divided page protectors

New MAMBI Products at Michaels – Perfect for Project Life or Everyday Pages

Here’s peek from the MAMBI site that gives a preview of what I’m talking about . . .

Yes, they are joining the ever popular trend of having a divided page protector, Project Life-type line and it’s called “Pocket Pages”. As a divided page protector scrapper and Project Lifer, I am very happy about this new development. I’ve always loved MAMBI’s happy, colorful, simple designs and have a bit of MAMBI (that’s short for Me and My Big Ideas) in my stash.

To make this development even better, the MAMBI “Pocket Pages” line will be carried @ Michaels! And as someone who has no Hobby Lobby, Archivers, Joann’s, or LSS, I mainly shop at Michaels. With COUPONS . . . hollah!

You can see the entire line of 3×4 and 4×6 cards HERE!!

I took the liberty of going to Michaels and taking some photos for you ;)

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And on your behalf, I also bought {2} packs of the cards to start us off. There was a 50% off coupon that I used for us, too. All in the name of shopping research … hee! Here are the sets we got – they don’t have names that I could find so I made up my own:

SUMMER

We have a pool and live near the ocean so I have scads of photos to use these with. Happy!

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SPORTS

Every kid I know plays sports and I love to take sports photos. Not to mention my love of MLB games and Spring Training. There are cards for soccer, baseball, and football. Another perfect match.

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I love how on the back of the package they show each of the cards so you can see what you’re getting before you buy them :)

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So the card packs retail for $4.99. You get {12} 4×6 cards with no repeats and {60} 3×4 cards with some repeats but not a lot. Some of the 3×4 cards are pattern-only like polka dots, grass, etc. No solids that I can remember. All of the cards have a reverse side of white with a light grey grid or swiss dots – so if you don’t have a use for the design, you can use the reverse side for journaling. The cardstock is of lighter weight – which I personally like because it makes for more pages within an album.

I’m pretty much in love with these cards and plan to buy just about every set over time with coupons. There are also the pocket pages (I already use WRMK and Becky Higgins Design A; not sure I want to introduce yet another style) and matching greeting card blanks. You just fold them in 1/2 and pop a 3×4 card on the front for a cute and quick card.

There are more at the link above – these are just 2 samples.

So there is my MAMBI @ Mike’s news and a review of their new product! Have you seen them at your Michaels yet? What sets have you bought or do you plan to buy?

Scrapbook Open House

I know that most scrapbook consultants have parties as the main way they get their products “out there.” Well, you know me, I have to be different, LOL! In my 3 years as a MEMORY WORKS Consultant (just had my 3-year anniversary on 2-6-10, yeah!), I’ve never officially had an MW party. Instead I prefer to have crops, where my products are for sale and customers can browse/purchase at their leisure, and now I’m having my second Scrapbook Open House.

The way an Open House works (and this is my own definition; it’s not something that Memory Works promotes as an option, per se) is that you find a customer who would like to be the hostess (they get hostess credit), decide your hours, send out flyers to your customers, offer some incentives for them to come by … and then PRAY that they do, LOL!

The first open house I did was in November 2008. I had a fabulous make-n-take, a 12×12 2-page layout with MY MINDS EYE products, that was hugely popular. It was a class kit from Memory Works, so I didn’t even have to come up with the idea or put it together. The hostess provided cookies, hot cider, and such. Ladies stopped by, did the M&T while they chatted with scrappy friends and had a snack, or they just purchased the kit and took it home. It was a great success and lots of fun.

Now with a crop (which is what I do more often) you get reservations and payment ahead of time, so you know financially how you’re doing as you go along, how much food to provide, etc. But with an Open House, other than the few ladies who might RSVP on their own, you really don’t know how many will show up. So from my perspective as a consultant, that’s a wee bit aggravating … yet the nature of the beast, so that’s okay :)

For the customer, open houses are great because they are TOTALLY at your convenience. You can stop by when you have time, stay for as little or as long as you want, do a quick shop or relax and stay awhile, chat with your scrappy friends without having to lug all your stuff like you would to a crop, get to see new products, and touch base with your consultant.

And those are all the reasons I like to have an Open House once in a while. It’s truly a win-win-win, LOL. The hostess gets free stuff, customers have an easy event to attend, and I hopefully make my customers happy and sell some things. This time, I’m most excited about it because I get to show off SIMPLE STORIES in person. I’ve been selling lots of it online (thank you, my dear customers!), but this is the first time I’ll show it off in person.

I think my job will be pretty easy, as it really does sell itself. I do look forward to seeing that A-HA moment in ladies’ eyes when they see how easy and fast it is, how fun it is to work with, and what a solution it can be to some scrapping dilemmas they might be facing.

1. That feeling of being “behind” ~ We all have super busy periods in our lives, or you just lose your mojo to scrap. Then you feel like you’re so far behind. You’re still taking photos as you always have, but they’re stacking up (literally, or at least on your computer) and how will you ever catch up?

2. You took a family trip, remodeled your house, or had a new baby and the amount of photos you took is, well, kind of embarrassing really :) You want to show off all the amazing photos and not have to skip any of them, but if you do regular layouts for every photo, you’ll need at least 2 albums … and 2 weeks of home vacation just to have the time, LOL.

3. You’d like to do PROJECT 365, 52, or 12. You want to do a weekly GRATITUDE ALBUM. You’d like to do a Year in Review album with just the best pics from each month.

Yep, Simple Stories takes care of all of these Scrapper Issues :) I think that’s why so many people have purchased it and are excited about it. It’s just a bonus that the kit itself is so dang pretty and fun. Anyway, I look forward to seeing reactions in person and hope my IRL scrap friends like Simple Stories as much as I do (wait, is that even possible???).

My Scrapbook Open House tomorrow is being held at the clubhouse of a sweet scrappy friend. She hosts a group of friends for a monthly crop, which we love because it’s free, easy, and fun! You can actually go to the entire crop day without spending any money (nice when money is tight), if you bring your own munchies and drinks. And avoid the inevitable trips to Starbucks and Michaels, LOL.

Tomorrow happens to be the February date for our monthly ‘friends crop.’ Since she’ll have the clubhouse open anyway, she agreed to be the hostess for my Open House (LOVE her!). There are usually 4 to 6 of us cropping all day from 9am to 9pm; I’m not sure how many are expected this time. Then from 10am to 8pm, I’ll have my Memory Works area set up with products, some snacks/drinks, a quick make-n-take, and free gifts for those who stop by.

I’m kind of nervous that no one will come to the Open House. You just never know. I’ve stocked up on a bunch of Simple Stories PRODUCTS ~ kits, page protector packs, cardstock packs, and even an album.

I’ll have my album available to flip through and show samples of how you can use the kit, and the M&T is made from Simple Stories products. I have copies printed of the new SIMPLE STORIES IDEA GUIDE and CATALOG.

Please keep your fingers crossed that I make some sales Saturday!

I’m going to look on the bright side: Even if I don’t have many customers, I still get to scrapbook all day, right?

Simple Stories “Life Documented” and Getting Started

The SIMPLE STORIES “Life Documented” kit by MEMORY WORKS went on sale Friday, January 15, 2010 at 9am MST … and I ordered mine 1/15/10 at 9:01 MST :) I know, I know, I lagged for a whole minute! Here is what I ordered:

The Simple Stories “Life Documented” KIT ($16.99)

Prism CARDSTOCK PACK with colors that match the Life Documented kit ($3.75)

We R Memory Keepers (WRMK) page protectors, in 3 configurations …

MULTI-PACK(10 for $5.50)

VERTICAL 4×6 slots only (10 for $5.50)

HORIZONTAL 4×6 slots only (25 for $11.50)

And the kiwi green WRMK 12×12 D-RING ALBUM ($30.00), which comes with (10) regular 12×12 page protectors

I received my package of goodies exactly one week later (the following Friday). Usually I get MW orders within 4-5 days but, understandably, it took longer this time because they were swamped with orders. That weekend, I set about getting started with my Simple Stories kit, which I’m using to complete my PROJECT 365 for 2010.

The kit is so detailed and nice-looking, that you can definitely “keep it simple” and use nothing but what comes in the kit, by cutting the cardstock elements apart, printing out and using the digital elements, etc. and just slipping them right into the page protector slots. Adding your photos and journaling would be the rest of the process, and you’d be DUNZO! Whoo hoo, love the simplicity and quickness of that.

But after seeing Simple Stories page samples from the Memory Works design team and guest designer BRENDA HURD, I decided to go a little more elaborate with mine. I really liked how they added flowers, ribbon, stamping, and other embellishments to dress it up and have a little fun with it.

So I went digging through my stash and began gathering things that I could use. I found lots of matching flowers and ribbons (Why, yes, I DO know that I have a ribbon issue! I’m on Step 7 of 12. I’ve humbly asked God to remove this shortcoming. I’m waiting to hear back) …

I decided to use one of the patterned, double-sided cardstock sheets to open my Project 365 album, with the title page/front page using one side, and then turning the page to an Introduction page on the left. {It has a bunch of personal info on it and with the nasty spammers I get on the blog, I can’t share the whole thing here, sorry … }. Here’s the bottom right of the Intro page, where I used a file tab sticker and alpha letters from the SS kit, and some light green glitter chipboard letters I had (thanks SSS SECRET SANTA!).

I printed out my photos and started popping them into the slots, along with strips, embellishment, and journaling cards from the kit. I also used one of the transparencies here, to give special honor to the photo of receiving my long-awaited Simple Stories shipment!

On the first page, I used the January month card. There’s a card for every month, which I love.

I kept the cover sheet from the kit and slipped it in a page protector, for when I take my Project 365 album {which will be my demo album} to Memory Works parties and crops.

I’m not sure why I took a photo of my WRMK album. I think because I’m in love with it and want to marry it …

I got all my P365 photos printed up to that point, which was the end of Week 3, and got them in the page protectors where I liked them. Some of the photos didn’t fit effortlessly into the slotted pages so rather than fight or force, I decided to make a front and back 12×12 layout using some of the Prism cardstock as a background.

At that point, I had a better feel for the colors and style of the kit, and went shopping in my stash again for things I could use to dress it up. I found chipboard numbers, journaling items, metal frames, and all kinds of bling. Hmmm … I’m getting so much stuff, I need a container of some kind to hold them on my desk. Shouldn’t be a problem, as I’m the Queen of Rubbermaid storage containers, LOL.

So that’s how things went on my first Simple Stories outing. Obviously, now that I’ve got the basic layout of my pages in place, it’s time to USE some of that fine stashness I’ve gathered.

I’ve never done Project 365 and I’ve never scrapbooked this way, with the divided page protectors. This is going to be a fun and growing experience for me and my scrapbooking, and I’m really looking forward to it.

Project 365 in 2010

Wow, that’s a lot of freakin’ numbers! Yeah, I’m thinking about doing Project 365 starting January 1 of next year.

If you’ve been living under a rock and aren’t already familiar, Project 365 is where you take a photo per day for an entire year (get it??? 365?? huh? huh?). Ostensibly, you then scrapbook those photos so that at the end of the year, you have photos and journaling from an entire year in your everyday life. Pretty dang cool.

I *think* this idea originated with Ali Edwards or Creating Keepsakes or Becky Higgins, or some combination thereof. Becky provided a PROJECT 365 KIT last year that you could purchase to simplify the process. It utilized those page protectors with slots in them and pre-done journaling boxes and accents which, along with your photo per day, you could just slip right in. Add some quick journaling each day or each week and you are dunzo. HERE is something from January 2009 by Becky, about all the reasons to do P365 … it’s a good overview of what the project entails and why it’s a cool idea. Plus, it will make you want to buy one of her kits, LOL. For 2010, she is selling the Project Life kit HERE.

Here is a sample from MAGGIE HOLMES using Becky’s kit from 2009:

This is such an all-encompassing project that a lot of participants started a blog separate from their regular scrapbooking blog to document their P365 photos. Some people see this as a great way to improve your photography, not just the skills used to take photos of such varied things but also opening your eyes to the everyday things that we wouldn’t think were “important enough” for a photo usually, but P365 gives you license to take their picture. For instance, maybe you take a photo of what you have for breakfast most days, your kids doing homework, or the gorgeous spring flower that just bloomed outside your window.

I avoided being sucked in to Project 365 last year, but my resolve is weakening. It has the potential to be a VERY time-consuming project, no? Not only do you have to remember to take a ding-dang photo every single day of your life for an entire year, but then you need to sit down and daily or at least weekly print out your photo(s), slap some journaling down, and make it all look cute.

However, I’ve been reading about Project 365 throughout the year here and there, kind of following how scrappers everywhere are accomplishing this daunting ~ yes, I said daunting…you gotta problem with that? ~ task, and they have made me feel like it’s doable. I think the divided page protectors are definitely the way to go. There is no way on Lisa Bearnson’s green earth that I’m going to scrapbook a full-on layout a day. Just ain’t happening. After the FIASCO with Becky’s P365 kits last year*, I’m not going there … don’t want to deal with that mess if I decide to do it for 2010. They are supposedly shipping Dec. 29th but we shall see. Just for the record, I’m not dissing on Becky … but I’ve not been a fan of CK Customer Service for years. Nicely put: They suck. So there.

*The link is to Becky’s blog archives for January 2009; scroll through and browse all the negativity to see what I’m calling “The Fiasco.” January 24 is a good one to read.

Besides, as happy happenstance would have it, the company I’m a consultant for {MEMORY WORKS} has announced their own products for the first time, coming out in January 2010. The first line will include items to do this type of “photo album scrapbooking” made so attractive and popular by the likes of STACY JULIAN and all those Project 365’ers out there. So there will be pre-cut journaling boxes and elements with corresponding divided page protectors to make scrapping a lot of photos about as easy as it gets.

As for the photo issue, now that I have my little Epson photo printer and can easily print photos at home, the obstacle of sending photos off to be printed in a timely manner is gone … I’ll just print them at home. Easy peasy. I doubt I would actually print out a photo every day, but I could certainly do it weekly … erm, at least I think I could.

So, I’m still on the fence about doing Project 365 in 2010. I’m kind of famous for … well, for lots of things actually, like the fact that Lou Diamond Phillips once brushed against me in a nightclub and that TROY DUNN is my homeboy … but what I meant to say was, I’m pretty famous for starting projects, being all gung-ho at the beginning, and then my life gets “too busy” and I let those commitments fall by the wayside.

In the case of Project 365, I don’t want that to happen. If I start it, I wanna finish it. And I honestly don’t know if I have it in me to do that. With 2009 coming to an end, there is a lot of talk on scrapbook blogs and message boards among those scrappers who did P365 this year. I’m hearing a lot of “Yeah, it was a cool project but it was SO hard to keep up on,” and “I was really excited to do it but I dropped out in February; it was just too much work.”

I don’t know. I’m confuzzled. Is there a support group for people like me?

I think it would be very cool to have a completely done 2010 album at this time next year. What an awesome thing for my family to look back on, a year of our everyday life captured in one place … the good, the bad, and the ugly. And believe you me, there is LOTS of ugly! Dirty dishes, a mentally-challenged dog, unmade beds … the horror! But I think doing this project would at least keep me in semi-scrapping mode throughout the year, whereas currently I only seem to scrap when I go to crops. P365 would force me to at least be taking some pics and jotting a few details down on a regular basis. And a reason to Scrap Shop! {Yeah, like I NEED a reason??} Project 365 would give me an excuse to buy the cute new Memory Works products, and it would give me a way to display them for customers.

One good idea I heard is to start NOW putting photo ideas in your dayplanner. Then you’re not struggling every day for what to take a photo of. HERE is a cool list provided by CK of 365 things to take photos of.

So, yeah, there are lots of positives to this project and that’s why I’m seriously considering participating in 2010. I think I’ve about 70% convinced myself, but the other 30% is being a real bee-yotch about the whole thing (“You’re too busy, you’ll never keep up.” “You never stick with anything long enough to complete it.” “Focus on your regular scrapping, dummy.” You know, bitchy stuff like that.).

So tell me, did you do Project 365 in 2009? Do you plan to in 2010? Why or why not? If you’re going to participate, HOW are you going to do it? Tell me, tell me …