Well, I finally managed to do it, to come up with the FINAL theme for my blog. I have been unhappy with it for some time. I tried many, many different themes, searched them for hours, and tried to find the perfect one, but it just wasn’t coming together. I asked friends for help, and a couple really did try their hand at it, but alas, my dream was not achievable. But then, I discovered this wonderful thing called the Blogger Template designer, and I fell in love.

Don’t be surprised if a few things change here and there. I may swap around some colors for text, try my hand at inserting a bit of clip art into the mix, but really, I’m just trying to perfect the blog. The background image and the general color scheme, and my title image will not change, those are finalized, but I may decide to play around with other things a bit. I love how I was able to choose my own size for the blog (you use this really cool dragging tool to make the blog and sidebar sizes exactly how you want!), and I think I’ll be able to sneak in some clip-art into the sidebar things, and make it totally my own.

I am also going to be designing a button for my blog, so that all of you who do read it, and want to link back, can! I’ve never really done anything like that before, so I’m going to probably make a muck of it, but hey, I’m no graphic artist, and I’m definitely not tech-savvy. It’ll have to do.

And because I know I’m going to catch a little hell if I don’t mention it, today is my birthday. No, I won’t tell you how old I am (suffice to say that for some of you, it’s going to sound very young, and for others, very old. I’m content with my age, not ashamed of it at all, but for some reason, even in this assertion, I really can’t hack comments about my age. People who call me young make me angry, and people who call me old make me feel queer inside. Just take a wild guess, but don’t expect me to confirm or deny any of them). I don’t really care for my birthdays because in the past, they haven’t always been kind to me. When I was in grade school, I rarely had birthday parties with children and cakes and games, because well, I was born in July. They were all on vacation. And I didn’t have many friends (I was the outcast). When I married and up-and-moved to the States, my birthdays continued to get even more miserable. They ranged from being neglected and almost entirely forgotten, with crappy, thoughtless, last-minute gifts from my ex-husband (Lesbian-themed dvd’s and clothes I wouldn’t wear if someone paid me), to spending it entirely listening to my ex whine about the condition of his ear-ache, and not getting thanked once for having to endure it, and not even getting a “happy birthday” uttered until he came out to the living room at 1am to get mad at me for not coming to bed, and me replying I could fall asleep on the couch on my birthday if I wanted to, then him replying with a sarcastic “happy birthday” and storming off.

The first birthday I had after I left my ex was 2 years ago, and I cried at work. Then I tried to put on a happy face because my paternal grandmother and uncle were coming over for dinner. I did get three very sensational presents – a digital camera, an expansion pack for the Sims 2 (another addiction), and a spa gift card, but when I planned to go out dancing with friends a couple days later, well, everyone bailed on me. I took a lonely taxi drive (pretty darned tipsy too) and cried again.

Last year was a decided improvement. Everyone kept quiet at work – mostly because none of them knew it was happening. My lovely beau Neil made me cupcakes, but we had to eat them fresh out of the fridge, because he iced them with cream cheese icing, and in July, well, that equals a melting blue-icing mess in about 2 minutes unless they are kept chilled. I don’t remember what he gave me for my birthday, except I think maybe one of the presents was a copy of Sense and Sensibility in the edition I wanted from indigo.ca. I think my parents gave me yarn (always a good choice).

This year, I am undecided. I go back and forth between being happy that it was my birthday and I got a spinning wheel for it, and depressed. Then I think about the fact that I get to dictate which take-out I want for dinner tonight and get happy, and then I remember that I might have to endure an encore of “Happy Birthday” and I get blue again. I think about my blessings, and I feel lifted, then I think about the miserable days like this past and I get angry. I have turned instead to a new obsession to keep me from going as mad as a march hare with all this yo-yo emotion-ing. Art Journaling.

I first learned about the concept from a Tranquility Du Jour podcast, and then visited the links from the show notes, and was floored. The links to the two blogs are on the side, Click on the Journaling e-course to see the blog and learn more. It sparked my creativity like never before, and of course, I had to get started the next day. I pulled out scrapbooking supplies, my journal, pens, scissors, and glue and all sorts of things and cranked out several pages in just one day. Here’s a few pictures of my favorites.

artjournal1 artjournal2

artjournal3

Are you as intrigued as I am? I highly recommend Hope’s e-course, at least for giving you excellent ideas on how to make journals like hers, as well as lots of useful tips on supplies, sources, and where to find inspiration. My inspiration bit me hard on the ass. Now visit her blog and look at her pictures and feel that bite too.

Alright, enough sappy blogging for me. I’m on to more art journaling, and stuffing my face with pitas and hummus (the newest pregnancy craving). Au revoir! And yes, I know, bonne fette a moi. (grumble, grumble and possibly butchered French).

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