Saturday, June 03, 2006

Yaaay! (+Scrapbooking)

So I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Today, shortly before 1pm, I exited the testing room for my final written exam towards my masters. In a few weeks that final results from all 3 written exams will be posted, and we will receive our "invitations" to the oral exam. But until then I have a little breathe time. I think I will give myself a few days before I start prepping those two final topics. I feel pretty good about the written exams, not good, as in: I did well, but good as in: I passed. Hopefully that feeling will be validated in a few weeks.

I feel pretty spent though. I have had a headache for the last few days, and have been plagued by dreams about me missing the exam because of oversleeping. I know my boyfriend has had to put up with a little nervous attitude of mine, and for that I am thankful.

One project I had to entice me like the proverbial carrot on a stick was the prospect of making a scrapbook of our trip to China. I had never really scrapbooked or even knew what it was until last year. It seems to be really popular among military wives. (Military wives are very crafty. I mean, they can sew, quilt, knit,'s pretty impressive). So I was bitten by the scrapbooking bug. And I made my boyfriend a small scrapbook of pictures of me (very self-centered) to send to him while he was deployed. Then after Christmas I made a scrapbook for my grandmother of all of our Christmas pictures. Now I want to make one for myself.

Last week while on post I convinced my boyfriend to buy me piles of magazines (have I mentioned what a sweetheart he is), and among my selection of Marie Claire, and Cosmo and co. I made room for my very first scrapbooking magazine: Scrapbooks etc.

I was flipping the pages for some inspiration when I came across a layout that I really liked. It was a square grid of 25 square pictures of the scrapper's vacation to Hawaii. And she called it “Views of Hawaii”. It was marvelous, because she was able to use all those pictures that she found kind of cool, but really don't justify being a page of their own.

(I am probably risking getting a Cease and Desist letter here.)

Although one could do it the old fashioned way, cutting and sticking together 25 small photos, I was sure that she had done this with a computer. I was trying to figure out how to do this, but realized I would probably need some expensive photo-shopping software which I don't have. I do however have GIMP, which is the Open Source, i.e shareware photo editing program.
Yesterday I had lunch with a friend who is a photographer and is starting to learn Adobe Photo Shop. And I asked if she could help me, and she gave me a few tips which I was able to use in GIMP...and voilá!

I present you with my version: Views Of China. isn't scrapbooked yet, but the photos have been slapped together.

I will be getting this printed out in a larger size online (super cheap).

It occurred to me that this would also look great in a picture frame. I think I will definitely do more of this in the future with many photos that on their own wouldn't warrant framing, but with many others make a nice collage.

(I know someone who will get a kick out of this out of this post and be teasing me in my crafty
endeavors...*wink wink*, Jenny.)


Blogger Day by Day said...

I'm just not that crafty... I have scrapbooks that are blank... suppose I could at least try... :)

I love the pics of China... and that is a wonderful idea... :)

2:14 PM  
Blogger bee said...

Nicely done!
I scrapbooked a couple of trips (DC, Europe) but it's so time consuming!

5:29 PM  
Blogger Stacy Kaye said...

That's fantastic! I just LOVE all of those China pictures. I also love the way that you combined them. I have so many photos that I would love to do that with. YOu know, it could also make a nice gift! Hmmm...I think I'm going to have to talk to you more about this.

7:28 PM  
Blogger Jon and Billie said...

I love the photos....and great idea. Whoever was behind the camera has a good eye :)

11:32 PM  
Blogger Nicole said...

Awesome's almost like looking into a kaleidoscope. I've always wanted to be the crafty kind...maybe someday ;)

12:08 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Well, I can't knit, sew or quilt, but I LOVE to scrapbook! I really liked your China squares! Good idea, and you could do that and print it out and frame it too for any subject as a gift for someone, that would be nice. I like to use these sketches too, I go through my photos and group them to fit on sketches and mark on the backs of the photos where they go on the sketch and which sketch they go with.

I will sit and go through my picture stacks with the sketches while I'm relaxing and watching tv. Then, when I have the time and energy to sit down and put them together, I will already have decided how to arrange the photos, so it saves me time and the hassle of deciding what to do with them.

5:42 AM  
Blogger Lizzie said...

I really like "Views if China"! Great idea.

I actually made my boyfriend a scrapbook of just me, too! It was years ago when we were both in college, and for his Birthday. I found a G.I. Joe type action figure and posed with it and my friends doing various everyday things at school. It was supposed to be funny, but the undertone was that even though we were apart, he was part of my everyday life. :)

4:44 PM  
Blogger Scarlett said...

Great idea for your China pictures. I had never scrapbooked but while hubby was deployed I knew I would want to remember it all someway. I had a box where I put everything while he was gone. After he got home I ran across an article in some woman's magazine that took away the whole scrapbooking mystic and I got started. It turned out to be a great conversation starter for us. I had him select the pictures he wanted included for the "in Iraq" pages and I got to hear stories that I am not sure he ever would have shared. Good luck!!

5:12 PM  
Blogger Lara said...

It's beautiful! Probably good therapy for surviving the end of the semester, too! I cope by reading--junk. :) I read the Nanny Diaries and The Devil Wears Prada. I highly recommend them for when you need to escape and not be mentally challenged while grading finals! I'm almost done--should finish today, then report cards tomorrow, and then come up for air. Whew!

Can't wait to see more of your scrapbooking prowress! Way to go!


6:35 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

Looks great! I love scrapbooking but I am faaaar too anal and perfectionist to do it. I have ideas in my head, but they never come out as well as I want them to.

Good luck with the project!

5:55 PM  
Blogger MQ said...

I wish I could have kept up on my scrapbooking! I love your layout!

3:36 AM  

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