Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Chinese New Year!

Happy Chinese New Year to every one who celebrates this holiday! We are at the end of day 2 of this 15 day celebration, and it's definitely hectic but so wonderful as we meet up with friends and relatives some of whom we meet only once a year.
Dh is from a large family (he is the youngest of seven siblings) and everyone gathers at our place so it's one big party! On my side of the family, we spend time with my mom's family (my grandma turns 100 this year!) and my dad's family (although my dad has passed nearly thirty years now) which has about eighty of us meeting together every year!
This year one of my cousins who lives in HK brought back from the village my dad's family was from in China, a two volume book with records of his family's ancestors and family tree, starting almost five hundred years ago! I had heard that there was a record but never saw it before! Apparently our ancestor was an official in an imperial court, and the record continues from there! He gave the naming conventions for 23 generations of his sons and grandsons, and it has been faithfully followed, and my dad was the 16th generation, and my brother the 17th generation! I found my dad and mom's names in it, but my brother's name has yet to be updated, whereas mine will never be added because it only records sons. Totally awesome and amazing!
Well, I can't spend too long, so want to show you the boys' birthday layout which I will add to my Project 365 book, which I've decided will just be my 2009 book, so everything goes in it, but I have to be mindful that Shutterfly only makes 100 page books!
Credits: Background paper from Weeds & Wildflowers, and ribbons from Studio MGL

And this is another layout of another outing we had in 2008 -I'm still playing catch up! Credits: Background paper and floral print both from Weeds & Wildflowers

I've put the templates in the store here!
And here's my 365 layout for the next 14 days after the boys' birthday celebrations. I'm liking the graphic style! Don't you? It's just a little hard to find graphic embelishments, I found this beautiful circle set by Tracy Ann Designs but I can't share it with you so have replaced with some similar shapes.

HERE is the template link. Oh and thank you for all your wonderful comments!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

About cameras

Just drop in to answer Susan who asked what camera I use.

Well, if you've been admiring my US trip photos, it was all taken on dh's Canon G7 - yes, most of the photos were taken by him, he likes to say that's at least half the reason my scrapbook pages are great, hehe. I have to admit a lot of what he does on the G7 I won't know how to do, although I complement a lot on photoshop!! lol

But he got me a Canon Ixus 801S last year, and I used that to take all the 2009 Project 365 photos, and I love it! I usually take with the flash off, and it turns out lovely.

We noticed though for our Japan trip photos taken with both our cameras, that the Ixus photos had a much warmer tone, not sure why, but I will need to harmonise the photos from both cameras on photoshop once I start scrapping them - which is not yet!! sigh.

Well, what cameras do you use? point and shoot like me?

I gotta run, hope to post more and some layouts this weekend. We're soooo busy spring cleaning and preparing for Chinese New Year starting with the reunion dinner this Sunday.

Have a great day everyone!

Oh Susan, you can email me at yindgs at yahoo dot com dot sg

Saturday, January 17, 2009

A quick post

Too busy to post much today, just dropped in to share more inspiring layouts, and also to post the template for my linear/graphic style 365 layout, which some of you requested. Have fun!
Don't you just love Christie Hayes' fabulous and sparkling engagement layout! Congratulations Christie!

And here is a wonderful family-filled desktop layout by Kathy Christensen

And I love this spirited layout of the cutest daughters of Meghan Justice!

You can get the template HERE!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

365 Everydays

First thank you everyone for a wonderful sale! I'll probably have one twice a year, so next one will be in July! I just hope I come out with enough templates in that time! :P

Right now I'm just getting quite excited and quite worried at the same time with this project 365. The more I read about it, the more I like the idea and want to have an album of our 2009! But only a few days into January, and I was like, what photos can I take? Our life is so "everyday", it's all the same everyday, how am I going to have photos to fill 365 days?? I've calmed down a little since then and decided that, I will cheat a little if I don't have photos for everyday, or I'll substitute some image if miss a day, or I'll skip some days and record more for others, just keep going and enjoy the process!

Actually, as the whole family gets involved into the project, everyone chips in with giving me ideas for photos, it is becoming fun and a great family project! Dh thinks we will find in the course of the year that there are many little things in our lives that we appreciate, fail to notice before, and are worth recording, but basically it is our life, and as a lady commented on this blog, our lives are ordinary but satisfying. I hope that shows through in my album, and we get a time capsule of our lives circa 2009 captured! If you have started, keep going with me!

Now the main problem I have is what style of pages do I go with? I've had a few requests to make templates for Project 365, and as I started, it got fun. Here's a layout using one of my templates (set 9 - altered as I needed 9 photos - it's available for your download further down)- easy and fun to embellish!
Credits: Paper from Thankful, by Emily Giovanni. The "january" epoxy sticker is from a mini kit I made long ago, you can download it further down too!

Now this is more in keeping with the graphic magazine style I started with my January First page. I can't decide! Which do you like better? Or do you think I can have mixed up styled pages in my album?? :)
Credits: paper by Andrea Victoria, and word art by Mindy Terasawa

Now you might be wondering what is Will Smith doing on my page, well I had no photos for that day where we worked till late then went on date night to watch Seven Pounds, so that will have to do.
And do you see the photo of a green snake trying to swallow a chameleon? Dh took that shot last week at his school camp, amazing! And without Project 365 that photo will not have been scrapped. :)

Next up I'll be scrapping the boys' birthday photos, they turn 10 and 12 respectively on 13th and 17th of January! Where did my babies go?

And here are Project 365 templates I put up in the store :here

And these are for you to play. Hope you like them.
Get the templatehere
And get these month tabsHere

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Before I knew it...

All I wanted to do was to add a music video of Amazing Grace I had found on Simply Sarah's blog, and blogger made some prompts, I clicked something, and before I knew it, I've updated my blog layout but lost a lot of my old side bar stuff! Thankfully I was able to put back my blog header (I'm sentimental, it's my first blog header and I never wanted to change it), but the other stuff will have to wait. Maybe time for a revamp! And to pay a visit to Jeanette's blog - easy custom blogs Thanks Jeanette for the link!

I'm so glad you liked the Brown Paper Pakages kit! Thank you for your WONDERFUL comments! I feel that the style is a bit outdated as I prefer more realistic embellishments now, but I still love the theme of it, about everyday joys, favourite things, and authentic lives we live! I had to fish out this layout I did with it, look how young Ryan was then.

It's the 6th of January, and I'm just suddenly looking back, and feeling that 2008 seemed to have flown by before I knew it! This coming sunday we celebrate the boys' 10th and 12th birthday, has it really been a year! Their birthdays are actually on the 13th and 17th of Jan, so we always celebrate them together on the weekend just before, it's fun this way!

On New Year's day, we also asked the boys if they had any reflections. Jared asked, what are reflections? We explained, "how you feel about the year that has passed, and the new year ahead?" Ryan said, "I'm looking forward to new discoveries in the new year, the old year is all rubbish" what? "well, new is always more exciting" ok, how about Jared? "The number you dialled is not in use." was his answer, grinning away. Sigh.. we'll try again next year! LOL

But seriously, the boys are more intuitive than they let on. Yesterday Jared brought home a "Find out your learning style" questionnaire he completed in school, and we had to smile at some of his answers - it's so true of him!For eg,
I would rather be considered a) realistic, b) innovative (he chose b)
I more easily remember a) something I have done, or b) something I have thought a lot about (he chose b)
I would rather first a) try things out, or b) think about how I'm going to do it (he chose a!)
I consider it higher praise to call someone a) reasonable or as having good sense, or b) imaginative or good at coming up with new ideas (of course he chose b!)
Interesting eh? I'm keeping the questionnaire to show him when he is 21. :)

I'm doing catch-up of last year's photos, which had been left unscrapped while I worked on the US trip. So Japan photos will have to wait. These are from our many walks around our island city!Credits: Papers by Ksharonk - summerspice, and embelishments by Fei Fei- crazybeauty - free kit available at Oscraps now! See how I sneaked in pink on an all boys' layout!
Credits: Word art by Donna Rafferty, leaves and glitter by Weeds & Wildflowers, swirl by Franziska Altmann

And some ladies have asked me to share the template of the layout I made for my first day of 365 project, and also if I could share templates for the rest of my 365 project, certainly! Here is the first one, and I also made a 'jazzed' up version of it for those of you who prefer it:

Download both versions of the templates HERE!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Blessed New Year!

Blessed New Year everyone!
I'd like to give you this verse and wish that I received from a very dear friend:
Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future."
In the coming year, may God's grace cover you, may His presence watch over you, may His love abound toward you - moment by moment, step by step, day by day. I wish you and your loved ones a Blessed, Peaceful, Joyous and Wonderful New Year!

After a wonderful time spent with old friends on New Year's Eve, reminiscing and laughing as we thumbed through old photo albums, we spent New Year's Day quietly and just by our family. After a time at the beach it rained, and we headed for our favourite Borders' bookshop nearby, and our favourite seat in the Borders' cafe.

It was so nice to sit with dh and reflect on the past year and the new year and share our thoughts and wishes over coffee. I won't share everything with you, but I liked what Rozanne Paxman said in the ScrapGirls newsletter, if I may quote some of her words, she said that sometimes when she compares her life with that of some interesting blog writers' , "I begin to think that I live a remarkably unremarkable life. I get up. I get dressed. I work. Sometimes, I cook. Usually I don't. On rare occasions I bake. Usually I don't. My house isn't as clean as I'd like it to be. My haircut is easy-to-do. I'm using the same makeup I've been using for years...." I had to smile because that is so me! You must read all that she says, but eventually she concludes that "for now, my life is as it is and my blog proves it. I guess that's okay. It feels good here."

Me too, I'm not perfect and neither is my life, but DH and I concluded that it is good, and definitely as good as it gets, and we treasure what God has blessed us with.

I didn't make resolutions, but I intend to enjoy every little blessing I have to the fullest, find the good in everything and in everyone I meet, and "love mercy, do justly, and walk humbly with my God" (Micah 6:8) :)
Now I did start something yesterday! I took a lot of pictures, and at Borders I saw this fantastic book that touched the part of me that love the magazine, graphic style of photo-booking, then I went to Ikea Goddess' blog , and read about the 365 Project link she had... well one thing led to another, and I started what you see here!

I'm not ambitious about taking a photo for everyday, but I will certainly like to keep going maybe every other week for 2009! This will be in simple graphic style, so I can keep it up, while I still get to be scrapbook style-creative with my Japan Travel photos!

If you're interested, the 1 Jan journalling reads: We woke up really late. After all, tomorrow we start 6 am school days! The boys bought and played their once a year entitlement to a computer game (yes, they are deprived!) Jared, his Return to wonderland platinum edition, and Ryan his Avatar Bobble battles. While we watched Dan in Real Life for the second time - wonderful movie, just the way we like them! After much debating (nowadays its usually a 4 way debate ..sigh)we made it to the beach for our much missed (3 weeks in Japan followed by 1 week of rich Christmas/New Year foods) local foods - satay, chicken wings, nasi ayam, ice kachang and coconut! YUM! The boys spent time playing on the beach - we have countless similar photos of them at this same beach through the years! They never tire of it! We sat on the beach and while he read papers I caught up with the sewing of school pants for Ryan - he's so thin everything needs altering! I still have 16 name tags to sew onto both their school shirts! When it rained we escaped to Borders, and our favourite love seat in the Borders cafe. We chatted and reflected on the new year and how good we have it, how it's so "As good as it gets", and how we must treasure each day. Then a quick take-home dinner and it's off to bed for the boys at 9, while I set out their first day uniforms, shoes, the bags they had already packed. We are ready for the new year! And this is how we spent the first day.

Now I would like to share with you lovely layouts from some wonderful readers and friends! This first one is by honeybee, love her Christmas morning pics!
And this is what Vanessa has on her desktop showing off great family shotsThis is by Britney, love the theme of EverydayLife and the way she scrapped about them.
And I wanted to show you my photobook! It was all of 100 pages! I had to throw 2 pages out, and when I received my book, I realised I duplicated 2 pages!! ugh!! But everything was beautiful, love the cover, the paper, colors, how well the textures showed up (I enlarged a couple of shots to show you here), and the spacing using the shutterfly printing guides turned out so well, I was so excited to get it, yes, I did do a bit of a dance :)
And here is the entire book (can you spot the duplicated pages?)

Click here to view this photo book.

Finally I want to leave you a little gift, a kit I made nearly two years ago when I was designing and selling at GDS, it's kind of out of date now, compared to the superb kits out there now, but you may like it. It has to do with everyday life, that's why I thought of it.Download the Paper pack hereAnd get the Elements pack here


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