This will be my last post on this blog

I just haven’t been feeling like blogging lately and I realized that part of the reason is that I didn’t like this blog name. It isn’t me. It isn’t enough of me, anyway. I’m so much more than just a stay-at-home mom. So I’m done with this blog. You can catch my future online ramblings at my new blog, Life His Way, which reflects who I am better – a girl who loves Jesus and is trying to live my life His way. I’d love for you to come and visit me over there!

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Today was Photoshop Wednesday :)

I wrote a new post for Penny’s blog today – about all the wonderous things that can be done with layer groups in Photoshop. Okay, so maybe they’re not really wonderous. I do really like using layer groups, though. It may be the organization junkie in me, but I really like having my layers “filed away” in those little folders. And there are lots and lots of time-saving things that can be done when layers are grouped together. You can check out the tutorial here. Enjoy!

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What I’m up to today

The thing that definitely stands out in my mind as the Big Thing I’m doing today is my doctor’s appt. I mentioned in my last post that I tore my ACL at the beginning of June. Not fun. Nope, I definitely wouldn’t recommend it :(. I had an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon three weeks ago, but my knee was too swollen for him to test my knee to decide what to do about it. So I’ve been doing physical therapy for the past three weeks and I’ve regained some flexibility – I just hope it’s enough for him to make a determination.

I’m still plugging along with Finding Photo Freedom. I got 100+ layouts printed last week and I’m LOVING having so many finished layouts in my albums! I’m guessing I have about 50 more older (way older) digi layouts to get printed and I’m working on getting those uploaded a little at a time. What I’m having a bit of a hard time with right now is deciding upon the categories (chapters) for my library albums. I have a tendency to want to organize too much and I have a lot of possible categories designated with sticky notes in my albums. The good news is that I don’t have to make any decisions right away.

Big Picture Classes
The other class that I’m doing right now is the MotherLOAD scrapbooking marathon taught by Lain Ehman over at Big Picture Classes. We’re in the “training phase” right now which is leading up to the layout-a-day portion in September when we’ll be completing (attempting to, anyway) one layout a day for 26 days.

Finally, I’ll be finishing up a tutorial for Penny Springmann’s blog today, so look for that tomorrow :).

I think that’s quite enough for one day!

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New Scraps

I can’t believe it’s been so long since I posted last. I busted up my knee (torn ACL) about 5 weeks ago which has slowed me down a lot and I’ve kind of  been in a scrapping slump. I think I’ve made four layouts in the past two months – totally out of the ordinary for me. I made two of them this past Friday, though, and I feel the itch to scrap some more. Woo hoo! Here’s what I did (layouts linked to galleries for credits)…

I guess I’ve done more scrapping than I thought! Thanks for looking! I’ll be back soon with an update about Finding Photo Freedom and news of my latest scrapping endeavour. Until then – make great memories, take lots of pictures, and scrap!

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Beginning the journey to Photo Freedom

Class started yesterday and I’ll admit that I have pretty mixed feelings right now. I’m excited at the possibilities I see. My current “system” isn’t working very well. Probably because I don’t have much of a system in place. My digital photos are mostly stored chronologically on my computer, but that’s where the system ends. Lately I’ve been wanting to make non-event kinds of layouts and I haven’t been able to find some of the older photos I wanted to include. That’s totally crazy! I had been planning to start importing all my photos into Lightroom and tagging them, but I don’t think even that would be enough. Yes, I’d be able to find my photos, but would I be making meaningful pages? I needed a change in mind-set.

I heard a couple of weeks ago that Stacy Julian was starting up another LOM class – now revamped and renamed Finding Photo Freedom. I agonized over taking the class. I’ve always put my pages in albums chronologically and I was pretty happy with that. The organization freak in me really balked at the idea of the LOM system because it’s not quite as structured as storing pages chronologically – or is it? I also wondered how useful the system would be since I scrap most of my layouts digitally. Since I’m working with mostly digital photos and I already have Lightroom I figured that the only real $$ investment right now is the cost of the class itself and anything I do in terms of moving pages around could be undone if I don’t like the LOM system. So I decided to take the plunge and I’m really glad I did!

I’m still a bit apprehensive about the using the different categories/binders. I tend to overthink things and I’m a bit afraid that it will take me too much time to decide where to put some of the layouts. Chronological albums are a lot more straightforward. I think I’m going to like it, though. I’m excited about the thought of creating layouts that are about relationships and not just about the things that we do. I’m also determined to print out layouts more often and have the albums stored where they’re easily accessible by everyone in the family – we just have to figure out where that will be.

I think my strongest emotion right now is exhaustion. I imported one month’s photos into Lightroom yesterday, then started to purge the ones I really don’t want to keep. I knew this step was going to be difficult, but I had no idea just how hard it would be. I have never been in the habit of deleting photos. If I take it, I keep it. When I started p365 in January I finally started purging some of my photos on a regular basis. RAW photos take up a lot of hard drive space and I realized that I couldn’t keep all the photos I take anymore. It’s much easier to delete photos that I took last week than it is to delete photos from 7 years ago. Of the 171 photos I imported from February 2006, I deleted 59 photos that were either really blurry or duplicates. It was hard and I was exhausted when I finished. It did feel good, though, and I don’t regret it today. I certainly hope it gets easier, because I have thousands and thousands of digital photos to sort through.

One of the things that we were supposed to do before the beginning of the class was to determine our “Enough Quotient” or EQ. What is the minimum amount I need to get done to feel successful (or at least satisfied) with my memory keeping? I always have more projects ongoing that I could possibly complete and I take more pictures than I could possibly ever scrap. So how much is enough? After much thought, this is what I came up with. I suppose I should revisit it in a couple of months and see if it really works.

  • Weekly: (1) Spend 15 minutes, 5 times a week working with my photos. (2) Scrap 2-3 pages. (3) Import and tag 5 digital scrapbooking products.
  • Monthly: (1) Scrap a “monthly highlights” page. (2) Scrap 1 non-event page per person (included in weekly layouts).
  • This Year: (1) Get LOM albums set up and completed layouts (paper and digital) in albums. This does not include the layouts I have in CM albums. (2) Store albums in living area of house so that they are easy to access and view.
  • Home: Put family photos on wall in living room.
  • Online: (1) Figure out where to put layouts/photos online for easy extended family viewing. (2) Blog more often about life in general.

I’ll let you know how it goes 🙂

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I'm baaaack!

Hi, I’m back! Miss me? LOL, I don’t imagine that anyone even noticed that I hadn’t posted in six weeks. I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things soon, but for now I’m just going to do a quick “here I am and this is what I’m doing these days” overview.

I finally got over my scrapping slump and I’ve been making pages like crazy this week. Part of the reason I haven’t done as much scrapping is that it’s spring and I’ve been out in the yard trying to keep the weeds at bay – with a moderate level of success so far. I’ve also gotten sucked into genealogy again and have been spending an inordinate amount of time sifting through moldy records in search of my ancestors. Okay, the records are online so they’re digital and can’t really be moldy, but you get the picture. I made a scrapbook page about my ancestor search and it was featured in a blog post about art journaling today over at Me So Scrappy! How cool is that?!

Click image for credits

I was very excited to win a spot in Katie Nelson’s class “Power Scrapping – Digi Style” Class and I’m learning how to make some adjustments to my workflow to become more efficient. Yay for more completed pages! Will I use this method on every page? Probably not. I really enjoy the process of sitting down to scrap a page from start to finish. Who knows, though. I may find out that once I have chosen photos for several layouts that I may go to that group of “pages to scrap” when I’m in the mood to sit down and create. I’ll keep you posted on how this class changes my scrapping workflow.

The big news I have is that I just took the plunge and signed up for Stacy Julian’s Finding Photo Freedom class. That was a big decision for me because it’s a whole different way of thinking about how to store photos and scrap them. I think that once I get over the “need” to have my layouts arranged chronologically in albums, I’ll love this system. It should be an intense couple of months of photo (and album?) organization. Definitely more to come on this!

That’s about all for now. Time to get my laundry folded and figure out what’s for supper 🙂

Finding Photo Freedom class

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Weekly Scrapping Roundup (sort of)

Wow, I went an entire week without finishing a page. I only started one and that was when I went to a friend’s house to hang out and scrap. I’ve been totally focused on getting the craft room (and the attic, too) decluttered and organized. I have to say that I love the progress I’m making on the house, but I really missed sitting down with my photos and scrapping. I’ll definitely have to take a more balanced approach next week.

You may be wondering why I’m posting a weekly scrapping roundup if I didn’t scrap last week. Good question. I have a request for my scrapping friends – if you like her stuff, go to Lauren Grier’s personal store and buy something. Lauren is in the hospital right now with some major health issues – she’s scheduled for surgery today – and could really use some financial support since she can’t design right now. If you’d like to know more about what’s going on with La, there are several threads over at Sweet Shoppe Designs that you can check out.

I thought I’d include a couple of recent layouts I did with La’s products…

kit is 'Birthday Monsters' by Lauren Grier (alphas not in kit) - click on image for full credits

made with various products by Lauren Grier - click on image for full credits

La has a ton of kits in all sorts of color combinations – not to mention fabulous alphas and layered element and page templates. I think it’s fair to say there’s something for just about everyone. If you scrap, please head over to her personal store and check out her products. Thank you!

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