In 1996, I became a card maker using rubber stamps.Â Â My friend Sharon taught me how to use stamps to make beautiful cards.Â Â She had thousands of stamps, and Iâ€™m not exaggerating.Â Â I slowly built up my own collection of stamps along with embossing pens and powder, markers, ink pads, adhesives, and cardstock.Â Â It then became necessary to buy a drafting table and a rolling cart to store the materials for my new hobby.Â Â I also needed a room for my crafts, so my study became the â€œcraft room.â€Â Â I have to admit that since I started this hobby, I have bought roughly five cards in the last 14 years.Â Â I justified my crafting expenses by the money I saved fromÂ notÂ buying cards.Â Â Well, thatâ€™s what I told my husband anyway.
My friend Christine was also a stamper (as we fellow crafters called ourselves), but she was also a scrapbooker.Â Â She tried to convince me to become a scrapbooker like many ladies in the Katy area.Â Â I kept thinking of the expensesÂ that scrapbooking would incur; I would have to buy even more supplies like a die cut machine, special 12×12 papers, embellishments, ribbon, organization bins, albums, and on and onâ€¦
After resisting for many years, I finallyÂ did it. I became a scrapbooker, much to the delight of Hobby Lobby and Michaelâ€™s.Â Â No matter how many supplies I owned, it became an obsession to want more supplies.Â Â I was thrilled with my â€œnewâ€ hobby.Â Â I chose to create chronological albums of my childrenâ€™s lives that include each month of the year.Â Â After two years of being an official scrapbooker, I became disillusioned by the overwhelming effort it was to make a single page.Â Â Â For example, if I wanted to make a page of our visit to the zoo, then it would require all (but not limited to) the following: a couple of 12×12 papers of animal print, cardstock, alpha chipboard or alpha die cuts, animal stickers, a cute phrase sticker or rub on, ribbon to match the paper, adhesive for the ribbon, glue dots, fun embellishments, and printed pictures.Â Â Then I would need space and free time.Â Â Scrapbooking wasnâ€™t for me anymore, especially with my two little kids who needed my attention.Â Â I admire all the ladies who are hard-core-weekend retreat-going-scrapbooking enthusiasts.Â Â I marvel at their patience.
I became overjoyed when I discovered digital scrapbooking.Â Â I researched the best software online and then bought it for about $25.Â Â It is very user friendly, and I can now make a beautiful page in just a fraction of the time and cost of the hand made pages.Â Â I entered the world of digital scrapbooking blogs. There are so many women out there with a passion for digital scrapbooking, and they love to share their digital embellishments, papers, and alphas (digikits).Â Â When I sayÂ share, I mean itâ€™sÂ FREEÂ to download.Â Â Do a search for free digikits, and you will find that it is endless.Â Â Be careful thoughâ€¦itâ€™s addictive.Â Â Once I have made a page, I save it as a JPG, and then upload it onto one of the many digital printing websites. One 12×12 page typically costs $1.99 to print; I print 20+ pages at a time, and then I wait for the delivery in my mail box.Â Â When I hold my pages in my hands, I am so happy.Â Â I have given away or thrown away most of my supplies.Â Â My craft room has become a study again, and I now need only my pictures on my external hard drive and my laptop to â€œcraft.â€Â
So, busy Katy moms — If you want to preserve your kids â€˜memories (or your own) in a special way but donâ€™t want to spend a fortune on supplies, then consider digital scrapbooking.Â Â Do you have any questions about digital scrapbooking? What are your thoughts about it? Post your comments below.