Thursday, February 26, 2009

So Sad...

I recently learned that the May/June issue of Simple Scrapbooks Magazine will be their last issue. I am deeply saddened by this. I have quite the collection of SSM and I love their layouts and designers. On nights when I'm too tired to craft but need some form of crafty therapy, I lay in bed and flip through these magazines and get ideas for my next project. SSM has also had some amazing special issues over the last few years. I will truly miss the separate magazine.

On a good note, Creating Keepsakes will be having a special section on Simple Scrabooking. Check out the link for more info.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I'm a Craft Addict

Hi. My name is Deanna and I'm addicted to crafts.

I don't remember the first time I picked up a crayon or held a pair of scissors in my hands. Crafting has just been part of my life for as long as I can remember. I had a Big Sister, Millie. We were matched when I was about 6 yrs old. Before we were matched they asked me what I liked to do. I remember telling them "arts & crafts", so they matched me with someone who liked to do that, too. I spent many an afternoon with Millie, working on one project or another. She taught me how to do plastic canvas (she was obsessed with plastic canvas). Whenever I get a glimpse of a sheet of it at the craft store, it brings back memories. Millie also taught me how to melt plastic cups and add beads to them and then use them as suncatchers. She also taught me to be patient when I was challenged with getting something to stick and the glue wasn't drying fast enough. So for years I spent time crafting with Millie. I guess you could say she was my first craftin' buddy.

Then as I grew older, I ventured out on my own a bit and headed off to summer camp. Ah, the memories of friendship bracelets, braided out of embroidery thread. And, of course I spent hours working on bracelets made of telephone wire, and of course gimp. You know, the plastic cord that is looped and then looped and slipped through the first loop. I also remember decorating a rock in the image of a camp counselor whom I had a serious crush on.

Strangely, I don't remember taking art classes in high school. I guess I earned my max of "art" credits in my music classes. Of course I was later told I was tone deaf by one of my music teachers, but my other (wiser) music teacher begged to differ and cast me in several singing roles throughout my high school years. I'll admit I'm definitely not the next American Idol (and if I auditioned, I'd get laughed out of the room as loud as the next guy) but I ain't tone deaf either.

The first scrapbook I remember creating was for my wedding. I wanted to put together an album with pics of hubby and I during our dating years to show at our wedding. Of course I still have that album, and I look back at it now and think "how cheesey". But that was probably the beginning of when my innocent hobby became a problem. I remember having all my art supplies confined to a shoe box with the exception of a pack of bright colored cardstock.

Then, when I married hubby, I moved to California. And then, I met my next serious craftin' buddy, Jen. Our conversations quickly revolved around scrapbooking and she started holding parties where the focus was on the scrapbooking. That was the whole reason we got together. Of course, we all bonded over those scrapbook pages.

Then, one day I got an official invitation to a crafting party. It was something I had never heard of before, and it came from a friend who I rarely crafted with. She had invited me to a Stampin' Up Party. I ended up hosting my own party, and was immediately sucked into the world of stamping and colorful scrapbook pages, all the ink pads and markers in coordinating colors...and we had more and more parties. And, of course my collection of supplies grew. And, of course, I shared my new love with my friend, Jen.

So, I admit, I've become a bit obssessive about my crafting. I've been consumed by creative thoughts when I should be focused on other things. My shoebox of supplies has grown into an entire room. Well, it's supposed to be half a room. The other half is supposed to be hubby's office. But the 50% that is owned by him is quickly shrinking to about 20%. My patterned paper collection alone could put some small craft stores to shame. And, my interests now include scrapbooking, stamping, sewing, jewelry making, home decor creations and other odds & ends. Really, I do anything that makes me feel good. When Jen recently started knitting, I started browsing the yarn section of stores, looking at knitted projects on-line. But I have forced myself to stay away from the yarn. I have refused to purchase any needles, because I know if I start I won't be able to stop. That's how it is with me and crafts.

Lately, my thoughts have been focused on fabric scrapbooking. Imagine that! Combining a love of fabric and sewing with a love of scrapbooking and photography! I want to move to North Carolina (no joke) and become friends with Donna Downey! Don't worry, Jen, I'll be sure to invite you to our parties!

I don't know when my crafting became such a problem. I have a very hard time driving past the scrapbook store. I obsessively check the mail near the end & the middle of the month for my Jo Anns coupons. I nearly burst into tears when I discovered the Michael's coupons were only being delivered to people who subscribe to the local newspaper. Fortunately (or unfortunately) they've reverted back to offering e-mail coupons. The other day I went to Jo Ann's in the afternoon and when I walked outside it was dark! I was in there for 3 hours!!! I had no idea that much time had passed. And there were no clocks. It's like Vegas. I think they do that on purpose.

Sometimes, I find that all that gets me through the week is my knowledge, that come Friday, I'll have 2 days filled with crafting. Coffee & crafting. That's what gets me through the rough patches. Of course there's T. And on the days when we spend all day in our pajamas sitting side by side and crafting, when I think for a minute what a neglectful mom I am, I remember that she's my best creation (OK, I guess John gets some of the credit) and that I'm teaching her a love of creativity and she's learning how to cut, paint, sew and make jewelry. So, is this really such a problem?

I admit it. I am addicted to crafts. But is it a problem? I don't think so. Maybe I'm just still in denial.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I'm not one of those moms

I was first sucked into the blogosphere a few months ago. I had been keeping a family blog, and then my friend Jen informed me of the fact that people blog about CRAFTING! I immediately became obsessed with reading blogs and drooling over all the creative projects that all these people were doing. And it struck me. Most of these women take beautiful pictures of their children creating educational, fun, thrifty art projects and precious memories that will last a lifetime. Many of these bloggers seem to have it all together. Amidst their beautiful photos of their beautiful families and their beautiful creations, they blog about their great organization tips and decorating ideas. Those moms seem to have these perfect little lives with no worries.

While I admire those moms and enjoy their blogs, I'm not one of those moms. I'm a crafty mom. Definitely. I have a beautiful, fun daughter. Definitely. And I have a very smart, supportive and good looking husband. Definitely. I'm even pretty cute myself. I like to be organized, but it definitely takes a lot of effort and most of the time - ssshhhh - my house is a distaster. I often craft surrounded by piles of clutter. Sometimes, my daughter even has a dirty face! ...I. KNOW. I have a really hard time keeping up with the laundry. I often get distracted while cooking and end up burning dinner. I'm often too engrossed in my crafting or blogging and my husband cooks dinner! I'm learning how to bake and I've definitely had my share of overflowing muffin tins, underdone cakes and overly crunchy cookies. My daughter doesn't always eat her veggies. And, sometimes, I'm too tired to fight about it. Sometimes...I even argue with my husband, Gasp! I. KNOW. And...are you ready for this one?...most of the time, my craft projects don't turn out perfect. I'm just good at fixing my mistakes ; ). Maybe someday I'll post a list of all my crafting bloopers...starting that draft now!

So, I tell you all of this because I like to keep it real. I don't wantchya to think I'm some fab blogging mom who makes all this cute stuff and has the perfect little family. No, I'm not one of those moms. And I don't want to pretend to be. I'm just me. The one who crafts to stay sane amidst the laundry and the bills and the constantly ringing phone and the busy kitchen and the toys all over the floor and the daily chaos of life!

About Me

This page is under construction. Stay Tuned to learn more about me!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Donna Downey

Right now I am soooo loving Donna Downey . I have one of her books, Photo Decor and with Donna's step-by-step instructions, I made these photo blocks as a birthday gift for my friend Jen. Donna is just so inspiring and really her stuff is sooo simple and easy to create but so beautiful at the same time. Love her! Check out her new fabric scrapboking line. Love it! I'm working on a Donna Downey inspired project that I hope to reveal by the end of the weekend. I can't wait to see how it turns out!