Tuesday, September 25, 2012

S.H.O. Time LOAD Blog Hop: Gotta Get your Head in the Game

Welcome to the S.H.O. Time  LOAD Blog Hop.  It's just days away...are you ready?   I've only recently started a blog and this is the first pre-LOAD blog hop in which I've ever participated.  I'm the first stop on the blog train, but be sure to hop along to the 10 other lovely LOADsters who will share their experiences with you.  We hope you find lots of tips and advice to prepare for your month-long scrapbooking journey.

I could start this post with all the things you need to gather to be successful in LOAD.  There's the obvious things like gathering cardstock and adhesive (more than you'll think you need).  You could be super organized and assemble page kits and prepare meals in advance.  Yes, all of those things are important and useful to a successful LOAD, but I'm going to take the preparation a little bit deeper by helping you create a checklist to mentally prepare for LOAD.  In other words, some advice to help you get your head in the game.

Image by Nina Matthews Photography

Let me share a story with you about my first LOAD in October 2010.  I had heard about this challenge about 6 months prior, but doubted I could follow through.  I thought I would just be wasting my money.  I was a scrapbook supply collector and not much of a user (talk about wasted money!).  I ONLY scrapbooked when I had the opportunity to attend a crop outside of the home - which was usually only twice a year.  And then out of the blue, just a day before the start of October, a fellow scrappy friend called to tell me about this Layout A Day Challenge she had heard about.  I immediately remembered, and on a complete whim, we both decided to go for it.  Within 24 hours, I mentally psyched myself into embarking on this challenge.  At the time, I didn't even quite understand how the "game" worked, but I was in for the long haul.  Little did I know how my life would be transformed.  All of what was keeping me from succeeding was in my head:
"If I only had a die cut machine..."
"If I only had a scrap room..."
"I can't scrap at home with the kids..."
"My supplies aren't current enough..."
"I don't have the time to scrapbook..."
"I don't have a fancy camera..."
"I need a large format printer..."
I pushed these excuses (and many more) aside and started scrapping.  I took the pictures from the boxes, the stories from my head, and the supplies from the shelves and created something real and tangible.  I felt a great sense of accomplishment at the end of the month as I admired my thick stack of layouts.   I didn't have one thing prepared prior to that LOAD except a mental shift and the determination to succeed.  

So, in addition to gathering supplies, here's a mental checklist to get your head in the game for a successful LOAD.
  1. Let go of perfection.  I know, I know...easier said than done.  You are talking to a Virgo here, so I really know.  Done is better than perfect.  
  2. Give yourself permission to try different styles.  I encourage you, when possible, to stick to the prompts (not because Leslie and I put them together), but you may just find a new scrappy technique or a story buried in your heart that will surprise you.
  3. LOAD doesn't leave much time for indecisiveness, but don't fret too long over your decisions.  Go with your gut and you'll be amazed how satisfied you are in the end.  Kill maybe.
  4. I have found when I have my scrapbook mojo going, everything else seems to fall into place.  The dishwasher gets unloaded faster, the laundry folded, and meals prepped when I know I have some "me scrapbook time" coming my way.
  5. Scraplift freely.  Don't try to re-invent the wheel or think by doing so that you're not really creating.
  6. Work in small chunks by mentally preparing your page throughout the day or setting out a few pictures and paper in the morning.  Revisit your page, if possible, as the day goes on to add an element here or there.  
  7. Have fun and enjoy the process.  This is your hobby and these are your memories.  It's not supposed to be a chore.
  8. And when you are having a rough day and scrapbooking IS feeling like a chore, come back here and re-read this list, reach out to fellow scrappers in the gallery and remember your scrapbooking "why".  We're all rooting for you to succeed!
Can you tell I've been brainwashed, a-hem, trained by the scrappy guru herself, Lain?  I am eternally grateful to her for the transformation that happened to me in October 2010.  I hope you find this month productive, fun and satisfying.  Thanks for playing along.

Be sure to hop along to all of your other fellow LOADsters' blogs as I'm sure you'll find lots of tips and advice to get you LOADivated!  And, tell us you stopped by with a comment!

Kelli P.
Alison D.
Cathy H.
Heather H.
Alison C.
Heather D.
Danielle H.

Oh, and about wasted money?  LOAD was seriously the best $30 I've ever spent!


  1. I could just sign my name to 98% of this post, including the signing up the night before of that first October 2010 LOAD! Changed my scrap life forever...

  2. Thanks Lynette! I didn't realize we started LOADing at the same time... I really love your post. LOADivated! I'm so going to use that!

    1. I must give Leslie the credit for the LOADivated term. She is so clever that way!

  3. Great tips! Sorry I haven't been dropping in recently. I'm having a manic few months :-)
    I agree most of all about the FUN!! So often forgotten but key to success. Great tips and I'm hoping to join in but I'm not sure how much I'll manage. Bit sad to be out of the hop. Too much going on right now. Go you and Leslie!!

  4. Great post we long time LOADsters have a lot of the same tips :)

  5. scrapbook supply collector << LOL, I think many of us could fit into that category at one time or another!! Loved that a "mental mind shift" was all you did to prepare for your first LOAD. I'll keep that in mind if I start to feel overwhelmed! :)

  6. Can't believe how many of us started on LOAD 10/10 together! How cool is that? This post is right on the mark, Lynette! So much of your success is in LOAD is truly mental!

    Thanks to you and Leslie for getting us all organized!

  7. Great post Lynette - gave me tons of LOADivation and for all the work you and Leslie have put into this for everybody!

  8. LOADivated is a new one! Thanks so much for putting this together! Love how you just threw yourself into your first LOAD. Great tips!!

  9. Perfect Lynnette! Love what you say about being motivated to get other things out of the way, because you know that you've got scrapbooking in the dayplanner.

  10. Aack, yes! I was just thinking this morning, "Perfect is the enemy of good," or something to that effect.
    Well said!

  11. LOADivated indeed!! Thanks for the great advice. From a fellow Scrapbook Supply Collector, this year has been such a revelation as I am finally USING (gasp!) those supplies and loving the results!

  12. Great tips, we scrappers all think alike! Thanks for all of your hard work!

  13. Love, love, love the tips, Lynette! Totally agree that "done is better than perfect" :)
    Thanks for sharing! I look forward to al the LOADivation coming our way!!! And now I definitely know I'm part of the right family, especially knowing we share the "collector-turned-user" blood!

  14. Well said, Lynette. I have had a TORRID 4 weeks and have been thinking "can I do this?" but of COURSE I can! And thanks to you and Leslie for putting this together.

  15. Thanks for all the tips! I can't wait to use my supplies!

  16. I can't wait to see what I create this month!