Monday, April 11, 2011

Longing for Egypt

Hello strangers! Things have been very busy around here, and as a result, I have been a total slacker about updating my blog. I'm back today with a layout from my Egypt album, a finished pin pillow, a cat story, and a new acquisition.

First, there's my new layout. This page had been sitting on my scrap table for a couple of weeks, waiting for sufficient inspiration to be completed. Then today, I was stuck sitting in court ALL DAY LONG. What does that have to do with scrapbooking? Just this: I decided to relieve the tedium of my unproductive day by reading a book, specifically, James Patterson's "The Murder of King Tut." I found myself thinking longingly of my time in Egypt. And suddenly, the desire to get that layout created was there. So here she is, nothing super fancy:

I don't think you can read the journaling, so I'm going to repeat it here:

It took only minutes from our arrival at the Cairo airport to realize how truly alien we were to this country. As we walked from the airport to the waiting van, we saw our first men in galabeas, and clusters of women in their robes and/or head scarves.
The ride to our hotel was an experience. The crazy drivers put the Romans to shame! I've never seen people with so little regard for the rules of the road... including the notion that staying in one lane was a good idea! The streets and alleyways we passed were filthy. Many of the buildings were only partially complete... possibly to avoid taxes due on unfinished homes.
As we neared our hotel, many of the side streets were dirt, much as they might have been millenia ago. And then we passed a cluster of camels, wearily podding home after a day at the pyramids. I was overwhelmed, intimidated, but excited. I think I was falling in love with a country.

What isn't in the journaling: we knew that we couldn't drink the tap water (or brush our teeth with tap water), so one of our first orders of business after checking into the hotel was to find some bottled water. The gentleman from our tour company had told us that there was a small kiosk around the corner from the hotel where we could get reasonably priced water. So after finding our hotel room, and paying a visit to the atm, we headed out the door. As soon as we stepped onto the sidewalk, we were accosted by an Egyptian trying to sell us... I couldn't even tell you what. It was so intimidating! He acted like we had met him at checkin (we hadn't) and started asking us all sorts of questions about what we were looking for. We turned the corner and saw a tiny little stand with drinks and snacks. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a man in a white military uniform with a very large gun stand up and walk towards us (Alton says he didn't notice this at all). I figured he was there to make sure we weren't being excessively harassed, but it was still weird. We got our bottles of water (less than a dollar apiece, very reasonable), and headed straight back to our hotel, the man who 'knew us' trailing us the whole way. I can't begin to tell you how strange and stressful that whole situation seemed to me. (weird, I know, but it just seemed like so much to have to cope with being bombarded as soon as we stepped out the door). We decided to stick with a hotel restaurant rather than try to find a place outside the hotel for dinner. You got used to the constant huckstering, but that first day, it was just... almost too much (for me, I'm sure Alton didn't feel that way).
So there your have it, our very first experiences on our very first day in Cairo. And continuing with the Egypt theme, I finished my limited edition project created by Shakespeare's Peddler in honor of the recent Egyptian revolution. I snagged a bit of chenille trim from Mom to finish it. Here's the front:

and here's the back:

This was a crazy quick stitch, and I love this little guy!
In my last post, I mentioned that my dear, sweet little cats had exercised a little destructive creativity of their own in my scrap space. I thought you might like to see exactly what I was talking about:

Sigh! Someday, I'm going to move out of this crummy little apartment and into a house, and when I do, I'm going to have a dedicated scrap space that is NOT in my living room. And this dream scrap space is going to have a door. A door that I can use to keep curious kitties away from my ribbons and flowers and things. Because some of my cats love my scrapbook products almost as much as I do!
One of the other things that I've been up to is graphing this little guy:

Yups, sometime soonish (meaning October, perhaps), you'll be seeing a reproduction chart of this sampler being offered by Cherished Stitches. I bought this sampler on sale, because I loved the bright pinks and turquoises of the border, and I thought the stag was cute. All that's left for me to do is graph the stag and pull the colors. Then I get to stitch, stitch, stitch away! I hope others will like this sampler as much as I do, and I will share progress photos once I am able to get to work on it. I'm hoping to get started on the stitching after the Easter holiday. We'll see.
That's all for today. If the scrap bug stays with me, maybe I'll have some more Egypt stories and layouts to share later this week. But maybe not. I've put off doing my tax returns to nearly the last minute, and I have another busy week in court ahead of me. Til next time, happy crafting everyone!


Margaret said...

Ok, I got distracted by that sampler. lol! Can't wait till it comes out -- it looks gorgeous!!!!!

Chris said...

Beautiful page layout. Why do the cats have to get in our stash?!! I just had to corral some of mine in a basket.
Looking forward to the repro :)
How is the Peach Keeper? It is on my list at the library.

Handmade Hannah said...

It is so lovely to see a layout that revolves around the actual journaling rather than products. Thanks for sharing :)

Valerie said...

Your Egypt layout is fantastic...what an experience!

I know what you mean about kitty terrorists. Mine two love, love, LOVE to pull out threads and drag them across the house. Go figure!

The sneak peek of the sampler has me drooling for more. I look forward to seeing your progress on the reproduction!

Blessed Ladybug said...

very nice thanks for sharing.. i love the pillow and the saying great job....

Tracy said...

Lovely layout.
Your sampler is beautiful.