When the design team first proposed the topic of ‘change’, my brain went in several directions. There are many stories related to change that I could easily have told. My eldest leaving home to go to university 3,000km away for instance. My weight loss and health journey since 2019 for another. My recent business enterprise and the changes it has brought to me and my family’s lives is another one.
And then I read Nikki’s blog post.
Oh man, that hit me hard! I can relate to pretty much everything she wrote about. If you haven’t read it yet, please go, click the link above, read her post, then come back here.
I too love to journal my feelings out. Mine take the form of written journals. I’ve been keeping journals for years but my writing in them was hit and miss up until 2018. That spring I embraced working through things by writing them down. This became a daily habit that I maintained (more or less) until this spring. I even scrapbooked about them for LOAD722Mini!
And just like Nikki, I am also a mother dealing with changes in family life AND “The Change”. My husband seriously needs a medal for the number of times he’s had to deal with our teenage daughters hormones plus my hot flashes and resultant moodiness! I made a layout about my feelings on motherhood too. The journaling didn’t go as deep as Nikki’s, but I do reserve the right to return to that layout and add more later.
For today’s post on change, I am proposing another way to deal with it. Change can be unsettling. Depending on what type of change it is, we can be left feeling on edge, or bored, wanting to cocoon, or wanting to push the boundaries and try new things. Change affects all of us differently so there is no one way to deal with it. Each of us needs to find our own way through. Because ultimately, that’s where we’ll end up. Through and on the other side.
I recently turned 49. It’s just a number and I’m trying to not let it throw me … but … that number, combined with my eldest leaving home, my hormones going completely haywire, my stress level sitting at approximately 100% 24/7, my weight gain, my increased physical limitations (because of the weight gain and stress), and in general a growing dissatisfaction with my current state of affairs, I feel the need to shake things up. Starting with my scrapbooking style.
I am normally a lover of patterned paper, lots of layers and stickers, and enamel dots. But every now and then I feel the need for a whole lot of white space. But this story of trying new styles goes deeper. I also tried something very new to me – watercolours.
As an owner of a craft store, I have wholesale accounts with several papercrafting companies. I recently took part in a Wholesaler Online Event with Altenew. This company reached out to us. I’d seen their products here and there, and knew designers like Jennifer McGuire use and love them, but it wasn’t until they reached out to us and we brought some things into the store that I realized how innovative they are. I wish we had the capital and the following to bring in all the gorgeous products in their line up, but for now, I will enjoy playing with what they sent me and see where I can take it.
In my event package was this stamp set (Gracious Peony) which came with a matching layered stencil and a matching die. I decided to paint the flowers with the watercolour set they also sent, and die cut them out. So I started by stamping the flower onto a piece of Vicki Boutin Foundations paper.
Here is the watercolour set they included in the event kit. Gorgeous, right? And check out all the colours!
We hold watercolour classes at our store and the instructor is a big fan of very expensive paint – something I’ve tried to temper to make the classes more affordable for our customers! However, I can see the appeal! These colours are gorgeous! So vibrant and a little goes a long way.
I’m no painting expert but I feel like I can decently colour inside the lines. It was very therapeutic to see what blends I could come up with.
This in and of itself is gorgeous, but I knew I wanted to group my flowers along the bottom of my page so die cutting these beauties was called for.
Here’s another look at the finished page.
The hard part was done, now all that was left was the decorative bits. I really wanted to keep the majority of the page white, so used a small photo and adhered my letter stickers right on top of the flowers. This also helps keep the focus on those flowers as this title is fairly subtle.
The last thing I adhered was my photo. I knew I wanted to splatter gold mist all over the layout too, so I actually did all my journaling before adding the mist and the photo.
I also didn’t want to add much that was visually heavy in the way of layers behind my photo so used two different vellum pieces and tore the edges for added softness. Then I popped the whole thing up so it can stand out against those flowers.
Finally, a word on the journaling. Yes, I wanted to create a frame for my page with my journaling. Yes, I had more to say than fit nicely around the edge, so I decided to keep writing back and forth – upside down – along the bottom of the page. Does that mean it’s hard to read? Yes. And I am okay with. If someone wants to take the time to read all the words, then they are welcome to them. But I think most people will skim the first part of the journaling and move on and I’m okay with that too. It’s not secret, and yet, I don’t feel the need to make it easy for people to read my words.
You on the other hand get them all for free LOL. My journaling reads: “As I enter the last year of my 40’s it’s only natural to look back at what I’ve accomplished, look forward to things to come, and see what changes can be made to improve my remaining years. Change seems to be the name of the game these days. Marley moving across the country to go to school. Leaving the Elementary school days behind. My body declaring its own “we’ve reached a certain age” in the most unpleasant ways. Pandemics and now recessions. And major money concerns driving high stress days and weeks at home and at the store. I’ll be honest, 49 looks a bit bleak right now. Here’s hoping 50 is rosier.”
With that I say thank you for reading all this. I challenge you to channel your energies into trying new things. Change can be hard. Change can be scary. And change can also be wonderful, and freeing. And sometimes is all of those things, just not necessarily all at once.