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Lori’s Format

December 24, 2009

My “why?”

I’m a worrier, by nature. I worry all the time about everything and when something bad happens I think it was because I forgot to worry about it. I do not enjoy worrying. It causes me much anxiety and fear and it takes away from my quality of life. I realize two things about my worry; 1. it is a habit of thinking and 2. it is so ingrained that there is a fear that to not worry will cause all those bad things I worry about to actually happen.

I really don’t know how or why I chose to be this way, and oh, yes, it most definitely is a choice, but I have.  Worry is negative thinking; what if the car breaks down, I can’t find parking, they don’t like my art, etc… I am a slave to this choice I’ve made. When my children fell ill with the flu over Thanksgiving, I gave in to the worry in the worst way. And, it struck me, for the zillionth time, that I’m so busy worrying over all the bad things that could happen, I’ve forgotten to just enjoy the wonderful, fantastic little moments that are happening right in front of me. Life’s best moments are those little everyday moments that I take for granted. I know this is true and I am ready to change the worry cycle.

For me, this project isn’t just an exercise that sounds good, it is one I intend to use to change my way of thinking. I intend it to change my quality of life. As soon as I read about the project, I knew this was the vehicle I would drive for the next year to help me achieve my goal of breaking my worry habit. I knew, too, that in order to be successful, I would need accountability. That is why I’ve chosen to create this blog and post my journey with all of you. It’s, also, why I asked Karen to help me. I am one who always has wonderful intentions, but unless it’s for someone else with a deadline attached, they don’t seem to ever get started.

Karen, on the other hand, has great intentions and actually does them. I knew if I asked her to help me with this project, she would. And, I knew, too, that she would email me the next day asking me about my progress, when we were starting, that she already had the blog set up, and oh yeah, a list of the 10,000 brilliant ideas she just happened to brainstorm since we’d agreed to do it the day before and an, “oh by the way can we talk on the phone tonight ’cause we really need to get this going?”.  If you think I tease, I do not. Karen is a doer and she’s an amazing person, whom I am grateful to call my friend.

My Format

I will absolutely be using every format I can to get this project done. When I’m on vacation I will carry a small journal with me. When I’m tired and only want to update my blog, then that’s what I’ll do. When I’m feeling extra creative, I’ll do an art journal page. I like to keep myself open to how I’m feeling at the time. I know from experience, I will fail, if I box myself into one format. Because I intend to be all over the place with my format, I decided to build an album that could easily house it all (small journal page, to print out of blog page, to art journal page, to the random list I made on a receipt and stuck in my night stand). I decided binder rings would allow for that flexibility.

I happen to be new to fabric. I did not grow up learning how to sew. It’s a new skill that I am enjoying teaching to myself these days. I really wanted to use the gorgeous Eva fabric by BasicGrey to create my album. I have found that that purchasing layer cakes (one 10″ x 10″ piece of each fabric in the line) works perfectly for my paper crafting needs. I love the large size and the variety from which to choose. I love, too, that it comes packaged nice and flat, so no ironing is required.

The album itself doesn’t look like much because it’s not embellished, yet. But, I love it already. Don’t you just love the pink woodgrain fabric? It’s super cute! I cannot wait to get my super girly embellishments on that cover! The overall album is 10″ x 10″ with a 3 1/4″ spine (the binder rings are large at 2 3/4″). Below are the cover, spine and inside of the album.

I will share the finished album with you in January. If you like the idea of a binder album and the flexibility it gives, but have no desire to make your own, I highly recommend American Crafts D-ring binder albums. They come in many sizes and colors and look great. Or, you can simply punch holes in all of your work and use the rings or some ribbon to bind them together with no outer cover. I think some pretty ribbon tied in a bow as a binding would look pretty awesome.

I hope you are having fun thinking about your own personal format. Look for our next post on the Monday the 28th. Until then, if you celebrate Christmas, I hope you have a wonderful one!


9 Comments leave one →
  1. Gab permalink
    December 24, 2009 11:10 pm

    Lori, that album is just gorgeous!

    • lorigentile permalink*
      December 28, 2009 8:48 am

      Thank you, Gab!!! :)

  2. December 26, 2009 4:20 am

    Oh I am so with you on the whole “so busy worrying about what might go wrong (or in my case also “so busy noticing what is wrong”) that I’m not even noticing and celebrating what IS great and beautiful in my life” front. And like you, I really DO want to change my way of thinking and of seeing things. I am still not sure what format will work best for me: I love your format’s flexibility but I also love Karen’s focus on getting things done rather than worrying too much about the artistic side of things.
    I have a few ideas I will be working on this week and will share as soon as they take shape!

    • lorigentile permalink*
      December 28, 2009 8:51 am

      I’m looking forward to hearing what you decide to do. If you like Karen’s idea, maybe consider starting off using it. You can always change your mind down the line. I can tell you that I will be using her templates. I love them, too!

  3. December 27, 2009 5:05 pm

    I’m familiar with the worrier/warrier side. I’ve been working heavily these last years to change (by choice) the thoughts that I spend time with. I thought I had posted my format earlier but I can’t find it in the comments from the previous posts. I have a deck of cards (52 cards, 52 weeks) and hope/plan to do something each week in that size. I will probably start by gesso-ing a bunch, some white, some black gesso and then run with the weekly theme or thoughts running through the group. I’m looking forward to this. Gratitude is a big part of my life, my journaling and my meditation.

  4. lorigentile permalink*
    December 28, 2009 8:52 am

    Thank you for you words, Kim. I LOVE the deck of cards idea. I hope you’ll share your work with us.

  5. Debi permalink
    December 29, 2009 3:04 pm

    I too am a worrier, and have been working for the past couple years, trying to get it under control. I’m always afraid (see? another worry) that if I worry that I’m going to have a flat tire on the hill, I will attract that to me, so that began the cycle of worrying about worrying LOL. I now try to change the subject in my head (usually visualize one of my grandchildren) to stop the negative feeling inside me.

    2009 being such a rough year for me, I truely HAVE found gratefulness in the SMALL THINGS! Like having hot water to take a shower, or having heat, or having a comfy bed, or having a roof over my head, or having the luxury of having the internet to do this class.

    I’m sooo excited to actually get some of these things written down…. not just for ME… but for my grandchildren to read when they get older and hopefully it will teach them not to take everything for granted, and maybe they too, will begin a Grateful Journal.

    Thanks so much Lori and Karen for this adventure you’re about to take us on. I’m READY!



  6. Laura McCann permalink
    January 1, 2010 9:16 pm

    I LOVE your album girlie!! It looks fab!

  7. January 5, 2010 9:56 pm

    Love your album!

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