My Story

The Tale of Two Craft Rooms

I’m so fortunate to have a job that allows me to work from home most of the time. That’s made it possible for me to spend some of my time Down-South over the last three months. Lucky me! One slight obstacle though … how can I continue to play with paper without access to the abundance of tools and supplies I have at my fingertips in my Up-North craft room?

Up-North Crafty Haven

Well, I think I have the hang of it, or at least I’m coming close. Here’s how I started creating my new Down-South craft space:

  • I moved most duplicate or extra supplies I had to my Down-South space. This included things like a trimmer, scissors, adhesives, ruler, markers, my old Cricut Expressions and cartridges, and storage containers.
  • As for paper, I moved theme specific paper packs and made sure I packed coordinating card stock with each one.
  • I planned my projects and packed paper and supplies specific to that task
  • I’ve made good use of kits and cutting guides, along with sketches from Pinterest and Page Maps.
  • I’m taking a couple of online classes this year: Stacy Julian’s 20 in 20, and SCT 356. Both keep me inspired and help plan my next projects!
  • I’m dabbling in digital again with Project Life, Photo Shop Elements, and Forever Artisan.
Down-South Craft Spaces

My Down-South craft spaces consist of the dining room table, my office desk, and a corner for supply storage. I’m trying to keep it easy and simple by determining my basic needs and planning projects ahead of time:

  • I sold my Cricut Expressions and replaced it with an Air 2. I just couldn’t go back to all the manual configuring that goes into using the old Expression. I’ve been spoiled for way too long!
  • I miss ink soooo much! I purchased a few ink pads and will be going through my stamp collection Up-North next week and decide which sets fit my Down-South needs best.
  • My traveling Cuttlebug, a few embossing folders, and some dies will be coming back with me next week.
  • After several disappointing visits to the local Michael’s and JoAnn’s, I was left with no choice but to place online orders for my favorite embellishments: twine, shimmer trim, gems, burlap ribbon, and sequins. I’m just so spoiled by the quality brands I’ve loved for years!
  • And then there’s photo printing … As much as I’ve tried to keep an open mind about using the local Walgreen’s for my photo printing, I just don’t love the results. So, I’ll be bringing my compact Epson photo printer back with me next week as well. There’s just nothing like having total control of your print quality.

All in all, the challenge of creating with limited supplies Down-South has been good for me. I’ve created with what I have on hand, and I’ll admit, its been fun! I look at my scrapbook pages and think “Huh. Not my best work.” But you know what? I’ve been telling my stories and finishing long overdue projects. And that’s what counts!

Besides, the view is awesome …

My Story

A Hard Refresh

Most of us have hit “Ctrl + F5” to clear our browser caches on our computers in order to get the most recent version of a webpage. It’s known as a “hard refresh” because it forces old information away and allows a clear, new view of what we’re looking for. And just like computers, we humans need a hard refresh every once in a while as well.

This past year has been full of new challenges, re-evaluating, and adapting. There have been moments we saw coming, and others that stopped us in our tracks. There came a point at which I took a step back to “get a grip”.

What I discovered instead, was that trying to grasp, juggle, go with the flow, or wait it out, wasn’t the solution. Prioritizing, defining, and letting go was. In other words, I cleared my cache.

The letting go part wasn’t as easy as hitting Ctrl + F5 on a keyboard. It has proven to be positive and heartbreaking all at the same time. One of the harder decisions for me was to let go of my commitment to Close To My Heart as a consultant.

Having been a consultant for over 8 years, sharing my love of scrapbooking, preserving memories, and storytelling, it took many months of back and forth to conclude that it was time for me to resign.

My love of scrapbooking has not changed. My willingness to share my work, and encourage others to tell their stories remains the same. Moving forward, I will be able to share products, tools, and learning opportunities I wasn’t able to share as an active consultant. I’m not going anywhere. I will not be representing any other products lines. I will, however, refer my friends and followers to the lovely people who do provide product and services.

I will forever be grateful for the memories and friends I have because of Close To My Heart. I’m looking forward to sharing my stories and creations in a way that fits me. Will Close To My Heart be part of that? Most certainly, just not all of it.

It’s called a hard refresh for a reason. But, there’s something to be said for an updated, clearer view.