Wednesday, December 31, 2008

the blog stops here

We went for a bicycle ride around the neighbourhood this eve. It looked like rain so we skipped our usual walk in the gardens, preferring to stay close to home. I had my i pod, and lagged behind Philip. We rode along the path, by the sea, "Love me for a reason " playing and I was transported to a time long ago. The same song plays, Donny Osmond's version. (smile) I was then at the age Sarah is now. I often put myself in my 15 year old shoes when I work with her. I try to feel what she might be feeling, see how she may be seeing. It helps.
Recently someone asked me to join Facebook. It is so 'not me'. I have few friends and they're all great. I can't imagine adding just anyone. And I feel mean for ignoring requests, but , hey...
Out of the clear blue I received an invite from Carmen. My teen buddy. We spent every evening cycling together or hanging out at each others homes. Growing up & discovering life, in the old neighbourhood. So funny, after more than 30 years! How did we lose touch? Today, riding my bike, playing the same old song, remembering and smiling to myself, I thought of Sarah. It's her time, 'a younger version of older me', as Brian Mc Knight sings. Not cycling, but on her computer, playing Wii, hanging out... with her teen buddies, her "Carmen". My role now, that of a coach, she playing the game. I'm still there on the sidelines, but she's playing the moves, making the choices, now & then glancing over her shoulder at me, knowing I'm there.
This will be my last post here on this blog. I will post scrapbook related goodies on the smidapaper blog and personal stories in my journal. Perhaps at some point I might start another blogging journey, if you feel inclined to follow, drop me an e mail or text message with your e mail add and I will send you a link.
Until then , stay well & live happy!
A final note to my dearest friends, the really long time ones from way back; Shirin, Jas, Carmen=)... long time friends from grown up days, Mike, Brig, Caroline,Mich... and Es, recent (and I hope you'll be around for a long time). You all rock! =) So dramatic, didn't know I had it in me. Ha ha! See you guys around...
p.s. to my most loyal reader, you rock , too.
Oh, happy new year, all. Well, bring it on, already!

new road for sarah

After 5 years of International school, we made a decision to place Sarah in a local school. We wanted her to grow in an environment that most Malaysians grow up in. She didn't know any 'Bahasa' and all subjects were in the national language. I remember how lost and forlorn she looked that first day in Standard 4. It must have been a huge culture shock for her but she took it in her stride.
Fast forward 6 years. PMR results day. Even with working in the store and studying in the store, she has done so well in all her subjects, even the dreaded "Bahasa' and now takes a new road. 4 years of high school. Papa & I are happy to give her this gift. For never complaining and always trusting and believing that we would give her the best that we could. Go Sarah!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


December days -Take 3 was a whole new experience this year. I started out doing it the same way, day 1, day 2.......after a week of that, it felt old. Did I want to take photos and write about the same things? Putting up the tree, last day at work, things around the house, date night? These same old familiar things didn't need to be recorded yearly, neither did I want it to just be about the 'book'. New techniques, which paper, colour? Page sizes, I'll stick some Hambly here, clever? Instead my pages looked like there was an invisible template, my hands and mind just comfortably doing the things I loved to do. The style that I've settled into.
So what exactly did I scrapbook? Well, mostly about stuff we were going through. Changes. Stuff that mattered, stuff that surprised me, like hosting a Xmas Eve party for 20 youths. Chocolate coloured nailpolish. Straightened hair. Meeting old friends. Old Aunts & new cousins. Forgiveness & humility. Disappointment. New traditions, like not cooking Christmas dinner. Appreciating Philip for cooking on Christmas day. PMR results. Decisions for smidapaper. Looking ahead...
Some days took up many pages. Some just words. No particular order. Many pages too personal to post.
And so December prepares to leave and January beckons, and through the process and the rest , I am almost ready. One more day -Day 31, Day 365. Seize it!
I was at Borders last night. Sarah gave me a voucher for Xmas and I went to choose myself a gift. Two things struck me;
1. Shopping with a gift voucher is such a deliberate delight. You won't end up buying magazines or some self help book. This is a gift and needs to be reconciled with the giver. Good fun. I spent almost two hours choosing one book. =)
2. Bookstores offer hope. A feeling that you can do anything! 'Maybe I can cook more often, oh this will help, I never knew that, ...' thoughts like these accompany you as you reach for another volume Never mind that you won't have time to read it.
So I left with the one book. The gift. The experience. And maybe that feeling of hope will last for a while.

May you be filled with hope this New Year's Eve! =)

day off

Days off were a common thing around our house, way back when... recently though it is a rare occurence and much looked forward to. Today it was my turn. Funny how you can be on leave for a week and only feel really free to do whatever you want, when the day has a title. 'Day Off!' I spent most of the day thinking and planning , and sorting my scrap space. Daily scrapping creates piles of stuff! We received a shipment from Chatterbox, and in it, the most beautiful velvet boxes, so perfect for organizing scrap stuff and so pretty to look at. =)

Now that eveything is nice and neat, I can settle down to some scrapping.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

the wedding

The night before we left I made a layout for J & Staphanie in a frame. It was the first time I've actually given away a layout.:)
I remember him & Alvin & my guys playing at Richard & Kiran's house. So little they were & now he's married! Ok he wasn't that little , but that was almost 20 years ago...My favourite part of the wedding was seeing his big grin all the time that his beautiful bride was being walked down the isle to his side. I do hope someone took close ups! I feel so old . (smile) We took lots of pictures and thought I might make a little book about the wedding, the whole trip, the people... and maybe about the hope a wedding brings, of a lifetime ahead, a new beginning, Stop me before I get carried away...

Monday, December 22, 2008

xmas time is here

I think it sneaked up on me! That leaves me very little time to prepare. Yikes!
We closed the shop for the year and I stayed back to finsih off my inventory. I really didn't want to come back to 'last year's work'! I wonder how long it will take for me to get into 'holiday' mode? (grin) So it's Christmas eve, eve and I'm not sure if I will be cooking. Things will be different this year. New traditions.

Our tree had been sitting there with nothing but the lights on for over a week . each day after work I would say we would do it the next day. Finally we came home one day and not only was it decroated, but with 2 more happy little trees. One was called the 'love tree' with hearts and 2 happy reindeer people in the middle. =)

I have not scrapped a thing since I've been on leave. We've been hanging out a lot with Philip's mum since she's been back from the hospital. Sometimes it takes a crisis, right smack in the busiest time to remind us that life still goes on even if we do nothing for a day or two! I've been taking pictures and writing down my thoughts, hoping that I'll be getting some scrap time soon.

We had a chance to catch up with family and friends on our trip to KL. So good to see so many people we love in such a short time. It certainly was hectic running around but I'm glad we went and I even managed to schedule time to have brunch with a really old friend. Really glad!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

so much to say

The day before we went to KL I took a lot of photos. We had a class that afternoon, the Papa thing. I was feeling a little weary, doing everything includig the classes, wondering if there was a point. The ladies who came made sure I knew that there indeed was a point. They loved the class and their projects, left beaming and with extra kits to make some more for other loved ones. (smile) I took photos but I didn't scrap any. Instead I wrote. A whole 8x8 layout of words, save for a little Xmas tree on the side. Writing is a great way to clear your mind and gain perspective. Sometimes my head is so muddled I can't pray. On these occasions, I write. Works for me =)

scrapping & photos

I have so many photos of Sarah scrapping or making cards. =) Sometimes I'm at my desk at home and she'll be behind me, on the scrapping table. Her stuff is everywhere and she's started working on a new project which she calls "being sixteen". She's always asking for ideas and adapted the idea from our "papa quilt frame' for her inside cover. Will post a pic if she doesn't mind.

Philip goes everywhere with his SLR camera, very embarassing when he insists that we look his way! He took this when he dropped me off at the women's biz sense xmas brunch. Once inside, I completely forgot to take pictures! I hadn't seen all the ladies for a whole year and we got carried away catching up...

mid month

So quickly the days fly by! I have been having so much trouble loading my photos to my blog and in the end, I just leave it. I work on my December album late at night. In week 1 , I actually forgot about my red & brown theme and used mostly red and white. I 'm finding it hard to post my thoughts as I work through my pages this year. I want the journaling to reflect real life, as it is and if I were to post, then my writing will be shallow. And what is deeper, my struggles, thoughts, hopes, will not be recorded.
So art for display? Or tell it like it is?
Hmmm! Some of my favourite artists have blogs that are very candid. Very personal. While I try to be honest and true to life, there are some things that are better left unsaid... here anyway, so...
December days on this channel will just be snippets.

I'm having fun with layering and little 'groupings'. I can no longer just stick a sticker down plainly on paper.(ha ha) I'm also not very interested in techniques this time, but concentrate on colours, coordination and mood. In week 2, I've started working with pink. Last year I used mostly Xmas patterns but I didn't feel like it this year working with whatever conveyed the message of the day.

Friday, December 05, 2008

red & brown

My i photo has been acting up! I could not drag any photos to my desktop which makes it hard to post, ha ha. Anyway, it works now. Note to self: backup all my photos.
My December book is coming along. =) For the first week I'm trying to use touches of red & brown. I'm loving K & Co's Amy Butler line and some of Crate paper's stuff, especially die cuts and glitter borders, which I cut up for flower centres. Our Christmas tree has yet to be trimmed. I'm all packed for the weekend trip. Almost ready for tomorrow's class. Eep! Actually, not quite ready, will get on it now...

Yesterday I had a private lesson with a lady who wanted to do our Mum Card Box . in the end we modified and worked on a mini album instead! Her photos would not fit the tiny card album that comes in the box. Sigh! We completed the album in 2 hours! What a feat and she was suitably pleased. (Big sigh of relief) I photo acting up again, will try to post pics later!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

december days- take 3

At midnight , Dec 1st, I decided I would do another December album.My 3rd . I have chosen to work with an 8x8 ring album and I hope to add pages with 4x6 slots. (hope I can find them) I will try to simplify the process and so will not update my blog daily but randomly. =) Last year I tried to use all kinds of paper, but I think this year I will have different themes for each week. I worked on a simple cover page in red & brown ...
December 1st turned out to be a busy day! Good thing we had a hearty breakfast at Spice Gardens. We started on a new project , to re do a home for a client, with the intention to rent or sell the property. It is something that Philip & I are passionate about and that we can work on together. We probably will not agree on some things but have agreed to leave those arguments, if they arrive, at the workplace. There is much to be done! Planning, budgeting, coordinating, designing...this is going to be interesting!

The weather has been awful and i've been missing my walks. The only exercise I got today was changing my sheets, yes, Monday is also cleaning day. I was much inspired by all the lovely new household outlets at Gurney Plaza. My room looks pretty now, new sheets, fresh flowers, lavender & patchouli in the oil burner.

Took loads of pics & printed some, all ready to scrap. I tried to focus on the details of life, like breakfast, pedicured feet, Sarah holding all the DVDs she's hoping to watch this holidays.
We put up our tree and lights, and decided to leave the decorations for tomorrow. We really raced through this year. I hope this December will be a little slower than the rest of the year. Oh I am so looking forward to a simple month!