Saturday, July 19, 2014

Scrapbooking Really IS Therapeutic! Now get busy...

Today's blog post is about something that I do indeed love: Scrapbooking, and how therapeutic it can be -- if you let it!

Lately we've had a lot going on in our family. A lot of good things, some quite worrisome things (health issues, which are never fun) and just a lot of activity in general. (With a house full of kids, a lot of activity is definitely the norm!) It's easy to put fun hobbies on the back burner when you're busy with life, but I've learned that it's a very good thing to embrace the things you really enjoy when you're going through a rough patch. It's good for the soul...

A good friend of mine who has a child with a very serious illness once told me, "When I get bad news, I allow myself 24 hours to wallow in my own self pity -- then I know it's time to move on." This coming from someone with a child that has a usually fatal illness...? Wow. She is indeed an inspiration. Okay, so this tells me, "Get on with your life already; stop wallowing; do something you ENJOY, and remember, Power = Knowledge." That's where I am right now... it's time to get moving (and CREATING.)

A lot of things change over time, but the one thing that is a constant with me is how therapeutic I find art, crafting and scrapbooking. It's a great way to pass time (especially when you're waiting!) and it's a great treat to look through happy pictures and reflect on the little details that would be forgotten if they weren't documented in photography. Most of the time I put the emphasis on my family when scrapbooking, especially my children's big milestones (think Birthdays, awards day at school, Christmas, etc.) but sometimes you just need to scrap whatever it is you feel like scrapping! It doesn't matter if it's insignificant in the long run, or if it's something that only you will find super interesting when flipping through your album. (Case in point: my husband will one day look through this album and grimace when he gets to the page with the Luke Bryan concert ticket on it -- and after he sighs, he will then think, "Thank God she went with her girlfriends!")

A great album format for scrapping just the little things is the SMASH book. (You can now find these at Target, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, etc.) Not only are these albums easy to find and inexpensive, they are graphically interesting and spiral bound. Even if you don't want to go to the trouble of shopping for one, you can make your own little happy album with a plain spiral notebook that you probably already have laying around...You can make it your very own album, and fill it chock-full of things that YOU find interesting, or little bits of memorabilia that simply make you smile!

I sat down today planning to scrapbook. I looked through Christmas photos (yes, I'm not a current scrapper) and then Spring Break photos. I frankly felt too much pressure when I looked at such important photos. I wasn't in the mood to over-think the layouts, or to write some amazing journaling that my boys would read (and hopefully re-read) one day when they have children of their own. Instead, I just wanted to enjoy the creative process, see pics that made me HAPPY, and reflect on really good times. I did just that -- and had a blast! Not only was the process fun, but I now really like the pages I did, and thoroughly enjoyed the trip down memory lane.

I think everyone should have their own little notebook -- scrapbooker or not. It can hold all kinds of things: poems that inspire you, paint chips of your home color scheme (yes, I've made one of those for my purse!) Pinterest ideas, or your own little book of memories and inspiration. (Mine falls into many of these categories, and that's why I like it!)

Here's a little peak of what I accomplished today:

In life we may not have all the answers, especially when we definitely crave them, but we need to remember to enjoy the little things, and most importantly, to have Faith. I enjoyed some "me time" today here at my desk, just as much as some others may enjoy a good massage, a nice run (I cannot relate to that, ha!) or even a little mini-vacation. The important thing is to just get busy, and to do what you love!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Celebrate National Scrapbook Day This Saturday!

This Saturday is National Scrapbook Day! Are any of you doing anything scrappy? Maybe scrapbooking all weekend, or going to a crop? Well, if you don't have anything planned yet, I invite you to join me (and thousands others!) over at Big Picture Classes for a true NSD celebration! On May 3, the fun begins at 9am pacific time. There will be classes, and techniques, shown for 10 straight hours -- and lots of prizes!

There are many advantages to online NSD celebrations/crops:

1. You don't have to pack up all of your craft supplies and haul them somewhere!

2. You get instant inspiration from all the great scrapbooking talent, all at one place!

3. You can meet all kinds of interesting people who share the same passion for scrapbooking as you do!

4. You don't have to get out of your pajamas all day! :)

If you are not familiar with Big Picture Classes, please click the link here. It will take you to their website, and all you have to do is spend about a minute signing up for the crop and celebration! Best of all -- it's totally FREE!

I hope to see you there this weekend, and remember to tell your friends about it! I am in no way affiliated with Big Picture Classes, but I'm always amazed at the layouts I do at one of their online crops! It's extremely inspiring to be with like-minded individuals who share your love of cardstock, stickers -- and all things scrappy! :)

PS - If you participate, please come back here and let us know if you got a lot of layouts done! I truly believe that seeing others succeed in scrapbooking helps motivate us to get creative ourselves!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Hurry Up, Summer!

Is anyone else tired of Winter? (Yes, I see all the raised hands; mine is raised high!) During these cold, snowy, gray days, it's sometimes difficult to be motivated to create. Lately I just want to curl up in front of the fireplace and read, or nap, or even watch endless loops of International House Hunters on HGTV. Oh, and occasionally get up to grab a cookie or a cup of cocoa.

Well, instead of viewing this month of February as Winter, I prefer to think of it as the time period in which I get my house (craft room included!) all ready for Spring fun! I have to focus on Spring and Summer get-togethers and pool parties; having friends over for dinner, lingering with a glass of wine on the deck, or simply day-dreaming about laying out by the pool this summer with a book in hand, great music blaring across the turquoise water and the sun providing that golden warmth we crave right about now. There is nothing wrong with dreaming about Summer. If that's what it takes to get through these next six weeks, then by all means indulge!

I did have a little "I'm thinking Summer" evening recently. I was stuck inside listening to the television, hearing all about the latest approaching Winter Storm, oddly named Pax. As the dread of more snow and cold grew, I happened to stop on QVC at precisely the right moment! They were having their Spring Accessories show. (How fortuitous!) In a short hour, I ordered an adorable Spring Green cardigan, a Clinique lipstick called "Pink Goddess," and an amazing white mother of pearl wristwatch! Can you tell I'm REALLY thinking Spring? And you know what? When that Spring Green sweater arrives, some day soon in the month of February, I'm going to wear it, and ROCK it! I'm not waiting for March! :)

Now, to help you focus on warm thoughts (and places!) and to get your mind off the crazy cold weather, I'm sharing some fabulous photos from our favorite Summer vacation ever! These photos were all taken on the 30A part of the Gulf of Mexico. If you haven't been to the Seaside/Rosemary Beach area, I highly encourage you to visit! It's an amazing place! Hope you enjoy!