Join The 'Pen Pals' Challenge ...

Every other Friday we will issue a new journaling challenge and post our sample pages on the blog. We'd love to have you join in with us too ... & maybe we'll pick you to be our 'Pen Pal of the Week!'

How you interpret the challenge is up to you, we will mostly create scrapbook pages - but feel free just to journal/blog post ...or maybe adapt the challenge to your art journals, cards & altered art.

Leave a comment on the challenge post with a link to your blog or gallery where we can find your work ... & if you'd like to be considered for the 'Pen Pal of the Week!' Guest Design Spot, be sure to e-mail your entry too!

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Are You Swamped With 'Stuff' Too?

You might have noticed that nothing's been happening here for a couple of weeks ... and we have noticed that you, our loyal followers, have also been missing for a couple of weeks.
This might have made me & Colette sad ... but we are big girls now, with grown up stuff to do & we understand that life sometimes gets in the way for us all.
So here's the plan:
We have absolutely NO intention of closing down this blog - we love it & if it's fun, well - you don't throw it away, do you? But we are going to take a loooooong break to deal with all the other stuff going on in our lives. I might post something occasionally if I have a li'l journaling prompt to throw out to you guys ... but there won't be any challenges & we might be silent until after the holiday season.
But we will be back in the new year - refreshed & ready to go ... put us in your readers to be sure you don't miss the announcement for when we are coming back (we haven't got a date just now) & in the meantime, just so as you don't miss telling your stories ... check out Jessica Spragues fab, free class - all the deets are here!!!

Saturday, 18 October 2008

More About Aubree

I asked Aubree a whole bunch of questions too - and these are the bits that she chose to share with us:

Tell us a bit about yourself :
I am married with 3 beautiful children, a 7 year old son and 5 and 3 year old girls. My real job is taking care of the kids but for 40 hours a week, I moonlight as a hedge fund portfolio manager.

How long have you been crafting?
I started scrapping about 2 1/2 years ago. I never thought of myself as a creative person but a friend convinced me to try it I am obsessed! I have taken over our extra bedroom and now have my own scrap space. My kids and I sit in there and scrap almost every day. They may just cut up paper and glue it to other scraps but in their minds and mine, we "scrap" together.

Top Journaling Tip? I struggle with journaling which is why I love this blog. It truely challenges me to write more about each event or memory that I scrap. I know my children will appreciate my work more when they can read the story behind the page.

Visit Aubree's Blog!!

Thanks for sharing with us Aubree! How great is it that you & your kids 'scrap' together? You sure are building happy memories with them ... & maybe one day when they are scrapping with their kids, they'll be telling the story of how they used to scrap with Mom!

Friday, 10 October 2008

Challenge #6 - Putting Down Roots

Another Challenge - & a brand new PenPal! We are pleased to welcome Aubree as our newest PPOTW; our winner from Challenge #3. Aubree sent us this beautiful mini book to illustrate her challenge ... which is a great reminder that you don't have to do a layout. So whether you choose to scrap your entry, create a mini book just like Aubree did, or maybe just get the words down ... in a journal, blog post or a file on your computer - we want to hear about it! So this is what Aubree had to say about Challenge #6:I thought it would be nice for everyone to create something to honor their heritage. It can be journaling about your parents, a layout about your ethnic background and customs, or even a project highlighting your family tree. I personally scrapbook for my children. I want them to have something to see how they have grown over the years and remember the fun times that we shared, but also to learn about their roots.
About 5 years ago, my husband's aunt researched their family tree. I used this information and stories that she remembers to create a mini album.

The journaling reads: Frank Greenspun and Molly Rothman were married on March 18,1928 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Frank was the youngest of seven children. He was born to Israel and Hannah on May 28, 1899. While he was born in the United States, Frank's parents had both immigrated from Russia. Molly Rothman was born in Russia on October 12, 1900. Molly's father, Abraham, immigrated from Karmonetz, Russia. He arrived at Ellis Island on October 22, 1905. His wife and child (Molly) must have joined him in the States at a later date as no records can be found of them traveling with him.

Frank and Molly had two children, Marilyn (b:01.18.29) and Bertram (b:10.29.33). They resided Northeast Philadelphia until late in their life. Frank died of Parkinson's disease in September of 1983. Molly passed on August 30, 1987.

So however you choose to do the challenge ... don't forget to e-mail your entry to us & maybe you will be our next PenPal!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

More About Chantele - part 2!

So we are back with Chantele ... & a whole bunch more questions!!

Current fave technique?
I love stamping diamonds on my pages. I also love distressing and making things shabby and grungy.

Top Journaling Tip?
Just do it! So many people don't journal on their pages. I am guilty of it sometimes myself. If you don't record those memories how will anyone know the stories that they tell.

Fave Manufacturers/Ranges
Ranger, Making Memories, May Arts, American Crafts, Prima, and of course, Scrapbook Obsessions. ;)

Who would you most like to do a page/card for?
Martha Stewart. Yeah, who would have guessed? LOL!

Any other interesting info you'd like to share?
My other favorite hobby is motorcycling. I have ridden my bike over 20,000 miles just in the last year and a half.

Visit Chantele's blog & check out more of her fab layouts on the message board gallery.

More About Chantele

Well it's been a li'l quiet around here this past couple weeks, so lets spend some time getting to know Chantele a li'l bit better. I asked her a whole bunch of questions & this is what she told me:

Tell us a bit about yourself :
My name is Chantele Jacobs. I have been married to my best friend since 1993. We have three boys ages 19, 17, & 13. I am the co-founder of Scrapbook Obsessions (, a monthly Scrapbook Kit company.

How long have you been crafting?
I've been crafting ever since I was a child. My mother is a very crafty lady and as a young child I learned how to do counted cross stitch, painting, etc. My mother is also the one that got me hooked on scrapbooking in the early 90's.

What is your favorite craft? (Scrapbooking? Cardmaking? Etc)
My favorite craft would definitely be Scrapbooking. It is a creative outlet for me and a great way to display my family photos.

How did you start?
My mother kept buying me scrapbook supplies as gifts for my birthday, Christmas, etc. I actually had no desire to use them so I stored them all on the top shelf of my armoire. It wasn't until 2-3 years of collecting all the supplies she gave me that I actually sat down and used them for the first time. Now I'm hooked. LOL!

Describe your craft space?We recently moved into a larger home and I did not have the furniture to fill the formal living room so I turned it to my scrapbook room instead. I lucked out and was able to pick up some Pottery Barn shelving units for practically no money at all and they have become my favorite storage of all time. They hold soooo much stuff and what is really great is that with my supplies actually visible, I tend to use them more than those that are stuck in a drawer out of sight.

Wow! I *need* a room like that one! Thanks for sharing with us Chantele ... & if you want to know about Chantele's fave techniques, manufacturers & more ... come by later for the next exciting instalment! LOL.
Have you entered Chantele's challenge yet? Be quick, you only have until Midnight!! E-mail us!!!

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Aubree's Challenge #5 Entry

Apologies to Aubree, who sent her entry to me ages ago - I won't bore y'all with the details ... lets just say I've been MIA. Anyway - I'm loving this colour scheme right now ... & the simplicity of this page - just fab! Thanks for playing along again Aubree!
The journaling reads:

N: Mommy, when I move into my own house, will you come over to babysit sometimes?
M: Sure honey to babysit your kids?
N: No mommy to babysit me!
M: (laugh) You do know when you have your own house, you won't need a babysitter anymore, right?
N: Oh...

The layout was made using BG Granola line and an MME tag.

There's still time to enter your page, project, blog or journal entry - c'mon ... e-mail me!

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Jan's Entry for Challenge #5

Check out this fab, colourful layout from Jan! And I have to say, she must have been quick off the mark this week - I've had this in my inbox for a couple days already!

Journaling reads:

The girls: “Mamaw, Seth drives like

a Grandma.”

Me: “Well girls, maybe he is just trying

to drive carefully”.

Girls: “But we don’t want to be careful,


Layne: “I want Brelynn to drive.

She goes faster”.

Me: “But isn’t it Seth’s turn to drive?”

Seth: “I don’t mind Mamaw.

I’m tired of being careful!”

Thanks for joining in with us again Jan! I love your choice of colours - so bright & fresh ... & the li'l flower accent that mimics the papers , the doodled (I think) road accents & stitched ribbon that also hints at a road & the whole driving theme. But most of all, I love this snippet of conversation - gotta love the funny things our kids say! LOL

Monday, 29 September 2008

Weekend (!) Winner

OK, so it's not actually the weekend but work with me on this. Let's just pretend for a moment that it is Saturday & I am about to announce the winner for Challenge #4's Pen Pal Of The Week!!!! With me so far? Good.
So, entries were down a bit for this one - I guess maybe I'm not the only one who has been struggling with fitting everything in just now. Happily Colette & I have come to a decision & are pleased to announce our latest PPOTW ... Nancy Jones.
I have long been a Nancy fan (no really? I hear you say! LOL) but her entry this time was soooo moving I cried! Congrats to you Nancy - can't wait to have you join us for Challenge #7!!

Check back tomorrow to see the first of Challenge #5's entries!

Friday, 26 September 2008

Challenge #5 - Let's Talk

This week's challenge is brought to you by Chantele, our Challenge #2 winner. Documenting conversations is a fabulous way to tell the story ... and gives a great insight to the way we interact with others, it tells who we are. So for Challenge #5 we want to eavesdrop.
It's up to you how you do it: you might want to create a layout, complete a page in your journal or art journal, blog about it or even use a series of e-mail or letter excerpts. However you do it, let's document those conversations - and e-mail them to us for your chance to be our next pen pal!

I love Chantele's page! A little gruesome perhaps but who said we can only scrap the good stuff!

The journaling reads:

The phone call:
"Hey baby, would you like to go to the open house with me at 6pm?"
"Yeah, if I'm done here by then I'll go with you."
"What are you doing?"
"I'm on my way to the emergency room"
"Why? What happened?"
"I got cut with a chainsaw."
"What?! Are you ok?"
"I think so."
"Tom, what happened?!"
"Cameron and I were cutting a tree branch and the chainsaw slipped and cut my wrist".
"I'm on my way!"

Scary stuff huh? We'll be hearing more about Chantele during her stay with us ... in the meantime, don't forget to check out our new 'meet our pen pals' links to visit their blogs.

More About Jing-Jing

I have been hit by the most terrible bout of lethargy, hence the lack of posts this past fortnight. So, without further delay ... here's some more about Jing-Jing:

I am Jing-Jing Nickel and I discovered scrapbooking 10 years ago when I was invited to an in-home class. To me, it was the most perfect extension of my love for traveling and travel photography. Then with the birth of my first child in 2004, a new dimension of scrapbooking as well as a new realm of creative possibilities were born with her. I transitioned from a pure event scrapper (trips) to encompass many "moments" documentation of her life with us. Now I have two adorable girls with my husband of 10 years, and scrapbooking has never been more fun and taken more seriously.

I was recently named one of the runners-up of the Memory Makers Masters competition, an honor beyond my wildest expectation.

In my spare time from scrapbooking, I have a full-time job in the I.T. profession as a software development infrastructure engineer.

Other interesting facts about me... I am extremely extroverted and outgoing. People who know me in real life know that I'm loud and crazy. I speak English (above all else), Chinese (Mandarin and Shanghainese), and French. And I love words and writing.

Blog Link:

Thank you Jing-Jing! We have loved having you as our pen pal & hope you will come and play again soon.
The new challenge will be posted this evening, so watch this space!

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Marta's Challenge #4 Entry

Well it has just been one of those months so far where little gets done! I guess it must be the same for most people as I have to say all my blogs have been quiet of late - not so many comments, and only 3 entries to this current challenge!!
Anyway, this li'l package of loveliness comes to us from Marta.

Here's what she had to say:
I did this LO in a 8x10 photo frame, inspired by one posted by Colette in the SO gallery some time ago.

The journaling translation is as follows:

My Wish…

I wish that I was closer to both of you instead of being a long-distance grandma. I wish I could sing you songs and read you stories before going to sleep. I wish I could make bubbles with you and chase the butterflies; See all the Elmo movies with Chloe and dance all the songs of the Backyardigans with Alejandra.

I wish I could tell you about Abuelita Cuqui, and how much she loves to sing and recites poems. I wish I could also tell you about Abuelito Juan, Abuelita Mary and Abuelito Figue; and how much they would have loved their great granddaughters. I would tell you about your cousins, aunts and uncles here in Puerto Rico, and how much we enjoy our family reunions. I would tell you about how beautiful Puerto Rico is ‘The Enchanted Island’, as it is called; where your parent’s roots are and so are yours.

I wish I could be closer to the two of you so that I could practice Spanish with Chloe and see Alejandra’s progress as she learns English. I would enjoy so much watching you grow. I would constantly talk to you about God Our Father, and all the blessings you receive each day of your lives and the marvelous gift he has given you of having parents that love you so much. I wish I could be closer to you to take care of you when your mom and dad have other responsibilities and that way you wouldn’t have to stay in the arms of non-family members.

I have to recognize that technology makes wonders! And thanks to the existence of the internet, digital photography and cellular phones, I can enjoy of the many moments almost instantly. But, my main wish is that I could hold you in my arms and kiss you frequently especially each time you say “I love you Nana”.

Thanks for sharing with us! I love the mix of graphic style & computer text, softened with the clustered embellies & li'l splashes of colour that tie in elements of the photos - adorable! And your wish? Something I guess most long distance grandparents also feel & something that the ones closer must appreciate every day!

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Vanessa's Challenge #4 Entry

Journaling reads:

My Hopes

Everyone has numerous hopes and dreams- ones that often change every day. I, on the other hand, have had the same hope for a long time. You were always more then an uncle to me, you were my teacher- my mentor. It was hard for people to see in you what I saw. Often people only saw you for the teacher, the bossy teacher, the one who made them actually do some school work. They couldn’t handle the challenge. They weren’t used to it. I wanted (or needed!) the challenge and I always got it. I felt as though I always needed to work harder then everyone else. They all thought I was getting good grades just because I was your niece. Oh boy! Were they ever wrong! I believe family has to work harder than everyone else; they have a standard outside of school to hold up to, a home and family standard that others never realize. I thank you for those challenges. I never took the time to say it. Although I believe that day you called me and convinced me to stay in University (regardless of the money, you said something would work itself out) you understood that your words meant more to me then anyone else’s at that time. To have someone with such high standards believe in you is worth the whole world. So my hopes? My hopes are

to be at least half as good of a teacher as you were. Anything over half would be outstanding! I think about you every day and I silently

thank you for pushing me to reach my goals- and I am nearly there!

Thanks for playing along again Vanessa - I'm loving the li'l ribbon flower details & how you pulled the whole thing together with the red in the staff noticeboard. I'm pretty sure you are going to look back on your Uni years fondly, they were definitely some of my best times! LOL.

Have you sent your entry for Challenge #4 yet?? E-mail it to us to have it posted on the Pen Pals Challenge Blog and for a chance to be our next Pen Pal Of The Week!

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Nancy's Challenge #4 Entry

Here is Nancy's entry for Challenge #4 ... & a bit of a departure from our usual 1-pic post. Not favouritism, you understand (although I guess you might have heard that I'm a not-so-secret Nancy fan! LOL) but she sent me close ups & I thought it would make a nice change!
Anyway, the journaling reads:
There are so many things that I hope for your future. You are such a smart, caring and beautiful girl. You have a beautiful heart so full of love. I hope you always stay true to yourself. Pursue your passions and live your life to the fullest. I hope you apply your self and get the most from your education. We will always sacrifice to make sure you have the best education we can get you.
I hope you find a man someday as wonderful as your father to be your husband. NEVER settle for any one that does not cherish you and treat you like your father treats me. Make sure he is also your best friend. Forever is a long time when you are unhappy. I hope for you struggles that will make you strong. Unselfishness and happiness but most of all I hope that you know just how loved you are, and that I am so very proud to have you as my daughter.

Awwww Nancy, you made me cry! Not that I shall admit it, ever! LOL. In fact I told DS1 that I had something in my eye ... not that he bought it - I have smart kids, which can be a disadvantage!
Anyway, I shall try to keep my emotions in check ... or just blame the hormones! Thanks for joining us again Nancy - I love the li'l hinged journal book & the buttons ... & the 'love mommy' sticker detail ... all of it really (I'm a bit of an embellie junkie too! LOL) I'm a bit tired this week, so I guess I'll leave it up to Colette to come along and say something really fabulous! LOL.


I am such a super-idiot! I have just realised that while I thought I was all up to date with the Pen Pals Blog, I haven't announced Challenge #3's winner - how daft am I???? So HUGE apologies to all of those that entered the last challenge & might well have been waiting for an announcement!
Without further delay, our next Pen Pal Of The Week, who is invited to join us on the blog for Challenge #6 is Aubree!
For the first time, Colette & I were 100% totally agreed right away on this one - I love the energy & colour in Aubree's layout ... & the equation-style journaling. Can't wait to have you join us Aubree ... & thank you to each & every one of you that has entered our challenges - we love to see them all!

Friday, 12 September 2008

Challenge #4 - I Hope For You As I Hope For Me

This week, we are honoured to be joined by our first official Pen Pal of the Week: Jing-Jing Nickel. Over the coming 2 weeks we will be getting to know Jing-Jing a little better but for now, I'm guessing you are all dying to know what exciting challenge she has for us ... so I'll get straight to it! Over to Jing-Jing:

Dear PenPal readers,
This week, I challenge you to document one of your hopes, be it for you, or someone else, journal it, scrap it, write it, print it, consume it...

My journaling reads:

I hope you will like traveling as much as I do.

Your Nagong and Nabu took me traveling at a young age when I was a little girl. At that time in China, people stayed put where they lived and worked. Traveling for fun was pretty much unheard of, but Nagong and Nabu thought it important for me to see the world and to expand my horizon. By the time I was a second grader, I had already been to several destinations including the Yellow Mountains, deemed to be the most beautiful of all Chinese mountains. For that trip, Nagong and Nabu spent nearly two months’ of their combined salaries (probably around $10 back then). Nagong had to carry most of our food on his back, ascending 3000 feet in altitude! Through their careful cultivation, they instilled in me an untamable heart to see the world and its wonders God-made or men-built.

I have come a long ways since my childhood. I have lived a few surreal moments when I finally came face to face with that which was only in my dreams. So I hope you will want to see the world like I do. I hope your hearts forever long for that next destination, that great valley, that awesome mountain, and that immortal structure. I hope you will write about your travels, document your journeys, scrapbook your photos. I hope you will grow up to be travel partners to each other, to dad and me, and to the lucky men who will be your spouses. I hope I will be there always, in person and/or in spirit to cheer you on in exploring this wondrous world of ours. I hope for you as I hope for me, that you will like traveling as much as I do.

I'm sooooo excited about this challenge & will be posting mine soon. Are you ready to take the challenge? E-mail your entry, be it a layout, card, altered project or a humble writing sample by midnight Thursday September 25 to have your entry featured on our blog & to be in with a chance of becoming our next PPOTW (Pen Pal of the Week). Go on, you know you want to!

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Vanessa's Challenge #3 Entry

Journaling reads: Whether you are 1 or 101 I will love you always. We may fight and argue but one thing I learned the first 5 minutes you were born - you are one of my favorite people in this world.

Thanks for sharing with us Vanessa! I love the blackboard-style journal block & how you highlighted the numbers in li'l doodled squares ... too cute! And you used your own handwriting! well done!

Jing-Jing's Challenge #3 Entry

Another gorgeous entry from Jing-Jing this week! Now Jing-Jing says that she didn't feel this page met the 'journaling' aspect of our challenge ... I think it does beautifully! The point of our journaling is always to make the point, to get the story across. Sometimes that will need a lot of words ... and sometimes just a few carefully chosen ones will say so much more than an essay! This page does that and sums up in those few perfect words (even if you guys spell 'honoured' differently to us! LOL) just what those cute li'l guys mean to Mum & Dad!
Thank you so much for sharing your page with us again Jing-Jing!!

Haven't sent yours in yet? E-mail it to us today & you could still be in the running to become our next Pen Pal of the Week!

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Marjorie's Challenge #3 Entry

The journaling reads, 'Together for us = 18 years + 6 change of addresses + 14 vehicules + 7 pregnancies + 3 beautiful children + 3 major career changes and 0 regrets'

Thanks for sharing with us Marjorie ... I love the clustered embellishments & obviously the Cosmo Cricket papers (is there anyone that doesn't know how much I love Cosmo Cricket?? LOL). Such a good idea to present your journaling as an actual equation too. 0 regrets? Now that is something to aspire to!!

There's still time to join in this challenge - check it out here ... but don't forget to e-mail us to be featured on the blog & maybe win a spot as our next Pen Pal of the Week!

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Carol's Challenge #3 Entry

Another new player joining us this week! Carol's journaling reads:
December 22, 2007

Heather and Rachel making tons of sugar cookies. Heather did not have enough money to get everyone in our large family something for Christmas. So, she decided to make tins with cookies and fudge for everybody. They both made cookies until 3:30 the next morning. It was a good thing Rachel helped her or she probably wouldn't have got them all done!!

Where is the maths? The 'tons' of cookies says Carol! LOL.
Thanks for playing along with us Carol - It's a great page & I love the 'recipe card' style journaling block!!
Wanna play? Challenge #3 details are here ... but don't forget to e-mail your entry if you want a chance to be our next Pen Pal of the Week

Ruth's Challenge #3 Entry

Here is the first of many entries for challenge #3 ... although I had to hold off publishing to this blog for a couple of days. Ruth, like me, indulges in a spot of multi-purposing layouts & this is a DT piece for Crop 'Til You Drop (I'm allowed to plug it a bit ... it's my store! LOL) Anyway, the journaling reads:
In this place, there are over 600 sheets of paper, 250+ pieces or cardstock, 57 pots of brads & eyelets, over 400 metres of ribbon, 263 pens, 123 pencils, 9 different types of adhesive, 27 CD's, 8 drawers of embellishments, 52 packs of rub-ons, 16 different paints, 19 tubes of Stickles, 34 ink pads, 17 different embossing powders, 19 tools, 4 craft knives, 16 bottles of primas and ONE artist at work! ME
In her e-mail, Ruth also added 'I wasn't sad enough to count my papers and ribbons so I estimated but I do confess to counting most of the other stuff!! Just realised I missed off a box of 50 ink pads and it was only after I completed the page I realised I had used the only picture of my desk looking tidy!! Ooops!'
Does this sound at all familiar? LOL.
Thanks for joining the challenge Ruth ... I don't think I'm quite brave enough to be counting all my stash though ... & certainly not before I've used a bit more of it!

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Marta's Challenge #3 Entry

In her e-mail, Marta told me
'This really is a HUGE challenge for me. I've been willing to participate in your challenges since the first one, but I'm a very lazy scrapper and never finish my LO's on time. Since this was a long weekend for me, I decided to participate and to my surprise, the challenge has to do with numbers -- something I'm not very good at (not in my finances, neither following chronological order) Anyway, here is my entry. It's in Spanish as I prefer my journaling in this language. I will translate but feel free to correct, as needed.'
Well I haven't corrected Marta's English (this is your stories in your words folks!!) & we are very pleased that you have found time to finish your page & translated it for us ... Marta's English is heaps better than my Spanish! LOL.
The journaling reads:
(as of 8-31-08):
  • we are both 54 years old
  • 33 years of marriage
  • 7 years as boyfriends
  • 3 wonderful children and 2 beautiful granddaughters
  • 2 cars and a big house where we have been living for the past 25 years
  • A extended family of 36 members (inlaws, brothers, sisters, etc); and
  • One vacation club we can hardly use
Thanks so much for sharing your page with us Marta. I love that you have calculated the number of days together (& the li'l date block in the bottom corner), the soft colours (don't they match that tie perfectly?) & how the yellow brackets & clustered embellishments provide the perfect frame for your photograph - fabulous!

There will be more entries to share tomorrow ... will yours be one of them? Check out all the challenge details here!

Aubree's Challenge #3 Entry

Aubree's journaling reads:
3 active children, 7 days a week = 4 sports,
3 games, 2 practices + 1 Hebrew school
Noah = Soccer, Ice Hockey, Roller
Hockey, Hebrew school
Hannah = Gymnastics, Soccer
Sarah = Gymnastics
Total of 9 hours of extra-curriculars each week
and 3 hours of travel time


Thanks for playing along Aubree! I love the bright colours, numeric, calendar & cog elements on this page & the title that goes soooo well with the activity in those pics. You sure are one busy lady!

Monday, 1 September 2008

Challenge #3 ... Gardening by Numbers

Here's my take on Jodi's #3 Challenge: to use numbers as the focus of your journaling. I have used a sketch (September #1) by Deanne Burton ... this is actually my first DT layout for her site ... gotta love those multi-challenge layouts! LOL. The journaling (in the seed packet/envelope) reads:
I have been gardening & showing an interest in cooking/baking the results since July 2008 ... just 2 months
In my garden there are...
4 pots of herbs & a chilli plant ; 2 courgette plants ... which produced 6 courgettes & 2 marrows; 3 potato plants grown from sprouting spuds that measure 18" tall ... & 3 more at 6" tall (gotta love successional planting!); 1 row each of parsnips, turnips, beetroot, spring cabbage, spring onions & mixed salad leaves; 2 rows of early carrots; a blueberry bush that has lovingly provided around 8oz in it's couple of months here (although Auryn ate most of them before anyone else could get to them!); 1 blackberry & 1 blackcurrant bush that should fruit next year.
In my kitchen & totally free are 3lbs of crab apples to be turned into jelly; 3 tubs of blackberries and 10 cooking apples ... we love blackberry & apple crumble; 6 sticks of rhubarb ... Sean called dibs, so I won't get any ... this time!

Sunday, 31 August 2008

Penpal Of The Week: #2

Ohhhhh! Colette & I are totally agreed that the worst bit of having this li'l challenge is having to pick just one to win! Not only do we love them all but having the slightest difference of opinion can make the decision even harder.
I really enjoyed Colette's challenge ... sometimes it is good to think a bit deeper about why we love the people that are special to us ... & right now was a good time for me to take stock and think! Although my page was all about my li'l one, I did get to thinking about the other special people in my life, what they mean to me & why ... I guess I have a lot to thank Colette for!
So before I get to the point - I just wanted to say (& I speak for Colette here too I think ... only with a completely different accent! LOL) that we think each and every one of your entries are amazing ... & you are all winners in our hearts!
I love Ruth's humour when thinking about her husband; My mum's thoughts about my own li'l guy; Nancy's page, which says something about both her own feelings & Bella's toward 'Nana'; Jodi's thoughts on her teenage guy ... & Jing Jing's page which didn't quite make it to the blog.
But the really tough call was between Jan's awesome page about Seth: fabulous photo, great layout & a li'l touch of humour in the journaling and Chantele's page, with it's slightly vintage feel & he said/she said journaling.
I have to say, it was the he said/she said that got me ... The way that in just a few short sentences I feel the love that this couple share ... From the lines when their thoughts are different, to the ones where there thoughts come together & reflect each other - I love this & it is surely the page I'd want in my album to look back on in 30 years. It was a tough decision but Chantele is our newest Pen Pal Of The Week & will be joining us for a guest spot on Challenge #5.
Congrats Chantele!!!

Thank you all so much for joining in with us so far ... we hope you'll continue to play along! And if you live in the UK ... c'mon guys! You're letting the side down! LOL
Check out Challenge #3 ... it's a goodie! & if you fancy a guest spot as our next Pen Pal, be sure to e-mail your entries, so we can put them on the blog for all to see!

Friday, 29 August 2008

Challenge #3 ... & Our First Guest Designer!

Colette spotted this fabulous layout by Jodi and immediately knew that she should be our first Pen Pal of the Week ... & obviously I had to agree!
Here's what Jodi had to say:
I am quite honored that you and Colette have chosen my page!
I didn't have a chipboard or ghost shape star the right size so I cut one
from a milk jug! It was a little too plain so I put bold pattern paper on the back of it! I scanned my juice label, receipt, and jammie pants and added them to the "collection" of photos!

The journaling reads:
While browsing for some inspiration, I came across a magazine call
requesting lo's about how numbers play a role in your life. I instantly
thought "hhmm, not many in my boring life!" A few hours later, on my way
to buy groceries -again- I started to realize how numbers really do add up
to complete my life. This really was fun to work on!! Just to name a few:
today is 8-4-08
I am 40
my life is blessed with 3 great guys
I have 8 daycare kids
my house number is 1179
we drink 5 gallons of milk each week
there are about 60 monkeys on my favorite jammie pants!
I drink 8 glasses of water a day
my alarm goes off at 5:15
I love 80's classic rock
I run at least 6 loads of dishes a week
I spend over $200 for groceries and supplies
I walk 60 minutes most everyday
I wash at least 10 loads of laundry
I drink 8oz of grapefruit juice every morning
I have been married to my best friend for 11 years
Nearly 100 toys "decorate" my livingroom floor!
gas is an outrageous $3.67
I wash 80 icky fingers 3x a day
I prepare 23+ meals/snacks a week
I'm lucky if I get 7 hours of sleep
I have 18 shoes by my front door
Umpteen hugs a day make it all worth while!
So this week's challenge is all about the math: Make numbers the focus of your journaling.
Thank you so much Jodi, for sharing your work with us & bringing this great challenge to Pen Pals. I love the play on words in your title and the numbers that you have chosen to give us an insight into your daily life (even if gas is so much cheaper in the US! LOL) Great tip for the recycled star too!!

Have you got what it takes to be our next Pen Pal of the Week? Send your entries in (be sure to copy your journaling in to your e-mail too) and you could be joining us for Challenge #6 on this very blog! You don't have to be a scrapbooker - we are all about the words here - maybe you'd like to enter a card, altered item, blog post, journaling sample or a poem. So long as you use our 'numbers' theme, we'd love to hear from you. This challenge will end on September 11 2008 at midnight BST, so you have two whole weeks!

We'll be back tomorrow with another Pen Pal of the Week: Challenge #2's winner, who will be joining us for Challenge #5.

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Ruth's Challenge #2 Entry

Ruth has also opted for computer generated journaling strips on this layout celebrating her husband. The journaling reads:
Reasons Why I Love You
You make me happy
You're you

You're a nice shape to cuddle
We're good together
You make me complete
You're generous
You love me
You make me laugh
You're beautiful
Just because
You give me strength
You're kind
You're fuzzy!
We belong together
You know me so well
You're my husband
You're caring
You drive me nuts!!!!
You tell it like it is
You're an annoying little g*t!
You're special
You respect me
You move before you fart on me!

Hmmmm ... gotta love that Essex-Girl humour! LOL. Thanks for sharing with us Ruth ... I love the mix of fonts used here & how they complement the words you have chosen.

There's still time to join in challenge #2 ... so e-mail your entry in & you could be chosen as our next pen pal of the week!

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Lynne's Challenge #2 Entry

So you might recognise the papers, you might recognise the design ... & you might recognise the li'l lad too - yup! that's my baby there in a scraplifted layout - & in case you didn't work it out yet, Lynne is my mum (or mom if you're reading this in American! LOL) But we are all about the journaling here - so you don't have to be the next big designer to join in (in fact, you could write a blog post on the topic ... or just e-mail your journaling to us - the projects are an optional extra!!)
Anyway, back to mum's page! The journaling is very subtle & written in red along the bottom of the page. It reads:
I love the things we do together. I love the songs we sing and games we play. I love your smiles and jokes. I love your hugs and kisses. We love you.

You still have about 18 hours to join in this challenge ... go on, you know you want to!

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

And About Time Too!

Finally, here is my take on Colette's challenge. The picture was taken for a Her Space: My Space photo challenge a looooong time ago & seemed just perfect for this theme too! I haven't used journaling strips for a li'l while now, so I've shamelessly copied that from Colette! LOL
In my journaling I've used a doodled heart for 'love' but as I'm not a techie, I can't work out how to reproduce that here ...
so the journaling reads:
I love the way you turn everything into one of your songs
I love how you say you love me - a million times a day
I love how you giggle when you are pretending to be invisible
I love the smell of your freshly washed hair
I love your smile
I love that you are my very own sweet boy!

You still have a couple of days to send your entry in and join us as pen pal of the week on a later challenge!

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Chantele's Challenge #2 Entry

Chantele is new to our challenges, so I'm particularly pleased to see her entry - we love new blood here! LOL. Here's what she told me:

I don't get to scrap as often as I want to but your challenge got me thinking and I quickly poured out this layout. Thanks for letting me participate. Oh, the journaling is a he said/she said every other line kind of thing. It says:
Me: I love you because you send chills up my body when you kiss me unexpectantly on my neck.
Him: I love the way you always stay close to me and hold my hand.
Me: I love you because you are my best friend.
Him: I love the way you snuggle into my chest every night.
Me: I love the way you hold me close every night.
Him: I love the kiss that's waiting for me everyday when I get home.
Me: I love how you always let me have the last piece of chocolate.
Him: I love how your always wanting to try new things like fishing, hiking, skiing, & motorcycling.
Me: I love how you can fix anything. There is nothing you can't do.
Him: I love to watch you jump on your bike and ride like you enjoy it and not because you felt pressured into it.

Thanks for sharing with us Chantele - I love the 'he said/she said' journaling style - & I bet you will look back fondly on these words well into the future. I love the style of your page too - it won't look dated in years to come!

Have you entered your project or journaling sample yet? Check out the details here and maybe you could be our next Pen Pal of the Week!
I will be back with my page ... but I haven't found my camera leads yet!! AAAAAAaaargggh!

Saturday, 23 August 2008

Nancy's Challenge #2 Entry

I hope you never forget: the snuggles, the kisses and hugs, How good nana smells.
How beautiful she is inside and out. Her generous giving spirit. BUT, most of all HOW MUCH she
adores YOU.

Ohhhh! I have to admit being a bit of a secret Nancy fan (ooops! not a secret anymore. LOL). And I love this page too! From the embellies in 3s to the cute li'l row of buttons & pearly details - I'm gonna design like this when (if!) I grow up!! The journaling is short & to the point - I love that!
Thanks for sharing with us Nancy!!

There are more entries to be posted ... check back tomorrow for the next one. And my own page? Just as soon as I find my missing camera leads!

Jodi's Challenge #2 Entry

Journaling reads:

I love this self-portrait…taken shortly before you turned fourteen. You are an amazing young man! You have such an easy going, good natured spirit about you. You have great character and such a fun, silly sense of humor. When you smile, the world around you lights up, and your giggles can chase away the greatest of storms! Your drive and determination are a great strength that will help you to achieve so much in life. To say that you are hard working , is a vast understatement! I love the fact that you are confident in who you are. You don’t let others change you, or let them determine who you are. As you have entered one of the toughest stages in life, know that I believe in you, I am proud of you, and that I’ll love you forever.

Thanks for sharing this with us Jodi! I love the colour scheme & star embellies ... & as a mum of boys in their late teens/early 20s, I totally 'get' how tough this stage of a boy's life is!! Great job!

Pop back later to see another entry for Challenge #2 ... & if you haven't submitted yours yet, don't forget you have until Thursday. E-mail me a picture of your project ... & don't forget to send in the journaling too ... go on, you know you want to!

Friday, 22 August 2008

Not A Good Start (Sorry)!

Oh dear! So here we are ... just 3 weeks in to our fabulous new blog & already I am exhibiting the most unreliable behaviour. Now when I first invited (or bullied ... however you wish to see it!) Colette to join me on this new blog, the deal was that I would do most of the posting etc. ... & I haven't really kept to my side of the deal!
In my defence, some unforeseen family stuff has come up & turned everything upside down ... nothing life threatening & maybe I'll tell y'all about it sometime (or maybe I'll base a future challenge on it! LOL) So this week has been a bit shaky.
Colette suggested some time ago that maybe we should have a fortnightly challenge ... & now I have (finally) admitted that I can't do it all ... that's what we are going to do! So Challenge #2 will end NEXT Thursday - August 28 ... & Challenge #3, brought to us by a special guest designer, will go live Friday August 29.

Check the blog later this evening for more Challenge #2 entries ... & my own take on the challenge too!
Beverley Todd

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Jan's Journaling For Challenge #2

This spectacular page was submitted by Jan! And, it's easy to see why she titled this one Blue Eyes! WOW! And, there's nothing like a touch of Mississippi humor to make it extra special.

Journaling reads:

I love your eyes

I love your energy

I love your smile

I love your big heart

I love your love of nature

I love your kindness

I love your blue mustache

Thanks, Jan! Now how about the rest of you? Have you taken the challenge yet? Come on! You know you want to!

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Pen Pal Of The Week!

This is just so exciting! It was a very difficult decision. I'm sure you'll agree with us when we say that ALL the journaling that was submitted for our first challenge was captivating.

It was fun to learn that Ruth worried unnecessarily about turning 30 and that Timi has gained some wisdom beyond her 21 years. Lynnise surprised us with her tale of intrique and romance at 19. Nancy shared her deepest dreams of becoming a mom at 33 while Jan proved that it could be equally as fulfilling at 17. Vanessa revealed inner strength even in the face of such terrible loss in her 20's. And, we all were moved by Aubree's moving description of how life changed in an instant when she was 28.

But, our first Pen Pal Of The Week Award has to go to Jing Jing! Her story of leaving her family, country, and all that she knew at 17 to immigrate to the United States was nothing short of amazing. And, her photo of a relaxed and confident teenager boating on the lake masked the underlying trepidation of her grand adventure to become a US citizen. Beautiful work, Jing Jing. You are truly an inspiration for us all.
Congratulations, JingJing! Be sure to email Beverley with your addy so she can get your prize package sent to you!

We want to thank everyone for their support and participation! You are ALL winners in our eyes! We hope you'll continue to share with us the stories of your lives while you craft and preserve your memories for those you love the most.

Friday, 15 August 2008

How Do I Love Thee ... Let Me Count The Ways Challenge #2

There's nothing new about using a list of reasons why you love someone as journaling on your page. Nothing except it's something I've never done and maybe there's a few of you scrappers who haven't done it either. There's lots of things that I love about my granddaughter, Breckin, but I'm not sure each one merit's it's own page ... or even if I have pictures to support my thoughts. But, I do want to make sure I preserve some of the current reasons ... one's that relate to things about her at three-years-old. And, I had this cute picture of her posing in her new jammies, that didn't have much of a story to go with it. So, I've combined the two to create this page for Breckin's scrapbook.

Journaling reads:
A Few Things I Love About You
1. I love that you always want to hold hands when we're walking together.
2. I love that one kiss good-bye isn't enough for you.
3. I love how we're always laughting when we are together. You laugh at my funny faces and I laugh back at you.
4. I love that you don't let anyone ignore you.
5. I love that you practice, practice, practice until you get it right. Then, you do it some more.
6. I love the shape of your pretty legs.
7. I love that you are so smart.
8. I love to share tomato soup and fresh fruit salad with you.

Your challenge is to scrap a list of things you love about someone. Your journaling can be done in strip form, as I have done here or you can write it out in paragraph form. You might even use a cluster of journaling tags with a reason written on each one. No matter what method you choose to use, be sure to write out the reasons instead of just using descriptive words. We'll save that technique for another challenge.

Aubree's Challenge #1 Entry

Just time for one last entry before our first challenge closes! I love the clean, graphic style of Aubree's page!

Journaling reads:

28 years old and I am living a dream. I am married to a wonderful man, have a job that I love, and am seven months pregnant with my first child. We live in a quiet suburban neighborhood, we live in a brand new house, we drive nice cars, we are truly living the American Dream. I love my life. I am on bed rest for pre-term labor but my friends have been very supportive, in and out, visiting and keeping me busy. While I am slightly concerned about my unborn son, I have faith that he will be fine. I enjoy catching up on the latest Hollywood Gossip and television shows, reading books I have been meaning to read for ages, laying in the hammock in the back yard, enjoying the sunshine. That was September 10, 2001. I had no idea that tomorrow my life and every American's life would change forever.
September 11, 2001, 8:46am, I awoke to the sound of the phone ringing...groggily I answer, 'hello?'. It is my husband, 'you need to get up and turn on the tv, it might be the end of the world.' I don't understand what he is talking about. I lazily roll over, hit the remote, and watch as my life, my outlook on life, and the world change forever. I watch as this tragedy unfolds and this pilot's 'mistake' is determined to be a terrorist plot against our nation. I am stunned, yet the gravity of the situation has yet to sink in. I attempt to go about my daily routine but find that there is nothing on tv except news coverage and I am unable to concentrate on my reading. I do manage to make a few calls to verify that my friends in New York are fine. At roughly 9:15pm that same evening, my telephone rings. It is a classmate of mine from Wellesley. She is in tears and clearly inconsolable....'are you ok?' I ask. 'No, Rahma was on the first plane.' Rahma, her husband, and her unborn baby, due only days after mine were on the first plane that hit the twin tower. Not until this moment did I break down. I question everything. How could I bring a child into this world? A world where people needlessly murder innocents all in the name of 'Allah'. A world where people are trained to kill Americans solely because they are American.

I now live in a constant state of questioning and in a sense, a constant state of fear. I am afraid of flying. I will only get on a plane if either my whole family goes or if my husband is staying behind with some of my children. I will not risk that my children are left without a living parent. I panic if I am caught in rush hour traffic on a bridge. What if someone ahead of me has a bomb in their car and is prepared to take his own life to kill hundreds. I think about where we would run if the terrorist hit even closer to home ... what is the best route to Canada, Wyoming, my hometown even...anyplace far away from the city. I grieve for my friend and her loss of experiencing her child, those first smiles, first words, first steps. I grieve for my own children knowing that they will never live in a world that is safe, where people treat each other as brothers and have an inherent sense of trust in each other....before it was forever changed.

Wow! This is powerful stuff. I remember the UK news being full of this tragedy too. I first heard about it while out shopping for a wedding dress with my MIL. For me, it was a distant event in part of the world that seemed so far away ... long before I 'knew' anyone there. But now you guys don't seem so far away and your account, Aubree, seems so real and ongoing ... not a memory of a single event but a tale of the impact that lives on ... always.

So, I'd like to round up this first challenge by saying:
Thank you all sooooo much for playing along with us. Colette and I have really enjoyed sharing in your stories and hope that you will all keep on joining in. The new challenge (#2) will be posted in just a few hours and we'll be announcing this week's winner on Saturday! If you have just missed the deadline but have your entry finished ... send it in anyway, I'll be checking e-mail for stragglers in the morning!

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Vanessa's Challenge #1 Entry

OK ... so I couldn't work out how to embed this into a blog post ... so I guess you'll all have to go visit yourselves! It's a plug n play 'smilebox' thingy ... so fun! LOL.
Here's the link!

Now this isn't Vanessa's usual thing - but I have to agree, it is definitely cute! LOL. Thanks soooo much for sharing this with us. It's always hard to lose someone we care about ... but if you can turn that into a positive learning experience and pledge (at such a young age! LOL) to make each day have purpose ... then your life, and those around you, must surely be richer for it. Thank you for reminding us of that in such an eloquent (but fun!) way.

You still have until midnight tomorrow to send in your entry!! What are you waiting for?????
Here's the deets ...

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Jan's Entry for Challenge #1

This absolutely beautiful page was sent in to us from Jan. It's a perfect example that you don't have to journal paragraphs of text on your pages to tell the honest and heartfelt story.

Journaling reads:
When I first saw your face, I knew this was my destiny. You saved me. I don't know what I would have become without you. I love being a mom. The problem is, you all grow up too fast. Sometimes I wish you were a baby again.

Thank you so much, Jan, for sharing this beautiful page and your touching story with us.

Keep 'em coming ladies! It's just so much fun to see everyone's work!

Nancy's Entry for Challenge #1

Wow. You ladies are cranking out some gut wrenching journaling! And, this fabulous page submitted by the uber-creative Nancy Jones is no exception. Love the way Nancy was able to get six pictures on her page and STILL journal her very emotional account about being 33. The little mini-book under one of her photos is one of my favorite journaling techniques.

Nancy's journaling reads:

For over Five years John and I had stars in our eyes, We played with other peoples kids. We had baby sat other peoples kids. BUT, We wanted our own babies. We just weren't real sure if we could have a baby of our own. The dr had told me it wasn't a "GOOD IDEA" with all my medical issues and kidney issues but it might could be done. Well that is all I needed to know. MIGHT was still something huh?
What would we have to do. I don't care. I want a child. I would have to go off medication for no less than 6 months. ok. well we did. and, right at the mark. When we really started trying, BAM, it took. I have never been so happy, yet so scared, in my life. I have had miscarriages before and I didn't want that heart break ever again. I want a baby. just one. that's all. The dr confirmed we definitely were pregnant. Finally my dreams of being a mommy were going to come true. Through many trips to the hospital and stays at the hospital through false labor, pre term labor and blood pressure issues... Resembling more of a whale than anything, The dr finally decided on April 21 to induce labor. It would be better than letting me go into labor on my own. Lupus is a tricky disease and can cause a lot of problems on labor and delivery. During labor my blood pressure got dangerously high, your heart rate, got dangerously low. I have never been so scared I didn't want to lose you. They wouldn't let anyone in the room trying to keep me calm as possible, but it was so scary. Finally the dr said he had to take you. so Caesarian they took you out.
IT was a long time, which felt like forever before I got to hold you. When I did I didn't want to let you go. So yeah you may be a little bit, OK you are totally spoiled rotten, but its ok..YOUR MY spoiled rotten. You are my one child that GOD gave me. My dream that I wanted to come true. Even if it was a lot later than I expected it.. But ya know. I think it was better that I had you later. God knows what he is doing after all. Some dreams you have to wait on for good reason. I'm glad I did. You were worth waiting till 33.
Now THAT'S what I'm talking about! Fabulous page, Nancy ... and we are just thrilled to bits that you were able to play with us!

There's a few days left for this challenge. If you've completed an entry just email it to us or post us a link to your blog. And, don't forget to share the journaling! We're all about the words here!

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Lynnise's Entry for Challenge #1

Journaling Reads: How vividly I remember my excitement as I woke up nearly nineteen years ago, and readied myself for our secret rendezvous in Ellsinore. I was a bundle of nerves knowing that what I was about to do would forever change my life. My parents were completely unaware of the life changing events that were unfolding as they slept soundly that cool Saturday morning in April. Jeff and I had made the big plans on little more than a dare the day before. I wasn’t even sure if I’d have the nerve to follow through, but as Jeff pulled into the driveway in his maroon Dodge Omni, all my fears were replaced with the happiness and anticipation. I knew then that not only would I follow through, but that, we’d live a long, happy life together. I didn’t care that I was still just a senior in high school. I didn’t think about the fact that we had no money or that we would have no place to live. It never entered my mind that we would send shock waves through our church and school, becoming the center of gossip and the subject of many rumors for months to come. All I could think of at that moment was that in a few short hours I would become Mrs. Jeffery Bowman.

Thanks for sharing with us Lynnise ... We will look forward to reading all about the next 19 years!!

Have you taken the challenge yet??

To enter: Send your entry, with the journaling in the body of your e-mail for a chance to win a 'wordy' prize & to become our very first 'Pen Pal of the Week' Check out all the details here

Jing Jing's Entry for Challenge #1

This is such a powerful story! The journaling reads:
Have you ever gone through a period in your life when you have no idea what is happening around you or to you, when everything is new & incomprehensible?
That was me at the age of 17, the summer before I entered college. This picture, from appearance, is as if I am already well integrated into the middle class Minnesotan American life: sitting in a boat, on a lake!
What you can’t tell from the picture was that I had only arrived in the U.S a month before the picture was taken . While I already spoke English like an American native with very little accent, I had absolutely no idea or background in American life or culture. It would be years before my understanding of America catches up with my mastery of the language it speaks.

So there I was, in America! After a tumultuous and nearly capsized run at obtaining a student visa, I had arrived! It was scary to leave my parents to strike out on my own, but I was young and felt invincible. It would be four years before I would see them again, and two years before I even spoke to them on the phone! However, I was in good hands, both in God’s, and in the dear people who chose to take care of me during my college years, the Andersons’.

So there I was, in the eye of the storm, and totally oblivious. The one thing I was acutely aware of was the burden of my responsibility. Now that I was finally in the U.S. and my first year of college tuition paid for, it was up to me to excel in school. To do anything less than extremely well would mean failure and dishonor to my parents’ sacrifices. At this point, I would not know how much they would continue to sacrifice and suffer for the next four years to sustain the dream of establishing me in the American society. My future was completely uncertain and the only thing I knew to do was to study well and study hard. Everything else was not up to me, I had to utterly rely on God, faith and circumstances that He would provide.

So there I was at the edge of adulthood, only I was surrounded by all new things, sometimes incomprehensible things. After all, was I not on a boat, in the country of great wealth, with streets paved with gold? Which part of a dream was that for a girl who had loved in China and Africa? I would soon find out how much I did not fit in from what clothes I wore to study habits. I would soon enter a period of serious identity crisis in a strange world with foreign people who all thought I was born and raised in Minnesota.

At 17, my life in the U.S. was about to take flight, only I had no idea what that would be like.

Thank you so much for sharing with us Jing Jing ... we are so pleased that you have decided to join us on our new venture - glad to have you along for the ride!

Have you started on your entries yet?
This challenge runs until August 14th (midnight BST)
To enter: Send your entry, with the journaling in the body of your e-mail for a chance to win a 'wordy' prize & to become our very first 'Pen Pal of the Week' Check out all the details here

Friday, 8 August 2008

Timi's Entry for Challenge #1

Journaling reads:

Things I learned before I turned 21...

The joys and pains of first love
The true meaning of brotherhood and sisterhood
The hospitality of Filipinos
The magic of first kiss
The real essence of friendship
That families are not perfect
The real situation in the countrysides
That love always finds a way
That I'm not always the best
October 1991

Thanks for joining us Timi ... gotta love that pink! LOL

If you'd like to enter this challenge, e-mail your submission or leave us a link to your blog post ... or do both!! Don't forget to show us your journaling too (in the body of an e-mail would be great) - we are all about the words here! LOL.

Ruth's Entry for Challenge #1

Journaling reads: I honestly worried about turning 30, I was very aware that I was closer to middle age than to my childhood which seems like such a short time ago, that I was getting lines around my eyes & that I would no longer be in my 20s. But I can honestly say that I feel great! I am happier now than I have been for a long time, I feel I have found a new part of me, I love my life & where it's going and I can achieve anything if I set my mind to it. For the first time ever, I can look in the mirror & I like what I see, how I feel, I love being me! I have found a new maturity & if this is how I feel now then bring it on. A few years ago I never dreamt I would feel like this about myself, I am so proud of me, of my life so far & looking forward to whatever my future holds.

Thanks for sharing with us Ruth!
If you'd like to enter this challenge, e-mail your submission or leave us a link to your blog post ... or do both!! Don't forget to show us your journaling too - we are all about the words here! LOL

Sunday, 3 August 2008


For me, the age that I am is a good age ... the best age. And, although I made the best choices I could make given the situation and information I had at the time, I do look back on a few periods of my life that I'm glad are over. When Beverley challenged us to pick an age and journal about it ... I immediately thought about my early 20's ... not realizing she was looking for positive thoughts and journaling. You see, my 20's weren't my best years. And, in my quest to be more honest with my scrapbook journaling, I decided to scrap about it anyway. (And, no fair laughing at the sunglasses! hehehehe)

My journaling reads:

Easily the worst years of my life, I don't look back on my early twenties with any nostalgia. I struggled to be a mother of two babies born a year apart ... one with a life threatening genetic disease, while trying to grow up myself. Living in a strange city without friends or family while Craig worked tirelessly to establish himself in business, I was often lonely and enticed by the social changes and fads of the 70's. It was a very unhappy time of my life and I look back with no desire to re-live it.

I loved working with these new BoBunny papers from the Beautiful Life collection that was released at CHA recently. And, I threw in some bits of the Pink Paislee Office Lingo die cuts just for fun! Don't you just love the way the clear embossed stamped lettering adds texture to the background? Stack on some buttons, use black Stickles for the dotty circles, distress and ink the edges ... and by george, I think we've got it!

Now it's your turn. I can't wait to see what age you choose to journal about! Who knows? You might even choose to pick an age that you haven't even seen yet! And, don't forget ... it' doesn't HAVE to be a scrapbook page. It can be a blog post, a card, an altered item ... even bits of thoughts written in your journal. Just get those thoughts and feelings down somewhere and share them with us! Beverley has generously gathered together some fab goodies that will go to some lucky challenger!