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100 Jars of Love
The entire Scrap Girls team wants to say how grateful we are that you have chosen to participate with us. You'll never know just how much your support means to us and our families.
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IMPORTANT TO KNOW
Don't forget to check out the Retirement Sale section of the Boutique. Items in this section are always on sale for 30% off. The items you will find during any particular month will be discontinued permanently on the 5th of the following month. So if you see something you like, grab it while you can!
OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOU
Customer Muses: Would you like to share your own Life Muse with our readers? To have your own essay considered for publication as a muse in the column for our special Saturday newsletter, send your essay to email@example.com. If your essay is selected, you will receive a $20 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique.
Way Cool Scrap Girl: We are so excited to have all of you meet some of the amazing people that have become Scrap Girls! If you would like to be spotlighted and win a $25 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique, send the following items to firstname.lastname@example.org:
Project SG Challenge: Stay motivated to scrap your current photos! Post your 2011 layouts in the Project SG Challenge Gallery to earn one point per layout each month. You can earn up to four points per month this way! Earn a bonus point each month by attending the monthly Project SG Chat! Each point gives you an entry into a quarterly drawing for a special prize! And at the end of the year, each month that you participated in will earn you an entry into the Grand Prize drawing for a 12 X 12, 52 page Keepsakes photobook from Color, Inc! Our fourth quarterly drawing winner will be announced in the Saturday, January 7th Newsletter.
Suggest a Challenge, Win a Prize! Have a great idea for a Gallery layout challenge? Submit it to email@example.com. If your challenge idea is chosen, you will win a prize! Friday will be Customer Challenge Day, so keep an eye out on the Message Board calendar. It will be fun to see what YOU come up with for us to do!
Scrap Girls is giving away birthday gifts to our Message Board members!
Of course, it is a surprise what you will get because birthday presents are always surprises! But you will like it for sure because most people like money.... Anyway, make sure your Message Board email address is current and that you have the correct date entered into your profile to participate.
12 Days of Christmas
Welcome to one of Scrap Girls' most cherished traditions - the 12 Days of Christmas newsletter celebration! We've been hosting this celebration since the beginning of Scrap Girls back in 2005. Back then, I was putting the newsletter together when I suddenly noticed that Christmas Eve was 12 days away.
Now, a 12-day event is something I love best about Christmas.
In some areas of the United States, people enjoy picking out a family in their neighborhood that they can secretly give little gifts to as a way of celebrating how grateful they are for the birth of Jesus Christ. Every evening after dark, some lucky person in the gift-giving family sneaks up to their target's front porch, deposits that day's gift, rings the doorbell, and takes off running with all their might. A successful 12-day campaign means that the receiving family never knows who has showered them with love.
Because I hadn't planned it out, the first Scrap Girls 12 Days of Christmas event was pretty simple - consisting of some extra freebies, a daily Christmas muse by me (this is when muses first appeared in the newsletter), and some neat layouts and samples. Angie Briggs quickly noticed that I needed a little help with this project – because, as I said, it was not pre-planned - and she started feeding me extra layouts for the newsletters. I'll always love her for that. She saved my bacon!
The second year (2006), without thinking through the ramifications of what it would mean for future celebrations, I decided to surprise our readers with a 12-part serial story. You know... like Charles Dickens used to write. (I'm a little nuts sometimes.) That first story – The Flight of Christmas - took me months to write and remains my favorite one to this day. (I have now written five serial stories for this annual event.)
The specially-designed set of 12 Days Embellishments first made their appearance in 2007. The games - including the Infamous Tree of Doom - made their debut in 2008.
So, as you can see, the 12 Days of Christmas event grew from me having a desire to share a little extra holiday spirit with you into an event that takes our team months to prepare for. We keep it going because it's just one small way we can let you know how grateful we are for you and your support of our company. When you refer your friends to us and share what we are doing, you help keep Scrap Girls going. Every time you shop with us, you help us maintain our Forum, our Gallery, our newsletters, our blog, and every other service we offer you. And, of course, you help us to be able to continue to provide you with the free daily downloads that you all enjoy so much!
We need you. We understand that completely. We want you to know that our team members and their families are sublimely grateful for you each and every time you choose Scrap Girls to be your source for the beautiful digital scrapbooking supplies you need to make your layouts and projects. Every time you make a purchase in our Boutique, you make a HUGE difference in many, many lives. You help keep this small business going!
This year's 12 Days of Christmas stories come from our readers who submitted them when we put out a call for amazing stories related to the holidays. Every day from now through Dec 24, you'll read a new story that will make you laugh heartily, think deeply, and maybe blink back a tear or two. We received lots of amazing stories and had a hard time picking just 12!
So here we go! This is the 2011 Scrap Girls 12 Days of Christmas event. I hope you have fun!
100 Jars of Love
My mom loved to read and to serve others. She combined these two joys, and the result has touched the lives of over 100 families across the country. It started when she read the book Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright. She immediately decided to start her own Christmas Jar and faithfully deposited her change each day. Two jars were filled and, as per the Christmas Jar tradition, those jars were delivered anonymously to families in need. The next year she filled more jars and enlisted her family in starting their own jars.
In 2009, just before Thanksgiving, she was diagnosed with Stage IV Lung Cancer. She had no risk factors, but instead of asking "Why me?," she maintained her happy attitude and looked for ways to serve others. At this time, she already had two jars filled, but she wasn't content with that. As family and friends asked what they could do to help, instead of bringing food to her, she asked that they start Christmas Jars. She even provided empty jars to get them started. We posted information on her CaringBridge.org site (listed under PatsyShipp) where others across the country and around the world went for updates. She asked everyone she talked to if they would start their own Christmas Jar.
I designed a label to be downloaded and placed on a jar. One day, my dad called and told me to come quickly. When I arrived, my mom was sobbing uncontrollably. When I asked if she was okay, she showed me a note she had received with a check for $100 to "help fill a Christmas Jar." This happened day after day as word of her love of Christmas Jars spread. It was simply the power of one woman, touching lives which resulted in making a difference in the lives of others.
In mid-December, we personally delivered her four jars. She was so excited to know over 25 Christmas Jars were filled in just one month, instead of the usual year, in her honor, and that those jars would be delivered to those in need.
But she wasn't done yet! The first of January, she decided that she wanted everyone to start Christmas Jars for 2010! She gave labels or jars to family that visited from out of town, friends, hospice workers, and everyone she saw. By January, she knew her time was drawing short but wanted the Christmas Jar tradition to continue. We had exhausted our supply of jars, so we needed to order more jars. When they arrived, a few days before she died, her family tied ribbons on 72 jars.
You see, her final request was that we would have Christmas Jars for those at her funeral to take home and start filling for 2010. All 72 jars, plus many more labels, were put in the hands of family, friends, doctors, nurses, and all those whose lives she touched. At the end of 2010, over 100 jars were delivered across the country with the simple label, "Christmas Jar."
This tradition lives on, and this year, even more jars have been added and more hearts touched.
- Laura Lewis
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Photo Brackets and ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Butterfly Shadows 6301 Mini are also available.
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Drop Shadows 11701 Super Biggie are also available.
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Textables - Dogs Mini, ScrapSimple Tools - Lightroom Presets: Classic Black and White 10301 and ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Ragamuffin Glitter 8501 are also available.
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Card Templates: Christmas Photo and ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Butterfly Shadows 6301 Mini are also available.
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Vintage Newsprint 6301, Brush Set: Painted and ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Butterfly Shadows 6301 Mini are also available.
If you have praise, comments, or questions for any of our Product Designers or Layout Artists, did you know you can send them a PM (private message) using the Message Board? It's easy!
If you are a registered user of the Message Board, just click on the "PM" box at the bottom of any of their posts to send them a message. Or, to check out more of your favorite designer's layouts, visit the Scrap Girls Design Team section of the Layout Gallery.
Join the ScrapSimple Monthly Club and you can enjoy the newest ScrapSimple looks while saving! (A $13.95 value for $6.99 or less!)
The new ScrapSimple Club contents are released on the 15th day of the month (or the closest business day to the 15th).
A commercially licensed version of the ScrapSimple Club is also available here.
With the ScrapSimple Club, you will receive:
Layout by Melissa Renfro
using December's ScrapSimple Club
Layout by Laura Louie
using December's ScrapSimple Club
Layout by Melissa Renfro
using December's ScrapSimple Club
Focus on Journaling
Note: Tutorial created using Photoshop Elements 9.0 with Windows Vista
Why do we scrapbook? I believe there are many reasons, and each of us has our own answer to that question. But I think one important aspect of scrapbooking that we all share is the desire to preserve our memories and to tell our life story through pictures and journaling.
I don't believe pictures alone can tell a story. There are times when a picture can tell us a lot, but most of the time it can't shed light into the most important details of a certain event or time in our life. That is why journaling is so important. It can add that extra information into our life that a photo just can't.
For many of us, journaling is the hardest part of scrapbooking, and many of us forget it. Journaling doesn't always have to be elaborate. Sometimes a picture does share a story, and simple journaling such as location or date can complete a memory. But then there are other times when the meaning behind a photo needs to be explained to share the importance of why that photo was taken or why that moment in time was so special. These are the times when our journaling is much more important than the photo or the pretty embellishments on a scrapbook page.
If you have photos that you want to scrapbook with and these photos have an important story or memory associated with them, why put off journaling till the end? Why not write your journaling first? Sometimes when we wait till the end, there isn't much room for our journaling. And if we focus on our journaling, we can usually give sufficient space to the story.
I used this technique with a couple of photos of my sister and a slice of birthday cake. To an individual, this event may look like a simple birthday party, but the event was much more intimate then that. My sister was the birth mother of the little girl who was celebrating her second birthday. This was the first time my sister saw her daughter after placing her for adoption. The little girl wanted the piece of cake with her name on it, and with a little extra thought, her father gave my sister a piece of cake with the word "birth" on it. This was a gentle act of kindness that I was able to witness. It was a sweet token of acknowledgment of the gift my sister had given him and his wife. After looking through my photos, I realized this was a story I wanted to document and remember. It was a story that a photo could tell by itself.
I opened a word document and typed by my journaling for my series of photos that I wanted to scrap. I like to use Microsoft Word because I am a horrible speller, and I need the help of spell-check. I also like to read over my journaling a few times before playing with fonts and sizes in Photoshop Elements.
Once I was happy with my journaling, I thought of different ways to make my journaling stand out and still get several photos on a page. I thought a photo cluster would be the answer. And I decided to use one of the photo spaces for my journaling and accent it with a special frame.
Now all I need to do is add some embellishments, and my memory of this special occasion is complete.
Next time you are ready to scrap a few photos, think back on the event and decide what kind of journaling is needed to tell the complete story. If the photos aren't enough, take some time to focus on the journaling and making your story really stand out. Memories only last so long in our minds before the details start to get hazy. I challenge you to get those important life moments in writing.
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Postage Due Cluster Frames are also available.
Article written by Jennifer Wight
Learn to make digital scrapbooking layouts and more! – Scrapbook Software Secrets Revealed
Ready to learn advanced techniques? – MORE Scrapbook Software Secrets Revealed
Surprise! Surprise! More Gifts Galore!
We have TWO designer freebies for you each day until Christmas Eve!
Commercial license versions of ScrapSimple Type Paths: Christmas, ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Cardstock 6301 - Primary and ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Butterfly Shadows 6301 Mini are also available.
Today's freebie designed by Syndee Nuckles
Today's freebie designed by Angie Briggs
* There is a "free download" button on the details page for each gift. You don't need to put them in your shopping cart unless you are shopping for other items. Also note that if you are slow reading your newsletter, you may find this freebie has already been retired, as the freebies are only available as gifts for about two newsletter cycles.
Heritage Crop and Chat
Thursday, December 15th - 6:00PM MST
Do you have boxes of heritage photos just waiting to be restored and scrapped? Are there family stories just waiting for you to write down and preserve? Then this is the crop for you! Join April (April Showers) and Carla (CRS) at 6pm MT for the Heritage Crop and Chat! We'll help you get motivated to scrap those heritage photos and record your family stories for future generations to enjoy.
What's New in the Scrap Girls Boutique Chat
Friday, December 16th - 9:00AM MST
Join April (April Showers) and Theresa (teecee) at 9am MT on Friday mornings to chat about all the wonderful new products in the Scrap Girls Boutique! What are your favorite new items? Is your shopping basket full? What did you kaboodle? Have you already done layouts or other projects with your new goodies? Come tell the designers how much you love their work! You never know who will show up. There's a thread every Thursday, and now there's a chat too!
Swap Crop Chat
Saturday, December 17th - 6:00PM MST
It's time for the Swap Crop Chat with Lei (Bride) and Carla (CRS)! We've done the swapping and created the layouts; now it's time to chat about all the gorgeous layouts! I don't know what it is, but these swaps bring out the best in everyone. This is the time to chat about the theme, the beautiful layouts and learn about the swap crop if you haven't participated before. We'll brainstorm a theme for next month, too! If you haven't done so, you can check out past swaps in the Swap Crop Gallery!
ScrapSimple Club Chat
Monday, December 19th - 6:00PM MST
Join April (April Showers) and Shannon (tinkerbell11) on Monday, December 19th at 6pm MT for a chat and challenge using this month's ScrapSimple Club. Did you know that every time you create a layout with the current ScrapSimple Club and upload it into the ScrapSimple Club Gallery that your page could be chosen to be featured in the Newsletter and receive a prize? Join us for the chat so we can encourage and inspire you and help with any questions that you may have. Let's get those ScrapSimple Club layouts done and uploaded!
New Member Chat - Early Edition
Tuesday, December 20th - 1:00PM MST
Life Moments Chat
Tuesday, December 20th - 2:00PM MST
The Life Moments Challenge is about encouraging YOU to do an album about YOU! On the day of the chat, Pat will post the theme for the chat on the Message Board. You can do your layout before, during or after the chat. There are no deadlines! Join Pat (PBarnes) in the chat room at 2pm MT to talk about the theme and creating a digital album about yourself.
Faith Journey Chat
Tuesday, December 20th - 6:00PM MST
Join Elisha (elibar) and Lei (Bride) for a Faith Journey Chat on the third Tuesday of each month at 6pm MT. All faiths are welcome! We'll be chatting and scrapping about our individual faith walk and how we also walk together. Watch the message board for this month's topic of discussion, and if you like - create a layout based on the topic!
December Message Board Game: BINGO!
Join us for an exciting game of BINGO on the Scrap Girls Forum during the month of December!! Pick 25 words from the list provided and send them in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with a subject line that says "BINGO CARD - your Scrap Girls Message Board username" by Friday December 2 (Midnight MST) in order to play in the first round. The first round will begin on Saturday, December 3rd. If you miss the first round deadline, you can still play! Just send in your BINGO card at any time during the month, and you'll be eligible to begin playing when the next new round starts.
Each day (Monday through Saturday), a member of the Welcoming Committee will call five random words from the BINGO list. Match just 15 of those words to win a BINGO. You must be first to call "BINGO!" in the game thread to win that round. After a winner is called, the boards will be cleared and a new round will begin the following day.
Each winner will receive a $5 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique! We like to see lots of winners, so please remember that each person can only win one round during the month. Have fun!
For complete details, visit the Monthly Message Board Games folder on the Scrap Girls Forum.
December Monthly Layout Contest: For the December Monthly Layout Contest, it's all about the gifts! Scrap a layout about a gift that was extra special, either one you gave or received. Or you can scrap about something or someone you consider to be a gift in your life. Share with us what makes that gift special! Post your layouts in the December Monthly Layout Gallery before Midnight MST on December 31st. Be sure to list your credits in the description or under the EXIF Properties. Two layouts will be selected to win a $10 Gift Card to the Scrap Girls Boutique!
Club Concepts Layout Contest: Post your new layout using the current club selection (either the Scrap Girls Club or the ScrapSimple Club) in our Scrap Girls Club Members Gallery or the ScrapSimple Club Members' Gallery. Be sure to list all of the Scrap Girls products you used. If your layout is chosen, it will be showcased as a Club Concepts layout winner, and you will win a $5 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique!
Check our message board calendar if you have any questions about what is happening at Scrap Girls. All event times are given in Mountain Time Zone unless otherwise noted. Need help converting time zones? Check out the World Clock - Time Zone Converter. (Use 'USA-Utah-Salt Lake City' as the location for the Mountain time zone.)
Haven't received your prize as a contest winner? Please send an email to email@example.com and we'll get it out to you right away!
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