Thursday, December 27, 2007

The Next Step in Photography

I have had fun over the past couple of days getting to know my camera a bit better. I have been meaning to study my cameras' manual since the day I got it -- but just haven't gotten around to it. The very talented Becky Novacek has done a wonderful photography tutorial on Scrap In Style tv... and I printed it out and grabbed my manual and worked through both of them over the past couple of days. Becky really emphasizes that she rarely uses her flash -- even for indoor photography...and I decided to take that as a challenge to learn how to do that (although her results are WAYYYYY better than mine) too. After playing with settings, and reading and re-reading both her tutorial, my manual and Brian Peterson's book, Understanding Exposure, I took the following pictures around my house. I did play with Photoshop on a couple of them -- but only to emphasize something that I liked -- no need to lighten them since the settings allowed me to get plenty of light without a flash. I love the soft look without the harsh shadows that I usually get from using the flash. Just a few glimpses of bits of Christmas around my house.










Hope you are enjoying the last few days of 2007 -- and planning on having a GREAT year in 2008. I am busy working out plans for What You Make It and am excited about some of the guests that we are going to be able to have come and visit us in the months ahead. We have some great things in store -- wonderful projects and a time to create lasting memories together. I can hardly wait!



Monday, December 17, 2007

Journal Your Christmas

One of the things my grandmother, Jammy Jane, used to always say to me was "never stop learning." Her advice has become one of the tenets of how I live my life...I love to learn -- I love to try new things. I love to take classes from other scrappers -- I think it helps me think outside my "creative zone." Thought I would share with you something that I am participating in this Christmas...It is Shimelle's Journal Your Christmas class. We get a prompt every day on what to journal about that day -- with a couple of challenges (ideas to try while we are working on our pages). I really wanted to participate in this class because I love the idea of recording some daily thoughts during this holiday season -- Honestly...there have been days that I did my writing/journaling but didn't get around to scrapping the page until the next day -- which I think is fine considering how busy this time of year gets to be.


This is the cover...had a super fun time playing with Tim Holtz's new grungeboard...this stuff is A-mazing! It bends -- it folds -- it inks and paints and is, of course, TOTALLY distressable.

The snowflake page is about -- what else -- the weather for Christmas...I pulled out the snowflake mini-album from Maya Road that I never got around to working on this fall...and took a couple of pages from it and glued them together to form the page. The page on the right is a little sleeve to fill with cards and letters (one of my favorite parts of this album) after Christmas is over. I have used several vintagey Christmas items (like the old Christmas card) as part of this journal...and know I will enjoy having it out as part of my Christmas decoration.

Hope you are capturing some of your thoughts during this season...and hope you are continually learning...What would you like to learn to do this year that you haven't done before?

Monday, December 10, 2007

What a Cutie!

And perhaps my youngest student for a scrapbooking class EVER! She did great during my button painting class...look at the detail she put in the wreath and tree on these buttons!


She ended up doing a full card....and her sister (younger than she is) also painted right along with us! Her mom did tell me that they do a lot of crafts -- but I still think she has a huge future in the arts! The class was in Glasgow, Kentucky at Scrapbook Village...it is just a wonderful store...lots of yummy goodness that you just want to wander around for hours!
I have been working on a journal called Journal Your Christmas...it is a great way to focus on the important stuff during this season that can get overlooked in the hustle and bustle...hopefully will keep going all the way til the 25th. Will take some pictures of what I have done so far in the next day or so and share. Think about taking time to write down some of your observations about Christmas over the next few days...and then tuck them away for scrapping afterwards. Here are some ideas to get you started...
1. What do you see around you that lets you know Christmas is near?
2. Are you a white light or a multi-colored light person...why? What did you have as a child?
3. What tradition from your childhood have you brought into your own family?
4. You know that song "The Little Drummer Boy?" -- if you were able to give Jesus a gift from your talents...what would that gift be?
I have really been thinking about that last one a lot the past few days...I was listening to Christmas music while working on a project the other day and the words to that song just got stuck in my head..."I played my best for Him -- pa rumpa pum pum." (ok...it was the first part of the phrase that stuckin my head...but I just like saying the "par rumpa pum pum" part).
Hope you are ready for a great week...

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Christmas Spirit

Ok....so today I intended to get all the white lights up...it is kind of the thing that signifies the :officialdom: of the Christmas season being in full swing. I start with the ceremonial placing of the nativity scenes (multiple ones in various rooms) -- and then move on to the placing of the trees/garland and the hanging of the WHITE lights. But being the "orderly" person that I am -- there are pre-requisites...like the house has to be cleaned first....I can sorta squeek by on the nativity scene activity -- afterall Jesus was born in a MANGER -- which probably wasn't totally clean either...but the rest of it -- the decorating the house simply requires cleanliness.

I have been in a major organizational tizzy...trying to figure out a way to use my guestroom (still as a guestroom) and as a warehouse for kits for the show. I have company coming -- and I would prefer for them to not to have to sleep on the shelves! *smile* So....as I said when I started writing...I INTENDED to get all the white lights up today -- but I didn't. I did make progress in the organization thing...and perhaps in a day or two I will get the lights up...but to substitute the season "jolliness" quotient that normally comes from having the winter wonderland effect from the hundreds of twinkling white lights -- I found another source for seasonal joy....listen to this. I hope it helps if there happened to be something on your "to do" list that didn't quite get done today.




Enjoy

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

You Can Make It

Thank you so much for all the great feedback you have given me about these Christmas letters we created for an episode of What You Make It. I used vintage Christmas sheet music, Tinkering Ink papers and German glass glitter...I got the letters from Deb Dambroise Designs -- she has so many absolutely FANTABULOUS letters, shapes and words. She is also offering these letters (Tuscan Joy) along with Melissa Francis paper in a kit that I thought you might enjoy...go check out her store on ETSY...I know you will fall in love with her products the way I did. She also has a very inspirational blog...here.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Crazy Frog Dance

Do you watch You Tube? I occasionally will find a link that just makes me laugh...and this video is just that kind of thing. These boys cannot dance...but I love how committed to this video/dance that they are....The boy in front knows the words...the one in the back is bustin some moves! Enjoy...Happy Monday