Tag Archives: fun

Scrapbooking for Beginners!

 

Scrapbooking for Beginners!

 

When it comes to the arts & crafts/hobby world, there is one that has climbed the charts of popularity over the past few years. Scrapbooking calls out to a variety of people who, let’s face it, are truly sick and tired of cellphones clicking away, yet never producing PAPER copies of your grandchild’s photos. I realize that these electronic photos are simpler to use as backgrounds on laptops and backgrounds on the cellphones themselves, but they take away from the grandmother who wants to carry those PAPER copies in her purse to show off to others. But…I digress.

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Scrapbooking also appeals to all those out there who love to create and color, draw, and put together books on “topics” that are special to them. But, how do you begin that art of scrapbooking so that you can start making the perfect Christmas presents for everyone you love? That’s easy enough.

 

First, we talk about supplies. This is not an overly pricey hobby (although it can be for those who wish to go grand when it comes to weddings, etc.). For the basic scrapbook, supplies include: card stock and/or patterned paper, acid-free adhesive which could be tape or liquid, embellishments or stickers that coincide with the topic you choose, sharp scissors, your photos that you wish to include, page protectors, and the album, itself. Hobby Lobby is a fantastic store to find all kinds of these supplies.

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Now…how to choose a topic for your scrapbook? There are millions of topics you can go with. You just have to remember that the art of scrapbooking is basically telling a story to others, so think about the moments or events in your life that you would like to share. And you don’t have to “go big” when choosing your topic. Such as, you do not have to put together a huge scrapbook of your life with your mate. Start small: trips, moments or memories you wish to treasure, things like that. And if you find that telling a ‘story’ is too hard, just pick a specific theme such as, a kid’s graduation, a birthday, or even a pet scrapbook that’s all about your love for the four-legged creature in your life.

 

When it comes to the size of a scrapbook, the two most popular formats are 12”x12” and 8.5”x11”. There are so many varieties of albums and papers that are already cut to these sizes, but keep in mind that a twelve-by-twelve layout will give you more space to add text, stickers, and other embellishments to a page with a picture that’s already 8.5 x 11”.

 

There is also no law, by the way, that you have to “go big” in this area either. There are mini scrapbooking albums that are a whole lot of fun to use. All the way down to a 4” x 4”. There are also albums that are round, rectangular, triangular – you name it, they’re out there.

 

Now, it is time to choose those perfect photos of yours. For this step, try to remember that less is more. The scrapbooking pages themselves will be lovely, colorful and most likely will already come with embellishments, so there is no need to include every photo you have on hand. Take the absolute favorites so that your scrapbook will end up being 100% meaningful to you. Choose the photos with the best lighting and focus and add more than just the smiley-faced ones. In other words, when choosing to do a scrapbook of that new grandchild, include shots or drawn pictures of the little baby hands and feet, a shot of their first Christmas, their favorite toy, etc. But make sure to save photos for the next project.

 

Why? Because, just as it is with that precious grandchild, one scrapbook will never be enough!

 

Source:  GIG News

 

 

Discovering the Walipini Greenhouse

The Green Underground

~ Samantha Lewis

Greenhouses are a lot of fun for both the homeowner and grower out there. They look unique, they serve a huge purpose when it comes to ecology, growing food, maintaining flowers, using solar energy to increase growth, and helping to save the soil. In fact, the list of benefits a greenhouse brings to both you and the world is a really long one. But green is not only for aboveground. In fact, underground greenhouses are becoming all the rage, and are super cool to build.

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When it comes to cold climates, there are growers who utilize all types of greenhouses to increase the time of their growing seasons and boost the crops they need to produce. There are coldframes, hoop houses—tons of choices where greenhouses are concerned. But, as with anything else, money comes into play.

 

The mammoth structures that most are familiar with when thinking about greenhouses are usually extremely costly to build; not to mention, the high costs of attempting to keep the structures heated when Old Man Winter comes along. But one of the most popular greenhouses that takes care of the worries, completely affordable and extremely beneficial, is called a Walipini, which comes from the Aymara Indian word for a “place of warmth.” THIS is the underground greenhouse.

 

It was over two decades ago in a truly freezing cold region of South America, that the underground greenhouse came to be a part of everyday life. Up in the mountains, the underground greenhouse was a huge resource that allowed growers to have a productive garden all year long, no matter how many feet of snow fell on them.

 

And building your own Walipini is a whole lot of fun. By taking the resources that nature and the earth already provide, the underground greenhouse provides a warm, well-lit and completely stable environment to produce vegetables. And to begin construction, all that needs to be done is to locate a growing area 6’- 8’ underground that can capture daytime solar radiation and store it.

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A rectangular hole in the ground dug 6’ to 8’ deep is covered by plastic sheeting, with the longest area of the rectangle facing toward the winter sun. Using a thick wall of packed earth at the back of the building, a lower wall is created at the front; with one short and the other high, a perfect angle is made for the plastic sheet roof that seals the hole in the ground, and provides an insulating airspace between the two layers of plastic. The two layers come from a sheet on the top and another on the bottom of the roof/poles, which allow the rays of the sun to penetrate and create that warm and stable environment to always have plant growth.

 

It is not a far out idea. After all, the earth is a true greenhouse already, and the grower can tap into the thermal mass of the earth by growing in an underground greenhouse. Less energy is needed to keep the Walipini’s interior heated, which saves massive bucks, instead of attempting to heat that aboveground greenhouse and watching your savings account decline rapidly. Waterproofing, drainage, and ventilation – these are the three things to keep in mind when building the Walipini, so make sure it is properly aligned with the sun while building to avoid any problems later on.

 

For anyone who is interested in bringing the idea to their own backyard, Walipini field models, as well as construction manuals, can be found from various places on the Internet. A place called the Benson Institute even has a 20-foot by 74-foot Walipini field model located in La Paz – a total cost of less than $300 to create.

 

Kind to the wallet and extremely efficient, it doesn’t take long to realize that the Walipini is the only way to grow.

Source: Baret News Wire