Simply Read, Rifle, CO
photo by Tobin Sanson

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Beach Vacation

No summer vacation is complete without a visit to the beach!

The week after wrapping up the school year and packing up the classroom I headed to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida with my dear friend Kelly Philbin. Kelly teaches 1st grade at my school and seems to get my sense of humor. She's kind, endearing, and a ton of fun. She didn't even mind when I invited myself along on her summer trip to visit her father.

We spent a long weekend riding around in Kelly's dad's blue mustang convertible, plucking Jimmy Choo sunglasses out of the Atlantic, drinking a variety of vodka drinks, laying in the sun, swimming in the sea, and riding stand up paddle boards.

It was a glorious week and a perfect start to the summer.

Mary Shedd!

Kelly paddle boarding in the Atlantic

I love paddle boards. If anyone hears of a cheap one, please let me know!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Recycled Goods Journal made from prAna Bags and Tags

This is a blog post I wrote for prAna a few weeks back. Thought I'd share it here as well.  Enjoy. . .

My boyfriend lives in fear that I’m going to become a hoarder, this coming from the man who has no less than 12 backpacks in our basement. Maybe it’s a true that I have a hard time throwing away perfectly useful things like gift bags, clothing tags, and pretty catalogs. Especially when these types of items hold so much potential if I can just find the time.
With school out for the summer, and my local climbing crag closed due to flooding, I’ve finally found an afternoon to put my collection of prAna clothing tags and shipping bags to use. What resulted was a one-of-a-kind journal, made entirely from stuff lying around my bedroom.
These recycled goods journals are easy to put together and can be made out of just about any recycled paper product. Check out this quick video to see how…
« cover paper (I used the prAna shipping bag that arrived in the mail yesterday)
« insert paper (anything will do, a favorite page from a catalog or an old paper gift bag. I used some scrap scrapbook paper I had lying around)
« cover board (the backs of old notebooks work great)
« pages (I ripped some extra sheets out of an old notebook, but any recycled computer paper would do as well!)
« something for the band (I used the pretty prAna tags that were attached to my new clothes)
« magnets
« string
« needle
« glue
« scissors
« drill with a small drill bit
1. Decide the size of you completed book and write it down on a sheet of paper.
2. Cut
«  2 covers that are 1 inch taller and 1 inch wider than the completed book size.
«  2 pieces of cover board that are the same height but ¼ inch less wide as your completed book size
«  cut off a 1 inch strip of each piece of cover board and save both pieces.
«  2 inserts that are ½ inch less tall and wide as completed size of book.
«  Inside pages that are the same size as competed book size, cut as many as you’d like/
3. Glue
«  Cover board to the back of both covers so that it is centered and there is a ¼ inch gap between 1 inch strip and larger piece.
«  Flip over and smooth wrinkles with the edge of a plastic ruler or chopstick
«  Glue a 1 inch strip of regular paper into the ¼ inch gap so that it overlaps coverboard on either side. This will reinforce the books hinge.
4. Fold and Glue
«  corners of cover onto cover board and smooth with ruler or chopstick
«  edges of cover onto cover board and smooth with ruler or chopstick
5. Position and Glue
«  magnet onto the back of the front cover on the opposite side as the hinge. Cover with a small square of regular paper glued into place
«  glue the second magnet between the two pieces of your band
«  attach the band to the front cover with the magnets
«  turn the front cover over and set it beside the back cover so that the band is overlapping the back cover
«  measure about 2 inches of space between the two cover and mark the bands position on the back cover with a pencil
«  remove band from the front cover and glue into place.
6. Glue insert onto back the backside of both covers so that it is centered and completely hides cover board.  There should be about a ¼ inch boarder of your cover paper.
7. Insert book pages between covers and secure with clamps.
8. Drill 5 equally spaced holes along the edge of the paper ½ inch from the edge of the book.
9. Sew the book together with needle and string in desired pattern.
~Jen Vennon, prAna Ambasador