i freely admit that i get overwhelmed by facebook, i'm intermittent with twitter, and the jury is still out on my staying power with pinterest. oh i do still love my blogs though. i guess i'm old school that way. i love blogs that share creative eye candy for sure. but beyond that i enjoy bloggers who are passionate about life. i love reading their thoughts, dreams, the beautiful details of their everyday. i love the real connection with real people. i think i would be best buddies with these girls if we lived a little closer. so sharing the love with those who have entertained me, motivated me, and inspired me this year i bring you my top ten blog reads of 2011 (in no particular order). and i would appreciate it so much if you would share your favorites with me. i am always on the lookout for new blog reading material. tia!
shimelle laine - i was lucky enough to meet this sweet girl once. she brought me a coke in a pepsi establishment. my heart will ever belong to her. i call her nasa girl. i am mightily jealous of her globe trotting ways. and she's a scrappy sharing machine. a scientist with an artists soul and gypsy feet. i think we are sisters in a split universe.
karen grunberg - she blogs. she sets goals. she blogs. she perseveres. she blogs. she has deep thoughts. she blogs. she takes gorgeous flower photos and edits them so beautifully. she blogs. she stretches and grows and makes me want to be more than i am. and when no one else provides me reading material. she blogs.
jill sprott - her work is so amazingly creative. so richly detailed. but her words. wow. her words are art too. she crafts them so well. each hand selected so carefully. she's not afraid to let her intelligence show. she's raising her daughter to be an intelligent and giving woman. i admire her greatly.
lisa dickinson- humor is a wonderful thing. i learned this from elmo. my dad elmo, not the furry red guy. although he's kinda funny and a good guy too. the ability to laugh at yourself is critical. lisa has a very healthy dose of laughter in her life. she can laugh at her imperfections. better yet, she can laugh at her perfections. and the best part of all. she shares her laughter with the rest of us. thanks for the laughs lisa.
sharyn tormanen- i love the everydayness of her blog. i love her story telling. i love her list making. i love her practicality. i love that she got to ride in an air balloon this year. i love that i "knew" her when she only had two kiddos and now she has four and the oldest is driving. solid family life. solid ethics. a solid read that i look forward to each day.
anja wade- she has such a unique sense of style. it really pulls me in. it also amuses me that she makes the 80's look so cool. i'm a child of the 80's you know. i mean she brings home rainbow unicorns from the thrift shop. how neato is that? way enjoy this one.
julie fei-fan balzer - julie embraces her art with such enthusiasm. and she's so enthusiastic about sharing her love of art with others. she's so encouraging. you CAN do art! she says. do it! her posts are so instructional too. a blogger very giving of her knowledge and talents.
karen russell - beautiful photography. a gentle humble soul. darling family dynamic. you can see the love growing here. and this year's footnotes to her deployed husband are so poignant.
pioneer woman- wowzas. if you haven't read her, well, where have you been? great photos. great stories. great fun. the ordinary. the extraordinary. lots of laughs. good food. adorable pets. lots of laughs. did you catch the one about the donut. ha!
patrice williams - i knew this girl when she was still a girl. i found her this year after a very long time. i am so proud to know her. she lives her life with such grace. she reminds me to stay grounded in my faith.
do you make new year's resolutions? i haven't in a while. and when i have they've been the typical boring ones that nobody keeps. at least i never keep them. i know i was in a complete funk about it last year. i just ignored the whole new year rolling in thing. i was tired. completely worn out. turns out i was anemic. not good doris. this year i feel awesometastic about life in general and the coming year specifically. hello 2012! you're going to be a great one! i've been playing with pencil and paper. generating lists. so exciting. i've also been reading some great blog posts that have been very motivating. what? you want to be motivated too? read karen grunberg's blog. i just love that she spends the whole month of december contemplating what she wants to work on in the coming year. she inspires me to be more than i am right now. and read this post by elsie. so practical and cheerful. it really helped me hone my ideas. so this is what i've come up with. a list of aims for the coming year. "i aim to" is such a nice southern expression. said with all sincerity. if it is in my being i will do it. this is what i aim for. not a resolution put before congress. not a goal that i must race to score as i dodge the defensive linesmen in my path. just "aim for the moon. if you miss you may hit a star." - w. clement stone
these are all phrased positively in my mind. they all have some fun aspect to them. they are all things that g and i will both enjoy and benefit from. this is just a brief run-down. i'll explain them more as i get to them in the coming weeks . . .
btw. the pic above is my crafty loving boy (pre haircut). i brought home a bag of fabric scraps from jenni's (i always accept fabric scrap handouts). the gman was quite captivated by them and sewed this little snake all on his own. isn't it fabulous? isn't he fabulous?
judging by the amount of loot under the tree, g was a very good boy this year. i spent 5 hours on christmas day assembling the black pearl and queen anne's revenge and i am not even exaggerating. i am very pleased to report that the gman has finally overcome his fear of the pirates of the carribean. he watched all four movies with me this week. i was ecstatic. i have a thing for johnny depp. i have every since my college days when i ran home from class to watch him on 21 jump street.
for the first time ever i went with a non-traditional christmas dinner. steak, mashed potatoes, baked green beans, and deviled eggs. we've started a new tradition. it was that good. many thanks to bob evans for the delicious baked potatoes that didn't dirty my kitchen. and i know you're admiring my elegant place setting. portmeirion botanic garden, oneida non silverware, my favorite buffalo wild wings glass, old hickory paring knife courtesy of elmo, and napkin courtesy of mcdonald's.
we also went with a non-traditional yet oh so christmas-y in green key lime pie for dessert. i took it up a notch by busting out the hallmark mitford plates.
the cats have just been lazing around. this is really no different than what they do the other 11.5 months of the year.
pepito wasn't really wearing the santa hat. i was just playing around with cool artsy effects on my smartphone. notice i'm smart enough to work the smartphone but too lazy to apply what i learned to my other photos here.
i have, however, been merrily contemplating goals for the coming year. i've got lots of ideas that i'm excited about.
and i've finally found my missing mojo. i have a couple belated christmas projects up on the jbs inspiration blog as well as a peek at the january kit that i'll be sharing here next week. :)
the gman finally got a haircut. we always know it's time when it starts growing down into his ears. good thing we don't worry about style trends around here as the justin bieber do we could not do.
the rear view. we sent these photos to aunty theresa today with the tag "he's got your hair." LOL was her response. actually we often talk about how proud we are that he got his grandma's hair. i don't foresee his papi's male patterned baldness in his future.
i've begun dabbling in art journaling. or maybe it's more like sketchbooking. i say this because most of the art journal images i find aren't quite what i'm feeling. i plugged in sketch on pinterest and got scrapbook sketches. definitely not what i am ever feeling. but whilst perusing flickr i discovered that sketchbook is a good tag for me. lots of good stuff. whatever it's called, hope to share my first couple pages soon.
a couple gifties i threw together monday for the local jbs girls. i was kinda tickled by how cute they turned out. many thanks to gluestickgirl for the great idea and all the great scraps. she is my superhero.
this is the gman watching tv with his new pet. he has been harrassing me for a venus flytrap for three days now. i really don't know where he gets these ideas. i take that back. i do know. it is clearly genetics and i am to blame for this one.
as january is approaching i'm in a big time organizing/planning mood. i spent a half hour torturing g by trying to find the perfect daily planner at staples. i couldn't find what i didn't know i was looking for. somehow this idea materialized in my mind. it's a regular calendar for the base. then the pages cut out of a smaller calendar and washi taped to each month along with a spare piece of 6x6 paper. also found these way cool list making post-it notes. i'm kind in love with them.
now i have the perfect doris planner. the large calendar will be for my jbs/scrappy stuff. the small calendar is for cub scouts (i'm the committee chair now don't ya know), school, and personal stuff. the papers are for brainstorming and notetaking. and then the lists. love me some lists. and now i can stick them all over the place and cover them up with more lists when they're done. or even move them to the next month if they're not done. not that that ever happens. but could my little organizational endeavor be any more perfect? i think not.
ths scrappy mojo has finally resurfaced. in the nick of time! pun intended. whew! got a couple layouts in progress. hoping to knock them out tomorrow and move on to a new one. fun times.
but the journal your christmas. hmmm. it's getting awfully close to being retired till next year. yep. i think this is totally ok too as it's not a december daily this year. the pics are all from random christmases so it won't be any big deal if it's done over two christmases. whew. glad i've convinced myself it's ok. you know. it's just that january thing. i want to tie up lots of loose ends and start 2012 fresh. i think it's gonna be a great year! :)
so yesterday i sat down and made a list of every darn thing i could think of that needed to be cleaned/organized in my world. i ended up with 12 major categories. i analyzed my calendar and realized i had exactly 12 days productive days left in 2011. i'm excluding christmas eve and day and new year's eve, obviously. so one category a day. it's a plan. i think i can do this. at the end of day two i don't have any lines fully completed, but i'm close in several. i'm humming the eye of the tiger as i work. i'm most intimidated my the computer line. there are currently 3632 emails in my inbox. nasty that. i'm also well aware of the fact that the back bedroom takes up 3 entire lines. it's currently in the "it's gonna get worse before it gets better" phase. i'm way amused by g's hair(cut) falling into the pet category. tempted to add my legs to that category as well. but eh. i've got enough to do as it is. shockingly, i'm rather excited about this endeavor. ringing in the new year with a clean house would be such a lovely christmas gift. :)
i did it! i finished something i started! my 2010 december daily is complete! nothing out of the world awesome on these last few pages except that they're DONE! woohoo! super simple cover featuring a darling santa card from sweet may.
the jyc christmas card page. the left side is an envelope. i cut all the notes and cute images from the cards and glued them back to back then stuffed them in there along with the christmas letters and photos.
jyc day 30 - year in review. no thought behind my photo choices here unfortunately. just snagged one from each month that was already edited small. the november pic is actually from december. ooops. i numbered them all then the left side is actually a tiny file folder. inside i put a couple little ledger pages and wrote what each pic was from.
the gallery updates for the december kits were posted a few days ago. i'm just now getting to posting mine here. i'm a little behind you might say. i have to say i was a major fail at donkey kong. i got stuck on this layout for two days. ai yi yi. but then i was all set to hit the comeback trail friday night when may mentioned a new trn that i needed to read. i quickly realized i hadn't read the book before that one in the series, so there you go. friday and saturday both blown. ooop!
let's see. the background and the cute smiley stamp were both from the main kit. lots of the rest is from the antiquarian kit. like the pennant is punched from that old fruit label. i got to use the new jenni bowlin for fiskars pennant and blue ribbon punches. happy day there for sure.
and here is the page i showed a peek of last week. i think it was last week anyway. this one is based on a sketch article i did for the december seminar at masterful scrapbook design. this was a super fun month at masterful as the topic was the canvas, something i love to experiment with. here's a fun tip about masterful . . . each sub runs for 30 (or is it 31?) days . . . so if you join now you get ALL of december plus whatever goes up in the first 12 or so days of january . . . so you'd definitely get the january seminar write-up (which is always awesome) plus at least a couple interviews (i know betsy sammarco and kelly purkey are up for january! excited about those!). it's a great deal and always SO much great info.
and so. 3 more days of school after today. woot! oh. and yesterday we got home from school and discovered our cichlids had 100 more babies. we still had 8 babies left from the last batch. we managed to talk petco into taking the 5 biggiest. but oy. we're gonna have to find a new home for these fish. when the boy who sold them to me told me they were easy to breed i didn't think he meant that easy.
i was playing with my december kit goodies last night and got this sweet layout almost done. i wanted to rush home today and finish the journaling so i could photograph it and share it with you. alas, the weather was not cooperative, so this quick little peek was the best i could do. i miss those summer evenings when i could photograph layouts at 9pm. ah well. they'll be back soon enough. until then i have these lovely butterflies giving me happy thoughts.
the layout is actually for my article with december's masterful scrapbook design seminar. it's based on a sketch. shocking i know! i'll be doing the interview portion of the seminar this wednesday, 12/7, at 7pm cst. if you're signed up for the seminar, please drop in and ask a few questions! (of course if you'd rather chat with jenni i completely understand :).
i also wanted to take this time to let you know that my classes at get it scrapped! are being retired as of december 31st. the very best value is this e-bundle featuring 9 classes from get it scrapped! teachers, including four of my own. if you've bought a class or two of mine and were considering finishing the set, now's the time to do that. i'd like to say that i will bring them back soon, but i don't always get things done in a timely manner. they're on sale now for $18 each.
product pizzazz 101, product pizzazz 102, product pizzazz 201: details, scraproom with a view