Posts Tagged ‘scrapbook crop’

Crops and Retreats are for People Pleasers … Like Me

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I was just reading THIS POST at 2peas, called “Maybe it’s because I’ve never been to a crop …” The poster, Jessica, goes on to state:

But I really don’t see the benefit… if peopl spend weeks getting ready for an all day crop then wouldn’t you have been able to do all those layouts before instead of putting together all these page kits? Is it more for the socializing? I just think that all the time I would spend gettin ready for a crop + the time I would spend at the crop I could get more stuff just doing it at home.

Then many Peas chimed in either to agree with her, or to explain why they do attend crops and retreats. Here is one such answer, from Renee:

The benefit is a big chunk of uninterrupted time to work on projects. No where to go, nothing to do, and no one calling for mom.

Yep, ^^^^THAT^^^^ would be me, LOL. That’s certainly why I go to crops. I don’t get anything done at home. Srsly. I hardly ever scrap at home anymore. And I figured it out.

I’m a People Pleaser.

I *should* be able to sit at my scrap desk, tune out all the distractions, and tell my kids and husband to leave me the heck alone. I should be able to focus, and daze off into Scrappy La La Creative Land.

But I just can’t.

Say I’m sitting at my desk scrapping. I hear one of the kids looking for a permission slip or piece of schoolwork, I jump up and help them. I hear the hubs starting to make dinner or do the dishes, I jump up and help him. My family starts watching a movie together, and I don’t want to miss out so I join them … and make the popcorn, then do the dishes after. When the dryer buzzes, I go fold and put away the laundry, and start another load. And when that dryer buzzes, I do it again. Lather rinse repeat. When the phone rings, even if I’m successful in ignoring it, when DH says it’s for me, I take the call (aren’t I within my rights to say, “Tell them I’m busy and I’ll call them back”? That’s what a sane scrapper would do).

When I’m working from home, I manage to tune everything out, to resist family movies, to let these capable human beings fend for themselves. But for some reason, I can’t seem to do it in defense of my scrapbooking time. I guess the difference is that, when I’m working, I’m People Pleasing my clients (since they ARE paying me, after all, lol).

Maybe it’s because I *do* work so much … that I feel like when I’m home and NOT working, I should be spending every spare moment housekeeping or doing things with my family. So maybe stay-at-home moms don’t stuggle with this, I don’t know. I would love to hear from you SAHM’s … are you able to scrap at home? It seems like most of the popular scrapbook bloggers are SAHMs; I can’t think of any who work full-time (at a non-scrapbooking job, I mean).

Maybe the successful at-home scrappers create when the kids are in bed for the night? Unfortunately, I’m either working again or too tired at that point. Oh how I WISH I could scrap late at night. I used to, when I worked part-time and didn’t have to be up early the next day to put in a full day’s work. Ah, the good old days!

So. I go to crops and retreats. Like someone said in the 2peas thread, I get more pages done at my annual weekend retreat than I do the entire rest of the year. Sad but true.

Coincidentally, that retreat time is almost upon me! I’ll soon be going away for the weekend ~ a Friday through Sunday in March ~ to adjoining condos at a nearby lake, to scrap, scrap, scrap. There will be eight of us and we’ll take turns doing meals, so the only time I’ll be tied up is making dinner on Saturday night. But I hope to pre-flight something and just warm it up at the condos.

Matter of fact, I think I’ll write another blog entry before then about how I pack for a crop. I’ll try to take photos of the process and then explain what I pack and why.

How about you? Do you crop mostly at home or mostly away? Are you a People Pleaser or can you focus and block out all distractions?

Scrapbook Crop and Open House: A Report :)

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As I told you about HERE, I had a Scrapbook Open House on Saturday. My friend who holds a monthly crop for several friends in her development’s clubhouse was kind enough to let me display all my SIMPLE STORIES merch and invite all my crop buddies and customers to come check it out.

The good news is: There were 6 of us at the crop for most of the day and I got to chat and have fun with my friends. Several customers stopped by and I was able to show them how Simple Stories works, along with some new MEMORY WORKS products I had in stock.

The bad, well okay, decent news: I sold a “moderate” amount of stuff, LOL! It wasn’t gangbusters like I had hoped, but I did sell enough to make me happy I’d done it. I think the best part was that, even for the customers who didn’t buy anything, I was able to show Simple Stories to them and every single customer seemed interested. Maybe it wasn’t in their budget for now, but hopefully it will be in the future.

Thanks for cheering me on. I know you were with me in spirit. I did have a fun day, and made some progress on my Project 365 album. I took my laptop and little Epson printer so I could try to get caught up. For my photos, I chose, edited, and printed them right there at the crop and then scrapped them (with the Simple Stories “Life Documented” kit and WRMK pocket page protectors). I didn’t do any journaling at the crop ‘cuz when I do, I tend to make mistakes. So now I’m only 1 week behind in photos and 2 weeks behind in journaling. Hey, if you knew all the stuff going on in my personal life right now, you’d be impressed, I swear! LOL :)

Overall, a fun and worthwhile day. Hope you had a scrap happy weekend, too.

Scrapbook Crops, Retreats, and Horror Stories

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I went to a crop this past Saturday. It was a monthly crop put on by a friend who gets the use of her complex’s clubhouse for free and there’s room for 6 to 8 of us. Most months there’s about 3 to 6 of us, a really great group of fun and supportive ladies. We can be in there from 9 to 9, and sometimes people come in the morning only, the evening only, or even leave and come back, like if their kids have a soccer game or something. It’s always a lot of fun and I love the chance to catch up with everyone’s lives. We are all varied women with various jobs and lifestyles…we all happen to be moms, and jobs vary from office manager to transcriptionist (me!) to doctor to SAHM, etc.

The cool thing is that there are never “crop horror stories” with these ladies, kwim? Have you heard of or experienced CROP HORROR STORIES? I sure have! Here are some examples of the bad behavior I refer to: talking super loud on your cell phone, smoking in the crop room, table hogging, the obsessive tool borrower, etc. Well, not this group…they’re all wonderful and I’m so lucky to be invited to crop with them all the time.

Speaking of which, this group does a yearly trip usually in February where we rent a double-condo at a nearby lake and crop from Friday night to Sunday afternoon. Everyone provides one meal, we all bring snacks to share, and it only costs $50 per person. This year, it looks like that trip will be in late January instead, which works well for me schedule-wise, so I hope I’m able to go. My mom usually comes down to stay at my house a day or two early, then she joins us on the crop weekend.

One really neat thing is that my mom and one of the ladies in my group developed a good friendship the first time we had this weekend a few years ago. They have some similar health issues and are really supportive of each other. It’s so fun to see them enjoying their time scrapbooking together, and with the rest of us, of course, LOL!

The sweet lady who hosts these monthly crops at her clubhouse is also arranging a weekend retreat for May 2010. It’s about $125 per person for 3 days and the retreat house is all decked out with individual cropping tables with Ott lights, a computer/printer, a big couch and TV for chick flick watching, etc. Again, each person provides a meal. Housekeeping is included in the cost. Whoo to the Hoo!

I told DH about these two fabulous cropping opportunities just to get them on his radar. He basically just grumbles when I tell him these things, but when the time comes, he’s fine if I go. As long as there are no sick kids around our house or anything. You know how it is, right? I’m feeling pretty positive about the January weekend, but the May one, well, we’ll have to see. The expense is the main problem. Maybe I can play the “…but May is my birthday-anniversary-Mother’s Day-month” card. Do you think that will work?

The only problem is I’ve already attempted to play THAT card to justify why I need to buy the camera I reeeeeeellly reeeeeeeellly want on Black Friday, since mine has been out of commission for months and a similar camera is on a great sale that day. And I only jumped ahead and played the “May” card because I had already used the “….don’t get me anything else for Christmas because I reeeeellly reeeeeelllly want this new set of crop bags.”

Sheesh, I’m running out of cards to play, ain’t I?

Hope you had a fabulous weekend and got to play with some paper! :)

Friday Night Scrapbook Randoms #3

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It’s the Friday night before a Saturday of cropping, yahoo! Yeppers, I’m going to crop with some friends tomorrow, from about noon to 9pm. I’m working now, and I haven’t even packed yet so it’ll be the usual, me scrambling to pack my crop bags late the night before, hoping I’m remember everything and putting together some semblance of things I can use to make actual layouts with, lol! I am the WORST about packing ahead for crops. The magic package I talked about HERE did indeed arrive today, and I’m so excited to look through it all. Since I’m busy anyway, I’m saving it to look through with the girls tomorrow. If I can resist…

One of the new things I got was the “AMBER ROAD” theme set from PINK PAISLEE. I saw something today that made me love it even more…CHECK IT OUT! And THIS TOO. Isn’t she amazing and ever-so-talented? Love what she did with Amber Road…

Saw this over on 2peas and wanted to share it with you. I had bookmarked this link a long time ago but forgot all about it, so I’m glad it was posted again….Free printable graph paper, ledger paper, binder paper etc. for your scrapbooks ~ you can make some super cool journaling spots, for one! LOOKIE HERE

This useful computer tool was also posted by a Pea: SCRAP BY COLOR color matching tool It takes the colors from your photos and gives you color swatch matches to use in your scrapbooking. Love it. Thank you, ROSALYNN!

About THIS, all I can say is WTH?

I will leave you with THIS. Talk about a scrapbooker’s dream trip! Ali, Karen, and Jenni plus that amazing place. Wow. Wish I could go…

Before my crop tomorrow, I’m going to the beach ~ it’s a family tradition, Coastal Cleanup day ~ so it’s my two favorite things in one day. No, not litter and cigarette butts, silly! The ocean and scrapbooking. Hope you have a great weekend and get some time to scrapbook to your heart’s content.

Crop Report and Michaels Coupon News

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Pink Paislee, Shoppin’, and Croppin’

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I got the box! I got the box! Pink Paislee box that is. By the time I got home yesterday with it, it was too dark to take photos. So, I just took pictures this morning and now I have to work all day. I will edit the photos and get everything posted tonight, so check back tomorrow.

I also hit Tuesday Morning and Michaels while in “the big city” yesterday. Look for posts about those stores later this week.

Otherwise, I’m preparing for my crop this Friday/Saturday. It’s the first one I’ve done since my “hiatus” from Memory Works from September 2008 til March 2009. I only have a few people signed up each day but enough to juuuuust break even on the room rental. If I don’t get any more attendees, I’ll lose money on the food/drinks and prizes. I don’t anticipate there being very many MW orders placed either. Have I said this economy sucks? Cuz it does. When a scrapper can’t even afford to go to a crop and buy a few goodies for her stash, something is DEFINITELY wrong. And, yeah, that’s what I’m hearing from my friends….they can’t even afford the crop fee right now much less doing any shopping. At least my mama will be cropping along side me both days, and I’ll get to see a few friends I haven’t talked to in a while, so it’ll be a fun weekend either way :)

See ya, homies!

Going to a Crop

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Well, my bags are packed and I’m going to a small crop with friends today. There are 6 or 7 of us who try and meet up every few months, which I love, because I never seem to crop at home anymore. The only time I get anything done is at crops. Anyhoo, since I’m starting up doing MEMORY WORKS again, I asked the hostess if she wanted to turn the crop today into and MW “party” so she could have the hostess credits. I was happy she said yes. So what happens is I take new catalogs and some products with me today and sell/take orders. Everything that’s ordered will be shipped together to the hostess and she distributes it to everyone. Which is easy, since we all live near each other and see each other often. The cool thing is you “share the shipping” that way instead of each customer paying it themselves. And the best part is the hostess, if we reach $150 in orders, gets a hostess credit. It’s a win-win. Actually, I’m a bit concerned with so few of us that we won’t meet the $150 minimum. It’s such a tough economy and I know everyone can’t afford to scrapbook spend the way they used to. If we get close to $150, I may add my own items to the order, so that my hostess can earn her rewards. But I just spent the last of my birthday money on THIS, so I don’t have a ton to spend right now either. Well, I’m just hoping it works out.

The main thing is this….I GET TO SCRAPBOOK TODAY!!!!! Even if the MW order thing doesn’t work out, I’m one massively happy camper. I was up late packing for the crop last night and am fairly disorganized. I’m here at the computer this morning printing photos (and order forms). So we’ll see how it goes. Hopefully, I packed enough of the right things to make some kickin’ layouts, LOL!

Hope you’re having a fabulous weekend. Do you have any plans for creative time?

I’m Goin’ A-Croppin’ Tomorrow

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Yay, yippee, woot woot!! It’s been quite awhile since I’ve either held a crop or been to one. Actually, this weekend was APPOSED ta be an annual scrap retreat with my mom and 4 friends. But the dear friend who usually organizes it is going through some personal stuff and couldn’t handle the planning this year. I offered to take over the reins but the other girls were gone on a SCRAPPING CRUISE so I couldn’t reach them in time to reserve the lake cabin for the retreat. But since my mom was coming down anyway, I called one of the retreat girlies this week and said, HAY-AYYYYY! Why don’t we just have a croppy Saturday at your clubhouse? And she was all for it. Thus….I’m goin’ a-croppin’ tomorrow. And I couldn’t be happier. Well, okay, technically I COULD be happier. I could already be at a crop RETREAT but let’s not split hairs, shall we?

So it’s about 8:45 on Friday night and I just finished packing for my croppy Saturday. I’m getting pretty good at packing for crops. I’ve learned that it does not pay to take every thing I own. Rather, I figure out 1 big project I want to work on {this time it’s finishing up the Santa Cruz part of my San Francisco/Santa Cruz trip album}, and all the things I need to work on that project. In this case, it’s the 12×12 album with enough empty page protectors to hold the pages I’m going to complete, and an Iris clamshell case with all the papers, embellies, and Thickers I’m using for this album. Then I usually bring maybe 4 or 5 other sets of photos that are of similar theme, colors, etc. and then a paper stack and chunk of embellies/letters that I can pull from for these layouts. For tomorrow, I have photos of a birthday, a bike race (Lance Armstrong’s race came through our area yesterday!), the kids playing with the puppy, and a Superbowl party. Do you see what these event photos might all have in common? Yep, bright mostly primary colors. So I’m taking the American Crafts “Celebration” paper stack that I just got (talked about it HERE), a “kid’s life” stack, several kinds of primary and black or white letter stickers, and a handful of colorful embellies.

The one place I guess I overpack is with cardstock ~ I always pack all 3 Cropper Hopper vertical files full of Bazzill ~ because I cannot STAND being at a crop and not being to find the exact right shade of background cardstock I need. Usually, I take my Baby Bug (little Cricut) and cartridges but decided not to this time. Maybe someone else will bring theirs and if they don’t, I can get by with the Thickers and such that I’m bringing. Finally, and most importantly, I always take my Cropper Hopper Flat Pack and a mini Tote-ally Cool Tote with my often used tools, adhesives, scissors, etc., my 2 Basic Grey Magnetic Mats, and my Ott Lite. This time, I also threw in a few border punches, and my “baby X” Xyron adhesive machine. So, miracle of miracles, I got all my stuff into my XXL, Crop In Style shoulder tote, and a small rolling tote. Wish me luck that I didn’t forget anything crucial! Although the great thing is that, at crops, everyone is more than willing to share anything you might need.

I’m really looking forward to tomorrow. Not just for the creative opportunity to make some fun layouts, and the accomplishment I’m going to feel when I finish my travel album, but the time I’ll get to spend with my mom and my friends, just gossiping the day away, laughing, listening to music, having a nice dinner, and coming home feeling de-stressed, refreshed, and gung-ho to keep cropping in the coming weeks. Going to crops always gets me motivated in my scrapping again and I’m really needing that right now.

Have a wonderful weekend, dearies!

Crops and Organizing and Such…

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Just a quick post, because I feel guilty when days go by and I haven’t yakked about anything :) I’m hosting 2 all-day crops tomorrow and Saturday (8am to midnight, both days). Seems no matter how much I get done ahead of time, no matter how many items I check off the To Do list, I’m up all night before my crops getting ready! Oh well, I have so much fun at the crops and have such wonderful friends to spend scrap time with, that I stay awake and happy on just a couple of hours sleep.

Can I say thank you SO MUCH for all the great comments about my business name?? That is so awesome and they are great to read. Scrappers are, yes, a very creative bunch and you make me smile :)

On a down note, it was finally confirmed at work today that they plan to close the facility I work at (part-time in a clerical job). It’s been a rumor for months, so I had already started to look around at other jobs. The closure will be completed by June 30, 2008…so now I’m hardcore job hunting again. It’s all very complicated but the heart of the matter is that this job has allowed me to be home with my kids more; finding another one like it in pay and hours will be virtually impossible. I’m about to have a breakdown from worrying that I’ll have to go back to work full-time. I have noticed such a difference in our family, our kids, my “self”, our happiness since I’ve been home more and it breaks my heart to think about us being back on that full-time treadmill. I know this blog ain’t about me, but if you feel like saying a little prayer for me I would truly appreciate it.

Okay, now I have 4 hours of computer work, then several more of getting ready for the crop (make goody bags, pack car, make brownies,…), so I’d better get on it! Hope you’re able to get some scrapping done this weekend!

PS: As for the Organizational Challenge, it officially ends this Sunday 1/6/08. However, I certainly won’t be holding anyone to the deadline as I won’t be meeting it myself. Unfortunately, job searching and financial planning has had to take over. I’ll continue to post my scrap space organizing progress and hope you will do the same. I will complete the RAK for the business name suggestions after I finish up the crop, probably Sunday or Monday. Thank you, sweeties, for understanding…

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