Monday, July 30, 2007

It's self promotion time!!

Hey everyone, I want to invite you to come and check out my new store at CafePress. You can find all sorts of super cool Lotus Paperie logo apparel and home decor! My personal favorites are the hoodie and the wall clock. Go to the link above and browse the store for yourself! Also, if you want to purchase a product that you don't see just email me and let me know so that I can add it to the store. I hope to see all of you sporting your Lotus Paperie threads...spread the word!

August Page Kit

So here it is...August's page kit is loaded with Basic Grey "Fusion" papers. It's rather girly, I know but the prints are more versatile than you might anticipate considering that floral. However, there are two great elements to this kit that get me really excited and I hope they do for you too!! In the lower left portion of the image above you can see some beautiful Celtic knots. Those are the latest and greatest from Maya Road. They were generously donated to our monthly kits. They are AMAZING!!! Also, there's some yummy green velvet rickrack which is another Maya Road product. The alphabet stickers are Thickers by American Crafts. They are my current favorite alphabet product.
In this month's kit you will receive one of each of the five prints shown above, two each of three cardstocks, one yard of each the green velvet rick rack and burgundy grosgrain ribbon, one pack of black "smoothie" thickers, prima flowers in monochromatic variations of both burgundy and peach, navy buttons and two pieces of the Maya Road chipboard.
As an added incentive to purchase this kit, the lucky ones who are the first to place their order will receive (at random and totally FREE) one of the following while supplies last.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

You gotta check back tomorrow...

because I'll be posting the new page kit for August. You can expect to see Basic Grey and some KILLER Maya Road chipboard. I won't say anything else now but in the morning as I sip my ritual coffee, I'll be posting the new kit for your summertime scrapping enjoyment. That's it for now.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

I need to vent...

I am having one of those days where I'm being forced to accommodate someone else's unreasonable, unrelenting request. It makes me MAD!!! I do not respond well to bullying and I am on the receiving end of it today. I won't say exactly who has committed this offense against me, but I will say that it is rude, ignorant and unreasonable. I can't stand being disrespected, I really dislike trying to communicate with people who speak on top of my words and get immeasurably frustrated when I know I'm not being heard. I like to think I'm a fairly adept and skilled communicator (albeit impatient occasionally when frustrated) but the phonecall that I engaged in today tempted me to use foul language and curse words with someone whom I have a business relationship with...I reluctantly resisted the urge. Who knows what I aim to accomplish with this post other than getting the altercation out of my head but I know that I was NOT in the wrong. I have the right to say "no" and that right was not respected. 'nuff said.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Macro bees

For my birthday back in March, Ray bought me a really fun Macro lens. I use it so much for photographing details for scrapbooking but every now and then I still go out and shoot flowers and bugs. This is a few from my garden yesterday evening. It was really for no good reason that I was taking these pictures...just for practice.

Challenge 30

Hey everyone! It's that time of the week again and I have a great, easy page for you. I chose to vary my interpretation of the accents in the top left quadrant but you know how it goes...these page sketches are just a starting point and the end result just needs to reflect your style and ultimately showcase your photos. This is my page. You can see how I rearranged the circles from the top left. Feel free to make the same sort of changes on your own pages.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

fortune cookies in Cumberland

Last night was the second session of a once-a-month ladies photography group called Chicks who click. We worked on a few important principles like lighting, depth of field and the rule of thirds. We were given three fortune cookies and were sent out within a two block radius to photograph them creatively. Luckily, Cumberland has no shortage of cool architecture and dynamite colors available. I shot something like 126 frames...of cookies! Crazy, I know but it was a great exercise.
who knew you could photograph fortune cookies so many interesting ways. I'm pleased with what I learned yesterday.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Finally...some sun!

Well, today Ray and Noah headed out for their road trip to Whitehorse. They left mid morning and have journeyed as far as Cache Creek. They will camp out in the back of the pickup truck on the side of the road roasting wieners over a campfire and roughing it like a couple of bachelors. I think it will be a very memorable adventure for my boys. Betcha there'll be some serious man-bonding on that trip!

As for me, well, I found myself taking pictures of kids at the petting zoo. Seth was beside himself over the goats, pigs and baby cow. The photo above is Ana Rose (Shannon's youngest daughter). She is quite OK with being arranged for photographs. You could say she's embraced her inner diva! There were many other great photos of Shannon's other kids. This one (below) is Anthony, her oldest son grabbing a little tap juice.

The little boys (Seth and Liam...who are partners in crime since babyhood) promptly followed suit...
It was such a fun day at Filberg park. The kids had a blast and I got more photos to scrap...what else is new!

Monday, July 23, 2007

It's not mojitos & BBQ but...

hangin' with friends in their back yard enjoying a little freedom from the kidlets while sipping a little Yellowtail Shiraz (snacking on mini chocolate chip cookies I might add) is still a really great way to finish the day. Ray & I headed to my pal Jo's place to lend her my Macro lens and her husband took advantage of a little fence-post-digging-reprieve. Her husband, Kyle graciously dusted off the wine glasses and cracked a bottle of wine for us to sip on in the back yard. It was so great to just accept the offer of a little adult socialization knowing that my other pal, Shannon was holding her own at home with 8 kids stacked three deep in the bedrooms and not taking my jail-break personally!

Ray is heading up to Whitehorse tomorrow with Noah and Seth and I are flying out next tuesday. I really liked spending some time with him tonight, even if it was running errands to the video store and the supermarket. Maybe one of these days while Shannon is here, I'll get out the camera and snap a few pics. Guess I'll post some pages in the next day or two too!!

Happy monday!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

We love Becky Fleck

This is the one, the only, the PageMaps master, Becky Fleck. I have to tell ya, I got an email from her this morning and her sincere compliments of the pages that I've made using her sketches TOTALLY made my day! She is a massively talented inspirational designer and we are all so very lucky that she shares her artwork with the world. So let's tip our hats in gratitude to Becky Fleck. Without her, many of my photos (and yours too, I bet) would still be in piles!

Here's the email

Hi Vanessa,

Thank you for your email and the link to your blog. I love what you’ve done with some of the PageMaps sketches! I hope you continue to find PageMaps a useful resource for your scrapbooking.

Have a great day!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Weekends are so lovely

Last night was so much fun! I had my pals Karen McKinnon and Sue Pyper over for mojitos and BBQ. What a good time!! I tell ya, Sue is so dang hilarious and Karen (who has mastered the art of rockstar-cool) added such a great element to a fun and relaxed evening. We sat around the kitchen drinking mojitos (made with mint from my garden) and snacking on fresh fruit and yummy homemade guacamole. My darling husband did the BBQing, which made my hostessing duties way more laid-back. After dinner, the girls and I retreated to my studio for a little show-n-tell which I love because I think my studio is one of the best places on earth. Everyone ended the evening full of yummy food and inspiration. I, however, was left to finish the pitcher of mojitos all by myself...bummer!

Sadly, there was no scrapping for me today but there was a moving company here giving us a quote for our move to Whitehorse. I can't wait to relocate. I love the challenge of building a new network and re-establishing my business presence in a new community. Hopefully the move will only have a minimal impact on the design team and my incoming shipments.

Well, there's a chilly beer sitting over yonder beside my sock that I'm knitting (Whitehorse is cold after all) so I will depart for now and return perhaps tomorrow with some new and exciting updates from the life of a hopelessly addicted scrapper.


Friday, July 20, 2007

Happy Friday! Challenge 29

It seems like this past week zipped by in a flash! I can't get over how much faster time passes when you're an adult. Remember how when you were a kid and it seemed like things took forever to happen...Christmas took forever to come (now it seems each year one Christmas starts as soon as the last one ends), Birthdays took forever to come (now some of us try to ignore the fact that birthdays keep insisting on happening), and summer holidays used to feel like they were way too short (now it's like the long weekend that just WON'T END!!!)

I have been really enjoying having the summer off from my teaching jobs and have been getting caught up on my personal scrapping. My 2007 album is already a good 60 pages long. I don't know about you, but I find these weekly sketches facilitate a certain productivity that I haven't seen in myself before. It feels so good to not have that looming feeling of falling behind in my scrapping, which always seems to make it feel more like work and less like fun.

So here's my very late version of last Friday's sketch...

and for those who are better at avoiding falling behind, here's the sketch for this week

Thankfully, this is a much much simpler sketch so everyone can breathe a sigh of relief over this one. I actually made that page last Friday, but only managed to have my urge to photograph coincide with cooperative weather. I also had a chance to photograph the pages that I made last night and this morning...I'll have the page for today's sketch ready at some point. I'll post it later. Remember, I love to hear your opinions and feedback. It makes me feel great knowing that other scrappers out in cyberspace like what I'm doing!!

This is my friend, Michelle's back yard. She's my second mom and my boys call her Nanny like her granddaughters do. She has known me since I was five and has the most blackmail material on me out of anyone on the planet!!

These photos were taken when we went camping at Kin Beach Provincial Park a couple of weeks ago. My best friend Shannon is on her way here for about a week's stay with her six kids. We're all headed out for four nights of camping back at Kin Beach. Maybe there'll be photos of me this time!

This was one of my funnest memories (yes, I realize funnest is NOT a word but in my opinion, it should be) The swings at Kin beach are amazing. The chains are crazy long and they go SO high! It was like being a kid again.

My darling Noah is truly a gameboy junkie. You sit that kid down with that thing and he teleports himself to another realm. It's a place where he can't hear what anyone is saying to him till about the third or fourth time and he always says he needs more time. Funny how only four years ago he'd never even played a video game, now he's right on par with every other kid his age. Such a good lookin' boy with those beautiful blue eyes.

And last but not least, here's a great action shot of Noah and his pal Maya goofing off at the waterpark in Courtenay. Maya has known Noah since he was born and she comes up from Victoria all the time to hang out with Nanny (yup, that's the Nanny I mentioned earlier). They always get on like a house on fire! You'd hardly know there's almost three years between them! Gotta love that childhood liveliness.

So that's what I've been up to. I wanna know more about your projects so let's see 'em!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Summer lends so well to...

doing copious amounts of nothing on some days and reading all the books I've hoarded throughout the year on other days. I finished "The Birth House" and it was amazing. I read it so fast! I was literally consumed by the characters and the evolution of their lives. I'm always riveted by a well-written tale of a woman's right to choose what she wants for her body, birth and baby. Now, I'm almost done another book called The Knitting Circle which has engulfed me equally. It's a story of the healing journey of a mother who has lost her young daughter to meningitis and the relationships she develops throughout that process. Sounds dark and grim, but it is surprisingly light and easy to read. Trust me, I read 3/4 of the book in one day!

On a slightly more creative and lighthearted note, I received a few boxes of wonderful things yesterday that I invite any of you who need some new scrap supplies to c'mon over and take a look. I have a few Cricut blades and cutting mats, lots of Thickers (which I love) in black & white, and HEAPS of Maya Road chipboard and mini albums!!! You have GOT to see these little flower books, they are the cutest thing EVER!!! I also have a bunch of new ribbons also from Maya Road. There are still a few kits left from Daisy D's (family, mother and baby boy) and a few sampler packs of the Beacon Hill paper collection. Just drop me an email or give a call to make sure we're around to help ya (for those of you who don't know, the store is in my home and accessible by appointment)

Hope your week is rolling along easily and that you have a marvelous day!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Challenge 28

Good morning everyone!!
Last night, as I was posting my most recent slide show, I took a minute to check out which sketch had been picked for today's challenge. I have to confess, I panicked a little and actually considered changing it to an easier one, but then the point is to be "CHALLENGED", right?? So here you go, the sketch utilizes 11 photos, but you can make all kinds of modifications. For example, see how in the series of 2x2's there's one photo cropped to 2x4?? Do that for other horizontal or vertical images if you don't have that quantity of small photos. For the big 6x12 you can upload a vertical image file to Walmart's photo center and have it printed 8x12 and crop out the width or you can stack three 4x6's to achieve the same measurement. I'm not sure how I'm gonna scrap this one, I might have to go out and take the pics for this page...

Thursday, July 12, 2007


I have been scrapping like CRAZY...despite the heat. I love making this kind of progress!! I still have a giant pile of photos to deal with but making this kind of dent in the heap is promising...

Sketch coming tomorrow...

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


So for the Chicks Who Click group with Karen McKinnon, we were given our assignment for the month. We were told to photograph something that embodies "solace". I was totally stuck and after a walk around the Courtenay Airpark with my pal, Jo who's also in the photo class, she made a suggestion that got my mind working and my creative juices flowing. Here's the two that I'm down to. They are both totally different but equally effective.
This one (below) was Jo's suggestion.
We have to bring one 4x6 with us to the next group night. I think I'll bring both.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Sketch Me if You Can

I was snooping through some of Tania's links earlier today and found a DYNAMITE resource for sketches. As you all know, I'm a hardcore sketch addict and can't get enough of great sketches. Given my recent acquisition of a Fuji S2 Digital SLR and two very fun lenses, I have been taking a shocking quantity of photos, but despite this, I'm editing them very heavily and finding that I'm left with one or two images that work together and let me tell you how challenging it can be to make a single photo layout look different after the first twenty or thirty goes at scrapping just one image! When I found Sketch Me if You Can and I explored designer Chris Greiser's single photo layout sketches...I was energized and totally inspired. Go see for yourself. If you want to get to know this very talented designer and her scrapping style go here to get a closer look at her scrapping MOJO!!

Chris has also graciously given us the total go-ahead to use her rockin' sketches for the design team...better be watching, they'll be coming up pretty soon.

Now, I'm going to skip scrapping for tonight and begin reading a book I got during Birthday Week called The Birth House. I can't wait to get started so....

Sunday, July 8, 2007

How 'bout a sketch???

I bet having the actual sketch for this week might make life easier, hey?? How 'bout this...

Challenge 27 (Birthday Blessings & Hush)

So this page (above) is the coordinating page for the one below. The one below is made using the sketch. I love the birthday candles...they are the actual ones on the cake. It was great this year. I asked Seth what he wanted on his birthday cake and he said he wanted Toopy and Binoo. We LOVE Toopy and Binoo!!
This page (below) was made from the sketch too, in an effort to get a little more caught up on old Noah photos. I wish there had been more decent photos taken when Noah was small. Good thing we're making up for that now.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Just a quick note...

I'm heading off for a little family camping trip. We're headed off to Kin Beach so this week's challenge will be a little late. Watch for it Sunday!! Enjoy your weekend...


Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Moment of silence for dead card-reader

It's always a state of crisis when an electronics device stops working (without warning). I blew an hour trying to get my card reader to work today so that I could post my page from the Seth photo. So after feelin' the love at London Drugs, I have now been home and retrieved my images, edited them and am thrilled to be posting.

For this page, I decided to try and incorporate the OLW page challenges. This one shows the "MY" word. I can't take credit for the layout though, it was a big fat scraplift from a page I saw in Creating Keepsakes. It's a pretty great page. I've been a big scraplifter lately. It's faster than inventing layouts. Call me lazy, I say efficient!!

This page was created from a sketch by the fabulous Becky Fleck. We love Becky Fleck!!
And last but not least, a page honoring my husband and one of his many "blue" skills (that is, instead of "pink") He is indispensable for many reasons. His car fix-it skills are high on the list of what makes him FANTASTIC!!

Monday, July 2, 2007

baking late at night...

Sometimes, some projects are best left to the daytime. Baking bread, it would seem, is one of those things. My husband loves my homemade multigrain bread and today I forgot to make a loaf so when I put Seth to bed, I put the ingredients in the breadmaker (what?? did you think I actually did the kneading by hand?!?!) on the dough setting, set the oven timer to two hours and forgot about it till it beeped at me. I watched a little TV, read a few chapters in the book Inkheart to Noah, chatted on the phone and got the bread out of the breadmaker when it beeped. I put the dough in the pan to rise and walked away...forgetting all about it. I also forgot to preheat the oven (the heat from which helps the dough to rise) and just now, at 11:41pm realized that I have yet to bake the bread for a half hour. UGH! So even though I'm ready for bed, I can't go there or else I will have wasted my bread dough and Ray will not have bread to make his lunch with. So in an attempt to spread happiness rather than my sour-puss mood, I'll share this cute photo of Seth. Watch tomorrow for the page that I did with it.

This is in Nanny's back yard this past Saturday. SO CUTE!!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

something else...just for fun

These photos are so cute! (Thanks Karen!) I love this SEI Doodley Doo boy paper. I especially like the quirky leaves on the journaling block sticker so I drew a few of my own on the left and right borders of the cardstock base using regular old pencil crayons. I guess I've been feeling inspired to get caught up on my personal scrapping...It's a very good feeling.


Chocolate goatee

This is an entirely random non-sketch-related layout. I had this incredible series of photos showing Seth taking on his first drumstick cone. Of course, it had to be chocolate for maximum impact. The best part of this layout is that all the print paper is ALL scraps. Gotta love those buttons.

Challenge 26 - Noah's Super Powers

I love these photos of Noah in Victoria's Inner Harbour. Our family went on a little weekend trip to the Royal BC Museum to see the Titanic exhibit. It was soooooooooo cool.
Today, we're off to the Canada Day Parade so I'm sure I'll have a whole new crop of photos to deal with.
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