Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The High Price of Gasoline

...has affected even me. We live near U.P. in Quezon City, yet the KiDS and DH work in Marikina. So every school day, very early in the morning, we would wake up 3 (four, including me) grumpy humans to prepare them for school. It takes about 30 minutes to reach the school from our house. Getting ready to leave, with all the grumpiness, like an eternity.

So we had a bright idea! Why not, since my in-laws have a house in Marikina, stay there during school days? That way, we save on gasoline, food, and grumpies. And we also give the oldies a bit of loving and caring.

But that means no scrapping for me, cause all my stuff are at home in QC. But since I have never missed a Kaya challenge, I am not about to miss Tin's now. Thank goodness, digital is acceptable.

Details at the Kaya challenge blog.


Friday, July 25, 2008

Lazy Honors Society

I still remember when I was so excited to have my first Basic Grey layout posted at the BG gallery. It was such a high for me 1) because I almost went mad using those Scarlet Letter papers (LOL); and 2) it seemed a big deal to have an LO accepted at the BG gallery. I haven't submitted anything there for awhile so my name has disappeared from the gallery. But now I am there again with this layout about Diego.

The KiDS' school does not have an honor roll, but Diego is among the top of his class, even if he is just happily coasting along. As a mother, I can't help but think about the possibilities if he only applied himself more seriously. But I guess, as long as he is happy and doing well in school, I should be content. At least I'm not being called to parent-teacher conference.

No doubt about it. You are an extremely intelligent boy. But...you like to read everything except your text books. You enjoy Math but are sometimes too lazy to come up with the solution. You have a talent for writing but you purposely keep your sentences short so you can finish sooner.

When I told your father you take things too easy, he proudly told me you are just like him when he was a boy. Bright and intelligent but never in the honor roll. Lazy Honors Society he called it. In your case, Diego, can we have the honors without the lazy? Love, Mama. 7/23/08

P.S. You know you can do it.

Patterned paper, stickers and diecuts - Basic Grey; Chipaboard letters - Heidi Swapp; Paint - Ranger; Pen - American Crafts; Stamp - Clearsnap; Adhesive - Saunders, Zot, Others - Notebook paper.

I will have to make a confession. As a student, I never really pushed myself, too. And now I wonder about the possibilities, had I really applied myself. I guess I just don't want Diego have these "what-ifs" when he's grown. Well, not that it really matters in the grand scheme of things But you, don't you sometimes think back about things and wonder?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The KiDS

Aaaah....blessed quiet in front of the computer. It's 6:30 in the morning. The KiDS have left for school and DH is in the shower. Got me a few minutes to share another layout.

I just played around with this one. I don't know why I printed out these particular photos but since they already exist, they should be scrapped. Nothing fancy here. Not much journaling either.


These here are the I**o kids, Diego (10), Sarah (8) and Kahlo (6). They are so smart, funny and loving. Just the perfect add-on to the I** family.

Quote on vellum:
Families are like fudge. Mostly sweet with a few nuts. - Unknown.

Behind each photo is a card where I asked each one to describe the other. For once, Diego got away with calling Kahlo weird. Mainly because I think she was quite happy with what Sarah had to say about her - "alive, alert, awake, enthusiastic." Hmmmm....I guess Kahlo doesn't know yet that came from a song. Or maybe she does, so she's not taking anything personally. LOL. I get a kick just thinking of them looking at this LO in the future.

Papers - Autumn Leaves; CS - Debbie Mumm, Paper Company; Quote - Colorbok; Pen - Inkssentials; Arrow - American Crafts; Buttons - UBL; Punchers - Fiskars, Stampin' Up, Marvy Uchida; Adhesive - UHU; Others - stapler, Cuttlebug.

OK, now back to regular programming. TFL!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Life Without Technology

The past few weeks I have been without a cellphone (it finally died on me, and I am still deciding whether I should continue with my Smart subscription or shift to Globe), without my laptop (my DH commandeered it for work purposes as his laptop is in the repair shop) and without cable TV (we have been spending so much time in Marikina, TV viewing right now is limited to a smorgasboard of Wowowee, Iisa Pa Lamang and My Girl.

It felt strange at first to have no access to text or e-mail messages. It felt like losing an appendage initially but I eventually got used to it. At least, no internet access meant staying away from E-bay. LOL. Funny, the last few days, DH and I play musical chairs. Every time he would leave the computer unattended, I'd rush to check my e-mail and my Facebook account. Yup, I am finally on Facebook. So if you're there, too, Facebook me. Hehehe.

Anyway, I was able to work on one LO which I'd like to share now. This one is about my Yaya's baby (or is it?). She's turning two next August.


According to Ate Juliet, Sarah volunteered to be Jazmane Marie's ninang or Godmother when we were planning her baptism back in August 11, 2007. I don't know if at the young age of 7 1/2. Sarah understood all the responsibilities of being a ninang. Certainly, not with the Fairly Odd Parents or Cinderella's Fairy Godmother as role models. But loving, caring for, and being a good role model for Jampong is a good start. Who said a Godmother can't be a little angel to watch over God's child?

PPS - Autumn Leaves, Creative Imaginations; Chipboard - American Crafts; Flowers - Prima, Bazzill; Buttons - UBL; Sticker - Colorbok; Rubons - MAMBI; Thread - DMC; Ink - Clearsnap; Puncher - Fiskars; Adhesive UHU.

Thanks for looking. I'm off now, gotta yield the chair to my DH.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Maling Kaya

Hahaha. I made this this afternoon as my response to Tin's Kaya challenge with the subject "Letting Go." I got so carried away, I forgot it's a sketch challenge. Waaahhh!!! Well, it's still based on a sketch, by Becky Fleck. LOL.

We never expected that we would find it hard to let go of a pet that wasn't really ours in the first place. For months afterwards, we would still mention talk about Mao like he was just around. I think, we've finally accepted that he's gone, but we will never let go of his memories.

Stray Cat

Journaling: (Warning: long read ahead)
We once had a cat named Mao. He was a pusang gala that started coming to our garage in 2006. The KiDS fed him so not surprisingly, the stray cat decided to live there. Every night, without fail, it would come and stay. Always, he would leave in the morning to do what it is that stray cats do.

One day, he just stopped coming. The KiDS started missing him. When Mao finally came home late one night, we were horrified to see him dragging his hind leg at a very awkward angle. His right leg dangled limply and uselessly behind him. We think he must have been in an accident and that he stayed in some ditch to heal before finally finding the way to our house. I was touched that out of the many houses in the village he chose to find haven in ours.

If I couldn't drive him away before, the more I couldn't turn him away then. So we took care of him and fed him. He hardly ever left the house, except to relieve himself. When he heads our van arriving, he would drag himself from the street into
our garage. He didn’t run, he sort of glided across the floor. The KiDS loved him, imperfect though he was.

In February 2008, Mao didn't come home again for a long time. We were worried something had happened to him. When he finally resurfaced,his face was swollen and he was very weak. I took him to the vet and I was told that with his injuries there was only a slim chance of survival even if we insisted on a surgery.He was also very weak and in so much pain already.I cried upon hearing the news. I had to make the difficult decision of putting him to sleep. The doctor said it was painless, but until the last minute, I saw Mao trying to escape from our grasp. He was a survivor to the last moment. I stayed with him the whole time as I didn't want him to feel abandoned as he was in the early stages of his life.

Breaking the news to my KiDS was even more difficult, and soon all of us were crying. We all mourned Mao, even if he didn't have pedigree, or even if he wasn't the type of pet my KiDS could freely cuddle and hug. He was family.

Mao might have been a stray, but he strayed right into our hearts. He was sweet and smart and a really great mouser. I am sure he is now in cat heaven where all cats are free, well-fed, and healthy.

Mao left behind a stray female cat named Barra. Shortly after his death, Barra had kittens, which, had they survived, we would like to believe were Mao’s. (Written 2/11/08)

PPS - Autumn Leaves; CS - DCWV; Ricrac, twine - unknown; Ink - Clearsnap; Stamps - Autumn Leaves; Alphabets - Heidi Swapp. American Crafts; Tag - Joann's; Adhesive - Saunders; Foam - Darice

Techniques Used;
While the LO is deceptively simple, it took me a long time to make. Not because of the layout itself, but because of the journaling. I had to figure out how to make three columns and text wrap around a box in Corel Draw.

An LO About My Bunso

I was still on a scrapping high, courtesy of Scrap Jam, so I worked on this layout intermittently last Sunday. Between homeworks, housework and office work, I finally finished it yesterday. It's based on a Page Map from Becky Fleck's book, except that I used only one photo, not three.

I Am Kahlo

Or "Me, Kahlo!" You always say this at the most unexpected times. Even in your sleep sometimes. Maybe it comes from having to assert yourself to a boisterous family of five. Or an attempt for people to remember you. But let me assure you, Kahlo, with your self-confidence, sense of humor, and flair for the dramatics, it will never be easy to overlook you. Yes, indeed, YOU, are Kahlo. Much loved daughter and sister. (7/7/08)

PPS - My Mind's Eye, Collage Press; Flowers - Prima, Bazzill; Chipboard - Basic Grey; Sticker - Pebbles, Inc.; Stamp - Clearsnap; Felt - Fancy Pants; Paint - Making Memories; Glitter - Ranger, Making Memories; Foam - American Crafts, Darice; Adhesives - Zots, Saunders, Ranger; Brad - All ABout Scrapbooking; Ribbon - unknown; Pen - Uniball Signo, Others - Fiskar's Border Punch, Paper Crimper.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

I've Got A New Squeeze

The past week, I've been acting like a zombie, waiting, mouse in hand, in front of my computer, listening to the clock go tick-tick-tick. A few minutes more, and the item I am bidding for would be mine. So I refuse to budge, not even to answer my DH's question if I've had dinner yet. As I refresh my computer screen, he shakes his head and exclaims. "OMG! If you're not careful, you're gonna be just like me years ago. Ma-addict ka diyan." Yeah, tell me something I don't know.

My heart beats faster in anticipation. I can feel the pressure building up. Will I be able to click in time? As I refresh yet again, I curse the other bidders for driving the prices up. And then, another disappointment. I lose just by a few dollars. Oh, well, there are other items to bid on in Ebay.

So I turned my attention on another item. A Quickutz Squeeze with Metro Unicase Skinniminni alphas. I hesitated a bit because one of the Scrap Jam's announced raffle prizes was a Quickutz Squeeze. I've seen similar offers in Ebay before but I thought I'd wait to bid until after the Scrap Jam, just in case I won in the raffle. But I the price for the whole set at Ebay was just too good to be true. Less than $20. I know the price will be driven up still but it would still be a good buy at $35. A small voice was telling me, if you won this bid and then won at the raffle, what would you do with the extra Squeeze? But then again, the logical part of me said there's no guarantee I'd win in Scrap Jam. So I decided to go for it online.

But Ebay won't accept my bid. It said that the vendor does not sell to the country I was registered in. I changed my mailing and shipping address to my sister's in the US, but still it just won't let me bid. Then I remembered that when I registered, I was automatically redirected to ebay.com.ph. I didn't take notice of that at the time but DARN! Now I was so psyched up I really wanted that Squeeze. Out of frustration, I just said, "Hay naku, ayaw niyo ako pa-bid, di huwag. I'm going to win that at Scrap Jam tomorrow, anyway.

If you've read the previous post, you'll know what came to past. Out of the many coupons in the jar, my name was drawn. I only had two raffle tickets in there. The Squeeze comes with a Metro Classic Unicase which retails for around $60 (alphas only). And I can begin using it, too, no waiting for shipping. Just perfect! Now I'm a believer.

When I showed DH my prize, he told me, "Bilis mag-isip ka na ng Lotto numbers..."

Scrap Jam!

Never before had I seen tickets sell as fast as tickets to Scrapbook Hawaii's and My Little Attic's Scrap Jam. I think as early as May, the tickets had sold out - for a July event! I was just lucky that Candy texted me that Rachelle was about to pay for their tickets, so I texted Rachelle to pay for me, too. If it had been me, it would've taken me a long time to schedule a trip to the bank.

July 5, 2008, Saturday - Rachelle and I car-pooled with Candy. We thought we were early, but when we arrived, we realized that there were people who came earli-ER. They had by 9 am bought most of the scrapbooking stuff off the shelves. I guess I should be thankful for that because I had just brought enough cash to make me happy and not feel so guilty. It's very easy to get overboard when scrap shopping. What with the many goodies that you just gotta have. I am particularly vulnerable about this, because although I had my mind set on what I should and should not buy, I am always tempted by what other scrappers have in their baskets. Yup! I'm like a lemming when it comes to my scrap shopping. If they're buying it, there must be something I'm missing out on and so I gotta have the same, too. Take for instance the white Basic Grey rubons. It's not on my list and I must admit I've seen it countless times before, but when Candy put it in her basket, I had to get one, too. Wishful thinking that I'd create LOs as fine as Candy's? Hmmm....

These are what I bought and wonder of wonders, I am exactly within budget. Thanks to the 25% coupon off one item that our wonderful hosts gave us with our kits.

One of the best parts of going to a scrapping event is a chance to get to know scrappers whom you only meet online. Rachelle and I shared a table with Liezl and Rita of the LB Scrapaholics. I really had fun sharing a table with them because they also selflessly shared their tools, stories, and tips. As Candy would whisper to me later on, she was quite impressed on how Rita and Liezl asked for each other's opinions as they worked through their LOs.

Around 10, we all got busy with Marisa's classes. She prepared several projects for us and I must say they are all something I want to replicate once I get home. I just wish I could recall her instructions. Unfortunately, I didn't take notes because I was busy following along with her, and her gregarious daughter cum assistant, Jian. We made a pretty bag out of cardstock (Sarah immediately lay claim on that one so I have to make sure I make Kahlo a purple one), a CD mini-album using papers from Scenic Route, a beautiful black and white gatefold album, which I didn't finish yet, but will soon (promise).

We had a very filling lunch at our tables (I refused to go back to the shopping room, lest I expose myself to unnecessary temptation, so I was glad when we had another make and take project - lovely card with materials from Melissa Frances. I didn't finish it, too, cause I'd like to use photos that I didn't bring with me. Then we had a Scrap Jam Bingo! This was my first time to participate in a scrapping bingo and I must say it was quite fun. It was made even funnier by Jian's bingo host antics. "I have a very loud voice..." she'd boom as she picked out a number from the envelope. Lucky Cookie, Helga and Christine V. won some prizes that I would have liked in my basket.

And then there was the prerequisite scrap challenge - make an LO with the theme "friend" using Bazzil Basics Fancy Edges, BB Boshers - "is it a button or a washer?", and the Anna Griffin papers that were given us. When I prepared my stuff for Scrap Jam, I prepared my photos, too. I do not always like joining on the spot challenges because I scrap more comfortably at home, surrounded by everything I could possibly need. I also do not scrap well under pressure and within a limit of one hour only. But last night, I decided to go for the whole experience and just have fun. Besides, the challenge kept me away from the shopping area.

My LO didn't win, not that I was expecting to, because many of the best scrappers in Manila were in the room. But I was so happy when my seatmates, Rita and Candy won third place and second place, respectively. My friend, Cookie (so what else is new?) won first place. Woo-hoo...I just felt energized by all the goodwill in Nette's lovely-smelling house (courtesy of Faberge aromatics, I was informed). I was quite satisfied to come home with an LO that I finished in one hour. I didn't even know that was possible. Hahaha.

And then the much-awaited raffle time. At this point, I had not won anything major so I really kept my fingers and legs crossed. There were three draws - one from the pre-orders (prize was an AMM tote bag, which Bea won). The next was the Making Memories carousel (I dropped one coupon there, cause I would've liked to get one for free, even if I didn't really need it). Marian won this. And the last prize was a Quickutz Squeeze with Metro Classic alphabet. My crossed legs must have worked because I won it! Wooo-hoooo!!!! Would you believe me if I tell you that I had a feeling I won when Jian couldn't read the name on the coupon? Hahaha. I always sign my name with two slashes on the L's loop to form a smiley face, and a heart at the end of E. No wonder I confused the poor child. :-)

You'd think that was the end of it, but no. We just had to add more items in our already full kits. At left is a photo of all the free goodies we got just for attending, Before we all left our separate ways, Nette and Marisa had to literally throw extra prizes in the air towards the end. Scrappers scrambled to catch the goodies, some tripping over their humongous scrap bags, thankfully no one was hurt and they just picked themselves up laughing. Some of the stuff even fell into the bowls of dinuguan on the tables but do you think anyone cared? No damage that the ubiquitous baby wipes cannot wipe off. LOL. Everything I brought home still smells like Nette's home. Just brings back more pleasant memories. :-)

And so it was that three, nay, four (Donna hitched a ride with us going home) very satisfied scrappers went home to brag about their loot to their family. Already, we were planning for the next Scrap Jam.

Thank you very much Nenette and Marisa, we all had a blast!

Friday, July 04, 2008

Campaign for Real Scrapping

I was surfing randomly for inspiration and found this from Kim Guymon's site.

Now that is inspiring. I love it! What Kim has to say resonated with me. So I am picking up on her campaign. Don't get me wrong, I believe that scrapbooking is a personal thing and it's really up to you how you do it. There is no right or wrong...supposedly. Unfortunately, the layouts that are published in books and magazines, the layouts that win in contests, tell me otherwise. And many times I get sucked in, and I forget why I started scrapping in the first place. This is a good reminder...

That I scrap to remember and be remembered. That means photos and stories. Photographs that capture real life as it unfolds and heart-felt journaling that will give insight to future generations about my life. I do still love all the pretty papers and embellishments and I don't think I'll ever be able to stop buying them (well, a moratorium works now and then) but I refuse to be stressed out anymore. Scrapbooking is supposed to be a stress-buster. It is not a "competitive support" as Kim calls it.

If you would like to join Kim's Campaign for REAL Scrapping then copy the logo and add it to your blog. Write your thoughts about what REAL Scrapping means and how to refocus our efforts to make sure we aren't overwhelming and frustrating ourselves with that which is not real.

If a soap can campaign for real beauty, why can't we scrapbookers campaign for real scrapping?

A New Love

After much deliberation, I finally took the plunge - I am now a certified Postie. A Postie is someone who writes paid reviews for PayPerPost. As many of you know, I have taken to writing sponsored reviews on my blog. It's something I do quite well (if I say so myself) because I love to blog and write my opinions about anything under the sun. So why not earn while doing it as well?

How did I discover PayPerPost? Well, I simply googled "paid blogging" and there it was. PPP is among the top avenues to make extra money from your blogs. Well, I certainly need that, specially now that I have experienced the joys of ebay. Haha. There is no stopping me now.

I know most of you love scrapbooking, too, and we often want more stuff. There is no denying and ending it. We will always want more. :-) So why don't you just sign up yourself and write a review and make extra money. It's an honest living and it’s really very simple. You do it through something that you already do anyway, grab one or two of the many available opportunities, post and GET PAID! Review and GET PAID… it's that easy. All you have to do is sign up at PPP but do remember word of mouth ethics, you have to disclose to your readers that you accept sponsored posts. I do this in my blog, if you'll notice. Thank you so much.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Look Who's On TV

Oh, well, there isn't much evidence because it's taking a long time to upload my video capture of Pinky Webb. I simply gave up. But I still want to brag a little.

In just a matter of weeks, ABS-CBN interviewed DH for three different shows.

Last weekend, DH and my MIL and FIL were in "Salamat, Doc." The show featured artistic families. Apparently they don't consider scrapbooking a mainstream art cause I wasn't invited. Hmph.

This morning, DH was in "Umagang Kay Ganda - Saludo Kami Sa 'Yo" segment. Most of the footage were taken in DH's arts studio, and some during the launching of the e-jeepney (electronic jeepney) in Makati last July 1.

And then, this afternoon, DH had to rush to the factory site of the e-jeepney to be interviewed again. This time it's for TV Patrol to be shown on Staurday, July 5. Catch it if you can.

DH volunteered to design the artworks for the e-jeepney project with Greenpeace.

Here are some photos from last Tuesday's launch.

I hope the e-jeepney takes off because it's much more environmentally-friendly and cheaper to operate than vehicles using diesel. These e-jeepneys are now manufactured locally, so the price of a unit is almost the same as the regular gas-driven jeepney.

Diane's Digital

D-D-D-D-D-D-D-D-lightful! So sings Ernie as he exhorts the delights of the letter D. And I'm sure you'd understand if in this post I delight over Diane's digital layout that she made for me.

I was happily working one day when Diane buzzed me asking if I had dinosaur photos. I knew at once that she was going to use it in one of her layouts so I immediately opened my Adobe Photoshop Elements. Just one click and I had all our photos of our US trip in front of me. A bit of scrolling, and there they were - photos in the La Brea Tar Pits. Well, they aren't exactly dinosaurs in the background, but I guess they'd do. They'll have to if I want an LO from Digital Diva Diane.

And she didn't disappoint. Here's the LO, using yummy a digital kit that had my Sarah proclaiming, "I didn't know dinosaurs can be so cute."


Don't you just love it? For all the details, please do visit Diane's album here.

Thanks, Diane. I've never had a chance to scrap these photos and I appreciate that you did. Now, what photos do you need next?

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

June Recap

June was a slow month in terms of scrapping. I was otherwise occupied taking care of the KiDS and getting them ready for school. And there's the job I have taken on, too.

So I am happy to at least be still on target. Four LOs this month. I've already posted three here. My fourth LO is my entry to Kaya 14. I almost gave it a miss but I didn't want to ruin my record. I've never missed a Kaya challenge and I didn't intend to start now.

Details in the Kaya blog

I made this Saturday night, in between packing our things for a weekend in Baler, Aurora. I still have to blog about that in my KiDS' blog, so in the meantime, you can read a more official account here. Sigh, an official press release, and they couldn't get DH's name right. Well, they got it correct for the most part, but left out the all important JUNIOR. That's what separates the son from the father.

This month, I also turned a year older. And at this ripe old age of (clearing throat) I finally acknowledged my weight and learned to ebay. What wonderful accomplishments! LOL.