Creating Keepsakes

Scrapbook Message Board: Club CK {Creating Keepsakes} Closes Effective 06-15-13 :(

One of the things I try to do with this blog is make note of milestones that happen in our industry … and I missed a big one. So I’m going to post about it now, a few weeks late (sorry).

On 05-17-13, the many loyal members of Club CK were treated to this message from Creating Keepsakes:

Club CK Forum Participants,

We at Creating Keepsakes are grateful for the readers that are part of Club CK; for the creativity you share, the enthusiasm you have for the hobby, and your dedication to preserving your memories and improving the craft. As we move our focus towards online initiatives, we are evaluating all aspects of our business.

In looking at Club CK and the areas it offers our readers we feel the focus should be on creativity and idea sharing, which is evident by the number of layouts shared daily in the galleries. To make better use of our resources and provide the best online and print offerings we can, we are opting to discontinue the forum portion of Club CK as of June 15, 2013.

In this digital age, the internet is full of forums, many have existed for years and have fully developed communities and we hope that you will find one that meets your needs. Below are a few that we think would be a great place to start your search for an online forum:

Two Peas in a Bucket
Splitcoaststampers.com
Scrapbook.com
ScrapJazz

We are excited about the future and the media options we are planning for you, our readers. We look forward to seeing you around the Creating Keepsakes community.

Stacy Croninger

Digital Managing Editor

This post generated (to date) a heartbreaking 17-page thread of disbelief, confusion, gratitude, suggestions, and most of all sadness :( For as long as the link works, HERE is where you can see it.

I’m writing this post on 07-07-13 and the board is still online. There are occasional posts but it seems most members have moved on to other scrapbook message boards. There’s a board called “scrappin-peeps” that was created and will be hosted by former Club CK members. You can join HERE.

Club CK was not the first message board from Creating Keepsakes. The original board, which I joined back in the early 2000’s, was called CKMB (guess what that stood for? lol). I was very active on there, met a lot of wonderful online friends, and have such good memories. I’m still in touch with several of the ladies I met there.

Then there was another CK board called Scrap and Paper-something (?) but I’m not going to find it or link it because people have had problems there (being able to see other members’accounts, I think). But it also ‘closed’ and apparently only the gallery remains.

Then Club CK came along. If I remember right, it was part of the plan for scrapbookers to pay a monthly fee to be part of the Club, have access to a special board, and exclusive content. (Am I remembering that right? Someone correct me if I’m not). I never paid for anything but continued to post at Club CK although the magic was kinda’ gone for me after being put through 2 board switches. And by that time I’d become much more active on Two Peas as well.

So as we shut the door on Club CK, here were my stats: Joined 02-04-10 and had 112 posts.

Forum Statistics
61,706 users have contributed to 367,089 threads and 716,398 posts (as of 07-07-13 at 5pm PST).

All this sadness may seems strange but unless you’ve been an active member of a scrapbooking board for a long time, maybe it’s hard to understand. I think many avid scrapbookers don’t have people IRL who will put up with us talking about it 24/7, look at pages with praise, share shopping deals, celebrate our victories in life and hug us through the sad times, discuss books, current events, or whatever – all with a happy, positive attitude and genuine care. That’s what CKMB and Club CK were to me and I hope you were able to be part of that, too.

We’ll miss you, Club CK …

PS: I would love to hear from you about your experience at CKMB and Club CK. Feel free to mourn, celebrate, complain about the closure … whatever is in your heart. Please know that I get it and totally sympathize :(

Scrapbooks, Etc. Magazine Ceasing Publication? Just a Bad Rumor … Phew!

I made it clear right in the title. Don’t want to cause any panty bunching or Diet Coke inhalation ;) I got yo’ back, homes.

Check out THIS THREAD on 2peas. Apparently, posters who had subscribed to Scrapbooks, Etc. through DiscountMags.com* recently got this e-mail.

Dear (Subscriber),

Your order for Scrapbooks ETC has been canceled (Order #——- on 02/15/2012).

Cancellation reason: The magazine has ceased publication.

Refund Amount: $10.00
Please allow 5 business days for refund to return to your account.

We’re sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reply to this e-mail.

Sincerely,
Customer Care
Disc0unt Mags.c0m

* No, I’m not going to give them the privilege of a link because that is a reeeeeeealy bonehead move. Do *NOT* mess around about a scrapbooking magazine being shut down. We don’t take too kindly to that kind of thing. And we bear scissors. And cutters, trimmers, piercers, and punches. Yeah, I said PUNCHES. Be skerred. Be very skerred.

K, so … it turns out the e-mail was incorrect. If you scroll down on page 1 of the thread, you’ll see this:

Hey, Peas! Michelle Rubin from Scrapbooks etc. here. We are still in publication! In fact we’re busy working away on our June issue. We’re checking into this e-mail, though. So it’s business as usual. Please feel free to renew your subscription!

Michelle Rubin
Editor
Scrapbooks etc.

First of all, that’s what I love about 2peas message board. You have a scrapbooking question or concern, you post about it, and you get answers – often right from the source.

Secondly, SO glad SCRAPBOOKS ETC. isn’t ceasing publication, and that Michelle took the time to come and squelch the rumors. It sounds like she had a little convo with the discount maggers because further down in the thread, a Pea posted this:

I just received a follow up email with an apology for saying that Scrapbooks, Etc. was ceasing publication. It just said that they were not offering the publication through their service.

Duh. That’s a pretty major difference, Discount Magazine People. I mean, really??? So now my scrappy heart can start beating again. Since the beginning, I’ve gotten Scrapbooks Etc. {because I’m a SB magazine ho, and I don’t mind their change in format as much AS I THOUGHT I WOULD}.

Until recently, I bought it off the newsstand but then a cute kid with a magazine fundraiser wouldn’t leave me alone and I subscribed. {“Who are these little people and why do they keep calling me ‘mom’?”}.

Just today I was considering whether to re-up even though my subscription goes through August. But honestly (and kinda’ related to this), I decided not to because of all the scrapbook magazines that have stopped publishing … and I don’t want to be left holding the bag. Yeah, I have *that* much confidence in today’s scrapbook magazine industry. Color me jaded.

Anyway, glad to hear SBE is planning to continue. They and CREATING KEEPSAKES are the only scrapbook magazines I still buy. Isn’t it crazy how many there used to be and now there’s TWO? Times have sure changed :(

Oh! Gotta’ go! Someone is knocking at the door. Better not be one of those cute magazine fundraiser kids. I. will. not. cave. Wish me luck!

ETA later the same night: Well, shukes! I can’t even be righteously indignant toward the Discount Maggers that sent out the erroneous info. Check out this contrite e-mail they’re now sending their customers:

We are writing to you today, to apologize for incorrectly stating in a previous e-mail that Scrapbooks ETC will be ceasing publication. We are unable to fulfill your subscription because this magazine is no longer available through our website. A full refund back to your original payment method has already been promptly processed. In offering this deal, it was certainly our intention to complete all orders.

Clearly, we did not meet your, or our own, expectations for the excellent service you deserve from us. Please be assured that we will take this opportunity to conduct a comprehensive review of our entire process in offering this deal, so this situation does not happen again. We have enclosed a code for $5 off your next DiscountMags.com purchase, in the hopes you will shop with us again and see that we are committed to doing better.

Gift Certificate: (a big long number)

Again, please accept our most sincere apology.

Sincerely,

DiscountMags.com Customer Service Team

It’s not even fun to be mad when someone apologizes like that, huh? Good on ya’, Disc0untMags.c0m!

“Creative Spaces with Megan Hoppener” ~ Creating Keepsakes Special Issue

This came out recently but I haven’t been able to find it on my local newstands :( Have you seen it anywhere? I only have Walmart, Target, and Michaels. I ended up ordering it from THE CK WEBSITE. I had a free shipping code but it’s since expired … maybe search and see if you can find another one?

The Peas are talking about “Creative Spaces” HERE (including a Pea whose room is IN the magazine!).

I happen to really disagree with the negative opinions of it posted HERE. I’m finding it to be very inspirational and, as MARTHA STEWART would say, “aspirational.” I’m different from some of the posters in that thread because I *don’t* want to see scrapbook spaces of “everyday” scrappers that are a hodge podge of furniture and organizational bins. I can look in my own non-designer space if I want to see that, LOL!

When I plunk down $15 for a glossy magazine, I want to see all the fancy schmancy scrap digs I’ll never be able to afford. Kinda the same theory of Architectural Digest showing amazing homes you’ll nevah, evah be able to afford, or Vogue with its clothes you can’t afford worn by women (um, teenagers?) who weigh as much as your pinky finger. It’s all about the eye candy, baby! And, yeah, maybe you’ll pick up tips here and there that you can incorporate into your own life.

As it happens, I am finding MANY scrapbook organization ideas in this magazine that I can incorporate into my space. Whenever I get a few minutes of quiet time, I sit down with this amazing issue and take my time with the articles and photos. I think it’s very well organized with great pictures and ideas.

Have you seen this issue? If so, what did you think of it? As always, diverse opinions are welcomed :)

Scrapbook Obsession Mentioned in a National Magazine!

Yep, I’m so stinkin’ excited!

CHECK IT, GIRLFRIEND.

OH, AND HERE, TOO!

Okay, so that wasn’t a magazine you were expecting, huh? Whoever would’ve thought I’d be mentioned in an article in “Hobby Farm Home” magazine, right? Not me. But here is how they describe the HFH mag on Hobby Farms website:

Hobby Farm Home
The editors of Hobby Farms also produce Hobby Farm Home, the home magazine for those truly living in the country. Hobby Farm Home highlights farmhouse activities such as cooking, crafting, collecting, pet care and home arts and skills.

See? Crafting. That’s us. Scrappers are crafters!

I answered some questions for the writer back in September 2010 and never heard anything more of it. I was just going to contact MONETTE to ask if her article was accepted. Then I was in Walmart one day looking for the latest CREATING KEEPSAKES and SCRAPBOOKS ETC and there was Hobby Farm Home magazine! I flipped through it to see if the article might be in there and had the most surreal experience … there was my name at the top of page 66. Holy mother of … WTH?

I called my mom right from the magazine aisle. I bought all three copies they had, which made the checkout lady wonder, LOL. I told her I was mentioned in an article and she was giddy with me :) Even though she had NO idea what I was talking about … Scrapbooking your farm? Mmmm-kay …

There was one little bit of confusion printed but that’s okay. Just for fun … whoever spots it first and leaves a comment here, I’ll send you a $5 Starbucks card (or Target card? if you don’t like coffee, tea, sweets, or smoothies … hee).

I hope I don’t sound like I’m bragging. I actually found this out 2 or 3 weeks ago but was too bashful to say anything. But I’m still excited and can’t contain myself. This is NOT the kind of thing that happens to me! So it was extra-special and fun. Thanks for letting me share.

Nate Berkus: How to Make a Memory Book

I found this via Creating Keepsakes Editorial on TWITTER (@CKeditorial). They linked to THIS article on Nate Berkus’ WEBSITE about how to make a “memory book,” or what we Scrapbook Obsessed would call a “scrapbook.” ;)

I have to say, when I go to read something about scrapbooking by a non-scrapbooker, I prepare myself to cringe. On time, there was an article similar to this memory book one in our local paper. They talked about things like using newspaper clippings, paper trimmings, and other random craft supplies on your pages with no mention of Archival Mist, acid-free, or the like. ACK! Scrapper Alert! Must. Say. Something.

Yes, I was so “upset” about it that I wrote a letter to the editor explaining the oh-so-propuh way to scrapbook items like that so that they don’t yellow with age, infect your pages/photos with acid, etc. Yeah, I’m a scrap geek like that. And proud of it! LOL

Anyway, I was fully prepared to cringe at an interior designer’s take on scrapbooking, much as I’ve been shocked at some of the things MARTHA STEWART has suggested in the scrapbook segments on her show. I’m glad to report there was no need to worry … Nate “Cutie Pie” Berkus got it right, as far as I can see.

He talks about scanning your photos and items (although I missed any mention of scanning them onto acid free paper or acid-free in general, right?), and recommends a binder ring over a spiral bound scrapbook, which I also agree with … and he (or whoever wrote the article) articulates the reasons very well. I’m a postbound/SNAPLOAD scrapper for the most part, so I’m not sure why those weren’t mentioned but, hey, it was a concise article with the major points covered, not a doctoral presentation on the matter, so that’s forgiven.

Anyhoo, it was nice as always to see any mention of scrapbooking in the wider media and to have Cutie Pie Berkus – who is one hot tamale right now, if you didn’t know – is a special bonus. Great job, Nate!

Creating Keepsakes Special Issue: Fast and Fresh Scrapbooks

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 …}

Changes to the Scrapbook Obsession Blog

Yep, it’s Spring, time for a new beginning! I’m going to try out this new theme, just released by WordPress, called “Under the Influence.” Love it. The name is so cool.

So far, there are several things I like about it – the wider columns, ability to control column and photo width, the font, and the cleaner look. The only thing I don’t like so far is that my coolio Scrapbook Obsession header (graciously designed and provided by my homegirl CHRISPEA) won’t fit. I need to figure out how to resize it and get it back up there. In the meantime, I do enjoy being able to have a tagline … yeah, I’m sarcastic and I OWN it, sista!

Please forgive me while I work on things around here. I figured out how to add the widgets I wanted to the right margin but now I can’t figure out how to delete the duplicate ones down at the bottom/footer. They’re waaaaayyyy down there … just pretend you don’t see them, K? Yeah, yeah, just keep your eyes up here, buddy! No need to look down. {Now watch me use my “V” fingers to point at my eyes, then your eyes, then my eyes}. Are we clear?

Regarding my Blog Roll, it was pure nostalgia trying to update it just now. If you were on the Creating Keepsakes Message Board (CKMB) back in the day, you might remember that I compiled and housed a list of CKMB members’ blogs here in my Blog Roll. CKMB’ers would come over here and click away, reading the blogs of all their buds. Can you believe I had almost 200 … yes, 200 … CKMB blog links? Amazing, huh? CKMB no longer exists, per se, but there is the new Club CK board where I occasionally see some old familiar faces, and meet new ones too. Alas, I deleted most of the CKMB Blog Roll tonight and it was bittersweet.

You know how on Survivor when it’s down to the final players, they take a walk, stopping at a torch to represent each of the eliminated players, and they pause to say some kind words and remember that player? That’s how I felt while going through the list of CKMB bloggers … I kept stopping to say, “Aw, I remember her blog. It’s where I got the peppermint bark recipe I still use every Christmas,” or “Aw, Daisydo! She always kept the board rolling. She and Leslie/luv2 talk were always such a hoot.” Ah, Camelot! I miss those dog days of CKMB. They hold a super special place in my heart, but we all must let go some time …

So … Spring. 2010. Time to update and move on and let go and welcome the new in, right? If you absolutely hate this new theme and will stop coming to visit me because of it, please let me know. Howevah! If you range from “I really like it” to “Meh. I can tolerate it,” then you don’t have to say anything if you don’t want to. Well, okay, tell me if you really, really, Sally Field like it! And if you’re “meh” … keep it to yourself. I’m having a spring, a rebirth, a new start. I don’t need you bringing me down. Got it?

Now go plant some flowers or something … Sheesh.

Allison Davis Sketch Books and DVD

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 Magazines vs. Papercraft and Cardmaking Magazines

Of course, we scrapbookers all know about the demise and downturn of scrapbooking magazines in the past few years. We’ve lost Simple Scrapbooks, DIGITAL SCRAPBOOKING, and MEMORY MAKERS. We’ve seen changes to the number of issues with SCRAPBOOKS ETC. and Creating Keepsakes.

For some down and dirty facts, check out this report about the 2009 scrapbook magazine industry … PART ONE, PART TWO, and PART THREE.

When I was at Michaels recently, I noticed that the papercrafting and cardmaking magazines don’t seem to be suffering the same fate. And what the hell is up with that?!?! As “our” magazines dwindle, theirs seem to be multiplying.

Keep in mind that even more magazines are hidden behind the ones that are showing. The magazine rack at Barnes and Noble looks similar.

Admittedly, I haven’t read through the 3 long “state of the industry” articles I linked to above. Maybe the answer is in there, but skimming them, I didn’t find it.

What do you think is going on? Do papercrafting and cardmaking have that many more participants than scrapbooking? Have they not yet hit the bubble and then downslide that the scrapbooking magazines did, but their time is coming? What do you make of this? I honestly can’t scrounge up a good explanation. Please ‘splain it to me, Lucy …

Friday Night Scrapbook Randoms #7

Just some random scrappy things to end your week with …

~*~ You know that “First” magazine you see in the supermarket checkout aisle? Well, buy THIS one … there is a scrapbooking article in it!

~*~ Word on the street is that Big Lots has older Cricut cartridges for 30 snaps. Okay, “the street” = “The PEAS,” you caught me! I’ll be checking my BL this weekend, but this is the store that got one lame shipment of Thickers when everyone else had tons of them, so I’m not holding out much hope. I guess for all the bad that comes from this seriously sucky economy, we will be seeing cooler items trickling down to the discount stores because of it. Mixed blessing, I guess…

~*~ Do you like scrapbooking novels? Well, did you know that JOANNA CAMPBELL SLAN has two scrapbooking mysteries out, and another one on the way for May 2010? I’ve read “Paper, Scissors, Death” and really enjoyed it. Now I need to get “Cut, Crop & Die” which has been out since summer. (Yeah, I’m totally lagging, cuz I DO want to read it!). Well, to tide us over until the next book comes out {details are HERE}, she shares a free scrapbooking short story HERE. She must’ve JUST finished writing it because there are some mentions in there about Twilight and the Tiger Woods situation. Timely, Miss Joanna, very timely… Anyway, it’s a fun story to devour with your next cup of coffee or tea. Enjoy!

~*~ What do you think of the January issue of CREATING KEEPSAKES? The Peas are talking about it HERE and, let me tell ya’, reviews are really mixed. I just got my copy and hope to pour through it this weekend, but have had a quick browse through and like what I see so far. It is definitely weird with all the usual suspects like Ali and Becky gone.

I’m putting off reading Lisa Bearnson’s last column ‘cuz I know I’m gonna cry. I had the pleasure of going on a week-long Mediterranean cruise with Lisa/CK in 2006, and she is THE nicest most caring lady you’d ever want to meet. It always kills me to hear her ripped apart by Mean Girls because I don’t think you can spend a week with someone and not see some mysterious evil side come out at some point, if it really does exist (which it obviously doesn’t). Yep, big Lisa fan here. Remind me to tell you about her on that cruise some time, k?

Oh gee, I seem to have gone off on a tangent. That NEVER happens, LOL! But back to the CK January issue … Your thoughts?

~*~ I am SO frick-frackin’ excited about a new product that MEMORY WORKS has coming out in January!! They have always sold all the latest and greatest products by other manufacturers {like Basic Grey, Fancy Pants, etc.}, but MW is coming out with their OWN line. I’ve seen some sneak peeks and it’s rockin’. Stay tuned…

~*~ Isn’t this an adorable layout from KELLY GOREE with Basic Grey “Sugar Rush”?

I love love LOVE the letters used in “reward” so I’m going to ask her how she did them. The SSS girls are thinking Silhouette and a sweet Sista named Lisa has offered to cut me something if I can find out which font it is.

ETA: Color me bummed. Kelly said “reward” is from the handwriting of a Basic Grey staff designer, and Kelly hand cut it. Alas, there is no way to replicate it. Even IF I could pretend to approach that gorgeous writing, there’s no way I’d have the skill or patience to hand cut it, LOL!

~*~ I shall leave you with the news that SCRAP SISTERS STUDIO (my home-away-from-home message board) is having an online crop this weekend. If you’re not already a member, join up and join in! Lots of fun chatting and doing challenges, sharing our work and ideas.

Have a wonderful weekend! Peace out.

Ali Edwards “Studio A” Leaving Creating Keepsakes Magazine

Read about it HERE on Ali’s blog….

This is a sad, sad day in Scrappy Land. After the December issue of CK (currently on newsstands), Ali Edwards and her “Studio A” column will be no more :( As of now, there are no plans for Ali to write any other features for CK, either.

The Peas are talking about it HERE, and the Scrap Sisters HERE

So can you read that great big writing on the wall, folks? Cuz I’m seeing it in big, black, ugly, capital letters: Creating Keepsakes magazine is on the way out.

Here are some of the signs I’m basing my opinion on:

BECKY HIGGINS leaves CK
– Crazy cheap CK subscription deals
LISA BEARNSON no longer does her monthly CK column after January 2010

Sorry, folks. I think CK is “done and done.” And I fear Scrapbooks Etc. is right behind them.

How many scrapbooking magazines will that leave us then? Oh, that’s right! NONE.

I gotta’ be honest here and say we have no one to blame but ourselves. I’ve heard time and time again on the message boards about scrappers dropping their scrap magazine subscriptions because they didn’t like this or that about the magazine. Now with Ali leaving CK, here comes another round of “Well, now for SURE I won’t renew!”

Do you see the parallel with the demise of the LSS? I sure do. “My LSS has the latest and greatest, but they (charge too much), (don’t kiss my butt when I walk in the door), (kiss my butt too hard when I walk in the door), (don’t order the exact brand and model number of product I want), (don’t have sales or coupons like the Big Box Stores),” etc. etc.

And guess what? The LSSs all closed while we scooped up coupons and Killer Deals at the big box stores. Hey, there are fewer choices, only major brands to choose from, and paper stacks galore, but at least it’s cheaper so we’re happy shoppers! Oh, wait, you mean if we don’t support the LSS and the variety of scrapbooking companies whose products they carry, the LSSs AND the scrapbooking manufacturers will go out of business?? Wha???

Well, yeah, that’s how it happens. And the same goes for scrapbooking magazines. We complained. We said, “Screw you. I don’t like exactly how you do your magazine, so I’ll just go get my content online for free from blogs and such!” We quit subscribing and buying from the newsstand. The newsstands stopped carrying scrap magazines, even for those of us who still want to buy them (but can no longer find them without searching). Scrapbooking magazines started folding. Did we stand strongly behind the remaining ones? No, we didn’t.

So now we have no Ali, Lisa, or Becky ~ three of the biggest scrapbooking names in the industry ~ and I think we can see where we’re going from here.

I’m not pointing fingers, believe me. First, because I know the horrible economy played a big hand in a lot of our decisions as scrappers. Second, because I did/do a lot of these same things, all in the name of saving money on scrap supplies. I did do everything I could to patronize my LSSs when they were here, but I live in a rural area and lost mine well before most others did. I did the best I could to support this industry, but I failed it in many ways, too.

I gotta’ say, I never gave up on the magazines, though. I criticized the changes at SB Etc. (because I thought they were making the wrong choice to save a struggling magazine), but I still bought it at full retail every month, as I did with every paper scrapbooking magazine out there. I really, really wanted to save them! I’m a Scrap Mag Ho, remember?

I just want us, as scrappers, to accept some of this responsibility. Ali is a symptom, not the problem or the cure. I will miss dearly the unique perspective she added to CK for years and years. I wish her great success in all she does in the future. I will miss her :(

When CK and SB Etc. disappear soon, I will miss them terribly, too. And I will have no one to blame but myself.

What Do Lisa Bearnson and “So You Think You Can Dance” Have in Common?

Absolutely nothing except that they both have upcoming shows I’m excited about!

Okay, LISA BEARNSON…Nope, unfortunately she’s not on QVC SCRAPBOOKING anymore :( Btw, I REALLY miss her on that show, don’t you? The other hosts try really hard but they just don’t have Lisa’s superior knowledge of scrapbooking products and how to use them. Plus, I miss her playfulness with David Venable.

Here she is with one of her daughters showing their seat belt burns from an accident they were in recently ~ thank goodness they were okay! Something tells me that without those seat belts, they wouldn’t have been….

Anyhow, I found THIS show that she’s going to be on (September 2 and 9, 2009), if you happen to get BYU-TV. You may not think you do, but look through ALLLLLL your cable or satellite channel listings and you might find it. On my Dish Network, it’s on Channel 9403….yeah, it’s way down there. It’s the same channel where I watch SCRAPBOOK MEMORIES, which has some new 2009 episodes. I haven’t watched in a while because I kept getting reruns of older shows but today I checked and am recording an upcoming episode that says 2009. Yippee skip! Love that show…

Okay, back to Lisa. The show is called “Latter Day Profiles” and the info says, “The co-founder and editor of Creating Keepsakes scrapbooking magazine, Lisa Bearnson.” Info also tells me this show originally aired on 6-24-09, so it’s fairly recent. Let’s check it out and then come back and compare notes, okay?

While searching around for shows to record, I also found something for fans of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE. On Wednesday, 9-2-09, Fox is showing a special episode with “fan fave routines from previous seasons.” The only bad thing is it’s a mere 1-hour long. WTH? I can’t wait to see it and hope they show some different routines than what were on the SYTYCD finale. There are SO many past routines I love. I could watch them over and over. Then the following Wednesday, September 9th, the new season of SYTYCD premieres, followed by the long-awaited second episode of GLEE! This is a show that won me over the first episode when they performed “Don’t Stop Believin’,” by Journey, my all time favorite band. {If you see me on the scrapbook message boards, I’m always “journey fan.”} Check out a Glee preview HERE; the Journey song starts around 2:45.

So, ya gonna try and catch Lisa B. and/or the SYTYCD episode?

Good Grief Blog: Scrapbooking the Loss of a Loved One

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.

CK Getting Thinner and a Possible LSS Closure…{Sigh}

I got the new issue of CREATING KEEPSAKES at Target last Friday. I’ve flipped through it and like it a lot. It is pretty thin and I’m getting so worried that even CK will go the way of the dodo bird….extinct. All of these magazines shutting down is just depressing me to no end (read my past posts about HERE, HERE, and HERE).

Speaking of shutting down, I got this sad e-mail from the only LSS left in my area (I will quote part of it directly from their newsletter):

================
As many of you know, (store name) has been severely impacted by the poor economy in the past year. We have always relied heavily on the year round tourism … and with the high gas prices beginning late last spring followed by the economic crash in the fall we haven’t had that support for over a year now. While we have strived not only to keep our doors open, but have continued to bring in new product during this difficult time, sales continue to drop. Things have gone from bad to worse.

We have always been hopeful that we could survive this tough economic time, but we realize that we cannot keep going at the current pace. If sales do not pick up over the summer, we will be forced to close our doors in the fall. We promised our customers we would not just close our doors quietly so we feel we must be honest with you about our situation.
================

I feel so sorry, well, for myself of course, but mostly for these 2 sweet ladies who’ve done nothing but run a wonderful store for several years, only to have their dream possibly crushed by this awful economy. They did include a coupon for $5 off any $25 purchase that you can print and use as many times as you like (one per visit) between now and the end of August. I hope that will motivate shoppers to come to their rescue, although I know scrapbooking typically slows down in the summer as we all get busy with outdoor activities and kids being out of school. I will pray (and shop) and hope they can pull it out. This is our last “local” store…we used to have 7 within an hour of me. If this store closes, my closest store will be about 2 hours away. I wish I had millions of dollars and could help these stores stay afloat until better times.

I know many of you have lost most or all of your LSSs in recent times and it’s crushing, isn’t it?

Scrapbook Message Boards: Survey and a RAK

As you might know, I’m a big fan of chatting on scrapbook message boards. The ones I’m most active on TWO PEAS IN A BUCKET and ALL MOMENTS REMEMBERED. I was on the CREATING KEEPSAKES message board for a long time before these, although all their format changes caused me to leave when I had to log on every single time I wanted to post (ya know, that’s quite a lot!) and would never accept an avatar pic, which made me feel like a faceless troll, LOL!

So, I’m just wondering what message boards you all enjoy. Please leave me a comment telling me where you like to hang out. Include linkees please! Tell me what you like and don’t like about message boards (you don’t have to name names on the negative part if ya don’t want to…). What makes a good message board? Why are you a long time member of certain places? Tell me all about it. Don’t forget to leave a link to your blog or check back to see if you’ve won!

For everyone who leaves a comment on THIS here post by midnight PST on June 11, 2009…I will enter your name into random.org and pick the winner of a small RAK.

Scrapbooker Blahs

I’ve got ‘em and it’s not just me. I’ve noticed the following in the last week or so:
– The scrapbook message boards are slow. Like watching pain dry. This pains me.
– The CK Media “reorganization” news is harshing everyone’s mellow.
– Either the new CHA products do not excite, or if they do, no one can afford to buy them. Manufacturers are desperately calling/e-mailing retailers, who can’t afford to buy much.
– Erin Lincoln says she’s not been paid in awhile….where does that leave CKMB?
– 2peas boards have been down all night

For me personally, there’s this kinda stuff:
– I posted a restaurant rant on 2peas, expecting about 90% support, and got much less than that. Didn’t ‘splain myself well enough, for one thing. And beyond that, it’s just cranky time, I guess.
– Landry was overnight at the vet hospital getting his manly bits removed. It was practically unbearable how much I missed him.
– DH and I got our first paychecks today since pay cuts….major ouch. How do you cut hundreds more dollars from a budget that is already bare bones? {Yes, I would get rid of my internet but I need it for work, natch}.
– Lastnight to cheer myself up, I decided to cash in a $15 product credit I’ve had for 6+ months at MEMORY WORKS (it was a consultant referral reward). Got all twitterpated over the Jenni Bowlin “Farmer’s Wife” and die cut calendar cards I had in my cart. Went to cash out and it declined my card. Found out today from the bank… they closed my scrapbook spendy account back in December…due to lack of activity. What in the HAY-ELL is that about??
– Just plain tired and feeling the blues…

As for my scrapping, I’m actually kinda’ re-energized after my crop last weekend, yet there has been no TIME or ENERGY to get to it.

How can we turn this around, ladies?
– Stacey at AMR had the right idea. She started a HAPPY THREAD with a little prize. That cheered me a bit :)
SASSAFRASS LASS and new BAZZILL cardstock packs at Mike’s!!!!! And a coupon this week!!!!!
– Would a couple Landry photos help? Well, here ya go…Could he BE any cuter?!?!

100_5772

100_5773

Are you having the Scrapbooker Blahs? Lie right down on my couch and tell me all about it…..

Simple Scrapbooks Magazine Ends Publication

Yes, the sad news is true: Simple Scrapbooks magazine is coming to an end. This is one time when I hate it that I’m RIGHT. First, the end of the digital scrapbooking mag and now this. If you don’t have time to read the articles and blog posts about this, here are the finer points:

~ Last Simple Scrapbooks issue will be May/June 2009
~ Economic decision, lack of advertising to keep both CK and SS afloat
~ SS will be somewhat folded into CK, whether as a separate section or ideas throughout is unknown at this time
~ Some of our favorite people will be included, like Cathy Z., Stacy, etc.
~ If you have any of your Simple subscription remaining after the May/June 09 issue, your subscription will be transferred and/or added to your CK subscription

Here is what the Simple gals are saying (click on their name to see their blog post about the issue):

The official ANNOUNCEMENT by Lin Sorenson, VP/Editorial Director, CK Media

ANGIE LUCAS, Managing Editor

CATHY ZIELSKE

STACY JULIAN

DONNA DOWNEY has not blogged about it yet; she appears to be traveling

WENDY SMEDLEY

and ABY GARVEY, who also hasn’t blogged about it as of this posting

REBECCA COOPER

Like many of you, I am very sad about this. I’ve read every single issue of Simple Scrapbooks magazine since I discovered it years ago. I loved all of the practical, common sense approaches, and ideas it gave this busy mom who tries to sneak in some scrapbooking on the side. The “personalities” it brought to my life, most notably Cathy Zielske and Stacy Julian, are very special to me and I hope we truly do see lots of them in CK. I hope they continue to blog about scrapbooking as they do now, so we can see their projects and what they’re up to. The “simple” style gives balance to the embellishment-crazy style on the other end of the spectrum and I, for one, will really miss seeing it in it’s own magazine. Best of luck and my prayers to all you Simple ladies as you transition to the new stage in your lives!

It’s Christmastime in Scrappy Land!

Hey, did you notice it’s snowing on my blog. I just really {heart} WordPress.

Okay, let’s start with a shopping report, because there haven’t been enough of those lately. Tonight I went to Michaels and used my 40% off coupon on a really snazzy 5-up photo album by Recollections. Sorry, I coudn’t find a photo of it anywhere online. It was back with the frames and photo albums, not with the scrapbooks. It’s my latest idea for storing extras of “already scrapped” photos and bad shots that I can’t seem to throw away. Each page has some vertical and some horizontal. I figure whatever slots I don’t have photos for on each page (does that make sense?), I’ll slip in some paper and do journaling or a title. Or just some decoration. I have to keep it flat, though, as I doubt this album would be able to handle lots of embellies. If you’d like a photo of it, leave me a comment and I’ll take a pic of mine. I’m going to start collecting these with future Mike’s coupons. I think they’re normally $25, but worth it, with a simple, classy looking cover and the plastic protecting cover that I love…

I also got a kit by K&Company, which was on sale for 30% off. It’s a paper pad with embellies attached (bling!) to make ornaments, which I’m going to give as gifts. And I’m sure keep some too. Every year, I make an ornament for each child so this year’s will be made from this kit. Again, couldn’t find a pic to post for ya’ ~ SAH-REE!

I also got some cinnamon-scented pinecones because I love how they make my house all smelly! I came right home and put them in 3 crystal bowls distributed around the great room area. Mmmmm!! And I got 4 bags of chocolate melts, because they were on a good sale. We’re going to make our traditional PEPPERMINT BARK with the recipe I coulda’ sworn I got last year from BECKY HIGGINS blog. But now I can’t find it on her blog, so I’ll refer you to a sweet CKMB’er, LIZ aka HicksChick, who also has it HERE. We made 2 versions, with Oreos and without. I thought I would like the Oreo version better but just to warn you, it is SUPER sweet. I could take about 2 bites and be done. Hey, wait! That’s a good thing! Last year, we used boring old white chocolate melts but this year, they had RED and GREEN. Totally cool! Here’s a pic of Liz’s peppermint bark so you can start drooling now…then go buy the stuff to make it, you won’t be sorry…{Hi Liz!!!}

Then I went to Target. Yawn. Their scrapbooking aisle has gotten so boring. Nothing was on clearance, and what they call “Sale Items” are, like, 30 cents off the regular price. I do want one or five of THESE KI Memories card and scrapbooking kits. Here’s the Christmas Cardmaking Tin:

And my favorite of the scrapbooking tins, Birthday:

I hope they don’t sell them all, and then put them on Clearance near or after the holidays.

Okay, what else is going on? I got the most recent Scrapbooks Etc and am really enjoying it. I hear a lot of scrappers saying on the message boards that SBE has replaced CK as their favorite scrap mag. I’m not quite there yet, but I get what they’re sayin’. Now the January CK is out and getting rave reviews at 2PEAS. I seeked…sought…sooked…oh, whatever!…but did not find it tonight on my shopping jaunt. Bummer, dude. But I did get the Jan/Feb issue of Simple Scrapbooks. Can’t wait til bedtime when I can browse through it.

I found a very cool LINK where you can download a list of all the Cricut cartridges released to date.

Well, that’s it for now. Back to work! Hope you’re having a wonderful Christmas season and maybe getting to scrap a little? Yeah, me neither but making Christmas cards and ornaments and gifts for soldiers is so much fun this time of year. “Buon Natale e Felice Anno Nuovo!” {Did I get that right, Anne Marie?}

CKMB Blogs

Yep, I also LUV the message board at Creating Keepsakes. It’s huge and fun and always happening! To the right, you can see the huge CKMB Blog Roll. I posted @ CKMB recently asking for updates, for those blogs I didn’t have listed yet, and many have responded. I’m slowly adding them, so please be patient with me if you’ve requested to be added. Thanks :)

i’m also trying out a Tag Cloud. The larger the word is, the more times I’ve used it here somewhere. Funny, huh?

CHA Winter 2008 Previews: One Stop Shop

I was doing a pretty lame job anyway, so I’m just going to turn over the HUGE task of giving CHA-W previews to this girl Monica @ SCRAP ETC. She is just rocking the previews and there are too many for me to keep up.

I was happy to see some Basic Grey previews over there, as BG is the one I always most anticipate:

BASIC GREY “ARCHAIC”
bg archaic preview

BASIC GREY “SUGARED”
sb sugared preview

BASIC GREY “BOXER”
bg boxer preview

I need to see more of each to say for sure, but so far “Boxer” is the only one I’ll be shopping for. I’m no scrapbooking designer, and I know it must be terribly difficult to keep coming up with fresh designs, but I miss “the old days” of Basic Grey. Not loving their stuff like I used to. I mean, there are elements of each collection that I like but I no longer just drool over the entire collection and have “can’t wait to use it” dance parties around my scrap room (no, there is NO footage of these events so don’t even try searching “Scrapbook Obsession’s solo dance parties” over at YouTube”). Do you think they got new designers along the way, or they’re just trying a little too hard to mix it up? The colors have gotten too muted for one thing. And you know how I feel about that weird flower they keep using. The dinosaurs in “Archaic” look cute, but they’re too specific, i.e. how many dino layouts can one girl do? I was scrapping a birthday party this weekend and really, really tried to use some of my Basic Grey “Sublime,” but it was just too…out there. The colors were off just a shade from matching anything (and you KNOW how many colors there are to choose from in birthday party pix), and the graphics were so weird that I couldn’t relate them to anything. You have to know, I HATE to be saying all this about “my” Basic Grey because they have always been my staple. Ask me any time since I’ve been scrapping what can I not do without, and the answer has always been “Basic Grey and Bazzill.” So I just really, really hope they do not disappoint again at CHA {picture me with fingers crossed}.

Tonight at CKMB during Happy Hour, ERIN LINCOLN (CK Message Board Hostess) posted THIS question re: CHA previews.

So, what are your thoughts? Am I alone on the Basic Grey thing? What are you most anticipating from CHA?