Tuesday, January 29, 2013

good blog reads

i have a pretty serious blog addiction.  g and i are home sick today with this random cough intermittent fever thing, so i can't think of anything else profound to say about my blog addiction.  here are some of my favorite reads this month should you care to share my addiction with me:

words of wisdom on growing and growing older . . .

thoughts on kindergarten - "what i want them to know" from tails from the maxxy pad
thoughts on twelve year olds - "the first dozen" from soulemama
thoughts on turning forty - "forty" from snapshots of a good life

crafty shares . . .

i'd love to do some of these stitch tutorials - "take a stitch tuesday" from pintangle
a good stamping trick - "cardmaking with crowned bunnies" from notes on paper
rebecca sower papercrafting again - "designs from a decade ago" from life by hand

photography . . .

lighting - "how i made the shot (natural reflectors)" from snapshots of a good life
i plan on doing this - "aleida's challenge" from pluckymomo (thanks steph!)

well-crafted words . . .

an autobiography i want to read - "lessons in grace, and audrey" from scrapologie
one of my latest addictions - "an eye for the peculiar" from blank ink paperie

Sunday, January 27, 2013

jbs mercantile january peek!

this is a little layout about one of my favorite childhood memories.  i was forever picking flowers and it didn't matter what size.  even these teeny tiny things fascinated me.

the journaling reads, "uncle gus thought it was so odd that i was taking a pic of these weeds, but i just love them so.  they captured my imagination as a child.  their teeny tiny crown of flowers on a flower was a little miracle, surely fit for a fairy garden.  seeing them always sends me back to my carefree days of childhood and never ending bouquets."

be sure to check the jbs blog for more details on the kit contents and how to still take advantage of our great january promo!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

b&w stories: his favorite photo circa 1935

whenever i've looked at my dad's old photo album he's always smiled and said this photo is his favorite.  it really is way too adorable.  the bright eyes are so engaging.  dad's smile is so open and friendly while burt looks a bit hesitant.  i wonder if grandma made their clothes (she made quite a few for me as a kid).  is that mickey on dad's socks?  and aren't burt's little mary janes (i'm sure they must not have called boys' shoes mary janes) too much?

photos tell different stories to different people.  my dad lived the stories that his photos tell, so they inspire in him much different thoughts than they do for me.  in this one he was four and his brother burt was two.  the year was 1935, six years after the stock market crashed.  dad's older three siblings had all been born before the great depression (bob would have been about 16 at his time, nada 14, and dick maybe 13).  there was also a newborn, donnie, who was in the picture at the time, just not in this particular one.  dad says he and his sister nada were the primary caregivers for the two youngest boys.  after donnie (baby #6) was born, grandma suffered from post-partum depression (did they even know what that was back then?) and everything went to pot.  prior to the stock market crash (and the births of the last 3 kids), the family had lived comfortably.  grandma was raised by a wealthy aunt and uncle who had gotten some money from oil wells and lived in the city.  grandpa helped run the family business, a butcher's shop and grocery.  my dad says the depression hit everyone hard.  his family lost everything except the land they owned and most of that had to be sold off.  grandpa moved 16 miles away to the country.  he helped run a slaughterhouse there and in the summers ran a painting business, mostly stenciling on water towers and other high up places.  grandma eventually left the family and moved to florida (they were from indiana).  in april before he turned 16, dad went to live with her and work with his two older brothers after they came home from world war 2.  at just 15 he bought an $18 greyhound ticket with his own money and boarded the bus to florida alone.  he had saved the $18 binding hay bales over a couple summers.  he'd ride on the baler tying wire at a penny a bale.  he said they'd do close to a thousand bales a day.  before that, at around age 11, he'd started working in a hatchery next door.  the place was short staffed during the war, so he helped hatch the baby chicks.

all this from an old black and white photo of two sweet little boys . . .

uncle burt passed away last year.  when we found out he was in hospice care, i had all these old photos scanned into my computer and was able to send several to his case manager so she could print them out for him.  he and my dad had several nice conversations reminiscing over them.

Friday, January 25, 2013

jbs mercantile: family portrait

good morning!  we got a snow day!  woot!  it's only raining, but i'll take a 3 day weekend for sure!  especially after our last one was ruined.  now if the temps would just get above freezing so i can run get my morning coke . . .

this is another layout i created for the old photos seminar at masterful scrapbook design.  i'm the little blondie bottom right.  don't you just adore the 70s vibe.  i have a horrible memory for remembering moments, especially those frommy childhood, but i do remember snippets of this one.  like the photographer trying to make my brother and i laugh.  and getting dressed to go and realizing something big was about to happen bc even my dad had to dress up.  and on a side note, you just can't beat vintage bits from jenni to make a layout special.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


friends!  i'm almost done posting that backlog or unposted layouts!  can you believe it?  are you relieved?  this one totally makes me laugh.  i mean, look at those two girls squaring off.  the kitties haven't quite adjusted to the new neighborhood yet and meeting the neighbors can be a bit intimidating, yes?

this was for my november gallery at jbs mercantile.  i really loved working with red/black extension five and all the extras jenni pulled together that month.  the antiquarian kit (sold out) really makes this layout.  it just all makes me giggle whether anyone else gets it or not.  the girl meets girl merger.  the pen nibs that look like cat claws.  the striped bag and architectural postcard that mimic the shadows in the photo.  the milk caps, knowing my chichi is lactose intolerant.  the filmstrips.  hey you.  snort.  classic.  i love a layout that makes me laugh.  

haiku 123

serenely she lies
bathing in silent sunbeams
dirt does not becken

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

masterful scrapbook design: dora the explorer

this was an assignment for the old photos seminar at masterful scrapbook design.  i used three photos from three different times in my life to tell the story of my name.  the first photo is me as a little girl sitting with the woman i was named after and her daughter, also named doris.  the second photo points to a "chicken bus" in guatemala and the journaling refers to how prevalent my name was for those colorful buses.  and the third photo is me and the gman in his toddler years.  all his little friends called me "dora" back then.  so cute.

i really like scattering my journaling across different areas of the layout, especially in a situation like this when i'm journaling about different aspects of the same topic.  it's just easier for me on many levels.

this layout was made for the october gallery at jbs.  it's mostly the october artisan add-on, which might be one of the last places to find those kraft flag tags.

drum roll please . . . i'm doing project life!

you're shocked i know.  believe me, i am too.  in private convos i have fondly been referring to pl as the pia album.  i vowed i would never do it.  i just knew my ocd tendencies couldn't handle it.  and let's face it.  i'm way too lazy to mess with it.  i thought i was anyway.  i got the itch to give it a try back in september.  i bought one of those 6x9 portfolio albums with the divided inserts and covertly tried messing around with all those little slots for 3 hours one sunday afternoon.  i hated it every bit as much as i thought i would.  yuck.

but you know i do so love elise blaha cripe.  and her seafoam edition is so pretty.  i contemplated buying it to scrapbook with, but you get oh so many cards and i couldn't imagine using them all.  maybe just the extra paper pack then?  i was living in pl purchasing limbo.  but then a little birdie gifted me with the set and a selection of 12x12 slotted pages and well, it's kinda funny actually, but i appear to be doing it.  i just may have entered the ranks of the project lifers.  what is the difference this go round?  maybe the coordinated set gave me a jumping off point so it was less intimidating to get started?  possibly size does matter?  maybe i just needed a lesson in perseverance?  who knows!  but i think i might actually like it.  i think i might actually do it.  for real.  i'll keep you posted.

details on my cover page:  all three photos are instagram (i'm dorissander if you want to look me up).  the three aqua cards are from elise's seafoam core kit.  the arrow (really an upside down house with the chimney cut off), heart, and house are maya road from my december jbs mercantile artisan add-on.  they're all embossed with ac zing embossing powders.  i was embossing happy that day.  the gold dotted vellum is dear lizzy.  that picture behind it is the one that is in that spot when you open the album to the first spread.  i was going to leave the window clear to see through it, but i didn't like how the flip side looked, so i double printed the photo and put it in both spots.  cheater!  the cutie paper bottom left is amy tan.  the little stickers (cosmo cricket) by the mailbox read, "live in a way to make happy memories."  oh!  and how cool is it that my new house number is 1302 and the year is 2013?!  way!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

lunchbox love

i made a set of lunchbox cards to send to school with g this week.  one per day (hooray for a no school monday!).  i got the idea from that octopus card on the right one.  it came in a pack of lunchbox cards i bought from the dollar spot at target. i had every intention of just sending those, but you know me.  one thought lead to another and before i knew it i was making custom lunchbox cards.  i like them a lot.  the front of each card has a trivia question either related to something g is currently interested in (like coal, believe it or not) or something he needs to study like math skills and missed benchmark questions (import vs export).

the question is on one side and the answer(s) on the other.  they are aligned here so the left card in the first image is the flip of the left card in the second image.  same with the next set below.

these were all made with my december jbs mercantile papercrafting kits (main and artisan still available) and a vintage map from my stash.  (goodness i hope we get a snow day soon!).

my absolute favorite part is the times tables.  aren't those peekaboo windows the cutest?  and they were seriously quick to make with my exacto knife.  i definitely plan on making more soon!  my baby needs major help with the 6s, 7s, and 8s!

g's bookshelf: a series of unfortunate events - the wide window

i have said it before and i will say it again.  these books are an absolute delight to read aloud.  i wish i could take a class from lemony snicket.  i want to know how he does it!  when i'm reading his books to gabriel i feel like i truly am the narrator of these tragic tales.

here, you try . . .


"oh, i could never sell this house," aunt josephine said.  "i'm terrified of realtors."

the three baudelaire youngsters looked at one another surreptitiously, a word here which means, "while aunt josephine wasn't looking."  none of them had ever heard of a person who was frightened of realtors.

there are two kinds of fears: rational and irrational -- or, in simpler terms, fears that make sense and fears that don't.  for instance, the baudelaire orphans have a fear of count olaf, which makes perfect sense, because he is an evil man who wants to destroy them.  but if they were afraid of lemon meringue pie, this would be an irrational fear, because lemon meringue pie is delicious and has never hurt a soul.  being afraid of a monster under the bed is perfectly rational, because there may in fact be a monster under your bed at any time, ready to eat you all up, but a fear of realtors is an irrational fear.  realtors, as i'm sure you know, are people who assist you in the buying and selling of houses.  besides occasionally wearing an ugly yellow coat, the worst a realtor can do to you is show you a house that you find ugly, and so it is completely irrational to be terrified of them.

as violet, klaus, and sunny looked down at the dark lake and thought about their new lives with aunt josephine, they experienced a fear themselves, and even a worldwide expert on fear would have difficulty saying whether this was a rational fear or an irrational fear.  the baudelaires' fear was that misfortune would soon befall them.  on one hand, this was an irrational fear, because aunt josephine seemed like a good person, and count olaf was nowhere to be seen.  but on the other hand, the baudelaires had experienced so many terrible things that it seemed rational to think that another catastrophe was just around the corner.


hear what i mean?  it just flows.

here's what g had to say (spoiler alert):

i thought it was a good book, because the house was on the side of a mountain.  i thought it was kind of weird that she would swim in that lake even though there were a kind of leeches and i thought it was pretty cool that there was a certain territory for the leeches.  it was pretty weird that sunny bit that count's leg in two and that that cave was for sale.  it was cool that she was actually writing a message in the will, but she faked her death.  instead of her jumping out the window, she threw a stool through the window and then she ran out the door and to the cave.  it was pretty cool that they were on the boat and the leeches were trying to break in and the leeches were trying to make a little hole and klaus would get the net and throw them off.  i wonder if the creature there is a he or a she.  that's it.  (to me: you remember the creature there?  wondering if it were a he or a she?  that would actually be very rude).

Monday, January 21, 2013

get it scrapped!: life ain't fair, but we made lemonade!

how was your weekend?  mine started off fabulously as dear chelle came over and scrapbooked with me.  i wish she would come over more often as i am a social scrapper.  g would have preferred a playdate as well, but he very graciously settled for the purchase of the much requested minecraft for the computer.  turns out it was a good thing none of his little friends could come over friday as saturday morning around the 11 o'clock hour he fell victim to violent explosions of epic proportions from polar ends.  yes, sickness has been running rampant in our school system.  there was much cleaning and disinfecting of the floor and throne and i had to cancel my plans to see les mis.  les sigh.  and then g cried as we had to cancel his saturday playdate as well.  le sniff.  but then we made the best of it and played minecraft and scrappies in the craft room all afternoon and had homemade chicken noodle soup for dinner.

i was really thinking (hoping) it was a 24 hour bug as he felt fine all day other than the squirt factor.  but alas. at 3:00 am i awoke to the burp and lip smack that signals imminent disaster.  tuck and roll as 2 seconds later the eruption comes forth.  he's usually better about sitting up and spewing on the bedspread.  this time he just lay there and gushed.  straight through the sheets to the mattress below.  oyve.  get him in the shower, mop up the wettest part, sprinkle kitty litter deodorizer on the rest, drag the mattress from the room, blow up the air mattress, dirty sheets in the washer, new sheets on the bed, another notch on my mommy of the year bedpost.

i actually awoke again later that morning in a crazy awesome cleaning/organizing frenzy.  i got that mattress freshened, the shed cleared out and reorganized, the linen and utility closets under control, all the empty cardboard on the place broken down and ready for recycling, the kitchen and bathrooms cleaned, the rest of the pansies planted (i started that project back the first of november), and umpteen loads of laundry washed and folded (we don't believe in putting it away around here).  g's dad came over and made dinner and lemonade and i went to my happy place and began purging the scrappies.  wheee.

today g woke up healthy and hale.  we piddled for a bit then went to miss jenni's for a bit then picked up a couple friends for a playdate at our place (THANK GOODNESS!).  there has been much nerf gunning, hide and seeking, lego-ing, and general happiness.  now we are doing fraction homework (on a 3 day weekend, so not fair) and reheating the chicken noodle soup.  one more day sure would be nice, but there's no snowbird in sight.  ah well.  it's only a four day work week!

this layout was made for the article "ideas for scrapbook page embellishment clusters" at get it scrapped!  i loved working with these papers by allison kreft and was delighted to see that she has a new release out with webster's pages.  and i promise you the title font looks much cuter irl.  the letters are glittered foam.  i inked them to change the color and i guess the glitter catches the light weird when they're photographed.  ah well.

thank you dr. martin luther king jr.

i use this speech each year to teach rhetoric to my students.  and so much more . . .

Friday, January 18, 2013

haiku 118

plump plumed friend 
perched outside my wintry windowpane
fat looks good on you

i'm a bit enamored with word usage.  specifically saying more with less.  haiku are so fun to me, but according to this article, slightly more complicated than i thought.  i'm not sure i got it right, but i enjoyed the process.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

i am the victim of the procrastosaurus rex

yep.  that's me.  that poor innocent plant eater being devoured by the procrastosaurus rex.  oyve.  i would like to say that one day i'll learn, but no.  i'm stuck in a neverending groundhog's day.  just me and my procrastination.  but isn't this layout adorable?  i hoarded that fun piece of dino paper from g's baby years and finally actually used it.  wheee!

this layout was originally made for easy scrapbook pages.  you can find a bit more information on it and directions for recreating it HERE.

also, there are still a few spots left in the critique group that starts this week.  debbie's added a bonus class as well.  you can find more information HERE.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

pop culture week: blog loves

so i end my pop culture week midweek because i didn't stay on task last week and on a fickle note as i have a fickle nature apparently.  ok, no, really i don't have a fickle nature except as i relate to social media.  i may have gushed earlier in the year about how much i loved twitter.  i can't remember the last time i was on twitter.  now i love instagram.  ha.  are you with me?  (i'm dorissander there - oh so original).  (oh and i have no rebuttals on the staying on task bit - sadly tis true, too true).

but really this post is about my blog loves.  i still love blogs just as much as the day i discovered them and started blogging myself.  i don't remember when that was, but it was.  last year i posted my ten blog favorites.  i still love spending time with those women as often as they stop by (their blogs).  i thought i would share five more faves with you this year in hopes that you'd share a few of your faves with me.

a beautiful mess - this blog is just beautiful to look at.  i've loved it even more with the addition of elsie's sister to the mix.  tons of variety in post topics.  i'm not interested in everything, but it's all pretty and i like that.

stephanie howell - seeing those little girls' bright shining faces is always a joy.  i am just made happy for a minute with every smile shared.  i'm so thankful stephanie allows me to be blessed through her children.

ashley calder/things that shine - i was enamoured with ashley's poetic journaling back in the day.  and she's back!  with a vengeance and a love of all things golden and shiney!

notes on paper/julie kirk - i find julie absolutely delightful.  witty.  oh so witty.  i have love of a good dry wit.

elise blaha cripe - the epitome of eclectic style.  i've enjoyed her motivating nature.  she is such an inspiration.

i've found this year that i'm more drawn to lifestyle, general crafting, and such.  variety if you will.  i finally got my blog roll of favorites back up (it's over there to the right on my sidebar).  i've added several to lifestyle and added a new category, the eclectics.  these would be my current favorite style or reads, so if you have any faves to recommend, please leave me a comment as i'd love to check them out!

oh!  and the photo is completely unrelated, but oh so cute, yes?  :)

jbs mercantile - donkey kong vday edition!

i just posted donkey kong - the valentine's day edition over at the jbs mercantile message board.  there's a $25 gift card up for grabs just for making valentine's day treats.  come play with us!

i'll be using my january jbs mercantile kits because i'm in love with them.  there has never been a better kit anywhere ever.  amen.

Monday, January 14, 2013

jbs mercantile: january gallery updates

well, last i checked, there were only 4 papercrafting kits, 4 extra paper packs, and 1 artisan add-on left.  are you a jbs mercantile member?  these fabulous kits won't last long with all the amazing exclusives and them and the january special going on.  tick tock tick tock.  personally, i'm already anxious for the february kits as i can't wait to see what else lisa dickinson has up her sleeve and i've already seen the exclusive stamp and it's a must have.  if you haven't been the design team gallery for january updates, then enjoy!

this kit so has me in the mood for "heartfelt" crafting if you know what i mean.  check back tomorrow for a donkey kong valentine's day special challenge!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

pop culture week: rise of the guardians

disclaimer - i have yet to see les mis, so that will surely be my favorite movie in 2013.  i should also add here that i don't really remember what other movies i did see in 2012.  mostly kid flicks, i'm sure.

i know someone asked me if rise of the guardians was a risk if your kids still believe.  the answer is NO!  this movie is all about believing.  in fact, that's what i loved so much about it.  it leaves you with the deep thought of how very important it is to believe in something someone bigger than yourself.  and i'm not talking about just the bunny and the big man either.  it's important to believe.

the characterizations are simply charming.

and i will admit here that g and i were both covertly wiping tears at the end.  any movie that can make a 42 year old woman and a nine year old boy cry is surely good stuff.

if you didn't catch it in theaters over the holidays, then catch it on dvd when it comes out.  the bunny features prominently, so i'm betting it'll be released around eastertime.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

pop culture week: duck dynasty

i love this show.  i had a couple friends mention it to me midway through the first season.  i caught an episode and was immediately hooked.  i haven't watched a show consistently since g was born, so nine years of not caring if i watched tv or not.  this show, well, i frantically scrambled around online looking for missed episodes and have watched it religiously since.  and i harass my friends until they give it a looksee.

i adore these guys.  during the first season when i was so caught up in indoctrinating all my friends, i remember distinctly chatting about it with a couple coworkers on our planning period.  another teacher had brought some of his kids in for testing help while i was in there talking it up.  next thing i knew, ten high school boys are hanging on my every word and one reverently states, "that's the best show on television."

i appreciate a&e.  why?  for allowing these people to maintain their integrity and for giving americans something decent to watch on television.  yes, indeed, the men tend to screwballs and screwups most of the time.  the show is hilarious and they act stupid.  it is southern redneck to the core.  but these men never swear, they respect their wives, put family first, and each episode ends with a prayer around the dinner table.

hello waltons of the modern generation.  thank you for giving me an hour of television i am proud and glad to watch with my son every wednesday night.

Friday, January 11, 2013

12 on the 11th, not the 10th

i enjoy so much looking back over my layouts from the year to choose my favorites.  i love the looking back at the stories i've told.  it's like reminiscing with myself.  ha.  anyhoo.  this first one i haven't shared here on the old blog yet, but it did make an appearance in the october jbs mercantile gallery and more recently was seen in an article on multiple visual triangles at get it scrapped!

another unshared on the blog layout (only five unshared ones left, well, except for the two new ones i made for january gallery updates and haven't posted yet, lol.  i'm getting close to caught up!)  this one includes the jbs digital cut file that made me buy the cameo.  oh how i love that cut. this one's was also part of the on trend seminar at masterful scrapbook design.

and now on to the ones you've already seen here.  i had to include at least one layout with the infamous oversized yellow flowers.  i cut those flowers from a sheet of basic grey paper and used them on three layouts!  yes i did!  and i'm hoarding the fourth!  yes i am!  and who doesn't love a beach babe brawl?  these photos totally make me laugh.  so fun to be an aunty and photograph the fights instead of breaking them up.

you've seen this one recently.  love that i got this story written down.

another that makes me laugh.  hilarious vomit splat.  thanks for the great idea louise!

adorable.  makes me happy.

sweet.  love the layering and the story-telling, and the softness.

another great story (i get lost a lot).  and so delightful to use unrelated photos to tell that story.

seriously cute.  that's me on the left.  hee.

still in love with the washi tape on the photo technique and still in love with my baby.

this one was pinterest inspired.  really love the arty feel and the title treatment.

a meaningful moment.  i love that scrapbooking adds so much emotion and meaning to the words and pictures.

so there we go.  2012 in review.  per usual, i am all over the place.  i think i used a bit more patterned paper this year?  i do see a penchant for using sentence length titles and older photos.  and perhaps i leaned a little toward soft blues, greens, and yellows.  but the chameleon scrapper is still alive and well.  here's to a great 2013!  thanks for visiting me in my scrappy world.!  :)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

cha winter 2013: my contributions

jenni and jared left on an airplane today for anaheim and cha winter 2013.  i sent along these two layouts to show that showcase some of the jbs new release.  so so fun to work with and coming to stores near you around the first of february!  check out the jbs blog HERE for a video of jenni introducing the entire line.