crafty adventures of a makeup loving Japanophile!



Thursday, 25 November 2010

Happy Thanksgiving :)...this is a looooong post :)

Hello loves,

Today has been a busy day for me as it's Isabella's 3rd birthday today.  It's the first one we've spent at home too.  Her first birthday was in my (second) "home" town Osaka, Japan (awesome right?!), her 2nd was in Melbourne, Australia (her Daddy's hometown) and now her 3rd, here in Perth, where I grew up.
Izzie's 1st birthday in our hotel room in Osaka. lol. look at that little face
Izzie's 2nd birthday. She proceeded to have us sing songs from her favourite TV show and dance to them after this photo was taken, in the middle of a major meeting place/'square' in the city centre of Melbourne. heehee
Today we had a lovely day filled with giggles, mummy and Izzy snuggles (she was snuggly today :)) and lots and LOTS of Tinkerbell. She is currently obsessed with Tink and almost all her presents were Tinkabell related. She looks a lot like Tinkerbell herself actually, so it's appropriate.  She's currently sitting in her bed, in her room--supposed to be asleep, but I can hear her little voice going.  She's talking to her new doll. She's such a sweety.
lol. Munching on her "special Happy Birthday Omelette and toast"

So, inadvertantly, on a day when so many of you will be having pre-planned family days, we had one here too, a bit more impromtu and filled with a few dramas here and there but really truly lovely.  I tend to be quite secluded and quiet when left to my own devices, so it's been a long time since I've had a 'big' family dinner or anything, but I really enjoyed it tonight which was lovely.

While my family (my parents, sister and her family and my grandfather) all sat at the dinner table out on our back patio (it's summer here remember), I looked around at them all and through all the noisy chatter, Isabella singing, my nephew shouting to be heard, Charlotte whinging because she was tired, drinks being drunk, glasses clinking, plates being cleared of their pasta, I thought, what a perfect time to bring in a new tradition to the people who helped me build all my old ones.

And so we said Thanks.  Just as so many of you will today, I asked everyone to go around the table and say what they were thankful for.  Some were funny, some were sweet and evoked teary eyes, some were practical some not.  But it was lovely and something I want to do more often than just on this day.

Here's a little story to tell you how I got here to where I am today;

I took a trip to Japan with my whole family (8 of us) in November of 2008.  When we got home, I wanted to make an album that showed how wonderful it was for me to be back there. (For those of you who don't know, I lived in Japan for 18 months when I was 21 and I've never 'gotten over it'. I miss it every day and what it gave me.  I want to be back there--with my husband and daughters--every moment.)
So I visited a scrapbooking store.

The rest as they could say is history. I never looked back and slowly but surely began crafting more and more. I had to put it aside for a few months for various reasons; Isabella needed more attention, we didn't have space on our dining room table any more *wink*, we moved house etc etc.  Then we had to move in with my parents.  The space, I knew would be limited, but I insisted that I needed (not wanted) a space to craft.  I knew that being wiht my family, whilst lovely, would be difficult for me (being such a solitary person it's hard to always have people around!).  I needed a corner, a space, SOMEWHERE that I could craft, create, just sit and be.

I slowly began looking at blogs, reading them daily, watching youtube for tutorials etc etc. It's how I found many of the blogs I still read today. I haven't given any of them up, my list has grown in size tremendously. 
I still love the inspiration they provide and even if I dont have time or inclination to craft one night, I still find that I look at almost nothing but craft/cardmaking blogs and websites now.

I told my husband Matt that I had two 'dreams'. #1. I wanted to 'do this' for a living- I wanted crafting to be a job. #2. I wanted one of the big stamp companies to see my work and twitter about me.  I never thought either would really happen, but he encouraged me, never once saying anything about spending money on something like paper, glue or ink (rather than something more 'necessary'.) He watched youtube videos I put in front of him, of techniques on how to ink, embellish etc etc.  He even took the girls out on his own every Saturday so I could watch one of my favourite crafting ladies on her ustream show (Laura from Following the paper Trail--watch her, she's so amazing!).  He was (IS) the best.

Then one day I made an order with a2z Scrapbooking Supplies and fell into an easy chat-via-emails regarding my order (which was rapidly increasing in size) with Linda from a2z. (We bonded initially over the same name and then a joke I made about needing to feed my children over buying craft supplies lol!).

Not long after that I was SO excited to see that Hero Arts tweeted about a card I made.  Linda from a2z saw it and realised it was me and not long after, through various discussions, one night, while I 'talked' to her via my blackberry email (I was getting ready to take Charlotte a bottle of milk before I went to bed), Linda asked me to create and coordinate their blog and Design Team. 

It was around 1 am when she asked me and I was standing in our Laundry (Laundry ROOM for you USA residents :)) at the time the email came through to my phone and I literally started jumping up and down (In the dark). *laughs* 

Since then I've been so blessed to 'meet' all of you and I've had my wishes come true. AND SO. Today on this day of Thanks, I'd like to take this opportunity to tell you all (and remind myself) of what I'm so thankful for:

  • I'm thankful that despite not having a house of our own, we have a home. (Thanks mum and dad)
  • I'm thankful that I have the most wonderful husband, who-despite having NO artistic inclination, still gives me his opinions on my work and always tells me what I make is wonderful.  I'm thankful for him in every moment of every day, for everything that he is and does.

  • I'm thankful for my 2 beautiful girls.  Isabella is smart and challenging and tough--like me (but smarter :)); Charlotte is cheery and easy going and simply a delight to be around.

  • I'm thankful for my best friend Jodie-she is family to me and always will be-I'm so thankful to have someone as ball-bustingly-strong and loyal as you on my side my love :)

  • I'm thankful that on the days when I think "Gosh I have SO much work to do", that work is making cards, layouts, crafty things in general, and that I then get to share them with you.

  • I'm thankful--SO thankful for my friend Linda.  She is beyond words and has become so important to me.  She inspires and assures me when I need it, she makes me laugh and feel important and despite the fact that we've never met in person (YET), she is such a huge part of my every day, that I know we'll be friends forever.

  • I'm thankful for all of you bloggy readers and crafty people out there. For inspiring me, for writing lovely comments, for being friends and my support team over the last year since my blog was 'born'.

Lastly, I'm so thankful that I have SO much to be thankful for.

That's it from me, but I wanted to leave you with this quote:

"When asked if my cup is half full or half empty, my only response is that I am thankful I have a cup."              --Sam Lefkowitz

nice huh.

Happy and safe Thanksgiving to you all :)

Linda xx


lynzw21 said...

Wow, what a great story! I too just fell into this wonderful world a few months ago, right at a time in my life that I needed it! I had the same dreams, and the twitter has come true so now just waiting for it to become my job lol! It's very early days, but as long as I just have fun and keep creating, and meeting all the lovely people in this community, I know it will happen eventually. But, if it doesn't then at least I have finally found a creative outlet that I love :)

Love that you introduced giving thanks to your family today! I moved to the US from England 5 years ago and Thanksgiving is my favourite holiday just for that very reason- its not about presents (though they are fun lol), but about just being with the people you love and taking a moment to be thankful.

Donna said...

Linda, very nice story and nice to know a bit more about you. And I so agree with what you say, about you are lucky to have a cup. We do not own our home either, but my bills are paid on time and we have a roof over our heads and food on the table. And with me being disabled and on a limited income that is doing OK in my book. My hubby too has been great, if I am not having a good day, he is so good about me not cooking and does not complain too much about my crafting, justs gets worrisome about the money I am spending, and that I can understand. But stamping and scrap booking came to me on a whim also, some one else wanted me to go to a class with them and lo and behold we went to the class and that person is not doing much and I am hooked big time, did mostly scrap booking the first 5 months or so, and then started doing some stamping and now it is mostly cards and some odd projects here and there, and it saved me, I literally felt like I was sitting around waiting for the final days!! Now I have something to live for!!.

Anyway, love your blog, and like you I have a bunch I visit or try to visit daily, hence that is why I have not had time to worry about my own blog, but I will be trying to change that over the next few months.

Glad you had a great Holiday, and will talk to you sometime next week, now I am not sure which Linda contacted me, you or the other Linda.?

Donna (Irishmist)