Saturday, April 28, 2012

Cruise Layout 1

I'm starting to do some layouts from the cruise. This is just a simple one of the ship and pictures from our first day while we waited to depart. The 'Cruisin' is a laser cut diecut I bought at a show. The laser cuts are amazing in the small details that are cleanly cut. I used my Imagine for the Mariner of the Seas title. The paper is Teresa Collins and the tag is 7 gypsies. Thanks for Looking!
Thursday, April 26, 2012

Cricut Cruise Thoughts & Creations

As many of you know, I went on the Cricut Cruise thanks to my DH. I wasn't sure what I would think of the cruise, but it is nice having everything pretty much paid for and you end up forced to relax. I'm used to 'go go go go go' as that is just my personality. Well, let me tell you.. when you have to take an hour and a half to eat dinner each night (unless you do the buffet thing), you are forced to relax. It was really nice. I would definitely do a cruise again. I don't think I'd take our children on any cruise unless it was something like the Disney one. I just don't think there's enough for them to do on a regular cruise ship. We did learn some things about when you're in port and little things we didn't figure out until AFTER the cruise (like things you can go get for free in each port if you go connect with this one person on board). In regards to the Cricut portion, I enjoyed meeting new people and making some new friends. The one thing I did for sure learn that I wish they had made more obvious is that you should book the cruise through the travel agent provocraft lists if you want to eat dinner with all of them. We upgraded to the dine when you want and found out that is on a separate floor entirely. They wouldn't change us either :( so I missed some definite bonding time so to speak :) We were able to see some sneak peeks of things coming. Give them some suggestions (good/bad) that they would be taking back to the higher powers that be. Of course, I had to show them the Imagine-Gypsy issue of the cartridges not working :) We played a few different games. A matching game that had pictures from cartridges you had to match. A CRICUT bingo game. A spur of the moment 'Iron Crafter'. Not everyone participated in this one. I did and tied for 3rd place with a quick mini album I made. We were given a set of items that we had to use and one hour from start to finish. It was a whirlwind of fun. I somehow missed that we could keep the items they gave us (quilling kit, mats, paper, etc). I did keep the apron after I asked if I could (they probably wondered why I asked, lol). You would win various prizes. I picked a Cuttlebug for the Iron Crafter prize. It was that or a cartridge from the one's they'd brought. They also did drawings. Basically by the end of the week, everyone had won a new cartridge (Chip Decor, Teen Scene, Garden Soup, hm.. and another I'm drawing a blank on). We were given backpacks, mini and regular size stuffed cricuts, credit to use online, rewards points, and the biggie was the Cricut Mini. So, you can look at spending the $300 in two ways. 1. You spend $300 for classes from provo staff and got a bunch of free stuff or 2. You bought $300 worth of machine/cartridge/etc. and the classes were thrown in. I had held off buying the cricut mini as I wondered if that was the machine we would get since last year I guess they gave everyone an E2. They brought the last gold cricut expression in existence and you could get multiple entries in it for each class you attended. Of course, my DH saw it and said 'THATs what everyone is excited about??? I can go buy a can of gold paint and paint yours for you' which just cracked me up. I personally would have preferred to win an E2, but it was cool looking. They also gave away the only 3' tall or so stuffed cricut. The last day they pulled names out to win cuttlebugs, cartridges, ink, mats, another backpack, stuffed cricuts, quilling kits etc. I didn't realize we could 'pass' and our name would go back in. They pulled mine out as a winner of a cuttlebug. Without thinking I said I'd take it. After I thought duh.. why did I do that. I have one at home already and I took one as a prize from the contest I won, but oh well. Figured I'd give it to my sister (shhh don't tell her). Toward the end, they were down to backpacks and stuffed cricuts. One lady won but had really wanted a cuttlebug. She didn't even know what a cricut was and we all got her addicted while she was there. I could hear the disappointment, figured I had one already and they are heavy to pack home, so asked Dan if I could trade her prize for mine. I figured my girls would then each get a stuffed cricut and we'd use the rolling backpack. So, we traded. Hopefully she is enjoying using the cuttlebug. :) We ended up using both the rolling backpacks. They are sturdy backpacks. Since they're that neonish cricut green, my one daughter really wanted one as 1. green is her favorite color at the moment and 2. it was a rolling backpack and she's been wanting a new one. So she has one and the other is for me to use. Hm.. what else. There were some various glitches, but technology is technology and you know how that goes. The one thing I was disappointed to see is how they ran their 'how to' classes. They had hour long classes for each machine and then CCR. They were ALL lecture and not hands on at all. For someone that really has never used a particular machine, this I think had to be the worst way to show them how to use one. I think they would have been great classes if they had done a very simple project like a card with each machine. Everyone pretty much attended them all even if you were an 'expert' as it gave us extra slips into the gold expression drawing. They could easily have built on each class. Start with something like the E2, then add the Imagine as they're very similar, then the Gypsy, then CCR. Oh well. They could have done away with them too. I don't know any crafter that doesn't help a newbie. That's one of the things I like about the get togethers. We share knowledge with each other and it doesn't matter whether you don't know where the on switch is to you create advanced things, we're all just having fun crafting. Anyways, we made a few different projects on the cruise. One of the key things everyone wanted to learn to use was Cricut Craft Room (CCR). I've played with CCR since it went out in beta to Circle members. I mainly use my Imagine and so it's always been finicky with it. It finally is starting to work better, but not quite there. They gave us enough insight/sneak peeks for me to know that they are definitely working on getting CCR to work all the way correctly with the Imagine machine. They are a company that wants to make money so there's things in the works that has them motivated to get it to work right. I learned a few things I had not noticed in the program. I do find it easier to use with a mouse than the touch pad on my laptop. So they had to create LAN basically since CCR is meant to be used online and the internet on a cruise ship is 1. expensive and 2. really cruddy on how well it works once you do pay for it. :) Below are two of the projects we made. I'll have to take pictures of the others.