Shabby Miss Jenn

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Catching Up

I thought I'd finish out the year catching up with some layouts I did at the end of the year and have not shared yet.  It's a bit long, so grab a cup of coffee and get comfy.

In October and November, I was a participant in the Last Scrapper Standing contest over at Divine Digital.  There were 6 elimination rounds.  (I made it to the finals, but I was not the Last Scrapper Standing.)  Each of the weekly challenges had 10 requirements, including extensive journaling and some advanced digital techniques.  I'm going to post 4 of the entries here today.

First up, Who Are You, about Jeremy's love of all things costume in the past year. Since this was made, he has added  Captain Rex (Star Wars Clone Trooper guy) to his costume box.

The journaling reads:  Since he turned 5, Jeremy has been especially interested in costumes and make-believe.  This year he’s been a superhero (in a glittery cape that I made for him with fabric he picked out), Batman, and Harry Potter (both birthday gifts from Grandma and Grandpa).  In the last few months, he’s become, well, let’s say obsessed, with all things Star Wars.  He loves getting out his light saber and working on his “Jedi Training”.  This apparently consists of a variety of moves, coupled with a fierce expression and deep, glowering eyes.  Oh! And killing bad guys, of course.  He’s going to be Captain Rex, the clone trooper hero, for Halloween.  I can’t wait to see who he turns into next...

This layout captures our T-ball season in one page. This challenge required use of a shadow box, and extracting an image (removing it from the background).  Both the season and creating this page were a lot of fun!

Journaling: Baseball is our game, and T-ball was a family affair this year. Dad was the coach.  Matthew and Jeremy were players. Mom was in charge of getting the kids into the batting order. Supplies at hand: helmets and bats, gloves and balls, cleats, and the tee.

It was Matthew’s second year playing, and he loved every minute. He made good contact with the ball, ran hard between bases, and made a valiant effort at fielding.

It was Jeremy’s first year playing and he was not so much in love. He exhibited great creativity at the “duck and cover” move when a ball was hit or thrown anywhere near him, kept his eyes closed while batting, and made faces at the coach (Dad) when getting batting advice. Oh, and who can forget him building sand castles in the infield?

I did another page about Jeremy.  He is absolutely desperate to get the dog to obey him, and really worked hard at it this day.  (She hasn't listened to him since...)

Journaling:  Today, you were playing outside while Matthew did homework. Our yellow lab, Ribby, was running around the yard with you. You desperately wanted her to shake with you. “Ribby, sit!” And she ran this way. “Ribby, shake!” And she ran that way. Finally, you asked me to get her to sit. Once she did, you moved in front of her, held out your hand, and said “Shake!” And she did nothing. And you tried again. And still nothing. And again. And eventually she lifted her paw up, and you grabbed it. Success! You reached over to give her a hug and got nuzzled on the side of your head. “Mom! She liked it and kissed me!” At the tender age of three, you announced “I don’t like work,” and you really haven’t deviated from that position in the nearly 3 years since. But today, you worked hard to accomplish your goal.

I hope you remember this accomplishment some day in the future when you think you can’t do something. It is going to take hard effort - yes, work - on your part. You might need a bit of help from someone else to get started. It probably won’t work the first or second or maybe even the tenth time you try it. You are going to have to be persistent. But remember how great it felt for Ribby to shake your hand and give you that kiss.

And last of today's set, but not least, is Creative.  It had to include three identical photos, one original version and the other two treated differently.  My variations included a b/w old-fashioned look, and a sketch or woodprint looking version of the original (top in the layout) photo.  It also required discussing a family trait.


Journaling:  My father was a teacher and a jack-of-all-trades. He was a mason, woodworker (particularly cabinetry), and carpenter. In both of our houses, he built beautiful front steps (both brickwork and stonework) and various cabinetry pieces. In our second house (we moved when I was 10), he refinished all the original hardwood floors, as well as building storage units for the root cellar (yes, we had an actual root cellar!) and re-sided the entire house with clapboard. In this picture, I’m riding in a sleigh he designed, built, and painted. It’s pulled by our German Shepherd, Happy. My siblings and I, as well as a number of the neighborhood kids, had great fun riding down the street in this sleigh during the winter.

Dad knew not only the basic skills of these trades, but the craftsman’s tricks to make a job easier, faster, and/or more beautifully finished. As the oldest, I was his first pick as a helper during the summer months when he wasn’t teaching. He always had number of large projects scheduled. I got to learn why he selected particular woods, or rocks, and which nail sizes, and why those things mattered to the finished product. I learned to appreciate the need for a variety of tools, each to do specific jobs. (I also learned a lot of swear words, but that’s a different topic...) I began to understand the nuances that elevate simple work to an art form. While I never really grew to love any of these jobs, I can handle a lot of basic fixes around the house.

My creativity is expressed in cloth, paper, and pixels instead of wood and stone. I started sewing when I was 10 years old, and from the beginning I was hooked. I’ve spent nearly 35 years learning the sewer’s tricks to make a job easier or faster or more beautifully finished. About 20 years ago I was introduced to quilting, and shortly thereafter to scrapbooking. The use of color, pattern, and design make my heart and soul sing. I don’t know if my creativity is based on “nature” (a genetic inheritance from Dad) or “nurture” (due to the exposure I got to his creativity while I was a child). Either way, I’ll take it and celebrate it.

1 comment:

  1. What a nice tribute to your dad, and encouraging thoughts for your son, and so beautifully written.

    If I were that TA from college and this were a paper, I'd give you the "Peachy Paper, A+" treatment! :D