Hello 2011!

Happy New Year everyone!!

Here is the title for Gerry's Rizal story which he asked me to do. He wanted the whole thing in freehand but of course, for the base pencil, I had to measure and use templates. The inking part is in freehand, though. Here's the finished pencil layout:

I didn't want to do it again in case I made a mistake with ink so I decided to scan it and print the lines in blue. Here's a partial inked part. Not much of it, actually. hehe. You'll see the finish product on his final inked and colored cover this January.

On to paper crafting! Two calendars I did for a couple of very, very good friends. You know who you are. Now you know what you're getting. :)



The calendar which I did myself, has a blank space at the bottom of each page/month to put tiny designs on. Here, I used paper strips. ribbons, stickers and a blank piece of cream paper where my friends can write important dates such as birthdays, et cetera. The pages, along with a cardstock stand, were bound together using wire comb binder.

If any of you would like a digital copy of the blank calendar, please leave a comment with your email address. I don't know how to make PDF file that I can link here, so I'll just send you the image files.


Be safe tonight everyone!

Merry Christmas!

That was just something I was inspired to do only a couple of days ago. I visited my mother and noticed her curtains. I love the burlap bag thing going on. Actually, she said it was for upholstery but she decided to just make curtains from this bolt of fabric my brother bought quite awhile ago. So, I asked for scraps and made these things for tree ornaments. I'm not yet done, as you can see. I know it's late but I still have years to come to hang them. I decided to make one for each family member on both Gerry's and my side. :)

The following are photos of a few pages I took of the souvenir magazine I was talking about. It's 12 days late posting but hey! I am rather proud of this, to be honest. It's my first time to do a "magazine" which was actually based on Candy magazine (it's our young lady's choice of mag)... and it comes complete with table of contents and an publisher/editor's info box! The cover title and all the title fonts inside are mine. And isn't she pretty? :)



On a more different note, our dining seats are just old and manky, and this one in particular was burnt by a flat iron. And I wasn't the one who burnt it, by the way. I've been meaning to change the upholstery years ago but I was such a coward to wade through the madness that is Divisoria. And then I finally could so I bought 4 yards of fabric weeks ago and replaced the old ones. I still have quite a length after finishing 6 seats so I gave the rest to my mother who was inspired to change the seats of her old, manky dining chairs as well.

Side note: What's going on in Photobucket? I can't upload these photos! Is there a monthly limit to how much MB I can use that I didn't read about? The reason I don't like to upload through blogger is this. If you notice, they are smaller than my previous photos.

Anyway, Merry Christmas everyone!! Cheers!!

An Invitation and a Christmas Production

Hoooookaaay..... Merry Christmas everyone!! In advance... because I feel so free right now. Free from deadlines. No work until after New Year, I told myself. Well, aside from the teaching thing. Then again, that's not really work... and the other things I do are not exactly work because they're all fun to make!! The second half of November and the first week of December had been really, really busy. So, I'll just fire away.

First is the invitation I did. This is how it came out, and I did 150 of these which I delivered two weeks ago. The theme is movies so this is what came about. The envelope is a clapper and the invitation itself are oversized movie tickets. I just wrapped it around with a burgundy ribbon. The father asked, "Why do you have to put ribbon around it?" He's hysterical, good thing for him, he's a very good friend.

If you're reading my tweets, you would have read me talking about the train. The train made from corrugated boards. Well here it is. These are the before pictures:


And this was this was taken earlier during the performance.

This supposedly was a dungeon wall where Izzy, Rosie and the Broken Toys were kept by the Abominable Snowman. This was made from newspaper, tissue paper, glue and paint. Thank you Neil Buchanan and Art Attack for teaching me to use these four materials to do just about anything!! And these two were my very able and very giggly assistants, Zara and Edjee. They're amazing! It's easy to meet deadlines with these two.

This was the set for T'was the Night Before Christmas. I wish I could have gotten a better photo because, modesty aside, it turned out so well in person. The stars hanging were made by the kids, pre-kinder to fourth grade. I promised them I'll hang them so I did with the help of Mang Eli. You have to keep your promises to kids!! If you can't, don't promise anything at all.

A closer take with the lights on. For before photos, please check out previous entries.

The three of us after the show.

These are my co-teachers with my assistants. From the left, Grace (prek/k homeroom teacher), Anna (3rd/4th grade teacher), Weng (Music Teacher/Music Director for the show. She's amazing! You just have to help her out to achieve what we're able to do tonight.), Edjee, Maya (Administrative Coordinator), Zara, Maan (Teacher Assistant) and me. Steve (1st & 2nd grade teacher) and Mark (PE teacher) were a bit shy to face the camera.

And us again. :)

It was so much fun, I tell you. Better than last year's in terms of children's performances and the general vibe and as if everything just comes together by Divine Intervention, like Anna mentioned after the show.

I also mentioned something about a magazine. Well, I'll pick them up on Friday and I'll post something about that on Sunday.

Well, I think I'll sleep now... finally. :)

Thoughts About My Job

There are so many things I'm doing that I thought I'd never had the chance to do or won't be doing anymore. I just recently finished writing a company profile and my clients are so very happy and satisfied with it that they now asked me to design, layout and write articles for a glossy magazine as souvenir for their daughter's 18th birthday celebration. They also asked me to make the invitations. As you can see, I do these alongside the set pieces I'm completing for the Christmas production. I am quite all over the place.

Sometimes, all I can do is laugh and ask, "Why do I do this to myself?" I know the answer. Of course I do. It's because I enjoy doing them immensely. The diversity of the projects are just mind-boggling and yet, I embrace it. It's exciting! When they asked me to do the magazine the first time, I laughed at their faces. That's not the way to treat clients, I know. My excuse is, they're my friends. But it's hysterical that they would just ask me to do it because I have no experience on anything magazine-related whatsoever. What got me was, they did not ask if I could do it. That level of trust in my ability to pull it off never fails to catch me off-guard.

These props and scenes I'm producing for the school are another thing. It's my first time to be the lead person to do these things. I'm just winging it, to be honest. They look great so far on the table but I have no idea how it would turn out with the stage lights on. But again, that level of trust in my abilities never fails to amaze me. All I can do is be grateful that they believe I can do it, and because of that I still have a job.

No, I haven't forgotten my paper crafting business. It's still there. It's just these last four months have been about trying and doing new things. Such joy to experience these new challenges.

Set Pieces for Christmas Production

Here are the photos of the set pieces. Thanks Art Attack's Neil Buchanan for teaching me the use of bathroom tissue in papier mache. Those extra corrugated boards definitely have use. The frames were made of 3/4" plywood scrap strips from carpentry. :)

Here's the fireplace.

Here are a couple of windows that will be on either side of the fireplace.

And here's the beginning of a dungeon wall. Edjee is helping me lay those stones. :)


I'll post the finished product later on. I doubt if I'll be able to finish this tomorrow. By the way, we're in the gymnasium closet, in case you're wondering why there were balls and hula hoops everywhere.

School Updates

Finally, I remember taking a photo of our Art Classroom. So, here it is! It's a bit small especially if I try to squeeze in 13 students in there. But I love it!


It's a corner room and during the day, we have lots of natural lighting. It doesn't look as bright as it really is usually because I took this late in the afternoon today. That window faces west. Ok, just a bit of a tour. I had that big black display board (literally, a blackboard) made to replace the white board that was on that wall previously. The white board was moved to the wall on the left side (not seen) of the photo. On the yellow sheets on display, those are cutting exercises by first and second grade students. On the far right of the board, those are warm/cool color and complementary color charts by third and fourth grade students. The bunting across the room is a triangle-cutting exercise by prek/k students.

On the windows, those are Chinese paper lanterns, a few that were left from their straight line cutting exercise. The low shelf is for supplies and the tall one is for papers. Beside it is a former cart I had replaced with several cubes to put pencils, scissors, pens, pencils, etc. Behind me is another supplies shelf where all the student folders are, paints (watercolor, oil, acrylic, poster, washable paints, powder paints, etc), color pencils, color markers, etc. I forgot to take a photo of that.

The tables were prepared for an exercise using hand prints in primary colors with color by number borders in primary colors as well.

Now, this one, these are several props for our Christmas production: stockings, doll key, elf tools, wreath, a rimmed hat, train conductor hats and a toy soldier hat. All these were made from recycled materials (corrugated boards, a-few-year-old felt paper scraps and five-year-old washable paints and glitters). I thought I took a photo of the set pieces. Oh well, tomorrow, I'll do that.

This Schedule is Frightening But Awesome!

Last week, I started working on the props for our Christmas Production. It's a big deal for the kids so I want the set and the props to look at least presentable and sparkly. I've been helping out on set designs since high school and again, when I taught the first time in that same school. This is the first time in which I'm actually the one doing it myself, along with help from my assistants Zara and Edjee, and the wonderful Mang Louie, head carpenter at IRRI. He truly makes things easy for me.

As of today, the frame for the set pieces are done while some of the props are ready to be painted. I requested for carpentry assistance on Monday. I hope I can show some photos (I know I'm slacking in the documentation department) of these things I'm doing.

Also, tomorrow, I'm going to meet with a mother of a debutante for her daughter's invitations and souvenir mag. The previous agreement, that was three months ago, would be I'd write the articles myself in addition to the layout and design of the magazine that should be finished in, well, five weeks? Ha! I'm Supergirl!

That's why I'm panicking now so I won't panic later on. There's a week and a half difference between the two occasions.

Tomorrow is November

... And we feel Christmas in the air, which also smells good. :)

First off, I am no longer accepting orders for Christmas giveaways. It is going to be a very busy month ahead and I won't be able to attend to your requests at this point. I wouldn't want to disappoint you because I accepted orders when I know I won't be able to fulfill them and deliver on time. I am sorry, but I do hope you remember me next year. :)

Starting Wednesday, I'll start working on the set pieces and props for the children's Christmas production, T'was the Night Before Christmas, to be presented on the second week of December. This should be fun!! It will take much of my time and away from my table, which is what's already happening. That saddens me. It's laziness more than anything else. If I want to do my sorely neglected personal projects, I should make, not 'find', time for them.

Anyway, I'll take pictures as I go along. And I hope this lethargy won't get in the way of my posting pictures of these props.

Three Sets


These three sets of Notepad/Penholder combo, Keychain Mini-Albums and Origami Albums were sent this morning as samples.

Manly Invitation


These are the invitations I made for a friend who also happens to be an architect. It's quite new to me, because I'm used to small girls and floral-like invites, but it's a whole lot easier to make. It took quite awhile for us to get to how this would look like but it took only a day to finish 50 of them. I would've wanted a blueprint for the 'plan' but they smell horrible especially if they're going to give these away to people not used to that smell. Besides, tracing paper looks smashing!

Meanwhile, I'm contemplating of ways to package 3 sets of samples to give a client. And I'm currently at the edge of my seat about this contract thing at school. Looks like I really have the job. Yay! for the new Art Consultant. My position isn't called Art Teacher... I'm an Art Consultant. Heee!

Birthday Souvenirs

December last year, my mother saw the notepad-penholder combo in my stash of goodies I'm selling. She just exclaimed, "I want these for Seya's souvenirs!" So, she asked me how much my budget should be sans labor, because a) she's my mother and b) she always volunteered to wash my dishes whenever she comes over. I thought it was a nice trade-off. One of my nieces turned 7 years old yesterday and these were her giveaways at her party today.

I made a slight modification to the notepad design because the flowers that were originally there I made by hand. And I absolutely have no more time to do them over 50 times for these. I thought she'd understand. The non-labor element's quite a good bargaining chip. :)

Oh, the pencils were not included. That's totally her idea and purchase. I just included them in the wrapping.



July Update


Hello everyone! This is not good. This once a month update is almost close to nil but it's such a busy last few weeks but yes, I'm doing good.

The repairs and maintenance activities at the school are almost done. Has to be because school opens on August 5th. The supply room is finally organized and waiting for new supplies to come in as ordered. The Art Room is finally taking shape. The library shelves have been delivered yesterday so probably the librarian is finally organizing the books delivered the last couple of weeks. I might post some before and after pics later on. I hope nobody expects some Nate Berkus makeovers here. We just purged, cleaned and reorganized furniture around.

The papercrafting business is doing really well also. I'm very thankful to have the time to do them despite other things. Other things being other projects outside of the usual things I do and the domestic day-to-day stuff nobody can really escape from.

Ah! And there's something else I want to talk about. I am an architect and was very active professionally until about six years ago and shifted to what I do now. The reason I left the practice is another story altogether but what I want to say is, I was hired by an architectural firm to revise, rewrite and design their company profile. Yay!! They got me because I'm an architect, I know the business so I know what I'm going to write about.

I'm so very excited about this most recent project because as much as I love papercrafting, I also love writing. And I've been craving to write something in a more professional capacity. So, when they called one day and asked if I could, I grabbed the chance. They also put forward a couple more projects for later this year: a brochure for their spa and training center, and souvenirs for their daughter's 18th birthday in December. I'm very, very thankful for this.

2010 has been very, very good to me and my husband, most especially to him. It's been awesomely fantastic so far. I can't thank God enough for such beautiful year so far.

June Update

Hello everyone!

It's been awhile. Personal projects have been on-hold for more than a month now. I have been really busy at school since a couple of weeks before the Moving Up Ceremony. Now it's cleanup time. The amount of rubbish generated in 10 months is astounding! Seven balikbayan boxes of trash... and that's just from the Art Room. I had some repairs and repaint that need to be done so I left it as it is for now. The queue for carpentry work is quite long.

While waiting for that, we tackled the library today. Drew a floor plan to help us rearrange the shelves, and we moved them. We'd still need seven shelves to follow the plan, though. It doesn't matter if we won't fill them up with books now. A library is a library, it will eventually get full. My architectural knowledge need not go to waste. heee!

Next week, the science laboratory and supply inventory. Need to schedule the painting job too. All classrooms need to be repainted as well as the corridor.

All these, and I'm not even an employee of the school. What do I call this job? Building repair supervision and consultancy? What?

Twitter

I signed up on Twitter days ago (see side bar) but I find I'm using it to rant or rave about tv shows because I love tv. If you like to follow me, please do. Just a warning though, I do rant a lot. If it's your favorite show, I'm apologizing in advance for hurting your feelings but I won't apologize for seeing it the way I see it and saying it out loud.

Moving Up Day

Yesterday was the kids' last day in school and of course, their Moving Up Ceremony. I did that background signboard or whatever you call it. The logo and the header are printed in large format. Then, the tarpaulin was stapled to a wooden frame without a plywood skin so it's lighter and easier to transport and haul up those undulating panels. We wanted it to be reusable so I decided that the other elements are paper cutouts in primary and secondary colors. Many thanks to IRRI's carpentry for making us that frame and helping us attach it behind the panels.

As to what the stage looks like... well. Until now, I'm still bad at arranging plant stuff. So I just framed the background with plants like so. And IRRI lent us a truckload of plants! I didn't know what I'd do with them so the others I just lined on the floor in front of the stage. In person, the whole front including the stage actually looks like a rain forest. LOL!

Shipping Today


Here are two mini-albums I'm shipping today for a friend. I'm still finishing four other minis, two of which are identical. I really do enjoy doing these small things. It's like doing scale models again.

Finally, My Own Scrapbook

I know! Isn't it pathetic? Remember my New Year's resolution about me creating a 2010 scrapbook? Well, I'm finally finished with my March double-page spread and starting with April pages. I also did the album on this one I think I'll be able to post this in January of next year.

I found that if I'm creating for myself, I tend to make it very simple. There are usually lots of frilly embellishments when I do scrapbook for others but here, it's not the case. But as always, there are a lot of photos in a page. I can't do just one photo. I tried, but I really can't.

Then there are the birthday photos of my niece, Kyla. I'll do a mini-album for those after the April pages.

And oh! Gerry is in a short film for Plan International under the direction of Lem Garcellano. I'll probably do a mini-album for his pictures there... a no-frills album as usual.

I Just Got Back from School

I will share with you what my students were working on for the last 11 weeks. It sounds very grand, but it's actually just 11 hours total because we're only working for an hour every week. It's an After School Activity at Brent-IRRI in Los Baños, Laguna, and it's on Scrapbooking and Photography. Sound a bit much? Yeah, I think so too. Maybe next year I'm going to separate those classes.

Anyway, I'm not really a photographer but I know some basic things I could teach the kids like utilizing natural light, effect of the combination of light, shade and shadow in photography, golden hour (but my class was in mid-afternoon so it was just words), rule of thirds, get close to the subject, holding the camera straight, etc. So these are just some samples of what they did:

By Iman Ismail, Fourth Grade

By Isabelle Douthewaite, First Grade

By Xyla Fitzwell, Second Grade

By Anna Heuer, Kindergarten

By Mami Hosen, Third Grade

Aren't they neat? They just used digital point and shoot cameras for this, but for their grade levels, I thought they did really, really well.

The other part of our ASA is Scrapbooking. Below is a stack of scrapbooks they did. They scrapped the photos they took. I prepared the materials for covers and cut the interior pages. They put together the covers and we punched the sides for the binding rings. We didn't really use any fancy brand-named materials. We just want them to experience to make their first ever album.

Instead of patterned paper, we used giftwrapping paper. We used ordinary acid-free glue stick for all the papers, and a different kind of glue for embellishments. I bought a lot of buttons, ribbons, flowers, feathers, transfer letters and sequins in various shapes. There were a lot of leftovers so I divided them to six, bagged them and gave the rest to them. They were sooooooo excited about that. Next year, I think I'm going to let them use 'real' scrapbooking papers.

So, here are the scrapbooks they did.



There will be an exhibit of their works on Friday, April 30. I sure will be there to support them while they present their work. I'm telling you, these are the sweetest, most innocent kids I ever met. And they did some really, really wonderful job.

Roses from SM

I wish we have a craft store here in San Pablo where I can just go and buy things I like. Unfortunately, there is none. Fortunately, we have none or I'll spend so much more than I should have. I am not fond of ordering online though I do it from time to time. I need to see and touch whatever it is in person.

The other day, I was in Makati to buy some stuff. And while there, I decided to buy some buttons, ribbons and lace from Carolina's in Glorietta 5 (there's another branch at the 2nd floor of Megamall B). Divisoria would be ideal cost-wise but it is just too far away and savings from my purchases would not be enough to compensate the stress I'd get just by going there. Anyway, I then went up to SM's 4th floor to hunt for some flowers I will use for my crafts, and found these on sale. I think they look quite pretty. I arranged them on top of my table and I'd probably pluck out what I need when I need them. Admittedly, I haven't seen the more elaborate flowers by Prima. But I'm quite happy with the ones from SM.

Carolina's and SM are not exactly craft stores. Well, Carolina's is debatable of course, but these places are my go to places every time I need something and don't have the time (or patience) to peruse online.

The Wisdom (and Insanity) of an Intellect-based Classification of Students

This is very common occurrence in many local schools. There is the 'pilot' class or the science curriculum class, and there are 'others'. I don't even know how you call this scheme. Categorization? Classification? Elitism?

As a teacher, I do understand why this is done. It is easier to teach students who have the same level of intelligence. It is easier to cover topics and move on to others depending on the ability of the whole class to do so. For students of the pilot class, they won't be bored to tears and whinge and moan, "Again? But we covered that for two weeks!" But what about the 'others'? How do other students feel about this? Do they feel neglected, unworthy, or dumb? Or do they appreciate being taught the pace they'd rather be than spend the rest of the time just coping? I don't exactly know.

Is this kind of 'classification' justified? Is the reverse, say equal distribution of everyone across different sections or groups despite intellectual capability, better? Isn't that communism? Is it elitism vs. communism in the classroom? Am I being right in simplifying the concept? Or am I being an idiot with too much time in my hands just even thinking about it?

I can't help it. On one hand, I know it's easier for both teachers and students like I mentioned above. On the other, I can't help but think how the students feel about it in their hearts... how students in the pilot class must continually push their limits, and being urged and expected to do so, and stress themselves out at a young age... and how the some of the rest of the students might feel that they can't measure up to the so-called cream of the class. It's one thought that's been bothering me since high school, this difference. And now I start to wonder how young is young to be categorized intellectually?

I decided to write about this because of a public school nearby where one of my nieces go. It's a very good public school, I should say and they have this classification thing going on. Somehow I understand the need because they have near impossible number of students. But it starts in second grade. I mean, c'mon! They're only eight years old. They should have more time socializing and being with friends playing. Instead, they're cooped up in a classroom for seven hours and sometimes more, five days a week in 10 months... writing and reading and computing. And not only that, they have multiple assignments when they get home. They're only eight year olds, for crying out loud. I think school work that intense should start at 11 years, at least, but not eight. They should be kids experiencing kid things. They shouldn't be as stressed or look back when they're older and only see their classroom from their childhood.

I genuinely feel sad about this making me ask, are they learning more? Or are they learning more about stress earlier? All these questions I'm asking because I just want my niece to have a livelier childhood than what she's having now. I'm sure she's happy but she can be livelier, if you know what I mean.

Vintage Printables

Happy April everyone! I'll resume posting about my projects later this month, in the meantime here is a very good site for those of you who love vintage images that you can print out yourselves for your art journals, mini-albums, collages and other craft projects.

This blog provides a variety of images in really large files that you can print out. However, please read the disclaimer on their 'About and Public Domain Manifesto' about, well, public domain and copyright issues before proceeding.


Here is the site: Vintage Printables

Environmental Concerns on Product Packaging

When I watch updates from, example, Two Peas in a Bucket and BlueMoon Scrapbooking, I see new crafting products out in small plastic packets. I wish companies would package them in a more biodegradable products instead of those plastic containers.

Of course, we can recycle the boards that come along with the packaging but the plastic isn't so much fun for the environment. And if scrapbooking is a billion dollar industry, it goes without saying that plastic used for the products must also be a billion dollar problem.

Meeting Neil Gaiman


One of the most exciting things I did last night. This is me with Neil Gaiman, my most favorite author ever!!! I had the chance of having my Anansi Boys signed. He was so sweet. Poor guy. He was soooooo knackered at this point.

He even confirmed to me that he wrote (I positively heard that it's in the past tense) an episode of Doctor Who for Series 6... giddily... in stage whisper. Yay!!

Update

My husband is in Manila giving a lecture about blogging, video blogging and social networking. In his lecture, he outlined the importance of updating your blog regularly. I should have attended, listened and applied, shouldn't I? I'm really bad at updating this one blog.

I haven't been doing any project right now, except my monthly 2010 scrapbook pages. My mind is preoccupied with teaching and house repairs in preparation for the typhoon season. Teaching would be done in six to seven weeks and I'm still crossing my fingers about a more permanent teaching post in the same school. I'll tell you about what school it is when I'm accepted. I don't want to jinx my chances.

I'll be back with new personal projects on the second half of April. Well, aside from those listed in my New Year's Resolution. There are things I really want to try out myself for quite some time, years actually. I think I'm going to start that one out. I'm still open for commissions, though.

Accordion Fold: A Spelling Lesson

I hope this is not taken the wrong way but I've been really, really, really bothered by this for quite some time. I did not major in English nor am I an expert in English BUT this has got to be addressed because there are a LOT of crafting blogs and websites that spell the term wrongly.

This is what we call an accordion fold, which is sometimes referred to as concertina fold. Accordion is spelled as A-C-C-O-R-D-I-O-N. It is NOT spelled accordiAn. It may sound like it when you speak it, but it's not spelled as such.


If you Google it, the search engine will automatically correct you:

Dictionary.reference.com has no result for accordian:

But in fact, has one for accordion:

Please, let's bother to look at our references before we endlessly abuse a word without really knowing how it's spelled. I hope you don't look at me funny. It's probably just the teacher in me.

Teaching

I never set out to be a teacher that's why I'm a licensed professional who never ever thought of becoming one. Dealing with children wasn't really a gift I had then as far as I know. But somewhere along the way, the urge to share was too strong that I had to let go and embrace the change though quite frankly, I don't think I have it in me to this day this instinct about being with children. I don't think I'll ever learn how to, to be honest.

The first time I taught, they were 16-year-old high school seniors and they're boys... mostly. I accepted the position because they were nearer my age and it would be easier for me to relate. They're getting into college as I got out of it. Besides, I was teaching introduction to architectural drafting and painting. How difficult can it really get? I enjoyed those four years immensely, and hopefully inspired some of them, at least.

Now, I'm teaching primary schoolers. Big leap, huh? I couldn't tell you how I'm coping because I really don't know. My personality doesn't really suit being with small children. I'm not exactly gentle nor am I sweet. All I know is that they have impressionable minds and their foundation is of utmost importance, and that's where I take off. I treat them as I would my teenage students but slower and with more foundational inputs because well, that's what they need. I don't know if it's the right approach because I didn't study to be a teacher and be licensed for it.

Yesterday, as I was slouching on a sofa at the reception area waiting for my Crafts Class to start, one of my students, a six-year-old who I learned later isn't affectionate at all, came to me, climbed and sprawled herself on top of me. She gave me the tightest hugs and a kiss on my right cheek and said, "I like you. I like making things." It gave me a start because she's very close and my personal bubble was suddenly agitated. I was overwhelmed, to be honest, but I relaxed after awhile especially when she climbed down and started to inspect the goodies I bought. I guess, I must be doing something right. And I have to get used to their spontaneity.

To A Very Good Friend

8 December 1973-18 February 2010

So long, mate. I'll see you on the other side someday.

(In the pic is Arlan with wife May during UAP San Pablo Chapter's Christmas Party on 13 December 2009.)

Question About Paperbag Albums

This is truly a curious question because I don't really see the point.

Why do you use paperbags when you are going to cover it with pretty papers? Isn't the point of using the material is to explore and expose its own properties and make it pretty without covering it with other types of paper unless, maybe, you're collaging on it? I mean, why call it paperbag album if you can't see the paperbag?

I don't understand. Honestly, if it is just utilizing paperbags as another material and it isn't being called paperbag album, I won't be asking this question.

Mini-Albums for January

Hello! Here are my trio of mini-album projects that kicked off my New Year. I have a couple of origami albums as gifts. The green one has the usual three overlapping square papers but the pink one has additional two so it's rather long to accommodate more photos. (I had to blur the photo on this one. It's my friend's underage daughter so...)

The one on the bottom is an 8"x8" modified coptic bound blank scrapbook album. I inserted beads in between signatures to give the pages more room for pictures and embellishments in terms of thickness.

The kite string still works wonders and it actually has a sort of paper-y texture. It's like a really thin paper twine to the touch. I quite like it.

New Year Resolution

I never made any list of resolutions at any time ever. Well, except if it's a school requirement back then and we all know some of them were done because they're requirements and unreal. I thought it's always a useless thing, well, as it applies to me. I always just went on about my life, carrying on, doing things that need to be doing and that's it.

Well, now, I'm making one. Just one. I thought I'd make one that is tangible and most likely to be accomplished. A bit lofty, actually, but I'm challenging myself. Like I said before, I'm not really an avid scrapbooker. I make them for others. It's what I do. This year, I'm going to change that because I'm making it my goal to finish three albums I kept putting off since seven years ago. First is our wedding album. I know! I know! That's why I'm putting this here. It's especially difficult to finish something personal than to finish something for somebody else with pay, you know? Second, is that great Bohol trip of 2004. I actually started that already. And third, I hope to complete a one-page a month album for 2010. I'm thinking, considering, to document my progress. Hmmm. I'm still on the fence on that one.

Well, it's because I promised Gerry this many years ago and he's snorting whenever I mention it now. I don't think he believes I'll do it anymore. This year, I'm really going to make time for these. :)

There's one other thing I'd like to do but this will depend on my resources that's why I'm not putting it up there. I plan to start re-printing old Florese family photos from our collection of negatives. I'd really love to complete those again. Thank God, my late father's a packrat. He kept all those negatives.

Next year, I will definitely revisit this post and see if it's worth doing at all. Resolutions, I mean. Wish me luck!!!

Finally saw the last episode of Doctor Who with David Tennant. David, you'll definitely be missed.

Happy New Year!!!

Wishing everyone a better year ahead!! Better in everything, I hope. 2009 was not really a good one for most of us for many reasons which I won't list here at all. I don't want to attract bad vibes into the new year. I'm sick as it is.

And it's Election Year as well. Please, please, please, choose wisely. Pray and ask for guidance before you choose our leader. We desperately need divine intervention!

Still, let's be optimistic and look forward to a more joyous, prosperous, peaceful year. Cheers!!!

We offer customized handmade papercraft products such as greeting cards, scrapbook albums, mini-albums, blank journals, calligraphy work, boxes, scrapbooking services and other papercrafts.

Ms. Ilyn is a licensed architect who decided that teaching arts and crafts, or making them, is way more fulfilling than dealing with contract documents, estimates and technical specifications. She taught Architectural Drafting and Painting to High School Students for five years, and Arts for Pre-K to Grade 3 Pupils for three years.

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