Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Sad Realization

Just a random post today.

I was sitting at the computer last night, finishing up a scrapbook page for an upcoming kit release and it hit me: OMG, I'm such an 80's child!

I was scrapping about one of my all-time fave movies, The Breakfast Club, and got to thinking: Is this really my favorite? I mean, there's Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller's Day Off ... and as I started to recall movies, I realized that many of them were not the computer-generated 3D releases of the past few years (in fact, I rarely go to the movie theater anymore). Instead, they were the more classic storytelling ones from *gulp* 20+ years ago. (Wow, suddenly I feel ... old!)

So today, I've hopped onto the big wide world of the Internet (thought: what did we do without the Internet? It was only in it's fledgling stages in the early 80's ... yup, still feeling old), and pulled up a list of the top 100 movies of the 1980's.  Here's a sampling of what I think are some of the good ones:

  • E.T. (who doesn't love a happy ending)
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark
  • Blade Runner
  • The Empire Strikes Back (have the entire DVD collection)
  • The Untouchables
  • The Princess Bride (totally a classic!)
  • Poltergeist
  • Back to the Future
  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
  • Rain Man (awesome acting from Dustin Hoffman)
  • The Color Purple (story of triumph in difficult circumstances)
  • A Fish Called Wanda (my kind of humor; love John Cleese)
  • Caddyshack (eh, a little cheesy, but good for a laugh or two)
  • The Road Warrior (second movie in the Mad Max series - Mel Gibson at his finer moments)

... and the list goes on.  Okay, so I'll admit that some of these don't necessarily have the classic storytelling lines (a cartoon rabbit, for example), but still, movies I can watch over and over again.

Herein ends today's random thought.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

I'm Baaaack!

So, did you miss me?

Great. Chirping crickets.

Well, it's my own fault - kinda - I guess. If I don't post, you have nothing to miss, right?  In my defense, the past 6-7 months have been a total rollercoaster in my personal life, but there is light at the end of the tunnel and finally, hopefully, I can move forward and things can start to get back to "normal" again, whatever that might be. Of course, I'm hoping said light isn't an oncoming train ... that would not be good. Two steps forward, one step back is still progress in the right direction, so for now, I'll take it.

So, what's new with me? DS is no longer in school - it's just not his "thing" right now - and an ultimatum was given: it's back to school or work. Work it is. After some persistence on his part (and some HR coaching from yours truly), he's found full-time work at McDonalds. When the call came for new employee orientation, he was so excited - like literally jumping up and down and hugging me and his Dad. He's worked a couple of days now, full 8-hour shifts. I've got to say, DH and I are getting a little bit of "I told you so" satisfaction when DS comes home from work and complains that he's tired and that his back hurts from standing all day. Ah. Welcome to what working is all about, son.

DH is enjoying the European soccer season, regular weekend television viewing in our house. He's also looking forward to baseball season and with DS, will likely try to catch a Tigers game or two if they come to town. The boys usually make a weekend of it, staying overnight and eating Lord knows what (truly, I don't want to know). This weekend we're hoping to get some time in the garden. Thanks to a lot of rain in recent weeks, the grass in the backyard has sprouted and needs to be cut ... and there's weeding to do. Of course, the 80+ degree weather from Monday has been replaced by 30-degree weather today ... really?!  Oh well, I don't mind gardening on cooler days. Not sure about plantings yet, especially since we were under a freeze warning last night.

Still scrapping (duh!!), but also taking some time out for other crafty endeavors. You see, I have this tapestry that my Mum purchased for me as a birthday gift, oh, I don't know, maybe six years ago? I've decided to pull it out of the closet and work on it for an hour or two, here and there. It's quite relaxing, actually. It's a very pretty canvas - a girl with butterflies. I'll have to post some pictures of the work in progress (nothing like a little accountability, right?).  Scrappy-wise, there's already buzz about iNSD - [inter]National Scrapbooking Day - first weekend in May ... mark your calendars!  I'll be doing a Speed Scrap over at Pixels and Company that weekend - and it will be during the day, not in the evening, so I'm hoping some of my fellow international scrappers will join me. I'm also trying to work through some of the classes at Scrapaneers that I didn't quite finish - so much fun and I'm learning a lot! Right now, I've got about four pages on the go for Crystal Livesay's Everyday Me class that I took last year (love that I have access to the class and can go back and see what modules I missed). Sort of wishing I had a SmartPhone with a good camera built in - that would make selfies a lot easier than dragging the dSLR out. But alas, I don't have a SmartPhone - Gasp! I know. Think DH would let me get one ... for scrapping? Yeah, probably not.

Speaking of Scrapaneers, there's some awesome new classes coming soon. Let's see a show of hands: How many of you know how to use the Pen Tool in Photoshop?  Um, yeah, not me - that tool sort of scares me. Next question: Do you have kids or family members that play sports, and you wish you could make posters to celebrate their achievements - you know, the ones that would have their team or individual photos, jersey number, etc.?  Okay, if you answered yes to either question, these might be of interest to you:

The beauty of both classes is that they're self-paced, so you can work on things in your own time. Kelly's class makes me wish DS played sports, but he's more of a pick-up-game kid, not an I-need-to-learn-the-rules-of-the-game kid.
Okay, I'd better get back to work as there are 401k reports and an Affirmative Action Plan that need my attention.  To close, how about a little eye-candy of some of my more recent scrapbook pages?  Adios!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Work in Progress

See the title to this blog post? That's kind of how I feel right now, a work in progress. Not quite where I want to be in some many things, but partially there. Of course, hopefully this "work" doesn't take as long as some of my other projects, like the butterfly tapestry and I got for a birthday present from Mum oh, I don't know ... six years ago?! Yeah, we won't talk about that, right? LOL  My OLW - one little word - for this year is Fly, so that's what I'm trying to do. Fly (or soar) to new heights, fly to freedom, fly to explore ... see, I even created this page (for the Art Journal Caravan with Tangie Baxter at Scrapbook Graphics):

The art journal pages are giving me a way to express how I'm feeling at any given point, and can be as "out there" as I want. After all, it's personal to me and so long as I understand the meaning behind it, that's what counts.

Art journaling is a way for me to explore other techniques and mediums (lots of brushes, overlays, etc.), and it's a little outside my comfort zone, but I love it - it's a nice change to throw all the "rules" out the window and just ... create. Of course, technique-wise, there's anyways new things to learn and boy, am I having a blast at Scrapaneers right now.  I missed the All Stars #1 class, but managed to grab a seat in All Stars #2. Now, I'm not going to give away any secrets on what's being covered (really, you thought I would?!), but here's a before and after of some really cool art canvas-style digi "painting" that we're learning:

Classes started February 4, but it's not too late to catch up - here's a quick preview of what to expect, if you're interested - tell 'em Kat sent you!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Digi-Shadowing 101

One of my goals when I create a digital scrapbook page is to make it look real - like you want to reach out and touch things (well, other than recording great memories, photos, etc. - of course!). I take it as a huge compliment when paper- or non-scrappers want to know if it's "real". There's a lot to be said with starting with quality digital products, a good design layout or structure to your page ... but often, too, technique can play a big role in getting that realism on the pages - and for me, it's all about shadowing.

Take a look here - no shadowing vs. shadows:

Quite a noticeable difference, right?  Want to learn more?  Aaaaaahhh, I have the perfect solution to learn some great shadowing tips, try out a few techniques, and even hang out on a live video chat with - oh, look, ME! (how awesome is that?!) -- The Digital Scrapbooker's Guide to Shadowing and Dimensional Effects with Tiffany Tillman?


C'mon, what ya waitin' for?  Okay, so fiiiine, you want to try something else, instead - self-paced classes have been on sale for a few days (you knew that, right?!), but you can still grab a discount through today:


Friday, November 29, 2013


Being Australian, the whole idea of Thanksgiving is something I've grown accustomed to - and while we are certainly thankful for many things (like family and friends), they day also brings some great football, and a lot of food. I mean, a lot! The day after Thanksgiving, today, is Black Friday - for my Australian friends, think of today as Boxing Day ... and all the chaos at the mall that goes along with the shopping sprees on Boxing Day! Long lines of people hopeful to get "the" gift at a hugely discounted price. Some stores opening last night - and staying open for more than 24 hours ... and people actually getting up (or staying up) and hitting the malls at midnight, 1 or 2 a.m. I've done that before, but today headed to the shops at a somewhat civilized time of 8:00 a.m. Got some of my holiday shopping done, too, snatching up a Vera Bradley clutch for a steal at 70-75% off, and a leather jacket that retails for $300 that I got for $60. Yeah, baby! Going to be some happy - I hope - family and friends this year.

As we head into December, I've also started on my "December Daily" album for this year. I started it yesterday, since Thanksgiving was so late this year, so it's a December-ish album, I guess. Last year I made it as far as December 20, my best effort so far ... but I'm striving for all the way through to January 1, 2014, this time. I've been preparing pages (using a template pack from Crystal Livesay and Mye de Leon), so all I have to do is drop in a photo or two and some journaling. December 1 - 5 are all ready to go, plus I just did November 28 and 29 ... I'm off to a good start!

Did you see that first page? Lizzie's back! We're so excited to have her with us for another yet. We discovered she really likes sugar cookies, too.  I'd better go see what she's got planned for tomorrow ...