Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's the last day of 2008... are you reflecting? are you making decisions for the new year? planning something big? doing something new?

Many of you are familiar with Ali Edwards and her "word" for the year (check her blog for more info). Now... my awesomely talented friend Stephanie Ackerman is doing something special with Ali.

Check out her homegrown hospitality blog for all the details of the SUPER cute doodle she will do for you of your own 2009 word.

Since I'm still enjoying my R&R, I will do an update of my own word on my "return". And since I am actually still reflecting, making decisions, planning something big and doing some thing new.... I am still thinking about exactly what I need my word to be this year...

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 26, 2008

A little R&R...

It's been a while (sorry), but... I'm catching up on some much needed R&R!

A little more holidaying for me in the pipeline before I get back into the swing of things for 2009...Enjoy your days of summer here in the southern hemisphere, and keep warm there in the northern!!

Thursday, December 04, 2008


What a week it has been! I have been a busy little bee, creating and playing, but I have a LOT to do still...

Most of my week was taken up with designing some layouts for The Scrapping Studios December kits. And speaking of economising...
this is all I have left over from 21 sheets of very colourful cardstock which makes up this month's Kit dubbed the "Econo Kit". It's an absolute bargain too R130 for 5 layouts - that's 4 double pages and 1 single page, plus 2 pages of special templates and a little pre-printed embellishment too. So head on over to their blog and contact the shop before these great Econo Kits are gone!

And now I need to get onto some Christmas gift making and adding to my December Daily album which you can see over at CreativeSouls.

Monday, December 01, 2008

A pinch and a punch...

...for the 1st of the month!

Happy December to you... and with that the beginning of my December Daily over at CreativeSouls.

My Christmas tree has been unpacked, but yet to be decorated and my album is here on my desk!

This is always a crazy busy time for us all, and no matter how well we try and plan things, it doesn't quite work out the way we would like it to.

Don't stress if you don't have the album made already, the idea is to use what you have on hand. So grab a piece of cardstock and start journaling about your everyday things, the little things, the things that are important to you personally / as a family. Take a photo if you like, embellish the page a little, punch 2 holes in it and add a binder ring. Yes, it can really be that simple.

So do visit Stephanie and I as we share with you our inspiration, and we'd love for you to share yours too at CreativeSouls.

Here's to memory keeping!


Monday, November 24, 2008


That's right... cardstock is on my desk today! Just good old, plain cardstock and I am playing!

I'm designing pages for The Scrapping Studio's monthly kit with this pile of cardstock. You get 21 sheets of cardstock in the kit, layouts for 5 double page spreads, some templates to trace and a few cute ideas from me!

It's been dubbed an economy kit (and who doesn't need one these days!) So check out their blog for contact details and put your order in!

I also have 5 little surprises ready to go to the post office. There are 5 lucky winners over at CreativeSouls who need to email me!

Wishing you a happy last week of November!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Happy weekend...

...quite a week it's been!

Managed to put some finishing touches on a project in the works... hopefully will be able to share that pretty soon!

My desk is completely cleared so I'll have something fun to share on Monday.

And for all you creative souls out there... come and visit us here to see how you can add these to the collection you may have started at Live, Scrap, Play!, at one of my classes or how you can simply start your collection right now...

Have a great weekend


Monday, November 17, 2008

On my desk Monday and Q&A

*edited on Tuesday as my modem got struck by lightning just as I was about to post. New modem and so relieved the post was saved*

What a productive weekend!

On my desk are the remanants of some of the crazy creativity that took place the last 2 days. My "Christmas Gifts-to-make" List has a big tick on it. I have my monthly AAM Group gifts complete and ready for 13 Dec.

I can't show the finished projects here just yet - that would just spoil the surprise! (If you girls thought I would slip're wrong!) are a few of the goodies and products I used! Oh... that would be except for the Christmas Traditions Scented Envelope Sachet which I didn't actually use in any of the projects, but I have it here lying in my office. The smell certainly got me into the Christmas mood!

So... on Friday Stephanie and I launched CreativeSouls - a little place of inspiration. Thank you all for the amazing response, the comments and emails have been wonderful!

I now have a link to CreativeSouls on the right -----------> please do visit us. Come and share your creative soul.

Some Q&A I've received recently:

Q: That baby picture is hilarious. Is it yours?
A: Nope, the baby is not mine, it's a stock image, but definitely cute.

Q: Are you still doing scrapbooking events?
A: Girlfriends' Getaway takes place in March 2009. You can download booking forms here. There might also be a few surprises in store from CreativeSouls!

Q: I love your blog banner. Can I get one made?
A: The good news is YES, you can. Even if you live in South Africa! Just email me with the details - your blog name, colours etc. If you're local the cost is R150. (Stephanie has a selected a cause close to her heart here in South Africa and the monies will go directly to helping this family. You can read more about it here.)

And I think that's it for Monday! (or now Tuesday!)
Have a great week.

Friday, November 14, 2008

I am happy to introduce to you....

CreativeSouls is a special place - it's a place for me (Lara), it's a place for her (Stephanie) and it's a place for you (all over the world).

This is a new beginning for me personally in many respects and so perfect the way things have fallen into place. It's just the start...

...head on over to CreativeSouls to find out what it is 'WE' do...

There's a little bit of 'we' history, a little bit of 'we' Q&A, a little bit of fun, and a whole lot of creativity!!

Please come and visit, we're looking forward to meeting you there! (or click the links)


Thursday, November 13, 2008

The waiting game...

... is almost over!

I did say I was working on a couple of exciting things ~ some big, some not so big, some soon, some a little later!

Be sure to come back tomorrow as Stephanie and I have something we'd like to share with you!


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It's back... popular demand...

Wednesday's Wise Words!

Love, love these words on a Compendium journal which arrived in my post box today, from a gem of a friend!

Perfect in every way...


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You only get popcorn when....

... you add heat!

I made popcorn for lunch today (really healthy!). As I was waiting for the kernels to start popping it came to mind that the only way they would pop is if there was heat (microwave!)

Here's the wikipedia definition of popcorn:

Popcorn or popping corn is a type of corn which explodes from the kernel and puffs up when heated.

I was looking to find something positive in a rather negative situation. And came to the conclusion that I am the corn, there is a LOT of heat going on, and something is going to pop! But no... not bad popping. Great popping!!

Popping of thoughts, ideas, creations. Some of which I am working on this very moment! If there was no heat, there would be no popcorn... and I am thinking positive here... and embracing the heated situation to 'pop' something awesome!

In the heat of the moment... popping is the goal!

Monday, November 10, 2008

The cuteness factor

And what's cuter than a baby animal?!

African cuteness - photos at Tinga with special friends and family.

Baby rhino and giraffe at Pumba.

Early Christmas cuteness from my friend Adele stands just 2.5" tall. Chocolate cranberry Christmas cake (almost) too cute to eat!

Heart, bling, just 1.5" tall - how much cuter could I want?! Cute chair business card holder from my friend Venessa would make the cutest photo holder too!

And speaking of CUTE... have you seen these cute stamps that Stephanie has featured? There are some other beyond cute goodies on her blog, so be sure to check them out!

The response for Girlfriends' Getaway has been amazing. If you are thinking about booking... book! Or add it to your early Christmas wish list... quick!

The dates are Sunday, 1st to Monday, 2nd March 2009. The cost includes lunch, teas, dinner and accommodation on Sunday night; breakfast, lunch, teas on Monday; all scrapbooking projects.
It's going to be a fabulous getaway... for more venue details see the Mount Grace website.
More cuteness to follow...

Monday, November 03, 2008

You know you deserve it!

The promised announcement!!

Click on the image for a larger view. Email for more info and watch this and this space for updates.

It's not too early to add hints to your Christmas wish list. Girlfriends' Getaway is going to be just grand!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy weekend thoughts...

How do you see life, right now, today, in current circumstances?

I have justified reasons today, to be annoyed. Very annoyed.

So once my breathing had returned to normality, I took to concentrating on my happy place. My home, my sanctum, and from these 7 random facts you now know that I am happy to be at home.

And really, I know that "Life's one happy game". I have just added 3 more pictures to our happy wall in the front entrance. The wall is filling up with pictures of us in places we've visited over the past 10 years.

The frames aren't the same, they just match since they're all dark wood. The spacing between each frame isn't even as the collage comes together as and when it does. The pictures really are hanging straight, the camera angle is just a little off putting (I think).

The vinyl word art is by DCWV-Home, called 'Once upon a Wall'. I bought mine here during my last visit to Arizona, but I did find a link here and here, otherwise try Ebay.

My 25 Days mini book is done, BUT there's a little delay in me posting the pictures. It's an exciting delay, so just hang in there, it will be worth it. We're working on this ;)

Enjoy your 'happy game'.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

...from a beauty pageant

well, not isn't all I want :) But it is a cute tin, and it's been missing in my SSS (scrap storage stuff) for over a year! I was beyond thrilled to find it today when I emancipated a few dust bunnies. It also helps getting back on track with Wednesday's Wise Words!
Earlier this week I was inspired by her and the cute, cute album. Since I'm such a mini book fan, I pulled out all my bits, and put together my own 25 days to Christmas. Yes! and it's only 29th October. I will try and take photos to post later in the week.
Here's to shoes (both cute and comfortable)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Ain't she sweet...

... and pink too!

The lovely Stephanie blessed me with this little lady. I am a serious mini book junkie, so her and I are sure to have endless hours of fun together!

Not too much creative stuff happening just yet - still finding my 'retired' sea-legs ;) and tying up lots of loose ends after Live, Scrap, Play!

In this post I mentioned some exciting things on the horizon for me. Well... it turns out that there are going to be even more exciting things happening in the near future and also the not so near future. As with all good things though, there is a little wait involved before I can reveal it all.

But... I can say... there is an announcement coming early next week, so remember to check back for the details! Any guesses?

For now, I was tagged by Sophia, so here are 7 Random facts about me:

1. I really battle to say 'goodbye' whether it's over the phone, on Skype chat, to someone I'll see the next day, or to someone going back home overseas. Nope, not a good goodbyer!

2. Rice is one of my favourite foods. I could eat it everyday, just on its own, plain. Probably the only thing on Survivor Island that I could cope with - living on rice!

3. I have very curly hair. Now that it's 'long' (for me) I blow dry it straight every day. Maybe sometime I'll embrace the curls!

4. Cleansed hands are important to me. I carry hand sanitiser in my handbag and in my car and I use it! So happy that some supermarkets have trolley wipes at the doors now!

5. I am a total baby in a thunderstorm. I see a flash and block my ears anticipating the thunderous noise. Not good for these Highveld thunderstorms.

6. I don't have any pets. Not one, not even a goldfish. I did have 3 dogs, a cat, 2 birds, 2 goldfish growing up though.

7. Home is where my heart is. I love to be at home, and love that my hobby and my 'job' allow me to work from home!

And now I am tagging friends and some well-wishers who left comments for my birthday:

And the anon comments, consider yourselves tagged too!

Here are the rules:
Link to your original tagger and list these rules on your blog. Share 7 facts about yourself - some random, some weird. Tag 7 people at the end of your post and link their blogs. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blogs.

It's all a big blog circle thing!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Breathless and speechless

...I'm running a HUGE catch-up game right now... and hoping that I win it (soon!).

First a very big thank you for all my birthday messages from across the world, and especially those visiting from Stephanie's blog.

Secondly, what an amazing 2 weeks I just spent with 2 wonderful women. It was such an honour for me to have Stephanie and Bonnie visit for the Live, Scrap, Play! events.

Stephanie has been really good with the updates of her trip, so visit her blog for the pictures. It's going to take me some time to get with that program and I will be adding pictures to the Live, Scrap, Play! blog as well.

Special thanks too, to all who have emailed me directly or the participating scrapbook stores with feedback from the events - it certainly seems that Stephanie's projects and her anticipated doodle-light bulb moments were an absolute hit.

And speaking of doodles.... don't you just *love* my new banner?! Such a treat being able to watch Stephanie play with her toys 'n tools!

I'll be back with updates...

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Safe and sound...

This is who I met at the airport today, along with mom-in-law Bonnie.

So excited to have Stephanie here in person, and to all that have asked from 'back home' - they made it safe and sound.

After a (very) loooong flight they are totally exhausted, so it may just be a little while before you see any blog activity.

And to friends and family, I will be sure to take care and looked after them for the next 10days that they are here.


Wednesday, October 08, 2008

What's next?

Things haven't slowed down, and they won't be for a while yet - that's the nature of this industry!

A big thank you to all who have emailed / phoned / left comments regarding my move from the position as Editor of Time & About. If you missed the post, check it out here.
(front cover #9.)

For those who haven't seen the magazine, here's my good-bye letter along with the contents of my final issue.

So what's next...?

I have a few plans - some BIG, some not so big - all exciting though. But right now I am in the middle of the final preparations for Live, Scrap, Play!. Once the events are over, I'll breathe a little and then start on the next "thing".

So... for now, it's a case of 'watch this space'

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

I thought so!

... I thought all was back to normal, but clearly not! My last entry - www or Wednesday's Wise Words, became the Week's Wise Words.

In between I have been running - still have Creative Escape goodness to unpack, still have Scrapbook Convention projects to complete, still have class designs to create... but I did chat to Stephanie today... and she is excited about her visit next week for Live, Scrap, Play!

I am excited about her gorgeous project and all the goodies she's bringing along for the classes. And to all our amazing sponsors who have once again made this event possible - thank you.

Check out Stephanie's blog for details of how you can get to take part in an online auction in support of breast cancer awareness. And check back here for details of how you can win an Epson printer!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Time for a (major) catch up...

So much has happened since the first of Spring! I have loads of amazing stuff to share from my privileged time here and fun time here in the last 2 weeks. But... right now I want to share a big change of season for me personally...

Cover layout: Lara Cousins

Time & About Issue #9 is now on sale, full of Spring inspiration for the new season. It also happens to be my final issue as Editor of the magazine. As I mentioned in my letter from the Editor's Desk, my time for change has come.

I feel like I am letting go of a baby, having been involved from Issue #1 when T&A launched. Here are some of my layouts from that very first issue and those from my last issue.

BFF and Princess Pooch - Fuzzy Finds (Pg 56 felt article)
100% Boy - FabScraps Advertorial (Pg 49)
TJ Style - Dymo-mite! (Pg 78 Office Bound - dymo tape article)

In addition: Pg 38 Henkel-Pritt Advertorial; Pg 42 Epson Advertorial; Pg 52 T&A Team Challenge; Pg 59 Views of DC.


Let's Play!

(Pg 44 Four single pages, framed. Scenic Route and Bazzill Basics)
-page scans not so great!-

And on that note... look out for regular updates for Live, Scrap, Play! just 3 short weeks away...


Monday, September 01, 2008


Rainbow colours....

Photo: Flickr

Happy Spring Day, South Africa and the southern hemisphere! Love the warmer weather.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Play! Time

A quick reminder... All bookings for Live, Scrap, Play! can either be made at each of the individual stores or simply by downloading the booking forms from the Live, Scrap, Play! site here. All details are on the booking forms.

I am really excited to have just seen the paper that will be part of the project - thanks to Scenic Route, our awesome sponsor. Check out the great colours of the Sonoma range here.

Have a great weekend.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


... so excited to confirm details of Live, Scrap, Play! 2008

Come and Play! with Stephanie Ackerman, special guest at Live, Scrap, Play! in conjunction with Scrapbooking for Hope.

So thrilled to welcome The Scrapping Studio, Scrapbook Emporium, Beautiful Scrapbooks and Scrapachinos as hosts of this year's events.

Contact the host stores for additional information. Download booking forms here.

Saturday, 11 October
The Scrapping Studio - Boksburg
Tel: 011 913 4498
Click to download
booking form

Thursday, 16 October
Scrapbook Emporium - Fourways
Tel: 011 465 9349
Click to download
booking form

Friday, 17 October
Saturday, 18 October

Beautiful Scrapbooks - Benoni
Tel: 011 425 4817
Click to download
booking form

Saturday, 18 October
Scrapachinos - Boskruin
Tel: 011 792 9326
Click to download
booking form

Live, Scrap, Play! is a charity event in conjunction with Scrapbooking for Hope. Funds raised will go to Reach 4 Recovery in support of breast cancer awareness.

Looking forward to having you play with us again.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

It's another Wednesday....

In all the stress that = life, I often come across such words of wisdom that are so perfect for the moment...
Photo: Spioenkop Dam

As soon as this week is over... it will be back to updates of this year's Live, Scrap, Play! events.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Remembering to....

the week of blur becomes a haze!

I fun poll sent to me by the Polka Dot Chicks - you're only allowed to answer with ONE word.

1. Where is your cell phone? DESK
2. Where is your significant other? WORK
3. Your hair? DARK
4. Your mother? LOVELY
5. Your father? PRECIOUS
6. Your favourite thing? SUNSHINE
7. Your dream last night? GREAT
8. Your dream/goal? REST
9. The room you're in? STUDY
10. Your hobby? SCRAPBOOKING
11. Your fear? LOSS
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? RETIRED
13. Where were you last night? STUDIO
14. What you're not? ANGRY
16. One of your wish list items? PRAGUE
17. Where you grew up? BENONI
18. The last thing you did? WRITING
19. What are you wearing? JEANS
21. Your pet? NONE
22. Your computer? ON
23. Your mood? CONTEMPLATIVE
24. Missing someone? YES
25. Your car? SILVER
26. Something you're not wearing? NAILPOLISH
27. Favourite store? MICHAELS
28. Your summer? COMING
29. Love someone? ABSOLUTELY
30. Your favourite colour? GREEN
31. When is the last time you laughed? EARLIER
32. Last time you cried? WEEKEND

Have fun!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

It's Wednesday (again)...

...the week has been a bit of a blur, and the next probably won't be too much clearer - publication deadlines for T&A are looming yet again!

Ever wish you had a filing system that looked like this for your current 'to-do' lists ?!

So... this Wednesday's {3} Wise Words come from my special guest at Live, Scrap, Play! and an awesomely talented friend Stephanie.

You need to check out her new "My Family Doodle".

Stephanie will design for you, a 5x7" (13x18cm) doodle with your family's names on it.

Now local SA girls... this is where you get lucky! Because Stephanie is coming to South Africa, THIS is your opportunity to place an order and have it personally hand delivered by the designer!! (if you're coming to a Live, Scrap, Play! event that is).

Today, the simply complicated gal even has a teeny, tiny, little sneak peek on her blog. Something she's working on for the projects she'll be teaching in Johannesburg at various scrapbook stores from 11-18 October.

Other exciting news - one of my favourite companies - Scenic Route Paper Co is sponsoring product for Live, Scrap, Play! Check out their fabulous new paper ranges just launched at CHA.

There are so many ways for scrapbookers / wholesalers / retailers to get involved in this year's charity event. Leave a comment here, or email for more info. I will keep updating details of classes, sponsors and projects right here!

P.S. Live, Scrap, Play! is supporting Scrapbooking for Hope this year - with funds going to Reach for Recovery.


Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Photo: 10 Oct 2007

Not exactly weekly 'wise words', just my thoughts as they are today....

(Miss you little boy...)


Monday, July 28, 2008

What colour is your Monday?

yes, those are my feet! And no, I am not wearing odd socks - just a little mismatched that's all!
I love wearing these (from the fabulous company Little Miss Matched) it's a little hidden secret. Nobody has ever said anything to me, I doubt they'd know what to say!
Love the colour combo - it sure beats that proverbial "blue Monday". Check this out for more missmatched color wheel inspiration.
The My Freedom prompts are about creativity this week. Who wouldn't feel just a little creative wearing these?
On my desk today is an amazing machine - the RX690 which the awesome people at Epson have lent to me to play with. It can do some amazing stuff with photos and I have been fiddling around with some possibilities.... an article for Time & About, a class for Live, Scrap, Play! and a step-by-step right here. Just need to fine tune my experiments a bit first.
So thanks to Epson and Eprofile who are awesome sponsors for my event again this year, such a fabulous company to work with. And these great scrapbooking stores who have already confirmed that they will be hosting classes: Scrapbook Emporium, Fourways; Scrapachinos, Boskruin; The Scrapping Studio, Boksburg. I'll keep updating with additional info.
I also got to chat with Stephanie today about the projects and products she'll be using. She is really excited about coming to teach and her first visit to South Africa.
Live life in full colour!
P.S. I have no idea why blogger is messing up my spacing. Not good for a straight-lined, graphic, editorially affected person like me!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Wise words....

Photo: Sabie River, Jan 2008

Good old big mouth - remember that Chomp chocolate TV advert from waaay back?!

So on that playful note... there are lots of behind the scenes preparations for this year's exciting scrapbook events - there will be Live, Scrap, Play! with Lara (you can read more about on the Polka Dot Chicks blog or here), and we're pulling in my Scrapbooking for Hope to raise funds for breast cancer awareness.

So local girls, get your stores excited about hosting an event (12-18 October) with the talented Stephanie Ackerman. You can check out some of her creativity here and here and here.

We're so excited to be hosting this creative 'simply complicated' gal!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Circle of life...

A week of introspection... influenced by, amongst other things, exploring inspiration and aspirations as prompts in the My Freedom class.

These two photos are pinned on the wall to my left along with wall art that reads "Life!".

Yes, this is my life...

I see these photos everyday. Perhaps I consider this an idea of the 'older' me looking at the younger me. How much has happened in between those two instances- that's 30 something years - the thing called life!

How many times have you wished to turn back the clock?
How often do you wonder what could have been?
Given the chance, what would you change?

With these thoughts, here's a page layout idea: create a timeline of your life with an old photo and a current photo of yourself. You'll be amazed at how many memories will begin to surface. Perhaps leading to ideas for other layouts you'd like to create.

Have a great weekend