Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Girl Piper - She's So Photogenic

So we've finally made it to the last of the pet menagerie. Today it's all about Piper, my eight year old Anatolian Shepherd.  As promised, I will be combining her post with projects. Yay!  In Piper's case, I will be featuring a few of my 12 x 12 scrapbook layouts of her along with some tips on the techniques/ideas used in those pages. I'm also including a few other pictures of her just for fun.

6 weeks old

Ask anyone in my family and they'll tell you right off the bat that Piper is my favorite. I'm not shy about it. She is the oldest out of my brood and I've had her since she was itty bitty.  I got Piper at the shelter when she was only about five weeks old.  She had been taken from her owner as the result of an abuse case.  It was rumored that there were others from her litter, but she was the only one I saw there that day.  At the time, I had just moved back and I was actually living with my parents while I shopped for a house. I went to the shelter by myself one afternoon and just fell in love with her. She's been my buddy ever since.

Graduating from Scotch Pines.

Piper is pretty darned smart and she knows it. She can be pretty darned stubborn.  The funniest thing about her is that she has absolutely no interest in toys of any kind and generally isn't that keen on treats.  All she wants is attention. 

This layout features my very first use of my circle cutter...or should I say first successful use of the circle cutter. Now...let me tell you one critical thing about using a circle cutter. You must, must, must use it with a glass mat. If you use some other cutting mat, you will absolutely hate it.  The blade will drag, you'll tear the paper, and you will occasionally shed tears.  Spend the $12-20 and use a glass mat. It's totally worth it.

Now I'll be perfectly honest. I'm not a fan of this layout. I like the colors and I like the primary paper, but it's a total lazy page. It's always bothered me.

I had actually cut the circles out for use on another page and couldn't bring myself to get rid of this fabulous orange patterned paper. (Oh...and for everyone who is probably wondering, I'm awful at knowing where all my supplies come from. I'm pretty sure this particular paper is from the Bohemia line by My Mind's Eye. I love that line fyi.) So...I used the cut sheet as a window and just added a couple of simple embellishments.  There is no journaling on this page because - well, honestly I just don't like to journal all the time. I would say about 75% of my pages have journaling of some kind. The rest do not.

The font on this page at this size is very small...so for those of you who don't like to click on additional areas...

"This is my girl Piper. She is my baby. I got her when she was just a tiny thing at the Canyon County Animal Shelter.  I was living with my parents at the time, after just finishing dental school.  She was such a cute little thing, I just couldn't resist her.  Thought she was just a mutt at the time, but now it turns out she might just be a purebred Anatolian Shepherd.  Either way I just adore her.  She's smart as a whip, but she can be a stubborn thing.  She is a good companion and quite the love bug, definitely a momma's girl.  She'll come to Collin, but only if I'm not around. Otherwise she just stares at me. Silly puppy. I would love to have her as an indoor dog, but she's got a little problem with nervousness and an inability to control her bladder. Still...she's just happy as can be. I love her to death. My sweet Piper girl."

As for her bladder issue, the vet refers to it technically as "submissive urination".  He thinks it came as a result of her abuse as a puppy even though I got her as early as I did.  She has gotten slightly better about it over the years, but has never really recovered. I love her just the same regardless.

This is one of my favorite layouts, I'll admit. I love the color scheme even though I'm not a huge fan of pink.  I think the hot pink in combo with the black and white just pops fantastically.  I also love the swirl pattern.  I would love to tell you where I got this awesome paper, but honestly I have no clue. (I know, you're stunned). I'm pretty sure it's made by DCWV (Die Cuts with a View), but I couldn't tell you what stack if my life depended on it. Just know I tore my collection apart tonight trying to find it for you.  My other neat trick on this page is the letter "P". It is a die cut P completed using my Pazzle - yet another awesome gift from Carole. Once I had it cut out, I coated it in Glitter Glue and let it dry. I love the sparkle even though I technically despise glitter (if you haven't heard my herpes of craft supplies line...well then...read here. I'm just that funny.)

But...once again, these don't always scan in the easiest way to read the journaling without the blow up. So...

"My sweet Piper girl. I love her to death. She is such a momma's girl...always mauling me for attention anytime I'm around her. She has the best personality. Always sweet and friendly (except for when she and Sadie get in a tousle) and always wanting to be right by my side.  It's hard to believe that she's already almost seven years old. She still acts like a puppy 100% of the time."

This page is based on an article I read in Creating Keepsakes magazine a few years ago. I keep a list of pages that I find inspiring and use them to scraplift ideas when i get stuck and run out of brilliant plans. I love the bright colors of the paper - I totally went through a phase of citrus style layouts - and I really love the fact that I got to use my Stampin' Up punch (it was brand new at the time). How awesome is it that I can make anything look like memo paper? I love it.

So...the 10 Lessons I've learned from Piper. Well...to preface...she and I have been through a lot together. She's my best buddy and I love that she loves me no matter what.  Even though I had a fantastic dog as a kid (I'm sure I'll talk about Keisha another day), I've never had a pet quite like Piper. She means more to me than I can even explain. So here are the top ten lessons she's taught me :

1. Love is unconditional.

2. Always be excited to the ones you love. (ugh...this was supposed to say excited to SEE...stupid errors)

3. Happiness is contagious.

4. A good friend can make even the worst day better.

5. Live every day to its fullest.

6. No matter what you wear or how you do your hair, a best friend still loves you for you.

7. Sometimes you have to fight for the things that are rightfully yours.

8. Life is short. Appreciate the ones you love to the fullest every day.

9. Personality is more important than perfection.

and finally...

10. You can never give enough love or have enough love given to you.

So there you go, life in a nutshell thanks to Piper. 

She's always such a happy girl.

Amazing dog right? I think so. She's made me a better me and I love her for it.

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