Archive of ‘scrapbook blogs’ category

What I Did Last Week?

Over on Ilse’s blog, she has begun a Sunday list of what she scrapbooked during the preceeding week. She challenged other’s to do the same on their blog, so here I go. But my little twist will be to list everything I did that’s scrapbook-related.

1. Scrapbooked Friday night and Saturday with my mom and a friend.
2. Tried Easy Patterns idea book for first time.
3. Got 8 pages (mostly) done for my European cruise album.
4. Bought scrapbooking organizational items at Target (a spinning desktop pen holder thingee) and Michaels (12×12 Iris clamshell case).
5. Organized my albums on bookshelves, separating blank albums from filled ones :)
6. Labeled large manilla envelopes for January through December 2007, to collect memorabilia. I’m in the process of re-doing the way I sort/store photos and memorabilia.

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SBR Book Review: Easy Patterns for Scrapbooking

I got “Easy Patterns for Scrapbooking” by Brenda Arnall after hearing so many people rave about it. It costs $14.95 on the Creating Keepsakes magazine website. I purchased mine at Michael’s using a 40% off coupon. I used this book for the first time last weekend and just wanted to share my thoughts.

First let me say, I was really in a rut. I felt like all my pages looked the same. You know, cardstock background, patterned paper accents (usually just one pattern, too scared to try more), some rub ons, a journaling box….blah! I’m a pretty basic scrapper, nothing too fancy, with my goal being lots of photos per page. But how to do that in a better way and change up my style a bit? Time for an idea book!

Here is how the Easy Patterns work: You choose a pattern, pick the designated supplies (e.g. 4 sheets of cardstock, 2 patterned papers, and ribbon tape), choose photos, and cut everything to the measurements provided in the instructions. Then you assemble the basic page, adding embellishments like the one’s used or choose your own. You end up with a variety of projects, say (2) 12×12 2-page layouts, 3 cards and a mini-book. A big bonus to me: You have hardly any scraps when you’re done.

Well, because of this book, I’m officially out of my rut! It became easy to try something new. The layouts are not complicated but you can jazz them up to your own liking. I actually mixed…gasp!…three patterned papers on ONE layout. Oh…my…gosh! After seeing several of my Easy Patterns layouts, both my mom and my friend ran right over to Mike’s and bought a copy! I liked how I didn’t really have to think, or overthink, about what I was doing. This is especially nice because I’m often so tired when the house is finally quiet and I have time to scrap. The only challenge was being careful to pick PPs that will work the same way as they do in the sample layouts. Like if a PP had flowers you cut out, yours should have some design you can cut out. And please follow the directions that say to write the letter in pencil on the back of each piece after you cut it.

I have two negative comments: 1) I wish there weren’t so many 8.5×11 layouts. The number of such layouts did not seem proportionate to the number of 8.5×11 (vs. 12×12) scrappers out there. In an ideal world, there would be an entire Easy Patterns book for 8.5×11 and another book for strictly 12×12. 2) For fancy scrappers who like to use lots of techniques or individual style, you might not like this book. But I think you should give it a chance…just put your own spin on em and embellish to your hearts content. I do recommend this book to any scrapper. If you want to try it out before you buy the book, an Easy Pattern is published each month in Creating Keepsakes magazine and there are many on their website that you can try for free.

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Martha, Martha, Martha!! (Martha Stewart, That Is)

Okay, first of all, please tell me you get the reference to The Brady Bunch? Which I still contend is one of the best television shows ever made. Much more wholesome and life affirming than Don Imus, don’t you think?

It’s not like I’m a huge fan of Martha Stewart’s but her scrapbooking products are coming to Michaels Craft Stores (or Mike’s, as we like to call it) and everyone seems quite twitterpated about it. I’m hearing reports that Mike’s all over the country have scrapping aisles that are being rearranged and cleared out for, among other new things, Martha Stewart’s scrapbooking line. Judging by the hits on my blog for this topic, I guess you want to hear more about it, so here goes…

From http://www.marthastewart.com:
“Martha has begun her search for five master scrapbookers. Enter Martha’s Scrapbooking Contest if you think your page is prize-worthy. You could win an amazing scrapbooking package, including HP products and a gift certificate to Michaels Stores. Enter now for your chance to win now!”

She will announce a winner every day during the week of May 7, 2007. Here is what you could win:
One HP Photosmart c7180 All-in-One
One HP Photosmart R837 Digital Camera
HP Premium Photo Paper (15 sheets, 8.5 x 11-inch)
One HP Custom 02 Series 150-Sheet Photo Value Pack
One Gift Certificate to Michaels Stores for $250

So, are ya gonna enter? There’s not a lot of time so get going! Entries accepted from April 10-27, 2007.

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Favorite Scrapbooking Celebrities

Would you feel especially validated if someone you really admire did the same thing you did…after YOU did it?? I just learned from her blog that Cathy Z (of Simple Scrapbooks fame) just bought the same stamps from Cats Life Press that I mentioned in my blog awhile back. I fully acknowledge that it was Ali Edwards (of Creating Keepsakes fame) who orignally discovered these and, dare I say, made them famous. But it still felt good to ‘share’ something with Cathy Z (does that make me a scrap-stalker?? LOL).

Speaking of Scrap Celebs, I think I would like to make a list of my all-time faves:

1. Lisa Bearnson: This woman has always been an idol and mentor to me. She and her husband took an exceptional risk years back and started a scrapbooking magazine out of their garage, at a time when scrapbooking was not very big and magazine publishers guaranteed it would fail. Lisa pushed forward anyway and, as you know, became an amazing success. Through it all, she has maintained her love of scrapbooking, telling her story, and preserving her family memories. Lisa seems to have a very tight-knit family and I know how much work that must take, especially with all the traveling she does. Lisa is the only scrap-celeb I’ve met AND gotten to know a little bit. I’ve seen her at several events, cruised with her in Europe, and watch her religiously on QVC. She is the most consistently nice and gracious person in the industry. I don’t think you can fake that kind of personality, you either is or your ain’t and she is. I also happen to love her scrapbooking taste and think my style is similar to hers (tho’ nowhere near as good!). As you can see, I chose Lisa Bearnson as my #1 favorite and it has as much to do with her as a person as it does with her scrapbooking talent.

2. Cathy Zielske: I always just refer to her as Cathy Z because a) everyone knows who that is, and b) I forget how to spell her last name! I’ve never met Cathy nor seen her in person but, in reading her blog every day, I feel like I’ve learned a lot about her. Again, just a genuinely nice person, a loving mom, and a talented person who shares her wealth (of talent and ideas) with the rest of us. Cathy is quirky, a little more on the wild side than me, raises her kids differently than me, etc yet I find so much in her that I relate to. I SO admire her scrapbooking style. She has given the definition of “simple” a whole new meaning. She captures the important stuff and tells a beautiful story while keeping the focus on the photos and the emotions. I feel like I’m always watching to see what Cathy will do next!

3. Ali Edwards: I love Ali Edwards’ style more than anything. She has really created her own non-duplicatable style from the very beginning. No one can touch her, not even close. To me, she has no fear. Ali just does what Ali wants and we all love it because it’s as close to perfect as it could be. I also admire her work ethic. When she is writing a book AND contributing to CK AND caring for an autistic son AND fundraising for autism research AND supporting her very politically successful husband AND looking so cute doing it, I wanna’ just give her a hug and ask, “When do YOU get to sleep, you poor baby??” But she makes it look effortless and fun, so how can you not admire that?

4. Becky Higgins: Super pretty, super mom, super scrapper, super traveler, and has super style. Becky is a woman who, again, shares her craft openly with others and that’s where she seems to get her joy. Her pages are simple and that girl is NOT just trying to sell product! (I feel that some famous scrappers just try to jam as much product on the page as they can and I go, “Huh? Where are the photos and journaling?”). I really enjoy scraplifting from Becky because she is event-oriented like I am, and she often includes lots of photos per page. Her idea books, Sketches and Sketches 2, are like the Bibles of my scrapbooking table. I refer to them again and again. I only wish I’d found those books as a newbie scrapper – they would’ve saved me lots of headaches and heartaches :) Becky seems to have disappeared a little bit lately from scrap world. I don’t read her blog so I don’t know what’s going on, but I hope all is okay with her. I’ve only met her briefly at a CKU class she was teaching but she was lovely. I imagine her to be a wonderful patient mom who is very supportive of her kids (have I gotten that feeling through reading her journaling all these years?). She also recognizes the importance of families, traditions, and passing this all on to your kids.

I could go on and on. There are so many admirable women (and men) in the scrapbooking world to look up to. Who are your favorites and why? Please share in a Comment or I challenge you to write about your heroes on your blog, and share the link in Comments. I’m really curious who you all look up to.

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More ‘Martha Stewart at Michaels’ News…

On the CKMB, a member said she just went to a taping of the Martha Stewart show. Martha apparently said that her line of scrapbook-related products will be in Michaels stores beginning April 29th, 2007. Martha also said there will be a scrapbooking contest announced next week involving submitting your favorite layout image to her website in May. This post led to a discussion, and others began sharing information about ‘Martha at Mike’s”. Apparently, there have been sightings at various Mike’s around the country of room being made in the scrapbook aisles for her products, and even some signage. The other rumor was that one of her products will be an 18×18 scrapbook! Wowza, that’s fyuge-ous! How do all you scrappers feel about that?!? Seems pretty unwieldy to show off something that big, but it would be a blast to fill those pages…at least for someone like me who takes massive quantities of photos and insists on scrapbooking about 80% of them. The flyer at Mike’s referenced Martha Stewart Paper Crafts and it sounds like there will be party supplies and other paper items. The other news I’ve heard is there will be organizational products and/or scrapbook storage. Well, color me anxiously awaiting…

Update: I also hear that Martha will start using her products on her show starting May 7th. Scrapbook Products will include: fabric, post, expandable, albums 12 x 12, 8 1/2 x 11, AND 18 x 18 ($79.95, yikes). Also, photo boxes and 12×12 paper boxes that coordinate with her scrapbook supplies. Then there’s the scissors, stamps, paper trimmer, punches, glitter, pens, a geneology kit, and ribbons that will coordinate with gift wrapping paper and scrap products. And finally: birthday kits for kids, i.e. paper crafts for cups, plates, gift bags, decorations, invitations AND some labels, recipe cards, etc you can use for homemade baked goods as gifts (I’ve seen her do this on her show a lot; wonderful and thoughtful idea). Mind you, I’m NOT in the industry so I don’t know for sure if any of this is true…I’m just wrangling all the rumors and adding to my own anticipation, LOL.

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Joys of Scrapbooking, Teaching and Starting Small

I held my first little scrapbook event this past weekend. Everyone was finally healthy so I headed down to my friend J’s house. She had invited some other preschool mom’s to her house for scrapbooking. Although the initial interest had been about 12 ladies, there was a much smaller turn out – 1 on Friday night and 2 on Saturday (it was the beginning of Spring Break and a lot of them had travel plans). One of the ladies was a very talented scrapper with a gorgeous book that I got a lot of ideas from. She was also a Basic Grey and Daisy D’s freak like me. The best part was that I got to teach the other 2 ladies to scrapbook for the first time! That was so amazingly fun. Everyone I’ve scrapped with before already knows how so this was my first chance to share my knowledge and my love for scrapbooking! As for Memory Works, everyone loved the products and I did make some sales. I also sold some other items I had collected so I’d have something on hand for the “newbies” – some albums, adhesives, page kits, etc. The silver lining of having such a low turnout was that I got to work on MY scrapbooking. I got 8 more pages done (well, without journaling) for my scrapbook cruise album. I’d forgotten to take my holder of Bazzill cardstock so I used just the Basic Grey solids as backgrounds (had to improvise!) with BG patterned paper as accents. My process for this album – because it’s so extensive – is to complete it in 3 steps. 1. Crop the photos, ink all the edges and get them down onto pages which are usually Bazzill background with BG patterned paper accents. I pre-plan how long the journaling will be and insert a Bazzill journaling box with inked edges where needed with repositionable adhesive. 2. Sit at the computer periodically and knock out all that journaling! 3. When it’s all done, I’ll go back and add extra embellishments like ribbon and scroll rub-ons. I have all the stuff so as I scrap, I kind of have in mind where I’ll add things. This is a huge project, so it’s daunting sometimes, but I’m having so much fun doing it. I’m reliving the memories of the cruise as I go along. Well, I’m glad to have my first event out of the way because I was nervous. Maybe starting small was a blessing! I’m still planning my NSB event for May 5 and this was a good practice run. Hope you had a fun weekend that included scrapping too :)

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What’s Oprah Got Against Scrapbooking?

Now that Oprah is back from her Spring Break and has new shows on again, it got me to thinking: Why hasn’t Oprah ever done an entire show on scrapbooking? Unless I’ve missed something during all these years as a loyal Oprah viewer, the only scrap-related thing ever was when Lisa Bearnson was on for a hot minute during a show about women entrepreneurs (I never saw this episode, I just heard about it – anyone got the low down?). So, I just don’t get it. The Oprah show’s main demographic is probably identical to the main scrapbooking demographic: women age 30 to 50, married with kids. Oprah is known for having shows about the latest, greatest, most popular thing – the “what is everyone doing or talking about?” kind of topics. Well, American women are scrapbooking, girlfriend!!! I have e-mailed Oprah myself with this fabulous show idea – TWICE – and nada, nothing. It’s just so bizarre. What is her resistance to scrapbooking? Is Ms. Winfrey afraid she will get a paper cut when she helps with the demo? Does she have something against people from Utah? Is she waiting until scrapbooking becomes “big”? Well, now is the time! The last scrappin’ statistics I heard went something like this: Every third household has a scrapbooker, and it is now a $3 billion industry. Scrapbooking far surpasses any other craft hobby in popularity and sales. I just wish Oprah would do a scrapbooking show and give this fabulous hobby/art it’s proper due – don’t you???

Edit: Here is a correction/addition to my scrap stats above. It’s quoted from Craftrends News Headlines: “The 2006 Craft & Hobby Association Attitude & Usage Study, released at the January trade show, reveals that the U.S. craft and hobby industry achieved $30.2 billion in annual retail sales, with 57 percent of U.S. households (62 million) participating in crafts last year. Annual average spending per household is $476.”

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Favorite Quotes About Scrapbooking

On the CKMB, many of us have a little signature line that contains our name, our website/blog, a Glitter Name, an icon (or many!), or a funny quote. This one from Brightsy cracked me up:

“Some folks say I have a short attention span, but they just….Ohhh look, sparklies!”

Isn’t that adorable and funny? And it got me to thinking about funny or cute quotes about scrapbooking that I’ve seen over the years, on tee shirts and such. So I went a-searchin’ and here are some quotes I found:

“Scrapbooking fills my days – not to mention my living room, bedroom and closets!” ~Author Unknown

“Blessed are the children of scrapbookers, for they shall inherit the scrapbooks.” ~Author Unknown

“I scrapbook therefore I am – broke.” ~Author Unknown

“I could keep on scrappin’
or I could go to bed,
but then what would I do
with all these layouts in my head?”
~Author Unknown, “My Addiction”

“Just as pieces stitched together in a quilt warm our bodies, scrapbooks bind together memories to warm our hearts.” ~Author Unknown

“My grandmother made me a scrapbook because I was once too young to remember; I am making scrapbooks for my family because one day I may be too old to remember.” ~Author Unknown

“When life gives you scraps, make something with them.” ~Author Unknown

“Keep some souvenirs of your past, or how will you ever prove it wasn’t all a dream?” ~Ashleigh Brilliant

“We gather up pictures and bits of our past
and scrapbook them into a gift that will last.”
~Kimberly Rinehart, “Scrapbooker’s Verse”

“Scrapbooking isn’t about scraps of paper and photos. Scrapbooking is about scraps of life – yours and those special to you.” ~Rebecca Sower

“To crop or not to crop, that is the question.” ~Author Unknown

“Scrapbooking is cheaper than a therapist.” ~Author Unknown

“My husband lets me have all the scrapbooking supplies I can hide.” ~Author Unknown

“The album we’ve made is much more than a book.
It’s worth even more than the time that it took.”
~Kimberly Rinehart, “Scrapbooker’s Verse”

“A true scrapbook addict is one who stages photographs to match paper she likes.” ~Author Unknown

[Mama] follows us around
hoping we’ll sneeze
So she can have the tissue
“For my scrapbook please.”
~Toni Sorenson Brown, “She’s Out of Control”

“And I’ll bury my soul in a scrapbook,
With the photographs there and the moths.”
— Author:Leonard Cohen

“I’ve spent most of my money scrapbooking and eating out. the rest I’ve pretty much wasted.”– Author:-unknown

“Mess with my scrapbook stuff I’ll punch your eyelets out!” — Author:?

“Perfection is the enemy of completion.” — Author:Bird Dunn

Do you have any favorite scrapbooking quotes to share?

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Martha Stewart Products at Michaels Stores

The Life magazine circular in my newspaper this week had a small feature on Martha Stewart. It said that “She’ll debut a line of craft products – including paper, scrapbooking, and storage items – at Michaels Stores this spring.” I tried to research more about this but I couldn’t find the products on her website. I did find an old Craftrends article from April 2006 that she was partnering with EK Success. As you know, EK Success is one of the top producers of scrapbooking and papercrafting products. Anyway, I can’t wait to see her stuff. I’ve always liked her furniture and home products. Although I don’t own a lot of her things, I have always looked to her for home decor ideas. She uses a lot of the colors and color combos that I like. One of the favorite inspirations I got from her is the use of clean white furniture and white moldings with deep pastel colored walls. For example, my bedroom has an ocean theme. The door moldings and baseboards are white as is some of the furniture. The walls are painted an ocean blue/green color that looks wicked cool against the white. I just love it. Hey, I should try to translate that to a scrapbook layout! Well, I look forward to seeing Martha’s scrapbook products and, like someone on the CKMB said, we can always use our 40% off coupons if her stuff is pricey! The word is that her products will be at Michaels Stores starting this April. My Mike’s is always slow to get new things, so please let me know if you see any “Martha” stuff at your Mike’s, k?

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Youngplay Memories Scrapbook Store

Yay! I finally got to go yesterday. This is the huge super-scrapbook store I’ve talked about before. It’s in Tracy, CA about 10 minutes off the I-5, I-205 and the I-580 (they kind of form a triangle with the store in the middle). This store has over 20,000 square feet of scrapbooking and beading supplies, a huge crop area upstairs, and a latte stand.

I got there about 11:30 am and planned to stay for an hour (yeah, right!). I started in the back of the store which, actually, is where a lot of the good stuff was. They had the usual wall of Bazzill, and their Basic Grey, Bohemia and misc. patterned paper back there. I of course found the Clearance table and had a ball. There was quite a bit to choose from but like most clearance areas, it was disorganized and difficult to wade through. But I did get a bunch of Daisy D punch outs and cardstock stickers, and several sheets of American Crafts letter stickers that I’m using throughout a vacation album. And about 30 Wild Asparagus die cuts (they were 75% off, or $.15 to $.25 each). When the nice lady rang me up, she said I got $11 worth of WA die cuts for $3. For some reason, I never bought the WA kit on QVC or anything, but I do have a lot of their papers. Was glad I got the die cuts to go with them. The bead section, also in the back, appeared to be under construction. Although I also make beaded jewelry, my mission that day was scrapbooking so I moved on.

I was very impressed with their huge sections on boys, girls, babies, sports and birthdays. And the travel section! It just went on and on and on. There were several sets of stickers, papers and die cuts where it appeared they had all 50 states along with some other countries. I was surprised they didn’t have more wedding items and the album selection was small. But they had all the latest and greatest stuff, a nice section of alterable items (I got a large ‘craft’ letter of my first initial to alter), and MANY samples around the store of pages and projects. The entire front wall was covered with project kits for 2-page layouts. They were very cute and very product-heavy but, at $18, too expensive for me. I enjoyed looking at them for ideas though. Unfortunately, the latte shop was powered down so the coffee I’d been waiting for all morning was not to be :( Maybe they only have it going during crops (?). I also couldn’t find any magazines and when I asked at check-out, she said they don’t carry them because they are not good sellers. I said, “I guess everyone already subscribes, huh?” and she said, “Yes, the people who come here are serious scrappers and they already get the one’s they want”. Also very few idea books. The only recent one I saw was Ali Edwards’ A Designer’s Eye for Scrapbooking with Patterned Paper. This would probably not be disappointing for anyone but me, I guess.

I finally got some Bazzill Bling (a sheet each of purple and blue), several Tres Jolie journaling blocks from My Mind’s Eye, and some beautiful embossed paper I’d never seen before called Letter Press from Autumn Leaves. I think my favorite purchases were this, this, this and this. It was very hard NOT to buy the Fancy Pants 12×12 acrylic stamps called Bella Brush and Pollen Dust. They are even more Heavenly in person than on the website! I had to tell myself, “Ok, put them down, back slowly away. They are $30 and you can’t afford them”. I did not leave without some scrumptious stamps however…got the Heidi Swapp clear stamp journaling stamps called love and – my favoritest purchase of the day – KI Memories date stamps called Icons – Calendar. I got my mom a few things towards her Christmas present, and some Heidi Swapp Bling crown stickers for my friend K. She’s ‘the queen of everything’ but going through some hard times right now. I sent them off to her today inside a handmade card (made from a Becky Higgins sketch, really cute, I should’ve taken a photo to post).

So…1.5 hours later (!) and $93.30 on the Visa (!!!), I forced myself to leave. Please don’t think I normally spend that kind of dough…I had a recent windfall and had planned for this trip :) I meant to sneak upstairs and take a peak at the scrap area, but I forgot until I was on the highway. Well, I’ll check it out next time…because there WILL be a next time, I’m sure. I also got some great deals at Old Navy and Walmart on the way home, so it was an entirely successful trip.

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I’m the Tagger This Time!

I enjoyed the Tag You’re It! last time, especially reading everyone else’s responses. I saw another one on Scrap My World and I wanna’ do it even though she didn’t tag me :)

I have to share 5 quirky things about me. Here goes…

1. I do not eat red meat. Please don’t give me credit for anything like loving cows too much. It’s just disgusting, bloody and greasy. (I probably just made you not want to eat it either, huh?)

2. I am afraid of the dark. I grew up in a bad neighborhood where dark meant shots fired, helicopters shining lights in my bedroom window, and constant fear. I will NEVER live that way again, nor will my children.

3. I am physically addicted to Starbucks. I try to stop and I honest to goodness can’t. My order is quirky too: Venti sugar free vanilla triple breve latte. Sometimes I shake it up and have sugar free hazelnut or dolce. Is it the caffeine rush or the taste??? BOTH!

4. Like Tanja, I’m not into labels or designer clothing, handbags, etc. I buy my clothes at Target, Walmart, JC Penney’s, and Old Navy. I only have so much disposable income and my priorities are scrapbooking and Starbucks.

5. I believe that kids should be kids while they can and, therefore, don’t allow my kids to do every activity, sport or club they want. I think what my kids can learn during our limited “family time” is worth 10x’s more than a coach or instructor can teach them. Unfortunately, this belief makes me “quirky” or “wierd” or “mean” in the eyes of most other parents I know.

Okay, now it’s your turn! I’m tagging Karen, Leslie, and Scrappy Cat.

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Pleasanton Scrapbook Expo

A company called Davis Promotions hosts Scrapbook Expo events in about a dozen cities throughout the year. (Thank you Leslie – I just did my first link!). I’ve been to the one in San Jose, CA twice and the one in Pleasanton, CA twice. This year was my third time at Pleasanton. There are classes taught by various vendors which you pay for and attend ala carte. Then there is a huge building with all of the vendor booths where you can do make-and-takes, see new products, and SHOP! It used to go for 3 days – now it is 2 days – and there are crops both nights you can attend (for a fee). The crops have games and contests so you don’t really get much scrapping done, but it’s a great place to meet scrappers from your area of the country. I’ve only gone “all out” and taken classes/attended crops one time. My mom and I shared a nearby hotel room and basically lived at the Expo for 3 days. It was a blast. Cost wise, I think it’s probably pretty similar to the cost of a CKU (Creating Keepsakes University) or CKC (Creating Keepsakes Convention). The atmosphere, to me, is just more casual than those events and more friendly to a beginner scrapbooker. Here is the experience I had this year…

I arrived at the Alameda County Fairgrounds at around 11:30 am and found parking pretty easily. The event started at 10 am and people were already leaving so parking spaces were opening up nicely. It cost $8 to park on the fairgrounds or you could park for free if you wanted to walk quite a ways. Many people that were attending classes and crops had their rolling or carry totes, so I can’t imagine them wanting to walk very far. I also saw a lot of mom’s with full size strollers, which hadn’t been allowed in the past. Here is the new rule, as copied from their website: “We can not allow Large or Rolling Bags on the show floor. Small umbrella strollers are allowed on the show floor (infants unable to sit-up will be allowed in other small single seat strollers). This is to keep our aisles clear and allow space for all guests to walk the floor.” I was sorry to see they had changed the rule from umbrella stroller only and now allowed larger strollers. I agreed with the old rule because the floor of the expo gets VERY crowded. It’s not really fair that we all have to move around the large strollers. And I say that as a mom who REALLY REALLY wanted to attend several expo’s when my kiddos were that little and I had to miss them because I couldn’t find a babysitter and my child/ren weren’t big enough to sit in an umbrella stroller. I honestly think everyone should be considerate of others and if you can’t take your child in an umbrella stroller, don’t go (please).

I paid my $8, got my wristband on, was checked in at the door, and entered scrapbooker heaven! First stop was the restrooms (which were large; about a 3 minute wait :). I only had 2 hours to spend, so I got right to browsing the booths. It was not as crowded as in years past and I was able to finally do some make-n-takes. In the past, there were long lines for the M&Ts that I never felt like waiting in (hey, you miss out on too much shopping time that way). But I was able to do 3 M&Ts – a 2-page 12×12 layout using tan cardstock with black lasercut designs and a Family 2007 scene ($4); a 2-page 12×12 beach themed layout with glitter ($2); and a 1-page 12×12 layout called “The Scene of the Crime” ($2) which you can use for pictures of your kids, husband or dog doing something naughty! When I figure out how to post photos of them, I will.

If I’m remembering past Expo’s correctly, the M&Ts were more expensive this time. But it was fun to do them and nice to give my feet a rest from all the walking. As for the shopping, I had no complaints. I didn’t buy nearly as much as I have in the past because of my own budget, not because there wasn’t plenty I wanted! I did mean to go back to the Creative Memories booth and pick up another Power Sort Box for photos (I’ve spoken of my love for them in the past). I saw one, didn’t want to carry it around, said I would go back, then ran out of time. Oh well, they’re easy enough to get from a Creative Memories Consultant around here. I also had 2 packs of some new Basic Grey in my hands – Stella Ruby and Scarlet’s Letter. Sooooo pretty and marked down from $20 to $16…but the line was long and I’m obviously NOT a long-line-waiter. I can get them from Memory Works for that price anyhoo. There’s just something about instant gratification that we all love, isn’t there? But I’m happy with my purchases. I’ve been wanting to try Tombow adhesives since hearing them constantly raved about on the Creating Keepsakes message board. I’ve been a Hermafix tab girl for a long time, so I’m curious to try something new. I love the pink t-shirt I got that says, “You better be nice, or I will crop you out of my scrapbooks”. Oh! And all the brads I got…at one booth you could fill up a cup with eyelets, brads, beads etc. for $7 for a small cup. There were two larger sizes but I forget the prices (maybe $14 and $20 or something?). The Daisy D’s Modern Romance paper pack is so gorgeous I can’t wait to make something with it.

I had to leave at 1:30 to meet a friend for lunch nearby, at Fernandos’ Mexican Restaurant. There are many restaurants, hotels and stores near the Expo so you will never be at a loss if you decide to go off-site for eating, lodging or shopping. After lunch, we walked around shopping and got some coffee before we each hit the road for long drives home. All in all, a very “Pleasant” day in Pleasanton.

I will probably go to the San Jose event this year too (August 10/11), but it appears they have moved it to the nearby city of Santa Clara, CA. I think Scrapbook Expo’s are great events and highly encourage you to go if you can.

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SB Weekend Delayed…

I was up until 1am getting ready for the event this weekend. Because I don’t have any Memory Works stock yet, I had gathered some other items I could have for sale – a few albums, adhesive, paper packs, embellishments, etc. I got everything inventoried, priced, and put in cute little baskets. I had about 1/2 of the car packed for the trip (my family was going with me). Then the phone rang at 10 this morning. It was my friend J, the hostess for the scrapbooking weekend tonight and tomorrow. One of her children is sick with the flu so we had to reschedule :( Wouldn’t you know it?! But better everyone be healthy so we don’t spread even more of this flu around. I think everyone I know has been sick several times this season.

Well, the good news was that Memory Works ordering is easy and shipping is fast! I placed my first order this Tuesday and had it shipped to J (she lives in another city) in the hopes it would arrive in time for this weekend. And it did – she got it yesterday. She said everything was beautiful and she was very happy with what she ordered. Now it will be ready for next time. The new catalog comes out soon and they have been putting up new items on the website called “Sneak Peeks”. So far, they have the new Basic Grey and Fancy Pants – yum!

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Just An Update…

I finally got my new notebook computer!! I’m the proud owner of a MacBook Pro with a 17 inch screen and 2GB. Whoo hoo! This is my first Apple product, so I’m still trying to find my way around in Mac World. So far, I LIKE! I like very much. So easy to use and the graphics are easier to understand than Windows. As I type this in a window on the left side of my screen, I’m watching the video introducing the iPhone on the right side. Man, I want one of those! They come out in June and I’m sure will be impossible to get.

On my old laptop, I wrote a post yesterday. It was about packing for a scrapbooking cruise. It appeared that WordPress was doing the auto-save throughout. But when I went to post it, it had disappeared :(:( I was so mad, I haven’t been able to bring myself to re-write it yet.

And I did finally make 1,000 posts a couple days ago. So that was a great feeling. Thanks to everyone who helped (wink, wink). Well, I’m off to prep for the scrapbooking weekend! Hope you’re having a great week…

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Scrapbookers Weekend

In a recent post, I talked about a group of preschool moms who were inspired to learn how to scrapbook, or renewed their dedication to scrapbooking, after attending the memorial service of a friend.  The friends’ scrapbooks were lovingly displayed at her service and everyone was very touched by the deep meaning that scrapbooking can hold in our lives.  Well, through the efforts of my friend “J”, who told me this story, all those ladies will be scrapbooking together this coming weekend and I get to be there too.  J has asked me to help instruct those that are new to the craft, and to have my Memory Works products available should they need anything.  Some are just going to bring all their photos and work on getting them organized, a dreaded but so important task.  I hope to also get a little scrapping done myself, but we’ll see how it goes.

I’m so excited to do this.  I’ve mostly worked with experienced scrappers so, while I may share a tip here and there, I’ve rarely had the opportunity to teach someone from the ground up.  J and her family were at our house last weekend and, when I was showing her through the Memory Works catalog, she said, “You are so excited!  And you know your stuff.  You’re the perfect person to be a scrapbook consultant”.  Awww, shucks.  But it’s true that I am excited about ~obsessed with~ scrapbooking.  I have a list of things I need to do to get ready for next weekend.  And I have to…place my first order!!!  J ordered some things so I told her she’s my guinea pig. 

The challenge is that I’m still pretty sick.  They treated me for strep throat but it’s 3 days after taking the entire Z-pack and I’m still not better.  I go back to the doctor tomorrow morning but I think the prescription this time will probably be, “Just be patient.  You’ll get better”.  But I wanna’ be better NOW!! (stamp foot hard on ground).

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Piz-ZAZ-zle…I Just Like To Say It!

Here are some new scrapbooking things I like:

Check out the new product that’s a collaboration between Bazzill Basics Paper and Creative Imaginations.  It’s called Pizzazzle and you can see it at here.  Click on the icons to see it in all 15 colors.  They took the all-time best cardstock in the world - Bazzill - and put some new textures to it.  There are monogram, number and tag punchouts and matching white chipboard shapes.  I will definitely be getting some of this stuff!  What do you think?  Will you Pizzazzle?

Now check out the American Crafts website for some free computer wallpaper:  http://www.americancrafts.com/wallpapers.php.  Your icons will get lost in some of them but they're oh-so-pretty to look at.  I currently have the grey, black, and white one on my desktop and it makes me smile every time I log on.  While you're at the American Crafts wallpaper site, check out their idea gallery - lotsa great stuff.

Are these not the prettiest, most elegant things you've ever seen?  http://sarahheidt.mennonite.net/Home/Products/Lasercuts/Scriptina_titles.  I just love the Scriptina font, and I can't imagine cutting these titles out with a craft knife.  I have yet to see a Scriptina font for my Cricut, so I will have to buy these from Sarah.  Guess you girls with the die-cutters that hook up to your computer could do your own though, huh?  One day, when the sunbeams break through the clouds and I get the sign from above, "It is time", I will begin scrapbooking my wedding from 13 years ago.  When that time comes, these Sarah Heidt lasercut Scriptina titles will be mine at any cost. (Don't tell Sarah I said that...wouldn't want to be overcharged!).

Any great products you'd like to share with the class??

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Goal Oriented: Update

Bummer, I didn’t meet my goal of 1,000 hits on my blog by the end of February.  I just checked my blog stats, which show only 824 as of midnight my time on 2/28 :(   Oh well, that’s still a lotta hits for a new blog I think (??).  I will just set a new goal:  5,000 hits by the end of 2007!!  Peace out…

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Scrapbooking Cruises – Part 1, My Experience

As I’ve mentioned, I went on my first scrapbooking cruise in October 2006.  It was sponsored by Creating Keepsakes magazine and toured the Mediterranean Sea.  I’m going to write some things about it to share my advice for anyone who might be taking or considering a scrapping cruise.  I’m no travel expert, so all I can do is tell you about my experience – how I prepared, what I packed, the excursions, the crops/classes/activities, and life on board my ship.  I think I’ll break it down into different entries; otherwise, it will be too long :)  I hope you enjoy!

First, the basics:  I learned about ‘Cruisin’ With Lisa’ (Bearnson, founding editor of CK)  from an ad in Creating Keepsakes magazine in Spring 2006.  My mom and I had to plans to go to Italy ‘someday’, but nothing was concrete.  When I saw the ad, I thought ‘This is it!” so I called her at 10:30 that night.  She’s like, ‘What’s wrong? Why are you calling so late?’, but I just could NOT wait until morning to ask if she’d go on this cruise with me.  (Think I kinda freaked her out, oops).  She was on board right away (pardon the pun, sorry) and soon after a good friend ‘K’ decided to join us.  By the time we called to reserve our spots, much of the cruise was booked.  I learned that, had I been looking on the CK events site or been on their e-mail list, I would’ve known about the cruise months sooner.  We were still able to get the rooms we wanted for the most part (by that I mean the cheapest choice, or we could not have afforded it!).  We had to leave a series of deposits, and the cruise had to be paid in full well before the departure date.  For this reason, I would highly recommend travel insurance.  It’s not that expensive compared to the amount you have at stake if you have to cancel your trip.  That being said, ‘K’ is STILL trying to get all of her husband’s money refunded through insurance; he had to cancel due to some family health problems.  I have faith she will get her money back and still think insurance is the way to go.

The most frustrating part was planning the rest of the trip – getting there and back, and our plans to stay in Rome for 2 days while we were over there.  I don’t know if this is true of all cruises, but the travel agency….despite contant begging and harrass-…ummm…politely asking….would NOT confirm the times of our flights into/out of Rome, nor the ship departure/arrival time until 2 weeks before departure.  We didn’t even know what vacation days to ask for from work…uurrgghh.  This is an extremely long story but the moral is this:  do not make your travel arrangements yourself through the internet, do it through the cruise lines.  It may seem like it costs more but – I compared notes with those who used internet and they paid MORE in the end – it’s cheaper through the cruise line.  It’s also simpler, less stressful, and safer.  By safer, I mean that if you book your flights, hotels, transfers and excursions through the cruise lines, they are obligated to get you to and from the ship on time.  The ship cannot leave without you if you’re late, etc.  It’s a nice feeling of comfort and worth every penny.  We had a seamless trip, while others had hassles, lost bags, lost reservations, were running terribly late, etc.  The best part was the transfers – someone carries your bags everywhere you go.  We could not have done it otherwise because, for a 12 day trip, we each had a large suitcase, a small suitcase, a carryon, a purse, a camera bag, and my mom had a walker.  Traveling makes you very tired anyway – can you imagine carrying all those bags too?

Other things to do ahead of time are:  get your passport (this can take many weeks unless you want to pay top dollar), have other photo ID, read travel books (so you can fully appreciate your destinations), join the Yahoo group about CKU cruises (very helpful!), get a copy of the cruise lines brochure (if I had done this sooner, I wouldn’t have bothered the travel agent with so many little questions cuz it’s all in the brochure!), and talk to a local travel agent even if they don’t book anything for you (they can give you hints about how to travel in a foreign country, etc).

Please join me next time for another episode of Scrapbooking Cruises when I will discuss ‘what to pack’.  Caio!

Note to self:  Even if you have strep throat, do NOT take Tylenol with codiene right before bed because it gives you wierd visions when you close your eyes.  Ugh!  (The good part about being afraid to fall asleep was that I looked through my awesome new MW catalog all night and brainstormed ideas….projects, make and takes, hostess gifts, incentives, oh my!).

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Memory Works, Scrapbook Idea Books, and Blog Hits

I’m going to the doctor today for what I think is strep throat, so this post will be brief.  Just a few things:

1.  I got some nice e-mails from Memory Works last week.  One was a quarterly newsletter that had page ideas, product updates, corporate updates, introduced business office members, and introduced the design team members.  It had color photos and was very nicely put together.  There was also a sneak peek at the March 2007 monthly kit which is absolutely adorable.  My consultant kit is due here today and, once I’m feeling better, I can’t wait to get my MW consultant site up and running.  The new MW catalog comes out in April and they’ll be giving sneak peeks periodically until then on new products from CHA.

2.  Last week, I used my 50% coupon at Michael’s for an idea book I’ve been wanting called “the me book” by Autumn Leaves.  It has been fun to look through and get ideas.  I’m so impressed with the journaling, with how revealing and insightful the designers are.  They share the good, the bad, and the ugly.  It inspires me to do the same.  Life is not perfect, and our scrapbooks shouldn’t be a fairytale either.  I always have my kids in mind when I do get that personal, and just make sure that nothing I say will hurt or harm them.  Otherwise, I think it’s a good thing to reveal who we really are, what we’ve been through, and what we’ve learned.

3.  Thank you for helping me toward my ‘blog hits’ goal of 1,000 hits by February 28, 2007.  It’s going well and I think we might make it!!!  I appreciate all the comments and am trying to answer every one.  Keep hitting :)

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No Happy, No Scrappy

I was laughing out loud yesterday (because I could SO relate) from the blog Bought, Sold or Processed (http://gingerrohlfs.blogspot.com).  She did a post on 10 things she must have her way, like ‘no wire hangers’ and ‘spotless glasses’.  I’m going to make a similar list, but of ‘Things I Must Have My Way While Scrapbooking or In My Scraproom’.

1.  I must have a cold can of Diet Coke on my desk while I scrap.  Same goes for a crop.  I even bring my little Igloo in case they don’t have Diet Coke there.  The few times I was without a Diet Coke, I tried having a coffee but it’s just not the same.

2.  I gotta’ have my tiny embellishments – brads, eyelets, etc. – sorted by color in my Craft Mates holder.  As soon as I buy something, it comes out of the packaging and into the proper color bin.  I love being able to find the color I need right quick.

3.  For some reason, it makes me grit my teeth to see a scrapbook album lying flat.  No matter how disorganized my scrap area can get, I have to stand my albums vertically.  Many lean against things until I can find a spot for them on the bookshelf.

4.  I’m very anal about journaling.  It has to be perfect with no spelling errors, etc.  If I find a mistake after the fact, I’ve been known to rip the journaling off the page and re-do it.  ‘Cuz I was an English major????

5.  This is the cropping set up I have to use or I can’t get anything done:  self-healing mat in front of me, cup of pen and tools to my farthest right, flat pack with adhesives, etc. in upper right, Scrap Rack in front of me (if at home), then papers and photos to my left.  It’s weird but if that’s out of whack, I can’t think.

6.  Must have my cell phone and Dr. Pepper Lip Smackers nearby when scrapbooking.

7.  If I buy something scrap-related for a specific project I’m working on (birthday book, a gift I’m making,…), I have to put all that project stuff together in one pile or holder.  If I put the paper with my papers or the ribbon in my ribbon jars, I forget I have those things at project time.  (This explains a lot of the piles in my scrap area, yup).

8.  I scrap best late at night.  Don’t know why, that’s just when I feel creative.  I sit at my desk sometimes during the day and just stare into space, trying to get motivated.  At crops, I end up talking and shopping all day, then when night hits – well, let’s just say I’m usually one of the last gals to leave at 3 or 4am.

9.   I’m obsessive (imagine that!) about my scrapbooking magazines.  I can NOT get rid of them until I’ve read the entire issue, cover to cover.  Skimming the whole thing doesn’t count.  This is a very annoying habit.

10.  Absolutely NO food allowed in my scrap area.  And I love food, so that’s saying a lot :)

What are your scrapbooking pecadillos?  What kinds of things MUST you have your way?  I would be interested to hear!

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