Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Here's Where I'm At, Right Now | No Card Today

I'm super close to quitting. It's frustrating enough trying to carve out the time to craft let alone blog and post and make videos and post and edit and voiceover and respond when there's three kids a household and a full-time job. I know you know where I'm coming from. That's the normal day to day frustrations of trying to get anywhere as a crafter.

On top of all of this, we talked recently about how I just don't want to. I want to WANT to make cards and post and blog and make videos, but I'm just not there. I'm tired. I'm tired and I'm sad that I'm too tired and then I feel guilty that I'm too tired then I'm sad that I feel guilty because why should I feel guilty?? It's a hobby. A hobby in the most wonderfully supportive community of fellow crafters a girl could ask for. I *KNOW* you understand, I know you know that real life gets in the way and we can't do all the things we want to do. But I'm still guilty and sad.

To add the icing on to my cake, my AdSense has been suspended for "invalid traffic". From what I have been able to glean from the internet is that someone somewhere out there has been clicking and clicking the ads and it has caused some red flags over at the Google. I'm not able to find out when or over what period of time this occurred, I can't find out what region this occurred on, I can't even find out if it was a real person or if it was a bot. But at the end of the day I'm responsible.

Don't get me wrong, it's not like this was a massive source of income for me. FAAARRRR from it, but I had hoped that maybe one day I would get enough followers here and enough viewers on the YouTube that it could at least supplement my crafty little habit.

So I'm on a 30 day suspension (that's why no ads here, folks) and if during that time the "invalid traffic" continues my account can be permanently disabled. Which means no ads, no potential for revenue and absolutely no chance of monetizing YouTube at any time in the future, because if it is disabled it is against policy to open another AdSense account. Which makes sense, I understand.

I get it. They have to protect their property and their clients and their *name*. I understand, I really do, but how am I supposed to prevent someone, somewhere in the world (or their bot) from going click happy on the ads that pop up?

I'm frustrated and I'm really sad about how easy it is for a faceless person somewhere to stomp on any hopes I may have had for the future here, not to mention any fleeting aspiration of joining a design team, maybe, one day, in the distant future. Maybe I know this person and they thought they were just trying to help, if that's the case and you're reading this, I appreciate that your heart was in the right place but it definitely isn't helping. So please stop, I don't want to know who you are because I don't want to feel angry about this situation towards you. You didn't know it would come to this because I can't make myself believe that someone would do this intentionally, knowing the potential consequences.

I can't even access my AdSense account to see where the clicks or invalid traffic was coming from, I certainly don't get a sense of increased traffic just by looking at my Blogger stats, I'm hovering around 30-60 views a day, sometimes more if I post a card. Sometimes less because I haven't posted in a while, I'm not seeing any crazy jumps in traffic to any particular page. In fact, individual pages views have been down lately, new post or not.

So what's a girl to do? Will they even tell me if my account is permanently disabled during this suspension or will I just flounder around in a sea of anxious turmoil until I literally don't have the energy to check anymore?

So that's where I'm at. I have a lot of thinking to do, and a lot to try and figure out. And I just don't even know what to do about this.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Simon Says Stamp July 2019 Card Kit | Just Bee-cause

Hi everyone, thank you for stopping by. I hope you're having a great day.

Today I have a card (and VIDEO!!) featuring the Simon Says Stamp 2019 Card Kit. Click the video below to see how this card came together as well as what I did for the *inside* of the card.

I don't normally finish off the inside of my cards, and it's really something I want to try and work on.

I recommend watching in HD over on YouTube!

I also really want to thank everyone who has reached out to me over the past little while to make sure that I'm doing okay. I am, it's just been crazy busy, especially now that summer has finally arrived.

I hope you like today's card (and video) and are inspired to create something of your own. If you haven't already, please follow me on the right side bar, over on Facebook and on YouTube! Drop me a line in the comments section below and let me know what you think.

Monday, 22 July 2019

Lawn Fawn | Bunny and Turtle Birthday

Hi everyone, thank you for stopping by. I hope you're having a great day.

Every now and then I get a special request. Someone needs a birthday card, but instead of choosing from what I have available, they want something a little more specific. This card was one of those.

I was told "something nice with a turtle and a bunny". Literally that is all I had to go off of. Ummm, what? There was no colour palette, no insight into what it was she wanted. Just "a turtle and a bunny".

Needless to say I fretted about this for a bit. I stopped offering custom cards quite some time ago, for any of you that have done this, you understand why. It can be incredibly frustrating when you think you've got what they are looking for, having literally put in hours of time only to hear "It's nice.... but maybe some brighter colours? or more muted? or something funner." So more hours go in, and it's not like we can actually charge for our time... I mean who is going to be paying for each iteration of a card because it's not "quite what I'm looking for".

So now for the most part, what I have available is what I have available. But this was for my mom. How could I say no? Fortunately, she provides me with quite a bit of creative freedom and there haven't been any flat-out "no" cards.

I stamped the banner, the bunny and the turtle (now wearing a hat) with Memento Tuxedo Black ink on 110lb Copic-friendly cardstock, coloured them with Copics and fussy cut them out.

I used one of my DIY stencils to create some fading grassy hills with Distress Ink and did the same with the cloud stencil for the sky. I then stamped some of the flowers directly to the panel and coloured those in as well.

I trimmed down a piece of perfectly plaid patterned paper (yay alliteration) and adhered that to the front of a standard A2 sized card base. I then trimmed down the coloured panel with the second largest of the Stitched Rectangle dies and mounted that on top. Finally I added my banner and my little birthday critters.

If I'm being completely honest, I was not really all that happy with this card, but mom LOVED it, and at the end of the day that's really all that matters.

I hope you like today's card and are inspired to create something of your own. If you haven't already, please follow me on the right side bar, over on Facebook and on YouTube. Drop me a line in the comments section below and let me know what you think.