A Note from Brit

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I have now moved over to my own domain for more room to grow, so make sure to check my new site and blog out at brittaswiderski.com. :)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

It's time to get crafty. :)

Today's a crafty day for me so I'll have pretty things to share with you for the next couple of days. I have some things in the works right now that I'm ridiculously excited for, but you're going to have to wait to hear about those. Hehe. I have a couple layouts to share, but first I'd like to remind you that today is release day over at Studio Calico!
Isn't the main kit lovely? I also got the Santa Cruz add-on at the subscriber pre-order. This month is going to be soooo much fun to scrap with. I also picked up a few goodies; I can't wait to play. The DT gallery go up and the kits go on sale to non-subscribers at midnight ET. I can't wait to see all of what the DT's cooked up this month. They're all geniuses, I tell ya.

Here are two more layouts I made using the On the Easel kit. It's my favorite ever.
 These alphas are from the Elk Lake add-on from August. Love them!
 I cut out different pieces of the die cut paper from the On the Easel kit as accents. I love the intricate look of the paper!
 This tape is from PrettyTape, and I added Peeled Paint distress ink to make the colors match perfectly.
 These fab letters are from Jenni Bowlin Studios. They were the perfect finishing touch for the date.

 Supplies: Kits- Studio Calico (On the Easel and Elk Lake), Cardstock- Kraft, Brown Pen- ZIG, Circle Punch- EK Success, Nestabilities- Spellbinders (Circle Large), Button- Papertrey Ink, Thread- DMC, Border Punch- Scalloped Sentiment, Ink- Ranger (Antique Linen, Vintage Photo, Peeled Paint, Crushed Olive, Shabby Shutters), Letter Stickers- Jenni Bowlin Studios, Washi Tape- PrettyTape on Etsy.

This next layout is about all of the "strange" things (to me!) that I encountered in Australia. I want to have a mini page next to it in my scrapbook explaining all of the things, but I don't have that part written up yet. I'll update that when I get it finished.
 This is using a lot of the SC paper from September. It's soooo beautiful.

Supplies: Kit- Studio Calico (On the Easel), Cardstock- Papertrey Ink (Vintage Cream) and Bazzill (Kraft), "weird" letters- My Mind's Eye (Summer Camp Kit), Thickers- American Crafts ("different"), "not","just" and numbers- October Afternoon, Border Punch- Scalloped Sentiment, Black Marker- Copic, Corner Rounder- WRMK, Ink- Ranger (Tumbled Glass, Shabby Shutters, Antique Linen, and Vintage Photo), Circle Punch- EK Success.

Off to go create some pretty things with goodies I haven't used yet. I'm excited! I'm just finishing watching Rocky Horror Picture Show in an effort to understand the Glee episode from last night. And uh... jury's still out on that one. I know why I didn't get to watch this until I was in college now. Haha.

Thanks for all the love. Love you all just as much. :)


P.S.- I'm editing this to add the journaling page that I made tonight to go with the Not Weird, Just Different layout. Here's how it sits in my scrapbook:
It's just a 5.5" by 11" page in a page protector that has been altered to fit. Therefore you can lift it to see the whole layout unobstructed. :)
And look below to see the full journaling text. It's a long one, but it contains a lot of memories from my trip. :) Feel free to skip past it if you don't feel like reading it!

knew Australia was going to be different, but I didn’t really understand what culture shock was until I went through it. From talking to Sara on Skype and hearing stories of random things that happened throughout her day, I understood that things were different in Australia- people say different phrases than Americans do, they drive on the left side of the street, and they have amazingly interesting accents. The photographs on this page represent some of the “not weird, but different” (as Sara’s orientation leader would say) things that I got to know about Australia.

1. “Keep Left”: I didn’t know how hard this really would be. My entire life as an American, I was taught that you always walked on the right side of the sidewalk, drove on the right side of the road, and rode on the right escalator. Everything is upside-down in Australia. I had no idea how difficult it would be to ignore my instinct to walk on the right side. I almost ran into so many unsuspecting people and almost walked up the wrong escalator so many times. It was so funny any awkward at the same time.

2. American clothing: The first time Sara and I went shopping, I got a really nice couple of compliments on my American Eagle t-shirt that I bought for about 15 dollars in the states. After walking through a couple of American clothing stores, however, I knew why. My shirt would’ve cost about a hundred dollars there! We saw some crazy prices, like $150 dollars for an Aeropostale sweatshirt or $185 for a pair of Lee jeans that you could easily find for $25 in the US. Crazy! The nice part about clothing there was that they were going into winter, so all of their summer clothing was on clearance. I bought a hole bunch of cute summer shirts on clearance because I was headed back home where it was soon to be summer. Lovely!

3. Vegemite: an Australian staple that one of Sara’s roommates ate every morning on toast, this was my first time to try it. And my last. It’s salty and a weird color. I was happy to try it, but next time I’ll be happy to pass.

4. Koalas: When we went to the zoo, I got to see a lot of animals for the first time next to little kids who had seen these “exotic” animals many times before. I must’ve looked so ridiculous freaking out about petting a kangaroo for the first time. “Look! Oh my gosh! It’s really a kangaroo!”

5. The plants and animals in general were not only “weird”, but mesmerizing. Growing up with my mom having a beautiful garden, I’ve always looked around at plants. It was a wonderful experience to see plants from the other side of the globe, like this huge aloe-like tree. These were all over, along with all other sorts of amusing trees. And don’t even get me started on the birds. The “mer” birds and the “robot” birds were my personal favorites. They have so much more personality than our boring American birds.

6. Colourful Australia: spelling adjectives with a “u” in them was something I got used to very quickly. When I got home, I felt like everyone was spelling it wrong. I also am now able to fully tell the difference between Australian and British accents and can imitate both relatively well. (Okay... so not that well, but way better than I could before.)

The feeling towards Americans in general that I felt from the people there was surprisingly welcoming. Since most of the movies they watch are American, they’re very familiar with our accent, and I was told on several separate occasions that I “sound exactly like a movie star!” It’s crazy to think that people there were just as interested in me being an American as I was in them being Australian or British. We seemed to run into a lot of British people there. One Brit asked me if I could spare a piece of gum, and when I gave it to her, she said “ohhhh! Is this some crazy American gum?!” It totally made my night.

There were moments when an Australian person and I would just plainly not be able to communicate. It’s crazy that we were both speaking “correct” English, but Sara had to translate for us on more than a couple of occasions. There was one incident while ordering pizza with an automated system where it simply would not understand my American accent. Sara, Adam, and I had to call about three times before we finally got it right. We were laughing so hard we were crying. 

Watching television was also a unique experience. The rules on censorship are much more lenient there; no swear words are beeped out like they are in the states. It was refreshing to watch reality shows and not have to listen to the incessant beeping; it’s almost as if bleeping it out adds extra attention to the fact that they’re saying something “wrong”. The morning shows were also hilarious. Australians tend to have a lot more of an awkward sense of humor, so oftentimes they would say awkward things or do something really strange on the morning news and brush it of as if it weren’t a big deal. I, on the other hand, was incredibly amused. 

And don’t even get me started about the guys. Accents. Surfers. Accents. Always plaid shirts when then go out. Sigh... Well, it was very nice talking to them. And looking at them. And using our accents as conversation starters. No big deal. :)

Australia was a life-altering and amazing experience. I didn’t realize there would be so many differences until I was the foreigner. My adventure definitely gave me a whole new outlook on how Americans look to other countries, and what a foreigner feels like when they come to visit our country. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I will truly always remember.


Christiana said...

Your layouts are beautiful, Brit! And so fun! I loved reading about your Australian adventure! I've never been to Australia, but now you've really piqued in me a desire to go.

I've lived in Honduras, Germany, and West Africa, and I've been a few more places -- next on my list is London.

Don't you just adore people with accents? Luckily, I married myself a German guy, and I never get tired of listening to him talk. ;o)

Laurie said...

Gorgeous layouts!