Apr 22, 2020
Today is Earth Day and I would like to take this opportunity to share something solemn with all of you. The Vancouver Aquarium is at risk of being shut down forever as a result of not being able to secure funding that is necessary to keep their 70,000 marine life safe and alive. They have been closed for more than a month now and the staff are still working to ensure every organism inside is being cared for. However, they will not be able to do this indefinitely. Unfortunately, the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre (MMRC), one of the largest and world-renowned rescue facilities— largely funded by Vancouver Aquarium— is inevitably facing the same dire situation.
Many people have the misconception that aquariums are always definitely bad. I won’t deny this. Depending on where it is located, some aquariums are probably pretty terrible. However, what sets the Vancouver Aquarium apart is that they are non-profit and are leaders in marine research, education, conservation, and wildlife rehabilitation. The MMRC, a state-of-the art hospital, rehabilitates, and releases over 150 marine mammals each year. Research outcome from both the Vancouver Aquarium and MMRC are shared with veterinarians and researchers around the globe in effort to improve life in the ocean. If there is anything we can all agree on, it’s the fact that if our oceans die, all of us will go down with it.
If you want to support my work AND contribute to this important cause, I set up a special listing on my Etsy shop. Should you decide to donate this way, I will send you a random colored Chubby Crystal-Blushing Whale. Although you won’t be able to choose the color, rest assured that 100% of the net donation (basically minus shipping and cost of the listing) will entirely go towards the MMRC. Because it is quite labor-intensive to pack and mail out parcels, I can only start doing this in increments of $75. Thank you for your understanding! Like the donations I was regularly making for the rescue since 2015, I DO NOT PROFIT FROM THESE FUNDRAISING SALES!
Thank you so much for reading this post and please stay safe, stay indoors, and wash your hands!!
My initial title for this post was going to be “Journaling for the lazy“. And then I realized how utterly absurd it is to conclude that I’m “lazy” when I simply have tons of other meaningful things I have to do in life?!
This post is not about crochet, but I think it is important to blog about it because this could become another major hobby of mine. I also think that people who likes arts and crafts also enjoy journaling as well. Also, who knows? Maybe this entry can inspire some of you to take up a new craft! 😉
So recently, I started documenting my life and thoughts again. Growing up, I’ve always kept diaries and reading those entries when I got older brought back a lot of memories. However, between 10 years ago and now, I kept nothing. Thanks to the evolution of cell phones and cameras, I was able to document my life in snapshots. However, although photos do ‘say a thousand words’, they did not document my feelings and emotions. More importantly, I do not take photos when I was sad so there was no way for me to take a look at why I felt a certain way and what I did to un-sad myself.
With Bebe’s health going downhill recently (and a bunch of other emotional struggles going on), I re-discovered my love for scribbling words on a page. I’m a pretty bad writer, but doing so allows me to channel my thoughts and (hopefully) take appropriate actions if I were to encounter similar situations in the future. When I read my previous journals, I’m always dumbfounded by how stupid I was ‘back then’. The answer is usually right in front of me, but I let my emotions cloud my judgement. There are several major decisions which I wish I could handle differently, but due to my inexperience at this whole “life” and “adulting” thing, those who were once close to me are no longer my friends. At the same time, I’m trying not to regret the past. It shaped me into who I am and, frankly speaking, I kinda like how I turned out today. I’m not particularly successful nor do I know what I want in life, but I really appreciate the attitude I have towards life. If you’re someone who experiences a lot of emotions and are overwhelmed by it, I strongly encourage you to try jotting down your thoughts. It doesn’t even have to be anything fancy! For those of you who wants your pages to be a little more special, let me share with you this start-up kit I prepared for myself!
You will need:
I’m currently using Molly & Rex’s journals because they have a variety to choose from and comes in full color with beautiful illustrations on every single page. They are perfect for people like myself, who likes to look at (and read) pretty things, but just don’t have the time to fully decorate each page. In the future, I’d loveeeee to be able to start from scratch, but that really depends on how much other things in life matters (i.e. aside from spending time with Bebe, I probably should dive right back into my numerous crochet projects and unfinished patterns!).
I also considered using plane notebooks (ex. Muji) and actual planners (ex. kikki.k), but for now, I think M&R journals will work out well for me 🙂
Pen, Felt Pens, Photo Printer (maybe), Washi Tapes + STICKERSSSS:
Somewhere during my university years, I developed a strong dislike towards using pencil for note-taking. Pencils used to make me feel very safe since nothing I wrote is absolute. Mistakes can always be removed and replaced. On the other hand, with pens, corrections are always very obvious. I used to not be okay with using correction tape because that clearly means I’ve “done something wrong”… but eventually, I learned to cope with it and turned out to really love using pens.
Actually, only gel pens. Haha.
For my journal entries, I use any brand of fine-tip black pen (has to be black!). Currently, my go-to is Muji’s 0.3mm selectable gel ink pen. It writes soooo smoothly and I can alway depend on the ink being there when I need it (you know that feeling of having a billion pens and they never write when you need them!? ugh!)
I also have a collection of special (ex. glittery, matted, pastel) pens, but have not used them here for simplicity’s sake. I do, however, use my set of Crayola Felt Pens, which have been sitting on my shelve for a while. Surprisingly, they work quite well with my Molly & Rex planners! The colors show up vibrant and doesn’t smudge.
Year ago, I bought one of those Instax Camera Printer by Fuji and am still using it to date. The version I am using is the sp1 and it still prints photos well. I dislike the idea of having to replace workable things just because a newer version is out…so I guess I’ll be using mine until it decides to retire! Including photos is an excellent way to sum up what you did a particular day. For example, I recently went to the Marine Mammal Rescue and wrote a journal entry about that. I included two captures of the cutest and chubbiest seals! On the flip side, Instax films are not cheap… it comes to about $1 per print, so I wouldn’t go crazy on it!
Washi tapes are probably the best invention for all those who journal and scrapbook. I would say I accumulated quite a rather impressive collection (just a few are shown here hehe) and their origin is either from Michael’s, or from my friends who mail them to me from overseas.
I am a MAJOR, crazy stickers lover and have SO MANY that I actually question if I am borderline insane in this category. Well well well, journaling allows me to burn through them, which is a huge relief. Some stickers lose their stickiness overtime (especially the cheaper ones) and they no longer stick after a while. If you’re like me (a sticker maniac), you need to put your collection to use. NOW. I get all my cute and pretty stickers either from local shops or, again, from friends who mail to me from another country (i.e. Hong Kong, Japan). I actually thought of sourcing them myself and selling them in my shop, but…LOL as if I have the time to venture in to thattttt!
Above is an example of how I very simply decorated my journal. You can see how easy it is to set up. I basically divided the page into columns with washi paper and then add random stickers. The purpose of this is for me to write down the gist of what happened in the day. If there were days where I had to deal with feelings and emotions, I would actually write a full entry in the next pages. Sometimes, one entry can take up to 10 pages because I am so frustrated and upset.
After seeing a sample spread, do you how grateful I am at how pretty Molly & Rex’s journals are? It takes only a few minutes for me to prepare a week’s entry at a glance! Here is a close up:
And that’s it for today! I hope this post will inspire some of you to start journaling. For me, it’s not about how pretty I’m able to get the page to look (although it is a big bonus), but rather, it’s the fact that I’m able to gather my thoughts into one area. I find this to be quite helpful in stress management and sincerely hope it can help you too 🙂
Jenn + Bebe
Ahhh! I’ve been absent for months and I seriously wonder why I even bother to pay for a website…-_- Anyway!!! I free-handed a cactus last Sunday and have been wanting to share this with all of you. I hope there are no silly mistakes, but since I am typing this at 12:48am, I’ll keep my fingers crossed. Please feel free to message me if you spot anything weird!
Hi everyone! Halloween is just around the corner and I thought I’d share a little cute project so you can make one for yourself, friends, coworkers, children…etc! I’m all about creating patterns that are beginner-friendly and doesn’t take too long to make. Hopefully some of you will have a bit of spare time to crochet this before Halloween!!
Without further ado, lets go! Continue reading “FREE PATTERN: Amigurumi Kitten in Spooky Pumpkin!”