Thursday, November 26, 2015


Tonight is a rare occasion where I am all alone at home. Jared is staying at his school hostel, Ryan is at his High School Graduation Dinner, the hubby is playing tennis, and I'm pulling this blog post together while listening to one of the Paper Clipping Roundtable podcasts. It's nice to have an uninterrupted evening to scrapbook and blog, but ugh! it's increasingly like an empty nest - and I'm not ready!!

I had several stories like this one tonight that I wanted to tell for September and October, and I was inspired to make 12x12 layouts for them.  I hadn't done this in a while and it was so satisfying I made eight of them :)

Both our boys started their first jobs recently and there was such mixed emotions for me. I'm so happy and proud they are taking it in stride and learning the meaning of work. I got to meet them for lunch as they are working near me, take the bus to work together, all wonderful new experiences and new ways of engaging with them! But they are literally flying out of the nest!!

In September Marlyn, one of the readers of my blog turned friend and frequent contributor of the Inspiration layout pages visited Singapore. And we got to meet up for a meal and a fun time catching up in real life! Another wonderful story told!

And here is Marlyn's page of the same occassion! 
Beautiful isn't it? Thanks Marlyn for the great time and sharing your layouts!

My husband's birthday was full of surprises! Celebrated and remembered here....

...Including an outing to watch the WTA opening match featuring Sharapova! Did you notice in the layout that I made my own 'pattern' paper by typing out words related to WTA?

Our family love the 'escape' room challenge and I love the chance for a great family time! This layout will bring back lots of insider jokes, fun memories who solved what and who botched what, haha!

My mom in law celebrated her Birthday in style, what cause to celebrate and what a great time for the family!

Here I told the story of my alopecia by recording the fun of figuring new ways to style my hair!

We are going to Japan! This is our first trip in eight years and we want to go to the less touristy places and experience more local neighborhoods. Planning has taken a good part of the last two months and it's a story in its own right!

These templates are all in the Store!
What Stories are you telling? Have they made it into your memory books? Capture them in any way you feel like doing. Don't let formats or albums constraint you!

Project 365 Layouts
Of course I have the half monthly review pages for Sept and Oct capturing the daily stuff. Still love how quickly these come together and the snapshot of our days and months they provide!

8.5 by 11 Templates
You may recall I took the 30 Days of List challenge in September. Enjoyed it greatly and I'm signed up for the next round starting 1 December! I am going to add the Sept lists I made to my Project Life Album in 8.5 x 11 pages like this. 
If you are interested to use these, the template can be downloaded here. 

Inspiration Pages
Now here are more lovely pages by Marlyn from her time in Singapore! You can find more of her beautiful layouts on her blog here.

And look at these fabulous layouts by Stephanie! You can see more on her gallery here.

Thanks ladies for letting me share your beautiful layouts!

Away in Japan
I will be away from this Sunday for two weeks in Japan!!! Very excited indeed. Please note there be a delay in how quickly I can respond to your emails. Please bear with me I will definitely get back to you.

I will be posting trip photos as well as 30 Days lists on my Instagram account: yin_dgs if you want to follow me :)

And I just might have a chance to post some trip photos here on the blog. :)

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Sponsor in October Digi Files!

October Digi Files
I'm very honored and happy to be back as a Sponsor in October's The Digi Files! The Daily Digi has been a great partner and also resource for me, Steph, Janet, Katie and Wendy are such wonderful ladies who have given me opportunities, taught me a lot, and do a great job there. I'm subscribed for years to The Digi Files myself - a great value to try out lots of different designers and styles! In fact, if you look closely, most of my monthly P365 layouts uses embellishments from that month's Digi Files - I tend to use the latest kits as soon as I get them :)

This is my contribution to this month's Files:
Also check out the other awesome designers sponsoring this month!
This set coordinates with set 449 that is a subscribers' only freebie. 
Next month both kits will be in the store. 
Travel layout template
Mini Travel Album template

I haven't posted these layouts, so here they are:
Taipei 228 Memorial Museum (journaling reads):
today we visited the Sun Yat Sen memorial in the morning, and then the 228 museum which remembers the 228 masacre incident in Taiwan’s past. So much to understand about this part of their history. Both haunting and touching, and leaves you wandering how it could have been different. In the afternoon we visited the SunHo paper museum where we got to try our hand at making paper taught by this sweetest young lady. Perfect day!

MaoKong (journaling reads):
This day started with a thrilling ride over 4 km and up 300m in a clear bottom gondola. We scared each other silly and played our scenic taidi challenge all the way. At the hilltop is the  tea plantation village with quaint tea houses and lots of walks. But first the boys were cold and craving for cup noodles which we had in the seven-eleven! We stopped for local goodies and later after our walk had another sumptious late lunch/tea at a beautiful teahouse, that’s what you do at Maokong! 

Huashan 1914 Creative Park and Red House :
Huashan park was  an old factory converted to art park, the Taiwanese have loads of indie/independent creative talents and their designs are cool and interesting! We also visited SongShan part and it is full of the same. Later I found this exhibit in the Red House at XiMenDing which chronicled the history in which the  RedHouse has gone through, from being a market, and community centre, factory, Japanese headquarters, to it’s present day gig as a artsy hangout, just what I love!
Travel photobook

Miniatures' Museum: 
The boys did one for this mama by visiting this miniatures museum with me. It was delightful! Full of dollhouses that were historical, not to mention beautiful and amazing to detail! They represented various ages from 1800s to present, and depicted daily life of working class and the rich, street scene, and also historical homes! What a collector’s dream and so wonderfully preserved. Totally amazing !
Travel photobook

 We booked all our accomodations through AirBnB this time, and it was great! Much cheaper than to check four of us into two hotel rooms, and we get to have more space, living area and sometimes being located in fantastic locations. We are Air-BnBing for all our trips from now on!
Travel photobook

Taiwan Album
No matter how many times this has happened, I'm over the moon every time a new photo book arrive in the mail. My Taiwan Shutterfly photobook arrived this week!
And I made a video flipping through to show you all the pages 
I made a blunder in the album - can you spot it?
Hint: It's towards the end of the video :)

I just love how the cover turned out!!
The cover template is a free download - check right sidebar for the link.
Travel layout template
Now for a closer look at the pages inside. 
Travel layout template
Everything popped against the black background!
Travel layout template
How I prepare double pages for printing
Now I know some printers offer lay flat books, and Shutterfly offers a feature where you upload double pages as is and they do the splitting, but I have not tried them myself. So I just want to share how I prepare these double page layouts for printing. For more information you can also refer this post.Printing Double Pages on Shutterfly
This is the original double page on my computer.
Here you see I have adjusted it by moving the photos/elements/words, and created a 2 cm gap between the elements on the left and right sides
Then the page is cut up to (saved separately as) left page and right page for uploading to Shutterfly. This is to give allowance for the part of the page that will fall into the middle of the book - the gutter. Once the book is bound the allowance will ensure the elements do not get cut from view and will appear nicely laid out. You may need to do similar adjustments with other printers if it is not a lay flat book. 

And this is the same page printed!

Did you spot the blunder I made?
Well it was in the spine: It wasn't until I got it back and my friend pointed it out.
December 2015???!! It's okay, we had a good laugh :)

Double Page London Pages
I continue to chug on with my 'artsy quirky' themed London album. It's a great joy coming back to it every month. I had more time this month and spent longer playing with them. Especially the Churchill War Rooms page below:
The Churchill War Rooms: (Journaling reads:)This was a highlight of our trip for sure. 
A massive underground office that was used for 6 years during the war. Heard interviews of old people who worked here then - wow war is real. There was the Map room - lots of maps all over the wall - many pin holes especially over the Atlantic Ocean where the naval ships were  trying to avoid German Bombers. The phones, many typewriters, old ways of communicating - so tough! We loved the audio guides that included speeches and diary entries of Churchill and his commanders. At the CHurchill museum - we were fascinated - he was quite a man. We enjoyed a moving digital display of the Ups & Downs of his career - and one of the falls was the Fall of the fortress of Singapore! His quotes were awesome - what wit and foresight and wicked humour! I liked that he was devoted to his wife & family, saying the most brilliant thing he did was “to persuade my wife to marry me.”  We bought a book of his quotes at the shop home. A most brilliant time getting to know this great man in this historical war rooms of the WWII. 
London travel page
London Churchill War Room Layout
Wallace Collection: This is a Museum of the collections (Biggest single family collection) from 5 generations of the Wallace family. We zoomed in on the amazing collection (one of the best in the world) of Armoury. Of course the boys especially Ryan was super impressed. There were so much armoury - from Indian, Chinese, Japanese, to lots of Medieval. They were huge and heavy and massive. How do they fight in them? There was even a complete horse armour! Even the chainmail was impressive up close (to me). Definitely worth the trip!
London travel page
The Monument: It’s built by Sir Christopher Wren to remember the great fire. The height it lied down, is directly to the bakery shop from which the fire started! The view is almost completely taken over by newer buildings now. How did they build something like this? It’s the tallest pillar-like observation tower in the world it seems. We even got a certificate each for the climb!
London Travel Page
Covent Gardens: What great atmosphere here - lots of buskers, music, especially loved the quintet, magic, jugglers, ... markets and shops were nearly closed, but still squeezed some shopping out of it - got a chopping board and some star wars weapons playing cards! 
London travel page
These set of four templates are available in the store Thanks for looking!

Free Sample Templates
And these are the first and last pages in my album. First page includes a map with where we covered in Taiwan, photos or grandma sending us off in the airport.
Last page covers the photo of Daddy using his now lost camera (along with all the photos he took on the trip) - and the accompanying story.
And here are templates 467 and 468 for you to play with!


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