I’ve been working on the…

… railroad, all the live long day… πŸ˜†

Do any of you remember that preschool song?

It’s been a super-fabulously EXCITING couple of days, staying up round the clock and working, working, working, and waiting, waiting, waiting… for the FIRST BIRTHDAY of our beloved Spraground!!! πŸ˜€

Our Spraground, aka jessicasprague.com, just turned one year old on June 4th, and we’re having a week-long celebration (or likelyΒ longer, since we all have a tendency to party at all times over there! πŸ˜† )! The site is new, with a MARVELOUS new look created by the awesome Jessica-and-Jared tandem, and lots of new things to celebrate! All of the great things, and then some more!!!

Jes is so wonderful: we now have MORE awesome courses offered right on our Spraground, so if you’ve happened to stumble onto my blog porch and haven’t visited our beloved Spraground, do come and join our celebration!

THE Candice Stringham will be offering a fabulous Photography course for beginners!

The expert on all things Shoebox and Mac, my friend Molly Schneider, will be offering a Shoebox class for digital organization… (Last month my sister was just sighing over the dearth of resources and support for Shoebox use, and I had told her “Go look for Molly because she’s awesome and she’ll be able to help you out!”… It’s truly amazing how you make a silent wish and then Jessica hears and makes it magically come true!).

Heidi Vanyo, of DigiScrapInfo fame (she and sister Connie areΒ the ACDSee experts), will continue teaching the ACDSee course.

Then there are other self-paced courses and more instructor-led courses coming up (including one on journaling and typography which Jes and I will be team-teaching on… this is totally EXCITING for me, and have I said what an incredible honor it is to be teaming up with the VERY BEST instructor??? WOOOHOOOO!!! πŸ˜€ )

Our site is totally THE place to be, so if you haven’t registered and checked it out, and you have even just a tiny teeny weeny interest in digi-scrapping, run, run, run to jessicasprague.com!!!

An Exclusive Freebie

I’ve been working hard on a Spraground Exclusive Freebie for the past days… and am so happy to say that the first part is complete and uploaded on our Spraground! You have to be logged in to get it, so do sign up… not only for the freebie, but even more for the phenomenal learning going on in that awesome site, and for the fabulous friendships you’re surely going to develop as soon as you join our Spraground family!

Here’s the first part of the exclusive freebie (Note: Since this freebie is exclusive to the Spraground, having beenΒ created in celebration of our First Birthday, there won’t be any links to it on my blog. The links are on jessicasprague.com! )

Exclusive Spraground Birthday Celebration Freebie


There are 8 highly-textured papers in this first part of the freebie! Totally had fun creating these!

If you’re not yet playing with us on our Spraground, here’s hoping you come over and join us! There are enough swings and slides! πŸ˜†


It’s again 5AM and here I am still sitting at my compy. I guess that means I should be going, huh? πŸ˜†

Have a happy day, sweeties!!!

Too Cool!!!

Okay, I’ve just had an incredible a-ha moment, and I want to jump for joy! Course I needed to run back to you and share the joy! (Uh… if you’ve already known this, then clap your hands and pretend you’re hearing it for the first time, okay? πŸ˜† Just kidding!!! πŸ˜† )

So I’ve begun working on a kit that I want to give as a freebie (nudge nudge wink wink!) πŸ˜‰ When I work on a freebie, I make these little squares and fill them with colors, while I try to decide on a color scheme for the kit…

Well, I got carried away with playing, and before long I had about 80 squares to fill with colors. I had copied and pasted these squares originally (think 80 layers)… and wait! Before you go zzzzz on me, let me tell you what I was wanting to do… I wanted to move up the 1st to the 8th row so I could accommodate one more row of 10 squares below them. Normally, I would select the top layer in the layers palette, hold down shift, then select the last layer on the layers palette. This, as you know, would select all the layers in between as well, so that I could move them as one entire group.

Confession time: a good deal of stuff that I’ve learned about Photoshop has come from playing and experimenting (of course the base of my Photoshop knowledge has always come from my dear friend Jessica)… Anyway, so I was in that playful mood, and I thought: well, what would happen if I just draw a selection around all these squares that I want to “catch” using my move tool?

So I tried it… and guess what? IT WORKED!!! WOOOHOOOOOO!!!!

So actually, if you want to select several items on your workspace / layout, select the Move tool and draw around it (make sure you have the Show Transform Controls checkbox checked so you know what you’re capturing with your move tool)… and when you let go of your mouse button, all that were included in your selection become highlighted on the layers palette and you can move them as a group!

Here’s a screen shot:


You’ll see that there’s a bounding box around the squares that I selected with the move tool (it appears as you draw around the squares with your mouse, so it’s a great guide that lets you know just which items you’re selecting). And over on the layers palette, you’ll see all the layers are automatically selected.

TOO COOL!!! Hee hee hee.

Well, that’s it for the intermission! Just wanted to share an a-ha moment with you! πŸ˜†


Photo Catch-Up!

Uhhh…. probably more like Photo Avalanche coming up (consider yourself forewarned, my friend). πŸ˜›

Our May Photo-a-Day challenge at the Spraground has just ended, and I have to admit, I’m experiencing a bit of withdrawal symptoms… There’s just something magical about the Spraground activities that makes one keep hankering for more. Amazing.

I loved seeing all the photos of my Spragmates come up in the Photo-A-Day gallery… the eyecandy is just so astounding over there! Even greater than that, this gallery is yet another testament of just how much phenomenal talent there is in that special home on the web! (If you happened to stumble onto my porch today and haven’t joined us yet on our Spraground, dooooo come and join us! We’re celebrating our home’s birthday this June 4th, so come a register on that day–it’s free–and join us in all the wonderful celebrating, whooping and yeehaw-ing that we’re surely going to be having for about a week!)

OK, so now you can stop reading if you don’t want to get bombarded by photo phreakishness! πŸ˜† I haven’t uploaded my photos since the last time, so here’s a whole avalanche of them!

May 11 ~ Traffic Lights

I so don’t like traffic, but I do get mesmerized by the red lines made by brake lights on the shiny, rain-kissed roads…

May 12 ~ Beacon

Turned off all the lights in my home except this set of 4 dinner lights that hang over our dining table. I thought the matte silver bars holding them up would show, but ended up with these seemingly-floating lamps instead. They kind of remind me of those biblical virgins with their lamps waiting in a line for the bridegroom… πŸ˜›

May 13 ~ Shell Cathedral

Couldn’t help thinking that this looked like a cathedral among the rest of the shell village. πŸ™‚ (PS. i am nowhere near the beach… just had this bunch of shells for the longest time and decided they made a great photo-op, hehe)

May 14 ~ dare to be different

I have always been fascinated by smooth, dark river stones… or, for that matter, stones in general, including glass ones.

CREDIT: Used a texture by Voidix as overlay

May 15 ~ X marks the spot

Ha! Finally found another use for our metal and leather tic-tac-toe set on our coffee table in the living room.

Credit: Used a texture by Ghostbones as overlay

May 16 ~ El Burrito

Meet Burrito, one of the many donkeys in my home. πŸ˜€ I’ve always loved donkeys, mostly because there’s something so moving about the most lowly, most humble animal carrying the greatest King on his back… πŸ™‚

May 17 ~ Mug Shot

Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun. Love my stainless steel coffee cups but not as much as i love what’s inside them. hahaha!

May 18 ~ Seek and you shall find.

My son has been very “into” Pink Panther lately, and decided to be Inspector Clouseau for the day. Totally funny. πŸ˜›

May 19 ~ Seek the light.

Could not help marvel at how this little plant remains verdant, fresh, and alive despite the bramble of thorns and darkness that surround it. I think it’s another one of Nature’s silent lessons to us: that in the depth of all the tribulations we may face at one point or another, we need to just keep our faces turned up to Heaven and things will work out…

May 20 ~ His & Hers

He has his marbles; I have my pearls. πŸ˜€ (The “he” is my 5 year old son, and the pearls are from the South China Sea, which happens to be very nicely located near the islands I call home πŸ™‚ )

May 21 ~ Small Beginnings, Great Things

A very ordinary photo, but a testament to my belief that there is an artist in every child, and a child in every artist… here’s to the children in us! πŸ™‚

May 22 ~ Ideal

I have ducks in almost every room of my house. They’re a good reminder of what I strive for: to be like a duck–calm on the surface but paddling like the dickens underneath (Michael Caine quote). πŸ˜€

May 23 ~ Haven
Is there any place more comforting, more safe, more serene, than the embrace of a mother? There is an indescribable warmth in her arms that we will always run to (or remember fondly, when she’s gone), whether we’re 6 or 60… I am always amazed by the softness and gentleness of the Madonna & Child, even when represented in hard brass sculpture. (This is one of the works in our home done by a Filipino artist called Michael Cacnio).

May 24 ~ For Sale

My 6yr-old son spent the entire morning of the 24th making this, and then declared that he was going to put up a toy shop and sell his creations “so we can have enough money to spend (when we go on our vacation).” ROFL. I thought it was incredibly cute and certainly a moment to remember so I can remind him about it when he’s older.

May 25 ~ Nurture the sillies.

I think a sense of humor is definitely one of the essentials needed to get through Life, don’t you? πŸ™‚

May 26 ~ Ssssshhhh…oes!

Promise you won’t tell anyone about this sssshhhoe secret? I really do not have many obsessions in life besides shoes (uh, there’s digiscrapping, and hard drives, and photography stuff, and… hehehe). Oh… and don’t tell my hubby: he hasn’t opened my shoe cabinet since we got married. hehehe.

May 27 ~ Serious Business

Sssh. This is a really important earth-changing board meeting going on; maintain silence and no comments from the peanut gallery. LOL! I am so amused by how serious these two look, when in reality their conversation revolved around what each had drawn on their own papers. Gotta love kids! πŸ˜€

May 28 ~ Simple Pleasures Β Ahhh… once in a while you taste wine so delicious, you just have to sing… it’s just one of those simple things that make life a joy to live. πŸ˜€

May 29 ~ Succor

We all have those days, when darkness falls and we grope our way through, hoping for a hand to hold onto… it always helps to know that there’s a warm and safe place to run to, where we can count on a friend waiting there for us with a ready embrace. My light, my home, my arms are open to every single one of you both here on my blog porch andΒ inΒ my Spraground family. πŸ™‚

PS. I wish the front door of my real home were as romantic as this; however, this is the back door of a restaurant where hubby and I had dinner. πŸ˜›

May 30 ~ Order in Chaos

This is the plant that I see when I look out of one of my dining-room windows… Today I was amazed that as the wind blew the soft stems of the plant every which way, the individual leaves nevertheless looked calm and in place… Again, Mother Nature gives us an amazing lesson: no matter how confused and confusing everything is around us, if we hold on steadily to our principles and values, we will get through the chaos with our serenity and certainty intact. πŸ™‚

May 31 ~ Believe in magic.

I think that one of our greatest challenges in this journey called Life is the struggle to see the world with the freshness, the innocence, the purity of the eyes of a child. My children have taught me a very important lesson: that no matter where one looks, if one believes in magic, there will be miracles to be witnessed in the most ordinary of places. Here’s to the miracle of our friendships, our Spraground, and our lives!

Phew! Wake up! The show is done! πŸ˜†

Am presently working on freebies; will be back with them soon!

Have a happy day!