Creative Memories--Sad Memories

I'm just so sad about CM's recent bankruptcy filing and changes in their business model.  I get it that they have to change and keep up with trends.  Apparently, scrapbooking was a fad and it's over now.  I heard that from a CM consultant, and it really bummed me out.

CM is what I got started with way back in 1996 or 1997 with scrapbooking.  I remember the first event I went to in someone's basement, and when I look back at those early layouts--the triangle corners and strips of paper--oh! They crack me up!! Scrapbooking, and CM, have come a long way.

Through all the years and changes in scrapbooking, though, CM is still at the core of what I do.  I have made 7 "daily life" albums, a baseball album, a wedding album, and a Rome album all with CM albums.  I only use their adhesive, and while I use lots of different papers, I have a huge stash of CM stuff.

There's just so much uncertainty right now that it's unsettling.  Not knowing which products will remain with the company (if they continue to exist), I've purchased enough albums, pages, protectors, and adhesive to finish 10 albums.  I figured that was a good round number to stop on, if I have to change materials.  Not knowing if they'll still be around or what will still be sold is bugging me.

Something I've been keeping an eye on lately is eBay and CM products for sale.  The prices are already OUTRAGEOUS!!! I can't believe how much money people are willing to pay for items that are still actually available through the CM website, like pages and protectors.  Albums, too, for that matter! By far the most ridiculous prices people are paying are for these little guys:

People are paying upwards of $60 for these things on eBay!! I can't believe it! I know they're unavailable on the CM website, but I can only hope that another company will buy the trademark and manufacture them.  Otherwise, I'll be cutting paper with dull blades soon, because there's no way I'm paying $60 for them!

Another thing going for crazy amounts of money on eBay are pages and page protectors.  Check out this listing:
I suppose this price isn't too bad yet, considering what they retail for through CM (where they are still available, mind you), but I'm willing to bet they'll sell for twice as much in just 7 short hours.

I've been reading blogs about the demise of CM, and truly, I feel bad for the consultants who have invested so much of their money and time into building scrapbooking businesses.  These people will either have to change with the company (whatever that is--no one is saying), or leave it all together.


PYJ 2013

We had a great time at the 2013 Preserve Your Journey scrapbooking event.  It's an expensive one--$129.00, but we get a lot of stuff and good food.  Some of the money goes to the church that sponsors it, too.  The event went from 3 PM to midnight Friday, and 8 AM to 8 PM on Saturday.  I didn't get there until around 7:30 Friday night:  I had an allergic reaction to some medication and was an itchy mess Thursday and Friday, so I took some Benadryl on Friday afternoon and promptly fell asleep for two hours.  Since it was also MY BIRTHDAY, we went out to dinner before I headed out to the crop.
One of my favorite make-and-takes came from a vendor, Cindy Tucker, who runs Citrus Tree Studios.  I don't know why she decided to do this instead of something scrapbook-related, but I love it!!

This is really close to the necklace I created.  We put knots in between each button, which keeps the necklace from separating like you see at the bottom of this picture.  I am going to start making these for people--they are fabulous!!
One of the weird things that we made was a fanny-pack that we decorated with a vinyl sticker and rhinestones.  Between the fact that it was a fanny pack (who WEARS those?!?!) that didn't fit me, and that I had to IRON the bling onto it, this was not a hit.  I made it, but I truly don't know what I'll do with it--probably give it away to a little kid in my life. It looked like this one below, without the logo and with three outside pockets.  It's hideous. And I ironed a pink butterfly and rhinestone bling onto it.

I got five two-page spreads finished at the crop, which isn't bad, I think.  Maybe bad if you think that there were 21 hours of crop time available to me.  Let's not think about it that way.  Between make-and-takes and visiting, and eating, there's only 1/2 of that time available for cropping!  HA!


Reliving Rome

I signed up for crops two weekends in a row.  So. Much. Fun. The first crop was a boy scout fundraiser crop, and it was okay.  Just okay.  It wasn't as fabulous as I'd hoped, but I did get a nice tote bag for Karen out of it.  And I bought a t-shirt, because I don't have enough of those.  There were no door prizes--I do like those hourly drawings! And there were no snacks.  I am one who likes to much and work.  The food was really good, but I like a little something in between.  Also, my scrapbooking friend got some bad news health-wise just a few days before, and she wasn't in a fantastic mood because of that.  Still, we laughed and did our best to have a great time.

Yesterday's crop was a no-frills crop put on by my CM consultant.  Knowing that it was no-frills, I had very low expectations.  But it was great! The people there were all tons of fun, and the consultants had a good sale table.  I took my new wagon with me, and everyone was envious.  It certainly made hauling my stuff in and out much easier:
I also liked the way I had it right next to me at my table and my stuff wasn't sitting on the ground.  It was easier to reach in and find things when they were right next to me.  I have decided that I love it.

I brought my own lunch because the church's location is not near any fast-food restaurants, and I didn't want to lose the time driving to get something.  Others did the same, and we had a nice little lunch break.  It snowed most of the afternoon, but nothing stuck to the roads.

At the crop, I worked on my Italy trip scrapbook.  The memories were flooding back as I read my journal and looked again at all the pictures.  That was such an amazing trip. Class.  I keep forgetting the CLASS part! Here's the last page I worked on this weekend.  It's the Republic Day parade we watched.  It was such a show of military force, and when we mentioned this to the desk clerk at our hotel, she kind of laughed and said that Italy has no military force to speak of.  This was interesting to me!
It's not a fabulous layout, but I think the pictures, program, and barrier tape really capture the day.  My classmate Carol and I went to the parade together, not at all knowing what to expect, and we had such a blast! Our vantage point across from the Coliseum was the starting point for the parade, and we saw everything! The president, or maybe it was the prime minister, or maybe even both, we're just not sure, came by a few times in his official car.  That was great.  The residents around us really cheered and were excited to see him, but we could never figure out who it was.

I'll be sad when my Italy trip is finished being scrapbooked.  It was such an amazing time.


Ordering Photos!

I just ordered bunches of Christmas photos to be printed.  I thought that was where I was in my scrapbooking...until I took a look at my scrapbook.  It turns out I haven't done any pages since the end of September.  So all my fall photos and Thanksgiving pictures were still just on the computer.  So this morning, I sent those pictures off for printing.  I take advantage of the online coupons for developing, and I got all these for 5 cents each through York Photo.  I don't really have a favorite photo printing place--I wonder what the consensus is out there? I do think that York and Clark are the same company, just different names.  And I've been using them since I would send my film rolls off to them when I was in high school with the check folded up inside that wonky envelope--do you remember those days?!?!

I have used Walgreens photo center to order online photos, but I wasn't terrible impressed with the quality.  I don't know, truly, if it was just some of the files that were low resolution, but I didn't love all those pictures.  The place was convenient to where I was cropping, but unless I'm in a pinch, I don't think I'll be using Walgreens again.  Their ordering site is a clumsy, too.  I once did a big order (400+ photos) and it slowed the site down to a crawl.  I always prepaid my order so I could just run in and grab the photos, but the workers didn't ever seem to know that I'd prepaid, and it was always a little ordeal to discover that indeed, I had paid for it already.

Yesterday, I started getting ready for a crop I'm going to this coming weekend.  That's where I discovered that I hadn't scrapbooked anything since the late September photos.  Then I got sidetracked working on a calendar project:  I like to have a monthly calendar at my piano, and I didn't get a new one for 2013.  I had picked up calendar templates that fit inside a CD case (?!) for free at a crop last year, and some sort of modern 4X6 photo frame I'd received from a student, so I got the idea to make my own 4X6 monthly calendars.  It was kind of fun and quick, and I got to use up some stash that I probably wouldn't use in my scrapbooks.  Here are a couple of photos:

February calendar
April calendar
 I pulled out some CTMH stamps (that I have never, ever used), and that was fun.  I colored in the shapes--coloring is so therapeutic!! And since I don't need to write anything on the calendar, the numbers could fill the whole space--the whole sheet is 4X6, so each calendar block is about 1/2 inch high.   I will love looking at these as I teach piano each night. I made the calendars through June, and it'll be fun to make the rest of the   year.

Anyway, back to the photo printing.  I hope that the pictures arrive before Saturday, although I am not terribly hopeful.  If the photos don't make it in time, then I'll scrapbook my Italy trip.  I just scheduled myself to go to another crop on Feb 2, so I can scrapbook those pictures then if they don't come in.