Happy Thanksgiving!! Why am I blogging today, instead of eating turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy? Well, some stupid germs decided to infect my sweet baby girl, making her run a fever and be all congested. So while she’s napping, I’m blogging!
I was able to finish a few scrap projects, as well as start some new ones, so I have lots to write about!
During the first weekend in November, I went to the fall scrapbook retreat with my scrap-buddies Kerrie and Andrea. They had each gone with me separately in the past (Andrea went twice) but, despite the fact that we have all known each other for several years, we had never gotten to all go together. Having kids spread out over the span of 3 years may have had something to do with it.
We were very excited to have the chance to go together and spend a good chunk of time scrappin’ and sharing stories. We all were able to leave our respective work places early, so we could rally at my house and leave around 5 (I live a little further out from them, and it’s only about 25min to the retreat from my house). We got there around 5:30 and were able to get unpacked and set up before night time; something I had never gotten to do in past years. It’s the little things that excite me!
After getting our cabin gear unloaded, we headed to the dining hall where the scrappin’ takes place. It was nice to see people that I really only get to see once or twice a year at this retreat. I’m sure I’ve described this in previous posts, but the retreat takes place at a camp that is primarily a kids’ summer camp, complete with small cabins (with showers, toilets and PLENTY of heat), a dining hall and lots of fields to play in and woods to explore. One time, I took a walk through the woods with Andrea, and we stumbled on a ropes course. It’s a nice campground and, in the off-season, perfect for a bunch of scrappers.
It’s actually been over a year since I’ve been to the retreat- last time I was there was spring in 2010. I was busy during the fall retreat in ’10 and the spring one… well… I didn’t go since it was scheduled on my due date (which, I ended up having her a little early, so I was actually still in the hospital during that weekend)!! I was so happy to be able to go and also, share this experience with my friends. My awesome and supportive hubby was in charge of Tori for the weekend… I had/have full confidence in him, but I’ll admit, I was nervous since it was my first time being away from her overnight. Of course, I had nothing to worry about, but that didn’t stop me.
Victoria’s baby album was my focus for that weekend. Luckily, I had just finished an album that I made for a weekend trip that Dave and I took in September 2010 with our good friends, Josh and Helen. I was literally 3 pages from finishing it before the retreat, that I pushed myself and was able to have it complete- which was awesome, because that meant I was able to spend that entire scrap weekend concentrating on Tori’s album. Yay! (I’ll post photos of that album soon)
It took a bit to get going, as it always does, but I was able to complete a couple of pages my first night. I don’t have a photo of the first page yet, but I got a few pictures of some of my favorite pages so far.
Even though I got to scrapbook for probably almost 18hrs, I didn’t get as much done as I would’ve liked to, but that’s fairly typical for me. I think I just get into too much detail with pages and, while they look awesome, they definitely take a long time to finish.
This is the front of the album- cute, huh? This was a $9.99 purchase from Ollie’s Bargain Outlet. They have overstock things, like Big Lots or various other discount stores, but Ollie’s definitely has the best selection of scrapbook stuff I’ve ever seen at a shop like that. I’ve gotten a lot of things from there- they typically don’t have paper, but they do have a decent variety of stickers, embellishments, and MANY albums.
I decided to use the first few pages to document my pregnancy and shower. This page was easily one of my favorites of the weekend and it got a lot of compliments from fellow scrappers:
I bought some stickers about pregnancy and used the trimester ones, plus the title. I had some photos of the pregnancy test- I actually took the test at 4am (TMI story- I was actually doing a fertility & nutrition study for PSU so I had several pregnancy tests stashed in the bathroom already) Luckily, the results stayed on the little screen until we got up to get ready for work. Dave snapped these photos of the test and result window, so I couldn’t resist including them.
For the pregnancy timeline at the bottom, I used my Cutter Bee scissors. These are fine tipped scissors that I absolutely love! I like to cut out people and things from photos and these allow you to really get close. They were a pricier purchase ($9 for scissors!?) but I use them often! Here’s a close up of the pregnancy timeline:
The opposite page was, more or less, corresponding ultrasound pictures (they aren’t a perfect match, but it’s still a timeline for her). I had several ultrasounds and some of the techs took LOTS of pictures for me! I’ll confess, I’m a little concerned with how these will keep over time since they aren’t printed on regular photo paper and the “inks” had already started to wear off on the backs of the ones in front of it, but I may run this page through a laminator sometime, which might help. Hopefully having them mounted like this and in a page protector will keep them safe for awhile.
Here’s the page I created for the moment I met our little angel:
I used the Opposites Attract Cricut cartridge to cut out the title. I love that cartridge because of the two font options on it, either a print type or a cursive type. I also used Creative Memories oval cut tools for the photos and their mats. Creative Memories products are great, but they are definitely on the pricier side. They have a whole collection of shapes (plastic with tracks in them) and blades (that fit in the tracks), and the whole set cost over $80. I just purchased one of the sets I thought I would use the most (ovals) and a few of the blades. I may build this collection as I go, but I’m content with the ovals for now!
I kept the embellishments fairly tame on this page. I used a “Labor of Love” sticker above the photo of me with oxygen, because that’s truly how it felt! (I’m just glad my hubby didn’t take photos of me before my epidural… of course, if he had, either the camera or Dave’s nose, may have ended up broken!! )
I don’t know if you noticed, but journaling is a big feature in this album. I’ve always left room for captions and stories, but for this album, I just wanted to make sure I documented as many memories as I could about this special moment.
I had a collection of photos of her being cleaned up and us snuggling with her in the hospital room afterward. I wasn’t sure exactly what to do with them. Looking at the photos of her screaming and turning red made me think- she was really scared! Here she was, safe and warm in my belly, food coming to her through a tube attached to her belly, and suddenly, she’s forced out into the cold, away from her food supply and away from her safe zone. I came up with the main title on the left and then the secondary title on the right. I want her to know that, yes, it is a scary world, but her dad and I will do everything in our power to keep her safe.
These are close ups of the two pages. I used the Opposites Attract font again. It has a nice option of cutting out the cursive font in wacky trapezoid shapes. I used the print font on the same cartridge for the rest of the title.
So I totally stole this idea from someone on Pinterest- side note: I LOVE Pinterest!! It’s so fun and I’ve gotten so many fantastic ideas from it. Anyway, someone pinned this and I decided I needed to do this in Victoria’s album:
The cost of things the year she was born- Talk about a scary world!! Although, sadly, when she’s showing this to her own children, she’ll probably be saying “can you believe gas was only $3.89?”!
Most of my immediate family was able to visit in the days after she was just born. My brother and sister in law in FL weren’t able to make it, but they got to meet her later.
I wanted to document everyone holding her- while I was making this page, my friend Kerrie said “Isn’t it neat how no one can hold a baby without smiling?” So true.
Again, this page was more about journaling, less about embellishments, but I did include a handful of stickers. I borrowed someone’s cartridge at the retreat for this one- Cursive 101. It is a slightly different cursive than the one on Opposites Attract. I borrowed it for my wedding album at a previous retreat and I love it!
Next is one of my favorite pages that I made. It’s a single page and it took me awhile to make it because I put a lot of detail in it with the title.
I used Opposites Attract (again) for the “Precious” and for the baby girl, it was a pre-designed word on a special cartridge called Sugar and Spice. As you can guess, it’s all stuff for a baby girl. It was a little tricky getting it cut out since I flip-flopped the color in each word and I had to make sure I made the background bigger than the color on top. I was also making this one later in the evening on Saturday, after a night of not sleeping well, so my brain was just not functioning! I used Doodlecharms to make the flowers in the corner, and most importantly, a photo of my precious baby girl, just days after being born. This photo (as my journaling describes) really was the moment that it hit me- I was someone’s mom! Giving birth and the first 48hrs were sheer craziness… on my last quiet morning in the hospital, I was holding her and she was just looking at me with those giant brown eyes. It was a moment that made me cry… I just want to do everything right for her. I know I won’t be perfect and that I’ll make mistakes along the way, but I will always try to do right by her, make her feel secure and show her lots of love!!
Lastly- here’s the final page I made while at the retreat:
I love that newborns can’t control their face… and we took lots of photos of her making funny faces at us. Even with all those goofy facial expressions, she’s still our beautiful little girl!
And with that, the retreat came to a close. On Sunday afternoon, we packed up and headed back home to our hubbies and little ones. I didn’t create any earth-shattering pages, but I am very pleased with the ones that I did bring home. Hopefully I will get some time in the coming weeks to add to her book. I’ll probably still be working on her first year album when she’s 10!
Andrea, Kerrie and I are going to set up a weekend or two in December for us to get together at one of our houses. It won’t be the same dedication as an entire weekend, but it will still be good to get together with friends and dedicate some time to our hobby!