Life Reset Button?

Can I just let the whole world know I have NO CLUE what I want to be when I grow up.


This empty-nest thing, (yes, it’s A THING!), is really tough.  If you are younger than 50, I know you are not interested in this subject, but you should be.  In the past, I NEVER listened to women who were of this age and what they were dealing with.  Darnit!  I was too busy to listen to them complain about all their FREE time.  I could only dream of all the fun things I wanted to do when I could finally be released from the trenches of the daily JOB.  As a teacher, my colleagues and I were counting the years to FREEDOM.  Freedom to pursue our interests on our own time.  Well, here I am.  Free.  Free to do whatever I want within my confines of a household and finite amount of money.

I’m not complaining by the way.  For me, it’s staying committed to a project that is so hard.  I have all the time in the world right now, but I lose my focus easily.  I bounce from one thing to the next.  At times I get very creative and so focused I can’t see the forest for the trees.  I look up and my entire creative room looks like it blew up.  I have such a mess I can hardly function.  It’s a vicious cycle.  Clean up, get organized, create, get buried in the mess, repeat.

Now this brings me to the feeling of needing a RESET button.  Several month ago, I launched a YouTube channel because I decided I could share my cardmaking to promote my independent business as a Stampin’ Up consultant.  It was fun and exhilarating to be on that path of learning something new.  But then Life happened and I lost my enthusiasm for it all.  I don’t identify myself as a Stampin’ Up consultant and I don’t want to work to be at the top of the heap in that company.  Sigh.

I like creating.  I like making cards and scrapbook pages. These photos are my latest creations.

I like working on digital scrapbook pages to be made into a hardbound book.  Oh, and if you need a great class to get you started with digital scrapbooking for a nice book, I highly recommend Cathy Zielske’s “Scrapbook Your Year” self-paced class. You can find her here. I like sorting photos.  I like sharing with other people how to get their photos organized and in a safe place for posterity. I want to encourage you to check out the only PERMANENT online storage for photos and other media.  It is the best thing since ice cream!  You can take a look here at the FOREVER site. I also enjoy other mixed media projects like art journals, and canvas work.  It all fascinates me.  I find great joy when I’ve completed a project.  Granted, those long-term projects are tough since I have a tendency to put them on a shelf for months at a time.

It’s hard not being on a schedule and so loosey-goosey with my projects.  Maybe a JOB would be easier?  Tell me your story of being an empty-nester and how you are handling your time.  Oh, and just for the record, I’m not one to go out and volunteer.  Yes, I’d rather stay home after all those years of being “on” a job. This last meme is how I feel.  Yeah, Retired.




There’s always a learning curve in new ventures.  Recently, I’ve been learning more about the world of direct sales through ©Stampin’ Up!  It’s ©Stampin’ Up’s 30th Anniversary this year and I’m awe of the quality products.  In April I was fortunate to attend the “ON STAGE” event in Fort Worth, Texas.IMG_6866

Seeing ordinary people getting recognized for growing their direct-sales business was electrifying. Those who presented and walked the stage for an outstanding achievement makes me realize that it is all in reach.  I’m not talking about movie star people walking that stage!  These ladies have what I want and they figured it out.  My biggest take away is NOT that they have a special personality or gift, but that they have a “stick to it” attitude.  They have paid their dues per se.  And yes, some now have huge businesses with a glowing on-line presence; but, it’s not what got them to where they are today.  These ladies did the work.  They had the gatherings in their homes.  They hosted classes in their communities. They stuck with what they knew and that my friend is getting out there in front of people to show them how rewarding it is to watch others create beautiful handmade cards.  That’s it my friends.  That was my biggest take away from “ON STAGE.”  But you know what? I’m going to stick this one out and keep doing the little things to build this little business. After all, I LOVE creating cards and giving them away!


These ladies give me energy and a strong will to succeed in the direct-sales world.  You can visit their blogs —  Kristina Rees, Creating with Kristina and Francine Wilson, Stampscrapgo

Speaking of creating, here’s some of the cards I’ve created using the latest Paper Pumpkin subscription kit.


The subscription kit for May is called “Manly Moments” just in time to get those Father’s Day cards ready!  Everything you need comes in the kit and it’s such a great deal.  Only $19.95 a month and that includes shipping!!! This kit makes 20 cards! Yep, 20 cards and they come with coordinating envelopes.  Check out how to get your Paper Pumpkin kit by going Here-My Paper Pumpkin

Here’s a SNEAK preview of the coming JUNE kit.  Sign up before June 10th to get your JUNE kit!File May 25, 10 22 19 AM

If creating cards is even remotely an interest that intrigues you, please consider becoming a ©Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator.  I’m a new to this, but having a blast learning the ropes.  Let me be your encourager.  I would love for you to walk this journey with me.  And who knows!  You could be walking that stage with me next year.

Go HERE to be my first ©Stampin’ Up! Downline.  Ha! That’s direct-sales speak!  Yeah, that learning curve.  Ya’ gotta start somewhere!!!

Cloud Storage BEST EVER!

Holy Toledo!  OK, don’t mind me, I’ve been away for a good bit because I had some surgery.  Now I’m feeling better and ready to share my passion.  If you follow me, you know I have many passions so this time I want to talk CLOUD storage.

Why is this a passion for me?  Because I’m a memory keeper/ scrapbooking enthusiast and love photos.  I’m also learning more and more about genealogy.

In the world of CLOUD storage, not all are the same.  It’s quite a convenience to upload blindly into these clouds until you read their TERMS of SERVICE.  Yikes!  Did you know some companies will own your content?  Yes, you heard me right.  Is that really where you want to have your most precious memoires and generational photos?  Not me!

I want them in a SAFE place.  Most people think the safest place is to upload photos to a web-based company and have a backup on external hard drives.  At least that’s how I USE to handle all my media. Trained professionals will tell you to have your photos and media backed up in 3 different locations, preferably one be off-site, like a friend or family in another place.  Yeah, I get it.  But do you know how hard that is to do?  It is OVERWHELMING!  And then if you’re anything like me, every time I’m looking for a photo I have so many places to look.  I know, I know….workflow.  Get a plan and stick to it. Well, easier said than done.  And that’s just the problem with it all.  It’s NOT easy or we wouldn’t be ignoring the problem in the first place. solves this issue for me. is a permanent CLOUD storage where all your media is in ONE place with no need to worry about hard drives, flash drives, cd’s and extra back ups.  Oh thank you FOREVER for making things simpler.

We all need life to be simpler.  We want to know all are most precious documents and photos are SAFE and not being shared with a third party or being hacked into by creeps out there.

Go sign up for a FREE account at and learn how easy this system of collecting, curating and sharing of your photos can be with peace of mind.  It’s like buying insurance for your photos.  Stop paying rent to drop box, google and many other clouds out there.  Read the terms of agreement.  You will be shocked how they cannot protect your photos.

I’d love for you to see my one YouTube video.  Ha!  I tried!

Pretty Paper and a Sketch

I love working with photos in my Forever storage account.  It makes my scrapbooking so easy!  I recently joined a scrapbooking kit club where once a month a box of goodies comes straight to my home.  Here are my goodies from HipKitClubJune kit  After looking through all the pretty papers my next step is to find a photo or two or three to work with for my scrapbook page.  I opened my Library in Forever and chose a recent photo of my husband and me at a baseball game in May.  Since I’ve become a member of Forever I have slowly been gathering all our photos and uploading them to my private Forever account.  If you would like to peruse Forever, go here: Forever 

The early years of our marriage I’m in very few of the photos unless it was a very special event.  I was behind the camera in the early years.  Can you relate?!  Now with the iPhone’s we take selfies so I’m getting more of the two of us together.  Technology is awesome!

I chose my photo, downloaded it, then printed it on my home printer.  The next step was to find inspiration.  I saw the most recent scrapbook pages on Instagram from  Stuck?!Sketches I wanted to give it a whirl.  I went to work on the sketch design by Laura Whitaker17498821_10154297868476039_3277204505362502742_n

As I continued to work I felt happier and happier.  It was coming together like a dream.  The papers from HipKitClub and the sketch from Stuck?!Sketches helped me produce this page. File Jun 18, 3 02 34 PM I’m very pleased with it.  Let me know what you think of it.

Thanks for looking.



Photos in albums are good.  Photos with stories attached are priceless.

Whether you’re a traditional scrapbooker using tape-runners, glue, and lots of embellishments or if you’re a digital scrapbooker, you will want to get in on the FUN!  LOAD517 will be starting May 1st and it’s open to anyone who loves a challenge.

I belong to a wonderful online community of likeminded scrap bookers who are keepers of memories.  This community can be found here at

Three times a year we have a month-long challenge of scrapbooking a “lay-out a day,” hence the acronym LOAD.  Our fearless leader, Alice Boll of has put together another brilliant theme to help us all go deeper into our photos to find stories we can’t wait to share. We will take the ‘Legends of Hollywood’ Movie theme to dig deep into our own stories.LOAD517-promo-image-crop  Curious?  All I can say is every LOAD I’ve participated in has produced some of my best stories ever.

Please go here! if you are curious in the least.  Use coupon code “ACTION15” to save $15 before Saturday, April 22. The layout a day challenge starts May 1

I’ll be sharing some of my stories and page creations here too.  Hope to see you on the Flickr message boards!

Jeanette Collins

photos, photos everywhere…

Hey everyone.  So glad you stopped by to take a look.  I am a scrapbooker and have many friends in the scrapbooking world.  Most of us have 100’s maybe thousands of printed photos that we are still archiving and doing our best to tell the important stories of our pasts.  In the meantime, with everyone able to snap a photo every minute of day we are suddenly drowning in digital photos that we’ve tried to make sense of on our current devices.  Back in the old days we took a photo on film, had it developed and had a set amount of photos to hold our precious memories. Then generation by generation we passed the albums or boxes of old photos for someone else to manage.  Sound familiar?

Well, today it’s so different.  We have thousands of photos on so many devices it’s hard to know where to begin IF you wanted to save them for posterity. How are we deciding which photos to save and which to toss? Does anyone ever hit their delete button much?  Where are those vacation photos from 2012 anyhow?  Are they on an old laptop or external hard drive or maybe a flash-drive?  Possibly those photos are on a Cd or DVD?  What about all those old family movies we took with our gigantic VHS video recorders?  And the 35mm video tapes stored in the corner of your closet?  Oh!  And don’t forget the slides grandpa use to show every Thanksgiving of his hunting trips!  Where are they and HOW do we pass these down? It’s a messy photo world out there.

So do you have a plan for all your photos and media?  Seriously now.  I would love to hear where you have most of your family media.  Let’s start a conversation.  Keep it clean, please.  I’m a retired school teacher–wink, wink.