Sorry for having been absent the last week.. or two.. or three! You all know how it goes, Advent arrives and you swear its going to be calmer and more organised than last year; and then before you know it you're running around like a headless chicken. Well, its happened again!
The good news is that we are now with the extended family and have been forced into a more sedate and calmer way of life. Which also means that I've been able to get some essential stuff sorted out on my laptop... things like - organising the mess of photo's I'd just dumped on my laptop for the past 8 or 9 months, and also sorting out my digi scrapping kits that I'd downloaded and then done nothing with. Anyway, they're all sorted now and actually inspired me to do some scrapping! Going along with the theme of catching up, I decided to do some layouts for Shimelle's 'Journal Your Christmas' class! So here are the two that I've completed today.. and hopefully there will be more in the next week or so, so keep checking back to see my progress!
The Christmas madness, that is! Its slightly frustrating as I'm trying to keep the focus on the various birthdays happening in our family over the next week or so, but I know that everyone else doesn't give a fig about that and just wants to concentrate on that extremely commercialised, de-Christianised, overindulgent, who-will-be-the-number-1-pop-jingle, waiting-for-that-episode-of-Dr.-Who-and-snoring-through-the-Queen's-speech, festival. Now, don't get me wrong - I'm not all "Bah! Humbug!" or anything. I just like to get the birthday's done with before I go dashing headlong into this period of madness. At least that's what I always resolve to do. The reality is usually far different! I get past my birthday on the 2nd, and my sister's birthday on the 4th, but then by the time I get to my Mom's birthday on the 8th I'm itching to get the Christmas tree up and start being festive. Come the 9th of December I'm usually running around like an overexcited child!! Then by the time the 20th arrives I've found that my whole festive period has turned into an exhausting fiasco which involves me doing my ingredients shopping at 1 in the morning at the local 24hr Tesco, posting my cards two days *after* the Royal Mail posting deadline and hoping that they get there in time, spending Christmas Eve wrapping millions of presents, eating far too much between Christmas and New Years and then collapsing in a tearful, quivering heap on the 2nd of January. At which point I write a long list of New Year's resolutions that I know I will completely fail to do anything about before January is even over! Does this sound familiar to anyone? Please tell me you do the same thing and that it's not just me?!
In an effort to reclaim my Christmas sanity this year I have decided to take part in Shimelle's 'Journal Your Christmas' class. I signed up for it 2 years ago, and then again last year - but ended up not doing anything at all and letting my Christmas simply degenerate into the fiasco as usual. However, this year I am determined to remain calm and serene and to enjoy it to the full with Shimelle's help. Obviously being a crafting sort of person, Shimelle tries to encourage us to produce a wonderful album full of beautifully scrapbooked memories of this season. However, I am going to keep this simple. I intend to blog about it most days, and will occasionally produce a layout when I have the time. I am not going to end up running around like a demented person. I am going to enjoy my Christmas. I hereby give everyone notice that I am reclaiming the festive spirit, and all the serenity that is *supposed* to go with it!
So, here is my declaration of intent:
"Starting today, December first, I will keep a Christmas journal. In it, I will write something every day to reflect on the holidays of my past, enjoy the holidays of the present and dream about the holidays of the future. To some, this would be a stack of papers and trivial scribbles, but not to me. I am taking back my Christmas, I am letting it be something I relish and most importantly I am giving at least fifteen minutes to myself, every day, no matter how crazy this season becomes. This Christmas I will make something with my own hands, my own words and my own memories."
Later, I might add a picture or a finished layout to this post. But right now I'm going to go finish making my Christmas cards so that I can actually post them early this year! Well, earlier than normal anyway. May everyone have a very Merry Christmas, a relaxing festive season and many happy memories. As for me, I'm looking forward to my birthday tomorrow!!
This weekend I was supposed to be tidying up, cleaning the house, putting up rollerblinds and generally getting ready for our visitors who are set to invade next weekend. However, after realising that we are going to be away for a full two weeks over the Christmas period... and that I'm going to be bereft of scrapbooking gear for the duration... and that I will therefore have no way of keeping up with Shimelle's 'Journal Your Christmas' class, I thought I would look into Digital Scrapbooking. Ha! "Look into" turned into almost a full weekend of fiddling about with Photoshop, surfing t'interweb for free digital kits and generally having fun in a non-gluey, non-sticky, non-cutting way! So absolutely nothing got done in the way of cleaning or tidying, but I *am* most definitely going to be doing digital scrapbooking for those 2 weeks over Christmas. I'm quite proud of the results of this weekend's labours, especially as last week I couldn't even figure out how to print out my photo's from Photoshop... and yet this weekend, I have managed to suss-out layers, changing colours, using brushes and merging!
The picture is of my brother flying an awesome kite on the beaches of Northumberland in August 2007 when we went camping together for 10 days. The beaches were beautiful, the scenery was stunning and the weather was atrocious! (Except for this particular day!!) Oh, and thanks to ShabbyPrincess for the free digi-kit!
Today I am starting our Christmas cards... and my arm is already sore! Perhaps punched edges and borders for 100 cards was not a good idea!! I'm currently considering buying 'Sure Cuts a Lot' for my Cricut so that it can do the rest for me! Anyone have experience of this software and can tell me if it would do??
So today Shimelle has us thinking about lists. Mostly lists of our favourite things, places or people. Favourite aspects of life, our kids, food, landscapes, tv programmes, clothes, colours, scrapbook pages, books, movies, CD's, concerts, plays, colours of nailpolish, pizza toppings... Well as you can see the list of all the lists could be endless! So thinking about my list of favourites, I started thinking about all the bits of life that are good right now. So 5 things that I love about life at the moment:
Phew, that's enough for now I think! Thanks for reading!
Wow, doesn't time fly? Over a year ago I had a new babe in my arms, sleepless nights were in progress and we were just getting used to having a new member in our family. Now I find that we are finally more settled and I realise I haven't updated the blog at all in 14 months! Ouch. In fact, I had actually let my subscription go rather than keep paying for something I wasn't using. However, I'm back on my feet again... life is getting to be as normal as its ever going to be, and I feel the need to share it with you!
So, In order to get myself back into blogging mode, I've signed up for a class with Shimelle (love her classes!) all about Blogging. Feel free to take part too, as its not too late yet to sign up! As part of this class we're being provided with 3 weeks worth of blogging prompts and technical know-how to make our blogs more reader friendly. I hope that you will come back and share this experience with me? I'm hoping to blog at least two or three times a week as a minimum. Hopefully, I'll be able to do more tho'... it just depends on how inspiring I find the daily prompts!
Also, as part of my return to blogging, I'm going to be looking at the possibilities of moving the blog to an alternate site. This all depends on how much I can manage to do with this one as I would love to have a blog that looks a little more 'me' rather than having the bog standard template as provided by TypePad!
So, hopefully I'll see you over the next three weeks!