Friday, December 30, 2016

December Daily® Day 11

I would be remiss not to give a nod to the house transformation that has been taking place in our "new-old" house this December. It's part of my husband's love language to demolish and restore.  He's getting better at it all the time. 

The page uses from paid items and some freebies.The a season of intention sentiment is from the Digital December Daily Christmas Phrases stamp.  No place like home for the holidays and embrace the mess are both "Ali freebies."  I created the yellow card to coincide with the kitchen color, and used the star washi from my "washi drawer" (no idea where I got it from...probably AE).  Each image is 2 x 2.

Journaling: December has been filled with home projects. Scott tackled the two most needy: the kitchen and the half bath. He seems to be in his element. He is becoming a much more meticulous painter, and that saves us lots!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

December Daily® Day 10

Yes, I do.  And I shall sit here until I am dumped off.  My wonderful son is 11 and still fully believes.  I have no intention of changing that.  I did so with son #1, believing that when he asked, I would tell him.  And, to this day, my almost 20 year old is still ticked that I admitted my part in the Throne of Lies when he was 12.  His brother knows that Santa needs Mommy and Daddy's help.  That's my baby step.

Since Dec. 10 had no pictures with a story that moved me, I decided to use the layout I had ready for a day just like today.

I used the 2015 Ashley Goldberg December-Daily-Kit-That-Keeps-On-Giving for the flipside of Day 9.  I thought the "Ho Ho Ho" fit nicely.  Again, there's a sparkly gold/bronze to the letters that did not photograph well here.  On the other side, I had a Simple Stories base page that I added to.

I did not journal on this day because it was my kid's Santa list.  I think it speaks for itself.  So I created a tab with Simple Stories Mistletoe Kisses Bits and Pieces Ephemera candy chipboard pieces.  The "10" comes from some AE stickers I had in my stash.

The flipside has more from the Simple Stories Mistletoe Kisses collection, and the letter Santa left Max on Christmas morning.

December Daily® Day 9

Since I dedicated Day 8 to food, and Day 7 to Max's concert. I thought on Day 8 I would use some pics I had to pass by.  This is more of a Project Life type of spread today, but I like including that December, while it is filled with crazy goodness, is also a regular month with stuff that goes on.

As I was journaling, it dawned on me that what I was journaling about would have been so foreign to me when I was in college.  So, I went with it.  This page utilizes all sorts of resources.  The upper right hand card is a mixture of last year's December Daily Ashley Goldberg kit and a couple of Story Kits (Old & first one! and Me) from Ali.  The "past/present" was actually one chipboard circle that I cut in half because it was part of the story but not THE story, and having it as one embellishment made it take precedence because of the size of the circle.  The tape was from a Story Kit...not sure which one.  I cut and repositioned it a couple times, as you can see from a little dog earing.  The photos were screenshots from two separate calls, one on speaker and one using Face Time.

The bottom left circle is actually bronze/gold with a hint of glitter.

Journaling: Times have definitely changed.  If you had told me in college in 1988 that college students of 2016 would be calling their parents and being able to see their faces, I would have thought that was something out of a science fiction movie.  We had a phone closet on the floors of our dorms where, if someone answered, you were lucky.  There you sat, having your private conversations in a very public place. I recall wishing for phones in our rooms, which we were told were on the horizon.  I am so happy when I get to hear from Ignatius, be it through a “regular” call or through Face Time, or even just texting. I am sure, for him, it makes the holiday (college definition: finals) time a little more comforting. 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

December Daily® Day 8: All the Foods

On December 8, I took a table-view shot of our dinner that night after we had devoured most of it. Seeing this shot made me realize I had a LOT of food pics for December.  An idea began: a spread on food! Enter, another digital template of Ali's, one that I ended up modifying greatly, but it gave me a great start.  Hers had space for 4 pics on the left and a column on the right with word art ("holiday" in her script and "hello traditions" in type underneath it).  I knew I wanted to get my journaling in there, but I also really needed the 5 shots, as they each told different parts of the month of eating.  I tried to keep "holiday," but felt a change in the title was due, and a good one.  I sampled the color for "merry" from one of the strawberries in the bottom left.  I used the same color for my numbers through my journaling.

Here was the base page.  I used number stickers from this month's Story Kit (using the crap out of that, I tell ya) to connect the journaling to the pics.

I also decided that it was time for another divider to make its way into the book, but I needed one side to pretty much stand on its own.  Loved this little snowman dude.  Simple Stories Mistletoe Kisses Bits and Pieces Ephemera and a stamp from Ali's Cheer set (limited release), along with some sparkly dots, wrapped up this pre-made page.

Then, the backside of this page could stay fairly simple.  I like it so much better on a chipboard divider than just in a divider by its lonesome.

I used a stamp from one of Ali's Week in the Life stamp sets from a couple years back.  Worked like a charm.  In this pic, you can see the stamped divider, and a bit of the sticker dimension.

Journaling: Indeed, we enjoy eating during the holidays. Pretty sure between what is shown and the other delectables in our house that are not typically here, my scale is going to be screaming at me...big time. 
1 | Belgian waffles on Christmas morning.  There always must be a special breakfast.  2 | A loaf of delicious Great Harvest Bread brought to us by a new neighbor.  3 | Scott pan fried some delicious steaks.  Our bellies were happily full.  4 | French toast made with Egg Beaters (yum) with strawberries, Cool Whip, syrup, and bacon.  5 | Cookies for Santa.  I was at first ticked that Scott bought a Toll House mix rather than just chilled dough, but it turned out to be a delicious error in judgment.

December Daily® Day 7

For this spread, I used a page that was semi-pre-made on one side and blank on the other.  A percussionist parent is hard-pressed to get a good shot of their student performing, unless you are on bleachers and/or have a fabulous lens. Armed only with my iPhone 6 plus, I got what I got.  So, there was some doctoring to the photo to point out exactly where my son was.

This page was so much fun to make. Max and I were spontaneously (which is a big deal in the land of ASD) messing with selfies as we awaited dinner at Bob Evans (tradition for before/after concerts).  I had three shots I really wanted to use, and then I remembered this awesome template of Ali's.  I even found the background color code for kraft (as I felt white would be too much).  I thought putting it on a polka dotted page was a unifying idea.

Journaling: Tonight was Max’s Christmas concert at CCHS. Bob Evans for dinner has been our tradition for music events. We had some fun with selfies, particularly with Snapchat layers, as we waited for our order.  

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

One Little Word 2016: Real Wraps Up

It feels like I just chose this word, and yet, when I go through this album, I realize what a lot has happened in 2016.  Holy moly.  So here is December.

I used the bejeebies out of Ali's Story Kit for this month.  Pretty much every embellishment and stamp was from that kit.  It was perfect for the prompt this month.

"Reflecting & remembering" stamp is from the Review stamp kit, as is "Life in Progress" on the flipside of the tab.

I knew I had to use A Year in Review for this spread.  I mounted it on kraft and outlined it in white Gelly Roll pen.  The back of some of Ali's 4 x 6 cards have "Story Sparks" on them, so I needed a cover.

When I did this, it helped to have the scrapbook right in front of me, especially for the feelings part.  I just lifted the feelings straight from what I was writing each month.  It was a good reflection for sure.

I think I might be addicted to these phrase stickers.  If Ali ever stops producing them, I might need rehab.

The finality of that last page cannot be overemphasized.

A close up of phrases and images that wrapped up my year with Real.

December Daily® Day 6

This is what I did with the back of the large photo on Day 5.  I had already set the page up with a couple kisses.  I decided to relocate the rest of them and add word stickers that came from songs of the season.

Using a couple of Ali's 3 x 8 digital templates, I chose to tell an everyday story from December plus a list of things for which I am thankful.  I placed a few stickers from Ali's Review Story Kit in there as well.

This is what the pages look like together in the album.

December Daily® Day 5: Advent (Updated)

The focus of Day 5 is the focus of the season for the church: Advent.  Not an "Advent calendar," giving parents 25 extra days of trinkets to have to think up.  But the season of Advent, the wreath, the symbolism, the hope, the peace. 

I took a picture of my church's Advent wreath and used Ali's freebie from Day 12 of the Twelve Days of Giving (available for a limited time).  I thought the message was perfect for that picture, and I used the entire 6 x 8 to show its significance.  The facing page is the flipside of the Day 4 spread.  The Hershey kisses were already there, and it is almost an anachronism of the post's topic.  The post does mention the secularism of Christmas, though, so I decided to keep it there for now.  I love the kisses, just maybe not at this place.  Maybe just a swatch of patterned paper will be a better choice.  Now in typing this, I have already made up my mind to change it.  Oy!  I'll update this post once I change it.

Journaling:  The secularism of Christmas overtakes the reality of what is going on in the church at this time.  The season is actually Advent. It is the beginning of the new church year, and is scheduled 4 Sundays before the actual day of Christmas.  We are called to prepare for the anniversary of the birth of Christ, There are many ways we are called to prepare: Reconciliation, the Eucharist, intense prayer time with God.  So, while we prep ourselves physically for the day of Christmas, spiritually, we look at how our souls can be best prepared.  The readings are all of hope and fulfillment of God’s promises.  Today’s photo shows the Advent wreath in front of the Baptismal font of Saint Patrick Church of Merna.  Two candles are lit, signifying the second week of Advent.  The pink candle will be lit next week, Gaudete Sunday, signifying the joy that we are almost there.    


I went with some kraft cardstock with a very subtle white star print, as other prints seemed to overwhelm the page.  I added a bit of stars from an Ali Edwards kit (I have no idea which). 
Because sewing the pocket was not what I first had in mind, I decided to put gold glitter washi on the side so the stars would not slide out.

Monday, December 26, 2016

December Daily® Day 4: A Tale of Two Houses

For Day 4, I used the Christmas card photo's origination day as the day to show it in the album, as well as reflect on Christmas past.

Top card was from our Christmas card in 2010.  On Dec. 4, we were still owners of both homes.  This shot was taken on the first snowfall as well as this year's shot.

My pretty "new-old" house.  The card served as Christmas and change of address.

Spot the typo?  I didn't until they came printed to me.  And then, I thought, so it is written, so it shall be!  Imperfect, like the author. 

This was sort of a base page that I used.  I love this Simple Stories page protector with 2-4" x 4" slots and a 2" x 8" slot.  I altered my journaling card to fit the space.  I included the flap from our envelopes this year as well.

Journaling: On this day, Scott took “the money shot.”  It was, to quote Karen Carpenter, “the first snowfall of the winter.”  He texted me this iPhone shot of our “new-old” house.  Since I needed to send out change of address notices anyway, I made the Christmas card have two purposes.  I love this card from Shutterfly, mainly because I love gold foil on pretty much anything.  Of course the photo was gently treated by Rad Lab, but I really did not have to do much.  I also loved that there was a typo on it, and I sent it out anyway.  Baby steps!  Several years back, I recall coming home and seeing our Gabby Drive home being blanketed with snow.  I grabbed “Bertha” and the tripod and started snapping some nighttime shots.  Thus, the Christmas card (partially shown) was born that year, circa 2010.  

Sunday, December 25, 2016

December Daily® Day 3: Freedom

In honor of George Michael, who passed away today, and the freedom I am feeling over break to be creative, a video:

2016 has been a doozy.  A reminder to us all to seize the day.

For this spread, I used a 3 x 8 "4 up" template from Ali.  She actually had a sentiment in one of the photo areas, but I needed the photo space.  Such a versatile template.  I also used her stamp sentiments that I purchased as digital elements.  Each sentiment is its own .png.  They are black, but pretty easy to recolor, as I did here in white.

Here is the flipside.  I spent about half of it journaling and the other half I used for a swatch of the godawful wallpaper that was in our half bath.  Now, I will say the persons who owned the home took impeccable care of it, and had chosen Colonial-era wallpapers.  But this was a hard room to deal with, as indicated in my journaling.  Here's a closer view.  You will have to imagine its repetition in the tiny space.

We moved to a “new-old” house at the end of July.  Scott is in heaven because it has tons of projects to occupy his need for demolition.  It’s been quite a transition for me, and not always in the best way.  The half bath was just scary awful.  Patriotic wallpaper (see below), sky blue tile, mildewing subfloor, horrifying toilet.  I woke up today to find Scott had demoed a good deal of it!  We made a trek to Sherwin Williams to pic up some paint. One thing that is awesome in our very 1970s basement is the pool table.  We frequently play, with Scott beating me 99.9% of the time.  It is, however, a nice use of “couple time,” which we were sorely lacking (can you believe he didn’t want to scrapbook with me?).

December Daily® Day 2

December 2 discusses my attempt at making healthier food choices.  The photo is an actual anju pear that I had at school.  I had fruits and veggies handy, and I was CONSTANTLY eating.  The bottom quote was from Cathy Zielske's 2016 FIT class.  She is taking enrollments for 2017 as well.  Lots of good motivation, although I was on and off that wagon last year.

The text of my journaling:

I am making attempts at making better food choices this month.  Shopping was step #1.  It’s amazing how little you can have in your cupboard when you stop caring what goes in your body. I also signed up for Weight Watchers online to do some tracking. I am writing this on Dec. 25, and my tracking has been missing for a few weeks, but I know that I can get back on track easily.  Getting off track is easier!  Scott has been losing a great deal of weight.  He made his bike into a stationary bike in the basement.  I walk the treadmill at times, but I am giving a lot of serious thought in to joining Jazzercise.  We shall see if I can get back in that groove. 

December Daily® Day 1: More labor-intensive than it looks

Finally, now, on Christmas, I am affording myself time to assemble my December Daily album. On my first day of December, I had the most random shots.  I decided to use a purchased digital file from Ali Edwards to give them some coherence.  The template is designed for a 6 x 8 page, but I cropped it to 4 x 6.  I also knew I wanted to use some of her digital paper, so I decided to match up the background of "Around Here" with the blue in the patterned paper.  I created the template for the journaling card using a bit of Ali's "December" handwriting along with Traveling Typewriter font.  Looks easy, but Photoshop was being very strange as I was doing this.  I am sure it could have been much easier!  I added an acrylic star from one of Ali's story kits to wrap up the page.  Here is the journaling:

The month starts off with a fairly average day. Between 7 and 7:30 AM, I am getting myself ready to drop Max off at Corpus Christi Junior High and then traveling to “the 602.”  If he has allocated himself enough time, Max is doing his “sensory” play. This December, I am taking a back seat in my classroom. Mr. Murphy, my student teacher, is in charge of most of the teaching. I have just recently become familiar with television shows again, permitting myself that luxury. “Speechless” is a huge favorite of mine, as well as “Blue Bloods” and “This is Us.” Recently, Maureen, Angie, and I have been gathering elf costumes for the Irving Christmas party. I am in charge of hats and shoes.  Thank goodness for Amazon Prime!

Friday, December 16, 2016

A Joyous Card

A friend of mine is fostering two children in hopes of adoption.  We are celebrating.  It's so fantastic.  Here's the card for her shower.

Die: You Wafer Die from Simon Says Stamp (coordinates with stamp in set)
Die: Stitched rectangles (I think they are from MFT, but I cannot recall)
Ink: Ali Edwards Black Butte
Stickers: Starfoam Hearts
Popped up with dimension stickers

Stamps: Papertrey Ink A Cheerful Heart and MFT Essential Sentiments (I think it might be retired)

A close up of the sentiment on front.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-laaaaaa, December Daily® Begins!

Although I have been taking and keeping photos for December Daily®, last night was the first night I actually started on the physical album.  Here's what transpired in the wee hours, as that seems to be my most creative time.

The base album looked a little something like this:

Then evolved into this.  Ali Edwards is big on stating intention with scrapbooking.  Many of her projects encourage scrapbookers to start out this way.

I used her December Daily® 2016 freebie .png file, and then put 2016 in the wreath using Hello Typewriter font.  That will be my album font this year.

This is the door to my new home.  I found it fitting to start the album with this for many reasons.  First, and most obvious, it's red--the color of the season.  Next, I had plenty of "white space" to add some subtle creative pieces, as shown in the next pic.  Last, it complements my intention quite well.

Here is the text of "My Reason Why:"

In browsing my 2015 December Daily album, one thing is abundantly clear: a lot can happen in a year.  The Platos at this point in 2016 are so different than the Platos in December 2015.  Good differences.  New struggles.  Just wow.  We moved to 205 Fleetwood Drive in Bloomington at the end of July 2016.  It took until November to sell our home on Gabby.  At present, we have still not closed on the house, so that will make 4 months of two house payments.  That caused an intense amount of stress.  I fell back into the throes of depression, and it hit me hard in September.  Unpacking, therefore, has been quite slow.  Almost a crawl.  I finally got my craft room to be usable, and got my mojo back just recently.  I was not even sure I was going to embark on a December Daily journey this year. I went to The Paper Forest and created a base album in a class there. I have decided to commit to that wonderful creative feeling I had when I worked on this last project year.  I love revisiting all that happened last December.  2016 has been a very strange year.  I imagine that December of this year will follow suit.  So, here we go, 2016. A month of recapping lessons learned and hopes for a new year.  The journey begins.

That probably lends itself to the stickers I used on the bottom left to make much more sense.  All are from Ali's Story Kits of past and present.  I am an addict of her word stickers.  I always find the best paired phrases!

On the back of that 6 x 8 page (which, by the way, the page protectors are way bigger than that), I typed out this Sunday's first reading, as I felt like it spoke for the season of the church year as well as life reminders for me to be joyful and acknowledge what I have been given after patient waiting, as well as what has been with me all along.

I maintained the Santa "Happy Holidays" divider as it was.  On the back, I had the foundation set and just needed a photo.  I chose one of my son in front of our new house's family room fireplace which he decorated himself.  He loves to "doll up" the house for the holidays.  I made it a wee smaller than the mat and stamped the date of the picture.

On both sides of the chipboard dividers, I stamped with one of Ali's stamps.  I thought it was fitting as the season begins.

Yep, that's "all" for now.  That took quite some time.  I had to reacquaint myself with my photo printers (yeah, much ink was wasted on the door picture) and the wifi in my house was being ornery.  More to come!!