Which Way?

Well hello there!

Thank you for coming back to visit my blog. I know the past year or so has been really sporadic with my postings. There was a time when I was a much more dependable blogger but, somehow that got skewed while living in Chicago.  I'm going to have a moment of honesty with you all.

Chicago was tough! I LOVED it at first. And Chicago will always have a special place in my heart. But, the last few months were tough. I've learned several things after living in a big city like Chitown:

- I can do it. I knew I would and that's why I moved but, now I know I can definitely survive a huge, life decision. I can survive change. I can survive and I can also come back home. 

- Chicago is a city that is misunderstood. Yes, there is crime. Yes, some may call it the murder capitol of the U.S. and there is definitely still corruption. But, there is so much more than that. People who are FROM Chicago... love and defend their city with everything they have. And for good reason. There is so much that is positive happening in this city. People want to make a difference. People take lots of pride in what they do. And, as with any other place in the world, there are those who just hang with the wrong crowd. It is what it is. I've met some amazing folks in that city.

- The winters SUCK. I hate that word. But I hate the winters in Chicago even more. It's terrible. It's horrible. And I never, EVER want to live through a Chicago winter EVER again! 

- People aren't always nice. I mean, I know there are mean people no matter where you go but, there is definitely a "city" meanness that can be defined differently. Especially commuters who ride the public transportation system. People are grumpy. They don't want to share space. They just want to get to where they want to go. People are in a hurry. They don't want to stop and talk or smile. They like to wear iPod headphones and jam to their tunes. I get it. I did it. I didn't like doing it. But, I can completely understand how it happens. 

- Chicago made me miss my home. Skyscrapers are amazing. The people who design them and build them are extremely talented. Chicago has the most gorgeous city scape EVER. I will defend that for sure! But, I began to feel suffocated. The building towering over me, that were once leaving me in awe, were now blocking my view. I couldn't see the sun. I couldn't see the stars. I could only see a block ahead of me. I missed the mountains. I missed the breeze coming off the bay (it is definitely different than a lake breeze!) and I missed the culture of the Pacific Northwest. You just can't beat it! 

All this to say, I'm so thankful for Chicago and having the opportunity (and gumption) to make the move there. I don't regret it. I embrace it and I'm still taking time to ponder all that I learned while living there and applying it here. I definitely missed my friends and my family. I appreciate them all the more! 

Now, I'd like to share with you a layout I didn't get a chance to post last month. It's using the June kit DIRECTION, from Inside Out and I take some time to record "Which Way?"

Every single one of us has come to a cross roads at some point in our life. We've been faced with a choice of some sort.  For this layout, I wanted to do some contradicting with the symbolism. I pulled both arrows and geo tags. I see the arrows as being the choice givers... similar to a road sign... "this way to this town" or "this way to that town", etc., etc. And the geo tags mark where I am or have been. Kind of like when you open up your map on Facebook, it has geo tags of everywhere you have checked in or took a photo, etc. 

I wanted this layout to have lots of movement. Not to cause confusion or frustration but to exude opportunity! Because that is where I'm at right now. Especially after experiencing two big cross-country moves. It's an opportunity! A chance to explore, to learn something new about myself and to grow as a human being. I love it!

This layout is a favorite of mine. I chose a white backdrop because I like the openness it symbolizes. The world is our canvas. We can make it look any way we want it to! 

I'll be back later, on my blog, to share some design notes about this layout. I had a lot of fun playing with the stencil from The Crafters Workshop! I am really loving stencils right now! It's forcing me out of my "clean and simple" box and I reeeeeeeeally like it!

Thanks for swinging by today and taking the time to read this post! I know it was a lot to read through. You all are the best!