Saturday, May 19, 2018

Ep 39: Doctors Who Create with Vidya Viswanathan

It is always a joy to see creativity bloom where you least expect it. I am speaking with student physician Vidya Viswanathan today, the founder of Doctors Who Create. Vidya and her team are on a mission to change the culture of medicine by fostering creativity. It is such a delight to see colleagues in medicine with an interest in creativity.

Vidya had the chance not just to explore how creativity plays an important role in medicine but also how her experiences of travel and foreign language have shaped her career as well. There is so much beauty in hearing a story shared well, and that is what is in store for you with Vidya today! Her perspectives are very unlike any we have had on the show so far, but her stories still have a little something for everyone. I am excited for you to join us as we explore Vidya’s journey to creativity and culture.

More Creativity in this Episode:

  • Vidya shares her roundabout path to medicine and her biggest cultural influences.
  • Medicine needs the influence of creativity too!
  • Vidya wants to highlight the profiles of medical professionals who use creativity.
  • Vidya shares what gave her blog some focus.
  • The broader appeal of Doctors Who Create.
  • Vidya’s parents encouraged her to read and write and express herself through words.
  • Taking Chinese played an important role in Vidya’s creativity.
  • Dive into some of Vidya’s best experiences while traveling in China.
  • Focus on the process, not the result.


Doctors Who Create

Check out this episode!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

A new experience: Press-On Nails

I posted the following on Patreon on my podcast website and thought I'd tell the story here for those who follow this blog.

Today I’m writing a bit about some practical or frivolous knowledge. Which one of these descriptions best fits may depend on your views about personal adornment. 
I experimented with nail art. 

I grew up a poor kid; you’d now say “economically disadvantaged,” and was a pretty serious young woman so never was much into cosmetics. I now have the time and enough money to indulge. 

While I do get manicures and pedicures, I’ve never been a great fan of the manicures. Manicures never look as good as I’d like and perhaps because of my neck health problems are not super comfortable. 

Today I experimented with some over-the-counter products. I did some cuticle care with Sally Hansen items that seemed to work well. I have no financial disclosures here; I just bought stuff that looked like it would work from my local CVS. I found some imPRESS press-on nails which were fun, quick and cute. Even if they do not last more than a day, I like them. It’s an inexpensive amusement. 

The thumbnail was challenging as my nail seemed a bit flat for the product and the press-on slightly cracked at the base when I attached it. I found some nail decals and clear nail varnish and fixed that up. I’m sitting here admiring my creativity. The other advantage of this creative approach was to have something to do with my hands as I watched an online educational video. 

I had no idea it would be so easy to do the process, nor that the results would look so good. I’ve learned that they may last two weeks and that cuticle oil will help remove them. I also found some info on the internet that suggested using body adhesive, the product used by models and celebrities to keep garments in place, is a good option for less long-lasting adhesion. That sounds perfect for a party when you might want your nails to coordinate with an outfit.

It’s never too late to learn something fun!

Friday, May 11, 2018

Translating Inspiration to Scrapbook Page Stories

 Podfest is a convention for independent podcasters like I am.

I have some photos that I want to use to remember the stories of the event.

One of the owners of my local scrapbook store, It's All About the Scrapbook in Dixon, CA tells me that she likes how I have used ideas from brochures and magazines to generate pages.

At Get It Scrapped, where I am a creative team member, Debbie Hodge has had some classes on ways scrapbookers use inspiration in how one can jump start ideas.

With these ideas in mind, I decided to look through magazines for inspiration.

When I design a digital page, I usually compose a layered template that I can use for future pages. As you may have noted from the examples that accompanied my NSD 2018 freebie template offering, the same template can look very different using a variety of kits, photos, and stories.

Here is the page I designed along with the template I made. I love that the six tracks for the conference matched up with my template journaling spots. That was not intentional. If there had been fewer, I'd eliminate the unnecessary. Elements may need to be resized, recolored or repositioned to fit the photos and style of the page. That is where a lot of the fun happens, of course.

For example, I'm considering whether or not I want to change the font for the word PodFest. I think I 'm going to keep it as is, though.

Page Supplies - Kit - TLP_Snapshots_2018_Collab; fonts - Halogen Flare, Avenir, Bebas Neue, Solomon Normal, Casually, Helvetica; shadows and effects - Mommyish, Fiddle-Dee-Dee

I'd love to hear about your ways of using ads or pages from magazines or brochures in your storytelling. Karens Corner of the web has a Facebook page where you can reply and upload your images.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

38: Celebrating National Scrapbook Day with Nancy Nally

Do you know that May 5th is International (aka National) Scrapbook Day? By now, my regular listeners all know that I’m a really enthusiastic scrapbooker, and at the moment, I am busy creating a kit to take with me to Dixon, California, to celebrate this special tribute to scrapbooking. Although I have done more digital pages lately, I still love to take out my supplies and get lost in the world of cutting and gluing. In fact, I love getting lost in the whole dimension of paper storytelling! May 5th is a day to celebrate other things, too. It’s Kentucky Derby Day, Cinco de Mayo, Burgundy Day (the color-not the wine), Comic Book Day, Hoagie Day, and even National Seeing Monarch Butterfly Day, to only mention a few! Most importantly, may 5th is Silence the Shame Day. Mental illness is far too common, and it’s very treatable! So let’s all speak out, advocate for more resources, and encourage those in need of help to seek it. What did you celebrate May 5th? I’d love to know! I’d also really love to know if you found a creative outlet for telling your story.

I’m really looking forward to today’s show with my noteworthy guest, Nancy Nally. Nancy is both a columnist and a journalist. Alliteration in her name could be one reason why Nancy Nally is known, but she is also known for her nose for news. On today’s show, we discover the latest trends in colors, papers, and motifs, from here and abroad. We also learn about the job of a craft journalist, and about how Nancy found her creative approach. I first met Nancy through the craft world, and more specifically, via events of the AFCI (Association for Creative Industries), formerly known as The Craft and Hobby Association. Nancy is no stranger to podcasting and helped host The Paper-Clipping Roundtable, while it was an active broadcast. Join me today, and listen as we take a peek at Nancy’s creative approach, and as we also celebrate creative crafts!

Show Highlights:

  • Nancy discusses her career and blog.
  • The three craft industry-related websites that Nancy’s company owns-Scrapbook Update, Craft Critique, and the recently launched Chasing Dust Bunnies.
  • The kinds of crafts on which Nancy focuses.
  • Some of the really hot crafts, along with craft comebacks.
  • The way that trends filter down into the crafts industry.
  • The ways trends here differ from European trends.
  • The latest trends in colors.
  • Chalk paints are currently a big craze in Europe.
  • The DIY trend is going strong in Europe, and there is much to facilitate this!
  • Metallic finishes are very popular.
  • How to rubber and wood-mounted stamps fit in?
  • Nancy’s purpose-driven crafting.
  • How curiosity drives creativity.
  • What creativity means to Nancy.


Nancy’s websites: Scrapbook Update 

Craft Critique

Chasing Dust Bunnies

Please join our Creative Approach Facebook Page, and the Creative Approach Facebook Group, too!

Check out this episode!

Saturday, April 28, 2018

National Scrapbook Day 2018, A Digital Scrapbook Template Freebie

 This is a post to celebrate National (International) Scrapbook Day. I'm offering a free layered PSD template that you can download through the end of May 2018 at
This template is for personal use only. No commercial use. No obscene, pornographic nor illegal use. This file cannot be used in whole or in part to be shared, redistributed, sold or to create commercial products. Copyright ©Karen Poirier-Brode 2018.

My studies of medieval and renaissance art inspired my use of an arch window in my design.

I was inspired by a creative team task at Get It Scrapped. We were given the assignment to create a page within a page design. That led me to create a two-page layout with an area off to the side for part of the story.

I hope you'll try the design; I'd love to see what you do with the template. Tips - note that the paper clip is duplicated so you can create a faint image to have the clip appear as if it is under the clipped items.

Here's an image of the template:

Here are the pages I made with this template:

Kit -lgrieveson, cherish; Fonts, Chalk Line, Carpal Tunnel, Traveling Typewriter

Kit - DawnInskip, Good Fortune; Fonts - Bohemian Typewriter, ChalkLine,

Kit - lgrieveson- Hester; fonts - Avenir, Bebas

fonts - American Typewriter, Halogen Flare, bird - lgrieveson_tweet; yellow button - one little bird_one for the album; template, heart brads, tiny round brads - my design; all other papers and elements - lgrieveson_headintheclouds

 one little bird_origin: flag, flower, floral, patterned paper, rubber heart, button & and star brad, date tag, label, ribbon, bow, wood tag, staple, stitching, word strip with heart, word art - one little bird_scoop ; lgrieveson_harrison: Two patterned papers, asterisk, banner, gear, two transfers, button flower tag bit brad - jjstsept2014, fonts - zag regular, Bebas, halogen flare, Avenir



Saturday, April 21, 2018

Product Review - Lenny&Larry's The Complete Cookie

I liked a product from The Lenny&Larry's Complete Cookie company. Lenny&Larry's included one of their Snickerdoodle cookies in my BlogHer Health 2018 conference SWAG bag.

read the 8 grams of protein on the packaging and thought, "That's pretty good."

Turning the unit over I noted the serving size of 200 calories. I evaluated that half of one of these cookies had decent nutritional value as a quick energy boostCookies are processed food, and my philosophy is to limit processed food in one's diet. Half a cookie as a serving seems right. The foil-lined plastic packaging is quickly sealed with a rubber band or piece of tape. Like most sweets, I could not recommend it as a regular part of one's diet; howeverreviewing the packaging made me think this might be a decent treat. The taste would tell

The product tasted delicious. I noted great cinnamon and sugar chewiness like I'd expect from a well-made Snickerdoodle. 

The main ingredients are enriched flour, protein powderpalm oil, and sugars. There is long list of ingredients on the label that are not in the product. The "nonpresent" items listed are the subject of several current dietary concerns. While the cookie is vegan and Kosher and avoids what many consider food no-no's, it contains gluten. In my mind, this is fine, except for those who get extremely ill when they consume gluten, almost always as a genetic problem - celiac disease. I know, many will swear by the reduction of inflammation by avoiding gluten hypothesis, but there is no convincing evidence of this. Well-documented scientific reference replies are always welcome; personal anecdotes are not. The last person who said she believed the gluten inflammation premise and felt this was important to her was eating a bag of Cheetos at the time she lectured me. Sigh! One of my relatives who is gluten intolerant tells me that she cannot fathom why people who can tolerate gluten attempt to avoid it. As she states, "The gluten food tastes so much better; if only I could eat it."

Great taste and the protein content make me feel I can recommend an occasional serving of half of this cookie from Lenny&Larry's The Complete Cookie


Cookie Decorating and me

 When I was at AFCI in Phoenix in January I got a few sample products to try. Manufacturers like bloggers to try their products and post our results on our blogs and social media accounts. Of course, they are hoping we had success and have favorable things to say.

One of the products I got was fondant from Satin Ice. Another item was edible glitter Disco Dust. I like how my project turned out and can recommend the products.

Satin Ice Fondant tastes sweet and does not have that intense flavor that many folks dislike about fondant.

I used a recipe from Joy of Cooking for iced sugar cookies. It's a little less sweet than a cookie recipe to be used without decorative toppings.

My little grandson, DC, enjoyed his space treats.