From Up Over to Down Under

Greens’ Verbal Slap to Tony Abbott

Another fine demonstration of how ‘carefree’ Australians use their words like whips against a leadership they don’t want.

“We’re a few weeks out from the Western Australian Senate election on April 5, a do-over after 1370 votes were lost from the September 7 poll.

“Greens Senator Scott Ludlam was one of the likely losers of the initial botched attempt, narrowly missing out on a seat – and yesterday he stood in front of Parliament under the guise of inviting Prime Minister Tony Abbott to visit his state, and gave the Coalition one of the roundest shellackings you’re likely to be treated to.

Read more at: Greens Senator To Tony Abbott: “We Want Our Country Back”

Help Bring A Novel to Life!

I have survived abuse, moved across the world at 20 with nothing but a laptop and a carry bag, lost various non-vital organs… and yet, asking for help is still one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I’d always rather give to others and support others than ask for anything of the like in return. But we can’t always avoid the hard things, so here I go…

Dark Echoes is my third novel and, by far (over 15,000 words), my biggest novel. I don’t earn enough personally or from previous novels to be able to support the publication process (or price). This is where I ask you for help. Donate, share the link, like the link… Please help me to spread the word and raise enough money to publish this novel.

Helping isn’t just about money. I am incredibly grateful to anyone who likes and/or shares my project. No matter how you have contributed, consider me in your debt. Call on me when you think there is something I can do to help you out. Please feel free to let me know what you’ve done/where you’ve shared the link/etc. Believe me, I will remember your kindness.

Thanks in advance for even reading this. My dream – my big dream – is to make enough so I can run around and start playing fairy awesome-mother to other creative people who are in need. I’ll do what I can now if there is anything that you’d like to spread the word about. Please let me know.

Give and give alike! Thank you.

Journals!

I really think I am starting to get the hang of things now. I made these two for my classes.

Advanced Editing

Myths and Symbols

Handmade A5 Travel Journal

Okay! So it’s about time I did this post, but I have been outright swamped. But now I am finally a citizen, enrolled in classes, have the proper referrals in place for my medical issues, and have finished the first draft of the novel. Phew! No wonder I was exhausted.

A lot of people helped make this craft even though they didn’t know exactly what I was making. So here it is: a handmade travel journal for a friend to use during her journey in Cambodia.

2014-02-18 16.38.48

Ta da! I’m a bit of perfectionist and am not easily satisfied with my work, but I’m actually pretty proud of this one.

First things first. I used paper mostly from Kaisercraft’s Timeless line. I love it so much. I’ve gone back to get more of the same papers to make journals for me. (Pictures of those later.)

2014-01-25 12.07.52

 

This is the inside/first page. The card is stuck in there (later on that). I printed all the pages on regular A4 printer paper, then tea-dyed and crumpled them. I love the effect it had on the paper, but I don’t think I’ll ever put myself through that much work again. :P

There is a very light greyscale map of Cambodia that takes up the whole page. I bought the stamp from Riot Arts and Crafts, and I used ‘Scattered Straw’ Distress Ink.

2014-02-18 16.32.15

I wanted her to have a journal that would capture the entire trip, including before they left and after they came back. Because of that, I started with a to-do list…

2014-02-18 16.32.26

 

In reality, their flights and hotels didn’t take up a lot of room. This way, she can stick in the boarding passes and/or anything she has from the hotels.

 

2014-02-18 16.32.36

 

In trying to figure out exactly what to put in the travel journal, I decided she needed a page where she could put any emergency info. She could have quick access to who was house/dog sitting, what the emergency numbers are, a note about the time difference, whatever.

2014-02-18 16.32.45

 

Now to the actual journey. I folded up a piece of 12×12 to create a pocket folder. (I sort of gave it a go, so I don’t have a YouTube video to share on how to do it.) It also makes a nice and easy separator for the pre-journey and journey stuff. I also punched holes in a bookmark (a wonderful gift from a friend!) and cut the side of the punches. Now she can take it in and out as she pleases to keep track of what day she’s on. A bit of ribbon and twine through the punched hole made it into a true bookmark.

2014-02-18 16.33.08

 

Given it’s a travel journal, I wanted to be extra sure that the folders I made were very secure. I found sticky Velcro dots at OfficeWorks, and they worked perfectly.

2014-02-18 16.33.21

 

Knowing exactly how long she would be away made customising this book a lot easier. To start each day, she has one of these…

2014-02-18 16.33.34

 

Following that, she has this spread… It’s something I wanted to be sure to include because having it there makes you look at things a lot closer.

2014-02-18 16.33.42

Then, of course, plenty of journal space each day!

2014-02-18 16.33.54

A second folder separates the journey from the ‘back home’ section.

2014-02-18 16.34.12

 

(And back…)

2014-02-18 16.34.24

 

As you can see above, the home again section starts with the same ‘where are we/what are we doing’ page. However, it’s followed by…

2014-02-18 16.34.35

For the above, I wanted her to have plenty of space for the little things you might not think about otherwise. Falling asleep at the airport, a picture of all the luggage, sky on the way home… Plenty of space for pictures.

I also wanted her to have plenty of more journal space not only for memories but for reflections on her very first trip away with her beau.

2014-02-18 16.34.45

 

The last page…

2014-02-18 16.34.55

Last, but not least, the back cover.

2014-02-18 16.35.13

 

But wait! There’s more…

About that little thing to the right of the book in the first picture. That is actually a no-cut, no-tape photo wallet I learned how to make with this video.

2014-02-18 16.36.50

I knew my friend would be out and about a lot, so I wanted her to be able to write down memories without being required to take her journal with her everywhere. So I made the little photo pocket and put some Project Life cards in it.

2014-02-18 16.36.23

 

These are beautiful 3×4″ journal cards from the Maggie Holmes Edition Project Life core kit. I loved these cards when I first saw them and ended up asking around if any friends would mind donating a few more. (The core kit comes with 10, but I wanted at least a dozen.) I punched each of the cards and then cut into the holes. That way she can write while she’s out and about and pop them into the journal when she gets back to the hotel.

2014-02-18 16.37.15

 

Phew! This one really was a labour of love, that’s for sure. It was a lot of hard work, but it really ignited a love of making notebooks in me. I’ll take pictures and share my other journals soon!

For now, thank you for reading if you’ve made it this far. :)

Finally! I’m A True Blue Sheila

Citizenship

Well, this happened! It all went as a bit of a rush, to be honest. I am unbelievably happy to finally be able to say I am Australian! I’ve been one in heart, soul and drinking habits for a long time. But now I am according to the Australian government, too.

So Many Crafts, So Little Time

There are so many things I want to try!

I’ve been spending too much time some time watching various tutorials on YouTube, and there is so much stuff I want to give a go! So much stuff. BUT, I have to spend my time wisely right now. Mostly my time has been taken up by:

1. Chasing around documents and other paperwork for things like school, etc.
2. Writing my novel.
3. Making a travel journal for a friend. (I should think of a blog name for her…)

Chasing up documents and such took up so much of my time in January, but things are finally coming into play. I am happy to announce that I will be taking my citizenship oath next week (squee!) which will make it possible for me to get the financial aid to continue with my education. If everything else falls into place, this will be a great year.

I’m also very close to finishing my novel. I will be so happy to type the words THE END. This has been a very tough novel to write.

As for the travel journal, I have been pecking away at it here and there. I’ve nearly finished the covers and have printed off the interior pages. I still have to dye them, stamp them, so on and so forth. I’ll have no trouble finishing it before she leaves.

I just have to stay on target until I get these big things taken care of. Then I can take more time to do new things! Here’s a little sneak peek at the journal in progress…

Journal Pages

Sweet Cool Relief!

Phew! Well, I certainly didn’t intend for there to be such a long gap between posts, but we’ve been dealing with a heatwave here in Australia. We’ve had quite a few days over 40C (104F) – most heading up to 43/44C ((109.4/111.2F). We are lucky in that we have a small air conditioner in the bedroom that stood up pretty well considering the circumstances.

But the bedroom is not my office, and my office is where my computer is.

My office turned into quite the little hotbox *cough*oven*cough* and I couldn’t really use it during the heatwave. I ended up taking some of my craft stuff into my bedroom and working on it there.

Bedroom PL

Alas, sweet relief arrived about midnight Friday/Saturday…

Heatwave

As you can imagine, 26C (78.8F) was sweet, sweet relief from such hot temperatures. Things were toasty again Saturday during the day but not as bad. Today, there have been plenty of cool breezes. Last night I actually slept under the blankets for the first time in a week!

Please bear with me as I catch up with everything. I do plan on putting a post up to demonstrate how to get two 3x4s onto a 4×6 (a common difficulty for Project Lifers) using PhotoShop as well as an update on my crafting stuff. I really want to get into everything I’m doing (and want to do) craft-wise here. I know it’s not exciting for most people – and no one probably reads this blog anyway – but I do have a passion for creating.

*If you’re interested in what I used to take this picture, it’s an Android app called InstaWeather. It reads your GPS, puts the weather reading on your screen, and you can take a picture of whatever you like. It posts to most social media sites and Instagram. It’s been a very handy little app to have for documenting the heatwave. I’m excited to see what the printed 4×4 pictures from Printstagram turn out like.

More on the Dangers of Sugar

I am a total documentary addict. When I watched the short video on sugar that I posted the day before yesterday and saw some documentaries/special news reports pop into the sidebar, I just had to check them out.

I’m a sugar addict. And I don’t type that with any cute or cheeky tone in mind. I am a sugar addict through and through, and I treat trying to break my addiction like I would approach breaking an addiction to any drug. For me, part of that is learning as much as possible about the drug, and going from there. So here are some videos I found on the topic.

I hope you find them as interesting as I did.

The Secrets of Sugar – CBC News

We’ve heard about the dangers of eating too much fat or salt. But there has never been a warning about sugar on our food labels – despite emerging research that suggests the sweet stuff is making more of us fat and sick.

Addicted to Pleasure – Sugar – BBC Documentary

In this first episode, Brian wants to find out why (like millions of other Brits), he is a diabetic. Starting in Barbados, from which sugar cane fuelled a consumer revolution, Brian discovers how the British acquired a ‘sweet tooth’ and why today, this has led to epidemic levels of diabetes, obesity and even addiction to sugar.

Toxic Sugar? – ABCTV Catalyst

In only a few decades, there are now more obese people on the planet than there are undernourished. When it comes to getting fat, we’ve come to believe it’s as simple as ‘calories in’ versus ‘calories out’ – if you want to shed the kilos, you need to burn more calories than you consume. But not all calories are the same. Some people absorb calories more efficiently and it matters what types of foods your calories are coming from. Sugar is now being proposed by experts as the new dietary villain that’s making us fat and sick. Dr Maryanne Demasi investigates the bitter truth about the dangers of a sweet diet.

Sugar Is Killing Us

A short and sweet (pardon the pun) video on the dangers of sugar and where it’s taking the United States as a country.

“Sugar is Killing Us is a campaign to spread information about the negative effects of sugar and empower people to make better food choices.

”

Project Life 2014 & Other Goals

Hello 2014!

I know we’re three days in, but it’s still ‘hello’.

I meant to make this post earlier, but I have been pretty flat out with everything. I want to start the new year off right, so I have been sticking to my resolutions and trying to do all the hard yards with some projects now so they’ll cruise later.

I am jumping into 2014 doing Project Life. For the ‘regular’ portion of my album for this year, I’ll be doing a month to a spread and adding in smaller pocket pages as needed. I just can’t do it from week to week. It’s too much. Well, too much on top of the other PL thing I am doing, but I’ll save that for later.

I’m definitely starting the 2014 PL project off right this year, thanks to my local Spotlight. They had 20% off the entire Project Life range, so I was able to go in and scoop up some great deals. I won’t be needing Design A pages for a while!

Spotlight Sale

(Design A pages, Sunshine dividers, 4×6 grid cards, a Flea Market mini-kit, a Kaisercraft butterfly template, and some glittery Jenni B letters/numbers. From Office Works, plenty of washi tape and a purple 0.4mm pen to try out.)

I’m glad that the sale wasn’t until January 2nd because it made me take more time to save up the bikkies to buy this stuff.

So, what else am I doing? What makes me so busy that I can only do a spread to month? Take a look to your right. The sidebar. See the Move More, Eat Well? That’s what I’m doing.

I decided to put myself not exactly first this year but to give myself (my health and wellness) a higher priority in my life. I splurged and signed up for the MMEW class, and I am loving it! I did a heap of printing and cutting yesterday and the day before, but it was worth it. I don’t want to spoil it too much, but this class has me thinking about my health, my priorities, where I’ve come from and where I’m going… It’s been a fun experience so far, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the month.

The class itself goes for 31 days, but there are tools to use for the rest of the year. I’m not sure if I’ll go month-to-spread after that (I’m hoping no, but I’ll see if I can settle myself into a productive schedule by then), but I’m doing week-to-spread (with additional smaller pages) with it now. I wanted to share my title page with you. I’m actually quite happy with it. I might embellish a little more later, but I don’t really have the time for it now.

Move More PL

I hope to have more pages to share, soon!

Project Life

Big Picture Classes

Archives