Tuesday, May 31

Today's Technie - Schemes

Today's technique features Simple Scrapbooks Schemes. These are little blueprints for your layouts that are exactly like the Becky Higgins sketches. Because it is featured in Simple Scrapbooks, these schemes are almost exactly Becky's style...simple. What is great about these little maps is that there is no thinking involved. You just follow the sketch exactly as it is filling in the pictures, journaling and embellishments where it has been predetermined. So, step one is to pick a sketch. In Becky Higgin's book, Sketches, it is clearly divided in sections so that you can easily determine which sketch to use based on the number of pictures you have. Brilliant!!

Step two is to follow the guide. So, instead of 12 photos around the page, I used patterned papers to match. I didn't have enough photos, so the paper has to fill in.

Voila! Simple. Easy. Wonderful. And you can do a layout in about 15 minutes! I love to do these when I have a little scrappers block. I quickly do a simple layout like this or scraplift a layout, just to get past the block. I think once you sit down and start to scrap, then it begins to come back to you.
All the Becky Higgins sketches are available online as well.....
And every month CK magazine asks for submissions to the column,
One Sketch, Many Looks.

Thursday, May 26

It's not Memorial Day without Camping!!

Memorial Day Weekend is almost upon us. There is one thing I think of when I think of Memorial Day...CAMPING. A few years ago, we got a great group together and took a camping trip that was so much fun we swore that it would be an annual event. The weekend was cold, it rained hard and the woods were fenced off so that we could not go exploring. But we had fun. A ton of fun. Well, you know things happen....The following year, Liz and Eric got married. (They are at the far right in this picture.)

Then the next year, my brother Andrew graduated high school that weekend. Last year, we had a solid plan, but mother nature is a cruel and bitter woman. She decided that we needed enough rain prior to the weekend and over the course of the weekend to flood out the campsite that we had planned to visit. So, we went to our cottage instead. It was super fun as well, but no camping trip. Well, this year, my baby brudder, Nate, is graduating Saturday.

Curse you Notre Dame High School for Boys!!!!!
So, no camping for us this weekend. But thinking back on camping and especially that summer of 2002 when we had such a bonding weekend. I mean look at us, I have very few pictures where people look truly happy. I love this picture!
These pictures make me yearn for camping. The simplicity of being outside all weekend. The deliciousness of cooking food on an open flame for three whole days. The cool thing that happens when people bond over a huge campfire. Ohhhh....I can just about taste the smores. I am generally a very happy girl when I camp, usually just as spazztic because I can never just relax, but really happy.I mean look at these people. Most of them had not known each other before this weekend, but over the course of a few days became friends. It's a wonderful thing.

These pictures bring back so many great memories. Makes me angry I will not be setting up a tent this weekend, but still good thoughts. I hope that I will get to see most of these people this weekend and check in with them. Someof them I haven't seen in years. You know who you are. (Bicki Funk!!) Remember...Brewhaha, Saturday, my casa. It is a consolation prize to the annual trip.

I rock product!
(saying born may 2002, 1st annual camping trip)

(no OPAW for those of you paying attention)

Wednesday, May 25

Doodling....Not Just for Kids

So, it's Hump Day again and I have not even began my OPAW. I need to just relax and let some cool ideas come to me. Not focus so much. I was thinking about how as a child I loved to color and doodle on everything. I especially loved coloring books. I was a talented 8 year old artist and would outline the pictures in marker and then color in with the crayons. Very advanced technique. I also doodled my way through high school. You could tell how my day or week was going just by the doodle. Of course, I was very into the doom and gloom of the late 80s, so most of the doodles were in that style. I also still doodle any chance I get, on everything. My shopping lists are works of art. At work I am always doodling, nothing much else to do. Unfortunately, there aren't many materials around here to doodle with to make a masterpiece. So, I picked up my pen, pencil, blue highlighter (we only had a blue one) and red pen attempting to create something artsy.

I call it....Office Portrait of Spazzgirl. I am hoping that this will get my juices flowing. Note to self: add the word juices to the list of hated words. Yuck! (And yes, I have a list for hated words as well as words I love) I think this has realy helped. Luckily, it is Wacky Wednesday, so I only have to be trapped in Corporate America til 2p. Yay! Then rush home to get some good materials and create something better than a doodle. I have 200 VHS cases to create something with....sounds like a challenge. It's the little things that make me happy.

Also, I was thinking, I really need to carry my digital camera with me more often. I used to carry a disposable camera in my purse before I had the digital in case I saw something cool. But since I have gotten the digital, which I am not that pleased with, I don't buy those cheap cameras anymore. But I really need to carry that camera, I am missing life shots. Note to self: put camera in purse.

On the to-do list today:

  • OPAW
  • grocery store again, 4th time this week for those of you keeping track
  • soccer practice
  • possible mani-pedi (oh, that would be good)
  • assess and try to minimize laundry pile
  • think about party plans...shhhhh brewhaha
  • purge closets for the Amvet people who are coming Friday

Wish my lists were shorter and included words like nap and tv. Good thing I am so chipper today and fully ready to attack this list full force. You're going down Wednesday to-do list!!

Blog of the Day is My Blog Is Bigger Than Yours. This guy is one of the Geeks on Beauty and the Geek which will be a new reality show on the WB. From the commercials it looks completely silly and painful to watch these guys go out with these clueless models...so I'll be watching. The picture on the website is too much!! Also the website address for the show includes the words -generic show. Airs June 1st, Set the Tivo!

Happy Hump Day!!!

Tuesday, May 24

A Tip for Tuesday

So, it is once again Tuesday and thus a technique is required. But it occurred to me that tips could also be useful and I have a ton. Back when I was attempting to write my book, Scrapbooking Cheap and Great, I wrote pages of thrifty techniques for scrapbooking. So, I thought, hey, why not share a few. But only a few as the book still could be published even though someone already stole my idea.

Scrapbooking can be an expensive craft. Especially with all the new paper that has been recently released at $1 a sheet. Wow! That is some paper. It not only looks great, but can clean my bathroom. I wish. So, keep your costs down but still create beautiful pages.

 Use strips of paper in place of ribbon: This is a great way to use your scraps and paper is less expensive than ribbon. Plus if you are using a particular line, the colors are a perfect match. Imagine…Ribbon always in the perfect width!
 Print your own “definitions”, look it up on the web and print on cardstock or transparencies: You can find the definitions online at Dictionary.com and just copy them to Microsoft Word and print on either transparency or paper. With this method, you will always have the word you need!
 Use your stamps to make patterned paper: But your stamps to use and embellish ordinary cardstock to make your own patterned paper.
 Tic Tac, Baby Food Jars or Film Containers make good embellishment organizers: These are great so that you can see the great colors of your brads and eyelets. You can also dress up jars with ribbon tied onto lid.
 Make your own storage with wire cubes: This is a very economical solution to expensive paper trays and so customizable.
 Old (clean) Jars make pretty ribbon organizers: Ribbon sorted by color can be stored in old Spaghetti Sauce jars and the colors are just as yummy as the sauce was.

Ok, so there’s a little something for those of you that are looking for something new and exciting. Maybe not so exciting, but it is definitely information.

Also, thought it was funny that my post regarding the Left Over Lunch site was commented upon by the designer of that site. I would like to stress that I was in no way talking smack about the design of the site or even the topic of Lunches. In fact, thought the site was cool. I was just adding to the list of things that some people enjoy and others question. So rock on Lunch Dude!

Blog of the day…..drumroll……
My not so Interesting Life. Funny Funny, did I mention funny. Great writing, I love it. Stumbled across it as the home page for Blogger changes almost every 10 seconds.

Tomorrow....Someone made ME a scrapbook!

Monday, May 23

Monday Meme Fix

Today's assignment as posted on 2peas:

This week [May 22- May 28th] we are going back to the 80's! Everyone seems to LOVE 80's music so we are going to list our TOP 10 FAVORITE 80'S TUNES!

Bonus Points #1- Talk about any 80's crushes you had.
Bonus Points #2- Add a picture of yourself from the 80's.

Have a nostalgic time!

Loves it! I heart the 80s big time and am continually getting crap for it from my brothers. I still listen to 80s music all the time. Oh heck, I am still wearing that Relax Tshirt! So, in comprising the list, I felt as though I was betraying some of my favorites so I have included a few extra.

80s Tunes I heart (No particular order)
  1. Duran Duran - Wild Boys
  2. Depeche Mode - Master and Servant (really any song)
  3. Joy Division - Love Will Tear Us Apart
  4. The Smiths - Shoplifters of the World
  5. Siouxsie and the Banshees - Cities in Dust
  6. Echo and The Bunnymen - Bring on the Dancing Horses
  7. The Cure - Boys Don't Cry
  8. Morrissey - Suedehead
  9. New Order - Blue Monday
  10. English Beat - Save It For Later

Honorary Mention

  1. Clash - Train in Vain
  2. Tears for Fears - Mad World
  3. Beastie Boys - She's Crafty
  4. U2 - Sort of Homecoming
  5. J. Geils Band - Centerfold
  6. Pat Benatar - Love is a Battlefield (loved that video)
  7. Flesh for LuLu - I Go Crazy
  8. When in Rome - The Promise
  9. Journey - Don't Stop Believin' (had the atari game)
  10. Styx - Mr. Roboto

Ok, so don't try to make any sort of logical correlation between the songs because there probably isn't one. Most of the music I loved in the 80s required wearing black clothing and hating everything. Happy times. I still love it though. It was back in the days when I would tell people I loved New Wave. The sad part about this list is that these songs are so old that each group has a greatest hits record.

Bonus Round #1 - Let's Hear it For The Boys

I am fortunate that I still possess my first Scrapbook ever which was circa, 1984. In the back of the book was cut outs from Teen Beat of guys I loved. Even now I can look back and laugh at what I thought was hot or in some cases still agree. I was crazy about John Cusack, especially after seeing Say Anything. Who didn't? I also loved Dave Gahan from Depeche Mode. I was a little obsessed with them in the 80s. Did I say was? I also loved that hot guy from Sixteen Candles. (Michael Schoeffling) I so wanted him to show up at my sister's wedding with a cake for me. Yum! Eric Stoltze was and still is at the very top of my list of hotties. There is something so sexy about redheads. Saw him the other day on Will and Grace, if he is a new regular, I may have to start watching that show.

Not the best picture, I was always the one to take the pictures. Me on the left. I know I used a spiral curling iron and I was wearing a mock turtle neck and tweed skirt. Great Look!

Me on the left Posted by Hello

It deserves a "Huh?"

So, while having nibbles Friday night and once again trying to figure out how to explain Scrapbooking to a man. It occurred to me how silly it does sound. I use paper, stickers, ribbon and photos and make up pages. "Huh?" Followed by the "OK" Which translated means, whatever tickles your fancy. I of course have to come to the rescue of my passion and get defensive any time someone questions my obsession with paper. But I really stopped and thought about it over the weekend, and it is kinda nutty. I have a room of paper, stickers, adhesives and ribbons galore. I bring my camera every where I go. I guess to the average person who is non-scrapping that is odd. If I imagine what it would be like not to scrap, oh the horror, I guess I can see where they are coming from.

So, this prompted me, in my plentitude of time, to find other things that make you go, "Huh?" Things that other people love and are passionate about that the majority of people question.
So here's the list:

  • Rainbow Brite fanatics. There are still people that care about this? Is this show still on? Who are these people? Yet, I find it intersting.
  • Free Fonts that are awesome. Here as well. Yet, Creating Keepsakes Magazine feels that they can make a dime out of this and have set up Scrapnfonts which you pay $3 per font. Ok???
  • This is a site devoted to Leftover Lunch. For some reason find it interesting and funny, but still want to know who pays and designs this site?
  • I am the only one not saying "Huh?" to this one. There is now a list of great blogs in one spot. It is called Blogebrity. I love to read useless information from people I don't know, this site is great for me, but I imagine most people would raise an eyebrow. Or two.
  • OMG...I cannot beleive this is an actual society. The UIS...Useless Information Society. I should be a member, I have a ton of useless information. I am disappointed however that it does not have an .org address though. Like it should be a non-profit organization or something.

That is enough stupid things for one day. Just remember, what you think is so "Cool Beans" may not be so cool to anyone else but you and you just have to be good with that. I am. I will defend my less than popular ideals any day.

Here's the blog of the day.... Barbra Streisand. This has to be good. What would she talk about?

Friday, May 20


I did it!! As I promised, I actually created something! I wasn't feeling very creative but I forced myself to sit down and just work with some awesome pictures and paper I have had for a month. I love the paper. I love the pictures. But it didn't make it any easier, unfortunately. These are OK layouts but not the best or even great. They should be great! I have been doing this long enough. I should just be able to create a WOW without thinking too much. Lately, it is just not there. It has been actual work. I am happy to report though that these two pages only took about 40 minutes total, which is very good compared to my current times. I need to get that time down so that I can get into Olympic form.

So, the pictures I am so pleased with because I edited them in Photoshop. Cheers to the free online course!! I can now do more than crop a photo!! whoopee!

Plus, I think the pictures themselves are pretty good. It is a nice feeling to know you aren't wasting as much film as before! Also, a side note, these pictures were printed by
Winkflash and the quality is great as you can see. The top one is in matte finish and the bottom in glossy. Just in case you are in the market for a great photo developer.

Phew.... at least I have achieved one goal this week, thank god it is Friday!

Scrappers Block and Blogs

This has been kinda a crazy week, very fast paced, very busy. And to think it isn't over yet.

I have been thinking about how hard it is for me to create something lately and how bored I have been for about a week with the whole Scrapbooking thing. Me?? Bored with Scrapbooking? OMG....the end of the world must be near. I don't think I have felt like this ever. Every day, when I am just living my life I am scrapbooking. I am looking at things and seeing designs. A person walks by and the color of her blouse is inspiring to me. I see scrapbooking everywhere. It was the one thing I always felt I never had enough time to do as much as I wanted. No more. Not this week. Maybe it is because it is hard right now and is not flowing like it usual is. Or maybe, I am so tired of seeing the same old stuff. I haven't even been surfing the 2peas site as much because it is monotonous. Everyone is starting to look the same. So, this morning as I was just feeling this blaise feeling toward my once beloved art, I thought to myself, "Self, you need to shake this thing, go find some passion." And I did. I looked at the 2peas website and found inspiring designers. Stuff that makes me want to go home now and scrap. They all have one thing in common.... Beautiful Simplicity.
I think it is because I am striving to achieve that in my life now that I am so drawn to it in my art. I love it. It is calming and serene.

The first one is
Gina Cabrera. She is wonderful. So much feeling behind her layouts. She has wonderful journaling and incredible pictures.
The second is
Kerri Lynne. Her combinations of color are perfection. She uses all great papers and combines them to create wonderful layouts. She needs to create more multi-photo layouts, but she has a few now.
The third is
COOP. I can't think of this girl's name (I am terrible with names), but I remember the first time I saw one of her layouts in a magazine. It included a picture of her and her child and I thought she was the sister. Man, she looks young. She does what I would refer to as real layouts. These are layouts that are great and that everyone can do.

Ok, so that is my Scrapper's rant for the day. I hope to make some stuff this weekend, now that I can feel the block lifting just by looking at these layouts.

On to my new blog spots. I know I forgot one yesterday, but this list will easily make up for it. I was looking through the blogs and found quite a few celebrity blogs besides Zach Braff. I was cracking up at some of the "celebrities" that have them and wondering who was reading these things. So, here are a few, see if you feel the same.

  • Kevin Smith - You know him as the guy behind Clerks, Mallrats and unfortunately Jersey Girl. You know... Silent Bob. I had heard about his blog when he was on the Tonight Show about a month ago. He was saying that his wife was pissed at him about the blog because he chronicles every detail of his life, right down to shagging and using the facilities. I checked it out, and man it is funny. Super long because like he said, he shares it all, but funny. I definite to check out.
  • Wil Wheaton - I know everyone just said in unison, "Who?". Well, apparently this is a popular blog it is a link on a ton of other blogs and he has countless comments made on his entries. This is the guy from Stand By Me and Star Trek (for all you trekkies). He updates almost daily, so that is good and his writing is alright.
  • Pamela Anderson - Now, this one is a mystery to me, who is reading this? Seriously, she isn't bloggin nude photos of herself or lost sex tapes, so why are men reading this. More importantly, it appears to be a blog based around her TV show, Stacked. Are there that many loyal fans of the show...Wow. I tried to look for a photo of her to post with this, but it was hard to find one of her with her clothes on.
  • Rosie O' Donnell - Rosie's fans are diehard. They will follow her to the ends of the earth. Since her work on Riding the Bus With My Sister is done, she seems to have plenty of time to blog and post pictures of her heards of children. If you are missing your Rosie fix, you can easily find it here any day. Love this picture of Rosie.

  • Ru Paul - If you don't remember who this is, I have posted a photo. This blog is actually very entertaining. What I found most entertaining was that he/she recently had dinner with Mickey Rourke. Could you imagine that? Mickey and Ru sitting done for a nice dinner...what the hell would they talk about?

So, if you find yourself with some time on your hands this weekend...Scrapbook, read some useless blogs or heck make up some lists and goals. That can always kill about an hour. Next week, I am going in search of the best ways to kill 6 hours on the web. This will take careful research.

Thursday, May 19

Where's OPAW?

Ok, so I know I promised myself that I would accomplish OPAW (one project a week). I had been doing so well. Last week, I even submitted another layout to Memorie Makers for their pet call. I was on a roll. The creative juices were flowing like crazy....then the brakes! I just have been so distracted lately and I can't get to it. Tried to make some cards this week so that I can finish my proposal for the park district once and for all....but no. The cards I have made have been so lack luster. I don't know what is wrong. I am freaking out about paper choices and simplicity, so not like me. I am making a huge thing out of nothing. This is affecting my ability to create like you wouldn't believe. I am now officially in a rut. I am not even sure if it is a rut, I just feel like I am not focused on it. When I sit, nothing comes. I move stuff around, rearrange the room to get things going, but nothing. I tried to make something for about 40 minutes last night. Just one simple card. And I couldn't do it. It was terrible. If anyone had seen it they would have thought a 5 year old made it, a blind five year old.

I am going to try with every ounce to create something tonight. Of course, it will have to fit in between going to the post office, bank and somewhere for dinner. As well as laundry and going to the mall to find something to wear for family pictures on Saturday. And let's not forget, tomorrow is the Spelling Test.... no wonder I can't create anything, I barely have time to think.

Wednesday, May 18

The Inside Scoop

I was thinking last night about how well I know myself. If I were to sum up myself in 100 words or less, what choice words would I use? Also, what do other people really know about me? What don't they know? So, here it is, in honor of the Wackiness of Wednesdays....

Lesser Known Facts about ME
  1. I despise country music, oh wait, everybody knows that for the most part. I need to search deeper.
  2. I secretly love Josh Groban and his music. I know it is lame but I love it and it makes me misty even.
  3. I also dislike well known and vastly popular rock groups. whenever I mention this in mixed company, people gasp. I'll just give you a few on the list so as not to upset the masses... Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, Janis Joplin, The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith...better stop before I really anger people.
  4. Not only do I dislike beloved rockstars, but I am also not fond of well known and celebrated actors. Again, just to name a couple because this list gets a lot of criticism as well...Andy Garcia, Al Pacino, Renee Zellweger, Keanu Reeves (except in Bill and Ted or Point Break of course), Catherine Zeta Jones... just a few, there is a longer list.
  5. Number 4's mention of Keanu Reeves reminded me of another thing I really don't like very much... The Matrix. Sure the one movie I saw was OK, but nothing spectacular that made me want to see the other two.

  6. When I eat, I don't like any of the food on my plate to touch each other. If I could I would digress back to my toddler days and get one of those divider plates.
  7. I am obsessed with gum. I love it. I could chew it all day. Oral fixation I guess, what does that say?
  8. I hate feet. Oh wait, everyone knows that one as well. If you didn't know, I really don't like feet! I don't like to see them at all, not even my own really. And god forbid someone on a show or movie is touching them or licking......ewwwww, grossed myself out!!!
  9. I am scared of water, heights and that I will be home alone one day and someone will come in and scare me. Not rob me or attack me....just a boo! Very scarry.
  10. When I get scared during a movie...I cover my ears. I know I should cover my eyes, but I think the music is sometimes scarrier.
  11. My favorite candy bar is Three Musketeers.
  12. I can tap dance, juggle and make pig sounds quite well.
  13. I love the color pink (just recently) but green is still my favorite.
  14. I secretly wish I was more of a girly girl and 3 inches taller, in case someone has a magic lamp and wants to share.
  15. I also hate cheetos. Not really because of the taste but because of cheeto hands!!
  16. I don't think The Family Guy is funny. Sure it has it's moments, but all in all, not really entertaining to me.
  17. I secretly wish I could live somewhere really rural, not necessarily a farm because that is too much work, but a small town. I really loved Little House on The Prairie when I was growing up.
  18. When I meet a guy for the first time, I look at three things.... Hair, Teeth and Shoes. And then I judge them based on that. I know that is bad and it took some guts to admit it!
  19. I may be more shallow than I once thought...this list may be helping me realize that. Am I? I need more lists!
  20. My favorite dish in the world is Italian Meatloaf and only my mom knows what that is and how to make it, but never does.

Ok, so that is probably good enough for now. I think many people have notions about me because I am a single mom and kinda a tough chick, but there is so much more to me. I don't know if I realize it sometimes because it is almost like I have been typecast in my own life and now I am stuck. This is helpful to help me embrace the ME that I really am. What do I like? What don't I like? Who the hell am I? It is quite healthy to do a self check of YOU every once in a while. So, if you don't have any lists....make one. Make two. Sometimes I forget that I need to check in with me and I am sure other people do as well.

So, I know that I forgot to put a new cool blog link on my entry yesterday. Today I shall make it up to everyone who was waiting with baited breath and post two, maybe three links!! Probably two.
The first, I am sure I will get crap for it but what do I care, is
Zach Braff's blog. You know, the guy from Scrubs and Garden State. He is actually very amusing and because he is a writer his blog is quite good if you ask me. He doesn't post much though, but when he does, he has some great links like this one of the funniest thing he has ever seen.

With the recent Star Wars craze which is upon us, I thought it would be a good time to mention this blog, The Darth Side, Memoirs of a Monster. It is the blog of Darth Vader and it is great. Well written and insightful into the mind of the evil genius.

So, there ya go, more useless nonsense...enjoy.

Tuesday, May 17

"Why must I be surrounded by frickin' idiots?"

I have probably watched hundreds of thousands of movies in my life. I love movies. I am crazy obsessive about watching them. If I go a weekend without watching a movie, I feel like I forgot something. Why is it so important to me? Don’t really know. Maybe it is an escape from the ho hum reality of my life. So, I have been thinking about my favorites lately, having trouble composing a definitive list, narrowing it down. I got to thinking about quotes from movies that I remember. (Actually I found myself quoting movies with someone who got me on a wild quoting tangent.) I thought that this list would be way easier than narrowing down my favorites, and it was. So, here it is, drumroll please...
Quotes and movies that have affected my life or made me take a moment to think.

“So it's sorta social, demented and sad, but social.”
-John Bender, Breakfast Club

I remember this one, I remember thinking, damn, I don’t ever want to be THAT kid. The kid who was in the math club. I also remember thinking, high school really sucks. There are only about 20 quotes from this movie I can rattle off at a moments notice.

“There is such a fine line between stupid and clever.”
-David St. Hubbins, This Is Spinal Tap

Ok, so this movie is a guarantee of the favorites list. Similar to The Breakfast Club, I have watched it countless times and it never gets old. This quote is one of my favorite quotes of all time, I use it in most of my signatures online and it really sums up life to me. There really is a fine line, it just depends on which side you are standing.

“Well, it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up, they meant we were suppose to be together... and I knew it. I knew it the very first time I touched her. It was like coming home... only to no home I'd ever known... I was just taking her hand to help her out of a car and I knew. It was like... magic.”
-Sam Baldwin, Sleepless in Seattle

Ok, so yes, it is a chick flick and I generally hate chick flicks. And yes, it is probably the chick flick of that decade. But I remember seeing this movie in the theater, hard to believe, I know, and when he said that line, I almost lost it. I got misty. I thought for a moment, that’s what I want. That’s the way it should be. Then, I came back down to my own planet and remembered that it was only a movie. A movie starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan nonetheless! It is still a happy thought, something I would embrace should Tom Hanks ever want to say that about me.

“Joey, have you ever been to a Turkish prison?”
-Captain Over, Airplane!

I remember seeing this movie for the first time while on a weekend with my dad. It was one of the first times I had seen a woman topless besides in the movie Joystick. I also remember thinking this line was funny and wondering what the hell a Turkish prison was? I was about 10, what do you expect. I also remember thinking my dad was too cool for letting me see this movie.

“I saved Latin. What did you ever do?”
-Max Fischer, Rushmore

God, I love this movie. It is definitely on the favorites list as well. This was such a sad love story to me, but much more realistic than Sleepless in Seattle. I always felt bad for little Max and wanted him to triumph so badly, I could’ve stood and cheered in the theater, but I didn’t. This movie reminded me that the little guy can win! Yay!

“I wrote a suicide note.”
-Richie Tenenbaum
”You did?”
-Chas Tenenbaum
”Yeah, right after I regained conciousness.”
-Richie Tenenbaum, The Royal Tenenbaums

Another Wes Anderson film, love him. Or should I say his movies? If you haven’t seen it, run out right now and pay your $4 to rent The Royal Tenenbaums. This is movie has plenty of those funny moments that you laugh at and then think, “Wait, that was morbid, maybe I shouldn’t be laughing.” These two characters were so pathetic it was heartwarming and the Tenenbaum family was so messed up it could make anyone feel good about their families. Thanks for making me feel good Wes!

Alright so that is the short list for now. It has actually helped add two definite spots on my favorite movies list. So, when you are shelling out your $4 to rent that movie or the ghastly $9 to actually go to a movie and play with the self serve butter machine, see if you can catch yourself having an ah ha moment and making a numb butt all worth it.

Monday, May 16

Learn something new every day

So these little blogs seem to becoming more and more popular and I have been trying to find a new one every day that is cooler than the day before. It all started Friday when I stumbled across this one, Post Secret. I was intrigued and amused. I read each and every one, wishing there was more. And then, today I found the Waiter's Rant, which is so well written and entertaining that I could easily read an entire book of this guys experiences waiting tables. I know my blog is not as interesting as these, but informational and slightly interesting to people who know me.
I know today is supposed to be Meme Monday, but I was not interested in this weeks challenge, so instead I am typing useless information. I had a crazy rockstar weekend and need to reflect and recover. So today, a top ten list that is not only scientific but proven to be corrected several times, unfortunately.

Top Ten Signs That Your Man/Woman is cheating
  1. He/She is mad all the time about little nonsense things that are not even worth an ounce of time to even think about.
  2. He/She is buying new clothes or looking better than you have seen in years.
  3. He/She is going out A LOT and not coming home some nights.
  4. He/She is very defensive about everything.
  5. He/She wants to go out, just not with you.
  6. He/She has new "friends" that you have never heard of before.
  7. You aren't getting sex.
  8. He/She is resembling the show Cheaters.
  9. He/She is not interested in anything that is even remotely associated with you.
  10. He/She is a completely different person.

The crazy drama of the weekend has prompted this list. This is all I need to say about that. Did I cheat on someone? Was I an accomplice to some cheating? All NO! Do I know of someone who is cheating? Do I know someone who should open their eyes and see what the hell is going on? YES! YES! YES! Wake up man! I know you don't want to see the ugliness of the situation but is right in front of your nose.

"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." (one of my favs)

Thursday, May 12

The Scrapbook Evolution

Scrapbooking is so popular now that I am often amazed at how many people are actually doing it. I never thought it would be this big. Now, there are so many vendors and online sources, it is outrageous. This craft is ever changing and there are things about it that I hope will change soon.

  1. I hope we see less one picture layouts. Come on, people have more than one picture of most events, so let's see them.
  2. That junky shabby style should be on its way out soon, thank goodness. As much as I like it, I think it is way too overdone.
  3. One word titles on the layouts, this is getting ridiculous. People need to stop using the word amazing because very few of those things are truly amazing.
  4. Maybe less layouts that look all the same. It seems like one person does something cool with ribbon or flowers and Wham! everybody's doing it.
  5. I hope I see more little boy and men layouts.
  6. I hope I see more pictures that don't look like a photographer took it. Not everyone has amazing pictures everytime and sometimes those pictures need to be scrapped as well.
  7. Cheaper pages. I am tired of pages that clearly cost a fortune to create.
  8. More journaling!! I love layouts that have great journaling.
I am glad that this is a craft that is always growing and changing, it keeps things interesting. I am also glad that there is no right or wrong way to do it. I can be me and have my own style and that is the right way! Too cool!! I can't wait to look back years from now at my current pages and relive the happy memories that I tried to capture.

Wednesday, May 11

"I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it."

That's a quote from Shakespeare. Got it on a cool website I just found Think Exist. They have a ton of searchable quotes and many recent from musicians and actors. It perfectly expresses how I feel about the internet and most recently this blog. I can type on and on about useless nonesense as a form of entertainment for myself. I really need to blog less and work on projects more!!

There are a few new favorites I have been enjoying lately when I should be working! (shhhh, don't let me find out!) Thought I would share some in case you find yourself in a predicament that you have time and nothing better to do or enjoy wasting time surfing the net as I do:

  1. Free classes online that are excellent. I took one about a month ago on Photoshop and it was super. Currently, I am enrolled in a class which starts May 19th to learn to use Outlook better.
  2. Went to a couple Scrapbook Stores over the weekend, thanks Carol, and now I definitely LOVE the My Mind's Eye Wild Asparagus line. Saw a great deal on these, which I paid $1 each for on QVC, so if you are jonesing for them you can get them for a steal HERE. This company also sells Second Avenue, which is cool as well and worth a peak.
  3. If you are even considering submitting some work to a Scrapbook Magazine, the best source is Scrap Source. I think I have mentioned this before, but I am obsessed with checking in to see what they are "looking for".
  4. Winkflash. I cannot say enough good things about this place. I have tried almost all the online photo processing places as well as most of the stores around me, and these are the best deal and good quality. Their prints are $.16 for a 4x6!! And they have matte or glossy, borders or not, and you can edit your photos very easily with their software!
  5. Scrappers Blogs are super cool, but the best is Ali Edwards. I love to look at her photos, they are amazing and she posts a ton on her blog! But, don't tell Ali, I am not so crazy about her new Art Journal stuff, not the Ali style I have grown to love. There are a couple others that are great as well, Tara Whitney, Tina Barriscale, Cathy Zielske....but Ali's I check out almost every day in hopes there will be a new picture.
  6. Scrapbook Industry News Blog. Ok, so I am obsessed with Scrapbooking and demand to know what is new before the majority of other people. In fact, I think this site is making me a little bit of a Scrapbook Snob, better stop reading it. If you want to know what is NEW in Scrapbooking, check here.
  7. Little Red Scrapbook. This is a monthly kit, but I love to check out their LOs. I don't subscribe to the kit, but they have the newest products and an amazing design team.
  8. For all your stamping needs, check out Split Coast Stampers. Love it, now that I am an SU girl. Yes, it is true, I am the newest member of the Mad Moon Stampers. This website is the best for getting inspiration for particular stamp sets.
  9. There is a guy on 2peas, Denis (dgermain) who is an amazing photographer. His website is ubercool and he has tons of tips and technique information, so if you are a camera nut check him out on 2peas and his own website.
  10. Urban Lily. Have you seen this product? OMG...I love it!! They are from Austrailia. Don't have it, but want it badly!
  11. Rocky Mountain Hobbies...this is one of the best online stores, they have free shipping on orders over $25 and the shipping is super fast.

That list would keep a person clicking for a week. I spend too much time staring at this screen and this is what I am looking at.

I got some new goodies over the weekend. I must use my product!

Tuesday, May 10

It's Tuesday....

You know what that means boys and girls... A new technique to try out!!

This week, I was inspired by the 2 rolls of film I took on Mother's Day to put the Picture within a Picture Technique to good use. You see, not all of us can take perfect pictures each and every time, so we use this technique to find the perfect shot within the "not so perfect" one.

This is a cute picture of my sister, Steph and my Max. They were just sittin' like that on the edge of the deck while I was taking shots of my sis and nephew. I caught them out of the corner of my eye and then just turned and *click*. Now, Max, being my son, immediately "posed" (check out that grin), but Steph was caught off guard. Plus, immediately after taking the picture I saw that they were sitting in front of the chair I brought outside to stand on to get better shots. When I got the pictures back, I got Pic 1, not the best, but not the worst.

After some initial just cropping, I got Pic 2, which is better, but still not the greatest.

Then I really cropped. There is one thing I have learned by looking at great photos, Get In Close! This really captured the tender moment I wanted to between these two.

And then, I really adjusted it. I changed it to black and white and adjusted the curves and brightness. Voila! That's what I wanted!

Now, if you are like me and you have good pictures, but they can be improved on, try this out. My first recommendation, if you don't do this already, is to get a photo CD if you are using a film camera. (I am still in the stone age, I know) Then, I have been using Picasa 2 lately because I need it for this blog thing and it is really easy to use and free. Then, if you have a lot of time on your hands and you are really into this photography thing, then check out the Photoshop tutorials on Cnet, that is how I finally learned how to do a couple things. And, Always!, shoot, shoot and then shoot some more, you may have to take 20 pictures just to get that perfect shot!

Monday, May 9

Meme Mommy Monday

Ok, so this week's meme challenge has to do with mothers (of course). Really it is a free for all, but I thought it would be fun to let you all know what distinguishes my mother from all the others, what makes her super special:

  1. There is no one on the planet more obsessed about cleanliness. She is freakishly tidy.
  2. She never "saves" anything, she is the most anti-pack rat woman.
  3. Here insesant pluralizing of words or chaning of titles. Examples... Friends in a Circle instead of Circle of Friends or Harry Potters.
  4. She has the most evil eye that could stop anyone in their tracks. Wish I had that power.
  5. Looks at least 15 years younger than she is...damn!
  6. When she gets mad at me she still just says, "Girl!"
  7. Has had more funny things happen surrounding her car than any other person I know. (Don't worry, I will share some later.)
  8. She is one of the best people at Finances, I still don't know how she makes it all work.
  9. Screams at movies loudly, even if they aren't scary. Anything startling gets a scream.
  10. Strangers are attracted to her. Leave her alone in a grocery aisle, come back a minute later, someone is having a conversation with her. I always think she must have known them....but no, complete stranger.
I love my mother, she is a difficult woman at times, but she is mine. We have had some rough times in my younger days and she carried us through as a single mom. She is by far the strongest woman I know. She is like the mailman, through rain, sleet or snow....

And I cannot forget my stepmom, she is the best as well. I couldn't have picked a better second mom if I tried. She is so loving and giving, a really kind person.

So, I got two moms...blessing or curse? Blessing! I am definitely a lucky girl to have two dynamite women in my life!

Thursday, May 5

Mothers and Sons

With Mother's Day upon us, it seems appropriate to talk a little bit about my motherhood. Or should I say state of motherhood. This role of mom that I took on a little over nine years ago has drastically changed me. I went from a completely spazztic girl to a completely spazztic mom with a more hectic schedule. I never thought my life could be this crazy and exciting all at the same time. I remember in my younger days (BTK...before the kid), when I thought I was busy. I had no idea what busy was! Plus, I don't think I thought it would be THIS much work! Teachers calling, homework, activities, so much laundry....and who could forget all the whining! I am a person who lives for having a plan. When the plan doesn't go as planned, I freak. So, imagine what having a child does to a person like me. It makes me a freak all the time! I hate being the bad guy, but as a single parent, I have to be from time to time. I hate that he has so many "problems", but it's life.

I thank my lucky stars for such a healthy child. And I am lucky to have a son who really truly loves his mother. I am enjoying that now, because I am sure as we approach teenage that will end. And I love being a mother. I love having this little somebody that I am trying to mold into a great man. I love inspiring him and watching him discover new things. I love seeing the changes right before my very eyes.

All the headaches and worry are easily outdone by the love and joy this little man brings me. He is so special to me, and I was so lucky that my life took that U-turn nine years ago.

**Glad I typed that quick...phone ringing and guess who? The teacher, ugh!!

The Max

Wednesday, May 4

Project of the Week

Here is my project of the week. A little 5x5 mini album for Mom's Day! Most supplies are KI Memories. The flower on the cover is from M's. Inspiration behind this comes from April's little flower album. Thanks for taking a peek.

Wacky Wednesday

Ahh, Wacky Wednesday!! One of my favorite days of the week. I remember when I was a little girl, commercials used to proclaim Wednesday as Prince Spaghetti Day. It was also known as the “Anything Can Happen Day”. Some used to refer to it as Hump day, but I rarely hear that one anymore now that the word has different meaning.

Wednesdays are great because in my city, the schools let out an hour earlier on Wednesdays, which means I leave work an hour earlier than usual, giving me more time before the dinner rush. And thus, this led to the name Wacky Wednesday because I had never heard of such a thing. Wednesdays used to be the day I would work both jobs, but not any more. So, now Wednesdays are even better!

So, as a tribute to the title of the day, I thought I would post a Wacky little tidbit from one of my favorite sites News of the Weird. Every other week there is new news to read up on, all true and all wacky.

One News of the Weird "No Longer Weird" category was apparently retired
prematurely, in that there has rarely been a sighting of it for years now. However, on April 7, a 48-year-old man drove to the Department of Motor Vehicles in Anchorage, Alaska, failed to come to a complete stop, bumped into a wall of the building, backed up, parked, walked inside nonchalantly, and got his driver's license renewed. Although workers in the accounting offices of the building were shaken up (one thought an earthquake had hit), no one inside knew exactly what had happened until police arrived. The driver failed a coordination test and was charged with DUI based on a prescription medication he was taking.
[Anchorage Daily News, 4-8-05]
The “news” reminds me of the movie So I Married An Axe Murderer which stars Mike Meyers. In the movie, his father, reads the Weekly World News as his source for news. Check out the Movie, it is hilarious!

I included a little picture here that cracks me up everytime I see it. So funny!

For everyone wondering what kinda projects I am working on… Well, I have finished my project of the week, a small Mother’s Day gift. It will be posted on 2peas soon. I will add the link to that after I post it. Also, I am working on my class proposals for the Park District and also, some in-home workshop ideas. Plus, I am working on cards and pages for my demo board. Man, am I busy! There are no enough hours in the day!

Tuesday, May 3

Technique Tuesday

Thought it might be fun to post a technique every Tuesday. This will force me to find a new technique every week. This week, the technique is chalking over Versamark. I couldn't find any pictures online to use, so my 9 yr old took some pictures of me demonstrating. I always think it is easier to figure out with pictures!

Step 1: Stamp your image with Versamark Ink. Here, I am stamping with a Birthday Bunny from the Birthday Banter set. You can also use a Versamark pen and write a greeting.

Step 1

Step2: Chalk over the Stamped images and the Bunny magically appears! You can use various colors or just one, your choice. With large background stamps the rainbowed colors are a nice affect.

Step 2

Step 3: If it is a card, you should probably seal it, so it doesn't come off on the reader's hands. Voila...My little bunny card.

Step 3

Monday, May 2

Meme Monday

Every Monday, I will be trying to keep up with the meme challenge posted on 2peas messageboard. In case you don't know what a meme is, here is your quick explanation as outlined on the board:

a meme n (mëm): is an idea that is shared and passed from blog to blog, like a question posted in one blog and answered in many other blogs.

So, each week, this nice gal posts a new assignment. If you want to see the thread, it is HERE. Last week's challenge was to create art, which I did! And this week is a doozie! She got it from Ten on Tuesday.

10 Stupid Things I Did As A Kid (in no particular order)

  1. Sun In - turning my hair a gorgeous sunkissed orange.
  2. Dressing like a boy during my cute years. I didn't wear anything girlie for about 5 years there. (1979-1983ish) Those were the years I looked the best, why did I insist on being a tomboy???
  3. Quit dance classes. Stupid peer pressure. I was so embarassed that I took Tap classes, that I quit. I coulda been in Bring in Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk.
  4. Perm in 1984...the year of the afro, enough said.
  5. I never tried my hardest at school. I could've done so much better, but I never really exerted any energy because I always got by and didn't have to try at it.
  6. Procrastination. Oh wait, I still do that one.
  7. Made my first scrapbook all about Michael Jackson. I can't really show that one around now, can I?
  8. I hated having my picture taken (still do) anad unfortunately there are a lot of years in there where I have no pictures of myself. Learn from me people.
  9. When I was very little, I insisted that the words for "Bringing Home a Baby Bumblebee" went like this: Bringing home a baby bumblebee, won't my mommy peas a potamie. Now, I know it doesn't even make sense, but when my future stepmom tried to correct me, I not only insisted but got angry at her as well. Duh!! Man, am I stubborn.
  10. Used to play church as well as school and insisted that my poor cousins (and my sister) do actual school work... Fun, huh?
So, second part of the challenge, the bonus round, was to post a picture of myself as a child. So, here it is, hope you have as good of a laugh as I am! 1981 was a rough year!

Yes, that is me on the left. Look at those legs! What was I thinking with those socks? Posted by Hello

Sunday, May 1

I'm outta here!

My Big A Memory Book... So me that the M fell off, I'm leaving it like that!

Well, the tour is officially over... Phew! This was the final performance as a member of the Archiver's staff. The final tour was very sentimental to me. So many kind words were thrown my way this weekend, I am walking on cloud nine. You ladies have no idea how much it means to me when you tell me "You are so good at this." I loved teaching people to do what I love doing. I loved giving people the Simone Secrets and thrifty tips. And I loved being surrounded by all that paper!!

As, I was getting ready to leave today (running around to buy something, but didn't know what I would "need"), I didn't feel even an ounce as sentimental as I did yesterday. But then, this little darling, Kamryn looked at me and waved. I remembered this girl and her mom, so well. Over a year ago, when we were still doing demos at the front counter, they came in. I remember telling this little girl that she was beautiful and making a little bookmark with her name on it. She was ecstatic, her face lit up. When they came in today and I was working a Make and Take project with them, I had told someone else that today was my last day and the mom (Claire) instantly said, "Oh no!" I was touched. So, when the little girl waved I thought... There is probably one of the youngest little girls I have ever turned on to Scrapbooking and I wouldn't get to teach her any more. There was so much more I was going to show her when she turned 6!! So, that is what I will miss!! I will miss great people... Great people that I worked with and great customers that I would have never met had I not taken this evil retail job.

So was it worth it? YES! I would do it all over again, just for the chance to meet such incredible people and make such great friends! I am more fired up than ever about starting things for myself. I have taught under the corporate thumb for long enough... Now, I will do things my way!! The Spazz Way!! The only way I know how, cracking up and using Simone lingo all the way! You have no idea how many times I got in "trouble" for all that at the store! But no more! It is my way or no way and it will be better. I will be better for it! I am fueled by you ladies to Make it Happen!!!

So, keep in touch, drop me a line and I will fill everyone in on the Spazz possibilities very soon. I have some awesome things brewing in my brain.....gotta go scrap them!! So, I can tell you sooner.

**Patricia was kind enough to take a picture of me saying "I'm outta here" and when she sends it to me I'll update with the photo. Thanks Patricia, you are the best!!!