Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Excerpts From The Diary of a Designer #10

Excerpts From The Diary of a Designer #10
HSC Horror Stories…


Dear Diary...

I’m currently hiding in my wardrobe typing this.
Hiding may not seem like the bravest strategy but I promise you it’s the smartest one!
Darling Daughter #1 has just started her HSC exams and I swear to you I have never seen a more irrational, emotional and unstable teenage girl in my life. Are they all like this??
Earlier this morning she explained in depth her extreme frustration at the unjust HSC system that requires english students to memorise a ‘ridiculous’ number of quotes. Half an hour later she was in tears sure she would fail no matter what she did. Then she came home after the exam exclaiming that it wasn’t that bad!!?!
Her mood swings are giving me whiplash.
Now she's out in the lounge room stressing over the next exam tomorrow, so I’m staying safely tucked away in this comfy cupboard!
I did manage to get a few hours of peace in the middle of all that today though. I actually finished a whole scrapbook layout… My absolute favourite thing about Imaginarium designs chipboards is that they do the most beautiful and endearing titles, and this is of my favourites 💚

Well the battery on my laptop is almost done so I’m going to have to sign off for tonight. I can still hear DD#1 out there ranting at anyone in earshot so I might just enjoy the peace and quiet a moment longer here.

Dear Diary...

I noticed a distinct lack of people moving through the house this morning, when I did eventually locate several of the children I found out they too are doing their best to avoid their sister and her crazy moods DD#2,3 &4 all said they would rather not eat breakfast at all than have to listen to DD#1 rant even further about the distinct lack of polylogism in today's schooling environment.
I couldn't agree more. I stayed in the bedroom with DD#2 & 3 and we googled what Polylogism is and played some Plants versus Zombies before they snuck off to school and I snuck out to my workshop.
Everyone deals with stress in different ways …
my way is to tuck myself away with some fabulous papercraft supplies and see what is born 🙂
Today’s adventures yielded another scrapbook layout … this time a double! I rarely do doubles, but I was so inspired by these Heartfelt Creations papers that I just couldnt resist this time.


Dear Diary,

I can’t take this any more, there was no exam today but there was a torrent of tears as DD#1 asked me if would still love her if she failed to get into law school and ended up working at McDonalds for the rest of her life?
I have no idea where kids find the pressures they put on themselves … I’ve never asked her to be a human rights lawyer …. that was all her idea … I think the job she had at maccas for the last 3 years is awesome …. But somehow it's the worse-case-life-scenario for her now??
I don't think her teachers put that much pressure on her either, all I’ve ever heard them say is ‘just try your best’ … so what's this question about me not loving her anymore if she doesn't get a HSC mark of 99 or above???
I find empathy in light of my daughters first world problems difficult to muster …. I just think ‘you are a crazy person who cannot be reasoned with, please don’t speak to me anymore’
...but you know ….
Instead I hugged her and said ‘oh baby ….sadly If you don’t get into law school you will actually have to change your last name as your father and I will have no choice but to disown you!’

She rolled her eyes and stormed off to her room….I feel like I effectively made my point.

Shes punished me all day with the silent treatment ….. BEST DAY EVER!!

I got all these cards made thanks to said punishment.
It’s difficult for me to regret my sarcastic streak when it yields such pleasing results.
Just saying.

All the chipboards on these cards were simply coloured with ink and then painted over with crystalina kindy glitz.

Dear diary,

Disaster has struck …. While vacuuming in a very bad ( yet extremely persistent)  mood, DD#1 smashed her wrist and injured her writing hand. This resulted in unparalleled drama, the likes of which has never been seen in this house and I hope shall never be seen again! The tears were epic, the panic tantrum second to none, and my ability to help stave off the torrent non existent.

She went off to her Ancient History exam in considerable pain and did the whole 3 hours of writing with a bag of ice on her wrist. She didn't quite finish which is apparently ( if you are to believe anything DD#1 says these days) a fate WORSE than death!!
So half my day and the whole afternoon was spent chasing our family doctor for a medical ‘misadventure’ certificate. Thank heavens we only have one more exam to go!!

Dear Diary

The weekend saw DD#1 wrist heal quite nicely and this morning she headed off to her final exam like snow white going to greet the forest animals for brunch.
She was so happy we were all a little wary.
Apparently maths is her favorite subject so it attracted none of the usual angst we saw so much of last week. We were all relieved, but Son#2 did point out that she's just acting creepy now. I told him not to worry, if she didn't get into law school via the usual methods her father and I had decided to bribe the one furthest away from home to ensure we are never living with her again when she has to sit an exam. He greatly approve of this plan and offered a substantial amount of his savings to contribute towards it.

DD#4 actually turns 8 today and she loves all things ‘Paris’ themed so I used the Imaginarium Eiffel tower to create this cute card for her. She sternly reminded me this morning that she’s 'not a baby anymore' so I should stop making her all those pink glittery cards ( my favourites of course) so it was with some nostalgia I did my best to keep the little girl themes on the inside while I make this slightly more ‘grown up’ version…

This is the last of my 6 babies … turning 8 today!! When you think about it, only it’s 10 more years and she will be sitting the HSC too …. heaven help me…. may the years pass slowly.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Diary of a Designer Vol # 9

Elnino SUCKS!

Monday the 4th September 2017

Dear Diary...

what's the go with this heat? and where has all the water gone?
Hubby just informed me that we down to the last dregs on our last tank...
I could have sworn it was flooding 4 months ago??

I'm feeling very suspicious of any water that comes from 'scraping the bottom of the barrell' ... I feel like if I were a germ that is exactly where I would live so I have decided to only drink vodka from now on ... germs can't live in vodka!

I'm too scared to scrapbook any more .... what if I get ink on everything and have to wash my hands? What if I gesso something, I'll have to wash everything up .... 
I have decided that only card making is safe to do until the next big rain gets here.

So here is my first card...
Fortunately it doesnt take much to fill a card up with gorgeous Imaginarium chipboard phrases, but I also couldn't resist adding a couple of these fabulous little branches as well 💜

Tuesday the 5th September 2017

Dear Diary...

Still no water 😟
We rang up the water delivery person to order a load. $350!!!!??!!!! ... for HALF a tank!!!
I'm pretty sure Coke is cheaper than this at wollies.
The worst part is that it's a 3 week wait...


Probs should have ordered that two and half weeks ago!!

So now our whole house hold has gone into EXTREME water saving mode: 

*There's a bucket in the sink to catch wrince water.

*A bucket in the shower, to catch those bits you always loose down the drain at the beginning of a shower ... you know when you first turn the taps on but it takes like 90 seconds of it running full pelt to actually get any hot water.

* A 3 minuet egg timer in the bathroom to ensure very quick showers.

*The washing machine is hooked up to a huge recycling barrel 
just outside the laundry door  

...and my LEAST favourite of all water saving measures...

* A sign on the toilet door that reads
'if it's yellow let it melo, if its brown flush it down'


For the record, I strongly disagree with this last measure.... all colours should be flushed ALL THE TIME. Sadly I was over ruled. Stuff global warming and holes in the ozone ... this is the true tragedy of global warming 😭

I would console myself with vodka but sadly that has also run out. Damn you elnino.

Card making it is then...

Today I tried to created a gilded frame look, which I just adore, and incidentally requires no washing up after at all 👍

I took this groovy chipboard frame, added glue and then pressed some flakes of rose gold all over it very roughly so that it would maintain that beaten metal look.

Super happy with the outcome.

Wednesday the 6th September 2017

Dear Diary...

This shortage of water thing is getting out of hand ... I caught one of the kids standing IN a bucket in her swimmers washing herself with a dribble coming from the shower head!! 

I explained that it wasn't quite that bad yet ( post apocalyptic that is)  but she was sooooo very proud of how little water she had used and how she had recycled 100% of the water she did use... I took a photo of her so she could use it on an inevitable 'recycling' school project one day.

She excitedly exclaimed that I could do the same thing...
A very awkward conversation followed where I had to explain the flaws in any plan where I am required to stand in a bucket!!

I was off to my happy place after that brief yet troubling interlude to indulge in
more card making. This time I made a very simple but colourful card using one of the sentiments that Imaginarium do so well.

These boards with repeated sayings are AWESOME ... I keep a dozen different ones on hand always in case I need to whip up a card for some reason

Add a simple flourish and card making is just too easy!

Thursday the 7th September 2017

Dear Diary...

today we have entered a whole new level of water saving skills....


We convinced our teenagers to shower at school ... 'tell them you have been doing sport and just need to freshen up' ... hopefully the school won't notice the ALARMING amount of hair care products my 17 year old daughter took to school with her this morning!

My husband also said he will use the showers at work ... despite them not having doors!!???! WHAT THE? 

I have committed to visiting friends in town once a day ... mostly in order to avoid my own toilets, but also to use all their water by drinking large amounts of coffee.

This is todays card effort... 

Still maximising the use of my sentiments boards.

no gesso on the title though ( as per my no washing anything ever again commitment) This title was simply coloured in with my white gel pen 😎

Friday the 8th September 2017

Dear Diary...


This simply has to come to an end ... the kids came home and informed me that it was 'just creepy' showering at school and refuse to ever do it again, My husband  said he just couldn't go through with the 'no door' thing. And I dont know who is going to clean the toilets in my house  after this last week ... 


We are half way down the outlet valve on our last tank and I just can't live like this anymore... I spent the morning calling every single water delivery company within 100km and managed to get someone who would deliver a half load tomorrow.


The madness can't end quickly enough for my liking. Feeling very pleased with myself I ducked off and created this birthday card.

I frivolously used watercolour paint on the balloon and black marker and crystalina kindy glitz on the writing chippies.

While making these cards I was listening to the radio ... the news report said that the current drought in our area could last until Christmas! I asked my husband how long the load of water we are getting will last us ... he said that at our current rate of consumption ... 3 weeks.

I'm moving to England.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Diary of a Designer Vol # 8

Life Moves Fast

Monday the 21st of August 2017

Dear Diary...

Now that I'm trying to squeeze in work, uni and family, life it seems is just a tad crazier than usual and keeping up has become quite the effort. 
This week the uni has given us a 'study break', so there are no classes or lectures. 
[insert party meme].
This couldn't have come at a better time... because I'm EXHAUSTED!!
I've been desperately trying to keep up with a mountain of work and readings mostly centring around French painters and art critics from the 1850 -1900 period.
Now don't get me wrong... I'm actually loving it .... there's just something about staying home with 6 kids for 20 years and watching Wiggles reruns endlessly that makes pretty much ANYTHING ELSE in the universe mind blowingly interesting... but still, I've been buried under all the paperwork!

I dont know why but most of my assignments were due at the beginning of study week ... of course it would have been nice to use study week to complete them in .... but none the less it has resulted in the boon of actually having no work left for study week which means .... a week off!! 
The house is filthy again and I haven't had a chance to scrap in ages so this week off is going to be AWESOME :) 

I started today by creating a fabulous storage box for myself ... during August the Imaginarium blog featured loads of ideas for storing your chipboard collections and I confess ... looking at them  I became quite jealous and covetous !! 

I have traditionally stored my chipboards in the package they arrived in ... but after seeing everyone else's cool ideas I decided to create something for myself.

This is an old Kaisercraft MDF wood recipe box and it makes for 
THE BEST chipboard storage space :)

Of course I decorated it up all pretty with chipboards, but the real magic is on the inside....

where all my different chipboards are stored in individual CD pouches that have a clear plastic panel on the front so I can see easily what's in each pouch. I picked up 100 of these on ebay for just a few $, I knew they would come in handy one day 

And the recipe box dividers work brilliantly as dividers for my chip board sections :)

Tuesday the 22nd of August 2017

Dear Diary...

I thought I should clean my house today before indulging in scrapping so got cracking on that nice and early. 
Firstly I made all the kids vacuum a section of the house each before they left for school,
this consisted of 30mins of arguing about doing the vacuuming and around 5mins of actual vacuuming!!?! 
After they left for the bus I got stuck into it... 

'If I can just finish the whole house before lunch then I'll get half a day to scrap' 
was the fantasy I sold myself.

Tradigically 4 mins latter all the kids returned with the news that they had missed the bus.

Well there goes my morning ... Now I had to drive them to school, a two and a half hour round trip!!!!! I was in a fabulous mood when I returned
 [she states flatly dripping with sarcasm] 
and promptly decided not to clean anymore, 
but rather to console myself with some scrap therapy.

this is the first double page I have done in ages ...

im feeling so arty at the moment ... I suppose comes from looking all those art works in my Framing Modernity class.... in anycase I attacked these pages with white gesso and Inka Gold wax, a ton of metal embellishments and some gorgeous Imaginarium chipboards.

Wednesday the 23rd of August 2017

Dear Diary...
Not wanting to make the same mistake twice the kids were out the door early today and securely placed on the bus!

Now back to the cleaning ... 
I managed to get the bath rooms done before the first of many annoying phone calls started. Now i'm not talking about two or three rings here .... it was ridiculous ... every 5 mins the phone would sound with another person offering me the deal of a lifetime or some fabulous solar installations! 

After 7 calls in one hour I just couldnt believe it, I remember ages ago signing up for the 'no advertising calls' register, that you can do here in Australia, and I hadn't been bothered by sales call much at all after that. 
I figured their system was broken and I needed to let them know this, but when I called the hotline I found out this directive only lasts for 2 years and mine had run out the day before!! 
Well there you have it. 
With that annoying activity taken care of and half the day gone already I happy abandoned housework for some more scrapping.

I recently got my hands on an awesome PebblesInc paper pads and had been dying to have a go with the papers. 
I just adore the full picture (or photo) pages and loved creating this layout that feels like an extension of the photo...

I melted embossing enamel onto the chipboards to give them that vibrant and shining effect and they were all that I needed to add to this layout along with some pearls and butterflies. I can get a tad tizzy with my layouts but I do love it when a page can look full and complete with little effort 🙂

Thursday the 24th of August 2017

Dear Diary...

Oh how I loved scrapping that page yesterday ... I couldnt wait to get rid of the kids this morning ( although I do love them with all my heart etc etc) so i could start again on another layout using the same full picture pages I used yesterday ....
 I'm LOVING this look :) 

I worked all morning on these pages and loved every second of it. I spent the afternoon uploading pics to Pinterest and googling 'sarcastic animal photos' ... I haven't laughed that hard in ages!! Of course dinner was toasties because I had forgot to do the shopping ... but hey, it was worth it ♥

Friday the 25th of August 2017

Dear Diary...

I got to bed at a terrible hour last night as I had to duck into town after hours for some late night shopping so I was totally stuffed this morning.
I had completely forgotten about this craft show I was working a stall at this weekend and as it turns out I needed to pack to go to that today!! 
So I spent THE WHOLE DAY packing and organising for that.
I loath real work.

Saturday the 26th of August 2017

Dear Diary...
Left home for the craft show at 6 am this morning ... returned at  6pm today.
But it was sooooo awesome, I'm feeling massively inspired by all the AMAZING things people make and do. Despite my extreme exhaustion from the huge day out nothing could stop me from sitting down to get cracking on a layout .... you see I got this FABULOUS string of beads at the craft show that I was dying to use :)
It's a well know fact that one inspiring embellishment is all it takes to get the creative juices flowing.... So this whole layout was pretty much just put together so I could drape this AWESOME string of blue beads on it ! lol

 I inked the chipboard at the top and put shine lines on them and shadow lines around them so they would pop off that boarded background.

The two little flourishes at the top are actually one of these cut in half.

Sunday the 27th of August 2017

Dear Diary...
I am barely alive!
Another full day at the craft show today and I've talked so much I have lost my voice now.
I packed up after the show and brought everything back home ... 
the place looks like a bomb has hit it. 
Boxes, products and craft supplies EVERYWHERE in my studio and the house.
 It was an awesome show but it's going to take me week to clean up from it. 
I would head off to bed early but I'm afraid that's just not possible...
You see uni lectures start back tomorrow morning and I still have three 25 page readings to get through.

Soooooooo glad I had a whole week 'off' to catch up!!!