polka dots. I love having a light-colored interior as it’s easier to find things. I can’t find a photo online or I would show you. I’ll go on and on about these bags in another post when I can find a photo of them. But I told the CMC that I was going to ask for the large bag (like an XXL) and a couple others for Christmas from my mom and DH. The bags I have were purchased piece meal. They’re old and they don’t match…some black, some navy, some blue. I got her card and will contact her when the time comes.

There was also a crop friend there selling Memory Works. She is a really sweet lady I’d met before through the crop hostess. We got to commiserate about being Memory Works Consultants and compare notes, so it was great. She had some Scrapbook Trends magazines (well, they’re like books really) for sale for $8; I think they’re usually $15. I don’t ever buy ST because it’s so dang expensive plus ~ I guess I’m a weirdo ~ but I like the ads so an “ad free” magazine isn’t a good thing to me, LOL! But I bought this issue called, “TrendSetters” which showcases 15 top scrapbookers; it’s from 2006. I love reading profiles of scrappers and seeing their work.

I couldn’t find this issue on the SCRAPBOOK TRENDS website but an online retailer sells it for about $14 (discounted), so I did get a good deal.

So, shopping and cropping all day. Couldn’t have had a better day if I tried. Hope you got some scrappy time this weekend as well. What do you think about the disappearance of Michaels ads in the Sunday paper?

Good Grief Blog: Scrapbooking the Loss of a Loved One

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Isn’t it interesting the way God times things in our lives? Giving us just what we need, just when we need it…

I recently posted this layout on my blog, about my Dad who passed away 16 years ago.

In case it’s too small to read, the journaling is simply the lyrics from “THE DANCE” by Garth Brooks:

Looking back
on the memory of
the dance we shared
beneath the stars above.
For a moment
all the world was right.
How could I have known
that you’d ever say goodbye?

And now
I’m glad I didn’t know
the way it all would end,
the way it all would go.
Our lives
are better left to chance.
I could have missed the pain
but I’d have had to miss
the dance.

It’s only the second layout I’ve been able to complete about my dad, even though I’ve been scrapping for 8 years. Doing layouts about him is such a struggle for me. The first one I did was for a Father’s Day challenge at AMR, and the second one {above} was recently done for a Book of Me challenge, also at AMR. Are we seeing a pattern? LOL I only seem to force myself on this issue…if I’m challenged. I’m one of those who didn’t really allow myself to go through the whole grieving process as I should have right after he died. So, here I am 16 years later, STILL kind of avoiding the feelings most of the time. The strange thing is that when I force myself to do these challenge layouts that involve my grief over his loss, I DO feel better afterwards. Part of that is the relief of getting some long pent-up feelings out on paper, and part of it is the encouragement, sympathy, and other heartfelt comments my fellow scrappers make about the layouts. Which I realize are the works of a mediocre scrapper, but do come from an honest place in my heart.

That said…I honestly don’t know when I would’ve done another “Dad” layout in the near future. I’m tellin’ ya’….PAIN. FULL. Full of pain. Right? And Avoidance is my middle name, baby!

Then along comes my homegirl EMILIE at the SCRAP REVIEW {love her for so many reasons; hers is one of the only blogs I make sure to read on a daily basis} to help along with some divine intervention :) She posted THIS about a new blog called GOOD GRIEF. Here is what it’s about, taken from the Good Grief blog:

We here have all experienced a loss. Together, we hope to heal. This site is intended to help in that process…to be a source of inspiration and motivation…and to simply be a place to share and know that others understand. To that end, we (the contributors) have created these scrapbook challenges. For us, scrapbooking about our lost loved ones is therapeutic on many levels. Challenges are completely open…anyone can participate and challenges are very much open to interpretation…take from them whatever helps YOU. Tackle them in whatever format suits you (layouts, mini albums, home decor, anything!). No rules…New challenges and examples will be posted on the 1st and 15th of each month. Between challenges, more in-depth looks at the contributor layouts will be posted. As this site evolves, we hope to add more content between the challenges and will look to you for ideas and suggestions.

And whaddya know? Their first challenge is….USE LYRICS. Bla-dow. DONE. Mwuh. Meant to be. Am I right? So I’m taking this as a sign: My angel, Emilie, was sent to give me the message about Good Grief. And me not being one to ignore angel messages, I will be entering my above layout in their first challenge, and plan to enter more challenges in the future.

Those Good Grief girls are just what I need. Challenge, inspiration, and the knowing of true grief. AMANDA PROBST started the blog ~ You may know her from CREATING KEEPSAKES. When I used to hang out at CKMB, she often posted and I remember when her dad died because, boy oh boy, could I relate to the feelings she was expressing. Like her, I lost my dad suddenly due to an accident, while he was in his 50s, so we are both raising children who are growing up without a Grandpa who should, mathematically speaking, still be here. Amanda was also sweet enough to join us once for Scrap Chat Hour at AMR, back when HER BOOK came out.

So, yeah, it all comes full circle, doesn’t it? I love this online scrapbooking community. It’s full of wonderful women whom I’ve never met in real life, and probably never will, yet they touch my heart in their own little way, at just the right time, with just the right inspiration. God bless them.

Typos in Published Scrapbooking Articles and Layouts :(

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Okay, I’m gonna’ have to go off on a little rant here because this really bothers me. I’ve seen this over the years and kept my mouth shut but here we go….this mutha’ is ON now!

I’ve been reading through a special issue from SIMPLE SCRAPBOOKS called “Scrapbook Play with Photos”….

….and, not to pick on just them because I see it everywhere but this is just the most recent example. I’m not even through the entire issue yet and I’ve already found several typos in the magazine text, and typos on layouts. {Just so you know, I’m purposely not mentioning the name of the article writer or person who created the layouts, as my intention isn’t to embarrass any one person and, actually, I lay the blame at the foot of the magazine editors anyway}.

Page 11 – A soccer team layout – which is totally rockin’, by the way – with a glaring typo in the layout title, “We are the CHAMPOINS.” I read through the entire page, assuming there was some explanation for the mistake but there was none. I mean, really, how do you MISS that before the magazine goes to publication? It’s hugely noticeable from the second you look at the page.

Page 14 – A cute little boy with curly hair layout called “That Hair!” with journaling that includes, “End the end, we aren’t sure.”

Page 24 – In the text to explain how to “dress up a picture with a transparency sheet,” it says, “…it will subtle detail and design interest….”

And I’ve only read through page 44 of a 99-page issue!

Okay, I know I’m picky. When I was a program analyst for 9 years, I used to proudly say, “I put the ANAL in ANALyst.” I was an English major and I used to edit fellow students’ thesis papers and Senior Projects for fun. I’m a transcriptionist who gets tiny joy from fixing all the little errors doctors make when they dictate. Okay, yeah, yeah, I’m WAY pickier with this stuff than your average bear. I get it.

But are all these typos and mistakes acceptable? For me, when I see errors like this in a professionally published magazine, I loose truckloads of respect for all involved. I mean, if I were a scrapper lucky enough to get my work chosen for publication, you can bet your bippy I’d be proofing my title and journaling within an inch of their lives. And then I’d have every person I know proof it, too. Yet time and time again, I see published layouts that have misspellings, missing letters or words, or other mistakes in the journaling or title. I do remember a couple times – I think it was discussed on the CKMB so this must’ve happened to layouts that were published in one of their mags – that it wasn’t the scrappers fault; one time a layout was published with something turned the wrong way and another time an embellie had fallen down to the bottom of a layout during shipping and the magazine photographed it that way….much to the dismay of the scrapper, who saw her beautiful layout misrepresented to a huge audience. Okay, THAT kind of thing, I don’t blame the scrapper for. Maybe the sweet lady who made the “CHAMPOINS” layout assembled it correctly, then the letters fell off in shipping, and the magazine staff reassembled it incorrectly. Any way you slice it, the magazine is responsible for making such a huge mistake.

As for all the typos in articles, features, and such, I just don’t get it. I see them all the time in the scrapbooking magazines, and I’m not just talking about in recent months when magazines are cutting staff or their hours due to economic hard times. This has all been happening since the “rich heyday” when they all had full staffs. Honestly, I don’t pretend to know how FUH-REAKIN’ hard it must be to put out a monthly magazine. I know there are so many details upon details to be completed perfectly. I can see how a “their” that shoulda’ been a “there” could be missed on occasion. However, I’ve always been really stumped by the fact that SO many little errors, typos, and imperfections find their way into scrapbook magazines. I also read “People” and “Us” on a regular basis and very rarely catch typos or mistakes in those magazines. Funnily enough, they often print their own “corrections” in the next issue and I’ll scratch my head, going, “Hmmm, I missed that.” Guess I don’t know the names of all the celebrities’ kids as well as I thought, huh? It’s not really the same thing anyway, because it’s not typos they’re usually correcting, just incorrect information like saying it was Goldie Hawn in a photo caption when it was really Kate Hudson, LOL.

On a side note, don’t even THINK of pointing all all the typos and mistakes in this blog, for the following reasons: 1. I am not read by millions, 2. I am a staff of one, 3. I’m usually working on 3 hours of sleep and no coffee, 4. Sometimes I put them in just for fun and to see if you’re paying attention, and most importantly, 5. I am not paid. At the jobs where I’m actually paid, I work my tail off to make sure there are never typos. But here on the blog, see, it’s a whole different ball a’ wax…

So, what do you think? Do you notice all the mistakes in the scrapbooking magazines? Does it bug you? Why do you think it happens? I’d be really interested to know your thoughts.

Paper, Scissors, Death: A Scrapbook Mystery

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Sometimes in our little online world, you make the coolest friends (whom you’ve never really “met”), and they help you out in the coolest ways. My “friend” Nicole from the HUMOR ME blog (and a fellow CKMB’er and fellow AMR MB’er) hooked me up big time! Gosh, it’s a long story and I’d probably farkle it up anyway but long story short, Nicole gave my e-mail and blog info to the author of not one but TWO new scrapbooking novels. (PS: Nicole is quite the writer and is beginning to rub elbows with Big Time Writers. She’s been published on the Killer Hobbies Blog and was just asked back to write for them again). The author is JOANNA CAMPBELL SLAN who is associated with a fun hobby blog called KILLER HOBBIES. Okay, pause, rewind…first I need to say THIS BOOK IS NOT COMING OUT UNTIL FALL 2008 and will be published by MIDNIGHT INK. Anywaaaayyyyzzz…thanks to Nicole “introducing me” to Joanna, I am one of the lucky bloggers she has chosen to send an advance copy of her book!!! I’m so frickin excited! I don’t get it until September but that’s okay, I can wait. Then I’ll read the book, give you all a review on my blog, and hopefully even have the author herself “come by” around the time the book comes out. Okay, you have to understand, I love to read novels, I love to write, I LUH-HUH-HUV scrapbooking. What better stinkin’ thing could happen to me? Well, I will tell you…NOTHING! Ha!

So there are all kinds of cool things about this book, including that it’s part of a series and Joanna has already written Book #2, to be called “Designed for Death.” The e-mail I just got from Joanna is full of details but I’m not sure how much I can say yet, so I’ll share with you as I can. Maybe I’ll put out little teases all summer, LOL. For now, I’ll share this from Joanna: “…as of today, AMAZON was accepting pre-orders. Signed copies are available through Main Street Books of St. Charles (email msbstchas@sbcglobal.net).” So if you are as excited about this new novel as I am, you can pre-order it now (click HERE. (C’mon, it’s showing on pre-order as only $10.17 plus another 5% off at checkout), or even request a signed copy!

What do you think? Are you looking forward to Joanna’s books? Have you read any scrapbooking novels or mysteries before?

More On Stacy Julian Leaving…

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Please see THIS POST (or just look right below this post) for the news that broke yesterday. Just wanted to direct you again to STACY’s BLOG, as she has now posted about these events. And also back to the SIMPLE SCRAPBOOKS blog, as their editor, Jennafer Martin, left a nice post today (again, undated, and there is no direct link…so if you click my link, it will take you to the blog but not directly to the post…grrr…). There are also links to blogs with “Stacy” posts, and they announced the winner to the daily contest from yesterday.

Stacy Julian: Stepping Down from Simple Scrapbooks

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From the Simple Scrapbooks BLOG today (? … I guess…it’s not dated…)

++++++++++++++++

Oh the Places You’ll Go!
Well, we can’t keep Stacy to ourselves anymore! She’s got so many exciting new opportunities coming her way (on top of a schedule only Superwoman herself could manage) that she’s decided she needs to lighten her load here at Simple Scrapbooks magazine. Stacy is a true entrepreneur, a big-picture thinker (pun intended!), a creative machine, and a scrapbook ambassador. And it’s only going to get bigger and better from here. We are so happy for Stacy–she’s following her heart, and we have no doubt that great things will come out of this move. We can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!
While Stacy will be less involved in the day-to-day runnings of the magazine, we will insist on publishing her projects whenever possible. And her original vision will continue to guide this magazine, as it has from day one. Stacy will always love Simple, and Simple will always love Stacy. We’re certainly going to be keeping tabs on her, and looking for opportunities to grow and evolve the scrapbook industry together!

You can look forward to your regular dose of Stacy in the next FOUR upcoming issues: May/June, July/August, September/October, and our Mini Albums in an Evening special issue, on sale in July. In the meantime, please join us in celebrating Stacy as we kick off the first-ever Stacy Julian Appreciation Week! Want to join in the festivities? Here’s what you do:

1. Call. We’ve set up a special toll-free number that you can call for the next 30 days and leave Stacy a voicemail! How cool is that? Call 1-888-HUG-STACY to share your thoughts. (note: that cool vanity number won’t be live until Monday AFTERNOON. In them meantime, you can leave your message at 877-809-8041.)
2. Comment. Leave a comment on THIS blog to let Stacy know how much her work has meant to you. We’ll pick one random commenter EVERY DAY this week to win a copy of Stacy’s new book, Photo Freedom. {NOTE: Leave a comment on the SIMPLE SCRAPBOOKS blog, NOT Scrapbook Obsession. I’m sure Stacey does not read my blog, nor will I be handing out books for free, LOL!}
3. Browse. Check out what Stacy has to say on her blog, and please leave her some happy mail there as well. Then visit Wendy’s blog and Cathy’s blog for more Stacy tributes (one done in video form!).
4. Check Back. We’ve got guest bloggers showing up all week long, so check back every day for news and updates. (Our Editor in Chief Jennafer Martin is on deck for tomorrow.)

sj

A Note from Angie to Stacy:
Stacy, this is my favorite picture of you. It reminds me what a cheerleader you’ve always been to me personally and to the readers we all care so much about. I really mean this: I scrapbook today because your philosophy rescued me. I was overwhelmed by my pictures. I felt behind. I had given up. But your Simple Scrapbooks vision got me back in the game. And for that I will always be grateful. Thank you for the inspiration, the motivation, and the SmartCookies you brought to our meeting last week. Also, thank you for publicly admitting that you are a nose picker, which inspired me to come out of the closet with my nose picking ways. Booger Busters unite! (Not sure if you wanted it to be THIS public, but there it is.)
[Um, yes Angie, that was way TMI!]

p.s. We’re also sending Stacy a different present every day this week. Once I know she has received today’s present, I’ll let you know what it was!
++++++++++++++++++++++

The post above says to keep checking blogs from Stacey, Wendy and Cathy so here are the links if you’re interested.

Nothing on Stacy Julian’s BLOG yet but I’ll keep checking.

Wendy Smedley’s BLOG – she has already posted a ‘PUBLIC APPRECIATION‘ for Stacy.

Cathy Zielske’s BLOG – she has posted a very cool YOU TUBE FOR STACEY

CONGRATS to Stacy Julian! It sounds like we’ll still be seeing her in the scrapbook world, just extending beyond SIMPLE SCRAPBOOKS magazine. I’m assuming the BIG PICTURE SCRAPBOOKING and BOOK WRITING PROJECTS are going so well, that’s where we’ll find her. But with Stacey, you never know. I hear she has boundless amounts of energy so perhaps we’ll see her in other places as well. I look forward to seeing what Stacy has in store for us.

I hope you enjoy participating in the contest on the SS blog, and that you leave a note of appreciation for Stacey somewhere. I think she deserves to know how much she means to all us scrappers.

Photos of My Shopping Haul

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In THIS POST the other day, I told you about my 3 scrap-shop-stops @ Michaels, a craft store, and my LSS. Here are pics of my haul…

PATTERNED PAPERS:
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On the far left is the MAMBI kit, merely called “Family” from Michaels. It has cool primary colored papers and lots of rub-ons and Soft Spokens related to family togetherness. But what sold me were the three lines of orange, green and blue blingees AND the chipboard sheet with large circles, which I’ve been needing to complete a layout from EASY PATTERNS for ages. Anyway, all their kits were 40% off, whoo hoo. Come to think of it, I should have gotten more (uh, dork!).

Next is 2 sheets of Chatterbox called “Sweetheart Roses,” one side with a modern flower design, the other solid pink. Then I think my fave PP of the day, 2 sheets of “Affection” by Prima. One side is deep color stripes, the other deep red roses. I love the roses so much, I think I’ll use both sheets as roses and just forget the stripes! But isn’t that always the challenge of double-sided paper? You love both sides, like two children you’ve given birth to, how do you CHOOSE!?! Next are a couple of sheets of “Pastel” Doodlebug (polka dots & flowers), then a random stripey one, then 2 more older sheets of “Obviously Orange” Doodlebug with a bright summer theme. And lastly, on the far right, 2 sheets from “Jack+Abby” by Love, Elsie. That ledger style on the last sheet caught my eye, then I found the brown circles paper to go with it. On the very bottom of the pic are 3 sheets of very Spring-y papers from Bo Bunny Press called “Lil Princess.” The photo doesn’t do them justice because the colors are really WOW, very cheery and bright. All 3 are double-sided with pink, yellow and green on the back sides and thick like cardstock.

Now for the BAZZILL:
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Is something seriously wrong with me that I get such overwhelming JOY looking at all that Bazzill cardstock?? On the top row are the sheets with either linen or grasscloth texture; ooh, such purdy colors. The bottom row is Bling and then a couple scallop designs. Proud to say I only paid full price for 2 sheets from all that PP and cardstock. Wicked cool.

Okay, well, it’s been decided. I’m not going admit I have a problem, because if I do, that would be the first step in my recovery. And I don’t wanna recover…so there! I ENJOY being addicted to paper. I EMBRACE my obsession with texture and color and design. I’m NOT embarrassed to admit that I love the smell of paper and the weight of it in my hands when it’s all stacked nicely, corners matching up perfectly. So, are ya’ with me??

Scrapbook Organization: My Space…AGAIN

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This is so embarrassing. After all my bragging about organizing my scrap space earlier this year (it was THIS POST), it’s a mess again. Holy cow! I think it’s even worse. Yeah, I just looked at the Before photos from last time and it is much, much worse now. My excuse is that I started as a scrapbook consultant this year and now, in addition to all my own stuff, I have to ‘keep stock on hand’ of Memory Works products. At any given time, I also have boxes of orders here until I distribute them. But, that being said, the real reason it’s a mess is because I haven’t kept up on it. I didn’t create a solution before I had the problem. And I’ve kept buying new scrapbook supplies while hardly using any. Okay, here is the disgusting evidence:

This is as you walk into my scrapping area, which is the back half of a larger room with the kids’ play area in the front. As you can see, the walkway is closing in on itself and I can barely walk through there without losing body parts. The box of red albums is a Daisy D’s Year in Review and Christmas album. I’m doing a class/party on that the week after Christmas. There’s my little Lexmark standalone photo printer that I got at Target for $25 on Clearance. I tried to use it once, got frustrated when it wouldn’t print anything but green photos, and it has sat collecting dust ever since. Although I did recently buy that Lexmark-specific photo paper (it’s sitting on top of the printer) to try again before I toss the thing out the window. The blue bins I bought last month to try and better display my products at crops, etc. (will be a separate post about those later). Until now, I’ve been using a big clear Rubbermaid container and small, white plastic baskets to display things. The Rubbermaid is just plain ugly and the white baskets are cute enough, but the sides are too low and everything just kind of flops over and won’t stand up for customers to look through it. You can also se my XXL tote and another smaller one (don’t remember what that one is called). I load them up with MW products when I go to crops and it’s nice because they protect everything from dust and getting bent in transit, and the XXL is on rollers so I can really carry lots of stuff. The problem is then I have no room to take my own crop stuff (tool kit, page kits, etc.). Needing a solution to that problem. The cream tote is all my Memory Works catalogs and paperwork. Well, I shouldn’t say “all”…there is another huge white binder of stuff in my home office. The black box is a Creative Memories Power Sort box full of photos and memorabilia from my Europe cruise. That was in 2006 and I’m only about half way through the album (if you don’t count journaling, of which I’ve hardly done any). Everything in the Power Sort is getting dusty because I can’t put the lid on or it will crush my brochures, menus, etc. To the far right is my shelf which has stayed pretty organized, mainly because it’s packed and there is nowhere to put anything else. But it needs work, for sure. The two ziploc bags on the floor are my templates, CM cutting system, Coluzzles, etc. They used to go on that shelf but they got kicked out when I bought some new blank albums.

mess1

After you walk in my scrap area and take a left, you’re looking at the window and my desk. That stack of paper with the black and white Jenni Bowlin on the top (love it!) is my December kit from Memory Works Express. I had it out of the box to look through it and never put it away. Under that are some other recent purchases: K&Co. Wild Saffron slab; DCWV cardstock pad with the jagged edges (what’s that called?), and two SIS tool packs that are empty. I had all my acrylic stamping stuff in one of them and it got full, so I bought an identical one when they were on a great sale at Tuesday Morning. Then I found the black tote at Michaels (you’ll see it later in the tour) for 40% off and moved all my stamps into the tote. Not sure if I’m liking it, so while I decide, the empty blue tool packs sit empty. The ribbon jars on the right look fine ~ I’ve managed to keep up with my ribbon this way, just tossing in any new ribbon I get right away. The large white box and another stack under the brown box (that you can’t see here) are picture frames from Costco that I bought about two months ago. Okay, let’s be honest, it’s been more like six months. I HATE the picture frames I have around my house right now and keep saying I will redo them, but there they sit. It just seems so intimidating to figure out which pictures I want to put in which frames, get them enlarged and/or converted to black and white, choose which pictures go where in the house, and hang them. I’m procrastinating big time on that one. The basket on the top right is full {bursting at the seams} with letter stickers. Even though I have a Cricut, I can’t seem to stop buying alpha rub-ons, Thickers, chipboard alphas and sometimes even sticker letters. Although I’m proud to say I don’t buy those much anymore because I know I won’t use them; I have years’ worth to use already. Although most of my letters are at least in one place (that basket), they definitely need to be purged and organized.

mess2

This is the top of my legal size filing cabinet. Inside is actually very organized, with all my greeting cards sorted by event; receipts, instruction books, etc in files; and office supplies like printer paper, extra cartridges, etc. Again, ribbon jars look good although they’re dusty on top. I purged magazines and idea books last time I did The Big Cleanup and now the stack is back! New magazines, idea books and other books that need to be purged or put away.

mess3

Here is the heart of the space, where i actually scrap, my L-shaped desk. With the missing front trim that never got put on because we didn’t follow the instructions properly when we put it together from the box. Once the desk was together, waaayyyy too much trouble to pull it apart again just to add some silly little trim. Anyway, you can see my black tool pack which holds many of my essentials – various adhesives, stylus, stapler, etc. The papers on top are envelopes from Christmas cards we’ve received so I can update my address list. I mean, really, that doesn’t even belong in here and that’s what happens a lot. If I want to straighten another area of the house, I just put things in here. Voila! We have a mess! On the right side are sticky notes and mailing supplies; my new ToteAlly Cool totes (larger for punches, Stickles, etc and smaller one for Cropadile, pens and scissors); the ever present Diet Coke. In the back are recently developed photos that have nowhere to go so I keep stuffing them back there. To the left is my ScrapRack which is very organized but too full so, see, the little K&Co. tags are falling out of the Christmas section. And my glorious new Basic Grey Magnetic Mats and faithful Cutterpede paper trimmer.

mess4

Here is my little corner with my stereo (new Pebbles Inc. Ribbon Iron on top cooling off because I just used it); high dollar printer and scanner that I never use; random Mike’s and Target stamps for long-overdue RAK’s; baby wipes to clean acrylic stamps; and my labeler which surprisingly gets a lot of use in my space. I’m very organized about being disorganized! The desk drawers have computer equipment, font and software CD’s, etc and are very organized but I don’t seem to go in there very much, so maybe that stuff could go elsewhere and open up some space for scrap-related things? The cupboard side contains my Cricut, mats, and cartridges on top, a bin with electrical cords, phone cords, power strip, etc on bottom. Again, why is that stuff in here? I do have an old laptop on my desk that I just use for journaling but I hardly ever use the accessories anymore so they could go in a closet or something. See, progress already!

mess5

Here is the rest of my desk. There is the black Michael’s tote I told you about. All my acrylic stamps, ink pads, alcohol inks, stamp cleaners, etc are in there. Behind the tote are: a bucket of Prima flowers I’m borrowing from a friend, my ink pens in Creative Memories Pen Holders, and random new products that need to be put away. The Colorbok paper pads under the black tote will be for sale, but I need to log them in my computer first. The pile on the left is mostly the stuff from my Secret Santa (thanks again!) and the right side pile is memorabilia to file and a new notebook for scrap ideas, to do lists, etc. (First entry should be: TO DO ~ Clean up your damn space!).

mess6

Wow, okay… Seeing your mess in a big full color photo is even MORE eye-opening, even MORE embarrassing and shocking. Deep breath. Count to 10. Breathe out through the nose. Yoga breaths, yoga breaths. Okay. I’m back. This is the table to the left of my desk (the far side of it is near the walkway we already saw). I brought this table in the last time I organized, thinking it would be extra space to work on big projects, sort my photos, or have a friend over to crop. Yeah, right. It’s become a primo dumping ground for the stuff I guess I just used to leave on the floor. On the table you can see more gingerbread jars which I’ve been dumping various embellies in that either need to be put away, or are prizes for crops. The 12×12 stack back there is mainly paper to file or put a price tag on. The white baskets I was using to display my products ~ one is empty, the other has in it two Memory Works Express Kits from May 2007. One is mine, one is for sale. There are papers and embellishments in a super large Ziploc, including a box of glitter chipboard letters from K&Co. which I need to keep bagged together to sale and/or act as a sample of the kit. The problem is that each of these kits comes with an alterable project and this one was a small paint can. I mean, jeez, how to you even store that?? I guess my lame answer is, “In a white plastic basket.” Down below the table are my very organized page kits in a white plastic crate, another jar, and a Target bag with a flattened postal box and some acrylic stamps to sell once I get them in the computer and price tags put on. At the bottom middle of the photo are two cardboard file boxes on the floor. Hiding under the bag of Figgy Pudding Card Kit stuff (with cards in progress) is one project box (album, papers, embellishments, photos and souveniers from a big trip we took in, yes, 2005). The other is a project box for my 2006 cruise album. Neither has even been touched in months, except to add or take papers from. What you can’t see is that the entire space under my desk is filled with bins of my old photo storage system (remember THIS POST about how I was going to re-do that?), altered projects to make (photo cubes, shadow boxes, etc.), and Christmas presents. I’ve been shoving gifts under there all year because it’s the perfect hiding place. Everyone is scared to come over here! Seriously, my DH sends the kids in to grab the wastepaper basket once in a while or he just yells over to me, “Hey, how’s your trash? Bring it here if it needs emptied, please.” Smart man. Very, very smart man.

mess7

This is just a close up of the jars on the table, and you can see the blue basket in the background where I’ve put some of the paper packs I have for sale. They are elsewhere in the house, but I have a total of two large blue bins (like the one on the table), two medium sized green ones, and two small blue ones. They are all filled with MW products for sale. The baskets themselves are organized, but I have nowhere in my scrap space to put them.

mess8

So, I have survived the ultimate in humiliation by showing you my ‘crap’ area. I mean, SERIOUSLY?? SERIOUSLY?? And why am I subjecting myself to this, you ask? Because that’s what it takes for me to get to work and get this place cleaned up again. Last time, I entered an Organization Challenge on the CK Message Board. This time, I’m sharing it here on my blog. Now I’m accountable (I mean, if you guys out there really care??) and I WILL get organized again. I’ve come to this conclusion: Now that I’m a scrapbook consultant and have to keep a lot of extra products and paperwork around, this space just isn’t big enough anymore.

Part One of My Plan: My wheels have been turning about how I can re-work this space, maybe somehow utilizing our guest bedroom/office also. I already got DH’s approval to get rid of the old king sized bed in there that takes up half of the room, yet only gets used about four times per year when my mom visits. (No worries, Mom, we’ll findya another place to sleep!).

Part Two of My Plan: I have two weeks off from work for the holidays. Granted, I could get busy with my ‘from home’ jobs, I have at least one scrapbooking event, and we may go out of town for a few days. But I think this is a great opportunity to spend some time getting my scrap area organized…once and for all…um, yeah, right! Do I have your support? You got any suggestions for the dilemmas I’ve shared? I challenge YOU to organize your scrapbooking area over the Christmas break, so post in Comments if you will join me. I would love it if you sent me some photos I could post of your before/after or link us to your blog showing same. DEADLINE IS SUNDAY, JANUARY 6, 2008 (‘cuz ya gotta have a deadline or else you won’t do it!)…

Good luck and God Bless Us all!

Crops and Shopping and Blogging…

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Don’ t have time to write much now, but I wanted to check in and say “hey”. So, HEY!

~ I hosted crops this past Friday and Saturday, from 8am to 12 midnight both days. Phew! Lots of work but SO worth it. I had such a blast and sold a lot of scrapbook supplies, so it’s all good. Will tell you more about it later.

~ Went scrapbook shopping today while my mom is in town. Got a lot of cute stuff, and finally found the book I’ve been wanting: The Organized and Inspired Scrapbooker. I’ll give a review when I’ve gone through it.

OAIS book

~ Okay, what’s up with my last post re: the latest HOF scandal with Bernadette and the two new HOF’ers? There have been lots of looks at it, but no one is commenting (there are 2 comments on that entry, but about other issues). Are y’all just burned out on the HOF issue? Did I say something wrong? You’re just too busy these days? C’mon, you’re hurtin’ my feelings…WTF??

~ My blog is about to roll 40,000 views – wahoo! Since I started the blog about 10 months ago, that’s an average of 4,000 hits a month, and 133 hits per day. I feel so lucky and grateful ~ THANKS! Please keep reading and commenting :)

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