Trip(ping) Down Memory Lane

So while celebrating our Birthday Bash (2 years old, yay!) at the Spraground, my dear friend Jessica Sprague the Digital Scrapbooking Queen (giggle) * challenged us to recall our digital scrapbooking journey, and knowing how I sometimes get so excited with trips that I travel way past the end of the road, guess where this reminiscing journey took me?

All the way back to the days (and songs) of my childhood!

πŸ˜†

Enjoy!

My favorite, favorite, F-A-V-O-R-I-T-E song of all time!

Break out the fruit shakes and spread the beach blankies!

This one somehow seems to be forever tied to an image of my eldest brother in his pageboy haircut. πŸ˜†

And this one is linked to an image of my sister in her straight long hair.

This song… oh man, what memories.

Can’t help singing along with this one, to this day!

What would the seventies be without Rupert Holmes?

Two of my favorite things in life: laughter and rain.

Don’t think I’ll ever stop loving this song:

Oh yeah. But Warren Beatty, I thought you had every right to be vain. πŸ˜€

Don’t you just love reminiscing?

Have a great night, sweeties!

Back to the saltmines! Catch you later! πŸ˜‰

*( giggling at a little joke between Jes and me)

Birthday Bash at JessicaSprague.com!

We’re turning 2 years old this month at JessicaSprague.com, and we’re inviting everyone to the PAR-TAY!

Things are buzzing around the Spraground; we’ve got a week-long birthday bash going on! Lots of cookies (as can be expected from the Dark Side, hahaha! πŸ˜† ) and cakes and ice cream, and boy have we got party hats in a big way! Come on over and check it out!

Also just doing a quick post to let you know (but you probably already do! πŸ˜‰ ) that we have awesome party favors and giveaways!

Birthday FREE COURSE!

First off is Jessica’s uber-awesome, highly-anticipated, new FREE Photo-Editing: Special Effects & Frame-Ups course! (Did I say you get it for free?) Sign up period for this free course is strictly during our birthday week, so if you haven’t yet signed up (and let me tell ya, the response has been H-U-G-E, it is so EXCITING!), come and sign up for it! Registration ends on Sunday, along with our festivities, so you have till now and then to hop on our fun bus!

To sign up, you just need to be a registered member of the Spraground (registration is FREE too!)

Then follow these instructions:

Free Registration for Photo Editing: Frame-ups and Special Effects – Just log in to your account (or create one), then click here and enter the code:Β FREECLASS062009 to be automatically registered! Then check out the class introduction in your My Classes link in the main menu. Registration is free through June 28, and class begins July 6!

HUGE 20% OFF SITE-WIDE SALE!

It began yesterday, it’s going on right now, and it doesn’t end entil Sunday 11:59PM! We’ve got 20% off everything in our jessicasprague.com store! This includes self-paced classes, templates, products, EVERYTHING!

Plus we’re getting new stuff in the shop throughout the week, so keep checking back for more stuff!

BIRTHDAY GIVEAWAYS!

We’ve got 24-hour birthday freebies that we’re giving away every single day of this Birthday Bash week! You’ll find them up on our Spraground blog homepage, and you can download them from there from 10Am of the release day till 10AM of the next day, when a new freebie comes up and the previous one gets moved to our shop. So I hope you’ll take advantage of those 24 hours when these awesome goodies will be free for you! YAY!

I’m coming in a day late here (partying too hard on the Spraground, hahaha!) so the first freebie has gone up and down, and will now be available in the shop… BUT we’ve got the Day 2 freebie up, and this is why I’m running over to my porch to let you all know! There’s still time to snag it! πŸ˜€

Today’s freebie is my first template product in the shop (well, technically, it isn’t in the shop yet as it’s FREE right now, but tomorrow it’ll be moved to the shop shelves πŸ˜€ ). It’s also the template we’re using to play with today as we go about doing our Birth-Day 2 / June Create-a-Day:Day 23 challenge!

Here’s what it looks like:

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And here’s the layout that I created as a sample (featuring my very pretty niece):

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And you can download it from our blog homepage till 10am tomorrow morning, Eastern Standard Time! After 10am it will go into our shop, and a new freebie will be up for grabs! YAY!

More coming soon, but right now I’ve got cookies waiting for me on the Spraground! Come skip and hop with me to the Spraground?

(((hugs)))

Beam me up, Scotty!

Guitar Love

I have a special affection for the piano and believe that no home of mine would be complete without it (having had a childhood where the piano was often the center of impromptu sibling singing, very much Waltons-style :lol:). I think pianos are great therapists (Feeling happy? Let your fingers play on the keys! Feeling angry? Let your fingers bang on them… just not too strongly, haha!)

But guitars! Guitars, I love because they remind me of my brothers. Guitars bring back such fond memories.

My eldest brother would play the guitar most afternoons in his teenage years, and girls would swoon. I can still recall very clearly the time that he had to perform in front of a crowd, and to everyone’s surprise, he played with his back turned on the audience (I think stage fright is genetic).

My other brother, 2 years older than me, played lead guitar in a band that toured (yep, they made it to the US too, haha!) back in his teenage years as well. He used to compose songs that I loved because they were so real. I may be in the minority, but I used to think it was so cool when he’d play his electric guitar in his room (I don’t think our dad shared my point of view. And now that I’m a parent myself, I’m thinking I’m probably blessed that my sons play the piano instead of the electric guitar. πŸ˜† ).

My youngest brother played the bass in three different bands before he grew up and joined the workforce. He’s amazing with the bass too. Ahem. Maybe stage fright afflicts only the eldest boy and the youngest girl (me)?

Ah. Guitars and boys.

And swooning girls. (Count me in this latter group).

So. It was with delight that I spent the afternoon listening to these while multitasking on … schtuff. πŸ˜‰ More on that soon. But for now… ear-candy time!

Love the last lines of this song… and the guitar picking (did I just invent that word? πŸ˜† ) is awesome.

Nothing beats a great beat… and amazing fingers. This Andy dude is amazing.

Every guitar lover knows the Boss. (This song was one of my favorites to play while driving long distance. Hot!)

Newton Faulkner. Introduced to me by my 16-year-old son. Cool dude.

And of course, this post cannot end without the coolest pairing of all: Bono and the Boss.

Happy strummin’ along, sweeties! It’s back to the salt mines for me! πŸ˜†

Free Photo-Editing Class, Fun Find & Freebie!

Oooh, I just love posts like this!

First things first: have you heard of the latest fabulous free class that’s coming to you real soon?

FREE FABULOUS PHOTO-EDITING COURSE!

PhotoEd2450ad

In the follow-up class to her hugely popular first Photo-Editing course, Jessica Sprague (and I’m proud to call her my friend! :D) brings more photo fun to you with her new and FREE Photo-Editing: Frame-Ups & Special Effects course!

The two-week instructor-led class begins on July 6th, with all the awesome stuff that come only with JessicaSprague.com courses! (Daily emails, a very friendly forum, screencast videos, a class private gallery, lots of love, and more!). Be sure you don’t forget to sign up and register (did I already say FREE?) for the course when you come around to our Spraground on the week of June 22-28. We’ll be celebrating our second Spraground birthday on this week, and let me tell ya, we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to make sure that you’ll have an awesome time celebrating with us (how does “amazing giveaways and exciting announcements” sound to you? πŸ˜‰ )

What will you need to take this course? Just Photoshop or Photoshop Elements (no experience necessary, and if you don’t happen to have Photoshop/Photoshop Elements, all you need to do is click on the image above, and you’ll zip right to our homepage where you’ll find a link to a free trial download of the program! Awesome, isn’t it? )

So mark your calendars, set your date alarms, and I hope to see you at the Registration line in about a week! YAY!

NOTE: Click on the image to learn more about the course!

FUN FIND

So I was moseying down netland and guess what I found?

PhotoFunia-22eb1d4-liv

Bwahahaha. That’s about the closest I’ll ever get to finding my photo on a wall. πŸ˜†

There is an amazing variety of stuff you can put your face (or your friends’ faces) on at PhotoFunia.com, from walls to magazine covers to coins and t-shirts and museum gallery frames. You can even have some cool guy spray-paint your face on a wall filled with graffiti. πŸ˜†

PhotoFunia-2192b42-graf

(Snort!) Try it and watch time fly while you play. πŸ˜†

AND FINALLY…

I have a new pack up at our shoppe at JessicaSprague.com…

T-Stickies:100% is the first in a series of textured stickers (thus, the T in T-stickies πŸ˜‰ ). This one is a set of 30 glossy, slightly-crumpled, textured stickers in five colors. The 100% labels are separate from the words so that you can mix and match them to your delight! πŸ™‚

LivE-Tstickies100-img

* Click on image to go to the shoppe *

And because you know I love ya, here’s a little freebie from the pack (this one is curled, pre-shadowed, and pre-matched so that all you have to do is pull it onto your layout and voila! πŸ˜‰ )

LivEdesigns-FM05-100Treasured-img

* Click on the image to download, and thanks for the love you leave on my blog as you snag this freebie!

And that’s all the F’s we’ve got for today, folks! πŸ˜†

Have a wonderful day! I’m off to bed! ((((hugs))))

Et cetera

Latin: et (and) + cetera (the other… things)

So. I have been trying to get my head focused on the one million and one things that need to be done (is your to-do list any shorter? Fancy trading yours with mine?), and I figured the best way to get my motors revved is to … procrastinate! bwahahaha. πŸ˜† just kidding. Of course, what I really meant is: the best way to get me energized to do the ton that needs to be done is to sit on this porch, have a little chat with you, and when it’s over, I’d have amassed the energy and inspiration I need to go and attack that workload!

Let’s play catch-up, why don’t we? Here we go! πŸ™‚

Something to look at:

Last week I got the biggest surprise of the year. See, there was a thread on our Spraground forum with a cryptic message from my friend Dawn who said something about “great seeing you ladies on p. 37!” (not verbatim, but you get the picture). It was a fabulous way to trigger the curiosity antennae… so I soon found out that my dearest friend Jes had done a layout of our beta Spragfest held in Chicago last year (lots of happy memories, that one) and it came out in her column in the June issue of the Creating Keepsakes magazine!

How awesome was that!

Of course I found out about this close to midnight. Of course I got out of bed in my pajamas, drove to the house of my regular magazine-stand girl, and demanded that she check the most recent shipment of CK for the June issue so I could get my hands on p.37 and savor the sweetness myself!

Well, not really. But I came close to it (ask Jes, she’ll vouch for it). πŸ˜†

So… a day or two after the thread came up, I got my own copy of the mag, and yippee! There we were, the Chicago babes! And there was Jessica’s AWESOME layout! Never mind if I looked like a dorky kid. To be a glue dot on Jessica’s layout is honor enough! ROFL. So here’s the page:

ckpage

And here’s a close up of the fab layout that Jes made:

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And here’s a funny:

I showed the page to my nanny. She took one look at it and said, eyes peering closely at the photo, “Oh, it looks like you, Ma’am.” I said, “Yep, cos that’s me!” Her response: HAHAHAHAHAHA!

No, she still doesn’t believe it’s me. To this day.

Something to marvel at:

My 7-year-old son J, who loves drawing so much that he’s going to make trees quiver in their roots once he’s done recycling all our paper at home, has just recently discovered that broken crayons can be taped together so they don’t go to waste. And he’s been using that discovery to mend all his little colored friends.

One day last week, he came to me all excited. “Mom! Look! I found triplets!” he said, holding up a crayon broken into three. “This crayon is going to the crayon hospital!”

Five minutes later, he comes to me and says, “Look, Mom! All better!”

crayon

Voila. Crayon Operation, folks. Who’da thunk you could actually staple a crayon together? Did you? I didn’t either.

Amazing, kids are. Makes you wonder just how much we could achieve if we adopted the same kind of brave, nothing-is-impossible attitude toward all that life throws our way, doesn’t it?

Something to be grateful for:

Remember that whole post about multitasking a few days back?

A friend of mine emailed me with this question: Can you download two or more things at the same time? (Cute, isn’t it, the innocence in that question? πŸ˜€ )

This is my answer:

download

Oh yes, my friend, you can. And boy, do I thank high technology all the time that indeed, we CAN!

Something to think about:

I keep this guy on my desk (among other “guys” πŸ˜‰ ).

1259

First of all, I love that my teenage son thinks I’m a cool mom because I have this… this creature… on my desk. (He has about 5 of his own. It’s apparently the in-thing with kids these days. )

Secondly, I love that it says 23:59. In fact, that’s what made me take it on its short journey from shop shelf to cash register. Initially, I loved that the time and all those (what are those anyway, veins? πŸ˜† ) spindly things seem to empathize with me when I’m rushing against deadlines (which I seem to get a lot of in regular doses).

But this little thing has evolved, and today I found that 23:59 stands for more than just deadlines. It makes me think about time running out (one minute left, lady!). It makes me think about how this life is temporary, how we really are just travelers passing through, making our way to our final destination. It makes me think about how all we really have is now, and how we need to grab Now by the collar and do all the good that we can and give all the love that we have… NOW.

Amazing. Little did I think when I picked up this little guy in the store that day, that he would stand for so much more than four numbers on his little face.

Something too precious for words:

heart

I hope I never run out of love letters like this:

luv

Something to laugh about:

Okay, so I think it’s been established that google reads our emails (or at least their robots do). My friend Jes and her carrot cake addiction will attest to that.

But nothing prepared me for finding this in my spam folder when I went to clean it up…

blogfunny-jun02

I mean, seriously? French Fry SPAM Casserole.

Right.

And yes, I fell off my chair. Rolled on the floor, in fact. Laughing out loud.

Have a wonderful, laugh-out-loud day too, my sweeties! Over and out!

Rain On

On my list of favorites in life, few things are more romantic than sitting by my window pane (fingers on my keyboard, of course πŸ˜‰ ) and watching rain fall while listening to really cool music.

It’s raining now. Yum! Sit with me and enjoy? πŸ™‚

I think part of what makes rain so mysterious to me is that it reminds me of tears.

Ever wonder how one thing is always so closely related to its opposite?

Another mystery, with all the secrets it keeps: night.

Bliss!

And my longest-favorite song (from way back when I was 3 years old and Michel Legrand’s version played on my dad’s …uh, what do you call those things that have huge wheels and tape? :lol:)

I love this version more (and watching Pierce Brosnan makes it even more delish! Mmmmmmm :D)

Happy ear-candy day! πŸ˜€

Lovin’ the 80s

Oh gawd. What a great decade. I’m so glad I came of age then.

Yes, we lived in a mad world back then. But it was fun.

The song that was as good as a license…

One of my 80s anthems:

And yet another:

And this one still makes me stop and put my hand on my heart when I hear it:

And this song was ooooh:

Oh yeah. The 80s were a great decade.

Mmmmmmemories. πŸ™‚

Feeling Creative? Join Us in June!

I’ve been multitasking πŸ˜‰Β  in a big way these past few daysΒ  (Read: working with more than 10 Firefox tabs open, and we’re not even talking about the other windows I’ve got floating around on my PC monitor space). And I’ve been having the time of my life, because most of the windows and tabs that are open are all related to one thing: the passion for creating and challenges! YAY!

We just finished our first-ever Spragweek Challenge: 7 Days in May at our Spraground, and we had a great number of Spragbabes who showed up to participate in the layout-a-day challenges that we (my friends Janie, Linda, and I) cooked up. Our Challenge Gallery was a virtual eye-candy art exhibit, what with all the great layouts being uploaded by the hour!

And… because wishes do come true on our Spraground, in response to the request of our members to have a month-long daily-layout challenge session, we are holding Create-A-Day in June, where challenges and prompts will be provided every single day for this entire month! And as always, it’s open to everyone! (So if you haven’t joined us yet, consider yourself formally invited… by me! πŸ˜† )

Here’s your invitation:

w-CADflyer

Credits: Painted Edges overlayΒ  by Flergs@ScrapbookGraphics.com).

So hop on the challenge train, and if you’re seeing this after June 1st, it’s totally okay! We have the Challenge Archives for those who want to catch up, and if the thought of going back in time doesn’t appeal to you and you’d rather just jump rightΒ  in the middle of things, that’s totally fine too! Whichever day you decide is best,Β  you can still come and join us at any point (can you tell we just love company? πŸ˜† )

Pssst. Just a little secret: you really may want to be around the Spraground on the week of June 22-27, which is when we celebrate our 2nd birthday! We’ve got loads of treats in store for you, and that includes surprises for those participating in our June Create-A-Day challenges! (Now, isn’t that a great incentive to come join us now? πŸ˜‰ )

Wait for more exciting stuff coming up in future announcements about our Second Spraground Birthday! πŸ˜‰

PS. If you need a map to get to the Spraground, click on the swings right up there on the top right and voila! Find yourself in the most magical place in the virtual world! πŸ˜‰

My MayDay Three

I don’t normally have the time to create layouts along with leading the challenges, but the energy and excitement last week were so infectious that I just couldn’t help myself!Β  I was able to get layouts done up to Day 3, but couldn’t go further as I had to buckle down to work on the ongoing June challenges.

So here are the ones I made:

Day 1 was a template challenge, with a template made by… me! heehee!

This was the template we used:

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And here’s the layout I made:

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{ Click image for a larger view }

Credits: Lorie Davison @ SBG: Flying Dreams: Background Paper, Moon / LivEdesigns: Layered Template, Grunge Brush / Font: Anivers

Day 2 was a challenge based on my dear friend (and our Spraground mama) Jessica’s Photoshop Friday tutorial on Burning an Image into a Colored Accent Block… with a twist! This one was really challenging for me, as I had no idea how to twist the tutorial! πŸ˜† But hey, that’s what’s great about challenges, right? They stretch your horizons and give you reason to push your skills further and further! (Gotta love that!)

Here’s the layout I made:

w-LivE_7DiM-D2

Credits: Jofia Defoe-The Smell of Summer paper / Ziggle Designs-If Only in My Dreams paper (slightly recolored) / Katie Pertiet-ScriptedOverlay, WateryOverlay, MessedUpOverlays2, FilmedOverlays2, ScriptedType brush, GrungedUpAlpha1 brushes, StitchedChipStrips / Kellie Mize-PaintedLove brushes, PanosFX puzzle action, snf modtype

And Day 3’s challenge was to create a layout about an inanimate treasured object. This one also made me think… I have treasured friends and treasured family… but treasured objects? (I couldn’t do a layout on my computer or my camera because they’re not objects… they’re appendages to my body! hahaha!) So, after thinking and thinking, and at one point staring at my cabinet as I was deep in thought, I had a eureka moment and voila! Thus was born this layout celebrating my love affair with… tadah! My jeans!

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{ Click image for larger view }

Credits: Natali Design: Swirl / Gunhild: FrayedFabric mask / Jen Wilson: LittleTags-Boys / Katie Pertiet: LilBitTags stitch, SewnStatements tag, WateryOverlay / Anna Aspnes: StitchedbyAnna stitches (recolored), TexturedOverlay / Amanda Rockwell: HomeSweetHome heart / FeiStuff-Pindated pin / Dana Zarling: Timeworn paper & Lynn Grieveson: Barcelona paper (blended) / Fonts: Artistamp & Lights Out

Back to the saltmines

Yep, gotta get off this blogporch swing and start marching back to the saltmines. Lots of work to do (but fun, fun, fun work!) Stay, make yourself at home, have all the iced tea you want, and I’ll see you around in a bit! ((((hugs)))))