College coterie


All photos taken on the beautiful Ohio University campus in Athens, Ohio, from 1985-89.

I had an absolutely wonderful group of friends during college. Most of them I made during the first quarter of my first year at Ohio University (1985/86) and remained close to throughout our four years. These guys made my college experience so much more fun (they were a funny bunch) and bearable (you know even the best college years have low points), and I love each of them. Just about every one of my college memories includes one or more of these sweet, smart, loyal friends.

  • top left: Micki McNiece, Phil Daquila, Jim Conlan (freshman year, winter quarter on Phil’s birthday)
  • top right: Teng Chek Cheong, Jim Conlan, Sandy Daquila (Mom visiting for Mother’s Weekend), Phil Daquila (senior year, spring quarter)
  • center: Joe Brown, Rich Saxby (freshman year, spring quarter as we packed up to head home for the summer)
  • bottom: Rich Ozmun, Teng Chek Cheong, Tim Schooley, Jerry Hirsch, me (senior year, spring quarter)

Product/technique notes

I followed the sketch below for my layout and will be entering it into the Page Drafts “Love is everywhere 2014 Valentines release” sketch challenge. The papers are mainly from Jillibean Soup’s “Grandma’s Lima Bean Soup” collection. I designed the title and cut that and the swirls on my Cameo. And I thought the vintage buttons were a nice touch with the quote about antiques.
Page Drafts sketch

There’s always room for ice cream


I know it's hard to believe, but I actually do love these two more than ice cream.

I thought I would share a Silhouette technique today. I had a lot of fun concocting this layout in my head, then in my Silhouette Studio software and finally in physical form.

I completed this look by building the page as much from the back as from the front. Here’s how:

I was looking for a novel way of highlighting my main photo, so I started surfing my Silhouette library for ideas. When I saw this “Folded Sunburst Card” shape, the light bulb went on. Why not cut the sunburst aperture from my background paper and put the photo behind it?
the Silhouette shape I used to highlight my main photo

So I opened the file and deleted all the card bits, leaving only the sunburst. I re-sized the shape to be a little smaller than a 4 x 4 photo and dragged it to the top third of a full 12 x 12 page in Silhouette Studio.

To add to the building from beneath theme, I set up my title to cut from the background paper as well. So that I would be sure to leave enough room between the sunburst and the title for the other photos I planned to use, I added those to the design in Silhouette Studio but I set them to “no cut.” Like this:
How my file looked before cutting

So that’s it. I laid down my patterned paper (from My Mind’s Eye “Cut and Paste: Flair” collection), cut this out all at once, backed it with white card stock and then built my page on top of it. And now I have a layout that has lots of depth and texture without lots of bulk.

Oh, and the photos are from a stop we made at a neat little ice cream place in North Carolina while I was home visiting Mom and Phil this August.

Out & about


Building my whole layout around tags was new for me, and I'm really happy with the look.

This layout was fun to pull together! I gathered four photos of Matt and me just out doing our thing in Austin last December. The north photo is of us waiting for our friends’ wedding to start; the east photo is when we were waiting outside the Alamo Drafthouse before seeing Les Miserables; the south photo is us waiting for our lunch to arrive at Cheddars; and the west photo is when we scored the fireplace table at La Madeleine.

My friend, Laurie, published this cool sketch on her blog and is running a contest with it for her birthday. Isn’t that a great idea? I decided to use the tags as my main focus but configure them a little differently by arranging them in a circle. I’ll tell you, using the Studio Calico cloud background paper with the grid really helped make aligning everything easier. I cut the eight tags out of another piece from the same SC “Here & There” collection and then embellished each. To bring it all together I created a circular title treatment on my Silhouette. I really like my final result, and I would’t have come up with this idea without Laurie’s sketch for inspiration.

Happy birthday, my friend!
Laurie's sketch

UPDATE: The happy news is that I won this sketch contest! Thanks for the Amy Tangerine stitching template kits, Laurie. I can’t wait to use them on my pages. :-)

Homecoming 1984


I went to the dance with Mike Lisi, and my brother took Jill Berlin.

A lot of my Facebook friends have children in high school, so I’ve seen my fair share of homecoming photos being posted lately. You know, shots of their high schooler with his/her date and friends and parents in front of the family room fireplace.

Exactly like we did before our homecoming dance in the fall of 1984! Not a lot changes over the years, does it? OK, maybe the fashions have changed a lot. ;-)

Our dates came to our house for a photo session before we headed to the school gym for the event. My boyfriend, Mike, came home from his freshman year at Miami University to take me to the dance. And Phil took our friend, Jill. The whole thing was very exciting.

My journaling reads: “Homecoming in our senior year was a big event for me. Because my friend, Tatjana, was both Student Council president and homecoming queen, last-minute dance preparations were left to me as VP. Then there was the fun of choosing my dress and having Mike return from college to take me to the dance. We had such a lovely evening!”

What a loser


I'm so proud of Matt for all his hard work to get in shape.

I was recently looking through some photos when I noticed a few of Matt that I had taken exactly one year before, and I could not get over how different he looked! I mean, of course I know that he has lost 35 pounds in the past year. But you know how it is: things that happen slowly are harder to notice. I’ve watched Matt do all the hard work it takes to lose that much weight—taking up running, lifting weights on the opposite days and changing his diet—and I see that he’s looking great. But that doesn’t mean I remembered how much he has changed his looks, not to mention his health, with his new routine.

I decided to create a scrapbook layout to celebrate the difference Matt has made with his hard work. So I had him put on the very same outfit he was wearing the previous year and pose for me as closely as possible to the original photos. Then I arranged the comparison photos next to each other to make the differences obvious. The first and second photos show how much weight Matt has lost in his face and neck, and the third and fourth ones show the weight loss in his torso.

I’m so proud of my hubby! He would say, “Don’t make such a big deal of it; I still have more to lose.” But anyone who has tried to lose extra pounds knows that 35 pounds and a lifestyle change are a huge deal. He’s such a loser.

Product/technique notes:
I used patterned papers from the Simple Stories Awesome collection on this layout.