4

Australasian Blog Hop – Playful Penelope

 

Hello (I am glad to be back) and welcome aboard our Penelope Australasian Close to My Heart Blog Hop. If you have arrived here from Meryl Cheetham – Mez’s Craft Room then you are in the right place.  If you landed here by accident, no problem, please join in by following the link at the end of this post. 

AUNZ blog hop

Today I would like to share with you a creation which features Close To My Heart’s Penelope Workshop Your Way paper kit. 

Penelope Workshop Your Way Kit

Penelope is pretty and playful, and offers loads of options by following the patterns provided on your consultants online store or through other ideas such as the one that follows. This one has come from pondering on what I could make from the leftovers! There is very little left now but what I do have will make pretty cards.

This is using the pieces I had left of the Penelope Workshop your way kit after making 6 doblepage layouts and 4 cards. I have a couple of embellishments left. I have used some other  greem for the background from Kaleidescope - but any green would have worked.

This is using the pieces I had left of the Penelope Workshop your way kit after making 6 doblepage layouts and 4 cards. I have a couple of embellishments left. I have used some other green for the background from Kaleidescope – but any green would have worked.

 

 

I loved using my scraps up. I also love seeing what others do. This collections suits so many Fun filled happy smiley days. I have a fellow consultant Kristy who created this layout. I really think we need to encourage her to blog as she does some wonderful designs too.  She has incorporated the current stamp of the month in the design and focussed on using strips of her scraps.

Penelope by Kristy

 

This exclusive Paper collection is only available during until April 31st 2016. Once we reach the end of Seasonal Expressions 2 it will retire.

  • This Workshop Your Way G1106 collection  can be yours for just $41. Individual components can be ordered from your CTMH consultant
  • This offer is available until the end of the current Seasonal Expressions idea book.

If you do not have a consultant please contact me or place an order here The Creative Heart

I’d love you to leave a comment before heading off to the next stop,Maz Wood: Inky Scraper

Thanks for stopping by

Jen

 

 

 

 

11

Life Is Wonderful Australasian Blog Hop

AUNZ blog hopHello and welcome aboard our Australasian Close to My Heart Blog Hop.

If you have arrived here from  Simone’s Blog, Scrappy Matters you are in the right place. If you landed here by accident, no problem, please join in by following the link at the end of this post.


Today I would like to share with you a creation which features Close To My Heart’s July Stamp of the Month Life is Wonderful.

You can get this stamp of the Month for FREE this month in the Jump on it July campaign! Yes…FREE!

During the month of July, when you purchase $32.50 AUD in current, retail priced stamps, you qualify to receive either the July Stamp of the Month, My Acrylix® Life Is Wonderful, FREE or any one of the Hostess Rewards stamp sets featured in Annual Inspirations 2014–2015 or Seasonal Expressions 2 for only $6.50 AUD!

I do believe this is a scrapbookers stamp set. I can see some of it used in card making but I have had a lot of fun making pages with it.

SOTM July S1507 Life is Wonderful FREE with stamp purchases of $32.50 in July.

SOTM July S1507 Life is Wonderful FREE with stamp purchases of $32.50 in July.

I have scraplifted this page and shared it with my weekly class group. I had the photo printed at 5 x 7 (8 x 10 can be too big). Slice it into 1 inch strips. If you wish to avoid a face start either side of the face, knowing you may leave off the two odd sized end pieces. This technique generally works super well with scenic photos but I did manage to make it work with this shot of me and my students did get good results with people photos too.

Keep Strips In Order

Use your Versamat or other grid and start placing strips from the centre. I used the Ruler and allowed 1/4 inch between strips. We found some look better with just 1/8 inch in the gap. The CTMH Ruler Z1471  was very useful for this process and helped keep things straight.

Versamat and ruler

  • All stamping is done using black ink.
  • Stamp the square on a piece of Kraft Card stock for your journalling.Your story matters.
  • Stamp and fussy cut Wonderful piece.
  • Stamp life is for the top corner.
  • Adhere some Black Arrow Washi to scrap white cardstock to add as embellishment on the Black Background.
  • Use a fine line Back pen to add faux stitching.
  • Punch the border with Chevron Border Punch and adhere a colour behind it to complement your photo.

See below for a full list of CTMH supplies.

This exclusive Life is Wonderful stamp is only available during July from your consultant. .It can be yours for just $5 with a qualifying order of $75 or for $27.00 if ordered separately from your CTMH consultant. It is also available FREE  for the Jump in July Campaign– Just order $32.50 worth of regular priced stamps. Remember many of these will retire very soon!

If you do not have a consultant please contact me or place an order here 

I’d love you to leave a comment before heading off to the next stop, Patricia Manhire – Patricia Manhire’s Creative Corner

The following Close To My Heart products have been used.

23

Summer Crush Campaign

Welcome to the Summer Crush Blog Hop

SummerCrushBadge

During the month of June, when you purchase any My Crush™ book and its accompanying assortment pictured in Annual Inspirations 2014–2015, you will receive the coordinating stamp set FREE! That is a savings of at least $15 AUD. Every My Crush book features a hard cover with wire binding and cardstock-weight pages that are printed with eye-catching designs to form the perfect bases for your memory keeping. There are coordinating assortments featuring sticker sheets, envelopes, alphabets, cards, and journaling spots, which along with your free stamp set, will help you to be well on your way to your own gorgeous mini book creation! This offer is only available while supplies last and once they’re gone, these books are gone for good, so put your orders in early! Contact your Close to My Heart Consultant today.  PS These books make awesome Christmas gifts!

 If you have arrived her from Krista Hershberger you are in the right place. Like always, our hops go in a circle. So just keep hopping until you get back where you started.  If you do get lost along the way a complete list of hoppers is available at Melinda’s Blog Here. In this hop I hope you get to see lots of artwork ideas and consider these awesome little books as potential surfaces for treasured keepsakes, or just more awesome paper to use in a way you choose. I think they make the best Jounals and have always been good stocking fillers.

 Purchase your choice of Crush Book and coordinating assortment and you will get your stamp set for free! Click for more details.  They are perfect for adults like me but tweens love them too!

I gathered my stuff together - Blue Bird Book, Bluebird assortment, Glacier twine, Aqua Dots, Shin Han Markers, Blocks, ink,

I gathered my stuff together – Blue Bird Book, Bluebird assortment, Glacier twine, Aqua Dots, Shin Han Markers, Blocks, ink,

There are 5 books to choose from altogether – Modville, Bluebird, In the Pink, Wildwood and Holiday Happenings. For this post I am sharing a page I created in the My Crush® Bluebird/Memories Combo.There are actually 2 combos for this book to choose from because there are 2 assortment packs!

To begin with I have no real plan – just a whole lot of coordinating product. I have the book, a photo, and the stamp. I have the assortment, some washi tapes, aqua dots, Shin Han Markers and Ponderosa Pine ink. I begin by deciding on possible embellishments from the assortment. Here are the steps I followed:

  • I do a little dress rehearsal with different elements to see what I like.
  • I stamp some of the flowers on the coloured card in that assortment and fussy cut them. I stamped others and the butterfly and coloured them.
  • Looking at the stickers I use a deep teel green and a fuschia coloured tab sticker back to back to create a tab and have the Gold Dot Washi and Silver washi ready as hinges to make a flap for journalling.(I am feeling pretty sentimental so lots of journal space is needed on this page. I may even write a whole lot more on the page next to this one. )
  • I begin laying down and layering the elements and decide to stamp on the page. Since I have already got some things in this book it is necessary to put my versamat under the page and right up against the coil binding so as to get a flat even surface to stamp.
  • I made the journaling pieces and did the journalling before sticking them down.
  • I did decide after I had put some things down to add a little spray mist with reinkers and that was not as successful as I hoped.
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Using the versamat under the page for a stable stamping surface.

Crushbooks are fun projects for odds and sods in your photos abd memorabilia. They will reveal the quirks of you and your life providing your family an insight into you.  I have filled one Crush book almost completely, made a good start on a second and made a start on a third. I treat them very much as reflective journals and try to use them to offer my children and theirs an insight into my everyday life.

Here is the completed pagefrom today’s effort. (I must fix the watermark date!)

Jenny Gilbert thcreativeheart.ctmh.com.au

Finished Page

 

Jenny Gilbert thcreativeheart.ctmh.com.au

Inside journalling

Jenny Gilbert thcreativeheart.ctmh.com.au

journal flap hinged with washi tape

Jenny Gilbert thcreativeheart.ctmh.com.au

Butterfly detail

 If I still have your attention please join me on a walk through my completed Modville Crishbook book. I am still not an expert in video making but this time I did use a tripod!

 Your next stop on the hop is the fabulous artwork by Nikka Geers Thank you for stopping by. Please leave a comment before you move on. (ps I have done what I can to try and stop the need for you to login in or sign up to comment so let’s see how that goes.) 

16

Australasian Blog Hop Stamp Of The Month This Moment S1501

sotm blog hop

 

Welcome to the first blog hop of 2015 by the  Australasian Close to My Heart Blog Hop group. If you have arrived here from Shaunna’s Blog, Passionate About Pages then you are in the right place. If you landed here by accident, no problem, please join in by following the link at the end of this post.


 

I am thrilled to share with you this mini album which features January Stamp of the Month S1501 This Moment.  S1501 available exclusively throughout January for $27 or for just $5 when you spend $75.

Love Notes Mini Journal

Ok I will fess up. I initially felt I had little use for this stamp set as I have no lover, no kids and my dogs can’t read a love note I might write. I did what I always do – I just stamped some of it out and an idea was born.

sotmjan15cover

URok is a deliberate choice – This book is meant to be an affirmation not a question:)

 

A little back story may help with why I did this mini album. It is no secret among those close to me I suffer depression. I am OK right now because I have awesome things to do with my time, (teaching people how to be creative is awesome) and great family and great friends supporting me. But I am not always ok. I am a single 50 something living at home in an empty nest with 2 dogs. I battle the black dog daily. While I occasionally have the company of my girls and grandson, I am very much alone and that sense of isolation can exacerbate any feelings of depression coursing through my veins.

I created this project while completely alone between Christmas and New Year. It is a time in which we reflect on what we have done and achieved and what we might like to plan for the years to come. I have promised myself to take some everyday photos to fill the pages along with completing the all important journalling. Maybe one day one of my offspring will treat it as a treasure once I have done those pages. But its purpose for me is in this moment!

My mini album therefore is intended to be an antidote to feeling sad. It is a very big Love Note reminder to take care of and love myself by being in the moment and appreciating that.  It gives me great pleasure to share with you my empty Mini I put together in just one evening using a few fun, well priced CTMH products.

Get your stuff together including a selection for For Always PML cards that speak to you.

Get your stuff together including a selection for For Always PML cards that speak to you.

All you need is the Hip Pics Mini Album Z1956, A la Carte For Always Picture My Life CardsZ3065 , Black Arrow Washi Tape Z2003, Black Shimmer trim Z1809, Marvy Uchida LePen journalling pen Z1979, Sparkles Black and Grey Assortment Z1754, Scaredy Cat assortment (Black Stars)Z3011, and an assortment of Black, White and Kraft paper. I have used just two inks, Black Z2105 and White Daisy Z2163. I added a piece of Black Twill Z1988 ribbon to my spine too. Get set to do each page as you feel as all these products coordinate completely with the for Always cards. The stamp set could well have been created from the same designs. I had a ball bringing these pages together.

Get over creative block! 

To begin with I stamped some of the titles and icons on black, white and kraft paper. This gets my creative juices going and helps push me past creative block! Then I knew how and where I wanted to place things on the album cover. I flipped through my For Always cards and chose those that were actually very similar and even the same in style with this stamp set, and fitted my colour scheme of black, white and kraft, as well as my mood and the thoughts I was feeling. I made no definite decisions yet but I had a nice little pile of large and small cards. I flushed out a piece of Black Fundamentals paper from my stash to use as well as I loved the Zing of the black and white chevron.

I like the hip pics pages but feel the pockets need a bit of stabilising. Fill each one with a piece of card 6 x 4 1/4. I mixed these up from my colours. Then I added PML cards. NOW is the time to stamp directly on the white space of your pages if desired. If you wait it can become a little lumpy bumpy and complicated. You can always cover it up if you decide you do not like it:)If you do need to support a page from lumps elsewhere slip your Versamat in there to help.

To adhere the PML cards into the album I simply hinged them in with black arrow Washi tape and used some scraps from fussy cut cards as tabs where needed. Once it was all stuck down I came back to decorate with more faux washi (scraps from cards!) I also did pen outlines, and stuck down some shimmer trim and gems. This little album is now ready for some photos and some reflection about what makes me smile, and what matters to me so in a moment I can be reminded to be in the moment.Here is how mine came together.

sotm1051

sotm1052

 

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Here Hello is stamped 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation.

 

sotm10153

sotm10154

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White pigment ink looks great on our Kraft card stock. Give it a try.

 

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I gorgot to do photos – the crds on the left fall down revealing my precious and grately appreciated first cuppa of the day.

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Here the photo of the day title is fussy cut from the card and popped on top – over the same card I cut it from with the hip pics frame in between.

 

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The love notes on the right included a little fold out note slipped into the pocket of the page. It is all set in place ready for me to write a nice love note.

 

sotm10158

 

Shopping list – If you have a stash – your only investment might be this cute album and the PML cards

 

 

 

 

I would love to hear from you if you decide to take this or a similar approach with this stamp set. Please let me know if I have inspired you.

This Moment is only available until January 31 from your CTMH consultant. I’d love you to leave a comment before heading off to the next stop,

Lauren Moore- CTMH Craftings

If you get lost along the way please visit  Mandy – Hall of Indulgence for a full list of hoppers.

Have a Fantastic New Year!

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5

Everything ABC’s Blog Hop Wildwood and Wanderful!

Welcome to the Everything ABC’s Blog Hop!

abc bloghop

For this hop we will be featuring the letter W. This may be the name of a paper, a stamp set or an embellishment. Whatever the crafter has chosen as their # element will be featured in their post. If you have just hopped onto my blog, please start at the beginning at Linda’s blog ~ Scrappy Therapy  If you came from there  then you’re on the right track!


 

Welcome to Wildwood and Wanderful!

I will be honest I was almost as indecisive about which of the two products I am currently using to feature for W as I was about pushing the ‘buy now’ on my air tickets that would whisk me off on my fab seven week trip of a life time to Mexico and Disneyland USA for the CTMH Convention!

Would I share with you Wanderful PML Pages and cards, or would I share my Wildwood Z2001 My Crush Book  Journal – a journal that is much more lovely when you open it than it looks in our Idea book?

Wildwood

PicsArt_1414663483596

 

The Wildwood My Crush Book has journal prompts, fabulous textures, loads of distressed pages and more. I loved it as soon as I saw the title page which I am sharing with you here, and I urge you to check out more than just the pages shown in the Idea Book. I decided to use the blank back of the cover for a few Wanderful PML cards to offer some of the back story to my trip. The card ‘just GO’ says it all! The title page ‘And so it starts….” is a sound beginning to this little story.

PicsArt_1414665999264

PicsArt_1414663270627

 

My first double page is about the decision to go and a little reflection about a regular day on the street in Mexico City. I used Wanderful cards for the journalling and of course in these kinds of journals we are supposed to break the rules….so while one page has a matted photo (Tres traditional)  the other has this rather odd angled one. I also used the Black Arrow Washi tape and will probably use this throughout as the Arrows are a feature of the Wanderful Paper and PML cards.

Wanderful

My album is well underway, but I am still in week one! I love to journal and make sure every key thought, idea and reflection is captured too. I also have to remind myself ‘not every photo needs to be scrapped’. But journaling is different. I have it everywhere! My students and my team will agree I do not think we are done as scrapbookers unless we are journalling too. Let’s face it, I do not expect to be around forever to tell my grandchildren who everyone is in the photos, and what we were doing, thinking and celebrating.So…let’s make journalling FUN!! and SUPER EASY!

CTMH have the solution for us with the Picture My Life Product Range bringing Journalling cards in products like Wanderful PML. Almost every card in this set lends itself to story telling, making it a very different set to say Chantilly or Pear and Partridge which have a few more decorative elements and lend themselves more readily to card making too.

PicsArt_1414663751356

So, let’s move on to my scrapbook page. I really did not quite know how to scrap these photos. The photos are from different times of the day, all of the same place, the Zocalo (City Square). Red was the predominant colour. I just loved the Wanderful PML card that said ‘This is what the world looks like‘ as I landed in Mexico City right in the middle of a Cultural festival. The Zocalo was a tent city, each tent representing countries around the world, including Australia. So It really was an ‘around the world’ in a day experience and even included a UK red Double Decker Bus!.

PicsArt_1414663671594

The cards I chosen have a sentiment that reflects how I felt, just wanting to ‘roam’ as I did on this day. They gave me the way to not put every photo on the page (yes that is a flip flap stack right there with 5 photos)  – just a representation of the day. This was easy peasy journalling and made a difficult to coordinate page an easy scrapbook layout! I still think it needs a bit more but I am armed with arrow washi tape and believe that will do the trick.

PicsArt_1414663622834

The stamped embellishments are from the Wanderful Workshop on the Go Stamp Set and Here we Go D1600. I used the same colours that are in the Wanderful PML Cards – Cranberry, Flaxen and Black. I am totally in love with the mini notebook stamp and it features already on many pages in this album.

BTW The pockets in the album are the strap hinge ones as I am stash scrapping as I complete these pages and they do a fab job to fill albums I already had on hand. I am loving CTMH Memory Protectors and their durable quality!

D1600Here We Go

 

Wanderful PML

Oh I Almost forgot!!! Up until now these collections came with a title page and plastic pockets. Talk to your consultant about the A La Carte version of PML – no title or pocket pages. That way using them like this does not leave you with 10 empty pocket pages! For Australian Consumers the A La Carte code is for Wanderful is Z3063

You can purchase the products used in the layout and My Crush book online at my store. Be sure to join my November Online Gathering to be in the draw for host rewards.

Your next stop on our Everything ABC’S blog Hop is Wendy Kessler – My Scrapbooking Blog 

In case you get lost along the way…go to Scrappy Therapy

2

Lost in LA!!! The tail end of the adventure!

Grab a cuppa! I have a story for you!

Hi readers. I know it has been some time since I posted but I have been preoccupied with my Mexican Adventure, Close To My Heart Convention USA in Disneyland (more on these in future posts) and of course discovering something of LA in my last few days before heading home.

The end of Route 66

Santa Monica Pier – The end of Route 66

I have discovered today the beauty of Santa Monica Beach and city, and the eccentric,  eclectic Venice Beach. I saw something of these yesterday on tour but we were given just 20 minutes in Venice Beach and drove right by Santa Monica pier. From that experience I would say don’t choose this tour by VIP tours! However it helped to get my bearings on this enourmous city.  

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Today I ventured out on LA public transport, specifically the Big Blue Bus. It started well with friendly drivers telling me where to hop off in Santa Monica. I wandered down to the pier and enjoyed the ocean breeze and the atmosphere.

I have a video here

Then I could not quite decide what to do. Pay big bucks for the hop on hop off bus or just get the BBB to Venice Beach. I decided given the time of day it had to be Venice, that was around 1 pm.  Not enough time for hop on hop off back up to Sunset Strip. (Unfortunately, and I doubt now I have time to get bck there.) But the BBB had a route through to Venice so off I went. 

Anyhow, I loved my time at Venice Beach. There was a lot of quirky artwork, skaters, cyclists, entertainment and another awesome red hat. Here is a video of one of the musicians. I can{t quite work out the embed code yet. 

I had a big late lunch and decided it was time to find my way from Venice to Route 3 on the BBB.  I had two possible directions to head. I started right, looked at the map and the envisioned potential walk ahead and decided left was perhaps better. Who should I run into but three awesome Aussies from Convention just arriving at Venice Beach!

Back on  track,  an officer of the  LAPD advised me the main road I was looking for was a mile and a half away. I have no concept of that so I started walking….and walking…and walking. Three miles may have been closer to the mark!  

On the upside of this part of the journey I saw some nice homes in the streets of Venice Beach, and quickly changed blocks when I realised I was in ‘cool’ ( aka dangerous) territory.

Suddenly I found myself back in the city of Santa Monica! Not only was it signed, the whole look of the place with its smoke free streets, good pavement and quality of shops and homes dictated I had crossed some sort of border. I felt safe but the walking I knew was going to be a problem. I had to turn right on Pacific Boulevard. I did and there in front of me were hills….I can walk bumpy flat ground (and I had in the streets of Venice Beach where in some place poles and fences were so close my walker would not fit through) but hills are a problem.  

Big Blue Bus Routes....there are lots of them!

Big Blue Bus Routes….there are lots of them!

By now I regretted the decision to go left. I regretted not having a decent map or any concept of how big the distance was between key roads marked on the map. I thought about getting a taxi and then realised I was on the wrong side of the street to hail one…They do drive on the wrong side of the road here!  

By now I was pretty cross with myself, and a little anxious. Then I saw it!  A BIG BLUE BUS! It was route 8 and bound to get me to route 3 according to the map I had which I needed to get home. After 30 minutes wait, and dodging fruit dropping from the tree overhead, I began to get anxious. Not one BBB had come through, but I had seen 3 go the other way. Surely one would come or had they stopped for the DAY? How could I Check?  

In the burbs oi Santa Monica around 6 pm getting anxious about the next Big Blue Bus not arriving!

In the burbs oi Santa Monica around 6 pm getting anxious about the next Big Blue Bus not arriving!

Then I remembered Santa Monica City has free wifi…. it worked in the burbs where I was…My BBB arrived just as I downloaded the time Table!  The reason for such a wait….city Traffic!  Duh!!!  Lol. Of course. I am just a country bumpkin afterall and have no idea about such things in a city of millions. 

So as I write the draft of this post I am safely on route 3, discovering all the while I did not need to walk miles to key stops Afterall! !! Every major intersection I crossed over following my map intersected with this one!!!! If I’d only had a map or thought it through before embarking on my homeward journey. One final challenge awaits…a working public phone at the bus transfer station to call upon my hotel shuttle. I had not seen a phone there in the morning…I am worried.  (If not I will be offering so one some money to use their mobile phone!)Enjoy these photos.

Today was and adventure and I can’t wait to scrapbook it. This rapid bus is making lots of stops. Yep….I am a dill. So could have thought this through better. There was a shorter quicker way…to my right where I was headed in the first place! 


 

Postscript: I found phones and had just 3 quarters left to make a call. No change machine in sight and 2 are needed for the call.  The girl at the hotel could not hear me so she hung up. It is after 7 pm…getting late. I needed one more quarter…asked a guy if he had change. Nope. He suggested putting a fiiver in the coke machine to get change. The machines rejected my fiver. 7.25 pm… I emptied my handbag and luckily found another quarter and a better phone. Made the call, got connected. A 15 minute wait. 8 pm…collected and taken round the airport twice (another story) while another client was dropped off for a flight. 8.30 by the time I walked into the hotel! But…I made it! And through talking with the driver I now know exactly how to get to Michaels for their Independence day sale tomorrow!

PPS..Americans are already celebrating July 4 with fireworks and some are turning it into a 4 day weekend. Just like us…any reason to party or go camping!

 

Cheers

Jen

Stash Scrapping brings Startling Revelations

I have already posted about the pending closure of Creative Memories Australia due to the  economic issues the parent company in America is facing. Our business manager and leading consultants have been busy keeping the CM family together through Facebook groups, the Virtual Crop, and emails. The final closure of the company we have loved and served is to close it’s doors on Monday June 9th. (Plan B will be announced Tuesday the 10th  and the excitement is mounting as we anticipate bigger and better)

The therapy for all of us who are consultants has come via the ‘Keep Calm and Scrap On’ campaign with the encouragement to ‘scrap your stash’. Engaging in  this has led me to a really interesting place, one I have not visited for a very long time and one that has helped me to look back on my past and laugh, and cry, and see a significant period of my life in a new light. Essentially, this is why I Scrapbook – it does enable me to celebrate and reflect on significant moments of my story – and more.

It is finally on the table again

It is finally on the table again

So in living memory, without delving into anything that is drawn from primary sources, I remember my Rotary Exchange year to Mexico with a great deal of fondness. I have happy memories of families – Comacho Junco, De La Pen~a, and Zavala who were my hosts and a particlarly emotional connection with the Lima Rizado family. In fact I communicate with the latter now on Facebook thanks to one of them looking for me. I had looked for them several times too! Who would have thought in 1980 that in 2012 we could communicate so easily all these years later!

 

 

hopefully still in date order....Yep pretty much!

hopefully still in date order….Yep pretty much!

Digging into my stash I came across my unfinished album of this fabulous year of my life. I have pondered why it was unfinished. Perhaps some of the memories were just too painful to bare, as I reconnect emotionally with so much. Perhaps it was the huge wad of letters and documents that both my mother and myself saved from that year. I have every letter written to me – and every letter I wrote home.  If I am to do do a good job of this photo album – traditional or digital –  I would need to dig into dates, times and places – and these are recorded in the letters. I knew I would have to read them. maybe that is why it has taken so long.

I also got a bit stuck considering layouts for pages. Mexico is not a country well reflected by our traditional scrapping supplies here and finding just the right paper or sticker has been an issue for me. However I have learned to make do – and have been focussed more on colour than sticker to this point in time. I had stopped at the folkloric dancing I saw in Fortin De las Flores. These pages had followed scrapped pages of 2 of the 3 homes I lived in. I clearly had reached an emotional point and packed it into a box. I have since been doing other things while the project sat in a cupboard and got carted through to or three house moves before it saw the light of day again on my craft table – years after it had been started.

What page and photos to do next?

What page and photos to do next?

In the last few nights I have pulled it out. I recently ordered prints of the slides I had digitised, and now I have kind of sorted photos. It was such a long time ago I could not necessarily place all photos in a specific place or timeline. Not that for this project timeline matters – but I got stumped after doing the pages on my dear third host family and the family of my Mexican Muchacho. I told myself to ‘Feel the pain and do

My 4th Family and the one I grew closest to.

My 4th Family and the one I grew closest to.

it anyway’. Once I got past the emotional response, I did those pages and came to another halt.

 

 

 

I ran out of pages, I had no memorabilia pockets and I had no idea what kind of order to put the photos into. With CM Australia about to close its doors getting this project finished would depend on the support of the CM family for the pages and pockets and encouragement to finish a traditional project. All I had to do was ask and magic happened!

I found the perfect paper - and upcycled a page from my old demonstration and teaching album

I found the perfect paper – and upcycled a page from my old demonstration and teaching album

My girlfriend and fellow consultant visited tonight with 3 memorabilia pages, and 3 sheets of scrapbook paper she thought might be good. One was simply perfect. In Cordoba Veracruz, La Jarocha is a traditional dance form and has with it a specific style of costume. A couple of my most favourite photos are of me wearing this costume and performing in a dance troupe with the dance school I attended. When in Mexico I needed something outside of school to do, I loved the dancing and I needed to exercise. Learning this kind of dancing was the answer – and my cultural life in Mexico benefited greatly from this. I really wanted to scrap this one particular photo. Armed with that perfect paper from old creative memories stock, and additional old size pages I found buried in a box that were from my Scrapbook techniques album in 2002, I was set…but I got stuck again. When was it taken? Where was I? Which performance was it?

Tonight I am very glad I kept every letter written. I have been reading them and can now place the photo on a timeline of events and use the letters to help create the necessary journalling. Photos alone cannot tell this story – I needed the information. While doing so I came across a lot of information I had quite clearly forgotton – the names of people, the importance of places, and was able to observe – as no doubt my parents did – some changes in my behaviour that may have raised an eyebrow or two! My poor mum and dad! My letters also had some very common phrases…’Sorry this letter is short but I am too busy…just a quick note to say,.. I really have now news….I am studying hard for exams (I hated zoo-ology!),  thanks for your cheque…can I have some money for… I love you muchisisimo xoxoxox’ .

My letters remind me of my own daughter who went to Japan on exchange, who was frantically was studying to pass basic Japanese, and had little time to write, who struggled emotionally at times, had some basic observations of the country and culture to report and such. She might well have been me…our letters and notes are so similar…..so sixteen!

Well…I got one page done…the rest of the time was spent reading through many of the letters and I was startled by the revelations the 16 year old me left for the 50 year old one!

Scrapping the stash not only makes use of what I have to make room for the new to come, it also gave me an opportunity to get back to work on a project that I think should be done.

Try stash scrapping – you will be surprised what you find!

 

PS I have already started the digital version and now realise I will have more text than photos when I am done! Plan B will hopefully provide me the opportunity to have the same lovely page prints I am accustomed to!

Digital MEXICO page that will end up in my traditional album!

Digital MEXICO page that will end up in my traditional album!