30 March 2010

Words ...

Sharyn say, My blog challenge for today is to describe your March in one word blurbs. What do you think of when you look back on the month?


28 March 2010

The bees have nothing on me ...

We are getting near the end of our month long blog challenge and Michelle has submiited her final topic.

Well I needed to finish what I started right? I am in charge of the challenge and today my GIS buddies are supposed to blog about the end of their month. Did it go out like a lamb? Or did it continue roaring through to the final days?

Well Michelle let me put it like this ....

27 March 2010

A slice of heaven ...

How beautiful it is - just 5 minutes from home.

Sunset over Brisbane Waters.

26 March 2010

My Beautiful Girl ...

More on the 17th birthday of Rachel.  I just can't believe all these years have flashed past me so quickly.

I decided to commemorate this special day and do a layout showing  the little child of 17 years ago with who she has become - a sort of "then" and "now" layout.

I issued a challenge in Get Teased to do a similar one.  A comparison layout about things that were and are now -  yourself now and as a child, your parents when they got married and how they look now or even the growth of a pet.  I even suggested that it didn't need to be about living things, it could just as easily be a layout about the advances of something in a lifetime (televisions, telephones, etc) or it could be the following of trends in hairstyles or fashion.

17 ...

My daughter, Rachel is 17 today. HAPPY BIRTHDAY sweetheart !

Oh to be 17 again - can you remember what it was like? I often think over points in my life I would like to go back and revisit and I recall my second last year of high school when I had just turned 17 and yearn to return.

17 was the time of firsts for me, an exhilarating period of being caught between a child and a woman. I had my first serious teen relationship and handled it badly, I was a debutante and got to play Cinderella for an evening, had the second lead in the school musical, learnt to drive, went to parties with friends, headed with car packed with people to the local drive-in without an adult in sight. It was my year of experiences - most wonderful, some not so. It was the time I began to realise that the good times of school and the security of both family and friends was coming to an end. It was the first year where I savored that small taste of freedom of being semi independent, of making life decisions for myself, of simply enjoying the moment for what it was and who I was in that moment. Life was good as are the memories.

Do you remember what it was like being 17?

Me at 17 playing "Katie" in our school musical "Calamity Jane"

25 March 2010

Clothing inspiration ...

In our blogging challenge for Get It Scrapped! Paula has asked us to show a piece of clothing as inspiration for a scrap layout.

I found this ....

and then this one ....

Cute aren't they - almost makes me wish I had another little person to buy these sort of gorgeous tee's for - almost!!

24 March 2010

So tell me what you want, what you really really ... la la la do di diddle do

Now I can't get this out of my head. Tami is reliving her Spice Girls days and has bopped out this little gem ..

So tell me what you want, what you really really want ...

OK Tami since you asked ... I'll tell you what I want, what I really, really want ...

One of these please

and someone who will do lots of this

How about a weekly one of these?

About three weeks somewhere like here

Oh and can I have this thrown in for good measure?

I'm not asking too much now am I? Tami? ... Tami? ....... Tami? ............

23 March 2010

School day blues ...

Sharyn wants to know about my weekly schedule - you brave girl you - are you sure you really, really want to know? Weekly will be like "War and Peace" so think I'll just share my weekly morning routine.

Every weekday the alarm in my bedroom goes off at 5.20am. My husband wakes and staggers to the bathroom. Unfortunately I wake up at the same time (who can sleep through 10 decibels of blasting radio at 5.20am? Oh I forgot, that would be the husband as it is usually me whacking him in the ribs that wakes him rather than the loud alarm). I then usually lie there in the dark listening to all the normal bathroom sounds coming from our en-suite across the room - oh joy of joys.

At 6am he leaves and then I get up. I check emails and a few online sites while having a cup of tea and bowl of cereal, I make my bed, unstack and restack the dishwasher, put in a load of wash and from about 7.15 start yelling at my teen dd to hurry up, get off the computer, have a shower, get ready, pick up the wet towels off the bathroom floor, put away all the makeup and pimple cream left out all over the bathroom. This continues in amongst me showering, ironing school shirts, making sure the ds is getting ready too, packing lunches and checking homework. At 8am when ds and I head out to the car I change tack to start asking if said teen is ready yet. This questioning increases in both frequency and volume until about 8.12am when I start to threaten to leave without said teen. At 8.15am dd arrives at car with school shoes in hand, pair of socks held by the teeth and hair still wet and unbrushed.

We leave for school, teen with scowl on face and plugs shoved in ears, Ipod blaring. It's a 30 minute drive and as we pull around the final corner dd madly scrambles for socks, shoes and hairbrush. We most always arrive just as the bell rings.

All this will change next year as dd finishes school and heads off into the big wide world. Not sure if my morning routine will get better or worse with a college teen at home but secretly I'm a bit sad - after 13 years of schooling and morning school day routines my baby won't be a part of it.

21 March 2010

Pearls ...

For her blog challenge, Michelle shared with us a "pearl of wisdom" and has asked us to do the same.

Say what you mean and act how you feel,
because those who matter don't mind,
and those who mind don't matter.

~ Dr Seuss ~

If you look at what you have in life,
You'll always have more.
If you look at what you don't have in life,
You'll never have enough.

~ Oprah Winfrey ~

Remove those 'I want you to like me' stickers from your forehead
and, instead, place them where they truly will do the most good --
on your mirror!

~ Susan Jeffers

19 March 2010

Family togetherness ...

Time for Family and Friends Friday blogging challenge over on Get It Scrapped!.

One of the things that stands out for many scrapbookers is the lack of pictures of themselves in their collections. Invariably we are always behind the camera, busy capturing those everyday moments of our children, family and life around us which we, of course, are a major part of but rarely seem to be seen in.

Sometimes ever rarer is a group photo of the entire family as usually someone has to take the pictures so the odd occasions you hand it over to someone else they still remain out of the frame, so to speak. Of course "family" does not have to mean husband, wife and kids - indeed in this day and age it more and more frequently doesn't - so whatever "family" means to you - parents, siblings, friends - when was the last time ALL of you were in a picture together? Please post it, we'd love to see some togetherness. And if you don't have any such pictures my challenge to you is to try hard to get some over the next weekend - grab a neighbour and have them take a photo of all of you, visit the Grandparents, set up the camera on auto or just nab someone in the local park but record some "togetherness" pictures for your album.

Rachel off to France - Easter 2009

18 March 2010

Music laydown ...

Over on Get It Scrapped! Paula is talking inspiration yet again - taking layout inspiration from music CD covers to be exact. She'd like us to find a cover we can use as the basis for a layout.

I have been looking through what I have here and this one jumped out at me. It's a 2 album "Best of" set for U2 but I really like the overall cover showing both albums. Think I can do something with this. Let's see what I can come up with.

17 March 2010

Going green ...

Michelle has asked us to post a layout being "green" in honour of St Patrick's Day. So glad she did that as this layout has been sitting in the "school" album for years unfinished and it motivated me to finally complete it. The funny thing is I have moved on so much from this style of scrapping that I was almost tempted to redo the whole thing but I stopped myself with a stern talking to. I just don't have the time to go down this path - as much as I am tempted to do so. Besides where do I then stop? Do I redo everything I did 5 years ago; do I then redo everything I do now in 5 years time? It's frustrating but I need to let it go and learn to live with my scrapbooking evolution.

16 March 2010

Food for thought ...

Tami is up today and she has asked us - So ladies.. any ideas on the first marketing person who coined the term two for Tuesday? Me either but it's definitely catchy! So today instead of the 5 W's I'll ask just two things..

What's (was) for dinner tonight?
What are your evening plans?

Sorry Tami, can't help you with "Two for Tuesday" but we had pasta, garlic bread and Caesar salad for dinner tonight. We'll three of us did - the ds is super fussy and has a really limited selection of food choices - I'm hoping he will grow out of it but it isn't looking like anytime soon.

Spent some time on the computer, did a little sorting and scrapping in my studio and watched an hour programme on TV.

15 March 2010

Recycled Creations ...

It's Amy today on the blog challenge from Get It Scrapped!

OK its Monday again...and what are we making over today you ask...anything and everything! Today's challenge is to blog about turning your Trash into Treasure, so to speak! Maybe you have ideas about using recycled products--Do you have a recent remodel project you'd like to show off?--or maybe you've been inspired by someone else projects and would simply love to share...PERFECT! Take to your blogs ladies and share your ideas (or someone else's) about making over your personal belongings and link us up in this thread!

I love the concept of using old vintage windows and doors to create these wonderful tables, shelves and display cabinets Robo Margo.

How about this really cool sculpture from Robert Bradford who uses discarded plastic toys in his creations.

Jangling Jack uses all manner of recycled materials to create this wonderful sculptures. This fantastic owl is made from an old saw and copper wire.

12 March 2010

Smells, glorious smells ...

My turn again for a blogging prompt. Today we are going to think about family in the past.

Do you remember the smell of baking cakes in your Mother's kitchen? Does the aroma of roasting lamb take you back to your childhood days of family baked lunch on a Sunday? There are other smells that I recall, every so often I will walk past somewhere and suddenly get a wiff of some perfume or odour and suddenly I will be transported back to another time and another place and recall a situation or a person vividly - like they are right there in the room with me or I am reliving the event over again.

So is there a smell, a fragrance or perfume that brings back vivid memories for you? Is there an odour that triggers a memory for you when you come across it? Not all odours are pleasant ones; perhaps a particular odour brings back a memory of an unhappy incident. Whichever the case, your chalenge today is to blog about smells.

This is a layout I did about my Grandmother. She was a wonderful lady and I loved her dearly. To this day when I smell violets or perfume with a heavy violet base I immediately think of her - it is almost like she speaks to me across time.

10 March 2010

Why wonder - just ask ...

Over on Get It Scrapped! Tami is asking us five W's for 2010.

Who is one person you want to see this year, or spend more time with?

This is easy - I've been wanting to visit with my friend Diane who lives in the country for a while now. We usually spend a few days each year together but missed out last year so it is high on my priority list for this one.

What is one thing you would like to do?

I'm actually doing it in April - going to an overseas scrap retreat. I'd like to do more than one but can't see the budget stretching quite that far.

Where is one place you'd like to go?

The overseas retreat is in New Zealand so that might count but I'd also like to spend some quality time with the rest of the family later in the year - Tasmania perhaps.

Why is this year going to be different than others?

Big, big year for us. Daughter completes high school this year so lots of exams, lots of study, a school formal, many 18th birthdays, MAD trip to Fiji, waiting on exam results, open university days, applications etc etc. Stress + year for her (and us)!

Son is in final year of primary school so lots of "end of" things for him as he transitions from being top of the primary to bottom of the high school. He has a formal to attend and a great many hurdles to overcome this year; he is so not ready for high school, seems only yesterday I took him to Kindergarten.

When the year is over what is the one thing you want to be able to say you did?

Survived it - it's going to be a big stress filled year (already started).

For the chatty girls.. answer this bonus question:

How are you making time for you this year?

I learnt years ago the importance of "me" time - I enjoy attending crops monthly and several weekend retreats a year, having lunch every now and again with friends, going to movies sometimes, dining out with my husband when we can. I try to stress less over the little things and work on things that matter in the longer term.

09 March 2010

On this day ...

Sharyn would like us to experience flashbacks ... she's obviously a "Lost" fan; plenty of flashbacks there !! No, not really ... the idea is to look at this day (or week) in years past. Hmmm - sorting out the piccies right now.

2009 - This time last year we had three month old kittens and they were getting into everything - and I do mean everything. Here is one of them (the boy of course) having some fun with paper that was supposed to be in the bin.

2008 - The kids and I went on a bush walk in the National Park behind our house.

2007 - John and Christopher - with bear in tow. Christopher was 8 and liked a cuddle and a climb on your lap; he's 11 now and although he still likes a cuddle he doesn't fit on the lap as well as he once did and the knees feel the strain !

2006 - The Batman days - lots of fighting crime and ZIP BOP and POW.

08 March 2010

I'm on Scrap Scene ...

I'm so thrilled to have an article out on Scrap Scene.  I've copied it out below - if you want to see the original it is here.

Scrapbook Your Interests – Without Words

In celebration of Get It Scrapped’s 2nd birthday, we’re offering Scrap Your Story free for the next 11 weeks. Look for a new lesson (with quotes, exercises, and journaling prompts) every Tuesday. Try the approach below for a fun way to represent your interests without words.

Representing Me, by Jane Howden

Jane Howden is a scrapbooker living an hour north of Sydney, Australia. She’s currently teaching a free, year-long class at Get It Scrapped! called The Street Where You Live.

My son returned home from school the other afternoon with a project. He needed to find four items that truly represented him – his personality, interests and/or hobbies – things that told the story of who he was, without the use of words.

The next day his teacher would randomly hold up the items from each child, and the classmates would try to guess who they belonged to. There would be no clues given and no names mentioned – the students needed to really think hard about each class member and work it out based only on how well they knew each other.

What a cool idea, I thought. Would my son’s friends be able to guess which items were his? Did they truly know his personality and what he liked to do? I shouldn’t have worried – the combination of Lego pieces, a Playstation memory card, Club Penguin game cards, and swimming goggles were a dead given away.

This got me thinking. What small items I could come up with that would truly represent me? Naturally as most everything I do ultimately comes back to how I can apply this to scrapbooking, I was also pondering how I could portray this on a layout.

This is what I came up with.

Can you tell that my name starts with “J” – that I’m a country girl from Australia who loves all things crafty, is fond of teddy bears, drinking milk, a nice cup of coffee, and being out in the sunshine and fresh air? Have you worked out that I am into family history, vintage memorabilia, listening to music, travelling and my family?

Why don’t you put together a similar layout that represents different facets of you and your personality? It’s a fun exercise. Size your layout to suit your own needs—it could be an entire 12” x 12” page, it could be 4 squares or 9 or 12 or perhaps you might use circles instead. It is a wonderful way to use up some of the paper scraps you have by the boxful. Oh, and it is certainly yet another page ticked off for your “Book of Me” album. This would also look terrific framed. Try it!

Some quotes about personal interests

- Each lesson in “Scrap Your Story” includes quotes—not necessarily for putting onto your pages, but, rather, to be used to trigger thoughts about what you might include on your pages. Here are several quotes that pertain specifically to personal interests.

- The whole secret of life is to be interested in one thing profoundly and in a thousand things well.” –Horace Walpole

- A person with a hundred interests is twice as alive as one with only fifty and four times as alive as the man who has only twenty-five” -Norman Vincent Peale

- My passions were all gathered together like fingers that made a fist. Drive is considered aggression today; I knew it then as purpose. -Bette Davis

- You must learn day by day, year by year, to broaden your horizon. The more things you love, the more you are interested in, the more you enjoy, the more you are indignant about, the more you have left when anything happens. -Ethel Barrymore

- The road to happiness lies in two simple principles; find what interests you and that you can do well, and put your whole soul into it – every bit of energy and ambition and natural ability you have. -John D. Rockefeller

Not a makeover ....

Amy says Ok this week I'm challenging you to makeover some part of your scrap space and share! Now HOLD ON...this is not an invitation to go out and redecorate you homes and then direct you angry husbands my way (this means you Tami....lol). Instead take on a small project that aims to add a little bit of flair to your space. Perhaps you could add some fun digital labels to your jars of brads and buttons. Or many of you already have huge organization projects under way with your photos as part of Tami's Get Scrapped Challenge...show us what your up to!

Believe me Amy you DO NOT want to see a before shot of my scrap room at the present moment - the word "disaster" springs to mind - and I'm not going to get to an after any time soon !

So instead I'll share some gorgeous downloadable and printable labels from one of my favourite blogs. These are delightful and oh so useful. Enjoy.


07 March 2010

More time please ...

Michelle has asked us how we have welcomed in March.

Well Michelle, I swear time is passing quicker this month than last and brother did last month just flash on past. It will soon be Easter which brings school holidays and then I'll be packing for my few days of scrappy heaven in beautiful New Zealand and I think by then I will need the break.

Rachel starts her mid year examination at school today and yes "mid year" is a bit of a misnomer but remember she is sitting her Higher School Certificate this year so it is a short one - all over by mid October and then she jets off to Fiji for 10 days on a MAD (Make A Difference) trip with a group of 20 kids from her year at school. This a holiday with a difference as instead of partying hard at popular beach locations with thousands of other teenage rabble which is the traditional way of celebrating the end of school life she will working with village children and physically benefiting the community where they are staying (last year they repaired and repainted a hall and village church). They do get to spend a few days at a tourist resort on the way home so it is not all work. Anyway she has been a tad stressed his week as she tries to study - a bit touchy and out of sorts. This is only preliminary stuff but she takes it all very seriously.

Christopher has been busy with swimming and represented his school at the zone carnival last Thursday. He didn't place but did PB's in both his races - knocking several seconds of his school carnival times. John took the day off to take him so it was a great bonding experience for both of them.

I've been busy trying to get a lot of stuff sorted around the house as well as my normal school run morning and afternoon and all the other after school activities both kids participate in plus do "normal" household things - I just never seem to get as much done as I want. I do one thing and then turn around and see another dozen things waiting for me too, and then I turn back only to discover what I had already done now needs to be redone - just so much to do - I mean SO MUCH to do, and so little time. I just need more time!

05 March 2010

Looking back ....

And today it is my turn to inspire. I thought that for the next few weeks I might get you to look to your past, to family and friends and what experiences and joys they have given you over the years.

Today I'd like you to tell us about your oldest friend (not the oldest in years but the friend you have had the longest !!). Do you still have friends from school that you keep in touch with regularly? neighbourhood children you played with in your street? - have you lost touch with all your childhood friends over the years or are they still a part of your life?

My oldest friend is Ronelle. We became close in the last year of primary school and were the best of friends throughout high school and beyond. She was there for me through thick and thin and we shared so very many happy times as teenagers. I spent many weekends at her home. We were debutant's together, celebrated our 18th birthday's, I was bridesmaid at her wedding. She lives in another state from me now and we haven't seen each other in person for a number of years but we talk and email and I know she's still there for me as I am for her.

I guess we have changed a lot over the years - life happens and priorities shift. Ronelle has just become a Grandmother for the first time - I'm still coming to terms with that. To me she will always be the sweet, long haired girl of my youth.

04 March 2010

My way ...

Day 4 - Paula is at the helm today. She tells us she gets a lot of her layout inspiration from using printed advertisements from magazines and has asked us to find something we could convert to a layout.

I quite like this one.

It has the just the one focal photo with room for title and journaling and lots of white space - my sort of layout.

03 March 2010

Spirits anyone? ...

It's Day 3 and we are all powering ahead with our daily blogging. Debbie has asked us all to include a news report on our blogs today.

I came across this and thought it a somewhat unusual tale. Just goes to show you can buy anything on the internet these days.

02 March 2010


Sharyn is up next on our blogging challenge and is suggesting we share an insight into our neighbours. I'm sort of neighboured out with doing "The Street Where You Live" so I'm going to share with you a really funny story from my youth. Be warned this is a tad risque so if you offend easily look away now.

One of the places I lived when I was young, carefree and single was in an apartment (we call them units in Australia) in the downtown retail area of a large country town. It was one of five on the third floor of a corner block, with shops on the ground and gym on the next level and us at the very top. My apartment was the middle one of three on the street side. My neighbour on the right was a girl, similar in age to me and we got along really well. On the left was a single guy - he was a policeman and kept really odd hours and then in his off time he liked to party (and party hard) so I didn't see much of him but usually could tell when he was home or not by noises from his apartment.

Unfortunately our respective bedrooms shared a common wall and this particular Friday evening he must have gotten lucky because in a matter of minutes after he came home there were all manner of groans and bed spring squeaks, grunting and moaning coming through the wall which escalated in both intensity and frequency until after a series of omg omg omg and mad thumping all was quiet ...... but not for long. By the wee small hours I'd stuffed cotton wool in my ears, covered my head with both of my pillows, had three cups of coffee, turned up my bedside radio and seriously thought about waking up Leonie next door and crashing on her lounge.

On Saturday night I went out and came home late and it was with some trepidation I put myself to bed. Andrew must have been out as well as not long after I was in bed I heard him (them) come in and soon the groaning, moaning, headboard banging against my common wall commenced and went on and on and on and on. At this point I was somewhat envious of his staying power and wondering if he might have been taking something to aid his performance. I'd already worked out that all the things I tried to deaden the noise the night before were useless and that me banging on the wall in the hope they would stop was both futile and probably only adding to the din so I lay there, counting the bangs on the wall and dozing in and out of sleep between intervals.

The next morning, bleary eyed and feeling a tad out of sorts, I ran into Andrew in the corridor. If I looked bad, he looked worse - dark circles under his eyes, eyes bloodshot and grainy. Not his normal buff and preened self. After my initial greeting of "Hi, how are you" he tells me with an open and loud yawn that he was "feeling like cr*p". Well at this point I see red and I tell him it's no flipping wonder he's feeling cr*p because a pair of rabbits would do it less often and a pair of elephants would make less noise.

He goes white then all shades of red. He smiles apologetically at me and says that his brother and his girlfriend arrived to stay for the weekend on Friday and that he's given them his bedroom and he was sleeping on the lounge. He says to me that if I thought it was bad when living next door I should hear what it was like from inside.

It was pretty funny at the time.

01 March 2010

Alter ego ...

We have started another month of blogging challenges over on Get It Scrapped!. We did this last August and it was a lot of fun and extremely productive - having a daily prompt to blog about is so handy.

Anyway to start things off Amy is asking us to post an altered photo and to help us all out she's listed 10 ways we can achieve this.

I've altered this gorgeous tub of flowers - tres chic don't you think?