Monday, 30 April 2012

March's Numbers On Paper

I'm not quite sure where the month of April has gone, but I suddenly realised that the end was nigh and I still hadn't blogged my March Month In Numbers!!!  Not wanting a repeat of last year's Project 12 (which also stalled during March) I have set to work to remedy the situation, putting these numbers straight down on paper - using scraps from my April Counterfeit Kit - and also prepared the opposite page ready for April's numbers too.

Layout - March & April in Numbers - Jimjams
The titles were cut with Man, Oh, Man! Sizzlit dies 
from the film-strip frame waste from my Bellagio Fountains page
5 = blue toes for Mum who fell awkwardly after helping with the Talking Newspaper recording.  Luckily nothing is broken, just badly bent. {She's still limping but on the mend after six or seven weeks}

32 and 1 are for the physio appointments, consultant appointments and steroid injection I had for my various ailments ... getting old is no fun at all!

1 = an unexpected overnight guest, delayed on her way home to the Isle of Man when the ferry company texted her to say that the ferry had broken down ... and was returning to Douglas without any passengers!  Luckily she was able to reverse her journey slightly and stay with us.  We put the world to rights over a couple of glasses bottles of wine!

2 = free tickets for the Moscow State Circus at the theatre where I work occasionally. It was a brilliant show on our tiny stage with laughter at the various clowns, wincing at the contortionist's impossible angles and wonder at the strength, grace and skill of the various acrobatic acts. 

24/7 = Hubby's cover at work ... much too restricting even though he wasn't called out!

7 = nights I spent in Vegas with 5 friends.  I dared to do my 1st helicopter flight and notched up my 100th geocache while I was there too.

4 = days spent in Krakow by Child No.3 who "enjoyed" her visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau and now wants to get married in the Salt Mines!

Salt Mine Chandelier

There wasn't quite room on my page for some of my other numbered notes so I'll add them here:

4 = books taken to Las Vegas, where, apart from the travel guides, I didn't read a thing!  Once I was back in the UK, I did manage to read 1 story about harvesting people for organs to order - yuk - "The Fifth Vial" by Michael Palmer.
45 = minutes spent on the phone to No.2 Son trying to determine what he thinks he's doing at university!
200 = blog posts celebrated with a Tagxedo tutorial.

Layout detail - Punched counterfeit washi tape - Jimjams
I used a border punch to add interest
to some more counterfeit washi tape
If you pop over to Notes on Paper I'm sure you will find that other people joining in with Julie's "My Month In Numbers" will be a lot less tardy than me ... they've probably done April's already (I know Julie has)!

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling!

10 sided dieLast Monday I blogged about World Book Night and offered up a number of books to be shared via with my blog readers.  There were fifteen commenters by the deadline, ten of whom were willing to give a temporary home to a WBN 2012 copy of "The Time Traveller's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger.  Fortuitously, and perhaps not totally surprising for a someone who loves numbers, I own a 10 sided die!

So with a zero standing in for #10, I got rolling:

Giveaway results WBN 2012

The winners have all been notified and their books are ready for posting.  So sorry if you were unlucky, perhaps one of the luckier recipients will pass their copy on via a blog giveaway - keep your eyes peeled!

Saturday, 28 April 2012


Regular readers will know that I recently travelled over 5000 miles in order to use a 40% off coupon in Michael's in Las Vegas.  Another reason I wanted to visit was the opportunity to go globe-trotting up and down a single street, namely Las Vegas Boulevard.  We took an open top bus tour on our first morning and travelled from the Egyptian pyramid and sphinx that is the Luxor hotel to see the Italian gondolas gliding around the canals at the Venetian hotel.  Along the way we passed the New York skyline fronted by the Statue of Liberty, admired various Roman sculptures outside Caesar's Palace and looked up at the Eiffel Tower outside the Paris hotel!  All in the space of 3km!!

Layout - Around the world in Las Vegas - Jimjams

I was inspired to use red white and blue and pennants on my page by this striking London Tour page over at Daphne's blog.  I've used my April Counterfeit Kit, added some blue & white buttons and, in line with the 3rd CKCB challenge for April, used some washi tape.  Well actually, I've used some counterfeit washi tape, because I don't own any of the real deal!

Layout detail - Around the world in Las Vegas - Jimjams

Julie Fei-Fan Balzer has this tutorial for "washi" with text.  I've used Scotch Magic tape (the translucent matte variety) pressed down onto one of my kit's vintage book pages to lift the text with a very layer of paper and then used red & blue water colour paint to tint the paper side of the tape before applying double sided tape to stick it to my page.  I like the effect and I'll be trying it out on other types of paper.  At least this way I don't have to have 30 feet of the same pattern - why is washi tape sold in such enormous lengths????

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Blogger It!

Dear Blogger
Why do you mess me about sometimes?
I have a give-away post here but nobody knows because for some reason you have decided to not to show it in Google Reader or people's dashboards!!!
Did I do something wrong?
Please let my blog readers know that I have a few World Book Night books to pass on right here.
Pretty please!
Best wishes,
Jemma of Just-Jimjams xxx

Monday, 23 April 2012

World Book Night 2012

Tonight it's World Book Night - the 2nd one to be held in the UK, and a slightly more world-wide affair this time around as the USA are joining in along with Germany!  In the UK & Ireland 20,000 passionate readers will give 24 copies of one of their favourite books to their friends, colleagues, neighbours, passers-by and anyone they feel would enjoy reading it.

World Book Night 2012 All Titles

In addition World Book Night will be giving a further 620,000 books directly to the hardest to reach readers through prisons, care homes, hospitals, sheltered housing, homeless shelters, libraries and charities.

The Time Traveller's Wife World Book Night 2012
I applied to be a WBN giver and was lucky enough to not only be selected, but be able to give away my first choice and favourite book - "The Time Traveller's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger.  For me, this book was thought-provoking, moving, stimulating, uplifting and exciting. While it is complicated with flashbacks and flashforwards through time as the hero travels to events in both his past and future, the book is worth a slow read to savour all the implications of just how much our lives are shaped by others.

I promised to keep a few copies back to give away via my blog: if you would like to be the temporary owner of a WBN copy, please add a comment below by noon (UK time) on Friday 27th April.  I say "temporary" because the idea of WBN is to spread the love of reading and these books are meant to be passed on ... and on ... and on!  Each book has a unique Book Crossing ID number and you can log its stay with you, add your thoughts (good & bad) about the book, and chart its progress in the future.

So, if you fancy reading this book and would be willing to share it with your friends, colleagues, neighbours or someone passing you by, please let me know!

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Fountain Filmstrip

Today I want to share a page I made for the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog's 2nd challenge of the month - to scrap with small photos.  I took hundreds of photos during my recent trip to Las Vegas and yet this page actually uses several of my friend Jacqui's pics (she took a more complete record of the myriad shapes made by the magical fountains outside the Bellagio Hotel than I did).  I used a Sizzlit film-strip die to include several shots of them: the frames are 2cm x 3cm so I used a my printer software to re-size the photos to fit behind them.

Bellagio Fountains Layout - Jimjams

Bellagio Fountains Layout - JimjamsThe film-strip frames die was also used to add texture to some of my patterned paper; to stop the cut-outs from falling out I added double-sided tape to the back after die-cutting and used this to stick the patterned film-strips to the page.  Everything is from my April Counterfeit Kit apart from the Echo Park blue title alphas which needed a little extra ink to make them tone better with the cardstock.

Have you been playing along with Shimelle's weekend crop?  The deadline is almost upon us which is why I've linked this page there too - it ties in nicely with her 15th challenge - to scrap with less than perfect photos - by printing the blurrier ones really small you can appreciate the shapes made by the fountains without noticing the imperfections!

Friday, 20 April 2012

Hieperdepiep Hoera

Another page for Shimelle's scrapping week(end) - this one based on an old sketch here (challenge #9), uses a neglected stamp set (challenge #8) AND is divided into quadrants (challenge #14)

Layout - Hieperdepiep Hoera!! - Jimjams

The photo is No.1 Son around his 2nd birthday next to the Lego set we gave him, wearing the fantastic paper crown made for him at the creche he attended on the days when I worked.  We are still friends with his nursery assistant from that time and José helped me with the spelling for the title - it's the funner version of the Dutch for "Hip hip hooray!!"

Layout detail - Hieperdepiep Hoera!! - Jimjams
Red distress ink transformed my butter-coloured mini-alphas!
This also does double duty with the UKS Weekly Challenge to scrap a birthday photo, use old paper (my April Counterfeit kit is full of old papers), a "weather" colour (sunshine yellow), and 4 of something!
This must be some kind of record for a multi-challenge page LOL!

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Gambling With A Sketch

Layout detail showing dollar token - Jimjams
The first challenge of the month with the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog is to use a multi-photo sketch from Pretty Little Studio.  I've used  it with my April Counterfeit Kit to make a start on my photos from Las Vegas, documenting my experiences in the casinos.
Pretty Little Studio Sketch #28
The sketch called for 3 portrait photos and a journalling block on 4 pennants, but I had a series of 3 landscape pictures to scrap.  They would have needed to be printed very small to fit within the width of the pennants, so I rotated the sketch through 90° to accommodate larger prints.  I also switched the journalling and the title as I had a lot to say!!
Extra pennants cut from vintage book pages, edged with an EK Success border punch, added some dimension and I topped off the page with a souvenir dollar token donated by my slightly luckier friend Jacqui!
Layout about Losing in Las Vegas - Jimjams

Hmmm - not that close to the original sketch now - which is just how I like it!!

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Scrapping Weekend

Layout - Green Buttons - Jimjams
Don't you just love it when you can spend an entire weekend on your hobby?  Especially with like-minded friends!

For me, sometimes it's a virtual gathering of virtual friends and scrappers - like this weekend with Shimelle.
Other times it has been a real gathering of virtual friends and scrappers - like this bloggers' weekend where my virtual friends became real!
And ultimately there's a real gathering of real friends and scrappers:

My UKSrappers "team" hooked up with other UKS scrappers last September for the first annual Green Buttons' Retreat - we're already making plans for the rematch!!

Layout Green Buttons Retreat - Jimjams

Shimelle's 2nd challenge of the weekend is to mix it up with papers from at least three collections - well my April Counterfeit Kit certainly meets that criteria and the page has Daisy D, Kelly Panacci and My Mind's Eye's Ooh La La papers on there along with cardstock from Bazzill.  It's based on a sketch at UKS for the monthly challenge there, but as ever, the resemblance has been diluted by my creativity inability to stick to a sketch!

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Ten on the Tenth: Things I Did In Las Vegas

After last month's Ten on the Tenth about my plans for Las Vegas, Julie predicted that I'd be back this month with a partner post about what actually went on!  Well done Julie!!!  Despite everyone saying "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas!" I have ten of our photos to share with you today: 

There was indeed plenty of neon and spectacle to enjoy every night:

New York New York Hotel - Las Vegas
New York New York Hotel
Bellagio Fountains - Las Vegas
Bellagio Fountains

And Vegas was pretty amazing by day too:

Venetian Hotel - Las Vegas
Outside at The Venetian ...
Curved Escalator inside Caesar's Palace - Las Vegas
... and inside Caesar's Palace
The food was interesting and tasty:

Outback Steakhouse - Las Vegas
Blooming Onion at Outback Steakhouse
(actually this isn't my picture;
somehow all 4 scrapbookers failed
to take a single photo!)
Memphis Sliders - Caesar's Palace - Las Vegas
Memphis Sliders at Caesar's Palace
along with the best fries I have ever

As were the drinks:
Lunchtime cocktail at the Rio - Las Vegas
I don't always dress to match my cocktails!
There were several "firsts" during the week including a first helicopter ride over the strip at night-time followed by an early morning ride out to the Grand Canyon:

Helicopter flight - Las Vegas

I managed to snaffle a few geocaches, both real and virtual:

One of two trees on the Las Vegas strip

And most importantly for a group of scrapbookers from the UK, there was a very successful trip to Michaels!

Scrapbookers outside Michaels in Las Vegas
Can you tell we were excited?!
Want more tens? Got some of your own to share?  Pop over to Shimelle's blog and join in!

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Scapbook Page Titles

Do you struggle with scrapbook page titles?  Does a title come to mind as soon as you choose your photo or do you decide on a title once the page is complete?  Does every page need a title?

I think I could answer both "Yes" and "No" to each and every one of those questions, though I have very, very few title-less pages myself.

Frequently my 95% complete page will sit on my desk for a day or two while the "perfect" title is trapped in the recesses of my brain; I know it's there - maybe I dreamed it - but I want to wait for it to surface.  Sometimes it does, other times I settle for something else and move on to the next page.

Occasionally I pick a photo and the future page title is glaringly obvious - maybe it's a play on words, or a phrase we were using at the time, or a lyric from a current song that just fits somehow.  My first April Counterfeit Kit page certainly fits this category (even though the statue is of a mammoth rather than an elephant): the title was set in stone!

Layout of Mammoth in Zoological Gardens - Barcelona - Jimjams
I've used a sketch from Creative Craft World
as part of the weekly challenge on UKS.
I seem to find it relatively easy to come up with alliterative titles (like Secret Surprise or Bognor Beach) but these start to look a bit cheesy if overdone. Occasionally Often my "perfect" title contains too many vowels for the alphabet I had in mind and I end up mixing fonts or get inventive with a backwards "3", a trimmed "Q" or an upside down "w"!

Manilla tags - clips - bakers twine - buttonsWhen I really struggle to find the right title, and my family and scrapping friends can't help either, I resort to the internet! My first port of call is usually Denny's Quotes (they have a decent search facility and a mix of page toppers, quotes, poems and lyrics).  Other places I go include The Perfect Title (organised into categories), The Quote Garden and Song Lyrics (you can search albums, artists, songs and within the lyrics).
I could do with some reliable alternative places to visit, so do please share where you go for page title inspiration in the comments.

P.S. I'm multi-tasking as ever and, while my page fits a UKScrappers/CCW challenge this week, it also ties in nicely with this month's challenge over at The Studio: to include at least three items from their supply list - Kraft, twine, die cuts, ink, a star and washi tape - I managed all but one! Pop over here if you fancy having a go yourself!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Bright Ideas for Counterfeiting

Welcome to the April Master Forgers' Blog Hop!  Have you hopped over from Glinda's blog or the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog?  Are you a regular reader or a random visitor?  Do stay and see how I  counterfeited a scrapbooking kit using supplies that were cluttering up my craft room! 

It was a good job I'd just bought new sunglasses when I found out about the April kits-to-copy - talk about bright!!!!  All four of the March kits from Somni were full of sunshiney colours, flowers, birds and butterflies but I fell in love with the second kit based around Christy Tominlinson's She Art collection by Pink Paislee:

Kits de Somni March 2012 Add-on Kit
Somni Kits March 2012 Add-on
I had several false starts putting my counterfeit together ... I don't like floral papers much and apart from the luggage tags and buttons I had nothing approaching the kit-to-copy ... oh and did I mention that I don't much like pink?!?!?

In the end I put based my kit on a mix of Daisy D's and My Mind's Eye Ooh La La papers, substituted red for pink and switched flowers to swirls:

Counterfeited Kit

MME Ooh La La Frivolous (with green hexagons on the reverse - see 2nd row)
Dream Street Papers Pompeii Villa
MME Ooh La La Over The Top (with sun burst on the reverse - see 2nd row)
½ sheet green dotty paper from a HOTP Paper Pizazz Christmas Book
¾ sheet 7gypsies Rouge Life
Beacon Hill Stripe, Holly-Pine Bough, Bowdoin Street Scroll from Daisy D's
Kelly Panacci Stonewashed Blue
Buutons - clips - bakers twineRed (and green and brown) alpha stickers from Websters Pages Botanical Christmas range
MLS mini alpha stickers in Butter
Pages from a vintage book of fairytales
Various MME Ooh La La die-cuts
3 small and 2 large manilla luggage labels
5 K&Co Travel Smash cards
Buttons galore
A selection of metal clips (thanks to Susanne's Christmas swap)
Some apple green baker's twine (simply because it's been sitting there all year and needs to be used!)

What's missing?
Well there are no paper flowers ... I think I'll make them myself using one of the tutorials here on the CKCB (and who knows - perhaps there'll be some new links from Bethany or Meridy in a day or two).
Nor have I included a doily stencil ... I do have a 6x6 Crafter's Workshop swirly template somewhere ...

And there's no cardstock - that would have been another add-on from Somni Kits, but of course for me it's "free" as I'm shopping from my existing stash.  Result!!

If you pop over to Jen's place now she'll have another version of a Somni Kit - and of course the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog will be full of inspiration all month long!

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Flying High

A friend e-mailed this to me just before I left for Las Vegas last month - it's a skit performed by British Airways staff at a BA function:

I couldn't help smiling as the cabin crew of my US Airlines flights delivered their safety mimes to us and wheeled the trolleys up and down the aisles. I don't think I'll ever look at a steward(ess) the same way ever again!

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Storytelling in Vegas

It's Sunday again, the first Sunday in the month which means it's Storytelling Sunday (hosted over at High in the Sky) - not a story like last year's post for April 1st - but this one is equally amazing.

I'm just back from a brilliant girly holiday in Las Vegas and I'm now wading through the 500+ photos I took, deciding what to scrap and what to print and scrap!  All six of us had cameras and we often took turns to take photos of the group with each other's cameras so I know that I'll have an even bigger choice of photos once we share them.  One day four of us we were enjoying a lunch-time rest and a refreshing (alcoholic) slushy cocktail, taking a few different combination shots of ourselves, when a kind passer-by offered to take a photo of the whole group.  What's more she was happy to take group shots with each of the four available cameras!  I noticed that her convention badge had the word "scraporchard" printed on it and asked what she was doing in Vegas: it turned out that she was a digi-scrapper attending "Digiscrapapalooza"!!!  No wonder she'd understood the need to take photos and offered to help!  We just had to grab another passer-by and get a shot of all five of us (on each of our cameras of course)!

Scrapbookers meet up in Las Vegas
Me, Jacqui, Balinda (our newest scrapping buddy), Nic & Jeanette
If you want to read more stories, or have a story of your own to share, please pop over to Siân's place and follow the links.