Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The sky is falling

I went to see Skyfall today and it was wonderful. I rarely go to see movies in the theater, maybe two to three times a year and its got to be something I've been waiting for. With Harry Potter and the Twilight Saga being done (although technically Twilight is not done for me yet since BD2 comes to theaters here on December 28th), the only movies I am waiting anxiously for now are Catching Fire and Mocking Jay from The Hunger Games.

Some foreign movies are released nearly the same time here as they are in their home country, but some we have to wait several months for. Almost all of the Twilight movies and The Hunger Games I waited for 6 unbearable months after American release. This trend really confounds me. Its just another aspect of my life where I have to intentionally push down my own desires and just wait patiently for these things to come. Living overseas but still expecting an American life usually only leads to frustration.

One of the best things about watching movies in the theaters here, however, is that you can take in your own food and drink. Yes, they have concession stands selling slightly overpriced (no where near American prices) popcorn, snacks and soft drinks. Most theaters here also have gourmet drinks (gourmet being Starbucks and the like). But many patrons, including myself, opt to buy a bottled water or softdrink from 7-11 before entering the cinema. I've even brought in my dinner from McDonald's before and its perfectly acceptable. I love that freedom. Theaters are clean and comfortable. I've even watched a movie in a reclining seat with foot rest before - standard for that particular theater.

One thing that used to bother me about watching foreign movies here was the intense and immediate replay of culture shock I experienced afterwards. I would get so involved in my two hours of English speaking heros and heroines, action scenes and car chases down the streets of London and San Francisco, that when the movie finished and I stepped out of the theater - back into the streets of Chinese written characters (kanji) along the streets of Tokyo, I would feel disoriented and lost for a few minutes. As the years have passed here I experience that post-movie culture shock a bit less now.

The passing of time makes some things a bit less shocking, easier to swallow and get on with life again. But it does make a few things harder too. Such as seeing how quickly my children grow and change. Learning to let go, ever so slowly yet knowing all the while that one day I will be alone again. That is how life is supposed to be. Empty nests. But I think I'm in for an entirely new kind of culture shock when the does happen.

My family and I usually only take a family photo once a year, just in time for the holidays. Sometimes we would drive far for a day outing, and sometimes we would just take the photo in the comfort of our living room. This year, we went to a nearby park where the leaves were in their glorious second spring. These photo taking sessions used to be a little bit fun - at least we could all stand close together and - if needed - tickle a smile out of the kids. My daughter is now a teenager and had no interest in taking photos with the old family. She'll smile and pose for hours at the photo-booths with her friends. But it was quite an adventure getting her to put down her cell phone and snap a few shots with mom, dad and little brother. In the end, we did take a few good ones though. Snap 150 photos and the likelihood that you get two or three goods ones increases.

This is a page that I made using one of those photos. My husband likes this photo the best because of the huge colorful tree behind us. But if I were to use this one on a Christmas postcard our faces would be smaller than a dime. Not so good if we want to show how happy we are to friends and family around the world in our annual card. So I will choose one of the other ones - one of the closer up ones.

 all papers and most elements from Journey by Etc by Danyale
dried vines from Old Garden also by Etc by Danyale

It's December, time for all the designers to break out this year's holiday scrapping designs. Since I don't have Christmas photos from this year yet I have been using photos from Christmases past. This one is of my babes from Christmas 2006. See how much they have grown since then. Time passing.

all papers and elements from Rustic Christmas by 2:00 a.m. Designs
guest designer at TDC this month.

I've finally remembered that its 2012, and here it will be 2013 in less than a month. No wonder I can't seem to keep up. Six years have passed in what feels like two, and this past one year has passed in what feels like six months.

My One Little Word for 2012 was Move. This was the first year that I have chosen a word. In the past I've made resolutions for myself - very specific goals. I can't remember achieving a single one. This year, focusing on just my one word, I believe I was successful. My goals were to MOVE myself - artistically, physically, spiritually, and in my work (would you say workfully?).

This is the page I made at the beginning of this year.

most papers and elements from The Daily Details by The Digichick Designers
some elements also from Emporium and Shutterbug both by The Digichick Designers

I made this page for the November 2102 Artisan Notebook about Scrapbooking Memes. Now, that was one I definitely had to look up. What in the world was a meme and were there any that related to specifically to scrapbooking? This is what I came up with - OLW.

all papers and elements from Kaleidoscope Kit and 

And just in case you can't read the tiny journaling - and would like to - here you go.

"Over the past several years, every January, I've heard talk around the scrapbooking community about One Little Word, otherwise called OLW. I'd read discussions in the forums about what everyone's OLW would be for that year. I had no idea what it was all about.

I used to make resolutions each new year - that come March or April would already be broken. I had good intentions, desire to change my life for the better, but would always make too many plans that were too wide sweeping, disconnected. I was setting myself up to fail from the outset.

2012. Enter One Little Word. Once I understood what it was all about, it sounded much easier to keep just one "resolution" that would encompass all of my goals.  I decided to give it a try.

I wanted to increase my physical activity. I wanted to re-energize my work situation. I wanted to deepen my friendships and kick-start my creativity. I wanted to move several areas of my life from one level to the next. So I chose MOVE as my OLW for this year.

Now, in just about any situation where I feel stuck or I know needs a change, I just repeat the word "Move." I focus on my OLW and try to apply it in nearly every area of my life. I feel good about the progress I've made over this past year. I haven't achieved every goal I would have liked, but by keeping with my One Little Word I feel more focused and more able to make the changes I need."

Okay. Enough for today, I'll be back soon. If you've made it this far I thank you.