29 August 2006

American Cancer Society Charity Kit & Crop

One of my fellow designers at SOTB, Amy, aka Doodleboogs Designs, has been organizing a huge charity kit and crop to benefit the American Cancer Society this past month. She originally started by making one kit that she named Cynthia after her mother-in-law who was diagnosed with brain cancer this past June. All proceeds of this kit are currently being donated to the ACS. When she shared this kit with the rest of the SOTB designers, she found that many designers had loved ones who had been affected by cancer and were willing to come together to create a Mega Kit. As this is an issue very near and dear to my heart as my mother passed in August of 1999 from brain cancer after being diagnosed only three months earlier, I created these embellishments to coordinate with ACS Mega Kit which is now available in the SOTB store along with a set of Jiffy Scraps and 2007 calendar pages that are all gorgeous, if I do say so myself - LOL! And 100% of the proceeds are being donated directly to the American Cancer Society.

As I am "the ad girl" @ SOTB - LOL, I was asked if I would create a graphic to advertise the kit and the crop that is going to be held on September 23rd. The graphic below is what I came up with using various pieces of the kit. It will be featured in the September 1st issue of the Digi Shop Talk newsletter and will also be used to advertise the kit and event through the various Yahoo Groups.

So, if you have a moment, please go and check out these gorgeous designs for a great cause! And you won't want to miss the crops on Saturday the 23rd of September where tons of goodies from all around the digi scrapping community will be given out. It is really amazing how caring and giving all of the designers and store owners are at all of the various sites!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

26 August 2006

Pampered Pets Crop

I have been busily designing my Pampered Pets Crop Kit for the past three days, and I hope to turn it into a full-fledged kit in the near future to use to scrap our fur babies. So join me this afternoon, August 16th at 3 PM, EASTERN for my Papered Pets crop! We'll crop with my fun and FREE Pampered Pets crop kit (shown below).

Please download it prior to the start of the crop using the link provided below. Additionally, all scrappers who post a layout in the Pampered Pets Grand Re-Opening Crop gallery using the crop kit by Sunday, August 27th @ 12 AM, EASTERN (midnight) will receive a special posting bonus that coordinates with the crop kit and the full Pampered Pets kit, but is not found in either!

Click XXXX to download the crop kit. And, please note, the password to unzip crop kit will only be provided at the crop; thereafter the full kit will have to be purchased in the store. Hope to see you at the crop!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

25 August 2006

Fourth "Friday Fiver"

Seeing as there was no Friday Fiver last week, I was happy to see that there was on posted as scheduled today. The nerve of some people going on vacation – LOL! Here is what was posted on this week's Friday Fiver and my responses:
1. Name your favorite ... candy.
This is an easy one for sure, and anyone who knows me would be able to tell you this – dark chocolate … and the darker the better!
2. Name your favorite ... cookie.
That’s really a toss up for me. There are two flavors of Girl Scout cookies I have loved ever since I was in elementary school and sold them myself when I was a brownie. Yes, I was a brownie – don’t laugh! My two favorites are Thin Mints and Samoas (which I now think they have changed the name of them to be Caramel Delights so it is more “politically correct”).
3. Name your favorite ... donut.
Surprisingly enough, I’m not all that big a fan of donuts. I would much prefer a muffin or coffee roll, but if I had to choose a donut, I would choose one of the powdered jelly filled ones.
4. Name your favorite ... cold drink.
My favorite cold drink would have to be iced coffee. Now, I know that may seem weird to a lot of people – LOL. I remember when I first moved down to Florida about 8 years ago, very few places served or even knew what iced coffee was, and I received many strange looks when requesting it at restaurants. It’s quite popular in New England where I grew up, and now at least the chain coffee shops like Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks serve it.
5. Name your favorite ... hot beverage.
My favorite hot drink would have to be hot coffee. Can you sense a trend? I am a coffee addict basically – LOL! I guess if that’s the worst habit I have I’m doing okay. That trait definitely comes from my mother who we used to joke would drink coffee by the pot instead of by the cup.

So, there you have it ... my fourth "Friday Fiver" for you! Now, I have to upload my crop kit for my “Pampered Pets” crop tomorrow at 3Scrapateers that is part of the big Grand Re-Opening Celebration! I hadn’t been feeling up to designing until the middle of the week, so I just finished my preview for the crop kit today. I’ll post more on my crop tomorrow morning!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

18 August 2006

Summer Reading & Glossy Glitter Alpha

Well, I did it again! I over did during the previous two weeks, and now this week, I have been feeling just horrible. My Dad sent me this little guy via e-mail, and I just thought he so represented how I have been feeling. Whenever I don't get enough sleep/don't sleep well, or if am stressed from trying to keep up with everything, or if I do too much cleaning around the house (I am a perfectionist remember, so I like to keep this immaculate - LOL), I ended up getting a fibromyalgia flare-up. Those things are all triggers for me. So, for those of you that don't know what it's like when that happens, basically my whole body just aches, and I am so exhausted that I'm not able to do much other than just lay in bed. Sometimes, even finding a comfortable position is hard. It's really frustrating when you are used to doing three things at a time. I did recently buy some new pain relieving gel called Biofreeze (recommended to me by a physical therapist), and it has worked so much better than any of the other types of topical creams and gels I've tried i.e. Icy Hot, BenGay, etc. Generally one of the worst things that happens is my hands cramp up as if I had arthritis, but this gel works wonders on them so at least I can type - even if it is from bed! It was somewhat hard to find though. They don't carry it in any of our local stores or pharmacies, so I had to order it on-line from The Bodyworks Mall. I ordered it Tuesday and received it this morning, so it was delivered pretty quickly. So, even after a week of this, I'm still not feeling 100%, but at least I'm feeling a bit less like the little coffee guy and more like a human - LOL! Seeing as I was feeling a little bit better, I was going to post this week's Friday Fiver and my answers, but the person who posts it is away on vacation this week, so there isn't one :( So, I am disappointed as I was looking forward to it, but I figured I might as well try to do something productive as long as I have the energy. I ended up working on uploading a new kit and alpha that I have had finished for a while but hadn't had the chance to upload to my stores.

I started working on this new kit, called Summer Reading, back in June and have worked on it on and off until recently. The inspiration for it came from our 11-year old nephew, Donald. He has been struggling in school for the past two years now, and is reading below grade-level. His parents aren’t how shall we say … very big on doing things with him that have educational value … so my husband and I try to whenever we get the chance like reading both to him and with him as much as possible. We also try to impress upon him the importance of doing well in school, and staying in school. Neither his mother nor his father finished high school, and no one in my husband’s family has been able to convince either of them to get a GED despite the fact that it would set an excellent example for their son … it’s just so very frustrating, because we want the best for him … but I digress! So, getting back to the kit, I started by designing a mini version of this kit to be placed in the
SOTB Summer Destinations MEGA Kit, but then I had an idea that perhaps if I made Donald a book of fun but educational things to do using a bright and fun kit that maybe it may encourage him to do some “work” over the summer. So I designed the full Summer Reading Kit - now available at Digitals , Digital Freebies , and ScrapOutsideTheBox to use to complete this book for him.

I think, overall, this kit turned out to be really bright and fun like I was aiming for, but I did find that while I was making the book, I needed an alpha to make titles for the various sections - vocabulary/spelling, reading, science experiments (which he loves ... a kid after my own heart!), etc. Out of that need, my Glossy Glitter Alpha sets were born! They, too, are also available at Digitals , Digital Freebies , and ScrapOutsideTheBox. As I used the same color palette for my Summer Reading kit that I used for my Cool in the Pool kit (which you can read about and snag a goodie from HERE in a previous blog post), the Glossy Glitter alpha also coordinates with that kit as well :)

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

11 August 2006

Third "Friday Fiver"

I'm certainly doing the happy dance that it's Friday! Aside from everything going on with my DOTB week and crop, I've also had two doctor's appointments and have been helping Jason prepare a large power point presentation for his standardization week that's held before the start of each semester at F.I.T. So, as it's Friday, here is what was posted on this week's Friday Fiver and my responses:
1. Do you work hard or do you take the easy way out?
I have been a hard worker since as far back as I can remember. I am a perfectionist to the nth-order so whenever I do something I don't quit until I am absolutely happy with it.
2. How's your day going?
Aside from being tired and sore from everything that's been going on lately, everthing is going well and as planned :)
3. How many pairs of shoes do you own?
The number of pairs of shoes I own compared to the number of shoes I actually wear is quite a spread! I own about 40 pairs of shoes which I used to wear most of when I was teaching full-time and had to dress-up each day and for school functions as well. I wear about 3 pair now - LOL - my Teevas, a pair of brown seude flip flops, and a pair of Clarke's sandals. In the winter I'll also wear a pair of Nike running shoes that I have, but even then I just generally wear my Tevas with a pair of socks, because it stays pretty mild here in FL in the winter.
4. Are you a lefty or a righty?
A righty, BUT I do have a peculiar way of writing ... or so I am told. Instead of holding my pen/pencil between my thumb and first two fingers (resting the pen/pencil on the middle finger) like "normal" people do, I hold my pen/pencil between my thumb and first three fingers (resting on on my ring finger)!
5. What's the last song that you listened to?
Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol

So, there you have it ... my third "Friday Fiver" for you. I'm going to skip sharing this week's ads I created, I need to relax - LOL ... it's been a long week!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

09 August 2006

Evergreen Tapestry Kit & Crop

I have been busily designing my Designer out of the Box featured kit and corresponding crop kit this for the past three days, and I think that is my favorite design yet! So join me this Thursday afternoon, August 9th at 3 PM, EASTERN for my designer out of the box crop! We'll crop with my fun and FREE crop kit taken from my Evergreen Tapestry Kit now available at Digitals, Digital Freebies, and SOTB.

And, shown below, is the crop kit that we will be using at this afternoon's crop. Please download it prior to the start of the crop using the link provided below. Additionally, all scrappers who post a layout in the gallery using the crop kit by Saturday, August 12th @ 12 AM, EASTERN (midnight) will receive a special posting bonus that coordinates with the crop kit and the full Evergreen Tapestry kit, but is not found in either!

Click XXXX to download the crop kit. And, please note, the password to unzip crop kit will only be provided at the crop; thereafter the full kit will have to purchased in the store. Hope to see you at the crop!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

06 August 2006

I’m Designer out of the Box!

I have some exciting news to share that I thought simply required a blog post! Every other week at SOTB a designer is the featured designer a.k.a. "Designer out of the Box", and starting today - it's me! Here is the blurb that the DOTB coordinator, Mary Ellen Kordik, wrote up to introduce me:

Jennifer Maceyunas is our Designer Out of the Box for the week of August 6th to the 12th.

Be sure to attend her special crop on Wednesday August 9th at 2:00 pm Eastern time. Jen will have a free mini kit taken from her soon to be released “Evergreen Tapestry” kit for those who attend the crop as well as a posting bonus for those who create and post a layout using the crop kit. You’ll find a link for the crop kit in the Come Crop With Us section of the Forums.

When asked how long she has been scrapping and digital scrapping Jen had this to say, “For as long as I can remember, I've always taken lots of photos and organized them into albums, but it wasn't until I was invited to my first crop in the fall of 2000 that I actually started scrapbooking. At that first crop I completed three layouts of my orange tabby, Marmalade, and I fell in love with scrapbooking. But, it wasn't until the end of 2004 when I received Photoshop as a gift that I uncovered my true love of digiscrapping. Being a computer geek at heart, I jumped right in and began completing all of the on-line Photoshop tutorials that I could find and was soon creating my own layouts. While I still enjoy paper scrapping from time to time, I definitely am a more productive digiscrapper, and my husband appreciates that there's no mess to clean up!”

Jen started designing kits for her own use as soon as she started using Photoshop. She fell in love with the whole process! Due to a back injury, she was forced to stop teaching Chemistry full-time and with her friends encouraging her to pursue selling her designs the transition to becoming a designer seemed a perfect fit. Jen started selling designs at Scrap Outside the Box in February of 2005.

Jen resides on the east coast of Florida with her husband of five years, Jason, and their many “fur babies”. They have 15 in all - 3 basset hounds, a yellow lab, an orange tabby cat, 2 prairie dogs, 3 sugar gliders, a flying squirrel, a bunny, and (Jen’s personal favorite) a skunk. In her spare time, in addition to scrapping, Jen enjoys spending time with her husband, reading, going to the movies, and playing with their pets.

Jen’s design style is very eclectic. Her designs range from shabby to cutesy to elegant depending on what strikes her when she is designing. She loves to experiment with different brushes, textures and filters when creating papers and elements for her kits. Jen also enjoys drawing (both on paper and digitally with her tablet), so she tries to include her own hand-drawn graphics in many of her kits as well.

When asked what she is most passionate about in scrapping, Jen said this, “I am most passionate about creating pages that are true to my style ... several of my scrapping friends call me a "rebel" because of this - LOL. I don't ever worry about what the current trends are when I scrap; I simply use whatever colors, techniques, and/or embellishments I feel go with the pictures on the page no matter if they are "in" or not. I also don't fret about adding journaling to every page; sometimes I add journaling, and sometimes I simply use a quote that I feel expresses the emotions or situations depicted in the photos that I am scrapping.”

Jen has grown to love graphic design so much that she is now taking courses towards an AS degree in Graphic Design. This will allow her to both expand her designing skills and get involved in more traditional areas of graphic design doing freelance work.

Jen has a wonderful variety of digital kits in her store and you will find many treasures there to add to your scrapbooking pleasure! You’ll want to be sure to check out Jen’s store the week of August 6th through the 12th when she’ll be having 20% off all of her products and 50% off her Jen’s Classic Cropping Creations Clearance Pack which is going to be discontinued on August 13th.

So I am just tickled pink to be the designer out of the box this week, and hope to see as many scrappers at my crop as possible!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~

04 August 2006

Second "Friday Fiver"

Sheesh! I can't believe it's already Friday again! The beginning of the month is always super busy for me, hence no blogging this past week. I have been working to finish up all my scrapping commintments at my various sites, finishing up my August MEGA kit and charity kit contributions that are due this coming week, and also creating a sketch for my Sketchy Details Challenge at Digitals . And I am also Designer Out of the Box at SOTB starting on Sunday, 08/06, thru the 13th. I'll be having a crop on Wednesday, August 9th at 3:00 PM, EASTERN to celebrate the event where we'll be cropping with a kit composed of pieces of my soon to be released Evergreen Tapestry kit. More news on the crop and crop kit to come next week!

So without further ado, let me get to this week's Friday Fiver. Here is what was posted for today, and my answers:
1. When is the last time your phone rang in the middle of the night?
I can't remember, so I guess that's a good thing as I always associate a call in the middle of the night with bad news or an emergency of some sort.
2. Who makes you yell?
Definitely our yellow lab mix Bailey! Let me back up by saying that we were in the market for a medium-sized dog, and we decided on Bailey, because we were told that he would only get to about 60 pounds. Well, he ended up being 95 pounds ... not exactly a medium-sized dog - LOL! Don't get me wrong, he's a really sweet dog, and I love the big oaf ... but he just doesn't know his own size. He knocks over everything in his path with his big tail that wags non-stop and whenever you pet him, he has to put his paw on your arm (nearly breaking it off). And if that wasn't bad enough, he's hyper as heck and barks at everything and anything he sees or hears outside despite us trying to train him not to since he was a puppy. So, he really gets my goat sometimes and he get yelled at ... especially when I am trying to work, and the house is all nice and quiet, and he starts in on one of his barking fits that nearly gives me a heart attack - LOL!
3. What do you do for fun?
Scrapbook, of course! And now that I've switched to entirely digital I get to do it more often, because there're no huge mess to clean up afterwards. In addition to scrapping, I also like to read all kinds of books, go to the movies, and spend time with my husband and pets.
4. What hours do you work/go to school?
I don't really have any set hours that I work, because I work from home. I generally work whenever I'm feeling up to it, and whenever I am not doing household chores, taking care of the animals, or going to various doctor's appointments.
5. Who is number one in your life?
My husband Jason is number one in my life. While he drives me nuts sometimes as I'm sure all husbands do, he's a great guy who is always supportive and loving even despite all the challenges that we've faced in the past three years with all of my health problems.
So, there you have it ... my second "Friday Fiver" for you!

And, as it is Friday, I also have my weekly ads to share! First, on Wednesday, I created the SOTB Weekly Newsletter Ad using a kit called At the Ballpark by Dragonfly Graphics. The realistic graphics in this kit were really cool to work with, and I hope to be able to get some time to scrap the photos I took on my husband's birthday when we drove to Tampa Bay to watch his hometown Yankees play the Devil Rays.
And today I designed the Friday ad for Digitals. We've decided to continue with the stock-photo style, and Stacey found this funky computer stock photo for me to use. I recolored portions purple (the original was orange) to match with the Digitals flower logo, and then I worked really hard to find a font that would be easy to read but would look like something that would be displayed on a computer monitor. I also tried to manipulate the text so that it had the same perspective as the monitor so it looked like it was actually on the screen. That was a learning experience for sure - LOL - but I think it came out okay in the end. Thanks for looking, and, as always constructive criticism/feedback on my ads is always welcome!

So for now . . . Happy Scrapping!
~ Jen ~