Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Thirty Questions

I "borrowed" this meme from Susanne over at Snaps and Snippets.

1. Who are you named after? 

My mother always told me that my name was inspired by the Four Seasons song "Sherry Baby".  But that can't be true because the song came out after I was born!  So, who knows?

2. Last time you cried? 

January 15th -  the day our kitty Ashley died.  Photo was about a month earlier.
3. Do you like your handwriting?

Yes. I get compliments on it all the time. Thanks to my second grade teacher Mrs. Spears who was a real stickler about penmanship.

4. What is your favorite meat?

Hmmm.  I mostly eat chicken or salmon, but I suppose my favorite is a properly cooked and seasoned filet mignon.

5. Longest relationship?

Technically it's my sister Deanna who is 4 years younger than me. Jay and I will celebrate 35 years of marriage this August.  

6. Do you still have your tonsils?

Yes.  But I'm short a gallbladder and 4 permanent teeth.

7. Would you bungee jump?

No way!  Not enough money in the world.

8. What is your favorite cereal? 

I don't eat cereal except the occasional bowl of oatmeal.  Does that count?

9. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off? 

Yes, always.

10. Do you think you're strong? 

Physically, I'm slowly getting stronger than I was, but strong, not so much.  Mentally, hell yes (minus the occasional bout of fibro fog).  Emotionally, yes - my overall life circumstances left me no other choice. It was be strong or lose myself in the mess.

11. Favorite ice cream?
I don't eat much ice cream anymore because of the sugar. But when I did, it was mint chip first.  Vanilla bean if mint chip wasn't available.  Or the orange/vanilla twist frozen custard at Kohr Brothers in Ocean City NJ. 
 Image result for kohrs ice cream

12. What is the first thing you notice about a person?

Their eyes, then their smile (hopefully!)

13. Football or Rugby?

Neither. The only time in my life I ever gave a fig about sports was when my daughters were playing soccer and I was a soccer Mom!

14. What color trousers are you wearing?


15. Last thing you ate? 

Organic no-sugar-added peanut butter on triscuits.

16. What are you listening to? 

I just finished The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah on Audible.  The book has stuck with me for three days now.  Maybe it just hit a little close to home in some respects.

17. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?

When I was a kid my favorite color was periwinkle.  Now I would be blue-green which is the closest my 64 box of crayola comes to teal.

18. What is your favorite smell?

Mint.  Followed closely by vanilla, apple-cinnamon, pumpkin spice, and thieves.

19. Who was the last person you talked to on the phone? 

my daughter Becca

20. Hair color? 

natural blonde with a little white at the temples.

21. Eye color? 

Undetermined.  I've always said hazel, thinking that was the combination of blue-green.  Learned from Susanne's answers that hazel actually refers to a combination of green & brown. My eyes are blue-green-gray depending on the light and what I'm wearing.  The Iris has a darker blue ring on the outer edge, is pale blue-gray in the center, and has a little bit of what I think is green closest to the pupil.  I did some research - some articles are calling it blue-green, others are calling my combination gray.  So I don't know.

22. Favorite foods to eat? 

Comfort foods like pizza, homemade mac & cheese, baked potato soup - these are my favorites but I rarely eat them anymore.

23. Scary movies or happy endings?

Happy endings.  I don't care much for scary movies as a genre.

24. Last movie you watched?

At the theater - the final Star Wars movie
At home - Jumanji

25. What color shirt are you wearing? 

Gray Life is Good graphic tee

26. What is your favorite holiday? (English ladies mean vacation.)

Spending time near an ocean.  Not particular about which one.  I just like walking the beach at sunrise or sunset and enjoying the roar of the waves.  The rest of my family, unfortunately, prefers Disney World.

27. Beer or wine? 

Neither.  I've never really cared for alcohol in any form.  If I'm in a situation where it would be impolite or noticed to pass, I drink DiSaronno amaretto on the rocks.
28. Night Owl or Morning Person? 

Also neither.  I'm strictly a middle-of-the-day person!  Takes me a while to get going in the morning and I'm tired by 9:30 or 10:00 p.m.

29.  If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

Hawaii.  Or anyplace with moderate temperatures and beaches.  But not unless I was also close to my kids... so basically, any place they are.

30. Favorite day of the week?

Monday.  Yes I'm weird. But it always feels like there is so much possibility in the week ahead on a Monday.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Craft Space Clean Up - AFTER

Well ladies - with all your encouragement, I got down to business and have completed my craft space clean up and reorganization!

On my last post Patio Postcards asked if the word "Simplify" was a prior One Little Word.  YES! It was my word for 2016.  And it's still so relevant for me.

Susanne of Snaps and Snippets wondered about all the Scrabble games.  They were definitely purchased to harvest the tiles for crafting.  I thought I would use the game boards for backgrounds for wall art or covers for journals.  During the clean up, I had to admit that the likelihood of that EVER happening was slim, so I dumped all the tiles and trays into a gallon size plastic bag and recycled all the boards and boxes.  It takes up so much less space now!

Here are my AFTER photos with some commentary...
The view from the office side of the craft table toward the front entry hall.  You can SEE the table top!  All that delicious making space - and no boxes, bins, or piles of stuff!

Under the table are storage shelves.  The upper shelf has 8 full photo boxes.  The lower shelf has 6 plastic boxes of miscellaneous supplies - ribbon, sewing, beading, some small bits of specialty fabric.  I don't access these items often so this spot was chosen because it's not as easy to get at.

Side of desk facing the wall. From this view, you can see my actual "workspace".  All the inkpads in the wall unit were tested and labeled.  I donated about 20 different colors of glitter in teeny tiny baggies.  I never use glitter on anything anyway!  And I added one new item to the wall unit...

Sarah made this mug for me years ago.  It's been sitting unused in a cabinet in the kitchen.  This space was perfect, and honestly, it's inspirational in terms of scrapbooking!

You may recognize the quote from the 2008 movie "Australia" as something said by the Drover, played by Hugh Jackman.

And those yummy distress ink pads? Can you believe I had five unopened ones?  I haven't bought scrapbooking supplies in at least two years!!

View of the bookshelves. At first glance it may seem like nothing changed from the original shot.  To be honest, this bit took me the most time of all!  I went through every storage box, bin, and basket.  A few things were culled out.  Many things were moved to group with other like items and contents of many of the baskets and bins was changed out.

I tried to group all my most used tools and supplies into this section - in the easiest reach from my workspace.

Other sections of the shelves include my Library of Memories Binders...

Paper and Photo Binders...

And other albums.  Jay and I before kids, my high school/college scrapbook, an album for just my art journal/artsy style layouts, Week in the Life, etc.

Here's a close-up of the bulletin board wall.  I have been hanging onto those vinyl wall words since before 2008. I'm so glad I finally put them up!  I added a command hook for my apron and switched out the desk lamp for a smaller one that fit the space better.  All those markers and paints in the Coca Cola tray?  Every single one was tested - all the dried up ones were tossed!!!

Below the bulletin board - my Ikea carts and storage. To fit the second Ikea cart, I had to move the table toward the office about 6" which really opened up this space.  Moved my punches out of the bottom drawer (which I could barely open with the weight) and onto the new cart.  Reorganized what was in all the drawers based on what got used the most.  Everyday adhesives and foam dots are now in the drawer unit up on the table and the glue gun is in one of the storage drawers.

All the craft paints were tested as well.  Tossed quite a few dried up bottles.  Added color samples to the bottles that didn't already have them.  Before testing this rack was full!  I now have space to add new paints.  Not planning to rush out and buy anything - this is my "room to grow"!

From a little further out on the side of the desk, you can see my small modular shelving unit which fits partially under the table top. You also get a glimpse into my office and the new furniture I bought last August.  My next "big" purchase will be a new stool for this space.  The table is counter height. The stool was snagged from the kitchen, but it is bulky and uncomfortable to sit in for any length.  I want to get a new one that is on wheels and lighter weight.

This shelf unit holds all my "once and done" type albums and each year's One Little Word album.  I had green fabric bins in three of the sections originally.  As the number of albums grew, the bins have been removed and their contents relocated.  I removed the last one in this purge and relocated the milk bottles that I use for flower vases onto a high shelf in the kitchen cabinets.  That freed up space for some empty photo albums and journals that will, no doubt, become scrapbook projects in the future.

All those albums and I haven't even included a photo of the Pottery Barn window seat bench that houses about 15 albums in the cubbies under the bench!  I have done some scrapbooking in the last twenty years!  Yes, I've been scrapbooking over twenty years now!

I'll leave you with this close-up of a piece of art work you may have glimpsed on the bulletin board (note: the mermaid painting was done by my sister Deanna - she was going to toss it).  The one and only Lifebook 2020 lesson I've completed to date... the "warm up" lesson.

So are you feeling sufficiently inspired to tackle your own craft space? What change do you think had the most impact?

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Craft Space Clean Up - BEFORE

One of my "projects" for February is to clean, purge, and reorganize my craft space.  These are my BEFORE photos...

I'm posting here so I can be held accountable to get this project done!

If I haven't posted my AFTER photos by March 1st, you can all ask me where they are.

Not only is this mess embarrassing, it hinders my creativity because there is no space on that table to actually work!

The set-up of the room won't change much because this is really how everything fits best.  But I do plan to purge stuff I will never use, clean up the mess, and get things organized so I know what I have and where to find it! Stay tuned for the transformation!

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

One Little Word

I never got around to posting my OLW January pages.  Confession:  I didn't even finish them until the beginning of February!  Pretty self-explanatory, so I'll just leave you to peruse!

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Catching Up

I seriously can't believe it has been a full month since I posted!  But there you have it.  My goal of weekly posting out the window before the year really even got rolling.  🙄

January was a bit rough around the edges.  I had a head cold.  Then our furbaby Ashley passed (she was just shy of 19). That was truly sad. In the process of burying her, I pulled a muscle in my back/hip and couldn't stand up straight for four days. The house is too quiet now (she was a very vocal kitty).

The truth is, I'm struggling right now.  Struggling to keep up with ALL.THE.THINGS.... struggling to stay positive... struggling to get clarity around my next steps.

I set myself up to have a super productive creative year with a slew of online classes. Most of which have already fallen by the wayside.

 I did manage to get Jay's birthday page done.

And my Christmas Cards 2019 layout.  Seems the art of sending cards in the mail has definitely fallen off.  We used to get so many photo cards that I would have to cut them down and I'd still have 4 pages for a single year.  Now I'm lucky to get 2 or 3 photo cards.  For those of you still sending me handmade cards, know that they are much appreciated and most of them are included in the layout and become part of our Christmas card exchange documented memories!


Mostly, I've been doing the job search thing. Drafting (and redrafting, and tweaking and re-tweaking) my resume, updating my LinkedIn profile, talking with my career coach, attending online seminars, attending networking events...

The last time I actively searched for a job was 1996!  I was extremely blessed to be recruited to join TREND in 2004, at a time when I knew I needed to leave my law firm practice.  I was extremely blessed to work at TREND for 13 years with wonderful people who became my second family.  I was blessed to survive the merger and another three years of employment before having my position eliminated.  I have no illusions about just how lucky I was to be gainfully employed for 16 years straight without having to think about resumes or profiles or personal branding.

Turns out, ALL of the rules for job searching have changed!  Everything I thought I knew is worthless. I'm a beginner in the job market at the ripe old age of...  well, it doesn't matter.  I just have to get on board with being back to square one and figure this all out. 

If you are still reading, thanks for being here for me!  I've re-committed to blogging more often and will be back soon!!!