Category Archives: Our town

Awards Night 2017

A couple of nights ago I was blessed to be sitting with a table of much loved people at the Midwest Business Excellence Awards. People who believe in my little shop, and in me. People who inspire me and share the love of our papercrafting industry.

 My little business was nominated in 2 categories; Business Excellence and Customer Service by a Business. I was thrilled to be nominated – and would like to say to the person/s that nominated me… I want you to know how positive this experience has been for me… and it began with you. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

So after the nomination, came the opportunity to put forward a submission. This is a massive undertaking for anyone to undertake, not only to write out so many words (and try to be eloquent even with my grammatical errors) but you need to ring your own bell. That’s not fun for anyone. Next you need to take a good hard look at yourself, (again not fun); what you are doing right, but also what you are needing to improve. Then, whilst you are still wincing over the areas where you suck you aren’t super special, you have to come up with strategies and outcomes to report on. Whoa… it’s like business stuff. I like colours and matching papers, and helping people get the most out of their crafting experience, not figures and certainly not percentages.

This is what I did one year ago. It took me weeks, but having a good base to begin with made the process this year a little easier, although it was glaringly obvious that I needed improve those figures or we wouldn’t be here in the coming year. So, we did. We had much of the year to work on it, and implemented new ideas and improvement. We had goals this year. Goals that we met. Goals that we exceeded. Far out… am I actually becoming some kind of legitimate business woman after all these years of faking it?

I was proud of my submission. I wrote it myself, not even asking anyone to proofread it, because I wanted to know if it was accepted, that it would be on my own merit.

Then I was invited for an interview.

I wasn’t even too scared of the interviewer who probably deals with more money than I have ever seen in my life. Last year I had to keep my jacket on because I was so nervous I began sweating like a crazy woman, and no matter how warm one gets, no-one needs to see that! This year I rocked up confidently in heels and a sexy little car. Who is this woman?

Then, The Scrapbook House became a finalist. My beautiful staff, design team and Mum  got to dress up and attend the evening of excellence. Wow there is certainly some excellence in Geraldton. We have great businesses and brilliant customer service.

We ate, drank and were merry. We took some photos and then we danced till the band could play no more. What a wonderful night.

Whoever nominated me, you have inspired me to work on my business, and in doing so realise how good my little shop is and I am so proud. Thank you. If you still believe in me next year, please nominate me again.

We didn’t win the award, but I certainly feel like I did.


Weekend Fun

This weekend was rather busy with the shop, family and friends. How blessed I am to have so much to do!

Friday night was the Art Journal class, using Distress Ink, Paint and Stain. Here is Kim’s page – I’m loving the colour tones in this.

Art Journal Page Distress Ink, Paint, Stain

Saturday after the shop had closed, we had a children’s birthday party scrapbook class held at the shop where we shared the afternoon with 13 little girls (and some helpers who didn’t quite know they’d signed up) as they crafted and chatted the afternoon away. Jo shared a photo with us afterwards – so cute as they left, walking to afternoon tea, hand in hand in rows of two.

The Scrapbook House Geraldton

The Nagle Year 12 Ball was held this weekend too, and how wonderful it is to see our beautiful young people dressed in their finest, on their special day. I think half the town heads out to the Marina, it seems to be “THE” spot for photos, the perfect venue for “Pre- ball greeting and photos”

IMGP0200 Geraldton Museum Nagle Ball

I had the pleasure of shooting with some friends – they all looked so beautiful.

Nagle Ball 2015

At the beautiful Marina and also the 50 cent ‘seat’ (more commonly known as the 50 cent swing)

Nagle Yr 12 Ball

And my darling hubby had his beloved old car out tonight.

Monaro Nagle Ball

Then we all went out to dinner for my Mum’s birthday – we were late… but we were there! Happy birthday Ma xxx

I’m not sure where Sunday went, but it whizzed by far too quickly. I did go see The INKS at the Freemasons as usual for a few hours – chill time, so good 🙂






Harmony Day

Maitland Park was abuzz today with lots of cultural performances, food stalls and workshops. The music was terrific and so many dancers from around the world. What a wonderful place we live!

I was thrilled to be invited to be a part of this community event and to hold some paper-crafting activities for the children.

Emily and I were so busy!!! There’s something so satisfying in my chosen profession, to be inundated with children who all want to have a go and make rosettes from paper using the cuttlebug machine. I just love what I do and am so happy to share this with others.

We had a great time!

Thank you Efana, for inviting me, and thank you Midwest Multicultural Association for having us, and thank you Geraldton for hosting and supporting Harmony Day!

Printing photos at home

Seems to be the topic in town at the moment…
What options are available to us now that some of our printing labs have closed down?
Have you decided to print some photos at home, just don’t have the spare time during “opening hours” to sit at a kiosk, choosing and editing every photo? My home computer is so slow it infuriates me trying to send photos online.
Gone are the days when you had a camera, took some photos, then dropped the film in to the ladies at the lab, and viola, collected them one hour later! Hey presto, we had packets and packets of photos back then! Now, we have more photos than ever before, but less “real life”, tangible, hard copies. Now they are still on the camera, or on a computer, or maybe your phone, a USB, a cd, or if you are good, they are backed up to a external hard drive, or somewhere up on some cloud in cyberspace.
Think about this… In 100 years, when your future generations are looking through the boxes of their ancestors, will they really be able to access that hard drive?
Will your babies photos be printed off your phone? Or will they disappear when it’s lost, broken, stolen or even so old they don’t make batteries for it anymore?
I have a feeling there will be a gap in photos for many of our time if we don’t print them.
But I’ve been so fussy for so long I am thinking its time to let that go; perhaps a low quality photo, or a home printed photo is better than no printed photo at all.
Being in a scrapbook store you would understand that I need photos, and it was just getting ridiculous at how long I would go between visiting my printing store. It’s no wonder they closed down, even with the best intentions and will to support local business my measly few bucks wasn’t going to pay their rent.
So, I decided to buy a printer to do it at home… Well actually, I bought two. I know I know, but when I’m an all-in kinda girl and the features I wanted, weren’t on just one printer.
I use an iPhone, it has a great camera, and wanted to be able to press “print” directly from the “camera roll”, all wirelessly. I love it. I can take a photo in my garden, hit print, and the photo will be drying as I walk back in the house! Great for scrapping too! Its great for copying photos, I did this for Mums birthday recently? Took iPhone photo of original (make sure the phone is directly above the photo and straight) and was presented with a printed copy in the next room a minute later. Love how easy this is!
Downside? Ink and paper aren’t that cheap!
So, I also wanted a high quality print at a good price. This is where my little mate comes into the discussion,
I purchased a Epson Picturemate 235, it is a standalone printer (or can hook up to your computer) and only takes 4×6 paper. The quality is lovely, and will do a variety of sizes (all of course 4×6 or smaller). Go see Ricky or Dave at Mitchell and Brown and tell them you heard about it at The Scrapbook House, they’ll look after you. Papers and ink too!
For example 150 photos, paper and ink $45.00 that’s about 30cents a print. Pretty reasonable considering don’t have to leave the house! Pop your SD card in and away you go! Quality? Pretty darn good for an ink printer! Lovely and sharp, colours true.

So in a nutshell –
One dedicated photo printer for SD card, easy, cheap, quick, high quality prints. 4×6 only or smaller, no need for computer. Epsom Picturemate 235
Another printer for wireless quick iPhone prints and all other printing and scanning requirements like emails and documents. HP Eprinter.

Have fun!


A Sterling Day at Stirlings Shopping Centre

Today was the first day of our Free “Make and Take” sessions at our local shopping centre. Boys and girls came by our tables to get a little crafty and make some paper flowers, rosettes and embossed butterflies.
I saw quite a few Mums wearing gorgeous badges and flowers too as many kids wanted to make more.
We used the Cuttlebug machines and some dies to cut out the shapes needed and then emboss them too.
It was a fun day, I loved being out in town, I don’t seem to get there all that often as my “house-husband” does our shopping, and saw so many lovely familiar faces.
Emily will be in the shopping centre all this week making different things each day. Tomorrow is “mini gift bags” and I am sure they will be popular too!


10 year milestone

Our little store just celebrated 10 years in business last November and I am so proud.10 years at any job is a celebration, but 10 years in a small business is a real success. I have struggled, as any business does, it isn’t all hearts and flowers, but on a whole it has been an amazing adventure.
For me it is more of a lifestyle; it’s more important to be happy than to be wealthy.
So what does one do on a birthday celebration such as this? Well, they invite their customers and staff to help them celebrate… and they came! We wrapped up presents to give away as prizes and had birthday party games! First was a treasure hunt in the store and we had ladies rummaging through everything to find the elusive key-rings to win a prize. There were 22 hidden and some of them were HARD to find! I pity Sharon’s kids when they are looking for things she has hidden at home, they’ll have no chance! Pass the parcel (great idea Kira), was fun with a prize in every layer. The last one held a small item, but one that is valuable in our store… a Scrapbook House reward card… full with stamps. Nice!
Our sales were fabulous, 50% off all stickers and rub-ones, this included all old and new. There was a 25% off voucher that went out by email (you can sign up for our email on the Facebook page, click on the “exclusive” icon next to the “photos”) so everything was on sale. Some things were 70% off. Many things just went out as gifts or prizes, over $1000 worth of products was given away as it was just time to clear that old stock!
But the very best thing was the people that came to wish us congratulations. It is the people that make it worthwhile, it is the people that make my life good, and it is the people that make the Scrapbook House the lovely community it is. Staff, family, friends and clients, thank you for your support, thank you for believing in my little dream to sell pieces of paper to put photos on.

Thank you for sharing your stories and a bit of your lives with me and thank you for being a part of mine.


Recall a favourite food from a restaurant in your town

 Oh this one is dead easy for me.

But then I think you’d all have to agree… it’s not just about the food. It’s the experience. Can you recall a favourite food from a restaurant in your town?

I think if I had some of that on a plate right here, right now… it wouldn’t taste as good. It’s like “mamma’s cooking”, and it’s not just because of the way it looks, smells or tastes. No-one can replicate Mamma’s cooking, because it’s not just about the cooking.  It’s about being home, loved and cared for, in Mammas kitchen. It’s the experience. The feeling.

My favourite food is just that… a feeling… a time gone by. I remember back when I was about 17 in Geraldton. Andrew and I had been dating for some time now and we headed for the same nook, in the same little café every lunch time that we could steal some time together. We couldn’t get enough of each other, and even though we were living together by then, we still met at lunchtime as often as we could. And we would go to “The Pancake Chef”. Our town of Geraldton lost something dear when Rod and Nola left that little business. Years later I met up with them again, and they cheerfully remembered us as one of their “courting couples”. How funny – how terribly sweet that they actually had a name for us. That they remembered us.

I remember their pancake, the one I would always order. A hot savoury chicken ham and cheese… with the yummy white sauce with bits in it… oh divine! So fluffy. So perfect. So wonderful. And I would sit there with the love of my life… order the ‘large’ and totally enjoy it. Holding hands in the little secluded booth with red seats, sipping on homemade milkshakes. What a wonderful time in our lives… at the Pancake Chef!

Morning Tea

I love hanging out with many kinds of people, and I must say that scrapbookers are very easy for me to hang out with… but when you get to be surrounded by scrapbookers who are generous and kind and giving… well THAT is an absolute pleasure.

Our biggest morning tea was held this Saturday and those who could make it came along. I brought extra chairs… just in case… and even with those it was standing room only. So wonderful. It makes me so proud to see the workroom filled with beautiful people, all sharing and having a laugh, enjoying the morning – all to raise money for Cancer Research.

Golly we hate cancer. Bad. Bad. Bad. I hope we did some good on Saturday to help those affected. There are so many affected.

We had a busy day, and with the help of Emily, Sharon and Kira we pulled it off! Both Kira and Sharon are also talented in the kitchen, bringing some home baking to share. Thankyou so much ladies – very enjoyable. Emily had a class on in the afternoon, so we had to be done by lunchtime… and the angels in pink shirts made coffees, teas and served, cleaned and tidied.

Our tables looked wonderful, and we pulled out the yellow table-cloth that Rachel had sourced for us last year. Sharon made the settings out of cardstock… how great does that look? The birthday boxes for balloons came out and I put treats inside each of the handmade boxes for our guests. Sharon used the new Tim Holtz Die to make these gorgeous flowers to top her boxes. She made napkin bows from card, punched card for placemats and cuttlebugged card to create boxes. Such a lovely touch.

We had raffles and some great prizes, for the photographer there was a huge frame, for the girls there was a rockinghorse, for the scrappers there was Prima, lots of Prima. Free raffle tickets were handed out every once in a while so everyone had a chance. Spot prizes were a hit, and everyone was so generous to purchase tickets to raise money.

We had a couple of little darlings who were so cute.. praying to win a prize and when they did… oh, it was like they’d won a million dollars… bless them! I hope you enjoy your milkshakes at Senses Cafe’ girls! Totally precious.

How much did they raise? I am so proud to announce they raised a total of $310.75 – how wonderful! In one hour!  Thanks to the generosity of the scrappers at The Scrapbook House – you make the world a better place. Thankyou. I am proud to call you my friends.

Special Sunday

Today was special as it was the birthday of the King of the house.  His day consisted of sleep-in, cooked breakfast, and coffee, loads of gifts, military show of vintage vehicles and aircraft, easy afternoon, take away dinner, 3 lots of sweets, celebrating also with Ma and Miss L, a game with family and his favourite computer game.

The Military Show was a highlight as this was something we’d never seen before and my King is a huge ‘war time aircraft’ fan. The boys surprisingly enjoyed themselves too.

Here’s my photo of the day, followed by a few more as I had so many good ones today, I didn’t know what to post.

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A Tank Load of Fun

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The Vintage Fly and Drive was on today – right up my hubby’s alley with all the vehicles and aircraft. The boys (mmm, pick the scrapbookers sons) loved having a ride on the tank (it’s called a Centurion) and disappeared in a cloud of dust.
He was kind enough to post on the tanks gun for me. ove that I got the Aussie flag in the background. This was a tricky shot to get, trying not to get all the brightly dressed children clamouring about in my shot.
Love this tank, would have liked to photograph it without kids on board, but they were all having so much fun. The name is kinda cool, and fitting for the rest of my King’s day… where Miss L drew blood during a little scrap over the new game we were playing. Don’t mess with this chick! Here she is with her “sorry” face on. Nothing like a little war wound to celebrate your birthday.

Family Dinner

We have “family dinner” on Sunday nights.

Does anyone do this? Am I just strange? I think it is important to ‘touch base’ with family once a week, good or bad. My kids like to see their Nanna, once a week at least, even if she’s been busy all week. I like to catch up with my brother and his girl, even if we see them during the week, nothing says “family”, like sharing a meal together.

Sometimes we talk, sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we play games, sometimes we fight.


This week I felt we needed a little something different for family dinner, and as it’s usually at my house for convenience with Joshua I took the opportunity to book something new and try it on the family for size. I asked for a little extra respite care for Joshua and he spent the night at Wendys (she had a hard one with him too – sorry Wendy)

I booked a Sunset Cruise on a local boat, where we cruised the Harbour, watching the sunset and hanging out together. Wind in our hair, salt air in our lungs. It’s good to get out. (and here we are, pictured inside the dining room)

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Harbour Cruise

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Some of the many boats as we were leaving the Fishermans Wharf tonight on our Sunset Cruise.

The meal was lovely, but it was a shame that one of us couldn’t eat as they weren’t prepared to cook the steak (for non seafood eaters) until 20 minutes before we arrived in dock, as a take-away. Shame they were too busy to cater for one of our men who went without a meal. So much for “family dinner’. The rest of us had fish and chips, yum!

My kids behaviour was exemplary, proving to the owner of the boat that not all children are badly behaved in pulic and can indeed go out with their families. I was most upset when it was suggested that I do not bring my children. We took photographs and sat outside chatting and seeing the sights. It’s amazing how different your city looks from the ocean. It is beautiful.

Our weather was perfect, and the night was still, which meant the ocean was calm (that always helps as we have a couple who get seasick). The boat was beautiful and we all enjoyed the city lights.

Something different – they say change is as good as a holiday.

Like a Moth to the Flame

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Like a moth to the flame…

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I am drawn back to the 365 site. I am completely addicted, I keep looking at the inspiring photos on everyones profiles.. going from one to the next to the next. So many beautiful photos. Ok everyone just stop it !
No more… no more… I need some sleep, and my children need to be fed.
This is true for the whole computer thing… I need to turn it off, walk away… but I can’t. I need to look at another photo, read another story, see another scrapbook idea, read another blog post, check that facebook, reply to that email, see who’s doing what, who’s saying what about who and who. It’s just never-ending.
Ok.. they say the first step to beating an addiction is acknowledging your problem… and I acknowledge this… there is too much good stuff on the internet… so everyone had better stop! Haha. See it’s not really my problem is it? It’s everyone else around me!
At least blogging is easier with the 365 project and I don’t spend hours deliberating over what to write, who is going to read it and what they will think about it. I have spent way too much energy worrying over ‘other’ people.  Just do it.
Today is a double-post, because I didn’t make it back here last night after work.
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No fair!

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My family was all in a fluster this morning, everyone seemed angry at everyone. I hate it when it when we have moments like that. Not fair!
This “50 cent swing” is another big “not fair” as it was bolted down. The iconic 50 cent swing made famous in local Author Randolf Stow’s book, The Merry Go Round in the Sea, an autobiographical book telling of life in Geraldton during the 1940s. You might think it’s named that because it costs 50 cents to ride, but no, it’s due to it’s unique shape. Built over 100 years ago the swing has been a focal point of the Geraldton foreshore for several generations. It spins on a central axis rocking from side to side while patrons sit on the timber planks attached. Sadly future generations wont get to enjoy the swing the local council saw fit to bolt the swing in a stationary position all in the name of public safety. No fair!
The 50 cent “bench” is not quite the same.


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Glimpse through the rocks

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The rocks are piled high but the glimpse of the foreshore dare you to climb higher for the reward of the view, and just over these rocks you can see the whole shoreline, right up to the Port.
On my photographic walk this morning I saw this and thought of this weeks challenge “to take a photo FRAMED by something other than the edges of the lens, manmade or natural. My walk was beautiful, the weather is perfect now and I got some great shots of the boats on the Marina. I think I might save a couple for later in the month.
For now, here’s one of the boardwalk. It was interesting and I overheard a couple of old blokes talking behind me. I didn’t dare to snap their picture but I wish I had the guts to do so… they were adorable. This is how the conversation went…
1st old fella ” Ya know, I’m getting a bit deaf. I have to get myself some hearing aids”
2nd old fella ” Yeah, I’ve got hearing aids. I think I might have to start wearing them”
1st old fella ” Yeah, my teeth need replacing too”
2nd old fella ” Mm, me too. My knees are going too, and I need stronger glasses”
1st old fella ” Not good, this getting old, is it”
2nd old fella “Nup”