Quote of the Week

"Life is 10% of what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it." ~ John C. Maxwell

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Christmas

I would like to take this time to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas. I won't be back until after Christmas as I finsih getting ready for our company. We have our big celebration on Christmas Eve with family and friends coming for cabbage rolls and spiral cut ham, mashed potatoes and a veggie. Salad, rolls, and several kinds of cookies and bars are on offer as well as the must have egg nog. Christmas Day is devoted to our little family of 3 most years and this year we hope to go sledding after present opening. It is possible that we might not have to travel as far as we usually do as there is a bit of snow and I am hopeful it will not all melt before Friday.

I have one last project to share with you this year. This is the frame I did for Jay's Mom compling several photos of Reece from 2009. My parents took one back to Canada, they don't know that yet, but it had some shots of them with Reece during their October visit. It is made using the awesome frame from Fancy Pants and as well as paper from them. There are Basic Grey rub-ons, Making Memories paint (if you paint the back of the insert you get a glossy finish and if you paint the front - like I did in the lower right - you get a matte finish) and assorted items from my stash. Reece, 2009 and the I heart you are cut using my early Christmas present the Cricut these are out of Fancy Pants paper.

We are just starting to play with adding a watermark to all our photos and as you'll see I suck at it... but the only way I learn is by doing so there it is - wink

Saturday, December 19, 2009

It doesn't get any easier than Simple

I am a simple scrapper and I am an Independent Consultant for MemoryWorks so I couldn't have been happier to learn about the Simple Stories line being launched by the company I love. Check out the super cute blinkie for Simple Stories in the right sidebar.

If you are new to scrapbooking, unsure of your way around all the paper and embellishments this is an awesome place to start you on your journey. If you are like me and you've been scrapping for awhile but find you have less and less time to get your photos in albums then this is a wonderful way to get that done and leave you time to spare!

So are you excited yet? I know I can't wait... Launch for the line, the first time MemoryWorks has done one of their own, is January 18, 2010. Check back often there may be blog candy.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day...

To most of us it is coming up on Christmas but for those who are making cards for Operation Write Home we are thinking a bit further out. The current call is for Valentine's Day cards - general themed cards are always needed - so while I am trimming my tree my work area looks like Cupid has taken up residence. I'll be honest V-Day is one of the harder ones for me it has all that red and pink... so I was thrilled with I found paper a little out of the box.

Here is my latest offering enmass

Here are some shots of groupings. I love this new stamp set from Unity Stamp and they ship super fast.

I used Basic Grey rub ons on these Valentine's Day cards making each one unique. Some also have hearts and XO's using Quickutz dies I bought then never used...

More of the Basic Grey Rubons used to make each unique.

These cards are done using an assortment of 'leftovers' from various kits and classes.

The general cards below have sentiments cut using my new Cricut (which Hubby loves to operate).

This is just a close up of one using my Cricut.

And just to show I have also been enjoying family time and because the subject is just too stinking cute not to share...

I plan on scheduling time to update here at least weekly as well as work on our website for our other hobby and that blog. Fingers crossed this happens...

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Cards Cards and More Cards

Wow it's been a while since I was on here... but what a great reason to get back on. My friend, Alex aka Super Woman, picked on on another awesome cause and I've jumped at the chance to help. Operation Write Home supplies cards to those in the service of their country who may otherwise have difficulty finding cards to send home.
Last night I made another 17 Valentine's Day cards for OWH. Each one of the design on the right is unique...I cut out words/sayings from a co-ordinating sheet and used used that as my sentiment.

And then today I started my Christmas cards. In total I made 22 using several designs a few of which were inspired by my Facebook friend Kyla! They are simple but I am very happy with them...

Monday, September 14, 2009

Kijiji & A Giveaway

To read about a safer alternative to listing things online and for a chance at a giveaway click here. It's a fun and informative place to visit.

Ok I'm going to admit I've tried entering multiple times with no success... Not sure what's up but hope anyone else that tries can get an entry in.

Monday, September 7, 2009

You *simply* have to meet Ella...


Ok I am trying to add this permantly to my side bar by my brain is taking a vacation this morning... So this will do for now.

Some of those who were associated with my FAVORITE magazine Simply Scrapping have started a new venture and if you click on the above way cute button you will get to have a peek at what they have in store for us all.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Blog Candy Alert :)

If you like Copic markers you have to visit here for a chance to win some. Poke around a bit more as there is some stunning stuff on there as well :)

Sweet Pea Stamps

Ok so I'm not a huge stamper but I do enjoy collecting them... And if you want to see some awesome stamps you **MUST** check out Sweet Pea Stamps

And while you are looking around other sites check out their Design Team Blog here. All the Team is great but I will admit a bit of bias to my friend Alex .

Thursday, August 20, 2009

August's Guest Designer

I am pleased and honored to introduce this month's Guest Designer - Missy Harris. Missy and I met while she worked for my husband as one of the field crew he has each summer. Our son LOVES her and she has an awesome dog (Hi Max!) but mostly due to me feeling like I might have had a small part in her paper crafting...

Without further ado here are her lovely (I may be biased) cards. All are done using 'scraps' left over after the making of a magnetic board for her new sister-in-law. Many of the scraps are from the Basic Grey Marrakech Theme Set, Rub-ons and Chipboard Stickers which of course MemoryWorks carries in the current catalogue.

I love the detail of the center design on this card and honestly likely would never have thought to do a card with it thinking it needed a larger 'canvas'.

It's a little hard to read but Thanks is across the front of this cute card. I love the cascading effect she achieved by layering.

Who could resist this card's simple yet important message to 'enjoy life'? And the bird just brings a smile to my face.

And last but certainly not least is another Thank You card. I love how Missy placed the 'vines' down the side to balance the vertical lines on the other side.

She will never be allowed to tell me again that she doesn't do cards now that I've shown you all that indeed she does and does them well.

I am currently working on a couple of things. The one I hope to get up tomorrow is a layout using product from this current catalogue and last years to show that you can mix old and new successfully. The other is highlighting using your scraps to make cards, layouts and altered items. In these economic times using every piece of product is a good thing...

Remember if you want to be a Guest Designer contact me and we'll talk :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Kids & Digi Stamps

Ok I meant to get this up yesterday but better late than never right? Well that's my story and I'm sticking to it... Incy Wincy Designs has a heart and that is just one reason you should pop over and check them out. They choose a group/class/etc to donate to this time around it is Sir Thomas Playford Kindergarten. They hold challenges and they have some very fun digi stamps! What more could you ask for?

Watch this weekend for me to post some projects I've been working on

Friday, August 7, 2009

HUGE Tamron Giveaway

Don't miss it! Today is the last day to enter @iHeartFaces HUGE giveaway. A Tamron Zoom Lens valued at $629.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Good to the last drop...

This morning I am sharing some projects done by my talented friend Jennifer Hirschi. She has used products in the current MemoryWorks catalogue.
Psst - exciting news!! We will now have 2 catalogues a year. Watch for the new catalogue to debut shortly.

But I digress - I challenged Jennifer (heck I challenged a whole email group I'm on) to do projects using items from the current MemoryWorks Catalogue and from their stash. You see even though I sell new product I know many are like me in these tough economic times and needing to use what they have on hand before they can get that desired new thing. And you know what that's ok! Use your old stuff I can help you find ways to do that to make it fresh again - then when we have gotten through our stash come to me and I'll help you restock (wink wink). Seriously though - it is perfectly ok to use old product with new, to mix product lines that go together and ok to be using every scrap you have to whip of some wonderful creations. The following papers are all lovely but are all left over from other projects I did at Retreat this past June. I took them in to Jennifer and said make stuff and left her to it. The only thing I asked was for the layout size to be at least 8x8. The following is what she did and I think they are awesome.

First is an 8 x 8 layout using the Tutti Frutti Theme Set from Doodlebug.

She used the same theme set to make this adorable card.

And who wouldn't want this tag on a gift, card or layout? The Pebbles So Tweet Theme Set was used for this tag...

...this 8x8 layout and...

this card. WOW what a way to use your stash!

The last 2 items are made using American Crafts very fun Craft Fair Theme Set - another lovely card and another 8x8 layout.

I am hoping to bring you a guest designer at least once per month to showcase some of the awesome talent out there along with the awesome product that MemoryWorks offers.

If you live in the Boise/Mtn Home area of Idaho and want to get in on being a 'guest designer' drop me a note ersehnen@gmail.com with guest designer in the subject line and we'll talk :)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Sweet Pea Blog Candy

You all need to run, not walk, over to Sweet Pea Stamps and check out their awesome products. If that isn't enough incentive they are currently having a sale!

Also stop by their blog to watch for the newly announced Design Teams creations. I know they will be out of this world cause a dear and talented friend is part of it -Hey Alex.

I know I've been absent lately but I promise to sit down at least twice a week and get some things posted. I hope to get some pictures of recent projects up here with product lists and I am working on a little surprise...stay tuned

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Looking for a unique gift?

I just have to share the gorgeous work of my friend Sarah. If you are looking for a unique gift to give someone you need look no further than her Esty shop.

Sarah also has the following listings:
here and

Her attention to detail is second to none and she is just plain fabulous and fun to be around... If you end up getting something let her know you read about her here - I don't get anything from it but being able to see a smile on her face and that is 'payment' enough.

A drift in a sea of PINK

And those of you who know me well know this was totally out of my element. Did I mention there was glitter involved as well?

Jay's brother and his significant other had a little girl and due to the proximity of Mother's Day I thought I'd do a mini album for the new mom. Keep in mind I am a simple scrapper so don't often use a lot of 'stuff' on my pages but when faced with using pink stuff... Let's just say it's done and I'll work on an album to commemorate her first year with input from her Mom as to what she wants to see used.

I went from this (note there was patterned paper coming from friends who knew I was glitter & pink challenged)

To this

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Politically Correct

I really dislike that phrase because too often it is tossed around in a meaningless way. Like by saying it the person is given a free pass just incase they do say something incorrect. By now I bet some of you are wondering where this is coming from and more importantly where it is going...I will ask you to just trust me and read on.

I am a 46 year old Mother to a 6 year old child who has Down syndrome. Please excuse this momentary instructional piece - it is not Down's nor is it Down Syndrome. Many times I have people ask if there truly is a difference and there is but if you happen to say or spell it incorrectly from habit - life will go on for us at least. There are some who are less forgiving out there.

Reece is warm and loving, smart and funny, he loves to be read to and he adores our dogs and they are devoted to him. Reece has some additional medical challenges but nothing seems to phase this kid of mine. And honestly his Dad and I have handled it all in stride as well. We know there are some out there who don't understand and never will about our life and our son but that is their issue not ours. Well that is what I thought until last Friday...

Reece has speech and physical therapy in Boise every other Friday afternoon. Often we all go in and have a small treat on the way home but this week it was just him and I. Since National Scrapbook Day was the following day (Saturday May 2) some stores had started their celebrations early and as he was in a very VERY good mood after his sessions I decided to go to one of the stores and do the make and take so I had all day Saturday to concentrate on catching up with an old friend at some of the stores closer to her.

Reece came with me, of course, and was on some of his best behaviour occassionally needing to be reminded to stay with Mum when something or someone caught his eye. He helped me with the crop-a-dile and with placing adhesive and my patterned paper. And just as I thought 'Wow this has been very enjoyable and not a struggle at all' it happened - totally, completely and unexpectedly IT happened.

The employee who was manning the make and take table looked at me and asked 'do you need to take classes to learn how to parent him?' Without hesitation I said 'no' but as the word was leaving my mouth I was horrified that Reece who was right there might have not only heard but comprehended the rudness directed at me but about him.

I suspect some of you are thinking - what is the big deal? Others might be reading it shaking their head at my overreacting but let me ask you all how you would feel if some stranger came up to you on the street and asked when the baby was due and you weren't pregnant... Or you are pregnant and some body your don't know touches your baby bump. Or if the same question was asked of you while you were in a business with your child. All of these are inappropriate and rude no matter who it is directed to or from whom it came.

I have no doubt that there was not a malicious intent behind those 12 words but they were inappropriate for a stranger to ask. Let alone an employee of a business I was patronizing and don't even get me started about doing it in front of the child in question. If it truly was a legitimate question and they truly wanted to have an answer then ask me quietly and discretely out of his hearing, not to mention the hearing of all the other customers in the store! I would still be taken aback but I am very likely to have actually responded differently than I did. I may have explained that although there are some differences that you parent him the same as any other child - you make sure they understand what you are asking of them and then enforce it. That all children respond better when spoken to like an equal - that instead of speaking at a child try speaking to them. That all kids like to know the rules even when it seems they just ignore them as it gives them security and shows them someone cares. I may have simply said that I don't know how to parent any other way as he is my only child. But I do know for sure I wouldn't have just said NO.

I haven't written about this to ask you to condemn the store or the employee but rather to, I hope, spread awareness that we are parents just like you. Our kids may have some challenges in life that yours do not but they have the most important thing in the universe in common. They have parents who love them more than one could ever have thought possible - they have the right to be treated with kindness and respect by all who they encounter. Yes there are people out there who will be mean and disrespectful but they will be just as mean and disrespectful of all who they meet in life regardless of outward appearances or smallest of differences. They will be that way because they were not taught any better by the adults in their lives. I am asking you to help your kids and perhaps some adults you know to learn how to do the right thing, to make a difference by spreading kindness and understanding.

And if you want to know how this ended for us. I waited for someone I have known for years to be available - I told her what had happened chocking back the tears as I did. I then checked out and the teller smiled as Reece handed her my debit card and then took it back and placed it in the right spot in my wallet. She gave him a sticker which he is still enjoying today. Shortly after I got home I had a call from the store manager expressing their deepest apologies and letting me know this was unacceptable and was being dealt with. Monday I had a call from Coroporate telling me the same thing. Will I still shop there - Friday the answer was a resounding ARE YOU NUTS but now that the Momma Bear in me is calming down. Yes I'll go back however Reece will not come with me and if that individual is in the store I will just turn and leave.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Day 4 of LOAD May 2009

That's layout a day for those non-scrappy types (wink).

So far I am having lots of fun doing the layouts - well if you don't count Day 2 where I thought I was dying. You can see what I've accomplished so far at myFlickr page. Well you can't see today's as the silly Adobe will not let me size it - ARGH! Now I remember why I let Jay do this stuff.

We get daily prompts but I haven't really been following them until yesterday - squares. We were encouraged to use squares and I managed to fit 29 on a 12 x 12 LO 30 if you count the background page itself. I LOVE the photo I used and it is one that I had to
Jay over taking. I had this vision based on a shot taken years ago to announce the retirement of the Top Show Dog in Canada where she and her handler were walking away from the camera down a tree line country road with a Best In Show ribbon over his shoulder. I had trouble getting Jay to stop looking at Sage who then looked at him - I wanted to just have them side by side walking into the twilight years (she is 12+ years old). I finally got it after much yelling and a few tears, he didn't cry much LOL This isn't the MONEY shot but it is a great one that reminds me that we can disagree and still do good work together as well as all the sentimental stuff it was meant to invoke. That and I had no problem cutting it into a square.

I'll be gathering my thoughts and posting a little later about a couple of things so stop on back.

Friday, May 1, 2009

What have I done now...

I signed up for the LOAD challenge over at Lain Ehmann's blog and although I am sure I will love what I do complete I am not sure I am up to doing a LayOut A Day (LOAD get it? Of course you do).

Maybe for a day or two, a week doesn't even seem that bad but for 31 days? Why oh why do I do this to myself?

Anyway I am still up burning midnight oil as it were because Jay isn't home yet and I can't sleep anyway so why not blog.

This week I also hope to address some of the problem areas mentioned in the giveaway post.

So to see me slowly lose my mind stay tuned. Oh and remember the MemoryWorks Retreat is coming up check it out here. This is a chance to Refresh Renew Refocus and Reward yourself like no other. Hope to see you there.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

A Fond Farewell

A few weeks ago I read an announcement about the closing of one of our LSS (local scrapbook store). Honestly I hadn't been in there in some time but only because I usually have Reece in tow and it is usually after his therapy sessions making shopping less than enjoyable for either of us as he's tired and a little cranky.

MaryAnn was a wonderful hostess to those who came through her doors and the store was always filled with goodies just waiting to be discovered. It was dangerous to wallets and budgets everywhere as there was always a new *must* have around every corner. Crops there were cozy but no one ever seemed to mind as they were also a ton of fun. It was the store I first took my friend Missy to when I was helping her start building her stash scrapping supplies because it was close to where she lived but mostly because it was a friendly atmosphere where newbies were encouraged and fostered.

MaryAnn - thank you for World Class Scrappers! Thank you for having new discoveries around every corner that just had to come home with me. THANK YOU for just being you! Good luck in your future endeavours whatever they are.

Sunday, April 12, 2009


If you don't know what pysanky are you have to find out... I have been intrigued with them since I was in grade school and now my husband is as well. We recently purchased a pysanky off of Ebay and don't regret it for a moment. Our egg is from Jan's Eggs and has a wheat design like this one.

Isn't she the most talented artist you've seen? We plan to add an egg or two each year and as long as Jan's Eggs are in business she is who we will be dealing with exclusively!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

GOBI by the Numbers Part 4

I am finally getting to this final installment nothing like the incentive of being out of commission for a few days to light a fire is there. It's nothing serious but I have a test scheduled for tomorrow am and these things usually have me out of it for a day or two.

Week 11 - we did a recap of the previous weeks and talked about maintenance of our spaces. We had a Task Card project (mine is still a work in progress - it needs a cover but all the tasks are listed) or we could choose to go the electronic route with a service like cozi.com. The other link was jot.com but I have not been able to get that too load - just a headsup. We were reminded that storage is about the container and orgainzing is about what you put in the container. We were encouraged to step back and see what we had accomplished whether we were all moved back in or still had a ways to go.

We then recieved a checklist for preparing for scrapbooking away from home. What a great resource! Even for those of us who do this a lot and have a game plan for it this was a great refresher for attending crops and actually getting things done.

Week 12 - We were encouraged to include visual reminders in our space about the WHY behind our scrapbooking. Honestly I still haven't hung anything in my space that will do this save for one photo of my son on a photo mat I made but I will get there. I am still trying to a balance between his school necessities and my creative necessities being on display. At the moment they are winning...

Aby gave us a wonderful bonus handout about using filters and staying organized. And I am trying to figure out how to fit in a cool wall vinyl in my space.

Week 13 - we had a bonus week and got a really cool banner project. I hope to work on mine over the weekend (once I figure out what I want it to say). Wendy had us reflect on all that we had accomplished over the 3 months and encouraged us all to stay in touch. I for one hope that will be the case as the time with all my GOBI alum was fantastic!

I am so glad that I stuck in there and allowed myself to TRUST the process in the beginning even when I wasn't sure that was the way to go.

I'll insert pictures when I get back from the hospital this afternoon.

Now I am back to counting down the days to the ULTIMATE in pampering - MemoryWorks Retreat

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

And the winner is...

I am still working on my last installment of GOBI by the numbers but am laying in bed feeling like crud... Thank you all for playing this round and check back I hope to have one drawing a month of product from Memory Works. If you want more information about the company drop me a note and I'd be happy to share. The new catalog is in the final stages so will be release soon - watch for it. I will be picking a comment or two daily after the final GOBI installment to address so check back.

I did enlisted my son to make the drawing and he picked Teresa. Please send your mailing address to ersehnen@gmail.com and I'll get it in off to you.

Following is what Teresa said...
My greatest organizational challenge is keeping it all cleaned up. After taking GOBI I am determined to make sure it is clean all the time. However, I have to make a very concentrated effort because I tend to be a very unorganized. I am going to need support to keep it up so I hope to create a list of blogs from the women that took the class.

April 4, 2009 10:14 AM

This is something I worry about as well Teresa. I share my space with the home office and it's where my son does his school (we do Virtual Academy) so we are trying to develop a routine that all of us can manage - Reece is only 6 so presents some unique challenges. I think making the task cards for each of us and using pictures and words for Reece then displaying them prominently will help. I agree with us all sticking together for support as I never want to go back to what it was.

Now back to napping to try to shake this bug... I suck at being sick!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

GOBI by the numbers Part 3

Psst remember the giveaway in the post below :)

Yesterday I shared with you weeks 5-8 during this time we contined to learn the *how* behind this hobby of ours, EMPTIED our spaces - yes completely emptied them, started to look at storage options to see which ones drew our eye. And then finally started to discuss what wasn't working for us and what was as a group with Wendy's blessing...

Week 9 - we had a few more projects that were optional (I skipped them but plan on going back to do them because - well they are cute). We were to continue to shop for storage that would work for us. I'm a visible but closed kind of girl as I live in the dust/wind capital of the world. We were encouraged to go slow with purchases and told often that our 'dream space' may not come together over night but it would come if we were patient. Lots of cheaper (read free) alternatives for storage were offered to tide us over until what we wanted had been saved for or went on sale. And yes we were encouraged to have a budget and start saving for all we wanted. Wendy shared that it took her 2 years to get her room as it is now. I found myself saying my mantra much less this week...

Week 10 - YEAH we are bring things back into our space! We started to figure out 'cute' display options, figuring out what will work for us and how to maintain it. We dicussed that sometimes our wants don't fit our budget and how to re purpose items we already have until we can get our 'ideal'. We were encouraged not to 'settle' in our search for items. We started to label our containers and I heard the 'trust the process' again... I hate labeling because I tend to overthink the whole thing - should I say tags or Tags by MM, K&Co & CI... And on and on and on! The final answer was a bit of both. We had a great handout from Lisa Damrosch about her favorite organizational items. Aby also provided us with a handout on making our spaces comfortable - another gem!

We also had our second Super Saturday! We discussed what we had left to do and about re purposing items we already had. We talked about the layout of our work stations and how over time that would likely evolve as we evolved on our creative journey.

I'll be back with weeks 11 to conculsion as I got behind with this due to company and having a very enjoyable afternoon talking about my other hobby competing with my dogs...

Saturday, April 4, 2009


To celebrate my return to the land of highspeed internet and the shiney new computer I am giving away to one lucky winner this wonderful collection of BasicGrey papers from their Recess line (4 sheets & 1 monogram sheet), a set of BasicGrey chip stickers from their Boxer line and one Prismatics paper pack in Razzleberry (contains 12 sheets of cardstock in 3 shades).

Just leave a comment about what your scrapbooking organizational challenge is and I'll draw one winner at random on the Tuesday April 7th. For this giveaway only those in the USA and Canada are eligible. I promise I will hold one shortly for only those overseas...

Stay tuned later today for the second installment of GOBI by the numbers!

GOBI by the Numbers Part Deux

Review of January - We spent the first month learning the *how* behind our scrapping. And made some great inspirational items - admittedly at the time I wasn't sure they were so great as I wanted to dig in and organize... I now have a binder for storing my inspirational ideas - easy to tuck a page from a magazine in, or paint swatches etc. A clipboard to display things that motivate me to scrap/create and I gave my magnet board an update of things I love and want to remember to use.

Week 5 - We spent time finishing up the assignment we had started last week from Aby Garvey. We learned of Clipmarks and wonderful resource for keeping track of things we had found online that 'spoke' to us. We had another book assignment and started to learn our creative space essentials. It was another week of learning the 'how' of scrapbooking for each of us and I found myself again saying 'trust the process' a lot because we were still not organizing...

Week 6 - Wendy FINALLY tells us we are going to need to get our energy going. YEAH!! We are going to start organizing - I can't wait because my space - well you saw the photos posted below so I don't need to elaborate right? No wait she wants us to WHAT - empty our spaces?!?!?!? Is this woman totally insane? Does see need to be on medication? Does she have a death wish? Ok so maybe that was a little over the top but I started to say my mantra much louder and more often this week. We were then prompted to sort as we emptied - it's a bit of a stretch but that could be the organizing I have been waiting for couldn't it?. Ok so the 3 piles thing is doable - one for things I want to keep, one for things I no longer love enough to keep and one that is just going out in the trash. Aby again had a bonus handout for us that was very eye opening and thought provoking. This week was also the first of 2 Super Saturdays. We spent the day 'together' in chat and doing various things with the support of our Fearless Leader and other classmates. It was awesome!

Week 7 - We continued to empty our spaces and received this pearl of wisdom...storing things does not make them organized! WOW! WOW!! So simple and yet to this point something I hadn't grasped... And with that we started planning our new spaces using graph paper (or online resources). We started thinking of new furniture or how to re purpose existing items, we were picking color schemes and pretty touches that would make us want to be there full time not just when we were creating.

We determined if our spaces were shared, dedicated, or temporary. We considered all that we would be doing in the space (me - crafting, school, home office). And we started to think about storage options we had been seeing in the book and in online resources Wendy had been sharing with us.

Aby gave us an audio pep talk and we continued to empty/sort/purge.

Week 8 - In Wendy's own words 'Finally, finally, finally we are going to talk about storage containers and shopping.' She went on to tell us that some of us may have had an 'aha' moment and realized we had become collectors and not scrappers. Ouch that one hit close to home... We were encouraged to continue purging and sorting - sorting and purging as well as start thinking about what we need to store so the purchases we made were appropriate. You wouldn't by a bird cage for a fish would you? We were encouraged to really look at the spaces of others that had spoken to us and figure out WHY we like something - was it the color, the fact they had a display area for recent projects, etc. We learned why Wendy had done some of the things she had and I know light bulbs started going off for me as I read what she was sharing. We had another project to make (a way cute desktop organizer) and completed a checklist to start us thinking about how we were going to organize so it would work for us. These last 2 weeks I found I wasn't needing to remind myself to 'trust the process' as much...

The next installment will cover weeks 9-completion of Get Organized Be Inspired. I know yesterday I told you to make sure you took this class next time it was offered but alas today I discovered that was not going to happen as the book which is so integral to the class is out of print. I am hopeful that Wendy and the wonderful people at BPS can figure out some way to offer something as wonderful without the book but only time will tell.

I am including some photos of the new scrapping side of the room. Next time I'll share the office side and likely over the next several days I'll be sharing other snippets of the transformation as well.

Friday, April 3, 2009

GOBI by the numbers

Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.
―A.A. Milne

How appropriate that the above quote arrived in my inbox this morning. This is the first in a series (that shall be uninterrupted this time) about my Get Organized Be Inspired journey. Now don't think I'll be telling you enough so you don't have to take the class next time it's offered rather I hope to share just enough to get you as excited about it as all of us that took it this time are.

To start some background - I am a piler and I married a piler. We have stacks of stuff and we are postive we will remember what they contain. We hardly ever do but since the birh of our child (and honestly the need to empty a room for him) we have been better at it. One of us more than the other but regression has occurred from time to time. I had finally got my combination scraproom/office/spare room in order and was loving it when I realized said son was outgrowing his room and I needed to swap to give him the larger of the two. And so my organized scrap area and office fell to pieces. Did I mention that this we happening during the holidays? So I remembered a reference to The Organized and Inspired Scrapbooker by Wendy Smedley and Aby Garvey either in Stacy Julian's book Photo Freedom or on her blog and I asked my wonderfully enabling husband to get that and only that for me for Christmas. About the same time I started stalking Wendy's blog and learned in she was teaching a class at BPS it was Get Organized Be Inspired or GOBI to those who love it...

The aforementioned husband, AKA Jay, signed me up after seeing me look at it dreamily for days. I'd spend hours in front of our computer reading the about it and thinking I couldn't spend the money on just me. See money was a little tight at that time which was pre-refinance of the house. Then it hit me I am wasting more money by not being able to use the stuff I already paid for than the class costs! so the guilt was I had been feeling left me. And the most incredible journey began... I will caution you all that if you are considering the class get a copy of the book as soon as you can since it is vital to being able to participate fully! Several participants had trouble finding this popular tome as it was sold out.

I've posted before photos earlier and so don't want to go there again check them out here but I will be sharing some more after shots with more detail later on.

I'll be giving a brief overview of my journey through this process broken to the weekly sessions. And just so you know my mantra through out this amazing journey was 'trust the process' especially during some of the assignments LOL

Week 1 - we were tasked to create a mission statement and Wendy shared why this was important. We also had a book assignment. I grumbled and complained and ultimately I did the project and had a pleasant revelation.

Ok so the mission statement isn't my finest piece of work but it showed me much more than I expected.

Week 2 - we did another book assignment and created another project. I am thinking "what the heck..." I didn't sign up to make MORE stuff I need to get rid of some and get the rest organized! But I then heard my mantra - trust the process. I did and again was pleasantly surprised.

I can't find the photo of the Inspiration binder we did this week so am adding this clipboard for now. Also created during the class.

We also had our first bonus hand out from Aby Garvey. WOW!

Week 3 - Another book assignment and then again with the create something... I want to dig in and start organizing but again I TRUST the process... to myself I think 'for now'. And our first Super Saturday! We chatted, we commiserated and we moved forward with the gentle guidance of Wendy.

Week 4 - ARGH!! now we are wasting time making LOs for a week? Ok breath and trust TRUST the process... I did and all was right in my little world after all.

I'm only including these 2 LOs I did this week so as not to bore you all

This is the end of the first month. A month that I might add in which I learned a lot about myself and the *HOW* behind my scrapbooking and for that I am grateful that I did indeed trust the process. Tomorrow I'll be posting about the next 4 weeks and tossing in a bonus giveaway...

Monday, March 23, 2009


ain't it great? Last Tuesday I thought all my computer/online issues would be fixed when we got our satellite internet connection. It lasted less than 24 hours. The modem died (they have to order a replacement) but all is not lost as I still have dial up... WRONG they removed my dial up info 'cause you won't need that any more' - right! I finally get it back up and running and the desk top that has threatened to die coughs and sputters and pretty much does die. I can go and open files etc just don't try to do more than look at anything. Oh and the best part the laptop was in DC with my husband.

So I am kind of back up and running but I can't get my email to down load on the laptop so if you are trying to reach me/us bruneaugsp@hotmail.com is the best option at the moment.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Totally Whacked...

well that is what I would have thought about the beginning of class if I hadn't read the book - twice - before we started. We spent a lot of time doing LOs to figure out how we scrap. See if you don't know how you think of your product how do you know how to store it?

Makes perfect sense right? Then why was is so hard! It was hard because I knew what I wanted to do but struggled finding the products/tools to do it. It was the on going vicious cycle that had become my creative hell.

Sometimes in life you just have to trust in the process and those leading you. That doesn't mean following blindly just to not overthink and go with where they are taking you. Straying from the path from time to time isn't a bad thing but it does make the journey longer... Tomorrow I will need to be reminded of this statement would you do that for me?

Oh and the delay in posting this...the new satellite connection lasted less than a day before I had to go back to dial up. The tech is aware but is out of the area until Sunday. I love technology - NOT!

How did it get that bad?

Well like most things it didn't happen over night. My space was before this room was shared with the spare bed and office and was very cramped. Then I had the brilliant idea to swap rooms with Reece, who at 6 needed a big boy room right?

The priroty during that move was to get Reece settled not me and the before pictures are the result of just dumping things where they fit (more or less fit would be more appropriate). Keep in mind this was started before the Holidays so I asked my wonderful enabling husband to pretty please with cherries on top get me only 1 thing - The Organized and Inspired Scrapbooker by the incomparable Wendy Smedley and Aby Garvey. My life has changed by reading this and taking the Big Picture Scrapbooking class in ways I never imagined. I'd say just as much as reading The Big Picture and Photo Freedom did.

So fast forward to the end of December the economy is tanking and we are a one income household so I never imagined that I could 'afford' to take the BPS class Wendy was teaching mostly due to me never wanting to spend money on just me. Then Jay (above noted wonderful DH) signed me up because I don't do stuff just for me and because we had just Refinanced the house so had a little discretionary cash. Still I balked and then a light bulb went on - as I stood in the middle of that diaster I realized I was wasting more money with the products buried that I couldn't use becuase I couldn't find them or forgot I had than what the cost of the course was... WOW!

Back tomorrow with more and possible some pictures. See they on are on the laptop in DC with DH who is nervous about coming here and loading them - this is the 6 ft man who will walk into a scrapbook store and pick up pink lace and flowers if I ask (not that I actually would ask as I don't do pink or lace but you get the picture).

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Get Organized Be Inspired!

Since I seem to have an internet connection at the moment I am going to share some before pictures from my class. I am kind of in shock at how much the space has transformed and how user friendly it is for all of us - remember it is a craft/office/school room. So without further ado here are the before (I can't believe I'm sharing these. ICK!)

This first shot is what you used to see from the hall when you looked into the room

Here is where I used to scrap.

This was how the pegboard looked back in January when this journey started.

This is where I tried to do school stuff as well as general office type stuff like pay bills. The desks were on the wall under the window and not very user friendly for more than one person at a time.

And this mess is how the closet used to look. I still can't believe I lived with it like this...

This is the closet now...what a difference! I no longer hope that nothing falls out of it.

I made this work surface as an after thought as I had the original "desk" top available. Jay got me a huge one piece top and even drilled a hole for all the cables etc to come up.

This is where the pegboard used to live. It's on the right side of the room but my scrapping desk is now on the left side so...

I have this set up on the left side of the room right behind my scrapping desk.

I'll continue to post new ones later this week as we are having a satellite internet service installed on Tuesday!