Sunday, May 24, 2015

Beautiful - The Studio Challenges

My One Little Word this year is still, and recently I had an overwhelming impression to act on it. At that moment, finding a way to be still was as important as continuing to breathe. 

A little background.... I've had several unexpected challenges thrown my way in the past six weeks or so, and I had to say "no" to some commitments. The things I said "no" to were things I could not manage to do, no matter how I edited my schedule and rearranged other commitments. I was truly between a rock and a hard place. I thought people would understand, trust that I tried my best, but not all of them have. Instead, I've been made to feel guilty.

Have you noticed this? Women airing their crazy-busy to-do lists, comparing their overfull plates as if to say, "Oh yeah? Well, my list is twice as long and I'm managing it.What's your problem?" Well, I see two problems here. One, we shouldn't be basing our value on how busy we are. I'm not more or less important/good/worthy because of the length of my to-do list. Two, I can't see someone else's entire to-do list. As women, we deal with much more on any given day than what we wrote in our planners or scribbled on a post-it note. You don't really know how much is on my plate. It might look like a dessert plate from where you stand, but that's an illusion of perspective. My plate is more like a platter. Everyone's is.

When that overwhelming impression to be still hit, I turned to something I love to do and haven't been able to do as often or as freely as I would like to lately - scrapbooking. Fiddling with paper and glue restores a sense of control within me. It also gives me the chance to relax and get lost in my own thoughts. Putting this page together was just the amount of still I needed, and it allowed me to process what I had been feeling about the consequences of saying "no". At any rate, you're probably just here for the layout, so here it is :).

There's a new challenge at The Studio Challenges today - white on white. 

I found that the trick to this challenge was starting with a great photo. All of the white elements keep the focus on the photo, and I love that. I did feel the need to throw in the colored flowers and alpha, but by placing them over the corner of the photo, I didn't feel like I was cheating ;).

All the white papers are DCWV - background cardstock, embossed cardstock, vellum, and printed vellum. 

For more details about the challenge, and to see the rest of the design team's takes, click here.

Thanks for stopping by today, and hearing me out :). Have a great week! Tessa


  1. This is gorgeous Tessa! That much white can be so hard to do - I cannot do it, but you have done it so very well.
    I hear you! At almost 40, learning how to say no gracefully and with confidence is something I have just begun to practice over the last few years. It takes practice, and yes I often do still feel guilty. (and still find myself saying "yes" when what I really should have said was "let me think about it and I'll get back to you.") I was raised to "give everything" but figuring out what exactly that means has not always been easy - give everything to whom and always? and at what cost to myself and my family? I continue to strive for balance - I know it is not something that I can check off on a list someday, to "arrive" at balance, it is a give and take and "work in progress" but the more comfortable I become with saying "no" after careful deliberation, the more at ease I feel with my "balancing act."
    Hang in there,
    Shanna :)

    1. Thanks, Shanna! Balance was my One Little Word a few years ago, and every year I feel like I need to adopt it again. It's an ongoing learning process, isn't it?! I appreciate the support and your willingness to share with me!


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