2013 Travel Christmas Ornament

Kangaroo Ornament by Natalie Parker

Here’s this year’s travel memento for our Christmas tree!

To recap, we pick up an ornament to represent each of our travels.  I was in Australia twice this year, once for work and once for school.  We actually haven’t had our big vacation trip of 2013 yet.

Sometimes with these ornaments, I love a piece of local art.  Sometimes, it just feels right to go with straight up kitsch.  How could I say no to the kangaroo?

Earlier: 2011 – Camel from Egypt, 2012 – Great Wall from China & Double Decker from London.

Paper Treats from Melbourne

Melbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerMelbourne Paper by Natalie ParkerI popped into any paper or card store I could find in Melbourne.  I wanted to buy so much more than what I ended up with – mostly because my bag going to Melbourne was at the weight limit!

Here’s what I ended up with:

1. Some cute long envelopes from Japan.

2. Paris notecards, 4 different designs.  I am out of notecards and am really glad to have these.

3. Melbourne notecards – these are produced from an old map of the city in the possession of the State Library of Victoria.

4. Nifty tissue paper that is made to look like clothing patterns.  This is a gift for my mom!

5. A world map file folder.  I think I’ll put paper scraps in this.

6. An I Tram Melbourne postcard.  The trams in Melbourne are awesome!  If you’re a fan of Melbourne trams, check out the I Tram Melbourne website for other cute goodies from this designer.

I also got a load of new birthday cards which I won’t post here lest people receiving them get a sneak peek!

Just back from . . . Melbourne

Melbourne Scenery by Natalie ParkerI was lucky enough to spend 3 weeks in Melbourne, Australia this month!  I was there as part of a study abroad program for my Master’s Degree.   I spent a lot of time doing schoolwork but also a lot of time getting to know the city.

Melbourne is such a cool city!  I wandered many neighborhoods and got some cool pictures.  Melbourne has embraced graffiti and I could not stop taking pictures of it all.  The colors were amazing especially because it was winter time and there weren’t any blooming flowers or leaves on trees.  I also tried to get my fill of passion fruit and Tim Tams . . .

If you were following along on Facebook, you saw one of the very old scrapbooks I got to see as part of the site visits my class did.  I got to see so many documents and institutions of memory – it reminds me of why I scrapbook.

Have you been to Melbourne?

Melbourne Skyline by Natalie Parker

Shopping for Paper Goodies in Sydney

Autralia Paper Goodies by Natalie ParkerAutralia Paper Goodies by Natalie ParkerAutralia Paper Goodies by Natalie ParkerAutralia Paper Goodies by Natalie ParkerAutralia Paper Goodies by Natalie ParkerOne one of my free weekend days*, I set out to go paper shopping in Sydney’s city center.   Being a fan of Simple Aussie Girls, I was too excited.

My favorite by far was kikki.K, which has a ton of locations in Australia.  I also stopped in Typo, Eckersley’s, the paper/supply area of Dymock’s, and even a cafe that doubled as a stationary store.

A nasty rain storm cut my trip short after the cafe stop.  I was very sad that I didn’t have time to get to scrapbook-specific stores, but they were a bit too far for me to get to.

The last photo is my little haul from the shops.  I had to be careful and get things that would fit in my carry on or else I would have bought everything in the stores!  I tried very hard to not buy stationary sets because I have too many, but I got some cool envelopes to go with my collection of envelope-less cards.  Major win!

*You thought I dragged Mr. P paper shopping, didn’t you?  Right.  He was only with me for part of the trip, and this is one of the things I indulged in on my own.

Life in Sydney

Sydney, AustraliaSydney, AustraliaAustralia by Natalie Parker 3Sydney, AustraliaAustralia by Natalie Parker 5Australia by Natalie Parker 6Australia by Natalie Parker 7Sydney, AustraliaSydney, AustraliaIt’s only the end of January and 2013 is already a whirlwind.  I just got back from an extended business trip and was on the other side of the world since early January.

Although I was very very busy with work, I managed to drag Mr. P with me for one of the weeks for some sightseeing.  I wasn’t about to waste visiting a new country (and a new continent!).

I’ll say this – Sydney has some crazy weather.  My vision of beautiful summer days was set straight when the temp went from 108 one day to 75 the next and then rain on the weekend.  I got to be there for the history-making hottest day ever in Sydney – 113 degrees with humidity to match!  At 15 hours, it was also the longest plane ride I’ve ever taken.

I had such a great time and was so glad my passport got to help start the year off right!