Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Finally finished a layout for me!!!

Well after last week's chaos I'd like to say it's all calmed down but I still have more typing than I know what to do with (hopefully knock that over in the next day or two) but I did finish the commission album today and the lady came in to Cyberscraps to pick it up. Apparently she was absolutely thrilled and I'm so glad. It's always hard to do layouts about other people, especially people you don't even know but I probably put more time and effort into it than actually converted into the dollars I was paid but I knew it was a surprise for this lady's mother's birthday so I wanted it to be great. Now the only pressing thing I really have to do is a new Father's Day tag album for the August classes at Cyberscraps. I did an original set but SM had them for something so I wasn't sure I'd get them back in time so I'm going to do a second set just to be sure. I'm hoping the August timetable is online today, tomorrow at the latest.

Well I took some time today to finish that layout I started A WHOLE WEEK AGO of Caeligh - the altered pic of her I did. I used the Klic & Kut for the title and even though it's meant to be Christmas papers and embellies they just seemed to fit. So what do you think? I'm very happy with it but it wouldn't be nearly as good without that picture. Have you taken any time to play with your pics yet??? Hmmmm????!!!! Now that I've got a little more spare time I'm going to start going through older photos that I like but for whatever reason were not really great to scrap and I'll see what I can salvage.

There are also some great challenges going on around the blogsphere at the moment. How Dare You's (how Michelle of BB is that? How Dare Yous!!!!) current theme is spirituality and I guess how you interpret that is entirely up to you. I've got a couple of ideas but nothing solid yet. Spirituality is a bit of a slippery customer for me. I'm still pretty new at it but learning to accept God's love in my life and learning to trust that He knows what I'm supposed to be doing here! (I'm really glad somebody knows cos I don't!!! lol).

All About Eve wants you to get away from it all and scrap your escape. I have a few ideas about this one too - do I scrap the lss where I work and love to be? Do I scrap the beach which is where I feel most centred and distant from the worries of life? Do I scrap my bed because when I feel the worst all I want to do is sleep?

One Little Word for this fortnight is "automatically" - now for me that's easy - I'm pretty scatterbrained most of the time (well duh says the peanut gallery!!! lol) and when I learned to drive I literally could not get the hang of having to use a manual car. I totally sucked at it no matter how many driving lessons I had!!! I just could not wrap my brain around having to use the accelerator, brake and clutch, as well as remembering to change gears, plus concentrating on the road and remembering to use my mirrors. I eventually gave up and decided that as far as other road users were concerned, I'm guessing most people would prefer that I focus my attention on where I'm going and what I'm doing, not faffing around with gears and clutches! So alas I drive only an automatic car. I think I could drive a manual in an emergency cos crikey knows I've had enough lessons but don't hold me to that!

I'm also going to take some time to look at Scrapdragons and their challenges. I know I have plenty to scrap already but there's nothing like someone throwing a curve ball at you to really bring out your best (or worst if that curve ball hits you in the head!!! lol). Anyway all I know is that some of my best layouts have come from challenge blogs and I'm really getting into them in a big way!
We've been doing tons of ordering at Cyberscraps this week - going more than a bit nuts at CHA!!! But how can you not I ask!!!! Just so you know what's coming in the next weeks we've ordered Marah Johnson's new ranges of Rock Star, Coffee House, Marquise and another one I've forgotten the name of (ooops), KI Memories gorgeous lace cardstock, some of the new Love Elsie ranges, Prima pretties, a truckload of new Basic Grey and so much other stuff that I'm glad the sale is going so well otherwise I don't know where we're going to put anything!!!! lol I think there's some new Hambly rub-ons in there somewhere and I'll be sure to update as stuff arrives. That poor FedEx man should probably get himself some protective equipment and a helmet!!!! lol

On the ol' home front stuff is busy crazy as usual. Blayd is determined to eat anything and everything he can that isn't on his diet and it's driving us all insane as we have to deal with the moods/temper/overall crankiness when he gets home from school. He's supposed to be going to the Ekka next week with his class and Doug and I are taking the other three with us and meeting him there. It's meant to teach him independence and responsibilty but I just cannot trust him right now to make the right food choices and I don't want to have to put up with his bullshit for three days if he just eats whatever he wants. So I will bring my phone and meet up with him at snack times and when it comes to buying his showbags so I can at least control some part of his diet. I can only imagine how much sharing of food will be going on but I've got to do my best to limit the nasties because home is where we end up having to deal with the fallout for mistakes in his diet at school and while he's out. I love the Ekka, it's something I used to do ever year with my friends and then it's only been every few years with all the kids. We did go last year with Cass and Kelly and their four kids so we had eight kids between us from 12 down to 1! It was a logistical nightmare and true to fashion only one kid got lost - my wanderer Lachlann. You know how every family has that kid who disappears every time they go out somewhere, just wanders off for a look and then poof!!! Totally gone!!! Yep that's him so this year I'm thinking about getting a big roll of gaffer tape and taping him to the pram by the arm or something....... At least he has a phone this year but knowing him it will be flat or turned off!! lol I only buy one thing each year at the Ekka (sorry I forgot to mention that it's like a county fair or Royal National Show type of thing with livestock, showbags, sideshow alley and scary rides) and that's the Bertie Beetle showbag. It's dirt cheap at $2 or $3 and I always get a few. I love those things so that's my little tradition. I think I'll try to scrap it this year!

Poor Lachlann overdosed on dairy on the weekend, having most of a big block of dairy milk chocolate plus pizza loaded with cheese. He only really thinks about milk when he thinks about his dairy intolerance so sometimes forgets about all the other places milk is hiding! He woke up Sunday morning with running itchy red eyes so off to the chemist for a stupidly expensive teeny tiny bottle of antihistamine eyedrops for him. Lesson learned.

James went to Pirateball yesterday - it's kind of like an introductory camp to basketball for primary school kids and it runs each Monday after school for four weeks. He had a great time even though he is so small that one of the coaches had to make a hoop with his arms for James to aim at!!! lol He'll be going back next week and it's a good reason for him to eat more so he'll have enough energy.

Caeligh has had a mixed start to her week. She has her moments, spectacular ones at that where she turns off Doug's computer mid-install, digs up all my eyeshadows so she can use them, tips Milo over my computer keyboard while she's trying to climb on the desk, gets into fisticuffs with James over the smallest things and had a monumental dummy spit on Sunday at the shops because all the boys got Ben 10 toys and she wanted one too but then she saw a miniature kitchen utensil set and decided she wanted that. We even asked her about ten times if she was sure she didn't want the Ben 10 toy but she seemed certain (at that time!). We left the shops, got the kids into the van and as we're strapping her into her seat she wants to know where her Greymatter toy is. We explain how things went down and that she did say she wanted the cooking set instead. HUUUUUUGGGEE supermega wobbly ensues until she falls asleep in exhaustion from screaming so loudly. She even had her bottom lip stuck waaaay out, like she was still cranky even in her sleep!!!! lol Then she woke up just as we got to the lake at Forest Lake for a picnic lunch. The first thing out of her mouth was a little whiny voice going "I want Greymatter!!!!". Thankfully ducks were a welcome distraction so we got over that pretty fast.

Doug and I have our grocery shopping "date night" tonight so I need to go and get something worked out for dinner for the starving masses and the MIL who is coming to watch over said masses. Have a fab evening whatever you're up to. Check out the Cyberscraps sale if you're interested in 30% off everthing in the store (except the already deliciously cheap 70c Bazzill - our regular everyday price). I think I'm going to try to watch NCIS but I don't even remember if that's what's on tonight!! Etch-A-Sketch brain I have!!! lol Chat again soon (really I will try to!). Love, Lu

Friday, 27 July 2007

This is my minute....

....to catch my breath! I haven't had one of these all week!!! I know I tell people all the time that I'm really busy and with four kids they usually just nod and I'm sure they're thinking "gee I'm glad it's her and not me!" lol but this week I honestly have been too busy to enjoy any of it and the whole seven days has flown past in a blur. I hate weeks like this. I'm going to point summarise - terribly lazy of me but not everyone likes to read my huge volumes of words about my time - so for those who like just the essentials, this was my week:

  • started with a call last Friday from the dr's I used to type for - yep, the ones who replaced me and hired someone in house. The in house lady is sick so can I please type the procedures? Nope, I can't I'm at the shop today.
  • Saturday was the V8's - all day long! I only just got the call today to pick up my photos from Harvey as they're havin one of those cheap 6x4 promotions which means nobody gets their pics quickly.....grrrr
  • Sunday was the flea market and then spent the afternoon doing boring stuff like grocery shopping and household shopping at Big W etc - waste of a lovely Sunday really (the shopping part that is!)
  • Monday I taught a class and the dr's rang me again - still no typist and can I cover for her? Nope I'm at the shop again but teaching this time. I offer to go home that afternoon and do all the procedure reports to help them catch up - 6 hours it took!!!! So very late bedtime that night!
  • Tuesday - the one day I have had in I can't remember how long where I was able to go to the shops during the day, during the week, without anybody at all but myself for company! Wanted a haircut and did some shopping for Doug's bd next month but get another phone call from dr's - typist STILL SICK!!! Can I please do the reports for the day, preferably like right now. Offer to get them done by close of business, realise I won't have time to get a haircut as the salon is really busy so I go home and type, pick up the kids, speak to the dr's again and they ask if I'll help catch up on the 120 consult letters so of course I say yes - why? - because I'm STUPID!!!! And really want the money! lol So I typed until midnight and got up again at 4am to work until 7am then get ready for work and go into the shop.
  • Wednesday the magical mystery Klic & Kut is waiting for us to play with. I've picked it up really fast thank goodness (it has it's own software program to use it) and have really enjoyed all the stuff it can do. Started what I think will be a fab layout when I FINALLY get to finish it and then have to stay late at the shop to help someone with an OTP they are doing. Late dinner, more typing, bed at midnight. Finished the August timetable for Cyberscraps thank goodness as it was really weighing on me that it wasn't done - really changed things around and added new stuff so that's exciting.
  • Still lots of typing as the dr's just keep adding more even though the typist came back on Thursday so I work all day from 6am to 1pm and then go get my haircut. I'm a real tightwad when it comes to hairdressers so I spent $30 for the style cut and the special promotion was $1 foils so I got a dozen violet/black ones put through. I can't tell you how happy I am with it!!! I have just tried to take a pic but my card in my camera is full and my card reader in the front of my computer doesn't appear to be working so I can't empty it!!!! More grrrrr! So I will try to get a pic tomorrow to share. It's kind of a longish shaggy rock chick sort of look and by cutting off an inch of the old red colour and putting through the black it looks like I've purposely had the whole lot done so I'm more than a little pleased. Plus you can't see any of the few greys that have started to show up. No Cass, you cannot pull them all out for me!!!! Ouchy!!! Then more typing again last night but now I've got the flu and feel like total crap so I went to bed early.
  • Hip hooray it's Friday! I got up at 5.30am, typed until 7am, got ready for work, dropped the kids at school, sent Caeligh to Gran's for the day but Jamie went with her cos he's got an abscess under a back tooth and looks like he's done three rounds with Mike Tyson! He went to the dr yesterday and got antibiotics but it still looks as though someone's punched him in the jaw. Thanks have to go to the man upstairs cos Jamie's not in a bit of pain. I've had a tooth abscess and I know any of you that have will know how exquisitely painful they actually are but he's perfectly happy! I don't get that but I'm not arguing!!! So I went over to Cass's and drive in to work with her. We spent the day playing with the Klic & Kut, helping crop day ladies, helping customers and not getting any of our own stuff done. Oh the sacrifices we make!!! lol We also got to see all the new CHA Creative Imaginations products in a catalogue and had fun picking out what we wanted with Cath. She's very understanding of our whims and wants and is very generous with what things she'll stock if we like them. All the new Marah Johnson stuff - the Rock Star is out of this world, plus a lot of new beautiful stuff! So then Cass and I headed home to wait for the children to walk back from school. I took my lot straight home. I got an email while at the shop to say the dr's would like me to continue to help catching up on consult letters over the weekend and that's all fine and good but the second I walked in the door I put down my bags and grabbed a frosty Coke Zero with a shot of Jack Daniels in it!!! I don't care if that makes me sound like a semi-alcoholic either......I was in desperate need of a little bit of time to relax and do nothing! So I've decided that even though I have a commission album that needs to be finished by Monday, even though I have housework coming out my ears, even though I have typing that needs to be done and the money is really good - I'm not doing any of it, not tonight, no way. I'll use the sick excuse if needs be but I want a night to do absolutely nothing if I so choose so that's all I've done so far, surfed the net and visited people's blogs! I might have to go into Cyberscraps tomorrow if we're really busy but until then I'm not on call for anyone or anything. I've even employed the 12 yo to make his fabulous fried rice again tonight because I don't want to cook either! Lucky he likes to get friendly with a saucepan! lol

So there you have it - my heller busy week! If it weren't for the fact that I've got the flu and now I've got an earache to go with it, I wouldn't actually be that stressed out. Lord knows we mothers live like this for days, weeks or months at a stretch, feeling like we never catch a break. It's not like I could check out of life and rest up in bed for a few days either because there's just too much to do and I'm the one who has to do it. So if you're like me, having one of those weeks, then give yourself permission to take a breather, even if it's only for an hour in a hot bath, with a tasty beverage or a walk - whatever resets your brain. I'm thoroughly enjoying my tasty beverage, I plan shortly to go have that hot bath, and maybe I'll get to the gym over the weekend (not hopeful here but if I commit the idea to screen then I might have a better chance of doing it!).

If you're in need of some scrapping inspiration then check out Aussie Dares' new challenge for the fortnight, or visit All About Eve and scrap your escape, not to mention One Little Word is challenging us with "automatically". I can't wait to do these but again, they are something that will have to take a number and wait. Scrapping for me is pretty low in the list of stuff I have to do right now. It's actually very soul satisfying when I get to do my own stuff these days and I savour every second of planning and putting together my own stuff.

I'll do a quick shout out to Jilly who has rocked the scrap world with ANOTHER COVER!!! The latest FK has her name all over the front cover and what a fab layout it is! Congrats to you girl and don't be any less than totally thrilled for yourself - you deserve it!!!! Hello to the beautiful Lusi who gave me a ring last week and I didn't get a chance to call back until last night. Lusi you are always so rock solid to talk to and a real compass point for me - I always feel so calm after chatting, even if it's about nothing or everything so thank you so much for being a great listener. Can't wait to meet you and give you a huge hug girl!!!! Hi to Kelley Forrester who was a real comrade in the countdown to getting Masters done the other week - fingers crossed for you! Hi to Kat who came into the shop yesterday and I missed you! I hope you're loving all your gorgeous new product - don't forget to blog share!!!

SHAMELESS PLUG AGAIN FOR THE CYBERSCRAPS SALE!!! This starts tomorrow online and at the shop with a massive 30% off everything in the store except our already ridiculously cheap Bazzill (which we just restocked and even got some gorgeous new colours in just yesterday!). We still have a few of the D ring binder albums and they'll be 30% off too if you want or need one but be quick! We still have some of the Marah Johnson stuff left if that's your cup of tea, plus lots of SEI, Cherry Arte, Basic Grey, Urban Lily, Sassafras Lass, My Mind's Eye and about a gazillion things more!!! We stock lots of pretties, some unusual stuff and our customers tell us we have a fantastic range and a real Aladdin's Cave of goodies in our store. Come on in and have a look around - I'm sure you're going to find something you love and it's even lovelier at 30% off. If we're busy I'll be in the shop tomorrow as well and we'd love to see you!

Okay that's the plug over with! lol The little ones have just arrived home with Doug so I had best to see if Blayd needs help with dinner. Thank you so much to those of you who've visited and said hi or even just had a peek on your way through the blogsphere. It's nice to know we're not alone! Have a wonderful weekend and give yourself that breather if you need it - I order you!!!!! I'll post a layout as soon as I have one to show! Take care babes!!! Love, Lu

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

GIMPshop fun and games!

I was looking at some great photos on the All About Even blog today, admiring the wonderful photographs and especially Emine's gorgeous "blown out" highlights in her pic that she's done for her Escape challenge layout. I heard the term "blown out" on a photography website which is a way of describing a photo that's really light and the highlights are all white. I actually really like those kind of pics and try to get that washed out kind of light in my pics now and then but I'm not a great photographer and thus not very often successful!!! lol I did however decide to read up on it today and find out how to begin playing with the things like levels and curves and colourisation in Photoshop. I actually run a program called GIMPshop which is a free version of software that does everything Photoshop will do but it has different names for stuff. It also comes with a Photoshop "plug in" which basically means that if you are more familiar with Photoshop then it will use the same names for stuff so you know where everything is. If you Google GIMPshop then you'll find a link to download the software for free and it's basically very easy once you begin.

I had the top coloured photograph of Caeligh that I took a few (warmer) months ago while she played in a plastic tub in the backyard with about an inch of water in it. Amazing how wet she got for so little water but kids to make a meal fo things don't they!!! My camera totally blew up deluxe in the midday sun and I couldn't get a good shot no matter where I stood so the coloured one above is what I ended up with. It's not all bad - it's actually a very accurate representation of my darling daughter - red glowing evil eyes and all!!!! lol If you've met her or heard of her escapades then you'll get it!!!! lol The photograph below it - the black and white one - is after having a red hot go at it with GIMPshop. I opened the pic, went into Image, then Adjustments and then Levels. Look at the bottom of the graph thing - there are three arrows pointing up, a black one, a grey/brown looking one and a white one. Drag the white arrow to the left. It should be at the far right. As you drag it lightens the highlights, giving a "blown out" look. But that isn't all folks!!! lol Lighten it as much as you need to so it looks likea "normal" pic and then open Image, Adjustments and then Curves. It gives you a graph thingy with a line diagonally across it. You can use your mouse to click on a point on that graph line and drag it around and as you do it changes the photograph. I got the best results from dragging the line straight up but you'll get the idea once you have a play around. Then to get the above photograph in that really rich black and white I chose Image, Adjustments and then Colorize. It then gives you three sliders so you can muck around with those and change it to any colour tint you want including black and white and sepia as well. It was really easy once I started and I made sure any changes I made did a Save As on or a Save A Copy so that I kept the original. Mostly the originals weren't scrapable quality anyway but you never know when you'll need it to change something else so always be sure to keep the originals!!

So there ya go - a quick photo altering lesson this evening!!!! This evening when I should be typing as the doctors I was working for full time a couple of weeks ago appear to be missing a typist at the moment so I'm doing lots of "emergency" work to catch up which has thankfully (here's the bit where I can see that God moves in seriously mysterious ways......) led to exactly what I wanted - a guaranteed full day of contract work plus overflow typing which fits in nicely around my work at Cyberscraps!! Almost too perfect but I'll take it!

So if you have a computer, and obviously an internet connection if you're reading this, then be brave and jump on in and have a go at some photo alteration. It can really take your scrapping to the next level and I know I've often looked at a layout and been instantly drawn by the amazing photography which just makes the whole page look a million times better. Like I said, I started out this afternoon not knowing how to do anything but there are so many tutorials and so much info available on the net that there's no excuse for not having a try if you're interested. I'm so thrilled with the results from the above pics that I know I'm doing to be doing lots of mucking around with the rest of my photos.

Watch this space for the above B&W pic making an appearance in a layout really REALLY soon!!!

Sorry but I still haven't gotten around to getting up any pics from the races - I did go to Harvey today to get some printed out for a big double layout (mobile phone prints which do 4, 6 or 8 shots to a standard 6x4 photograph which you then chop up into little pics) but there was a ridiculous special on 15 cent 6x4s which means that the poor guy at the Harvey Norman at Browns Plains here in Brisbane (his name is Randall and he is THE BEST photo guy ever - totally helpful and nothing is ever too much trouble - rare breed indeed that man!!!!) well he's right up to his proverbials in 6x4 pics and there is a three day delay on getting anything at all printed out but I won't go anywhere else! So I'll print out this one of Caeligh at home and just put up with it because I really want to scrap it when I go into the shop tomorrow.

Oh BY THE WAY THE KLIC & KUT ARRIVED TODAY!!!!!!! I am fair wetting myself with excitement at being able to have a play with it tomorrow!!!! I'll post back with hopefully a completed layout tomorrow so you can see how it does things like titles with cardstock, patterned paper and even chipboard sheets. So if you're around on Friday come on in for our crop day and go wild with our Klic & Kut - the $10 crop day price includes use of the Klic & Kut plus use of all of our punches, foam stamps, Fancy Pants acrylic stamps and even morning tea!!! Give me a ring tomorrow at the shop on 07 3274 5522 if you want to come and play with us!

AMENDMENT ON THE CYBERSCRAPS SALE - sorry but I got the day wrong before about our very HUGE 30% off sale - it actually begins this Saturday - bright and early at 10am and it runs for two whole weeks (while stocks last that is!). Every single thing in the store (apart from our already rock bottom cheap Bazzill) is 30% off - great stuff like the brand new Basic Grey Infuse range, Marah Johnson's Lovestruck, Bliss, Intentions and all the fab embellies and accessories that go with them, albums, tools, adhesives, it's all on sale from Saturday 28 July for two whole weeks. And YES! For those of you who don't live local the sale will be online as well so jump on the net and grab a serious bargain or two, or more!!!!! We've been doing so much ordering at CHA and we've got eyes right on the scene to do the ordering for us so we'll have the coolest new stuff ASAP! Come and buy up on what you want and need and help us make room for all the delicious new stuff that's coming! If you've got time then let me know and I'll even put the kettle on for you so you can have a cuppa while you browse, see our new Klic & Kut in action or take some time out to flick through our ideas books for some inspiration. Look forward to seeing you there!!!!

A big hi to Kat who came in on Monday with her lovely friend and spent some time with Cass and I. It's the coolest thing ever to meet up with fellow scrappers and bloggers in real life and we love people to come in and have a natter and a coffee while they shop around. Thanks for visiting girls - and make sure you post on your blog what you've done with all the fab stuff you bought!!!!

I keep meaning to do this more regularly but I sometimes remember stuff I am thankful for and it's a good habit to get into, recognising that my life is overflowing with good stuff and the day to day crap is just that, gone in a day most of the time! So today I'm thankful for:

(1) More work coming in, even if it's a bit crazy right now while things get sorted out

(2) Cheap and cheerful scrap supplies I picked up today - big buttons, felt, shiny ric-rac

(3) Doug for making a lovely dinner for me while I work into the wee hours

(4) Getting Doug's tax return back so we have a little bit of a buffer for how ever long that lasts!

(5) Finding a new pair of sunnies as my favourite ones were getting really scratched up - and even better - finding them at Best & Less for $1!!!!! That's right!!! Just one buck!!! They were reduced as old stock from last summer before this summer's stuff arrives and they are almost exactly like the ones I have and love now so what a bargain for me!

(6) Finding out that my camera really only needs a good going over with compressed air as there's some grit trapped in the lens mechanism after the dust and dirt of the V8's on Saturday and that's why it stopped working - and I'm doubly thankful that I still have two months to go on my rental agreement if it turns out to have any problems after we clean it

(7) Accepting myself for who I really am and not taking myself so seriously that I can't use the fun/weird/wacky/odd pictures I have of myself on my layouts - I'm sure it's those strange photos that my kids will look back on one day and say "Yep that was Mum - fun/weird/wacky/ odd!!!!" and have a good laugh about them.

Okay I'm going now because time is money and I'm wasting both sitting here yakking instead of "proper" work typing. Have a wonderful Wednesday (if you can that is!) and hopefully I'll be able to show you some Klic & Kut magic on a layout by this time tomorrow.

Thank you for visiting my little corner of the blogsphere - I know I owe some of you a visit (Sue, Alana, Lusi, Ali, Jasmine, the list goes on!!!!) and I promise I'm going to get there this week!

Much love and blown out highlights, Lu

One Little Word challenge

This is my layout for the One Little Word challenge blog. This time around the word was simplicity and whatever our interpretation of that might be. My interpretation is that I tend to make things into more than they are and therefore regularly freak myself out about stuff that I probably don't need to get my knickers in a bunch over! So I've done this layout as a reminder to myself, as well as a reminder to not get so over-excited all the time. I (being a wee bit hyper by nature) tend to have trouble keeping things simple and want to continually go bigger and better. Doug calls it my "pick up the ball and run with it" syndrome!!! I get an idea and before I've even thought it through properly I've got it all planned out and I'm off and running. I'm really trying not to do that anymore! Maybe it's because I'm impatient.....? And yep, I know I look like a goose in this photo but I don't actually care!!! lol

Sunday, 22 July 2007


Don't chop up capsicum and sweet peppers and then scratch the inside of your nose, trust me, just don't..........

RAK Winner!

Hi all, I will get to posting some pics about the races yesterday but as my camera died of a fatal system error BEFORE the main race even started all I have is the detail stuff, pics of the pits, the qualifying and some attempts at arty stuff! It also means I don't have a pic of the name I've just drawn out for the Basic Grey Infuse RAK either but hand my heart the winner is KELLEY!!! Yay for you girl! If you want to email me your addy I can get your stuff off to you this week (it will have to be this week as our sale starts on Saturday and there won't be any left otherwise!!!! lol).

I'll go through my pics later and find some okay ones to post and chat again later. For now it's baths and dinners for small children and roast vegetable and chicken wraps for Dougie and I. Back later!!!! Love, Lu

Friday, 20 July 2007

Happy mojo, race cars, rag curls and freaking cold

Okay so in order of the title (and sometimes that's a bit tiresome the old title thingy!) I am currently doing a commission album for someone. A lovely lady came in and asked if I would do an album for her mother's 50th birthday and handed me a stack of photographs. I had to get her to write names on the back of everything and now I'm about 3/4 of the way through, having done a few layouts here and there every day this week. Cass and I were at the shop tonight, getting in some more scrap time and after I'd done my pre-determined number of commission layouts I decided to relax and do something of my own before we left. There was a piece of My Mind's Eye Magnolia paper (really funky candy striped) which had been calling me every time I walked past it in the shop this week. I tried to ignore it cos I'm not really into stripes but it was the last piece of that one left and it just would not stop bugging me so tonight I picked it up and used it. I can't even show you that one yet as I've brought it home for Dougie to have a look at and I'll get Cass to scan it for me when I see her next. It's a clean layout for me, resisted the urge to go completely OTT with it as it's a black and white photo of Caeligh and Lachie together and part of me wanted to go all out but I thought I'd try restraining myself and see what happened! Really happy that I showed myself that I can STOP at some point when doing a layout!!! lol So I left the shop at 11pm tonight one happy - if not bloody cold - camper!

Tomorrow Doug and I are going out to Queensland Raceway to see the V8's racing. It's apparently out past Amberley which is the equivalent of the Artic Circle so I'm glad I bought a new jumper today. Maybe I can wear it under my hoodie and a blanket and a doona and a sleeping bag......... I've been told I migh need earplugs but in my book that defeats the purpose of going to something like that. We went to Indy last year and I refused the earplugs then too. Those kind of events are meant to be real sensory overload - sight of all the cars speeding past, the smell of octane fuel and the roaring sounds of engines. Because it's not something I do every weekend I am trying to "embrace the experience" so to speak!!! Good thing blogging doesn't require good hearing.........

I sat on the couch last night and Caeligh put her little head on my lap and went to sleep and while I was playing with her hair I suddenly remembered how my mother used to let me put my head on her lap and she would use strips of old bed sheeting to put my hair in rag curls. I have no idea why the memory came to me but the urge to go rip up an old sheet was so overwhelming that I got the boys to grab me one from the linen cupboard that was close to rag anyway and proceeded to do Caeligh's hair. I couldn't get all of the back because she was sleeping but when she got up this morning she was absolutely stoked with her head full of raggy strips!!! I tried to explain that if she would only let me take those out then her hair would be pretty and curly but she liked it all knotted up instead - took me an hour to convince her to let me take them out. I did eventually get them all out and if her hair had been wet when I'd done it it would have taken really really well. As it was she ended up with soft curls that kind of puffed up a bit so we had to get her a stretchy headband to keep the semi-afro out of her face! She was very pleased with herself but because everyone was rushing out the door this morning I didn't get a chance for a pic :( Maybe next time.....

I've just come home from the shop at 11pm tonight and holy cow is it cold!!! Not just cool or even plain ordinary cold but SUPER-MEGA-FREAKIN' COLD!!!! I bought Caeligh this cool striped peruvian winter hat this morning, the kind with the braids hanging off the ear warmer parts, but I was so cold I ended up wearing it!!! Very Heidi indeed!!! We listened to Triple M doing their Cold 30 countdown tonight from 1985 and man was there some rocking music happening!!!! Mega songs like Take On Me, Summer of 69, Working Class Man (which I can't ever now disassociate with the national anthem since Adam Hills did that Comedy Festival routine - google his name and Advance Australia Fair if you want to find it and I promise you will never be able to erase it from your memory again, or sing the national anthem without wishing it was Jimmy Barnes!!!!), Walking On Sunshine, all that stuff. We walked a few shops down to the takeaway and had REAL hamburgers with the lot and they were cheap as too! We scrapped, we laughed, danced around the shop and drank hot Milo sucked through Tim Tams and basically had a fun night. If we'd had a couple of mattresses it wqould have been just like a sleep over!!! lol No I don't think Cass and I will ever grow up either.........

OOOOH OOOH OOOOH!!!!!! SUPER COOL SHOP NEWS - we're getting a Klic & Kut!!!!! Now I haven't used one before nor have I used a Cricut or a Robocutter but apparently this thing is the Rolls Royce of cutting machines and will cut out any font you can have on your computer plus things like scrollwork and embellishment stuff as well. It cuts from paper, cardstock and - wait for it - chipboard sheets!!!! It will be available at the shop for customers to use when they come in for crop days on Fridays and for the crops every second Friday night so if you've always wanted to have a play with one of these babies - and you live within a scrapably justifiable distance - then keep an eye on the bloggie here and I'll let you know when it arrives. We're hoping Monday so that we can get in lots of playtime and know the ins and outs of it by our next crop on Friday next week. I won't kiss goodbye my craft knife just yet (that'd be ouchy anyway) but I'm hoping to seriously cut down on the amount of cuts and blisters I sustain from trying to hand cut detailed titles for my layouts. How cool to press a button and have a little machine do it all for me!!! I am getting all hot and bothered just imagining the possibilities.....lol

I had my All About Eve layout picked up by SM today which is great cos I thought it would be too detailed, too grungy, too "me" basically but like they say all the time, you never know what the mags want! It's the closest layout to my usual style that I've ever had accepted so you'll get a look at the "real me"!!!! (run away now........) I still get excited about every single acceptance so in my mind that tells me that I'm still enjoying the submitting process and not sick of it yet or allowing it to "take over" my scrapping, and that I'm not getting totally up myself by thinking that I DESERVE to have my work accepted. I worry about that, you know - I'd like to think I'm pretty down to earth and I don't carry on with bull s&*t and I do read the occasional (very occasional mind you and totally no finger pointing going on here) blog or forum where people just foam with condescending praise for others that's just a precursor to being able to talk about themselves. For you guys who know me, if you ever EVER hear me starting to become even slightly up oneself, can you please firmly tell me to stop being on myself?????? Excellent!!!!

I'm off now to get ready for bed in the flannie jammies and maybe put an extra blanket on the babies. I'm super paranoid about heaters so we don't use them except for either right next to my desk if I have to work, or in the loungeroom of an evening sometimes and so it's extra layers all the way at our place.

I know I keep saying it but do whatevert you have to in order to keep warm. It may even mean sharing body heat!!!!! Lucky for me Doug is like a furnace but even he's starting to feel the cold. It's the mark of a truly cold winter when the man from Scotland says he's cold!!!! lol

Rug up you gorgeous girls and have a great weekend. I'll post some piccies of the races when I get back tomorrow. Thank you, thank you, thank you to each and every one of you who has stopped by this week and to those who were able to leave a comment I'll be sure to draw the RAK on Sunday. I get the warm fuzzies when people do say hi and I'm really trying to return the favour lately and share the comment love around! Love and warm uggies, Lu

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Layout share

Firstly a big HELLO!!!!! to Leone who came into the shop today - we've talked over the net in various places but today was the first time Cass and I got to meet her for real. There's one very talented lady there and a lovely lady as well!!! And she brought mini-muffins - the crowning glory of her loveliness!!!! Leone, it was fab to meet you and remember to drop in any time for a coffee and a chat!!!!

I did another BG Infuse layout yesterday although it wasn't my intention when I started it but it all goes together so nicely so I kept going!!! lol I scrapped my new found love of my life - my uggies! I wasn't ever going to buy any due to the daggy connotations but it's been so cold this year and my feet have been freezing even in socks so I relented and picked up a gorgeous pair of pink ones at Target on sale and they have become my favourite footwear - but only inside the house!!! lol

This layout is one of the classes at Cyberscraps next month, focusing on masculine layouts in preparation for Father's Day in September. This one is the intermediate, not too hard but a bit more interesting than a beginners' layout. He looks like a happy camper doesn't he?????? I can't remember why he's looking like such a bloody sourpuss but I think it was at Indy last year and maybe the sun was in his eyes (and knowing me I probably ambushed him by surprise with the camera!!!).

I spent most of today in the shop doing a commission album that's due at the end of the month. It's for someone's 50th birthday and while it's a little weird scrapping other people's photographs I am enjoying creating something hopefully very special for the birthday lady. I've even been entrusted with some very old photographs to incorporate into the album. My biggest challenge has been finding ways to incorporate journalling space without leaving too many empty spaces on the page so tags, hidden journalling and pockets are making a big comeback in my scrapping today!!! I will have to make sure I explain to the girl when she comes in to pick it up that I've had to leave that journalling space because I can make a pretty album for her but what will really make it special is the words that her family will put with my layouts. I don't know why the photos she chose are special to her mother and I don't know the memories that go with them so I've done my best and I hope they like the end result. It's also nice to be able to step back a bit and not have to put hours into every layout. I've had a chance to try a few techniques and elements that I like but that I don't often do in my own layouts. So that's going to keep me pretty busy for the next week or so until it's finished. It's a full 40 layout album and I'm not a quarter of the way through yet!!!! Hmmmm I see a pattern here of leaving myself not a lot of time to do quite a lot of scrapping!!!! lol

Doug is off to High Octane tonight with his mates for his monthly racing league. That's the place he took me to last month where I got to play on the driving simulator for a couple of hours and it was surprisingly really fun! It's a little more serious with the fellas do it apparently - they all get there an hour early for practice laps before the real racing starts. He should be home by 11pm hopefully so tonight it's me and the shorties! I'm doing the cheating mama thing of chicken strips and a jar of Chicken Tonight with some rice and then I have homework to check, a sick child to check on (Blayd went to school today and straight to his bed again when he got home), a grade one home reader book to listen to, a card to make with my baby girl before she goes to bed (apparently she's just feeling arty today and wants to make a card for her Gran) plus Lachie's english homework to go over with him. I have to try to remember to record House and Medium on the computy for Doug as he won't be home in time to see them and I have to do a few more layouts for the commission album if I have time/inclination. You know how it is though - by the time the babies are all in bed I would much rather flop on the couch in my jammies with a blankie over me and enjoy a glass of wine than sit at my desk and scrap cos I've been doing that all day.

Oh hey does anyone want to come to the shop and crop with Cass and I on Friday night???? We're open from 9.30am Friday morning for a daytime crop until 2.30pm and then I'll be keeping the shop open past our usual closing time of 4.30pm and staying open until midnight! We lock the doors once everyone is in, trade our shoes for our uggies and slippers, put on some tunes on the radio and get settled with a hot coffee, tea or Milo! At half time -or before if we're starving - we order pizza and have a break. You can either work on your own stuff or catch up on reading your scrap mags or you can shop if you like! I forgot to say that everyone who comes to the crop night automatically receives 10% off anything they buy during the crop so if you need to stock up then come along and save a few bucks! Cath will be at the shop tomorrow so if you'd like to come then just give her a ring on 07 3274 5522 and book your seat. We'd love to see you!!!

I haven't been typing long and already my fingers are freezing!!! lol I'll hold them over the heater for a minute now and burn them for a few seconds........okay can type a bit longer now!!! Okay the children are strangling each other so maybe I don't get to type for a bit longer!!! Time for me to kick ass and chew gum at the same time........

Talk again soon. Love, Lu

All About Eve Challenge Blog - Scrap Your Age

I am really sorry, I didn't realise it would be accepted at all, let alone so quickly but I'll put it back when the mag comes out.

Thanks so much to the All About Eve challenge blog that gave me the inspiration to do the layout in the first place!!!!

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Cyberscraps August classes and a blooming challenge blog addiction!!!

I've just sorted out the class list for August at Cyberscraps and next month, just in time for Father's Day, we're doing some masculine layouts, an intermediate one and Cass will be doing an advanced one for those who like to get stuck right in. We've also got some new Bella kit classes with new kits from our usual ones and the Making Memories kit classes are available also in beginners' and intermediate versions. The Making Memories classes even come with a heavy duty plastic storage case for your layouts and leftover product. We're also going to be doing the Father's Day mini tag album which is currently in the Basic Grey Ideas Gallery which is great for dads on the go as it will fit into a briefcase or a glovebox or backpack, whatever the man in your life needs to keep his stuff in!!! Kids classes for August will be about Dad too - a cute little gift box with a mini accordion album inside and a gorgeous hand painted canvas for Dad or Grandpa or whoever the special father figure may be.
Now that that's business out of the way, I tell you what - I've developed a real love of challenge blogs lately!!!! I've been a huge fan of HOW DARE YOU for a while now and do my utmost to participate in every single challenge each fortnight. The standard of work done by the contributors is just mind-blowingly good and they are a fab bunch of girls too! The whole site has just been revamped with some familiar faces back plus some new ones and some very exciting new dares which are guaranteed to get the mojo pumping and the creativity flowing. It's definitely become a regular haunt for me and I get all excited every second Friday morning when I jump online to check out the next cool dare. Go have a look if you're in a scrap rut!
The next challenge blog I've discovered and embraced is ALL ABOUT EVE - a blog that encourages us women, who are typically the ones behind the camera, to scrap ourselves and I believe that's so important. I know that from experience because when I was 19 my mother passed away and I barely have any photographs of her at all because she was always the one taking pictures of me and nobody took any of her. It's something I desperately wish could have been different for me and so, because you never know what life will bring, I've started making a conscious effort this year to do layouts about myself so that my kids will know who I was as a person and not just their mother. Sure I do layouts about motherhood sometimes but I'm also quietly compiling an album of layouts that are focussed on personal things about me, stuff that maybe my kids aren't old enough to talk to about yet, the kind of things that we as women don't usually find out about our own mothers until we are adults and sometimes not until we're mothers ourselves, and sometimes not until our own mothers have passed away and we hear the stories of our mothers' lives from friends or family and and maybe wish we'd known about her while she was here to celebrate her history with us. So for now the album is under the bed, in a box, where nobody in the whole house knows about it but me and now you know too!!!! But at least if something ever happens to me it will be there and someone will find it and I hope it gives my kids a more complete idea of who I am and I hope they will be understanding when they read some of too, just because it's so honest and I wouldn't want it any other way. So if you're someone who is always behind the camera too then prepare to step in front of the lens and learn to love scrapping about yourself.
I've also found ONE LITTLE WORD in the last week and while I haven't had a chance to do any layouts yet, I'm very intersted in the concept and also the total freedom it gives scrappers to approach scrapping the word in any way they choose. There are no criteria, only interpretations of one word and we all know that one word can mean a million different things to a million different people. Definitely looking forward to participating in that when I get a minute and I'll be sure to post on my blog as I do them.
Well I have grocery shopping tonight. Doug and I go alone and leave the MIL with the kids. It's kind of like a date night for us. We push the trolley together, crack jokes, steal kisses and laugh alot as we trawl the aisles reading all the labels (food intolerances in the kids is such a pain!!!). It's not exactly a romantic night out but it's lots of fun and sometimes that beats any expensive candlelit dinner. I was meant to go to the gym today but it hasn't happened yet and I don't know if it will. I'm even bloody well dressed in my gym gear because I figure it's much easier if I'm dressed and ready to go all day and I can take the opportunity to go if it arises. It's one of those things that I totally have the best intentions of doing when I go to bed each night. I think to myself that I will get up early, I will get to the gym, but these days it's been so cold that it's really a deterrent to have to get up at all, let alone get out of the warm flannie jammies and have to go outside to get to the gym!!!! lol The gym now has one of those infra-red saunas, it's like a little pine cubby house that you sit in and it apparently makes you sweat without the whole steam and heated rocks thing. I'm not normally claustrophobic but the damned thing is pretty small, about the size of an outdoor spa for four people and the door gets shut and you can control things from inside on a control panel next to the door. The light inside is quite dim as well, I'm sure there's a reason for that but I just don't know what it is so the cramped space coupled with the dimness makes me a little nervy. I keep having doomsday visions of the door getting stuck while it's turned on full pelt and they'll find my body the next day, cooked to perfection like a rotisserie chicken!!!!! lol Ahem, so let's say I'm not overly interested in the new whizz bang sauna just yet........
I'm off to check on Blayd the Invalid - yep that's his official title. I'm sure every family must have a raving hypochondriac and he's mine. Every cough is pneumonia, every sniffle is the plague! He actually does have the flu right now but he only just got it and it's been hanging around the house for about a month now, Caeligh had it for a whole month and is only better this week and I had it for three weeks and I'm only better this week too. Now of course as we get better Blayd has come down with it. He does look a bit like death warmed up so he won't be going to karate tonight but I sure hope he's capable of putting in an appearance at school tomorrow. I'd hate to have to take him to the shop tomorrow. I'd have to give him a pillow and tell him to sleep under the big work table at the back of the shop!!!! lol
Cass's little sister Trisha just had her beautiful baby boy Toby yesterday and wow is he cute!!! The beauty of finally knowing when I don't want any more of my own is that I can appreciate the serious cuteness of someone else's baby but not get that clucky longing feeling of wanting to be pregnant again myself. These days the thought of being pregnant again makes me shudder!!! Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy being pregnant but instead of post-natal depression I used to get pre-natal depression. I'd literally go basketcase and it would start from about 20 weeks and just get worse and worse until by the time I was 8 months or so I just about wanted to slit my wrists. It was a horrible, dreadful feeling of not being able to cope with anything, hating everyone and even having the occasional, very calm and perfectly rational (to me at the time anyway) thought of driving my car into a tree. My doctor said it was just the way my body chemistry reacted to the pregnancy hormones and the moment my kids were born, well within a few hours anyway, I was absolutely, totally back to normal. It was like waking up from a nightmare. I could sit and smile philosophically and say that yes both of my last two kids were worth it (it has only happened the last two times) and that a new baby would be worth it too but if it was any worse next time than it was last time then I can honestly say I might not live to see any of my kids. That's how bad it was and there was nothing I was prescribed that helped, nothing even took the edge off that horrible, spinning out of control psychotic feeling and the things that might have helped couldn't be given to pregnant women. I'm sure you understand when I say I wouldn't risk placing myself, an innocent little life and my family in that position again. So I'm resigned to the fact that my preggie days are over and I'm enjoying this new phase of my life where I don't have to start planning for the next little one to come along now that my youngest is at that magic age - anywhere between 2 1/2 and 3 1/2 is when my body started thinking I should be getting knocked up again. I'm enjoying giving away the baby toys to people who really need them, giving the baby clothes to charity, whizzing past the baby aisle in the supermarket without even a glance except to admire the super-cute dummies and itty bitty socks. It's a bit scary to wonder who I am if I'm not the mother of a baby. Now I'm the mother of an almost teenager, school kids and a little girl who is independent as she can possibly be. It's a redefining of myself and who I am, where I fit into life these days but it's a good change iykwim? It's a horizon full of possibilities that can only come from having children who are not entirely dependent on you for every single need, it's a little bit more mummy freedom, a little bit more time to focus on myself (gee maybe she should be able to fit in a visit to the gym they snicker!!!! lol) and it's a chance to find out what I want to be when I grow up (if I decide to grow up that is.....!). I used to wonder what the mothers of school kids did all day and now I'm starting to find out. I guess part of me is scared of the unknown, what is it I'm meant to do now and part of me is horrified at the speed in which my babies are growing up and away from me. Now I think about it maybe what I really worry about is that I'll get left behind and not have a life to go back to after my kids don't need me to mother them 24/7 anymore. You know that scenario about how empty nesters can sit across the breakfast table and look at a total stranger cos they've been so busy being Mummies and Daddies that they've forgotten how to be friends and lovers and the kids were meant to be the glue that held the marriage together? Oh God what a morbid turn my cute baby paragraph took!!!!!! Anyway he's gorgeous and I can't wait to scrap a few pics of him. He doesn't even look like Yoda at all! Perfect layout material that kid!
I'm going to go now cos I think I've rabbitted on quite long enough. Isn't it funny that I thought I didn't have anything to really blog about today.......ha ha ha!!!! Thank you so much for those who've managed to survive the endurance read that was today's post!!!!
I know I've said it before but for goodness sake keep warm girls! Love, Lu

Sunday, 15 July 2007

Sooooooo cold!!!!

I've been sitting at my computer all day, rugged up to the eyeballs and I still can't get warm!!! I'm starting to wonder whether I should get my thyroid tested as I'm always cold, always hungry and always tired lately!!! lol Wouldn't it be nice to have a simple explanation and just pop a pill to fix all of that???? What I think is really wrong is that I need a different type of heater, I need to learn to eat when I'm hungry and not cos I'm bored, tired, unhappy, lonely, stressed, anxious or in a bad mood, and I probably should try to get to bed at the same time each night instead of a different time every night of the week!!! It is simple but it requires effort and there are days where I feel selfish and think that I do enough all day every day so I feel too lazy to do that kind of stuff, you know, the actually taking care of yourself stuff.

I caught up on all my typing today but not a bit of scrapping at all :( I'm back in the shop tomorrow thank goodness so I can catch up when I get in tomorrow. What I have found is that if I am forced not to scrap, for whatever reason but usually because of work commitments, that I come up with so many ideas. Maybe that's the thing - the imagination is trying to run away but knows the rest of me is chained to my computer for work!!! So I now have a whole pile of layout ideas rattling around in my head and you just know that my first day back in the shop we'll probably be really busy - great for the shop and not so good for my scrapping!!! lol And I bet I won't get much done at all but fingers crossed for me girls!!!!!

I've also got to load some layouts into my new D-ring binder album that we got into the shop last week. They are fantastic, fit so many layouts in them and are much better for storing your thick, lumpy bumpy or heaviliy embellished layouts than the normal albums cos they don't get squashed into a flat album. They're also a bargain at less than $20 and we got new colours in this week in addition to the black, pink and blue we already have including a hot, hot pink and red which I'm going to grab one each of tomorrow when I get in.

If you're interested in picking up a bargain we're having our Cyberscraps sale from 28 July so not long to go now. The whole store (except for Bazzill cos at 70 cents a sheet we're rock bottom cheap all day every day) is 30% off - Basic Grey, Hambly rub-ons, bling, off the page stuff, albums EVERYTHING!!!!! CHA is on and we want to spend up big, buy lots of beautiful new stuff for you guys so we need to make some room! Anyone who has been to the shop knows that we've managed to cram an awful lot into our store but it also means that if we want to have the latest and greatest then we need to sell some stuff to make some more room!!!! A warning though that you need to be really quick as it's a first come, first served basis and it will only apply while stocks last so you can't put a raincheck on anything. Once it's sold out then that's it!
So mark that one in your diaries girls and come see us for a great bargain. Those of you who have shopped with us before know we've got amazing prices so imagine how much extra bang you'll get for your buck at 30% off storewide?!?!?! I have my eye on some stuff for sure so like I said, be quick if you want the best stuff!

Okay I'm off to rescue the sausages from cremation and get dinner on the table for the tribe. Have a great Sunday evening ladies and thank you for those who've left comments so far for the RAK. You've got until next Sunday afternoon to post and then I'll draw the Basic Grey Infuse RAK.

Take care and keep warm!!! Love, Lu

Saturday, 14 July 2007


Well I did definitely say that as soon as the new Basic Grey Infuse came into the shop that I would do a RAK and as I'm back in the shop this coming week I'm going to start it now.

For anyone who leaves me a comment this week I'll be putting names into the draw to win the entire Basic Grey Infuse paper range plus a sheet of the FABULOUS die cut shapes and a set of the FUNKY new font alpha stickers! Now who doesn't want the entire range of that lovely stuff??!?!?

I've used them already (layouts a few posts back) and Cass has gone wild with them too so they are a firm favourite of ours even though they only just hit the paper racks! The fab part about it is that all the Basic Grey ranges co-ordinate with other stuff and the plain colours will mix and match with anything at all. Now that's versatility for you!

If you're a die hard Basic Grey fan then don't forget to have a look at their online gallery at www.basicgrey.com and take a few minutes to submit some layouts. Your name will then feature on the list of their designers if they select your layouts or off the page projects to display in their gallery and your name will be right up there among some of the best scrappers all over the world! That is v.cool!!!

Okay well I'm off to bed now as it's too damned cold to do anything else!!!! lol

See you all tomorrow, love Lu

Friday, 13 July 2007

I've been pubbed in the Rouge de Garance blog!!!

That's so cool!!!! I subbed a layout a few days ago that I had done using RdG paper and which I absolutely love but which didn't get picked up by any of the mags so I thought I'd show it to them. It's turned up on their blog today in their "ARTwork from our RdG friends" album!!! That's still as cool as when I just said it a moment ago....duh!!! lol So if you've created something with RdG papers don't be afraid to email it to them - they are a lovely bunch of people and I'm sure they'd love to see what you've created with their drop dead gorgeous papers.

Just thought I'd share....busy blogger today I am!!!!

SM for this month - Vol 9 No 2

This is my pub in SM this month. It was actually done because of my Get Real Challenge on Cyberscraps earlier in the year to scrap a typical day - a preferably brutally honest testimonial of what your day is actually like.
As you can see by the title, it was a totally typical day in my house!!!!! And I didn't even notice the wine bottle right behind me in this picture until AFTER it was accepted and I realised that people could easily mistake me for a lush!!!! Shhhhh don't tell anyone......!!! ;)
Cass also has her product challenge in this issue so have a look when you get your hands on a mag plus one of her layouts as well. Way to go babe!!!!!

Wanna hear something funny?

Well it went right down to the wire yesterday with the Masters entry. I was still burning my pics to disc at 3.30pm to make it to our local post office which closes at 4pm. So I'm panicking and frazzled and trying to hurry and ringing Doug to help me as I had to use his computer to burn the pics to disc. My MIL came over to watch the kids for a bit while I went to the post office so she parks the car outside my house on the street. While I'm trying to burn the disc on the computer a guy knocks at the door and says he's hit my car while he was reversing out of the driveway across the street. So it turns out - and why he managed to hit the only car in the whole fricking street when he had so much room as it's a wide street I don't know - he has reversed into the MIL's car and smashed the driver side headlight and that panel. So I go outside with her and take his details - NZ license and doesn't have an Australian one yet he reckson but swears the car is insured - and we pick up the glass and go back inside. Normally the MIL parks in our driveway but because she knew I was in a hurry to get to the post office she left it on the street for me so she's unhappy about that. We go back inside and I sit down again and ring Doug again to have him talk me through the disc burner thing and it's going okay when about 15 minutes later - and I'm so running out of time now - there is another knock at the door. The man who lives across the street is standing there and says he needs to give me his details because he's accidentally reversed into the car parked outside. I said it's okay, the guy has already given me his details and I was starting to wonder if he was going to try and say it was him cos the other guy didn't have an Australian license. He looks at me funny and I say the guys name and say he's just given me the details. He looks horrified and says that he's just hit the car AS WELL!!!! I could not frickin believe it!!!! Both of them hit her car while reversing out of their driveway!!!! And in the space of 20 minutes!!!! I felt so bad for my MIL and at the same time I wanted to cackle with laughter at how on earth these things happen!!!

So after that high drama settled down (and the MIL moved her car into the driveway!!! lol) I raced out the door with my Masters entry in hand, not even taking time to throw shoes on and made the mercy dash to the post office. Also in such a hurry that I'm not looking at where I'm walking in bare feet and I've stood on a bit of broken beer bottle on the footpath!!! Much cussing and limping later I made it and posted my entry. The amusing aspect of this slightly painful incident means that I can now officially say I've walked over broken glass to get my entry in on time!!!!! lol

Have a fab Friday girls, talk again soon, love Lu (with a bandaid.....)

Thursday, 12 July 2007

Finished AND Posted!!!

Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done! Done!Done!

The finish line is in sight!

Okay well I sat up until about 2am finishing the mini album and I'm happy with it - thank goodness!!! I basically just pulled out everything in the colour scheme I wanted to use and sat it all on the table and just went from there. It all came together really quickly in the end (if you can call five hours quickly!! lol) and I've been doing my photographing this morning. I've added a few bits to the storage solution and I now only have to finish the last little bit of my double and do my 200 words and voila!!! I will be done!!! Cass is even very kindly coming over to take Caeligh off my hands for a couple of hours so I can work (which I still have to do from 8.30am this morning until 4.30pm this afternoon regardless of this whole Masters thingy) and I'll get the last bits done in between typing jobs. Then Cass is coming back to chauffeur me to the post office to get it sent. What a best friend that girl is. Worth her weight in gold I tell you!

Because I was getting Headless Chicken Syndrome yesterday morning, sick of looking at nothing but the Masters stuff, I wasted precious time that I could otherwise have used to do my Masters and ended up doing a layout just for me instead - well not really for me - for the Cyberscraps Get Real Challenge this month about quirks. It has fabric covered buttons so I'm going to see of the very lovely Sue from Dares will let me sub it for this fortnight's dare - last day as usual!!!! It's a bit minimalist for me, not quite my style but I'm really happy with it anyway.

I've also got a few layouts to do for a photo swap at Cyberscraps - I haven't forgotten you girls - I promise!!!! Tomorrow afternoon I'm all yours again - no more Masters and no more typing!!!

Best of luck to all of you who have been slaving over your entries too - scrapping moves so fast and evolves so quickly that it will be fab to see what everyone has done this year. Each year wows me more than the last and I am itching to know what people have come up with!

HUGE thank you so much to everyone who came by last night and offered "cyber-support"!!! It is very much appreciated!!!

I'm off to type and sort out the last of this Masters stuff! Enjoy your Thursday. Cya, Lu

Wednesday, 11 July 2007

Stand down from red alert!

Photos found. Panic momentarily over. Send chocolate!!!!

Blowing. Up. Deluxe.

I. cannot. find. my. mini. album. photographs.......anywhere.


I am indeed now struck down by the dreaded Headless Chicken Syndrome!!! This is a crippling and debilitating condition which leaves the scrapper unable to adequately focus on anything other than Masters projects which have become all consuming in terms of time, money, physical and mental strength. I'm suffering typical side effects such as Crankybumitis, starvation, anxiety, extreme thirst and chocolate withdrawals. I've developed obsessive compulsive behaviours such as repeatedly looking at the clock to see how many hours are left until I can make the last Express Post pick up tomorrow afternoon. My multi-tasking skills are being seriously challenged as I attempt to do my job while my brain takes small leaves of absence about every ten seconds to think about what I can do to finish off my mini album which is still ONLY HALF FRICKIN DONE!!!!!!

Soooooooo who wants to pull an all nighter with me???? lol Unfortunately, as today is the last full day I have to complete it, I will be up until the wee small hours methinks, frazzled and coffee overloaded, with photo tabs stuck to my jammies, face smeared in ink and Pritt with what looks like the remains of a tornado in a scrap shop strewn all around me.........

If you're around this afternoon or tonight do PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE take a minute to say hello as I'm going to let my blog keep me company, warmly glowing from my computer screen with hopefully some love and reassurance that it's okay, it's totally worth going competely nucking futs over!!!! I may not be able to respond immediatley to people's comments given that my fingers will be worn down to bloodied stumps from hours of scrapping but I promise I'll regularly check to see if anyone has stopped in!!!

It's such a shame that what I really need right now - like a valium and a strong bourbon and Coke and a nap - won't actually help me achieve anything..............

Does anyone have any good tips on how to be completely focused and artistically brilliant whilst being distracted, frazzled, time pressured, panicky and stressed? Anyone? Gee it's quiet in here.......... :)

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

July Get Real Challenge

I just thought I'd quickly mention the July Get Real Challenge over at Cyberscraps. If you know me then you know I like to scrap the bad right along with the good and I also like to challenge other scrappers to find the not-so-perfect in their lives and add it to their albums. It also incorporates lots of stuff about ourselves so if you don't to many layouts about you (and if you have kids this is so so important and they will cherish these layouts later) then you should give these challenges a go.

This month I challenge you all to scrap your quirks!!!! Now it can be just one thing or if you are super-mega-quirky then I challenge you to scrap them all!!! If that's the case think lists, think dot points, think little journalling blocks, thing about journalling around your photo, think of using ledger paper or graph paper even.

You don't even have to include a pic of yourself if you don't want to but if it's a quirk you can capture on film then we'd love to see it - provided it's not going to offend anyone!!! If you have quirk for flipping the bird at people when you're stressed then we probably suggest you use a picture of a canary instead!!! lol

There is an album in the gallery on Cyberscraps to upload your quirky layout (or more than one layout if you're feeling particularly keen) into and this month I'm going to choose a winner from all the layouts posted in the July Get Real Challenge album to receive a mystery prize!

So get scrapping all you quirky thangs out there!!!

Cold enough for ya!!!

Oh I hate being cold!!!! That's probably what I dislike most about staying at home and working, my room is about 5 degrees colder than the rest of the house and the rest of the house is 5 degrees colder than outside. So I'm set this morning with my hot coffee, my heater and my newly purchased and absolutely "dont know how I lived without them before"essential uggies!!

I'm happy to say I've finished my storage solution for the Masters comp. I'd like to look at it and think "wow" but I'm actually more concerned that people will look at it and wonder how the hell I could have made something brand new look so old and crap!!!! lol Either way, still satisfied that it's just bloody done. I don't have time for anything else at this point and second thoughts just have to get left behind as I still have to finish the mini album and the last little part of the double. Now that I figure I have nothing left to lose, it's very liberating and I'm getting through the stuff fairly quickly. Today though there will have to be eight hours of solid typing and then I'll get to look at the mini album tonight and hopefully finish it. Luckily Cath from the shop gave me a pile of new Petaloo stuff that came in that will be just perfect so I'll have to dig through my bags and get them all out. I like to spread piles of embellies out in front of me until I find what I want to use, kind of like a scrappy smorgasboard!!!! lol

Before I get started with work I'll do some quick hellos to people I owe them to - a big helllooooooo to Jilly - I totally appreciate your support and all your help. I promise I'll email you today with some pics so you can see what I ended up doing. Lusi, lovely to hear from you babe and I'm sorry I haven't called yet. Hopefully by the end of the week life will have calmed down but I did pick up something cute for you on the weekend and I'll have to remember to put it in the post with the brads I need to send you.

Oh, congratulations to people who have kids going back to school today - I know that sounds awful but I've had one of those weeks last week and none of the kids managed to survive even an hour without trying to commit murder or at least assault!! It doesn't matter what kind of entertainment I provide, the end result is still the same so at least at school I know they'll all be separated and out of each other's reach.

Lachlann went to the hospital for an assessment by the Child and Youth Mental Health Clinic yesterday. I wanted him to be thoroughly checked because his ADHD meds don't seem to be as effective as they used to be and he's becoming increasingly short-tempered and irritable. It turns out that the very lovely doctor who saw him, after listening to his history, thought he may actually have a sleep disorder which he's probably had since he was little and which is causing identical symptoms to ADHD. She wants to have a monitor put on him for a week to watch his sleep patterns over a week to see what's going on. She did however say we shouldn't worry too much, the med he's on for ADHD is exactly what's used to treat the type of sleep disorder she thinks he has. Apparently if he's constantly tired and exhausted he will be cranky, have trouble concentrating, feel fatigued all the time, be bad tempered and have trouble in general coping with life. All his ADHD med is doing is waking him up enough to function each day. She even warmed that it can turn into narcolepsy as he gets older!!! I'm very grateful that we've gotten a doctor who is willing to do something other than write out a prescription, as a more wholistic approach was what we were looking for, someone who would consider all sorts of possibilities and treatments instead of just a pill. So thank God for directing us to her and hopefully things will improve for Lachlann from here - like any mum, I hate to watch him struggle and seem so unhappy.

Okay well it's time for me to get started today and I'll just get out my handcuffs and chain myself to my keyboard. Hey at least I can still check my email and go chatting on the Cyberscraps forum. It's all still technically typing!!!!

Have a fab Tuesday and a safe back to school for those have kids going back today. Take care and rug up girls, Love Lu

Sunday, 8 July 2007

Hambly RAK Winner!!!!

Hi girls, firstly a big thank you to everyone who has come and visited my blog this week, those who stopped by for the RAK and those of you who stop by pretty regularly anyway. I can't tell you how much it means to hear from people - even a kind word here or there is lovely and I've been doing the same this week, making a real effort to blog surf and comment wherever I've been. I'm always on the look out for new blogs to visit so if I haven 't been by yours, drop me an email and let me know the addy. I love to blog surf!!!

The winner of the Hambly rub-ons is MAZ!!!!!! Yay for you babe!!!! I've left my camera at Cass's place this afternoon after a party so I can't take a pic of the winner's name on a bit of paper but MAZ is indeed the winner so if you know her please let her know.

MAZ if you want to shoot over to Cyberscraps and have a look at the rub-ons, choose two you like and then have a look at the Kaiser bling and choose four of those colours too, then email me your choices and your addy I can have those lovelies to you ASAP!

Again, thanks to everyone who has shared their thoughts with me this week. It's nice to know there are so many people around who are happy to take a moment to have a read of what I'm up to and I'm really touched that so many of you do come by to look, even if you don't comment, the counter keeps going up so I know you've been to visit.

I have a week of full time typing work at home this week - I'm already missing the shop and a whole week away will be awful for me - but I hope some of you will still swing by to say Hi cos I'll be here at my desk all on my lonesome for the whole week! I'll be typing my heart out while dreaming of layouts!! lol

Thanks agian to everyone who came by and congrats to Maz who wins the RAK this week. Now that our Basic Grey Infuse has arrived at Cyberscraps safe and sound I'll be doing another RAK this week for some of that wonderful stuff so stay tuned.

Much love, Lu

Basic Grey Infuse - yummmmmmmmmm!

The first one up the top is a bit of a screw up - I had intended to get the writing upside down but it's upside down, the wrong way around even then and just buggered basically!!!! I am totally navigationally challenged, so that is what happens when I try to be a smart arse on a layout - it gets all messed up!!!! Good thing I decided not to try and be clever on my Masters!!! lol
The bottom one has a bit of a string thing going - don't even know why but I'm loving bits of ordinary brown string on layouts right now. I even did hidden journalling - unheard of for me!!!
We've just gotten in the new Infuse range and the papers are only $1.20 a sheet - bargain!
I'll be back later to draw the RAK winner for this week. Enjoy your Sunday!

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Masters mania!!!!

Just quickly before I start to open the floodgates, this is a better look at the layout I submitted to Scrapbooking Memories to go with my Real Stories, Real People article in this month's issue. I still love it just as much as when I did it, maybe more!

Okay, I've got the double about 4/5 done and it's turned into a complete monstrosity of a thing!!!! Barely recognisable as a double layout anymore I'm afraid....... I've completed the single layout except for a couple of alpha stickers that have to go on (I bought one set, didn't realise I'd use them for my Masters stuff and when I did I quickly noticed that I wouldn't have enough but I liked them enough to go and buy more today to finish it) and while I'm not completely thrilled with it, I am completely over it so que sera sera as the song goes!!!! lol It's far too late in the proceedings now to be worrying that I don't love the layout - Cass really loves it so that's good enough of an opinion for me!!

The mini album idea I had was a little too far removed from an actual mini album and Cass and I got to thinking that maybe I'd end up ruling myself out of contention because my idea was SOOO far away from what a mainstream mini album would look like. Of course, that is typically me, go bigger, better, crazier but I'd hate to shoot myself in the foot so to speak so I toned it donw somewhat, keeping with the original framework and colours I had wanted but just restyling what I'm doing. That will hopefully be finished tomorrow at the shop provided we're not too busy. Not that I'm discouraging any of you fab girls who'd like to come by and visit - I just will have to leave you in the very capable hands of Cass while I slave over my stuff!

The whole storage solution thing gave me no inspiration AT ALL!!!! Boring, boring, boring........ I do KNOW I could just embellish a pre-made/purchased storage item but where's the ingenuity or imagination in that? This is Masters for goodness sake, I'd certainly like to think I can come up with something better than a set of plastic drawers from Crazy Clarks. I do have an idea that I've come up with but again, it's bigger and messier and more time consuming that I think I'm able to do. There are days I wish I was as dyslexic as Cass and I had done all this a month ago rather than trying to cram the whole process into a week and a half! SO while I have this idea, I think I'm biting off more than I can chew so mayhap things will get toned down over the weekend so I can have some hope of completing everything and posting by Thursday so it will all be in on time.

Apparently SM haven't even opened any of the Masters entries they've already received......they are all sitting in a room, piling up and they won't get opened until after the closing date. If they're being honest then they must be busting with excitement - it's kind of like trying not to peek at your Christmas pressies isn't it? I've heard that they shortlist 100 entries and the more I think about that the more confused I get. I mean, 100 sounds like A LOT of entries and then again, given how many of us love this art, it is a drop in the ocean of the number of people who've entered. I'm not worried about whether I'd be chosen as one of the Masters or not - how on earth do I phrase this stuff without sounding like I think I'm so good that I'll totally get chosen????? - but I think I'd probably prefer Honourable Mentions instead. I mean, I don't even know if I'd be able to do the stuff that the Masters are expected to do throughout the year. I barely have any time to do the stuff I do now for the shop and commission stuff and do I love it all enough to do as much as would be needed? I don't know if can answer that one. Maybe if I can just have the title but not have to do any follow up work? lol that would suit me much better!!!! I think the whole Masters thing is best left to the talented girls who have the time on their hands to really commit to it. So why am I doing it at all you ask? I think it's a personal challenge thing, can I do it in time? Can I create something "spectacular" enough? Can I be good enough to be shortlisted? Good enough to get an HM? I guess it's just to see what I could accomplish if I try, that's about it really!!!! lol And the funny thing is, I've turned to techniques and products that I normally wouldn't even bother with, or that I don't even actually like but which work for the projects I'm doing!!! Masters does something weird to your scrap psyche - little voices that start saying "Yesssssssss, use the eyeletssssssssss!!!", and "Oh no, you don't need to pen outline those aphas - leave them au naturel!!!". It's an unexplainable phenomena but if anyone else has had the same thing happen to them I'd love to hear about it!!!! I despise eyelets, I could never, ever get them to set right and I just can't be bothered with them 100% of the time but what do you think I've gone nuts with for my double and for my mini album???? FREAKIN' EYELETS!!!!!! Somebody please just shoot me now and be done with it...........

Oh hey by the way, tomorrow night is crop night at the shop if you want to come play with us!!! It's a fun girls' night with tunes, pizza, hot milo and everyone wears their slippers and uggies!!!! In fact, the uggies have almost become pre-requsite attire if you want to come crop with us! Hell I even had a blanket last time cos I was cold! I can't scrap when I'm cold and that's just not an option when I'm sitting in the shop watching everyone else get stuck into their layouts. We get started at 6pm and are open all through until midnight and you even get a 10% on any shopping you do in the store while you are attending the crop night - how good is that? It means more goodies for you and a fun night out with Cass and I for entertainment - oh maybe I shouldn't say that!!! Not everyone thinks us two cracking jokes, poking fun at each other and cackling like a pair of crazy women is entertainment!!! lol BUT Cass has just recoloured her hair a fantastic shade of magenta and THAT my lady friends is VERY entertaining!!!

Well I'm off to bed now cos it will be a late one tomorrow night. Because the crop is on I won't be closing the store at all so we're going to be open from 9.30am tomorrow morning until midnight tomorrow night so if you're desperate for supplies or for some playtime be sure to come by the store and have a nice cup of something warm with us!

Thanks to everyone who has commented so far this week. It's nice to see familiar faces and new ones too!!! I've even updated my blog links list on the sidebar to reflect some of you very lovely people who come and visit me so if you're looking for somewhere to blog surf, check out the talent!

Have a great weekend if I don't get back to blog before then. Cass and I are off on a secret mission on Saturday but for once I totally cannot blab. I will leave that for Cass when and if she decides to share with the blogsphere.

By the way, if the ramblings about Masters sounds like a broken record, it quite probably is! I tend to let my mind just go for it's own wander and I could have voiced my thoughts on the whole Masters thing before and not remembered. Apologies if you've heard this all before!

Gratitude this week for:

(1) School hols being almost over - love my kids but don't love having to shove them from pillar to post on the hols, trying to organise babysitting etc

(2) Doug for cooking me the most delicious dinner last night cos I was late getting home from the shop

(3) The week of typing work next week - I hate that money is such a needed thing

(4) Easier acceptance of who I am and what I want to do, and for my ever increasing levels of "I don't give a flying rat's ass what people think of me" attitude

(5) No more smashed lightbulbs this week - but the weekend is two whole days at home for Caeligh to do her worst so who knows.........

(6) The old patchwork quilt I bought at a flea market for $5 which is now what keeps me warm on the couch most evenings while watching the telly

(7) Having enough money to buy Cass's son Kris a medical book for his birthday because any kid who wants to learn as badly as he does deserves the tools so that he can

(8) For online friends - even if I don't blogsurf, chat or ring regularly I know that's okay and that we'll just pick up where we left off next time we catch up - I'm so grateful for total acceptance from you wonderful mates I've met through scrapping - I'd love to have a big party one day and invite all of you to have us all in one place together - what a bash that would be!!!!

Thanks for tuning in, love Lu

Tuesday, 3 July 2007

200 Posts so we need a RAK!!!!!

Morning gals!!!! It's my 200th post, I can't believe I've found that much to say (everyone who actually knows me now laughs out loud, nearly chokes and says "Never doubted she'd find that much to say!!!! lol). Thank you to everyone who stops by to have a look-see at what I'm up to - apologies that sometimes it's not all that terribly exciting and at other times it's a bit of a place to vent for me.

So firstly, and just quickly, I'll share this layout...... one I did for the Scrapbook Creations colour comp not long ago. The original one I wanted to do I had - can you believe it? - misplaced it!!!! I swear I had it in a plastic envelop thingy in one of my scrap totes and then at the shop when it came time for Cass and I to post our entries - NADA!!!! Could not find it at all - grrrrr!!! So I had to do this one in about two hours on the day it had to be sent!!!! I've only now given it to Cass to scan for me (thanks babe!) so now I can share.

And because we've reached a bit of a milestone with 200 posts it's definitely time for another RAK! I was waiting on our new Basic Grey Infuse range but when we got new Hambly rub-ons in yesterday I got a bit carried away about those!!! Oh I don't even know how to describe them but OMG!!!! They come in black and white and we've got them at Cyberscraps at a fantastic price. I am assuming they'll go on the website today and be available in store today as well. I'll take a photo at Cass's place today and add it later for you. So the RAK to celebrate 200 posts is two packs of the new Hambly rub-ons and a few packs of the new Kaiser bling we've also got in the shop. They're pretty cool too, lots of unusual colours and the glue NEVER comes off the back of the bling - it always sticks. Gotta love that!!!!

So if you'd like to win some Hambly love and some bling love thrown in then please leave a comment on this or any post you like this week and on Sunday afternoon I'll draw out a winner and send your lovelies straight to you!!!!

Look forward to hearing from you all. Have a great week and good luck for the RAK

Much blingy love, Lu

Mmmmmmm Slider Love