Piano recital

Piano recital scrapbook page by Janice Daquila-Pardo

I was fortunate as a girl to be given piano lessons. Our church’s organist, Ms. Shimmels, would come to our house weekly and patiently work with me on theory and technique. I’ll admit that I loved it and hated it. I really wanted to be better at playing, but daily practice sessions were so hard to get excited about. It’s the age-old conundrum of the wannabe.

I loved to perform, though, so I did get excited about recitals. I practiced the heck out of my recital music, learning it so well that I would get to the end of the piece and not remember the details of having played it (like when you drive a familiar route on auto pilot).

Each year Ms. Shimmels’ students came together to perform for their families at the Fine Arts Association in Willoughby, and these photos are from our recital in the summer of 1978.

It was a really big deal to me, and my family treated it that way, too. My mom made this sweet yellow dress for the occasion (as she often did for my recitals over the years). And two of my aunts (Mary Lou and Rose) drove from Pennsylvania to be there for it.

I remember quite a lot about this special day, considering it was almost 37 years ago, and I’m grateful for everyone who worked together to make it happen.

Product/technique notes

I followed this Let’s Get Sketchy January sketch quite closely:
The Let's Get Sketchy January sketch I followed for this layout
Most of the patterns I used are from Jillibean Soup’s “Chilled Cucumber Soup” collection. I designed the title and cut it on my Silhouette.

Using stitching on a layout as more than just decoration


Say bon voyage to boring layouts with hand stitching!

Stitching on scrapbook pages is used all the time—I use it all the time—to accent and decorate. It’s a beautiful way to highlight a portion of your design and makes a page more special. But it needn’t always be relegated to the embellishment category on our layouts. In the case of today’s page, you can see that it provides much of the meaning, too.

I wanted to leave as much of my background map paper on show as possible, but I didn’t want my page to be too simple, lest it turn out boring. As I thought about all the trips my mom has taken over the years during her summer breaks from teaching, it hit me that the design needed a fanciful flight pattern to complete the look and the message. And stitching was the perfect way to do that! I doodled a quick curlicue path with pencil, pierced holes along the route and stitched it with hot pink embroidery floss to match my mom’s shirt.

Celebrate Blogtoberfest with me all month!

This October I celebrate four years of scrapbook blogging! And that makes me feel like having a little party, so I’m hosting Blogtoberfest. Sorry, you’ll have to supply your own beer and brats, but I’ll bring the paper-crafting inspiration:

  • sketches
  • tutorials
  • product reviews
  • free cut files
  • a giveaway: I’ll reveal the details a little later

“Roll out the paper.
We’ll have a barrel of fun!”

I do hope you’ll join me often this month and help me celebrate the good things that scrapbooking brings to our lives.

Product/technique notes

The travel-themed patterned papers I used are from Jillibean Soup’s “Sightseeing Stew” collection, and the others are older scraps from my stash. The airplane is a foam Thickers sticker.

Note: I’m submitting this to the Paper Issues “Seas the Day with October Afternoon” link party.



My title was a no-brainer, considering that imp was the first word to occur to me when I saw this photo.

This is just a photo of me at around two years old, in my pajamas, grinning for the camera. I don’t mind saying I was pretty cute!

Product/technique notes

I used the March week 2 sketch at Let’s Get Sketchy when creating this page. The papers are a mix of older American Crafts for the background and Jillibean Soup’s “Blossom Soup” collection 6×6 pad. I created the outer edge design with a Martha Stewart punch set and designed and cut the title on my Silhouette Cameo.
Let's Get Sketchy sketch challenge

Updated 3/20: How cool is this? My layout was featured on the Let’s Get Sketchy site. Thank you!

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

Reminds me of childhood memories


I think this may be the last time that anyone could call me leggy! LOL

The eleventh sketch challenge has been posted at the SCRAP & MUSIC challenge blog! Head over to the site to grab the sketch and play along. This eleventh sketch came with the song “Sweet child o’ mine” by Guns N’ Roses.

Scrap & Music sketch #11

My layout

My maternal grandparents lived in California, and because we lived in Ohio we didn’t get to see them very often. This photo is from their summer of 1979 visit (when I was 12 and Phil 11). My grandma and my Aunt Mary Lou were half sisters, so AML had also driven to our house from Pennsylvania to visit while Grams and Gramps were in town.

This photo, taken out in front of our garage (because that’s scenic), shows from left to right: Mom, me, Aunt Mary Lou, Grandma, Grandpa and Phil. Daddy took the shot, and it looks like they may have been heading somewhere (perhaps to the airport?) because Grams is dressed up a bit more than usual and holding her purse.

So that’s all I can tell you about the surface details of this photo. But there’s a lot more it brings back to me when I inspect it. For instance, it surprises me how much I remember those outfits that Mom, Phil and I wore, as if it wasn’t 34 years ago at all! I specifically recall feeling a little nervous whenever I wore that terry cloth “onesie” because it was strapless. What a terrible idea for a girl who liked to play with the boys! And I have to cringe when I think about how much I loved to get a tan during the summer. And boy did I love to sit in that outdoor rocking chair and read. And I always find myself smiling when I contemplate photos of Gramps because he was an entertainer; he made us laugh a lot.

It’s the magic of photos, isn’t it? A simple picture of people lined up in the driveway with their arms around each other doesn’t look like much to anyone who wasn’t there. But we all know how very much they mean to those of us who were.

Product/technique notes

Once I had decided to use that busy background paper from American Crafts’ “Lucky charm” collection, I rifled through my scrap bin in search of papers that would coordinate that I could use to fill in the sections of my spinner (a freebie shape from Silhouette that I cut on my Cameo). I used papers from American Crafts, Jillibean Soup, Lily Bee Design, Making Memories and My Mind’s Eye. I also designed and cut the title using the Cameo.

The challenge

The challenges on this blog involve following the sketch and using a title on your layout with a line from the provided music. Below I’ve included the video as well as the lyrics for this song:

“Sweet child o’ mine” by Guns N’ Roses
She’s got a smile that it seems to me
Reminds me of childhood memories
Where everything was as fresh
As the bright blue sky

Now and then when I see her face
She takes me away to that special place
And if I stare too long
I’d probably break down and cry

Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child o’ mine
Ohh! Ohh! Sweet love of’ mine

She’s got eyes of the bluest skies
As if they thought of rain
I hate to look into those eyes
And see an ounce of pain

Her hair reminds me of a warm safe place
Where as a child I’d hide
And pray for the thunder and the rain
To quietly pass me by

Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child o’ mine
Ohh! Ohh! Sweet love of mine

Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child o’ mine
Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child of mine

Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child o’ mine
Ohh! Ohh! Sweet child o’ mine

Where do we go
Where do we go now
Where do we go
Where do we go
Where do we go now
Where do we go now
Where do we go (sweet child)
Where do we go now
Where do we go now
Where do we go
Where do we go now
Where do we go
Where do we go now
Where do we go
Where do we go now, now, now, now, now, now, now, now
Sweet child
Sweet child o’ mine