Thursday, August 28, 2014

One Thing Leads To Another - A Contest And An Offer

It was just over a month ago that I realized I had not filed my scrapbook layouts into my Library of Memories albums in quite awhile. By "quite awhile" I actually mean over a year and a half. Give or take. In that time, I had participated in a few fantastic online classes that resulted in layouts, as well as a few LOAD challenges. So the pile looked like this:

That stack is 4.5" tall.  Broken down,  it is 1" of digital layouts,10 sleeves of Project Life page protectors, and 3" of paper layouts and an office file folder layout (the one with the bow - several pages inside).  So how many pages do you think are there?  Leave your guess in the comments to be entered into my blog contest. The person who comes the closest will win a special prize from me - I can't say what yet as it will be something chosen specifically for the winner!

Here are a few more angles to help you out:

Remember - leave your guess in the comments!

Anyway, having determined that the time had finally come to unite those loose layouts with the albums in which they belonged, I set aside a few hours one day and went to work. That day was over a month ago. I got started only to discover that some of the albums in which those layouts belonged were already full to capacity.

My existing Library of Memories albums
In fact, the "All About Us" albums were truly ready to be broken out into individual albums. Things was full. People was full. There was no room at the inn for those layouts!  So I got online, tracked down the best deal I could find for the albums I wanted and placed an order.

Order of new albums and page protectors
The wait was blessedly short - the albums arrived in just three days - thank you Staples!

So I sat down and started filing away layouts.  At which point I discovered that I had layouts that really didn't fit my category albums. I really needed an album just for "My Art" - those layouts created just for me, either as creative team assignments or art journaling or whatever - layouts in which my family would have zero interest.  And I needed a specific 8.5x11 album as well.  Back to the Internet I went.  This time I found a better deal on Jo-Ann Fabrics site. And another order was placed.  I had to wait a little longer this time, but the albums did eventually arrive about a week later and the last of my layouts were finally filed away.

"Before" photo
But that lead to a new problem. I had literally just doubled the number of albums I was using for Library of Memories and would need more shelf space to store them. Which meant I needed to rearrange the shelves in my craft area to accommodate the new albums. And the only way that was going to happen was to purge my stash of stuff.  I didn't want to simply add more storage for a couple of reasons. The primary reason is there is no room in my craft/scrapbooking/sewing studio for more storage units of any variety. Secondarily, I really want to limit my stash to what fits in this space.  It is a big space and anything more would just be excess that I don't need.

This is what my Library of Memories storage looked like before adding albums. The smaller albums on the top shelf are photo albums. The cream album is my "Seasons and Celebrations" album. And the second shelf contains the bulk of my Library of Memories albums as they existed.

So now I am in the process of purging stash and rearranging storage.
The Library of Memories albums now take up most of three shelves. Because the third shelf down is "fixed" (not movable), I can't store the albums on three consectutive shelves.  The photo albums got moved to the center shelving unit.

A couple of close-ups of the Library of Memories albums:

As you can see, I divided up my three "US" albums into six. There is now one for each family member and one catch-all for family as a whole that showcases relationship type layouts. "Things We Do" and "People We Love" were each divided into two volumes - volume one being full and volume two having room to grow. And "Places We Go" was divided into Near (around the house, around town, pretty much anything within about an hour) and Far (which includes travel and places we don't visit regularly).

And I finally got all of the albums out of the plastic covers, added the tags, and added labels in the spine pockets and added title pages. My girls will now know which album to pull off the shelf if they want to see what I have scrapbooked specifically about them!

The 8.5x11 album I needed was for "Things We Love" which is the album I am dedicating to all of my "Precious" layouts (thanks to Sian) which I will continue adding to over time. I love the beautiful coral "My Art" album!  Finally, the Seasons & Celebrations album - has things like Spring, Winter, Easter, Christmas, Birthdays, Weddings, etc.

As for the rest of the shelves, and all the stuff now sitting on the floor... this is not likely to be a quick process. The time I have to devote to it is limited. But as I go through and identify stash that no longer serves me, I'll be offering it up here in hopes that it will find a home where it DOES serve someone else's needs. I have to let go of enough stuff so that what is left fits in the existing storage spaces!

The first bit of stash I have to offer up is Project Life related.  I have genuine Becky Higgins Project Life page protectors - 28 Style A and 16 Style D.  And an approximately 85% full Project Life Core Kit "Olive Edition" in all the original packaging.  I also have 14 assorted sheets of pocket pages (variety of size and styles) from WeR Memory Keepers.  Having determined through trial and error that Project Life is just not my thing, I'd love to offer up these supplies to one or more of you who will put them to good use.  I only ask that you pay the shipping costs. If you are interested in these supplies, please drop me an email!

Don't forget to leave your guess on my # of layouts in the comments. And check back regularly for more stash-purging offers!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A Year of Kindness - Challenge Week 34

This week's challenge is short and sweet. LET SOMEONE ELSE GO FIRST.  So if you are shopping and someone only has an item or two, allow them in front of you in the check-out line (queue). If you are on the road, make space for a merging vehicle. With a friend or family member and you both have stories to share? Let the other person go first.  Just slow down enough in life to notice and let someone else ahead of you! It is a great way to practice patience too.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A Year of Kindness - Challenge Week 33

 I heard from several of you after last week's challenge that you donate school and/or art supplies regularly. Kudos! I went through our school supply cabinet and found that even after last year's massive purge, I still had more than we'll need of pens, pencils, erasers, so I culled our stock a bit more. Then I went to Staples and bought spiral notebooks, glue, pencils, and index cards. I took two large bags of donations to Pennridge Fish (our local food bank) and dropped them off. Felt pretty good too!

This week I'd like to honor Robin Williams with a challenge centered around a quote from him.  I've seen a lot of movies starring Robin Williams - Mrs. Doubtfire, Jumanji, Dead Poets Society, Good Will Hunting, Good Morning Vietnam, License to Wed.  There are just as many I haven't seen. But I want to.

But I know that his movies always touched me. He made me laugh.  He made my world a better place by being here. He will be missed.

Robin was quoted as saying:  "No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world."  I would like to believe that my little Kindness project is changing the world, or at least little bits of it, in some small way.

Your challenge this week is to USE YOUR WORDS to make the world a little better.  How you do that is up to you. Write an uplifting blog post. Write a letter to someone you love, letting them know how much they mean to you. Smile and say "hello" to everyone you come in contact with. Whatever it is, this week make a difference with your words.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Life Tunes 3

It is August 15th and that means it is time for the third installment of Life Tunes!  This month's suggested topic is a song from a movie soundtrack. Here is my layout:

Now it's YOUR turn to share a song from a movie soundtrack.  A song that touches you in a special way. Or one that is just fun.  Whatever.  You can create a layout, write a blog post, or share a link to a YouTube video. The linky will remain open until the end of the month, so you have plenty of time to join in!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Documenting The Everyday - Week 32

Flap closed. For this week, I wanted to go with a softer, almost vintage palette. The background color is a cheap acrylic paint - french vanilla. I received a number of items in Happy Mail that were perfect for this week as well.

The challenge for the week was to add a fortune from a fortune cookie. I didn't have one, but did have the little banner (from happy mail) that says "many hands make light work" which sounds very fortune cookie-ish and kind of looks like those little slips of paper.  Jay and I celebrated our 29th anniversary during this week and I journaled a bit about that - blurred it out because it is a bit personal. This was a nice change of pace for me, but I know I can't stay away from the bright colors for long! :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Texture Tuesday - Stillness

My original photo - taken Sunday at Peace Valley Park - with my iPhone. Minor post processing to increase sharpness and contrast.

With Kim Klassen "quiet" at 85% soft light and Kim Klassen "Follow" at 65% soft light.  And a quote that is a reminder I need this week!

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Year of Kindness - Challenge Week 32

This challenge this week is simple. As we are coming to the end of the Summer holidays/vacation and thinking about Fall and back-to-school, consider donating school supplies.

Free school supplies, health exams offered in Louisville
photo source
Check your own stash of office and art supplies first - do you have multiples or more than you need of anything? You might be surprised at what you have stock-piled in drawers and cupboards. Lined paper, notebooks, pens, pencils, erasers, glue, rulers, index cards, highlighters, crayons, colored pencils are all welcome items in schools where not all of the children can afford to bring their own.

Next check the sales. Right now you can cheaply purchase basic supplies from any of the major office supply stores (Staples, Office Max, etc.) or major department stores (WalMart, Target, etc.).  For example, this week at Staples you can buy spiral notebooks for 17 cents each, rulers at 25 cents each, school glue at 39 cents each, a box of twelve pencils for 68 cents and a pack of index cards for 48 cents.  At those prices, a mere $5 can purchase a sizable stash of school supplies.

Many places will accept school supply donations at this time of year - our local food bank runs a drive for school supplies for area children. Some of the stores selling supplies will take your purchased donations and deliver them to area schools for you. You can also drop supplies off directly at schools in need. You may not get to see the smile on the face of the child who receives your donation, but you can feel good knowing that it will be appreciated and used!