Playing Catch up – Project Life

The past few months have been somewhat crazy and only getting worse. My most hectic month will kick off from mid August til late September with uni prac then my cousins wedding in north Queensland, with lots of assessments due in between. The cruel thing is I am doing 3 subjects this semester and 2 have assessments due mid prac while all 3 have an assessment due on the same day in the last week of term. OMG!!

I was starting to stress a bit too which is rare for me, but I was starting to fall behind. With a toddler who is a night owl at the best of times suddenly not getting to sleep until close to midnight some nights or waking frequently, it was getting a little frustrating and extremely unproductive. One of the challenges of a night shift husband.

With said husband on tour with his band this weekend, I was fearing the worse with falling even further behind, but nope. I’m now at least a week ahead in each subject with readings and up to date with assessments so far. Phew! Miss L has been nice and easy for mummy during our girl weekend.

So much so I got some time to play a bit of project life catch up tonight since I am starting to fall over a month behind on that now too. Caught up til mid June. Not as bad as I thought but still a long way to go.

 

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The fact that week 23 & 24 had so few photos and fit on a single page certainly helps with keeping up. And good memory keeping with useful apps on my ipad really help keep me on track when I’m behind. I should do a post on that sometime soon I suppose. When I find a spare few minutes that is 😉

Otherwise, you can find my entire 2014 album so far here.

Creativity Break

I’m in week 3 of uni already with 2 assignments due in the next 2 weeks. I’m doing 3 subjects which is a full on post grad work load with the amount of reading.

Let’s just say… I’m very busy!

I met my first practicum mentor teacher yesterday, as well as the principal & the class of year 2 kids I get to work with. Exciting stuff. Everyone seems nice.

One of the kids even made me this, although I think she thinks my name is Loren? Not sure.

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Today it’s back to the books in between toddler interruptions but I had a sudden burst of creative mojo. It’s been a bit rare at the moment which is a bit sad, so I did a quick scrapbook page to tide me over:

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Nothing fancy but it felt nice to create 😊

{DIY} Baby Shower Invites & Poem

Baby shower planning is such fun. Last week I printed off the invitations for my friends upcoming baby shower, which I am hosting!! I love party planning. It is one of my favourite things.

We had our first shopping trip on Friday and purchased a few items for the day, like the token giant baby bottle for the lolly guessing game. Some blue yarn for the belly measurement guessing game and a few other bits and pieces.

She has a stack of little cardboard favour boxes left over from their wedding, so during our shopping trip we decided to have a lolly buffet that guests can fill their boxes up from. So a few pretty shaped bottles and vases made their way into our trolley. Gotta love discount stores.

Initially the plan was simple – blue and white. No specific theme. However on Friday my friend decided she wanted to throw in a jungle theme too. All good. The invites are not jungle themed but if we keep with blue and white and mix in some monkeys, giraffes and elephants, it’s no biggie! Their nursery is jungle theme.

As everyone who knows me is well aware, I can’t hold a function without a special theme or event thrown in. For this baby shower, it’s asking each guest to bring an item of clothing that represents their friendship with mummy-to-be. It is kept unwrapped and placed in a bag on arrival. The mummy then has to guess who might have brought each item. A bit of a laugh. While I can’t reveal on here in case she reads this before August, my outfit is perfect for me to give. She will laugh and know straight away.

The challenge was then finding a poem to go with the invites for the game. Could not find one anywhere online. I wrote a dodgy one and the person assisting in the shower is a teacher who made it far more awesome and rhyme-y.

How fabulous do the invites and extra inserts look (although I had the wrong lens on so a bit out of focus). I kept them simple and you can purchase a customisable version in my Etsy store. I can make them any colour instead of blue too.
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The insert poem is:

For Kelly’s baby to be well dressed,

An item of clothing we do request.

Of many sizes you could choose,

Something that represents you & Kelly too.

Keep the clothing unwrapped and unmarked,

We’ll make it a game – a special task.

Who gave the clothing Kelly will guess,,

See if she will pass the test!

SAASAS

I printed them all at home from my Epson printer, which is nothing fancy but reasonable for photos due to my scrapbooking hobby. For the textured card I used Becky Higgins 4 X 6 White Cards. They were perfect. I love the look of the rounded corners for that extra little something.

They also come in a 3×4 size, however for the inserts I simply created a template with 2 per card and cut them in half with my paper trimmer, then rounded off the 2 straight corners with my Project Life Corner Rounder
.At least then I know it will match since it’s the same company, but any corner rounder would do the job.

These will now be turning up in lots of letter boxes soon as my friend is inviting around 50 ladies to her day. So many people! But it will be a blast. I will share more closer to the event, including lots of photos from the day.

{DIY} Whiteboard Calendar & Planner

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When life gets extra busy, sometimes the best solution is a really BIG reminder!

With university kicking off for me once more next week, after 8 years of being uni-free, I know getting organised is a must. Like not just a little bit organised like I may have been back in my teens as a first time uni student, as I was a pretty lazy student, but as in really organised. To the second almost at times, since I will now be juggling part time work and motherhood alongside my studies.

I decided I needed a really huge calendar that is re-useable and on my wall. With that in mind, this quick half hour project was born. Sure you can buy pre-printed whiteboard calendars, but about 3-5 times the price. I don’t want to spend $80+ for something I can create.

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All you need is:

  • Whiteboard – as big as you want, to suit your needs
  • Whiteboard markers
  • Permanent marker
  • Ruler

With my uni semesters being approximately 4 months each, I wanted something relatively big although decided the size I got would suit 3 decent sized monthly sections. That’s okay as I can erase and re-write every 3 months to fit the next phase in. That’s the beauty of a whiteboard.

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Start with wipe off whiteboard marker

Decide on how you want to lay out your calendar. I would suggest marking up in whiteboard marker initially, to make sure you are happy with your design. Use a ruler to measure out your lines and sections.

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Rule up where you want your lines

Once you are happy with your design, draw up your lines in a permanent marker. Be mindful that drawing directly over existing whiteboard marker will stop your lines from being permanent. Whiteboard marker erases permanent marker. Good tip to know if you make a mistake. So after you’ve done your initial design, maybe just use dots to mark everything up.

Once your permanent lines are up, use a whiteboard eraser or a cloth to wipe off any existing whiteboard marker.

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Permanent marker

Everything else you can do in whiteboard marker so you can erase and change the dates, months and entries to suit your needs.

Initially I had a 7 day calendar drawn up but decided I really only needed 5 day weeks since uni assessments are never due on weekends. Instead I created a dates to remember section down the side of each month where the other 2 days would be. Up to you what works best for your needs.

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Then just add in your important dates

And there you have it… a massive calendar organiser you can use all year round and year after year!

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All set up on the wall of my messy office

I am slowly on my way towards an organised and simplified life.

Digital Project Life Catch Up

With my uni studies set to kick off in less than 2 weeks now, I have found myself full of motivation to get organised beforehand. This time round, it will be nothing like studying as a fresh out of high school teen, with no responsibilities. Back then I was living with my folks, not working, or at least not frequently, with no bills or kids to worry about.

Whole different world this time around. I get to throw study into the mix of motherhood, part time work, running a small business, blogging and scrapbooking. Yep, I’m going to be busy.

Which means making the most of this pre-study period. I have a to do list… of course! And have spent the past few days decluttering like mad. I have several massive boxes of stuff to get rid of which is very cleansing for my hoarding ways. My home office/craft room has a floor. And some desk space. Still a way to go but it’s better than it has been in years. My dining room has almost become a dining room again instead of a sewing room.

I’m also trying to tick off some of my creative projects now while there’s time too. Playing serious catch up on project life as I’m still a month behind. And hopefully I can have a mega scrap session in the next week to create some projects for my scrapbooking design team commitments for the next month or two. Every little bit helps!

But enough about all that. I thought I would share my latest 3 weeks worth of project life covering from the end of April til mid May. The rest of the album for this year is here.

{DIY} Scrap Buster Cards & Other Useful Ways To Use Your Scraps

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I’ve mentioned before that I have a wee bit of a hoarding problem. In fact, I’ve confessed this quite openly just recently. My hoarding extends to many things. Some useful… some far from it.

One of the items to do hoard is scraps of scrapbooking paper. I have an Ikea expedit cube full of scraps and offcuts from the scrapbooking pages and cards I have made over the past several years. Yet I’ve probably opened this cube maybe 2-3 times to actually find supplies, as compared to the hundred times I’ve opened it to hoard another scrap or 5.

Enough! It was time to act on the scraps. And here is the perfect solution – HANDMADE CARDS

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Cards only require small pieces of patterned paper and I’ve always considered it such a waste to throw reasonable sized pieces out so putting 2 and 2 together, my hoarding does have use.

It also makes me feel better about the more than $1 spent on each piece of paper on average over the years and often not using the whole sheet. So it’s a thrifty method as well.

Materials:

  • Blank cards or cardstock
  • Scissors/cutting tools
  • Adhesive
  • Embellishments
  • Paper scraps

Here are some of my most recent scrap buster cards:

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You can make cards with a special occasion in mind, future events or generic themed cards you can use for last minute occasions. I like to keep a variety of all occasion cards on hand in case I haven’t the time to create one. Saves buying an over priced store brought card.

You can find a stack of inspiration on Pinterest for cards if you are stuck. It’s always my go to place for inspiration for anything.

And here are a few other stash buster tips:

Make a card or two out of scraps immediately after finishing a scrapbook layout – this means they don’t end up in the scrap box and you’ve just created a couple of projects in just a few minutes more.

Use them for kids craft – let your kids have fun with your scraps by giving them paper, a glue stick and scissors (depending on age) and let them make you a masterpiece. Keeps them entertained for hours which is an extra bonus.

Donate them – local schools, parents with kids, local craft groups. Ask around. You never know who might jump at the chance to make something wonderful out of your unwanted scraps.

Don’t limit yourself to just cards – sometimes scraps are all you need to finish off the next project you are working on, whether it be a scrapbook layout, Christmas tags, or an off the page mixed media project, remember to check the scrap box. Saves cutting up another piece of paper sometimes.

Looking for more ways to declutter in your home? Here’s some.

 

{DIY} Digital Baby Shower Invitation

My friend, who’s wedding album I finally finished recently is currently expecting. So exciting!

She has been kind enough to plan both my bridal shower and my baby shower over the past several years, and as she had a ‘surprise’ wedding, I finally get the chance to plan an event on her behalf.

She is due late October and we have been holding off on the baby shower planning until she had her gender scan, which was just last week.

It’s a boy!

So now I have full creative reign on her baby shower and ecstatic. Another friend is helping out also, however with a much younger bub, I am taking on more of the organising. It’s a role I’m a natural at. Event organising that is… not so much house or desk organisation…

Ever since my discovery of project life and dabbling in digital project life and scrapbooking, I have been having a bit of fun creating a few of my own digital supplies, such as invitation templates and project life templates. It’s a whole lot of fun and it is a lot cheaper than handmade invitations for events… which has always been a love of mine also!

Here is the invitation for the baby shower (with fake details of course). A nice simple design and colour scheme.

Kelly baby shower sample

I’ve listed this template in my Etsy store, along with a couple of other digital invitation templates available for customisation and purchase.

It does still amuse me at the fact that I was once so certain I would never give up handmade invitations or change to digital scrapbooking. Now I’ve done both and I get a whole lot of enjoyment out of digital creating also. My favourite part – no mess! 

Do you have any great baby shower ideas to share? I’d love to hear them.