Thursday, July 31, 2014


So I’ve been playing around on another blog of mine these past few days. It’s an old blog that I turned into a snail mail/pen pal blog to give it new content. It’s called And Along The Way. I’m not sure if I’m going to keep at it, but it’s been interesting. I’m sort of making an experiment out of it. I didn’t want to bombard this site with all of my snail mail stuff (I’ve been doing that on Tumblr), so I felt I needed a place to experiment with all my letter writings. I’m trying to be more creative with the letters and mini parcels I send out to my pen pals. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m curating bits and pieces of ephemera more than creating those bits and pieces. It’s become a bit tedious really and sending things to your pen pals shouldn’t feel like that. So I decided to challenge myself and be more creative with my letters. So far so good! I’ve got about two letters I’m playing around with, but I really wanted to share my little greeting card booklet.

After playing around with greeting cards to create little folders out of them, I decided to try making them into little booklets. I figured this would be a cooler, more compact way of writing my letters to my pen pals as well as putting in little treats for them like Project Life cards, small pictures and stickers, etc. This booklet was fairly easy to make and looks super cute. Forgive me while I try my best to explain how I made it.

A Few Things You’ll Need

  • A greeting card. You can use any size you want. I’m just going to use a small card.
  • Paper: scrapbook paper, lined paper, graph paper, kraft paper…any kind of paper you want.
  • Some embroidery thread. Any color you wish.
  • A needle
  • Scissors or paper trimmer
  • A ruler

First things first, gather all your supplies. Once you’ve done that, grab your scrapbook papers and cut them to the size of the open greeting card. You’re going to fold these pieces of paper into the greeting card to create a booklet, so make sure you make the width of the pieces a little shorter so that they don’t end up sticking out when you fold them all into the card. I used various bits of paper I had lying around. Some patterned scrapbook paper, old book paper and some graph paper. You’re going to use this booklet to write your letter to your pen pal, so whatever paper you use be sure you’re able to write clearly on it. I’m going to scrapbook in my booklet, so I’ll be adding little pictures and such to it. I haven’t filled up this booklet yet, but hopefully it’ll all fit in the envelope. If not, I can always put it into a bigger envelope!

Once you’ve got your desired amount of pages, use your needle and poke two or three holes through the middle of the spine of the card and through the spines of the folded pages you want to add. Take your thread and make a simple bind. Tie a knot and trim the remaining thread or leave it as is. I left a bit of thread hanging lose on the outside just because I liked the way it looked.

I jazzed my booklet up a bit by adding a little folder pocket on the back. I basically did the same thing I did in the create a greeting card folder post, so that I can add a few bits and pieces of things I’d like to send. I also taped a Project Life card to the front inside cover, so that I can use that bit as a mail tag and have it right there, the first thing that my pen pall will see. I will write my letter on the pages of this booklet a little later on. I just wanted to show you how my finished booklet looks.

I definitely encourage you to play around with this. It’s a really fun little project and it makes your letters so different! I’m quite glad that I’m beginning to challenge myself with these small projects. Writing letters and sending mail should look and be fun. And I’m trying to find that fun again.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Hey guys! I just wanted to share some more awesome Instagramers that I follow! As you know, I’m really into scrapbooking and there are so many scrapbookers out there that use Instagram as a platform to share their work. I follow plenty of them, but I just wanted to share a few of my favorites. What with summer now at full speed, I think these accounts are perfect for the season, as they are always so bright and summery looking! Each one of these ladies are awesome. Be sure to check them out and their blogs.



  • stephanie bryan – I found Stephanie’s blog through Studio Calico. I love her layouts and her mini books are definitely worth checking her blog out! I love the brightness of her photos and the pastel colors of her layouts, Project Life spreads and mini books. I think I have a thing for the use to white and bright pastel colors in scrapbooking. It’s very subtle, but it’s so aesthetically pleasing! Definitely worth checking her Instagram and blog out!



  • magdamiz - Again, I found Magda’s blog through Studio Calico. Much like with Stephanie, I love the way Magda uses white as her base and then builds in the bright pastel colors to all of her layouts and spreads. Both have similar aesthetics and I’m just so attracted to that. Magda’s Instagram feed is stunning though! Very clean and minimal. Lots of white, which I love!



  • blinks of life – I discovered blinks of life a long time ago–like way before I really got into scrapbooking. I might have been on Pinterest looking through the Smash book tag when I came across a pin from the blog. I absolutely love her style! Her Smash books are always so neat and pretty, and her Project Life spreads are stunning! I love all the subtle pastel colors! I can’t wait until she puts her site back up. Definitely worth checking out when she does.


Follow ariestrash on Instagram!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


If there was one bit of advice that my mother gave me when I was younger that has resonated within me for years it’s that you only ever need just one good friend in your life. Just one. And I guess I have lived my life by that rule. Since I was a kid I was always alone. I wasn’t a loner, but I didn’t have many friends. Sure in elementary school I was nice and well acquainted with all of my classmates, but there really were only about six of them that I ever invited to my house for play dates. Those were my good friends. At least as good a friend you can have when you’re eight.

In middle school I had even less friends, but I suppose that was because it was in those years where I was able to really begin to pick and choose the individuals that I really wanted to hang out with. I’ve always been a great judge of character. I suppose as a quiet, shy, extremely observant child, I was always able to pick up on little things innate to ones character but rarely–if ever–expressed on first site. I don’t know, I’ve always just called it vibes. I’m really good at picking up on people’s vibes. If I get a really bad or uncomfortable vibe from someone, I generally don’t associate with them much longer after that (course, that’s if it’s in my power to cease all association. Cause sometimes you’re stuck having to be with a person you don’t particularly like for many different reasons that are totally out of your control. In which case, I avoid contact as much as possible, though I’m very subtle about it.)  I can always tell if a person will be a good fit for me as a friend.

I’ve always had one very good friend. I suppose you can call them my best friend (though the term is a bit obscure now that I have more than one best friend). But in my school years I’ve always had the one. In high school, that best friend title sort of became obscured. I suppose it was a blessing in disguise.

Middle school was a horrible time for me. Looking back on it, I dislike those three years even more. The program I was in was very cliquey and there was very little diversity amongst the students. I felt sort of like an outsider , an oddball, and I suppose I was. I had two really good friends and a few okay friends, but that was about it. I could count them all on my hands. So naturally, going into high school I just assumed it would be the exact same atmosphere that I left in middle school. But oh how wrong I was.

I had a group of friends in high school–a rather large (by my standards) group of misfits who just liked being in each other’s company. Honestly, I don’t even know how our little group even formed, but it seems so natural now that I’ve learned not to question it. The idea of having just one really good friend sort of morphed into having multiple good friends. Of course, I find myself closer to a few of them more than others, but we’ve all experienced so much with one another that I can honestly say they are like my family. I have eight really close amazing friends (and a few other good friends, but not many) and I’m okay with that number. And I’ll tell you why.

Since the beginning they have never judged me by how I look, speak, act, my sexuality, my religion, anything. I did the same. They simply accepted me for who I am and I accepted them for who they were in turn, and by that we established a mutual understanding of one another. We are just comfortable in each other’s presence and I think that’s a beautiful thing. All of my friends have something in common with each other and then we sort of branch off in our commonness, but we still try to accommodate what each of us enjoy. And while I sometimes think that we as a group have little in common with each other now that we’re a bit older and have new friends and interests, we still have all of these shared experiences and memories that seem to hold the seems of our friendship together. And you know what? We continue to embrace that and create brand new experiences and memories with each other because we all genuinely care for one another. As we change, our friendships change, but for the most part we are still the same group of misfits who just love being in each other’s company.

I wholeheartedly believe that it’s not in the quantity but the quality of your friendships that make them last, and my friendship with all of my friends have just about proven that to me. I’ve known some of these people for over ten years! It’s quite amazing how we are all still friends with one another, me especially since I’m a hermit at heart. But a great friend is someone who’s patient and understanding; someone who thinks of you even when you don’t think they do. Someone who’ll spot you a few bucks when you’re short, or stop by your workplace and wait around until you get off. A great friend is someone who would go to the ends of the world with you and back, someone you’re not afraid of getting lost in a strange city with, or getting stuck walking (or running) through the pouring rain with. Someone who let’s you crash at their place late at night because you forgot or lost your keys and no one’s home, or someone who’ll stay up with you until dawn, just talking about anything and everything with. A great friend is someone your parents genuinely like and always ask you about even if you don’t always have the answers to their questions because you were too busy having fun with them to ask them about how school or work is going for them. A great friend is someone who will dress up with you in fancy clothes for no reason, or cosplay, or sing karaoke for hours with. Someone who you can geek out with over whatever it is you like to geek out over. A great friend is someone who forgives all your mistakes and understands that you are you and there are just some things that don’t change about that, and that’s okay. They still love and support you because they are a great friend.

I love my friends, the small few that I have, and I’m very blessed to have them in my life. And if you have just one great friend, you are blessed too.