Wednesday, January 29, 2014

family flashcards.

best christmas gift given in 2013:  Photo Flashcards that Aunt Abby made for Charlotte and Eleanor. Once this gift came out of the wrapper, no other gift had a chance for the favorite spot.  And guess what? It was simple to make.

Family Flashcards are one of many creative photo projects available for the making at Pinhole Press Please use my link to check out the fun for yourself! You can find these Flashcards under Games & Education.

 Right here:  Pinhole Press. 

This is an easy drop-and-drag project.  Even the backs of the cards are colorful & fun.  The flashcards are made of a sturdy cardboard and super-reasonably priced at $24.99.  Another cool feature is that you can change up the alphabet letters to fit your family.  You might notice that we have lots of M's... and no Q or X.  It is 26 letters of your choice.

letter writing station.

first bit of advice from mother rabbit:
Write more hand-written notes. Resist the temptation to send all your communication by email.  Love, appreciation, care and concern are communicated powerfully when they are spoken with your handwriting.

second bit of advice from mother rabbit:
Have a letter writing station armed with everything you need to write a note whenever you need it.  Fill a basket with pretty notes, fun postage stamps, and pens.  If you have everything you need right there at your fingertips, the task will be less daunting.  Writing a meaningful note of concern or congratulations might take as little as 3 minutes when you don't have to hunt for the supplies, but your investment will be multiplied upon delivery.

one more thing from mother rabbit:
Have some FUN with your note-writing station, drawer or basket.  Add some beautiful stickers or rubber stamps to your collection of supplies.  Buy notes that make you happy to look at.  Maybe shop for notes or postcards when you are traveling.  Make your basket so fun that you WANT to write notes!

I had some fun on my last visit to Pinhole Press when I made some Address Labels using their templates.  While I won't be putting these colorful custom labels on my bills, I can hardy wait to embellish a package to a girlfriend! 

my first insta-album.

Possibly you know that one of my passions is helping people get their photos off their devices and into their lives.  I became more serious about posting photos to Facebook and Instagram sometime in early 2012 when I learned that this is the hipster-way to stay connected to our kids.  I can follow their lives in photo and word-snips, and they can follow me.  They are the ones who told me that "Facebook is for old people" and I quickly learned that most of their social media comings-and-goings happened on Instagram.  It was easy to became a fan of Instagram because it is about sharing PHOTOS.  You can send your photo out into cyberspace with a caption, or just plain.  But a photo is what is doing the bulk of the communicating. Instagram comes with a set of editing filters and is a pretty fun way to communicate with family and friends. 

One of my goals in January is to get my Instagram photos off my iPhone and into an album for safe keeping into the future. For my Insta-Album, I chose a little hardcover 5.25 x 5.25 60-page book from Pinhole Press.  Since 2012, I have sent about 250 photos into cyberspace as "instagrams". These are the ones going in the books. Not all 4000 photos I took on my iPhone are going into keepsake books... just the ones that were favorite enough to post to my Instagram world.  It looks like 4 little sixty-page books will get me current. This one is my first! Volume 2 and Volume 3 are on their way.  For more detailed instructions on how I created it, please see KarensMemoryJogger.

 Please check out  Pinhole Press  for yourself!  I am totally in love with the clever and creative products that they offer.  My personal favorites are the Family Flashcards, the Memory Game personalized with your photos, address labels and wine bottle labels for a wedding or party. Please use my link to check it out for yourself.

Pinhole Press

Monday, January 13, 2014

take photos before you take down.

Good idea:  Snap some photos of your holiday decorations BEFORE you take them down for the season.  Then pack the photos in with your Christmas ornaments for a handy reference of what you did last year.  If you are anything like Mother Rabbit, you might tweak your decorations from year to year to keep things fresh.  The photo-reminder will help you know what you might like to repeat.

Before I pack these photos away with my holiday decorations, I thought I might share a few ideas.

Consider browsing vintage shops for your holiday decorations.  I found this antique Swedish candle tree at a charming vintage shop in Lindsborg, Kansas.  I loved the flavor it added to my kitchen.

 One of the smartest decorations I have ever purchased are these Pottery Barn "potted" evergreens.  I have them in all the sizes and enjoy changing their locations around the house every year.  People are continually amazed that they are not real, even after touching them.  This adds to the fun.

When I got tired of hanging ornaments on the tree, I piled some in a fabulous china bowl that once belonged to my Grandmother Eunice.  After sprinkling them with some fake sparkling "snow" it was one of my favorite decorations.

Needed:  One keepsake decoration, some yardage of white netting and a footed glass bowl from the thrift shop.  The little angel candle is a keepsake from my childhood, so I set it on the piano.  The glass bowl from Nifty Thrifty with some (fake) cranberries gave the candle a festive twist.  Netting is a simple way to create some holiday magic.

I like fresh evergreen for my holiday arrangements, but this year I added the silvery evergreen and white berries that I found at Pottery Barn.  They were a great touch with the mercury glass.

I hung the stockings on the banister again this year. 

This photo is going in the Christmas decoration storage box to remind me that next year I should invest in a red throw for the sofa during the holidays.  A red cable knit throw would have added a festive splash of color to the room, better than the soft blue blanket I left on the sofa.

It is fun to improve on decorations from year to year... taking some photos can help.