Saturday, November 08, 2014

Ever sit down to scrapbook and you’re faced with this?

  ...."I don't have a CLUE about what to do embellishment? Journaling? Arghhhh!"
That's the little voice in your head by the way - lol.
...and don't worry - you're not alone. We've all got one.
Without a doubt, the toughest part of scrapbooking is coming up with new ideas....
...And when the ideas dry up, so does the motivation... 
...But don't let a lack of ideas stop you from PRESERVING your memories....
...Because behind each photo, there's a STORY...
...A story that needs to be told... 
...So people aren't forgotten and those special occasions will always be REMEMBERED... 
...So if you get stuck for new ideas, I want to help re-ignite your creative spark, so you can:
   Make SERIOUS progress on that pile of photos you've been meaning to turn into pages....
   Get more CREATIVE than ever before...and produce layouts that looks like art....
   Create pages in HALF the time it takes you now....
   and much much MORE!
....You can get all of this with the help of the Scrapbooking Coach. Right now they’ve got a big scrapbooking sale on…where you can soak up a world of new ideas for your pages!

...But don't take my word for it, here's what some of their current students say:
 - "I LOVE the training videos...they give me SO MANY IDEAS for my pages!"  - (Janette S, Orange Park FL.)
 - "Holy Mackeral!!! I took notes, I replayed the videos and I can't wait to experiment! Thank you for INSPIRING   me!" - (Amy W, Lakewood Ranch, Florida)
 - "I truly LOVE the videos. They gave me some FANTASTIC ideas....I'll be watching them over and over" - (Karen E, Milwaukee, Wisconsin)
 - "I've learned so many EXCITING TECHNIQUES to add to my pages....Thank you!" - (Deb S, Nebraska)
...If you want NEW and INSPIRING ideas, then you'll love this scrapbooking sale, to see it just go here now:
You can get over $300 worth of training and ideas for just $1
But you'll need to be quick cause the sale is almost over.
Till next time, be inspired to creatively preserve your most precious memories, now and always,
Kyra Patterson
P.S One of their students says that “the video training is like the video version of the scrapbook magazines!" And I'm not surprised, cause they show you how to create AMAZING pages with new techniques and layout ideas step-by-step. 
Check it out now by clicking here:

P.P.S Remember - when you run out of ideas, you can run out of motivation to continue scrapping! Don't let that be you :( It's EASY to preserve your memories when you have a head full of ideas...
...And you'll find those right here:

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Blog Hop of Kith and Kin Stamp Co Design Team

Hi Everyone,

Well if you've made it this far you know I'm the last blog for you to hop to.... I am the owner of Kith and Kin Stamp Co and I am so grateful to those of you who have played along. Alyce's colour along's are always so informative and full of great info I know you will have learnt lots. We feel very honoured that she has chosen one of our stamps.

I love colouring and really only got interested in using copics after I saw Alyce's lovely colouring.... that then got me started on creating my own stamps so I could decide the images I wanted to colour.

My colouring is of me... Kyra Mermaid which you can buy in my facebook store

For the next week I'm going to have some extra surprises and specials for those of you who are keeping an eye on my Facebook Page.

Here's all the blogs that participated in case you missed anyone.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

50 Ideas to Get Organized and Enjoy Your Scrapbooking Hobby

Scrapbooking is a wonderful hobby! Besides being relaxing and fun, it also allows you to be creative and to spend quality time with your family and friends. Plus, it results in a storybook of lifelong memories.

One very important element of scrapbooking is getting it all organized. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • storing all of your supplies in an organized fashion so they can be found instantly when you need them.
  • remembering what supplies to pick up at the store, and eliminating duplicate purchases.
  • finding time to research new and creative ways to spruce up your scrapbooks.
  • finding enough time to enjoy the art of scrapbooking in your busy life.

  1. TELL A STORY. Plan your photos, before you shoot. Instead of taking random shots of someone standing here, or someone else sitting there, tell a story. For example, let's say it's Halloween. You may plan on taking four photos of your child:
    1. on the hayride taking him/her to the pumpkin field.
    2. looking for a pumpkin.
    3. finding a pumpkin.
    4. with the carved pumpkin later.


    Photos for your scrapbooks can be extra nice if you take a little bit of time to learn some basic photography. Visit for a quick photography tutorial. Getting organized has a lot to do with preparation and this site is filled with helpful tips and ideas.


    Organized documentation is important for the serious scrapbooker. The main goal is to eliminate future questions such as "Who or what is that?", "Where and when was this photo taken?", and so on. Document photos as you're taking them, so you'll know exactly what is on each roll of film. That way you'll be prepared when you're ready to organize the photos in your scrapbooks.


    If you find rolls of film around your house that are ready to go to the developer, bring them today. You may consider mailing all of your film to a supplier such as so you don't have to spend time dropping off film or picking up photos. Simply mail your film out, and you'll get your photos back in the mail a week later. From now on, always get your film developed as soon as you take the used rolls out of your camera.


    Once your photos are developed, you need a place to store them until you're ready to put them in your scrapbook. Keep them separated by year or event, in Ziplock bags. Label each bag with a number, and put a corresponding number on your Documentation Form. Then, store them in a photo box. Keep the box in a dry, cool place to protect your photos until you're ready to put the photos into your scrapbook.


    If you have boxes of photos that span from the beginning of the 1900's to now, it's time to start getting them organized. Schedule a day and time to begin sorting through them and stick with your appointment when the day rolls around. Get your kids, or friends, to help out. Begin by making piles, categorized by event or year. If you don't know the exact year, at least sort them by decade. This may take a little while, but once everything is separated, scrapbooking your photos will be much easier and more pleasant. Once they're all sorted, store your photographs as mentioned above.


    If you're planning to scrapbook lots of photos from way back, start with the most recent photos you have, and work backwards. Chances are, you have a journal describing recent photos, and even if you don't, you can probably recall the details more easily. Older photos--the ones that you don't have a journal for--will take a little more thinking.


    If your scrapbooking hobby seems like a colossal job to you, it's not going to be fun. Don't feel like you have to put ALL of your photos into scrapbooks. You can always put the majority of your photos in acid-free photo albums or photo boxes where they will be safe. Choose a small set of photos to begin scrapbooking. Once you're done with this small set, you can then decide whether you want to dig into your photo albums or photo boxes and continue scrapbooking them, or leave those photos where they are, and simply scrapbook any new photos in the future.


    Double prints will do you no good if they're just sitting in your photo box taking up space. Do something with them. Perhaps send them to someone who is in the photograph. It's a great way to keep in touch. Or, pass the doubles onto your young children who may like to create their own scrapbooks. It's a great way for them to learn your beloved hobby and decide if they would like it to be a hobby of their own.


    Sometimes, for the purpose of creatively decorating your scrapbook, you may wish to keep tickets, brochures, maps, postcards, and so on, that are related to a particular trip or event. Use manila file folders or catalog envelopes for this purpose. Label the folder/envelope so that you know which photos/Documentation Form it corresponds to. File these until they're ready to be used.


    Already have a pretty good idea of stickers, diecuts, etc. that you're planning to use with a particular set of photographs? Keep them in the same Ziplock bag with the photos until you're ready to put them into your scrapbook. This way, everything will be in one place and ready to use.


    Stickers and punched shapes can be kept in acid-free sheet protectors, plastic baseball card sheets, business card sheets, or even Ziplock bags that are 3-hole punched. Each sheet should be categorized and labeled by theme: birthday, Christmas, Halloween, wedding, springtime, etc. Insert these sheets into a 3-ring binder. If you have a large number of stickers and shapes, you may want to use index dividers labeled with general categories. For example, a general HOLIDAY category, may hold Easter, Christmas/Hanukkah, Halloween, etc., a general SEASONS category, may hold Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring, and so on.


    For very tiny diecuts and other small items, consider storing then in empty film canisters. The clear ones are best, but if you only have opaque ones, simply stick a label--or the actual diecut attached with a piece of tape-- on the canister indicating what is inside. Baby food jars serve the same purpose well.

  14. PAPER.

    Where do you keep all of that cool paper until you're ready to use it? You can get a plastic, portable filing container--research its composition to assure archival safety--that holds hanging file folders. Label the hanging files by theme or color. You may want to place a manila file folder into each hanging file folder, to keep your papers from curling. Or, you may buy file folder pockets or sheet protectors that fit into a 3-ring binder and store your papers inside each pocket, categorized and labeled. By the way, be very careful not to store acid-free paper with other paper.


    Do a little bit of research and purchase a scrapbooking organizer, which will hold papers, supplies, etc. There are many products on the market that can help you keep it all together. Many office supply stores carry six-drawer organization stations. They're vertical and have 6 see-through drawers of equal size. Each drawer can be designated for a different purpose--papers, templates/diecuts, stickers, etc. Plus, they have wheels, which makes them very easy to transport from one room to another. Or, if you often bring your scrapbooking supplies outside of your home, such as to a friend's house, use a portable system that isn't too heavy or cumbersome, and comes with a handle.


    Put your stencils/templates into sheet protectors that can be purchased at any office supplies store. Then insert them into a 3-ring binder for easy access. By the way, you can store two templates in one sheet protector with a piece of paper in between each--white or colored depending on the color of your template. This will make it easier to see the designs and eliminate them from catching onto each other.


    If you always scrapbook at home, use a kitchen utensil caddy with a number of divided compartments, like those you normally keep tall kitchen spoons, ladles, and spatulas in. The ones that spin will keep everything you need at your fingertips.

  18. HANG IT UP.

    If you're lucky enough to have a room specifically designated for your scrapbooking hobby, hang a large pegboard above your work area. You can then attach scissors, templates, crimpers, rulers, stencils and more, all within easy sight and reach. In addition, you might hang a small ledge or shelf nearby, to store all of your corner rounders, photo corners, and so on. If you prefer everything out in the open, this system will work like a charm.


    Store rubber stamps in shallow, plastic containers, a rubber stamping organizer, or a plastic organizer with shallow drawers. Don't stack stamps. They should be stored in a single layer, so that you can always see the top of the stamp showing the design.


    Fishing tackle boxes--with compartments and levels that expand and collapse--are wonderful for storing scrapbooking supplies and tools. Plastic tool boxes, with many see-through drawers are also great for this purpose.


    Is your closet full of scrapbooking magazines? There are a few things to do about this dilemma. 1) You can go through your magazines, find the articles you wish to keep and organize them into file folders by category. In other words, keep the article, toss the magazine. 2) Or you can keep the magazines in cardboard magazine boxes. If you do this, you should always keep a list of the title/issue of the magazine, the pages that interest you, and a few words describing why they interested you. This way, you can just scan your list, instead of going through the entire magazine to find what you're looking for. You can even use your computer and create the list in a word processing file. Then using the Find feature, you can simply search for key words in your document.


    Rather than keeping all those great scrapbooking ideas and tips in your head--you know, the ones you pick up from magazines, web sites, etc.-- keep a 3-ring binder with some notepaper inside for all your thoughts and ideas. Plus, when you see something in a magazine, you can simply tear the page out of the magazine, 3-hold punch it, and place it in your binder. The same goes if you see something on a web site that you wish to refer to later; just print it out and insert it into your binder. You can even separate the binder into a few different sections, such as page layout ideas, organizing ideas, neat tools/supplies, etc.


    Scrapbooking is more fun and less of a chore, when everything is in one place and in close, accessible proximity to your working area. Designate a room, or a portion of a room, in your home for this activity. You should be able to retrieve your supplies, photos, etc. in seconds, without having to walk into another room, or rummage through a closet.


    Use an organized shopping system so you remember what you want to pick up for your hobby --scissors, crimpers, papers, etc. This will also eliminate purchasing items that you already have. When you think of something you need, immediately put it on a SCRAPBOOKING PICK UP list, and bring this list with you when you go shopping. Using 3 inch x 5 inch index cards, make examples of your cuts and punches on them. Label and keep them in your day timer, or a tiny 3-ring binder. Bring these cards with you when shopping for scrapbooking items, and you'll never buy duplicates. This also works great for remembering what color pens/pencils you have. Just draw a line on your index cards and label them.


    Resist the urge to buy a million new papers, punches, and so on, until you've used some of the craft supplies you already have. Unless you're planning on opening a scrapbooking warehouse, it's best to be choosy before emptying your wallet on new items, when you already have items you could use in your current supply.


    You'll save a lot of time running back and forth to the store, if you commit instead to making your purchases online.

  27. TRADE.

    If you have something that you haven't used in a year or more, such as craft scissors, stickers, etc., swap them with a friend. Who knows? Perhaps your friend will find immediate use for this item, and you will get something you can use right now in return.

  28. GOALS.

    Always set goals for your scrapbooking hobby, perhaps one to two pages a week. This is especially necessary if you're creating a scrapbook for an upcoming special occasion.

  29. PLAN.

    Before you start working on your pages, plan ahead. Arrange your photos in chronological order and gather stickers, diecuts, etc. that correspond with your photos. Think about your layout and how you plan to document each photo. This will ensure you're going to be happy with the final results, and will reduce the need to redo things.


    Step One: Assemble your pages with your photos, documentation and critical diecuts.

    Step Two: Decorate with stickers, stamps, etc. The two-step process will help you get the critical part (step one) done faster, and then you can continue with the second step (less important) later on.


    Although you may really feel the need for creating a work of art on occasion, if your goal is to get a scrapbook done as quickly as possible, keep it simple. Getting photos and documentation in the album is the main goal. Save your really creative moments for extra special scrapbooking projects. And remember, too much stuff on any one page, takes away from the photos.


    Quickly, organize your scrapbooks with colors that compliment each other, by referencing a good color harmony book. You can pick one up at your local bookstore. They include hundreds of color combination examples. Color Harmony, by Hideaki Chijiiwa, is an excellent book for this purpose.


    Looking for a few minutes here or there to catch up on your scrapbooking? Take and make all your phone calls in the same room as your designated scrapbooking work area. Then, while you're on the phone with your friends or family, you can crop, frame or mount at the same time. Or, instead of making punches when you need them, make a bunch of punches at once while you're watching television, or are on the telephone, or when you're waiting for a pot of water to boil. This will save time later because your punches will be ready when you need them.


    Many people like to get their kids involved with the actual project, such as arranging stickers, applying diecuts, etc. If you would rather your kids were not involved with the actual project, give them a project of their own. You can always find a few photos that you're not going to use in your scrapbook, some inexpensive paper, kid scissors, etc. Then have each child make their very own scrapbook. Either way, the kids will be occupied, which will give you time to enjoy your hobby.


    If you have more than one child that is involved with a scrapbooking activity, get them each their own plastic storage box and/or accordion files to keep their own supplies in. This way, when they want to work on their scrapbook, all of their supplies will already be separated. You may even color code their supplies, plastic boxes, etc. so they always know which stuff belongs to them. For example, blue container, blue scissors and markers labeled in blue for Billy, and all pink for Sally.


    Scrapbooking is a great way to spend some time with your family. Get the whole family involved and around the table at the same time. It's a great time to share ideas and dreams with each other. Can't seem to get the male family members involved? Perhaps they can sit at the table while the females are scrapbooking, and they could do something they enjoy at the same time. At least everyone will be together and having fun.

  37. TEAM UP.

    Scrapbooking is a great way to spend time with your friends and catch up with each other. Start a scrapbooking club and meet at each other's homes one day every few weeks. Make a party of it!


    The next time you get together with friends, or a scrapbooking club, put a little piece of colored tape on your scissors' handles, the sides of your punch tools, pens, etc. Then, everyone could share, but you'll be sure to get your tools back when it's time to go home.


    If you're going to be scrapbooking at a friend's home, take a few minutes to plan what you want to work on. By doing this, you will only have to carry those supplies you're going to use. In other words, if you're going to be working on a wedding theme, there's no reason to be carrying all of your holiday items with you.


    If you are spending too much time looking for supplies, background papers, photos, frames, that great rubber stamp and so on, then, it's time to organize your work station. Declutter and toss out or trade those items you don't need, you don't like, etc. Organize your supplies into binders and storage containers. You should always be working on a clear surface, with only the current project in front of you.


    If there is a wastepaper basket right near your work station, all of the scraps that you're not planning on using can be tossed immediately. Don't leave trash on your work surface. If you visit a friend's home, you may want to carry along an empty tissue box so that all scraps can be discarded immediately, and make clean-up for your host quick and easy.

  42. PUT IT AWAY.

    Always have a home for your supplies, and when you're finished using them, take a few moments to put everything away. You should be able to start fresh with a clear mind and a clear surface.


    Never place a big item over a smaller item, because if you do, it will be out of sight, and difficult to find quickly.


    Organize your work area for increased productivity. Make sure it's well lit. Have a comfortable chair to sit on. Your supplies and tools should be within arms reach.

  45. SAFETY.

    Organize your scrapbooking with safety in mind. Use a protective covering for your table. Craft mats are great for cutting on. Scissors and other sharp tools should be face down in a holder, and out of a young child's reach.


    Different personality styles require different organization systems. Make sure you use an organization system you can live with--one that works with your style and that allows you to find things without delay. If you find things easier when they're alphabetized, then use that type of system. Perhaps you're better at finding things by color. Then use that system. Your organization system must work in harmony with your personality.


    Finding the time for your scrapbooking and/or rubberstamping hobby can be difficult if you have too many things going on in your life. Reduce or eliminate the activities you don't truly enjoy. Reduce the activities of your children. Get on an organized cleaning schedule, so you're not wasting the entire weekend cleaning up. Make easier dinners that are healthy, but take half the time to prepare. Get your family to help out with household chores and obligations.


    Those spare minutes that we all have can be put to good use. Have to wait at the doctor's office for your appointment? Sketch out a quick layout idea. Waiting for the wash cycle to finish? Sort out some photos, or gather supplies for tomorrow's scrapbooking project.


    Don't ever leave your home without a small notebook in hand. You're bound to come up with a thought, or a cute caption, for your scrapbook. If you don't write it down right away, you may forget about it. You may also want to keep a small pad and a pen right near your bedside, in case you have a bright idea in the middle of the night.

  50. ENJOY!

    Plan, organize and schedule some time to enjoy your creations with family and friends. Scrapbooking is all about fun, laughter, memories, and touching moments!

Maria Gracia - Get Organized Now!

FREE Idea-Pak and E-zine filled with tips, ideas, articles and more to help you organize your home, your office and your life at the Get Organized Now! Web site!

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Quick Scrapbooking Layout Tuesday Tutorial

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Taking A Look At Things To See When You Visit Las Vegas

Las Vegas stands among the most popular destinations in America for people to visit, but one thing that a lot of people fail to realize, when they visit Vegas, is that there is a lot more to the city than just The Strip; if you are going to be taking a trip to Vegas at some point in the near future, you will want to make sure you know how to maximize your trip - and if you are not planning to take a trip to Vegas sometime soon, you can keep these three ideas in mind for whenever you eventually make the time to go!

Of course, when you are in Las Vegas, The Strip is "the place to go," but you should realize that there is also a downtown to Vegas, and this is where all the oldest casinos (and some of the greatest stories) are; when you go to Vegas, make sure you take the time to visit downtown, as you will be disappointed if you leave the city without seeing all that this part of the city has to offer.

And although most people spend plenty of time on The Strip when they go to Vegas, most of this time is spent there at night, but rather than just lounging by the pool all day or sleeping away the afternoon when you are in Vegas, you should also take the time to get out on the strip in the daytime; in addition to the Casinos and the shows, there is also plenty of great shopping in Vegas - right there on The Strip - and the best time to get out there and see all that the Vegas shopping experience has to offer is during the day.

And even though you will want to maximize the time you have to enjoy The Strip at night, one thing you should do is take at least one night to get away from The Strip for an hour or two: The Strip at night is a magnificent sight from far away, against the vast expanse of the desert, so drive a little ways away from The Strip one night, sit outside, and drink in the view.


Everyone who has spent time in Vegas has their favorite parts of the city, and when you make sure you indulge in these three things when you visit Vegas, you just might be adding one of these things to your own list when you leave.

Friday, December 27, 2013

How To Scrapbook For More Than One Child

Scrapbooking can be a delightful way to corral those family photos and memories into an exciting book. Scrapbooking can be relaxing for you as you do it, and a pleasure as you share it.

Books and articles on scrapbooking for 1 child abound, but suppose you have more than 1 child. Suppose you have 7 children. Then you need a book or article on how to scrapbook for more than 1 child.

You Have Scrapbooking Options

Those who want to scrapbook for more than 1 child have several exciting options.

1. Make a full-blown scrapbook for each. If you have many photos and memories to preserve, this allows the most space for each child. Your scrapbooking will require more time and money, but will be a labor of love.

The book's theme will focus on that one child. Place his or her photo and name on the front, and theme every scrapbooking page to that child's life.

You will use family photos, of course, to show the place the child held in family activities. But you will want pages that focus solely on that child: baby "firsts"; first year of school; favorite hobbies; favorite toys; dreams; birthdays; awards; graduation; etc. If a photo shows two of the children together, focus your journaling on that one child's part in the photo. How did the world look from his eyes or her eyes? Our memories are always, I have found, as seen through our eyes. Do mention the second child, but spotlight the first.

As each child becomes able, he or she can help add new pages to his or her scrapbook. Scrapbooking can be a time of bonding and love that will long be remembered.

When they leave home as young adults, they can take their individual scrapbooks with them. As they mature, they will come to realize what it meant in time, effort, and cost for you to provide these treasured scrapbooking memories.

2. Make a mini scrapbook for each. If you have fewer photos, want to be more selective, or simply have very little time for scrapbooking, a mini scrapbook will still provide individual, tangible memories that can be carried into adult life.

Select just one theme for each double-page spread, with one or two photos on each. Tie the photos together with your theme, mounting them on the same color of torn paper or using identical frames.
Mini scrapbooking will not allow for as many family or sibling photos, but remember that this is a book about one child. When you make a mini scrapbook for each child, you can rest assured that each will get full attention. There will be no "left-out" feelings.

A mini scrapbook can be no larger than 6" x 6". Or it can be half the size of a standard letter: 5.5" x 8.5". You can read details about how to make your own mini scrapbooks in my article entitled, "How to do Mini Scrapbooks".

Digital mini scrapbooks would be interesting for children, since they live in a computerized world. Digital mini scrapbooks can be less expensive to make, and people who are comfortable with one of the computer graphics programs, such as "Adobe PhotoShop", will be able to apply interesting effects that are not possible with conventional scrapbooking.

3. Make a family scrapbook for each. A third way to scrapbook for more than one child is to make a family scrapbook for each. Less attention will be paid to individual children, in such a book, and focus placed on the entire family unit.

Your scrapbooking theme is your entire family, including every family member. Place the family name on the cover, and a nice family photo, if you wish. On the title page, write a note about the family as a whole.

Scrapbooking a single volume of memories will call for both family memories and individual memories. Theme your pages to focus on high lights of family life. Begin with Dad and Mom - the wedding, especially. You will still have a scrapbooking page for each child's birth, but there will probably be insufficient space for every "first" of every child. Try to include true highlights of each child's life. Include amusing times as well as those that were less pleasant. Include school events; sports; musical interests; birthdays; awards, graduations, and family pets.

You may still want to include your children's scrapbooking efforts as they become old enough to take part in the process. Scrapbooking family memories will give opportunity to discuss those memories, and solidify them in each one's mind.

When each child leaves home, for college attendance, to marry, etc., make a copy of the book as it is at that time, and present it as a going-away gift. Office supply stores or copy centers can copy each page in color on heavy paper or cardstock, and bind them with s durable spiral binding. Covers can be copied in color or black and white on cover stock.

Your scrapbooking gifts will vary for each child, according to when they leave home, but personal family memories of their time at home will be preserved.

4. Make a Perpetual Digital Scrapbook. If you want to scrapbook for more than 1 child with the least time involvement, you may want to consider a perpetual digital scrapbook.

Digital scrapbooking may contain hundreds, or even thousands, of pages, and yet take up no more space than a small computer CD. Digital scrapbooks allow you to add pages, even when the family is grown and dispersed.

Digital scrapbooks need never be printed. You can include individual pages of every child's "firsts" as well as all of your family photos. Throughout life, you can continue to make pages. As each is completed, simply attach it to e-mail and send it to every family member. They can add each page to their scrapbooking CD, and continue the family album.

TIP: A digital scrapbook on a CD in a bank safe deposit box is the safest way to store your family memories. Your digital scrapbook will be safe from fire, floods, and other disasters.

©2007, Anna Hart. Anna Hart invites you to read more of her articles about scrapbooking at Anna is posting new articles every week on that site, each one dealing with a scrapbooking topic. If you decide to solve the problem of how to scrapbook for more than 1 child by doing a digital mini scrapbook as suggested above, you won’t want to miss her article on the subject.

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Why Using A Real Travel Agent Might Be Right For You

These days, the Internet has taken over many parts of our lives, and has even taken over a number of jobs. In very few jobs is this as true as with travel agents, where their job has largely been replaced by such websites as Orbitz, Priceline, and Expedia, which book a customer's flight, ground transportation, and hotel, all in a matter of moments. But believe it or not, there is still a place for travel agents, and there is a chance that a travel agent might be just right for you.

1) Packages: Many travel agencies put together packages themselves, which can include anything from the basics to the whole shebang. For instance, you might have an all-inclusive trip that a travel agency offers, which flies you down to a resort where all your food and lodging is included, and which then flies you back. On the other hand, the travel agency might offer a trip that covers four cities in six days, with lodging and transportation taken care of all the way, and even with tours scheduled or other concessions made. Travel agencies are able to sell such packages for less money than you would be able to book the trips on your own, because they book this exact trip frequently and therefore are able to get certain discounts; furthermore, they can book these trips far more quickly than you could on your own!

2) Knowledge: Travel agencies can let you know what spots you should visit and what spots you should make sure you avoid. While you could learn this through trial and error, it is unlikely that you would want to waste your trip missing the good spots and hanging out in the bad. Even with extensive research, you are unlikely to find out more than you can find out from the travel agencies themselves, as these travel agencies deal with these places directly; furthermore, it is the job of these travel agencies to be knowledgeable!

3) That extra mile: One of the biggest ways by which travel agencies survive in a world where the Internet has largely taken over their business is by doing those things the Internet cannot do - going above and beyond what is expected, going that extra mile.

Consider your options before you book a trip of your own, because even though you might find that a travel website is the right tool for you, you might also find that a travel agent is far likelier to give you a better experience.

Scrapbooking Process 112: Planetarium Studio Calico Kit

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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Western Scrapbooking Pages Free

Western scrapbooking pages, free of charge, can be found on the Internet and in scrapbooking magazines. Scrapbooking is one of those hobbies in which people enjoy sharing pages they have created. Whether novice or professional, they want to help others have similar happy experiences.

Sources of Western Scrapbooking Pages

Western scrapbooking pages, free for copying, appear in many places on the Internet. You might want to try these options.

1. Galleries: Scrapbooking galleries are probably one of the best places to find western scrapbooking pages free. These galleries feature photos of successful scrapbooking pages, free for you to borrow from their creators. Scrapbook has nearly 350,000 images in their gallery, including both layouts and digital layouts of scrapbooking pages. A search there on the word "western" produced 214 western scrapbooking pages at the time this article was written. A mouse click at this gallery enlarges any photo so you can easily see the elements.

2. Forums and Chat Rooms: You may also find western scrapbooking pages free in forums and chat rooms. Sometimes, if you are cooperative, a forum member may even volunteer to create a western scrapbooking page free to meet your specific needs. Forum members are often scrapbooking "addicts" who love to share their talents.

3. Scrapbooking Kits: Online retailers who sell scrapbooking kits often feature 2 or 3 kits, showing large pictures of scrapbooking pages within the kits. The pages are copyrighted, but the ideas can be adapted. Digital scrapbooking kits are sometimes free for the taking as an introduction to a site's digital elements. You may find just the western scrapbooking pages you want on a kit site.

4. Scrapbooking Stamp Retailers: Online retailers of stamps often show scrapbooking pages to illustrate what their stamps will add to a layout. We found lovely western scrapbooking pages free at one of these sites.

5. Scrapbooking Supplies Retailers: Internet retailers who sell an array of scrapbooking supplies follow the same practice: placing photos of samples to spark ideas, or giving 2 or 3 scrapbooking pages free as an introductory offer. Browse these retailers' sites and you will come away with many ideas for western scrapbooking pages.

Do-It-Yourself Digital Western Scrapbooking Pages

Digital western scrapbooking pages can be created at your computer if you are handy with a computer graphics program. We use Adobe PhotoShop.

Begin by creating scrapbooking paper. Make your paper 12" x 12" for now. It can be reduced later if necessary. Create digital scrapbooking paper in several themes for your scrapbooking pages. These three ideas will get you started.

1. Western Riding Scrapbooking Pages

Make the paper background medium to light brown with a sandy texture.

Place a clear layer in front of the brown, and add words to it such as "Western" or "cowboy" to carry the theme. You won't need many words. Vary the font for interest. This layer is optional on your scrapbooking page.

Find 1 or 2 clipart or photo images of cowboy hats. Then find a cowboy boot, saddle, and spurs. Add a rope if you wish. Once you have the graphics, create a pattern on your brown paper, repeating it at pleasing intervals.

2. Horseshoe Scrapbooking Pages

Make the paper background light brown, and then render clouds with light brown and ivory.

Find a clipart image of a steel gray horseshoe. Create a pattern over the clouds, repeating the horseshoe at intervals until the paper is covered.

3. Man and Beast Shoes Scrapbooking Pages

Begin by creating horseshoe scrapbooking paper. Add small clipart images of cowboy boots at wide intervals over top of the horseshoes. It's good to have 3 different pairs of cowboy boots for interest.

Completing Western Scrapbooking Pages

Once your scrapbooking paper is ready, you can make digital western scrapbooking pages on it. Place cropped, scanned photos on each page. Overlap photos, with a piece of journaling placed to one side. Add a page title in bold, western font. Half a dozen wild mustangs in ivory or off-white might be placed at a page bottom, as though dashing in from one side. Add digital stickers to your scrapbooking pages and move to the next.

Tip: Western scrapbooking pages look best when "busy" cowboy paper is used intermittently with plain, more colorful backgrounds.

©2007, Anna Hart. Anna Hart invites you to read more of her articles about scrapbooking pages at Anna is posting new articles every week on that site. If you like free scrapbooking pages, you won’t want to miss her article on free digital scrapbooking frames.

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Enjoying Your Ice Cream At Home

In many homes, ice cream is a favorite treat, but in spite of this fact, many homes do not have ice cream in the freezer, because it sometimes seems that ice cream is so much better when it is purchased at an ice cream shop! While this is actually true in many instances, ice cream is also far more expensive when purchased at an ice cream shop, as you will often end up spending as much money on one serving of ice cream at such a shop as you would spend on an entire carton of ice cream that you could keep in your freezer - and for this reason, it is beneficial for you to know some ways to enjoy your ice cream at home!

One idea for enjoying your ice cream at home is for you to do ice cream sundaes; of course, this will cost more than a trip to the ice cream shop the first time you do it, as you will need to pick up all the various ingredients, but once you have all the "add-ons" in your pantry and refrigerator, they will last for a long time!

You can also make a homemade version of Cold Stone Creamery ice cream using these same add-ons; simply put a couple metal spoons and a glass cutting board in the freezer for a bit, and then mix the ingredients into your ice cream on top of this cutting board!

And when it comes to enjoying your ice cream at home, one of the most classic ways is with milkshakes and ice cream floats; you can make a great variety of different kinds of milkshakes at home, and you can make your ice cream floats with root beer, cola, or anything else that fits your taste preferences!

When you start to get creative with making your ice cream at home more delicious, you will not only be able to save some money, but you just might find that it is a lot tastier than what you could buy at an ice cream shop as well!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

How To Prepare For The First Year Of College

The first year of college is a huge transition time, and many students who enter this time are unable to transition as well as they would like, which puts them in a position in the future where they are always feeling like they are "behind," and like they are unable to catch up. One of the most difficult things about the first year of college is that there will be so many new things to experience and deal with, but when you have an understanding of what you should be prepared for - and of what some of these new experiences will be - you will be much better equipped to conquer that first year of college!

If you see yourself as someone who worked really hard in high school, and if you figure this will help you when you move into college, you should be aware of the fact that "working hard" in high school is different from "working hard" in college; for one thing, the classes are more difficult in college, and for another thing, everything is less structured, which means you will quickly have to learn to boss yourself - and you will have to be ready to truly study hard!

Of course, it is also easy for "studying hard" to become such an obsession that you forget to enjoy the college experience, so as you budget your time for your first year of school, make sure you also plan to make time for truly enjoying college and getting the most out of it.

And even though you might get upset when you make mistakes, realize that making mistakes will be a big part of any new experience, and this is no different when it comes to your first year of college. But the key, if you want to be successful in your first year at school, will be to make sure you are recognizing the mistakes you make, and that you are learning from them so that you do not make the same mistakes again!

Scrapbooking Process: Maya

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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Scrapbook Albums and How to Construct One

Your honeymoon was delightful. You spent 11 days in Bora Bora, and now you'd like to capture those memories in one place. A friend suggested a scrapbook album, but you don't know how to construct a scrapbook album.

Honeymoon scrapbook albums can be fun to make, even if you have never tried one before. Tropical scrapbook albums also are exciting. When one combines the best of tropical scrapbook albums and honeymoon scrapbook albums, the results can be amazing. But how do you make scrapbook albums?

Let's look at the steps.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 1

Scrapbook albums come in a range of materials, sizes, and styles. The first step in constructing scrapbook albums is choosing the album itself.

1. Materials: Leather scrapbook albums are likely to be the most expensive. Honeymoon scrapbook albums are precious, however, and you may want to choose durable leather for yours. Cloth-covered scrapbook albums are also a good choice. Some have a window opening on the front cover for a special photo. The cloth used is usually book cloth, so it is strong. Cheap scrapbook albums are also available. These are usually made of heavy cover stock, plain or covered with paper.

2. Sizes: Standard scrapbook albums have a useable page size of 12x12 inches. The scrapbook album itself may measure 13x14 inches or more, but part of that is the book's spine. Some scrapbook albums are larger - as large as 18x20 inches. Smaller scrapbook albums are as small as 4x6 inches. As a novice, you may want to select from the standard scrapbook albums, since scrapbook supplies are made to that standard.

3. Styles: As the popularity of scrapbooking has increased, the variety of styles in scrapbook albums has mushroomed. Plain cover scrapbook albums come in many colors. Some scrapbook albums have a military-themed cover, featuring the military branch and a gold plated service medallion. Others have a Disney theme, with Mickey Mouse and friends adorning the cover. Tropical scrapbook albums, which you might choose for a honeymoon in Bora Bora, would be attractive in scrapbook albums with a bright red or blue Hibiscus-patterned cloth cover. You might even find unique Bora Bora scrapbook albums.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 2

Once you have selected a scrapbook album, you need to sort the photos and memorabilia you will use. Pay attention to the theme of each piece as well as the colors.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 3

Honeymoon scrapbook albums already have an overall theme - the honeymoon. Your next step will be to decide sub-themes for each 2-page spread. For example, you might have a theme of arrival at Bora Bora, with approach photos of the island from the air. This theme could also include photos taken upon landing. First impressions are important memories. Lay out your photos, deciding a theme for each page or 2-page spread. Then move to the next step.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 4

Background papers are a good way to tie pages together. Scrapbooking paper in standard 12x12 inch size comes in a multitude of colors and patterns. Plain paper is also available. Be sure you purchase paper that is acid free to protect your photos and memorabilia. Choose paper to complement the photos on each page.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 5

With your scrapbook album paper in place, arrange photos. Resist crowding your pages with photos. You will need space for notes and other elements. You might want to add a bit of torn paper beneath photos to set them off from the background. On come pages, you may want to put a paper frame around the photos. Such scrapbooking supplies are available at scrapbooking stores and websites.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 6

After you arrange and affix the photos, it's time to add journaling. "Journaling" is nothing more than notes or captions that help explain the photos. You may have a memory of what was said when a certain photo was taken - or a comment about what happened immediately before or after. Journaling can be done on small pieces of paper that are added to scrapbook albums much as photos are added.

How to Construct a Scrapbook Album - Step 7

The final touch in constructing scrapbook albums is to add embellishments, charms, stickers, and other small pieces that add interest. Honeymoon scrapbook albums might include small hearts or kisses. Bora Bora scrapbook albums, or other tropical scrapbook albums, might include small sandals or seashells.

The Easier Route!

If construction of scrapbook albums "from scratch" sounds too complicated, or too time-consuming, you may want to purchase a scrapbooking honeymoon kit!

©2007, Anna Hart. Anna Hart invites you to read more of her articles about scrapbooking at Anna is regularly posting new articles on that site, all dealing with scrapbooking topics. If you would like scrapbook layout information, you won’t want to miss her article on the subject.

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Bamboo Or Egyptian Cotton?

If you are looking to purchase a new set of sheets, you may find it difficult to decide between the Egyptian cotton or the bamboo. This is a hard choice when it comes right down to it. Both of these fabrics have great qualities about them.  The choice is going to be extremely personal. Many more people are familiar with Egyptian cotten then they are with bamboo.

If you are looking at a set of sheets and they have an extremely high thread count, you are probably looking at Egyptian cotton. These sheets can have a very long life because of how well made they are. The high thread count of Egyptian cotton is part of what gives it such a luxurious feel. You may not immediately knotice now soft these cotton sheets can feel.  As you wash them and use them you will feel how soft they can be. Soft sheets are at the top of my list for sleeping necessities. Cotton breathes well so you won’t feel like you are smoldering during the night. Compared to bamboo sheets they are on the less expensive side as far as price.

Bamboo is a sustainable resource and uses no pesticides to grow therefore pretty environmentally friendly as far as that part of production. If you are "going green" bamboo sheets may be just what you are looking for. When compaired to Egyptian cotton, bamboo sheets have a lower thread count.  Ironically, bamboo is just as soft (if not softer) then Egyptian cotton. Bamboo is touted to be hypoallergenic, and also have some surprising antibacterial qualities to them. Bamboo is a bit more insulating then cotton so it has the ability to keep you warm but can breathe as to not keep you too warm.

Either of these fabrics will feel great to you. Egyptian cotton is less expensive then bamboo, but bamboo is a renewable resource. You will need to decide what will fit your needs the most. If you don't mind the extra cost, the bamboo sheets may shock you.

How To Train Your Puppy Not To Whine

One thing that is especially great about having a puppy is how cute they can be - and in fact, puppies can sometimes be so cute that it becomes easy for you to let it slide when they are doing things that they should not really be doing - but one of the problems with having a cute puppy that gets away with doing things it should not be doing is that it will eventually become an adult dog, and these bad habits will carry over; one of the worst "bad habits" a puppy can get into - and that can become permanent behavior if you are not careful - is whining, which can become especially annoying what it continues to happen all the time, even as your puppy grows into an adult.


You should be aware of the fact that your puppy is likely trying to communicate something to you when it is whining - but while this message it is trying to tell you will sometimes be important (for instance, "I need to go to the bathroom," or "I don't feel very good"), there will be lots of other times when your puppy is whining because they simply want attention; learn to discern why your puppy is whining, and if they are whining because they simply want attention, you will need to learn to not reward them for this behavior!

Your puppy will usually stop whining for attention once you stop giving them attention as a reward for whining, but if you are unable to solve the problem this way, another thing you can do is find something your puppy dislikes - such as being sprayed with water from a spray bottle, or having a noise-maker shaken around them - and when they start to whine for attention, counteract their whining with this thing they do not like. They will no longer equate "whining" with "a means to getting attention" when you consistently respond to their whining with this spray bottle, or with this noise-maker, but will instead begin to equate whining with whatever negative reaction you have chosen.

And of course, you will not just want to repay bad behavior with a negative response, but will also want to repay good behavior with a positive response; when your puppy does good things, make sure you are rewarding them - and in this way, you will constantly reinforce positive behavior, while getting rid of the negative!